Downsizing is hot these days. Â Just ask Marie Kondo, who is surely a millionaire a few times over. Â And I like sorting through the things I don’t need and creating more space in my closets, drawers, and just generally in my life. Â I’ve tried to do that over the past nine months, with some success.
But tidying up has its limitations. Â Â If I had downsized tooÂ aggressively at any point in the past thirty years, I would not still haveÂ the utterly awesome Mickey Mouse Cookbook I had as a child.
I loved it when I was young and I kept itÂ for sentimental reasons lo these many decades. Â You know what? Â I’m darn glad I did, because this summer, my own childrenÂ rediscoveredÂ it andÂ were utterly fascinated.
And so weÂ embarked on a summertime project. Â I decided toÂ teach my boys a little bit more about howÂ to cook, with the help of Mickey and the gang.
Over the summer, I’ve let the boys take turns picking recipes from the cookbook, and we’ve worked on making them together. Â I should add that we’re not exactly talking about Julia Child here; the recipes are remarkably easy, some of them more about dumping in a pan than actually cooking, but it doesn’t matter. Â TheÂ boys have loved the challenge, and whether it’s Big Bad Wolf’s Brownies or Cinderella’s Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, I’ve loved tasting their creations.
There was even one evening where I actually found myself sitting on the couch with a glass of Cabernet while someone else made dinner. Â That someone else was my nine-year-old, who was making Chip n’ Dale’s Triple Decker Sandwiches with great concentration and skill. Â I enjoyed the rare sensation of not being in the kitchen at 6 pm and Â thought: Wow, I sure am glad I kept that cookbook.
So the moral of the story is to never ever throw anything away because you never know when it might be useful. Â Just kidding, of course; I think the moral is to carefully weigh what you keep and what you give away. Â Just because you have had something for over thirty yearsÂ doesn’t mean you need to keep it forever, but it also doesn’t mean you need to get rid of it, either.
Listen to your gut, and if the book makes you smile after all these years, consider that it might make your own kids smile, too.