|My Mom 1946|
In the early part of this new century, my Mom had the idea that she wanted to create a cookbook of some of our old family recipes and give them to each of her daughters for Christmas. She wrote down the things she could remember and brought them to my house. We sat down at my computer and she talked about each recipe and we tried to come up with written recipes to record for posterity. We did our best. She bought some fund-raiser "blank" cookbooks from one of my nieces (I think - could have been a nephew - but I remember it was a school fundraiser). She took what I typed to a copy service with the books and they printed them and cut them to the non-standard size of the "blank" cookbooks. We all got them for Christmas that year. We treasure them greatly!
It's difficult to create recipe for cooks, like my Mom, who cook without measuring! Some of the recipes, we just wrote down what she did - without true measurements. Others, she came pretty close to measurements we could grasp sufficiently to "sort of" recreate her dishes. Do they ever taste "just like Mom's?" Not really. For several Thanksgivings after that, I asked her to spend the night at my house Wednesday night, and to just sit there and let me recreate some of her dishes...or let me watch her prepare her dishes. Then I took notes on the recipe pages she had put in her little recipe book. I believe I have perfected her cornbread stuffing - it's now what I'm asked to prepare if I am attending a Thanksgiving that my Mom is not attending.
Our family used to get together - the entire horde - for Thanksgiving. As our family expanded to a massive size with children, grand-children, great-grandchildren and assorted partners...my Mom would have us to the Fraternity or Sorority House wherever she was a House Mother at that time...after a long a industrious work life - her "retirement" job was as a House Mother for several University of Texas Greek Houses. She finally retired from the last sorority job and now travels from family to family for the holidays. None of us can handle the multitudes...and actually, as we've all gotten older...we like to have our own Thanksgiving in our own homes. Oddly enough, I'm now in the same position my mother found herself...I travel to my son's house for holidays. I live so far away from the family that with working schedules, melting pot families who have to fit in many "stops" for the holidays...no one can come to my house now. So, I go there. I take the cornbread stuffing and a few other favorites. It's a mixed emotion. I miss my Mom's Thanksgivings, I miss MY Thanksgivings, but I love watching my oldest grow into the excellent cook and host that he has become.
I've got my Mom's Recipe Book out today, and am reading what we typed, sitting there together in my computer area (MOM, we made lots of mistakes!). I have become more adept at cooking and creating recipes myself so the errors are glaring to me :-) but, it is a marvelous walk down memory lane.
|Mom camping with 5 kids on the beach - Port Aransas, TX - mid 1960's|
|The back of Mom's b-day tee|
|Mom's custom b-day tee - "Buck Up Getting Old Ain't for Sissies"|
|Mom on the jetties at South Padre|
|Mom with her 80th birthday cake|
|My son carving his first turkey|
BON APPETIT, Y'ALL!!!