Bread and Wine Link Up

Oh my!  I have absolutely loved reading Shauna Niequist’s book, Bread and Wine, with the Bloom book club at (in)Courage.  Loved it!!


From the first pages, I was eager to invite someone to my table to dinner.  Anyone.  It really didn’t matter who, I just wanted to have an experience like she was writing about!  I wanted to call all of my friends and ask them to join me in creating a cooking club like Shauna’s.  I wanted to recreate each and every detail of the stories she was relaying.

But, alas, this is a very lonely season in my life.  God has been using this time to grow my relationship with Him and with my husband.  So, when I got the urge to call all my girlfriends and start a cooking club, I realized I had no girlfriends to call.  Bummer.

But that is not the only reason a cooking club in my kitchen would be an epic fail.  It has been brought to my attention (in both subtle and obvious ways) that I am not much of a cook… no matter how much I want to be.

When Hubby and I were first married, I was invited to bring whatever I wanted to family potlucks and cookouts.  I love my mom’s potato salad… and Hubby never complained, so I felt it was a good staple to turn to.  But then my mother-in-law lovingly asked me to bring something else since her sister was bringing the potato salad.  When I asked what she thought I should bring, she suggested forks, plates, cups and napkins. (That would be the subtle, in case you weren’t sure.)

For the next TEN YEARS, I would ask what I could bring and I was told each time to bring the forks, plates, cups, and napkins.  If I ever opted to bring something in addition to those things, I always carried the majority of the dish home… uneaten.

 Remember this episode of Friends? I love Phoebe!  I sooooo understand what she felt!  I just wish I had rocked the cups as well as she did!!

It became a running joke between my Hubby and me.  I was able to laugh at it because I knew that, whether the rest of the family enjoyed my cooking, my small family of four ate everything I served.  But then Hubby started cooking.   And he is really good at it.  And when compared to my husband, the kids cannot help but say he is the better cook… and they DO say that.  A Lot.  To anyone and everyone who asks.  But they always add, in a pitiful sing-songy voice, “but mom cooks good, too”. (Thanks, a lot, traitors.  And watch your grammar!)

But, now that I have read the entire book, I am even more determined to host someone—anyone—in my home for a meal.  Maybe Hubby will cook, like he did on the 4th when my brother and his family were home from Egypt.  Mom cooked all the sides.  I cooked the brownies that weren’t quite done, so everyone just ate the edges.  Sigh.  God will introduce the friends to come.  And I will light the candle and set the music and be the welcoming host that makes everyone feel welcome… whoever they are.  And they will eat Hubby’s delicious meal and maybe we will laugh over my ineptitude in the kitchen as we eat raw-ish brownies with the best forks, plates, cups, and napkins money can buy… after all, it’s what I do.

Thank you, Bloom ladies, for this great book club selection.  It was my first… and I loved it!  Thanks, Shauna for opening your heart, your home, and your kitchen to all of us by sharing intimate details of your life.  I enjoyed sharing in your cooking club, though vicariously.  You have inspired so much in me!


12 thoughts on “Bread and Wine Link Up

  1. I am that person who is asked to just bring paper products! More because I try out new recipes on my in-laws and my church family. My husband is the better cook but not adventurous so I will try a new recipe and if anyone says it was good he will try to cook it too. He likes to compete. I am okay with that because it means I don’t always have to cook. So just start taking side dishes along with your paper products- just make sure nobody knows the dish belongs to you- I bet they will try it and like it.

  2. Amy, Thanks for sharing your heart here. I know from experience that lonely seasons can be especially hard. I love you Friends reference and I love your motivation to pursue hospitality in spite of past imperfections. God will reward you for your faithfulness.

  3. I loved this post, Amy. So vulnerable and humble. For what it’s worth, I can’t bake regular cookies to save my life. My husband will always be the cookie-baker in our family. 🙂

  4. ((hugs)) I’ve had seasons of plenty and I’ve had seasons of lonely when it came to friendship; I’m hopeful you find that special someone soon! Keep plugging away at the cooking thing; really, truly, you will find the special dishes that you become known for…just keep trying ).

    So GLAD you joined Bloom this go ’round; I hope you’ll be back for our fall study!

  5. Hi, I recommend trying to learn about the process of cooking like a science experiment. I do this, and this happens. America’s Test Kitchen on PBS writes great cook books. Check them out. And don’t forget that Julia Child didn’t start to learn how to cook until she was 37. And PS I was very lonely too when my friend all seemed to move away at the same time. Hugs.

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