Good Parenting is a Bottle of Steen’s Cane Syrup

Narcissistic Mother

Emotional Abuse

Alcoholic Father

Mental Hospitals


Suicide Attempts

While Mother, Mother is certainly not an upbeat novel, as you can see from the over-arching themes of the book listed above, I did not want to write about anything that was too dark and depressing.

I will not claim to have no knowledge of or experience with some of these things, I just choose to deal with them in private and not in a public forum, such as this hopefully mostly lighthearted blog.

But, I will admit I grappled with what topic DID I want to write about for this month’s From Left to Write Book Club selection.

This book was dark and menacing (in a good way, y’all, really, go read this book, I loved every second). But, if not inspired by one of the heart-heavy themes, then what??

How about Pancakes?


You read that right, Pancakes :-)!!!

In the book, pancakes are used as a metaphor for getting your life together. First you have all of the ingredients in chaos everywhere, but if you try hard enough long enough you make pancakes instead of a mess.

Rather nice visual, eh?

I almost never make pancakes for breakfast. I can’t get anything together for breakfast until I have had a few cups of coffee, and by then, it seems like cereal or eggs are easier.

But, sometimes, for a special treat, I’ll ask my kids if they want pancakes for dinner.

(usually it’s because I am tired and don’t want to cook two meals or two variations of a meal to account for children with no sense of taste or adventure in the culinary arts, never mind the fact that they are 5 and 3)

The answer is always a resounding (and in stereo)


So, in an attempt to “be a better mother” and completely unlike Josephine in Mother, Mother, I vow to try and make pancakes more for my kiddos, maybe even for breakfast one day. Or brunch. Or lunch.

Here’s a link to my favorite recipe.

I will also add here that any *good* Southerner (you know who you are – you heard that word said with a draaaaawl in your head) uses cane syrup instead of maple syrup. Now, I lived in New Hampshire for 2 years in the heart of maple syrup country and have even toured several maple syrup houses, so I know what *real* maple syrup tastes like. But I stand by my previous statement.

(although I only have maple syrup in my house due the aforementioned children with no sense of taste or adventure in the culinary arts).

Oh, Steen’s, how I miss you, let me count the ways……

Happy Pancake Eating!

PS: as a child there were a few nights when my Mom wasn’t home and she asked my Dad to make dinner for us kiddos. His specialty: No, not pancakes, ha! 🙂 But he would mix peanut butter and Steen’s cane syrup on a plate and then we would dip bread in it.

Best. Dinner. Ever.


ImageA controlling mother, a missing daughter, and a family who is desperate for love. This post was inspired by the the psychological thriller Mother, Mother by Koren Zailckas.

Join From Left to Write on September 19 as we discuss Mother, Mother.  

As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.


5 thoughts on “Good Parenting is a Bottle of Steen’s Cane Syrup

  1. Fellow FLTW reader here. I love this! I opted for a heavier topic but now I’m wishing I went for pancakes. I make pancakes for dinner (or “brinner” as I like to call it) at least once a week! The Canadian in me must top them with pure maple syrup though 😉

  2. Pingback: Book Club Day: Mother, Mother by Koren Zailckas

  3. What a great theme to pull from the book, wish I had thought of that! I too relate, but tried to not have a heavy post. Pancakes have always been special to me because they were my sister and I’s special treat every Christmas. Until I was married, we made green pancakes every christmas morning. It was(still is) one of my favorite things about the holidays!

  4. I’m with you on breakfast for dinner. I didn’t grow up in the typical southern family so I’ve never heard of Steens. Nor did my mother ever make pancakes-we at frozen ones. My mother did make some incredible Vietnamese-style (French?) crepes though. Never for breakfast but as a snack.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s