Thursday, March 3, 2011


I have fond memories of toasting marshmallows in a fire   --sometimes outdoors at a beach or campsite in the summer,  or at Girl Scout camp, or at home in our fireplace on a winter evening.

We didn't have sweets like marshmallows very often, and Mommy didn't let us eat many of them, so each marshmallow was rather special.  This rationing of marshmallows was intended to save our teeth. It also happened to save marshmallows; one bag of marshmallows lasted a long time at our house! Another consequence was the ease of toasting. Although stale marshmallows were a bit more difficult to pierce with stick or skewer, they did stay on the skewer longer.  I can still recall the firm texture of those treats. You might be more familiar with soft sticky ones, which are fragile and can droop down and fall off your stick if you're not careful.   No such problems with our firm ones!

"Fireside memories" is the theme I have chosen for this month's column: Marshmallows and other fireside memories.  I composed the first draft while sitting in front of a lively fire in the fireplace of my present home.  The weather that day was cold and wet.  I enjoyed hunkering down by the hearth and remembering childhood experiences as I watched the flames flicker.