Banana Muffins Can’t Be Brownies and Other Life Truths

Banana Muffins Can't Be Brownies and Other Life Truths
Julie Voiceover Category

When my daughter was young she could sniff out a baking mix from a mile  away. Once I purchased a box of banana nut muffin mix at the store and my then four-year-old had it out of the bag and was waiting for me before I could even set my keys down. I sliced up a few bananas while she put paper liners in the muffin pan. She insisted on adding sprinkles, and I said, “Why not?” We whisked and poured and put them in the oven.

Banana Muffins Can’t Be Brownies

As soon as I closed the oven door, my daughter started asking if her brownies were ready yet. Her slightly older brother piped up from doing his homework, never missing an opportunity to correct her.

“They are muffins. Not brownies.”

My daughter was quick to reply: “ I want brownies…”

Me: “Sorry, we just made banana muffins, with sprinkles. You like muffins; they will be yummy.”

My daughter finally recognized she was not going  to win this one and responded quickly, ” Well, can we just call them brownies?”

Me: “Sure. You can call them whatever you want. But they are still going to taste like muffins.”

I laughed at my daughter’s stubborn insistence, even when she was completely wrong, because it was kind of cute when she was four. Even though she couldn’t read, she’d insist I’d spelled  something wrong or would try to convince me that twelve-teen was in fact a number. She’d argue that her pink boots did in fact match her red dress.

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Toddlers do not listen to reason, and most of these things are harmless, so eventually I’d concede and let her wear the mismatched boots and use made up numbers. As she grew, so did the stubbornness. Sometimes it paid off: She practiced her penalty kicks until my hands stung from trying to stop them. She found a horse camp all on her own and I forked over the money. Other times, she paid the price: She was exhausted from staying up working on the project I kept trying to get her to start earlier, or she’d freeze when I tried to get her to take a jacket but she swore she did not need one.

However, on banana muffin day, after 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees, my daughter learned that no matter what you call them, muffins are never going to taste quite as good as brownies. She took one bite and threw the rest of hers in the trash.

You can call something whatever you want, but it is what it is.

Other Life Truths

I may not be four, but I am occasionally just as guilty of that crazy logic and my own stubborn insistence. I catch myself calling things something else, because it is more appealing than the truth.

I call my mess “shabby chic.”

My procrastinating gets called “prioritizing.”

Scrolling social media or binge watching shows gets called “relaxing.”

My gossip gets called “concern.”

Another drink is “taking the edge off.”

Another helping, I claim, is just being polite or not being wasteful.

I call things I want, things that I need.

My exhaustion from an over-extended calendar gets called “being involved.”

My anxious worry gets called “planning ahead.”

Picking a fight is “communicating.”

And all kinds of other little lies that are so easy to tell myself. More often than not I am all too happy to believe them.

Sadly, just like the muffin that was not anywhere close to a brownie, giving something a more palatable name doesn’t make it any more satisfying.


Ready to be more discerning in your approach to, well, just about everything? Check out this podcast episode: Change Your Life with These Tips for Smart Living – 212

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