Monday, April 21, 2014

A Goodbye Needed

It's Tuesday, and time for the weekly Slice of Life at the Two Writing Teachers blog.  Tweet at #SOL14  Thanks Stacey, Tara, Dana, Beth, Anna and Betsy!


         Many of you know that I had an estate sale last year and sold many things, things I had lived with for a long time, things I knew I no longer needed. I had moved into nearly the same space, minus a garage and a larger basement, but still I brought plenty with me. And my grown children took things too. Now, after a little more than a year, I am cleaning out more, and replacing some things. This post is about replacing cookie sheets. 


          I’ve had the same cookie sheets since I was married, many years. I have scrubbed them until I can no longer get them clean. I knew I needed to purchase some new ones. Funny how some old, old, and seemingly minor, things are tougher to throw away than others. No one will get this pan. No one would want it. It will soon live in a landfill, perhaps for archaeologists hundreds of years from now to use in figuring out how we lived. Perhaps that’s a good thing. It will continue to serve a purpose. But this cookie sheet has baked hundreds of dozens of cookies, held bread to be toasted with butter and parmesan cheese, baked sweet potato fries and more. It's even baked “shrinky dinks”, remember? And I will miss it.

Ode To My Baking Sheet


old pan I love
you’ve shown consistency
when baking sweets
you did it skillfully
no sticky mess
no cookies burned
cooking delight
yet now I’ve learned
it’s age I confess
that makes me sigh
and know I need
to say goodbye

Linda Baie © All Rights Reserved

42 comments:

  1. Isn't it funny the unexpected directions that send little pangs to the heart? It sounds as though your cookie sheet provided a lot of good service and many warm memories were made with it. Thank goodness for poetry and the service it provides!

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    1. Thanks Tabatha. I never thought I'd write an ode to my cookie sheet, but it happens to be a helpful goodbye.

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  2. Linda, I love your poem. When I read the topic, I immediately thought of my own cookie sheets, how many cookies I've baked my boys, and knew (with tears pricking at my eyes) how you were feeling. Hope the new ones hold many batches in store.

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    1. When I wrote I suspected that others would connect, Katherine. They are one of those things that hold so many memories as you wrote, too. Thank you!

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  3. Loved the poem. Yes, sometimes the mundane objects flood us with memories that the formal objects never hold.

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  4. I think I finally discarded the cookie sheets from my bridal shower thirty-seven years ago. I hope the new ones bring you just as much joy baking and they last just as long.

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    1. Thanks Elsie, I know they will, but still...

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  5. Oh, my! How could you make me cry over a cookie sheet?

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    1. Sorry, but it is at least nostalgic, isn't it?

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  6. Yes, we all have those old cookie sheets! So funny! One of the things I got out of this post is how writers write about those daily things in life. Usually when I sit down to write, I feel like I have to write some big piece. Good lesson for me. And to pass along to students!

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    1. So happy to have you say this, Michele. It is those little things that make up our lives, isn't it?

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  7. It is amazing the memories that object evoke. Maybe that is why it is so hard to part with belongings for some.

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    1. Yes, the remembering is what makes it difficult, yet still we need to say goodbye to some.

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  8. Oh, that is a well loved and well baked cookie sheet. I have one of these, and don't have the guts to do what must be done. So, it leans up against a wall in the boiler room, gathering dust. Love the ode!

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    1. You made me feel good with this, Tara. I know you understand. My basement is less accessible now, so I can't run right downstairs to put it there.

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  9. ah, yes saying good bye to things that have served us well. So hard to me too but once I get started, hey watch out!
    Love that poem... I wish I were in this Poetry month challenge but I have enough challenges for now... getting ready for swimming lessons :)

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    1. I'm writing quite a few poems, but doing a few other things too, Bonnie. I'll be happy to hear more about that swimming! It's been a while!

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  10. Linda! You have touched so many of us. My cookie sheets once belonged to my Great Aunt Tom, and she passed away 15 years ago. Each time I bake, I think it's time...but then I put them back in the cupboard for that next batch of oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Wonderful post. Wonderful poem. Wonderful woman. Happy unsticky baking with your new pans!

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    1. Thanks Amy, so glad to hear about your cookie sheets-another wonderful story! I have some iron skillets from grandmothers I will never give up, and then will pass on to my own kids. The cookie sheet, even scrubbing, just won't make it anymore.

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  11. Linda, it's amazing how we can become attached to those little things and how hard it is to get rid of them. Love your poem. I'm sure even though it won't be baking cookies any more, it will still have a very practical use. Hope your new cookies sheets will serve you as well.

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    1. Thanks Judy. I'm sure you have a few of those things too, and maybe someday, some new ones.

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  12. I bought some new ones, but I did not throw the old ones out yet. Maybe it is time. I might do it without a poem or I will just read yours at the send of party:) Love these unexpected gems in our slices!

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    1. Love hearing your story, Jaana. See, it is hard to throw what holds such memories, isn't it? You're welcome to the poem!

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    2. I have my old one in there with the two new ones. That way I won't feel so bad about tossing the old one. The new ones will have their memories for me soon!

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    3. Maybe I should have asked for ideas of what to do, Donna. You're still giving a little love to it, right?

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    4. Yes, there are actually two old ones, and they get pulled out and greased up every once in a while now. They still work. They are just a bit stained, need a bit of extra oil, and don't cook as evenly and sometimes cookie bits stick...they are a lot like me - stained, need oil, a bit uneven and frequently have cookie crumbs stuck to me! Yikes!

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    5. Sounds like my pan, and if I really think about it, maybe it's representing other things I'm not ready to give up, kind of a 'start'. One step at a time, maybe?

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  13. I smiled over your ode. So true. we hold on to many things even after they have passed their usefulness. I have trouble letting things go too. But I am trying to be braver!

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    1. You're right, Beverley, it does take some courage. Thanks for sharing that part of it too.

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  14. I have the same inability to let go of kitchenware...I have some truly inexpensive spatulas from my mother's house that I continue to convince myself are the best, best, best! Mostly, that's because they have been all that I have ever used. But, your final lines are right -
    "and know I need
    to say goodbye"
    Maybe a creative soul will find your cookie sheets and turn them into something extra special - I don't know what! ;-)

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    1. I know what you mean. My brother and I both looked for an old spatula of our mother's. I think because it was hers, but also because we cooked with it too. Thanks, Maureen.

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  15. I enjoyed reading about your downsizing and replacing. Memories are always within us but the objects that trigger the memories are hard to part with. I have many things I can't part with because of the history it has within our lives but I never would of thought about my cookie sheets and we like to bake. Thanks for giving me something to think further about.

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    1. I hope it makes you think, but not to hold onto them even more, Mandy! I wonder sometimes what would it be like to lose everything, and people do. I know that it would be okay, but there are things I would keep remembering.

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  16. We just cleaned out my mom's house and I can't even tell you how many things I brought home, not because I will use them, but just because I couldn't stand to give them away. So many good memories…Wishing you lots of happiness with the new cookie sheets.

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    1. When I wrote this, I thought of you, Carol, knowing that you both took things because you told us, and because you gave things up too. It's not easy. I hope your mother is doing better!

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  17. Oh Linda, hundreds of dozens of cookies and shrinky dinks too! So many precious memories. I inherited my aunt's round pizza pan, but she used it mostly for baking cookies. Even though I rarely use it, it brings back memories of the milk chocolate chip cookies she used to bake. Can't wait to see those new sheets and hear about the adventures they'll have with you and the grandkids.

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    1. Thanks for sharing your stories, Ramona. I think we could have a book created just by kitchen memories from our pots and pans!

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  18. A perfect tribute to a pan that served you well, Linda!

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  19. I love both your introduction and your ode. The process of letting go of things that have so many memories is hard. You've captured that sort of conflicted feeling in your words. I can really relate to this and what you are doing.

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    1. Thank you-conflicted feelings abound when one has gathered and loved things, yet know it's a good time to make changes and let go of some too. Wise Words!

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