Lake Atitlan, Panajachel, Guatemala

“Reading and writing are acts of empathy and faith. Guard that trust carefully — in this rapidly changing business, it’s the only sure thing.” ~Erin Keane
"Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in." ~ Louise Brown

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~Jesse Stuart

"A writer's job is to take one thing and make it stand for twenty." ~ Virginia Woolf

Saturday, April 27, 2013

X Marks the Spot

I'm at a loss of a food beginning with X. And if there is one, I don't have a recipe for it in my cookbook. Therefore I'll use this opportunity to talk about X Marks the Spot. Or another way of saying --"Look here, this is what's important."

X Marks the Spot to find the treasure. My treasure is my family, and although preparing family meals isn't an easy task for anyone, it is so worth the effort. Dinner time provides a time for the family to gather and refresh, replenish, retreat from the outside world while spending time together around the table enjoying a meal.

It doesn't have to be a lavish meal. I believe in "the rule of three." That means if you can pull together three items, it feels like a meal. Take a bowl of soup, bread with butter and jam, and a glass of milk. That's a meal. It counts.

What matters is that food is set out, the family gathers, and magic happens. Not every time. Not all at once. But moment by moment, day by day, it adds up and then one day you look back and say, "Yes! It WAS worth it." Not just the meals either, but the whole thing of being a mom, having kids, raising them the best you can (although no one is ever as good a mom, or dad, as they'd like to be that's for sure).

And that's why I wrote my recipe book Hearty Meals for the Active Family. Because I believe in the value of home and family, and I believe that having regular family dinners together is key for uniting families. And that's where X Marks the Spot for me.


  1. Having meals together is the best. It's a way of life, over here and I love it.

    Great photo.

  2. We always enjoy meals together. And simple is fine with me.

  3. Meals together are a good thing. Gives folks a chance to catch up on what's been happening in each other's lives.

    Blessings and Bear hugs!
    Bears Noting

  4. Love this post. So true, all of it.

  5. Nicely said, Karen.

    I agree. Some of my fondest memories were sitting at the dining room table with my family for daily meals, conversation, and even arguments. That's life...

  6. I think you picked the perfect X. Family is what it's all about.

  7. Hi Karen .. yours is an extended family - you'd probably need a barn to have them all together .. but I love this photo - each is a treasure .. and each needs to eat .. cheers Hilary

  8. Meal time around the table is one of my favorite times of the day especially after school snacks time and supper. It is when I thrive on the animated conversation of my children.


  9. I miss the 'round the table' meals we had when the children were small. I love your philosophy.

  10. I consider our family dinners almost as sacred. You won't find me going to events or lectures in the evenings, because of this.
    So X marks the spot for me too.
    The other day my teens commented on how few of their friends have regular weekday family dinners. I realized what a retro-mother I have been, and felt doubly happy.

  11. I like your "X." It marks the spot for me too! Providing good food for my family is one of the most important things I do. Clearly, you feel the same way.

  12. I love having family meals together! I'm excited for your cookbook! The food is delicious! :)

  13. What a clever "X" post. I love the look of your table and could be quite warmed by that happy looking meal. Hope the little fella's arm heals soon.

  14. Yes, even a simple meal is a feast with family at the table. Happy A to Z!