Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Books, Baking, and Memories

Today was the day I planned to straighten the bookcases out, rearrange things, and tidy up in general. I did those things, but somehow it turned into a four bookcase purge and restructuring. I have a photo evidence of this occurrence -- the thing that blows me away the most is the fact that even after all the books I got rid of (see the two stacks on the floor?) my shelves are still full!!! I am beginning to think that my books are multiplying while I sleep...seems completely logical to me :/ So the two stacks of books more than meet the five-a-day requirement. I am not going to list titles because there are too many!!

I would have finished the job today, but I was distracted by a picture of a cake -- a flourless chocolate cake with chocolate ganache. And because I have a friend having a birthday on Monday, and this would be the perfect birthday cake for her...I needed to make a test cake. This is how the conversation with my daughter went:

Me: You're going to be my Guinea pig tonight.
Sierra: what?!#%!!
Me: I'm trying a new recipe, and you and Jeff are going to be my Guinea pigs.
Sierra: Ooooooooooooooohhhhh! I thought you said we were eating Guinea pigs tonight!!
Me: Yes, and it's your job to find them in the backyard, catch them, butcher them, and prep them for tonight.

I think needs to get her ears checked or something!
Here is a picture of the finished and sampled test cake. No Guinea pigs were harmed in the making of this cake. Click here for the recipe. It is very rich and decadent :)

So on to the "memories" portion of tonight's blog post. The top book on the stack in the front is a cookbook. It is the same cookbook my mother had for many years. I found it at a garage sale and bought it because it was in much better shape than my mother's, and I am sentimental and sappy. I can only think of one recipe in it that I've used, and I actually have that recipe on a 4x6 card in my most important recipes folder ( a re-purposed small photo album).

It was a battle between sentimentality and logic -- in the end logic won and the book is in the purge pile. I've done a lot of thinking about why tangible objects are so important to me as memories, and the only thing I can come up with is that I need to be able to touch something that was theirs to honor their memory -- almost like creating a shrine to honor them. I can think of far better ways to honor my mother, and hanging on to stuff isn't one of them. Plus, I will always have the memories, and they don't take up precious space or require dusting. Honestly, I am a little sad to be getting rid of the cookbook, but it feels like the right thing to do.

Thanks for reading :)


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