Almost

 

almost

 

 

I had the most interesting week, with events that may never again be duplicated, thus the need for documentation.

 

My BFF Stephanie is an editor for a nationally-known website. Last Monday (as in the last Monday that was 11/14/2016), Stephanie learned through her employer that a producer for Good Morning America was looking to book people for a segment on cranberry recipes. Being a true BFF, Stephanie immediately let me know of the opportunity and encouraged me to submit a recipe.

 

I thought, well, why not? So I typed up the recipe for my Three Layer Cranberry Pie, a backstory to accompany it, and attached a copy of my Facebook profile pic. Do mothers of little ones have pictures of themselves, other than the obligatory Facebook profile pic? I reason that they do not.

 

I received word on Monday evening that my recipe and information had been given to a GMA producer, and if GMA was interested, they would contact me. If I didn’t hear anything from a producer, thanks for playing and better luck next time.

 

Tuesday passed uneventfully.

 

Early Wednesday morning I turned off the alarm on my phone and opened my e-mail app. There was a name that I didn’t recognize in my inbox with the subject Copper Webb for Cranberry Segment. I literally jumped out of the bed. A producer wanted more information about me.

 

Was I married? Did I have kids? How long have I been making my pie? What was the closest major airport to me? And could I submit a 20 second video in which I talk about my dish? The producer assured that the video was not for air, but just so that GMA could see what I was like on air. The video was needed ASAP.

 

“How am I supposed to make a video ASAP?!?” I cried.

 

“Well, there’s this thing on your phone called a camera. You may not realize it, but it can take videos of people other than your children!” reminded my husband.

 

Mike confirmed that he did not have any meetings that morning, and I got dressed as quickly as possible. What was available in my closet that didn’t need to be ironed?!? This is exactly why I should USE that BeachBody app on the Apple TV, rather than just letting it take $14.99/month from my checking account. 

 

We lured the kids into the playroom with the promise that they could watch a movie. (On a Wednesday morning?!? Without doing school first?!?! It was an easy sell.) Mike set up his iPhone on a tripod, and we filmed a video. Filming wasn’t exactly easy because I kept saying things like, “Gwaham Cwackow Cwust.” I was obviously destined to be on national tv.

 

 

I sent the video to the producer, and immediately received a reply with some follow-up questions. This I took as a good sign. Apparently I wasn’t terrible on camera.

 

There was no further communication with Good Morning America on Wednesday.

 

On Thursday morning I woke up to several emails from the producer. One was time-stamped 4:11 AM and read, “Please call me ASAP.”  It was already 7:00 AM in Idaho. Oops. But, clearly, had I been up at 4:11 AM grinding wheat and gathering fresh chicken eggs like a truly good homeschool mom, I absolutely would’ve made that call to New York ASAP.

 

The producer wanted to talk through my story for the pie. She explained how the segment would likely run, and confirmed that I was available to fly to NYC on Monday and appear on Good Morning America on Tuesday morning. After our phone call, the producer emailed a few more times with additional questions on my pie’s assembly and presentation. I eventually had to let the producer know that I was headed out to the Boise foothills for my kids’ environmental education classes, and may be out of cell range. The producer requested the information necessary for booking a flight, just in case she had to move quickly and I was unreachable. That was the end of our communication on Thursday.

 

I texted family members and a close friend to tell them that I might possibly be jetting off to NYC on Monday morning and appearing on GMA on Tuesday morning. I crafted a few funny Facebook statuses in my head, you know, just in case I got to announce big news to the world. And I stressed over what I would wear on national TV.

 

I woke up on my own at 6 AM on Friday, and eagerly checked my e-mail. Nothing from GMA. This was not good. Due to the difference in time zones, there had always been early morning emails. I was bummed. I was sure they had decided against using me, but wouldn’t they at least tell me? I re-read every communication that I had with the producer. Where did I go wrong? Did I make a huge mistake somewhere? I Googled myself. Was there something online about Copper Webb being a horrible person?

 

I did some laundry, got the kids started on school, texted my feelings to my friend Stephanie, and obsessively checked my e-mail.

 

At 11:40 AM I heard the blessed ping notification on my phone. I had an email! From GMA!

 

fullsizerender

 

This was not to be the plucked-from-Idaho-obscurity Cinderella story that I had hoped to live. It was disappointing to hear that I wouldn’t be waking up in The City on Tuesday morning, or able to add “appeared on Good Morning America” to my bio, like I had been glamorously imagining all week. But the e-mail wasn’t too devastating, since A) I had already processed through many sad feelings that morning by eating stale donuts and texting Stephanie, and B) The producer said such nice things about me, and C) I now have an Emmy-winning producer on my contact list. That’s something I definitely didn’t have before this week!

 

So, that’s my story about how I almost caught a big break. Almost.

 

As a consolation, here’s my awesome pie recipe:

 

Three Layer Cranberry Pie

1 (9″) prepared graham cracker crust

1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup lemon juice

4 tablespoons brown sugar, divided
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups cranberry sauce (I make my own, and it really puts the pie over the top. Recipe for cranberry sauce down below.)

1/4 cup cold butter
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in sweetened condensed milk until smooth. Stir in lemon juice. Pour into prepared crust.

In small bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and cornstarch; mix well. Stir in cranberry sauce. Spoon evenly over cream cheese mixture.

In medium mixing bowl, cut butter into flour and remaining 3 tablespoons of brown sugar until crumbly. Stir in walnuts. Sprinkle evenly over cranberry mixture.

Bake 45-50 minutes or until the cranberry sauce starts to bubble. Cool, then refrigerate.

 

 

Cranberry Sauce

1 orange
2 cups water
1 Granny Smith apple
3 cups fresh cranberries
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Dash of ground cloves

Directions
Using a sharp vegetable peeler, cut away about 1/2 of the orange peel, bring careful not to cut into the white part of the rind. Use a paring knife to cut the orange peel into small pieces. Combine the orange peel and water in a small pan, bringing to a boil. Boil for 10-12 minutes. Drain orange peel pieces and set aside, discarding water.

Squeeze the juice from the orange and set the juice aside.

Peel and core the apple. Dice the apple.

Rinse and sort the cranberries.

Combine apples, orange juice, orange rind, sugar, cinnamon and cloves in pan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to low heat and partially cover the pan. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens, the apple is tender and the cranberries have burst. Yep, the popping and hissing sound is normal. This step should take 10-15 minutes.

Let the cranberry sauce come to room temperature before serving (or using in the pie recipe above), so plan on making this at least an hour ahead of serving time.

 

Happy Thanksgiving, friends!