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Mrs. Sundberg's Recipe Collection - 12 tried-and-true--one for each month of the year--featuring an introduction and tips from Mrs. Sundberg herself

Roses in my arms and tears in my eyes

August 29, 2007

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. It was one of those hot and rainy weekends with almost no sun so I didn't go much of anywhere but the porch and the basement. I did take what was intended to be a short drive during the show to pick up a gallon of ice cream for homemade chocolate malts, and ended up at home three hours later with roses in my arms and tears in my eyes.

What happened was I got to the general store and all the buckets of ice cream were sold out, so I thought I'd drive north and east a bit to the supermarket with the friendly dairy manager whose shelves of yogurt stretch for miles and who sometimes moos at people from back in the cooler where he's restocking the milk. He's one of those people you hope drives by when your car breaks down, because it's a sure thing he'll stop, and if he can't fix your car he'll find someone who will.

Well, I got there, and there was ice cream sure enough. I was pulling away when I found I'd left my purse in the store, so I parked again and went on in and there it was at register three. I gave a little wave to Margie, the clerk, and went on out to find I'd locked up my keys. Of course I did, not wanting to turn off the radio, and not thinking clearly while singing along. I thought about that ice cream in the back seat and how all I really wanted was to get home and out of the heat, and the tears started rolling and now what to do.

Well, lo and behold, there he was, the dairy man, with a smile on his face and a coat hanger in his hand. "It'll be a minute or two, Ma'am," he said and with his back to me he bent and twisted a bit and sure enough, there he stood holding the door open. I was somewhat embarrassed of course, for the tears, and thanked him and told him it's been one of those days. "No need to apologize," he said. "Have 'em myself once in a while."

As I was pulling out of the lot, I saw him in the rear view mirror gesturing for me to pull on over. "The floral department is doing inventory, and these were headed for the refuse pile. I thought someone ought to have them." And he handed me a bunch of red, red roses bound tightly with twine and what looked like pricing tags. Oh, I said, and thank you, and what else could I say? "I hope the day gets better for you," he said, and the kindness in his eyes lifted me right on up.

An hour later, the kids came running to get their chocolate malts, there were red roses in several vases scattered about the house, and I was humming a tune and thinking about making a pie. An apple pie. What a good thing it is to run across someone willing to take a bit of time and hand it on over with a smile on his face. And the flowers don't hurt, either. Red roses, at that.

Glazed Fruit Pizza

Ingredients:

1 (18 ounce) package refrigerated sugar cookie dough
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (8 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
1/2 cup white sugar
1 pinch salt
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon orange zest

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Slice cookie dough and arrange on greased pizza pan, overlapping edges. Press dough flat into pan. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Allow to cool.

In a large bowl, soften cream cheese, then fold in the whipped topping. Spread over cooled crust. You can chill it for a while at this point, or continue by arranging the fruit.

Begin with strawberries, sliced in half. Arrange in a circle around the outside edge. Continue with fruit of your choice, working towards the middle. If bananas are used, dip them in lemon juice so they don't darken. Then make a sauce to spoon over fruit. In a saucepan, combine sugar, salt, corn starch, orange juice, lemon juice and water. Cook and stir over medium heat. Bring to a boil, and cook for 1 or 2 minutes, until thickened. Remove from heat, and add grated orange rind. Allow to cool, but not set up. Spoon over fruit. Chill for two hours, then cut into wedges and serve.

Mmm! Enjoy!

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