friday faves - sweet delights

As a little kid, when I wasn’t doing chores, I spent a lot of time just hanging at home, alone in my room drawing, or loitering in the kitchen with my mom while she cooked. My five older siblings were either swimming their brains out, cavorting with friends or at jobs while my dad was at work.

On rainy days I’d sit at the bar in our kitchen and eye my mother beneath glass-enclosed cabinets as she flitted around the space, her plump form draped in a cotton apron tied over a patchwork-printed blouse. Endless muzak streamed from a faux wood box radio perched on top of the refrigerator. I half liked listening to it.

Mom showed me how to bake—cakes, cookies, bread, pies—you name it. Flour and sugar lived side by side in a deep divided drawer, beat up aluminum measuring cups half buried in the white mounds. She used a wooden spoon to stir batters and doughs in shiny wide-mouthed mixing bowls. I loved the dull din of moistened wood on metal and its gritty, sugary scrape against rounded sides.

With no exception my mom let me lick the bowl. She was sweet, always leaving ample chunks of sticky, buttery clumps of dough or wide silky swaths of batter. She seemed to enjoy seeing me delight in the goodies, though she was less happy with the eight cavities I soon developed.

Savory-sweet aromas filled my nostrils as she plucked the confections from the oven into thick quilted mitts. My mother wrapped her arms around my elfin frame, mine around her soft middle as raindrops pattered on the shingles of our cozy ranch style home. We lingered.

It’d be fun to show Calvin how to bake, to reserve a gooey treasure for him to lick clean, to see his eyes, large as moons, and his impish grin as he buries his face deep into a bowl emerging with a chocolaty smudge on the tip of his nose.

Perhaps in another lifetime.


  1. Oh the memories that food and smell bring. Such a link to family. Yes, I get how this is a treasure that will be missed.

  2. Aw.
    This pulls at my heartstrings. All of it.
    The images. Reminds me of my mom in all her plumpness and apron baking bread. Me standing on a chair, listening to the country music station and wanting to help.
    I wish you could share this with your boy.