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4.06.2009

Sunday suppers, grace, less waste

bountiful organic garden in Esalen, Big Sur

Sunday night suppers have been a tradition with my father and step-mother for around 10 years. Several months ago it became an issue with Tristan because after his nap he would want to stay home and getting him changed and dressed and over there for supper by 5:30 became too much of a forceful event and no longer fun, so I put it on hold for awhile. I'm hoping that now spring is here and he's a little older, maybe we can start to go again. Sunday supper, after all, is where Tristan learned about "Grace." My father, though not overly religious in any one direction, starts each supper with a grace. "Dear God, thank you for the food you have set before us and for the precious hands that prepared it." Tristan seemed to love the idea of holding hands before a meal and as often as his daddy and he and I sit down together for a meal, there is also a grace. Tristan initiates it usually by spreading wide his hands to hold one of each of ours. "Say grace Tristan." "Mommy say grace." O.k., I say grace - something long and overly inclusive. Then I say, "O.k. now Tristan's turn." Tristan has a lovely, simple grace. He bows his head low, and then very quietly he says, "Dear God thank you for the food. I love you God. Amen." How sweet is that?

In the book I mentioned in the April 4th entry, You Are Your Child's First Teacher by Rahima Baldwin Dancy, she talks about the importance of grace before meals also. The one she mentions that I like best (unfortunately she cites the author as "Unknown") goes like this:

Before the flour, the mill,
Before the mill, the grain,
Before the grain, the sun and rain,
The beauty of God's will.

Yesterday, my hubby and I in a three-hour period got to plant 8 varieties of tomatoes, 3 varieties of cucumbers, some garlic and some dill. Some of the ground we planted in hasn't seen a plant in decades. I am far from being an expert on soil but this little patch in particular gets a good 6 or 7 hours of sun each day, at least in the spring and summer. We'll see how that goes. We also planted a few of the items in containers. We had great luck with containers last year and hope to have more luck with them this year. Planting our own veggies definitely gives me more consideration about wasting food. We have such a plentiful state here in California. Food is everywhere, easy to get and the varieties are endless, all the time. How spoiled we are here! But when we are growing our own, I become more mindful of what gets lost - the squirrels who get the tangerines and persimmons before we do, the little hands that pick the tomato before it's ripe! I am so happy that Tristan has taken to saying grace, as it gives a little moment of pause to remember just where the food came from, the energy and time that went into growing and picking, and to be mindful of its waste. One nice thing about having that compost hole is that I can often put some of the waste back where it belongs. I do notice that between composting our kitchen scraps and recycling, our garbage has become smaller, which was one of my main goals in creating the compost. I think I'll call the city and order a smaller garbage can. That will save a little bit more!

Have a wonderful Monday.

1 comment:

Jodi at Joy Discovered said...

Genny, this is such a thoughtful and beautiful post. Good luck with your garden this spring and summer. It sounds lovely!