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Kitchen Wisdom - From Stockpots to Rolling Pins

Passing is Such Sweet Sorrow 
Mar. 4, 2013 8:23 am 
Updated: Mar. 12, 2013 8:45 pm
It has been over two weeks since I have stepped foot in a kitchen to cook.  I went to town to buy a few ingredients for a pie I've been wanting to bake.  Hubs had been doing a good job of keeping the basic supplies on hand.  Since we live in such a small town, many questioned why they hadn't seen me around. Word hadn't circulated yet about my dear mother's passing.   

I was packing to make the trip to spend time with her.  She was chatty on the phone the night before, and was so excited, as she always was, to know that I was coming.  Yet I had noticed a weakening in her voice over the past few weeks when we spoke.  She would never let on to me how much pain she was really in.  Maybe because I was the baby, she just didn't want me to ever worry.  There were some places she wanted to take me shopping, and of course our girls out lunches at the local restaurants. Mom always had a beautiful smile and a contagious giggle. Everyone she came in contact with loved her.

Mom had a bad night and was taken to the hospital.  The doctors had to perform an emergency procedure to remove an obstruction in her lower intestine.  There was some risk due to some weakened organs, but it had to be done. The toxins were building up too fast in her frail little body. Sadly, she never regained consciousness after the surgery.  My sister and I both traveled as quickly as airplanes could get us there, only to arrive seeing her on life support.  It was heartbreaking.  With no hope for recovery, the only thing we could do was to fulfill her wishes and let her pass.  

Our uncle, a senior pastor at a church in Southern California, came to give the sermon at her funeral. It was comforting to have him preside, which is what she would have wanted.  Toward the end, he took time to speak personally of his relationship with her and recalled a time when she had he and his wife for dinner.  He said she made the most beautiful leg of lamb, and spoke of how delicious and memorable the meal was.  Mom was known for making wonderful roasts, a legacy passed down to both me and my dear sister.  

Mom had a fetish for collecting cookbooks.  I think she had every edition of Betty Crocker, Pillsbury, and numerous others.  She also loved to pick up the small monthly ones at the grocer check out.  My sister and I had so much fun looking through them.  I remember confiscating one that I used a few recipes from for Thanksgiving this past year. We will cherish those books forever.

There was an overflowing of love from family and friends.  I'm sure she was looking down with joy. She touched so many with her kindness and zest for life.  The memories will be cherished and held close in our hearts always.  She is now with the Lord, pain free.  Rest in peace, dear Mama. We will be together again, and forever in spirit.  You are my best friend, my everlasting angel.  

Mar. 4, 2013 9:13 am
You seem to be a very grateful daughter and loving, as well. I'm sure your mother had much comfort from that during her transition. God bless you and your family.
Mar. 4, 2013 9:47 am
My sympathy to you and your family. No matter how old we are losing a parent is devastating. I' m glad you are already exploring the good memories.
Mar. 4, 2013 11:08 am
What an incredible Tribute to your Precious Mother. Her life will continue through you and your God-Given Talent.
Mar. 4, 2013 11:35 am
My sympathy on loosing you mom.I lost my mom 28 years ago.My heart goes out to you.Still have my dad,he is 91 and still going strong.
Mar. 4, 2013 4:01 pm
My deepest sympathies to you on your mom's passing.
Mar. 4, 2013 4:49 pm
I am so sorry about your mom. It sounds like she was a wonderful person.
Mar. 4, 2013 6:35 pm
Better than gold or precious gems are the memories we build and share with those we love. If that is true, you are wealthy beyond measure. God bless.
Mar. 5, 2013 4:28 am
So sorry for your loss. Glad you have such good memories of your Mom.
Mar. 5, 2013 6:00 am
Thank you everyone for your caring and concern. She was so precious and dear. This has been very difficult, but each time I find myself wallowing I feel her spirit and the bright light that surrounds her. She is with me always, I know that. Thanks Doc for reminding us what true wealth really is. Well said. Blessings to all.
Mar. 5, 2013 8:24 am
Thank you for sharing your memories of you Mother. She sounds like a beautiful spirit. When my Mother passed several years ago I found this short poem. It gave me strength and I hope it does the same for you.
Mar. 5, 2013 10:12 am
Oh, AZ thank you. That is so beautiful!
Mar. 11, 2013 10:19 am
I am sending you a special Cathy Myers loving embrace, Cyn. My daughter and I also share a very close love for each other as you had with your mother. Stacie called a few days ago just to say "I love you". I replied, "I love you too, Sissy. What's going on? (I could tell by the tone in her voice.)". She told me that her firend's mother had passed of conjestive heart failure and she was thinking of me. I too am a heart patient. We are all in new seasons of our lives it seems. In rememberance of your dear mother, loved by so many especially by you, I hope that you are able to except and embrace this "new season" in your life, Cyn, and live it to it's fullest. God's greatest blessing to you and your family. Sisterly love from Cathy Myers.
Mar. 11, 2013 10:27 am
P.S. I apologize for the misspell, Cyn! "accept" NOT "except". Do I see a smile on your face?!
Mar. 11, 2013 7:46 pm
God Bless you and pour out His peace in your heart. The memories will live on and your mama will continue to live through you. Let yourself grieve her absence - but always celebrate her life - which was obviously a joyous one!
Mar. 12, 2013 3:54 am
CC, please accept my sympathies in the death of your mother. My mother died almost 4 years ago, and there are times when it seems like a fresh wound. Like your mother, my mom had a way with roasts, and cookbooks, too! I have never been quite able to equal her roasts, but my cookbook collection surpasses hers! I think you have it right, that she is your best friend, and I believe she will continue to be, as your memories come to stand in for the physical words and embraces you will miss. In a very special way, she still lives and breathes in you, in your body, and in your mind and spirit. Our understanding of this now is very dim, but one day we will know it fully. In the meantime, keep breathing, share memories with your sister, take any offered hug, and love others the way your precious teacher taught you. I am so sorry for your loss.
Mar. 12, 2013 8:30 pm
Thank you, Cathy. I can feel your warm embrace. It is so wonderful to have such cherished memories. Obviously you know by having a loving relationship with your daughter, and that the time spent together is so deeply treasured.
Mar. 12, 2013 8:41 pm
Oh Bibi, your words are so beautiful. I can still feel her with me, and I'm certain I always will. It's odd, in that I feel like a lost orphan now that both of my parents have passed. It's an end of an era, and I am at a crossroads. Thank you for the gentle reminder to keep breathing. I will never be her, but she did teach me a lot about how to make others feel loved and important. There was never a day she wasn't smiling. She had such strong faith in the Lord, and I know she is now at peace pain free.
Mar. 12, 2013 8:45 pm
Thanks, luv2cook for your thoughtfulness. I still catch myself crying, and then I feel her like a whisper at my side telling me to not be sad. I am blessed to have such wonderful memories.
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About Me
It brings me a lot of pleasure experimenting and improving on my cooking and baking skills. It's something I take pride in. I'm a canine mom, and raise backyard chickens ("my girls")for entertainment and the wonderful eggs they produce. Growing up, I really wasn't allowed much in the kitchen except to wash or dry the dishes. Occasionally my mother would let me help her bake Toll House chocolate chip cookies. When I left home I was armed with a skillet and a slow cooker. I now enjoy my repertoire of pots and pans, mixers and food processor, several small appliances, and a variety of unique casserole and serving dishes. In addition to cooking, I'm a collector of antiques and love to pull together interesting mixes of linens, fine china and silverware at the dinner table. In the summer time, I move my cooking outside to the grill and spend a lot of time on my back covered patio. It's a great gathering place for friends and family.
My favorite things to cook
Any type of holiday cooking and baking, especially between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Mexican cuisine is regular fare at our house. In the winter, I bake a lot of casseroles and slow cooked roasts. In the summer time, I always cook steaks, burgers, chicken and ribs outside on the grill. I also love to bake desserts. Cheesecakes are my specialty.
My favorite family cooking traditions
I grew up in a small family, just me, my sister, Mom and Dad. We rarely had anyone else at the dinner table, so most occasions were just the four of us. My Dad loved to cook out on the grill, and made one mean burger. His were the best! Always done to perfection. Juicy on the inside, slightly charred on the outside. And he always went to the local bakery for fresh buns. So now, I am known for making the killer hamburgers. I fondly refer to them as "Eddie Burgers", and they never disappoint.
My cooking triumphs
I think the biggest triumph is when it gets REALLY quiet at the dinner table. The occasional "mm mm" or lip smacking are the greatest compliments. Clean plates followed by "when do you want to do this again?" top it all off. Mission accomplished!
My cooking tragedies
Oh my. I remember trying to impress my boyfriend at the time (now my DH) by inviting him to my place for a home cooked meal. I didn't want him to think that all I could do was boil water. After work, I went to the store and grabbed the latest copy of "Bon Appetit" and opened it to find a beautiful picture of Chicken Parmigiana. That's it! I thought. Okay, now to shop for the ingredients. With groceries in tow, I went to my apartment to begin the preparation. He was to arrive at 8 PM. It was now 7 PM, and had barely started. In reading the recipe, I was like "pound the breasts with what?" and when I finally had them dredged and ready to fry, the oil wasn't hot enough. It was disastrous. And my sauce burned to boot. When he knocked at the door and stepped in, he could see things were not going well for me. In a very kind way, he asked, "would you like to go out to dinner instead?". We ended up at a five star restaurant on the waterfront drinking wine and laughing. The rest is history!
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