Rise and Shine

I was quite sure we would still have snow on the first of May, but thankfully I was wrong. We had an exceptionally long winter with night time temperatures that really dipped and kept the scenery white. I went skiing for the last time about three weeks ago on the lake. The lakes are still frozen but I would not recommend venturing out on the ice anymore.

When the spring rains decided to arrive our snow disappeared in a week. The coltsfoot, which is our first wild flower to bloom in the spring, can be found along the sides of ditches. They rise out of the not-so-pretty brown landscape bringing the first little dots of yellow color. They are called “leskenlehti” in Finnish which means “widow’s leaf” if translated directly. The flower only blooms in early spring and for the rest of the summer the flower only has the green leaves.
I love receiving these little yellow bouquets of love. After the coltsfoot have bloomed I know that it will not be long before the crocus and tulips bloom.
Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. Each day has a new promise and is a new beginning. This homemade granola is the perfect occasional treat that does not have to be saved for a weekend brunch since it works well even if the morning is a bit hurried. Just make sure to make it the night before so that it is ready to to. This granola is not nearly as sweet as store bought versions. Store the granola in a paper bag.



6 dl/2.5 c large old fashioned oatmeal
50 g /1.8 oz butter cut into cubes
1/2 dl/ 0.2 c sugar
3 tbsp honey
100 g/3.5 oz mixed nuts, roughly chopped
(optional flax seed)
1/2 tsp salt

100 g /3.5 oz raisins
100 g/3.5 oz dried apricot cut into small pieces

Preheat the oven to 175 C/350 F. Line a pan with parchment paper and spread the oatmeal, sugar, nuts and salt evenly on the pan. Mix in the honey. Sprinkle the cubed butter evenly over the oatmeal mixture. Place into the oven and bake for about 10 minutes or so that granola has acquired a nice golden color. Let slightly cool and add the raisin and apricots. Allow to cool completely before placing into a paper bag.

Enjoy with yoghurt or milk, berries and bananas.

pussy willows


  1. The coltsfoot are so pretty, isn’t the most wonderful feeling when you see the first signs of spring, here in Brooklyn the first thing we are crocus. I always make granola and for the first time I used butter, its delicious I am glad to see you also use it in yours. Happy spring to you and your family!

    1. Our kids were looking for the first signs of spring: The two cranes (that spend every spring in the field behind our house) have returned from the south and later in the summer we will see their young ones, the swans have been returning and flying over the house in a V-shape and causing all sorts of rucus 🙂 on the lake as they congregate and we even spotted a few butterfly. Happy Spring to you too!

  2. This year everybody around the world are dreaming about spring. It is late everywhere. However, it definitely will come. The yellow “leskenlehti” are looking promisingly.

    1. Spring always does manage to come, and before we know it there will be little buds and leaves on the trees! But I really shouldn’t complain of the long winter, it was really beautiful with lots of sun and perfect skiing conditions!

  3. Looks winter was too long everywhere this year. Little yellow blossoms are to sweet and really calling for spring – love them! Granola breakfast looks yum, thank you for the recipe! Enjoy your spring Sunday 😉

  4. Lovely little yellow bouquets. Are they edible or used for making tea? I am really fascinated that you keep the granola in a paper bag. Does it keep the granola texture better?

    1. My granola is not as dry as the store bought version and that is why I do not store it in an airtight container. You could bake it at a lower temperature for longer for a more dryer version.

  5. Have a great season my friend…
    luckiy me, i lived in tropical country with sunshine throug years around….
    i think granola is needed in rainy season here, ooks really good too
    actually i’ve got some issue in baking with sugar. weather is not caramelize or burned out…hehehe

    1. Yes, you are lucky to have the sun all year ’round! There is a mystical magic to the darkness and when the light arrives here in the north it is light all night long!

  6. Spring is definitely in the air and you’ve got flowers in bloom to prove it. Your granola sounds like the perfect start to any day, Spring or not. Yum!

  7. I remember years ago riding through the countryside and spotting what I thought was early dandelions, but the stem was long and the leaves only at the base. It was coltsfoot, one of the many yellow spring flowers. Your pussywillows were another reminder… of placing a dozen or so stems in water to root, then planting them and creating a hedgerow along the front of our lot, by the road. Sweet memories for which I thank you.

    1. What lovely memories Kathleen! The pussywillows are like an inexpensive flower for me. I just need to pull on my rubber boots and take my clippers and walk a little ways down the road where there is an abundance growing along the ditch. Thank you for sharing!

  8. The wild flowers are so pretty. Breakfast is my favorite meal too! 🙂 I adore milk and I have a sweet tooth only in the morning when I eat pastries and cookies.

    1. I have a sweet tooth in the morning as well! I have noticed that if I have a little something sweet in the morning I don’t need other sweets for the rest of the day. I’m good to go! 🙂

    1. Thank you Danny! Your spring in the warm climate comes so much sooner than ours. 🙂 I know that in many places the temperatures are nearing summer temps at this time. Often our June can be still fairly cool.

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