Snapshots by Gloria Freeland - Oct. 17, 2008

Between two hot mamas

When I awoke early Saturday morning, husband Art told me he had a plan for later in the day.

"Oh, boy," I thought. "I wonder what job he has for me to do now."

The stereotype is that the wife has a list of "honey-dos" she wants her husband to complete on weekends, but I've learned over the years that Art is just as likely as I am to come up with some such request.

I was relieved when the task just involved going along with him for a ride to Topeka. He wanted to see whether his car would over-heat as it had done on a previous trip. Although he'd had the car in the shop for more than a week, the mechanics weren't sure they had solved the problem and Art wasn't either so he wanted to check it for himself.

Ordinarily the idea of going on an hour-long trip in a vehicle that had been overheating would have made me nervous. But Art is good at coaxing our various old cars along and I knew he'd be prepared with water and coolant just in case we had problems.

So I told him I was game.

But we weren't going just to drive over and back. Art's plan also included a bonus - eating out at Olive Garden, one of our favorite places to get Italian food. So he, youngest daughter Katie, Mom, his mother Donna and I piled into the car and took off for the capital city.

Katie was squeezed between her two grandmothers in the back seat. It was a warm, somewhat muggy, day so she immediately shed her jacket.

"What's the matter, Katie?" Donna asked. "Are you too warm between these two hot mamas?"

Then she cackled her trademark raucous laugh and Mom joined in with a giggle.

"Oh, you guys are just too cute," Katie said.

"Cute!" Donna exclaimed. "You must be kidding!

"No, I think you're both adorable," Katie responded.

"Adorable?" Mom asked. "What exactly do you mean by adorable."

Katie explained that she thinks they're both entertaining and they both make her laugh.

I turned around and smiled at the three of them in the back seat.

"Wouldn't we make a cute picture?" Katie asked.

I had to admit they would so I got out my camera and took a shot of the three of them - Katie in the middle with each of her grandmas leaning their heads toward hers.

Katie's middle name Joanna comes from her two grandmothers - Jo from Mom's middle name Josephine and Anna from Donna's middle name Anna. I asked her what traits she thought she got from each of them.

"Well, I got my art talent from Grandma Freeland," Katie said, "and my singing voice I got from Grandma Vaughan."

"And I got my stubbornness from both of them.

"Stubborn?" Donna said. "You think I'm stubborn?" Again the laugh. And again Mom joined in with a giggle.

Katie continued ticking off how she was like each of her grandmothers. She said she got her smile from Grandma Vaughan, her ears from Grandma Freeland and her opinionated nature from both.

Her grandmothers wanted to know what classes Katie is taking, which are her favorites and what kind of make-up she wears.

The conversation continued all the way to Topeka, stopped long enough for all of us to chow down and resumed on the way back.

The car stayed cool the entire time, but the two "mamas" and their granddaughter between them kept the air warm with their constant banter.

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