I write this post with such a bittersweet heart. Right now my sister and I are sitting in my grandmother’s den recalling all the hilarious things that dynamo of a woman has said throughout our lives while she lays in her bed in the frailest of states in what has become the last stretch of her extremely fulfilled life . I first want to say how lucky I feel that I have been blessed to have her in my life for nearly 34 years. She is truly someone that I look up to. There are many women that I look up to that have great successes in their careers and while I find it important to empower women to never fear failure and set your sights high for your career, I find it of the utmost importance to have success in your personal life. Jobs will come and go and when it comes to your professional life you will always win some and lose some, but it’s who you have behind you with the ebbs and flows of your career that will determine your true success or failure. At nearly 96, I think I am allowed to say that my Nana has the market cornered on personal success. She is by far the FUNNIEST person I have ever met and had friends “for days”. She is everything I have aspired to be in my personal life. A funny, no-nonsense kind of woman who likes to swear and drink…….just kidding (not really)!! She and I have a lot of similarities in some ways and in many ways I find myself emulating her style. She doesn’t always sugar coat things (in fact it’s raw to the core), but everyone knows that her heart is always met with the truest of intentions of honesty and concern. Humor is a very powerful tool. To some it is not always understood, to some it can often be taken the wrong way, and to some of us it is the best way to get through the day. Laughter is the best medicine and my Nana truly has the most infectious laugh that I hope I get to hear at least a few more time before she goes.
I am so sad that I am nearing the end of my time with my grandmother and watching her once statuesque frame lay helpless in her bed is certainly not easy, but I am comforted knowing that she lived her life the way she wanted. She has a family that adores her, friends who loved being around her, a loving husband, who no matter what crazy thing came out of her mouth would kiss her lips three times in the morning and three times at night before bed with a “Hello, doll” or “Night, doll”. Well, Nana, it won’t be long before you can see your handsome Captain and “Oh, Lord, Child, wouldn’t that be a scene.” All my love to you, Nana. You are an amazing woman and I feel lucky to have you in my life.
These are some of our all-time favorite Nana quotes. I should probably put a disclaimer by each one and I really hope no one gets offended, but this is our Nana and she didn’t tie it up and put a bow on it, so neither will I.
“It’s not that I don’t like that picture, doll, it just doesn’t do you justice”.
“Well, everybody and their brother is here today.”
“She’s pleasant, she’s just not the brightest hen in the house.”
“She’s so cheap she wouldn’t give you a postage stamp.”
“Well, hey there, sugarfoot.”
“She says she a size 8, size 8 my foot.”
“Home again, home again jiggety jig.”
“That’s high as a cat’s back.”
“Katy, bar the door”
“And I said to him ‘Friel, don’t you ever give up drinking for Lent again! You are such a drip’”
“She’s dead. He’s dead. They’re all dead. Guess I’m next.”
“If I’m here next year.”
“Oh, Lord, child, wouldn’t that be a scene.”
“I stood there with my cigarette in one hand and my drink in the other and waved at my priest and I knew I was meant to be an Episcopalian.”
“Friel, you jackass, get off the roof Steve’s here.”
- - 1 cup quick grits (dry, cooked per instructions on box)
- - 3 beef buillon cubes (add to water for grits)
- - 3 tbsp butter or margarine (Smart Balance Light can be used)
- - 3 eggs (egg whites can be substituted)
- - 1/2 cup 2% milk (if you use skim only use 1/3 cup)
- - 1 pound hot sausage (can use turkey sausage and add 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes)
- - 2 cups shredded mild cheddar cheese
- - 1/8 tsp black pepper
- Cook grits per instructions on box. Add beef buillon cubes to water before boiling.
- In a bowl, combine eggs, milk, 1 cup cheese and sausage and stir to combine.
- Once grits are done, stir in butter to melt. Add egg mixture to grits and stir to combine.
- Pour mixture into a greased casserole dish, top with remaining cheese and bake for 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees F.