I’ve been trying to comfort myself. I haven’t been home much over the past few weeks, as I spent most all of my free time with Ginny. Little did I know two weeks ago that these would be the last two weeks we would be physically together. It’s the kind of realization that leaves me with a difficult to swallow lump in my throat. At 104, Ginny (AKA Gram) my paternal grandmother was remarkable. She would be the first to tell you that she had lived a good life and was ready ‘to go’- but somehow that had remained well beyond her control.
Since she was in her 90’s I had wondered how I would feel on the day we were no longer together. Little did I know that we were going to be granted 14 more years to enjoy each other’s company during our weekly visits and calls. And while I know it would have been selfish to want more, there was no amount of time that was going to make it easier for me to let her go. I was never going to be ready. I just don’t do ‘good-byes’ gracefully.
In retrospect, I realize that everything about me during these past few weeks was trying to find comfort from reality and my emotions. I wanted to dress in only the softest materials – flannel hit the top of my list, and leggings weren’t too far off either. I was constantly craving my favorite comfort foods – and yet none of them satisfied me. In the past, pasta and chocolate could almost always turn the corners of my mouth upwards into a smile, until now. Sleep escaped me and it seemed that music was my only outlet to calm my otherwise inconsolable emotions.
I tried to prepare my children for the inevitable as my mother, aunt and step-mother tried to prepare me. My head understood that it was time for Ginny to go but my heart refused to cooperate. Each car ride into San Francisco to see her left me in tears as memories would sneak out of my eyes and rapidly roll down my cheeks. The return ride home was much the same. I thought there might be at least one ‘dry’ day but such a day never materialized. It seemed I was capable of providing an unending supply of tear juice.
I haven’t had much of a desire to cook or bake which makes it challenging to be a food blogger. This week I paced around the kitchen in a circular clockwise motion, for the better part of 30 minutes, until I decided that I had to try to crack the seal and figure out how to unlock my suppressed cooking gene. I pulled out my recipe archives and after a lengthy span of time, and several opportunities to be side-tracked, I finally summoned some cookies into the oven. It was not easy. My heart wasn’t in it, but I pushed through to try to find that glimmer of me that has gone suddenly missing. The cookies certainly put smiles on faces around the house and at the office, which was all I could ask for given my state of mind. It confirmed that while I may be momentarily lost in emotions, my baking abilities still work. And I am sure with a bit of food coaxing, time will help me find my stride again.
In the process of rediscovering my take on an old-time classic cookie recipe I managed to somehow feel closer to Ginny. I’ve been searching through my archives and found SO MANY of her amazing recipe creations … and there is one that I can’t wait to make (yes, I am a tease) … which we will discuss soon. Until then, I share with you this crunchy cereal infused chocolate chip cookie. While I typically tend to make chewy chocolate chip cookies there was a time when I was a “tried and true” crunchy cookie gal. Meet a cookie with some serious texture in its character– and while it is not necessarily a beauty for the eyes to behold, it does the belly good.
Crunchy Cereal Chocolate Chip Cookies
½ cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
½ cup vegetable oil
1 TBS brown sugar
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup corn flakes, crushed into crumbs
½ cup raw oatmeal
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium size bowl, using a hand mixer, combine butter, sugar, vegetable oil, brown sugar, egg and vanilla together. Add in flour, baking soda and salt and mix well. Lastly add in corn flakes, oatmeal and chocolate chips. Stir by hand until well combined.
Bake 10-12 minutes.