Handy Gram

Grandma Janda was Mom’s Mom and her manicure was her most obvious feminine habit. Her other feminine habits had to do with behaviors, like noticing the shape of people’s heads. She was a head noticer. She would make comments like “Ah. He has a good head.” And, she meant the shape of it, not what was in it.

Her smile was feminine in the shy way some women do: bending her head and looking up at you as if you just said something funny and she was thanking you for saying it.

Her fashion sense was feminine but might have been thwarted by economic hardships. That may be the reason she didn’t have much of it beyond dresses with flowers, aprons with flowers, slippers with flowers and hats with flowers.

But her manicured hands were the hands of one who hires others to work, which she didn’t. Hers kneaded houska bread, typed at sound-barrier speed and played the piano with vigor. How she managed flawless hands finger-tipped in a coral hue is unknown. Once I watched her put lotion on her hands. It was the same way she kneaded bread, powerfully and thoroughly and so feminine.

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About Mrs. Fitz

Hello! I'm Michele Fitzpatrick, a Chicago writer. Like our town, a work in progress. As a journalist, teacher and writing coach I think all of us live our stories and sharing them creates moments that remind us we're connected. And that is enough.
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