February 28, 2015 § Leave a comment
We celebrated Josh’s birthday last weekend, before the big snow of the past week hit north Alabama. It was actually a bit icy on the roads closer to Madison from an earlier freeze, so our trek was abruptly stopped about 30 miles from his house. Thankfully there was one hotel in the town of Arab (pronounced A-rab) where we could bed for the night. We finally made it to his door around lunchtime Saturday and made the most of the rest of the weekend. Josh had requested my mom’s coconut layer cake with lemon filling. This cake has been made in my family since my mom was a child. Pillowy, shiny meringue frosting hides soft almond-scented cake and thick, luscious lemon curd between its layers.
He opened presents, we stuffed ourselves at Bonefish Grill and visited my Grannie who lives nearby. We made chili in his crockpot for Sunday lunch and I tried to surprise him with shortbread cookies. Hard to do when you’re making them in the same kitchen. But they were quite the success! I found a recipe I’d copied from the Back in the Day Bakery cookbook years ago and finally tried it. Raspberry jam sandwiched between two buttery, slightly crisp cookies that shatter on your tongue is simply delicious. My brother and I have been through what most siblings have. We endured each others’ taunts and mild physical abuse growing up, and we ignored each other a bit through those junior high years. He went off to college first, and I, bereft, did not handle his absence well, I confess. I missed my first friend. As we have grown, I have been blessed that we have grown closer together. And, I love the times our family of four gets to share. There’s always lots of laughing, lots of debating, lots of eating and talking about when we’ll eat again. I am glad I have the big brother I do.