Ham and corn chowder
A chowder that makes perfect use of leftover Easter ham.
Life is made up of a series of memories; some big, some small, some clearly life-changing, and some seemingly inconsequential. My wedding day, the births of my children, the loss of loved ones … all clearly consequential. But the little memories … like singing the soundtrack to "Grease" with my sisters while we played on our childhood swingset or selling candy bars outside the grocery store or riding our bikes in the park … turns out that those are just as consequential. We just don’t always realize it in the moment.Skip to next paragraph
The Gourmand Mom
Amy Deline is a stay at home mom to three little boys. She’s a former early childhood educator with a lifelong passion for home-cooking. Amy is the author and photographer behind The Gourmand Mom, a blog which celebrates food through simple and perfectly seasonal recipes, fit for a gourmet feast among friends or a relaxed family dinner.
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
I was playing around on my computer the other night and distractedly watching "American Idol," when two of the contestants come on stage and begin singing "Islands in the Stream," a duet originally performed by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton. In an instant I was transported back to my childhood, in my parents’ room, where my sisters and I used to stand at the foot of their bed, with our toes jammed between the mattress and boxspring, so that when we’d lean forward, the edge of the mattress would catch our calves and we’d suspend there, bobbing forward with our arms outstretched. We’d sway back and forth, mock-gliding over the mattress singing "Islands in the Stream" at the top of our lungs … with all the wrong lyrics, I am sure.
Such a simple little memory and yet it’s etched in my mind. Because it’s more than the ordinary event of singing a song with my sisters. It was a matter of being together, of laughing, of loving, and of feeling at home. Those are consequential, life-altering sorts of things wrapped in a silly little memory and tied together with a country song.
Every morning, our boys come bursting into our bedroom. The baby is usually already there by that point, drowsily enjoying a morning feeding. But the older boys don’t wake drowsily. They wake with a lightening bolt and go 0 to 60 in the moment they open their eyes. They fly into our room in a flurry. They do not stick their toes between our mattress and sing a Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton duet. They mostly just make animal noises and shout things like underpants.
They climb into my armoire. They climb under the bed. They jump on top of the bed. (Just imagine if you released a couple of monkeys into an enclosed space … it’s exactly like that.) Every so often we can convince them to climb under the covers for a snuggle. And sometimes we’re inclined to just send them back to their room because the activity level far exceeds what we’re prepared to handle that early in the morning. But those morning memories, of waking to a family that loves them … those memories matter.