Waffle Mornings

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Throughout my childhood, there were moments in time which are

treasured. Seems a little ‘simple’ or holding little ‘value,’ but our

mornings where my Mom and Dad were not going to work nor

preoccupied with their lives, were extra special. The old waffle

iron being pulled out, placed on the counter, close by to the sink

and all the ingredients of flour, sugar, baking powder and soda,

milk, butter and eggs being lined up meant this had the glowing

potential of becoming a morning of serendipity. Those mornings

are permanently engraved in my mind with the cross-hatched

imprint of homemade waffles. Mmm! My Aunt Amy always sent

us a nice bottle of maple syrup from Chardon, Ohio.

This past Thursday morning, while many families were finishing

their preparations for their Thanksgiving meal and others were

on the road traveling on crowded byways and arriving at their

destinations Mom and I were getting our breakfast prepared.

We cooked up in the toaster, four store-bought frozen blueberry

waffles, put butter  on each one, allowing them to melt into those

little square pockets and poured some real maple syrup over them.

Mom and I settled in for a huge treat, it was the morning of the

annual event:

The 88th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Mom and I enjoyed so much of the floats, musical presentations

and the marching bands. She is often amazed and surprised with

the unique balloon floats, which she exclaims and pronounces so

many of them, “my favorite one of all!”

I have a few notes down, which Mom supervised, since she felt she

should have her hand in their choices. After all, she probably has

seen a few more than I have over all the years. Although, I did remind

her that her treats on Thanksgiving morning were baking up some of

those orange glazed and vanilla frosted cinnamon rolls by Pillsbury,

not usually did she have time for waffles on Thanksgiving. Although,

there was one year that I got rather annoyed at my brother, Randy,

my Mom and Dad for being side-tracked by the Waffle House on a

Thanksgiving Day… but that is all in the history of our family, no

real need to dwell on that!

It has been 40 years of having Hello Kitty in the Macy’s parade. It

has been 45 years since Royal Caribbean has been part of the parade.

We took a moment to discuss and remember my Mom’s father and

her step-mother, who we were told to call “Aunt Vergene,” having

their honeymoon on a Royal Caribbean cruise. They has quite some

adventures with trips to places all around the world, their favorites

possibly being the Alaska trip and the Scandinavian one where my

Grandfather was able to see the fjords. (My Grandmother had passed

away long before their marriage and trips, since this is important to

my family history and the fine example of love shown by both of them.)

Mom liked the Peter Pan musical presentation, with children from the

Broadway production. There also was a commercial about the current

upcoming television production to be seen on December 4, 2014. The

cast includes Minnie Driver and Christopher Walken. I thought the

previews looked quite good and think J. M. Barrie’s tale of Peter Pan

is always a timeless treat to watch.

Mom worried about the underdressed New York City Rockettes and

yet, thought their little ‘bathing suits with gift bows’ were ‘cute.’

I am not sure what Meghan Trainor sang, need to go check: “Lips

Are Moving.” Mom said she liked that Meghan looks like a ‘nice,

healthy girl,’ and she also did not ‘mind the style of her singing.’

It was a rocking and rapping song, which was pleasant sounding.

In the little bits of her comments, she told me,

“I always love pink flamingos, they make me smile!”

“I remember the Sea World in Florida, this float captures all the

colors and beauty of the sea.”

“I love the movement and impressive activity of this band, along

with its music.”

“I remember this group, what are they called?” I answered her,

“This is the KISS band with Gene Simmons as the lead singer.”

“Oh, this is nice to hear their songs.” (The medley was a nice one,

which I may add, I was impressed that there was only one tongue

presentation. I read in the papers, the next day, there were ‘no rules

or restrictions formally given to the members of KISS.’)

 

We were both surprised that Paddington the Bear had his first time

appearance in 2014. This British icon so sweetly floated as a balloon

with his familiar blue coat, big, red hat and suitcase in hand. He looked

like he was ready to rush off and enjoy a wonderful day in England.

Paddington is one of the most recognizable children’s book characters.

It was fantastic to see him join the Parade. Next year, in 2015, will be

released the bear’s first full-length animated movie, produced by the

Weinstein Group. Not only fun and sweet memories attached, but it

never hurts to have some advertising for the upcoming movie.

During the commercials, Mom was enthusiastic about the upcoming

holiday release of Stephen Sondheim and others’ “Into the Woods,”

movie musical. With Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, Anna Kendricks,

and Johnny Depp playing the character of the Wolf, she was wishing

to go to see this at the theater. She waited about five minutes, with

a serious look on her face, which usually accompanies an abstract or

somber thought. I could relate to her fears expressed in this comment,

“Although, I am not sure I could sit for two or more hours without

having to use the bathroom.”

We decided we could wait until the library has this, possibly in time

for my July, 2015 vacation. We have been making a rather long list of

current movie releases, hoping to be able to watch them next summer.

The most outstanding and magnificent dancers, we felt were the Beijing

Traditional Dancers. Their float was financed and backed by the “Sino-

American Friendship Association (or Organization). It included lots of

color and the Great Wall of China in the design of the float.

I would say the ‘close second’ place Float of the morning was the one

which held the Cirque D’ Soleil crew of jugglers, athletes, dancers and

performers called appropriately: “Dream Seekers.” This float was

touted as the ‘biggest float of the parade.’

Sabrina Carpenter sang on the Pirate Ship with playful words, “I’m

Ready to Fly,” which is a beautiful song with her voice exhibiting

dulcimer tones. I will need to check her out sometime soon, to see

or better yet, hear her other songs she sings. She is young and was

born on May 11, 1999. I am giving you a prediction:  Sabrina will

go far in the musical world!

A funny but serious group of “48 Mammas” were dancing to the

song, “We’re Not Going to Take It.” They were promoting the great

message of being Against Ageism. They were all representing the

controversial subject of age discrimination. There were some dancers

who had walkers, others who had canes but they were a lively group.

Mom leaned over towards me saying,

“They may be representing those who are disabled but they would

not be able to endure the pain of walking the whole course of the

parade, if they were truly ‘handicapped.'”

There is a group I hope you have not heard of, but you may already

know of this extremely ‘cute’ and ‘popular’ British singers: The Vamps.

We thoroughly enjoyed this pleasant singing young band. The young

people along the parade route were screaming, as if they were the

famous Beatles of the 60’s. Since they are out of England, they have

not appeared, as far as I know, on any of our 2014 award shows. Not

yet! Their float was futuristic, with a Hess brand truck launching a

rocket.

The newest balloon float, the Red Mighty Morphin Power Ranger,

along with the Spiderman entry would be so fun to go and see the

early morning balloon ‘blowing’ pre-Parade moments. I think if I

lived closer to New York, (oh, and had extra money to ‘blow’) I sure

would take my grandchildren to this special ceremony and watch

the preparations. This was mentioned by the announcers of the Macy’s

Thanksgiving Parade as a valuable and memorable family time.

 

Of course, many children get excited each year to see the final float

with reindeer and Santa Claus. It means it can’t be long till Christmas!

 

It may seem rather strange to celebrate holidays with television events,

but those mornings where my own three children and I would get all

wrapped up in blankets, eating waffles or sweet rolls, while watching

the annual parades are priceless memories.  After all, television was

something that kept my generation, the first to be able to really watch

all the parts of the world right out of our own living room, happily

entertained. It is hard to explain this phenomena, where many of my

grandchildren take for granted their ability to view the world from

their computers and cell phones.

 

It was very enjoyable to see the 88th Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade with

my Mom this year through her ‘fresh’ older eyes. Along with pleasant

promises of the next event to celebrate:  the Annual Parade of Roses.

 

 

 

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40 responses »

  1. Mmmmm…. waffles! I love them much more than pancakes (which I also do love)!

    I’m not sure about Christopher Walken as Captain Hook… Walken is usually a great addition to any movie — there are some that are better just because he’s in them — but I’ve seen a couple clips and heard him reading a couple lines… and the classic Christopher Walken voice as Captain Hook in a light-hearted musical….. no, no, no… it just doesn’t work for me! It’s just too wrong!

    On the other hand, I’ve had a long-time crush on Minnie Driver…. o_O

    I am looking forward to the Paddington Bear movie, though! I still have those books.

    • I think it is all those pockets that collect the butter and syrup, W.S. that makes them ever so delicious. I had a waffle maker in my dorm room, with the all in one package of waffle mix, so I could get that heated up, open the door, and many guests would appear! Smiles! (Nice in our co-ed dorm, my senior year but we wore it out. In fact, I wish I had my Mom’s old stainless steel one, because I have gone through probably ten irons since the 70’s!

      I am wondering about Christopher Walken, too.
      I also like him in comedies and Saturday Night Live skits, but he is certainly a well rounded sometimes sinister character. I recently saw a movie with him in it, which was with Robert De Niro and another older actor. It was funny but it also had a sad side to it, too.
      Thanks for the support for Paddington Bear. Now, I am wondering, since the Marquee at the Strand theater said, “Paddington coming soon…” if the emcee on the parade may have said the wrong release date. Oh well, look at your local listings, W.S. please for this one.

      • There is also that a properly made waffle has a crunchy exterior. I like the crunchy.

        The Paddington Bear movie already opened in the UK (Nov 28) and will open in the USA on Jan 16, 2015.

        (De Niro and Walken…. The Deer Hunter from 1978? Did you ever see him with Johnny Depp in Nick of Time? Cool movie — takes place in real time.)

      • “Stand Up Guys” is a newer movie with Christopher Walken and Robert DeNiro. There is one other man in the trio of past hoodlums. They have a mission and it is a good movie. I will tell you someone does die, though. As all good movies go, it was a ‘blast!’ Mom and I got teary eyed, while brother Randy, did not.

        Thanks for your Paddington research, maybe with it being December, our movie theater thinks “coming soon…” can be in January? smiles!

  2. Waffles on Sunday mornings – that was a tradition in our home when I was growing up. In fact, I often made waffles for my daughters growing up. Sometimes when I go to visit them they still ask if I will make waffles – they love my Whole Wheat Raspberry Buttermilk Waffles, a recipe I developed myself. (If I had a food blog, I would write the recipe.)

    Another interesting item was your mention of Royal Caribbean. It was on an RC Alaska cruise that my wife, Florence, and I met. It seems we have a number of things in common. However, one of my quirks that most people don’t get is that I like peanut butter (crunchy style preferred) on my waffles. Lots of people think that is strange until they try it. And smothered in maple syrup, of course!

    Thanks for stirring up those fun memories. Now I’m hungry. 🙂 – Mike

    • And since you mentioned Peter Pan, you might be interested in the 2015 release of the movie PAN, an epic film which will tell the story of how Peter becomes the hero who will be known ever after as Peter Pan. I saw the preview last weekend when I took my grandson to see ‘The Penguins of Madagascar,’ and it looks intriguing for fans of the story.

      • I hope you liked the Penguins movie, we enjoy their little invasions in the “Madagascar” movies…
        I will have to check out “PAN,” Mike! Good ‘looking out’ for the post and adding this to it, so in the future we will remember who said this first! You suggested it, yay!

    • Oh, Mike! I bet your Whole Wheat Raspberry Buttermilk Waffles were the ‘bomb!’
      Wow, how lovely that this stirred up such great memories and so happy your didn’t mind sharing them with us.
      I had not known which cruise brought you both together but you had shared that you were both from two sides of the country, took both of your homes and sold them, then went on your across the world tours. Adventures have held you together and brought your life into mine, through your blogging about your travels.
      I like crunchy peanut butter on toast, I could see it being a possibility for my waffles, but a I love butter and syrup best. I also like a little powdered sugar added to the butter first, to mix in and then pouring the maple syrup last over it all! I am hungry tonight reading these responses, Mike and it is pitch black, almost time to walk on home to my apartment where I shall heat up some New England Clam Chowder and eat some leftover Thanksgiving pie (apple pecan streusel from Cracker Barrel) for dessert.
      Not quite like waffles, but it will satisfy! Smiles, Robin

  3. I’m happy you were able to share the parade with your mother…very nice, Robin. I remember many weekends growing up my mother would break out the waffle iron also. I’ve never been big on waffles or pancakes since I don’t like syrup, it’s just too sweet. My mother and I came up with a solution, she put peanut butter on my waffles and I was happy. 🙂

    • I appreciate your sharing childhood memories about your mother ‘breaking out the waffle iron,’ too!Guess what, Jill? Mike made the comment he puts crunchy peanut butter and adds maple syrup on top of it to his waffles! I had not thought of peanut butter till the two of you suggested this!
      I will stick to even adding extra sugar, (the powdered sugar mixed with the butter first, then adding maple syrup.)! I have the biggest sweet tooth. I bet you are so glad your mother figured out a way to entice you to eat waffles, since they are really good. I am in awe of your thinking they are too sugary and sweet the other way. I wish I could ‘curb’ my sweet tooth, Jill!

    • I am glad you let me in on your lack of television, there is only one other person, Eric, who comments on my posts, who doesn’t watch t.v. I hope you will just stick around and skip the t.v, awards and shows I watch posts, because in the midst of this varied selection, I may have something of interest.
      This was so nice of you to find something positive to say about the kids and the holiday memories with good food, too. I found a few people awaiting approval today, I am so sorry this is a belated response to your caring and thoughtful comment, my new friend!

  4. Do you know what Minnie Driver’s friends call her? “Tiny Motorist.” How awesome is that? I think Christopher Walken is so fabulously off-beat and strange and quirky that he will pull off any role. Also, your review of the parade is a delight. Just like you!

    • I am so glad you shared this about Minnie Driver, I liked her in the television show, “The Riches” which had her and her husband character played by Eddie Izzard, as being ‘gypsies’ who lucked into a key which led them to bring their children to live in a rich mansion neighborhood. It was a great one. I also loved her in the movie, where she is young with two other famous actors, “Circle of Friends.” I also have mentioned her show, “About a Boy,” on one post of new t.v. series to watch… She is a great and funny actress, along with believable in her development of character, too.
      I think your description of C.W. is spot on, Barb! I think he can pull it off! Smiles and hugs!

      • Hello Robin, I LOVED “Circle of Friends.” Also, I thought Tiny Motorist was superb in “Good Will Hunting.” Did you ever have a chance to read the Nick Hornby novel “About A Boy?” So, so good!

  5. I missed the parade this year because I had to work on my audit. I used to love seeing my moms waffle iron pulled out. So glad you got to enjoy the day with your mom!

    • I wish you didn’t have to work on your audit, Luanne. I bet this was time-consuming and exasperating, too.
      I am glad you have some fond memories of waffles and thanks for saying this about my day(s) with my Mom, Luanne! I am far behind on reading posts, need to stop and say this before I run out of time at the library…

  6. Wonderful, Robin. From waffles to balloons with Mom. The way you analyze her mind working is precious. Thank you for your insight of living to the utmost with an aging parent, my friend.

    • I have a lot of fun, it is just like being a kid with another kid! I truly am blessed. I am also thankful that you don’t mind reading this stuff. It is maybe hard on some… I miss my Dad so sometimes it is hard at times to read people’s posts and stories about their own fathers.
      I like this summation ‘from waffles to balloons.’ You always amaze me with YOUR insights, Mark! Attention all who wish to HIRE a nice, hard-working and smart man who can write and incorporate many fields of interest: check out mark bialczak!

  7. Now, you have me hankering for waffles, Robin. Hmmm. Butter oozing into all the little squares. That does take me back.

    About Paddington’s appearance. He does wear pants? Correct? Just wondering cuz his British bear counterpart, Pooh, does not – even in the winter. Odd!

    Thanks for the parade memories, too. 😉

    • Hampstead, London is where Michael Bond was born, whereas A.A. Milne was born in the town of Newbury, England. Judy, could there have been different dress codes? ha ha!

      I love the fact when you look at the Wikipedia site for Paddington the Bear, there is a photograph of a statue of Paddington without clothes! Check it out, it is a bronze statue… created by a sculptor, who I did not memorize his name…
      I love waffles, they are so delicious. I love them plain for a bite or two, but must add butter and maple syrup (or syrup) and also, if possible, confectioner’s sugar! Mmmm!
      I wonder about the pants on Bears, too. But truthfully, Pooh is sweet and even in the original drawing looks a little worn around the edges. Do you think he may have originally had in the writer’s imagination a full outfit, but children tend to take clothes off toys or dolls…
      Oh, anyone here, please check out Judy’s post about Pooh’s pantless controversy! I had not heard about it, until I read her post recently. . .
      Thanks for the thoughtful visit, Judy!

  8. Waffles remind me of…Waffle House. And waffle House reminds me of…the time I went into Waffle House and all the waffles were on fire. I prefer thinking about gyros with lots of cucumber sauce…

    • I have a big sweet tooth, so I prefer waffles but do love gyros, too. I like to mix the garlic sauce with the cucumber sauce. (garlic sauce = tzatziki sauce at Opa’s where I like to go.)
      Thanks for the funny image of burning waffles, TLK!

  9. I possibly have eaten waffles twice in my life. Pancakes more so, just with a sprinkle of sugar and drowned in lemon juice. Glad that watched the parade with mum and smiled when she commented on Kiss. What special moments you both have. Hugs xxx

    • I have had crepes with a lemon butter sauce but never tried this similar combination, sugar and lemon juice, on pancakes. It would be scrumptious, Jen! Thanks for the suggestion!

      Does this mean that Brits don’t eat as many waffles as they do pancakes? Just wondering… Only 2 times in one life is really a low number, Jen!

  10. I loved that the waffle tradition continued. Even with a bit of a humorous twist! 🙂 Unfortunately we were on the road and didn’t get to see the parade so a little parade share was appreciated. 😉

    • I texted my first ex-husband and his wife to let my grandson watch the parade, since as the Spiderman and the Red Morphen Power Ranger balloons floated on by, I thought he usually spends his Thanksgiving with me. His wife sent me a nice text picture message with Micah and Dave pointing at the turkey. Don’t know if he got a chance to see the floats and balloons. I do know it kept my brothers and I busy sitting watching them while waiting on my cousins to arrive on Thanksgiving days of ‘old.’
      Colleen, I am sorry you were on the road, was this to the house of your good friend? I am glad you enjoyed the parade share! Smiles back.

      • No the day of the parade I was on the road to my daughter’s. Yesterday I was on the road to my friend’s in West Virginia. I was writing in the car while someone else was driving. I was trying to post pictures to others who knew about the surprise and to update friends back at work while we were on the road. 🙂

      • Thank you, Colleen for this personal information about where you were, the family and the events leading up to the surprise visit for the friend to a place they called, “home.” It is nice to be able to be in the car, with someone driving and getting caught up all at the same time! Smiles!

  11. lovely review of the parade Robin! which reminds me I haven’t watched or been to one in years. Wonderful memories of your mornings with your parents. In our house we love waffles with ice-cream and maple syrup. I usually leave it for hubby to do for some reason he does waffles and I do pancakes 😀

    • I think my friend, Mike (who commented above) was also in charge of the waffles at his house! I am not sure why family customs begin, but it is nice to know who is in charge of pancakes (you) and who is in charge of waffles (your hubby.)
      Yolanda, thanks for sharing this memory and adding another fun ingredient to the conversation, my dear. I love the idea of ice cream and maple syrup together on a warm, toasty waffle. It would all melt together and become ever so yummy!
      I guess watching the parades became part of my holiday tradition, even after my children grew up and moved out, just liked to hear the music and commentary, along with the beautiful floats and balloons…

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