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23 January 2010

A Lovely Lady....

As many of you know I was not excited about my LOA (Leave of Absence) from school.  Not in the slightest.  However, there is always a reason for the way things happen.  This is my Grandmother and she has the beginnings of Alzheimer's.  It's progressing at a much more rapid pace than any of us want it to.  When I'm in grad school I only see her at Christmas and possibly once during the summer.  It's not enough time.  I was blessed to be able to stay with her for a week after New Years and we had a ball!  We read (me books, her newspaper), we ate, we baked, we went to the beach, we went to the Aquarium, and we spent time together....

I took some pictures of her while I was there.  I don't want posed shots.  I want shots that are true to her and the way I know her.  Every morning from a very young age I remember her getting up, fixing a mug of coffee (her first of many), getting the newspaper, and sitting down to read.  In the summer she sits on her screened in back porch so she can watch all of the birds at her many bird feeders or sitting in the livingroom (as pictured above) looking out at the birds in the front yard (and feeders).  When I asked if I could take pictures of her she said, "Really?".... "um... ok... SURE!"  I took a ton in hopes that some of them would have her personality shining through.  I captured some that I love and I'm hoping for some more this weekend.

She's a special lady and I don't look forward to the day when she knows not who I am.   For now... we laugh, we eat, and I repeat things over and over again with a new spin on the answer each time...

G: "Did you bring the food in?"
Me: "Yes.  I put them in the refrigerator."
G: "Christa, did you bring in the food"
M: "Yes Ma'am I put them in the box beside the freezer."
G: "Oh the fridge."
G: "Did you bring in the food?"
M: "Yes Ma'am I put it in the cold thing  with shelves that helps to keep food fresh"
G: "Ahh... the refrigerator.... Good girl...."

And so it goes.... we've made a game out of it... and if it makes her keep using different parts of her brain... I say..... Bring it on!


junction said...

Enjoy! Your pictures do capture her personality. Good shots!

polly's path said...

she looks and sounds lovely indeed! Grandmothers are a special treasure. So glad for you that you have yours to enjoy!

polly's path said...

I emailed you some recipes but not sure if i used the right address. I just hit reply to your comments. I hope they got to you!

polly's path said...

Stuffed potato balls(because I don't think my emails through blogger got to you)
Start by boiling about 6 large potatoes as if you were to make mashed potatoes. Once cooked, you will mash them thoroughly, but only adding salt and pepper. Nothing else. Set aside to cool because you will be working with your hands.

The filling: 1 lb ground meat(we use venison, but use whatever)
1 small chopped onion
1 small chopped bell pepper
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
generous pinch of oregano
salt, pepper
3 tablespoons of tomato paste

Brown the meat with the onion and bell pepper. Add the spices and seasonings. Add the garlic and only cook it for about a minute. Lastly, add in the tomato paste. Cook for another 30 seconds or so. Don't forget to remove the bay leaf before you start stuffing. Sometimes I might add just a bit of cubed cheese to this filling.

To make: Take a golfball-sized amount of mashed potatoes in your palm, use your thumb to press it out to make a little bowl. Put about 1-2 tablespoons of the filling in the potato, then cover it with the same amount of potato, flattened out. Using both hands shape the potato into a perfect ball, making sure all the filling is sealed inside.

To finish:
Beat two eggs, season.
In another bowl, have some seasoned bread crumbs ready.

Heat veg. oil either in a "fry daddy" or a deep small pot. You want about 1.5-2 inches of oil, or enough to cover a ball when you drop it in.

Roll each potato ball in the egg and then breadcrumbs, and fry in the hot oil until golden.
I serve those with sour cream in which I might mix in some dry ranch seasoning or fresh herbs, depending on the season.

It sounds like a long recipe but it is really easy. Very yummy, too. You end up with about 12 or so potato balls.

Lea said...

Just happened upon your blog and it brought back such memories for me. My husband's Mom died last year because of Alzheimer's and what a sad, sad disease. I was privileged to oversee her care the last year of her life and I pray that I never have another loved one with this disease. It is so sweet that you are making the most of this time with your Grandmother, it will be a sweet memory for you down the road. Blessings to you!