On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

Published in the Rains County Leader on March 5, 2019:

Jim and DavidLast Monday was David’s birthday, and Tuesday was my brother Jim’s birthday, so we’ve been celebrating a lot this week. We met Jim, his wife, and his middle son at Tiffany’s for dinner on Monday in honor of the occasions. They had booked a few days at Holly Lake Ranch so the guys could “fish the Fork” and Jo Lynn could catch up on some reading, so we looked for a restaurant around the lake that would be convenient for all of us.

Tiffany’s wasn’t our first choice. David and I don’t eat out a lot except for an occasional Coconut Cream Pienight at A.J.’, but since they’re closed on Monday and Jo Lynn doesn’t eat fish anyway, we weren’t much help when it came to suggestions. Our ladies Bible study had lunch at Verona’s Italian Restaurant once, but they’re closed on Monday, too. Jo Lynn did an Internet search, and we decided to try Oakridge Marina. Unfortunately, they close at 3:00 pm on week nights. It was my turn to get on the computer, and I came across Tiffany’s. We had eaten there once after a book signing at the Alba library, and the salmon was delicious. Besides, they are reputed to have the best pie in town, so that sealed the deal.

They didn’t have salmon on the menu, but we all found something good to eat. We had a table out of the traffic flow, and the place wasn’t crowded, so we lingered long after our plates had been cleared. We waited too long to ask about pie – the remaining choices weren’t on our can’t-live-without list, so we passed. It was a very special time together anyway.

German chocolate cakeDavid and I weren’t too disappointed about the pie, because we had already eaten dessert earlier. His birthday always means German Chocolate Cake at our house. It’s a real pain to make and it’s not exactly on the approved food list for diabetics. But it’s his all-time favorite, so I make it for him once a year. I thought about taking it to the restaurant, but I didn’t know how well it would travel. I could see three layers of coconut-pecan frosting shifting to one side in the cake carrier and decided against it. I did, however, carry it across the street.

When I put the finishing touches on it, David was having coffee with our neighbor Charles, so I decided on an impromptu birthday party. I packed up the cake, plates, and forks and carefully made my way across our front yard and up the neighbors’ driveway. Everyone was sitting on the sun porch enjoying the nice weather – a perfect setting for another special time of enjoying friends and celebrating life.

Charles has offered his assistance a couple of times if we needed help with the leftovers, but David was pretty protective of the cake that was left. I wrapped individual slices in plastic wrap to keep them fresh, and we continued to celebrate through Saturday when we finished the last of it.

The cake is gone, but we plan to keep celebrating. One of David’s favorite sayings is “every day’s a holiday and every meal’s a feast.” We don’t plan lavish parties with gourmet food and flashy presents, but we try to enjoy and celebrate the simple things life offers each day – the deer in the back yard, Orion’s belt in the night sky, the first yellow blooms on the small bunch of daffodils in the yard, or a meal with friends and family. And on really special days, we have German Chocolate Cake.



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