Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween! My Grandmother the Witch

Good morning and a Happy Halloween to you! Do you have your candy ready for the trick or treaters'? I do and hope that I get more than one or two. 

Image the Graphics Fairy


I was thinking after yesterdays post it is ironic that although I am not a fan of Halloween as I young child I grew up believing that my grandmother was a witch. Not the green faced, mean witch from the Wizard of Oz but a friendly witch. I actually wrote about it HERE the first year I started this blog, as I didn't have many readers then I thought I would re-post it today.


My Grandmother the Witch

I've lived a magical life and I am lucky because I have always been surrounded by love, imagination, colorful story tellers and taught to believe.

Image from The Graphics Fairy


From the time I was a small child my grandfather wove tales of our heritage to amuse as well teach us. In addition to my relatives, Hocus Pocus Johnny Mocus, the alligators in the basement that guarded the barrels of money and the shark that bit off the tip of his finger, my grandfather loved to share tales about my grandmother who was a "witch" and lived in a beautiful tower.


via Martha Stewart

 He claimed that after we went to bed, she took her long black hair down, hopped on her broom and rode off  to see the city and perhaps to visit her friends before going to sleep in her tower castle and then coming back by morning to see us.


Image from Wicked Faerie Queen


He often took us driving by her beautiful tower and when we asked if we could go in the answer was always no, you could only go in at night and the only way in was to fly on your broom to the top window.


via Pine Cones and Acorns

Being of a young, fertile mind I thought perhaps the story was true because after all, my grandmother did have long, black hair ( most witches do), it reached her rear end, and she always wore it in a bun, she also always took it down at night and would brush it, 100 strokes to keep it soft.  In addition, she did a lot of sweeping with a really cool broom ( witches have these too), and sometimes when she wasn't looking we would take it outside to the garden to see if we could get it to work.

Then, there was her tower which was perched on a hill, overlooking the beautiful Lake Michigan and surrounded by beautiful houses and a park, clearly visible for all of Milwaukee to see, even those far out to sea. 

Visible for all all to see, even the ships out to sea!


My grandfather would drive us by the magical tower and although we could see the beautiful windows and the architecture there was no door that I could ever find.


I dreamed of visiting her here!

 Most importantly, every time we asked her if she was a witch, and I can tell you there were many times, she just smiled and said we should "believe in things we cannot see."





I never really had reason to doubt these stories because I did often see my grandfather come out of the basement, from a room we were never allowed  into, and he always came out with a box of money, which he gave us a quarter from every Friday to go the penny candy store (dating myself here...now a days that doesn't get you much). He did take us to meet Hocus Pocus Johnny Mocus, a distant relative who gave us candy and soda and was a magical man. And my grandfather was missing the tip of his index finger. Clearly evidence to a small child and her siblings to believe any and all tales.


Image Graphics Fairy


I also had other reasons to believe, my grandmother was from a family of 13 children, and she had 10 children herself, from a stock of hard working, land owning, German, Catholics. She was magical, because whenever you were with her she made you feel like the most important person in the world and she made you feel loved. She was a hard worker, industrious, intelligent and she loved to read, which is a magical gift that she passed on to me. 




 She worked magic in the kitchen and would whip up delectable treats, Cinnamon buns, Christmas cookies, cakes, and tasty morsels for family and friends, and often she let her little apprentices stand side by side with her, rolling dough and frosting cookies. Even when times were tough, she always used her magic and faith to find ways to feed her children and to make sure they had a wonderful life.

My grandmothers "slab apple pie"

 She instilled in us the value of family, the importance of love, and a zest and joy for life. She also taught us about the magic of tradition and to always be there for one another and the fact that there is "no place like home."

 I believe and think that is the most magical of beliefs. So my guess is that if she was a witch she was the best kind there is...a Good Witch.

I think of her often and miss her all the time but mostly when I see her tower which I visit each time I am in Milwaukee. I stand there and imagine her up high with her friends sharing a cocoa and a cinnamon bun looking down and smiling at me.


Image Pine Cones and Acorns

Happy Halloween!
 Be safe and Enjoy! I hope you do not eat too much candy and tasty treats!

10 comments:

  1. Just loved this post Elizabeth...wonderful grandparents and magical stories. Wish I had been in line those friday afternoons when your grandfather took his trip up the from the basement with the money box. Just thinking about what 25 cents could buy you back then...what a world we lived in!
    Best wishes Elizabeth...
    Jeanne xx

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  2. Good morning dear one.

    I don't have great tales to remember from my grandparents themselves, so I have to invent my own!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Lucky you. You have so much to draw from and I love ya for that...happy day. Anita

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  3. What a sweet tribute to your grandmother...so that's who you get your baking skills from! She sounds like a really special person who connected with you as a young child......cute story.

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  4. Sounds like your grandmother was an exceptional woman! Thank you for sharing!

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  5. HH Elizabeth. From snowy Aspen :-)
    xoxo

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  6. love this story elizabeth! your grandfather sounded magical
    cheers
    debra

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  7. How sweet is your story, Elizabeth! I love your grandmother's magic tower and how your grandfather played along.
    Happy Halloween, dear friend!
    w/L

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  8. Hello Elizabeth
    I loved this story of your grandparents. Pure magic. I would love to have known them. Thanks for sharing these powerful memories.

    Helen xx

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  9. Elizabeth, I have enjoyed reading about your grandmother. Both your grandfather and grandmother sound like perfect grandparents. I love the castle tower. Wonderful memories. Happy November!

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