Did you take Home Ec (Economics) in Grade School? Back in 1959, when I was in 6th grade, it was mandatory for all girls in the 6th, 7th and 8th grades at the City of Buffalo public schools to take Home Ec. Boys had to take Shop, and learn how to make bird houses, cutting boards and use tools. All those manly things. We girls took courses in sewing, cooking, managing the home, etc.
I made an apron, sewn by hand, and when we graduated to the foot treadle sewing machine, I made a wrap-around skirt-brown, ugggly with an emphasis on UG. The sewing skills did not take, but I enjoyed the cooking, and they even taught us the basics on planning a meal to serve it all at once-not an easy task, setting the table, washing the dishes.
I was actually thrown out of that class and sent to the principal because I mistakenly pronounced Hor D'oeuvres "Whore dee vores". Honestly, it was just out of stupidity, not trying to be funny. I had never heard or seen the words before and it was my turn to read in class, but because I did display a sense of humor in the class in the past, no one would believe me, and the students were laughing, and the teacher lost control, and, it was all my fault. I went to the bathroom and cried because if anything, I was trying to not make trouble, and to think, I was sent to the principals office, woe is me.
So anyway, when it came time to wash dishes in class, there was a specific pattern to get the dishes washed up properly: Glassware, silverware, chinaware, pots and pans. I loved the rhyme of that, and that it had reason to it. Rhyme and reason, I am a fond follower of that approach. Those days, no one, not even your rich friend from the other side of Weston Avenue who lived in family homes, not the projects like I did, no one had a dishwasher then. Dish washing was a common task that we shared, rich and poor.
Glassware first because the water is the cleanest, and you want your glasses to sparkle, and pots and pans were last because they were nasty.
Today, we had a lovely family soup party, and I can be quite persuasive some time to not allow my guests to help with the dishes, sometimes, not so lucky. Tonight, I won. and as always, I used the Home Ec formula, organized my dishes, and had them all done in a about an hour.
Today, the schools offer a Home Ec course, but both boys and girls take it, and it is not mandatory, and shop type of courses are also open to both sexes. I think I would have liked shop too!
When it came to the dishwashing tonight, SSon dried and sorted the silverware, he loves to sort things, so this was perfect for him, and he dried the three sizes of plates and sorted them too. The rest I did, all the time thinking about how the get-together went. This dishwashing time is a look back for me on the day, to relive time spent with special people.
I so enjoyed myself-I love having soup parties. One cousin did not know it was a soup party, and when I offered to get him another bowl of a different kind of soup, he stated that no, he would wait for the main course. We laughed and said, this is the main course, after he had a few more bowls, he thought this was a good idea for a party.
We had: Roasted Vegetable Soup, Chicken Italian Sausage Black Bean Chili, Chicken and Rice Soup and Italian Wedding Soup. Served on the side were scalloped apples, almost like an apple pie in a bowl. The usual three kinds of crackers,nice croutons, freshly made and a good variety of bread: White Sour Dough, German Rye, Whole Wheat rolls, and Rosemary Bread-the smell of this one was so heavenly.
For Dessert, we had: Peach Cobbler with home-made whipped cream, Zucchini cake with cream cheese frosting and Thanksgiving Cake with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. I bought some very good cider at Wegmans-their brand, made some Crystal Lite Iced Rasberry Tea, Coffee and that was the meal. It works so well when everyone brings something to share.
There were only eight of us, a nice group, we talked and talked, then watched the last few minutes of the Buffalo Game (boo hoo, we barely lost), and then part of the Yankees play-off game #2 (double boo hoo, we lost that one too). then we talked some more, we are all very compatible.
SHusband is now resting, SSon is catching up on facebook, and little Boo Boo Marie the SCat is now back in the living area, she was exiled to SS's room because nothing says being a good host like having a cat jump onto the table to lick the butter.
Our next get together is Thanksgiving, and since most of my fall decorations are put out, I just need to add a few Thanksgiving things and I will be ready-wouldn't it be nice if the house stayed clean?
Here is a picture of my outside decorative corn stalks-new variety this year called broomstick corn stalks-loooove it. And what is wrong with this picture? Is someone really going kicking and screaming into fall? The temp was mid 40's when we were putting up this thing! Gotta love his enthusiasm for all things summer.
When I have dinner parties, I try to use serving pieces or other items to represent people not with us any longer. Matka is very much front and center in my head and heart right now, her birthdate is this week, tears are flowing.
For my Matka today, I used her warm and friendly attitude, she loved having parties too, loved to cook up some lasagna and pizzelles and set the table nicely, and always welcomed everyone to her home.
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