When I moved back to my hometown, I dreamed that my days would be filled with moments like today.  Today, my sister Kendall and I, had a birthday brunch–in her new home–for our grandmothers.


How many people can live in the same town with both of their–not only living–but healthy enough to pop over for brunch, grandmothers.  We feel so blessed, and I am ashamed that I don’t take advantage of my ability to soak up their love and wisdom and grace and humor more often.


Kendall clipped these yellow roses and Queen’s lace from my Aunt Alice’s yard.  Then, she mixed some of Mom’s china with her own to complete our sweet table.


Kendall, I’m sorry that the only picture I took of you was when you lit the candles for those few minutes…before we realized that it was too cheesy to have candelabras burning at 10 am.


My tomato tarts were photo-worthy, if I do say so myself.


As was Kendall’s DELICIOUS fried okra salad.  I ate mine and then finished Mimi’s off when she wasn’t looking 🙂


We also made a ham and swiss quiche, fruit salad, and pistachio muffins.  It was good.  I tell it like it is, and there wasn’t a bad thing on that plate.

Along with the food, we reminisced over memories of Mimi’s husband–my Papa–who was Sheriff for 16 years and never once carried a gun…apparently he was intimidating enough without one.  I remember the man who used to take me with him to the barber shop, and bought me a gingerbread after his appointment was over.  A pig farmer, who let me ride beside him in his truck while my cousin Boyd (6 or 7 at the time) playing gate man–wordlessly hopping out of the truck each time Papa paused, to run open and close each gate that we drove through.

We also heard about how Mimi’s opinion that I was “plum crazy” for delivering a baby without medication.  She slept peacefully through the births of all four of her children, with the use of “some kind of gas”…I think I may request that this time around.  Sounds like a good deal to me!


Evelyn Runnell Clark, “Ruby Pearl”, Mimi, my Dad’s mom

We talked about the way Grandma still loves to sleep with her face touching “Sollie’s” back–despite the fact that he has been having recurring bad dreams about snakes, during which he nearly knocks her out of the bed. Is anybody else laughing out loud?

We compared my Uncle Greg’s night-time terrors as a six-year-old to Pace’s night-time terrors and decided that maybe she inherited her sensitive heart from him.

We laughed about how, with her first baby, Grandma followed her doctor’s instructions so to-the-letter (He TOLD her that her water would break and THEN her contractions would get closer together and she could come in to the hospital.  When her water never broke, she kept refusing to go to the hospital–despite the tremendous amount of pain she was in.) that she nearly gave birth at home with only “Preacher” (her nickname for Grandpa) to help.  Apparently the nurse said, “If you had stayed home any longer, you would have just spit that baby out.”  My water never breaks until the baby comes either 🙂


Catherine Evelyn Sollie, “Sister”, Grandma, my Mom’s mom

As you can see, Kendall and I may have rocked our brunch menu, but the priceless part of the day was the quiet, uninterrupted “girl talk” we shared with the these women we love.  Happy Birthday Grandma and Mimi!!! I think we should make this a new tradition.

11 Responses to “Hometown Living”

  1. Gail says:

    Love this story, Abby…Please write more!!!! <3

  2. Konie (mama b) says:

    I agree with this being a tradition:) I know you and Kendall made them feel so special and they are!:) Just spending time with them is the best gift:) BTW….BEAUTIFUL table and I KNOW the food was delicious if prepared by you two:)xoxo

  3. Kathleen says:

    War Eagle. Congratulations to Kendall. she was listed in the May 2013 program!!! am I right??? anyway Happy Mothers Day A.M. you still blog –thank you very much. One day you no doubt you shall discover instagram webstagram and well ce le vie(sp?) Dothan rocks as does the Fl panhandle (wink wink) oh have you ever visited donut King in Euafala Al??

  4. lori says:

    Love hearing about your grandma’s and wanting
    to soak up their love, grace, wisdom and humor.
    And sharing it with us. Thank you.

  5. Stephanie says:

    I read your blog as I Lay beside my baby girl, trying to get her to sleep each night. I laughed out loud tonight, but it was so worth it. Please keep writing, you have such talent and plus it brings real joy to our nighttime regime.

  6. Sarah T says:

    Abby, this is such a beautiful post! I love prying stories of old from my own grandmother. You and Keke sure know who to host an event!!

  7. Becky says:

    I love both your grandmothers and enjoy hearing your stories and seeing the delicious looking food and always beautiful table decorations! If I send Elizabeth over you think ya’ll can rub off on her? lol

  8. Jan Peel McGregor says:

    How beautiful and so sweet! Love Mrs. Runnell and your Papa was one of my daddy’s best friends. I remember him giving him a deputy sheriff’s badge to carry in his wallet. (It came in handy sometimes). I know both of your grandmothers cherished this day. <3

  9. Susanna says:

    I was referred to your site by Annapolis & Company {Mary Beth}, and I’m so glad she sent me your way! What a lovely heart you express here. Congratulations on your newest addition soon to arrive!

  10. Jennifer says:

    This is precious, I’m so glad you have these stories recorded here. My in-town grandmother is on a downhill slope, so yes, make this a tradition!

    (PS, I am a long-time reader, and now neighbor of your sister Caroline)

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