Tough Talk Oatmeal Cookies

Basically there are two things I hate talking about more than anything else: my feelings & money. I’m good with either of them in the abstract, like “Whoa! Wish I could get that right now but I don’t really have the cash” or “That REALLY pisses me off” but delve any deeper into actual financial details or reasons behind emotion and I would rather clean a public restroom than take part in that discussion. I can’t be alone here, can I?

Earlier this week my husband and I had a serious money talk and boy-howdy, it was not fun. Don’t worry, it’s not like we’re destitute and going to lose our house or anything, it’s just that everything has gotten more expensive (and I do mean everything, thanks economy) and the earnings are not really matching that. You might be thinking, “Why don’t you just look for another job?” but here’s the thing: for the most part, I really love my job and I’m really good at it. Would it be nice to make more money at it? Of course, but I don’t know how feasible that is since I work for a small business and I’m not really sure how much more they can afford to pay me.

Again, “Why don’t you get a waitressing job somewhere to bring in extra cash?” Ahhhhh waitressing. My sly mistress. I was a waitress from the time I was 14 until I was 25 and I can safely say without intending to boast, that I am a really good waitress. There is no profession (other than stripping or something) where you work such a short shift and have the instant gratification of a huge wad of cash to take home. It was really hard for me to quit because I loved the place I was working and did make pretty decent tips there but I just felt like I was never home. I was working two jobs, hardly seeing my husband and never had time to do anything for myself (blog!) so I guess it was a selfish move to quit, but I’ve been so much happier only having one job. When I first graduated from college I thought “Great! Now I can stop waitressing!” ha! I graduated in 2007 and the job market was a little rough. To be fair, my degree is in English and Women’s Studies so it’s not like I got one that is super marketable. Plus about two years in I realized that I don’t really like people to read what I write so…….here we are. I buckled and ended up waitressing for another 3 years. Like I said, I know I could go back and do a good job but it’s so hard to stop. Waitressing is clearly like a drug to me.

So where does that leave me? My husband always uses the phrase “We’re living above our means” which is a hard one for me to grasp. I mean, it’s not like we’re driving a Bentley and jetting off to Vegas every weekend. We live in a smallish house, share a car and don’t really buy extravagant things. But then I try to remember that I’m only 27 and I think about what my parents were doing when they were 27 or even how we lived when I was little and I realize that I am trying to maintain the sort of lifestyle that I had when I was in high school (provided by my parents). Does that make sense? I mean it’s not like we were insanely wealthy or anything, but we were comfortable. Like when I was younger I remember my mom complaining about how often my dad and I rented movies and clipping coupons and insisting that we buy the generic Mac & Cheese instead of Kraft and that sort of thing but as I got to the age where money was something I understood, we didn’t have to worry about those things. I have to remind myself that my parents worked really hard to get to that stage of life and I haven’t put in the time yet to be able to be that comfortable. Also I watched the 20/20 interview that Diane Sawyer did with Jaycee Dugard yesterday and I realized that I am so lucky, its criminal. Her story was one of the saddest and most horrible things I have ever heard and yet she has risen above it and seems like a generally happy person so every time I feel sorry for myself I’m just going to try for a little perspective.

Ugh, can we talk about these cookies already? Enough money and feelings talk please! I made these oatmeal cookies for several reasons:

1. They are OMFG delicious

2. They are easy

3. They are cheap

4. I was reading Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn and was feeling unsettled so I needed to do something comforting

I took the recipe that Baker on the Rise provided and made it less healthy by eliminating the raisins and adding butterscotch chips and bittersweet chocolate chips. I’m not hating on raisins, I just didn’t have any and felt like chocolate and butterscotch could handle the job. I’ve decided butterscotch is an underutilized flavor and I plan to do something about that. These cookies are so perfect, it’s crazy. They are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside and just so satisfying. Plus you probably have everything to make them just sitting in your cabinet already, so they are economical! 🙂

So let’s review: these cookies are BOMB and you should make them, I need to remember to not be such a brat and have some perspective, and I’m going to explore a few ways to make a little extra money on the side. My girl Phoebe showed me how I can write little blurbie things on the internet to make a few bucks and my friend Jenna came up with a very interesting Thanksgiving pie plan that I’m noodling. Just, things are going to be fine. As long as I can still make cookies, things will be fine. 🙂

6 thoughts on “Tough Talk Oatmeal Cookies

  1. As your readership increases and it surely will, monetize your blog. See if BK would give you commission for stuff sold from being listed on your blog? If I was rich I would employ you as my cook. Just made some Anzac biscuits like your oatmeal ones but added a good dose of instant coffee. Yum!

  2. Ahhhh….life with our parents…can’t wait to get out of that stifling environment BUT when we do we realise just how comforting “stifling” can be! (and cheap!). As penniless student hippies we sympathise with you. A sad state of affairs is that more and more people are simply unable to afford their own home whether its small or not. The “economy” has a lot to answer for, but our own ideas about how and what we are consuming are causing it all so we have to try to do what we can to minimise our load. I headed on over here today to tell you that “Always Add More Butter” on my rss feed reader is jumbled all together and reads “alwayssadmorebutter” which to ME looks like Always Sad More Butter! You can never had enough butter ;). Bravo on not slaving your life away in the pursuit of elusive dreams! People forget that the only life we really have is right here…right now. Everything else is past or prospective and we are not guaranteed of anything so I can’t think of a better way to spend that precious time than baking oatmeal butterscotch cookies. Chin up old girl… pip pip! (I am not all that good at emotional stuff either and as we don’t HAVE any money, I guess that puts me in the same boat financially…you are not alone 🙂 )

  3. Hey, I’m in the feelings business and I don’t like to go there either, all I can say is my own therapist earns every cent having me as a client!

    We live in a really nice part of Sydney, the northern beaches. It’s often referred to as the insular peninsular. The beaches are stunning and within walking distance. The houses are incredible. And it’s so easy to take it all for granted. To think that this is normal and everyone lives like this.
    I was driving one of the kids to a party and the houses were multi million dollar waterfront properties. My child asked why we can’t live in one of those houses. I answered because we can’t afford it! She asked does that mean we are poor (cos we can’t afford a $7-8 million dollar house!!!). I guess my point is that no matter how much you have, there’s the risk of taking it all for granted. You can live feeling dissatisfied cos there’s always going to something bigger and better you don’t have! So I have been on a mission to show gratitude for what we do have and not get lost in what we don’t! I have loved reading Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach to help me stay on this track! It really is about appreciating the ordinary.

    Great looking cookies by the way!!

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