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A box showed up on my doorstep unexpectedly last week. I recognized the handwriting immediately as Kate’s.  I once asked her how she developed such beautiful handwriting and she admitted that as a small girl living in France, the school she went to put a substantial amount of attention on penmanship and it just stuck.

Kate has become such a strong supporting character in my life over the past five years that I wondered if it warrants providing any back story on who she is and why she would be sending me a package in the first place. Stories of our time together have been gracing my blog since the early days of our life in San Francisco when we first met in the hallway of our apartment building.

Kate and Nick once lived with us for a month in SF after they quit their corporate jobs and decided to house sit in the South of France for 5 months. They moved to North Carolina less than six months after we moved back to learn all they could about farming before moving on to Boston and then finally, Vermont. They are Arlo’s godparents and Kate was there with me on the night he was born. Last summer we spent an unforgettable week on their farm outside Montpellier, VT.

She also happens to be incredibly thoughtful.

In early February, Nick and Kate made plans to stop in NC as part of a road trip down the East coast to escape the relentless cold of Vermont. We were lucky enough to host them for an entire week. We cooked big meals, explored Raleigh, and took a day trip to the NC Zoo. We also got to celebrate in person, their most recent, life changing adventure - parenthood. Kate is due in July with their first child.

Her package was a thank you for their stay. Completely unexpected and unnecessary especially considering that they had arrived weeks earlier with arms full of fresh eggs, local Vermont maple syrup and handmade goat milk caramels.

But last week, I sat on the floor and pulled out each piece of her package, admiring the detail and care she had taken on the four wrapped gifts. Beside each of our names, she had attached a feather from one of the many birds on their farm. A rooster, a wild turkey, a bluebird.

The children were napping and so I waited for them to wake before we opened our gifts. In the mean time, I pried the lid off the container she sent, knowing exactly what was waiting for me inside.

I have eaten no less than a hundred of Kate’s famous chocolate chip cookies over the years. Possibly more. They are just the right amount of salty and sweet, crunchy and chewy, and are highly prized among our friend group.

I ate three immediately and only by sheer willpower did I stop there and save some for the rest of my clan.

I love the photo above of Everly’s wild eyes and crazy bedhead as she devoured one of Kate’s cookies - the whole container lasted less than 2 hours before it was empty.

Once the kids awoke, we took turns unwrapping the brown paper to discover a book-  each with a theme so perfectly suited for the recipient and a small, personal note on the inner binding in her impeccable handwriting.

This post is basically just a lot of words to say a simple thing. And that is, it is so nice to be cared about, isn’t it? To receive a gift, an act of kindness, or a gesture from someone that they so evidently put much time, effort and love into.

Kate’s package has stayed warm and comforting on my thoughts all week. I have re-read the card she included several times with a smile and I wanted to document it here as both a reminder to myself and inspiration for the future to take the time and effort to do the same for someone else.  It’s funny how a gift of thanks from a dear friend has left me feeling, so deeply, like the one most thankful.

Love.

M