Friday, November 16, 2012

The Heart of Our Home

Haiku My Heart
November 16, 2012

Haiku My Heart is a weekly meme that brings friends together to share. You can find more haiku and find out how to participate at Rebecca's recuerda mi corazon.

My Mom, at the stove in the kitchen, getting Christmas dinner put together for the family around 2000

Family kitchen

Eating our way to heaven

Twelve foot long table

My friend Rebecca had a post recently where she introduced us to a marvelous blog that spoke about kitchens, food, cooking and life. It is entitled Muy Bueno. Click on the link in her blogpost and take a look. You may just see something you like by way of a new, or something you might find to be an exotic, recipe.

In the meantime, Rebecca asked for comments about our favorite kitchen experience. I wrote about some of the time I spent as a kid and throughout my life with my Mother in the kitchen.
I commented, “I would watch my Mom in the kitchen and tug at her apron, asking, "When we gonna eat, Mom?" But I watched, and tried things on my own. Those days "helping" Mom bake Italian delicacies for the holiday gatherings or lifting the heavy pans of boiling water for pasta and huge 6" roasters filled with lasagna when she was getting older, were the best memories I have of time spent with my Mother. As Fall is here and another Los Dias celebration is behind us, we think about Thanksgiving and Christmas and talk with our daughters about our plans and menus. Everyone mentions how they'll miss Grandma and what recipes of hers are we going to make.
Maybe the best memory is the one that we have not yet lived as she attends to the details in spirit at my own home.
Carmelina Rosa Caruso Spado lived her life and directed her love to the family from the cucina. (Cucina in Italian, cocina en Espanol)

That said, it made me think of so many instances of celebrations, birthdays, holidays or just a plain old fashioned Sunday, or even a weeknight, dinner in every kitchen I’ve ever lived in or visited and places where I have been invited to cook. This way of life was inspired by my Mother, Carmelina Rosa Caruso Spado, may she Rest In Peace.
I love the kitchen. To cook for the masses, or to cook for my spouse and myself, is a ceremony. Our home has a table in our kitchen. I remodeled the room to create an open kitchen/dining area. I have made my own custom size tables at three of the places where we have lived. We sit at the table and entertain when guests stop by. All action gravitates there.
We went from a long rectangular table to a round table and were using the outdoor glass top patio table until we found a suitable round one here at Spadoville. Perusing Craigslist, I found a round wooden table that had twelve 8” leaves and extended from four feet to twelve feet and everywhere in between!
So, my haiku today speaks of the many meals that will be shared across our new table and elicits more fond memories of my life at home growing up. In fact, that second line could also easily read "Cooking our way to heaven". 
Wish I was going down to help Mom make some Christmas stuff this year. I’ll just have to make some here in my own kitchen this time. Thank you for letting me share here today.



carol l mckenna said...

Lovely tribute post and haiku to your Mom ~ (A Creative Harbor) ^_^

ps. food was not 'central' in my growing up nor is it now ~ you make the kitchen and food so loving ~ ^_^

ps. I do like sharing food with others and good conversation ~ mostly it is the 'people' and food the smaller part ~

Barbara said...

What a beautiful post about childhood, food and memories. And a wonderful haiku too.

Delphyne said...

The first thing I spied was the huge pot of sauce on the stove and then saw how small your Mom was!

This is a gorgeous tribute to your mother, Carmelina Rosa - she had a beautiful name and sounds like an equally beautiful soul.

somepinkflowers said...

{{ sweet, small mom
you had,
looks like, joe !!

food + family = love
don't you think ??

did you have
a little separate table
for the kids
when you were growing up??
i had to go off to College
before i graduated
to The Big Table ...

isn't life grand!

love reading your memories shared

♥ }}

joanne said...

My close Sicilian family always gathered in the kitchen, with wonderful Italian treats always present...I decided that food was family, food was love, food was comfort, and food was delicious!

Lea said...

Your haiku and words here today, a feast. I love reading about your beautiful mother, her name spoken here with such love. And all the ways she has infused your life with the gathering of family, cooking, and the opening of your home... I just went from a round table to a square table, also with many leaves, eleven! I don't know yet how I feel about the corners, there is something about the round that is more community making for me. We will see... Peace dear Joe!

Kim Mailhot said...

Family and those loving traditions are so dear. Loved hearing about your tables and your magic Mom.

(Waiting in sweet aniticipation for the mail person !!! Hee !)

Wishing you peace and love, my friend Man.

Laura said...

beautiful... I love to prepare food in the kitchen too... side by side with my mother, sisters, daughters, nieces, husband or friends... though most often I cook alone, there is something more celebratory about cooking with others. I hope that you will consider sharing an offering for this year's 4th annual gratitude word quilt. You can find information about the project and how to participate at the top of my blog. If you’ve already sent something thank you and forgive my poor memory. The quilt is growing quite expansive and with only first names, I can’t always remember who already shared. Feel free to write in your native language google translate is available on my blog so every one can read and understand one another. Every Blessing~ Laura

Fallingladies said...

Your post makes me feel warm and cozy... Food was not that way at my home growing up but it was when i went to my grandma's house. I wsh i had learned to cook from her before she died...

I did just receive a wonderful package! i will e-mail you ....

Meri said...

In my next house, which will be a cozy cottage, I want a beautiful rustic wood table. I'd picked a Welsh harvest table for this house, but it was too long for the dining room. The square glass table that I settled for works with the contemporary feel of the house and leaves me cold. It never gets used for dining -- only for folding laundry.

carol l mckenna said...

thanks so much for understanding and commenting on my shadow photograph ~ not all people understand it ~ hugs and namaste, CArol (A Creative Harbor) ^_^

Unknown said...

That table sounds like the exact one I am looking wouldn't need quite as many leaves...
You have so many memories Joe,
Thank you for sharing one of the good ones♥

Mel said...

She's such a spunky thing with her pot on the stove and you harassing her. LOL Small doubt you miss her sorely.
You two were graced to have each other.

Nothing to draw from on the kitchen experience growing up, but we're creating some great memories nowadays with he-who-cooks and me-who-supervises! LOL And kiddos who watch and critique and steal ingredients and interfere and make everyone nutz!! Of course, I encourage it. LOL It's a grand family affair--and it's ours!

Stuff that memories are made of, eh? ;-)

gma said...

Cooking our way to heaven. I love that!!! We always make old family recipes for the holidays that way the old ones are here with us in some way. Occasionally we leave an empty seat for them to join us. Now the family has grown so much we need all of our chairs.

Grace said...

Those memories are the best to keep ~

Thanks for sharing and have a great weekend ~

Annie Jeffries said...

So many of my happiest memories are from my grandparent's kitchen. Homebaked bread, flapjacks, donuts, and my ever favorite deep fried donut holes . The flurry of flour and smell of yeast in a warm kitchen makes me nostalgic and happy to this day.

Marit said...

I'm always jaleous reading about diners, cooking and big tables... my mum has very talents but cooking isn't one of the 'big' ones... neither is mine. I'm not much of a cook... but I can imagine big tables, laughter and lovely food! Enjoy!

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

"eating our way to heaven"

What a festively delicious line! :)

Golden Lace Shadows

Pamela said...

I just got to meandering around on the web and catch up on this and that. One of the this (or that) was this post of yours. I'm glad to got to read it, it's really sweet. Thanks!