Grandma’s last words

Make the guests some coffee.

Aunt 5 felt overwhelmed as new people, unannounced, knocked on the door and filled the den where Grandma lay in her hospital bed. Grandma had always been a hostess. Blessed with graciousness, she entertained friends and family for her whole life. Aunt 5 inherited from Grandma her hospitality and entertaining abilities. I associate my aunt with Pampered Chef products and Independence Day garden parties.

All month, relatives took over Aunt 5’s home. We came in and out until we no longer felt the need to knock. We never knocked at Grandma’s house and she lived here now. When we stood vigil as Grandma breathed her last breaths, and I felt the need to stay the night near Grandma, I hardly formed it as a question. I needed to be near Grandma and this is where she lived.

“Make the guests some coffee.” said Grandma to her daughter who watched as Uncle and  Auntie 1, their pastor and several friends filled the granny flat, chatting and praying. Humbled, Aunt 5 turned on the pot. Grandma was overjoyed as her new friends made themselves comfortable and sang praises to God.

I was quickly offered coffee the next time I visited and held Grandma’s hand. We heard her words repeated at her memorial that month.

I am grateful for Aunt 5 and her family for taking care of everyone in Grandma’s last days.

I am grateful for Grandma who guided us, even in her last days.


Rose’s Tip of the Day #1: Share your food

rose tip 1 Give your neighbors food.

I live the suburban dream because I have the best next door neighbors anyone can ever ask for. My neighbors have lived next door to my family for about sixteen years and in that time became my family’s closest friends. My neighbor has a habit, or tradition, of bringing food over when she has good left overs.  Every now and then, she will knock on the door and say, “I made fried rice; here’s some for you.” If someone in my family is very ill, she might show up with dinner. When I had laryngitis, she showed up with spiced tea. One time, she had enough of an entrée that I was pretty sure she made extra just to make sure we can have some too.

Every time my neighbor brings us food, or invites us to dinner, I feel that she is taking care of us and I feel that we are loved. she communicates her caring and love by sharing. So, I decided to pick up a new habit: when I make something I’m proud of, bring a slice next door.