There are 3 things that I remember about Thursdays when I was growing up:

1. It was the night we cleaned house
2. Mama made a “homemade pizza” for supper
3. The Walton’s came on at 7 p.m.

There were only three of us in our family unit, as I am an only child so we were close knit. On Thursday nights, we all pitched in to clean house, which involved vacuuming, dusting, mopping and cleaning the bathrooms. Mother preferred to clean house on Thursday nights so she did not have to do it on her weekend off from work.

Everyone arrived home by 4:00 p.m. and we would get to work. Afterward we would enjoy some pizza and watch The Waltons together. Pizza and our favorite family show was the reward for cleaning house. It made for a good, fun family night!



I don’t know many men whom will pitch in and clean house like my daddy did, and still does. Today, my mother is not able to do a lot of housework so my daddy does most of it. He does a really good job, which is a good thing because I call my mama “Ms. Tidy-bowl”; she likes a clean house. She always made sure our home was clean; she took great pride in it.

In honor of my dad for the upcoming Father’s Day, I want to recognize him for being such a good daddy, and sweet husband to my mother. Here we are when I was in high school. (We liked Home Interior décor. Can you tell?)


Now, as a treat, I am going to share my mother’s “home-made” pizza recipe. It is soooo good! I often make it for my family.


This is such a quick and simple pizza to make. The reason I call this pizza “home-made” (with parenthesis) is because we start with a base, compliments of Chef-Boyardee. I could eat this pizza sauce base all by itself. It is YUM.

Pizza box

We prepare it according to the box’s instructions. I use both my iron skillet and stoneware when making this pizza.

Pizza base

The itty-bitty pepporonies in this kit are delicious. I always sneak one out of the sauce when building my pizza; I just can’t help myself. Since there are pepporonis in the sauce, I add cooked sausage. You can add large pepporonis if you like; that is my daddy’s preference. My husband prefers hamburger over sausage.

pizza sausage

When it is summer, I use fresh veggies. In the winter, I buy store-bought vegetables like onion, green pepper, and tomatoes. I do prefer to use canned mushrooms, which are easy to keep on hand.

pizza veggies

I then top it well with mozzarella cheese, but you can add other types if you like. Once ready, I bake it for about 20 minutes and WAAA-LAAA! I know! It looks so good you can taste it, can’t you???

pizza final

From this Thursday night experience, I learned not only how to make a great pizza, but I also learned that even the most mundane things can make great family memories. What mundane family things have made for great family memories at your house?

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Author Gina Duke is a wife, mom and Director of Women’s Ministry at her local church. With a B.S. in Organizational Leadership, she is able to bring a clear word for authentic Christian living. Through her book, “Organizing Your Prayer Closet: A New and Life-Changing Way to Pray” (Abingdon Press), she imparts 1 Peter 4:7 with the gift of structured prayer journaling. If you would like to schedule Gina to speak on prayer or host a prayer journaling workshop, click here for more information. You may also follow her on Twitter and Instagram @TheGinaDuke.

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