As I started to write this memoir of a sort, I had to set the laptop down quickly and make a bee-line to the oven. Frantic that my cake was burnt, Whew ! It’s Mother’s day, which means it’s tea party day.
In Vincy, tea parties are an inherent part of Mother’s day and School fair culture. The phone is ringing off the hook for my mom, and sadly to say I haven’t given her a hug and a kiss yet because I’m caught up making sure the goodies she assigned for me to make are done for her event of the year- Women’s League Mother’s Day Tea !
My memories of this annual activity which is hosted by our Women’s League and by extension, the ladies of the congregation; is that it is a splendid opportunity to get our church and our community together, and display the culinary skills and talents of its members. My mom loves to see little girl in a pretty dresses, So my god-sister and I would flaunt our own pretty dresses on these sunny Sunday May afternoons, showcasing our best moves with then skinny frames…..Applause ! Applause !
As I got older, I retired from modeling but continue to volunteer for different roles. within the past years, I have been expressing myself in the kitchen and my mother who is an active member of the league has been taking the opportunity to utilize my new kinship with the kitchen for her group’s benefit.
Our women’s league, I think is under appreciated because they contribute to our church in such a significant way.This brings us to today, Mother’s Day, 2017. A few days ago, my mother declared that she wanted mini-quiches on the menu. I had no choice but bow to her wish, so here I am preparing mini-quiches with spinach. I added a vanilla cake topped with coconut and almond.
Earlier this year we lost one of our church members who for years had offered his well manicured property as the venue for our annual affair. So because of this, the venue has since changed, but the cause remains the same.
This fundraising social is in celebration of the women who have sacrificed for the children in their care. I know my mommy has gone above and beyond for her family and for this, her gift today is this article. Happy Mother’s Day to my mother, who made Saturday afternoon bread-making fun, because she thought one is never too young to be acquainted with the kitchen. Undoubtedly, I love my Mommy !
Article and Photographs submitted by Roselle Solomon.
Although Mother’s Day 2017 has passed, we hope that this post will warm the hearts of all our mothers out there who strive daily to add a little bit of sunshine to the lives of children in their care and their communities. It’s never too late to say thank you!
© 2017. All rights reserved.
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My first memory of Christmas was when we lived in Layou, that coastal village town on the south western tip of St. Vincent. We lived in a two-storied house that was fashionable at that time: made of concrete downstairs and a wooden upstairs. It was located just around the bend past that delicate little stone-wall church in the corner as you entered the village from the Kingstown direction. Our neighbours were the Palmers.
Mommy had boiled the picnic ham, then baked it in the outside drum-oven; the ham was golden brown with cloves stuck artfully into its tender skin. My big brother was tasked with taking it upstairs, having to walk up the flight of concrete stairs. He might have tried to pick a piece of the loose meat, or maybe he was overwhelmed by the honour bestowed upon him; either way, the next I remember, we all squealed with horror and anger, as the dainty ham came crushing down to the sandy ground.
There is a gap in my memory in regards to the rest of that day, but we must have all recovered well from the trauma of the tumbling ham; because the next I remember, was me lying in bed, feeling very full as my mother gently massaged my tummy with a feather. She sang a verse that I recall up to this day:
“Kerry belly swell, Kerry belly swell,”
There was little more to the song; but I understood that the intention was to relieve my indigestion that had come about due to overeating and I assume, over drinking.
I have had the pleasure of singing the ‘Belly Swell’ Song for my own daughters, when they too, as little girls had fallen captive to the indulgence of the Vincentian Christmas Lunch/Dinner and had ended up with distended tummies.
Yet, to do otherwise is simply not considered appropriate at Christmas: even for those of us who are now mature and have transformed from the skinniness of childhood and early adulthood, to a more almost rotund body stature.
We may vow to cut down on our portion sizes, but there are simply too many savoury dishes to be sampled; then the Fruit Cake, Black Cake, Sorrel, Ginger-beer; Red Wine, Black Wine, and all the other culinary delights which tempt our appetites, enticing us to try just a little bit of this and a little sip of that.
It is what it is, and so in spite of breaking all my preset dietary rules for Christmas 2016, I’m thankful for the feelings of pride that the season brings to SVG. This has been a challenging year for many of our citizens, and so we at take this opportunity to wish all a Blessed, Peaceful, and Prosperous 2017.
Photos by Roselle Solomon exclusively for Express Vinci®.
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