It takes a special kind of Banana Apple Muffin to comfort a mother’s spirit as she accepts that her babies are growing up. It has to be a moist muffin, one packed with flavourful fruits and topped by a sweet oatmeal streusal… one just like this: The Kindergarten Registration package for my youngest, Alice, arrived last week and I’ve been a sentimental-mom-mess ever since. It’s because I know what happens the moment she steps onto that bus next September, I officially close the book on my ‘baby years’. We’re done. No more diapers, breastfeeding, or sleepless nights. I know, I know, I should be celebrating, but as the snuggles become less frequent and my girls grow more independent, well, I just want to curl into a ball, clutching their baby blankies and sulk. It all just went by so quickly. So, when Alice woke this morning with a runny nose and a little extra pink in her cheeks, I jumped on the chance to dump all responsibilities and declare it a sick day at home. We have spent the day sculpting aliens in Play-Doh, baking these amazing muffins, getting MUCH paint on EVERYTHING, and dancing to her favourite satellite radio station, Kids Place Live (I’ve heard What Does the Fox Say 17 times so far today!). It’s been a great day and I think we’re both starting to feel much better for it.
- 1 large farm-fresh egg
- 3 large ripe bananas, mashed
- 3 apples, peeled and chopped into a small chunks
- ½ cup butter, melted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1½ cups whole wheat flour (all-purpose works too)
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 Tbsp butter, melted
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup quick cooking oats
- Preheat oven to 400ºF (190ºC). Line a muffin pan with paper liners or grease it and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk egg lightly and blend well with mashed banana, vanilla and melted butter.
- In separate bowl, sift flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together and stir. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix just until blended. Add the apple chunks and stir by hand to ensure there's apple throughout the batter.
- Spoon batter into muffin pan, filling each cup 3/4 full.
- Prepare the topping by combining all oatmeal streusel ingredients in a small bowl and sprinkle evenly over the muffins.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until tops are browned and a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.
Alice and I have been having so much fun together today that I thought a late-afternoon snuggle on the couch was inevitable. Nope, she insisted she wasn’t tired. Which is funny because during a time out on the stairs (paint + curtain + third warning episode) I thought it strange that she was being so quiet. I paused from doing dishes and turned the corner to find this:
So then her sister came home from school and I tried to lure her into a snuggle session (I know I’m coming off as pretty needy here but bear with me, I’m working through something). No interest from the six year old either. She was however very keen on the muffins cooling on the table. After scoffing down two she asked, “Can we take pictures of them now?” My heart swelled with pride. She doesn’t want to hug me, she wants to PLAY with me. Maybe that’s the cure to this sentimental heart ache? Accepting that the days of total dependency and unsolicited affection may be over, but they are being replaced by the next chapter, one full of exploration and fun together. Well, I can live with that.
And, hey, I still have the dog to snuggle with. 🙂
— xxxxxx —
What I’m Drinking: I am absolutely hooked on ginger tea with a teaspoon of local honey lately. Great for helping with digestive upset and boosting immunity during this very frigid cold season.
What I’m Listening to: Ylvis What Does the Fox Say on repeat apparently. Now that I realize that these two are not AT ALL taking themselves seriously, I actually respect them quite a bit. They really are funny. Seriously, funny. Watch this and you’ll understand: