August 20, 2014

Yes, I am addicted - to BOOKS

Hello, my name is Nanny and I have a problem...

Isn't that how those meetings begin?

Well not to diminish those with real addiction problems, I do have a problem. With books.

I literally have 1000's of them in my house. I guess you could call me a book hoarder, if there were such a term. There are stacks everywhere and overflowing bookcases galore!

I have loved books since as long as I can remember. I loved reading A.A. Milne poems with my grandmother. I loved Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and anything by Roald Dahl. Charlotte the spider and I have a personal relationship because of the number of times I've read Charlotte's Web. (come to think of it, I even have a daughter named Charlotte, hmmmmm....) I could go on and on and on, but then you'd all go on and do something else with your time :)

Then I got older and my choices changed. When I was in college, I procrastinated often (it's probably why my grades were okay, but not amazing - sorry Mum and Dad). We had the best bookstore in our little town where I would spend hours reading every kind of book you could imagine.

I kept finding myself not in the literary sections, (a true shocker to all my friends) but in the children's, coffee table and art book sections. Guess my feeble brain was telling me something!

I remember waiting and waiting for Martha Stewart's first book, Entertaining,  to be published. I had read so many reviews of this upcoming new book from this lady who no one knew about. This was in the early 80's and I was working in a French restaurant in town on the side (maybe another reason my grades were so-so? I can rationalize anything!). I was (and still am) such a geek that I was literally panting with excitement when I placed my hands on the cover. 
It was true bliss.

If a book tells a person's history, then this one tells mine.
I used Entertaining in college to wow my fellow restaurant chefs with the recipes for goodies like Snow Peas with St. Andre and Phyllo Triangles with Feta and Spinach and I used those same recipes and others to wow my friends at our oh-so-glamorous parties in our senior apartment (keg and blender drinks aside). And it was Entertaining that I used as my bible when I started out in my catering and event business on our charter boats. It was my go-to along with her Martha Stewart Weddings that helped me plan the most amazing wedding (more on that in another post).

Entertaining was simply my companion when I wanted either one of Alexis' chocolate chip cookies, or some yummy garlic shrimp. 
It was my friend and mentor, and it showed...

I have had the great fortune to meet Martha Stewart a few times, but a couple of years ago, I got to have lunch with her in her offices! So, armed with my Velveteen Rabbit-like version of Entertaining, I meekly asked her if she would sign my bedraggled copy. She did, and my bucket list lost one more item on it.
It's a moment I will never forget - sigh...

p.s. look at her EMMY's over my shoulder - omg!

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