Less is More (5)

Old becoming new again

My late grandmother and her family, used to cook on this very stove in my summer kitchen. I live in a two family house that my dad and his cousins grew up in. There is an additional kitchen downstairs because Italians can never have too many kitchens. It is fueled by a pilot light and has a nifty retro label in cursive. I feel like the value of cursive has been lost on our generation, but I still have this stove. It's so old that despite scrubbing with abrasive sponges, it will not come clean, but I feel this is to our benefit. It's a reminder of where we come from, and that old becomes new again. 

There is great comfort in remaining connected to my roots. They are strong roots, caring and resolved. Proof etched in grease remains from the makers before us, who prepared food for their families, my family, in the summer heat.

 The unstoppable summer kitchen stove. 

The unstoppable summer kitchen stove. 

A new flavor of iced coffee at Dunkin Donuts

I said once before that I look forward to my three o'clock iced coffee break, like a kid craves a visit to Disney World. And it is true. I allocate my projects and tasks at work around that three o'clock break, and frame it as a reward and indulgence. While coffee for some is black, mine is more like dessert especially since Dunkin Donuts partnered with Baskin Robbins to release ice cream inspired coffee flavors. I am weak in the knees for the Cookie Dough. I get my medium iced with one squirt of the Cookie Dough syrup (that stuff is sweet!) and some, well, cream. So much for a mere coffee break; how about a mini vacation. 

A bouquet

 The littlest bouquet I ever received, and one of the more special ones. 

The littlest bouquet I ever received, and one of the more special ones. 

Children are remarkably resilient. They are creative and find solutions in the rarest of places. Along those lines, they also find joy in under appreciated situations. There are like walking, talking mini ambassadors for simple pleasure seeking. I've been spending some time with three special kids. The middle child walked up to me in the backyard with this tiny bouquet. It was only the size of my thumb, but it was beautiful, a gift from her to me. 

Making pickles

So far this season I have made pickles twice, with darling little gherkins from the Farmer's Market. The first pass was a great success and I thought to myself that I must have the pickling touch. The second pass, I parted from the recipe and improvised, adding additional items and in different orders to the brine. My mason jar filled with cucumbers nearly exploded two days later. I had even gifted one of the jars from the second batch to friends, and was horrified to tell them, "I think something is wrong with the pickles. Proceed with caution."  I do love pickles though and will certainly try again; the summer is long. James bought me a pickling book so I can build a stronger foundation.