Holidays are meant to spend with family...and inevitably having any amount of family around will bring out certain "traits" in a person. Thankfully the one I saw this season is a good one.
My dad is almost always poking about the kitchen making...something. He's the kind of cook who doesn't generally use recipes, and therefore never cooks the same thing in the same way twice. He also tends to get on kicks of using certain ingredients. Lentils, stir fry, cumin....etc. Years ago he got into a kick of cooking everything in oven bags. One memorable evening during this period, I remember him cooking some meat and vegetables in an oven bag, loading the meal, my brother, and I into the car. We drove to a small house where our new pastor and his family were just moving in. As I remember, nobody asked my dad to bring the meal...he just did it. Over the years my dad has brought many different meals to church potlucks, small groups and events and i never thought much about it. It's just what you did. But I think it goes deeper than that. Generosity and hospitality run deep in him.
My paternal grandmother is one of the best cooks I know. Her green beans and rolls can make me the happiest person in the world. (lets not even get into her macaroni salad) As soon as you sit down in her house, she offers you food or something to drink. When you get up to leave, she offers you something to take with you for the road. It's who she is. You are a guest..and you will not go hungry in her house.
I have always prefered cooking for large amounts of people rather than for just myself. I used to think it was just so i didn't have to deal with leftovers that sit in the fridge for weeks. But.....I think its more related to the hospitality passed down from my Granny Rose and my Dad. I may not be able to solve your problems...but you will not go hungry in my house.
My old pastor and his family moved back to town the day before Christmas Eve. That night, I arrived at their door with a pan of lasagna, garlic bread, chocolate muffins, plates and silverware. Nobody asked me to do it...I just figured no one wants to start their life over in Walmart at 11pm the night before Christmas Eve.
So this New Year..I'm celebrating the hospitality that was taught to me by two generations....and oven bags..