Tag Archives: mother teresa

Creating ripples….

14 Sep

This last month, in addition to baking almost every day,  I’ve had a couple of interesting “pie” experiences that I would like to share with you.

a quiche for Liz

A Quiche for Liz

The first occurred at a party for my husband’s team of managers.  One of the women there asked me if I was still baking pies everyday.  No, I answered, it’s more like a few times a month.  She then turned to her partner and said, “Karen baked a pie a day for a year.”  That’s when he looked at me and said, “You’re the pie lady?  You brought me a pie!”

pumpkin pie for Debbie

Pumpkin Pie for Debbie

I wondered how that could be for I’d never seen this man before.  When he told me that he knew my friend Shirley it all came back to me.  During my “pie year”, Shirley had asked me to bring a pie to this man because he’d been so very kind and helpful to her… and of course I said I would.  Then she told me that he would not want to meet me (he’s pretty shy) and so we arranged to leave the pie in a safe place near his house.  He told me that he had arrived home that night wondering what he would have for dinner and saw a pie sitting there.  He said that pie solved the problem!  How about that… one day I deliver a pie and three years later, I finally meet the recipient!


A quiche for my friend in need

Then last week my husband and his team went to dinner with a business consultant and her husband.  My friend, Amey, was there and casually mentioned to them that Emile’s wife (me) had created a project a few years back, giving away a pie a day. The couple both seemed stunned and told Amey that their friend back home in Sacramento had read about my pie story.  She’d been so inspired by it that she decided to set up a pie stand (much like a lemonade stand).

The next day that same couple popped into the kitchen at the B&B where I am working (they were guests there…  another coincidence?). They were happy to meet me and so excited that they could go home and share this news with their friend. I gave them my card and hope that their friend will soon share her pie experiences with me!

judy's pie prep

Prepping an Apple Pie

Finally, several months back I baked a pie and a friend came to mind and I decided to bring her the pie. When I reached her on her cell phone and asked if she was at home, she told me no… and was in fact on her way to her sister’s funeral. When I told her the reason for my call, she thanked me and said she felt better knowing that I’d been thinking of her. A few days ago, I baked an apple pie and called that same friend.  This time she was home… but shared that her brother was very ill and she’d just returned from visiting him.  She said that she would love a pie and thought it might help to cheer her up.  It seems strange that I thought of her when she going through two very difficult times… but I was so grateful to be able to help in my own way.

Judy's Pie

An Apple pie for Judy

Though these stories are not extraordinary at all, what most surprises me is the fact that years after my project ended, I am still discovering how people – some whom I don’t even know – were affected in some way by the gift of a pie.

“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” Mother Teresa


Thank you, Nurse Kathleen!

9 Jan

Kathleen's pie

This past week my Dad fell twice.  Both falls occurred during the wee hours of the morning and thankfully my Dad did not suffer any injuries… but of course that does not mean that I wasn’t worried about him.  Immediately I began wondering what was causing him to fall and what could be done to prevent him from falling in the future.

When I asked Dad what he thought was going on, he really didn’t know.  That might also be a part of the problem.  When Dad awakes, he “thinks” he is fine and so he tries to get up (maybe before he is really awake or before his body is ready) and then tumbles to the floor.   To make matters worse, Dad chooses not to call the med-tech on duty because he “doesn’t want to bother” anyone and so he remains on the floor for an hour or more.

Fortunately I found that I was not alone in my concern.    A few days ago I received a call from the staff nurse at the facility where my Dad is staying and she asked if we could talk.  Since I was about to bring my Dad back to the facility, I agreed to meet with her.  When Dad and I sat with Kathleen I was impressed with the caring way that she spoke to my Dad and how she shared real concern for his safety.  She was able to do so in such a way that captured his attention in ways that I as his daughter cannot.

We agreed to ask Dad’s doctor to look into adjusting Dad’s medications and also encouraged Dad to consider calling for help before he gets up in the night… at least for a week or two.  When I finally left the facility to go back home, I felt a great sense of relief because I had found an ally on this journey.  This is not to say that the rest of the staff is lacking; that is not true at all.  But after talking with Kathleen I felt that someone understood my Dad, had a connection with him, and was looking out for him.  That means a lot to me and so yesterday afternoon I stopped by Kathleen’s office with an Apple Pie to thank her.   It’s so very nice to know that I have her on my team.



“It is not how much you do but how much love you put in the doing.”  Mother Teresa





Goodbye, Love, and Apple Pie

18 Feb

apple pie prep

Apple Pie beginnings

In my last post, I asked what was so  good about goodbye.  The story behind that post was that an old friend is moving away from the area to live closer to his children and how much our community will miss him.  I mentioned that I was lucky to have been given the chance to say goodbye, because sometimes that is not possible.

Shortly after that post was published, a dear friend wrote to say that she’d lost a relative quite suddenly.  Saying goodbye was not really an option given the circumstances and that made his passing even more difficult.

My friend shared that her son was going to visit the family of the man who’d passed and when I offered to make a pie for the family, she accepted graciously.   It was all I could do to help and I was grateful for the chance to assuage the pain that she is feeling.

apple pie prep2

Almost ready for the oven!

This is not to say that a pie will make much of a difference; but it is the love that was sent with the pie that might.   After all, it is the very best thing that we have to offer one another on this journey called life.  And it is the only thing that makes it worth living.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”  I Corinthians 13

“Life is short and we do not have too much time to gladden the hearts of those who travel with us; so be swift to love and make haste to be kind.” Henri-Frédéric Amiel

“I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.” 
Mother Teresa

Day 326: Celebration of Life

26 Feb

Today I spent many hours preparing food for a celebration of life service. It was my honor to do so and I was touched by the trust that had been bestowed on me.  It was important to me to return that trust and so I worked very hard to make sure that everything that I made was as good as it could be.

When all the preparations were completed, the celebration service began.  The moderator opened with a moment of silence.  Afterwards friends and family members shared their special memories about a man who was well-loved and who will be missed very much.

After the service, I realized that I had yet to deliver my pie of the day.  I’d made it for a friend of mine but when I called tonight, she did not answer.  As it was nearing nightfall, I thought I would find someone in need of dinner and honor my friend another day.

After a short ride through the downtown plaza in Ashland, I spotted several outdoor urban dwellers and parked my car.  As I approached the men, I held out the quiche and asked if they would like it.  Immediately they both began thanking me and said that they would bring the quiche to the church shelter to share with the others who were there.  As I left, they thanked me again and wished me a good evening.

As I was driving home I was struck by this thought: I put the same attention and care into the feast as I did with the quiche and it does not matter who receives our gifts; what is more important is that we use them.

It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”
— Mother Teresa




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