Let's talk about food for this week's writing prompt.
What did a typical mealtime look like?
Growing up our meals were always eaten as a family, and that included breakfast, lunch and dinner (though we referred to the latter as supper.) The six of us would gather around the table to eat, except if someone was working or out of town. During the week my mom was responsible for the cooking, though she and dad did the grocery shopping together. On the weekends, my dad was right in the kitchen with mom. Dishes were the responsibility of the kids.
|Mom with Duke|
The household rule was that you had to eat everything on your plate, and dad made us sit at the table until the plate was clean. On several occasions that meant that I sat there until bedtime. There were some things even our German Shepherd Duke wouldn't eat, despite my best efforts to feed him under the table. Rutabagas come to mind. Dad mellowed a bit in later years, and mom was allowed to make me a hot dog for times when things like liver and onions were on the menu.
Both my mom and dad were excellent cooks, and most things they served tasted really good. While they never were into baking goodies like cookies or brownies, dad could whip up awesome pineapple upside down cakes, lemon meringue pies, apple or peach pies, etc. My dad's pineapple upside down cake was so good that I took the pan he baked it in after he passed so that I could try to duplicate his masterpiece. Regular cakes were pretty much reserved for birthdays. But the best part of eating was getting to catch up with everyone on what their day had been like.
|pineapple upside down cake|
My husband experienced pretty much the same thing in his house growing up, so sharing meals was something we carried through to our married lives. When our children came along, we made it a point to sit down together for meals despite both of us working full-time outside the home. We learned a lot about their daily experiences by being tuned into the conversations that flowed as we ate. The greatest compliment my kids ever gave me was the fact that they both planned their extracurricular activities around our dinner time whenever possible, so that they could eat at home. I hope that is something they will continue to do now that they have households of their own.
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