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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

Gravity is Like That

January 23, 2014

Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. Cold weather's been hanging on, and we've lost a day of school this week to that cold. -17 tonight and can't complain. Have had the fire going all day and it's warm inside. Kids are pretty happy, and Mr. Sundberg is out in Arizona, sending photos of cacti and lovely landscapes and little cafes where he goes for breakfast and to work on his latest talk, "Patience and Perseverance."

I miss having him near when he's not. One of the nice things about having a partner, or a best friend, is that they help you keep your bearings. They let you know when something about you is askew, and give you a frame of reference when your thoughts or actions tilt a bit. Would have been nice to have him around on Sunday when I did something I think most people never do: I, in a hurry to get out of the cold, tossed a bag of oranges into the family car, which was warming up for the kids to drive to play practice. (The oranges were our donation for snack time.) In my rushing about, I quite literally slammed my head in the door. Shut it so fast, I caught the door full force on my left cheek and jaw, and the right side of my head banged up against the car.

Embarrassing, yes. But more painful than embarrassing. I managed to tone my holler to a whisper of an expletive, and after I made sure my face was intact, went into the house. No one was there to see right off, and when the kids came running out to get their coats and go, one of them said, "You're bleeding, Mom." Sigh. Yes. Small cut, nothing big, but I hadn't noticed as my face was quite numb. Even now, days later, no bruising. Just a sore place on my jaw, and a memory of a moment of inattention.

If someone were to organize a Clumsy Convention, I would surely be on the planning committee. Not that I'm proud of being prone to injury because I leave cupboards open and skip steps as I hurry downstairs and tend to walk into doors and windows now and then, and mostly when I'm alone. When Mr. S is home, I'm not so clumsy. He's my spotter, my point man, my flag waver and my safety net. Sometimes my GPS, and often my guide. He tells me often if I'm ever in trouble to call him and he will come rescue me. Hasn't happened yet, but I imagine it will one day.

Gravity is like that. Always at the ready, quiet, keeping us from flying off into orbit while we're making our way through the day. And when it's gone, even for a while, we lose our bearings and wish it back home.

Here's a soft and spongy and colorful cookie perfect for a Valentine's Day plate or as a light dessert after steak and lobster and potatoes.

Cream Cheese Delights

1⅓ cups flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
¾ cup rainbow sprinkles (or colored sugar)
cinnamon red hots (optional)

In a medium bowl sift together flour, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add sugar gradually and mix until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and egg and beat well. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not overmix. Chill batter 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Add ½ the sprinkles to a wide shallow bowl (add more as needed). Scoop up rounded tablespoons of dough and form into balls. They may not be perfect as the dough is sticky; try wetting your hands lightly. Drop into the sprinkles and coat all sides, and place on baking sheet 2 inches apart. Press a cinnamon red hot in the middle if desired.

Bake 10-12 minutes until lightly golden on the bottom. Cool on baking sheets 10 minutes or so.

Enjoy!

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