Monday, June 16, 2008


Good surprises:
  • finding a copy of the Betty Crocker Cook Book c. 1975 at a flea market in eastern Washington.
  • finding a copy of the I Hate to Cook Book, c. 1960, which my mom had and which I read with great amusement when I was a kid. (It's ironic, of course, that my mother had this book--she doesn't hate to cook and is in fact a wonderful cook--but the book had its day, and as a piece of humorous writing, it is great--and the recipes are quite hilarious in their own right. But that's another post for another day.)
  • finding three dollars in the pocket of my just-washed white jeans.
  • finding the shoes that I passed up at DSW three weeks ago (because I had imposed upon myself an absurd two-pair limit), a pair of slate-gray Clarks flats, at the Nordstrom Rack a few days ago.
  • coming home from a trip to find that the roses I pruned in March are taller than my head and blooming their heads off.
  • discovering that chamomile and lavender together make a lovely and refreshing iced tea.
Bad surprises:
  • I have more books than I have shelves (technically, this isn't a surprise).
  • cat vomit on the floor of my study.
  • can't sleep, too hot.
That second bad surprise was a bit grim, certainly, but as of right now, 11:18 p.m. on an evening mid-June, the good surprises outweigh the bad. And a bonus: because I found the Betty Crocker Cook Book, which was the cook book of my youth and young wifehood, and which at some point drifted out of my possession, and which for a very long time ruined me for cook books that didn't have glossy photos, I can finally fulfill my dream, if I still want to, of making the Black Forest Cake, oh cake of my dreams, cake I aspired to as a young wife and never had the wherewithal, such as the ingredients or the correct pans, to make. Also, it is the source of my most reliable yellow cake recipe, the Yellow Whipped Cream Cake, which, in its title, speaks for itself, I believe.


  1. I love the Betty Crocker cookbook. And I was cold at about 4 a.m. so all is not lost. yet. Technically it's still spring.
    If you make that Black Forest Cake I need some!

  2. My favorite off the wall cookbook is No Man Knows My Pastries, a take off on the Joseph Smith biography, written by a drag queen, featuring recipes like jello with hot dogs. I'd love to find the hate-to-cook book. It sounds hilarious!

  3. No man knows my pastries--that is the funniest thing I've heard in a long time. And by a drag queen no less. That's a cookbook I'd even like to read.



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