Tuesday, November 21, 2023

On Our Watch


Bananas Foster Turnovers | recipe developed by Karen of www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #dessert

 I wrote a blog post back in March of 2021 when, in the state where I live, Covid shots were limited to those over 65, a requirement I didn't meet. The post was (mostly) baout my quest to het vaccinated. I called it Just Shoot Me. Please.

I should have known better.

The morning the post was to go live, at 6:00 am, I was up changing the title and the graphic. My title had gone from valid to insensitive. Why? The day before, there was a mass shooting (in a covid vaccine line) in a grocery store in Boulder. Where, btw, my son lives.

On October 26th, the 299th day of this year, there was a mass shooting in Maine. The 565th of 2023. That's almost two a day. Over 35,000 people have died of gun violence, that figure includes those who don't fall into the category of being involved in mass shootings, defined as an incident where 4 or more people are killed at once. That's over 100 people a day.

On that day a month ago, I turned the television off. 

There is concern, with these murders now becoming such a daily occurrence, that we as a society could become desensitized, diminishing our response due to the constant exposure. 

Not me. Although it clearly seems to be something that afflicts our politicians.

On  Our Watch | graphic designed by, featured on, and property of Karen of www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics #blogging

For me, it's an unbearable emotional assault. So I shut it off. And then I turned it right back on.

Because as painful as it may be, turning away felt wrong to me, as if I was ignoring the cataclysmic fallout experienced by those personally affected by the violent deaths of their families. I can shut my eyes to it when it feels like too much. But they can't.

I don't know how to explain it, but I feel that as long as I live here, as long as this goes on, I almost have an obligation to watch.

Maybe because this is happening on our watch.

So I have decided that from now on, I will bear witness. I will watch. I will honor those who have been slaughtered by being present. I will show my respect to those who have lost loved ones by not walking away from their pain, witnessing their anguish, hearing their stories.

As you sit down this holiday season, enjoy those fancy dinners and decadent desserts with those you love, I ask you to consider doing three things.

Bananas Foster Turnovers | recipe developed by Karen of www.BakingInATornado.com | #recipe #dessert
Bananas Foster Turnovers

Look around the room and, take stock of what, and who, you have to be thankful for. That's pretty much a given this time of year.

But I also ask that you consider this:

On  Our Watch | graphic designed by, featured on, and property of Karen of www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics #blogging

Watch. Keep your eyes open. Don't turn away. Read the names of those who are being slaughtered in our country. In our movie theaters and bowling alleys and grocery stores and bars and even our places of worship and our schools. See the pictures of these members of our society who just moments before had lived and loved and prayed and played. Note their ages. Acknowledge that their friends and families will be living a new normal consisting of a perpetual state of senseless grief. Feel their pain.

And third, commit to being proactive. Identify the politicians in your district who have dedicated themselves to being a road block to sensible gun legislation. Register to vote, help humanity by showing them the door. 

Baking In A Tornado signature | www.BakingInATornado.com | #MyGraphics

Bananas Foster Turnovers         

Printable Recipe

1 ripe banana
2 TBSP butter, divided
2 TBSP brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2 TBSP spiced rum
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 TBSP speculoos (cookie butter)
1 (half of a box) refrigerator pie crust dough
1 tsp sugar

OPT: ice cream and/or caramel sauce to serve

*Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
*Peel the banana. Cut into about 1/2 in slices, then cut each slice in half.
*In a small skillet, over medium heat, melt 1 TBSP of the butter. Add the banana, brown sugar, cinnamon, and rum.
*Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, it will boil. Add the walnuts, cook and stir another 2 minutes.
*Remove the pan from the heat. Mix in the speculoos and stir until melted. Set aside.
*Unroll the pie crust and fold in the rounded sides about an inch to form a rectangle. Roll out until it's about 10 X 10. Cut into 4 squares, each piece about 5 X 5. Place them on the baking sheet.
*Spoon the banana mixture into the center of the bottom half of each of the squares, leaving room on all sides. Fold the top half down, creating a triangle. Press the sides together with a fork to seal. 
*Cut a couple of small slits into the tops. Melt the remaining butter, brush over the turnovers. Sprinkle with the sugar. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes, until browned and bubbly.
*Top with vanilla ice cream and/or caramel sauce, if desired.


  1. It's sad that we're even having this discussion, but so important.

  2. Karen, baking serves two purposes, it brings joy to you and your family, your readers. It blocks out the negatives we are surrounded by. Hugs, Beth

    1. Very truel, it's a respite, but it doesn't change anything.

  3. Woke up this morning to the news coming out of Dayton (Wal-Mart shooting). Not that long ago, a Canadian blogger commented along the lines that if Americans did not take action after Sandy Hook, we would never take action, and I think about that more and more. Consider this: in 2009, our community suffered a mass casualty event. In 2022, a member of our community committed the mass shooting in the Buffalo, NY supermarket. The shooter was only a child in 2009. I truly don't know if the broken part of us will ever be fixed, and I hate to think that way.

    1. I agree with the Canadian blogger, if all of those dead children mean nothing to us, what would it take for one of these shootings to actually make us take action?

  4. The banana turnovers look nice, never had something like that
    I rarely watch the news and often have no idea what is going on in the world

    1. Those Bananas Foster Turnovers were so good I recently made them for the second time.

  5. One woman at the Colorado movie theater who survived is a member of our church. She's sometimes in a wheelchair due to the pain she still has in her knee, where the bullet cannot be removed. Trust me, I see, I remember, I vote.

    1. I had no idea you knew one of the Colorado theater survivers, sad how many years she's suffered, but I'm glad she survived.


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