The children were delighted that we’d been having pasta and pizza nearly every night for dinner—and allowing them extra cookies and cakes. We’d been working very hard to get rid of all of our chametz. The pantry was nearly bare, as was the refrigerator.

Admittedly, I sometimes get a little carried away with Passover preparations.

The garage was clean. The spare freezer was spotless. The basement stairs were swept. The beds all had fresh linens. The fabric shower curtain was just washed. One day was set aside for cleaning the floors of the entire house and in the crevices of the couch.

Really, everything was on a schedule until Passover:

Wednesday: cleaning the kitchen cabinets and fridge
Thursday: running the self-cleaning cycle on the oven
Friday: kashering the cooktop
Saturday night, after Shabbat: pouring boiling water over the sinks and covering the kitchen island with a vinyl tablecloth

As I was planning everything out in my mind on that beautiful Sunday afternoon, just over a week before Passover, the doorbell rang. Who on earth could that be? Verizon reps don’t usually try to sell FIOS on Sundays. The postman doesn’t usually ring the bell on Sundays, either. I wasn’t expecting anyone, nor was I anticipating a surprise visit from any frazzled friends who were also busy preparing for the holiday.

I opened the door and saw two of my friendly neighborhood Girl Scouts—with the boxes of cookies I had ordered months prior. I forced a smile, trying to ease the panic that arose in me at the sight of unanticipated chametz. I grabbed my checkbook and politely paid the two sweet girls, thanking them for the cookies.

As the girls ran off to their next customer’s home, I found slight relief in the fact that I had only ordered my usual four boxes of cookies. After all, the same thing happens nearly every year—cookies delivered just in time for Passover.

In order to calm my now-racing heart, I tried writing a letter to Sylvia Acevedo, interim CEO of the Girl Scouts, to let her know that cookie sales could be much higher if they were delivered a couple of days after Passover. The words weren’t coming out right. I didn’t want to seem like a complaining customer who was requesting special treatment. After all, the Girl Scout cookie company has made an effort to appeal to Jews by paying for kosher certification on all of their products.

So I did what any self-respecting, cookie-loving, Passover-observing Jewish mother would do. I opened a box of Thin Mints and shared them with my kids.

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