Things are pretty bleak over here, people. I have two little people that want to play outside so bad their heads hurt. They talk about the seasons changing in school. They talk about how yesterday was the first day of Spring. They bring home art projects that involve tulips and baby animals. They beg me to take them to the park, even though they can see their breath. The walk from the car to our backdoor seems long and we're all holding our breath by the time we turn the knob. I've thought about starting a fire in the fireplace.
They monitor the plants that grow in our basement, below warm lights, and wonder why the same isn't happening outside. They look out the window and with their hands to the glass, testing for warmer temperatures, but there are none. Today, it's snowing.
I think Spring will come. But truthfully, I'm starting to doubt its inevitability. I want to believe that its right around the corner and surely it will come with April. March is supposed to leave like a lamb, right? But, all I see are grey skies, snowflakes, and restless children. We have done nearly every Pinterest project. We've painted and colored until the markers are dry and colorless. We've run made-up errands just to get out of the house, thank you Target. We've built every shape and style of fort and had dance parties till our thighs ache. We've done copious amounts of laundry and reorganized the furniture more times than I'd like to count.
The elbows on my favorite sweater are wearing thin.
There is one thing that Becks and Reed still get excited about. Any Kitchen Project. So, we've made a daily activity out of it. And, even though it's become part of our indoor routine I think a part of them looks forward to it. In the past week, we've made granola, granola bars, 2 kinds of snack bites, hummus, shamrock cookies, three kinds of muffins, freezable protein snack-cakes, and two loaves of really good bread. We do a kitchen project almost every morning. Over breakfast , we comb the internet for ideas and inspiration. It's a made-up chore because we don't really need any of these things. But, I don't know what I'd do with my mornings without them. An added bonus: my kids are going to know their way around a kitchen.
Magic Muffins - In an effort to make every snack we have substantial (my kids are eating a ton these days), I am tending towards flour free recipes. [Just to avoid the question, I am not, by any means going Paleo.] However, I refuse to eat a muffin that is as hard as a 2x4. I don't know how these muffins work, I just know they are puffy and satisfying. It's hard for me to walk by the freezer without grabbing one. They're also great to throw in lunches.
1 cup of any nut butter (we have tried peanut and almond)
2-3 bananas with lots of brown spot so they are super sweet*
a handful of pitted medjool dates, only if your bananas aren't brownish
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon honey, optional
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
chocolate chips, optional
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and line a muffin tin with paper liners. Put all ingredients into your food processor. Blend until totally mixed. Evenly distribute your batter in the lined pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top, if using. Bake for 13-15 minutes. They should look puffy and lightly browned on the top. Cool on a rack and store in the freezer for up to one month or in a sealed container for up to one week.
*I have made these twice. The first time my bananas were not as ripe as they should be so I threw in 6 or 7 pitted dates. The next time they were super ripe so I skipped the dates and the honey and they were great. I'm not a fan of super sweet things anyway, so the super ripe bananas were perfectly sweet enough on my second try.