Book review: Smith’s ‘The Meat and Potatoes of Life’ gives a funny look at military life
Once upon a time, young Lisa Smith, a lawyer, married Francis Molinari, an up and coming naval career officer. Then they had three kids, and military service caused multiple relocations. Like everyone else raising a family, notions of “new place” adventures are dashed by reality, and Supermom ideals are torn down faster than a confederate statue. Being a military spouse ups the crazy quotient, and Lisa Smith Molinari captures it all in her new book, “The Meat and Potatoes of Life: My True Lit Com” (Elva Resa Publishing, MilitaryFamilyBooks.com 246 pp. $26.95 for hardcover, May 2020)
If Erma Bombeck had been a military spouse, she could have written this book, which is about family life in all its heartwarming, eye rolling, ironic and revealing glory. Molinari compresses a lifetime of parenting as a military spouse into four “seasons”: “In the Beginning,” “In The Mix,” “In The Trenches,” and “In It To Win It.”
Within each season, Molinari pens episodes that prove to be as entertaining as their titles: “When Strangers Marry,” “Thanksgiving’s Forbidden Fruit,” “How Many Idiots Does it Take To Fill Out a 1040?” “Lady Surgery,” “Life, Hot Flashing Before My Eyes,” “Traveling on Auto Potty,” and “The Truth About Our Son.” There is so much more, and Molinari writes humor with a surprising and engaging eye for detail.
Who knew military family life could be so hilarious?
In her current writing career, the author has harnessed both funny and poignant experiences as a military spouse in her column for the national publication, Stars and Stripes. “The Meat and Potatoes of Life: My True Lit Com is her first book.”
What shines through witty observations is her love of family. It is about gratitude and facing challenges together. It is a feel-good read because laughter releases endorphins in every chapter. It is an intimate and laugh-out-loud look into a military family.
Email Suzette Martinez Standring at email@example.com.