Vicki Cabot

Homey comforts. . .

Home, again.
Photo Vicki Cabot
Home, again. Photo by Vicki Cabot.

The sweatshirt caught my eye.
Soft, slouchy, comfy, just warm enough.
Basic black, with one word emblazoned across the front.

I snatched it off the rack and pulled out my credit card.
An impulse purchase, but one that became a staple of my at home wardrobe.
I bought the shirt as we were hunkering down for year two of COVID, resigned to staying home and making the most of it. A pot of soup on the stove, fresh bread in the oven, flowers on the table, leisurely meals and good conversation. Small pleasures, the little things.
Home comforts.

Then came the miraculous promise of the vaccine, the shimmering possibilities, visits with our kids and grandkids, meeting a precious new little one, spending time with extended family, maybe even a trip to places afar.

And then the variants arrived, first Delta, then Omicron, and who knows if there is another lurking not far behind?

COVID was again stalking us, its uncertainties upending plans, its worrisome presence slowing the hoped for normalcy we all craved.

Trips were cancelled, events postponed,in person gatherings on hold.

And so as 2022 arrived, the numbers were climbing, the news somber, and life seemed a little more unsettled, the future more unclear, life a little, well, less than perfect.

So it was that a piece by Genevieve Ko in the New York Times spoke to me, not just Ko’s recipe for a comforting meal of poached eggs, but her insights on how to live in this imperfect moment.

A food writer and recipe developer, Ko shares the story of how a less than perfect batch of homemade graham crackers for a photo shoot became a lesson learned. She discovers that striving for perfectly baked crackers or perfectly coddled eggs — or perfect anything — misses the point of making them at all.

The crackers came out of the oven with misshapen edges, the poached eggs, carefully prepared, emerged from their boiling water bath looking like friendly ghosts, she writes, rather than five star round globes.

But the crackers were quickly gobbled up and the poached eggs were gently placed on toasted English muffins, rivulets of bright yellow yolks running through the muffin’s crags, a messy but satisfying breakfast to enjoy with friends.

Not picture perfect, but beautiful in their own imperfect way.

I could not resist pulling on my favorite sweatshirt, following Ko’s recipe on New Year’s Day and sending a photo of my own less than perfect poached eggs and her wise words to my kids.

Ta Dah! I wrote in the family text, nice way to kick off 2022.

May not be perfect, but what matters is cooking a meal and sharing it with those we love.

About the Author
A writer and editor, Vicki has been recognized for excellence by the American Jewish Press Association, Arizona Press Club and Arizona Press Women. Her byline has appeared for more than 30 years in Jewish News of Greater Phoenix and in a variety of other publications. A Wexner Heritage Scholar, she holds masters degrees in communications and religious studies from Arizona State University and a Ph.D in religious studies also from ASU.
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