Tarot by the Mouthful – Six of Cups

by Theresa Reed on October 4, 2015

Tarot by the Mouthful Theresa Reed and Kyle Cherek

Kyle is a foodie who loves Tarot. Theresa is a Tarot reader who loves food. 

Together, we host Tarot by the Mouthful: a mouthwatering, multi-media culinary tour through the world of Tarot. 

Sublime recipes. Soulful stories. Essays, videos, interviews and delicious surprises. 

Join us every Sunday for a new installment — and get ready to sip, slurp, crunch and savor your way through the entire Tarot deck! 

This week: Six of Cups

tarot by the mouthful six of cups

Six of Cups: This gentle card symbolizes a return to days gone by.  Nostalgia.  Happy memories from childhood or a different time.  The blast from the past returns.  Look backwards but don’t lose sight of the present moment.  Stop and smell the roses.  A desire for simplicity or simpler times.


Kyle: Memories and Caviar

I was 8 years old the first time I tasted caviar.  My father had remarried when I was 7, and with that union came a slew of new bothers and sisters, 9 in total, all older than me, bringing our familial count, including my older brother by birth, to 11.

When all fully assembled for family events, we moved through the world in a manner that must have appeared to other people as something resembling to a swarm of bees; composting the air, swaying and careening, with some sort of unknowable logic, and then gone.

To add to the 9 bothers and sisters came a host of relations. Aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents and the like, some of which, who lived in a tony suburb, and hosted the holiday party the season of my eighth year. The party was, to that point in my short life. The fanciest holiday party I had ever been to.

My family entering the front door holiday fete was more like the populous of a flight deplaning in the pre-security days, Loved ones at the gate, waiting to meet the eyes of one or more of the passengers as they passed through the door.   For me, not knowing most of this new relatives, I was like the business man just visiting the city for the first time, wondering where the closest bath room was, and hoping to get a good meal while I was there, and all the while thinking of home.

The child’s eye view of any crowded room is all at once one of obstruction and sincere observations.  The hand gestures, subconsciously flexed by the grown ups, their overhead interactions, all tell their own story. Their rising and falling laugher, silences, words hushed mid-sentence, and exclamations, make for an opera of it’s own sort, rich enough to rival anything by Mozart or Puccini.

Amidst all this, new relatives reached down with their eyes to spool out their questions about age, interests and what stuff I hoped to have appear beneath the tree. Between velvet pencil skits and green holiday sweaters, cuff links, cocktail glasses and cold cut platters, I began to move through the house like a shark, anxious watchful and worried for who might talk me, should I stop.

Weaving from the kitchen through the living room to sun room where the sea of sport coats and sweater vests seemed to be thinning, my new cousin Julie, a teenager, and daughter to the new relatives hosting the party, nearly checked me in my path next to the buffet.  She was cool and friendly.  A teenager that would be described by teachers as “a good kid.”  Though we were both foreigners to each other, I was fidgeting in her parent’s sunroom. A visitor in her land. “Do you like caviar?” she asked smiling “no?” I replied, sounding like someone who was trying to ace a Rorschach test. Not sure if it was bunny or a bat I was supposed to see. “It’s fun,” she said grinning, “I like Saltines, do you like Saltines? It is waaay better than those.”

Upon a small cracker she placed the loose pyramid of inky, polished, wet and heavy eggs. Tight with the mass of their initial design’s potential, they where their own culinary equivalent to the center of something tugged from a black hole, where matter was compacted, and an once of it weighted much more than it ought to.

I pressed the cracker into the roof of my mouth as instructed, and as her eyes waited for me to squirm, swallow or smile, the ocean, pure white summer clouds, silk, salt, and a life force wed to flavor rushed over me.  I grinned. She set me up with another cracker.

More crackers and more caviar, with sour crème, some off of ivory spoons. Some smeared and some piled up, on and on until she sensed as only those can who straddle that age between childhood and what comes after, that the urge to shoo-away by grown ups was building across the room.

My new comrade cousin Julie scuttled me off to something else in her house. The Tom and Jerry cups where cleared by the staff and Greensleeves filled in between the swells of conversation.

When people talk of nostalgia, as represented in the Six of Cups, I think they often miss the mark. It’s not wishing for the past and the way it used to be.  That soft focused view discredits the memory and where it has brought you.  It’s the salt and succulence.  A bright moment coming forth from the deep dark of memory and time.  What you do with it, the Six of Cups card directs us to as well. You can lock it away in tower, or turn to the garden, with it’s rich soil, and cultivate the moment into something alive a new.


Theresa: I want candy

The sweet Six of Cups shows two figures in a garden, one handing the other a bouquet.  This card symbolizes joy coming from the past.

I’ve written before about my mother’s cooking.  Yes, I’m all sorts of nostalgic for that.  Although I cook some of those long ago foods, it’s not the same.  Moms have that way – you can recreate but it’s still not theirs.

But there are other things that I miss from my childhood.  Things that I miss dearly. Namely, certain candies that are no longer available.  I have always been a bit of a sugar fiend and I blame some of that on my Aunt Deal but also on the array of delicious candy bars and other such goodies that often found their way into my belly.

My favorites:

Marathon candy bars – a whole foot of chocolate covered caramel shaped like a braid?  Yes, please.  Sorry, Cadbury, but Curly Whirly bars are not the same.  Nice try though.

Oompas – Willy Wonka made some amazing chocolates back in the day.  Now they only make those hard rock-candy like Nerds and similar stuff.  Oompas were to-die-for!  They were like big M&M’s with a half-chocolate half-peanut butter filling on the inside.  Peanut Butter M&Ms are a sad substitute but once in a blue moon, when I want to recapture that Oompas feeling, I’ll eat a few. And then I get bitter all over again because they can’t compare.

Super Skrunch – Another offering by Willy Wonka, the Super Skrunch was peanut buttery crisp covered in chocolate. My mouth waters like Pavlov’s dog just at the mention of these.  Why oh why did Willy Wonka abandon us chocolate lovers?

Choco’Lite bars – These thick chocolate bars were billed as “puffed milk chocolate with crispy chips”.  They were very light with little bubbles inside and the crisps were minute but made the texture wonderful.  (I also liked the design which reminded me of little gravestones.  Yeah, I was a macabre kid.) PS Aero bars are NOT the same.

Milkshake bars – These candy bars were filled with nougat and caramel.  They didn’t really taste like a milkshake but they were yummy.  Milky Ways had a similar flair but the Milkshake bars had better chocolate.  Just sayin’.

Jello Spoon Candy – I had this one time.  My Aunt Marie made it when she visited.  It was a pudding with a hard chocolate shell on top. It came in different flavors like vanilla and chocolate (we had the chocolate version).  Unfortunately, it was on the shelf and gone so fast that I was never able to find it. Thanks to the internet, I was able to relive that memory and prove to myself that I wasn’t insane: it did exist.

Cristy bars – Another here today, gone fast candy that made a brief appearance in my life, never to be seen again.  When my mother was getting her first open heart surgery, I stayed at my Aunt Shirley’s house for a few days.  Dad came to see us and he brought along a bunch of candy bars.  I spotted that blue wrapper with the blonde girl and had to have it.  The candy bar was some sort of nougat covered in white chocolate.  When I opened it up and saw it wasn’t chocolate, I felt ripped off. But then I took a bite and fell in love.  Cristy vanished, but I never forgot her.

The thing about getting older is that you find yourself reflecting more, both on the painful parts and the sweet.  Although my life has had it’s fair share of difficulties, I like to remember the simple joys that helped make the hard stuff bearable. There is much good (and goodies) behind me…and more to come.

“Candy is my religion.” ― Sarah Addison Allen

Bon Appetit!

Theresa and Kyle

© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2015

photos from personal collection and Jessica Kaminski

Hungry for more? Click here to explore the entire Tarot by the Mouthful series, from the very first card… right up to our latest installment. Bon appetit!

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The Hit List – Ben Franklin Is My Homeboy

by Theresa Reed on October 3, 2015



So guys…

I’ve started a weird little side project. And it involves Benjamin Franklin.

I know, I know. I usually gravitate towards rappers and music industry moguls but I am telling you, Ben was the BO$$ MAN of his day! He was a prolific inventor, author, scholar, involved in politics, respected by his peers, and (ahem) pretty successful with the ladies. I have a feeling Ben and Jay-Z would have been the best of friends, poppin’ bottles back at the crib.

But I digress…

Back to my project!

In his autobiography, Ben makes a list of Thirteen Virtues that he values most.

1. Temperance.
2. Silence.
3. Order.
4. Resolution.
5. Frugality.
6. Industry.
7. Sincerity.
8. Justice.
9. Moderation.
10. Cleanliness.
11. Tranquility.
12. Chastity.
13. Humility.

(You can read more about each virtue at a neat website called ThirteenVirtues.com.)

History reveals that Ben would try to “practice” one virtue per week, recording his efforts in his diary and then continually trying to do a little bit better. I love this. I’ve decided to try the same thing except I’m doing one virtue per month (I am not as goody-goody as ole Ben.  Plus, it takes 30 days for a habit to stick.)

I just wrapped up Month One: Temperance.

Here’s what happened:

Ben explains Temperance as this: “Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.”  I admit – I have an appetite for destruction. Put simply: I love to eat all that is bad and I enjoy my wine… probably more than I should.

Last month, I cut back on those naughty habits (not easy!). I plan on reducing it further (there is a goal weight in mind and I’m not there…yet).  Self-discipline, yo.

I’ve also applied Temperance (restraint + moderation) to my mindset. I’m a sensitive gal and when anything cruel shows up in my world, I take it to heart. I had a few testy situations last month where the old me might have reacted with a bit more shall we say…intensity. But, I held my tongue, took a few breathes, remained ever-so-polite and worked hard to keep my Zen. Crisis averted and hurt feelings begone!

What I learned:

To think before I drink or raise a stink.

How I intend to carry this virtue forward into the rest of my life:

I plan on continuing to practice mindful eating + drinking. I’m also increasing my Loving-Kindness meditation efforts and sending that chill, loving energy outward any time I’m feeling salty (extremes are for drama queens!).

Temperance & Tarot – your affirmation for the month:

The best way is the middle way.


How about you?

Is it time to introduce more Temperance into your life?

What would that look like? Where will you begin?

bigstock-Benjamin-Franklin-hand-on-hip-21364109If you’d like to join me as I continue my journey through Ben Franklin’s Thirteen Virtues, feel free! This month (October) I am tackling Silence. So… no more blog posts until November. JUST KIDDING. I won’t be THAT silent.  I’ll swing back next month and let you know how it goes.

I hoped you enjoyed this backstage peek into my latest side project.

I’ll leave you with this gem from our man B-Franklin:

“Never leave that till tomorrow which you can do today.”

Word to that! Whether it’s tidying your house, writing a new blog post, doing something kind for your partner or spouse, or improving your character as a human being, there’s no need to procrastinate. There’s always something—one little step—that you can do today. Make Ben proud. Why wait?


Other stuff:

Wisdom from my smarty pants friend, Susan Hyatt: What’s up with your money, girl? 

What might happen if you said yes to every creepy guy who tried to chat you up?  This gal found out.

Thought provoking: The case against Pinktober.

Favorite post of the week – this is vulnerable soul-baring truth from Shenee Howard.

Mary Greer found Tarot on TV with this episode of Lawman.

Donald Trump’s many faces.  Hilarious!

Illiana Burk at Makeness is brilliant.  Loving her post for the broke and hopeless who feel like they can’t afford the business they are made for.

And then this goodness from The Uncaged Life: is your business coach full of shit?  READ IT.  This needed to be said.

Oh Annika Martins, how I love your insights: You ARE the universe.  An appeal for self-reverence.

Hilary Parry has a mighty fun Instagram tarot challenge you might want to check out.

Loving Jamie Ridler…and she’s loving me right back.

This week, I cover Judgement for Little Fox Tarot’s Tarot Mixtape.

The customer is not always right: stupid restaurant customer stories. The chicken pot pie one is my favorite.

Bookmark this:  my new favorite tarot site: Breathing Fashion.  Fashion + tarot.  YES.

What happens when the original cast from The Warriors returns to Coney Island?  This.

My girl Courtney Weber makes an appearance at the 15th annual Pagan Pride gathering in New York: Bow Down, Witches.

I loved getting this peek inside Esmé Wang’s home. I want to sit in that book nook!

They had me at Mancave: making plans to head to Portland next year to visit HunnyMilk.

What happens when you photoshop away your most hated features?  You want them back.

I read everything Paul Jarvis writes.  You should too.  Start here: I am my own worst enemy.

I so love her other books and just added this to my wish list: Anodea Judith’s Chakra Yoga

Counting down the days until this new offering from Rolf Gates is released: Meditations on Intention and Being: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga, Mindfulness, and Compassion (An Anchor Books Original)

Lana Del Rey’s new album has been on constant rotation here: Honeymoon [Explicit]

I promised myself I wouldn’t buy any more boots…and then I saw these: Sam Edelman Women’s Josephine Slouch Boot

The latest wisdom from Pema Chodron: Fail, Fail Again, Fail Better: Wise Advice for Leaning into the Unknown


What I’m Grateful For:

My daughter will be home soon!

Sweater weather

Crisp skies


Cooking from scratch

Seeing my friends prosper

Good snail mail


Soundtrack for 10/3/15: It’s All About The Benjamins by Puff Daddy ft. The Notorious B.I.G, The LOX, and Lil Kim



© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2015

images from stock photography, personal collection, and flickr commons

Wanna learn to read tarot cards? Enter your email below and get your free Tarot Card by Card manual plus the Rookie To Reader e-course. These simple, super-fun lessons will get you reading tarot...even if you've never picked up a deck before!

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