Monday, February 14, 2011

Love, Friendship, and Pumpkin Spice

By this you men will know you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:35

Sarah and I have been friends for a long time. We lived in the same small, Iowa town for years, when our now-teens were small. Then she and her family moved to Virginia. I’ve never stopped missing her. Neither have my sons. She had a way of making us feel loved and celebrated. Now Sarah and her family stop by to visit, once a year, on their way to spend time with relatives.

When we were neighbors, Sarah loved to drop by with homemade treats. Most often, she brought spicy pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. My sons whooped for joy when they saw Miss Sarah coming, mini-muffins in tow.

“Mom! Miss Sarah’s here,” Logan would holler in his little-boy voice.

“I wonder if she brought muffins?” Grant would ask.

Then they’d run to greet her with hugs. She’d hand me the coveted tray and crouch down to receive my boys.

When Sarah moved, she shared her special recipe with me, but my muffins aren’t the same. The chocolate chips sink. The tops don’t mound. Plus, my boys don’t get as excited. They miss my friend’s warm smile.

A couple of summers ago, Sarah and her children came to visit. They’d been traveling for two days. She pulled in our driveway and stepped from her van. My five boys charged to greet her. The older boys are bigger now, taller than Sarah. And there are a few new smaller ones.

Sarah reached up to hug the big boys. Then she crouched to embrace the small. She took the time to greet, hug, and speak to each one. “I have something for you,” she said when my boys loosened their grip.

She reached into her van and pulled a Tupperware container from under the seat. I didn’t have to wonder what was inside – pumpkin chocolate chip.

We visited with Sarah all day long, and when evening colored the sky, my boys and I watched her drive away. The lights from her van disappeared and we walked toward the house.

“Let’s eat the last of the muffins before bed,” Logan said. His voice was manly and deep. “No one bakes them quite like Miss Sarah.”

“Yah,” Grant said. “There’s nothing like Miss Sarah’s muffins,” he paused. “And there’s no one like Miss Sarah.”

We gathered around the table that night and enjoyed soft, spicy muffins and tall glasses of cold milk.

“To Miss Sarah,” I said. Five boys and I clinked our glasses together in honor of our dear, dear friend.

Lord, thank you for precious friends, Sarah and others, who have loved my boys through the years and across the miles.

Valentine Book Giveaway -
Thank you, friends, for sharing from deep places about how God showered you with LOVE this week. Precious! It was amazing to hear of His intimate, personal care. Oh, how He loves us!
SHARON DRACH MANGAS, Gabe pulled your name from his ski cap. Hoorah! We’ll send your copy of Cup of Comfort for Christian Women this week.
Again, thanks to all. God bless and Happy Valentine’s Day!


  1. What a fun surprise to be the winner--I'm not sure I would've been "the one" except for Gabe pulling my name out of a hat--lots of other stories that were a bit more inspiring, but THANKS! Can't wait to get the book & read more of my favorite author!
    Heartwarming story about your friendship with Sarah. HUGS!

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  3. Whoops! I didnt know it would say I removed it. The smiley face was on the wrong row! Here is what I said!
    My mom made those pumpkin chocolate chip muffins today Miss Shawnelle!! I love this story as well!!!!

  4. Hi Ginny - You lucky girl! Wish you could run some on over:)