Sunday, January 4, 2015

Love Makes Pancakes More Special

Our gingerbread house turned into a New Year's house.  It's just as fun to make (and edible) after the holidays.

During our stint without heat (hallelujah, heat back on!), this is how Chris watched football games.

I love Christmas break mornings.  I appreciate welcoming the day in a more relaxed fashion.  For two weeks, I'm not the mom barking out orders and shooing boys out of the house before sunrise.  Instead, I'm the leisure mother, still clad in pajamas, savoring precious early moments with the boys.

During Christmas break, I have time to whip up better breakfasts than they typically get from their cereal boxes.  I enjoy making things like pancakes, muffins, and eggs.

One morning, I asked Connor if he'd like me to make pancakes.

"No," he replied with as much kindness as he could muster.  "You don't make it like ____'s mom."

He then went into a lengthy description of the pancakes made by his friend's mom, and enjoyed by Connor during several sleepovers.        Evidently, her pancakes were fluffier than any ones possibly created by a mere mortal of a chef.  They had the perfect combination of ingredients that no amateur (like his mother) should attempt.

But he didn't stop there.  He gushed about her culinary excellence.  Her chicken was cooked just right.  Her pasta was topnotch.  Her salmon was excellent.

I listened to his dietary diatribe and then interjected, "Well, maybe I could get her recipes and make those dishes?"

Connor sighed, "It just wouldn't be the same.  She is a REALLY good cook."

 I had to chuckle.  

I've tasted her dishes, and I agree she is a REALLY good cook.  I also agree that what she makes I can't replicate.  I think what's added to her dishes can't be found in the instructions on a recipe or purchased at the grocery store.

I think Connor appreciates what's sprinkled into her food.  She weaves friendship, warmth, love, and hospitality into her dishes.  And, when he's spooning bites of pancakes into his mouth he's savoring the company and experiences with friends as much as the flavors. 

I get this. 

When I reflect on my childhood, certain foods vividly sit in my memory.  My mouth starts to water when I think of Frosted Flakes and hot chocolate.  It was the breakfast my Grandparents served me on special overnight dates.  (Only a Grandparent would serve that sort of breakfast!)  In my mind, it was the very best breakfasts I ever inhaled.  But I imagine, if I whipped up that same breakfast today, it wouldn't taste the same.  It would lack something, and that something would be the love and affection I felt from my grandparents.

And so I didn't make the pancakes.  Those he can eat and savor at his friend's house.  But, I will try to make other things and add my own special additions, ones I hope to create in our home.

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