This week I’ve decided to feature my Low Sugar Coconut Granola. It makes for a delicious and nutritious breakfast when served with organic natural yoghurt and fruit. I wasn’t sure if I’d include it in Cakes for Conor. It isn’t a pretty cake but it does get baked in the oven and eaten more than anything else in our house. It’s very easy to make by mixing the dry ingredients with melted coconut oil and maple syrup before baking. It gives off a lovely smell from the oven. Coconut is one of my favourite foods and so this recipe was always going to be a hit.
I made a decision in the weeks after Conor died that we would only be able to survive our loss if we stayed healthy. We eat well (hence low sugar coconut granola), make dinners from scratch and follow a healthy lifestyle. The cakes and biscuits normally featured are for visitors or given away. I’ve even stopped myself from licking the bowl! Neither of us has had even a common cold all year so we must be doing something right.
There’s one thing I can’t get right with just a healthy lifestyle and that’s sleep. I’ve eliminated caffeine, set up a bedtime routine and carefully chosen reading material. My poor mind is so busy at night. As the lights go off in the house, its like someone switches on floodlights in my brain. Just like any new parent, I long for a good night’s sleep. I was advised to write to try to improve my sleep. It has certainly helped but I am not cured. During my pregnancy my sleeps were interrupted with toilet visits. I never complained seeing it as preparation for night feeds and teething cries. The last night I slept completely through the night is the night Conor died. I know he kicked as I was heading to bed but I think he must have died soon after that. There were no kicks or wriggles during the night to wake me. It didn’t take me long in the morning to realise something was wrong. There was no “good morning Mummy” kick to start my day. I have been assured by the doctors that Conor felt no pain. We both fell into a deep sleep that fateful night but only one of us woke up.
I often remember dreams. In the dreams in my old life I was quite the hero and regularly solved crimes. Since Conor died I’ve become the victim. In those first weeks of my new life death featured heavily in dreams. Conor’s daddy was washed away by a big wave and dropped dead of a heart attack in another. I witnessed someone in my clothes throw herself off a building. On one occasion I had a horrible nightmare taking me back to bad news day. I became afraid of closing my eyes while well wishers were telling me to have a lie down. Slowly sleep and dreams have improved and bedtime is now my favourite time of the day. On one occasion I dreamt about Conor and it felt good. I can’t believe he doesn’t feature every night because he dominates my daytime thoughts. I have also had dreams about a happier future. I still wake every night in the wee small hours and sometimes it takes me a long time to get off to sleep. I write down my thoughts and fears when this happens and try to clear my head. Some of my best work happens at 5am! I am no longer afraid of sleep or afraid of waking. My gorgeous little niece told me she dreams about baby Conor. She dreams that his Daddy takes him swimming. She also believes that he dreams. When asked what he dreams about, she replied “his Mummy”. Night night and sweet dreams baby Conor.
This is the recipe I use. I no longer add dried fruit as the fruit has a tendency to burn. I add the coconut flakes half way through so they don’t burn. Its a bit time consuming as you need to bake the granola in small batches but it’s well worth it. Cheap granola is full of sugar and the healthy stuff is super expensive.