Friday, April 07, 2006

One of my greatest ambivalences is that I'm going to become my mother one day. I always knew that I had tendancies towards that, yet it didn't become apparant until a nice young family moved in downstairs. Before I knew what was going on we were (and I mean the females, cause that's our job) getting together with our kids for playing in the park. If the days grew too long while our husbands were at sea we were there to lend a shoulder or provide quick daycare. Then there were baked goods. Bread, mostly. Desserts are a showpiece. An elegant ending to the banquet and they can be as fancy or simple as needed. Cassaroles are less formal. The comfort food of a mother's kitchen although the recipe has changed a little each time it changes hands. Moving across the country I find that much of what I took for granted in foods and recipes are more regional than I had ever suspected. Thank God my dear mother taught me how to cook.

One thing that does not change much is the baking of bread. It is the staff of life. Every culture that ever was has bread in some form. So now when I see a woman who seems depressed and in need of cheering, I'll make her a loaf of bread.

Someday when KittyCat has grown older I won't have as much time to spend baking and punching down dough in the traditional ways. It's a shame. Somehow I must find the time to teach her this. Maybe it was instilled in me as a good Christian Thing, but it's also a caring Thing. Homemade bread is just different. Different from store bread, even bakery bread. I'd like to think that it's a blessing on all of our heads.

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