Grandma Says..

Observations and views from a different set of eyes

Happy Tuesday Thought



Studying for the final for my first course!  Aieeeee!  But, wanted to share a smile with my friends before I get back to the books!  Have a great Tuesday!




What’s In Your Box?


Last week, I received a Panic Call from the Admissions Office of the University. They had requested my transcripts from the high school I graduated from but had yet to receive them.

I imagine that someone from my school was still wandering through the catacombs to find this ancient document and had yet to return from their dark and dusty search.

I was asked if I had ANYTHING that would prove I was a high school graduate. They would be able to accept a copy of my high school diploma until the transcripts arrived.

“Well, I doubt that after forty five years that I still have my diploma on hand, but I guess I could check ‘The Box.'”

“What box?” the admissions director asked.

With a sigh, I said, “You don’t want to know.  I’ll get back to you.”

I have kept up the family tradition, passed down by generations of McMahon’s, of owning a Family Box.  It’s cardboard and dwells in my closet along with unused shoes and the Christmas decorations.

What’s in it?  It’s filled with photos and family memorabilia that never made it to the Family albums, never earned a place of honor on the wall and usually, it’s hard to identify where the contents came from.

Many times over the years, I would stare at the box and swear to go through it and put the photos in albums.  Never happens.  When the contents threaten to overflow, I just go out and get a bigger box.

A search through “The Box” normally involves spending countless hours staring at dead relatives, places I can’t identify or people who have escaped into the dark recesses of my memory; their names just on the tip of my tongue but never remembered.  The box holds the memories but doesn’t always share it’s secrets!

A lot of hours are spent looking at pictures at a younger version of my parents, my siblings and yours truly and of course, my own little darlings.  I’ll shake my head when I come across pictures of ex-husbands and reach out to throw them out, but never manage to do so. They were a part of my life, albeit an unpleasant part, and they had earned their place in “The Box.”

I think the only thing that I ever managed to take out of the box and discard was the flower I so carefully wrapped in cellophane from the wrist corsage I wore to my Senior Prom.  It had turned into a dangerous looking fungus and turned out to be the source of that funky smell I noticed each time I approached “The Box.”

Having to spend a day or two searching through the box was not what struck fear into my heart.  I knew if my box failed to turn up the elusive diploma, it just might be in my deceased sister’s collection which I inherited when she passed.

She didn’t have a box like mine, she was a more prolific family historian.  Her collection is stored in two suitcases and three garbage bags.

Of course, my mother who is still alive and kicking (bless her heart) has a box.  That box resides in the state of Washington, where my mom now lives, and there is no way I’m jumping a plane to look for my diploma.

After the Admissions departments phone call, I did the next best thing than to having to go to “The Box.”  I called the high school and begged the woman who answered to help me out.  She took pity on me when I explained about “The Box” and faxed a copy of my transcripts to the University.

Whew, it was a narrow escape!  Now I can rest easy and get back to my studies.  I did make a note to buy a bigger box…after all, I’ll need room for all of those Christmas pictures I’ll be taking!

If my daughter is reading this, and giggling over my dilemma, she should be forewarned.  When I go, honey, you get “The Box.”  Tee hee!


Let’s Get This Party Rolling!


Yes my friends, today is Cranky’s 63rd Birthday.  So, where’s the party?

So, far I haven’t received one birthday wish.  Not a one.  Did everybody forget?  Am I expecting too much to hope that my loved ones and friends would have circled this day on the calendar?

There’s no party hats, no balloons and my phone is dead silent.  You would think that such an important day would at least call for one lousy “Happy Birthday” wish, right?

I realize that 63 is not a milestone birthday filled with Hallmark cards that read, “Fifty Is Nifty” or “Sixty and Still Sexy!” but even a boxed card would be nice.  Do I have to wait another couple of birthdays to get a “Sixty Five And Still Alive” banner hanging amid a room filled with black balloons and a cake sinking under the weight of dozens upon dozens of blazing candles?

I crammed this week took all my tests so if I happened to imbibe a little too much Diet Pepsi at the festivities, I would still be able to take time to recuperate before hitting the books again!  So, where’s the party?

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Oh, wait a minute!  I just looked at the clock and discovered it’s only 5:30 AM.  Okay, it might be a wee bit early for people to start celebrating.

So, I’m going back to bed.  Wake me up when the party starts!




No Words Needed



God Bless all of our military heroes, both home and abroad.  God Bless those Veterans who served on foreign lands or defended our homeland. God Bless those who made the ultimate sacrifice and did so willingly.

Let us never forget to thank a Veteran for their service, not just today, but every day!  They are the reason we are the Home of the Brave and the Land of the Free!

Happy Veterans Day!

1 Comment »

Words to Remember


Found this early this morning and just felt I had to share it.  It just spoke to me and the way I’ve lived my life and continue to live it…away from the crowd.

Have a great Sunday!



And That’s A Fact, Jack!



We Haven’t A Clue!


Yesterday morning, I was cooking breakfast when Danny called to me and asked where the yellow pad was that we leave on the patio table.

“It should be right there on the table.  You used it last night!”

“It’s not here.”

Danny had written some measurements on the ever-present pad the evening prior and he used the cardboard backing to write phone numbers on.  This made it mandatory that I stop in my tracks, put breakfast on hold and focus all my attention on finding the missing pad.

Danny’s memory has suffered a bit due to the medications he takes, so I assumed (and we all know what assume means) that he just misplaced it.

So, the location of this yellow pad became the object of a major search throughout the house.  Every room was scoured…the garage underwent a major investigation and both cars were strip searched. Garbage cans were inspected (always a delightful undertaking, especially since I just emptied coffee grounds into the kitchen trash) but no sign of the elusive pad could be found.

“It’ll show up.” my optimistic self told Dan.  I scuttled back to the stove and tried to save the sausage gravy that now looked like wallpaper paste and whipped up another batch of biscuits (the first batch seemed to have turned into missiles after sitting in the oven too long).

We sat down to breakfast, and I knew that we were both playing the “blame” game in our thoughts.

“He lost it somehow.”

“She put it somewhere.”

I glanced over to Buddy, our now well-behaved puppy and noticed he was chewing happily on something that didn’t look like one of his chew toys. I had found the culprit. I went out and removed the one-inch piece of paper from his jaws and went in search of the rest of the pad.  No trace evidence was found until I looked at Buddy’s “leavings” on the lawn.

“I found the pad” I yelled “but I don’t think you want it back.”

“Why would the dog eat a pad of paper?”  Danny was nonplussed and skeptical that I had the suspect in custody.  “Paper has no flavor!”

“Well, he ate the walls!  They don’t have flavor.  He ate the remote control and I’m sure that wasn’t a culinary delight.  But, if you have any doubts, come on out and take a look!”

We returned to our breakfast (Danny ate his…my appetite seemed to have diminished since finding the evidence in the yard) and decided that we had to clear the patio table from now on before we closed up shop for the night and went to bed.

Last night, we removed all temptation but felt comfortable leaving our cigarettes (no sermons please…we know…we know) and lighters in the very middle of the table.  Buddy had never shown interest in taking up smoking, so we felt safe and secure.

I awoke this morning before dawn and headed out to the patio for a smoke and couldn’t find my pack of cigarettes.  Danny’s pack seemed to be among the missing also.

I immediately woke up Buddy and told him to cough up the cigarettes.  They don’t come cheap and they are dangerous for dogs.  He just gave me the “who me?” look and slunk away.  I grabbed a flashlight and found the “cig burgler” had evidently found cigarettes distasteful, but the packs they came in were quite tasty.  I found two piles of “smoking gun” materials, one in the pool area and one on the lawn.

Now, I’m relieved that he didn’t eat all the cigarettes as nicotine poisoning is very dangerous to animals.  The perpetrator ate a hearty breakfast and woofed down his usual gallon of water, so I don’t think he ate any of them.  Cigarettes are costly but not as expensive as an emergency visit to the vet would be.

So, Buddy is now on “lock down” for the morning…no treats for him!  And, I’ll be keeping careful surveillance on his “movements” during the day and try to catch him in action if he tries to become a repeat offender.

Why do dogs eat paper, plastic, and nasty nicotine products?  We don’t know…we haven’t a clue.  But, vigilance will be maintained to prevent him from becoming a “Serial Chewer!” and to keep him from continuing his life of crime.

Holy shades of “Marley and Me!” I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next to test our patience…I’m sure it’ll be fun for him…not so much for us!  Guess it’s time to rethink our decision not to seek behavior classes.  Silly Us!


There’s Something Spooky Going On!

Halloween-Night-Animated-Wallpaper_Okay, I know it’s the month when ghouls and goblins run rampant and try to spook us mere mortals.  But, it seems that one or two have been floating around my site lately and it’s starting to send chills down my spine!

Some unexplained phenomena I’ve been experiencing has me shaking my head and I’ve started to wear a garlic pendant around my neck.  I’m not easily spooked…well, not unless I’m reading a horror novel or watching a rerun of “The Ring.”  But, now I’m almost afraid to check my site and see what the ghosties have done to my posts.

While Danny was in the hospital, I couldn’t check my stats so it was a week later before I discovered that one of my posts titled “Watch Out For Those Gallinippers” caused a dramatic rise in my stats…all in one day!  If you haven’t read it, it’s about mosquitoes, okay, really large mosquitoes that were threatening my little tropical state of Florida.  It was funny (if I say so myself) but not really worthy of being viewed over two hundred and fifty times…all in one day…months after I published it. Spooky, right?

Then, this morning, I checked my site to find a mysterious thing had occurred.  In answer to one of Bastet’s Pixleventures challenges, I posted a gallery of black and white pictures on my sister site, “A Dream Come True.” I had reblogged it (I share…yes I do…with my faithful followers on both sites) and somehow…some way…a picture appeared in my Reblog Post that I hadn’t used in the challenge.

It was a black and white photo of people jitter-bugging way back in the 50’s.  I had used this photo in a piece titled “Dancing With The Shakes” and it was about the new trend called “The Harlem Shake” which I posted in February (way before twerking came our way!).  How did it get in my reblog post?

As you can see, I’m confused and surprised by all these strange goings on…but, being the fearless Cranky…I will continue to post and hope that you will let me know if you notice something strange or unusual (now I know..I’m often strange and unusual, but you know what I mean).  Because, there is definitely something spooky going on here in Crankyland!


Happy Days Are Here Again


Why is Cranky dancing?  Why is she jumping for joy?  What’s the reason for her grin spreading ear to ear?

No, the Government Shutdown isn’t over.  No, she didn’t win the Lottery.  No, she didn’t wake up and find that she’s a best-selling author overnight.

No, my friends, none of the above are the reason that I now wake up looking forward to each day with a new, rejuvenated desire to greet the morning.  I’m just slap happy that the summer has ended…the humidity is gone and the sun is no longer burning up every living thing.

Our fall usually starts around October 15th…the calendars say September, but here in Florida we don’t get any relief from the sweltering heat until October.  We don’t get the pretty fall leaves, we don’t get pumpkin patches sprouting up by the roadside and the logs aren’t crackling in the fireplace.

What we get is beautiful mornings in the 70’s and the highs in the mid 80’s during the day (and the mid 80’s feel like the mid 80’s…not the low 100’s).  We get to go to the beach and be able to walk on the sand without peeling the skin off our feet.  We get to open our cars and not be blasted with the stored up heat it’s accumulated.

This week has been right on the mark.  The humidity dropped, the skies are clear and the roads are still relatively easy to ride (most of our Northern folk don’t come down here until November.)  So, I’m a very happy camper!

I am removing the “countdown” calendar from my site and hope that it will be a nice long winter for us here in Florida.  Heck, the coldest I’ve seen it get here in dead winter is the 30’s…bring it on I say!

So, I hope that everyone is enjoying their fall….I know I am!  Well, I have to dance on out of here now.  I hear some gardening that I’ve been dying to do all summer calling me!




Galloping Gators!


The other evening, as my canine and I were heading for the lake (a small pond, actually, but everyone calls it “THE LAKE”) when a kindly old gent stopped us.

“Better be careful,” he bellowed from across the street (most of the old timers here bellow at me…I think they believe that the ear pods I wear are hearing aids) and he cast a furtive glance in the direction we were heading.  “John told me that there’s a gator roaming around up the street.  I wouldn’t go down that way, if I were you.”

“Thanks!” I waved and headed off towards the lake.  Since I had no idea who this man was and being totally clueless of who the heck “John” was, I decided to follow our normal route. Gators or not, my pup needed exercise and a place to squat.

There are actually two gators who call our little “lake” home and they differ vastly in size.  I call the smaller one (approximately four feet) “Goober” and I have labeled the bigger eight foot mammer jammer “Godzilla.” They seem to tolerate these names well as they haven’t hissed at me or lunged in an effort to grab me in a death roll.

My pup and I have greeted these mini dinosaurs many times in the past months and in return, they totally ignore us.  They don’t seem to find my chicken legs that I walk on tempting and my sixty-five pound puppy is a little too large for their tastes.

Of course, I’m not stupid.  I’ve lived in Florida long enough that I know to keep a watchful eye out when near the water so that lurking rascally reptiles don’t catch me unaware and decide that they want to have me for dinner.  Actually, it’s not the alligators to blame when they attack a human, 99.9% of the time the humans have brought it on themselves.

They think it’s cute to feed them, allowing the gators to get comfortable with Homo sapiens bearing gifts.  So you really can’t blame them when they see you and believe you’re bringing them goodies…and for deciding on Plan B (a big chunk of you) for a new culinary experience.

Bravely, I popped my ear buds back in and my pup and I proceeded to begin our walk around the water while I kept a keen eye on the banks of the lake.  It wasn’t long before I spotted “Goober” lazing on the center island of the lake.

alligator_6  Now, Goober and Godzilla don’t hang out together, so extra vigilance (all due to the town crier’s warning regarding galloping gators) was maintained as we proceeded around the bend.

I felt something brush against the back of my legs and I didn’t hesitate for a second.  I just knew that Godzilla had snuck up behind me and barely missed taking a chunk out of my butt. I did what any smart, self-respecting Floridian would do when they become an object of desire to a gator…I screamed and ran like hell, pulling my poor, confused pup along with me.  I didn’t look back until I felt that I had left Godzilla behind in the dust of my tracks.


As I turned to see how far I had outrun the voracious monster, I found a silent and empty street behind me.  The banks of the lake were empty, no bikers or walking dead were cruising the street and no grinning gator was in sight.  Confused, I spent a few moments peeking over the edge of the lake and only found a couple of ducks…I swear they were laughing at me.  Raising my eyes, I caught sight of Godzilla on the other side of the lake, drifting along without a care in the world.

I spent another few minutes resting while my heart rate slowed, my breath returned and my puppy fearlessly took a pee.  A few residents, hearing my previous blood curdling scream poked their heads out of their doors.  Mortified, I just waved and hustled down the street to avoid questions about my less than courageous behavior.

Once again, the soft brush against my legs returned…but this time I turned before repeating my embarrassing waddle and found the source of this terrifying threat was my dog’s fluffy tail wagging against my legs.

Mystery solved.  Feeling like a complete idiot, who could no longer claim that “gators don’t scare this tough old broad”, my puppy and I finally finished our walk and arrived home all in one piece.

I think that the next time “John” sends a message down the neighborhood pipeline…I’ll heed his advice and take a different route…a road where I know no-one witnessed my cowardly escape from the imaginary jaws of death.



P.S.  Here are a few mythbusters for you, just in case you get a visit from Goober or Godzilla in your neighborhood.

1.  Alligators can’t run as fast as a quarterhorse…top speed for an adult gator has been clocked at ten miles per hour.  They can only maintain the speed for short bursts.

2.  Most people believe that you need to maintain a ZIG-ZAG pattern when running away from an agressive gator.  WRONG!  They can’t see straight ahead so just high tail it out of there in a straight line and you’ll be okay.

And, just a reminder from an old lady who has lived in Florida for 25 years.  Don’t feed or swim with the gators.  It’s not healthy for them or for you!


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