what we didn't throw away

Both my family’s side of the vacation and Creativity Boot Camp are winding down. Today is the last day for both.
And the random word of the day is smile, which is pretty fitting.
For example, today Owen smiled all the way up the lift, while I white knuckled the bar and closed my eyes. But I did smile when I got to the top and took in the view.
And I’m smiling just thinking about getting in the hot tub in a minute.
Or playing some dominoes later.
I’m smiling because even though everyone else is packed up to go home before the sun rises, my crew has an extra night here. And even then, we are headed further north for another week rather than south.

But my biggest smile came as I climbed down the steps in a tiny white Baptist church.
I’m not particularly Baptist and I didn’t attend a service there.

Let’s backtrack a bit.
My family likes to make good food and especially to eat good food.
Even though I’ve hiked miles with a toddler on my back and rowed for ten miles in the last few days, my pants are fitting a little tighter than when I packed them.
Back home, my parents belong to some kind of gourmet club where they cook and eat foods I have never heard of.
So let’s just say there was no peanut butter and jelly on this trip.
We dined on 2” steaks and my dad’s famous spaghetti sauce and brie cheese on crostini and homemade bruschetta and crescents with nutella. And this morning my husband made some mean breakfast burritos.
Later today when everyone was packing up and cleaning up, the refrigerator and pantry were still full. There was a half dozen steaks, an entire lasagna, a dozen hamburgers, multiple packages of hotdogs, (the kids have to eat too), milk, cheese, waffle mix, oreos, granola bars and lots more. I couldn’t bear to throw it away, and it is too far to haul it all back. So I made a few phone calls. I googled local churches and started asking whoever answered the phone about local families or any food pantries that might keep some of this food from going to waste. Eventually after a few minutes, I got someone on the line who was happy for me to fill up their fridge.

So I recruited one of my nephews to help me load up the truck, because it was too much food for one girl to carry. And we headed down to a small local church. And unloaded our coolers into their kitchen while the woman told me of a family with lots of children and an out of work father who would be thrilled to come pick up our food.
Our leftovers.
Which makes me feel a little bad for the gorging I did so freely the last few days while others go hungry.
Which would have been trashed.
I’m not sure why I never thought of this before and suddenly had this idea where I quit my day job and run a food pantry in a resort town and put little magnets on all the condo and rental house fridges offering to pick up their leftovers before they leave town.
I don’t think that they will really happen, but I assure you I will throw away a lot less from now on.

And so I climbed down those church steps with an empty cooler and smiled while I thought of a family who usually does without, dining on thick steaks tonight.

(and it is Friday, and usually I do a playlist….but I am so tired from the hot tub soaking and the dominoes that it is everything i can do just to get this post up by midnight...so it will have to wait until tomorrow or maybe even next week. My destination next week doesn’t have wifi so the blog might be a little quiet.)


luci said...

found your blog whilst looking through some folks creativity bootcamp stuff. hope you keep up with your writing, you write well.

onevoice said...

this story made me smile, too. Have fun next week...so jealous...texas is muy hot.