A head cold, the incessant rain, a trip to the emergency vet and some punk who decided to slide across my beautiful Zoysia front lawn have left me in a bit of a funk lately. My family and crews will assure you that I can take the fun out of funk.

I was, that is, until yesterday, when I got a call from the Browns. Doug and Joan Brown are a lively retired couple and are the kind of clients that make me glad to have chosen my profession. They are cheery, realistic and genuinely kind. Doug even made me his FABULOUS tomato sauce during the course of their project AND was kind enough to share the recipe that we call ā€˜20 Minutes to Heaven.ā€™

As it turns out, they called to ask for help with a wet corner in the basement. I arrived to hugs. Then, I basked in the accolades about the performance of the above drainage project in the recent flooding rains. They even fed my dog treats and water.

In the course of one afternoon, The Browns hired Shady Grove to complete a small project and all the while, they lifted my sprits, and turned my rudder just enough to alter the course of my life.

This Thanksgiving, Iā€™m grateful for Doug and Joan.

20 Minutes to Heaven

Sautee 1 medium onion, chopped, in 2 TBS olive oil until soft. Add two large cans whole Italian Tomatoes ā€“ squishing each one in your hand as you dump them in. Add the juice from the cans as well. Add a little salt, pepper, sugar and white wine to taste. Simmer over low heat for 15 minutes and (very important) skim the scum off the top every five minutes. Finish the sauce with 2 TBS real butter. Serve over pasta or just eat with a spoon.