Sunday, November 8, 2015

My Tasha Tudor Moment

She was my hero.

And January 7, 1995 she came to Nashville.

How could I not go?

I had admired her ever since reading this book--
Drawn From New England
Tasha Tudor
by her daughter, Bethany Tudor.

I fell in love with Tasha's Pembroke Welsh corgis--
bought Corgiville Fair,
her favorite book.

And Tex, our very own corgi,
love of our life,
joined our family.

So you can bet I was going to see Tasha Tudor
when she came to the Opryland Hotel.

I sat three rows from the front
and I listened to her wonderful voice
and watched her sketch.

After she finished they auctioned off her sketches.

My $100 bid for the corgi lost to one that topped $400.

I bought Tasha's cookbook and hurried to the
autograph line.

Several hundred other people were in front of me.

This wonderful 80 year old woman stopped at 100 people,
but I got to watch her graciously sign books
and speak to each person.

I went to a little snack area near a hotel exit,
bought a soda and sat down to rest,
a little disappointed that I didn't have an autograph.

My table was right by the exit door.
I sipped on my drink and then a miracle happened.

Tasha Tudor and her entourage walked toward the exit.
And she looked right into my eyes and smiled at me.

At me, as if she wished that her corgi sketch 
could have gone home with me.

Today I made her gingerbread from her cookbook.

Cinnamon, ginger and cloves scented the kitchen.

Tasha's gingerbread was delicious.

And I thought of her.

[Some of you emailed me that an old post of mine, In Old Cape Cod, showed up as current this past week while I was away from blogging. I have no idea why this happened. Blogger Gremlins? I'm sorry for any confusion. Has this happened to any of you before?]


  1. Such a sweet story. A dear friend introduced me to Tasha Tudor's world many years ago! She was one of a kind!!

    1. I have never read her books. If you were going to just recommend one... which one would it be?

    2. That's difficult to answer, Georgene, because they're all beautiful books. If you love to garden then Tasha Tudor's Garden is full of beauty and her children's books are charming but I do love her daughter's book about her, Drawn from New England. And The Private World of Tasha Tudor is a thing of beauty too. Sadly, now that she's gone, I've read reports of some of her children feuding over the estate. That is such a shame and I hope it's been resolved and forgiven.

  2. Oh, how I love me some Tasha Tudor! As a child, I was captivated by the beauty of her books and all these years later, I still am. Thanks for reminding me of her precious treasures. Such a wonderful story!

  3. I don't own any of her books but I've read some about her from the local libraries and she's simply amazing!

  4. What a sweet story. I was hoping for that happy ending where she graciously signed one more copy of the book (yours). But your memory of that moment is probably greater than what the signing (in line) may have been. :)

  5. I am a huge Tasha Tudor fan also! I first discovered her through a book about her home and gardens. I have two videos that feature her and were filmed at her home, and I bought the cookbook you wrote about. She was amazing and a true inspiration. When I look at the books and watch the videos, I get a warm and cozy feeling. I wish you had won the bid on the corgi.

  6. What a lovely picture of you and your doggie!

    Yes, I loved Tasha too. But never had the opportunity to see her.

  7. What wonderful memories! You gathered them up to enjoy for a lifetime and now you've shared them with us! How sweet! Sweet hugs, Diane

  8. Tasha? Me too!.

    After she died much was for sale. I could not afford, but gave it great thought, one of her marionettes. Later, discovered most went to a museum. Did purchase some of her signed prints.

    Her garden book is incredible. Whenever I have the flu, most rare, her garden book is the one I take to bed with me.

    Glad you've shared this story.

    Garden & Be Well, XOT

  9. Dewena, What a good memory . Blessings, xoxo,Susie

  10. I have never heard of her but you can bet I'm going to go google her name soon and find out all about her. How wonderful to get to see her in person and watch her sketch...darn....about that sketch... Love love the photo of your kitchen and what you baked - it looks so cozy. Really enjoyed your story about seeing her in person.

  11. now why on earth! i am sitting here with my eyes welling with tears.
    when you stood in line... such a near miss... and you must have been so tired as well as so disappointed... and then for her to smile right at you. YOU!
    when she walked by and smiled... she didn't have to be 'on.' you know. the way you are with a crowd... and people rushing for the next autograph.
    she had time to smile just at you. what a darling memory of a darling woman.
    i too love her. only i don't have a single book of hers. i can't believe it.
    i've gotten them all from the library many times. she was absolutely amazing.
    and that picture of you and tex? THAT should be in a frame. that's wonderful.
    you are my tasha and gladys and anne morrow... and so much more!
    maybe that's why the tears. just tears of love and joy! XOXOXO♥
    this is a wonderful post dsm. worth waiting for for sure.

  12. Oh, what a wonderful story Dewena. How special and wonderful! If you could have only gotten her autograph in your cookbook, how wonderful would that be? I know how disappointed you were that you couldn't get the Corgi sketch, but you have such wonderful memories of such a special time! Could you please share the recipe? I love gingerbread...the wonderful aromas and flavors! Love and hugs to you!

    1. Here goes, Benita! 1 stick unsalted butter, softened; 1/2 cup sugar; 1 farm-fresh egg, beaten; 1 cup light molasses; 2 1/2 cups unbleached flour; 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda; 1 teaspoon cinnamon; 1 teaspoon ginger; 1/2 teaspoon cloves; 1/2 teaspoon salt; 1 cup hot water; 1 1/2 cup dark raisins.
      Preheat oven to 350 F; Grease 2 iron cornbread pans or...two 9 x 9 square cake tins [I used a 9 x 13 cake tin].

      Cream together the butter and sugar. Add the egg and the molasses, then sift in the dry ingredients and mix the batter well. Add the hot water and beat until smooth. Stir in the raisins.

      Fill the prepared tins half full...bake 25 to 30 minutes [I only baked it about 23 minutes.]until done.

      Benita, I happened to have some leftover Knudsen Carrot Orange juice so I used it instead of water. I think Tasha would have approved of my thrifty use of that! And it was delicious, even if I only had dark molasses not the light. I also used golden raisins instead of dark ones.

      R.H. has never been crazy about gingerbread but he loved this. A little bit of melted butter in the middle of warm gingerbread is pretty good too. I also chopped some preserved ginger on top of the whipped cream.

      Tasha says in her book that this was her grandmother Tudor's receipt. Hope it turns our well for you!

  13. Oh my goodness! I have to follow Tammy's comment?! She's so freakin eloquent, I can't stand it. And she always manages to say what I would LIKE to say, but a zillion times better!

    I feel the same all I'm gonna say is 'yeah, what Tammy said'. Lol

    Oh, just one more thing...even though she said it already,that picture of you and your sweet fur baby Tex is precious! You look radiant and yes, it's easy to see he was the love of your life. I can relate.


  14. My Mother introduced me to Tasha Tudor years ago and we both felt like we were with our Granny when we read her books! Such a personal touch she gave everything she did. So happy you got to go see her and have a great memory of her.

  15. Dewena...this post seems to have touched those who know of Tasha Tudor and many who don't. Maybe this is some sort of magic she left behind. That she smiled at you---what a touching moment that you'll never forget.

    I love the picture of you and your baby! You have a radiant smile. :)

    I have that first book, I read it in one sitting. I sometimes wonder how well I would do alone, God forbid I had to without the love of my life. She made me contemplate my ability to be brave and forge on, be self reliant and content in my own company. A great lesson and her book is on my shelf so I can always consider those thoughts again.

    Thank you for a great post as always.

    Jane xxx

  16. I'm with Sandy, a few comments above. I'm not familiar with Tasha Tudor, but after your story, I've got to discover more about her! I bet she's the kind of person that would be so happy to know that her smile lasted many years within your heart!

  17. I always was a big fan on Tasha Tudor. She definitely was a woman to admire.
    What a wonderful experience you had that day in Nashville!

  18. I commented on this post yesterday, but apparently modern technology deleted it! :-)

    I thought it was so wonderful that you got to see Tasha and sad that you were unable to get her autograph or collect one of her sketches. It is wonderful, though, that you have such sweet memories of someone you admired.

    I love the scents and tastes of gingerbread. Could you please share the recipe? Love and hugs to you!

  19. What a great story Dewena. I have to say I don't know a whole lot about Tasha Tudor, but it seems that I should! I do have a little children's Easter book of hers that I've always liked. You look beautiful in your fuchsia robe and silver hair (I am noticing those things especially these days!). xo Deborah

  20. Hello,
    What a lovely story.
    I love Tasha Tudor too!! I use many of her quotes.
    I love the photo of Tex, what a sweetheart!
    xx oo

  21. What a wonderful memory to cherish. Tasha Tudor was a unique and very special woman, who lived life her own way.

  22. That's such a wonderful story, Dewena. I can only imagine how thrilling that was.

    Funny... I can't imagine Tasha Tudor having an entourage. How strange!


  23. I'm not familiar with Tasha Tudor so was very interested in reading your post and looking at your images - thank you.

    All the best Jan

  24. I have always thought of Tasha Tudor as the Beatrix Potter of New England. She inspired my mother's love of corgis (she owned two) and she owned many of her books. One of the first picture books I bought my first grandchild was a Tasha Tudor.

  25. Dewena, how exciting for you! I came to love her late but love none the same. Many years ago, Madeleine L'Engle came to Knoxville and two women, their two children and I traveled to see/hear her. The women didn't want to go; "it's a school night" and my reply was...L'Engle is a living treasure and you/your children will have precious memories the rest of your life. How can you NOT go?" We went and had a lovely time...precious memories indeed.

  26. What an absolutely wonderful post! Oh Dewena, I can see how getting to see her TWICE would mean so much, especially as she stopped at the doorway and smiled at you. What precious memories!

    I have not been a very faithful commenter on your blog and I apologize. Sometimes I get so caught up in the memes, I forget to visit my other friends. I got way behind in all my commenting a couple of times recently too, including when we went on Vacation. I seem to stay "behind" all the time! But I'm trying to do much better. I love your blog and always love your comments on mine as well.