Rolo® Cookies

I have always loved baking. When I was 10 years old, I was making cookies and sharing with the neighbourhood kids. I used a recipe that was on the back of a package of chocolate chips. When I was about 11 or 12, I modified the recipe and it became my own.

Once I got married and had children, I was a stay at home mom, and proudly made cookies for my kids’ lunches using the tried and true recipe from my childhood. I “upgraded” my cookies by using mini Rolo®s instead of chocolate chips to great success, and they became the new favorite.

One day a few years ago, my daughter Meaghan and I were talking about cookies and she told me that she had been jealous of the kids at school who had slice and bake cookies in their lunches because of the designs baked into them.  She had been out of school for a while and probably figured it was safe to share that information with me.

She is now living in Newfoundland, and when she was planning a trip to Moncton with her boyfriend, she messaged me to ask if I would be making Rolo® cookies. Of course, I did. That’s the great thing about traditions, they are always there for you, bringing you home.

 

 

Michelle’s Rolo® Cookies

I freeze the mini Rolo®s at least overnight and preferably for a few days before baking. It just helps the caramel to not melt as much while in the oven.

Preheat oven to 350 F

CREAM TOGETHER:

½ cup butter (Here’s an easy way to measure butter or shortening if you don’t have a package with measurements on it. Fill a measuring cup with water to the 2 cup mark and add the butter until you get the amount you need. Just make sure to look straight across at the line to see the measure)

1/2 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (the only kind of “brown sugar” we ever used)

ADD IN:

½ tsp salt

½ tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla

2 eggs

MIX IN:

2 cups all purpose flour

 

Spoon dough onto a greased cookie sheet

and bake for 10-13 minutes or until golden brown.

I use a scraper to push any melted caramel back to the cookie. Then put on cooling rack.

 

The Shape of Things to Come

This story has taken 4 years to write, but don’t worry, it won’t take that long to tell.

It all started in July 2014, two months before my 50th birthday. Ray and I were visiting his brother’s cottage, along with other family members. We were enjoying the sun and the water, and I was feeling proud of how I looked as an almost 50-year-old. So proud in fact, that I took a picture of me rocking a bikini. (that’s Ray’s brother in the background).

July 2014

Continue reading “The Shape of Things to Come”

Work of Heart 2018

Work of Heart 2018 was a magical experience of love and light. For me the weekend started on Friday night when I gathered at the Hotel Wingate in Dieppe, NB, with a group of women, led by founder Angela Harris. We each received a workbook and a contract for us to sign, the Work of Heart Weekend Pledge. It gave us permission to focus on ourselves, and to allow us to be open to trusting the process. During discussions that evening, many of the younger women spoke of feelings of guilt at taking this time for themselves. Those of us in our 50’s could commiserate with them, and we shared our experiences of getting through that and realizing that this type of self care was the best gift not only for ourselves, but for our loved ones. We were joined by Tracey MacDonald, who was one of the speakers for Saturday’s main event, and her input really helped to set the tone for the weekend and made me even more excited to hear her presentation. Continue reading “Work of Heart 2018”

Building Bridges

I am almost ashamed to admit it now but there was a time when one of my favorite sayings was “Build a bridge and get over it.” I quoted it to friends who were struggling with how to move on from difficult situations.

I meant well with those words. I thought it was good advice. Figuratively building a bridge to get from one place to another, and a way over difficult terrain. I haven’t thought about or used that phrase in a long time. I was reminded of it today when I was in my driveway because I could hear the noise from the machines that are pounding the steel supports into the ground for the new bridge that is being built to replace the causeway between Moncton and Riverview. Continue reading “Building Bridges”

How We Started

My family moved to Moncton in the summer of 1981. I started school at Moncton High in grade 12, final year of high school not knowing a soul. It was a challenge for me to make friends as the social groups were pretty well formed by that point. I went to my classes, ate my lunch alone in the cafeteria, and then went to the library to fill in the rest of the time. I tried out for the school musical, “Anne of Green Gables”, one of my all time favorite stories.

Continue reading “How We Started”

Lessons from the litter box

We have three cats in our house, and that means I spend a fair bit of time cleaning the litter boxes. Today, while I was at this task, I realized that even though Forrest Gump says that life is like a box of chocolates, it can also be a lot like litter boxes.  Here are some of the lessons that I have learned: Continue reading “Lessons from the litter box”

Lights Please….

Christmas is my favourite time of year. I never get stressed out about it, because my focus has always been on the thing that is most important to me, my family. The people that are my family are, of course, my husband, and my kids. But there are also people who have come into my life that are my “adopted” family.

 “A Charlie Brown Christmas”

When I was a child, in the days before any type of recorded TV shows, I waited in anticipation for the night it would be shown. I never missed watching it, and I could recite Linus’s speech, word for word.

I loved watching that show again when my own children were young and seeing it through their eyes. We could record it, and watch it over and over again, and we did! I think I watched it more than the kids did, and every time Linus said “lights, please”, I would repeat his speech along with him.

I read a comment by the person who posted the clip. After all the times that I have watched that show, and focused on that scene, she brought my attention to something that I missed. Take a minute to watch it here.

Did you see it? When Linus says, “fear not” he drops his blanket! That security blanket that he carries everywhere. The one that Sally tried to get him to give up earlier in the show. He came up with all kinds of reasons that he could hang on to it.

How many times have we seen something, but not really seen it?  For years I had been looking at that scene with the eyes of a child.  I missed the most important part of it. We look at people and see what we want to see, and miss the signs that they are showing us.

A wise friend of mine, Sharon Joseph, reminds us that there is only love or fear, and if we are living in one, we cannot be in the other. So many choices are made from fear of failure, fear of success, or fear of not being enough. If we live in love for self, then we take care of ourselves. We set healthy boundaries and know that “failure” is just a lesson that we need to learn.

My wish for you this Christmas is that you give yourself the greatest gift of all, the gift of love. Then you can share it with the people in your life.

Merry Christmas!

The Empty Page

Blueberries are red when they are green

I recently learned an interesting fact about blueberries. Apparently wild blueberries can’t be planted. They grow by sending out runners under ground, creating clones of the parent plant. There can be various clones in a field of blueberry plants, and that’s why there can be many shades, sizes and flavours in the same area.

So, the way to “cultivate” wild blueberries is to clear the area around the plants, cutting down trees, removing the stumps and leveling the land. Over time the original plants will send out runners, and new plants will grow.

That got me thinking about how we cultivate relationships, Continue reading “Blueberries are red when they are green”