Cannas and curtains, my Aunt Vera’s kitchen

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Cannas and curtains, my Aunt Vera’s kitchen
Not published. Blog only.


Janelle Meraz Hooper

A memory of my Aunt Vera’s kitchen from my A Three-Turtle Summer research file:

One of my most vivid childhood memories is of the kitchen in my Aunt Vera’s home in Oklahoma.  It was tiny and had just enough room for a white kitchen table and chairs that sat in front of the windows that overlooked the fish pond. In the mornings, the adults would gather at the table while my aunt made fresh coffee and corn bread muffins with sugar and raisins. It was such a happy place. Laughter flooded out the windows and swirled around the huge willow tree that shaded the fish pond. White curtains blew in the early morning summer breeze and danced with the cannas planted underneath the window. Back and forth, back and forth they gently swayed. I always loved the tall plants with their big leaves—elephant ears we called them—so I was delighted to see them again at Campbell’s Resort in eastern Washington on the way to the swimming pool this summer. Several times I’ve tried to grow them here at home on the west coast of Washington but it’s too moist in my flowerbeds and they have never been very happy. But every year, I try. Next year, I’m planting them in pots and keeping them on my deck! My childhood memories—good and bad—have found their way into my Turtle Trilogy (A Three-Turtle Summer, As Brown As I Want: The Indianhead Diaries, and Custer and His Naked Ladies) and many of my short stories. You can read more about them here: www.JanelleMerazHooper.com