Leap Year

I am mid-leap.  I’ve gotten the last of my duck’s in a row.  Well actually my husband and daughter did when they purchased my chef’s pants at Finn’s Corner in Cork City, Ireland, for me yesterday.  Let’s hope they fit.  I’m saying good-bye to my clients this week and transitioning them to new therapists.  I’m going now!  I feel like I’m mid-leap with a yawning crevasse below.  I’m leaving behind the place where I’ve worked for the past ten years along with the professional identity and relationships I’ve cultivated.  Yet I haven’t arrived or even have a sense of what will develop with this new adventure outside of the fact that I should become a really good cook!

As it happens March is the month my brother Pat would have turned 64.  Happy Birthday, Pat!  He died in an airplane crash in 1974 at the age of twenty-two.  As you can imagine, his death unraveled our family.  Anyone who has experienced the sudden death of a loved one will attest that who you were before the death seems very different than who you become after.  For me a lot of fear, depression, and loss of confidence ensued.  To take this leap especially one that requires getting on an airplane to cross an ocean is huge for me.  I am going way outside of my comfort zone.  My brother Pat was one of the “good cooks,” in our family although I think his expertise was limited to all things eggs, fried, omelettes, scrambled.  His favorite birthday meal was Swedish meatballs, and his favorite cookie was “no-bakes,” which he was also good at making.IMG_0745

Pat’s death turned me into an introvert.  I have traveled far more into my own psyche than into the world.  He died the day before Thanksgiving in 1974.  The following February, Mary Sue Milliken Border Grill and I snuck off to Chicago to see her sister.  I’m not sure my parents even knew I was gone.  I remember my fear being palpable, so I attached myself to the far more adventurous Mary Sue.  On the train there I began a journal on some large index cards that had been among Pat’s things.  I have been writing ever since.  For the first few years I addressed my journal to Pat.  Without that trip I might not have moved to Chicago after I graduated from college. I marvel at this twist as now forty years later Mary Sue steered me toward another adventure to Ballymaloe.   So often we are not aware of the positive ways in which we impact another person’s life and it can seem like such a little thing, but you never know. Thank you, Mary Sue.  And I will always miss you, Pat.  Here’s my healthier version of No-Bakes.  The original calls for two cups of sugar so bear with me on what seems like a lot of sweet.

No-Bake Cookies

1/4 C cocoa powder

1/2 C date sugar

1/2 C monk fruit crystals

1/2 C white sugar

1/4 C butter

1/4 C coconut oil

1/2 C peanut butter

1/2 C milk (I used goat’s)

1 t vanilla

3 C oatmeal

Melt butter, coconut oil and sugars in a sauce pan.  Stir in

cocoa powder, peanut butter, milk and vanilla then stir in oats.

Drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper and chill in refrigerator.  Enjoy!


3 thoughts on “Leap Year

  1. What are monk fruit crystals ???? And where do you get them or do you grow them in a garden ?
    We all miss you ! Doesn’t feel the same. But I am certain you are more excited as minute to the count passes ! Safe travels !!


  2. My post says April 14 at 12;26 am but it is really April 13 8:27 pm. And the above should be edited, “as each minute to the countdown passes !”


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