Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Of Stock and Substance

We are a two car family, and as our children have gotten older we have sometimes found ourselves with an unequal ratio of drivers to cars.  One morning I found myself having to chauffeur my husband in to work, and as I returned home I used the time to lift others before the throne.  At the end of my prayers I just had to laugh out loud as I referenced my youngest son to the Lord, using a phrase I have often used regarding him, "he is just so full of pepper!"

Its a good thing I was nearing the end of my prayers, as this sent me on a mental tour of my kitchen in a spontaneous game of association with each one of my children.  Come on, am I really the first?

In no particular order...

R - was the easiest for me as I have long known he is pepper (this includes chilis.)  He is full of the zest and spice of creativity. He can get me hopping, that's for sure; and like pepper, he might not be the first you reach for, but can be counted on to always add an unexpected zing to things.

L - was a bit tricky.  I began thinking of sugar, brown or white, or even honey, but was not settled on any of these possibilities.  I wound up hitting upon molasses!  In addition to the familiar metaphor "slow as....", molasses has a sweetness with a bit of bite and creates warm homey desserts like gingerbread.  Settled.

Q - clearly is salt.  Scripturally this goes without saying, and just as no kitchen or meal would be complete without salt, so our family would be incomplete without him.  Salt brings flavor and depth to things, can be overdone, is missed when it is absent, compliments and embraces.

A - a knotty one to match.  I toyed with balsamic vinegar for a while, but that was not quite right.  Then I hit upon chocolate - of course!  She loves all kinds of chocolate, but this child, while she would want to be white chocolate is instead dark.  I could write a dissertation here, but I'll just allow the sweet savor of it to settle.

D - the most difficult to pin down.  Capers, pickles, ginger, olive oil?  I had almost despaired of his culinary counterpart.  Then I knew.  He is wine - sophisticated yet earthy, both dry and sweet, the stuff to mellow your bones and loosen the imagination.  Requires time to reach fullness and to breath. (In a deep voice with arched eyebrow:) Complex.

Not an exhaustive nor necessarily final combination of child/staple alliances - I'm tossing around the likeness of one to an orange at this very moment; but for now this will do.  Its funny the things we consider when we're thinking about our kids.  They are my "fruit", if you will.  I am blessed in abundance.

I've always loved this blessing given in the movie It's A Wonderful Life.  We'll just have to imagine that they included all the staples I've concluded with as well, and that George and Mary Bailey were speaking to us:

Bread... that this house may never know hunger. Salt... that life may always have flavor. And wine... that joy and prosperity may reign forever.  Enter the Ruiz-Esparza Castle. 


  1. Nice! :) I would like to hear what you can come up with for the rest of your family.

    Can I be the orange?
    Hi Tania!

  3. :) I will ask my dad and mom tonight !What their idea about me would be !!! :)

  4. I believe we had something in the family about nuts. Was it a squirl and a bunch of nuts lives here?

  5. This is fantastic, Mom! And I think they match up with us kiddos pretty well. Pop can be Crunch-and-Munch and you can be a wooden spoon, haha. And I'm quite pleased with mine, for who wouldn't want to be luxurious and sophisticated, earthy and complex? All the best adjectives in my book.

  6. Cute Blog! I’m a new follower Happy Friday!! I would love for you to stop and take a look at my blog as well! Thanks!

  7. Love the thought - will have to ponder where my kids fit in the culinary world. Hmmm... That's a tough one!