All of it together, all of us together
Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. I kept getting up from the couch to sneak a jellybean or two from the bowl on the table. I had eaten all the black ones already, and white were my next target, and I noticed my daughter watching as I popped one into my mouth. “I didn’t know you like jellybeans so much, Mom,” she said and I replied that it is more of a nostalgia thing for me to eat them. I buy them only once a year, the full-sized sugary ones and I suppose I eat most of them. The kids aren’t much interested. They have Peeps to eat, and chocolate rabbits, solid. They have mini candy bars and Tootsie pops and strange, colorful little things that fizz in your mouth.
One black jellybean is all I need to transport myself back to the basement fellowship hall of the Lutheran church of my girlhood, where on Easter Sunday there was a service at sunrise, followed by a breakfast of egg bake, sausage, cheesy hash browns, cinnamon rolls, coffee, and orange juice. And next to each plate in a little paper cup was a modest pile of jellybeans. My brothers and I ate them throughout the meal, and helped clean up after on the off-chance that we’d be given leftover jellybeans, which we often were.
It wasn’t the meal or the service or the array of lilies round the cross or the organ playing or the pastel dresses or hats or anything in particular that made those Easter Sundays memorable. It was all of it together. Getting up early, the hunt for candy, the fight for the bathroom mirror, the walk to church, my father dozing off during the sermon, the smell of my mother’s skin, the mystery of God. And then food, good food. All of it together, all of us together, the whole ball of wax. It felt comfortable and perfect and as if everything was as it should be.
Tough to recognize a moment you’ll long for one day when you’re in it. Sure is.
Here’s a repeat of a recipe, a favorite of mine, and a good place for all that leftover ham if you, as I did, went out and bought a ham a bit too large for the occasion.
Mrs. Sundberg’s Wild Rice Soup
1/2 cup uncooked wild rice
2 T. butter or margarine
1 medium onion, minced or chopped as you wish
1 quart milk (this would be 4 cups)
2 cans cream of potato soup
1 lb Velveeta cheese
Optional: 10 strips crisp bacon, crumbled, or 1 cup cooked, shredded turkey or ham.
Mmm, this is going to be good.
Prepare wild rice in separate saucepan according to package directions. Set aside.
In large 4 qt saucepan or soup pot, saute the onion in the butter until tender. If you’re adding meat, this is a good time to do so. Add milk and potato soup, adjust heat to medium. When hot, add cheese in chunks, and once the cheese melts, add the wild rice.
Simmer and serve.
Bacon can be used as a garnish.
For variations, saute mushrooms or green pepper with the onions.