Sydney and I have been designing everything form Valentine’s Almond Cookies to Cassis-Cherry Marshmallows. I realize this will most likely be the last Valentine’s Day Sydney and I will have the opportunity to bake together for the next few years; Sydney has decided to transfer to Goerge Washington University (in DC). I want her to spread her wings and fly solo, experience the world, but it would be deceitful of me if I did not admit I am melancholy (a tad). Letting go has to be the hardest parts of parenting, but necessary, in-fact since her birth our job has been to guide her into becoming a moral, upstanding, and independent adult.
While baking a cake for a client, today, Sydney and I began to reminisce about the last 19 1/2 years, we found ourselves sharing, what happens to be both one of our favorite memories… The first time I called a day of “hooky” from school. Sydney was in kindergarten at St. Mary’s Academy , and kindergarten was full days, I must admit I was having a hard time adjusting. Before I go any further, I believe education for children should be a priority, DF and I agonized trying to choose the right school, I even thought of home schooling Sydney, I actually almost did home school her. We finally decided it was not in Sydney’s best interest to home school; Sydney and I spent and an exuberant amount of time together ( she being an only child) and I was concerned she would not have enough socializing with other children. I believed family time was just as important as school time, full time kindergarten seemed excessive, and I would generally pick her up after lunch.
On a cold day in January 1998, a few weeks after Christmas break had ended, I decided to take sydney to see Titanic, I knew she would love the move, DF and I had already seen Titanic twice since its debut on the 19th 0f December, 1997. I packed her a lunch, in case she became hungry, found a 10:30 am showing of the movie, and that morning when she bounced down the stairs dressed for school, I informed her she was not going to school. I kept the activity a surprise until we arrived at the mall, the movie theater was in the middle of the mall.
We purchased our tickets, and it just so happened the only other people in the theater with us was an elderly couple. The movie began shortly after we took our seats in the center of all the theater. From the beginning of the movie Sydney was memorized, I kept whispering, “are you hungry?” she actually asked me to please stop talking. She adored the Jack character, then played by the unknown actor Leonardo Dicaprio, she is still enamored with the now very well known Mr. DiCaprio.
I found myself watching her reaction to each scene in the movie, when Rose, played by the talented Kate Winslet, turned and peered out of her hat Sydney sat straight up wide eyed.
For the entire 3 hours and 15 minutes five year old Sydney sat through the epic drama without a sound, nor eating the lunch I had packed, wide eyed. The only scene she missed was when I covered her eyes to the deceased mother clutching her baby in the frigid water. Once the movie had ended she just sat there for a moment, as we were getting up from our chairs the elderly couple approached us and complimented Sydney on her wonderful behavior during the movie. The woman asked Sydney if she enjoyed the movie, Sydney seriously replied “Yes and wasn’t heart breaking?” she than turned to me, announced it was beautiful that Jack and Rose ended up back together.
Throughout Sydney’s school years prior to college I would announce “hooky” days, but the Titanic experience is the one day that Sydney has complete recollection and brings a smile to her face when we recall the experience. Sydney knew as long as her grades were good I would let her miss school to “play with me.” I whole heartily believe those special mother/daughter days were just as important as her education. I think we have become so caught up in preparing our children for college (prestigous colleges) we forget they are children and need down time.
April 4th this year Titanic is being released in theaters, this time in 3-D format. Sydney and I have already made mother/daughter plans to see the movie, however now that she is a college student and cannot miss a day we will be going at night. Time goes by so fast when our children are growing-up please take time to enjoy every precious moment.
**Footnote all the pictures from Titanic belong to The Official Movie Trailer
I think we will take the Cassis-Cherry Marshmallows for our movie snack.
For an art exhibition of my food photography visit Jonell Galloway’s blog.
Letting go is truly the most challenging.
I wish I grew up in your house.