Dinner of Champions

Paula and I lived together all through our 20s. One of our apartments was a two bedroom, one bathroom on the bottom floor of a two story building built in a mid-century style. Big, wide floor to ceiling windows in the living room and light green tile in the kitchen. We called it the cave because it was always cool and dark in that place, even in the height of summer. Of course, we were two blocks from the beach, so that helped some.

About six months after we moved in, a newly divorced young mom with two small kids moved into the apartment next to us. The kids were small, probably 2 and 4 years old. Their names were Landon and Maddy. Every day when they came home, Landon would look through the window and wave. Sometimes one of us would say “Hi, Bud” and then he’d holler to us about his picture or his game or whatever.

One night, Paula was standing in the front of the window eating from a bowl when Landon came home.

“What are you eating?” he asked her.


“You’re eating cereal for dinner?????”

He went running into his house, yelling for his mom. A big pause. Then the door opened and he stuck his head out.

“MY MOM SAYS YOU CAN’T EAT CEREAL FOR DINNER!!!” he yelled. Then he slammed the door.

Catholic kids know better. We can eat cereal for dinner. It happens all the time, like Fridays in Lent. Pancakes. Waffles. Egg sandwiches. And cereal.

Just no bacon.

And waffles are a MUCH better option then that other Catholic Friday stand-by: tuna casserole.

(My mom is screaming right now “But you LOVED tuna casserole when you were a baby!!!” Fine. But then I grew some taste buds. Just sayin’).

I use the Better Homes New Cookbook recipe for waffles, minus the cooking oil and sugar:

1 3⁄4 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1⁄4 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

1 3⁄4 cups milk

Of course, I add the same secret ingredients as my Super Secret Saturday Pancakes: vanilla and cinnamon (we eyeball it).

Gabriel shook off my waffles the other night and had cereal and yogurt instead. Of course, I made sure Paula saw this picture. She said “Cereal: the breakfast, lunch & DINNER of champions!”


Breakfast: It’s what’s for dinner.

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