hunkering down


Friday’s tragedy in Newtown continues to reverberate through our lives, our families, our communities. From my tiny office I stare out the window at the gray skies and the dirty snow, and feel the weight of that tremendous loss, of all of those young lives obliterated. I turn to my computer when I can stand it and read about the victims and their families, tears welling in my eyes again and again.

This weekend I had a lot on my plate—workshop pieces for my online class, a book-length manuscript I’m editing, a freelance article I’ve been working on. But I couldn’t make myself sit down at my desk. I couldn’t bear to isolate myself from my family.

So instead I held my girls tightly, caught them up in as many hugs as they would allow, and I baked. Or rather I stirred and stirred, then, hours later, wrapped and wrapped. In other words: I made my first batch of homemade caramels. I have never been much of confectioner, but this year, I stumbled upon a caramel recipe that called to me. I started with the classics and then made a batch of orange espresso caramels. I have to say that they are dangerously delicious. Sunday morning as the girls were busy with a sewing project and then a beading project (with an intermission at the pool to swim), I cut cellophane, wrapped, and taped. And for those short hours, the world felt safe.

Here is a glimpse of my handywork (100 of each kind):


Sending love out into the world these days and hugging my girls close.


  1. And that is really all we can do is it not? Hug our babies and send love into the world, day after day. And pray that light will win out.

    The Caramels look delicious- I see them pulling my dental work right out 🙂

  2. I have done a lot of hugging and kissing and not yelling these past couple of days. I’m so grateful for my children and their precious lives and I need to show it more. They are to be cherished as long as we have them and they have us.

    Maybe your caramels will taste like love to their lucky recipients! The orange espresso sounds amazing.

    Hugs to you and yours!

  3. Oh, so awful. There are no words.

    But caramels, yes. Yours look gorgeous (100 of them!!). I made a batch of these last month and, despite accidentally using twice the required amount of butter, ate almost all of them myself.

    • I know, Andrea.

      I KNEW you’d be proud of my caramels because you are so crafty. The apple cider ones look delicious, too. And I actually made 200! (I’m trying to get them out of my house before I eat too many.)

  4. There is comfort and love in food when made right. There has been a lot of comfort food and snuggles and stories and candles in this house lately.

    P.S. if you’re trying to get caramels out of your house, you’re welcome to send some here : )

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *.