While it lasts

It's nearly November and the weather still allows us the luxury of eating in the garden. While it lasts, we try to grab as many meals as we can on the patio. This Saturday morning was a beauty; blue skies, warm breezes, the scent of Jasmine, and a house filled with giggling girls.

And, eating on the patio gave me a few more moments of relaxation before I tackled the cookie crumbs, lemonade spills, and the microwave popcorn arson scene in the microwave from lasts nights sleepover.

Banana Scones with Brown Sugar Glaze
adapted from theKitchn

2 ripe bananas, mashed
milk, approximately 2-4 tablespoons
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
4 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cold butter cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup powdered sugar

Preheat the oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
In the bowl of a food processor combine the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and butter. Pulse until the butter pieces are no bigger than pea sized. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Alternately combine all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and cut in the butter until the butter pieces are no bigger than pea sized.

Combine the mashed banana with enough milk to equal 1 cup. In a small mixing bowl combine the banana, and yogurt. Mix well.

Pour the banana mixture over the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula until just combined  The dough will be slightly wet and sticky. Turn out onto a floured surface and gently pat into a rectangle about 1 inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter or floured glass cut out the scones. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Gather the dough scraps and repeat.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the scones are browned and firm to the touch.

While the scones are baking make the glaze. Melt together the butter and brown sugar. Stir until the sugar has melted. Add the vanilla and stir well. Add the powdered sugar and whisk to combine. Drizzle over the top of the scones after they have slightly cooled.


“Life without thankfulness is devoid of love and passion. Hope without thankfulness is lacking in fine perception. Faith without thankfulness lacks strength and fortitude. Every virtue divorced from thankfulness is maimed and limps along the spiritual road.” 
― John Henry Jowett

With the events of the past few weeks put in perspective, honest conversations shared, suitcases packed and unpacked (yes J, unpacked), stories heard, hands held, laughter shared, I find myself wanting to tell a lot of people thank you.

Thank you Lauren for sharing a cup of coffee with me every morning. I covet those few moments to catch up.

Thank you Julie for showing me a sweet new spot of respite, conversation and friendship.

Thank you friends from the "Hood" who loved on us long distance.

Thank you Micha for making me laugh.

Thank you to my family, parents, siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, who stormed heaven and sent words of encouragement.

Thank you Singapore small group for your faithfulness to me and my family.

Thank you Faouzi for picking up my daughter and taking her home when you noticed she had missed the school bus.

Thank you ACST family for being resilient and moving forward even when at times you weren't sure you had it in you. I knew you did.

Thank you Bredy boys and our security staff for being so brave.

Thank you Hager, your sweet, gentle spirit brings me joy.

Thank you Andy, McKenna, and Morgan for being my soft shoulder to lean on, and my strong hand to hold.

Oh there are more people to thank, and forgive me if you weren't mentioned. I hope your feelings aren't hurt, but if they are, may I offer you a cookie along with my heart felt thanks?  They are buttery, and tender, and topped with warm cinnamon and sugar. A very cozy cookie made for sharing with the people you are most thankful for.

Snickerdoodle Blondies
adapted from Brown Eyed Baker
2 2/3 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup packed dark brown sugar *see cooks note
1 cup sugar
1 cup butter softened to room temperature
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In a mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, ground cinnamon, and ground nutmeg. Set aside.

With electric beaters, beat the sugars and butter until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined.

Add the dry ingredients, blending on low speed until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Mix together the remaining sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over the top of the batter. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Cool the bars completely. Remove from the baking pan using the parchment paper as a "sling" and slice into 24 bars.

*Cooks note: The original recipe calls for 2 cups of brown sugar. The brown sugar available to me is very dark, much more so than a dark brown sugar in the US, and can be overpowering in some recipes. I wanted less of a molasses flavor and so I only used 1 cup. I also think if you wanted to gussy these up for company you could make a quick cinnamon flavored glaze to top the bars with but truth be told, they're fantastic as is.