Fall Favorites: Spiced Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

With the arrival of fall, thoughts turn to cool, crisp mornings, fields full of pumpkins, the smell of a crackling fire, and the taste of hot apple cider.  This time of year often causes us to reflect on happy times.  I always find it interesting how our senses ignite memories.  Memories that take us back to a single, meaningful experience.  The senses of smell and taste, in particular, tend to evoke the strongest memories for me.  The smells of freshly cut hay and buckets of Dad’s ripened tomatoes, or the taste of Mom’s homemade Thanksgiving dressing.  These smells and tastes take me right back to my childhood. It’s such a visceral experience.  I think that’s one reason we enjoy the seasonal routines of planting gardens, visiting a pumpkin patch, or preparing and eating a holiday feast.  The sights, smells and tastes associated with these activities bring back a familiar comfort. So, here’s the thing.  With the many signs of fall, including pumpkins appearing at the local farmers’ market, I  remembered one of my favorite recipes:  Spiced pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.  I hope you’ll try this recipe and maybe even add it to your fall favorites.  Enjoy! Spiced Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins: *Use organic ingredients when possible Ingredients: 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour 3/4 cup sugar 1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice 1 tablespoon curry 1/4 teaspoon turmeric 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt *************** 2 […]

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Waiting for Spring

It’s been so warm and sunny here lately that daffodils are blooming and the pastures are turning from dull brown to vibrant green. So, this past weekend, Farmguy and I decided it was a good time to gather our sheep to administer their yearly vaccines and attend to other routine care practices like trimming hooves and de-worming.  After we finished, […]

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Remember To Breathe

‘Tis the season…for lots of continuing education, especially if you’re a speech and language pathologist AND a procrastinator–like me.  Every year, I say, “This time, I’m going to complete my continuing education hours throughout the year, not crammed into the last two months of it.” And, every year, I lie.  This coming Wednesday will be my third course since the beginning of November.  And, I’m sure it will take at least ten more months before I’m even able to think about signing up for another class.  Sigh. Last week, I attended a course called, Effective Strategies, Interventions and Resources for Autism, ADHD, and Sensory Processing Disorder (Sometimes, I think they all have this title).  Most of us are fairly aware of ADHD and autism (ASD), especially since ASD has become the number one childhood developmental disorder. However, you may not be as familiar with Sensory Processing Disorder. A condition that exists when sensory signals (information from our six senses) don’t get organized into appropriate responses due to the central nervous system not working properly. When this happens, various environmental stimuli may cause a person to feel overwhelmed, stressed, or frightened. Often, this is when children with one or more of these diagnoses may shutdown or meltdown. Anyway, it was a very interesting and valuable class, and I learned lots.  Towards the end of the day, the instructor shared a number of resources to use with children to address their stress and frustration […]

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Christmas Memories

“I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.” –Charles Dickens “Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.” –Laura Ingalls Wilder I love this time of year–beautiful music, snow, twinkling lights, festive decorations […]

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