“I learned that if I could read, I could cook. I surprised myself I like it.”

I slept in until late this morning then I just took my time reading the papers and doing the crossword puzzles. Before I knew it, the morning was just about gone, and here I am with a list of chores and errands to do. I haven’t even brushed my teeth or gotten dressed. First on the list is the chocolate pie, tonight’s dessert. The chili was made yesterday, but I still have much to do and here I am lollygagging.

The desk got dusted last night. It was one of those chores I needed to get done, and I was determined to finish it before I went to bed.  The top of the desk can now be seen, and its glass protector is reflecting all the wind-up toys on the top shelf. I keep looking at it with a bit of surprise at how good the desk looks though it does make me want to move along to dusting the shelves.

My mother never made us to do chores when I was a kid. Many of my friends had to make their beds, clear the table and wash or wipe the dishes, but I never had to do anything. I never questioned that; however, there were some disadvantages. I never learned to cook as a kid. My mother did it all, and I never watched. The washing machine was a mystery when I got to college. I had no idea the buzzing meant an uneven load. When I got an apartment my junior year, my roommate did the cooking. She could make gravy and cook just about everything. I was in awe. She had learned how to cook when she was growing up and had been responsible for cooking dinner at home a couple of days a week. I served Dinty Moore if I had to make dinner, and what did my roommate do? She made dumplings for the top of the stew.

Strangely enough, cooking became one of my favorite things to do. I have made all sorts of dinners including Chinese, Indian, Moroccan, Middle Eastern, Greek and, of course, African. I love the challenge of making something new, something difficult. I even go so far as to match the table decor with the meal. That, I believe, trumps the dumplings.

I have mastered the washing machine to the point where I no longer have uneven loads, and that buzzer never rings. Now that is an accomplishment!!

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14 Comments on ““I learned that if I could read, I could cook. I surprised myself I like it.””

  1. Hedley Says:

    I’m tired, I watched football until Eric’s team were ready to board the plane back to Kansas City with a very attractive 3-0 record. Its a bit different watching a game when you are concentrating on the right tackle position, but that is what Mrs MDH and I did.

    I read today that a British tourist got trampled to death by an elephant. One version said that the poor fellow was taking a photo of a bird and was in the path of a stampeding “Nellie” . A more exciting version (ok the Mirror) announced that he was taking a photo of another elephant, was ambushed from behind by a couple of rogues who knocked him down and jumped on his stomach.

    I guess departing this world by way of elephant is not to be anticipated – I have always hoped to avoid the eaten by a crocodile or drilled by a shark exit – probably a low risk in Michigan.

    As the Bengals moved the magic number to 4, Prince (not ours) Fielder, chasing a foul ball, reached in to the front row and took a nacho from a supporter of our great team. When asked why he didn’t coat the nacho with the cheese, Mr Fielder responded that he wasn’t sure that the owner wasn’t a double dipper.

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      I think I would lose track as I never see individual players well unless they do something spectacular like intercepting. When they show those replays, I need the circle showing the player. I can understand your and Mrs. MDH’s exhaustion.

      Where was the tourist when he was trampled? I would think a tour guide would be watching to safeguard his charges (a bit of pun, sorry). That’s a gruesome way to die.

      I would like to go to bed and just pass away in my sleep-no melodrama at the time of passing though being eaten by an alligator or a great white would make for a wonderful story to pass along in time with the family. “Years ago my great grandmother’s sister was eaten by a great white off the shore of Cape Cod. All they found was her foot.”

      The Bengals? Aren’t we talking Tigers? The Sox got their berth last night. Their magic number is 1 to take the division. Mr. Fielder is a large man who might have needed a pick-me-up.

      • Hedley Says:

        “He is believed to have been taking pictures of an elephant in a river when two jumbos attacked him from behind, the Press Trust of India quoted police as saying.
        He was reportedly “fully focused” and did not hear warnings from other tourists.
        One of the elephants is understood to have trampled his legs and abdomen, the report said”

        The Daily Mirror

        The poor unfortunate was Colin Manvill, who was wandering the Masinagudi National Park in Tamil Nadu – ok some dump in India.

        Yea, Pumpa was biking in Stoney Creek Metro Park with Big Rick when a 15ft croc, rare but indigenous to the State of Michigan, emerged from the Lake, and dragged the poor unfortunate from his bike and in to the rushes. A Tottenham Hotspur T shirt was found near the accident

        Every now and again there have been discussions next to the water cooler of the worst ways to check out, and lunch for some random has been right up there. I quite inappropriately suggested that in the arms of Ms Harris could be an optimal strategy to meet my maker.

      • katry Says:

        MDH,
        I like drama so my last gasp should be in some way dramatic, but painless. I do not really want to be eaten. I did like your touch about the A Tottenham Hotspur T shirt being found.

  2. sprite Says:

    I find that reading hinders my ability to cook, particularly if there’s a line in the recipe that says something like, “Allow to cook for more than 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.” Because, you see, “more than 3 minutes” means “enough time to read a few pages before I’m supposed to get up and stir the thing” which really means “I will be sucked into my book and not look up until the timer has been going off for 2 minutes and the house is filled with the smell of burning ex-food.”

    • katry Says:

      sprite,

      Luckily my main dish, the chili, cooks in the crock pot because the dessert needed my attention the whole time. Stirring constantly was the direction for all three parts of the chocolate pie which is finished and cooling! All I need to do is appetizers and set the table. I am moving right along!

  3. olof1 Says:

    It’s been another beautiful day here and it started with frost. Not much ice anywhere though, some on the spider webs and most on my car windows 🙂

    I had to do a lot at home, the laundry and cooking, dishes not so often thankfully and cleaning the apartment. I guess that’s why I don’t like doing lots of it today 🙂 Well I have periods when I like to cook and I always like baking bread but the rest? Nah 🙂

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      I’m not o sure a beautiful day should start with frost!

      I do have lots to do here but not until tomorrow as tonight is my dinner, and I’m about to do the appetizers. I have laundry and cleaning tomorrow. I don’t mind a day or two of cleaning!

      Enjoy the evening!!

  4. Birgit Says:

    A sung chili recipe:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IP7dR_1imGI
    We sang this song as a 5-part song with the chorus years ago, it was a torture to sing and learn by heart. I remember the bass part sung by girl on the left. These 3 girls are amazing.

    • katry Says:

      Birgit,
      I’d have to write like crazy to copy their recipe, but it sounds a lot like mine though I skipped the jalapeño peppers.

      I loved the asides ( I guess that’s what i’d call them) by the singer on the left. They are definitely amazing!

  5. Bob Says:

    When I was a kid my mother and then later my aunt, after my mother passed away, did everything for us. Woman in those days didn’t work outside the home and they felt the need to take care of their family by doing all the work themselves. My mother employed a maid once a week to help do the heavy house cleaning. Living in a segregated city, Dallas in the 1950s, she was the first black person I ever know. We had no chores when I was growing up. I was determined that when I had kids they would have chores to help around the house, build their self esteem and to lighten the load on my wife and myself. It just never worked out like that. My kids are like the character, Maynard G. Krebs played by Bob Denver, in the TV series “The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis”. Maynard Krebs would exclaim the word work in a high pitched squeal as if the word was hurting him anytime anyone on the show mentioned the word work. My kids just disappear.

    It rained on and off all day and the high temperature never got above 75 degrees. My lawn is still brown but happy for the rain. Tomorrow’s forecast doesn’t include the wet stuff but the temperatures should be in the low 80s.

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      My mother had kids at home for a long while so she couldn’t have worked and those were the days of a single car in the family. We walked or took the bus if my mother wanted to go somewhere. I had friends who had chores to do around the house, and I was always kind of thankful and glad I didn’t.

      My sister’s kids didn’t have chores growing up, and my sister worked, but she is a cleaning fanatic so they probably wouldn’t have done it right anyway.

      I didn’t know anyone who had help when I was a kid. I have cleaning people and a landscaper so I guess they’re help

      You must have loved today!! 75˚ is about where we were, and it was delightful. The lawn just takes a rest but will return when the rains come!

  6. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    For a while my mother would make my middle brother and me wash dishes but we fought so much over whose turn it was to dry that she gave it up. Neither of us wanted to dry because the drier was last out of the pantry. Somehow that made it seem as if one had worked harder and longer. Seconds count when TV viewing is at stake. 🙂

    I taught myself to cook by inflicting my creations on my family. Only one of them was daring enough to try all my work. The rest would eye it dubiously unless it was immediately recognizable as something American. They were usually pleasantly surprised.

    I had plans to work on some projects today because I didn’t have to be anywhere. A friend that I haven’t seen for almost a year called to take me out for my birthday. She was a few weeks early. We celebrated anyway. What the heck.

    Enjoy the evening.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      My mother was one of 8 children and I have to think my grandmother needed help with that many kids, but my mother never mentioned her chores growing up. Maybe she hated them enough she didn’t inflict them on us.

      I started baking when I was in Ghana, and I was happily surprised with the results. I made sugar cookies for Christmas, and they tasted good. I was hooked on baking at that point.

      My friends just left. Dinner was a success, and the dessert was to die for. My friend loved her gifts and yummed her way through the chocolate pie.

      Have a great rest of the evening!


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