Sunday, October 11, 2009

Three Jumps at the Pantry Door

When I was growing up, my mom did a lot of delicious cooking and baking. She gave herself the night off every Sunday. On Sunday nights we were to prepare our own meals. She called it "three jumps at the pantry door." As in,

"what's for dinner?"

"three jumps at the pantry door."

(meaning: fix yourself something!)

However, she didn't really take the night off as I would interpret the meaning of night off. She still rummaged around the kitchen and set out things that would help us: leftovers, cheese, meat, bread, vegies and fruit, fixings and even dishes for us to use... to me that is pretty much the same as making a meal, but to her it was a break from meal prep.

My hubby and I still use the "three jumps concept." But in our world, it is a 100% night off for both of us from trying to feed the other. In our house it goes like this:

"what should we do for dinner tonight?"

"how about Three Jumps?"


and we know each of us is completely on our own. We both just scrounge; no one lays out any food suggestions for anyone else. The only overlap is if one person creates something yummy, and the other one is jealous. Then a little bit of stealing or "forced sharing" goes on.

You know what? When I sat down to write, I was going to talk about church today and the quilting I've done! Somehow this story came out instead. I probably have food on my mind, after seeing "Julie and Julia" in the theater Friday night (good movie, and Meryl Streep, as usual, was superb).

Do you have any strange language such as "three jumps at the pantry door" that no one outside of your family understands?


Torina said...

In my family we say, "m'ungry?" Then grunt and nod and say "m'ungry!" If we are asking if someone is hungry and replying :)

Unknown said...

we just

I have to think about this a bit...

Darcie said...

Love the story, Carol!

All that I can remember is a hurtz donut. I was (still am) the baby of the family by many years to my siblings. And my two older bros LOVED to tease me. (Still do.) Anyway...they'd say "hey, you wanna hurtz donut?" Donuts have always been my weakness, even as a child. So of course I would nod, excitedly. They'd punch (lightly, of course) me in the arm, laugh hysterically, and say "Hurts. Don't it." Brothers. lol

Twisted Quilts said...

My husband always makes up names for things. He calls one grocery store near us the Tommy Road store because his uncle Tommy lives on the same road. We call our daughters new boy friend the Chinese boy friend because she met him in China, he is not Chinese. In our extended family some of us have "family" names. My husband calls our oldest son Earl just for fun.

Carol E. said...

Oh, I love these comments! Wish I could hear more! We quote a lot of movie lines at home, too. "You didn't clean up your area." and "I shall hold back the waters!" and "I shall avert my eyes at the proper moment" are all movie lines that we use fairly often. The first two are from.. I can't remember the name, but they're from the same movie. The nut jobs that "escape" from the hospital into NYC. The third one is from some western we saw on TV.

Also we use crazy names for things and people. We call our neighbor Bill Bob even though his name is Jack.

And we sometimes have "bonelness chicken" in honor of a misspelled sign in a grocery store (it stayed up for over a year until I finally pointed it out to an employee).

And of course we quote our children from their toddler days all the time.. we take out the bahdij (garbage). We eat keputch (ketchup) and "chase skeemadoes" (mosquitoes).

Judy H. said...

For the last couple of years, my husband and I have used, "Big room with cars!" as a code word for "I'm blanking on a common word that I want to say." You can probably extrapolate the story on your own...

Mary Johnson said...

We call this fend night around's what Keith's mom called it when they were growing up.

Usually we fend when Keith comes home, I haven't cooked anything, and when one of us doesn't feel like going out.

BrendaLou said...

I was a follower of your mom! About the time my kids got to middle elementary school age I declared Sunday as Mom's night off. We would stop at a local grocery deli for sandwhiches after church and everyone was on their own for dinner. It evolved into "Baked Potato Night" as most of the time everyone would cook a baked potato and put leftovers on top.

"Fimmers" (fingers), My hubby is often called Skill Bott (Bill Scott) or I now refer to him as Mr. Scottie Dog.

Craftygirl said...

When Fred or I pour a drink for the other we ask "Do you want more than you usually get?" due to years of filling glasses half full to limit the amount of kid-spills.

And when Cal was little he called butter crank. "You want more crank on that potato?" Imagine the chagrin when the kindergarten tester asked Cal how to make a sandwich . . . "First you take toast, then you spread the crank . . "

Baby Chrissy (now 15) called Grandma's beverage of choice a "Diet Seppy" We still ask Gma is she wants a Seppy when she comes over . . .

And of course there's "Typical Ford Rust" We once bought an old truck from a classified ad, when asked the previous owner said it had "typical Ford rust." Whenever my family's stressing me out by doing the things they always do, acknowledging that it's "Typical Ford Rust" usually helps me shake the irritation.

Craftygirl said...

PS: I love the bonelness chicken.

PPS: Hubby is learning to text. His first text to me was "everything is fin" so now when we're checking up on each other we'll ask if things are fin. Makes me smile.

Pattilou said...

Once while on a picnic with our family and a friend of our son, I was wearing a t-shirt from a writing class that I had taken, with "Don't Foget to Write" written accross the front. After we had eaten his friend looked at me and said, "You have a (stammer stammer) well, a chip on your forget." Which has now become code from my husband to me, when he says, "You have a chip on your forget" it means --"You have something on your ample bosom, that needs to be brushed off." Anyone with that problem knows they are like a shelf that catches everything and we smile every time he says that, and I simply just brush off the "chip."

3Jumps said...

I presume you live in USA? I live in UK. I have found your phrase because I'm investigating 'Three jumps at the cupboard door' which my mum always used to say to us when we asked 'what's for tea?' (tea means dinner in north of England). To me, it meant 'nothing, if you're not careful!' There are many variations of the phrase and it appears to have been used around some of the northern counties of UK....

If she didn't know what she was going to cook she used to say…."three runs 'round table and a kick at pantry door"
"A run round t'kitchen & a kick at the pantry door"
"we had 'a jump at the cupboard door and a bite at the knob'"
When asking what's for tea: A run at the cellar door and a bite of the knob.
"What's for tea Mum?" "Roast leg of liver and a run round the table and a kick at the cellar door"
A variation on 'what's for tea? ' a slice of bread and a run round 'table'.