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Lambie PhotoWhen Lambie Stout was diagnosed with breast cancer in October of 2005, she was more overwhelmed than surprised. Her father, whom she adored, succumbed to colon cancer when she was just seven. Her paternal grandmother and aunt suffered from breast cancer. But at age thirty-six, Lambie was unprepared for this inheritance.

At the time, she was an attentive mother who had just celebrated her daughter’s first birthday.

While grabbing groceries from the car, Lambie turned around to find Elizabeth walking unsteadily toward the outside stairs. Instinctively, she ran to block her daughter from taking another step. Her body slammed into the doorjamb, bruising the yet-to-be diagnosed tumor.

A few days later, on her way to a birthday dinner, Lambie fastened her seatbelt and felt increased pain. Consequently, her calendar filled up with doctors’ appointments and surgeries. Meanwhile, her front hallway filled with unopened boxes from Smith College, her alma mater. Historically, the college sold gourmet pecans as an annual fundraiser. Lambie had pre-ordered a sizable quantity before her diagnosis with the intention of selling them.

 
 
 

The bulk pecans inspired a holiday trail mix, which Lambie made with Elizabeth and packaged as daycare and hostess gifts. The recipe was a variation of one her mother prepared years before as an after-school snack. Not surprisingly, Elizabeth most loved the red and green M&M’s™. Though it was an unwelcome time, making the mix with Elizabeth gave Lambie a reprieve from her illness. She referred to the recipe as “Merry Mix.”

Leftover batches – and they were plentiful – became a household staple served to friends and family who visited with Lambie after her chemotherapy treatments. It also became the only food that she could stomach. A bowl of Merry Mix sat on her nightstand alongside a pitcher of water and stacks of cancer how-to books. Ever the opportunist, Elizabeth snuck a few M&M’s™ each morning when she woke up her mother.

Lambie spent hours in bed listening to the sounds of Elizabeth’s childhood beyond the closed door – the cacophonous banging of pots and pans, exuberant sing-alongs. But the night before her last treatment, Lambie left her bed to sing to Elizabeth in her great-grandmother’s rocking chair. She promised her sleeping daughter that she would do whatever needed to be done in order to live. Lambie had survived the childhood loss of her father and could not bear Elizabeth experiencing this grief.

 
 
 
Now in remission, Lambie has made good on her promise to her daughter. She has also fulfilled a promise to herself to move beyond her illness and contribute something substantive to the world. The sale of Comfort Crunch products empowers her to donate five percent of company profits to further cancer research. This spirit of generosity and outreach is Lambie’s legacy for Elizabeth.

Sample generous helpings of Comfort Crunch for yourself or tastefully share it with others.
 

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