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Tales From the Motherhood: Thinking about the new year ... and bagels

New year, new me? Maybe, but it’s me we’re talking about.

I’m torn between the visceral pull to cleanse with lemon water and broth and the impulse to eat bagels and cream cheese. Gah! All it took was another mention of Jake’s bagel shop on my Facebook feed. But every time I hear about it or spot it again on my way through Aurora, nobody’s home! Seems they’re closed on Sundays and late afternoons, when my impulse apparently strikes.

Not time to make the bagels, I guess. But how have I lived here this long (nearly 10 years) and never been to Jake’s? I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, but maybe it’s time to right that wrong. When’s Jake's open? Visions of New York style salt bagels (and cream cheese with chives!) danced in my head.

“Can you dial a number for me?” I asked my son. He’d been sprawled nearby, surfing the net on his phone.

“Oooh, that’s a little above my pay grade,” Noah said, and tossed me my phone. Nice. But my phone was dead. Phooey, foiled again. Maybe it’s for the best? Between the candy canes Santa left on the Christmas tree and other festive treats, I’ve definitely exceeded the recommended daily dose of fun foods.

Come to think of it, I think I’m the only one eating the candy canes. What’s up with that? In years past, I had to be strategic in order to snag a few, but not anymore. Between Noah’s powerlifting meet-prep (he does have "cheat" days, but it seems candy canes don’t make the cut – go figure) and Holly’s slacker-ness (she’s only eaten one that I know of), it’s all up to me. Especially now, since she just had all four of her (“bony impacted”) wisdom teeth extracted. She’s stuck eating sherbet and soft foods for a few days, so unless I give them all away, it’s on me to get the job done.

But there’s that pull to flush out the sugar and toxins to consider, too. I care less about others’ opinions about how cute I look than I do about how I feel in my own skin, and about how my kids feel in theirs. I believe in balance, a mighty tough thing to achieve once Halloween (the "gateway holiday") hits and the sugar tide rolls in. No food is evil, in my book, bagels included (and certain foods can be medicine!), when consumed in moderation.

Also, I’ve been wanting to watch the 2016 documentary, “What’s with Wheat?” It's reputed to shed light on how perhaps it’s not gluten that guts us but how gluten is processed (i.e. with what toxic chemicals) these days that may be the culprit where some folks’ inflammation and gluten sensitivity is concerned.

First, I confess, I want to try those dang bagels, nom nom. But I’ll need to wait for Holly to be back in chewing form before buying them, Jake’s or otherwise, as she’s a bagel fan. To do so any earlier early would be cruel. Poor kid, her jaw practically square from swelling the morning after her procedure, she stoically bears pain like a champ. (Once that post-operative drug induced “feeling fine” thing passed, of course. She was so “fine," in fact, that to prove it, she sat down at the piano the minute we returned home, her mouth still full of gauze, and played her favorite piece, missing nary a note!) I hate to see my girl in pain, but I do relish opportunities to comfort her, no matter how old she gets. Hoping I’d be quickly alerted were she to wake overnight in agony, I scouted around for some means.

“Noah, do we have a bell?”

“Mom, I’m closed for business.” He didn’t just SAY that! Oh, but he did. Annoyed as I was, my funny bone is bigger than my grumpy bone. Way bigger. So there, I’ll resolve to laugh, instead. Cheers to that! 

Jennifer DuBose lives in Batavia with her family. Her column runs regularly in the Kane Weekend section of the Kane County Chronicle. Contact her at

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