Now for those of you who aren't familiar with Zabar's; I'm turning to Wikipedia, to provide you with a lil background. "Zabar's is a specialty food store at 2245 Broadway and 80th Street, on the Upper West Side of Manhattan in New York City. It is known for its selection of bagels, smoked fish, olives, and cheeses. Zabar's is frequently referenced in popular culture; it is mentioned in the 1998 film You've Got Mail, the 2009 TV series V and episodes of Will & Grace, Dream On, Mad About You, Sex and the City, The Nanny, Seinfeld, The West Wing, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, 30 Rock, and Castle."
With that being said; I was in utter shock, to be receiving a package from Zabar's; and I honestly had no idea who had sent it. I opened the package, and found a note that read "SENDING YOU SOME MUCH NEEDED 'COMFORT FOODS' FROM NEW YORK. KEEP UP THE GREAT BLOG. MUCH LOVE RACHEL & PENNY." And then I promptly cried because I was so moved by their thoughtfulness. Oh my goodness!
Rachel, is the Rachel S that I wrote about in "A Note Of Gratitude;" and if you've had the opportunity to read it, then you may remember how touched I was by Rachel's words of encouragement and how thankful I was that she had called me the other day. So, can you imagine how overwhelmed I was by the kindness and consideration that Rachel and her extraordinary, mother Penny had shown by sending me this gift? I adore Rachel and Penny; and not because they sent me a care package in response to my "Comfort Food" blog; but because they CARE.
I've known this magnificent mother and daughter since I was 16 years old; and although I typically only saw them during the summer, at the Pine's, they were very dear to me. I remember that Rachel (who's a few years younger than me;) ALWAYS had her head on her shoulders. She had a unique maturity and she never cared what anybody else was doing; she invariably did what was right for her. She loved her parents profoundly and their relationship was admirable. They all showed each other love, respect and devotion; and after talking to Penny today, I realized that she was one of my first "parent" role models. Much like my mom, Penny always took the time to get to know Rachel's friends and whenever I saw her, she never failed to express her fondness and genuine interest in me.
Rachel and Penny went out of their way to attend my Nana's funeral; and went even further out of their way to surprise me at my bridal shower. We've all managed to keep in touch throughout the years, and my family had the pleasure of seeing Rachel and her sister just a few years ago when they came to Phoenix; but by no means do we talk, write or see each other regularly; which makes this gift even that much more surprising.
I immediately called Rachel to thank her and I believe that I was still choked up, maybe even crying; as I left a message expressing my utmost gratitude. I asked Rachel to please call me back so that I could thank her properly, and provide me with Penny's phone number; and within a matter of minutes, Penny had called me.
It was so comforting to hear Penny's voice; and after reading my description of this dynamic duo; it shouldn't surprise you to hear that after I thanked Penny for the wonderful care package; she said "You can believe me that it gave us more pleasure than you can imagine." She went on to say that it was more of a pleasure to give to me than to receive. And I KNOW exactly what she means.
Penny and I chatted for a while, and amongst other things, we talked about my kids. I bragged (of course;) and told her how fantastic they are; and she told me "You get out of them what you put into them;" and you know what? She's absolutely right! We talked a little bit more and Penny said "You're so fortunate that you have love all around you. If you have love and your health; you're way ahead of the game;" and I couldn't agree more. Penny is a sage woman who has always given great advice; and the fact that she still thinks so highly of me after all of these years; is just a testament to what a loving, compassionate woman she is; and surely the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, in the case of her daughters.
Although it was cold and rainy in Phoenix today, I was warmed by the unbelievable benevolence that I was shown. I feel so fortunate to have these astonishing women in my life. Rachel and Penny make me feel So VERY special and so cared for; and that in and of itself is a gift. I think that I could write for hours and hours on the subject, and never fully convey the depths of my gratitude and my love. I am blessed, I am blessed, I am truly BLESSED!
Till next time...
Queen of EVERYTHING