Growing up, we went to my great grandmother's house every Sunday after church. Fried chicken was on the menu every week, and I now make really good fried chicken.
She lived in a farmhouse that had a rather small kitchen. I can remember the layout exactly. How all the women in the family fit in there to cook is now quite the mystery since there was not one inch of countertop in that kitchen.
Tons of food every week, and we seemed to take shifts eating at the dining room table. It was a much larger room than the kitchen with a huge table, china cabinet, and a buffet where all the desserts were on display. Chocolate cream pie and applesauce cake come to mind.
My husband's Sundays were similar in New York with the menu consisting of Sunday gravy and pasta.
Sunday gravy, of course, is red spaghetti sauce--not the same gravy as here in Kentucky that we put on our mashed potatoes. Pastries from the bakery were their preferred dessert. We grow our own parsley, oregano, and basil for the homemade "gravy" every year.
Our children have now left our house. Our oldest moved into her condo and has her two new kittens, Harry and Marv, to keep her company. Our youngest just graduated from college, passed her certification exam, is moving to a townhouse, and starts her career later this month. I think it's time to bring back Sunday dinner even if it's not on Sunday.
It may have to be Meatball Monday--traditional Italian meatballs and spaghetti one week, French onion meatballs with noodles the next. This could be fun.
We all like Asian-inspired food as well--sticky chicken with fried rice or beef and broccoli in the crock pot.
We don't even have to just have family. There are four of us, six with the boyfriends included. If they can't make it one week, we have good friends that we would love to invite to join us.
While the kids were in school, Sundays were not sacred like they used to be. Sports would schedule practices on Sundays, or swimming would actually have their meets ALL weekend long. We thought we were helping our kids with teaching them a practical skill, making friends, keeping them active; but with family not being local, sports often times interfered with family life. Sports are great, but family life is more important. The kids realize that now.
We are all still busy, but school and sports are behind us. We might ease into family dinner at least once a month and then more frequently. They may not admit it because they still live close, but I think they miss us, or at least our cooking.