Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Carrot Pudding Angel

Funniest thing - just before I this happened, I read Christy's posting about the train wiring directions! Goose bumps.  I just had to post!

My husband and I went to RI for a couple of days last week on business.  As we were driving down, I received an email on my phone from my sister.  She had come across my grandmother's recipe for Carrot Pudding, hand written by our mom, on a little piece of paper tucked in an old cook book. Loving the sweetness of seeing it written in our mom's handwriting, she scanned it and shared.

A couple of days before getting the recipe email, I had been thinking about making my grandmother's Carrot Pudding for Christmas, but didn't know where to find the recipe.  Then, here it shows up in my inbox in Mom's handwriting!  I hadn't even told my sister...  I asked my sister if she might also have the copy of the recipe for the White Sauce for the pudding, but all she'd found was the pudding recipe.

On our return home, we discovered that our boiler wasn't working. To avoid steep charges for an emergency call, we waited until morning to call the repairman.  There would be no heat for the night without a nice fire in the wood stove. 

The next day, after the boiler was repaired and was again heating our home, I searched a few of my cookbooks and the Internet for the sauce recipe.  I finally found one that sounded close.  It had most of the ingredients I remembered, so I decided I'd use that.

Today, as I was doing some cleaning in my daughter's old bedroom, getting it ready for Christmas company, I heard what sounded like a low rattling coming from the basement.  I had heard the funny noise yesterday, but ignored it, thinking I'd mention it to my husband later.  Maybe it was the boiler again?  I decided to be a big girl and go check it out, just in case I needed to call the repairman.   But the everything was running smoothly.  I couldn't hear any unusual noise anywhere.  There was no more rattling.

A bit perplexed, I turned around to go back upstairs.  I went by some of the racks with boxes my husband had been going through, cleaning and repacking.  I stopped to look at a toy case with a fairy doll and a little stuffed dolphin that my daughter had when she was 6, over 20 years ago.  I didn't need those upstairs, but they made me smile.

I continued to the stairs.  As I did, I caught a glimpse of a pile of boxes off to the right, next to the basement wall.  The boxes were behind some fans and miscellaneous treasures on the floor.   There on top of the pile was a thick, faded red, familiar looking book.  The page edges were yellowed and the binding frayed.

"No," I whispered, "it can't be." (I really did.)

I shone the flashlight I'd brought down with me, but hadn't needed to use, on the book's cover where I was pretty sure I knew what it said. In large white block letters was "The Good Housekeeping Cook Book"  with a picture of a white baker's hat outlined below the title.
Mom's cookbook!  I didn't even know I had it.

I pushed fans and small boxes aside, and squeezed between them, reaching for the faded red cookbook of my childhood. As I opened it up, there were a few recipes cut from newspapers, and some other cards with recipes in handwriting I didn't recognize, but one scridge of paper was in Mom's pretty handwriting.  I don't know why, but seeing her handwriting is such a comfort to me.  It is something so personal in her absence, like a whisper.   And such a whisper it was.  On the little piece of paper was written my grandmother's Carrot Pudding Sauce recipe.

I'll probably never hear the rattling again.
I hope I do, though.

Guess what? There's going to be carrot pudding this year for Christmas!


  1. There is someone up there watching over you, most probably your mother and grandmother, wanting to take care of you even now! I always like the way you make the stories so inviting, but a little mysterious so I really don't know what will happen. I actually thought you were going to have a 'pudding on the stove but the furnace went out' story, but it was better than that. What a treasure your book is, & will be, for the daughter & on!

  2. I love it! What an amazing series of connections. I got goosebumps reading this, and I couldn't help but flash forward to your daughter uncovering generations of scridges of paper sometime in the future!

  3. Donna, Thank you for the comment on today's Poetry Friday post. Isn't it a wonderful poem? I'm just in awe of people who find such different ways to say things. I wanted to wish you a Merry Christmas too, & hope it's really special with the new grandchild & the new home to look forward to & all. Christmas cake sounds delish!


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