Love Languages

The first time I talked to Egypt she was walking in the door to the church. “Welcome,” I said, smiling at her.  “I’ll punch you in the face,” she said with a determined look. Those aren’t words I’m used to hearing coming from anyone, much less a woman about twice my size. The intensity of […]

No Separation

My relationship with homeless people is changing. I grew up in Berkeley where it was common to see people living on the street year round. I would pass the same familiar faces selling “Street Sprit” newspaper by my favorite bakery, and wonder what it felt like to have that life. My family never gave money […]

Linda and Joy

Linda and Joy come every week to Free Food Harlem, usually midway through dinner service. A mother and her adult daughter. I say hello, ask them about how their week has been, sit and talk for a bit. Joy’s face always lights up, her name perfectly describing the emotion she evokes in others. Linda’s eyes […]

No Apple Left Behind

We had lived on a 162 acre property for a few years before we noticed the apples. I know, it seems odd that you might not see 80+ fruit trees in the garden, so somewhere in the back of our consciousness we must have known they were there, but no one remembered seeing them previous […]

Two Hungry Women

Last night at Free Food Harlem, when the initial crowd died down and service was slow, I took a break from serving and stopped to eat the meal we had cooked. One thing I love about our meals is that I always want to eat the food. When I’ve volunteered at soup kitchens or other […]

Finding our Home in the Tenderloin

It was time. We had been dreaming, planning, envisioning Love to Table for long enough. We were overflowing with ideas of how we wanted the restaurant to look, what it would feel like, the food we would serve, the tinctures made from our garden bounty that would adorn the curated bookshelves filled with books on […]

Doors Open to Everyone

When I was homeless, I didn’t have a choice of what to eat. If it was cold food, milk, bread, peanut butter and jelly, an apple, I’d eat it. At Free Food, the food is great. We make it ourselves. We make it out of our hearts.

“How Much for a Flower?”

We were loading all our bags of food and supplies up on the curb for the short drive over to the church when a man stopped me to ask about the flowers. We had a bucket stuffed to capacity with colorful roses and peonies, all donations from a local flower shop in New York, Eros […]