When I was very young, I would visit my grandparents every summer in W. Va. We would go to my mother's mom first. We called her Mimi, and from her I got my grandmother name. She made the best fried chicken I have ever eaten. She would put on an apron, get one for me and we would cook together. We then went to my father's mother. We called her Mama Lou. She taught me to make my Dad's favorite cookies, "Magic 5 Way Cookies". She would put on her apron and also get one for me.The memories of cooking with my grandmothers and the gifts of their wisdom are irreplaceable.
My true inspiration and mentor is my mother. She can out-cook the greatest chef. Her meals far exceed any five-star restaurant. On birthdays, holidays, any special occasion, or just any ordinary day you will find my mom in the kitchen stirring up something incredible. My favorite birthday cake is her Carrot Cake which is like a taste of heaven. She makes these cookies "Date Pinwheels" that will melt in your mouth; she is trying to get me to make them now but what she doesn't realize is that the love she put into making those for me cannot be duplicated. It only comes from her hands and heart. However I will take over her tradition as she doesn't have the strength in her hands to roll out the dough anymore. I know mine will never measure up to hers. There is not a day that goes by she is not cooking something. If you were to walk into her kitchen you can feel the magic in the air. So you see I come from a family of great magical cooks.
|This is my mother cooking in my kitchen in 1990.|
I know the love I have for my family is in every thing I prepare. When I put on my apron and start cooking there is magic in my heart and my family is always very near to the kitchen. I taught our boys, Coleman, 32 and James',30 how to cook from very young ages. They do not love to cook like I do but can hold their own in the kitchen. When our first grandson, Parrish, was born 4 years ago the real magic began. As soon as he could walk he was in the kitchen helping me. Now, our second grandson, Preston, is in the kitchen. We should just have 1 big room in our home, the kitchen, because that is where everyone gathers. I am very blessed to have a wonderful family whom I love to nourish and bless.
Grandma's Apron(author unknown)
|When I used to visit Grandma. I was very much impressed,|
by her all-purpose apron, and the power it possessed.
For Grandma, it was everyday to choose one when she dressed.
The strings were tied and freshly washed, and maybe even pressed.
The simple apron that it was, you would never think about;
the things she used it for, that made it look worn out.
She used it for a basket, when she gathered up the eggs,
and flapped it as a weapon, when hens pecked her feet and legs.
She used it to carry kindling when she stoked the kitchen fire.
And to hold a load of laundry, or to wipe the clothesline wire.
She used it for a hot pad, to remove a steaming pan,
and when her brow was heated, she used it for a fan.
It dried our childish tears, when we'd scrape a knee and cry,
and made a hiding place when the little ones were shy.
Farm produce took in season, in the summer, spring and fall,
found its way into the kitchen from Grandma's carry all.
When Grandma went to heaven, God said she now could rest.
I'm sure the apron she chose that day, was her Sunday best.