My birthday lingers in the background of my mind. Only a few days away, which also means my mom's birthday is coming,too. If you've read previous posts you'd know my mom died when I was nineteen, and I've been without her for fifteen years. It doesn't always make our birthdays easier. Sometimes I even have the thought that it isn't fair that some people get to have their grandparents for so long when I only got to have my mom for so little time. It feels dirty to just say that. Shameful even. I guess that is what loss does to you. Makes you wish there was a way to bargain, even after all these years.
This brings me to think about how much life have I wished away? Countless minutes, hours, days and maybe months. How often we wish our life was totally different. I know I get stuck in that cycle. I still feel pressure that I should own a house by now, have a B.A., a masters, children, traveled the world, working full time in my profession, a better car and maybe, a total different life!
We wish our struggles weren't ours. I wish I had a more supportive family, that my mom was still here, that my dad didn't drink so much, but those are my lessons. They suck at times but other times I see the gifts. They aren't always bold,in-my-face blessings. They are usually hidden under a massive pile I have to dig out.
When do we find the sweet spot? The silky, smooth life melting spot. The place where we feel our life is beautiful, that we are accomplished just for making it through our life lessons, that we have enough because we ARE enough and blessed because we get to be here another day.
How do we get there?
One moment at a time -and patting ourselves on the back. Has anyone told you lately you are amazing? That life isn't always kind but you are doing a swimming job? The best person to tell ourselves this, is ourselves! Too often it is easier to pick out our faults and where we would like to be rather than give ourselves the love we really need.
We don't get to choose our lessons, or the way life weaves our despair with a speckling of diamonds. I know I wouldn't have chosen any of my hardships if I was asked. I guess that is why we aren't apart of the committee of life lessons. If we could look back at ourselves on the wild, twisted, dark, beautiful, daunting, joyous journey we were on, we would see a glimmer of hope every time. There were points when we weren't sure we could handle anymore that we groveled on our knees with despair. Though scrapped up and battered, we started to see something glistening ahead. It was a gift. It wasn't wrapped in a bow or even easy to see. It was something that we had to dig for and polish. We knew it was there because every once in a while, the blazing sun would reveal a twinkle. Cupping our hands with a gem in the center; there was some hope. Getting up, you actually thank the world around you.
It was just what you needed to keep going.
If I had you over today for sourdough pancakes with blackberry syrup I'd tell you your life is beautiful. It may not look like other people's or even what you hoped for or imagined, but it was especially made for you. I'd peer in your eyes and hold your hand while telling you, "I hope you always know that your soul is strong and you are amazing."
I may always miss my mom but she has given me a gift. On September 18th I will celebrate Debbie Williams' Day. I will thank my mom for being my mom and all the love she gave me. I will thank this universe of ours for the all the gifts I didn't know I would benefit from. I will thank myself for continuing to move forward even when it seems impossible.
Today take a moment to find that sweet spot. The spot where your life is juicy, oozing with love for just being you and stepping forward each day.
Now lets make some pancakes and syrup to compliment soaking in our sweet spot!
Fermented Sourdough Pancakes
2 cups of Organic Unbleached Flour
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 cups of Almond/Coconut Milk with 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar (this is how you make it into buttermilk or you are welcome to use buttermilk)
1 cup of sourdough starter, unfed
all the overnight sponge
2 large eggs
1/4 cup of vegetable oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. To make the overnight sponge: Pour the almond milk in a bowl with apple cider vinegar. Let sit while you get the rest of the ingredients ready. In a large bowl add the flour and sugar. Pour in the starter and "buttermilk" (almond milk with apple cider vinegar); mix all ingredients.(Use a large bowl because the sponge because it will grow overnight.)
2. Cover the sponge and let rest at room temperature overnight.
3. In the morning, take a small bowl and beat together the eggs and oil. Add to the overnight starter.
4. Add the salt and baking soda, mix to combine. This is really fun the batter will start bubbling.
5. Warm a pan on medium heat. I like to use a cast iron pan and put oil in the bottom and rub it around with a paper towel. This ensures you don't have too much oil on the skillet. Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour the batter in the pan.
6. The way I tell it is time to flip the pancake is when the top has a lot of bubbles that have popped and it isn't gooey any more. Flip, let it cook for a few minutes. Flip again to check it is done. Repeat. Then enjoy! This recipe makes about 24 medium pancakes. So you can possibly have pancakes for a few days.
Homemade Blackberry Syrup
3 cups of blackberries; fresh or frozen
1 cup of sugar
1 Tablespoon of lemon juice
1 cup of water
1. Add blackberries, sugar, lemon juice and water to a medium pot over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Boil for two minutes then remove from heat and allow to cool a little before blending or serving.
2. This step is optional if you want chunky blackberry syrup. Blend the syrup in batches until smooth. Then strain using a cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer. Discard the seeds. Serve up with your pancakes.
You can store this in your refrigerator for up to two weeks in an air tight container.
My hope is that you enjoy these recipes while finding your SWEET SPOT! A place where you honor yourself and all that you have done in your life. A spot where you find the sweetness of the moment even if it isn't exactly how you want it to be.
I would love to hear from you! Tell me about how your find your sweet spot in your life or how you changed/loved/enjoyed the recipe above! Thanks for being apart of my world!