We were standing on the bridge connecting the north and south sides of town last night waiting for the fireworks to begin when I looked up towards South Mountain and said out loud to no one in particular, “Aunt Evelyn isn’t home any more.”
Aunt Ev was actually my great aunt – my grandmother’s sister. There were ten children in their family and the house where my aunt Ev lived until she passed earlier this year was where they all grew up. Everyone in the family affectionately referred to Ev’s house as “Up Home” as in, “We are going up home for a 4th of July picnic.” Continue Readering »
From Kim King, author of the blog “Consider the Lilies.”
“Had a couple hours in the Charlotte airport today…awesome people watching and writing time. The two go hand in hand for me now that I think on it…I enjoy writing in public places. The noise and movement give parameters–something to push against and lean into all at the same time.”
These statements raise a few interesting questions; Do you always carry a notebook with you, and do you like writing in public? As solitary as I often prefer my creative time to be, there is something to be said for the quiet that lives amongst the chaos.
When I was a very little girl, perhaps between the ages of three and five, my grandparents on my dad’s side used to babysit me. When my grandfather would come home from work, he would always treat me to a Hershey’s bar of chocolate. This was back when their plain chocolate bars were made up of little rectangular pieces that could be easily snapped apart. It would take me forever to eat that chocolate bar because I would break off one little rectangle at a time and then rub it between my thumb and forefinger until it turned into a gooey mess which I would then happily lick off and then start all over again with the next little rectangle and so on until the bar of chocolate was gone.
Some memories I suppose we will always remember for one reason or another but I believe one of the best ways to retain them is to write them down.
Will you share with us an early memory of your grandparents?
I am a decent cook. Mom was a decent cook. Gram was a very good cook. (It was her job for 18 years to cook for the elderly at an extended care facility.) I watch lots and lots of Food Network programming and shows with Gorden Ramsey. I am not afraid to try new things and typically throw things together rather than follow recipes. I also tend to shop without a list which means that sometimes, things can fall by the wayside. Continue Readering »
I believe in some cases, there may be more than one woman responsible for nurturing us and offering us their unconditional love. In recognition of Mother’s Day, here’s to all the amazing women who’ve helped to make us who we are, and also to those who continue to help us grow each and every day.
What would it mean to you to discover a notebook that your mother kept during her childhood? During yours?
It can be so easy to delegate many of our daily tasks and responsibilities to one of our electronic devices, but I believe there are some things that are just always going to be better on paper- like a handwritten note on your birthday or your great grandmother’s meatball recipe on a well-worn index card.
In what ways will you always use paper? Prefer using paper?
In the late 80′s when VHS players became reasonably priced, I, like many others, bought one and began turning my living room into a nightly mini-theater. My husband and I would put pillows and blankets on the floor in front of our 25″ TV and pop in one after another of our favorite horror movies and also every new release we could get our hands on. Continue Readering »
I’ve received a recent question pertaining to Tuesday’s blog post in which I wrote about my husband cooking me a dinner of loose meat sandwiches. The question surrounded the relevance of that post to Rhodia and its fine writing products, so I have decided to elaborate and see if I can explain how my brain made the connection. Continue Readering »
Working late in my studio tonight, I get a text from my husband that he made “Sloppy Joe’s” for dinner. Yum. What’s a Sloppy Joe?
From Wikipedia: “A sloppy joe is an American dish of ground beef, onions, sweetened tomato sauce or ketchup and other seasonings, served on a hamburger bun. Commercially made sauces are also available…. The Original Sloppy Joe Sandwich was invented by a cook named Joe at a cafe in Sioux City, Iowa, as a variation of the popular “loose meat” sandwich (which does not contain tomato sauce).”
As my husband is learning to cook, I won’t hold it against him that he bought a can of the prepared sauce, but I will someday soon teach him to make it like my Mom used to. She’d first saute green peppers and onions, (always chopped very small) then add and brown the ground beef which she’d season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. The sauce? Heinz Ketchup mixed with Gulden’s Spicy Brown Mustard. (The 2 major condiments of my youth) Super simple and very tasty. She’d serve it along with her homemade macaroni salad – comfort food at it’s best.
When was the last time you ate a version of a loose meat sandwich? Do you have a special recipe for the sauce?
Having a birthday on the last day of the year gives me a slightly different outlook than most people because when the clock strikes 12:01 on January 1st, I will literally be a year older in a whole new year.
With this comes certain rituals. I am mere pages away from finishing a journal and will begin anew on the 1st. I will continue to work on my “Manifestation” list for 2012 – a bucket list of sorts which isn’t only about what I want to accomplish in the new year, but also who I wish to be. It is also a time when I like to select a single word to set a specific for the new year, words like: Positive, Abundance, Focus, Clarity, Presence, and Joy all come to mind. I will also “look back down the mountain” to remember my experiences from 2011.
A trip to the river, a last mandala, a smile as I turn forward and continue looking ahead.
Happy New Year everyone! See you next year!
My grandmother used to drink Folgers instant coffee. (The best part of wakin’ up, is Folgers in your cup!) She’s been gone since 2000 and I wonder what she’d think of all of the gourmet coffee available today. She had been a cook in a nursing home for 18 years somewhat of a food snob long before the Food Network started converting us. She’d go on group tours to other countries – to Italy to see the Sistine Chapel, ask her about the trip and she’d describe it by the food she ate.
I remember once sitting on her couch and watching a cooking show where they were making something with portabello mushrooms. I told her I wished I could make that dish but how portabellos (at the time) were pretty expensive. I couldn’t even get that out of my mouth before she is pulling a $10 bill from her change purse and pressing it into my hand. “Buy them” she says…
I really appreciate that she encouraged me to experiment in the kitchen. I only wish that I would have written down some of her recipes. She made a meatloaf that I still dream about – nothing has ever come close.
Is there anything that one of your relatives used to cook that you long for? Something that you have tried to replicate but cannot?
Photo courtesy of Mike Rodriquez.
“Reminders may come to us as inherited discoveries. Through time, we become recipients of the gifts of those around us. Their recollections can become ours, too. We all receive keepsakes in varying forms, and that surely includes stories. In this way, we are also discovering gems that land in our paths. Although significance may have been ascribed by predecessors, we can add our own appreciation. In sharing reminders, we can assure one another of the great purpose to our steps.”
I, much like the author of this post on “La Vie Graphite” will occasionally pick up a pretty stone or pebble to remind me of a moment in time – these of which in actuality turn into giant stepping stones as I look back down the mountain of my life.
Want a great start to your week? Take a look back to see how far you’ve come, take a deep breath, then smile and keep going.
PS – Read the inspirational post “reminders” at La Vie Graphite. Photo also courtesy of La Vie Graphite.
I am not sure you all have met Cecilia yet – she is Exaclair’s Product Marketing Manager and also a frequent poster to our Rhodia Drive Facebook page. She sent me the image along with some stories from her recent journey….. Continue Readering »
It’s probably not news to you that last Tuesday, almost the whole of the east coast of the US felt a 5.9 magnitude earthquake that originated in a small town called Mineral, Virginia. While earthquakes are apparently not as uncommon on this side of the US as one might think, it was due to the shallow depth of the quake and the hard rock much of the east coast sits on that many of us lost our minds when our houses started to rock & roll. My mind quickly raced between paranormal activity, neighbor’s washer thumping, Continue Readering »
“A typewriter is a mechanical or electromechanical device with keys that, when pressed, cause characters to be printed on a medium, usually paper. Typically one character is printed per keypress, and the machine prints the characters by making ink impressions of type elements similar to the pieces of cast metal type (called sorts) used in movable type letterpress printing. From their invention in 1870 through much of the 20th century, typewriters were indispensable tools for many authors and businessmen. By the end of the 1980s, however, word processors and personal computers largely displaced typewriters in the settings where they previously had been ubiquitous in the western world. Nonetheless, typewriters remain in use in various areas of the world.” - Wikipedia
The other day on Facebook, a friend mentioned her daughter had asked her, ” What’s a typewriter?” I hear things like that and I get a little melancholy for the “good old” days back in the 1970′s. Don’t remember the 70′s? Viet Nam, gas lines, Studio 54 – they were far from simple times but when you are young, things feel easy because you aren’t yet plagued with adult responsibilities. Continue Readering »