Tuesday, December 7, 2010


When the LDS Genesis Branch has their annual Christmas party things can get a little crazy: www.ldsgenesisgroup.org if you've never checked out the webesite, go for it.

For YEARS I've found myself in the kitchen sometimes by assignment, sometimes by volunteering myself out of need. Last year and this year I ended up in the kitchen and have quit enjoyed it. By now, after 7 years being in the kitchen I have some things pretty much down to a science. Myself and 4 other people can prep food and get it moving in and out to feed the masses of between 300-upt to 700 people sometimes over the years.
When you come to a Genesis Christmas party, The Branch Provides the meat: Smoked Turkey and Smoked Ham ( We use some folks who who built their own smoker and it is a B.E.A.U.TIFUL thing. ) Last year the men who sliced the meat for us and was throwing away the ham bones. Do you know what happens when you in a black woman's kitchen and start messing around and throwing the wrong stuff away? They learned pretty quickly. One of the gentleman from last year had to educate his buddy from this year: Leave the skin on the turkey and don't throw away the Ham bones. There was much peace in the valley of the kitchen this year.

Why so much flack over the Ham bones you say? Let me tell ya what a ham bone means. For those who don't eat pork, you can preplace the word "ham" with soup.

Back in the day when you had dinner, times were such that you didn't throw anything away. You kept ,onions and potatoe skins, bones, leafs and root of your celery and carrots, meat fat, skin, bones, herbs and spices and create even more meals with it: soup, stock, stews and what not.

What people anxiously toss out today was life sustaining in the "olden" days.

There's a story about a Black LDS Pioneer woman by the name Jane Manning James that goes like this:

She and her family; Husband Issac, and son Sylvester left Nauvoo with the saints in 1846 to head west. During the trek she gave birth in Winter Quarters, Nebraska (yes thats a real place even today) to another son they named Silas. Winter Quarters was a temporary settlement or housing quarters for persecuted and pioneering LDS mbrs during the winter months.

In 1847 Jane and her family left Winter Quarters for What is now the SL Valley. During that time food, provisions and the very basic necesities of life were barely obtainable.

In her own words she Jane says:

"“Oh how I suffered of cold and hunger and keenest of all was to hear my little ones crying for bread, and I had none to give them.”

What she could share, she shared with her neigbors.

One of her friends Wrote the following in her behalf:

Eliza Partridge Lyman, whose husband had just left for a mission to California, wrote:
“April 13th [1849] … May the Lord bless and prosper them and return them in safety. He left us without anything from which to make bread, it not being in his power to get it. … Jane James, the colored woman, let me have two pounds of flour, it being half of what she had.”

Times are rough right now for many of us and hard.... THIS hard for others. Some of us don't feel the pinch of the times and some of us will never have to worry about saving scraps of food and bones to eat.

What does ALL THIS have to do with Soup bones you ask? Ima tell ya.

Back to the Genesis Christmas party. When we have this party is when most people are introduced to collard greens, black eye'd peas and some of the other Traditional African American foods: Sweet Potato Pie and such. We make plates for some of the Genesis family who can't make it or show up late. We make plates and give food away to area missionaries and other people we know who could use it.

One man, very special to me, Let's call him Papa D. ( AKA Darius Gray) Each year we make sure we make a plate for him.

Last year at the 2009 Christmas party when we were tutoring our Caucausion Brothers on saving the soup bones, Papa D not feeling well was unable to attend the whole Christmat party. So I made him a tray for him and his family. He came to pick it up and I showed him what we wrapped. He gave a greatly appreciated "Thank You" and huge hugs and a kiss on the cheek. As he was turning away, I grabbed one of the Ham bones wrapped in aluminum foil and said...

"WAIT! I almost forgot! A Soup bone for yo pot!"

He looked at me with that brilliant beautiful smile of his grinnin from ear to ear and said...'

"Now that... right there... IS LOVE!" And I felt "the love" as well.

Whether you are sharing a cup o sugar, lb of flour or a soup bown fo yo neigbors pot, That kinda love comes from no other place. A place where Xboxes, and Flat Screens and even Diamonds can't reach. That kind of love is Rib stickin, bone warming and life sustaining and Soul nourishing.

May we all learn to give love in a way that wants us to give AND RECEIVE a soup bone fo yo POT!

Big Brother, Little Sister Moments

Big Brother, Little Sister Moments
Hand in Hand


I earned some temporary wings!