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“Comfort food is the best food.”

Today is the 4th of July, marking the 241st year that the Declaration of Independence was signed. But this topic today is not about the celebration. Today’s topic is about all the food that will be consumed from cookouts today. We all look forward to the holidays because it gives us an excuse to binge on all the food we want to eat. As a kid growing up, my mother would take my sister and I to the parade. We would sit there until the parade was nearly over, then head to the cookout at a family member’s house. And you can just about guess the food that lined the picnic tables.

I’m talking all kinds of good eating: Catfish, meatballs, fried chicken, baked chicken, pork chops, meatloaf, turkey, honey ham, brats, BBQ ribs, collard greens, macaroni and cheese, cabbage, sweet rolls, black eyed peas, mashed Related imagepotatoes, fried okra, yams, sweet potatoes, corn bread. The meat would be smothered in two to three types of gravy; soda, Kool aid, juice, sweet tea, some brews, and water would be the beverages of choice. And it didn’t stop there, you can’t forget about the desserts: banana pudding, chocolate pies, sweet potato pie, lemon pies, egg pies, German chocolate cake, pound cake, and ice cream.

The above food was the meals my family would consume on this holiday. But now that I am an adult, I don’t look at the holidays the same anymore. Not that they are not important, it’s just that living on my own, cooking on these days are not as special. I could always go to visit family, yet it’s not the same. Now most would say, start your own family. But I am far from ready for a family of my own. I think back to when I was growing up and the meals the family would have together. As time went on, people married, moved away, and some even passed away. Now, it seems far less special as when I was young.

And I guess that’s why these once great times to eat together have changed. There were children that used to fill the premises, and adults as well. But eating as a family, especially on holidays takes on new meanings. That Image result for soul food desserts banana puddingfeeling of being stuffed and sitting back with your pants zipper undone is not quite there anymore. Now the portions have gotten cut down because we have to live after the cookout. Fewer children and more teens who themselves are thinking about moving outside the home town for college. So now, there are middle aged to elderly adults left.



And in the end, the 4th of July reminds me of the great meals as a child. The firework show, even consuming small portions of leftovers the next day. You know, I never looked at the 4th as an Independence holiday, rather a special day family came together to have a feast. (PERSONAL WEBSITE) (FAN PAGE)   

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“We are not what we used to be.”

We can’t pick them, we can’t get rid of them; and that is our family. The problems we face in life are challenging enough, but what about trying to appease the people who are closest to you. How about trying to live your life while they stand on the sidelines and judge. Sad to say, but sometimes these are people who can become more of a burden on your life than complete strangers. But why, why are families so much more tougher than others in society? Why is that these are the main people who you should be able to depend on the most that are the ones you have to sometimes protect yourself from the most?

Well, for starters because people feel that since you and them carry the same bloodline that constitutes they have a say in your life. Yes we are connected biologically, but we mentally we are different people. Just because we are spawn from the same lineage does not mean you know everything there is to know about me. As a matter of fact one of the reasons why relationships last so long is not just because you admit when you’re wrong and love your significant other. It has a lot to do with the idea that when you two have problems in the household you don’t pick up that telephone to call your family. Because family members are going to give you advice based on their own personal situations not what is good for you in life.

Where does this entitlement that since we are related you’re owed to something come from? Because every family has that mind-frame, why? In my opinion, I think people have that mind-frame because the meaning of what family is, is a very ambiguous meaning. It all depends on the person who is interpreting what is family. To one person, family does whatever it takes to help each other, some believe tough love is the best method. I look at family as everyone pulls their weight. Meaning if I have milk, you have cereal, this person has bowls, and this person has utensils, then “WE” can eat breakfast. Family is not for a single person or few carrying the load of all. Because usually what happens is if that person is longer around, the family dynamics collapse.

See, in the end, your family are not something you choose, but it’s what you’re born into. But that doesn’t mean  just because we have the same bloodline we know everything about each other. In addition, you shouldn’t tell family everything as well. Some things are mean’t for them not to know and some things are mean’t for them to know. 

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“Who comes before who?”

My children are my world! My children are my everything! These are the words so may married couples utter when speaking about their children. The only problem is that how can a marriage withstand a situation where the children are the sole reason for being together. The reality is that it can’t last with children coming first. Well, isn’t that one of the premises for why we as a society promote marriage? We promote marriage so that children can see an example for how to lead their lives. But what type of life is worth living with everything revolving around your children? But also, what marriage can last that way.

I’ll tell you, no ones’ marriage last long. Because if everything is around the kid, what happens as the children age. Yes, when a child is an infant, they need all your undivided attention. You are not only their parents, but you’re also establishing a trust between them and you. They are seeing a familiar face that they can depend on, on a continuous basis. So at least the first 10 to 12 years you have to dedicate so much time to them. But what happens once the child reaches middle school. The parents have been about the kid for so long that they neglect each other. And why is middle school such a pivotal time period in the life of a child?

Middle school is the beginning of the adolescent stage of life for a young male or female. This is when children start to take on their own identities. It’s when peer pressure arises and the need to conform to a group becomes important. So they stray away from their parents and start to assimilate into these groups. Now the married husband and wife are at home with each other all the time. And given they have dedicated so much of their to kids, they have nothing in common now that kids are gone. So what comes next is a trial separation and then a divorce. Which is why making children the focus is not a good thing.

See, in the end, people follow certain principles because they think it makes them admirable. They follow the belief that kids come first because we push this to them in our society. But the problem with this ideology is that kids are not home forever. And as those children age, they’ll take on their own personalities. Once this happens it will force you and your significant other to continue a relationship that was lost a long time ago. What was once a connection is now severed. Severed because you made the focus of your existence off of individuals that will and must go off and have their own lives; leaving you behind.