first days and a bit of a break

I didn’t intend to leave the blog for so long. My hope for this blog was that it could be an exercise in mindfulness and a reminder to find the little joys in life. The last week or so has been very emotionally draining and sometimes not in a good way. It’s been a struggle to find positive things to write about and I’ve started more posts than I have been able to finish. I guess that is a mindfulness exercise in itself. Letting go of my expectations for filling this little space.

We started kindergarten last week. I really mean all of us did. It has been hardest on me and the baby. No more lie-ins and wandering about in our pajamas, leaving the house whenever it suits us. I hadn’t realized that we had created a wonderfully slow rhythm over the summer. I’m usually a schedule lover but lately I’ve enjoyed the relaxed pace that I have been able to set.

Now I’m on someone else’s schedule and poor Sacha is being dragged along. But we are finding a new rhythm once again. Unfortunately that has meant the end of morning naps. As he grows closer to the one year mark, Sacha is becoming more independent and willful and he has decided that he would like to spend his mornings with mama instead of napping. This has meant a lot of tears, frustrations and short tempers for both of us at times. Another lesson in mindfulness for me. I am learning to plan to do less in the day so I can spend time with him. Today we spent the time stacking and knocking over blocks. What a great meditative activity.

As for the kindergarten transition, things are going really well at school. We are super lucky that we got into a child centred school where the children benefit from team teaching, multi-age classrooms and very lovely parents and teachers. It’s been wonderful for William. He finds it all a bit amusing after the rigor of his Montessori preschool. “I just play cars mom, I’m not really learning anything.” He is also enjoying the afternoons at his Montessori school from last year where he is working on his reading and building contraptions (marble runs I think). I think the two schools complement each other very well and it’s been good to have the familiarity of the old school while transitioning to a much bigger school.

We’ve been nourishing ourselves during all of this upheaval with some comfort food. I discovered a new fall favourite recipe for molasses cookies. It came from a Mennonite church cookbook that I bought at a funny little gas station in Winkler and refer to often. These are super tasty, low in sugar and really easy to make. We like to eat them with a glass of almond milk. Enjoy!

Molasses Oatmeal Cookies

1 1/4 cups flour

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup sugar (I use turbinado or sucanat)

1 tbsp milk

1 1/2 cups rolled oats

2/3 cups molasses

2/3 cup melted shortening (I use applesauce mixed with water instead)

Sift dry ingredients together and mix with oats. Combine rest of ingredients, add to dry mixture and mix well (this works well in a stand mixer if you have one). Drop by teaspoonful on parchment covered cookie sheet and bake at 350F for 15 minutes.

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