Here are January's prompts: apron, bar, basketball, bed, bicycle, birthday, boat, broom, button, cake, car.
Grandma Dykes never wore an apron – though she did give me one just a few years before she died. It was a frilly pink confection, not a practical piece of fabric for catching spills. I can't imagine her ever wearing such a thing, and probably it was a gift she'd thought too pretty to wear. She was the Queen of preserving things of beauty – that's why the couch stayed covered in plastic my entire childhood. That's why she never wore the clothing items my sister and I got for her. But if there was anyplace she was most herself, it was in the kitchen. She loved company while she cooked, though she could not tolerate help of any kind. We kids were invited to sit on the stool that always stood in the corner. From our perch, we were welcome to watch and converse. Grandma Dykes took a hands-on approach to cooking. She put her long, capable fingers in everything, often mixing things like hoecake batter with her hands. She liked to taste things, too. By the time we'd sit down to a meal, she'd rarely put more than a spoonful on her plate – because she'd already have eaten her fill.