Thursday, June 5, 2014

Dad's Peanut Brittle


My Dad loved all things nutty, sweet, salty, and crunchy. Peanut brittle or caramel corn or any number of roasted nut mixes. It was his thing. That and cinnamon buns.

I love making treats for my family and have made a fresh batch of this brittle, in honor of my Dad, for Father's Day. My husband has the same love of nutty/salty/sweet so he is in luck next weekend.

I definitely inherited my sweet tooth from my Dad. I also inherited my taste in music. I acquired the performing gene from my Mom but it was my Dad's music that influenced me from an early age, and still does today. The Beatles, Joni Mitchell, John Denver, Frank Sinatra, The Carpenters.

I was schooling my daughters in The Beatles the other day and thought of my Dad. He played the guitar. Well enough that he could play songs and we could sing along. But he had always wished he had learned more music. He encouraged me through my music study years to stick to it for my lifetime. And now I understand why. Only recently have I gone back to playing the piano. I played a few Beatles tunes for my daughters, and they quickly joined in. When we would sing along with my Dad we called it Song Guitar. We have amazing memories of Song Guitar.

And here's the thing- memories are made up of the small moments. The small joys. Delicious peanut brittle. Laughing and singing. The sound of a guitar. It isn't complicated. It isn't expensive. And it takes little time and effort. If I have learned one thing (and to be honest, I have learned much more than one thing) this past year, it is that being present, making those memories for ourselves and our children, is about less, not more. Less stuff, less effort, less money. A song, a treat, a story.

My Dad knew this. He didn't tell me that he knew this secret to a purposeful, joy-filled life. He let me figure it out. Each day I allow time to be infused with the simplicity of the moment. The ease of just being. And I can happily reminisce and hope that one day my daughters will be telling their stories of treats and music and moments.

~Kimberley