Rabu, 17 Agustus 2011

Other things may change us, but we start and end with family


My mom tells a story.  I’m not sure if its funny, sad or shocking.  Maybe it’s a little of each.  I’ll let you decide.

She grew up in the late 40’s and 50’s.  Her home life was very traditional for those times.  Dad worked outside the home.  He was the president of BumbleBee Corpration . . . yeah, the Bubble Bee that makes tuna.  Mom stayed at home doing the homemaker thing.  Both were strict disciplinarians . . . you didn’t mess with my grandpa and grandma. 

As a side note . . . I never knew my grandfather; he died when I was still a baby.  I knew my grandmother.  She died of cancer when I was a young girl and my memories of her are sparse but interesting.  She lived in a dark, cluttered apartment in Washington D.C.; not messy just filled with bric-a-brac and plants.  When we visited her I recall that she always had Clamato juice and vodka in the fridge for her Bloody Mary’s.  She was an alcohol and that was her drink of choice . . . and I seem to recall she was never without a cocktail in her hand.   I always thought she was kind of scary and she wasn’t particularly affectionate.     She reminded me of Joan Crawford in her later years . . . bony and stark looking.   Grandmother never slept on printed sheets because she said they gave her nightmares.  That’s as far as my memories of her go.

Anyhoo . . .

My mom was the youngest with two older brothers (she later had a younger sister but that was after this story).  One summer day, Mom put the boys in charge of their little sister.  Obviously, this was a hassle.    Who wanted to look after a little kid when there was stickball, kick-the-can and tag to play with their friends?  So they came up with a plan that would keep her out of their hair for a while so they could go off and do boy stuff.  They took her to the playground, stripped her nekkid, plopped her on the merry-go-round and set it spinning. 

I don’t know what happened between then and the time Dad got home from work, but as my mom tells it, when he found out what happened SHE was the one who got the beating . . . yeah, those were the days when parents were allowed to discipline their kids without fear of arrest . . . SHE got the beating because she was out in public naked.  The boys?  Well, they were just being boys.



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Old Fashioned Sour Pickles


This pickles have an distinct flavor . . . a little bit sweet, a little bit sour, a little bit spicy  . . . a LOT yummy!



Cucumbers

1/2 Gallon Vinegar
1/2 Cup Salt
1 Head Garlic
4 Hot Peppers
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Dry Mustard

Combine dry ingredients and add vinegar. 


Use quart or pint jars that have been washed, scalded and dried. Use small cukes. 


Wash and dry cukes. Pack into jars with garlic and sliced peppers. Fill with vinegar mixture. 


Seal and store in the refrigerator.   Ready to use in about 3 weeks.

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