I knew it would happen. I wished for it, in fact. But now that it has arrived, I’m a bit melancholy.
Baby Girl has grown up.
Long gone are the days of father-daughter outings to Applebee’s for mac & cheese. She’s a calamari connoisseur these days. Baby Girl has traded Sailor Moon for Sephora.
It hit me a couple years back when she landed her first real job — and started driving herself there — that Baby Girl was fast approaching this moment. Instead of lamenting the true speed of time, I reveled in requiescence.
There was someone else who could go to the store for bread and milk, after all. Now, though, she can drive herself to the doctor — or buy her own airline ticket. Baby Girl can vote in an election. She can go apply for a bank loan. Or enlist in any branch of our Armed Forces.
She’s traded slumber parties for Snapchat. Flowery flip-flops for pumps. Kool-Aid for coffee. Gone too are her braces … and our reminders to brush and floss, or use a napkin instead of her shirt.
Though her childhood went all too fast, as I should’ve known it would, I couldn’t ask for a better set of memories. Happy memories. Fun memories.
It’s official now. Alexandra is a beautiful woman. But she’ll always be my Baby Girl.
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Brats en Brochette
- 5 – Bratwursts
- 10 – Bacon slices
- 4 oz – Pepper Jack cheese, cut into 1-inch matchsticks
- 1 – 12 oz beer, preferably something dark
- ¾ cup – Barbecue sauce
- Toothpicks, for securing the bacon
- In a large skillet, simmer bratwursts in beer until just done, about 15 minutes; remove and set aside to cool.
- Place bacon slices in skillet with remaining beer; simmer for 2-3 minutes; carefully remove and set aside.
- When brats have cooled, create a lengthwise 'pocket' (as deep as possible without cutting all the way through) for stuffing the cheese – leave a thumb's width uncut on both ends of sausage so that cheese doesn't melt out the ends during grilling.
- Stuff each sausage with 2-2½ pieces of the cheese.
- Starting on one end of the bratwurst(s), secure the end of a piece of bacon and start spiral-wrapping toward the other end, making sure the edges are overlapped. (Each piece of bacon will wrap about half of the brat. Secure it with a toothpick and start wrapping the next piece.)
- Preheat grill to medium-hot.
- Carefully place wrapped/stuffed bratwursts on the grate and cook until bacon starts to brown, about 3-4 minutes on each side.
- Once bacon has browned, start basting the sausages with barbecue sauce; flip once more to allow sauce to caramelize.
- Carefully remove the toothpicks.
- Serve immediately on rolls.