As soon as October passes away, things seem to go into hyper-drive. I know that I'm kidding myself if I think that things will change after I graduate, because things have been like this as long as I can remember. Exams, papers, assignments, and the like will stop eventually, but fall events, obligations, time with friends and family, and the hustle and bustle of the Holiday season will not. So, in light of that, I want to share some thoughts of thankfulness.
- I am thankful for Jesus Christ, whose sweet love and sacrifice is the greatest blessing in my life. I am thankful for the nudges and reminders He gives me when I am living selfishly, and for the help that He gives me to love and serve others.
- I am thankful for my family and my husband's family, who are a constant source of support and encouragement. I cannot even express how blessed both my husband and I have been.
- I am thankful for my husband. I am blessed by the time that I get to spend with my husband: the dates, the special gifts, the sweet words, and the surprises. I'm equally thankful for the struggles that we get to grow through together.
- I am thankful for my education. I may sometimes gripe and complain about studying or writing papers, but when it all comes down to it, this time is such a blessing and it is an honor to be learning this material from my professors and with my classmates.
- I am thankful for oatmeal, one of the most comforting foods for a chilly morning.
- I am thankful for tea. My favorites right now are Harney & Sons Hot Cinnamon Spice, Stash White Christmas, and Celestial Seasonings Candy Cane Lane.
- I am thankful for Christmas music. Not that I've been listening to it, or anything.
This year is the first year that I will be hosting Thanksgiving at our house with visiting family. I will be keeping things simple for our day of thanks, but over the next two weeks I hope to share with you some of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes. This pear gingerbread is wonderful to have on-hand for a quick breakfast of toast and coffee or tea. It is fairly spicy and barely sweet, which works well for Thanksgiving breakfast because there will be plenty of sweets later in the day. Wrapped well in a layer of saran wrap and another layer of aluminum foil, this bread can be baked in advance and stored in the freezer for several weeks.
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup molasses
2/3 cup canola oil
2/3 cup applesauce
2 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon cloves
¼ teaspoon cardamom
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/3 cup fine diced pear
½ cup fine diced crystallized (candied) ginger
Preheat the oven to 350. Grease and flour two 9 x 5 inch loaf pans.
In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, molasses, oil, and applesauce. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the baking soda and next eight ingredients (through whole wheat flour). Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring just until there are no dry patches. Fold in the pear and ginger.
Divide the batter between the two loaf pans. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean.