Sundays in the South are something truly special.
There's a certain peacefulness in the air as families gather for a day of worship, rest, relaxation, and more than likely a delicious Southern meal. From the church service to the traditional Sunday dinner, there’s a sense of family, community, and tradition that permeates the day.
It is truly a setting to which only a Norman Rockwell painting can do justice.
When I was growing up, one of the most important parts of a Southern Sunday was attending church. For many families, church attendance brings them closer to their faith and to each other. The Sunday service is a time to gain knowledge through sound preaching, to reflect on the past week and give thanks for its many blessings, to pray for guidance in the week ahead, and to fellowship with others of faith.
Many families continue the day's celebration with a big, home-cooked meal after church. Sunday dinner is a time-honored tradition typically including dishes such as fried chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, cornbread, and a variety of other comfort foods.
You can usually smell various aromas coming from the kitchen, which cause your mouth to water just thinking about the foods from which they come. From the sweet sound of little giggles at the table and holding hands to say grace, to the warm feeling of a strong family filling the room, these memories are ones that warm the soul.
Many families have their own Sunday traditions and special recipes that are passed down from generation to generation. Homemade chicken and dumplings and fried cornbread were two that still live on in my family.
Most of our family meals included fresh vegetables picked from the farm that my family worked tirelessly on day after day. Riding the tractor with PawPaw to prepare the land or sitting on the front porch with Nanny shelling peas made those meals all the more special.
This day and the meal are often a time for extended family to gather, catch up on each other's lives, and share stories and memories. It's a time to relax and enjoy each other's company, and to savor the delicious flavors of Southern cooking.
Once upon a time, the only thing open on a Sunday was the church and grandma’s house for dinner. That was a simpler time, I suspect, where the day was quiet, the busy streets were empty, and little bellies that were full still feasted upon stories told on the front porch.
But things have changed a bit. Sundays in the South aren't just about attending church as a family and dinner anymore. They're also a time for leisurely activities like napping, reading a good book, or just spending time outside in the warm sunshine. Many Southern towns in Alabama have charming downtown areas where families can stroll and browse through shops or grab a sweet treat from a local bakery.
Overall, Sundays in the South are a time to slow down, appreciate the simple things in life, and spend quality time with loved ones. It's a day to recharge and reflect before the start of a new week.
So if you ever find yourself in the South on a Sunday, be sure to soak up the hospitality, warmth, and charm that make this day so special.
Ashley Carter is a wife, mother, and grandmother living in Elmore County where she and her husband run Farm to Table Living and Carter Farms. Ashley serves as Controller and Executive Assistant at 1819 News. She is currently working on an inspirational book of short stories. To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email email@example.com.
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