Our first-year goal of full-time travel has been centered on spending time with family. Our two months in Austin gave us the opportunity to visit with my husband’s parents, or, simply, Mom and Dad. After Mike’s hectic workday, we’d head over to their house for a relaxing evening of conversation, laughter, and food–wonderful, delicious, and homemade food.
There are family secrets to the delicious brisket that Dad makes–it’s truly the best I’ve ever tasted. His homemade sausage is a treat we look forward to each time we sojourn to Austin. Mom’s comfort-food casseroles are spot-on and provide a fullness in the heart and stomach. Her Harvard beets are beyond compare (I love beets) and her sweet potatoes melt in the mouth with a rich buttery and sweet flavor. Her potato salad runs an even race to my grandmother’s, which I dearly loved as a child.
Mom shared some of their cooking secrets with Mike and me. Each recipe can be followed to the letter, but there is always something missing–something that distinctly sets it apart when Mom and Dad prepare it, and, for some reason, it just doesn’t taste the same. I think it’s because Mom and Dad make it with such experience, enjoyment, and pure love.
At their house, the door is always open. We are greeted with hugs and, “Dinner’s ready, grab yourself a plate.” While we are getting our plates filled with deliciousness, the front door opens with a, “Hi, Grandpa and Grandma,” from one of their grandchildren. It can be followed with, “Hello, Mom and Dad,” by Mike’s brother or one of his sisters. It seems that there is always enough no matter how many stop by. Everyone fills a plate and experiences a fullness from more than just food–there’s a satiation of the heart just from sharing the meal together.
This is our favorite experience from Austin–those wonderful meals spent catching up with my husband’s siblings, spending time with nieces and nephews, and (more precious than anything) getting time with Mom and Dad.
This is why Austin will often be in our front window.
Thank you, Mom and Dad, for your time, food, and love.