GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 40

Soul food Why grandmothers don’t eat O My heart celebrates each bite that actually makes it to his mouth. By Lynne Daroff ur famiLy Dinner Began with shopping. In those years, the 1940s, each food group had its own store; every neighborhood had a butcher shop, a fish market, a cheese store, a deli and a grocery. Shopping with Grandma was an all-day experience, and in the days when fresh meant alive, my favorite stop was the poultry market. Grandma would wade into the outdoor pen, study the squawking chickens and point out her choice to one of the bloody-aproned butchers, who chased it down and unceremoniously dispatched it to the great chicken coop in the sky. Inside the shop, the bird was plucked clean and passed over an open flame to burn off the hard feather stubs. Grandma supervised the entire process, from pen to final wrapping in white paper. Back home, she gently removed the chicken’s innards, searching for a special treasure— embryonic yolks that had not fully formed into shelled eggs. When the search was successful, she stashed the multisized yellow globes in the new electric refrigerator until dinner was ready and everyone was seated around the oversized kitchen table. Then Grandma made a grand show of slipping the yolks into the pot of bubbling chicken soup. As Grandma’s ladle scooped up all those delicate bits of sunshine and deposited them in my bowl, the adults looked on with an envy I enjoyed almost as much as I did the sweet, creamy tidbits. While everyone else started in on their yolk- less soup, Grandma sat over an empty plate, not eating, but preferring to supervise my food intake, providing words of encouragement and compulsively refilling my never-empty plate. “Eat, eat,” she said. “Isn’t that delicious? Ummm, good!” My task was to eat—as much as humanly possible. As a child, I wondered why she watched me eat, rather than eat her own meal. Now, I am a grandmother and I understand. My grandson is old enough now to eat what used to be called “table” food, and I am mesmerized by the way he manipulates the toddlersized spoon and fork. My heart celebrates each bite that actually makes it into his mouth. He loves to eat…and I love to watch him do it. Using my grandmother’s words, I encourage him: “Eat, eat,” I say, “Ummm, good…have another one.” At a family restaurant last week, while he gobbled mouthfuls from his children’s meal, I cut pieces of my cheese omelet and deposited them on his plate with the same loving care my Grandma gave those shell-less egg yolks. Midmeal, he leaned back in the highchair, a chunk of cheese omelet speared on his fork, soggy pancake in a syrup-drenched fist, and said “Ummm, good!” with a contented sigh. My heart soared with joy as I sensed Grandma’s loving energy around us. I know now what she knew 60 years ago: Food only fills the belly. Watching your grandchild eat fills the soul. G 40 GRAND MAY 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - May 2009

GRAND Magazine - May 2009
GRAND View
Contents
GRAND Central
Watching Lily Bloom
GrandZ in the 'Hood'
Numbers Game
We're Taking In the G'Kids
Face-to-Facebook
SHMILY
Family Crews
Soul Food
Resources
GRAND Finale
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Intro
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - GRAND Magazine - May 2009
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Cover2
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 3
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - GRAND View
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 5
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Contents
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 7
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 8
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 9
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 10
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 11
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 12
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - GRAND Central
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 14
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 15
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 16
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 17
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 18
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 19
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Watching Lily Bloom
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 21
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 22
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - GrandZ in the 'Hood'
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 24
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 25
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Numbers Game
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 27
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 28
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 29
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - We're Taking In the G'Kids
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 31
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 32
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 33
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Face-to-Facebook
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 35
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - SHMILY
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 37
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Family Crews
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 39
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Soul Food
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 41
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 42
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Resources
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 44
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 45
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - GRAND Finale
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - 47
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Cover3
GRAND Magazine - May 2009 - Cover4
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