She lived on 49th Street in Washington, DC. My sister, Marcia, and I spent our summers there. Since Marcia was five years older then me, she graduated from this annual event earlier then me. I loved it there, and have the fondest memories forever in my heart.
My Grandmother lived with her two sisters, Kathryn and Helen. Both of them worked full time and never married. Jessie did not work outside of the home. She was the home administrator. Probably not the title given to this position in 1955, but a well deserved title in retrospect.
Jessie was the best cook. To this day, I can smell the aroma of her fried chicken and pan gravy. For all I know, it could have been made with lard. Low fat cuisine was not the style in the 1950s. All I know for sure, was it was delicious. She also made the best apple pie. One of her neighbors had an apple tree, and Jessie and I would pick them fresh for the pies. Jessie would always use the apples that had fallen first, as long as they were not damaged. She was frugal and cared about the environment. I would watch with wonder as she rolled out a perfect crust. It was such an art. It was a labor of love for sure. My favorite was the rolled cinnamon and sugar cookies that she would make with the left over dough. Of course, I would eat them warm from the oven.
My Grandmother was also quite the seamstress. She made all my clothes as a child. They too were works of art. Dotted Swiss dresses with big sashes. A snow suit made with real mink trim that she cut from an old worn-out coat. She had a dresser full of fabric that I could choose from to make an outfit, and the amazing part for me as a child, was that she would make an outfit to match for my doll. She never had one sewing lesson, or used any store bought patterns. She took apart old clothes to understand how they were constructed.
My new blog is dedicated to my amazing, grandmother,
Jessie Hoffman Anders.