Almost 48 years ago, a knot was tied in Cabin Hollow, Kentucky.
Evelyn Colyer Jones became Mrs. David Lee Givens.
Nana and Papa were young and in love and full of dreams for the future, but even dreamers have to do regular, everyday things like eat. So, Nana made one of the few things she knew how to cook at that time.
A cherry delight pie.
She was most pleased when her new groom ate the pie with appreciation and satisfaction.
So she made him another when the first was gone.
Then she made another.
It was after the third or fourth one that Papa told her he just couldn’t eat another bite of cherry delight pie. He didn’t like them and could eat no more.
“Why did you eat it if you didn’t like it?” she wanted to know.
“I thought if I ate it all,” he said, “that it would be gone, but you just kept making more of them.”
I’ve been in this family for 23 years, and I have yet to see Nana make a cherry delight pie.
I’m pretty sure 1965 was the end of those in the Givens family.
There are some pretty major ingredients for a long and happy marriage in this story.
Serving. Nana wanted so much to do something that would please her husband.
Sacrifice. Poor Papa ate something he didn’t like at all for days.
Communication. They were able to talk about their differences without blaming or accusing or hurting.
More serving. Nana never made another cherry delight pie again, instead learning to make other things they could both enjoy.
Trust. Several years later, guess what kind of trees Papa planted at their old Kentucky home.
Yep – cherry trees.
Papa provided cherries by the bucket, knowing he could trust his palette to Nana.
They’ve both entrusted a lot more than their taste buds to one another, and for almost half a century they have been loving, working, praying and serving together.
I have high hopes that y’all will know this kind of marriage one day.
And that you will be as kind and loving to your wives as Papa is to Nana and as Dad is to me. Husbands like that are a true treasure and make a world of difference.
We were recently in Kentucky for a visit with our much-loved extended family, and Nana showed us one of her alternative cherry recipes.
Lee, it wouldn’t have been possible if you and Dad had not picked and pitted some cherries. Thank you!
Will and John, I didn’t get a good photo of the cherry pitting, so you’ll have to ask Lee and Dad for details. You squeeze from the bottom of the cherry, and the seed will pop right out.
You’ll need about 2 cups of them for the cobbler.
Put them in a saucepan with 1/4 stick of butter.
Mix 1/4 cup cold water with 1 tsp. corn starch.
This will thicken the cherries.
Pour this into the cherries and cook on low heat.
In a 9 x 13 pan, melt one stick of butter in the oven.
While those things are melting and cooking, you’ll mix the batter. Nana had the greatest little pitcher for this. It held all the ingredients and worked easily for pouring.
She put in one cup sugar,
one cup milk,
and one cup of self-rising flour. Whisk all this together until it has no lumps.
Remove the melted butter from the oven; gently and evenly pour the batter over the butter.
Then spoon the cherry mixture on top of that.
Nana sprinkled some sugar on top.
Bake at 350 degrees until golden. I think it took about 30 minutes. Nana said you’ll know when.
It will look like this when it’s ready.
Get some quickly, though, or the dish will look like this! Food doesn’t last long at Nana’s.
I love you,