Wednesday, November 01, 2006

All Saints' Day

In some countries and in some churches, November 1 is a day to remember the dead.

In our house, All Saints' Day is a day to celebrate eternal life, and those people who have been part of the "cloud of witnesses" in Christian history. Every year we choose one person to be our dinner "guest," and plan table decorations, a devotion and maybe the food around that person. We've had Noah, with a toy Noah's Ark on the table; C.S. Lewis, with a stuffed lion and some books; and Queen Margaret of Scotland, with tartan trimmings and a fancy medieval-looking covered book.

Tonight's guest is going to be George Washington Carver. Not every Christian hero is a missionary or a pastor; God uses us, if you'll excuse the expression, "where we're planted."

I liked this quote from an Amazon review (of George Washington Carver: His Life & Faith in His Own Words):
In 1921, Carver addressed the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee regarding the endless uses of the peanut. At the end of his address, the chairman asked:

"Dr. Carver how did you learn all of these things?"

Carver answered, "From an old book."

"What book?" asked the chairman.

Carver replied, "The Bible."

The chairman inquired, "Does the Bible tell about peanuts?"

"No, sir" Dr. Carver replied, "But it tells me about the God who made the peanut. I asked Him to show me what to do with the peanut, and He did."
Now, what are we going to serve tonight? Unfortunately, Mr. Fixit can't eat peanuts, so we can't try Carver's original peanut recipes (check out #59--Peanut Butter Sandwiches). Don't have any cowpeas, either. Sweet potatoes? Soybeans? Durn, I was going to pick up some tofu at the supermarket last Saturday, but one of the packages had leaked all over the others so I passed on it.

Well, some kind of beans or nuts, anyway. We do have some cashews...

[Update: well, our Carver meal wasn't too authentic. I did make Bean Balls with a can of romano beans; I thought that was somewhat in the spirit of Carver's leguminousness. So we had pasta with spaghetti sauce (or blood sauce, nod to Coffeemamma) and Bean Balls, and the Hillbilly Housewife's Garlic Breadsticks which we haven't made for quite awhile, and raw veggies, and chocolate pudding. Ponytails was a big help getting all this ready, and vacuuming, and even helping get some extra dishes done before the meal--blowing kisses your way.]

We Celebrate the Saints, no matter what's on the menu.

[Update: We played a couple of peanut party games after the meal, except that we didn't have any peanuts so we used other things. Everybody got a drinking straw and a dish of big dried squash seeds, and you had to suck on the straw to pick up a seed and move it to another dish. Mama Squirrel thinks she holds the record for sucking the most seeds in thirty seconds. The other game was a peanut rubber ball race--you had to put a straw in your mouth and push a small rubber ball to the finish line.

I hope the Saints were laughing.]


Anonymous said...

Happy All Saints' Day!

Katie said...

If we lived down the street, I'm sure Cornflower would have given you a few sweet potatoes!

What a fun idea!

Mama Squirrel said...

We usually do have sweet potatoes, but right now we're all out.