Because I Fainted in the School Cafeteria…

So, it’s a 95 degree day.

And you are really an Arctic dweller in disguise, living in Southern California.

And you’ve been known to faint.

And the latex gloves just feel so hot! And the Sweet Potato fries that you’re serving to fourth graders are even hotter!

Fast forward to the nurse’s office, and there I am, stretched out with a bag of ice on my head and a fifth grader on the other cot with a toothache. That was after Scene Number Two. And The Wheelchair.

Ha! It all passed, and I was humiliated, and the Meyers, new to the school, are now even more infamous than that first day when I caused Scene Number One.

Cookies to the rescue. I baked up some salted butter hearts, and wrapped them with ridiculous notes of how I’d be volunteering in the school library from now on, thank you!

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And delivered three bundles.

One, to Josie The Nurse, who did the wheeling. Two, to Chef Laurel, who didn’t need my kind of volunteer in her kitchen. And three, to the Asst Principal who was there with her Walkie Talkie when I told her I wanted to lay down on the cafeteria floor and disappear.

One of my favorite givings of the year. Unplanned, but kinda needed.

Cheers, friends!

Overproofed

24 dinner rolls, two loaves of no-knead, and a lenten cake

Needed an oven schedule for all the various bready things

Gave to the Kings–a whole house full of them

It was in a bakery in Saint Louis, many years ago, when I was accidentally locked in a commercial proof box. I had rolled a full rack of bread that needed rising into the large metal box. It was a walk-in space, large enough to house several six-foot racks. The heavy door that seals the space, holdingĀ  in the heat and moisture, slowly swung shut behind me. The emergency lock that lets you out from the inside had rusted to little bits of useless frustration. I was stuck. It was way over a hundred degrees inside and the humidity at 100 percent.

If you know me, you also know that I have a tendency to faint when it’s too hot. I have several very dramatic fainting stories that I drag out now and again to amuse friends. As I knocked on that door to be rescued from the heat of the proof box, as I waited and tried to push back the panic, it was hard not to imagine fainting and being found the next morning in a heap by the door. The headlines that wooshed through my mind were zingers:

Baker’s Daughter Overproofed.

Proofing Proves Fatal.

Risen, but Dead.

Someone finally heard my screams and pounding. I was shaken, and indeed overproofed when I emerged. I took the rest of the day off. Odd though it may seem, I’ve never had any desire to return to Saint Louis. Ever.

For the last several days I’ve been feeling a bit bewildered and… overproofed. One event has tag-teamed the next, and though all of them have been worth while, worth working for, (like our wonderful evening with Frederica Mathewes-Green!) I haven’t baked much–and my kids are yelling, Mom, where’s the bread? With the panic of Saint Louis in the back of my mind, I have tried not to get to the deadly kind of headliner stage.

Instead…

House Blessing Saves the Day

Last night we had a fun gathering with some old and some new friends as our house was blessed for the new year. We marched around our home, out to the offices, to the garage, opening every door, holy water flying everywhere, singing all the while. The sharing of the event was just what I needed to pull me out of my little, hot and humid hole. I’m breathing in the feel of a new start–of a holy dwelling, of the prayers still lingering in the air.

So hopefully my kids will forgive me for living a bread-less existence, and get back to eating their pbj’s on the few leftover rolls from the party.

Amazing what a dose of song and holy water and close friends can do…