#FF — A Happy Meal


PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

She layered their shirts and pants before putting their threadbare thrift store coats on them. The oversized boots they’d had to choose because that’s all that was left were an advantage in winter. More room for layers of socks. Their hats, scarves, and mittens, donated by the ladies of the nearby nursing home, were thick and warm.

Every morning by eight-thirty, she and the children waited in the park. At eight forty-five they crossed the street and got in line. At exactly nine, the door under the welcoming stone archway opened to warm air and the happy smells of breakfast.

[100 words]

Learn more about food insecurity here.

Rochelle Wisoff-Fields is the inspiring host of Friday Fictioneers.  I must also give a nod to Dale Rogerson’s lovely photo today!  Wow!

50 Comments Add yours

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Neel. The picture really inspired me.

      Like

  1. Laeli says:

    Her love, tenderness and care shines through so warmly in your words. I can see them all so clearly in my mind and it breaks my heart for them all the more.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      ❤ Thank you. Mine too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Evocative and truthful. I know some such children. I’ve fed some such children. The care and tenderness is palpable. And underneath it, the desperate determination. Well done! Such an important reality to raise awareness to.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Na’ama.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. neilmacdon says:

    Kids that organised are going to grow up to make a change in things

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      🙂 Yes! Maybe one day they will the director of the place.

      Like

  4. Dora says:

    Lisa, I love the inherent resilience and joy in this story: funny, those of us who don’t have to rely on the generosity of strangers are rather more prone to self-pity than gratitude for all we have.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Indeed, Dora. Wonderful comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Iain Kelly says:

    A family surviving on the breadline. Sometimes that’s all there is, but there should be more.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Yes, Iain, there should be more.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Bittersweet story, Jade.

    Susan A Eames at
    Travel, Fiction and Photos

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Susan.

      Like

  7. memadtwo says:

    At my last apartment the line to the local city food distribution center always stretched around the block. I hope they are still doing it. No one should have to be hungry in this country. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      You are SO right, Kerfe. There is no excuse for it.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. msjadeli says:

      p.s. The trend around here now is food trucks, where the semis park in a large parking lot and people either walk up or pull up with their cars. I’ve seen some of the stuff on food trucks. It will keep you alive but none of it looked that great. It’s a shame that the castoffs are given to the desperate and then the company writes it off as charity 😦 I hope your soup kitchens are better there.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. memadtwo says:

        The ones run by the city were coordinated with school breakfast and lunch programs. I’m not sure they were great, but they were not “leftovers”. There are also lots of different soup kitchens, many run by churches, but I don’t know where they get their food. I know restaurants give their leftovers to some organization but I’m not sure how it gets distributed. It’s so awful people feel ashamed to ask for help in this country…one of our worst cultural faults.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. notestowomen says:

    Lisa, this is such a heartwarming story about a struggling family, thankful for what they have because of the kindness and generosity of others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you very much, Magarisa.

      Like

  9. Sadje says:

    A lovely story Li.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you much, Sadje.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje says:

        You’re welcome

        Liked by 1 person

  10. badfinger20 (Max) says:

    It had shades of a Charles Dicken type story…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Max, I’m honored to be compared in any degree to Dickens.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. plaridel says:

    a true to life story. a bit of humanity more treasured with the less fortunate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Plaridel, yes. Things people with more take for granted.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. draliman says:

    At least they have somewhere to go for their breakfast.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Exactly, Ali. Many kids look at school lunch the same way (when school isn’t shut down due to covid, that is.)

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Why oh why are so many still reliant on charity these days? Sadly it’s on the increase as the current situation robs people of their jobs and income.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Middle class is being elbowed into the lower class and the rich aren’t giving away much of anything, especially when the leaders refuse to tax them appropriately. This leaves so many scrabbling to survive. Compound it all with covid and you’ve got a catastrophe.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Dear Lisa,

    Heartbreakingly real. I could feel the cold. Well written.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Rochelle, thank you. This is going to be a long cold winter.
      Shalom,
      Lisa

      Like

  15. granonine says:

    Wet take a lot for granted, don’t we.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Nobbinmaug says:

    That’s a beautifully written bittersweet story. I remember standing in line at the food bank as a kid to get those big-ass blocks of government cheese.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Nobbin. My aunt got the cheese (and the canned meat) and gave it to us.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. A sad reality of our times. This was written with such a sense
    of dignity for the mother. I could feel her pride in her children despite
    the tattered clothing. A well-fed child needed to follow your super descriptions.
    Nicely written … Be Safe … Isadora 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Isadora, thank you very much.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. James McEwan says:

    A warm place and early breakfast are wonderful things to look forward too. There is so much we take for granted, while for others it is there only saviour.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, James, yes.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Dale says:

    Oh, how heartbreaking because it is the reality for far too many. Beautifully written, Lisa.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Dale, yes it is.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. A touching and heartbreaking story because it is a true one. You conveyed their desperate situation very gracefully. I felt their cold and their hunger. Thank you for including the link.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Many thanks, Brenda. I wish it wasn’t so 😦

      Like

  21. Well this certainly tugs at the heartstrings, well done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      ❤ Thank you, Michael.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. pennygadd51 says:

    You capture the ambivalence of the situation very well. There is the struggle to provide adequate clothing, the kindness of many, the pleasure of a good breakfast, and through it all comes the mother’s pride in making sure that her children are adequately clothed and fed whatever that takes. And what you don’t say is as telling as what you do say.
    Good, subtle writing. A story with a warm heart.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Penny thank you so much for your feedback, it is appreciated 🙂 ❤

      Like

  23. Laurie Bell says:

    Beautifully written
    Such brave souls. Good people trying to make the best of a bad situation.
    This is heartfelt and heartbreaking. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you Laurie!

      Like

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