One of the things I like (although you could look at this the other way, I suppose) about having co-slept with both children for so many years is that whenever they are feeling vulnerable, or sick-in-the-night, they seek out the comfort of our bed. L. doesn't do this much anymore, although he will, on occasion and when he's not feeling well, make his own "bed" out of a pillow and his sleeping bad and lie down on the floor next to our bed. T. has transitioned on her own to sleeping the entire night in her bed now and I've been thumbing my nose at all the advice-givers (including pediatricians) over the years who warned us that if we co-slept we would never ever get our kids out of our bed. EVER. So I know when T. is feeling sick--if she has a headache, or is feverish, because she'll appear in our bed, snuggle right up next to me, and toss her arm across my neck.
Since becoming a Mama almost eleven years ago I've developed many Mama "super powers"--such as, super-hearing, which gives me the ability to hear L. sneak an extra piece of bread even though he's been cut-off from the bread bin, and super-vision, so I can spot a danger to my children before it evens pops onto the horizon, and also super-touch, which allows me to instantly sense any deviation--by even a quarter of a degree--in my children's body temperatures. I was wide awake, then, at 4:00 a.m. when T. smooshed her hot body next to mine in bed, stuck her hot feet under my leg, and wrapped a hot arm across my neck.
A fever meant a sick day yesterday, even though she cried at the news that she had to stay home ("how could anyone cry about staying home?" L. grouched when he discovered that his sister would get the "day off"). It was the perfect day for lots of reading, and puzzle-making, and Jenga-playing and for baking a loaf of raisin bread for T., who like me, loves raisin bread passionately. It was the best kind of comfort food for her, and she ate two big slices, washed down with orange juice, for lunch and dinner yesterday. I adapted the recipe from an out-of-print cookbook I recently bought at a thrift store solely because I saw the recipe and fell in love with the glossy photo of the finished loaf, golden and moist. I showed the book to T. before we checked out.
"Oh Mama," she said a little breathlessly, her eyes growing bigger when she saw the bread. "You just HAVE to buy that book!"
This was by far the best raisin bread recipe I've ever tried. It was gloriously simple to follow, and uncomplicated ingredients-wise and a cinch to make, the way all good raisin bread recipes should be because, really, who wants to mess around too long for the perfect loaf of raisin bread? I mixed up the batter while T. read at the kitchen table, and when the bread was ready we split the first piece--still steaming from the oven.
Raisin Honey Bread
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
More cinnamon for sprinkling on the top, if you like
1 3/4 cups low-fat vanilla yogurt (the recipe called for plain yogurt, but I used vanilla)
Ener-G egg replacer for two eggs
1 cup raisins
3 tablespoons honey
Earth Balance for greasing the loaf pan
Preheat the oven to 425.
Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt into a large bowl. Whisk together the Ener-G egg replace and yogurt and fold into the flour mixture. Add the raisins and honey. Grease a small loaf pan and spoon in the mixture. Bake at 425 for 20-30 minutes, or until the top is brown and a toothpick inserted down the center comes out clean.
The top looks dark because I sprinkled some cinnamon on the top