Posted by: notsofancynancy | June 26, 2012

Thankful Tuesday~ My Grandma was The Little Old Lady from Pasadena

The Little Old Lady from Pasadena

“It’s the little old lady from Pasadena
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
Got a pretty little flower bed of white gardenias
Go granny, go granny, go granny go
But parked in her rickety old garage
Is a brand new shiny red super-stock dodge

And everybody’s saying there’s nobody meaner
Than the little old lady from Pasadena
She drives real fast and she drives real hard
She’s a terror out on Colorado boulevard

Its the little old lady from Pasadena”

First recorded by Jan and Dean in 1960, Then the Beach Boys 1964

Grandma “Susie” about 1930, Kansas

My grandmother affectionately known to us grand kids as Grandma “Susie” moved to Pasadena, California back in 1942. She had driven tractors and such on the farm in Kansas but when they moved here she did not get her drivers license. Grandpop drove her everywhere.

My grandpop passed away in 1972. Grandma “Susie” lived about an hour away from us or at least it seemed that long when we were kids. She was an independent lady and decided it was time to buck up and get her license. At this point she was 69 years old and she had not driven since leaving the farm in the 40’s. That is 30 years! I cannot imagine what it was like for her to learn to drive on the streets of Pasadena. The traffic in Pasadena was already busy back in the 1970’s. But that did not stop her, she was far from a good driver though. She downright scared me, and never drove with my father around.

Grandma’s car looked like this

She drove a Dodge Valiant. It was not red, and it did not go fast, but she did become “The Terror out on Colorado Blvd.” She must have been her mid eighty’s when she took a wrong turn off of Colorado Blvd on to a one way street. All fine and dandy until you know she was driving the wrong way. Yep, the cops called my mom personally as they felt she did not understand she was going the wrong way.

Then there was the time that Grandma’s neighbor called my mom because “Susie” was stuck on the grass in front of the house. For anyone who had been to her house there in Pasadena you know that the hedges surrounding her yard made it near impossible to make the turn to get onto the grass. Mom was baffled. I was scared to be on the streets while she was driving. It was not soon after these two incidents that mom and dad took the keys away from her. But for about 12 years my grandma was “The little old lady from Pasadena.”

The Little Old Lady from Pasadena, no really!

When I think of the Beach Boys song I will always think of my Grandma “Susie” “The Little Old Lady from Pasadena,” who was the “Terror out on Colorado Boulevard.” It makes me laugh even now.

Yes today I am thankful my grandmother was “The little old Lady from Pasadena.”

© 2012 Copyright notsofancynancy


  1. Colorado Boulevard, my, my, my, how it’s changed since Susie rolled over it…
    I absolutely love the picture of your grandma from the 1930’s. I must have a copy. 😀

    • She was quite a kick. You may have a copy if you like. Back in chapter 10 of Dad’s story I found some letters written from Grandpop when he came to California. He actually talks about driving in Pasadena in 1942. I get a feeling this is why Grandma Susie never drove.

  2. Your grandma was the Coolest.Lady.Ever. 😀

    • Ha ha ha She really was. Even at 90 she like to have a Pabst Blue Ribbon beer or two with my dad.

  3. So that is where you got your 4-wheeler skills from ?

    • Ha I took after my dad and am a really good driver, but I can take you places that will scare the heck out of you.

  4. There are certainly relatives in one’s life that scared you silly when being driven by them and not all of Grandma Susie’s generation 😉 Lovely memories!

    • Oh my mom was horrible at it too. She really scared me! Maybe bad driving ran in their family…lol

  5. I love how you keep your loved ones alive through your stories.

    • Why thank you! I am going to run out of family someday. lol But I still have a couple left! lol

  6. Awesome!!!! Go check on Bill Duff if you get a chance….. 😦

    • Oh my goodness, I am crying now. I love Mr. Duff!

      • When you visit his blog, make sure you check out how he started. It gives every Post a different meaning. Take care and God Bless…

      • sniff, sniff ok.

  7. OK you forgot to say that she lived about 6 blocks off of Colorado Boulevard and her church was on Colorado Boulevard and other then the grocery store and our house this was about the only place she drove was ON Colorado Boulevard

  8. Your grandma was a brave lady. I love hearing stories like this. Thanks for sharing it. What sweet and funny memories. Hugs

    • Thanks for taking the time to let me know you enjoyed it! Big Hugs back!

  9. She reminds me of my grandma Lola. It goes to show that the myth about elderly people being slow, careful drivers is not necessarily true. I remember one time when I went to visit Grandma Lola in Arizona she took my sister and I shopping, and at one point she had two tires up in the air. lol Her driving REALLY scared me, but she was a great lady with a big heart. 🙂

  10. How special! I love this story. I had a little old lady from South Pasadena fro MY grandmother! LOL! Not quite as melodious, but very special! oxo Debra

    • Sweet! South Pasadena is just as good in my book!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


It's all in a Nutshell Crochet

a nutty crochet blog for nutty people

Make My Day Creative

Exploring things crafty, crochet, and beyond

Bill Willson

My Writing Life


Lost my bliss looking for a new one

Dear Judy...Letters to Tanzania

What the hell, it's cheaper than postage

The People of Pancho

At Play In The Archive

Wayne's Journal

A life of a B-25 tail gunner with the 42nd Bombardment Group in the South Pacific

%d bloggers like this: