Dad and Banana Pudding

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Banana Pudding

It’s that time of year again… taking requests for favorite foods and especially desserts. It is during these times that the memories invade every pot and pan I clang in my kitchen, every measuring cup and every shuffle through the special recipe box. My heart always goes back to home, my childhood place of memories. The smells of my Momma’s kitchen, the visuals of my Daddy testing everything and eager to make his own special creations. I miss it terribly..I miss them more.

Most of our holidays were spent traveling on the busy highways to  West Virginia and Kentucky. We visited, trying our best to split our times between his family and mine. I don’t think it was ever enough for either side. Sometimes it felt like we spent more time in the car than anything. I don’t miss that part.

The one year that my parents came here for Thanksgiving was one of my most memorable. The weather was warmer than usual, so much that we ate outside on the picnic table. Daddy had wanted Banana Pudding that year, so I made the largest one ever. We had eaten so much other foods, that it was left untouched. Sometime during the night, he got up for a snack – Banana Pudding. He said it was the best he had ever eaten, so much that by the next morning, all we found was a spoon and an empty bowl. We laughed about him eating the entire bowl many years after..it is still mentioned every time I make it now.

So, this year… the bananas have been purchased and once again, I will remember how much he loved it and I will probably have tears when preparing it – good tears… good memories. Every taste, I will see him smiling over eating all of that Banana Pudding by himself.

I am also reminded that I am now that Momma in the kitchen, making the things for my family that they enjoy, memories that will belong to my daughter one day. I hope that her memories are as fond as some of ours. She will remember seeing the special apron from her dear Aunt Moe, her daddy sneaking a deviled egg out of the refrigerator and the sounds of the Thanksgiving Parade blaring from the television.

Make memories with your loved ones, whether they be large or small. Little memories often become big ones later in our lives…ones that are sparked by a Banana Pudding.. or fixing cinnamon toast because it was the way mamaw did it. Be thankful that you have a table of your own to prepare, dishes to wash after your labor in the kitchen. Home. I have always said that it is not so much geographical as it is in your memories. Make good ones… tell stories of holidays past and never take one moment for granted. Remember your loved ones with smiles and treat your living ones with kindness. It’s usually one of the few times that we share a meal, a dessert or just a little bit of our time.

Happy Thanksgiving from our house to yours.

3 thoughts on “Dad and Banana Pudding

  1. Oh Denise… I love it! You had me giggling about your Daddy and that banana pudding and me wishing so much I could have known your parents… but I know the family you have with you now and I know the memories of those gone before us… It fills me with gratitude for you and your family and for your memories, because they remind me of all the crazy times with my own family, especially at Nana’s house and with my aunts. Your Daddy wasn’t the only one to pull a trick like that!!! If we didn’t go to Nana’s for Thanksgiving, they usually came here and one year they brought the “made that morning” sweet tater pies and some nut cake. Well, both are my favorites… I had a good go at the nut cake right to start with… but somehow… sometime between Wednesday night and Thursday lunch, one of those pies got gone and I was the one who ate the whole thing!!!!! My mama wanted to beat me… Nana was amused but knew I shouldn’t have done it… everybody else? Laughing like nuts cause they thought I would never want tater pie again… WRONG!!!!!!!!!!! So now when I make my own sweet tater pies for Josh (Reg doesn’t like sweet taters) and the inlaws, I use my Nana’s old recipe that came on the back label of a PET milk can before I was born… If there were ever times I wish I could take my boys back to… it would be those Thanksgivings… to the time when it didn’t matter what material things we had as long as we had good food to eat and could eat it with each other… It’s been 32 years since my last Thanksgiving with everyone together… and that’s a mighty long time but still seems like yesterday…

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