It’s hard to believe that it’s already been a year since Two Food Girls posted our first recipe. A lot has happened in the course of this year. Of course, a lot of delicious food has been discussed. We have so loved your interaction and your readership. Vanessa and I feel incredibly lucky and grateful to have such a fabulous village of foodies with whom we may share our passion and our love for all things edible. At the start of this blog, it really was just about the food and sharing what we love with the hopes that you would love it too. But over time, this blog has also become a safe space for us, haven of sorts, where we can pour out some of the angst we feel (especially during this challenging climate) as creatives, as women, as moms, and as humans walking through this experience of life. We have tried to convey from the start that food is something that, for both of us, resembles so much more than simply eating. For Vanessa and me, food represents family, history, shared stories and memories of times passed, evenings gathered with friends and loved ones, laughter, and togetherness. For both of us, food is the conduit which brings people together. And it is through that “bringing together” that memories are made and new stories are written. It has been our honor to share some of our stories with you and to hear yours as well. So, in this time of Thanksgiving, we want to express to you our deep gratitude for being on this journey with us. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
We realize that this isn’t exactly a food post, but the current climate seems to crave a little hope or at the very least, some positivity. So, in honor of our one year anniversary, here is a list of our food hopes for you. A few simple items that we hope you will try. It may seem small and even trite, but we really do believe that breaking bread over a good, honest, healing conversation can help initiate those baby steps toward feeling whole again.
Accompanying this post are some beautiful photos that we’ve been meaning to share from a photo shoot taken last spring by our wonderful and talented friend Bre Kwatera (of This Little Big Life.) These photos were taken during an afternoon of coffee drinking, and toddler wrangling, and salad chopping, and meatball making. At first blush, this would appear to be a pretty typical afternoon, nothing especially unusual for “The Food Girls.” But, it’s amazing how special moments always seems to occur within moments of mundane. Sometimes it’s only when we pause and look back, that we can truly appreciate the magic that is created when we connect and share our lives with others. It is that connection that punctuates our stories with meaning and definition and color, bringing them to life. Thank you to Bre for capturing that color so vividly.
So, without further ado, here is our list of food hopes for you and for those you love. Whether you choose to partake in this or not, our greatest wish for you today, in this moment, is that you are able to find comfort and love in connecting with the people who make you feel most understood, valued, and respected. Enjoy!
- Meet a friend for coffee – Choose that cute little local shop that you’ve been meaning to check out. Order your favorite hot beverage. Why not treat yourself and sample the pastry selection as well. The key is to meet a friend. Make a date. Call someone that’s been on your list to check in with, but may not be expecting to hear from you.
- Bake something and bring a plate to your neighbors – What to bake? Try this. Or this. Or this. Then put some on a little plate and march yourself next door. Maybe you’ve already got a great relationship with your neighbor, maybe you’ve never met them. Now is the perfect time. Extra points if put your goodies on a plate that has to be returned later, ensuring another opportunity for connection.
- Cook something with your kid or with a kiddo in your life – Preferably something that they can really dig their hands into. While you’re at it, ask them about their dreams for the future. What do they want to be when they grow up? If they could have any superpower, what would they choose and why? If they could travel anywhere in the world, where would they want to explore? What is your favorite memory about being ___ years old? Be sure to answer the questions yourself as well!
- Cook something with your grandparent or parent or any elder in your life – This is a beautiful time to ask questions. There is a lot be be learned from the wisdom of those who have walked this life before us. Ask them what they think about the current state of events and really listen to their response and reasoning. Or if that’s too heavy, see number 3. These are always good questions for any generation. 🙂
- Invite 2 friends over and cook something that you currently have in your house – We highly encourage you to NOT SHOP. Maybe just for wine, if it’s necessary. But the point of this is to get together with people you love without any pressure to “put on the dog.” So, choose two people who know and love you and who you just want to spend sometime with laughing and relaxing. Cook something easy, with ingredients you currently have in your fridge, freezer, cupboard. Creativity is the name of this game. And if you’re really low in the food department, breakfast is always an easy way to go. Whip up a couple of eggs, make some toast, and put out that jar of jam that’s been sitting in the back of your cupboard.
- Get a group together to cook a meal for those less fortunate – This one needs very little explanation. It is a true and heartbreaking fact that there are people living in our own communities who do not eat 3 square meals a day because they do not have access to food. In this country of plenty, it seems unfathomable that we would have brothers and sisters, living in our own back yards, who go hungry. We have volunteered for the Minneapolis Crisis Nursery to cook and serve meals before, and it was a humbling and beautiful experience to make a meal for children in need. There are organizations like this who are looking for people all the time and just don’t ever have enough volunteers to meet the needs of the people they serve. If you have the time and the means, please consider giving some of it to one of these organizations.
Cheers and Happy Thanksgiving!