Thursday, August 27, 2009

Memories of food

My Paternal Great-Grandmother (Grandma Wood) would always bring boxes and boxes of Entenmann’s baked goods tied with string from the outlet store where she would stop on her way to our house. My favorite was the chocolate covered doughnuts. I loved them straight from the freezer, which is where she stored them when we went to her house.

Grandma always had a big glass cookie jar* on her countertop with her homemade sugar cookies in there. I can’t remember ever going to her house without those cookies being there. They were the best after a long day swimming in the pool! She must have made thousands of those cookies!

My paternal grandmother (Nana) would always burn her cookies when she would bake them, she always made chocolate chip cookies, and she always burned them. She wouldn’t throw them out either, she said they were perfectly good. I remember taking a butter knife to the bottom of them. They still tasted burnt. Her cookies are probably the reason I still don't like chocolate chip cookies much to this day. Nana made the best eggplant parmesan ever though.

My maternal grandfather (Grampy) would always take us to McDonalds for Chicken Nuggets when they came to town to visit.

When we went to Grampy and Grammie’s house, we would always be sure to time the trek so we would be in time for breakfast! Grampy made the best fried eggs! Along with Bacon, sausage patties, home fries and baked beans. The homemade toasted bread was the icing on the breakfast. Grammie always had a Tupperware container in the fridge filled with all different jars of jams and jellies.

One little weird thing about me is that I have always loved my eggs over medium, but I don’t like to eat the white that is immediately around the yolk. I would cut the edges of the white off and eat those, and then I would open the top of the egg and dip the yolk with my toast, and I would leave the middle on my plate. Grampy always used to eat it up for me so Grammie wouldn’t yell at me for leaving it. Nowadays, my tummy doesn’t like me to eat the egg whites at all. Fortunately, my husband will eat them sometimes. It’s funny because if he doesn’t I feel like I am being wasteful. I think it’s so sweet that he eats them like Grampy used to 

My dad used to go diving a lot when we were young. Pretty much every weekend during the late spring and all summer we had the fruits of his labor. They would come home with enough fish to cover the front lawn. My mom would fry it up with just simple seasoned flour and Crisco. That fish was to die for. It was so good, I would sometimes wake up in the night and eat it cold from the zip bag. Then there was the conch that she made into fritters, or that dad made into conch salad. Plenty of hushpuppies. Fresh corn on the cobb. Florida lobster – they would bring dozens of them home during the season. One year we spent a week in the keys on a houseboat and we actually got sick of lobster. I never thought that would ever be possible. I’d like to do that again!

I loved going to Aunt JoJo’s house with her luxurious air conditioning and she would make honey mustard chicken, or our very favorite Chicken Cordon Bleu. I even ate calves liver coated in oatmeal at her house once that was very tasty.


*When Grandma passed away, all of us girls got one of the cookie jars in the set. I also inherited her dining room set, where our family ate meals at her table for more than 40 years.

Friday, August 21, 2009

When one door closes, another opens

How interesting that is.

Of course, you can never see the forest for the trees when you are in the situation.

Ok. Ok. I'll stop with the cliches.

Even though I knew it was best and I really was relieved at the time, losing my job really sucked. You know, the process of it. Having them call you into the "office". Having them ask for your keys. Realizing that you have to take 8 boxes of crap out of your office and put it where? Giving your fish that lived on your desk to your sister for her desk, so her daughter can say hi when she visits the Castle! Seeing your sister's face as she walks by the "office" - knowing that she knows. Thinking about how great it has been to work with her for 8 years and with some of the others for nearly 13. Having people walk by and say goodbye. Thinking about the fact that you won't get the sweet little annual christmas story card anymore - cause well that girl was laid off too. Waking up the next day and not having to go to work, but feeling like a loser. Trying to navigate the paperwork coming at you. Worrying about the amount of money in the bank.

(Image by Daquella Manera via flickr)
I felt down and out. It was a terrible blow to my self esteem.

Lo.... I'm here to tell you, things can turn around for the better sometimes faster than you think.

One person's kindness, that leads to another's kindness, that leads to giving you the opportunity to put yourself out there again.

The taste of knowing that you still have it - nothing sweeter.


(Nevermind in less than 30 days. Mwah!)

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Clams two ways

We went out for dinner and sort of a business meeting the other day to Bunky's in Melbourne. They are known for their raw clams and oysters. Luckily it was oyster night, so we got some. I am partial to raw clams, so we got some of those too. The oysters were ok, some of them were a little odd looking. Almost like they were frozen before, but I cannot imagine they are. The other person we were with said that every other one of hers were icky.

The clams however were teh awesome. They were small, briny, sweet and succulent. Now, as a lap band girl, I have issues eating sometimes. Usually the clams are no probelm though. Not so that night. I could.not.keep.them.down. Very annoying. So clams two ways. There you have it ;-)