Given that 2012 begins in less than two weeks, I’ve been taking some time for a bit of personal reflection lately. I’ve found that looking back over the past year—or several years—empowers me to move forward with confidence and positivity in my life as I reflect on the growth and change that has made me stronger in the past.
It’s hard to believe that just a few years ago, I had very little interest in health and nutrition, no plans to start a blog, and certainly no plans to write a book. To be honest, I really didn’t know what life had in store for me. Waking up in the morning and trying to greet the day with a smile was often what felt like an insurmountable challenge. I’ve shared before just how much my poor health had affected my mind, contributing to depression and a defeated mentality. In our predominantly negative society where we’re bombarded with I-can’ts, I-shouldn’ts, and I-won’ts, I spent years of my life getting by on the feeble hope that tomorrow will be better—but don’t count on it.
With time, I slowly began to climb out of the negative pit I had settled into. I was blessed to have encouraging, motivating people in my life who helped me regain confidence in myself and my abilities. As I delved into the world of holistic nutrition and the study of how food can heal the body (using myself as an experiment), my symptoms and physical weaknesses began to improve. I’ve made a slow but steady climb toward optimal, vibrant health.
Speeding up to the right now, I can honestly say that I’m in awe of how my life has taken shape in the last year or so. Not only have I written and published a book, developed wonderful friendships with people I’ve never even met face to face, grown leaps and bounds in confidence, and begun to see that where I thought I had no potential, I actually have tons.
Are there still days when I wonder if what I’m doing is the right thing, if I’m on the right path, if I’m making the right choices? Absolutely. There are many of those days. But more often than not, I wake up and greet the day with a ready heart and an eager spirit. One of my goals this fall has been to approach every experience as an opportunity. I’ve learned that it’s amazing what life has waiting for us. If only we’d open our eyes and hearts to the wonders that are all around us.
The end of the year offers the perfect opportunity for us to take that first step toward embracing our lives with both arms. Why wait until January? Let’s start now. Define your goals (or even just one) and start taking small, actionable steps toward achieving them. Wouldn’t it be great to make 2012 the year of things that actually happened?
What does all this reflection and goal-setting have to do with little cakes? No clue. If I tried to make what I just wrote mesh with this recipe, it would come out awkward and forced. But here’s the best I can do:
Eat one or two of these cakes as you’re sitting quietly with pen and paper, scribbling down your goals for 2012. Try to believe in yourself, affirm your positive qualities, identify your strengths and weaknesses, and ultimately use the reflective time to be restorative and motivational.
I believe we all have the strength within us to do more than we ever thought we were capable of. Let’s make 2012 the year of discovering that strength. I’m in. Are you?
“If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.” - Thomas A. Edison
Two-Bite Orange Walnut Crumble Cakes
For the crumble topping:
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons coconut sugar
2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, room temperature (not melted)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the cakes:
1/4 cup coconut flour
2 teaspoons tapioca or arrowroot starch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs
1/4 cup honey or dark maple syrup
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 10 cups of a mini muffin pan with mini paper liners.
In a small bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the crumble topping with your fingers. Work into a crumbly, clumpy mixture. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the coconut flour, tapioca or arrowroot starch, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and baking soda. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, honey, orange zest, and vanilla to combine. Pour the wet ingredients over the flour mixture and whisk to combine thoroughly.
Divide the batter among the lined muffin cups. Crumble a bit of the topping over each cake. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until firm to the touch and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of a cake.
Cool completely before serving. (Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.)
Find more healthy recipes at Slightly Indulgent Tuesday.