The scent of Mama’s cooking


Happy Holidays! I hope everyone is having a wonderful blessed season. Give thanks for all your blessings.

It’s been an interesting few months for me. My computer in October conked out on me. I’ve recently received the new one and still getting familiar with it. The long wait for a new one gave me a lot of time to think and contemplate about everything that happened in this last year.

When I thought about everything I was amazed and saddened how things changed. Not the day to day changes of life but the one that shake your core and change you irrevocably. My biggest change this year was the passing of my mother. And the holiday’s brings it out even more. I miss her so much. I’ve fought away the sadness and instead will celebrate as we usually do each year. Cooking and baking as we usually do.

Each time I bake or cook one of my mother recipe many things overcome me but there two things that stand out. The first is of course the memories of being in the kitchen with her. For as long back as I can remember I was always underfoot when my mom cooked and I wanted to learn. I remember my first time I baked a cookie on my own I was eight at the time. My mom was shocked when she came home to find the cookie. Did you catch that “cookie” in there? No It’s not a typo. I made a cookie with a recipe that should have made about a batch. Mine was one big fat cookie that covered an entire pan. It was soft and delicious. I remember that my Mom was so proud and barely got a bite before my brother ate it off. LOL. Ahhh…. The memories.

Comfort is the second thing that comes to me. To me cooking and baking gives me time to think. There is nothing like kneading dough to get all your thoughts in order. It is a therapeutic thing. The work brings me comfort and takes me to a place where I can experiment yet get my mind off of things. Hmmm… that bring a whole new meaning to the term “comfort foods”. Each person has that comfort food that no matter what is happening the thought of it brings a smile to your face and tummy. LOL. I used to call my Mom and say “make me a bowl of love”. This was our own little code for her to make a bowl of hot cereal (it’s didn’t matter which one). I call it love because I knew that is how she made it. With love. She used to kid and ask why don’t you make it (since she knew I could cook almost as well as she did). I told her that it doesn’t taste as good. Believe me when I made it for myself it just didn’t taste as sweet. I’m sure you know what I am talking about. Well Mom laughed and made it and she even turned the table on me a few times and asked that I make her a bowl of love. I did it since we are an equal opportunity “bowl of love” household. LOL. From generation to generation cooking has been passed down in my family.

Lately I find myself more and more in the kitchen just thinking. As I think I wondered about how the preparation of food then the cooking of it that is passed down in families. You can have many families preparing the same thing but the way they prepare it is what makes them different and unique. Uniqueness is the dynamic of the family. This led me to questions of families.

What is it about the preparation then the scent of foods made using mama or grandma’s recipes that invokes so much memories, feelings, and comfort? What about it that makes your family unique?

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About McKenna Jeffries

McKenna Jeffries has loved the written word from time she picked up her first book. Soon she was creating tales of love and family. Although McKenna used to make up stories she never thought to put them on paper until....she realized the stories would keep filling her until they were written. Since then she's been writing and sharing her interracial/multicultural books. There is always some new story floating around her head. An itchy feeling in her fingers fills her until she can get a piece of paper to write it down. She writes because it's a love affair. Writing is in her blood and she enjoys taking readers on a journey. With so many ideas filling her, McKenna is always hard at work.

2 thoughts on “The scent of Mama’s cooking

  1. My grandma is 86 and she still looks forward to cooking the Christmas meal — and she goes all out! By that age, I hope to hang up my apron and let folks cook for me. But there is nothing like a meal cooked with loving hands. Also, over the years, my family and I used to go through the ritzier parts of town and look at the Christmas lights as we listened to Christmas carols on the radio. I can’t wait to start traditions with my own family. Sorry the holidays are tough without your mom. God bless

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