by Debbie Maranville, Co- owner of Goods from the Garden, Catering & Events 


True Story – A co-worker and I were setting up for a “Retirement” catering party this evening.  As we were creating the menu and details, we were also notified that she lost her husband this passed week.  As I am setting up and paying attention to the details, I received a note letting me know that one of my best friends had just passed away from Breast Cancer.  I was saddened and felt angry, for I never got to say good- bye.  Her disease progressed so rapidly during the three weeks that I had knowledge.  In my heart I wanted to bring her my “Aunt Marlen’s Macaroni Salad.”  I was just too darn busy and did not create the time to drive down to Phoenix and hold her hand.  When Sandy and I were roommates back in the 1980’s and through our child rearing years, I would prepare the Macaroni Salad for Sandy.  She loved it!  Her eyes lit up when I brought over a big Tupperware bowl.  

Whether there was a death in the family, someone is in the hospital, or life has taken a difficult turn, we all face difficult challenges from time to time. A home-cooked meal can’t fix a tough situation, but it can definitely provide love and comfort when it is needed most.   

Preparing comfort dishes for family, friends and loved ones can be especially received by those that are grieving.  Homemade Care Packages not only gives them a bit of comfort, but it’s a good way to take their mind off the current stress. 

Don’t let this tradition die away. Whether you make the food yourself or purchase a meal from a restaurant, take meals to families who are grieving and attach a touching sympathy note while you’re at it, too. 


Matthew 5:4 

“Blessed are those who morn, for they will be comforted.”  (New International Version (NIV) 





Foods and Herbs to Support Grieving friends and family 

Chamomile Tea – Calming, soothing and supports anxiety.  

Rose Essential Oil –  Anti-depressant and opens the heart.  Helps you get grounded and addresses emotions.  

Hawthorn is well known for its supportive and protective effects on the cardiovascular system and the heart, but it also has a lot to offer the emotional heart.  You can take as a capsule or brew as a tea.  

Lavender tea and essential oil can be a good choice if you’re feeling down due to grief and depression. For centuries, people have been using lavender and its oil to uplift their mood. The oil is rich in analgesic and relaxing properties. Thus, it can deal with issues like anxiety, depression, and stress that may happen due to grief. 

Fresh fruits and vegetables are a great benefit during the grieving process.  They include vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber.   

Soups, Stews and Broths are very nurturing.  Also easy to reheat.  

Chicken Pot Pie, Shephard’s Pie or a Baked Macaroni and Cheese are great comfort foods.   

Goods from the Garden, Catering & Events is a great local resource for all your catering needs.  We specifically hold a space for compassion when it comes to Celebrating the Lives of others.    

Contact us at 928-237-3214 or email us