My Name is Sarah

MY NAME IS SARAH. I am a quilt designer and the sewcial director of Sarah's Sewcial Lounge. I also have a business called Down Right Charming. I sell my quilts mostly on etsy and I make pillowcases to donate to patients in the hospital in memory of my friend Kristen Kirton. I am a young adult living with Down syndrome. I hope you enjoy reading about my life journey.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Cupcake Quandary

This is Joyce. Sarah officially begins her spring break today so she is sleeping in. That's the cue for me to take over her blog this morning.

Adorable, aren't they? 12 cupcakes. Pretty colors. 6 chocolate. 6 vanilla. 5 different icing colors. 12 for $6.00. The boys will love them. (as you can see, Matt already ate one before I could take this picture). And there are purple butterflies to add to my collection.

Sorry, the picture is not so clear. It says Wal*Mart Bakery. Yes, I was in a Wal*Mart last night. That in itself is worth talking about. I hate Wal*Mart. The ones by our house are dirty, merchandise thrown about, boxes up so high they might fall on your head. So I stay out of them.
However, on the drive between Cleveland and Columbus there is a huge, super clean, super organized, super center at the Mansfield exit right off of I-71. It is open 24 hours. It also just happens to be directly behind the cleanest Marathon gas station I always stop at.
So last night at 10:30 p.m. I am on my way home from Columbus and exit for filling up the gas tank. I'm in no hurry to get home, so I decide to make a stop into Wal*Mart to see if they have the David Cook CD (don't know how I missed the release in November).
At any rate I swing by the bakery section as they often have cute things for the holidays. Sure enough. The above cupcakes. Seemed like an easy decision. Here's the dilemna...
As I am walking out of the store the Wal*Mart greeter, a tall, middle aged woman, comes over to me. "OooHhh you bought those cupcakes. Do you realize those are 50 cents a piece?" "Yes, that's a great deal isn't it? They are so cute and I love the butterfly decorations on them," I reply in a friendly conversation voice. "Yes, but they are 50 cents a piece," she says. I reply, " I don't think I could make them for that. They are half chocolate and half white, 5 different colors of icing and then I would have to buy 12 butterfly rings."
And then she says back in a sad, not whiny or complaining voice, just a sad voice, "But some people just don't have the $6.00."
My first reaction was to give her the box of cupcakes. But then I thought where would she put them. She is on duty. Clocked in. So I said "Have a nice evening, and went to my car. Walking as fast as I could. In those few moments, my perspective changed. Completely.
The rest of the ride home all I could think about was her kids and how they won't have those cute little cupcakes waiting for them this morning. I couldn't sleep last night, thinking about it. As soon as my husband was awake this morning, I shared the story with him.
His response, "Honey that's what I love so much about you, all these years and you still think like a social worker." True. My purpose in Columbus yesterday was for a meeting at the OSU College of Social Work.
But still. A tiny corner of my heart is breaking this morning. All because of cupcakes...


Meredith said...

Hi there, I've just started following a few months ago but I don't think I've commented before. I'm not a social worker, but my heart always beats for the orphaned and I understand your story completely! You are definitely a person of compassion. I have four children, three *extra* special little ones that bless me daily. What a blessing to be able to give special cupcakes to your children. I hope they enjoy them and that they also receive your heart of compassion. Have a blessed Easter weekend. Meredith

Sonia said...

It's such a hard situation to be in! If only this or only that, it's so hard to want to save the world but not be able to! I have those moments often and it's frustrating!

However, I remember when I was teaching, I learned that if just one student was able to grow and prosper as a human being, then I would be proud that I was their teacher. But secretly, I hope and wish that I was able to touch all their lives :)


Well, the purpose here was to tell you and Sarah that I have a gift for you guys over on my blog! So, please go and check it out!

AZ Chapman said...

joyce your husband is right u are so careing

Nan P. said...

Hi Joyce. I understand where you are coming from, totally. I have been in similar types of situations before, and felt awful, yet part of me was un-easy, un-convinced of the full truth coming out.

Some years back, before and just after my marriage break-up, I found myself in a very difficult financial situation. On one occasion, by the 6th of the month I did not even have enough cash in my purse to feed my kids till the next pay check at the end of the month. And the bank accounts were not only empty, but in the absolute red... My sister-in-law of all people helped out, but only after I broke down on the phone that night. No one has even known the tough road I've had to travel, and I am always suspicious of people telling so much to total strangers. May be also because I got stung some years later by a sad story...

So now when I encounter this type of situation, I walk away, feeling terrible, but I walk away. I prefer to give any spare cash to organisations I KNOW will use it wisely to relieve true hardship.

But that's only me.

Hector and Jennifer Varanini Sanchez said...

You are so compassionate. It's true, little stories like this can really bring everything into perspective. I hope you find peace and can enjoy your cupcakes, they are darling! And let's hope that employee and her kids get something special this holiday season as well. Thanks for sharing!

Ssejors said...

Absolutely Beautiful Cupcakes! If I was a walmart greater i would have tried to talk you into giving them to me too :)

Monica @ Monkey Musings said...

I just bought the same cupcakes at our grocery store this afternoon. We will savor each one slowly and think of those who have less than others. Thanks for the lesson...

Brent & Jodie said...

Wow! That really made me think. We also just finished off a box of those same cupcakes. My daughter was thrilled with her butterfly rings. I loved the frosting. We certainly didn't need them. But we were able to buy them and enjoy them and take them for granted. Thanks for giving me a different outlook!

RK said...

I've had similar situations, and I always swear that the next one will be the ONE where I act on my gut instead of chickening out. But I'm sad to say I haven't been 100% successful. There have been some moments where I just went for it, and I never regret it, so I'm not sure why it's so hard to do!

This makes me think of your "by chance or by design" line... I refer to that phrase often, thanks to you.