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Friday, March 30, 2012

Fearless Females: Wisdom

Did you receive any advice or words of wisdom from your mother or another female ancestor?

My grandmother's were full of sayings and advice.  Some, not fit to repeat in polite company.  We'll just call it their farm girl charm showing through and leave it at that.

The best piece of advice was given to me by my Grandma Combs when my long time boyfriend (now husband) and I were having some problems.  I went home to her for the weekend from college and spent most of the first night crying my eyes out to her.  She calmly looked at me.

"Does he have close friends?"

"I think so... sure."

"Well they are probably just giving him a hard time about being tied down, it'll pass."

"Oh, I'm not so sure, he was pretty sure we shouldn't be together."

"Yeah, well, boys can be dumb.   Your grandpa did the same thing at one time.  Know what I did?"


"Hit him with a 2x4, that brought him a round."


"Not a real 2x4 Shannon.  You just have to figure out what his 2x4 is, the thing that will bring him out of the stupid.  All men have one and once you figure out what it is, he'll be yours.  Just drag it out from time to time and let him remember you know best."

My husband and I will be married 13 years in August.  I don't think I ever figured out what his "2x4" was, but obviously we worked out the problem.  Sometimes I think about this evening in her bedroom watching old black and white movies, eating chocolate, and drinking her homemade wine.  It always brings a smile to my face when I remember how serious she was telling me about her 2x4.  That night was one of the last times we were able to have an evening like this.  She died a few months later in December 1997.

*Image: simonov via photopin cc


  1. I've thought a lot about what makes men hesitant to get tied down but it never occurred to me that it might be his friends giving him a hard time. Great thought! Did your grandmother ever tell you what your grandfather's 2x4 was?

  2. No I never did. When I talked to my dad, several years later, he laughed so hard. He said his dad gave up early in thier marriage ever going "against" his mom... she was going to do what she was going to do with or without his approval. He would just hold out for the moments when he could smile at her and say "told you so."

    They were quite the pair.

  3. I had a conversation with my grandma that was similar. She told me, "No one ever told you that you have to marry poor." It still cracks me up today when I think of our conversation.