Madeleines!

The other day I went to the Home Store to poke around and see if they had anything I wanted but didn’t need, and low and behold they did! I was rooting through the clearance baking pans, when this very classy woman with a French accent pointed out this interesting looking pan:

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She told me it was a “madeleine” pan, and that she bakes madeleines for her friends who simply adore them. I had to admit to her that I had never heard of a madeleine or it’s seashell style pan, but her commentary intrigued me so I forked over the five-spot and set to baking.

I easily found this recipe http://allrecipes.com/recipe/madeleines-ii/  online and VIOLÁ,

Madeleines!!

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They are crunchy on the outside and soft and cake-like on the inside and simply divine.
How fortutious that a chance encounter, taught me a new skill with such a delicious result.
Merci Mademoiselle!
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Award Season ad infinitum

award-bannerDoes anyone remember a time when the televised award season consisted of the Academy Awards, Emmys, Tonys and Grammys? I guess the Golden Globes were around years ago too, I just don’t remember hearing much about them until more recently, but now it seems that there are multiple awards shows for every genre of entertainment, including a glut of music award shows. There are so many in fact that I feel the meaning of an award has become substantially diluted.

I know I’m being cynical because I think that most awards are political and done for boosting sales of either tickets, or nowadays downloads, but maybe I could forgive some of the blatant self-congratulation if they were at least a bit entertaining. It’s ironic to me that the businesses that are meant to captivate, enthrall and cheer their audiences can’t come up with a better way of being, well, entertaining!

Every year they try “new” and “better” ways to give out the awards, start off the show, and speed up the speeches, but I find myself watching the opening bits and then turning off the tube and keeping up with the results via the internet. Maybe I feel I’ve seen it all before or maybe because I’m sitting on my couch, arms crossed, thinking “I dare you to entertain me”,  I will always be left disappointed.

I do sound like an old curmudgeon, but I just can’t stop thinking about the mighty egos that think that we all want to see 5, count ’em 5, Country Music Award shows! Mighty proud of themselves ain’t they?! And I’m a country music lover, but how many times do we have to see the same bands and singers recycle the same old songs? Get off my television and give someone new a chance dang it!!

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Phew, ranting like that really takes it out of a person!

But, because I am an eternal optimist (not hardly!), I’ve already checked today’s Oscar nominations for Best Picture and figured out how many I still need to see before March 2nd (6) because maybe this year’s telecast will win me over!

Last of the Lot

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My mom and pop 1954

Cold temperatures, like we’ve had today, always seem to put me in the mood to putter around the house. Today took me into the basement to dig through boxes that I haven’t looked at since we had a flood down there four years ago. (I know what you’re thinking, but my excuse is out of sight, out of mind!)

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New Year’s Eve 1960’s with my aunts

One of things I came across was a plastic tub full of photo albums with snaps from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. There were the usual vacation photos with my awkward 14 year old self, long pigtails and glasses with ginormous lenses, holiday gatherings in glorious black & white and lots of badly taken pictures of my childhood home. What dawned on me as I was strolling down memory lane was how everyone in these pictures has, how can I say this, passed to that great puffy cloud in the sky. I’m trying to be humorous here because it’s really quite sad to realize that everyone that was a big part of my life for many years is gone.

My extended family was quite large when I was a kid, and we got together a lot for all kinds of occasions, but one thing was pretty noticeable at these things; I was one of only three kids in attendance. For whatever reason this older generation didn’t go forth and multiply, and with my parents both being in their 40’s when I was born back in the 1950’s, my family members were, without exception, already past middle age when I was little. As a result I got along much better with adults than kids my own age when I was young.

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Christmas 1959

So I’ve started to think about all the good times we used to have and all the memories and stories I used to hear from this lost generation and I’m thinking that I really need to write and catalog what I remember so that all is not forgotten.

It’s tough to be the last of the lot, but I’m so glad that I was a witness, and took a small part in the “good ol’ days”. They were a fun bunch, and my only regret is that I didn’t have them around when I was an adult so we could have shared a few highballs together!