What's for dinner

When I was growing up, our family had a very tidy dinner ritual. We ate at 6pm, we all ate together at the table, and my mom did the cooking and it was good. What was on our plates varied throughout the season but was dominated by whatever meat my Mom chose to pull out of the freezer where several whole dismembered animals were kept. This meat was usually accompanied by a vegetable selection from the other freezer where last summer's garden was kept unless of course it was cannable or of course it was in season and thus fresh. Only after I moved out and lived fully on my own did I come to appreciate the vast grocery store of items that lived in our basement.

Let me just say that I like going to the grocery store almost as must as my granny Mary Lou. Really what female doesn't? The vast amount of cheeses, and the endless boxed deserts waiting to be mixed into a mouthful of goodness. This is a cook's paradise. I am even lucky enough to call Trader Joes my 'local' grocery. If you haven't been to one lately you are surely missing out on the best food shopping experience EVER (and I don't use all caps that often). But even with the big name draw and superior organic goods I am still terrible at buying enough to last the whole week. Invariably we come to Thursday and Dave and I are wondering about dinner and if we should cook the rest of the Mac-n-cheese or give in to our culinary desires. For Dave that always means Italian, and for me that means MEXICAN.

I am my father's daughter after all. When I was a kid and my Dad would come home after long truck runs, he wouldn't bring me a trinket or a toy. He brought me only what my little heart desired more than anything. Farris Truck Stop chips and salsa! The chips came in a brown bag and the salsa was in a medium styrofoam cup and I couldn't get enough. We would sit in his brown recliner to the protest of my mom and eat until I was hemorrhaging salsa. This gift has led to endless debates between David and I where he asks "Mexican... Again!?" And all I can say is "YES!" Last week alone I used my powers of persuasion to have Mexican 5 meals in a row! Dad, aren't you proud?

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