Wednesday, August 29, 2012


While baking with Maga was a treat, it is not an unusual practice in our house.

The kitchen is the center of our home.

The girls jockey for position to help cook meals. Part of the reason why vegetables have made such a big resurgence on our dinner plates is that the girls can easily help prep them. Peeling corn, snapping beans, picking tomatoes and prepping salads are all proven and fulfilling toddler-preschooler activities.

But just in case anybody forgets the drill, Grace has taken it upon herself  to create some signage.

Oh, and as an afterthought.....

To bad the person they are directed at can't read yet.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


The last two posts I've put up were kind of throw aways. Two weekends in Chicago, over 1200 miles in the air. It's exhausting.

But it's been making me think about family a lot.
All of the things we are missing. All of the memories that aren't being made for us and our girls.

During the first weekend, my mom was at the center of the trip. She had grand plans for Gracie. She wanted to make up for lost time with some of those memories. She wanted to bake.

Armed with three kinds of chocolate chips, they worked together, side by side, in a sweltering kitchen without pause.

I'll crack and you stir.
You pour and I'll stir.
Careful, only the eggs are supposed to go in the cookies, not the shells.
Let's taste. Does it need more chips?

There is something so back to basics about baking. I can't imagine a childhood without it; without those memories of stirring, pouring and kneading. Teaching your kids how to cook is like teaching them about soul. How to put love into something inanimate, that has the ability to animate.

And I'm glad that Grace was able to have that afternoon in the kitchen with my mom baking cookies.

Eggshells, salt pockets and all.


This post is inspired by Sarah McCoy's The Baker's Daughter. In a small Texan town, Reba discovers Elsie's German Bakery and falls in love with more than the pastries. Shes drawn to Elsie's life in Germany during the last year of WWII. Join From Left to Write on August 29  as we discuss The Baker's Daughter. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Waiting

They were waiting for me when I exited the train station.
'Stop being a pansy and take the stairs,' Matt texted to me while I waited a solid 5 minutes for the elevator to creep it way back up to me.  No way dude, these are BlogHer bags. They weigh a ton.

Grace refused to nap, despite the fact that Matt had taken them on a three hour tour of Fort McHenry. She focused on her American flag trinkets, counting the moments until I emerged again. I was greeted with 'I Love You's,' 'I Missed You's' and the inevitable, 'Why did you go on vacation without me Mama?'.

I whispered stories of my walks all over NYC. I saw her statue. I touched a bull. I sat on a motorcycle.
She whispered back with stories of feeding cows, singing our anthem and eating cupcakes with friends.
We both had grand weekends.

Then she remembered the empty suitcase I left with, and it's promise to be full upon return.

After emptying the suitcase, she looked at me and said, 'Mama, I like it when you go on vacation.'