Take a Chance…Take a Chance

September 20, 2009

As my children continue to grow up, I, like all other parents, find myself faced with decisions about when it is “safe” for them to engage in new activities. At what age could they navigate the stairs without me nervously accompanying them? When could they go on a play date without my drinking coffee in the kitchen of their new friend’s home, fearful that my departure would result in some catastrophe (or lack of perceived control)? Now that my daughters are 10 and 14 I seem to be faced with these decisions on a more, not less, frequent basis. Can my oldest daughter have an overnight with the rest of the varsity soccer team girls, most of whom are juniors and seniors? Can my younger daughter find her way across the school to her sister’s soccer game without my accompanying her every step of the way? I continue to struggle with what is safe, most convenient for me, and providing them reasonable opportunities to develop independence…so much to balance.

 So, yesterday, my older daughter asked to go to a movie with a friend. There have been a handful of times that I have dropped her off at the near-by theatre before the movie, stayed in touch by texting and then picked her up when the movie had concluded. It seemed to work out well. However, this time was different. My younger daughter wanted to join them at a movie that I really could not bring myself to see. We went back and forth about this. When we asked her, my older daughter was actually happy to have her along. She has been babysitting other peoples’ children for well over a year and was adamant that she would not “ditch” her sister or do anything to put her in danger. They were both thrilled by the adventure and convinced me that it would be safe. I nervously decided that I would “take a chance.”

We kept in touch by cell phone and I was contacted as the movie started. I suddenly realized that I was going to have about two hours to myself. What should I do? I decided to make Melissa’s scones. I started to put together the recipe. As I have written previously, I am nervous about changing recipes too much. I think when I develop a clearer understanding of the chemistry of baking, I might be less fearful. I had decided that I wanted to add more sugar to the scones.  One tablespoon did not seem sufficient, so I added 3. How would that impact the structure of the scones…I had no idea. Even though I had purchased an orange at the grocery store, at the last minute I decide to add ¼ cup of cocoa nibs to the recipe instead. Don’t ask me why, I just thought I’d “take a chance.”


Cocoa Nib Scones

Cocoa Nib Scones

All of my risk-taking worked out well! My daughters came to my car when I picked them up, giddy with the pleasure of their adventure. I learned how they had managed the money I had given them and what they had learned. My scones were also an absolute success. The texture was perfect…somewhat crunchy on the outside and flaky and rich on the inside. They were moist and no additional butter was needed as an accompaniment. The cocoa nibs added the perfect amount of crunch and flavor. The additional sugar was just right. They were not in any way too sweet and they did not need any additional jam or honey to give them more sweetness. I got the thumbs up from everyone as they tasted my creation based on Sweet Melissa’s recipe. Maybe I am learning I can “take a chance.”  Now I need to decide what to do about that sleep over.


4 Responses to “Take a Chance…Take a Chance”

  1. Nina Says:

    The cocoa nibs sounds like a great addition!

    Give your daughters a chance to do things. I know that my parents let me do as I please basically as long as I maintain good grades and I don’t go out and become wild like lots of kids in college. They were so overprotected in high school and now in college, they go crazy with all the freedom given to them.

  2. katie Says:

    Cocoa nibs? Sounds delightful!!

    Katie xox

  3. jane S Says:

    the right amount of sugar! that sounds perfect. Way to go with the girls, things just keep changing

  4. Jessica Says:

    I’m glad that your chances were successful. I grew up with a very nervous mother, and now that I’m older I understand how hard it must have been for her. I think it’s great that you’re doing baby steps. I taught for a couple of years in an inner city school, and I was amazed at how much “freedom” a lot of my students had. A little freedom is good, but I think it’s good that you’re a concerned parent.
    On to the scones! I didn’t get a chance to make these, but your cocoa nib scones look wonderful. I’m glad that they were everything a scone should be. I’m going to try to make these this week and do a double post on Sunday.

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