An elegy for tomato aspic


The first step is to wait until Thanksgiving.
Then you dig out the ingredients.
You have most of them in your pantry.
You bought them last year when you made this.
That extra box of Jello, first off.
Then the can of V-8.
Then that shrimp, those really tiny ones.
Grab the can of olives, too.
Chop up some onion (this you bought fresh)
Throw it in the bowl
And mix it all together with some h2o.
The next step is to
Dig out your jello mold
The one with the Christmas tree on it.
Pour the mixture in and let it sit overnight.
In the morning you will have tomato aspic.
But not just any tomato aspic.
This gelatinous feast
This is your Granny Mary’s tomato aspic.


Today’s Poetry 201 assignment is an elegy about flavor using enumeratio. I instantly thought of my Granny Mary’s tomato aspic that my brother insists we make every year for Thanksgiving in her honor. It is, honestly, a pretty horrifying dish. But it reminds us of our dear grandmother, who was a beautiful soul, but not a very good cook.

Throwback Thursday – 4 generations


As I mentioned, I am taking a Photoshop class and this week we learned about restoring old photos. It just so happened that my mom brought me a photo album that belonged to my grandmother that I, for some reason, had stored in my things at her house in Spokane. Many of the photos neither of us had seen before and this is one of them! And it’s such a great photo! Here we have me at around 7 years old, with my mom, great-grandmother in the middle, and grandmother on the right.

The original photo has a red cast to it and now I wonder why. Is it due to the fading of color in the print? It seems like a lot of old snapshots have a red cast to them. In the original photo below you will see that I have a gnarly gash on my chin. I was trying to remember how I hurt myself and then it hit me, this is when I took a serious spill on my bike. I wrote about it here.

4 generations before


Here is my “new and improved” Photoshopped version. I corrected the color, removed a ton of dust, and removed the scab on my chin.

4 generations after


I am kind of proud of the finished version, but in some way it makes me a little bit sad too. Like I’m rewriting history or something.

It’s interesting because I posted both of these on Flickr and I got more¬†response on the original version. One person even said that the original’s red cast appealed to them. I kind of feel like the original, red cast, scabbed chin, and all, tells more of a story. What are your thoughts?

Wayback Wednesday



This is a photo of my Granny Mary again, a little older and with my mom. I have always loved this photo. It is weird and wonderful to see my mom as a baby. Today when I look at it I wonder what camera my Grandpa used. I came back from Spokane having inherited several old cameras in varying conditions. I wonder which one them might have been used for family snapshots.

More on the cameras in another post!

Wayback Wednesday


My grandparents. They were so adorable. They drove that there camper every year from Coeur d’Alene, Idaho down to Mexico. Every year! The always brought home ephemera from their trips (as you can see). This photo was taken camping somewhere in Idaho. Probably at Lake Pend Oreille.