Wednesday, April 02, 2014

slice of heaven

Most mornings before anyone is awake, I'd start preparing for the day:  make breakfast, feed the dog, make sure everyone's backpacks are in order.  The usual.

Although we were on vacation a few weeks ago in St. Lucia, the early morning routine only changed slightly and we still started our days quite early. However, I had my own morning-before-the-kids-were-awake ritual.  I would pass by the lobby, greeted with freshly brewed coffee watching the quiet hustle and bustle of food preparation while the smell of breakfast wafted through the air.  I'd grab a quick cup of brew then go for a quiet walk along the mile long beach, securing our spot for the day while enjoying the beautiful sunrise.  

Amazingly, I never needed an alarm clock to wake up so early, even if it was a much earlier time than what I was accustomed to back at home.  Although the sun was just starting to peer over the horizon, I think it was the rhythmic waves of the ocean that kept calling me to visit.  And each morning, I did.  

When I made it down to the beach, there were no more bustling noises but just waves crashing along the shoreline. The only sensation I had felt was the warm breeze on my skin and the slight taste of salt in the air as I sat and watched the sun grow larger over that line where the water meets the sky. 

The tranquillity from being alone on the beach was my own little slice of heaven.  It was the most beautiful way to start the day.  

As I now ease back into the daily rigours of rushed morning routines, it's easy to forget how our body craves to start our days with stillness and observation.  How our body naturally wakes itself when it knows there is something beautiful over the horizon that will feed our soul.  Something to look forward to, whether it's the start of a simple day or a lifetime's worth of dreams.

Even though I now look out of my window and still see remnants of snowmen instead of sandmen, I still hold on to a few morning rituals from St. Lucia.  I'll tune out the traffic noises in my head and somehow still hear the waves crashing along the shoreline. With a cup of coffee and the springtime sunrise, I can now clearly see what's peering over the horizon.  Although my day no longer starts on the beach, for a brief moment in the stillness of the morning, I will be transported again to my little slice heaven.

And it is still the most beautiful way to start the day.

Banana Maple Syrup 
(aka "Slice of Heaven" syrup in St. Lucia)
(Makes 2-4 small servings)
While we were in St. Lucia, there was one particular breakfast that the kids absolutely adored.  The lovely chef behind the counter called it "Slice of Heaven".  It was essentially two thickly sliced raisin bread slices, with whipped cream in between the slices. Dipped in french toast coating (eggs, milk, cinnamon), then cooked on a cast iron skillet.  Topped with maple syrup infused with bananas (and then topped chocolate sauce!).  I made a less indulgent version of that dish, making the same banana maple syrup, but topping it on regular french toast instead.  It's still heavenly.

  • 2 cups of maple syrup
  • 1-2 bananas, sliced
  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • Over medium heat, melt the butter and saute the sliced bananas in small sauce pan.
  • When the bananas are very soft, add the cinnamon and maple syrup.
  • Slowly continue heating until the maple syrup is reduced to about half.
Serve over pancakes, waffles or french toast.  Enjoy!


  1. Although I am not a morning person, the stillness and quiet of the early morning is my favourite part of the day!
    I sit in my living room with my coffee and watch people walking their dogs, the brave runners, lights going on, people driving off to work...

  2. now that really seems to be a real and delicious slice of heaven.. thanks for the finger lickin' recipe :)


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