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Memories revisited by special meal

Growing up on the family dairy farm, our cows were given a number rather than a name except for the belligerent low-milk producer. Her name became "Hamburger."

Dad would call Lloyd, who would come to the farm with his gun and the truck with the hoist. Lloyd would do his job and leave with the dead old girl formerly known as Hamburger to be transformed into roasts, steaks and of course, hamburger.

Lloydy, as we affectionately called him, would leave behind the liver which would go directly in the refrigerator to be cooled.

The fresh kill. The bloody, dark red almost black, blood filtering cow organ would gross out most. But not my family, just thinking about it makes me salivate. It was time for the feast.

Dad would sharpen his knives and thinly slice the cooled liver into about one-eighth to one-quarter inch thick pieces.

Mom would fry up a couple pounds of bacon. Then she would coat the thin pieces of liver in flour, seasoned with salt and pepper and fry the pieces in the bacon grease.

Mom would fry a heaping platter of fresh tender, delicate-textured meat. The key was not to over cook it.

My dad, three extra-large big brothers and I delighted in the delicacy. Not one of us complained, not even me, the family's finicky eater.

I am sure Mom prepared mashed potatoes and "every dinner has to have a vegetable" but what stands out in my memory is the heaping platter of meat.

After indulging, Dad would look up at the clock and announce it was chore time and he and the boys would go to the barn to milk the cows.

Mom would finish frying the rest of the liver and we would start on clean-up.

After chores, the big, growing boys would come in and snack on cold liver. I would imagine that one of my brothers would make a liver and mashed potato sandwich.

Before bedtime the meat would be gone and it would be about a year before we butchered again.

After my brothers were full grown and two had left home, there was no longer a need to fill the freezer with homegrown beef and the

tradition ended.

But recently a neighbor gave my parents frozen liver and Mom and Dad prepared for a feast. Receiving more liver than they could eat themselves, they hosted a special dinner for family and friends.

As we shared the meal, memories of days gone by were revisited.

Still being the picky eater, I feel fresh, never frozen, thinly sliced and lightly fried in bacon grease was the secret to loving a food item most people detest.

In reality, it is probably the overall positive feelings of that time I hold dear, with the excitement and loving intent of my parents providing for their loved ones.

Ahh, sharing special

moments with family and friends is what make life worth remembering.