Lesson Learned:: Shirley had just moved from Florida to a suburban Philadelphia retirement community and there were boxes everywhere. I worked in her compact sized kitchen trying to unpack the contents of these boxes as quickly as the moving crew brought them in. She told me into which cabinets to place her dishes, glassware, pots, pantry items etc. and slowly her cabinets were getting full. One of the last boxes contained a collection of baking pans and utensils, as well as two chicken roasting stands which I placed in the cabinet above the microwave. Shirley’s daughter observed this placement, turned to her mother and inquired why she needed two such stands. Without skipping a beat, Shirley very firmly explained, “my mother always told me, if you send your guests home without some leftover food, you didn’t prepare enough.” By having two roasting stands, Shirley was assured of sending her guests home with some leftover chicken for lunch the following day.
This exchange between mother and daughter brought back many memories of my grandmothers and mother sending their guests home with containers of soup, spätzle, and roast beef and plates of homemade desserts. Having been on the receiving end of such hospitality is always appreciated as it extends the memories of a tasty meal for another day. So keep the plastic containers and plastic wrap handy. Shirley’s mother is smiling!