Nothing represents southern hospitality more than food and fellowship. I have had a lot of both lately. As I thought about this week’s blog, it occurred to me that we all may need a reminder of the importance of reaching out and touching others with food and other ways we show neighbors and friends that we care.
Our family has had two events recently. The first was a baby shower hosted by my cousin Paula and her daughter Bridget for our youngest daughter, Chatham. Chatham and family, including husband Johnathan and son, Drew will welcome baby girl, Hayden Elise, to the family the week of August 15th. Paula and Bridget hosted a lovely shower with delicious food. While it would have been acceptable to some to have Costco hors d’oeuvres and pastries for the shower, Paula and Bridget (with the assistance of sous chefs friend Beth and our granddaughter, Mary Grace) prepared a lovely dinner. The star of the dinner was a delicious Ritz Cracker Chicken Casserole. I made a Ritz Cracker Chicken Casserole many years ago, but lost track of the recipe. While this is probably not the exact same recipe I had years ago, it is similar. I am so glad this recipe was resurrected by the shower hosts. Do give this recipe a try, and you will be glad that you did.
The other event has been the surgery and recovery of good family friend Maureen, known to us as MoMo. MoMo had a rotator cuff repair a week ago, and I have been her main caretaker. What that means is I have prepared her meals and have been her “wheels” while she has been unable to drive. She and I have both enjoyed the time this has given us to be together without all of the rushings around that seems to take so much of our time. MoMo requested the Ritz Cracker Chicken Casserole recipe for one of her meals. We have also enjoyed BLTs with fresh tomatoes and maple bacon on sourdough bread for several days for lunch.
One of MoMo’s neighbors brought her (us!) delicious spaghetti, salad, and mini chocolate chip banana muffins one evening. That was such a lovely gesture. I think many of us have gotten away from reaching out to our neighbors and friends when they have health issues or surgery, and I encourage us to get back to that. We should not be too busy to do so. Some of MoMo’s other friends brought her lunch of BLTs one day, (that is where our idea of having BLTs for lunch came from!) and other friends took her out for dinner once she was ready to venture out. These acts of hospitality mean so much when we are unable to cook and care for ourselves.
Apologies extended, if needed, to others outside of the South, for referring to these acts of kindness as “southern hospitality.” There are certainly many people outside of the South who show acts of kindness referred to here as “southern hospitality.” I will grant those people the designation of southerners, without the negative baggage that goes with it!
Bless Your Heart!