I’ll never forget the day in second grade when my mom showed up with two giant sheet pans of homemade cinnamon rolls. It was my birthday, and this was her surprise to me — a special treat to share with the whole class. I was genuinely surprised. And also a smidge disappointed that she hadn’t shown up with trays of store-bought cupcakes sporting thick swirls of frosting and plastic toppers that said, “YOU’RE RAD!” like the cool kids had brought in on their birthdays. (In addition to my reading and spelling skills in second grade, I was also proficient at ingratitude.)
Needless to say, everybody went gaga over the cinnamon rolls and, thankfully, my class showed all of the appreciation for my mother’s efforts that I lacked.