Here are some pink and red cupcake beads, both topped with matching hearts along with a pair of black cherry topped cupcake beads that are on their way to my studio. I challenged the artisan to put something other than the usual sprinkles on top and I like how these turned out. Send me an EMAIL if you want to reserve any or all of them.
Other than that, I boldly prepared my mother's lasagna recipe last night. I say boldly because I feared it wouldn't taste like hers. She is no longer here so I couldn't ask questions if I needed to! The recipe is so old that when she says "parmesan cheese" in the recipe, she means the canned kind we used in the 60's!!! Not the lovely, fluffly parm we get these days from "microplaning" it from a pricey block of Reggiano. I had to call my dad to verify if on that one ingredient Mom splurged beyond our very tight family budget.
ME: "Hi Dad. I know Mom only fixed lasagna for special occasions like all of us kids' wedding rehearsals...now, I know she used the 'canned' parmesan the year round but did she still do it on the cheap for this special lasagna?".
DAD: "She was cheap."
BOTH OF US: hahahaha
BABY BROTHER: "Sis, I can't believe you think she'd do it any way OTHER than cheap!"
Hee hee...I had a moment whilst the dish was baking away where I feared that if it tasted different then the memories surrounding it might be affected in some mysterious way. Since she cooked it so rarely, would those fun and loud rehearsal dinner memories shrink in intensity? More importantly, if it didn't taste the same, would I lose a part of my Mom in some way because I couldn't recreate this dish? Goofy, I know, but these were the weird thoughts bouncing off the walls of my crazy brain.
The good news is that it tastes JUST like Mom's. Whew...and with nearly every bite I feel I'm connecting with her and with the wonderful memories like.... the luscious anticipation at every rehearsal dinner, knowing how that fabulous lasagna was going to taste the same EVERY time along with the fresh loaves of challah (holl-uh) bread that always accompanied it (haven't attempted THAT recipe yet) and.....feeling the joy of looking down that loooooong table to "drink" in the 25-30 family members that were talking and laughing....and most likely feeling the very same joy I did.
Thank you Mom...thank you.