I finally pulled out my fall recipes, just as the season was approaching its peak. Sitting on top of my slightly worn recipe cards was your favorite: my Orange Glazed Cranberry Bread.
I’ve made this so many times for you that I’ve lost count. I’ll never forget the first time you tried it when you were so little and how much you loved it. It really is the lovely, simple things that remind me of you.
I lit my prayer candle on my counter and started to bake your favorite recipe. I love baking in a peaceful space. There’s nothing that a little bit of salt, sugar, and light can’t brighten up. I collected all the ingredients—flour, sugar, buttermilk, salt, baking powder, orange zest, cranberries—and mixed them so carefully together. I think about all the times I’d let you come taste the batter right before we’d pour it into the pan and generously top it with streusel.
Careful as always, I poured the batter into the pan and set it in my oven to bake. Don’t forget to cover it with foil, or you’ll learn the hard way like I did the first time, and catch the top. Remember that one time that you were baking with me, and when we pulled the loaf out of the oven it was still raw? We laughed for so long, and I still chuckle thinking about it now.
You are on my mind a lot these days. I think about how it’s been so long since I’ve been able to wrap you up in my favorite prayer blanket, so I’m sending you your very own. My wish is that you’ll wrap yourself up, surround yourself in grace, and think of me. Of course, I’m also sending you a loaf of your favorite bread, too. Make sure you drizzle some of the orange glaze on top before you eat it! I’ll be sending a copy of my recipe card, too, so we both can bake your favorite recipe this year.
My whole kitchen is warm and smells of cinnamon and orange. I’ve come to love the simpler things, because they remind me so much of you. I’ve pulled the loaf out of the oven, and per your special instructions, I’ll wait a day to eat it because you think the flavor is richer on day two.
Promise you’ll make a loaf for me this year. Thinking of you always.
Lots of love,
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