11.08.2010 by Andrea
This last Friday I had the pleasure of roadtrippin’ it up to Bellingham, Washington [accompanied by fresh new beats compliments of my friend AC] to visit my Gram. My brothers and I are fortunate to have grown up with strong family ties and wonderful grandparents. This particular Grandma fostered my love for Scrabble and word games. She is incredibly active, sharp as a tack, and naturally emanates nurturing bedside mannerisms from when she was a practicing nurse. There are always guests traipsing in and out of her apartment in her retirement community, it’s quite the social circuit.
Just a few weeks ago she took a pretty nasty fall so, I wanted to check in on her. I also knew that we would get down to business and enjoy wonderful competition, lively conversation, and a cup of hot tea over a game of Scrabble. We haven’t kept a lifetime tally but I am fully aware that my losses to her on the Scrabble boards are much like the Seattle sports teams of late. Nothing has changed. Gram put me away by a large margin. 53 points if anyone wanted to know.
I get pretty excited to play in part because I adore her board. I grew up playing on this board, it has history. It’s beautifully handcrafted wood, that is double the normal size. What can I say? We are gamers. Both her name and my grandfathers name are etched into the ends and the bonus squares are delicately hand painted. The craftsmanship on this board is exquisite. Lines are perfectly chiseled and letters just sit comfortably nestled into the squares we drop them onto. You would think with such a jumbo playing space I would have plenty of opportunities to score. Alas it just wasn’t in the tiles, I got trounced.
After the painful routing I got to eat lunch in the community dining room where she resides. My first official job, after I respectfully declined an opportunity to be a courtesy clerk/cart girl at a local grocery store [rain and curly hair – no thank you], was working in an assisted living/retirement home. It was such an enriching experience and hit home the importance of staying in contact with loved ones. Nonetheless, from what I recall the food there was traditional large quantity fare. My Gram’s chef, hits it out of the ballpark. Gram treated herself to a homemade albacore tuna salad, on a large leaf of lettuce. My Auntie J, had a cup of clam chowder.
Myself? Sweet and Sour Meatballs. Come again? Yup! I know, who would have thought? I had no idea the rich variety the residents are treated to.
Auntie J noshed on some as well. I also treated myself to a salad with mixed greens, peas, sunflower seeds, tomatoes and of course I added croutons [have to get the carbs in there somewhere]. The addition of the peas were wonderfully inventive and an even more charming surprise. If this was just lunch I can’t wait to visit for dinner. All the colors on my plate were so festive and reminded me of an autumn harvest. Add in some fresh corn and it was harmonious blend of flavors. I was in need of a nap after clearing my two plates!
I walked away a winner that afternoon. Quality time with my Gram far supersedes a loss in the battle of words. Tasty lunch and a full belly? Can’t beat that. Thanks for creating yet another great memory with me Gram! Until next time folks, happy eating.