Tips from Mom's House

My mom lands in foggy San Francisco this evening, and I'm so excited because I haven't seen her in nine months. I love my mom so much and wanted to share a few things I've learned growing up in her house. I can't divulge the family's fried chicken recipe, but here's a few random tips and advice.

Feeling a cold coming on? It's Hot Toddies and Chicken Noodle Soup with egg, immediately. This woman can stir up a mean Hot Toddy, and I have yet to recreate it. I don't know what she does over her stove, something like a witch's brew from her cauldron, but here's a recipe that's close. Screw scotch or brandy, it's bourbon all the way for Appalachian folk. Also, the egg in soup - don't ask, but it knocks it out of me every time. She just drops the yolk in while it's heating up and magic happens.

Mr. Ellis was the nicest man who helped my mom with yard work during the summers and gave us a homemade concoction for plants. It was approximately 1 can beer, 2-3 tablespoons dishsoap, the recommended amount of plant food and 2 gallons of water. Some mixtures call for ammonia, but I don't ever remember doing that. Trust me, if you haven't used this one, your plants will like you. My mom has had a spider plant that's older than me!

Always have a yellow kitchen. Again, don't ask, but it makes her happy. When she's happy, there's good food.

Always turn the flat sheet inside out, "so the pretty side is next to your skin." I like that.

Yes, I'm still dreaming of the Draper Sheets.

Dinner time is family time, and there will be no television unless it's Andy Griffith.

Wipe the kitchen table and counters after every meal, which may seem obvious. Some people are lazy and don't, but we were always healthy. It's silly, but I do this at work every time I've finished lunch. Obsessed much?

My mom's house = good food, immaculate and always dusted surfaces, spider plants overflowing from macrame hangers, plenty of yellow and downright comfort. I hope she brings some of the cheer to lift the fog off this town for a while!


  1. the sheet thing is pure genius.

  2. I know! I've always loved that. Why not feel even happier wrapped in the "pretty" side. haha!