I was remembering my mother the other day. I was rolling out pie crust, and she came to mind. I don’t remember loving her pies, I was not much of a pie lover growing up. Me, I’m about cake, and brownies, cookies and such. But, my mother was a pie-woman. After I was married I picked up a rolling pin for my kitchen. It was big and made of white plastic, didn’t work too well. Later I replaced it with another one. Still not much of a pie baker. And than my mother passed away and I inherited her rolling pin, cloth and sleeve. Now whenever I use them I think of her. I also use her pink-handled pie spatula and her small paring knife. I’m sure these items were purchased from the grocery store near her home. She would be mortified to wander in to William Sonoma with me and see the prices they get (sometimes from me) for their kitchen supplies.
My father also gave me my mother’s jewelry after she died. I wear her wedding ring along with mine. And, the diamond and ruby necklace he bought her always gets compliments when I wear it. But it’s those inexpensive kitchen tools that warm my heart the most.
Another thing I’ve noticed about kitchen and dinnerware in particular, is how big they’ve gotten. The stainless steel flatware I received as a wedding gift 30-plus years ago was missing too many pieces. So, this fall I bought a new set. The drawer insert I had bought when we remodeled the kitchen 17 years ago did not fit the new knives and forks–they were too big. And I know more than a few folks who after redecorating their kitchens (new paint not new cabinets) replaced their dishes. Only to find the cabinet doors would no longer close on the over sized plates. It’s hard to find small 3oz juice glasses, and don’t’ get me started on coffee mugs. What does all this mean?
Everywhere you look our stuff takes more space than it used to. And the question is does it have to? (You could extrapolate this to the cars we drive and the portion sizes in restaurants, but I’ll leave that for another day.)
So, I was thinking about my mom as I rolled out pie crust with her old wooden rolling pin the other day. Feeling her right there besides me admonishing me not to roll the crust out too much or it wouldn’t be flaky. And I knew some things are best left unimproved or enlarged. And finally after all these years, my mother’s rolling pin in hand, I make a pretty good pie. I’m just say’n.