Tag Archives: Scatter Family

More than just a chocolate surprise

Porch sign

By Laura Grimes

Dear Mr. Scatter,

You do realize, right, that while you sped away to have a raucous dinner party at the assisted-living facility, you left me here to 1. make my own coffee. 2. fetch my own newspaper. 3. share my bed with more beasts than usual and 4. somehow end up with less bed space.

Ah, but the co-opted bed comes with a bonus. When I got home late last night The Small Large Smelly Boy was already ensconced on your side of the bed half-asleep and half-watching House Hunters International on HGTV (I can’t make this stuff up). We attempted to continue the family tradition that you claim to be a medicinal practice: Eat a dark Dove chocolate every night. But this morning, after I unpretzeled myself to get up, The SLSB said, “Oh, look out for a chocolate somewhere in the bed.” Apparently, his half-asleepness last night got the better of him.

I didn’t think much of it, except to remind myself to carefully look over the bed when I got around to making it. But I didn’t get that far …

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Spreading out the fond memories

It's just a tablecloth to some people, but to us it makes Thanksgiving special.By Laura Grimes

More than a year ago Mr. Scatter’s parents moved to an assisted-living facility.

By then, the seven children were making choices for them and the parents weren’t sure where they were. The little cottage they had lived in was cleaned out.

A very few favorite items went with the folks, a few basic kitchen items and furniture pieces stayed, and the rest was spread out in the garage to sell. I’m not sure what because I wasn’t there.

All I know is that when I arrived a few weeks later by myself in the middle of the hot summer the place was an eerie ghost of its old self, empty and echoey. The familiar pictures were gone and the walls were a fresh new color. I immediately checked my feelings at the front door, knowing this had been a long time coming.

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A galaxy of recipes and remembrances

Gingerbread drawing that inspired "Star Pie," Small Large Smelly Boy, Nov. 24, 2001.

By Laura Grimes

A little-known blog fact: The Scatter family has a hand-made recipe book.

Nearly a decade ago, we started collecting our favorite recipes that went with some of our favorite food stories. We loaded them up in notebooks and gave them to our close family and friends for Christmas. It’s called Star Pie: A Galaxy of Recipes and Remembrances.

It got its name because exactly 10 years ago today I wrote down a conversation I had with the Small Large Smelly Boy, who was not so large and not so smelly at the time. In fact, he was downright adorable. He was 4.

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Cooking up steroids, I mean stuffing

By Laura Grimes

My mom is swimming her way south and the meat marathon has begun. Look what we got cooking on the stove:

Cooking up turkey broth.

We bought turkey wings just to make turkey stock just to make turkey stuffing just to go with Grammy’s turkey breast.

When Mr. Scatter asked The Meat Guy for “two turkey wings, one for each side,” the guy replied, “I don’t know if I can get you a matching pair.”

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‘You can’t do that when Grammy’s here!’

Norman Rockwell's "Cousin Reginald Catches the Thanksgiving Turkey" (1917), copyright 1917, The Country Gentleman and Curtis Publishing Co.By Laura Grimes

At the time of this typing, my mom’s ETA is 45 hours and counting.

The early missile warning system is now in effect. I repeat. The early missile warning system is now in effect.

In my last post, I promised a concussive blast. Reading on? Don your helmets! Duck and cover!

Continue reading ‘You can’t do that when Grammy’s here!’

License to thrill? Not really

The back of our poor little van at the scene of the crash in Hoodsport, Wash.By Laura Grimes

We back up our meat-centric blog for a little backstory. Mom’s coming for Thanksgiving and we got meat multiplying in the vegetarian-family freezer, but before I move on to the concussion blast and the traumatic brain injury these circumstances cause the Scatter Family, I first must explain our license plate.

We recently had to buy a new Large Smelly Boymobile.

Actually, let’s first back up to July 31, 2011. It was a gorgeous summer day. The Small Large Smelly Boy and I were driving our beloved van, LSBmobile1, from Port Angeles, Wash., where my mom lives, to Portland, Ore., where we live. Just to clarify, I was driving. The Small LSB isn’t even in high school yet.

Continue reading License to thrill? Not really

Will you won’t you will you won’t you take us to the dance?

Sir James Tenniel, 1871 illustration from Lewis Carroll's "The Walrus and the Carpenter." Wikimedia Commons

Today the Scatter Family Land Schooner sets sail for the wilds of the Olympic Peninsula, where the winds whip westerly and the mountain peaks glisten like gold. (Actually the winds tend to blow toward the east, off the Pacific Ocean, and the mountains, when you can see them through the drizzle and the pelting platitudes, are white with ice and snow. But Mr. Scatter is feeling alliterative this morning.)

This is a land where the crab grow sweet and pure, where the brawny geoducks plant their lurid necks in the sand, where good hot coffee rarely comes from the Land of Starbucks but from thermoses and home-grown oases of dryness and warmth. A place where wool plaid is still a fashion statement and a ramshackle emporium called Swain’s General Store beats the thermal-lined undergarments off of anything Walmart can offer, at least in terms of interesting cool stuff from all sorts of odd corners of the collective imagination.

A place where the Expanded Scatter Family Thanksgiving Feast awaits, and where we wish you well and happiness at your own.

As we cruise up Hood Canal we vow to keep our eyes open for a well-dressed walrus and carpenter prowling on the beach. They seem to have a way with oysters. And we plan to snag a few dozen for ourselves.


Above: Sir James Tenniel, 1871 illustration from Lewis Carroll’s “The Walrus and the Carpenter.” Wikimedia Commons