awe nuts

We made it out the door and on our plane! We are now gone for two weeks which is the longest we’ve vacated in many, many years. Currently, I am typing in the back row of a small aircraft. We lay overed in Minneapolis where Margot worked through a full range of emotions on Terminal F when I said no to a blueberry muffin. Although it really had nothing to do with the muffin and everything to do with the stress of traveling all day, the day after her mom and dad ran around like those bugs that skeet on water (skeeters?) but not as elegantly. I slept 2 1/2 hours last night. We’re cooked and the muffin denial released some feelings. I had just read about a method for addressing unsatisfied wants in kids where the parent takes empathy and creates a story — specifically, the story the kid wants to have happen. One articulates the child’s desired outcome because when she imagines her brain actually feels it as if it were so. It helps move kids through what they want and into what’s really there. I said You really want that muffin. You love blueberry muffins so much. You would eat the shit out of that muffin and all the muffins in Minnesota right now, right? They are so good! Except of course I didn’t say shit but my message was that enthused and invested. It worked so well. She softened and cried about leaving our animals for two weeks. We hugged and played tag.

Margot then chose the most expensive milk we’ve every bought, as named by Andy. It was a tiny carton of organic 2% and it was $4. Ruby then desperately wanted milk just as the last call for boarding to New Orleans bleated overhead. We didn’t have as much time to give Ruby’s frustration but I know it came from a similar place. I spun her into the backpack and we all shuffled toward our plane. Single file like this: Andy with 17 bags slung over every surface of his body, me with a sad kid on my back and a pyramid of water bottles, art supplies and baby dolls on my front, Margot with her milk.

Margot didn’t drink her milk. Andy carried it on the plane and sweetly asked her once every two minutes or so if she wanted a sip, his eyes wildly determined to make good on that $4. Ruby didn’t want the milk either. The plane rolled forward, Andy stuck the milk in his seat pocket. He was tense. Honey I said, getting ready to declare LET THE MILK GO. IT’S HOLDING YOU BACK. But after I said honey he turned and his knee smashed into the milk which geysered straight up and all over his legs.

I haven’t laughed like that in a long time. I had tears and aching abs. He laughed too. And the kids. It was perfect.

The girls have been lulled to sleep by the giant engine that is holding us in the sky. Just as we took off Ruby yelled Mama! Dada! Look I am see the whole entire world out this tiny window! I cannot wait for this vacation.

I’ll leave you with this recipe we brought for plane snacks and have been devouring for the last few weeks. Interestingly, after 15 years with an almond allergy, I am no longer allergic. I had a hunch so I ate a nut. And, holy smokes, I didn’t have a reaction. I went nuts! I immediately began cooking with nuts to make up for all that lost nuttiness. Here’s my simple oven roasted recipe that is honestly out of this world.

Balsamic Honey Roasted Almonds

4 cups raw almonds
3-4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons honey

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl whisk honey and balsamic together. Add nuts and stir to coat.

Spread over a cookie sheet, sprinkle with salt and bake for about 20 minutes, stirring every 5-8 minutes.

Pay particular attention to the nuts on the edges. Those edgy nuts burn easily. They are done when toasty brown with a satiny sheen. We toss ours with raisins, dried cranberries, chopped apricots and peanuts.


36 Responses to awe nuts

  1. Trbholt says:

    Burb, The whole description of the “milk scene” made me laugh out loud!…(second time time this morning laughing out loud with you!). How does the saying go?..”There’s no point crying over spilt milk”

    I had a vision of you when I was thinking of you Friday night preparing for your trip…
    My daughter who, waits-to-do-everything-for-a-trip-until-the-last-minute…I knew what was going on in your house at midnight! AND you ALWAYS get it done..THE skitter shuffle! Gives a whole new meaning to…”edgy nuts” :0)!

    I can hardly wait to see you all; only two more days…..xoxo to all

  2. Emily says:

    Love this post, as usual. I’m a skeeter, too, and have a hunch I might always be, despite my best efforts. The tiredness is always worth that great ‘got-it-all-done’ feeling you have in the morning, but my husband doesn’t me there. He tells me there ARE enough hours of the day, and I need to decide that I can get it done then. There’s something different about that midnight oil though! Either way, y’all have a glorious trip!

  3. Jacki says:

    Cracking up here over the milk-splosion (…as I eyeball a tiny expensive bottle of orange juice my kid forgot after two sips). Happy travels!

  4. Kathy says:

    My kids are now in their early twenties but oh how I wish I’d known of this strategy. It’s beautiful and feels gentle and kind. And I think it’s a suitable sweet approach to a lot of my grown up situations…. validating the feelings of others. I love it so.

    Last night I posted a quote on Facebook as I was working through some stuff with a struggle my kid is having. It’s this…….
    “The hard reality is that even though you give birth to it — human or music — it still doesn’t belong to you. It’s something you have to nurture and mold but it doesn’t belong to you. It’s some big girl shit. It really is. You have to let stuff go. It’s hard.”
    — Erykah Badu

    And your words to your guy about the milk were brilliant and so fitting for me right now. I loved the power they hold. I’m going to repeat it to myself today….dude, let it go. It’s holding me back.♥

  5. I am laughing out loud at the milk story!!!! I would have been Andy, we are NOT wasting $4 milk!!!!

    You are going to my favorite city! We visit several times a year since we live only 2 1/2 hours away. You are going to love it, it is unlike any other city in the world. A beautiful, diverse, and smelly place LOL Seriously, it has its own smell, and it isn’t a good one!

    Also, I love how you handle difficult situations with your girls, you are an awesome Mom!

  6. Denise says:

    We flew with our two lovelies this summer. Our son had just turned 2. We lied. We had bought him a seat, but sometimes he NEEDED the comfort of sitting on our laps. No one asked for proof. I recall similar scenes of my husband frantically pulling 2 bags (one with a car seat strapped to the front), and one bag carried on each shoulder. I had a 5 year old on by back, a 2 year old on my front, a diaper bag over my shoulder. We must have been quite the scene! By the time we returned home (a month later) I felt like I could write a novel on how to travel with kids!

  7. Anna Claire says:

    Sorry to be the downer but I would like to ask everyone to PLEASE PRETTY PLEASE save your PEANUTS for when you are not on an airplane! I am allergic (as well as many many others) and just the smell of peanuts or peanut butter will cause a serious reaction. For myself, this means touching them would likely cause anaphylaxis, meaning I would almost definitely die on the airplane. I have a 2 1/2 year old and am pregnant and cant stand that thought. As common of an allergy as this is now days it is so important that we take this seriously. I always inform the flight attendants upon boarding, and usually they will make an announcement. I had a serious reaction as a teenager and am alive and well by a true miracle. Peanut allergies are one allergy that is often life threatening.

    • dig dig says:

      Oh how scary for you! Man, they were handing peanuts out for the snack on both of our flights! Thanks for sharing your perspective. Leaving peanuts off the plane seems an easy enough thing. xo

  8. Heather says:

    So stinkin’ funny. Laughter is the best hijacker of the grumpies. xoxo – H

  9. loislanesf says:

    love this. hope your trip is amazatron.

  10. Stacey says:

    Years ago, pre-kids, my husband and I flew to Colorado for a quick weekend ski getaway. On the plane in front of us, a family of 6 loaded in, and I swear we did not hear a peep from those 4 kids the whole ride. They each had a backpack with their gear for the flight and proceeded to entertain themselves and each other while their parents sipped cocktails. We spoke with the parents while we all waited for our luggage in baggage claim and commented on how well those kids handled the flight. The parents swore that doing it regularly was the key; their kids had flown a lot and knew the routine.
    Well. Fast forward a few years and with a few flights-with-kids under my belt and I still can’t figure out how they did it. We have yet to have a flight like that with our kids, but I’m not giving up. We love to travel and to bring them along, and while we may not have mastered the process, we have yet to throw in the towel. Three car seats, lavatory diaper changes, blow outs, thrown pacifiers (42 times one flight), angry fellow passengers (whose seat may have been kicked by a 1-year old the whole flight), and the ever-elusive in-flight nap – it’s all like a hazing experience into this fraternity of traveling parents. Our kids will absolutely benefit from our efforts and the things they experience along the way. And who knows? Maybe they’ll line up in seats one day and I’ll sip my cocktail quietly instead of chugging it in between tantrums.
    I hope you all are having a fabulous time! Can’t wait to read about more of your adventures. And thank you for the nuts recipe – cant wait to give them a try!

  11. *Love* that book. I read it several months ago and it is my “breakthrough” parenting book. I don’t remember ALL the tricks though, so thanks for reminding me of this one!

    Still laughing over the milk geyser.

    I LOVE traveling; especially with a one-to-one adult-kid ratio. Awesomeness.

  12. Wesley Molloy says:

    Water skippers? That is what we always called them!

    You are so calm and understanding with your girls. I hope to be the same to my little one as she ages and needs help expressing her feelings.

  13. Think there’s any chance I’m no longer allergic to shellfish? I want some shrimp, dangit.

    But seriously, Thursday night. Face the Gulf Coast. Howl at the moon with me.

  14. stephany says:

    what book? i think i could use it!!
    enjoy your vacation…

    • dig dig says:

      I linked to it up there! It’s called Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids. My favorite parenting book I’ve ever read.

  15. Claire says:

    Oh my, your descriptions are so vivid. And I need to make those nuts soon – love almonds :)

  16. Liane says:

    I hope you have a great vacation! xx

  17. Kellie says:

    I had a similar nut story. I had a severe peanut reaction at age 3 so my mother put the fear of God in me to never eat another peanut or peanut product. Cut 30 years into the future and my peanut loving husband begs and pleads with me to get tested on the peanuts. “What if you aren’t allergic any more?” he asks and he inhales a Reese cup. So I did it, had the blood test and guess what, ZERO reactivity to peanuts. The past 6 years have been a blur of PB&J sandwiches, peanut butter pies, Peanut butter flavored oatmeal, smoothies, etc… you get the picture. Spainish peanuts with their nice little red jackets are my favorite version of the lowly peanut, whom has now become my close companion. I am also a big fan of Almonds in dark chocolate and cashews.

  18. Britta says:

    Have a wonderful vacation!

    I wish I were brave enough to try an old allergy – I’ve got a peanut/tree nut allergy. Last test in my early twenties came back negative for peanuts, still positive for tree nuts. Yet I’m still so scared to try peanuts!

    • dig dig says:

      I know. I grabbed an almond so many times in the last month and then put it back, unwilling to puke for three hours if I was wrong. I can’t explain the confidence I felt when I DID eat that nut. I just knew it. I grew into my allergies as an adult so I’ve always hoped I’d grow out of them. It will take a divine act to get me to eat a cashew, however. The last cashews I accidentally ate sent me to the ER in so much fear and pain. Maybe someday….anything is possible!


  19. Monique says:

    Love the “you can eat the shit out of that muffin and all the muffins…” that had me cracking up because I can hear myself saying those same words…but sometimes (not proud to admit) the shit word does come out. Those parenting moments that test our patience can run me a little wild a times. But laughter, like the gut wrenching laughter you had over Andy’s milk explosion, it gets us through to the end where we then hug and play tag. Enjoyed this post. You write with such a strong descriptive voice, as if I were right there behind you in single file shuffling to the airplane. Enjoy your time exploring Florida with your family, at your brother’s wedding and on the beaches with your friend Kelle.

  20. Rachel says:

    Hey, I was in Terminal F at MSP yesterday too! Except I was flying from Minneapolis to Los Angeles. Have a wonderful vacation! I wish I was hopping back on a plane to go somewhere fresh and new =]

  21. Laura says:

    Thanks for the laughs, first about the muffin, then the milk!

    Happy travels!

  22. Mel says:

    Oh this is so good. It’s funny how we think we get something for one purpose (the milk, to drink) and it ends up serving an even better, totally unexpected purpose. Have a great vacation!

  23. Jaim says:

    Oh my gosh, the nut thing must have really taken a lot of courage! My oldest has a peanut allergy and we have scared the shit out of her so she never eats ANYTHING that we have screened first. So many potlucks around here…I never knew how scary potlucks could be! Congratulations and I can’t wait to try this recipe…Almonds are the only nuts that we can get that are peanut free!

    Also, I have been told that you can call the airline prior to your flight and they could hand out something else, like pretzels. We haven’t tried it…we switched to the train.

    Hope your trip is fun…the pictures I’ve seen so far are out of this world! The girls must be loving all the colors and music! Enjoy yourselves!

  24. AMY says:

    Oh man, that story made me laugh. Glad Andy was goodnatured about it!
    But can I ask, why the $4 milk, but not the blueberry muffin?

  25. I love your yellow mixing bowl. My Grandma had one just like it. My Aunt won it in a Betty Crocker homemaker contest as a teen and gave it to my Grandma. It has now gone back to reside with my Aunt. I have mixed many a batch of cookies in it with her. The picture brought back sweet memories. Thank you.

  26. Jennifer says:

    Great story. I will think of Andy the next time I see a $4 container of milk.

    And the nuts look terrific. Have a wonderful vacation!

  27. awe nuts | dig this chick Ali MankerGabriel Strutynski

  28. Annie says:

    Totally get the milk situation. So been there! Love how it was handled. Hope you are having a wonderful time!!

  29. JAK says:

    Please don’t bring nuts on an airplane. Many with nut allergies don’t just “puke for three hours”, like you said you did in the past. Anaphylaxis, even with Epi pens, on a plane could be absolute deadly. Nuts in the air, your kids eating and touching the seats…

  30. Dakota says:

    Ah, you give me hope! I’m still currently allergic to almonds and hazelnuts but like you I started reacting to them (and a whole bunch of other things) as an adult. I’ve grown out of a salmon allergy already, so here’s to hoping the nuts (and other things) work the same way. :)

    It was fun to read about your family’s trip… love the photos of sleeping Ruby and I’m amazed by her sleeping abilities. Any chance you could package that up to share around to some of us traveling Mamas? 😉