Impromptu dinner for 100? Am I nuts?

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Ok, first, let me clarify. Our church is preparing a funeral dinner for tomorrow, and the expected number of family members is coming in right around 100. For the first time though, I find myself on the other side of things – the planning side.

I love it.

It has been a priveledge to be able to work closely with the lady who is heading things up. I’ve never been able to plan from this end before, and it is refreshing to have some input.

We left the grocery store talking about the total amount for all the groceries and paper products. While I’m well aware that the grocery store is not the cheapest place to purchase paper goods, there were a myriad of reasons that dictated that we get them at this particular store. Our total came in a full $50 less than the amount that we were told to expect. I wondered why but didn’t give it another thought.

I had to giggle tonight though when I got home from the grocery store and began cooking, all while on the phone to our pastor’s wife. I’m doing a fair bit of cooking (2 cakes, 4-5 dozen dinner rolls, a box of mashed potatoes, and making iced tea). To me, it doesn’t seem like a lot. Maybe it is. Maybe I like to overcommit, whatever. It doesn’t matter – this is what I’m doing.

So I was on the phone, and made a comment about the ingredients in a cake. She asked why I didn’t just buy a cake mix to save myself some time. Honestly, it never occured to me. I’ve become so accustomed to doing everything from scratch (it’s so much cheaper, and don’t even get me started on preservatives and extra chemicals that are added to processed food) that I just figured I’d go though my cookbooks and find something to make that used ingredients I already had in the house.

Then the same comment was made about the iced tea. Why didn’t we buy the premade iced tea? Again – this didn’t occur to me. I don’t understand this though – we make several gallons of iced tea a week (on the stove, using real teabags) – it takes me next to no time at all to make it. Why should I consider buying premade tea when I can buy a box of teabags for $2 and make it up myself and save the church some money?

Probably some of the reasoning was “Just buy it premade so you don’t kill yourself working on it.” They say that “time is money” and while that’s true, I just don’t know. I enjoy baking. I enjoy doing things like this. When my grandmother died this summer, it was an immense relief to be able to just go to the funeral without worrying about what or how or when I was going to eat. Knowing that I’m being a small part of that for another family – that’s a blessing to me. So to do some extra work and spend some extra time, all while saving some extra money, then great.

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2 thoughts on “Impromptu dinner for 100? Am I nuts?”

  1. That’s wonderful that you can be a blessing and a help to a family in a time of need!

    While you can use cake mixes and tea and such, the TASTE of “from-scratch” is SO much better! (and healthier!)

  2. You are absolutely blessing that family, no question. When my Daddy died, a local restaurant that he frequented fed the 50 or so relatives that were in town for the funeral – for three days, three meals a day. They brought the food to the house so we could have it as we needed or wanted it. It was incredible. My sister and I were so grateful and it was only one of the ways that God showed his tender care and mercy during that time.

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