I'll Clue Ya...

May 29, 2014

My Grandmother and my Mother, when truly wanting to stress a point , squint their eyes, point their index finger and say "I'll Clue Ya..." It is sort of like if the mafia threatened to cut your throat and then said "bless your heart".

Really?  What kind of clues? I always wonder if it is a murder mystery or are we looking for treasure?  Both are possible in my family.  Do I get to be Miss Scarlett? Did Colonel Mustard do it in the Library with a pipe wrench? Or, are we going to play Blue's Clues?  I love that song- "Everyone's looking for Blue's Clues..."

For years, my Grandmother ran a retirement home for other elderly ladies.   She had an upstairs apartment where she lived for about 20 years while she managed the retirement home.  For sake of convenience for her, since she was working a full time job in her seventies that confined her to her residents, our Christmases were spent at Holley House.

Each year, we loaded up all of our stuff and headed to Holley House for either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day dinner.  Usually we would do Christmas Eve with just our immediate family upstairs. Our immediate family consisted of my mother and step-dad, me, my husband, my daughter, my uncle and his wife and their two children.  We can basically all sit at one table- they have always been fairly low-key get-togethers.

The first year that I was married to my present husband, we did the 23rd of December at Holley House. I was so excited, my family was complete and we were going to have our first holiday with my whole family! Grandmother was going to be cooking a full Christmas meal for the residents, so for us she had prepared a ham, potato salad, baked beans, rolls, and deserts.  Keep in mind that this was after she'd already cooked three meals for 12 other people.

I was in the kitchen helping Grandmother, and my mother- who was running late as usual (this can normally range from 1-6 hours), called in to see what time we would be serving dinner.  She asked what we were having and I gave her the run-down of the menu.  She was LIVID!  "Dressing?  She didn't make dressing?!" She said it like the world was ending.   I replied "No, she has to cook dressing for Christmas day, so we're going to have ham.  No, I'm not crazy about ham, but it is what we are having.  So, come on now and don't be late."

"Well, then, I'm just not coming.  You are supposed to have dressing at Christmas and I want dressing! I didn't have dressing at Thanksgiving.  We have to change our Christmas and come there, instead of the farm, and we don't even get dressing? F that!  I'm not coming."  She slammed down the phone. My mother will always find a way to hurt your feelings and ruin a holiday if you give her enough time, so we were already off to a good start.

I called her back. F that?  Did she really say F that?  Yes, she did- to which I replied
"Your 71 year old mother has been on her feet cooking for a house full of people all day long.  She didn't make you dressing, says she doesn't have time to make dressing, but I....I am going to make you some dressing.  And when you get here you are going to eat every "F-ing" drop! So get your dressing eating ass in the car and come show some respect, because we're going to have Christmas and YOU are going to eat some dressing."

She showed up, grinned like a jackass eating briars, and had seconds, maybe thirds?  I can't remember now.  I do, however, remember my Grandmother saying this...

"We won't ever do THIS again, I'll clue ya!"

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