The Soldier and the Squirrel introduces children to the Purple Heart

through a loving story of a friendship between a newly wounded soldier

and Rocky the squirrel with his backyard friends. This story began as a

blog during my first year in bed after my incident. With much

encouragement, it is now a book and has been placed in the

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum. Please watch the video

on the About page to learn for the Soldier & Rocky are changing children's






Glorious Rejoice Dots Glitter





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« A Mother, A Daughter, and A Cup of Coffee | Main | A Quote for The Edit »

Being Betty Crocker

Betty CrockerI am no Betty Crocker. I get out the brownie mix. Set it on the counter. Look at the directions. Three steps. I can do this. Water, eggs, and vegetable oil. But I need a bowl. I open the cabinet where I keep my mixing bowls. I have way too many bowls for somebody who rarely mixes anything but her metaphors. I do brownies, and cupcakes. I tried to bake a cake one time for my daughter’s birthday. It wasn’t a very pretty pony.

There will come a day when I will bake something that doesn't come in a box. I want to bake like my mom. Like Betty Crocker. Why is it that I have had four children and have very little ability to bake anything that doesn't come in a box? Who was Betty Crocker anyway, and why can’t I be more like her? So I Googled "Betty Crocker", to discover how to become more like her. I was flabbergasted. It turns out Betty Crocker never even existed. According to one website, "In the 1910's, The Washburn Crosby Company received thousands of requests for answers to baking questions. In 1921, managers decided that it would be more intimate to sign the responses personally; they combined the last name of a retired company executive, William Crocker, with the first name “Betty,” which was thought of as “warm and friendly.”

I am horrified and liberated at the same time. Betty Crocker wasn't real. I am free from the guilt of trying to be someone, that never lived.

The oven is preheating, the air filling with the aroma of a remnant from last week’s cupcakes stuck to the bottom of the oven. I like to refer to this as re-baking. It will go away in a minute.

The 8x8 square pan sits on my counter, the pack of instant brownie powder resting limp over its lip like a slumbering sack of possibility. The eggs are still in the refrigerator. The vegetable oil in the cabinet. But it’s a start. I will bake. But until then I will sit with this moment at my computer with an unexpected peace that I no longer need worry that I'm not like Betty. Now I focus on how to bake more like my mom.


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