Chatting with Miriyummy: Rivki Silver

Meet Rivki Silver.  She once interviewed me, and now I get to interview her.

Rivki is one of those wonderful women that I am fortunate to meet in the blogosphere.  I think I came across her blog, Life in the Married Lane, because one of my blogging buddies commented on a post and it showed up in my feed.  I clicked on the link and have been hooked every since.  I find Rivki’s blog inspirational, thought-provoking, and a teensy bit voyeuristic (check out how she met her husband).  One day I hope to meet her in person, but but I’m probably never going to make it to Baltimore, so Rivki is just going to have to come to Israel.  In the meantime, check her out, and maybe you too can find “meaning in the mundanity.”

(Apologies, this interview is a few months old, so I hope the answers are still timely.  Rivki, feel free to let me know…)

Who are you, what are you, why are you?

Short answer: I’m Rivki.

Long answer: Like many women, I’m a lot of things to a lot of people.  I’m a mommy to two energetic little boys who keep me pretty busy, as well as on the edge of sanity.  I’m married to a wonderful man, who is a doctor, and works very hard, and a lot.  I’m also a musician, trained in piano, clarinet, flute, sax, and voice.  I’m very happy to have had many opportunities to perform on a regular basis.  I like to blog (www.lifeinthemarriedlane.com), and I spend too much time online (I’m working on that).  I love to read books, usually informative ones, but I do enjoy a good mystery.  I love to walk, a little obsessively sometimes.  I also like to nap.  And cook, and bake, but more on that later.

Where do you live, and why? 

I live in Baltimore, ’cause that’s where my husband got a job.  We’ve been here for just about four months, and it’s been fabulous so far.  And exciting.  We’ve experienced an earthquake AND a hurricane.  Cleveland (where we lived before) didn’t have anything except a lot of snow.

What is your family like?

Right now we are young-family-ish.  Our kids are 1 and 2.75 years.  Sadly, we don’t have any family in town, but we are fortunate in that we have the ability to visit them, and that they have the ability to visit us multiple times per year.  It’s very important to us to have family involved in our kids’ lives, and I look forward to seeing my kids develop relationships with their extended family.

In the house, I’m the housekeeper and cook, and my husband is the breadwinner and official taste-tester.  My kids are the food critics.  My baby has been known to throw his food off his tray in protest.  I can just hear him thinking, “too salty, try again.”

What is your relationship with food?  Do you like to cook?

I love food.  A lot.  I like to snack, I like to cook, I like pretty much everything about food except cleaning up after cooking (though sometimes I don’t mind that, either).  I love the creative aspect of taking ingredients and blending them together into something nourishing and yummy for my family.  Even if it’s just microwaving a piece of cheese on a piece of bread for my picky toddler, it’s still a pleasure.  With my family in its current incarnation, I can’t potchke around in the kitchen as much as I would like, but when I get the chance to make something fancy, I love it.

What is your first food-related memory?

Not Rivki, but her story and the look on this little girl's face match perfectly!

I don’t actually remember this, but this is a story I’ve often heard my mother tell:

As a little girl, my mother didn’t feed me sugar.  When I was in kindergarten, a classmate of mine brought cupcakes to celebrate her birthday.  This was the first time I had ever experienced refined sugar, and apparently it was AWESOME.  As the story goes, I went around to all my classmates’ desks and finished their leftover cupcakes.  All of them.  The teacher was a little concerned, and informed my mother about my, uh, unusual behavior.  My mother continued to make healthy food choices for me, but I think she relaxed a bit on the sugar thing.

How would you describe yourself in the kitchen?  As a host/hostess?

It depends.  In a perfect world, I am in my element, starting off with a clean workspace, tidying as I go, multiple recipes brewing simultaneously, content and efficient.  Really, though, I’m usually juggling around dirty dishes (there’s that cleaning thing again), cleaning what I need when I need it, and making the quickest dish that I can muster before the boys start destroying the house.  I’m not giving up the dream, though.  This is just the state of things with little, little people around.

I’m lacking in hostess experience, but I try to be relaxed and attentive (but not TOO attentive).  The hostesses that I have enjoyed the most are the ones who seem to be able to anticipate what I need (i.e. toys, highchair, a 10-year-old to entertain the baby, chocolate, etc.), so I try to think of ways to make my guests comfortable.  I don’t know if I’ve always succeeded.  Maybe I should make an exit survey or something.

What is your favorite comfort food and why?

Right now I love crackers with hummus.  I generally like salty food for comfort, though I have never said “no” to a pint of Ben and Jerry’s.

Desert island picks, name three foods you could not live without:

Coffee, crackers, cheese sandwich.  Wow, I really feel like I should have a fruit in there or something.  Well, I guess there’s probably fruit on the island.

Is there any food you hate?  Why?

I’m not fond of caviar.  Yes, that’s random, I know, but I mentioned once to my (Russian) mother-in-law that I enjoyed it (I really thought I did, once, a long, long time ago), and so she, being very nice, bought some for me.  And it was HORRIBLE.  I could barely swallow it, but I felt like I had to, ’cause I *had* told her that I liked it, hadn’t I?  Thankfully, that was the only time she bought it.

What is your favorite Miriyummy post and why?

I really like this post – Isn’t It Romantic?  First of all, it’s about your anniversary, which is sweet, and I cracked up at the description of how you found your present.  The recipe is great, and I hope to use it to get some vegetables into my boys’ diet, as they primarily consume carbs.  Plus, you used the word “zhuzz” repeatedly, and I just love that.

Do you have a food-related story you would like to share?

A few years ago, my parent came for a visit over Thanksgiving weekend.  I don’t really do Thanksgiving, but not for any philosophical reason or anything.  I just don’t feel like cooking the equivalent of two Shabbos meals in one week.

My mother told all her co-workers that we weren’t doing Thanksgiving, but that it was okay, ’cause she was visiting her grandkid, etc (poor thing; what a trooper).  However, I had decided to surprise my parents by making a Thanksgiving-themed Shabbos.  I pulled out all the stops for a traditional Thanksgiving meal, and even used fancy-shmancy recipes.

They were SO happy when they found out, and my mother was able to go back and tell her co-workers that she had the best Thanksgiving EVER.  It’s now a tradition for us, and this year will be the third year we do it.  I have scaled back on the fanciness of the recipes, but the essence is still there, and it’s a great pleasure for me to see how much my parents enjoy spending Thanksgiving Shabbos with us.

Thank you so much for this opportunity to share with you!  It was very enjoyable.  :)

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All I want to do is live happily ever after.

Posted on 19 April 2012, in Chatting with Miriyummy and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Great interview! Nice to meet you, Rivki!

  2. Irmgard Upmanis

    I love the story about the cupcakes!

  3. So nice to meet you! I, too, am a Rivki admirer and was fortunate to meet her around Chanukah. I think we now have a little joke that I would like to borrow one of her snoods. Because she can rock a snood!

  1. Pingback: I’m chatting with Miriyummy today! « Life in the Married Lane

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