Creating traditions with my little family has got to be one of my favorite things about being a parent. My Mom was the master of tradition-making (and still is), and now as a Mom myself I find myself doing many of the same things we did together, with my boys.
I really feel that one of the coolest parts about being a parent is having the ability to shape your kids' childhood in a positive way, and create magical memories that they'll carry with them forever. And when I think about little Charlie, who might not necessarily remember details from these first years, I remind myself that it's about the feeling in everything we do. There's just something in the air during the holidays and each year all of it- the mood, the emotion, the magic- all rolls into the next year until it's become something special, and that feeling is now what my kids will think of whenever they think of the holidays growing up. Pretty neat.
So this year Henry and I baked chocolate chip pumpkin loafs to drop off for neighbors, friends, and family. It's a fun tradition we started when he was a baby and we had just moved into the neighborhood. It's been so fun the past couple of years especially with Henry helping more and more, and this year he pretty much made all of the loaves with just a tiny bit of help from me. Yay, Henry!
There's just something so special about watching this little baby that rocked to sleep every night begin to do these big kid things. It's still surprising to me that this tiny person is not a baby anymore- here he is cracking eggs! Here he is, telling me how many loaves we need to make for x-amount of friends, and here he is, writing out the gift tags! Shocking. I shared this thought on Instagram the other day, wondering if I will always see the baby behind the boy, and later, the man. At 15, 25, 39...will I still see the baby face lingering somewhere in there? I think so. I hope so.
So on this day my suddenly big kid stirred and poured and baked. Charlie and I watched, I helped where it was needed, and the day flew by, in a haze of sugar and chocolate and the scent of fresh pumpkin. We packaged our bread up for delivery, another year and another tradition tucked away somewhere safe in my mind, with the hopes I'll always remember these special days with my babies.
Here's the recipe we used, from Sally's Baking Addiction- enjoy!
1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light or dark brown sugar
1 and 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
1/4 cup orange juice
2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Grease your pan with coconut oil and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt together until combined. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together until combined. Whisk in the pumpkin, oil, and orange juice. Pour these wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently mix together using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. Fold in the chocolate chips. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 60 minutes or until a fork comes out clean.
Enjoy! And as you’re creating your own holiday traditions, Fisher Price (and I!) wants to hear your family’s story. Over on Instagram, they’re announcing the The Fisher-Price™ Holiday Traditions Sweepstakes! To enter, follow @FisherPrice on Instagram, and then post an original photo that captures your favorite “Holiday Tradition” with the hashtag #FPTraditionsSweeps. The sweeps runs from November 24 to December 21st- and see the official rules here.
*This post was sponsored by Fisher Price.