Of course being 7.5 months pregnant I think often about how I want to raise my son. A few weeks ago we were out to breakfast and saw a mom pick up their child and then watched as the child began to smack, hit, and just go crazy on the mom. I was shocked. Of course I said to Chris “Our child will never act like that.” And — I meant it. First of all, if my kid acts out I will take them outside. I do not care if it is rainy or beautiful out, I would want to take them out of the situation and discuss further. It might even mean making the choice to leave the restaurant. There is absolutely no reason to watch a child loose control and beat the crap out of his mom. Something is not right in that scenario. Those of you who are already parents think I might live in a dream world, but let me tell you, my father might have scared the crap out of me, but I knew how to behave.
So that little rant was about the kids misbehaving, but what about parents? I just read an article about a dad who was mocked for his son loving a custom play kitchen. Now, I will tell you I have not discussed this with Chris, and so he might not agree with me — but I would love for my son to have a play kitchen. Why you might ask? Chris is the chef in our family and he is a damn good one. He does not look at it as the wife’s job. He looks at it as art. He loves his time in the kitchen and from the taste of a dish, to trying something different, right down to how he displays the final product on a plate. Now that does not mean there are nights that it does not feel laborious to him, but he loves his kitchen and I stay out of the way. Why would I do anything to keep my son away from that? Why would he spend his childhood watching his father in the kitchen (and hopefully interested enough to want to join him) and then tell him he cannot have his own play kitchen?
What has this world come to? Cooking is an art and it is not just for women. If I was the one in the kitchen we would eat like crap — just ask Chris. I have no patience, I cannot time things right, and really have no interest. Chris has the patience, loves it, and I know he will have the patience to teach our son as well. My job will be teaching him how to bake. Yes, I will.
I loved this comment from the dad in the article:
“As far as my comment on if he wants to play with a barbie doll…again, let me stress this. HE IS 2. I have seen him get excited and play with a broom. Ya’ll need to chill. Kids are going to play with what they want, and if you try to prevent them from doing something as harmless as playing with the toy they want to play with, they are going to end up resenting you.”
So damn true. Let them play with what inspires them. I would much rather my son paint, get dirty, play in the kitchen and use his mind then be mesmerized behind a video game and develop no social skills whatsoever.
I have had a favorite cookie recipe for years. Nothing compared to it. Until this week. This past year Chris and I have found that we tended to gravitate towards chocolate chip cookies with flake salt on top. Anytime we are at a bakery that is what we order.
Over the weekend I decided it was time to find and make a recipe to have them at home — that and I keep having these nesting urges to bake. This is a must make recipe. It is really no different to make than any other chocolate chip cookie recipe. One thing that is always important to me is what they taste like a few days later. Often I find I only like cookies right out of the oven and they taste differently the next day or a few days later. Not these cookies. Chris will have to fight me for these — he usually gets what is left after day one.
Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Heath Bar Bits
Makes about 18 to 24 cookies
1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar (Sugar in the Raw) [If you do not have any use brown sugar.]
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups flour
1/2 pound semi-sweet chocolate cut into 1/2″ chunks with a knife
1/4 cup heath bar bits
Flaky sea salt to top cookie dough
Heat oven to 360°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugars together with a mixer for about 5 minutes. Mix in egg and vanilla. Mix in salt and baking soda until combined. Add flour until just mixed. With a spatula, stir in the chocolate chunks and heath bar bits.
Form cookies into 1 1/2 tablespoon sized mounds and add to prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle each with a few flakes of sea salt. Bake for 12 minutes or until golden on the outside but still very soft inside. Let cool for about 5 minutes before serving. So good!
I grew up learning how to knit, bake, and sew. Not necessarily in that order. My grandma taught me how to knit, my mom (and 4-H) taught me how to bake and sew. I also often baked with my grandma. I have so many memories of screwing something up while knitting and getting frustrated. Baking was much easier. It might not have come out perfectly but it was usually at least edible. Sewing on the other hand often drove me crazy. My mom had this old singer sewing machine. (Image from Google). My sister would have to confirm if this was the same model, if it is not, then it is at least close. Making a bobbin and then threading that thing was horribly frustrating. I remember many times throwing the bobbin across the room.
When I started my handbag business in my twenties, my mom was not around to get me through using her old Singer. So I got rid of it, and instead purchased a Bernina, and rarely do I have a problem using it. It got me through 5 years of my business, with many very late nights and early mornings, just me and the Bernina.
So when I found this hilarious advice from a 1949 Singer Sewing manual I could not stop laughing. “Have your hair in order, powder and lipstick put on.” Never, ever in my life have I put on lipstick before sewing. I am not even sure if I put any lipstick on for my wedding day. The only mental preparation I needed before using that old Singer was to not throw it across the room. Maybe that is why they made them so heavy.
“If you are constantly fearful that a visitor will drop in or your husband will come home and you will not look neatly put together, you will not enjoy your sewing as you should.”
I am at a loss for words. Actually no I am not. Chris often sees me in my pajamas all day on a Saturday. He might softly mention that it might be good to take a shower, but he often sees me at my worst, and he has only seen me with lipstick a handful of times in our 12+ years together. My how the world has changed in the last 65 years. I will have to get my hands on a 2015 Singer Sewing manual so I can be inspired by their advice and all the things I should do before I start to sew.