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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Pies vs Pie Crusts

My mother made wonderful vanilla custard pies.  Best I've ever eaten.  Then, isn't that what everyone says about their mother's cooking?  I did love her pies.  But, what I really looked forward to was the "cuttings" where the pie crust got trimmed around the edges of the pie pan.

Once the pies were all ready to put in the oven she'd put all the left over crusts on a "cookie sheet" and bake them in the oven.  Those are what I really loved.  Even today, when I have a chance to have a pie (we don't have them often as we both love them entirely too much) I almost prefer the crust to the actual pie.

What memories I have of  helping my mother make the crusts.  Mostly at the house we lived in on Nat's Creek in the late 60s.  The old Charlie Blessing house.  My dad, who was born in 1902, said it was an old house when he was a kid.

I can remember that house from when I was a pretty small lad myself.  We would ride the passenger train from West Van Lear down to Patrick and walk the old road and paths to my grandparent's house.  Part of that path lead through the lower part of the yard just in front of that old house.

I can only remember parts and pieces of it now that I'm much older.  Very few memories.  Stories of my Uncle Jeff and Aunt Norie (or Nora?) when we passed that old home place.  Stumbling upon a "blowing viper" in the path just before we got to the barn at the Arnold Justice barn.  My dad was carrying an empty shotgun (not very usual) and had both his hand guns in a bundle of clothes, etc he had wrapped in an old bed sheet.

I stood there watching that snake as my dad searched through his bundle for one of his pistols.  Finally he found one and killed the snake and we continued on our way to my grandparent's  house.

When I was that age (between about seven and thirteen) I dearly loved to go there.  Play in the creek, crack black walnuts on a small piece of steel I'd hold in my lap and hit the nut with a hammer.  Putting the head of kitchen matches in empty .22 shells and smashing them on the concrete steps with a hammer to listen to them go "bang".

I suppose, as is usual with very old memories, I only remember the good things from those trips.  I think that is a good thing.  What purpose would it serve to recall  how tired I was after those long walks?  Or, any other less than positive things.  Though, there were few of those.

When I was young I think my grandparent's house was my favorite place to be.  I have so many memories from there.  Most of them are good.    A few of them will not get repeated.  But, most were pleasant.  And, rated "G".  

Most, at least.  :-)

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