Many of you know that I grew up in rural Iowa. My experiences there were so different than my life now. Of course I’m older, but living in an agricultural environment is very different than living in the fast paced urban environment that I live in now. Here there are several restaurants on every block, access to mass transit that will take you anywhere in the city, and access to every national chain you can think of.
Instead of stores and restaurants, I lived in a patchwork of corn and soybean fields. Farmers raised cattle, hogs, and sheep. Interestingly, I was surrounded by so much abundance, but we had very few food options like I have today. My town had one diner and one grocery store. However, I still have fond memories of the food that was served at home, church socials, and community events.
When I think about food and my hometown, I instantly remember the many great recipes from our church’s cookbook: The Gowrie United Methodist Women Quilting Bee Cookbook (1982). My mom gave me a copy of this incredible cookbook a few years ago, and it is one of my treasured possessions. It has a great recipe for Monster Cookies, hints on serving 100 people, and helpful canning advice. Plus a few short proverbs like this one:
Fear less — hope more. Eat less — chew more. Whine less — breathe more. Talk less — say more. Hate less — love more. And all good things are yours.