Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The Blessings Just Keep on Coming

The last few days have been tough, and yesterday was one of the longest days of my life as we waited until nearly seven o'clock at night to find out the results of mom's CT scan. I had worked so hard to hold it together over the previous week, and most of all to not obsess, that I don't think I realized the stress I had been under until I got home last night and just collapsed on the sofa. I was so wiped out that The Carnivore and I ended up eating a late night dinner of nachos. Um-hum. Cooked in the microwave, no less. 'Twas a new low. But the news from mom was so good that I felt it canceled out the nachos.

So I kicked into high gear this morning, made the menu for the next week, planned a casserole that I could make for The Carnivore so that he doesn't starve while I spend the weekend at mom's, got the grocery shopping done, picked up work, went to the bank, took a deep breath. Etc.

And then I loaded up my briefcase and set up at mom's house to get some work done today. First thing: open the mail that had been wallowing in my bag for the past four days. I sorted the stack into smaller piles, opened the junk mail to shred the sensitive stuff, separated the recyclable paper from that which needed to be filed, and then looked askance at an unexpected envelope from Fine Cooking. The outside said something about a free gift, but I had my doubts.

Fine Cooking is one of the greatest publications of all time. I love it. Ms. Carr has brought me a few issues over the past year, and mom even bought one for me one day to thank me for doing something. Really, I love it. I read every word, cover to cover (even the articles on meat!), and I've gotten some of our favorite recipes from this magazine. In line at the grocery store, I will look longingly at new issues and try to read a quick article, praying that the person in front of me will write a check or do something equally slow that will cause the line to be held up.

So here I was this morning, breathing audible sighs of relief that mom had gotten such good news from the doctor, glaring at the pile of work that I've been ignoring for the past couple of days, and basically just feeling out of sorts from the tension of the last week. And then I opened the envelope from Fine Cooking, scornfully of course, expecting yet another piece of junk mail.

I was wrong.

The tiny piece of paper inside said, "A gift of a 2 year subscription to Fine Cooking is on its way to you from Paula in Minnesota."

I am humbled. Deeply humbled. I am continually surprised and grateful for the support that mom receives from her online network of adoptive families, but I am humbled to my core that a woman I have never even met, the mother of 20-something children, would bless ME in such a thoughtful and huge way.

Then again, since she is also the wonderful woman who passed on her incredible blackberry vinaigrette recipe, I should have already known how cool she is.

I'm sure this post is going to embarass the heck out of Paula, and I bet she would have preferred that I not even mention this publicly, but since many of the recipes that I will be blogging in the near future will be thanks to her, then I think it is only fitting that she get public credit.

Thank you, Paula. You rock.

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