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There are times blogging is not about food, travels and the pursuit of all things sweet. It’s about the people. How they come to have a special place in your heart no matter how far away they are or how frequent the interactions may be. Yes, I will post plenty of sweet recipes next week but today I want to stop and celebrate.

The picture above is dedicated my dear friend Barbara of Winos and Foodies to celebrate the end of her chemotherapy. I’ve entitled it "Reach". A couple of years ago, Barbara posted a picture of her dancing shoes on New Year’s Eve and these words "Dance like no one is watching" while she was still going through life with cancer, its ups and downs and all that it affects. It inspired me. It moved me. It was "so Barbara". Strong, funny, witty. I shot this one thinking of her dancing shoes. She inspires me to stay strong, focused and to try to reach new heights everyday.

Today a few of us are also reaching out beyond our screens to extend a virtual hug to Barbara and toast her to life, to health and to her family and friends. Yeah baby!

I have had the priviledge to laugh, cry and get hungry with Barbara over the past few years in the emails we shared. Her ability to see things so clearly was painful to me sometimes. Raw. Reality. Fear. Pain. Sadness. Hope. I’d share my miscarriages and she would share her cancer. Not fair, eiher way in their own ways. I had it easy compared to the hell that she was going through. That’s Barbara. Grace and generosity. Class and moxie.

Barbar, my friend, cheers to you and your wonderful family! Reach for the moon my dear!

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Lori July 12, 2009 um 12:49 pm

Barbara is extraordinary. I am very happy for her. I love the way you celebrate your friendships. I think your gratitude and appreciation brings so much in your life.

Rosa's Yummy Yums July 12, 2009 um 1:40 pm

A beautiful picture and post! All the best, Barbara! I'm so happy to hear that.



Simones Kitchen July 12, 2009 um 2:34 pm

I know how brutal chemo (my dad is currently going through it) can be and it's wonderful news that Barbara is done with the chemo. Hope she stays healthy and strong!

Char July 12, 2009 um 2:59 pm

cheers to Barbara for continuing to fight the good fight! 🙂

Laura July 12, 2009 um 3:10 pm

Beautiful poignant post. I sent you an e-mail, kind of crazy.

I wrote a comment to Barbara. Chemo is brutal! I wish her a quick recovery.

Sunshinemom July 12, 2009 um 3:15 pm

This is so like you! I don't think there can ever be a comparison between two kinds of tragic happenings. Going through miscarriages is as painful as going through treatments (for any condition), each equally difficult and draining in its own way. I admire that you have never let it show and always spread good cheer through your blog – It is no less brave! Bravo – both you and Barbara!

Amanda at Little Foodies July 12, 2009 um 3:20 pm

This gave me goosebumps so glad to read this about Barbara. Hope all well with you. x

Maybe July 12, 2009 um 4:23 pm

I'm so happy for you and your friend Barbara ! And you're right : when some great things happen in life, we must take some time to celebrate !

Nutmeg Nanny July 12, 2009 um 4:56 pm

That is great that your friend is doing so well. You are so sweet to dedicate the post to her:)

Anonymous July 12, 2009 um 6:22 pm

Lovely picture, lovely post, lovely dedication.


Alexandra July 12, 2009 um 7:07 pm

Frinds are the gifts in our lives. They are the sources of hope, strength, and life's lessons especially during our trials and tribulations. You are beautifully generous for sharing something so personal and heartfelt…to good health and friends!

Anonymous July 12, 2009 um 7:20 pm

A phrase written in a high school graduation present was, "If we're walking on thin ice we may as well dance!" I went through cancer, was given a 5% chance of living the first year by eight doctors (3 were my uncles and grandfather); that was over 20 years ago. Ten years after, a car hit me and cut off my foot. An old friend who'd suffered a bad miscarriage and I spent some time recuperating. She said she'd rathered lost a foot than the baby. I agreed with her. But I never was allowed even the hope of children, which I didn't say. I'm still on a slippery surface, but even a one-footed woman can twirl. Life is good when it is truly lived – good luck to you and your friend.

oneordinaryday July 12, 2009 um 7:20 pm

What an homage to women and their friendships. Nicely said.

Edda July 12, 2009 um 7:39 pm

Wonderful picture and post! Tu es spéciale et tes mots, ta générosité m'ont émue. Meilleurs voeux à Barbara

Simply Mel {Reverie} July 12, 2009 um 8:01 pm

An incredibly moving post! Thank you for those words and for sharing another side of your 'sweet' self!

My mother battled cancer and many horrific treatments of chemo, and I am so grateful to still have her with us. Blessings to Barbara and her journey of health.

Nina Timm July 12, 2009 um 8:09 pm

It is wonderful that you can celebrate with a friend. I also read things about you that I did not know and that is beautiful that we can in some way connect even though we are miles apart. You are an inspiration to me!!!

Barbara July 12, 2009 um 10:32 pm

Helen how lovely and what a wonderful surprise. Totally unexpected but very much appreciated. I love the photo. Thank you. Yesterday I drank champagne with a good friend who beat cancer 10 years ago. We had a lovely day. Thank you to all the lovely people who have left comments and good wishes.

Bron July 12, 2009 um 10:48 pm

Lovely toast Helen, a great reminder that we should all reach for the moon! xxx

K and S July 12, 2009 um 11:34 pm

way to go barbara!

paula July 13, 2009 um 1:38 am

woohoo! This is incredible, such a long journey I am sure. Your words are inspiring. My mom hits her 5 year mark this fall.

Irene July 13, 2009 um 2:08 am

Cheers to Barbara!

Elizabeth July 13, 2009 um 3:04 am

This is a beautiful post. Hugs to you and to Barbara.

Anonymous July 13, 2009 um 4:23 am

This is beautiful. It truly comes from the heart. You're the greatest friend ever. 🙂

All the best for Barbara.

Baking is my Zen…sweet nibbles for the soul July 13, 2009 um 5:50 am

The absolute "Best" to Barbara. She is also blessed to have a special, beautiful friend in you!

MsGourmet July 13, 2009 um 9:54 am

What a beautiful post Helen honouring an incredible woman! Cin Cin Barbara – to life, love & happiness xox

Cindy July 13, 2009 um 11:50 am

i'm sorry you've both suffered from the challenges life throws at us sometimes, but it's wonderful how loving and supportive you are of each other. all the best!

Rachael Hutchings July 13, 2009 um 11:54 am

Beautiful post, beautiful picture, beautiful YOU…as always.

Receitas da Piteca July 13, 2009 um 12:00 pm

Loved the post!!! Best wishes for both you an Barbara! Everything will be ok, we just have to believe it!! 😉

Cakelaw July 13, 2009 um 12:28 pm

A beautiful post. Here's to Barbara!

Christelle July 13, 2009 um 2:00 pm

Beautiful post, Barbara will love this proof of love and support I'm sure! Good luck for the fight, she has a lot of courage to go through that!

Jen Yu July 13, 2009 um 3:00 pm

So sweet and so very poetic. Barbara is lucky to have a friend in you (as am I!). I know you were out of town and busy, which makes it even more special that you immediately agreed to do this. Now we just need to find a way to kidnap Barbara to SF in September!! 🙂 xxoo

Dodie @AshevilleTravel July 13, 2009 um 3:52 pm

I love this…for me, it is one of many recent reminders to celebrate life by living with passion. I have some wonderful role models. It appears that Barabra can be one for all of us.

Patricia Scarpin July 13, 2009 um 4:05 pm

I'm so glad to hear that, Helen – Barb is such a dear and she deserved nothing but happiness!

Engineer Baker July 13, 2009 um 6:00 pm

Cheers! I love that photo, and this post is a wonderful tribute to a wonderful lady.

Margot July 13, 2009 um 6:28 pm

Lovely picture, lovely post, lovely dedication.

kamran siddiqi July 13, 2009 um 7:06 pm

You are such a good friend! And the picture is beautiful!

Maria July 13, 2009 um 7:10 pm

What a great post. Yea for Barbara!

Ms Alex July 13, 2009 um 9:20 pm

A gorgeous photo, a gorgeous gesture.

Melissa July 13, 2009 um 10:47 pm

Just like all Tartelette posts–sweet and inspiring!

Thanks for sharing Barbara's story of strength!

Susan from Food Blogga July 14, 2009 um 12:21 am

Oh, Helen, this is a most beautiful tribute to an amazing woman! I couldn't be happier for Barbara!

Joyce July 14, 2009 um 2:57 am

A wonderful celebration!! A super photo too. xoxo

Kelly-Jane July 14, 2009 um 7:39 am

Barbara has a special ability to touch others. Lovely post.

Kristen July 14, 2009 um 1:51 pm

Barbara is such a strong and inspiring woman. What a wonderful tribute to her. That photo is incredible!

raj July 14, 2009 um 7:20 pm

the photographs are SO beautiful!! the food looks almost too good to be eaten!
notice i said almost! 😛
-the hungry cook

MyKitchenInHalfCups July 15, 2009 um 3:32 pm

The best reason to celebrate! Wishing Barbara all the very best forward.

cindy* July 15, 2009 um 10:18 pm

congrats to barbara…and what a wonderful way to cherish your friendship. lovely helen…

decocinasytacones December 23, 2011 um 7:29 pm

A big kiss to you and a huge hug to Barbara from Spain.
I hope the new year to come brings health and lucky to everyone!!!!
Merry Christmas to all

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