Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Better Butter

This puddle of melted butter in our microwave started
our day in the best way ever. True story.

You see, in our house, an attempt to soften butter so
it's spreadable, which ends in butter that could
be sprayable is a sweet reminder for Peter and I.
We call it "doing-an-Oma-Meinen" :)

When I called Oma to tell her I was dating a farmer she was
pretty excited. When she found out he was a dairy farmer
I think I actually heard her clap her hands. Needless to say,
she became quite fond of Peter in a very short time.
We used to visit her in Brampton and our times together
always involved lots of food and lots of 'farm talk'.

One of my very favorite memories of Oma was when she
took us out to Mother Tucker's restaurant. We left her
apartment and headed for her little car, but when she saw
Pete's Ford F150 sitting in the parking lot, she decided that
we should take the truck instead. So the three of us piled into
the cab and drove along McLaughlin Road with the country
music on, Oma sitting high and proud in the passenger seat
so everyone could see her. When we got to the restaurant,
before Pete could run around to the other side of the truck
to help Oma out, she had already opened the door and hopped
down like a young spring chick. It was awesome.

But, back to the butter...
Another time we were there, enjoying the dutchiest
of dutch lunches ever - soup and buns, when Oma
realized she was out of butter. She had a block in the freezer
and proceeded to take it out and put it to thaw in the
microwave. Well, we weren't really paying attention and
the next thing we knew the butter was completely melted
and Oma said some choice words in dutch. Well Peter
just grabbed his bun and dipped it right into that soupy
mess and then and there Oma's heart melted right
along with that butter. When we left she grabbed my hand,
squeezed it, and whispered into my ear that Peter would
make a 'fine husband'. We were only dating at the time,
but I definitely knew this was the man I wanted to spend the
rest of my life with. And Oma's approval meant so much to me.

Oma never got to see Peter and I married, as she passed
away a few months after our "Butter Date".
But I often think of how much she would have loved to
watch our family grow and see her and Opa's great-grandchildren
out in the barn with the cows. I still pick up the phone to call her
sometimes and tell her stories of what's happening on the farm
and the mischief the kids are getting into, because I know she
would have loved it. I hope those fleeting moments of forgetting
she's gone never leave me. And when they do, we'll just keep
telling her stories so our children can have a piece of Oma in their
hearts. Gracie Jo's name is from Oma's (Grada Johanna) and
sometimes I wonder if in naming our daughter after her, we
haven't planted a seed of Oma's spirit in her heart.
Gracie Jo is bossy, nosey as all get-out, steadfast in her faith
and has a love for her family that is more fierce than a wild fire.
And I'm sure when Oma meets her namesake in heaven
she will be prouder than a peacock - as she was of all her children,
grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

We sure miss her.

But 'doing-an-Oma-Meinen' always helps.
So, next time you melt your butter into a puddle
in the microwave, don't fret. Just laugh, sop up the mess,
and talk about your favorite 'Oma Meinen' moments, and
how God has blessed our families through the generations.

And, pour it on, because everyone knows that butter is better!!

"...we will tell the next generation

the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD,
his power, and the wonders he has done.
so the next generation would know them,

even the children yet to be born,
and they in turn would tell their children.

Then they would put their trust in God
and would not forget his deeds..."

~Psalm 78:4, 6-7~


  1. Another wonderful story - thank you for sharing.

  2. Oh Angela - this isn't the first time reading your blog has brought on the tears. You have such a lovely way of expressing memories and finding God in all the busy-ness of your day. Thanks for this post, I loved it.

  3. Angela, this made me think of my Beppe and how she loved to fish and jumped on the four wheeler to get out to the irrigation pond when she was in her 80s. They had such spirit and personality, that generation of dutch women. You made me realize that I need to pass those stories onto my children, so they too can know God's blessings through generations. Thanks for reminding us all of our godly heritage. I can just picture your oma in the truck, it makes me smile.

  4. Crying a little here! Thanks Ang! You make me smile all day long!

  5. Angela, I absolutely love reading your blog. Your story today brought tears to my eyes but made me laugh too (especially the comparison with Gracie-Jo, too funny).

    That generation of Dutch-Canadian women were a lively bunch, hey? I'm so blessed to have both of my Oma's alive...and both of them with their own zest & flare, just like Oma Meinen.

    Love you so much Angela, so much. xo


  6. Thanks for making me cry.....I was pregnant when Oma passed away, which didn't help with the tears, and again I am pregnant which doesn't help with the tears. Thanks for the memories, we all have bucketfuls, I am sure we could write a book!! You are a blessing!