One Picture, So Many Stories

My grandmother died when I was in the first grade, and a few years later my grandfather married a lovely woman named Marie. I’m guessing it was the first wedding I ever attended. This is one of my favorite pictures because it has so many subplots. Like ,why is my cousin Brian wearing a turtleneck in the middle of summer? Speaking of Brian, he hasn’t left a comment since I wrote a glowing essay about him. You know I love you cousin. It’s not your fault you were held back. You graduated, eventually! But I digress.

The picture has every grandchild on BOTH sides, except one. For years, anytime the wedding was mentioned, Ginger would always say, “Yes, every grandchild was there except ME.” I think the guilt has traumatized her. For some reason, Ginger elected to stay at the lake instead of going to town with the rest of us. Her mother is the one who drove us, so it makes no sense. Why would Ginger even want to stay at the lake with all of the fun people gone? Last time I saw her, I relieved her of her guilt. Obviously, since she was only about nine, it wasn’t her fault she wasn’t there. It was her mother’s. Aren’t they always the ones to blame?

I’m the super, cute kid in the short dress, dark stockings and two-tone shoes. That’s my “I’m cool and I know it” stance. I got that dress about two years prior, which explains the length. But I LOVED that dress. It’s actually one-piece, made to look like a skirt/top combo, and there was a small applique flower on the bottom portion made from the same fabric as the top. I thought I was the stuff. Well, here’s how I came to own the dress; You be the judge.

A new store opened in town and was holding it’s Grand Opening. My mother took me and I can remember sitting in the buggy as she shopped. I may or may not have been too big to ride in the buggy, but that’s beside the point. As part of the celebration, they were holding a raffle, and I made sure my name was included. I told my mother, “I am going to win because I am God’s little angel.” Humility has never been my strong-suit.

Soon they announced the big drawing and my name WASN’T called. Of course my mother didn’t make a big deal out of it because she was concerned for my feelings. HAHAHAHHAHAH, just kidding. She was all like, “I guess you’re NOT God’s little angel. You’ll have to work harder.” And thus began my life-long struggle with legalism.

Just when it seemed that all hope was lost, the announcer called the name again. And again. It turns out you had to be PRESENT to win. So he decided to pull another name out of the hat. Mine. Undeniable proof that God totally gets me! Being the sweetest child evah, I picked out a dress for church. Believe it or not, my mother didn’t feel bad at all.

Back to Marie. She was a lovely woman with a reputation as one of the best cooks around. Unfortunately, she passed away not long ago. In her honor, I’m posting one of her many recipes I remember loving. I won’t do it the disservice of a Moron Test Kitchen.

Mississippi Mud Cake

2 c. sugar, 2 sticks margarine (soft), 4 eggs beaten, 2 t. cocoa, 1 tsp. vanilla, 1 1/2 c. chopped pecans, 1 1/2 c. angel flake coconut, 1 jar marshmallow cream.

Combine and mix all ingredients EXCEPT marshmallow cream. Pour into greased and floured sheet cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. While cake is still hot, spread with marshmallow cream, cool then frost.

Frosting – 2 c. confectioner sugar, 3 T. cocoa, 1/2 stick margarine, 1 tsp. vanilla and enough milk to spreading consistency. Combine and mix all ingredients, then frost the cool cake.


7 thoughts on “One Picture, So Many Stories

  1. I have that recipe, haven’t made it but I have made some of her stuff…I have one of her cookbooks…and everything I’ve had in it is delicious, she was a AWESOME cook…

  2. It is delicious and I remember she always made it for the family get togethers. Joe’s father loved chocolate so I made that cake for the first Thanksgiving that I was in the family and he liked it. You didn’t say if you had tried to make it yet….

  3. I haven’t made it. I want to remember it as good. But you people could make it FOR me.

  4. The stuffed banana peppers that sister likes so well is in the book she should learn to make them.

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