Christmas is a magic time to step back into childhood, and I love to visit memories of Grama Bagley. She was chubby and plump (a right jolly old elf) like I have become. She had gray hair most of the time although I do remember her having a tinge of blue or pink when that was the Grama trend. She wore dresses and aprons, and nylons rolled at the knee so they would stay up without a girdle, and she wore black grama shoes with laces and stacked heels. She was definitely soft and squishy like a giant stuffed toy.
I remember going to her house at Christmastime to bake sugar cookies. She had really cool cookie cutters and she'd roll out the dough with flour on her kitchen table and then I got to cut the cookies out. While she transferred them to the cookie sheet, I'd eat the scraps. Scraps from dough that has already been rolled out is even better than the actual cookies! She decorated them like an artist. She even used paint brushes, and her Santa Claus cookies had coconut covering the frosting for the beard. She used red hots, and silver ball candies and sprinkles, and the frosting was made with real butter so they tasted as good as they looked. Grama could decorate cookies very fast, and my feeble attempts usually left me disappointed and impatient.
In the living room a quilt was usually set up. The furniture was pushed back to line the walls of the small room and we kids would play under the quilt while Grama and her friends sat around chatting and quilting. Their legs all looked the same from that vantage point, with the rolled stockings and clunky shoes, knees apart as they reached under the quilt to stitch. I listened and learned while I was laying underneath the quilt, staring at the pattern of stitches. It looked so different from the design being created on the top, with all the pieces of contrasting fabric telling stories of log cabins and sunflower girls and building blocks.
I'm the age Grama was when I was little. It would be so fun to visit her as she was then and as I am now. Our interests and hobbies might be different, but our goals would be the same. I really think we would be good friends. Maybe thinking about her this way is a good way to visit her.