It surprises me how much of our lives is spent marking days off a calendar.
In fact, so much time is passed counting down to the next vacation or public holiday; and the hours and minutes in-between sometimes fade to oblivion.
I mean, just think about it.
Unmemorable days at the office, sitting in front of a computer at that grey desk with the same cup of coffee; hours wasted in front of the TV watching ridiculous programs that don’t add any value; minutes that we kill by doing Sudoku or crossword puzzles on the train, as we tap our foot in impatience – as we wait for life to happen.
It’s weird how we tend to live for moments sometime in the future; birthdays, weddings, get-togethers, Christmas or the start of a New Year.
While it’s not weird for us to look forward to these events; what I find disturbing is that we spend so much time waiting to get somewhere else, that we sometimes forget about the current; we don’t know how to enjoy the present; and what’s worst of all – we may even completely ignore the here and the now.
This week, it came as a sprightly reminder when I was reading a few of my favorite blogs.
Kelsey, writing from her end of the world in Denver, Colorado, scribbled her thoughts on the transition of winter to spring. I was struck by the sincerity and warmth in her words, whose wisdom always leaves me thinking. This time, Kelsey wrote in that calming voice of hers –
“Savor the crumbs of cold that are left for us, folks. Everyone seems to want to be in the season that’s in front of them instead of celebrating the one that’s here, now. It will be time for tulips, asparagus, and rhubarb soon enough.”
Living here in Argentina, with the seasons in reverse, as we prepare for summer to leave and autumn to fall in with grandeur and pomp, I can understand.
I know how there is a certain anxiousness to the last few days of every season; something unsettling, because when with every passing season, it feels like another chapter is being closed, and when you live in a country with seasons, it feels like a new story is being written every three months, not just once a year.
After all, how do you measure a year?
I pondered this question as I read Nicole’s latest post, in which she let nostalgic childhood memories of musical theater wash over her, she answered in these clear, simple words –
“If you’re abiding by the laws of Rent [the musical], it’s in laughter, cups of coffee, and sunsets. Another good reminder, then, that there’s really no day but today, and to at least live in the present as much as one can…”
And yes. I wholeheartedly agree that life, or years or periods should be measured and counted in all the good and beautiful things that make them.
Lovely things to be grateful for such as the new friendship formed at a random gathering and later fostered over dinner at that organic vegetarian restaurant; moving to a new neighborhood and apartment and becoming independent; or embracing a new lifestyle of eating.
And as this summer waves us goodbye, we embrace colder days and drink in views of pretty auburn leaves-lined avenues, I want to soak in every bit of the present.
I aim to celebrate life – it’s ups and downs and in-betweens; it’s large achievements or little pleasures.
Today, I learn to be thankful for the warm days of sunshine we’ve had in the past few months, instead of wishing in vain for them again.
And today, in celebration of the last days of summer, let’s take the season’s blueberries and make muffins.
I’m glad that we had an entire season of blueberries and summer fruits and happy memories. And so, as I mix almond meal with tapioca starch, baking powder and salt; as I combine honey, eggs, butter and vanilla extract and pour them into the former, I feel thankful to be alive to appreciate each season.
There’s nostalgia, as always, because that’s part of who I am, but there’s also acknowledgment of the warmer days we’ve enjoyed.
Tuck into a muffin with me, won’t you? Let’s eat our fill, bid goodbye to summer, and then wait for autumn fill us with her beauty.
GRAIN-FREE BLUEBERRY ALMOND MUFFINS (Makes 12)
Barely adapted from: Paleo Spirit
1) 2 cups of almond meal
2) 1/2 cup of tapioca starch (or a little more if batter is too liquid)
3) 1 teaspoon of baking powder
4) 1/8 teaspoon of salt
5) 3 large eggs
6) 1/4 cup of honey
7) 1/4 cup of melted butter (or melted coconut oil or ghee)
8) 2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract
9) 1 cup of fresh blueberries
1) Preheat your oven to 325 deg Fahrenheit (160 deg cel)
2) Grease your muffin tin generously with butter or line it with muffin paper liners
3) Combine the dry ingredients (almond meal, tapioca starch, baking powder and salt) in a large bowl and mix them together
4) In another bowl, whisk the wet ingredients (eggs, honey, melted butter, vanilla extract) together
5) Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and then stir well until a homogeneous batter is formed
6) Gently stir in the blueberries into the batter
7) Spoon the batter into the muffin tin (dividing into 12 portions evenly)
8) Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and muffins are golden on top
9) Serve warm
P.S. If you’re wondering why I’m trying to eliminate wheat from my life, I strongly recommend Wheat Belly – a book that will empower you and make you determined to get rid of wheat and it’s terrible health effects!