Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween from Motherhood Handmade

I'm fighting my way through a cold and last-minute costuming today, but wanted to check in and say Happy Halloween from our family.  Stay safe, eat just enough candy, and have a great time.  Back in two days for Cookie Friday!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Cookie Friday: Butternut Squash Bars

Baking soothes my soul.  The process of measuring and mixing, becomes a meditation for me, bringing me back to center.  After a crazy week, I love when I can create something for our family to enjoy as we come back together for the weekend.

These bars have been a big hit with our family.  Originally made with pumpkin, we adapted this to use up some leftover butternut squash.  While it's technically a cookie, I think it's light enough for breakfast.

Butternut Squash Bars 
(adapted from Better Homes and Gardens' recipe found here)

Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.  Gather ingredients, and grease a 9 x 13 in. pan.  We like coconut oil to prevent sticking. 

1/2 cup softened butter
2/3 cup stevia-sugar blend, or 1 1/3 cups sugar
1 cup butternut squash, mashed (Pumpkin is okay, but you'll thank me if you use the squash)
2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream or yogurt
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Blend these ingredients until they are just mixed.  

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4  teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon cloves

Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl with a fork.  Add to wet ingredients 1 cup at a time, adding the next cup after the first is incorporated.  After all are mixed in well, transfer the batter into your prepared pan.  Bake at 350 for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick in the middle comes out clean. Cool completely before adding frosting. 


1/2 cup butter
4 cups powdered sugar

In a sauce pan, brown butter.   Remove from heat, and stir in powdered sugar.  Add milk by tablespoon until desired consistency is reached,  Spread over bars before cutting. 

Enjoy, and let me know if you try these.  You'll be going back to the store for another butternut squash as soon as you've polished off the pan!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Are you proud of me?

Colin, my younger son closed a door for me.  I said "Thank you for helping me today!"  and he asked "You proud of me?"  At school, his big brother had his behavior card moved down to the white- the color coded cards took a bit of getting used to, but white is your warning before consequences happen.  It wasn't anything serious, but Aidan was distraught.  He cried and said "I'm sad because now you won't be proud of me."

My heart hurt when the tears ran down his face.  Had we made being proud of him too important? Were we sending the message that we value his behavior and choices more than we valued him?  I kissed his head and told him it would be okay, that he could try again tomorrow.

It's been on my mind since, how I talk to them about their behavior.  Lynn G. Robbins said 

"In helping children discover who they are and helping strengthen their self-worth, we can appropriately compliment their achievement or behavior- the do.  But it would be even wiser to focus our primary praise on their character and beliefs- who they are."

I never wanted them to think that their actions changed their value to me- maybe I needed to change the way I spoke to them about their actions.

In the car driving home, Aidan and I talked about how he could make better choices, try again the next day.  We discussed apologizing to those affected by his behavior.  Then his voice, a little shaky, asked "And then will you be proud of me?"

I am grateful for the Inspiration to respond by saying "You are my son.  You are a good boy that I love, and I am always proud of you.  When you make good choices, it makes me happy, but because you are my son, I am always proud of you, and I will always love you."  

He smiled, and the tension in his shoulders seemed to relax, when he whispered "Thanks, Mom."

Monday, October 22, 2012

Life Looks Like: Photo Link Party

Life Looks Like little 'messes' that cover up seasonal decor. 

Every Monday, I'll have a place to link up your photos- unstaged and no cleaning beforehand please- of what your life is really like.  Let's take away, for one day at least the tendency to crop out the little messes that make up the everyday.  This is about finding the beauty in those messes. While I'm still in the process of getting started here, I hope you'll take a moment to link up in the comments.  I'll be sure to come take a look, and I'll have a link party up and going soon.

If you're on instagram, please join me (username telfordswife) by tagging your photos with #lifelookslike. I can't wait to see what you've got.