18 July 2012

It's great being a Nana

I'm not yet 40 but in some ways I've always been a bit of a Nana. I love baking for people and making hot water bottles. And as my dear Austrian friend points out, it's kind of unusual to travel with a shower cap.

I used to wish that cooking and baking wasn't my 'thing' because the results disappear so quickly. But now I have come to understand what a rewarding and soul-nourishing it is for both the baker and the eaters.

I have two lots of people to 'treat' today, apart from my own family, with two children always needing morning and afternoon teas. Crawling around in our cramped ceiling space today are electricians installing a ventilation and heat exchange system (Smartvent synergy, if you're interested) that will distribute heat down to our bedrooms and remove the moisture that ends up as condensation all over our windows on winter mornings. At least, I hope it will. The tradesmen have been great so far - don't you love it when they turn up exactly on time, remove their boots and consult you when they have to make decisions?

Secondly, a neighbour is having a tough time - her husband is in hospital after a massive cancer operation and she's nursing him there, getting about two hours of sleep each night if she's lucky. They have 8 year old twins at home. She'll receive a container of scones to take as hospital fuel for her.

So it feels like a compassionate thing to do. In The Art of Happiness, the Dalai Lama (via his co-author) explains how when we have suffering of our own, it drains us, but that being compassionate to others has the opposite effect: it energises and enriches us. He's right. It feels good.

They smelt delicious as I mixed the milk into the cold, buttery flour.




So on this beautifully sunny winter's morning I was able to serve a decent tray to the electricians. They were chuffed!


These are date scones and plain scones from - where else? - the Edmond's Cookbook. 


(p.s. I just asked the electrician to do something a little bit tricky instead of the standard approach. "You've made us scones - you can have anything you like now," he said.)

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