Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Hancock News Column-- May 7, 2014

This one is for my dear mother. Happy Mother's Day!


One luxury we splurge on is having unlimited long distance calls on our home phone line. It costs more, but when we moved here, we knew my well-practiced talent for talking on the phone, paired with the fact that all of our family and friends lived at least two hours away, would require the extra investment.
It was an investment worth the money. Countless mornings I’ve lain in bed a few extra lazy minutes while long-distance Grammy “baby-sits” an early bird. She kindly listens to childish concerns. She keeps important secrets that are whispered when everybody else is still sleeping. The children remind her to take her medicine or to refill the vaporizer for her breathing problems. They giggle together over jokes she finds for them on the internet. They play together their own made-up games like the rhyming game and the birthday game.
Do you know how sweet it is to awaken to the sound of your early-rising five-year-old asking Grammy to read a book to him? Some mornings I’ve walked down the hall to hear my mother on the speakerphone reading The Little Engine that Could to all five children, and they are reciting it with her because she’s read it so many times that it’s imprinted in their memories.
These close times with Grammy will stay with them even though they can’t be close to her geographically. Because of that unlimited long distance, my children’s chubby little fingers have learned how to dial that 11-digit number by heart, just to talk to their special friend. Yes, that extra money is certainly well worth the price.
On Mother’s Day in our house, we usually place a couple of long-distance phone calls to our mothers. Then because I love cookies, it’s become a tradition for me to make cookies with the children. This year I plan to make one of my favorites--Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies. This recipe makes a huge amount, so you could bake some now and freeze some dough for later if you don’t want the temptation of so many freshly baked cookies piled up in the cookie jar. Or you could bake them all and share them with your mother!

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

1 1/2 cups butter
1 1/2 cups peanut butter (whatever kind you like)
2 cups packed brown sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
3 cups quick oats
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt

Cream together the butter, peanut butter, and brown sugar. Mix in the eggs and vanilla. Combine the oats, flour, baking soda, and salt, and then stir it into the peanut butter mixture. Mix well. Drop onto an ungreased cookie sheet and flatten with a fork dipped in flour. Bake at 350℉ for about 12 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack, let cool until cookies won’t burn your mouth, and then enjoy with your children or mother (or all by yourself) and a glass of milk!


  1. What a sweet thing to have long-distance story time with Grammy this way. As you said, definately worth the cost!

    1. It is sweet, and it is also helpful to me since I don't always have (what I consider) enough time to read to each of the children individually each day. Grandmas are definitely cool people!