Happy New Year! Additionally, #TGIM – Thank God Its Monday and, as such, #HappyMonday to everyone! I look forward to every Monday because it’s one of my 52 Chances each year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!
Today is so inspiring, to me because it’s National Thank God Its Monday Day – which is always the first Monday of the first Month of the new year. A lot of people bash Mondays – like the Grinch bashes Christmas – but, to me and many others, Mondays represent new beginnings, which always offer new opportunities.
As NationalDayCalendar.com claims: “Mondays are often full of new beginnings…Not only does the observance focus on the first Monday in January, but on every Monday throughout the year.” I LOVE that! Especially since I write these blog posts, in memory of my mom, every Monday and they always energize and inspire me for the rest of my week’s workload. I can only hope they energize and inspire others, as well.
NationalDayCalendar.com suggests that we… “Stop shaming Monday and look at what Monday has to offer… 52 chances to see a beautiful sunrise… share your talents with the world… teach someone a new skill that will better their lives… of meeting new people.”
Since reading that a few years ago, I now see Mondays as my 52 chances to share memories of my mom and tell her story, over and over again; hopefully, re-inspiring someone else’s love in the kitchen, in the home and family, throughout the neighborhood and around the world. Mondays were always one of Mom’s favorite days, also.
FROM MOM’S MEMORIES…
As seen in…
My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, pp. 54-55)
RADIO AND BOB ALLISON’S ‘ASK YOUR NEIGHBORS!’
RADIO turned out to be the most appropriate way by which we made people aware of what we were doing…my involvement with the wonderful world of radio actually came about without any specific intention of becoming a regular part of the broadcasting field…
I didn’t know I had what is considered ‘a radio voice’. Heaven knows our five kids will, to this day, even in their adulthood, testify to the fact that, on occasion, during their up-bringing, I had been known to discover conditions that would prompt me to accelerate, vocally, in a pitch that only dogs in the next county could here!
My introduction to radio began with Bob Allison and [the] ‘Ask Your Neighbor’ show. I was folding diapers at the kitchen table, waiting for my favorite daily segment of ‘My True Story’ to come on the air when, instead, WWJ [a Detroit area radio station] announced that it had been replaced with a NEW show.
This new show turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me…almost every Monday morning I [would] visit with Bob Allison and his neighbors…
When ‘My True Story’ was replaced by Bob Allison and his ‘Ask Your Neighbor’ show… I was, at first, very disappointed. Household hints and problems around the house that you cannot solve yourself seemed like just too much homemaking information to please me.
I soon, however, became ‘hooked’ on the show, as almost everybody does, to the point that, on Fridays, when Bob would sign off and say he would talk to us again on Monday, I was spending the weekends just looking forward to the show on Monday.
I called the show about 2 or 3 times a month for the first year or two, to ask questions of Bob’s “neighbors” that my newspaper column readers were asking me. When I couldn’t find the answer from consulting other sources, I knew I could rely on Bob Allison’s ‘neighbors’ to come up with the right answers for me.
In return, I would often… phone in an answer that I occasionally had in reply to one of their questions or recipe requests. Bob did not recognize my voice as a regular caller until I had initiated the newsletter, however.
He asked me where the [hamburger sauce] recipe came from that I was giving, in reply to one of his listener’s requests, which is how his program has always worked… In mentioning that the hamburger sauce recipe would appear in the next issue of my monthly newsletter… Bob reacted with great interest and curiosity.
‘You have a newsletter, do you?’ He asked. ‘Well, tell us about it and how much it is and where our neighbors can get it.’ That was all it took to get us well-acquainted with Bob’s ‘neighbors’ and, in no time at all, our subscription orders went from a few to many.
‘Don’t count your days, make your days count!’ – source unknown
Reading more and learning something new every day have been other successful New Year’s resolutions of mine, which I continue to repeat each year. Mom instilled in me, when I was very young, the importance of knowledge and to Learn Something New Every Day! As the old adage indicates, knowledge is wealth!
There was a time when women and girls weren’t even ALLOWED to read or learn anything other than how to be a good wife and homemaker. Unfortunately, I think that’s still so in some places around the world. So even evolution, itself, is still evolving.
Over the past few years, in my own quest to Learn Something New Every Day, NationalDayCalendar.com has been one of my favorite go-to-sources for information. Something is celebrated every day of the year even if it’s not a federal holiday and I’ve found National Day Calendar’s website to be a really great source of information about what’s being commemorated (and how) each day, every week, and in all months!
Some of January’s month-long observances include… National Blood Donor Month, National Hot Tea Month, National Mentoring Month, National Oatmeal Month, National Slow Cooking Month, National Soup Month, and National Sunday Supper Month!
Disappointingly, January’s celebrations of National Slow Cooking Month and National Sunday Supper Month, plus, this coming Friday’s National Sunday Supper Day aren’t done much in America – not even by British/Irish descendants, from where the tradition supposedly originated.
The practice of Sunday suppers has been traced back to the UK’s Renaissance Era, when families congregated after church for a large meal; with a slow-cooked pot roast, being the traditional choice. The Sunday supper gathering was where you usually learned about your family’s stories and history, traditions and beliefs.
Royal bodyguards were supposedly known as ‘beefeaters’ because of their love of eating roasted beef. This actually became the design for Beefeater restaurants, also known as The Sign of the Beef Carver restaurants. Mom imitated many dishes from them. Here’s one (below) from Mom’s self-published cookbook, Eating Out At Home (National Home News, St. Clair, MI; Sept. 1978, p. 22).
Additionally, January is also National Hobby Month. Thus, I want to re-share one of Mom’s stories (aka: memories) about her dining room table, family-based business not being a hobby. It was her profession, career, and livelihood; but it was never work – not to Mom – and certainly never a hobby!
MORE FROM MOM’S MEMORIES…
As seen in…
My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, p. 53)
THERE ARE MANY RISKS involved with going into business for yourself, no matter what product or service you intend to offer. If I had thought more about the risks, than I did about the possibilities, I never would have moved an inch toward doing any of the things about which I now write. My husband is not a risk-taker. I am. We complement each other well. He still becomes uneasy and anxious about every new idea I have for another book or another project, on the basis that ‘we can’t afford it.’
I have learned, over the years, to keep many of my projects to myself until they are completed; which, in the long run, saves Paul from worrying unnecessarily about something that will very likely turn out well, and keeps me from worrying that Paul is worrying.
When I have been asked about goals or destination, it is been my feeling that every corner I turn has a new goal, a new destination awaiting us. I have never thought of any one point as being the top. Life has so many wonderful opportunities for each of us to take advantage of, that it does not seem reasonable that I should give myself the limitations that would determine just how far I should be able to go.
Because this was never a hobby, never WORK, never a job, I have had no problem with the worry or concern that accompanies a position from which one expects to retire. I would not want to give up what I have been doing [writing] since I was a child. It would be unfair to have to give up doing something that has also brought so much pleasure and good information to so many people.
It was, however, only when I realized WHAT I should be writing about and what I should be sharing with the readers – what I knew best – that things really began to happen. Of course, my husband wisely reminds me, when someone asks about writing their own cookbook, that WRITING it is the easiest part. Knowing how to SELL it is the hard part!
Back to Sunday suppers – Did you know that there’s a difference between “dinner” and “supper”, even though many people use the terms synonymously? Dinner is a large meal, usually eaten about mid-day (aka: lunch); while supper is a lighter meal, with something like soup and a sandwich, that’s eaten in the evening.
Another difference between the two terms, according to Merriam-Webster.com (Jun 28, 2018), is that “Supper is used especially when the meal is an informal one eaten at home, while dinner tends to be the term chosen when the meal is more formal. In some dialects and especially in British English, supper can also refer to a light meal or snack that is eaten late in the evening.”
In honor of January, being National Soup Month, here’s Mom’s copycat recipe for “Dent Knees Cheese Soup”; as seen in her self-published cookbook, The Joy Of NOT Cooking – Any More Than You Have To (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Nov. 1983, p. 71).
P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…
January 8th is… National Bubble Bath Day, National English Toffee Day, and National Joy-Germ Day! Plus, as the second Sunday in January (2023), it’s also… National Mocktail Week, National Folic Acid Awareness Week, Universal Letter Writing Week, and National Pizza Week (which always start on the second Sunday of January).
…1 down and 51 to go!