Monday, April 4, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History: Spring

The prompt for Week 14 of 52 Weeks of Personal History & Genealogy, by Amy Coffin of We Tree, and hosted by Geneabloggers, is: Spring:

Week 14. Spring. What was spring like where and when you grew up? Describe not only the climate, but how the season influenced your activities, food choices, etc.

In Northern Ohio, Springtime brought warmer weather, after a long, cold winter. My mom began shopping for new Sunday clothes for the six children in our family, to be ready for Easter, and the boys (and Dad!) could hardly wait for baseball practice to begin! My dad is the last individual on the right in the picture below, taken at the ball park in Bay View, Ohio.

Spring also meant that dandelions would be popping up in lawns all around our village. That reminds me of the time I asked Grandma Emma to make me dandelion salad. I really wanted to like it! Here is the story of Grandma Emma's dandelion salad:

When I was very young, I heard that you could actually make a salad from dandelions that grew wild in the back yard. (Though I have a lot of farmers in my family tree, I did not have much experience with gardens or farms when I was little.) I thought I would ask my grandmother, Emma Yeager Orshoski, if it was true that a salad could be made out of dandelions. She assured me that it was true, and she said if I picked some dandelions, she would make a dandelion salad. So, I picked some dandelion greens, and I am sure that Grandma Emma also picked some. Before I knew it, Grandma had made the salad, and my dad took me down the road to Grandma's house so I could eat some of the dandelion salad. Grandma Em made it with a vinegar and oil dressing, and she also added chopped hard boiled eggs to the salad. I so wanted to love that salad....but I hated it! It was bitter, and wasn't anything like my mom's salad with iceberg lettuce and French dressing. I hope that my disappointment wasn't too obvious to Grandma Emma!It was so kind of her to take the time to make that special salad for me.

These recipes, found in a book entitled THE TABLE: HOW TO BUY FOOD, HOW TO COOK IT, AND HOW TO SERVE IT, by Alexander Filippini (C.L. Webster & Co., 1889),are accessible on Google Books. They sound similar to the dandelion salad my grandma made for me long ago.

Pictured below are my paternal grandparents, Steve and Emma Orshoski, with my brother and I, on Easter Sunday in the late 1950's.


Marian Burk Wood said...

Loved your story of dandelion salad. And thanks for sharing your spring memories!

Kellie said...

That is so funny!! I never heard that story before!! :)

Dorene from Ohio said...

I was so young...and I wanted to like that salad, but it just didn't work out that way :)

T.K. said...

Dandelion salad! My mom always used to say, "Be careful what you wish for, it might come true." I admit I've sometimes wondered about dandelion greens... but not too hard! LOL!