Today I am combining Five Minute Friday with my daily March Slice of Life writing challenge. This week’s writing prompt is: table.
As a child, my mom stayed at home and managed the house and children. With six of us, you can imagine the amount of management that took. She put a home cooked meal on the table each and every night.
See, I didn’t realize how much my parents struggled to raise six children. Each of us went to private schools as the public schools in our neighborhood at that time we sub par to say the least. My mom stayed home and my dad worked his butt off. We didn’t have fancy clothes or go on vacations. But we had everything we needed and we were happy.
Eating out was a treat that was rarely afforded. It meant swinging through McDonalds to get 6 cheeseburgers and 2 large fries to share among my five siblings. I had no idea happy meals existed. And forget about a special order anything.
But there was nutritious food on the table without fail. It was the meat and potatoes kind of meal that a large Irish Catholic family from Chicago’s southside thrives on.
Pot roast, mashed potatoes, green beans
Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, corn
Pork chops, mashed potatoes, green beans
Chop suey with rice…and mashed potatoes
Now that I have my own family in my own home with my own table, too, try to put a meal on my table each night. I am a bit more adventurous than my mom was offering things as exotic as ground lamb bowls with cucumber mint salad or fancy as seared scallops and risotto. But the sentiment is there.
Food is love. If I love you, I will try to feed you. Let’s face it. If I hate you I will feed you, too. Probably because I made too much.
My kids aren’t nearly as adventurous with our nightly family meals at the dinner table as I would like. I always used say I would never ever make something different for my kids than whatever the rest of the family was eating. They could eat what I made could just go hungry.
insert eye roll here
But when your oldest falls off the growth chart for a time, you give up those notions and start shoving anything she will eat down her throat.
I was so smart about being a mom before I became a mom.
I love being about to put a meal on the table for my family. I don’t mind planning them each week. I could do without the grocery shopping but even that has its perks.
hello one hour of no kid time
I look back at my childhood and wonder how my mom did it. How did she manage six kids, a home, and manage to cook an actual meal with really real mashed potatoes every night.
We love our potatoes. Don’t judge.
I do my best and replicate as many meals as I can remember while branching out to some new favorites. I think each time, would she like this?
Chances are if it had potatoes, she would.
I am writing for the 2020 Slice of Life Challenge.