I recently happened upon a poem, “Grandma’s Apron”, that I would like to share with you. It was written by Tina Trivett in honor of her grandmother. When I read the poem, I couldn’t help but think of my own apron-wearing grandmother – Ruth Baumgart.
My grandparents (Ruth and Gerhard Baumgart) and their four children lived on dairy farm in Wisconsin. They worked hard and lived simply. They raised a good bit of their own food which included milk, eggs, beef, pork, chicken, vegetables, and fruit. That meant that Grandma spent a lot of time in the kitchen… and a lot of time wearing an apron. Most days, she wore a simple house dress topped with a correspondingly modest apron. Some of them tied at the waist, while more elaborate styles looped over her shoulders and tied at the waist. Fancy!
Grandma was known for her baking. She was especially productive the weeks before Christmas. This was her time to shine. She made iced sugar cookies, spritz cookies, caramels, popcorn balls, fudge, chocolate covered pretzels, haystack cookies, chocolate & marshmallow covered brownies, pinwheel cookies, and so many other things I can’t remember now. Spending time with Grandma and Grandpa over Christmas was delightful. So many goodies. So little time.
I still bake some of Grandma’s specialties and use her rolling pin when making cutout sugar cookies and pinwheel cookies. I like to think that a bit of her soul is embedded in that old wooden rolling pin. People love my Christmas sugar cookies with butter cream icing, which leads me to believe that my theory is true. Imagine how much better they would be if I wore an apron while I made them!
Remembering Grandma, busy in her kitchen, wearing her super-heroine outfit/apron, gives me great comfort. Even though she’s been gone for ten years, I still get teary-eyed when I think about her. She truly is one of the finest people I have ever known.
Here’s a video of my grandma making kolaches. When she gave the final rundown on the ingredients, she unintentionally left out yeast. Not something you want to forget with this recipe! My uncle Gary shot this video in 1987. Peanut gallery commentary by my grandpa and cousin Dierdra.
The poem I promised…
by Tina Trivett
The strings were tied, it was freshly washed, and maybe even pressed.
For Grandma, it was everyday to choose one when she dressed.
The simple apron that it was, you would never think about;
the things she used it for, that made it look worn out.
She may have used it to hold some wildflowers that she’d found.
Or to hide a crying child’s face when a stranger came around.
Imagine all the little tears that were wiped with just that cloth.
Or it became a potholder to serve some chicken broth.
She probably carried kindling to stoke the kitchen fire.
To hold a load of laundry, or to wipe the clothesline wire.
When canning all her vegetables, it was used to wipe her brow.
You never know, she might have used it to shoo flies from the cow.
She might have carried eggs in from the chicken coop outside.
Whatever chore she used it for, she did them all with pride.
When Grandma went to heaven, God said she now could rest.
I’m sure the apron that she chose, was her Sunday best.
You can find more of Tina Trivett’s poetry on her poetry blog.
A Final Thought…
Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool.
Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw.
They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron.
I never caught anything from an apron…But Love.
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