My baby starts Kindergarten tomorrow. At one point recently, I did not think that Kindergarten was going to be that big of deal. The school we go to still has half day Kindergarten, so I get my boy back every afternoon. As the time has neared, and as we have gone to the Kindergarten Round-Up and School Open House, I am really starting to not be able to hold it together. What is it about Kindergarten that stirs up such emotions? He has gone to preschool for the past three years. We have been apart before. He loves school and has zero anxiety about it whatsoever. For me, I think the emotions stirring are from the time we have had over the past five years. Have I spent enough quality time with him? Did we build memories that he will look back fondly on? My friend Sara, whose daughter started full day 1st grade this year, summed it up perfectly. “I feel like I have just wasted the past 6 years with her.” I know that I haven’t wasted the past five years with Jacob, but I cannot help but feel like we could have done more. I should have worked less and played more. I should have scolded less and hugged more.
I know that I am a good mom and I know that Jacob and I have a great relationship. I also know that he is going to be exposed to things that he has never been exposed to…kids and people that I have been able to protect him from in the past. The real world is inside those school doors, and I don’t think I am ready for him to face that.
As you can imagine, there is going to be a lot of baking going on in our household over the next few weeks. Baking is my comfort activity and comforting is what I need.
I’m going to go grab a tissue. In the meantime….enjoy these comfort inducing Parker House Rolls.
Parker House Rolls
- 6 cups all-purpose flour about
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 packages active dry yeast
- 1 cup margarine or butter 2 sticks, softened
- 1 large egg
- In a large bowl, combine 2 1/4 cups flour, sugar, salt, and yeast; add 1/2 cup margarine or butter (1 stick). With mixer at low speed, gradually pour 2 cups hot tap water (120 degrees F to 130 degrees F.) into dry ingredients. Add egg; increase speed to medium; beat 2 minutes, scraping bowl with rubber spatula. Beat in 3/4 cup flour or enough to make a thick batter; continue beating 2 minutes, occasionally scraping bowl. With spoon, stir in enough additional flour (about 2 1/2 cups) to make a soft dough.
- Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes, working in more flour (about 1/2 cup) while kneading. Shape dough into a ball and place in greased large bowl, turning over so that top of dough is greased. Cover with towel; let rise in warm place (80 to 85 degrees F.) until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours. (Dough is doubled when 2 fingers pressed into dough leave a dent.)
- Punch down dough by pushing down the center or dough with fist, then pushing edges of dough into center. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; knead lightly to make smooth ball, cover with bowl for 15 minutes, and let dough rest.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- In 17 1/4-inch by 11 1/2-inch roasting pan, over low heat, melt remaining 1/2 cup margarine or butter; tilt pan to grease bottom.
- On lightly floured surface with floured rolling pin, roll dough 1/2 inch thick. With floured 2 3/4-inch round cutter, cut dough into circles. Holding dough circle by the edge, dip both sides into melted margarine or butter pan; fold in half. Arrange folded dough in rows in pans, each nearly touching the other. Cover pan with towel; let dough rise in warm place until doubled, about 40 minutes.
- Bake rolls for 15 to 18 minutes until browned.
Recipe courtesy Omni Parker House Hotel, Boston, Massachusetts