Friday, December 6, 2013

Secret Subject Swap: A Gift

Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This week 10 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts.

Secret Subject Swap

Here are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts. Sit back, grab a cup and check them all out. See you there:



My subject is What is the best gift you have ever received? It was submitted by: Juicebox Confession.

I’ve had some difficult Swap prompts. I mean some really difficult ones, some almost had me paralyzed. Like the time I had to write my post "Cat in the Hat" style the time I wrote about getting a middle of the night phone call from the CIA and the time I tried to explain my newfound knowledge of household mysteries brought on by having been bitten by a radioactive dustbunny. So this prompt is a piece of cake (get it? baking? cake?) right? No, I have to tell you, this was a really hard prompt for me. I could easily have said that the best gift I ever received was my kids. Especially considering all I went through to have them.

But that’s a story I’ve already told (well, parts of it anyway) and honestly that answer, though true, is just a little too cliche. In fact, most of the answers I was coming up with were the same, just too “already been done . . . to death”.

I’m going to go in another direction completely. I’m going to tell you about a gift that showed up in the mail about 3 years ago.

At the time I had a computer that sat on my desk in the kitchen and another one that was in the office. Both were very old, slow and barely functional. I knew we needed a new one, but I wasn’t really using it a whole lot and wasn’t really looking to spend any more time sitting in one spot. My sister had been trying to convince me to get onto Facebook. I knew I should because my kids were on, but I really didn’t see the point. I just wasn’t interested.

Shortly afterwards my sister had surgery to her foot. During her recovery there were times when she was in pain and had to stay in one place for long stretches of time. She tried again to talk me into getting onto Facebook. She was 1500 miles away and if I could play Scrabble and chat with her online, it would give her something to do while immobilized. So I did it, I joined the land of the living.

Strawberry Crinkles | www.BakingInATornado.com
Strawberry Crinkles


And then it arrived. In the mail. From my sister and her husband. A laptop.

From that day to well over a year later we always had a Scrabble game going. Sometimes we’d play and chat late into the night. And her daughter, my niece, sometimes would have a game going with me as well.

I ended up reconnecting with friends from as early as high school, friends who lived all over including in other countries. I was interacting with family far away on a daily basis. And I started posting pictures of all the baking I was doing. And venting through humor about my kids, my life, my frustrations.

One day I made a comment on Facebook, sort of in passing, about having enough stress that I could probably write a whole blog just about baking and venting. Three different friends picked up on it and started pushing. Hard. And I did it.

Now I know people all over the US and the world who I’ll never meet. They help me and support me and cheer me on. Some are bloggers, some have liked my Facebook page or follow me on twitter, pinterest,linkedin, or bloglovin. Now I’ve been published in two anthologies and I have more offers on the table.

So the best gift I’ve ever received? It wasn’t for any occasion at all. It was a laptop. And it changed my life.

Bakinginatornado.com

Strawberry Crinkles
                                        ©www.BakingInATornado.com
                                                                                                                                                     
 
Printable Recipe
 
Ingredients (makes about 40 cookies):
1 box Strawberry Cake mix with pudding in the mix
3/4 tsp strawberry extract
1 egg
8 oz cool whip defrosted as per container directions
1 cup powdered sugar

 
Directions:
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
*Mix together cake mix, extract, egg and cool whip.
*Drop a teaspoon amount at a time into powdered sugar. Roll around in the powdered sugar and put onto ungreased cookie sheet, about 20 at a time.
*Bake for 13 to 14 minutes.
*Let sit on cookie sheet for one minute, then remove and cool.

35 comments:

  1. I'd like to thank your sister and her husband for giving you that laptop. I know that it has enriched my life and I'm not even there. It just helped us become friends!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, so many people I never would have known. It really made such a difference. XO

      Delete
  2. I love this! I am so glad you got that laptop. Where would we be today without your swaps and your humor? Oh and your delicious recipes. I some times contemplate licking my screen for a taste. *hangs in head shame* I know weird, but the pictures look so yummy!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I LOVE that you contemplate licking your screen. Especially with my crappy pictures *hangs head in shame*!

      Delete
  3. Cheers to your sister and that laptop. I don't know how I would have gotten through so many things with out your electronic words (So many times). Glad for the path that little lap top took you. Not to mention, you probably rock at Scrabble by now :) Love you, lady!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! Don't know about my Scrabble skills, but I do love the blog friends I've made.

      Delete
  4. Your sister's gift to you has also been a gift to us--because we our lives have been enriched by getting to know you! XO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES! So well said and I couldn't agree more.

      Delete
    2. Thank you both. It seems to be the gift that keeps on giving!

      Delete
  5. That is awesome!!! Way better then the gift of kids or health - your sister connected you with the world, your family and yourself. Love it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It really is amazing, the world this laptop opened up for me. I had no idea that there was a blogosphere out there, and that it was populated with such amazing people.

      Delete
  6. And what a gift it was-I'm so glad that she gave you that laptop because it has been so wonderful having you as a friend! :-D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right back at you. Love having you as a friend and having you make me laugh.

      Delete
  7. I have to say, you best gift directly became one of mine. Because of your laptop, your blog, your Facebook page, I have been connected to so many amazing people. Thank you for that. I could not have imagined a better answer for this question.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It took me a while to choose a direction for my answer but once I did I knew it was taking me right where I wanted to go!

      Delete
  8. Best gift, smart relatives! Love your cookies! Yum! Nettie

    ReplyDelete
  9. you picked this recipe for me, didn't you? it's SO EASY! I love it! (I'll get to your post in a second but I need to discuss cookies first). I still plan to make the fluffernutter ones. they have peanut butter in them and my 6yo HATES even just the smell of pb so I'll have to make another kind too so he can have something special. I think these are them! Too easy and definitely something I haven't made before. I think he'll LOVE helping, too.

    Okay, on to the post. I think that laptop was everyone's best gift because YOUR blog is a treasure and I'm so grateful for you! What a great answer. oxoxoxoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I picked this recipe because it's the perfect recipe for this time of year when kids want to help in the kitchen. As you said, it's so easy and kids love them. Hope you all have fun making them.

      Delete
  10. Alright, what's her address?? I need to send that woman a thank you card! She gave a gift to all of us by sending you that laptop; the gift of a new, invaluable friend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, I've made so many valuable friends just from receiving that one gift (and for talking me into finally joining FB too).

      Delete
  11. I'm grateful you received that gift!!!! I love love love your blog!!!! It was truly a gift for you and all of us!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The gift is returned by all of you who read this blog. I'm grateful for all of you as well.

      Delete
  12. And I'm so glad you did get that laptop and start your blog! What in the hell would *I* do without my Fairy Blogmother?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're a very capable, talented and prolific writer. I'm guessing you would have found your way!

      Delete
  13. Sounds like it was a great gift that gave you the inspiration to discover your blogging talent. That, along with making killer pastries!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Although I did have a computer, the laptop and the encouragement to join FB definitely opened up a whole new world to me.

      Delete
  14. Wow - I love this! The laptop that changed your life! That is so cool! It's funny how we can sometimes pinpoint something that started something else...laptop --> FB --> blog! Your sister had the right idea! It really was the gift that kept on giving! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It really was, but in so many more ways than I ever could have dreamed.

      Delete
  15. Nice Story!!! And Lucky for US!!! Keep on Keepin' on... Slu

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Slu. I'll keep on keepin' on till I can't keep any more, LOL.

      Delete
  16. This is great and it reminds me so much of the link between me and my sisters. Although I have never baked to de-stress, my sister does.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm hearing more and more that I'm not alone in baking to relieve stress. Ultimately it doesn't matter what works for us, just that we find it!

      Delete
  17. This is why I adore social media. The friends and connections made around the world and the infinite possibilities. What a nice gift to get!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I never knew what I was missing, but now realize how easy it is to connect with people all over the world. It really is a great gift.

      Delete

Warning: Comment at your own risk. I have Comment Moderation, meaning I approve all comments before they show up here. So go ahead, I'm not scared!