The most important meal

Today’s prompt is What’s your favorite meal to cook and/or eat?

I love cooking breakfast for my 12-year-old son Angelo. He is the only breakfast-eater I have ever known. I’m not talking about a banana and a piece of toast nonsense. I’m talking about enormous three-egg omelets loaded with turkey, cheese, mushrooms and spinach served with sides of fresh veggies, fruit and toast — chased with a glass of Rockford’s finest tap water. Delicious!

Though I don’t like eating breakfast, I love cooking it for Angelo. As such, I’ve found that cooking breakfast is the most important meal of my day. Watching my son wolf down his breakfast makes me feel successful. Do not ask me why. It just does.

My son Sam still loves strawberry shortcake for his birthday. Everyone else prefers store-bought cake so I love that I still get to “mom it up” for his birthday.

We don’t do much for Thanksgiving because we’re all usually exhausted so I make a pared down version of the traditional feast with the family favorites.

When the kids get home from school, I usually have a charcuterie waiting for them. This one is for the meat-eaters.

If there is a game, Fern has to stay late at school for band so I’ll bring her some hot turkey soup for her break. She meets me in the parking lot and fills me in on her day between bites.

And once a year or so, Jesse will say he has a taste for homemade pizza so I’ll throw some together for him with whatever ingredients we have in the house.

As everyone gets older and busier, the needs and traditions of the family change. Except for birthdays and a couple holidays, we no longer gather at the table. We haven’t for years. But I’ve found ways to have fresh food available for them to eat. If you look closely, you’ll notice that I have spinach tucked into every meal.

And once a week, usually on Tuesday, you can count on Anna’s Pizza delivering two enormous veggie pizzas to our house. Sam insists that one be “minus spinach.” I wonder why.

I’m not much of a cook but like most people I have a few decent recipes ready to go at a moment’s notice. Thanks for reading / looking at my pictures.

Time to wake Angelo and start his breakfast!


The last of the breakfast eaters

Today’s prompt is How do you define success?

I have anxiety and low standards so:

  • keeping my cats inside (they love to bust out in the warm months)
  • walking my dog before work (not just letting her out in the back)
  • brushing my cats before work (minimum of ten strokes each)
  • having my cats’ favorite canned food well stocked (or stop at ALDI on way home)
  • having my dog’s favorite canned food well stocked (or stop at ALDI on way home)
  • when the water in our fish tanks are crystal clear

I’ll stop there because I’ve just realized how much my pets control not just my definition of personal success but my sanity. I’ve always suspected it, even joked about, but it’s actually true.

You’ve heard the expression “If Momma Ain’t Happy Ain’t Nobody Happy.” In this house, it’s “If Barbara, Tuffy, Two-Spot, Vice President-Elect, Senator Snout and The Debt Collector Ain’t Happy Ain’t Nobody Happy.”

When people go on a vacation or a road trip, I’ve heard them say things like, “It was nice but I couldn’t wait to get home to my dog,” or “I had a great time but I missed my pets.”

You’ll never hear me say that. I have anxiety but I don’t have Stockholm Syndrome.

I need to wrap this up because I have to go to work. I’m happy to say Barbara is fed and walked, the fish are swimming around in their tanks all fancy free and the cats have been groomed and fed. This, along with serving my youngest son a big breakfast (my other kids are breakfast-shunners) before he catches his bus truly helps me walk out the door feeling like I can do my best in the world.

Thanks for reading!

Yours in remembering to pick up fish tank filters from PetSmart,