Sunday, February 8, 2009

My Little Chef Oven and other Childhood Memories

When you were a little girl, did you have a little cook stove? I got mine for Christmas when I was 5 years old. I remember Mama, really wasn't all that interested in me ACTUALLY using it to bake. She had hoped I would play with it and just pretend to cook on it. And I am sure I did, because I only remember cooking once with it. I made a chocolate cake and it turned out as hard as a rock. She wouldn't let me eat it, so it ended up in the garbage. Mama, really did not have much patience with kids in the kitchen. Now, mind you we learned very early on how to CLEAN the kitchen. She just didn't want us under foot to learn how to cook. I married very young and about the only thing I knew how to make was instant tea! NO JOKE! So, I really had a hard time learning, I would have to call my Granny on the phone for instructions. She would talk me through a recipe, telling me use a pinch of this and tad of that. I didn't even know how much a pinch or tad was. It was a trial and error (lots of errors) on the job training. Eventually I became a pretty good cook, and I focused on teaching my girls how to cook at a young age. Today, they are quiet talented young women, who can whip up a tasty meal in minutes.

Over the years, I have collected children kitchen items. I love all of the toys that little girls played with. I can just imagine the meals that must have been created and served to most beloved dolls and stuffed toys. Wonder, how many little brothers had to sit, wiggling at a tea party?

I ran across this Little Golden book with such cute pages I just had to share with you.

I wish I still had all of the books that my children had when they were little. Some things I should have kept, but with 5 children it is impossible to save it all.

I love this little yellow apron with the red rick rack! Her mama taught her right! Aprons are an important item. Donnie, laughs at me, because I wear one every time I cook. He told me his mother wore one, but he had never noticed his sisters wear them. My mother never wore one either, but Granny always wore her apron to cook, garden, can vegetables,and to clean her house. We even made her one with her grandchildren names embroidered on it. She loved it. I miss the old fashioned ways of doing things. I suppose others may laugh and think they are outdated. Maybe it does make me seem old. But what joy there was in the simple times we used to know. Remember when we were kids and caught fireflies in mason jars? Remember how we entertained ourselves with games, songs and coloring books. Cutting paper dolls and making snowflakes. Sitting on the front porch after supper, enjoying a conversation or story from our grandparents. Remember hopscotch? Growing beans in a can? Making mud pies? I wonder if our grandchildren will ever experience such wonders, if we are not a bit old fashioned and teach them the old ways. One of my favorite memories is drinking Coca Cola in a bottle and putting peanuts in it, so it would fizz. Not exactly ladylike, but oh so much fun!

As mothers and grandmothers, we need to teach our little ones how to entertain themselves without the use of TV, electronics and video games. Whatever will they do if the electricity goes off? We had an ice storm here about 9 years ago and lost power for 14 days. My kids learned to play checkers, dominoes, cards, and act out plays for our amusement. We had a blast! They learned new songs, we made snow ice cream, and we became a close family. Truly thankful for the blessings we had been given. Yes, I was glad when the power came on. I had been toting wood and boiling water on the grill. I am grateful for the advances we have made over the years. I just yearn for the simple childhood days of the past. I think I will begin a new journal for those who come behind me. A book to describe what childhood life was like just 30 years ago. If for nothing else but to remember those happy moments!

Enjoy your week!



Kay said...

Lorri, What a beautiful post. Your childhood memories reflect many of my own. I too, love the simple things in life and strive to pass that appreciation on to my grandchildren. Reading this post was like a walk down memory lane.

Cottage Rose said...

Hello Lorri; I know just how you feel, all of my grand children would not know what to do with out all the things out there these days. I had so much fun when I was a little girl, and we did not have what they have today. The journal sounds like a wonderful idea. My Mom always wore a apron, and I do too, even to garden and paint or what ever. I love it, and there is nothing wrong with being old fashioned in the times we live in now, we need to revive the past, past time pleasures of just being a family..


Michelle said...

That was definitely a trip down memory lane. :) I actually did have an oven...I can't remember what kind though. I just remember the wonderful brownies I made with it. That book is so adorable! I love the vintage pictures in it. My mother also taught us girls how to cook at a young age...well I was always so interested in even just watching awe. :)

Shanda said...

I enjoyed reading all your memories. I love to look at the old kitchen toys at antique store, I had so many from the early seventies and I get sicken to think we just chucked them or sold them at a garage sale. I would love to still have some of my dishes and little mixing bowls I had. Such good memories.

FeeBeeKay said...

Loved this post Lorri! Such a wonderful girlie post! I didn't have a little oven like this (which maybe explains why I can't bake for toffee now!!) and I had a Mum who wasn't a big fan of games or toys which made a mess!! Your pictures are just beautiful! Have a great week!

Fiona x

Pherenike said...

Fabulous book images. I think I just had a cardboard box as an oven as a kid!

^..^ Corgi Dog Mama said...

Lorri this was a fantastic entry today. I've had many of these thoughts myself. Our childhood, was truly a childhood! I had one of these little ovens as a child in Michigan. When we moved to Indiana I never saw it again, so I figure it went to Salvation Army and didn't make the move. My grandma always wore an apron, my mom did too. I kept the family tradition going all these years, and have quite a variety, that I wear through the year. Make a meal, without one, never!!
Delightful trip down memory lane. You express yourself beautifully!
Hope the corgi info helped you some. The snow is gone in Indiana, it's in the mid-40's, and we can see green grass! We're all thinking it's Spring, hope the groundhog was mistaken afterall!

Jean Tuthill said...

Your post brought back a lot of memories for me. I did so many of these same things. I didn't have a stove, I learned to cook at about age 12, for a family of 8, some of the meals were not that good, but we didn't have a lot of ingredients to choose from. It was make do with what we had. My two Grandmas wore aprons, I don't (probably should), BFF wears one whenever she cooks.

kymber said...

Hi Lorri,
Great post! I agree wtih you - times were simpler and slower paced when we were kids. I feel like my mother now admitting that. You know you are getting older when you say - "Remember when" :-)
I remember my mom telling me to go out and "find something to do" We would play kick the can until dark and our parents would call us in.

I had such a hard time getting my kids to use their imaginations when they were young. Technology has done so much good - the fact that I am typing this to you being one of them. But I truly feel that the future generations will miss out on the simpler things because too much of life is spent on computers, playstation, gameboys, texting on phones, etc...

I guess it will be interesting to see how our kids and grandchildren view the memories of THEIR childhoods.

I think journalling is a good idea. It is important for them to remember the simpler times -perhaps in the hustle and bustle - they will one day long for it more and we will see a drift back in that direction. I know I for one long for it the older I get.
Thanks for the great post!

the wild raspberry said...

love the books and toys. oh nostalgia...we love you so.

Lorri Lennox said...

Thank you for sharing the little golden book, they are amazing and bring back so many nice memories. I am presuming the image from this book is old enough to be copyright free? As I would love to work with it and digitally alter it for my stuff!
Please let me know if that is ok... I am thinking of cutting out the individual children for collage works.