I know this sounds high and mighty, but it’s not. I was just now driving home from having breakfast with my mom, and I was trying to figure out why she was so happy about our time together.
She thanked me when I got to her place. She thanked me when we sat down in the restaurant. She thanked me on the way home. She thanked me when I left her as she joined a group of friends who were doing a service project together. And that’s not nearly all of the thank yous she expressed this morning.
We didn’t talk about big stuff while we ate. She’s aged pretty much, so cutting up a waffle is kind of a big undertaking for her. It takes enough concentration that she can’t really converse much while that’s underway.
The food was good, but that wasn’t the source of the gratitude she kept trying to convey.
And we talk frequently on the phone. Well, I should say that I talk while she beams and listens. What I say isn’t that interesting. Really. And I’m not trying to be modest.
There’s just something mysteriously satisfying about being together when you know each other well. Nothing new there. But I felt it keenly this morning from my mom. Without any big project to do together, without highly charging conversation between us, without anything pressing to sort out, our just being quietly across the table from each other registered deep within her.
It was certainly enough for me, too. But I was especially thinking about how amped up I can be about getting stuff done. I’ve got deadlines everywhere I look. But I slowed up this morning when Ma thanked me again. Something different was going on here. We didn’t need to be doing something “productive” for her to be deeply happy.
I liked having food spread between us. It helped me hit the right gear.
I love waffles. Like when I was a kid, I got a charge out of filling up the squares with a buttery syrup this morning. Waffles tend to be a little airier than pancakes, but you can usually use the batter interchangeably if you’re a pancake person.
Here’s a great multi-grain batter for making waffles or pancakes. Eat it with someone you like to spend time with.
Oatmeal Waffles or Pancakes
Fix-It and Enjoy-It Healthy Cookbook, pg. 195
Makes 6 servings
Prep Time: 5-10 minutes
Cooking Time: 3-5 minutes for each waffle; 10-15 minutes for pancakes
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (yes, you can find it in most grocery stores)
2/3 cup uncooked rolled, or quick, oats
⅓ cup cornmeal
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
2 cups skim milk
1 Tbsp. canola oil
egg substitute equivalent to 2 eggs, or 4 egg whites, beaten
1. Combine dry ingredients in mixing bowl.
2. Stir in milk, oil, and beaten egg substitute or whites.
3. When batter is well blended, cook in waffle iron according to appliance instructions.
4. If you wish, serve with maple syrup, honey, or blueberry preserves.
Calories 192, Kilojoules 803, Protein 9g, Carbohydrates 33g, Total Fat 3g, Saturated Fat 0.3g, Monosaturated Fat 1.7g, Polyunsaturated Fat 1g, Cholesterol 1.6mg, Sodium 200mg, Fiber 3g