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Bookstock shopper finds late mom's recipe tucked inside cookbook

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Debbie Levin found a recipe handwritten by her now deceased mother inside a cookbook at Bookstock. Debbie Levin found a recipe handwritten by her now deceased mother inside a cookbook at Bookstock.
LIVONIA, Mich. (WJBK) -

Bookstock is the largest used book sale in metro Detroit.  However, for one woman, it turned out to be something more.

"I was definitely meant to be here this morning at this moment," said Debbie Levin.

If you've ever doubted that miracles happen somewhere every day, this story could change your mind.

There are more than 200,000 books at Bookstock.  The statistics aren't official, but you could say the odds of what happened in Livonia on Sunday morning are about one in a million.

A volunteer handed Levin a copy of "Fiddler in the Kitchen" written in 1982 by the Detroit chapter of the National Council of Jewish Women.  She noticed something was folded between the pages of the book, so she gave it a shake.  She was not prepared for what fell out.

"My own mother's recipe... in my mother's handwriting, and it's her original recipe," Levin said.  "It isn't her cookbook because I have all her cookbooks.  She passed away about two years ago."

The recipe was for Doris Levin's famous apple chocolate chip cake.  It was her signature dish.  She knew the recipe by heart, but likely wrote it out for a friend, who eventually folded it up and stuffed it in the pages of a book that later found its way to its destined owner.

Doris Levin died just a year and a half after her husband, family says, of a broken heart.  It's a pain you never quite get over, but for her daughter, it's a reminder that her mother in some way is still here.

"I'm like overwhelmed that I would find my own mom's [recipe] here.  I know she's watching me now.  Very happy," Levin said.

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