Powdered Milk and Hot Beef Sandwiches

For Mother’s Day I thought I would share with you a childhood memory or two from my mother’s kitchen.

Mom and me at my Uncle Daryl and Sandra’s wedding when I was 5

Ben and I were raised to love milk. My mom and dad must have been raised to love it as well. The four of us could go through 3-4 gallons of milk in a week. We weren’t one of those families that drank it at dinner. It’s a sin to have anything other than a big glass of sweet tea with dinner. But somehow between the four of us having milk for breakfast every morning, a cup or two with cookies throughout the week, and replacing water with milk whenever we were hot and sweaty from being outside (ok, that’s just Ben) we consumed large amounts of milk. I remember drinking chocolate milk every single morning for breakfast. Not just any chocolate milk. Carnation Instant Breakfast. Every morning my parents would wake me up by bringing me a glass of Carnation in a fancy blue glass…because it couldn’t hold enough milk for the packet thus the drink was more chocolatey. That’s what got me out of bed everyday. Breakfast in bed every morning. A little spoiled, I guess. You can imagine how awfully terrible my mornings were if I woke up to, “Brittany, we’re out of milk,” and was then handed a glass of Carnation mixed with powdered milk and lukewarm water. Disgusting! My dad finally learned to start making early morning trips to the store to get a gallon of milk to avoid my bratty response. To this day, I CRAVE chocolate milk like no other food/drink. All the milk we bought, it probably would have been cheaper to buy a cow. But then I’d have to get up every morning to milk a cow and, well, bratty adolescent Brittany would have never done that.

Mom and me when I was 4, I think this was for a preschool play?

The nights we had hot beef sandwiches for dinner I knew there must be NOTHING else in the kitchen to eat. I mean, we must be out of butter and cheese because wouldn’t a grilled cheese be a better option than hot beef sandwiches? My mother couldn’t have possibly planned to have hot beef sandwiches for dinner. What about a yellowish green beef mixture on white bread sounds good? Hot Beef Sandwich night happened not by choice, because it could never be a purposeful part of the week’s meal plan. Well, I must be honest with you. I ate them every time. And not one ounce of complaining came from my mouth about those sandwiches. They are GOOD! Brown some ground beef, drain, mix in mayo and mustard, and spread on white bread. If you add too much mustard, it turns green and really loses its appetizing appeal (as if it had any to begin with). Delish…and apparently cheap and easy.

Mom and me on one of our MANY outings to the mall

On this Mother’s Day I want to say thank you to my mother who always had powdered milk on hand so that I did not go to school unhappy and on an empty stomach (because I refused to have anything else for breakfast). And thank you for all the hot beef sandwiches you lovingly prepared for me so that I didn’t go to bed hungry.

Mom and I being silly at Christmas

Thank you also, Mom, for allowing me to sarcastically share these memories with the rest of the world. Thank you for your fantastic sense of humor.

Mom and I at my rehearsal dinner

But most importantly, thank you for always pointing me to Christ. Feed me powdered milk every morning and hot beef sandwiches every night, I don’t care, for you showed me what I truly need…Christ. 
Mom and I the day my parents moved me into my condo in Auburn

Thank you for always making me see the other side of the argument when I was mad at my friends. Thank you for being involved in every aspect of my life. Thank you for being friends with my friend’s moms and building a community of fellowship for me. Thank you for being a wonderful grandmother to Lily. 
A favorite pic of my mom and baby Lily
Thank you for letting me borrow your red Toyota Previa when I turned 16 to drive to show choir practice until I got my ’97 Camry…that, by the way, we still own. Thank you for sharing a bathroom with me for 18 years so that I would always have your glaring eyes on me in the mirror teaching me to just barely touch my eyes with lotion to avoid a thousand wrinkles. I’m sure your mother taught you the same. 
4 generations: Mom (grandmother), Mom (mother), me, and Lily
Thank you for not letting me shop at Abercrombie & Fitch and Limited 2, for I learned that my identity and confidence is not in the clothes I wear and the crowd I fit in to, but in Christ. Thank you for teaching me to be frugal with my money. Thank you for encouraging me to be less like the world and more like Christ. Thank you for living a life worthy of the calling you have received with humility, gentleness, patience, love, and selflessness (Eph. 4: 1-2). Thank you for the hours upon hours we have spent laughing. I have a six pack of abs somewhere under the flab thanks to your merry heart! 
One last thing, thanks for going spelunking with me when I was in the womb because I’ll never go outside the womb. 
Love you Mom! 

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