2023 January 01

Your’s truly delivered the sermon
for worship at Cross Tracks Church.
Follow this link to view the service.

I know that many of my friends in Texas are having Hoppin’ John* for a meal today. Even if they don’t make Hopping John, they are likely to have blackeye peas and ham. It’s a southern tradition.

My family tradition at New Year’s is Lentils** and Kielbasa. This is a traditional Italian New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day meal. Though there is some Italian in my DNA, it is predominantly Irish and German. I don’t know how an Italian tradition became our family tradition. All I know is that for most New Year’s lunches (we called them dinner – not to be confused with the evening meal which is supper) mother made lentils and kielbasa. This year I made lentils with chicken stock, shredded carrots and jalapeno sausage. It turned out very well. And as usual, I made more than could be eaten in one meal. On Tuesday I may add some diced tomatoes, diced bell peppers, cummin, garlic, and chili powder. Then I’ll serve it over rice. Maybe with cheddar cheese

The following is a repost of a short essay I wrote in 2018

THINGS NOBODY TOLD ME ABOUT GROWING OLD

Nobody said it would be this difficult and sometimes painful to just to get dressed in the morning.

Nobody explained that one third of my income would be spent on doctors, medications, and supplements. And that was after the insurance had paid.

I don’t recall anyone explaining about the mysterious “traveling” pain that would move from body part to body part.

Who would have thought that retirement could be so tiring and busy?

There are bits and pieces of me missing more everyday, hair, teeth, eyesight, hearing, and memory.

Speaking of memory, there’s the panic when I forget something … did I just forget or is it dementia?

Also that social filter in your head, that keeps you from saying what you really think, gets weaker and less effective every day.

© 2018 by Thomas E. Williams

Goodnight and God bless

©2023 Thomas E Williams
*A major New Year’s food tradition in the American South, Hoppin’ John is a dish of pork-flavored field peas or black-eyed peas (symbolizing coins) and rice, frequently served with collards or other cooked greens (as they’re the color of money) and cornbread (the color of gold).
**Lentils, or lenticchie, are believed to bring good luck in Italy, and eating them at New Year – shortly after midnight – is a tradition that’s said to date back to ancient Rome. To wish friends luck and prosperity in the New Year, ancient Romans would give a pouch full of lentils as a gift.

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