When our oldest son Raun was less than one year, Jeff and I decided to load up the truck and move to North Carolina. I was familiar with NC because I had spent my teen summers working at a youth camp my aunt and uncle were responsible for. My uncle was the founder and director and my aunt ran the kitchen. It was shortly after we arrived that Aunt Meryle and I were discussing what title she would like Raun to call her. Would she be Auntie, Aunt, Meryle…? Meryle thought for a moment and then replied, “Granny. I like Granny Meryle!” That was 31 years ago, to this day she is still lovingly referred to as Granny Meryle.
In 2010 I spent a few weeks with Meryle in her home in Charlotte NC, a place I knew very well. We looked at pictures, talked about the past as we worked to begin the process of cleaning out her home. I returned home with my grandfather’s pocket watch, pictures of my mom and aunt Meryle, some linens, my favorite red dinnerware that I had fallen in love with 30 years ago as well as pieces from my grandparents wedding china; but the most precious box that accompanied me home was the one containing the recipes, cookbook and menu planners that Meryle had used over the last 40 some years in the camp kitchen.
Granny Meryle left this world on September 1, today we will be celebrating her life. I’ve looked at that box of recipes for 3 years, scanned many into my computer, and retyped those that were too worn and used to read. It seems fitting to share this history with other. It seems fitting to share them now in honor of her. For the next year, I will be posting a selection of those treasures that are contained in that box on a site called: CookieMush.com.
Please join me ~
Jeannie Meryle Bruenning