My mothering shifts in this returning season also. Thoughts tend to focus more on education, outside classes and activities, dare I say it, the holidays. I pull out the woolens and inspect the hand-knit sweaters. Sweatshirts, boots and shoes now await by the door. The family calendar boasts new pencil scribblings, often filling the days and weeks to the brim! I also find myself speculating on who may get sick first, the first cold, the first flu,the first tummy bug. With determination I check that all my herbs, teas and medicines are stocked for the inevitable. For this season also brings some unpleasant sickness.
Dear October, the skies are clear and crisp, the air still warm and often dewy, pulling us outside to gobble up every last bit of outside happiness it has to offer. Corgi's enjoy the carefree days laying about in the grass at Blueberry Cottage, little knobby-kneed girls in short skirts still dance barefoot outside, protesting when Mum suggests shoes and a sweater should be considered. The last bits of summer dwindle, beckoning us inside in the afternoon. The light changes, the sky darkens earlier, the air becomes a touch cooler, caressing the cheeks and sending a little chill to bare arms and feet. Yes, October is a dance of inside and outside. So is mothering. A delicate exchange of hearts while sitting on the old bench watching maple leaves fall. Knowing when to press a matter inside one's heart and and knowing when to let it go, to let the child be still and know you are here for when they wish their thoughts outside, in the open.
Afternoons enjoying a cool dip in the water are replaced with baking favorite autumnal treats. The smells of October are apple, maple, clove, cinnamon, ginger and wood smoke. Tea with a splash of milk and a generous drizzle of honey are taken by the fire, lit to take the afternoon chill away. Lazy afternoons spent reading with a favorite cookie to nibble on leaves one feeling content and happy and safe in the knowledge that they belong here, to this home, to this family. Mothering can and will do that, cement the feeling of belonging, which to a child is of great importance.
Our afternoon weekly teas are reinstated, always with a treat. Currently we are working our way through Beautiful Girlhood by Karen Andreola and the Companion Study by Shelley Noonan. If you have daughters and want to have a beautiful time of teaching and instructing tender hearts, so start with this study. I can't say enough good things about it.
While we can bake cookies, decorate for a pleasant and welcoming atmosphere, nothing is more important in our mothering than conveying to a child that he/she is loved and belongs here, withing this family. That if they were not here there would be an empty space in the heart of the home.
I came up with this recipe because my husband loves those store bought (cheap) oatmeal iced cookies. I think this hit the mark, at least it got high praise from him. These cookies do remind me of autumn and the smell of them baking is wonderful! The girls and I enjoyed them with tea today during our study.
Maple Glazed Oatmeal Cookies
adapted from Shugary Sweets
1 cup butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 TBSP baking powder
2 cups quick cooking oats
2 cup all purpose flour
2 cups 10X sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp of maple extract
* I also added in a splash of organic maple syrup in place of some cream, but this is optional.
In a mixing bowl combine the sugar and honey, then add in the butter. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each. Add in flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon. Mix it up good.
On a parchment lined baking sheet drop by tablespoon fulls, I used a Pampered Chef medium scoop and got a great sized cookie. Bake at 350 for 13-15 minutes, depending on your oven. Don't let them burn! Then let cool a minute on the sheet before moving them to wire racks to finish cooling.
Mix the frosting ingredients and apply to the cookie with a spoon. I used the back of a regular teaspoon to spread the frosting so it would get in the cracks. I didn't overload it, I wanted them to look like the store bought ones. Let the glaze dry and pack 'em up!