"So this is what people feel like all the time?"
He still only feels it very rarely and last night, it struck. He came home from work with some stresses on his mind and couldn't shake them off (don't worry - nothing medical, family-related or serious... just boring old work stuff). We talked it out, made lists, searched the basement for some missing papers, said a quick prayer and the stress persisted. Finally after Gage had gone to bed and KJ was starting to drift, Steven sheepishly said, "You know what might make me feel better? I mean... we've done everything we can do tonight and there's really nothing else I can do till tomorrow to fix the things that need to be fixed, and I know we've both been trying so hard to stay like...healthy and everything..."
"Steven. Say it."
So without further preamble, I give you our version of Swedish Chocolate Cake (original recipe here).
10 oz margarine
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 2/3 cups of sugar
1 cup of flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt the margarine (or salted butter) in a saucepan over medium heat. Once it is melted, add ingredients to saucepan and stir to smoothness. Pour into a greased 8x8 square pan. Bake for about twenty-five minutes - the middle should be gooey, so don't check it with a toothpick. Just make sure the outside edges are firm.
Serve warm with a huge glass of milk.
It worked, guys. One melty, warm, chocolatey slice of this and suddenly everything was put into proper perspective. This cake is insanely easy to make and clean up. It's definitely something I'd make for company. It looks beautiful without any toppings, though the original recipe calls for some powdered sugar on top. In the summer I'll make it with a tart raspberry sauce.
So maybe this isn't the healthiest way to deal with stress and I'm not suggesting that every time anyone feels stressed out they bake a cake (though that's not actually a bad idea). But I did love snuggling up to Steven in the dim glow of a snowstorm outside. I love nights like that. The house was quiet except for the occasional sniffle or sigh from the sleeping kiddos upstairs. Life is good.