To Give and To Receive

by Stefani on 18-September-2007

The last couple of days have held so many gifts, and so many opportunities for giving.

There were no birthdays, no holidays, no fine print on the calendar at all. Maybe it’s just the promise of autumn (it will come, I know it will!), the idea that we will all soon be huddled closer, seeking warmth of both the literal and figurative sorts. Whatever the reasons, the season of giving has begun.

The first gift, was a complete surprise.

The Daddy brought home a new bike for me!

Bike

It’s a really sweet, retro funk cruiser, exactly what I would have chosen for myself. It also came equipped with a poshy little seat on the back for my wee one. The boys and I have gypsy caravaned all over the neighborhood, loving every minute. We’ve been like bees, speeding from one bit of lovliness to another.

Our neighborhood jaunts have brought lots more subtle, but equally surprising and delightful gifts.

The woods, are, when no one is looking, bringing their autumn attire out of storage:

Red

Wheatish

And speaking of well-dressed, we have crossed paths with so many finely arrayed ladies and gentlemen:

Bfly

We were even gifted an abandoned summer home, by some kindly absent wasps:

Summer_house

Now as if these weren’t all gifts enough, there were more, and a few opportunities to be the giver as well.

My dear friend, Denise, said that if I would bring some wine and some crafty supplies, she’d invite some new friends and make a night of it.

I saw this not only as a nice way to spend an evening, but also a great way to pawn off share a few bags of Amish Friendship Bread starters. That’s a great way to make new friends, don’t you think? Strapping them with yet another thing to feed and keep alive?

So off I went with my bottle of red, my Ziplock bags of monster yeasty goo, and various stamps and papers for card making.

What I got in return was astounding.

Not one, not two, but three phenomenal new friends. One is a knitter who has promised to help me learn to make socks (YAY!). Another is a cute-as-a-button young Mama who was a professional photographer in her previous life. She was as tickled as I was to debate the merits of film vs. digital (YAY again!). The other is a gorgeous Mississippi gal, so full of southern charm and drawly humor that you just want to rest your face in your palms and gawk at her all night long. Add to that, the company of my sweet sister in law, who is an amazing mom, cook and friend, and you have a perfect evening.

I’m a little giddy to have such an abundant harvest of newfound friends!

Last, but not least, my passport arrived today! A REAL, HONEST TO GOODNESS PASSPORT!!!! There was much squealing and prancing about, I assure you. I’ve set right to work making a delicious little holder for it, along with my itinterary and what not. Who knew there would be a need for travel crafting!?!?! You can be sure that I will soon be giving you the run down on my adventures in travel document holder making 🙂

For now though, to celebrate, I will share with you the recipe for some scrumptious treats that one of my new friends brought last night. I have my eye on her… she might have secret motives to fatten us all up.

Brace yourselves, this one’s a doozy! It is the perfect thing for those of you who like a little salty with your sweet:

Cracker Candy

1 sleeve of Saltine crackers
2 sticks butter
1/4 c. sugar
12 oz. chocolate chips
1 package sliced almonds

Line cookie sheet (sides too) with foil. Place crackers side by side in the pan. Bring butter and sugar to a boil for 3 min. Pour the hot mixture over crackers and bake at 400 degrees for 5 minutes. Sprinkle chips over top of crackers and spread when they begin to melt. Top with nuts and refrigerate until hard. Break into pieces.

I’m wishing you all the chance to give and receive so richly today!

Leigh-Ann September 19, 2007 at 4:49 am

Gifts of so many kinds make the heart purrr and glow 🙂 Happy day to you my friend 🙂
As Teaque would say, you’re nasty with that recipe! Danger! 😉

Leigh-Ann September 19, 2007 at 4:53 am

ps> that bicycle is SAH-WEEEEET!!!

erin September 19, 2007 at 5:07 am

love the bike! sounds like your new found friends might be a craft swap group in the making….

Tracy September 19, 2007 at 5:37 am

Amazing photos, as usual. And lucky you to have made so many new friends all at once!

I think I have had that candy before, only with graham crackers instead of saltines. That was pretty yummy too!

Valerie September 19, 2007 at 5:57 am

I love your new bike, just from the tiny snippet of a photo you posted. What is it?

leslie September 19, 2007 at 6:08 am

Too funny….i had that amish starter years ago…..like 6! I also had it on my counter for about 2 years! It really was the best!!

Love your new wheels!

randi September 19, 2007 at 6:13 am

I LOVE the bike! So very cool! I want one in pink!

Angela September 19, 2007 at 6:18 am

Very cool bike…impressive taste, Daddy. Isn’t it the best when they pick something you really would have chosen for yourself–it’s like double-awesome because you get something you love, PLUS you get that satisfaction of knowing that your sweetheart knows you so well?!

Can’t wait to see the passport holder!

kirsten September 19, 2007 at 6:29 am

hooray for cool new crafty friends! i need more of those real-life ones! 🙂

Anne September 19, 2007 at 7:21 am

I am laughing at the Amish Friendship bread – it just keeps multiplying, and when people see you walking towards them with a bag, they run.

Marjorie September 19, 2007 at 8:45 am

Now I know what do with some of those saltine crackers in my cupboard!
Can you show us the whole bike please? cute 🙂

Jade September 19, 2007 at 10:59 am

love, love, love the bike!!! that’s what i’m asking santa for for christmas.

Heather September 19, 2007 at 12:00 pm

I am so excited for you that you found a bunch of new amazing women to befriend. I think there’s something to be said for having a mix of cyber friends and real life in your own back yard friends. Ya hoo for you! I’m pretty sure I know that candy and HOLY COW! It’s really good pack the pounds on stuff. I think I’ll have to make some soon… and then run 10 or so miles to work it off…

Grace September 19, 2007 at 12:27 pm

i’m amazed by how generous *life* is. all of it. sweet, thoughtful post as always, stefani. xo

Shelley September 19, 2007 at 2:35 pm

What great photos! Love that you’re taking photos while you’re tooling around the neighborhood – capturing the essence of your life right now. What a great gift your children will appreciate years from now!

Oh and how fortunate to have received the sweet new bike – just in time to counteract the effect of that yummy candy and the Amish friendship bread!

Steph September 19, 2007 at 4:34 pm

Great bike..wheel. Those retro bikes are the coolest!! Your passport enthusiasm is making me reminisce about my first trip overseas to the US, counting the days like a mad woman. And it’s worth it!!

Molly September 19, 2007 at 5:39 pm

Your words and images are a rich gift each day. Pedal on, sister.

tania September 19, 2007 at 7:18 pm

your posts always remind me of the sweet, precious time I had with my kids when we homeschooled. Thank you for taking me down memory lane so often and so eloquently.

tania September 19, 2007 at 7:18 pm

your posts always remind me of the sweet, precious time I had with my kids when we homeschooled. Thank you for taking me down memory lane so often and so eloquently.

kristin September 19, 2007 at 8:53 pm

ride well.

happy for you.

dianeinjapan September 24, 2007 at 8:48 pm

Wow, what a great couple of days! I can just tell that I’d love that new bike of yours–I adore biking around the neighborhood on my orange cruiser. Yea for getting your passport! And your new friends sound fab.

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