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Alright guys, we’re in full-on get out of town mode, so I’m not going to try to whip up some half-baked blog posts for you this week. I hope to send one or two your way if I can, but I just wanted to let you know why I’m absent. If you want to keep up with my little goings-on, check out my twitter feed. I’ll try to send some pictures and updates your way.

I hope your week is less hectic than ours.

love,

me

the best chocolate chip cookies

I used to not like chocolate.

I’ll give you a second to regain your composure.

I don’t know what it was, but when I was little, there were a lot of things I didn’t like. I didn’t like chocolate, I didn’t like sandwiches, I didn’t like pizza (ask my husband how radically that has changed), I didn’t like peanut butter. My poor mother.

Luckily, most of that has changed. I still don’t like sandwiches, as much as I wish I did, but pretty much everything else a normal person should like, I now like. Particularly chocolate.

There’s something so pure about a chocolate chip cookie. These days, with all of these food shows and extreme baking competitions and inordinate amounts of cupcake shops, desserts have gotten a little out of hand.

In times like these, when dessert makers and eaters everywhere can’t tell you which way is up, getting back to the basics tastes that much sweeter.

And man, are they easy to make. I didn’t even have to buy anything at the grocery store for these, I had everything on hand. That is a rarity in this household.

Can I tell you a secret?

I like the dough better than I like the cookies.

However, I will not pass up a freshly baked homemade cookie, no matter how much dough I have consumed.

Particularly when they come out looking like this.

The recipe didn’t call for sea salt sprinkled on top, but since that’s the fad these days, I added it to a few of them. And honestly, for this recipe, I like them better without.

This recipe was perfect. Nothing special, nothing out of the ordinary, no fancy additives. Just cookies. Good ole chocolate chip cookies.

Perfection.

The Recipe (adapted from Allrecipes.com)

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, depending on how much chocolate you like

Directions

  • preheat oven to 350*
  • cream the softened butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth
  • beat the eggs into the creamed butter one at a time, then add vanilla
  • dissolve baking soda into hot water, then add it and the salt to the mixture
  • stir in flour and chocolate chips (you may also add walnuts, which are listed on the original recipe!)
  • spoon onto ungreased baking pan in large spoonfuls
  • bake about 10 minutes, until edges are slightly brown
  • makes about two dozen cookies

with hugs and chocolate kisses,

me

moving on

If there was any denying it before, there’s no denying now: we are moving.

It still hasn’t sunk in yet, and honestly I’m not quite sure when it will. I don’t know that I will truly believe it until we are in Boston. Perhaps it won’t be until I have a job. But it sure doesn’t feel real now.

I see friends and tell them we’ll be back a lot, for weddings, for holidays, for fun. But when I think about it, there aren’t that many holidays in the year, and we probably won’t be home for all of them. We may not even be able to come home for Thanksgiving! I’ve never had a Thanksgiving without my family.

I think I’m telling myself and others that we will be back a lot so I don’t feel like I have to say a true goodbye to anyone.

It’s hard to say goodbye to people. It’s hard to say “no, I don’t know when I will see you again.” We don’t want to think about the fact that it may be years before we reunite with people we love. And there’s always the reality that there are people from stages of our lives that we will never see again in this life. What a strange thought.

So I focus on the fact that we will be back. I give chance the benefit of the doubt, that I will see all of these people again. Because it makes me feel better to think that way. Is that wrong? Should I be dwelling on the reality that life as I know it will be unequivocally changed by the time August arrives? Honestly, I don’t know, but I certainly don’t want that to cloud my present as I prepare to leave this life behind.

In the next week, I will say goodbye to my family, my friends, my pets, and my home. That’s a lot to say goodbye to. I like to think that I will handle it with grace, but I know that there will be moments when it all feels like too much. Thank goodness I have Marshall.

Change is good. This change is very good. I could not be more excited to move to Boston, for so many reasons I couldn’t count them. But change is hard, and this change will be very hard.

But you know what, no matter how hard it is, I will grow. I will learn, I will change, and I will grow. And above all, there will be snow.

So I’ve got that going for me, which is nice.

-me.

i miss my journal

I may lose a few readers by saying this, but I miss my journal. I’ve been doing a lot of writing recently, for the blog, for Nfocus Magazine, for resumes, but not in my journal.

The only place I ever used to write was in my journal. Whenever I had the chance, I feverishly documented the life I lived inside of my head and out. I was more disciplined in my journal writing than I was in many other aspects of my life.

I have a lot of thoughts going on in my head, and my journal is a great place to get those thoughts out. I think it helps me to get perspective on things that can often become jumbled when they are mere abstractions. But recently, I just haven’t been writing in my journal. And I miss it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to be putting my writing to good use, and I love being able to write for other people. But I’ve realized that there really is a difference between writing for yourself and writing for someone else. Half of my journal entries are barely legible, let alone sensible or well formulated. I love tangents, and my mind wanders a lot, but tangents don’t translate quite as well when you are trying to tell someone a story. I can write whatever I want in my journal. And that’s why I love it. It’s one of the only places in my life where I don’t have to follow the rules.

One of these days, when I’m famous, I’m going to publish my journals and make millions. No, that’s not cheating, because I spent a lot of time on those things! I’m kidding, sort of of course, but I do often wonder how perceptions of me would change if people could read my journals. I like to think I would still have friends, but it’s definitely a toss up.

One of these days, I hope I will return to that feverish journal writing. In the meantime, I’ll settle for the once in a while.

Happy Monday.

me.