My website

My website

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Brian is coming home from Qatar!

Brian's sign says "Milwaukee, Wi - 7,066 mi."
Sometime during the second week of October, our son Brian will travel home from Qatar.

The second week of October isn't tomorrow, but it feels like it.

He hasn't been in Qatar long, but it feels like it.

Brian & Liam the day Brian left before his 10-week duty with the ANG.
There will be one sweet boy happy to see his dad.

And one sweet wife.

The rest of us will be smiling too.

Godspeed, dear Brian.

I love you very much.

Gail Grenier is the author of Calling All Horses, Dog Woman, and Don't Worry Baby, all available from

Monday, September 17, 2012

Audrey's Best Barbeque Sauce in the World

I served my mother's beef barbeque sandwiches - also known where I live as "Sloppy Joes" - at a neighborhood gathering recently. People commented immediately that the sandwiches were unlike any they'd ever tasted. Too often Sloppy Joe can mean a glorified ground beef and ketchup sandwich.

"This recipe is different because of the horseradish," I said.

"No, it's more than that," someone said.

I told them the other ingredients and we deduced that the recipe is a classic German thing - combining sweet and sour, like German potato salad. Mum was 100 percent German-American, so it all figures.

I have no idea where Mum got the recipe, and there's no email to heaven that I know of, so I can't ask her. I'll share the recipe here and promise you that it's the best one you'll ever taste. Mum's directions indicate chicken but I've only made the recipe with ground beef. YUM!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

We canoed around the whole lake!

Pauline & me at an event a couple of years ago
Pauline and I talked about it for two years: we were going to canoe the whole perimeter of Little Green Lake.

Every summer for four years, I suggested this endeavor to my husband, Mike, but he said we couldn't do it.

Pauline and I plotched our paddles around just a little, two summers ago.

Then last summer we waited too long and the season got away from us.

This summer we re-scheduled three or four times.

But we finally did it.

Nancy is still alive, more than one year later

Nancy Reinsvold is my friend. I wrote about her last summer in my blog post Don't tell her when she's gonna die. Her doc told her that she'd be dead by last July, 2011. It's mid-September 2012, and she's still here.

She's 78 and fighting pancreatic cancer. I visited her today, as I do every week, and we sat on the couch laughing about this and that. Her hardest laugh came when she told me about a robber who drove his car through the glass windows of an Apple store and stole a bunch of computers. Unbeknownst to him, the license plate fell off his car in the process. The police were waiting for him when he got back home.

Boy did she laugh. I could see all her teeth.

Fifty Shades of Grey - a Grumbling Report

I didn't want to read Fifty Shades of Grey even though everyone was talking about. I didn't want to read it even though my writing students were trying to dissect its success. There are so many wonderful books to read and I didn't want to waste my time on, well, smut.

But when my neighbor Marlene plopped the book into my hands and said "Don't judge it until you read it," I took her up on it.

That was months ago.

It's been a real chore to finish the book.

Why? For three reasons: