A Summer’s Lesson
In my youth, strawberries rewarded effort. We washed them, we sliced them, we sprinkled them with a bit of sugar, then we enjoyed them, lifted up to lips parched with the waiting for that first sweet taste.
Sometimes we spooned them over ice cream, or slid a ladle’s worth between the halves of a biscuit of shortcake.
But always, always . . . we hulled and sliced, as if to demonstrate our worthiness, like we could earn the sweetness those seeded ruby-gems of summer promised.
I believed that all people everywhere prepared strawberries just like that.
This July, the berries came cheap at the store. They were big as a baby’s fist, bursting with ripeness, deep red and gleaming.
But I didn’t have time to clean them that day.
A crazy notion came over me. What if . . .?
Overcome with inspiration, I swooped up three perfect baskets, sweet as every promise summer ever made, and bought them.
Back at home, I announced, nonchalantly as if all people did this everywhere, We’ll just eat these berries fresh, out of hand. I washed them, then tucked them, stems and all, whole, sugarless, into the fridge.
And my husband didn’t recoil in shock. Nope. I watched, fascinated, as he walked to the refrigerator, opened it, and grabbed a few berries, snacking on them as if all people everywhere ate strawberries just like that, whole, all the time.
Dizzy with joy, I tucked strawberries into my lunch box and ate them midday. I nestled a few on the edge of my husband’s plate, little love offerings from me to him, at dinner time. I ate a berry while the coffee brewed one Tuesday morning.
Oh, how small my world has been, when it comes to strawberries. Oh, how great the joys that await me when I lean into simple, perfect gifts.
29 Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you; 30 and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so. 31 God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
Genesis 1:29-31 (NASB)
I’l linking with Ann Kroeker for Food on Fridays. I hope you’ll stop by–it’s always yummy!