Monday, February 15, 2010

Scroll Down to See the Sexiest Mixer in the History of KitchenAid.

That's right. Don't scroll down unless you're ready to get seriously hot and bothered. But first, a story...

My mother bought her Pro-Grade KitchenAid mixer when I was very small. She almost never used it when I was small, maybe a few times a year, but had every attachment available at the time, just in case she ever got the itch. Really she just liked the idea of it. All it represented. She could make applesauce or grind her own meat if she wanted to. Just in case.

By the time I entered grade school, it was shoved to the back of the kitchen and never saw the light of day again until I got a little older, and was intrigued by it's appeal, it's sense of mystery, and it's raw power for any task I could throw it. It's great usefulness whispered to me, and in my spirit I knew how much it ached to come out and be useful, to be needed, to be properly appreciated. So a few times a year, from the time I was 11 or so, I'd dig it out, clean it up, and use it. All by myself. My mother continued to not.

Then I went away. It sat alone in the dark. Then I got married, and got pregnant, and got done with school, and got serious about making a home of our own. What my mother idealized as the perfect domestic vision but didn't possess in real identity, I had the power to embody. I actually like to cook. Love to cook. Love to learn more and more about how to cook. I make mean baked goods. My husband cooks for fun on the weekends, makes mean breads. Because it's our thing. Not her thing. I needed that mixer. But this had to be done delicately. I knew what it symbolized to my mother, though she left it in the dark for some 20 years. As a woman, I could understand- it's the idea of it, the idea of that identity, the idea of the ideal, to her. And she never became it. Giving it away would mean admitting that time had passed, and she didn't become that ideal she'd idealized. Though maybe she never really wanted it for herself, she still attached that ideal to being the right kind of woman. You follow?

Jim and I talked it over. We both wanted her bad. Over Spring Break of our senior year in 2003 we house sat for my parents and we got that old KitchenAid out and loved on her. Cleaned her up, gave her a proud spot on the counter- as a surprise for my mother. If she began using it, we'd know she really wanted to make a new start. If not, we'd wait a while and see, and if it felt right, we'd ask. So we sat, eating pizza, my belly full of Grace not yet born, and I asked, ever so delicately, right there in the middle of the restaurant. Just in case it got ugly, we were in a public place, so it couldn't get too bad, if you know what I mean. I asked if she'd used it much lately since we got it out last March (this was 2 months later). She'd used it once, to make some brownies. Like, the from a .99 box brownies. Great. Once. For a job you can do by hand if you wanted. Sad, and great at the same time. So the moment felt right. I let her know if she felt like she wasn't going to need it, Jim and I would give her a great home. Instantly, her face changed, and she let me know she was actually planning on baking some bread soon. (I've never, ever, in all my years seen my mother bake bread). Right. She's not ready.

Fast forward a couple of weeks, and Grace was about to be born. My mother came up to visit, mixer and all the many special, amazing attachments for grinding, shredding, and the like along. Glory Hallelujah, she had a breakthrough. That big, heavy, bowl-lifting super machine was ours. Jim baked bread almost immediately. I ate some of that first batch of whole grain bread the morning I went in for my induction. I remember it clearly. It was good.

And ever since that spring day in 2003, we've kept that KitchenAid purring like a kitten. That bowl got dirty at least a few times a week. It, paired with my trusty KitchenAid food processor, kept our kitchen tasty and messy.

And on Friday, February 12, 2010, she gave a fond farewell. After just nearly finishing a double batch of sugar cookie dough, we heard a small sizzle, and the girls and I watched as smoke began pouring out her back (a story they retell with great panache). Oh, sweet mixer, your time is done. You were old and a little rusty at the bottom from years of living in the dark, but you were trusty, and I'm glad we gave you these last Renaissance years before you paddled your last.

But, out with the old, the next day, after thorough inspection by The Engineer, we put her away and I very proudly went out to purchase a new one. My new one. Not a hand-me-down, but one that encompasses my identity, our identity.

She had to be beautiful- and oh, she is. And she had to be powerful, for this baking, cooking, processing family of 6. Oh, she's powerful.

The KitchenAid Pro 600 Bowl-Lift Stand Mixer in Cocoa Silver. A color that I believe is perfect. I have walls this color. Just off the kitchen. So they salute one another in their brown-silver loveliness.

After intense online searching and comparing of models, The Engineer gave me three models to choose from as the best for this house, and I was off to Macy's.

And there she was. Oh, Have Mercy, there she was.

And the very first icing she made for my cake did not come out of her giant-sized 14 Cups of Flour capacity bowl, but from her price.

Originally $499, she was on sale this weekend for $399 (KitchenAids are on sale everywhere right now- it's their 90th Anniversary- thank you, old mixer for dying now). On top of this sale, there was a $40 rebate, which Macy's didn't even know about, but we did after all that online searching and I told them, and By George they found it online and gave it to me, and on top of that, I did something I rarely do and signed up for a Macy's card (this is one rare exception when playing the credit card game benefits you, and when I get a chance to play their game and take all their benefits and not get caught up in the scam, I do it with reckless abandon. Digressing here...), and that card gave me another 20% off. Are you doing that math???

$500 mixer. For about $280. Give or take some tax.

The first thing we made was some sugar cookie frosting. The kids all helped. In her inaugural run, she got all covered in confectioner's sugar and corn syrup and love. It was a fitting start to a wonderful life together.


stacey said...

Congratulations, she is breath-takingly beautiful! I hope you have many years of yummy mixing together:)

Keri said...

This made me laugh- I was just in Bed, Bath & Beyond drooling over the red version on Saturday. And boy did I notice that sale tag! I'm convinced this machine would change everything for me in the kitchen and miraculously overnight I will turn into a joyful cooking machine! (To my embarrassment I've never been much of an I-love-to-cook kind of girl)

Maybe someday...

Congrats on your new baby! I hope you have a long, happy life together :)

Annika said...

I LOVE my Kitchen Aid! Enjoy your new toy :)

Anne Elizabeth said...

I LOVE it. I have that same model in black and I love using it. I have to say I LOVE the color of yours much more than mine:) What a deal you got too!

anne said...

She's a beaut.

ps- my parents bought me TWO for Christmas one year and I had to decide between them.
I am not good at making quick decisions!
One was an idustrial like one and the other was an AWESOME color...that I fell in love with, and she was mine. She's been the best and I'm glad I chose her.

anne said...

ps-s- what a deal!!!!!

nicely done at Macy's

Danielle said...

Awesome! That's the color I want. Can you believe with all the baking I do I don't have one yet. I swear this is the year I'm going to buy one!

Rachel said...

I feel for your mom. :) That's completely something I would do!

But I'm glad you gave it a good home and congrats on your new one.

Kiki said...

It is beautiful. I've drooled over one of those for many years. I have a hand me down Bosch. Good, but not the same.

And do you have a picture of the first lovely?