We arrived just as the wind picked up and rain came on. Most market-goers had deserted and the farmers stood under their tents with their arms raised high, holding on to the beams.
I loaded up the last of Larry’s pears and as we chatted I piled them on to his scale. He had to let go of his tent to weigh and figure a price and Will quickly reached up and held it down for him.
The significance of our simple interaction struck me later. It was one small moment in an ordinary day. The exchange reminded me of how we rely on each other. Constantly. Unnoticeably. And it’s there in those quietly normal experiences, when we’re not realizing the significance, that who we are is revealed.
When I observe the simple interactions that make up most days, I realize I am often either engrossed in my own storm, focused on holding down my tent and getting through, or I am asking, demanding, pushing of others. I like to think the latter, the pushing, helps people become better, reach higher, risk further. I see Will though, and so many others in my life, who reach out to listen, support, and give of themselves easily. In the ordinary everyday, I’d like to do a little more of the holding up of others’ tents.
Watch your interactions today. Are you just holding on, hoping the wind doesn’t blow away all that you’ve been working for? Are you asking and/or demanding of others? Are you instead an encourager or perhaps a helper, willing to take over for another for a while? There’s significance here in the mechanics of our connections. Pay attention. The roles we play in these small moments make up who we are, who we ultimately become.
Hazelnut, Pear & Oat Muffins, makes 12 standard or 8 large Inspired by Megan Gordon’s Whole Grain Mornings 3/4 cup oat bran, certified gluten-free 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour mix 3/4 tsp. baking soda 2 tsp. baking powder 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg 3/4 tsp. salt 2 medium pears 1/2 cup honey 1/3 cup canola oil 1 cup almond milk 1 Tbs. raw apple cider vinegar 2 Tbs. ground flax seed 6 Tbs. hot water 1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract 3/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with papers.
- In a small dish, whisk together the hot water and flax seed. Set aside to form a thick slurry.
- In a liquid measuring cup, combine the almond milk and vinegar. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the oat bran, flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt. Mix well and set aside.
- Grate the pears using the large holes of a box grater. Don’t include the core and seeds.
- In the liquid measuring cup with milk, add the honey, oil, vanilla, pears, half of the hazelnuts, and flax mixture. Stir thoroughly.
- Pour the liquids into the dry mixture and stir until just combined.
- Fill the muffin cups almost to the top with batter and then sprinkle the remaining hazelnuts on the top. Put the muffins in the oven immediately and decrease the heat to 375 degrees F. Bake until the tops are golden brown, for 20-25 minutes.