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Preparing breakfast | Source: Freepik
Preparing breakfast | Source: Freepik

Single Dad of Two Girls Wakes up to Prepare Breakfast for His Daughters, Finds It Already Cooked

author
Jul 10, 2024
10:05 A.M.

As a single dad juggling work and two young daughters, Jack never expected to find a stranger's homemade pancakes on his kitchen table one morning. When he discovers the mysterious benefactor, her shocking story of hardship and gratitude changes his life forever, forging an unexpected bond between them.

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Jack and his two daughters | Source: Midjourney

Jack and his two daughters | Source: Midjourney

Being a single dad to two little girls, Emma, who was 4, and Lily, who was 5, was the hardest job I ever had. My wife left us to travel the world, and now it was just me and the girls. I loved them more than anything, but balancing work, cooking, and taking care of everything at home left me exhausted.

Every morning, I woke up early. First, I went to wake the girls.

"Emma, Lily, time to get up!" I called softly, opening their bedroom door.

Emma and Lily asleep | Source: Midjourney

Emma and Lily asleep | Source: Midjourney

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Lily rubbed her eyes and sat up. "Good morning, Daddy," she said, yawning.

Emma, still half asleep, mumbled, "I don't want to get up."

I smiled. "Come on, sweetie. We have to get ready for daycare."

I helped them get dressed. Lily picked her favorite dress, the one with the flowers, while Emma chose her pink shirt and jeans. Once they were dressed, we all headed downstairs.

Jake dresses Lily | Source: Midjourney

Jake dresses Lily | Source: Midjourney

I went to the kitchen to make breakfast. The plan was simple: oatmeal with milk. But when I entered the kitchen, I stopped in my tracks. There, on the table, were three plates of freshly made pancakes with jam and fruit.

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"Girls, did you see this?" I asked, puzzled.

Lily's eyes widened. "Wow, pancakes! Did you make them, Daddy?"

A plate of pancakes | Source: Midjourney

A plate of pancakes | Source: Midjourney

I shook my head. "No, I didn't. Maybe Aunt Sarah stopped by early."

I picked up my phone and called my sister, Sarah.

"Hey, Sarah, did you come by this morning?" I asked as soon as she picked up.

"No, why?" Sarah sounded confused.

Woman talks on her phone | Source: Pexels

Woman talks on her phone | Source: Pexels

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"Never mind, it's nothing," I said, hanging up. I checked the doors and windows, but everything was locked. There was no sign of anyone breaking in.

"Is it safe to eat, Daddy?" Emma asked, looking at the pancakes with big eyes.

I decided to taste them first. They were delicious and seemed perfectly fine. "I think it's okay. Let's eat," I said.

Emma and Lily wait to eat the pancakes | Source: Midjourney

Emma and Lily wait to eat the pancakes | Source: Midjourney

The girls cheered and dug into their breakfast. I couldn't stop thinking about who could have made the pancakes. It was strange, but I decided to let it go for now. I had to get to work.

After breakfast, I dropped Emma and Lily off at daycare. "Have a good day, my loves," I said, kissing them goodbye.

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At work, I couldn't focus. My mind kept going back to the mysterious pancakes. Who could have done it? Why? When I returned home that evening, I got another surprise. The lawn, which I hadn't had time to mow, was neatly cut.

A neatly cut lawn | Source: Midjourney

A neatly cut lawn | Source: Midjourney

I stood in my yard, scratching my head. "This is getting weird," I muttered to myself. I checked the house again, but everything was in order.

The next morning, I decided to find out who was helping me. I got up earlier than usual and hid in the kitchen, peeking through a small gap in the door. At 6 a.m., I saw a woman climb in through the window.

A strange woman in the kitchen | Source: Midjourney

A strange woman in the kitchen | Source: Midjourney

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She was wearing old postal worker clothes. I watched as she started washing the dishes from the night before. She then pulled out some cottage cheese from her bag and began making pancakes.

My stomach growled loudly. The woman turned around, startled. She quickly turned off the gas and ran towards the window.

The startled woman | Source: Midjourney

The startled woman | Source: Midjourney

"Wait, please, I won’t harm you," I said, stepping out of my hiding spot. "You made those pancakes, right? Please, tell me why you’re doing this? Don’t be afraid of me, I’m the father of the girls and would never harm a woman, especially when you’ve helped me so much."

The woman stopped and slowly turned to face me. I saw her face and thought she looked familiar, but I couldn't place where I knew her from.

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"We’ve met before, haven’t we?" I asked, confused.

Confused man in a suit | Source: Pexels

Confused man in a suit | Source: Pexels

The woman nodded, but before she could speak, Emma and Lily's voices came from upstairs, "Daddy, where are you?"

I glanced towards the stairs, then back at the woman. "Let's sit and talk. I'll get my girls. Please, don’t go," I pleaded.

The woman hesitated, then nodded slowly. "Okay," she said quietly.

The stranger sits at the table | Source: Midjourney

The stranger sits at the table | Source: Midjourney

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I smiled in relief. I hurried upstairs to get Emma and Lily.

I hurried upstairs to get Emma and Lily. "Come on, girls, we have a surprise guest downstairs," I said.

They followed me down, curious. When we entered the kitchen, the woman stood by the window, looking unsure and ready to bolt.

"Please, don't leave," I said gently. "I just want to talk and thank you."

Jake stops the woman | Source: Midjourney

Jake stops the woman | Source: Midjourney

Emma and Lily looked at her with wide eyes. "Who is she, Daddy?" Lily asked.

"Let's find out together," I replied. Turning to the woman, I added, "Please, sit down. Can I get you some coffee?"

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She hesitated but then nodded slowly. "Okay," she said softly.

The woman sits at the table | Source: Midjourney

The woman sits at the table | Source: Midjourney

We all sat down at the kitchen table. "I'm Jack," I started, "and these are my daughters, Emma and Lily. You've been helping us, and I want to know why."

The woman took a deep breath. "My name is Claire," she began. "Two months ago, you helped me when I was in a very bad place."

I frowned, trying to recall. "Helped you? How?"

A man tries to remember something | Source: Pexels

A man tries to remember something | Source: Pexels

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She continued, "I was lying by the road, weak and desperate. Everyone passed by, but you stopped. You took me to a charity hospital. I was severely dehydrated and could have died. When I woke up, you were gone, but I convinced the parking guard to tell me your car number. I found out where you lived and decided to thank you."

Recognition dawned on me. "I remember now. You were in terrible shape. I couldn’t just leave you there."

The woman when she was seen by Jake | Source: Midjourney

The woman when she was seen by Jake | Source: Midjourney

Claire nodded, her eyes moist. "Your kindness saved me. My ex-husband tricked me, brought me from Britain to America, took everything, and left me on the street. I had nothing and no one to turn to."

Emma and Lily listened intently, their small faces filled with concern. "That's so sad," Emma said, her voice barely a whisper.

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"But why are you here?" I asked, still puzzled.

Confused man | Source: Pexels

Confused man | Source: Pexels

Claire explained, "Your help gave me the strength to keep going. I went to the embassy and told them my story. They helped me get new documents and connected me with a lawyer to fight for my son. I got a job as a postal worker. But I wanted to repay you, to show my gratitude. I saw how tired you looked when you came home every day, so I decided to help you with small things."

I was touched by her story. "Claire, I appreciate what you've done, but you can't just break into our home. It's not safe, and it scared me."

A serious man | Source: Pexels

A serious man | Source: Pexels

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She nodded, looking ashamed. "I'm so sorry. I didn't mean to frighten you. I just wanted to help."

Emma reached out and touched Claire's hand. "Thank you for making pancakes. They were yummy."

Claire smiled, tears in her eyes. "You're welcome, sweetheart."

Claire smiles | Source: Midjourney

Claire smiles | Source: Midjourney

I took a deep breath, feeling a mix of relief, curiosity, and empathy. "Claire, let's do this differently. No more sneaking in, okay? How about you join us for breakfast now and then? We can get to know each other better."

Her face lit up with a hopeful smile. "I'd like that, Jack. Thank you."

A smiling man with folded arms | Source: Pexels

A smiling man with folded arms | Source: Pexels

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We spent the rest of the morning talking and eating the pancakes she made. Claire told us more about her son and her plans to reunite with him. I realized how much strength and determination she had.

As we finished breakfast, I felt a sense of new beginnings. Claire's gratitude and our mutual support created a bond. She had found a way to repay my kindness, and in turn, I wanted to help her reunite with her son.

Family breakfast | Source: Pexels

Family breakfast | Source: Pexels

Emma and Lily seemed to adore her already, and I felt a glimmer of hope for the future. "This could be the start of something good for all of us," I thought.

"Thank you for sharing your story, Claire," I said as we cleaned up together. "Let's help each other from now on."

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She nodded, smiling. "I'd like that very much, Jack. Thank you."

A smiling woman | Source: Pexels

A smiling woman | Source: Pexels

And so, a new chapter began for both our families, filled with hope and mutual support.

This work is inspired by real events and people, but it has been fictionalized for creative purposes. Names, characters, and details have been changed to protect privacy and enhance the narrative. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental and not intended by the author.

The author and publisher make no claims to the accuracy of events or the portrayal of characters and are not liable for any misinterpretation. This story is provided "as is," and any opinions expressed are those of the characters and do not reflect the views of the author or publisher.

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