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Every Life is a Story
    A place to share my own family stories

Thursday, April 29, 2010

A recipe!

I don't remember where the recipe came from. Probably somebody gave it to my mother, and she tried it, but Swedish Pancakes were an instant hit at my house from the very first batch. It became THE breakfast anytime we had a sleepover or slumber party. It was our traditional Labor Day breakfast for a few years. They were a staple in my family.

Similar to crepes, but easier to make, these were a thin, rectangular pancake. You added any toppings that you liked, then rolled them up to eat them. They fed a ton of people, they allowed for endless creativity in toppings and they were a lot of fun.

The tradition changed when I went to college. Our church has a general conference two weekends a year. In Utah, this means we get to watch conference on television. One year, one of my friends invited everyone she knew over for a conference breakfast. We all had pancakes, bacon and eggs, and sat and watched the Sunday morning session of the conference together. It was great! Six months later, another friend decided to carry on the tradition and hosted it. It turned out well, but we hadn't anticipated the appetites of some of the college boys, and there wasn't enough food. I ended up running home to grab some muffin mix I had in the kitchen to add to the breakfast so people wouldn't still be hungry. That's when I remembered Swedish Pancakes. They were the perfect breakfast. As long as you had eggs, milk, and flour, you could just keep on making them and it was easy to feed a crowd.

When the next conference rolled around, I was the one who hosted the breakfast, and the first Swedish Pancake Conference Breakfast was born. I provided the pancakes, and guests were invited to bring toppings or drinks to share. This has continued for twenty years now. People have come and gone, children have been added to the mix, houses have changed, but it's always Swedish Pancakes for conference. I imagine that the day will come (in the FAR FAR future) when we'll add grandchildren to the guest list. The recipe is as follows:

Swedish Pancakes

3 eggs
1 1/4 cup milk
3/4 cup flour
1 Tbl. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix the eggs and milk, gradually add flour, sugar and salt, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. The batter will be thin. Heat a griddle. Spray with no-stick cooking spray. Pour the batter across the hot griddle in a long row. When the batter has set, use your spatula to cut the batter vertically into roughly rectangular shapes. Flip to cook on the other side. Top with a tablespoon or so of your favorite topping, roll up, and eat. We typically make 6-8 batches for every conference breakfast, and we'll get 30+ people attending.

Favorite toppings include:
any fruit
whipped cream
jams and jellies
sugar and cinnamon
peanut butter
chocolate syrup
ice cream toppings
powdered sugar
brown sugar
pretty much anything else in your pantry you are brave enough to try

My favorite topping combinations are:
chocolate syrup and powdered sugar
sugar and cinnamon and maple syrup
white sugar, butter, and lemon juice
Strawberries and whipped cream
butter and brown sugar

The nastiest topping combination ever attempted was powdered orange drink and peanut butter. The powdered orange drink was meant for drinks. The guys insist it was really good. They're wrong.

Monday, April 5, 2010


My little sister always wanted to be a Mommy when she grew up. Except for a brief time when she wanted to be an apple picker, when you asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up, it was always a Mommy. Life didn't turn out that way for her. Mr. Right didn't come along until she was in her thirties, even after everyone else had gotten married and started a family. She used to point out that our grandmother had beautiful wedding pictures of all of the cousins on one wall. Then on another wall was the single picture of just her. She called it the wall of shame.

Even after she found her Prince Charming, starting a family and having children didn't happen either. Health problems, doctors, fertility specialists and years of waiting replaced being parents. They signed on for one adoption agency, and waited for three years for something to happen. Nothing. Finally, my sister started talking about giving up on the idea, and maybe they should travel instead, because just working and coming home each day, it just seemed like they needed something else in their lives.

Over Christmas they heard about another adoption agency that seemed to have more birth parents listed than their previous agency. It was a relatively painless matter to fill out new papers, and transfer home study information to add the new agency to their list of things they needed to wait for. Before the final papers were even sent, the call came. There was an infant up for adoption, and were they interested. Their profile was one of four that was sent to the birth mother, and to their astonishment, the birth mother chose them! That was seven weeks ago.

Things didn't stop there! Three weeks ago, they got another call from the agency. The same birth mother also decided to place her one year old baby up for adoption- a little girl. Were they interested in having two? They said yes, but had no information on either of the children, other than the gender of the one-year-old. It was almost like they were getting twins, because they needed two of everything! High chairs, cribs, and let's not forget clothes! We bought every gender neutral newborn size outfit in the store to help get ready.

Last week they found out the infant was a boy. They also found out that the birth mother was flying out here early to be induced. Two weeks early. Monday morning they learned that the birth mother was arriving that night. Without any chance to finish their preparation, my sister brought home a one year old little girl two days ago, and yesterday her little boy was born. The doctors say they will be able to bring him home tomorrow. In the course of seven weeks things have gone from nothing to much much more than they could have ever hoped for.

Yesterday, I was holding my new little niece, and she suddenly stretched out her arms, reaching for my sister. Surprised, my sister asked, "Do you want to come see your mama?" She took her in her arms, and the little girl patted her on the arm, and said, "Mamamamamamama."

And they say there aren't any miracles anymore....

"To be a person
is to have a story to tell."

- Isak Dinesen  

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