Last night I went to bed feeling melancholy about the back to school rush. I love the possibility of adventure and avoidance that summer brings forth. We are in control of our own destiny. But when school starts I feel like a robot. Or a widget or something. Drop them off. Pick them up. Repeat. Don't get me wrong, I do love the newness of things. School supplies, bouquets of sharpened pencils etc. But after the erasers are chewed off, the let down is heavy. The process makes me get all existential. I become face to face with my limits and the limits of my children. A book I have been reading about the spirituality of children says that existential limits box us in like the four walls of a room -- the experiences of our own death, the sense of fundamental aloneness, the need for meaning, and an awareness of the threat of true freedom. It argues that whether these limits are distinguished is one thing, but the pressures of these boundaries can be acutely felt by kids. As a person who is on the high end of the anxiety spectrum, I do not find this terribly difficult to believe, however unpleasant. And I guess I feel that my children have a higher likelihood of experiencing these pressures outside in the big bad beautiful world? I know that is not completely true. There is plenty of stuff to scare them stiff right here at home. But it just feels that way.
To help ease the pain of the transition, we made the most amazingly tasty "granola bars" that I have had in a while. You may have seen The Kitchn's 4-ingredient oat bars floating around for a while, but Arrowhead Mills and I have may have them beat in the lowest number of ingredient category. And the recipe was subtly on the lower corner of the bag. We stuck them in the freezer for next week's rush.
1 cup crunch peanut butter
1/2 cup honey
3 cups puffed wheat
1 cup raisins
Mix peanut butter and honey together. Fold in wheat and raisins. Press into an 8 x 8 innch pan and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.