Filed under: 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History
Week 32: Dinner Time. On a typical childhood evening, who was around the dinner table? Was the meal served by one person, or was it a free-for-all? What is dinner time like in your family today?
I don’t remember where we ate when we lived at Mankato. I am sure it was in the kitchen. When we moved to Burr Oak, my sister left for college a few months after we moved. My brother was only there for 1 year, but he drove 15 miles to complete his senior year at Mankato, and I don’t remember many meals with him. We would have SUPPER about 6pm, it would be served family style, usually with a meat, potatoes, gravy and a vegetable. Our table had chrome legs with a green variegated laminate top with matching chairs. The table was squeezed up next to the wall and the stove was at one end. If there were more than 3 of us the table had to be pulled out. If there were more than 4 we would eat around the round table in the dining room. Daddy would sit at the end, Mom and I would sit on the side with me between them.
When I talked to my cousin about writing for this blog, she wanted me to write about the plate. She has always told me she was envious because I had my own plate, and I would not share. I had always thought she was referring to the plate trimmed with stripes and stars.
But not long ago she stopped by and looked in my china closet and said there’s that plate. She was referring to the child’s plate that had the alphabet around it.
The child’s plate was one of two that my father bought for my brother and sister. When he brought them home one fell off the seat and broke in two. This was late 30’s or early 40’s, in those days you did not through something out because it was broken. So they glued the plate and it was used for Melba and Kenneth, with arguments about who would get the “good” plate. Then I used the plate, as well as grandchildren have used the plate. It had raised sides, and the alphabet was around the edge. Today my sister has the broken plate and I have the unbroken one.
What I remember is the plate with the black stripes and stars. There was only one and it was my plate. We had a matching bowl and it was almost always used for mashed potatoes. The plate finally broke, but I still have the serving bowl.
Today as a single person, I try to eat at my kitchen table, which is wooden with drop down leaves and sits in the center of the kitchen like an island. For family gatherings we sit in the dining room around the same round table I grew up with.
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