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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

A Mazillion Small To-Dos Before School Starts

August 23, 2013

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. Decided to head up to the cabin on Monday for a few days of swimming in the heat. We went and it was like visiting the edge of heaven for a day. Those lake cabin sunsets realign one's mojo more evenly and efficiently than most anything in the world. Good time to do it, too. A week from today the oldest goes back to school, and in between now and then, and between then and Tuesday the 3rd of September, there are a mazillion small things to which we must tend. A box spring or some wood slats (the queen box wouldn't fit up the steps of her small duplex and THAT was a scene worth filming), lists of needed clothes (mostly jeans as I bought the rest on sale here and there), books, toiletries, school supplies, and groceries as we ate everything at the cabin. There are forms to fill out, schedules to change (phy ed, an already filled requirement, is not on the favorites list when there's comparative anatomy and Chinese to take), play schedules to make note of, doctor's appointmens for an ingrown toenail to be clipped and a rather nasty growth aptly called a "wart" to be removed, hair appmts to make, etc. Name something needing doing and it's gonna get done.

There's a lot. Not a complaint, mind you. I've got it in me, for sure. And thank goodness for the busyness of it all. Takes my attention away from the little ache inside. Won't dwell on it, but you know the one. Rises up about this time every year and probably always will. It resides in the space always there for them, the space created and stretched wide by three amazing lives, by years of hollering and boo-boos, by those agonizing questions, by all the handmade Mother's Day cards and the bunches of daisies pulled from roadside ditches, handed to me on hot days when I was a bit too crabby to be kind. "Here, Mom. I picked these for you." Yep, that space. The one there from day one until they are old people, and I am a bit older, and we look at each other and marvel how we came so far together, and I will say, "Who is going to get up and get more iced tea?" And we'll laugh, and I'll do it because I plan to have a lot of energy when I'm old and will still want to do things for my old kids.

For today, though, they can bring me the iced tea. With a lot of ice. It's warm out, and the list isn't getting any shorter, and I got up extra early. To meet it all with arms wide open, whatever this day will bring.

Made these for Mr. S last weekend, and I swear he nearly tipped over with joy. They're wonderfully satisfying, and go well with a slew of appetizer-type foods, and beer. Or before a meal of teriyaki anything.

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts

8-10 slices bacon, cut into thirds crosswise
Brown sugar
2 8 oz can whole water chestnuts, drained
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup oil
1/4 cup ketchup
2 T vinegar
1/2 tsp pepper
4 cloves garlic, crushed

Mix together all but water chestnuts, bacon and brown sugar. Pour into large Ziploc bag; add chestnuts. Marinate overnight. Drain. Roll each chestnut in brown sugar, and wrap with 1/3 strip of bacon. Secure with toothpick.

Place on a broiling pan, and broil with vigilance until golden brown, turning chestnuts once or twice for evenness. Drain on paper towels. Can be prepared ahead of time and stored in refrigerator until ready to bake. For a sweeter version, simply wrap chestnuts in bacon, and baste with a mix of 3/4 cup ketchup and 3/4 cup brown sugar.

Enjoy!

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