All posts filed under: comfort food

breeding joy

In 2004, our family was a bit worn by a run of fairly epic events: illness, strife and woe, though strangers for the most part up until then (lucky us!), took up residence in our solar system with a vengeance. When the dust settled (for good, we innocently thought) my husband and I did a hugely greedy thing: we had another baby. It was greedy by planetary standards, and that gave me some major pause. But it was also greedy for joy. I can run circles around most circular thinkers—but this! But that! But this and that!–and though I continue to visit and revisit many of my big decisions, I feel pretty confident that the joy grab was a sound move. Illness, strife and woe have not been as strangers since then. But the boy continues to compound the happiness of those around him. This week Vitamin A turned 10, a noteworthy milestone. We always have his Party after the holidays, when his school chums are more available, and mark his official day with a …

holiday baking for the slightly demented

holiday braking

Are you feeling it? Not the amnesiac impulse that leads to you to truly believe you can operate a sewing machine, pastry bag (or whatever instrument is your personal Martha Stewart Waterloo) like a boss, not the bubbly energy that suggests you can mingle cheerfully and with durably good hair at multiple holiday gatherings in a single day, not the vain hope that you can get to (and out of) the post office three days before Xmas with your dignity and errand timetable intact.  Not those things.  We are all (right?) grappling with those demons.  I am wondering if you are feeling what Mrs Wroblewski, my sister’s college-era landlady, called “too much party.” The tiny houses are done.  This year I managed to avoid a 3peat of the ‘Bake Em Wrong First‘ fiasco, which is a significant advancement.  But the process is not automated yet.  It continues to be lunacy. This year it was lunacy in good company, as two friends enabled joined me. Blessings on their heads. So that’s done.  And the little hoggies …

So many angles on tomato soup

The Tomatrix

The Pekingese notwithstanding, I have been a rabid fan of P.G. Wodehouse since I was a youngster.  In one of his most epic Jeeves/Wooster romps, The Code Of The Woosters, Bertie finds himself a guest at a posh country home, in a bedroom where the mantel is festooned with little china figurines.  As the plot thickens and various characters process their woes and frustrations, one by one the tchotchkes get dashed, passionately, to the hearth. At the end of the book, Bertie comments that the “rush of life at Totleigh Towers” has taken the ultimate toll, and not a shepherdess is left standing. It’s been a little refrain in my head since then, “the rush of life at Totleigh Towers.”  This has tons to do with tomato soup, as I will now demonstrate by deftly changing the subject with an imperceptible flick of my wrist. It’s the time of year when it must be accepted—in my zip code, anyway—that edible food will not be coming fresh from a patch of earth nearby for several moons …