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« Life Balance Through Family | 3 Simple Ways to Improve Your Listening Skills »

The Value of Baking

“Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first.”

~ Ernestine Ulmer


It’s been a busy bunch of months. I know I’m not alone in this. Life is full. We can easily become overwhelmed with our mounds of to dos and limited time to accomplish our goals and commitments. While in general, I’m pretty good at this balancing dance, lately it’s been more challenging with many competing demands on my time.

Last week, I took a mini break from other projects and commitments to focus on preparing for Thanksgiving. It’s a favorite holiday of ours that we love to host. I scheduled prep time so that I could enjoy the doing as much as the actual event.

The day before Thanksgiving, our younger daughter, Cassie surprised us by arriving home early. To my delight, we got to spend the whole day together baking, chopping, and preparing for the feast. While working we listened to music, talked, and laughed.

Baking and cooking was something I always did with our girls growing up. It was a special time to connect, relax, and learn. What an interesting lesson to be reminded of in the midst of the frenzy I’d been experiencing. The familiar, love-filled act of baking pies together was not only joyful, but balance restoring.

What simple things help restore your balance? Come join our conversation. I’d love to hear your thoughts.




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Reader Comments (7)

Listen music and watching something on tv (shows or movies) are the most simple things that restore my balance. The other thing taking a shower. And talking about things I can't control, the rain and cloudy days are so relaxing to me.

Happy holidays to you Linda and all your readers.

December 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterNacho Eeguiarte

Are those your pies? I love the heart on that one:) A full day baking with your daughter sounds like a delight! I like to decompress each evening of the holiday season by lighting tea lights in all of my holiday votives. It takes a couple of minutes to replace and light them, but the glow is very calming and feels special. Candles bring a gentleness that slows me down, which is always a good thing in December.

December 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSeana Turner

I love the picture you painted for us of you baking, listening to music and sharing special time with your daughter! In the winter I work on my needlepoint project. It involves very fine stitching with intricate shading in the patterns. Sometimes I make things as gifts or pillows for my house. The rhythmic act of sewing helps me to decompress and allows my mind to wander. I often come up with great ideas or solutions to issues while sewing.

December 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterDiane Quintana

Linda what fun it sounds like you had with Cassie and your family. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. This year it was a little different for three reasons: 1) my husband's parents weren't able to be with us because of a health issue, 2) my sister's family was unable to split their time with her in-laws and our family as they have in the past and 3) this was the first time our Thanksgiving meal had to consider the wants and needs of omnivores, vegetarians and vegans.

I had a feeling going into the day that it could be a little weird / off balance so I made a conscious choice to completely relax the day.

Instead of the afternoon of warm appetizers and wine that we usually have while we're cooking, we snacked on chips and fruit (we still drank the wine!). Lounge wear and sweats were deemed acceptable attire. Most importantly, to the delight off all of the men folk, when dinner was served we all filled up our plates and took them into the family room where we enjoyed football (we're all sports nuts in my family) and conversation.

My husband commented to me afterwards on what a great Thanksgiving it was and how he appreciated it being so relaxed. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to reframe this experience as creating balance for what could have been an out of balance kind of holiday. You brought a smile to my face. : )

December 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea Sharb

Reading is my solace from the hectic pace of the holiday season. With family we always hang out on Christmas Eve, eat finger foods and watch the same movies every year. We have great food, laughter and fun.

December 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJill Robson

Dear Linda,
So much of what you're sharing resonates with me. Life and work have been pretty hectic lately and I've been off balance. Thanksgiving didn't provide the respite I was hoping for and I found myself retreating on Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving Day. I actually napped. Can you believe it? I can't remember the last thing I took a nap. Then, I treated myself to a healing session with a very good friend of mine and that made all the difference. I emerged from the weekend feeling energized and ready to go.
Thank you for sharing your experience with us. May the season continues to unfold with shared love and joy.

December 2, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterYota Schneider

What a wonderful group! Feeling very lucky to "hear" all your amazing voices.

@Nacho- Love your balance restoring list. The restorative powers of water are incredible, aren't they? Any type of water does it for me (looking at or being in.)

@Seana- Yes. Those are my pies- pumpkin and apple. What a beautiful thing that you do…lighting candles each evening. So interesting how the power of the elements can be so restorative (water, fire.) Wonderful.

@Diane- My grandmother used to do various sewing crafts (knitting, crocheting, needlepoint.) I loved hanging out with her. We'd talk, she'd knit. I was always amazed how she could do knit while talking and without looking. How lovely that you enjoy the rhythmic, therapeutic, creative outlet.

@Andrea- I love how you re-created your holiday in a meaningful, relaxing way. As family changes and shifts, we find ourselves in exactly that place of needing to rethink our traditions and create new ones. Sounds like your reinvention was a big hit.

@Jill- Reading is a wonderful way to find "solace." I love your description of your holiday traditions. There's comfort in revisiting favorite movies. I have my holiday favorites too that I never tire of watching. It's like visiting old friends, isn't it?

@Yota- How beautiful that you recognized the need for self-care after feeling off balance. The holidays, work, life can do a number on us if we're not paying attention. Napping and healing. Just lovely. It's so easy to forget ourselves in the list of "to dos." I'm glad that you're taking care of you.

Love, hugs, and happy holiday wishes to all of you. You bring light and love to this wonderful community. Thank you for sharing about all the ways you bring balance to your lives. Inspired.

December 3, 2014 | Registered CommenterLinda Samuels

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