As I’ve grown older, I’ve acquired many names in addition to Sara. I’m called Mom, Momma, Love and Friend. As of 2020 I can add Lasagna Mama to that list.
Back on August 26, 2020 I saw a post made by a family friend about a grassroots movement called Lasagna Love. The post pictured a woman named Rhiannon making a lasagna with her daughter. It stirred up a lot of interest and emotion within me and I knew I had to research further.
I clicked on the link and as I read, I discovered that Lasagna Love founder Rhiannon Menn delivered her first lasagna on March 27, 2020. Once I read the mission of this movement, I knew I had to be involved.
Serving Up Love
Lasagna Love’s mission: “What we do is simple: feed families, spread kindness, and strengthen communities. Our mission is not only to help address the incredible rise in food insecurity among families, but also to provide a simple act of love and kindness during a time full of uncertainty and stress.”
Rhiannon also shared this insight: “Not only are five times as many households with children facing food insecurity since the beginning of the pandemic, depression, overwhelm, and stress are hitting families hard. We’re here to help in any way we can—whether it’s putting food on the table for a family that’s lost income, or simply taking one thing off of someone’s to do list that might give them a much-needed break. We’re weaving kindness back into the fabric of our communities, one lasagna at a time.”
“That was amazingly yummy, a huge hit for my kids as well.” This was a message I received after my last lasagna delivery. I never started this to receive praise but receiving a message from a family fills me with joy. While this past year held a lot of uncertainty, loss and confusion, many beautiful emotions, gifts and opportunities have risen out of it. Lasagna Love is one of those gifts.
“We’re weaving kindness back into the fabric of our communities, one lasagna at a time.”
With each lasagna I make, I honor the memory of my Mom as I make her recipe. Growing up I have the fondest memories of making lasagna with my Mom; she always welcomed me to help in the kitchen. This is where my love of cooking started. Her recipe was simple, but you could taste the fact that she enjoyed making this meal for our family.
As a child my favorite part was when my Mom had a couple noodles leftover, a little sauce left in the pan and cheese on the counter. She would take one noodle, spoon a little sauce over it, sprinkle that with cheese and then she would offer it up. My Mom would always remind me to eat it over the sink as it was gloriously messy.
Again, this meal was created out of very simple ingredients—but you could taste my mother’s love in every bite! I now have the honor of remembering my Mom’s love by rolling up the leftover ingredients for my two girls as they lean over the sink and enjoy every bite.
By feeding families I am nourishing bodies and souls, encouraging families to eat together and, even if it’s just one meal, I’m helping take away the uncertainty of putting food on the table. If you would like to get involved with Lasagna Love—whether you’d like to cook a meal or request a meal—visit lasagnalove.org today.
Sara Simoneau is a native New Englander now living in beautiful central Virginia. She spends her time working as a full-time HR professional, part-time ESL teacher and a Mom navigating the world of having two girls, one entering double digits and one about to enter her teenage years. To relieve stress from dealing with the aforementioned and promote well-being, Sara loves to hike with her family, volunteer, cook for others and occasionally binge watch a series with her partner. She believes something as simple as a smile can help turn someone’s day around. ★