I’ve been spending a lot of time lately planning a move. It’s not a tragedy, I know.
It’s just one of those things that requires work, much like finding a job or learning a new skill — you have to deal with some discomfort, things aren’t exactly easy, there are costs and, in the end, you hope you emerge a little different, a little wiser, having gone through it.
Last week, my brother and I were talking about logistics — you know, the obvious things of furniture, moving trucks, long drives across several states — and I kept trying to find a way to solve things better. He’d say, Why don’t you buy a bed when you get there?
And I’d say, I don’t want to spend the money! He’d say, It’s not that much money. And I’d say, I am going to be broke!
It was kind of funny, actually. Or at least it is now.
From a removed standpoint, I see the problem. What I want is not just to relocate.
I want to relocate without spending any money, losing any sleep, causing anyone any difficulty. I want to relocate without relocating.
Or at least, I want relocating in a perfect world. It’s such a silly thing to get stressed out about.
It’s just moving. But you know, I’ve been thinking about it, and whether you’re talking about moving or the way two dozen white hairs emerge on your 20-something head, the fact is that this world really isn’t a perfect place.
We’re reminded of imperfections every day, in the big things of murder and suffering as well as the small things of long lines and angry strangers. We all taste difficulty.
We all experience frustration. In different ways and at different times, but still.
I mean, I don’t even watch the news, and I can tell you from experience that there is pain and hardship in this life.
But the thing I am thankful for, even more than that in this life there is also joy, is that the imperfections of this world remind me of life beyond it.
Like Elisabeth Elliot wrote:
Heaven is not here, it’s There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next.
Oh, that’s so good.
I am also thankful — very thankful — for the good gifts we taste now.
Like blue skies.
Like eyes to see them.
Like a sun that rises every morning, as faithfully as the God who made it.
And I am thankful for my particular gifts, like love, like self-employment, like the way these things are moving me towards a move. I am thankful, this week, for some time in the kitchen to bake cookies — the best chocolate chocolate cookies I’ve made really, little nibbles that are more than just cookies but actually like the lovechild of cookies and truffles combined, soft and rich, covered in chopped walnuts.
I’m thankful to sit cross-legged in the kitchen on a Tuesday afternoon, with a giant white bowl and a big spoon, licking chocolate batter in contentment, grateful for what I have, even more grateful for what will come.
Chocolate Truffle Cookies
Makes about 40 to 48 cookies
I made this recipe twice, the first time halved. But those first 24 precious cookies went so quickly, I had to make a full batch shortly thereafter.
Consider yourself warned.
1/2 cup of unsalted butter (1 stick)
1/2 cup of coconut oil (or butter)
1 1/4 cups Sucanat (or sugar)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups flour (I used white spelt)
2/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 3.5-ounce bar of good-quality dark chocolate, chopped finely (you could get by with half a bar if you’d like)
For rolling cookies: 1 cup of walnuts, chopped very finely
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a big bowl, beat together butter, coconut oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Then add the dry mixture to the wet until well blended.
Stir in chopped chocolate. Form dough into balls and place on baking sheets, baking for 8 to 10 minutes in preheated oven.
For walnut-rolled version: Roll balls of dough in chopped walnuts, covering them completely. Gently flatten balls of dough on sheet before baking.
About Shanna Mallon
Shanna holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her mantra? Restoring order and celebrating beauty through creative content, photography, and food. Shanna's work has been featured in Bon Appetit, The Kitchn, MSN.com, Everyday Health, Better Homes & Gardens, Houzz.com, Food News Journal, Food52, Zeit Magazine, Chew the World, Mom.me, Babble, Delish.com, Parade, Foodista, Entrepreneur and Ragan PR.