This is an essay about the love we share through the food we share, and it is a celebration of the love story between grandmothers and grandchildren everywhere. Enjoy it with someone you love.

I was about four when I had my first “big girl” lunch alone with Nana. I hadn’t wanted to go. I’d once heard Nana lose her temper with Mom. She scared me.

I watched through the screen door as Mom backed out of the driveway. It was too late to run after her. Nana hoisted me up onto her kitchen counter and started inspecting me. I trembled looking out at the dozen straight pins Nana held clenched between her lips.

“Hold still or I’ll poke you.” I put my arms straight out, holding very, very still, while Nana checked my hem. I was wearing the bright yellow dress with daisies sprouting from the pockets that Nana had sewn for me. After lunch, she was taking me to J.C. Penney’s to have my portrait taken. I guess I passed muster because Nana grabbed both of my hands and kissed them.

Read the full essay at MariaShriver.com

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