Growing up, my father worked days and my mother worked nights. This was because we couldn’t afford to only have one parent working and because they couldn’t afford babysitters. Since my father was in charge of the night shift, he was responsible for cooking dinner for me and my sister.
My dad was the king of leftover cooking. My sister and I have a favorite story of one night my dad putting dinner on the table and my sister and I just staring at it for a long time. I mean a long time. My dad looked at us and said, “Eat it before it gets cold.” My sister looked at him and said, “But dad, where are the vegetables?” (Side note: that comment is hilarious all by itself because my sister wasn’t a card carrying member of the veggie lovers club.) Then I looked at him and said, “Um dad, where’s the meat?”
You see – my father had served us four different kinds of potatoes for dinner. Mashed potatoes, hash browns, French fries and a baked potato. Of course, when you’re a kid, you don’t understand. You just want to know where the chicken and green beans are.
And people like Jaime Oliver might call it bad parenting.
Bottom line, it’s all we had.
- More than 17 million American kids are at risk of hunger. That’s nearly 1 in 4.
- 15.5 million kids in America live in poverty.
- 20.1 million children benefit from food stamps.
- 19 million kids get a free or reduced price lunch on an average school day.
That’s why every year Share Our Strength hosts the Great American Dine-Out to end childhood hunger. The dine-out starts this week and many of our favorite restaurants are participating. If you’re able to eat out this week, those establishments will donate funds to help eliminate childhood hunger. The funds go toward making sure more schools are able to offer subsidized meals and helping families learn how to prepare affordable and healthy food options.
Mr. Bartender and I are planning to support this worthwhile cause. We hope you will too.