Today was National Baklava Day and I was kind of looking forward to it. Last year I didn’t know exactly what Baklava was and I proceeded to make my own. It came out pretty good (good enough to make a second batch a few days later). I knew I could tackle this one today. It was a Friday, and I could toss a batch together in no time. Even if I backed out of making my own, I still had a backup plan to go to the Greek restaurant (Mediterranean restaurant actually) in Middletown and pick some up. Yep, everything was going to work out just fine. Then God laughed.
I got a message midway through the day from sister-in-law Cherie who was looking for my wife. Both of Cherie’s sons were sick and she actually had to take one to the hospital, so she was hoping Lola could watch the other (and her daughter when she got home from school). Cherie and Lola found each other and all bases were covered. On my way home from work, I decided to stop by the hospital and see how Cherie and Calix were doing. Poor little Calix, on his birthday, had a pneumonia and he was getting all kinds of treatments to make him better. Two years earlier, we were in the hospital with him when he was born as he had decided to start his journey into life a few weeks early. Our first glimpses of him were seeing him all hooked up to machines inside an incubator. Seeing him on the hospital bed was a flashback to that day. He was again hooked up to machines and monitors and his little body was working hard to breathe. Seeing him today also flashed me back to my own youth when I was suffering from pretty bad asthma attacks. It was a sad little scene. Cherie had asked Lola to watch her kids until Pete could get home, so when I left the hospital, I went to their house and joined Lola. Brickie was sick too and laying low, although I got a few smiles out of him, and Wavy looked pretty tired too. It was a long day for the whole family and we were glad we could help in the smallest of ways.
All that however kind of put my Baklava plans on hold. I couldn’t put it together now. I had neither the time or energy (plus the stores were closed for the ingredients). I had to celebrate something else. That’s when I realized it was National Peanut Butter Month. That was perfect, so after a long afternoon, I made two pieces of toast slathered with lots of smooth Skippy peanut butter. I was hungry and this was as easy as it could be to put together.
Everyone, excepting those with allergies, loves peanut butter when they are a kid. It’s a special treat. When you are an adult, you still love peanut butter, but it takes on a new quality of ease and joy. When you are racking your head trying to think of something to eat, peanut butter is always a good fallback plan. It’s delicious – nice and sweet and nutty. It’s also easy to make and you almost always have a jar on hand. Tonight, my peanut butter toast did the job. I came home exhausted and hungry and just wanted something simple and satisfying. Check and check. I love peanut butter on toast because the PB starts to melt and it brings a new depth to the party. No jelly tonight, just the basics. That was the perfect way for me to end this long day and the perfect way to pay tribute to National Peanut Butter Month.
Next up: National Apple Cider Day