Memories of Connie and Ida Mae Grieb


Conrad Grieb on his Wedding Day.

Conrad Grieb (Son of Fred Grieb) and Ida Mae (Campbell) have quite an interesting history. They left a wonderful legacy, not only with their four kids, Dean, Elaine, Richard, and Georgia, but with the Grieb and Campbell families and many friends.


Connie and Ida Mae met when she was living with the Chandlers. Ida was essentially a housekeeper and babysitter for the Chandlers. The Chandler home was just across the driveway from the Fred Grieb Sr. home off Halcyon Road in Arroyo Grande. We do not know any real particulars as to their courting.
They were married at the home of Fred and Gertrude Grieb by a local minister . . . a basic but very warm family wedding in November 1940.

Connie had purchased a ranch in Los Berros, about 5 miles from Arroyo Grande in 1938.  He was always a “man of the soil”. The ranch house was approaching 100 years old when he bought the ranch.  It didn’t have a bathroom which meant there was an outside privy about 100 feet from the house.  Top priority was to install a bathroom shortly after Connie and Ida were married.

Dean was born in 1941, Elaine in 1943, Richard in 1944, and Georgia Mae in 1946, each brought into the world with love.  All four children were raised in the old house, each having very fond memories of the good times shared as a family.



Connie always involved the boys in his daily farming/ranching activities, mentoring both Dean and Richard with many skills he had involving cattle, farming, apricots and walnuts, etc.  Ida was mentor for girls, teaching them everything from domestic house chores, sewing, and assuring they grew up to be proper ladies.  Connie and Ida did a great job!

Life during the 40’s and 50’s was not as complex as it is today.  The kids played outside did not have TV, computers, i-phones, etc.  Many values that were shared by Connie and Ida are presently the threshold of their offspring.


Connie and Ida always had an extended family with at least one extra youngster for dinner or staying over-night.  Avila Beach was always a favorite with Connie after a full day of work during the summer.  He loved the ocean, so off to Avila with family for a swim and hot-dog roast they would go. These outings provided very fond memories for all the kids.

Connie was a Odd Fellow and Ida was a Rebecca with the Arroyo Grande IOOF Lodge, each for more than 50 years.  They both went through the various chairs of the organization and enjoyed it to no end.

Conrad Grieb Fishing 2017-01-27 005.JPG

Connie (left) loved fishing.

Connie was always a man of the outdoors.  He loved farming, hunting, fishing, getting together with family and friends, horseshoes, and barbecues.  Ida loved to play cards, tell a joke or two, and prepare scrumptious dinners.  In later years, both enjoyed traveling the western states and frequently stopping at a casino.  The both enjoyed playing Keno.


Connie passed away in 1987.  Ida passed away in 2006.  Their loving legacy will live for many years to come with family, friends, and mere acquaintances.

Chester Arthur Grieb

Memories of My Father, Chester Arthur, by Gary Grieb

October 6, 1911 – June 15, 1982

Married Mildred Fox

Two Children: Gary Arthur Grieb – August 9, 1936 and Edith Ann Grieb – July 14, 1944 – February 12, 2013


Chester Arthur at 6 Months




Young Adult

An Outdoorsman

Dad seemed to really like the outdoors. If he wasn’t working hard he was going fishing or hunting. It seemed like we always had something wild to eat.

Sometimes at night Dad would take us over to Avila between the 2nd and 3rd pier.That small beach is where Dad and his cronies and of course all the families would go grunion hunting on the beach. When the grunion would come in on a wave and use their tail to dig a hole which they were ending up looking like they were standing in the hole on their tails. They would lay their eggs and then catch a wave back into the ocean. That’s when Dad would have a light on and we would see them and they try to catch them. We would get a bucket full,if we were lucky, go home and Dad would then clean them and we would have grunion for a few days to eat.

I remember one day after Dad had gone pigeon hunting he brought some pigeons and he said a cotton tail rabbit after he cleaned them. I had asked him because I was pretty young then what was that he had said a rabbit which was real good to eat. Of course I believed him but after we had eaten it he told me it was a tree squirrel. He must have felt guilty telling me it was a rabbit instead of a squirrel.

The International Truck

Dad and a bunch of his fishing buddies went trout fishing north of San Simeon. He took me with him in his International truck. It was really a fun trip.

I remember when Dad had bought the brand new International truck. It didn’t have a bed in the back, just a cab and frame. Every day after he had worked all day he would drive the truck up to Clyde Withrow’s welding shop and work on building a bed on the truck. When he and Clyde finished it looked like it came that way. To me this was how he survived being fruitful doing so many things himself.

A Family Man

Playing basketball my first year in high school. We went to Lompoc High School and Played. Dad came down in the car and watched the game. Afterwords, I got permission to ride home with Dad. I was really proud that he went all the way to Lompoc to watch me play and bring me home.

One day we were unloading our boxes of vegetable at Arroyo Grande trucking for them to haul our vegetables to LA to sell. He told me that he had driven truck hauling to LA. He was surprising me even once in awhile. He also said he was on a semi pro team here on the Central Coast and while doing this they had played the LA Rams which in those days was not a big professional team. He said in those days they were bad. They would play them in the evening under lights. He said the Rams would shove the football inside their jersey so Dad’s team couldn’t see where the football was. Would you believe he played the tackle position?

I was at the Taylor house playing with Denny in the evening. It got to be supper time and Denny and I because of playing never noticed the time.  Dad came to pick me up in our Plymouth car which had running boards on it. I begged Dad to let me stand outside on the running board to ride home. I saw he really didn’t like the idea but I sweet talked him so he drove home real slow. We were just getting in front of our house. Dad hadn’t stopped yet and I decided to jump off while the car was moving and of course I fell down on the cement road and got the wind knocked out of me. Dad slammed on the brakes, jumped out of the car with a frightened look on his face picked me up and carried me into the house. He told me not to jump off a vehicle while it was moving and I could tell he wouldn’t ever let me ride like that again.

One day Dad was in the shed sorting and packing artichokes with Uncle Connie and I was out playing where I shouldn’t have and I opened the fill cap on the big gas tank and was smelling the gas fumes. For some reason Dad came checking on me because I seemed to like to get into mischief, and Dad found me up on the gas tanks laying there. I think I passed out and again I got carried into the house and Dad revived me.

Farm Life


Dad and Uncle Connie raised pigs at Uncle Connie’s farm in Los Berros. I will never forget killing a pig, carrying it down to one of the old oak trees in the back of the pickup after they had shot it in the head. They would winch the pig up in the air by it’s hind legs over a big metal drum. The drum must have been from the oil fields because it was thick steel open on the upper half with a fire underneath and boiling water inside. They would drop the pig into the water then raise it up, then start scraping the hair off. Dad would let me help him scrape. This would go on until they had gotten all the hair scraped off. Then they would clean the pig cutting it open taking all the insides out and washing it. Usually when I was there Dad did the cutting up, then they would haul it over to the walk in cooler at Grandpa’s ranch.

When I was in the first or second grade Mom and I went down to the apricot orchard where Dad was pruning. I had seen the advertisement somewhere, this was during World War II, selling these air force hats with goggles the pilots wore in those days. I asked Dad to buy one for me and he just grinned and kept pruning talking to Mom while working. I pushed pretty hard then I think a bud or something dropped in my eye.

It hurt and kind or burned and I told Dad if I had the hat with the goggles I wouldn’t have got something in my eye. About two days later after I had forgotten about the hat and goggles Dad gave me a little package and here was the air force hat and goggles which I really didn’t need. Times were hard and I now feel Dad really couldn’t afford to buy it.

Dad decided that the ground below the Hodges house where we lived in the adobe ground needed improving. He cut down a few walnut trees, borrowed Saratoris dirt scraper and started leveling. He leveled for about a week, not having any survey equipment disked and ripped the ground, furrowed it and planted vegetables. The leveling was almost perfect which dad did by sight with the water running perfect. To this day I couldn’t believe he could do everything himself without surveyors or big equipment to level with.

One time Dad came home with tomato plants. How many I don’t know but enough to cover about a half acre. He said let’s go plant these. So guess what I did that day? Dad put an empty barrel in the back of the pickup laying it down horizontally, put a valve “faucet” in the small plug which was on the bottom and filled the barrel with water through the big cap hole. We then went across the creek over to where he had disked up and had measured of where the plants were to be planted. We planted them and dad kept them watered. The plants did well and he would pick them and put them in the shed to finish ripening, then weekly would sort them picking out the ripe ones and shipping them for sale.

Dad was driving tractor disking on Saratori’s place across from the Halcyon store. I think mom dropped me off there so Dad let me got on his lap on the tractor. We were disking along with me watching Dad pull the levers to turn the cat and keep it going straight when he pulled one lever I pulled on the others and that disengaged the clutches and the tractor stopped for a second until I quickly let go. Boy Dad was sure startled. He gave me a “little” bawling out and we kept on disking of course getting dustier as well.

The Time I Went Missing


Art, Gary, Edith and Mildred

When I was pretty young, Dad was disking in the walnuts and artichokes behind our house on Uncle Henry’s farm on Valley Road. I got tired of riding with him so he stopped and got me off the tractor. We were about half way out in the orchard and artichokes. The ground is good and the artichoke plants grew big. I was sleepy after riding the tractor so made me a little bed inside a big artichoke plant. Dad hadn’t seen me do this, and I fell asleep inside the plant. It came time for dinner and Mom and Dad called me and of course I didn’t answer.

Dad and Mom were frantic looking for me. Dad went looking in the artichoke field, and I woke up and was getting out of inside the artichoke plant when here comes Dad looking a little shaken. He told me to be sure and tell one of them where I was going.

More Memories

One time I asked Dad why we didn’t have milk cows and he told me when he was going to school he had to be up early every day and milk and feed the cows morning and night. He had made up his mind when he went out on his own he would never be tied down milking cows.

I was talking to Andy David the attorney, dead now, one day and he told me how he would get Dad’s help in information from years back. Andy said that Dad had more true information than he had heard anywhere. Andy said when he had a case that needed information from the past he would sit down with Dad and get what he needed.

Thinking about Dad makes me think about how I believe he never stole anything or lied to anyone. I cannot think of one time that I had been with him that he wasn’t always friendly to everyone. He seemed to like to talk with people and most of the time be laughing and joking. I think he liked almost everyone and in front of me I never heard him talk bad about anyone which is better than myself.


Four Grieb Generations: Gary holding Gary Jr., Art and Fred


A Verse For My Mother

Lorna and Sandi
Kind and gentle, loving and giving,
She is truly a model for daily living.
Compassionate, selfless and caring,
She lives her life entirely by sharing.

A beautiful, pure, saintly soul,
A woman with a heart of gold.
A wonderful mom and grandma too
Who unconditionally loves her babes no matter what they do.

A lady of many talents is she,
Like cooking, sewing, quilting, all three.
She may call or visit to bring homemade bread
Or a handmade gift sewn with golden thread.

She knows how to balance her work and her play,
And save a task for another day.
Contented to curl up by the fire with her kitty and a book
On a quiet day in a cozy little nook.

She tenderly shares her Godly heritage now
And shines God’s light upon all of us somehow.
And hopes all will receive faith in the Word
By hearing the good news of the truth they have heard.

She is loved by her family ever so dearly.
Her inestimable worth is seen very clearly.
So these words to her I now send
To show that my love to her will never ever end.

My love to you mom from your daughter Sandi

“Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.” Proverbs 31:30

(Sandi’s Mother was Lorna Grieb. Sandi currently is the owner/operator of Grieb Farmhouse Inn)

Grandma Gertrude Grieb and her daughters.

Grandma Gertrude Grieb and her daughters.

Four Generations Lorna, Sandi, Julie, Lily

Four Generations
Lorna, Sandi, Julie, Lily

Croquet Anyone?

Ranching can sometimes feel like, “all work and no play”, yet we love to make memories as a family and treasure the many fond memories we have playing games on Sunday afternoons and holidays at Grandma and Grandpa Grieb’s house. There were three outside games we all enjoyed as kids: Croquet, Kick-the-Can, and the ever-popular Bamboo Patch game.

Now that the tables are turned and we ARE the grandparents; our family tradition of playing games together continues.

The big fields next to Grandma and Grandpa Grieb’s house were often filled with the harvesting and drying of apricots. However, when the fields were cleared after the harvest we quickly took up that space for our outside games. Croquet was one of the first games we set up. Grabbing the mallets, balls, ball stakes and wicks we set up the familiar pattern. We then developed our hitting skill by whacking the croquet balls with a mallet through the ball stakes. The game is played by 2 – 6 people and the object is to get from one wick to the other through the stakes taking turns. The first one to hit the stake on the other side is the winner. You can break up into teams or just fight for ball position as individuals.

Recently we got out our Croquet set at Grieb Ranch for four generations to play. As we were setting up, Papa (Carl) declared that he would surely beat us all. Little did he know that the playing field was dotted with holes left by the chickens where they spend part of the day sunbathing. Those holes made the game more challenging than usual and much laughter was heard across the playing field.

Memories by Connie Grieb Willems

Grieb Boys

The Grieb Boys George, Fred, Henry

The Grieb Boys
George, Fred, Henry circa late 1880’s

Grieb Family History – The Start of the American Tree

Konrad and Katharina Grieb had a total of 12 children yet only 9 survived infancy. Five were born in Germany, three died in infancy, and the rest were born in America including two of the three living sons, George and Fred. Henry was born in Germany and was the youngest of the group that came to America after Konrad and Katharina settled in Edna Valley on the Central Coast of California in 1873.

George and Fred stayed in the Arroyo Grande Valley area and purchased part of the existing Grieb Ranch back in 1916 and 1917 for the sum of Ten Dollars, in Gold Coin of the United States of America. The sign over the entrance to Grieb Ranch reads established 1878 as that is the year Fred, who is the Grieb Ranch patriarch was born. Today six generations of Grieb Boys work, live or play at Grieb Ranch.

The Gift of Hospitality

From the time I (Sandi Ferrio a Grieb Family member who runs the Grieb Farmhouse Inn) was a very young girl, my grandmother Grieb was my model and mentor; kind, generous and steadfast in her beliefs. Best of all, she was a woman through which the light of God shone. There were no more joyous moments in my life than time spent with her. As I assisted her with household tasks preparing and serving meals, greeting guests, friends and family I observed how she moved with ease, balance and grace. Everyone felt welcome, valued and loved.

“Be not afraid to entertain strangers for thereby some have entertained angels.” Hebrews 13:2

Her life verse, Hebrews 13:2, was played out to perfection. She was always friendly to those she did not know as she believed that any person she met just might be one of God’s chosen messengers as told in the Bible in Genesis 18, (Abrahams’s encounter with God’s messengers). The love of God overflowed in my grandmother’s conduct in all she did. She was neighborly, charitable and hospitable. Her hospitality required generosity in loving her fellow man and following the commandment to love your neighbor as yourself.

I am sure my grandmother never knew all the lives she influenced during her time on earth. The way she fed the homeless hot meals who came to her door during the Great Depression or how cheerfully she daily fed drop-in visitors her delicious brand of food and modeled godly principles of hospitality. The soup pot was never empty, the cookie jar was always full. An offer of a cup of hot green tea and a warm cinnamon roll was not uncommon.

She was a woman who made a deep and lasting impression on my life. It is no accident that in my own way I chose follow in my grandmothers footsteps and more importantly the leading of God in my life by extending hospitality to strangers at the Grieb Farmhouse Inn. It is a joyful thing. “ I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.” Philippians 1:3.