Shenanigans with Sandy

Grandma Kc wrote this on October 26th, 2014 25 Replies

This is a special memory from my own childhood.

So I told you the story of the first time I met my sister Sandy. I shared the story of the first time Amara met Aunt Sandy and Uncle Mark. I’ve posted about my trip home to Michigan in 2012 and spending the week with Sandy and Mark. However, there are many little stories from when Sandy and I were younger that I haven’t shared and this seemed like the perfect time.

The best-known story is the one about the blueberry muffins. We still haven’t lived this one down. Mom Number 2 had made muffins for dinner one night while I was there. They were by far the best blueberry muffins I had ever eaten. Michigan has huge blueberries that just burst with flavor. I had become accustomed to the little tiny (and expensive) things they call blueberries in southern California. Mom’s blueberry muffins have become my most requested food item anytime I go home.

But back to the first time, Sandy and I shared her room whenever I visited. She had bunk beds and I got the top bunk. We knew that if those muffins were left downstairs in the kitchen our little brother John would eat them all before we got anymore. So we took them to our room. We ate some and we may have forgotten and left the rest under the bottom bunk. The ants found them and so did Mom Number 2. I remember the phone call I got about a week later, “Did you girls hide blueberry muffins under Sandy’s bed?” I was scolded! I really was part of the family.

John and Pooh eating ice cream

A side note to the bunk beds. Back then Sandy was terrified of thunderstorms and I used to tease her about it. I was afraid of earthquakes having just gone through the 1971 Sylmar quake. Sandy used to think it was cute to shake the bed frame of those bunks and yell, “Earthquake!” I loved having a little sister!

That same trip Sandy and I dropped water balloons on the heads of John and one of his friends from the bedroom window. At 20, I probably wasn’t setting the best example for my 12-year-old sister or 8-year-old brother but I had never had a brother before and it was fun! Sandy claims to have no memory of this event. Since John went running and whining to Mom Number 2 about it, I bet she remembers! I am pretty sure she told us girls that we had to stop!

During one of my visits to Michigan Mom had to work some of the days I was there. She let me take her to work so I could use her car. Sandy and I went to Jonesville so that I could visit some of the places from my childhood. Mom and Dad’s anniversary was in another week so we decided to drive to Coldwater and get them a gift certificate for Gracie O’Shanahan’s. It was one of their favorite places to go. We were about halfway there when the DJ on the radio station said it was 4:45. There was complete panic as we were supposed to be back to pick Mom up from work at 5 PM. I may have exceeded the speed limit trying to get back. When we pulled up Mom wasn’t out front waiting for us as we expected her to be so we parked and went inside. She was working away and the clock on the wall read 4:10. wW had been listening to some rock station out of Indiana. From 1970 – 2006 Indiana didn’t observe daylight savings time. We were early!

Sandy and John a few months before I met them.

I have other shenanigans with Sandy to share but they will just have to wait until next time.

25 thoughts on “Shenanigans with Sandy

    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      I do have great memories. Sandy and I always had such a strong bond. We just connected. Something my real sister and I didn’t have. I am so lucky to have gotten a new and wonderful family!

      Reply
  1. Sandy

    I have tears in my eyes are I read this! That was such a happy time for all of us. I remember so much laughter and love and joy and FOOD when you were with us. We all wanted you to move back to Michigan and live with us! As a 13 year old girl, I was so happy to have a big sister! And you were the best! You never made me feel dorky (which I was), and you actually wanted to hang out with me and do silly stuff. So many wonderful memories!!

    I think it was my idea to hide the blueberry muffins under the bed so we could have them all to ourselves. I don’t know why .. Mom would have made them every day if we’d asked her to!! After all these years, I still smile and think of you whenever I make blueberry muffins!

    I do remember shaking the bed and yelling ‘Earthquake’! That was probably pretty mean, but I had never been through an earthquake and had no idea how scary they are.

    And you’re right, I was really scared of thunderstorms back then! I remember you wishing we’d have one because Southern California rarely has storms. I had very scary memories of many times spent taking cover in the basement during tornado warnings (which happened during thunderstorms). The worst time being the Palm Sunday tornadoes in 1965. I was 8 years old at that time. As the thunderstorms carrying these tornadoes enveloped us, the power went out and we felt helpless not knowing what was happening. My parents and my brother and I lived with my grandparents at the time and I knew if the adults were scared, there was something different about this thunderstorm. We could see an eerie red glow in the western sky, which we later learned was from fires burning where the tornadoes hit homes on Coldwater Lake. The tornadoes missed my grandparents farm by 1 mile. We were without power for 3 days. And the areas where the tornadoes hit looked like a war zone, and never looked the same afterward without the old trees and buildings gone that we were used to seeing. So I thought you were incredibly brave to not be afraid of them. And I know where you got your bravery from … your amazing dad, who I was blessed to then call my amazing dad as well since he married my mom in 1969.

    To fill in everyone reading this – our dad worked for Consumers Power Co. as a service man, which basically meant that he worked an 8 hour shift during the day troubleshooting problems people were having with their electric service, or hooking up new service for people who were building a house or barn (another great story I can share later!). And when a thunderstorm came through and knocked out the electricity, or there was a house fire and the power needed to be turned off, he would get a call in the middle of the night and do whatever it took to get the situation taken care of. I’m sure OSHA would never allow it today, but back then times were simpler, and every now and then Dad would take me or John with him on a service call. I remember one early evening I went with him when we drove into the teeth of a fierce thunderstorm. It was scary driving through the rain and wind and flashing lightning and booming thunder. We came to the location he was looking for and he told me to just stay in the truck. He climbed out, and in the darkness I really couldn’t see much of what he was doing. I know he grabbed some tools from the back of the truck from previous outings. As I sat there scared silly and wishing I hadn’t come along that time, a huge lightning bolt lit up the sky and I saw my fearless new father high up on an electrical pole restoring power to someone’s house. As the lightning continued to flash I watched him work. I remember saying prayers over and over for his safety. The vision of him on that pole is imprinted forever in my mind. I couldn’t believe he would be out in that raging storm just doing his job and getting power restored to someone’s home. At that point I believed there was nothing he could not do. To a 13 year old kid, he was my symbol of bravery, and still is to this day. So it is no wonder to me that my big sister, who is so much like her dad, wasn’t afraid of storms.

    Just for the record, I am not afraid of storms anymore. In fact, I look forward to them! I’ve been in many during our motorcycle trips and it has been incredible to feel the power of the wind, to feel how the storm charges the air – almost like it’s blowing negative energy away and replacing it with positive energy. And like memories restored by blueberry muffins, I always think of our dad during a thunderstorm.

    I still don’t remember the water balloons we dropped on John. Being the obnoxious little brother he was, he probably did something to deserve that though!

    I do remember our anniversary gift shopping trip to Coldwater. That was hilarious! We were so sure we were going to be in trouble for being late to pick Mom up. Silly daylight savings time!!

    Thank you for sharing these wonderful memories of your visit home. I love that our parents fell in love and we became a family!

    Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      I love that a year before I got my Dad back – he married your Mom and so when I found him I got a whole new, wonderful family. I love that your Mom was and still is my Mom, too. I love that you shared my love of Dad. He really was just an amazing person who we lost way too soon. I wish he was here to know our grandchildren – he would love them as much as he loved Jenna and Josh.

      I love you baby sister. FYI – everyone seems to agree that you need to share your side of the stories! Please!

      Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      That is what is so wonderful about this story, my real sister and I were not close. By high school we didn’t like each other and the older I got the more I didn’t like her. She was not a nice person and someone I wouldn’t want as a friend. Sandy on the other hand has the biggest heart and is so much fun to be with. I tell her often that the best thing Dad ever gave me was her.

      Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      You such terrible stories of the evil step-monster and I feel so very lucky that I got a good one! And with it a wonderful little sister and a pain in the butt little brother! Sandy was the lucky one to get Dad her new family when she was 11. I was 20 and I can’t begin to imagine what life would have been like to have grown up with them as parents. But sure glad I got them when I did.

      Reply
  2. Joyce

    Both you and Sandy made me feel like I was right there, shaking that bed along with her! Really, there’s nothing like having a sister!
    I was very touched by Mom 2’s “blueberry muffin factory” and Dad’s bravery on the work site. The Palm Sunday tornado also struck just outside of GR in a neighborhood that my youngest daughter lives in now. When I returned to teach at my own high school we were advised by the principal to never take a tornado warning lightly. Many of our students were affected by the 1965 one and were understandably very frightened by serious weather.
    Let’s have more Sandy and Kc stories, please! I love that team of sisters!

    Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      I was in California during the Palm Sunday tornadoes but I knew about them from the news and I knew that Dad and Uncle Dick who also worked for Consumers were probably out working afterwards. Dad did get some amazing pictures of the destruction. He often took his camera with him in his truck.

      I have more Sandy stories to share with you and I am trying to talk Sandy into posting some of the stories from her perspective, too. I wasn’t there when her Mom and my Dad met. I would love to have her tell the story. I’m working on her!

      Reply
  3. Lisa @ Grandma's Briefs

    Getting in trouble by Mom and terrorizing a sibling is a sure sign you were and are indeed part of the family. This was such fun to read, as was Sandy’s comment. You two are peas in a pod. Love your escapades and memories.

    Reply
  4. Joy @ Yesterfood

    Kc, I enjoyed this sister/family story so very much! Complicated adults’ relationships, such as marriages and divorces, can be hard, but can also have a silver lining- new siblings to create wonderful memories with. You and Sandy make a great team. πŸ™‚

    Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      I really got lucky to get such a wonderful family. I was so afraid that first trip back that Mom Number 2 would hate me or would be mean. It was absolutely the opposite of everything I thought it might be. And it still is.

      Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      Even at the time I don’t think I thought she was being mean — she was just playing! Much like I was playing when I told her I was praying for an earthquake while she and Mark were here! Something she was really afraid would happen!

      Reply
  5. imaddy

    Thanking for sharing your life stories. I look forward to reading them. Did you ever make it Gracie O’Shanahan’s after being so early for Mom Number 2?

    Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      We never did make it to Gracie’s to get the gift certificate. I think we ended up putting $25 in a card for them. $25 seemed like a lot of money 40+ years ago.

      Reply
  6. Connie

    I still love to tease my sisters a bit! I really loved the part about dropping water balloons from the window on brothers head! I would have been right there with you!

    Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      Since the day Sandy and I met we have had so much fun together! And we still tease each other a lot!

      Reply
  7. KImberly

    We just changed times here in Indiana. I failed to change the time in my car. One my way to an appointment, I glanced at the clock and had a heart racing moment before realizing the problem.
    The time change drives me nuts. That was a wise twelve year old to know how to tease you back.

    Reply
    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      My daughter lives on JST – Jenna Standard Time. When she and Justin were first married she refused to change the clock on her side of the bed. Made him nuts! I think having a child in school has helped her get past the not changing her clocks thing!

      Reply

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