Endings and New Beginnings

It’s been a busy and strange time in our home over the last few months with ups and downs.  We navigated the joy of Christmas where I was amazed to actually be off over the enter Christmas days despite working in the emergency services (shh don’t say anything incase anyone finds out).  We filled the toddler up with chocolate with marshmallows, sweeties, mince pies and miraculously he slept until Christmas morning to continue a diet of sugar and cocoa based products only.

We survived the mess and consumerism, he has too much, the house is now too full and we need to teach him about recycling!

We have known for a while that Nanna wouldn’t be around for much longer and so for the last few months have made an effort for the toddler to spend as much time as possible.  She had a wonderful Christmas and we were happy to host Christmas at our own house making Christmas Dinner for the first time.  Sadly in the New Year she peacefully passed away.  Despite our worries the toddler has taken this news in his stride.  In the days leading up to her death I worried about how I would explain this news, how he would understand that he wouldn’t be able to see Nanna again.  I reached out to my local community of mums who advised; be honest, read stories, explain and remember.

We read The Heart and The Bottle, Oliver Jeffers where a young girl is amazed by all of the wonderful things in the world, and shares this with a special person who sits in a special chair, then all of a sudden the chair is empty and the story follows the girl as she comes to accept the empty chair.  We also read Badger’s Parting Gifts, Susan Varley where Badger knows that soon he will pass away so he begins to prepare his friends.  Both of this have helped facilitate the story.

I have been amazed by how well he has come to accept the change and now instead of saying he wants to go to Nanna’s house, he knows it is Grandad’s house.  He knows he can’t see Nanna anymore and seems to be OK about that, we explain she is the sparkliest sky in the night sky.  We’ve chosen some photos and whilst there aren’t many of them together one will receive a special place on the wall when Dad is ready.

So whilst we have come to the end of an area, with a new year we look to new beginnings. A new job beckons, and the garden which has so far remained neglected will be attacked and a vegetable patch started, which the toddler can help with.

We plan to grow courgette, beetroot, kale, salad leaves, squash and strawberries.  We’ve grown courgettes in the past and I look forward to the sweetness of fresh courgette griddled alongside salad with feta cheese.  I already know that the strawberries will be the favourite crop of the toddler! For now we need to prepare the garden, build up some raised beds and read up on where to go from here.

So with the highs and the lows of the previous months the following recipe has become an all too easy delicious staple, warming and comforting like a warm hug in a yummy chewy package.

Dangerously Easy Oaty Cookies makes approx 8 cookies

  • 75g plain flour
  • 75g jumbo oats
  • 75g brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 75g butter
  • 20g golden syrup
  • 1 – 2 tbsp milk

Set the oven to 180 C, butter a large baking sheet.

Mix the dry ingredients together.

Melt the butter, golden syrup and 1 tbsp milk in the microwave (or in a pan if you want).

Combine the wet and the dry ingredients till just brought together.  Dollop a golf ball size amount of mixture onto the baking sheet.

Bake for 10 – 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool for around 5 – 10 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool.  to a plate with a glass of milk for dunking.

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