Sunday, September 27, 2009

Monday Memory - Spending the night at the Osgoods

As I've described in previous posts. on our family vacations we would usually stay at Grandma & Grandpa Graham's. As I got older, once in awhile I got the opportunity to go by myself and spend the night with Grandma & Grandpa Osgood. The picture to the right is of Grandma Osgood on Christmas Day in 1976. She's in the living room of their home in Fruitland. The walls were turquoise. How neat was that?

If it was just me alone with Grandma & Grandpa, we would have the evening meal on a little table in the kitchen. The table had fold out sides that would make it big enough for us. I was fascinated with a bug zapper Grandma & Grandpa had that was right outside the window. Mosquitoes were an issue with me...I always seemed to get eaten alive on vacation. That juicy California skin, I guess. In the evening, Grandpa would watch the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. It seemed like we were staying up really late, because at home in California, Johnny Carson came on at 11:30 p.m. In Idaho's mountain time zone, it was 10:30 p.m. Grandpa would sit in his easy chair and have a cigarette while he watched. The room always had a faint smell of cigarette smoke. It's strange now--that smell is such a turn off, but as a kid, I barely noticed. It was there, sure. But it wasn't as off-putting as it is now.

Where would I sleep? I remember a few times sleeping in the upstairs bedroom that used to be my Aunt's. (My mom's too when she was younger). I remember once when I was a little older, maybe 12 or so, when my cousin came that night too. She was just a year older than me and we always had a great time together. We slept in sleeping bags on Grandma's dining room floor and talked about all kinds of things pre-teen girls talk about. It was great. When I was older, I remember sleeping on the sofa hide a bed. By then, Grandma had a thing about protecting pillows and mattresses. So they all would be covered with plastic. Every time you rolled over, the crinkly sound would wake you up. Plus, it would get kind of hot in the summer. But it was worth it.

The mornings bring special memories of a very special breakfast. Grandma always had Froot Loops on hand just for me. I don't know when I told her I liked them--I was too young to remember. But Grandma always remembered. There was never a time when I was there that she did not have this yummy breakfast treat for me. It was extra special because mom never bought the sugary cereals. It was all business, healthy stuff. Mom stuff. But Grandmas are different. They remember what you like, and don't mind indulging your sweet tooth.

Grandpa died in September 1996. Grandma followed him in January 2004. Since then, the house has been vacant. It looks like my aunts and uncles are going to finally sell the place and finalize the estate issues. A part of me hopes that the place does not sell until late next summer. I expect to be in Boise in June, and would love to be able to go back inside the house one last time. Here is how it looks on Google maps street view:

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