As I scrape the remains of another meal into the compost bin, I have a greater appreciation and reverence for the food that I make myself. There is a stronger desire to savor the flavors and make it last longer than items I purchase pre-made or from the restaurant. Even if making the food costs a fraction of the price to buy store bought, I somehow find myself valuing the home made version more possibly because of the time investment, possibly because of the connection that I now have with that food.

I am particularly attached to the bread that I bake on Sundays. In is not difficult to make and the time investment for three loaves is about 30 minutes of work time plus babysitting (rising and baking). I often find myself thinking that I will keep some bread on hand to share with neighbors and friends in need but I just have such a hard time parting with it.

In spite of my stinginess, I think that slowing down to appreciate the food is a valuable exercise. Too often, I see food being devoured as though it will always be bountiful. But now, I cringe at the wasted food on my children’s plates. Aside from the affront to my own cooking ability that I need to just plain get over; I can better see the value and cost of what is wasted in money, time, the life of an animal and the love imbued being thrown out.

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