Most of my life on Christmas Eve our family would go to my Grandma and Grandpa Law's home to see my dad's family. My dad had a big family. He had 5 sisters and 1 brother - and we would see most all of them on Christmas Eve. Most of the time we had snow - and lots of it! Us kids would go outside and goof off in the snow throwing snowballs at each other then come back in to warm up and eat the goodies that everyone had brought.
After both grandma & grandpa were gone it dwindled out. I remember going to my cousin Shirley's home when the kids were about 9 & 10 and that was the last Christmas Eve I spent with the Law family. Now, every year when we get to this time of year I have this deep heartache because things aren't the way they used to be. I miss my Christmas Eve visits with my dad's family. I know things change, but sometimes you don't want it to. If I could freeze time I would have my grandparents back and I would be spending Christmas Eve with them again along with the rest of my family.
I decided it was time to visit my Uncle Lyle & Aunt Thea. The last time I saw them was at their 50th Wedding Anniversary party which I think was almost 3 years ago. I've been thinking about my Uncle Lyle a lot lately. He has the kindest heart and he would do anything he could to help you out. I will never forget him bringing firewood to our home when my first husband and I were married and I was pregnat with Justin. He was working on my Dad's farm with him and on his way home he brought wood with him on the back of his truck and unloaded it all into our garage so we would have heat in our home. Dana was working the afternoon shift, so Uncle Lyle unloaded that whole truckload of wood for me and then proceeded to check my fire to make sure I would be warm while I waited for Dana to get home.
I wanted to take some kind of treat when I visited. I had bananas that were needing to be used so I made some Banana Crumb Muffins to give to my Aunt & Uncle. You know, us foodies, we don't like to go anywhere without taking food with us to give to other people! They enjoyed the muffins while we were there visiting. Uncle Lyle got his fiddle out and played with it some. It reminded me of Christmas Eve when Grandpa would pull his fiddle out to play and I enjoyed every second I was there. This visit helped me some, but it doesn't mean I'm over it. It just makes me want to go see them and my other aunts & uncles more often.
The Banana Crumb Muffin is a recipe I found on Allrecipes.com. When I make banana muffins, this is the only recipe I ever use. I love how it is a light muffin - not dense in any way. Also, the crumb topping is so good that I secretly think about taking the top of the muffin off and leaving the rest! ;o) Aunt Thea told me it was the best muffin she ever ate. Of course, that pleased me right to pieces!
Banana Crumb Muffins
1- ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
3 bananas, mashed
¾ cup white sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
⅓ cup butter, melted
⅓ cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon butter
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease 10 muffin cups, or line with muffin papers.
In a large bowl, mix together 1 ½ cups flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, beat together bananas, sugar, egg and melted butter. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.
In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and cinnamon. Cut in 1 tablespoon butter until
mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle topping over muffins.
Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean.