It seemed silly to me then. She nearly always said yes. If she wasn’t about to say yes, I wouldn’t have asked.
Mother, may I be excused (from the dinner table)? May I go out to play? May I bake something?
About the only way I could get my request denied was to ask the wrong question.
Can I be excused?
“Why no, of course not! What self-respecting mother would excuse such an impolite remark, and from her own darling child, no less?”
“Mom, can I bake a batch of cookies?”
“Barbara, you’re ten years old. If you don’t know whether you can bake a batch of cookies by now, I hate to tell you this, but I’m kind of worried about you. Yes, you may bake a batch of cookies. But don’t use the chocolate chips because I’m saving them for Sunday.”
Mom loved words. She was quick and fun, and she was encouraging.
So today, in honor of my mom, and May Day and of our never-ending efforts to learn to communicate well with each other, I made cookies that bring me home, a place where most of the questions I asked were soft and dripping with sugar: Molasses Crinkles.
Come and get ’em!