Friday, August 14, 2009

Simple is Beautiful

My friend, Tammy, gave me this book for my birthday. A Year of Mornings. It's a book of photos, really. Photos taken by two women, who each took a photo every morning and posted it on their blog. Their images are quiet and tranquil. They are photos of the simple and beautiful things that make up a year of mornings. Toast, a coffee cup, flowers, a gray sky, a puddle, a little girl's braids. Their blog soon had a worldwide following.
Seems a lot of us find simple things beautiful.
I think that is what I love best about this book. By stopping to take note of the loveliness that is around us all the time, we can celebrate the humble things and find beauty in them.
I made muffins for breakfast last Saturday morning. The boys helped Aaron pick oranges and then we squeezed them for juice. We ate outside. It was lovely.
We also had to get up a million times because someone needed more juice, or another egg, or, or, or. We couldn't get Lilly's food to her fast enough and she kept yelling. It wasn't perfect.
But it was still nice.
A Year of Mornings is like that. When I first read the book, I couldn't help thinking, "I'd love to have quiet mornings like that to take pictures. But at my house it is too hectic. Too rushed. Too loud. It just isn't like this." And it is all those things. But there are also moments of beauty. As long as we look for it, we can always find something lovely to celebrate. The writers of A Year of Mornings focused the camera on one beautiful thing amidst the morning chaos. We can do the same thing, camera or not.
We can say, "My, what nice manners you have with your napkin on your lap!"
Or we can say, "Why don't you put on some pants! We don't eat in our underwear." (Although if you say that you've never eaten at my house. Be sure to wear cute underwear if you come over for dinner.)
It's all about perspective isn't it.
And to make that point just a bit more pointed, here is the mess that I had to clean up after breakfast.
But it is kind of beautiful, isn't it?

Oh, here it the recipe I used for the muffins. It is actually a zucchini bread recipe, but the muffins work just as well. It is from Martha. I made it more healthy for the little people in my life by using half the sugar (half white, half brown) whole wheat flour, heaping cups of zucchini, and replacing half the oil with applesauce. They were good. Not so sweet as quick breads or muffins usually are. Still moist. The kids loved them. That matters the most.

I made them again yesterday to take to a meeting. This time I used 3/4 the sugar, instead of the whole 2 cups. Still used whole wheat flour and half apple sauce. They tasted more deserty. Good either way, I'd say.
Hope you have a beautiful morning tomorrow.


Lillian said...

Thank you Greta, You inspired me. Love from mom

Denise Vivaldo Group said...

Thanks for visiting our blog! Both of your blogs are just beautiful and yes!, simple is best.

Warm regards,
Blog Mistress for
Food Fanatics Unwashed