Bonding with my mom over Starbucks mugs

Pour yourself a cup of coffee in my kitchen and chances are it’ll land in a Starbucks mug. After years of stashing them away, I’ve lost count of how many of them I have from distant places stuffed in my overly-full cabinet.

My boyfriend hates the clutter, but I can’t bear to get rid of the collection of mugs that I’ve acquired. In some ways, they’re a part of my family.

When I was a teenager, my mom and I used to travel to New York City every so often so I could look at colleges with good theater programs. During these trips, we would always visit Starbucks multiple times. We didn’t have one in our hometown of Worcester, Massachusetts, and getting Carmel macchiatos there made me feel so sophisticated as a 16-year-old.

There are few things that I remember as deeply from my senior year of high school as when we finally got a Starbucks in Worcester. After cheerleading practice, my mom (who was also my coach) and I would leave the campus and make a beeline there to sip on fancy lattes and share an apple fritter. In a house full of kids, my evil step dad and animals, it was our only time to really bond with one another alone.

On the morning of my last day of high school, we woke up, sat on the couch and talked for awhile about my upcoming prom, the graduation ceremony and getting ready for college. It seemed to hit us both, almost at the same time, that I was home on a weekday, and it felt like the book of my childhood was suddenly slamming shut.

Big crocodile tears streamed down our faces as the countdown to me leaving home began. We cried together for what seems like an eternity, before, through a series of sniffles, my mom asked me if I wanted to go to Starbucks with her.

Ever since, when one of us travels to a new country, we always bring back a mug as a souvenir. We have celebrated so many holidays and birthdays by gifting one another with Starbucks' "You are here" mugs, and I doubt the tradition will end anytime soon.

Comment below to share about what you collect and why.

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