Maybe Tomorrow

“How are you doing?”

I hear that question a lot lately, and I’m always grateful. Whether it is directed at me, or another person, I love knowing how much others care.

These past two months have been rough on everyone. I don’t know a single soul who is not yearning to be outdoors, or shopping, or dining out with their friends. The stay-at-home directives have been challenging for us all, and now we’re growing restless, and our nerves are wearing thin.

Coping

In recent weeks, I have decreased the amount of time I spend watching the news on TV and scrolling through social media. And I am happier for it. It’s not easy to dial back a habit, but sometimes it is necessary. For me, it had become an unhealthy coping mechanism.

We all know we could make better use of our time, but when we are stuck inside with nowhere to go, it’s easier to say, “Maybe tomorrow.”

There is always something enticing to grab our attention, to get us to ‘click’ and read further. Then, of course, we must comment, copy and share with all our friends. Before we know it, half the day is gone. And it’s time you cannot get back.

Hoping

The good news is that we are slowly coming out of the COVID quarantine. It will be a gradual process, so this is a good time to dial back the distractions, and make the most out of our remaining indoor time.

In our home, I’ve been doing more reading lately, and cooking up some meals from my dusty cookbook collection. Now that the weather is warmer, my husband is gardening again. We’re also back into “purging mode” as we prepare to downsize our home next year. That also means finishing repair projects, and tackling new ones we have been putting off. And maybe even planning again for our vacation that was cancelled.

😷😷😷

When you look back on this time years from now, what do you want to remember? Hopefully you will have some endearing and happy memories, as well as the ones we’d all rather forget. If you haven’t journaled at all lately, this is a great time to write down your thoughts. Organize your recent photos and write down what you were doing during this time and why. Wouldn’t that make an interesting time capsule?

With all the bad news around us, be sure you take time in the next days and weeks to remember all the good things going on too! I’ve enjoyed John Krasinski’ Some Good News on YouTube. (Click the link to see one of my favorite episodes!)

And on this Memorial Day weekend, please also pause to remember those who have sacrificed so much for us in the name of freedom. And pray for all our brave men and women in uniform who are serving around the world today.

Photo by Chad Madden on Unsplash

Food = Love

Food.

We dream about it, talk about it, and even have television networks dedicated to it. Sweet, savory, or spicy, ethnic, vegan or fusion. Whatever our preference may be on a given day — we love it all!

But despite all the hours we spend consuming food, very few people actually enjoy cooking their own food.  Many will do whatever is necessary to avoid standing in front of the stove. It’s much easier to drive-thru, make a reservation, or order take-out.

Family Feasts

For just a moment though, let’s think about my favorite holiday: Thanksgiving! It’s just around the corner and I’m already looking forward to it. But beyond the festive table settings, and dishes laden with delicious food (and the football game we will sleep through afterward), it’s all about the people we love seated around that table.

Thanksgiving Memories, 2017

 

My mother-in-law raised five children, so she cooked meals for a small army. By the time I arrived on the scene, everyone was grown and flown. But family meals were still a regular occurrence. I can’t say whether cooking was a favorite chore in the Manausa household, but it was always a group effort. Everyone pitched in, and like my own dad, my father-in-law did his share of the cooking!

Several family meals became my favorites. “Chuck’s Everyday Waffles” were extra-delicious because they were full of bacon, with a little bit of bacon grease blended into the batter. Truth be told, I’d be in big trouble if I ate them every day. And his fish fries were wonderful family gatherings too, with his own fresh catch on the dinner menu. “Macaroni Mess” was really what we youngsters called American Chop Suey, only there was bacon in that too. Because, as the saying goes . . . bacon makes everything better.

Memorable Meals

Ketchup was always on the table in the Manausa household, particularly if my husband was coming to dinner. (True story: at my bridal shower, my future mother-in-law presented me with half a case of Heinz Ketchup and a can of K2R Spot Remover. It was an ominous sign.) I never really knew if the condiment was meant to enhance the flavor or hide it.

My in-laws have since passed away, but I fondly remember those meals that often ended with a long evening of conversation and cards. It was a time for jokes and laughter, but also a time for sharing stories and giving and receiving advice. I treasured every moment, especially in my early years as a newlywed.

🍴 🍴 🍴

Fast forward 37 years.

Cooking a meal takes planning and preparation, but I actually look forward to it now. I keep adding new skills, testing new gadgets, and trying new flavors. It’s a lot more fun now that it’s not  just another daily chore.

I enjoy cooking for myself when no one else is around, but most of all, I enjoy cooking for those I love. And thankfully, the ketchup usually stays in the pantry. ❤️

Morning Omelet with Bacon, Mushrooms, Tomatoes and Spinach