The Spoiler won't give up 'til you agree to seconds, and a cookie for the road. We all have one in our lives: she might be your grandmother, who sneaks you an extra treat after dinner, or your partner, who surprises you with your favourite cake after a long day. The Spoiler knows that it’s important to indulge once in a while: their passion is to please, and they know there's no better way to do that than with good food.
Celebrate The Spoiler in your life by making a donation to Community Food Centres Canada on their behalf
Got a Spoiler in your life? Scroll down to share this with them on social media and thank them for being your food hero! #myfoodhero
Our all-star Spoiler is Janet Davis. Read more about Janet and why being a Spoiler is so important to her.
1. What are the key qualities of an effective Spoiler? Are you the Spoiler in your grandchildren's lives?
For me, ‘spoiling’ my grandchildren is about making my special recipes: a delicious cake made with Ontario prune plums, apple crisp made with Northern Spy apples, cranberry-banana muffins with fruit straight from Muskoka cranberry bogs, a recipe that's based on a muffin recipe from their great-grandmother, another wonderful spoiler. Beyond food, I also try to spoil them in a way that establishes a relationship full of love, but also curiosity in what they’re doing and what they have to say. As a photographer, I am notorious for capturing them in their natural world, and creating little video vignettes with them that I hope they’ll enjoy watching long after I’m gone. So I spoil with baked Ontario fruit dishes — and also with love, listening and conversation.
2. Did you have a Spoiler in your life growing up? Who were they, and what was special about them?
My grandmother in Victoria, B.C. was my Spoiler. Widowed and living independently on very limited means in a one-room apartment in a boarding house near the ocean, she only had a two-burner stove so her dinners were not fancy, but they were healthy and adequate, using the ingredients she could afford. She was not a baker, but she always had a bowl of humbug candies and fresh raspberries in season for us to sprinkle on our cereal when I visited. Our treat was to sit together at the lunch counter at (what was then) Eaton’s department store and have a special meal “out”. She was my teacher in the spoiling role: spoiling me not just with home-cooked food and tasty treats and special meals out, but with love and a true sense of companionship that belied the 65 or 70 years between us.
3. Why is it important for you to support an organization that uses food as a tool to increase physical and mental health and community belonging? What about this approach resonates with you?
My husband and I support Community Food Centres Canada because it is a truly unique organization, interweaving the provision of food for those hungry and in need with a nurturing environment in which loneliness is assuaged, darkness is lifted, and life skills taught to increase independence and well-being. In other words, “spoiling” its clients with healthy, nourishing food and a sense of dignity and hope.