Seriously Mom — Are You Crying?
Probably. A state of calm is something generally not associated with a child’s high school graduation and, since we only have one child, the inner crazy mom in me was getting ready for a breakdown this past May.
It was the craziest chain of events though. Having made it through our only son’s graduation on just one Kleenex (yes, folks, ONE!), my inner crazy mom said, “Hey, you got this!” The graduation party a week later was full of friends, family, laughter, great food and, again, about only one Kleenex. At this point, I am wondering if my tear ducts have dried up because I am a crier from way back — including crying at weddings where I am the soloist and barely even know the bride and groom. During all of the preparation for graduation, the picture I painted in my head leading up to the ceremony was me sobbing hysterically on the bleacher with my husband asking me to quiet down, only to look up and him to see mascara running down my face and me out of Kleenex. But this didn’t happen. Had I turned cold or did my “bad mom” mischievous thoughts of having a bathroom all to myself take over and dry up my tears? Mom guilt had set in.
This mystery was quickly solved as my husband started talking about the college move-in weekend in September and I discovered that my words were lost as the tears started to flow. So that’s it! He’s still in the house so it is truly the moving OUT day and IN to college day when I need to wear waterproof mascara.
Many parents have shared stories about college move-in day with their kids and how driving away and leaving their child was the most difficult thing they have ever done. One couple mentioned how they kept hanging around doing just a “few more things” in the dorm room with the dread of walking out the door. Listening to these stories has not helped at all. I am seriously thinking of dropping him off and making a run for the car — with a parade of soggy Kleenex trailing behind me…what a sight that would be! But, it’s grown-up time and that won’t happen. We will move him into his room; he will be excited to organize his stuff and figure out how to fit everything he wanted to bring, and he will want to talk to his new roommate about the fun week of welcome they are going to have and we will know when it is time to leave.
So now what? Yes, we will leave and go home — despite the joke played on our son that we sold our house and are moving two blocks away from his college. His reply? “Nooooooooo Mom!” Ha! Seriously though, I imagine on the drive home being angry with ourselves in an unrealistic way for raising an independent, strong-willed, and adventurous child. He is excited for college and all that it brings and…he will be fine.
Mom and dad, however, will need to stop for a new box of Kleenex for the ride home. I may need to also pack these cookies for the trip back home to make me feel better. Love these…
Salty Caramel and Pecan Oatmeal Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups rolled oats
1 11 – ounce package caramel baking bits
1 cup pecans, toasted (in a fry pan for a couple minutes or oven for 5 or so) and coarsely chopped
Coarse sea salt
In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar, brown sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, the baking powder, cinnamon and baking soda. Beat in eggs and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining flour. Stir in oats, caramel baking bits and pecans.
Drop 1 1/2-inch mounds of dough 2 inches apart onto cookie sheets — lined with parchment paper is best. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt.
Bake in a 350 oven for 11 to 12 minutes, until the edges are light brown. (Centers will look undercooked.) Cool on cookie sheets for 3 to 4 minutes or until cookies can be easily removed.