Monday, August 16, 2010

Summit Street, 1959


I could be a vegetarian...if I didn't have to give up meat! Early on, I loved vegetables and grains. My favorite lunch when I was a kid was cooked spinach with lemon but I think it was was greatly influenced by Popeye cartoons!

My brother and I were typical 1950's kids who were expected to clean our plates. It wasn't a suggestion, there wasn't a discussion...we just ate what was on our plates, no other choices given. When I compare childhoods with Hubby, he was allowed to get up and fix a hot dog or eat a bowl of cereal in place of the roast and vegetables that he hated. Wimp! I had to force down liver and onions, Salisbury Steak or meatloaf loaded with onions...my Dad's favorite. Luckily, Mom provided plenty of fresh vegetables with our meals and I loved nearly all of them! Mashed potatoes, creamed corn, Harvard beets, glazed carrots, green beans with bacon and new potatoes, baked sweet potatoes and greens of all kinds cooked down with country ham! Summertime brought Big Boy tomatoes and fresh green onions, fried okra or squash and corn on the cob. In the middle of the table you could always find an assortment of condiments; homemade bread and butter or beet pickles, chow-chow or fruit preserves to be served with hot biscuits. Cornbread or hot rolls were on the table often. Mom had learned from her mother that homemade bread was far superior to anything store bought.
These hot August days have me remembering that kitchen table where we sat and ate our meals. The plastic seats of the chrome set would stick to my skinny little legs and I'd squirm around, alternating sitting and standing! The Emerson fan sit on a little shelf on the wall and did it's best to stir the hot air from the oven being on to prepare the meal before us. It was 1959, and we didn't know how cool air conditioning would make our lives, the phone never rang at dinnertime and we were just one of millions of families who were gathered for the evening meal.

9 comments:

  1. That photo really brought back the memories, it could have come from one of our kitchens. Like you, I was taught to clean my plate... I really hated the liver and onions and spinach in any form... but I love them today.

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  2. What memories this post brought back. Mom didn't make us clean our plates, guess we just did it but I remember a couple of friends who would sit at the table for an hour or two trying to down it all. You write very well and I enjoyed reading this! Those were the days for sure when the phone didn't interrupt meal time!

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  3. We were always taught to clean our plates. Although my mother didn't fix liver and onions, my grandmother did. She, my grandma, tried to tell me once that she was fixing steak. One small bite past my lips and I knew. And she knew I knew. YUCK! But I sat there and I ate it. No complaining allowed. Oh, the memories from childhood.

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  4. I agree!!
    I love my Veggies!!!

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  5. This post brought back memories! We were taught to eat what was placed in front of us, even if we didn't like it. It develops "character"!!!

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  6. I think that is why kids wanted a family dog so badly, not for the love of a pet but someone to feed your icky suppers to under the table.

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  7. Couldn't hold back the tears when I got to the plastic seat part...ours were grey/silver.
    My life was so like yours that it is uncanny.
    I loved vegetables soooo much, esp. fresh turnip greens that granddaddy raised. We had fried cornbread with them and lots of pepper sauce..yum.
    The relish, chow chow, peppers, pickles, and jelly were always on the table. My brother and I loved grape jelly on our corn bread + lots of butter.
    Such happy memories....thank you so much!

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  8. This brought back lots of memories. My grandmother used to make the best chow chow. Wish I had some right now on some purple hull peas.

    I miss your header picture. Where did it go?

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  9. Joycee, We had similar childhoods. I was never allowed to leave the table until everything on my plate was eaten. "I also had to ask if I could please be excused". I feel that it was good training. Plus, we needed to appreciate how hard Father worked to put the food on the table:-)

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