A New Chapter
It's pretty safe to say that I'm absolutely thrilled about today! Ian leaves home this afternoon to begin a month-long prematriculation program at VCU as a prep measure slash foot-in-the-door before medical school begins in August. While he'll be living the dorm life again (last time ever!), he'll have access to a full kitchen, which means he'll be stocking up on groceries to cook his own meals. I mentioned before that Ian's kitchen experience ranks in the "very little or none" range, so we're both very excited and anxious to see how this independent experience goes. Please note: just because Ian hasn't spent his life in the kitchen memorizing cookbooks or scrutinizing labels doesn't mean I am implying that he's helpless or idiotic. He's just new to it, that's all. My only real concern thus far has been a conversation that occurred last week:
A.K.: "So what kinds of meals are you thinking about making?"
Ian: "You know, spaghetti, pasta, salad, that kind of stuff."
A.K.: "Will you be able to cook spaghetti in a dorm?"
Ian: "Well, I'm bringing a skillet..."
I think my heart stopped for a few seconds. Scout's Honor, I tried my best not to laugh.
Help from On High
One of Ian's uncles bought him a great getting-started book for kitchen newbies as a graduation gift. The cookbook estimates that the chef will spend five dollars per meal (assuming the chef already has basic herbs, spices, oils, etc.) and it includes nutritional info, which I can attest is perfect for someone who has floundered in the kitchen. The book even includes a section on quick, simple meals to prepare on Date Night ;) Hey, I wouldn't scoff at homemade chocolate-covered strawberries!
My mom has been quite excited about Ian's transition from undergraduate to prematriculation student to med school student this summer, so she has been pulling together (read: hoarding) an impressive array of kitchenware for him to use in his dorm and in his new apartment. She even gifted him with the coveted banana hook he'd been eyeing and a matching paper towel holder for graduation. Even I didn't anticipate that he would feel compelled to run out and buy bananas specifically to put the banana hook to use immediately...
Ian's mom is a wonderfully caring woman who bends over backward for her two boys. Last night, after unloading a full trailer of beach supplies and doing myriad loads of laundry, she and Ian hauled themselves to the store to pick up non-perishable necessities. She even helped him look for low-sodium, low-sugar, low-fat alternatives he and I have been discussing.
Ready... Set... Go!
Ian is such a smarty-pants, I have no doubt that he'll be successful both as a prematriculation student and as a new cook. After all, between his family and mine, he's got everything he needs, plus healthy "suggestions" from me ;)
P.S. Thanks for keeping Ian in your thoughts and prayers as he makes this scary and exhilarating change in his life :)