Throughout my dance training, the phrase 'be in the moment' was repeatedly stated. What does it really mean to live in the moment? Should we throw caution to the wind and do whatever we feel in the moment? I continue to discover, define, and redefine what living in the moment means to me each day.
I can say this- there are so many moments I love that are etched into my heart. So many moments I expressed myself fully that were positive, and some... not so positive. But, I felt I was fully living in the moment. It's easy to forget about the now, about being present, especially when there are challenges and healing to do. Or, you are spreading yourself so thin trying to do all things and be all things to all people. You are basically running on fumes, as my mom would say. How do we be in the now during these times?
The answer: Being Present. To me, this is living in the moment. Being your best in each moment. Being your best doesn't mean being perfect. It means awakening to the smells, the colors, the sounds of your environment right now. Take a moment, to close your eyes... what do you hear? What do you smell? Open them now, what do you see?
Delicious Ginger Cookies
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup sugar (brown, white, or my option of Monk Fruit-which is much healthier)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons ginger powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- Extra sugar for rolling dough in (brown, white, or monk fruit-I do organic raw cane sugar here)
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/3 cup melted Earth Balance (organic canola oil works too)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
Feel free to add a little bit of salt if you have unsalted vegan butter. Mine was salted (Earth Balance).
Step 2: Mix Dry Ingredients
Using a fork, mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Make sure everything is well combined. You will not want any patches of ginger powder, or other powder.
Step 3: Mix Wet Ingredients
Pour all the wet ingredients into a small bowl. Mix well until the molasses dissolves (no clumps).
Preheat oven to 375 F
Step 4: Combine Wet and Dry
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and vigorously stir! This is the only tricky bit.
It may take a bit of stirring to combine everything. If it still looks crumbly after you have stirred a few minutes, you might add a bit of water, a tablespoon at a time.
The dough needs to look slightly firm, yet gummy.
Step 5: Baking!
Roll the dough into small balls, about 1 1/2 inches across. Once rolled, dip them into sugar and place them onto a baking sheet. Bake them at 375 F for 8-10 minutes. With smaller balls, I only bake for 8 minutes. Chubbier balls might get 10. It depends on how chewy you like them. You might want to do a small test batch first (6 cookies). The cookies will be quite soft when you remove them from the over. But-no worries! They do firm upon cooling.I like to immediately place them on a cooling rack (We like our cookies a bit chewier).
Now... Enjoy your delightful treats!
My husband. Me. Pepper (our feline family member). Fire. Cozy blankets. Ginger cookies! Ah... Love Actually.
Holiday Candle Making
Below is a recipe for natural scented candles. I prefer using soy wax or beeswax for my candles as well as essential oils for non toxic, environmentally friendly candles to be enjoyed by all.
Clean candle mold or container
Wax: Soy wax , beeswax
Optional: Candle warning label
Small or Medium rubber ended spatula
Wicks: Preferred-Cotton core (instead of lead); Pool diameter 1/4 inch; Strong clean flame (sometimes mushrooming occurs)
Note: You can purchase cotton wicks at Michael's and other craft stores. You can also purchase these and the waxes off Etsy!
Holiday Essential Oil Blends:
Ginger & Sweet Orange
Peppermint & Cinnamon
Vanilla & Peppermint
Bay & Cinnamon
Pine, Fir & Bay
1 Cup melted wax = 2 Dry cups of wax
2 1/2 - 3 tsp essential oil blend
1. Melt wax over low heat to 165 degrees F, stirring occasionally.
2. Add essential oil when wax has cooled to 110-120 degrees F.
3. Pour into container or mold.
4. Add wick & allow to cool. Note: You might need to keep your attention on the wick so you can straighten until wax cools enough to keep the wick steady.
5. Leave the candle undisturbed at room temperature (70 degrees F) until completely cool. Note: When cooling multiple candles, allow 1/2 inch between candles.
Your candle may need to cure for 1-2 days to help set the essential oil's lovely fragrance.