Our Dream Home!
It was 1981 when we moved from California to Baltimore….with a four year old little son…We looked for a home to buy in April and May of that year…only not liking anything we saw on the market…. On the day before we went back to California to await the movers who would pack us up and move our stuff to Baltimore…we took one more drive with the realtor hoping to find our dream home. Since we could not decide on any of the houses he showed us that day, he finally said: “There is a house that I know the owner wants to sell, would you like me to call him and see if he is serious?” We nodded our heads and he placed the call and the seller said that we could come by and see it.
When we walked into the front door…I knew this was the home I wanted! I felt immediately comfortable in it and loved the large rooms and the floor plan.
It was our dream home!
We spent thirty-three years in this house. First we moved walls, painted, re-did rooms, designed a new all white kitchen, bought furniture together with an interior decorator, and made the home …”OURS!”
I felt that we could let our lives and dreams come through and share it with people who we hoped would become friends, let our son grow and develop into the person we envisioned him to become. We had the perfect home for all this to happen through the years!
And it did!
We entertained international friends and guests through McCormick Company where my husband had a position in the International Division, and, I started a cooking school in my beautiful new kitchen.
Our son was able to have friends who came and played in the woods that surrounded our home, building forts and bridges over a small brook that ran through the Watershed. He learned about all kinds of little animals that had their home in the trees or in little caves underground, birds that fed off a feeder in the middle of the back yard, and, a little birdhouse on a wall near the kitchen window.
We could watch birds in the spring nesting, feeding and teaching their off springs to fly….We watched snakes that wound around branches on trees and some that lived under our back steps. Foxes patrolled the yard for food, hedgehogs that ate our freshly grown lettuce for lunch before we could pick it to have it for dinner. One year we planted potatoes and did not think that they needed soil that was free of rocks and pebbles, therefore, they came up all gnarled and had funny shapes…but, we ate them anyway. When he was fourteen his father taught him to drive the big lawnmower and keeping the lawn mowed became his weekly job for which his allowance increased.
In the winter we fed the birds on our deck wall, but, not only birds ate there, they shared their crumbs and seeds with squirrels, foxes and, at night with raccoons and one evening we saw a possum visiting the feeding area.
It was a wonderful house to do anything in and kept us busy throughout the thirty-three years…
Maja’s Viennese Kitchen/Maja’s Kitchen LLC!
My Home Cooking School kept me busy throughout the years. I taught thirty classes a year and ended the year with Gingerbread House Decorating Sessions in December. It all started when our son was about 5 years old when I invited his friends for an afternoon to decorate gingerbread houses. It continued on until it became a part of Maja’s Kitchen. I would have up to 100 children and adults come to these weekends of Gingerbread House Decorating Afternoons every year.
When the decorating of the gingerbread houses ended I invited the children and their adult companions to attend a Candlelight Christmas Tea in our basement.
There they experienced and enjoyed a buffet table ablaze with candles and lots of little sandwiches, pastries, fruit and I never forgot the “pigs in the blanket.” Hot chocolate was served to the children and the adults had tea. All was served in china cups with saucers and dessert plates. The children were wonderfully behaved and acted properly. Everyone relaxed and chatted and had a good time. I loved these afternoons in December, because for me too, Christmas was approaching and we all felt it as the Christmas music kept us all in a festive mood…
When “Tea” was over they picked up their houses upstairs in the kitchen, parents took photographs around the Christmas Tree in the foyer…and with a shout of “Merry Christmas” left with smiles and glowing faces holding tight their decorated little Gingerbread House.
Cooking Classes at Maja’s Kitchen!
Cooking and baking is truly my passion, I will never tire doing it!
I loved teaching and getting to know the ladies who came to my classes, and yes, there was an occasional man who joined us. Actually men could not come to my classes because my classes were held in the morning, from 9am to 1pm on Tuesday and Thursdays. But I did some private cooking classes with men when they scheduled it on a Saturday morning. It all was great fun for me!
I loved learning about having a business. My husband was very good in getting me thinking of it as a business and not just having fun. His help and encouragement helped me to make this a successful business. I learned to handle the income and expenses, networking, writing recipes, printing them and having them ready for my students when they arrived in the kitchen. The night before I set up my kitchen for classes and prepped the ingredients for the recipes. During the class we learned to cook, plate the meals, decorate tables, learned about each other and become friends.
To keep up with teaching I attended many cooking classes at different schools, like the Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park, NY, the Lavaren Cooking School at the Green Brier, the La Accademie de Cuisine in Bethesda, and many classes that were held around Baltimore through the years. I also joined the International Association of Culinary Professionals where I am still a member. The yearly IACP meetings have helped me to become a better teacher, and, where I found great support from more experienced culinary professionals.
We have recently moved from our “Dream Home” to a condominium not very far away from the “old’ house. We have installed a new kitchen and I have already started to continue Maja’s Kitchen in my new kitchen and condominium/home.
My pastry business is thriving !
Here are some of my recent creations
made in my “New Condo Kitchen!”
The First Cooking Class in the new kitchen!
Maja/Maria Reisz Springer
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