Wow! I always knew how lucky I was, but now, after hearing these stories, I'm even more grateful for what I have. Nobody should ever have to be hungry. I was very lucky indeed, as a kid, as I never remember hunger (in fact, I was fat). We never had any fancy food, mostly cheap stuff, but Mom is a great cook, and it always tasted good. We had pretty simple, but balanced meals, and always had enough for seconds. We also usually had a vegetable garden, too, which helped.
When I read the stories here, I was reminded of something the former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly wrote about his childhood: there were 6 hungry boys, plus Mom & Dad, in the family. He said they always had food on the table, even though many dinners consisted of canned baked beans, period. But, he appreciated the fact that his parents saw that the boys always were fed, even though they were very poor.
Years ago, I used to cook chili for a church group that distributed it to the homeless in town. I loved doing that (I only cooked it at home,though); then they decided they "Just didn't feel like doing it anymore."! How can you do that, and leave needy people in the lurch?!!??
This may souond corny, but every day, I thank God for the food in our pantry. I'm a big believer in stocking up when you can, for financial emergencies. DH and I have had a lot of close calls financially with his job (he gets paid hourly, and the hours just haven't been there the past 2 years). Once, he got suspended without pay for 2 weeks (which was an error, it was only supposed to be 1 week, and for something the other person later admitted she made up to get him fired). Thanks to my pantry, we barely noticed any financial stress--I just cut back on other stuff. I get paid every 2 weeks, so, the paychecks when I have few bills, I buy canned goods on sale, etc.