This past week, one of the meals I pulled out was the chicken veggie soup. This time, however, I became wrapped up in memories of when we were little kids, back in the financially-strapped war-torn 40s. Mom did her best to fill up three antsy, active kids at dinner.
When she made chicken soup, one liked it "as is," one always asked for rice in it, and another preferred noodles in the soup.
It didn't take long for Mom to take the easy route. She'd set out the big pot of soup in the middle of the kitchen table. On the side were bowls - one had noodles in it, the other rice. Sometimes the noodles were bow-ties; other times, wide noodles. The one rule was that we had to, absolutely; take a big gob of either the noodles or the rice, to help fill our hungry bellies. What fun, to make those choices those nights.
The night after that, the soup was hauled out once more, with leftovers of both noodles and rice plopped in it.
If there had been enough noodles to add to the soup the 2nd night, plus more, she'd butter the excess as a side the night after that.
So, this past week, I grabbed the bowl from the fridge where I keep some cooked brown rice available, and plopped a big gob into my own homemade chicken soup.
And Mom, Dad, Betty and Jack, I was thinking of all of us that night. Nice.