My Grandma, Ruby Katherine Dooley Leftwich was always happiest when she was feeding someone. Everytime there was a family gathering or we would visit, there was always a spread of so many wonderful things! She was always famous for her Preacher Cookies and chocolate pie, that Brett always had to de-foam. But also, she made the most amazing pancakes! Even though, when spending the night at Grandma and Granddaddy's house, their aroma would wake my brother and me up very early in the morning, it was worth it! My Uncle Freddie would always tell Grandma she needed to open a pancake house! I think she would have had a very lucrative business. I have tried very hard to duplicate her pancakes. As close as I get, they are just not the same.
Even though she would always receive praise for her culinary expertise, she was always so modest about it. When I was in middle school, I made an oven rack puller for her. It was made of wood and I had very lovingly stenciled "Greatest Cook" on the handle. It always sat above her stove and when I would arrive, at her house, the stenciled letters would always be facing the wall instead of out where everyone could read them. I would always turn it to face out. She would always say, "It's not true." I would simply tell her "yes it is" and I would turn it back over when she was not looking.
Being the 3rd of Ruby's 7 Grandchildren, I was quite impressionable when we would visit my Dad's parents home. Once, when I was very young, I can remember being quite impressed with my Grandma's no fear ability when her Grandchildren were in possible danger. Two of my cousins, my younger brother and I were all headed out to play on the swingset that sat in the side yard at Ruby and Carlton's house. As we happily skipped out to the swingset, we all jumped over the long piece of black plastic, or so we thought. The next thing we knew, Grandma had come out with a shovel and was killing what was actually a snake that we had jumped over. She did not want anything to happen to her Grandchildren.
I always thought of my Grandma and Granddaddy Leftwich as wealthy. Every time I had a birthday, they would send me a $5 bill in my birthday card. Often, they would send a $1 bill for me to give to my brother, which I never liked to have to do.