My favorite part of the holidays are the traditions we hold sacred... The things we do year in and year out, together. Some of these are common and shared with the rest of the world. And some of them are unique and individual. Some may even say silly... but to me they are the most important part of the season. These are the moments that make the memories. I was born into a good family, but I married into a good family as well. For many years a big part of our Christmas tradition was dinner at Leroy's Grandma Borba's. This family is capital "C" CRAZY and the most fun and love filled bunch of people you'll ever be around. There is never a gathering that does not include some form of food fight. (Yes, that includes weddings.) One of the best parts of these gatherings are the food... not only in abundance, but some of the more traditional dishes like chicken soup... and lasagna.
... Oh the lasagna ...
I have looked forward to eating lasagna on Christmas night for over 25 years. I'll never forget the first Christmas after my mom passed away. The entire season was hard with her absence, but I completely lost it when we went to Avo Borba's and no one made lasagna. I went home in tears. It seemed so ridiculous to cry over food but nothing seemed right without my mom... and my lasagna. My traditions were broken and so was my heart.
Since Avo passed away, our Borba Family Christmas gatherings have been hit and miss... But not this year. Leroy's Tia Rachel hosted dinner tonight... and because she loves me, there was lasagna. And I think it was the best lasagna EVER.
I am not so naive to think it's the lasagna I love. I know it's the hands that make the lasagna that mean the world to me. It is the love that goes into my favorite dish that I'm attached to and hold close to my heart. It is the love in the tradition that I appreciate and look forward to each and every time we get together.
Love becomes manifest in a steaming hot, cheesy, pasta dish. It doesn't get much better than that.