A Wrinkle in Pillow…the Conclusion

A Wrinkle in Pillow….the Conclusion

Well I was feeling quite suspicious by this time. Further investigation on my part revealed a white shirt that didn’t smell like any of my kids, and underneath it a mason jar filled with cigarette butts and, of all things, Ramen soup. By now my mind was in overdrive. “Nah” I said to myself, “There’s no way”.Always wanting to think the best and also that my kid is not capable of doing a nasty in my house, I went to Aaron with a blank piece of paper and pen and said very nonchalantly, ” Write out what went on here in my absence”. I got two lines out of him that basically said that he had had a party at the house with pot and beer.

“Not good enough” I said. “I want the “deets” “. So this time I got a page and a few tears. Seems that once his friends found out that I would be away for the week and that he would be staying at Dad’s, things got out of hand very quickly. News of Aaron’s party spread throughout the school like wildfire. At the end of it there were about fifteen young people attending, there was beer, pot, and for lack of something better to eat, dry Ramen soup. Somebody puked on my blanket. As the story went, he had appointed four friends to be “sargeants – at- arms”. Their job would be to make sure that no one, and I mean no one was allowed to go upstairs except for the bathroom. Also they would be the ones to stay behind and clean up the house afterwards. I have to say that they did an excellent job. They even washed my blanket!

So how, you might be wondering, did Aaron manage to pull this off without his father knowing? Well he told Dad that he was going to spend the night at his friend’s house. Dad didn’t think to call the friend’s father, and the friend said nothing of the sort to his dad. So Aaron was off the hook for the night.

But the question begs to be asked: Why was there a wrinkle in the pillow? Well, the four sargeants-at-arms were told that they had to spend the night at the house, and that they would be sleeping on the floor in the basement. One of them slept on my new pillow, hence the wrinkle and the grease.

There were a lot of lessons to be learned from Aaron’s party. Dad learned that you don’t take anything that a 14 year old tells you at face value. You check it out. Aaron learned that having a party is a lot of responsibility. Nothing went wrong, nothing was stolen, the house wasn’t trashed and nobody was hurt. But any and all of those things could have happened. I learned that my son needed tighter boundaries but also mercy from me.

Mercy in my definition is not getting what you deserve. Aaron did not get what he deserved. I figured he had learned his lesson all by himself.

And as I gained respect from my son, I also grew a few more grey hairs.

Divorce Fudge

Divorce Fudge

“Oh taste and see that the Lord is good…..and His mercy endures forever!”

People who know me know that I am the Fudge Lady. It’s true, I make a fudge that is “to die for”, also known as sucre a la creme here in Quebec. I sell this fudge at craft shows every fall, and have a loyal following of customers who order from me during the year when they just have a yen for some meltinyourmouth sweetness.

However, very few people know why I call my concoction “Divorce Fudge”. It isn’t because my divorce was “sweet”, and it’s not even because the name irks my ex.

Let me tell you a little story of a slice of my life in the fall of 2005. You see, back then I was going through my divorce and racking up huge legal bills. I had no way to pay them, and my heart was so heavy that I just couldn’t see straight. Back then I was what I call a steady plodder, just putting one foot in front of the other and trying to live one day at a time, just trying to get through it all.

While pondering over the phone with a friend how on earth I was going to pay all those legal bills, she suggested that I sell my fudge. I told her that was a mountain too big for me to climb. I could make the fudge, but that was all. I was not emotionally able to drum up business for myself. So she offered to take orders for me. She told me to make a sample of the finished product and a plate of samples for her to pass around. So I did.

Divorce fudge 2009 002

Never underestimate the love of a loyal friend. Brenda passed out samples of my fudge to everyone in her entourage: the people at her bank, the cashier at Zellers, her mechanic, her family and her friends. Everyone loved the fudge! Every other day she would call me with ten orders, or twenty orders, or eight orders. The orders kept coming and coming until…I had enough to pay my lawyer!

And then the orders stopped. There were just no more.

So I became the Fudge Lady and I tell this story to anyone who will listen so that they can see that the amount of fudge I sold and the amount I had to pay the lawyer was not a coincidence but the hand of a mighty and loving God.

To date, Divorce Fudge has made it from coast to coast in Canada, also to several States. One pan even made it to Ireland! At the present time it is being sold sprinkled with edible lavender at Pure Lavande, the boutique where I work, and people are buying it and coming back for repeat purchases! It has been a little source of revenue for me for the past four years and I am thankful.

So on this Thanksgiving Day I am thankful for a powerful God, my loving family and friends and also for Ted, my nephew and biggest fan.

To God be the glory!
Divorce Fudge lives on!

Curried Buttercup Squash and Apple Soup

Curried Buttercup Squash and Apple Soup

People have been asking for my recipe for this amazing soup, so I’ll share it here. I found the recipe in a magazine about ten years ago and have been making it every autumn since. With a piece of crusty bread, it makes a complete meal. And it is so easy to make…

The cream topping:

3/4 cups sour cream
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp salt
wisk together these three ingredients and refrigerate.

The Soup:

1 buttercup or butternut squash, sliced in half lengthwise
4 tbsp butter
1 chopped onion
2 stalks of celery, roughly chopped
2 carrots, roughly chopped
1/2 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves
pinch nutmeg
1 tsp curry powder
2 apples, peeled and chopped
salt, pepper

Scoop the seeds out of the squash and put cut side down in a buttered baking dish. Bake at 350 deg for about an hour. Cool for 45 minutes.

In a pot, melt the butter and then saute the onions, celery and carrots.Cook, stirring for about 10 minutes. Then add the apple and spices,stir. Then add 6 cups of water and the cooked squash that you have scooped out of its shell.
Simmer 1 hour
Let cool 30 minutes and then puree, either in a blender in small batches, or do like I do, with an immersion blender. I do it right in the pot. Add salt and pepper to taste.

To serve, garnish with a dollop of the sour cream mixture on top.

Let me know how you made out!

“Allo Police?” Parking Garage Distress

“Allo Police?” Parking Garage Distress

I hate parking garages. I have always hated them and never wanted to use them, danged mazes that they are. I remember in 2006 driving from Montreal through New York City, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Washington DC without mishap, only to get lost in a parking garage in Myrtle Beach. I just couldn’t find my way out, and it was a long time before Aaron let me live that one down.

However, that was nothing compared to what happened more recently. Being a middle aged single mom, I had no other way to meet men than to frequent internet dating sites. I did this for a few years, and met many memorable men, all at a restaurant called Scores in St Eustache, Quebec. Enter Roger aka Regor, as he was known on the Christian Cafe. He drove all the way from Detroit, Michigan in a great big black Cadillac just to meet me. That car was so big you could play house in it, and I was a little embarrassed to be seen in it, if the truth be known.

We went to visit downtown Montreal in that BBC (big black caddy), and when we arrived at Old Montreal to take in the sights, there was nowhere to park except in, you guessed it: a parking garage. I don’t know about you, but I find that the space for turning in those parking garages leaves a little to be desired, and this one was no exception. As Murphy’s Law would dictate, we had to park on the fifth floor. The car was too big to make the turns to go up to the next level, so Roger Dear had to make ten three point turns to get to the top. I was dying. At the top, there was a machine where you get a ticket, and on returning, you pay there at the machine, take your receipt and stick it in the machine at the ground level in order to get out.

Ok, we made it to the top, and then went on to enjoy the sights of Old Montreal at -30 degrees Celsius. I just wanted to go home. Well, finally it was time to go home and we found ourselves once again on the fifth floor of the parking garage, where Roger paid at the little machine, took his receipt, and then we proceeded to do ten more three point turns to get to the bottom.

At the bottom, it was a simple matter of putting the cardboard receipt in the slot and the big arm would go up, letting us out. Roger could not get the paper receipt in the slot and I kept telling him that he should have had a card to put there. But he didn’t. After many tries, he went back up to the fifth floor to see if the correct receipt was there. It was not. Then he tried walking in to the garage to get another receipt. Well Roger was not as big as his BBC so there was no receipt coming from there. I tried to lift the big arm up to no avail. We called the French operator on the little intercom, and all she could tell us was to put the receipt in the slot. We called Maintenance to see if they could help us. Only if there was a problem with the system, they said. It was getting late and the temperature was dropping. Imagine, to be a prisoner in a parking garage, of all places! Finally in desperation I asked Roger whether or not he thought I should call 911. He said I should indeed.

Wow! My first call to 911!! I explained the problem to the kind lady on the phone. She had one question for me.
“Can you walk out of the parking garage?”
“Yes.”
“Well, I can’t send the police if you are able to walk out.”
I asked her if it would make a difference if I called the police myself.
“Maam, we ARE the police.”
“Well what if I call CAA?”
” Just a minute, I’ll see.”

And while she was gone to “see”, Roger Dear found the missing card….in his pocket, right where he had put it. I quickly hung up on the kind lady, Roger Dear put the right card in the right slot; the big metal arm went up, and we made a dash out of that parking garage. Thank God there were not other cars behind us being delayed and worse, witnessing our predicament. It has been said that the primary difference between intelligence and stupidity is that there are limits to intelligence. I concur.