The best part of waking up is oatmeal in my daughter’s bowl. The morning is the most routine part of her day and she sticks by it with military precision. This is her own doing. She rises at 8, requests a bowl of oatmeal, and then gets dressed. Every single day. Her penchant for oatmeal used to be a sticking point for us; I had to boil the water and prep the oatmeal from scratch. This wasn’t feasible every morning.
Have you looked at microwave oatmeals? Honestly, they’re gross — at least to me! For something so pure and natural, most of those boxes read like a chemistry experiment. So we reserved oatmeal for the mornings I had time to make the real thing. Until I discovered Better Oats Raw Pure & Simple Oatmeal. I swear this isn’t sponsored; my endorsement is as organic as the oats themselves! I found it on the shelf at my Kroger one day, and at $1.99 per eight-count box, I couldn’t afford not to stock up. Now it’s a staple on the grocery list and for six months my daughter has had a bowl of this oatmeal every single morning.
Each pouch is filled with raw, pure oats and a blend of quinoa, flax, and barley. We buy the “Bare” — just plain Jane oatmeal. It takes two minutes to prepare: Oats in the bowl, water, microwave for 1:45, and serve. We’ve found that using a little less water than recommended and cooking for less time gives a thicker oatmeal, which my kiddo prefers.
What she actually ends up eating is anything but plain Jane. She has a standard recipe that we abide by: butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, dried fruit, fresh fruit. (more…)
Raise your hand if you’re not looking for something refreshing to drink right now? Cruising in to the hottest weeks of summer, “hydrate, hydrate, hydrate” should be the motto of every one of us. Yes, even a couch potato dehydrates in these hot temps, and if you’re actually prone to moving your body and regular bouts of exercise, then a water glass should always be raised to your mouth.
But water’s boring and bland and blah, blah blah. I feel ‘ya. Iced tea is my go-to drink in the summer. Yes, it counts as water. However, the caffeine can be counterproductive as it’s a diuretic.
Few things smell better than a cinnamon roll fresh out of the oven. (Cinnabon continues to bank on this one basic fact!) That’s one of the reasons I avoid a certain bakery in my neighborhood. Even walking in front of the building makes my mouth water—the cinnamon rolls smell (and taste!) that good.
But sometimes I give in, as I did earlier this week. The sweet scent was just too good to pass up. Of course, this came at a cost. Like, a really big cost: 620 delicious calories, to be exact, which is higher than pretty much any other treat I’ve learned how to burn off—even donuts and biscuits and gravy.
So, how could I help rid my body of the extra 620 calories?
I could have done hot yoga for 149 minutes. (Okay scratch that—I can barely stand 60 minutes in that heat!)
For the people of Portland, OR, this past Friday was a snow day. We received 5 or so inches of snow—more than has fallen on the city in the past several years—which effectively shut down schools, businesses, transportation, and more. However here’s a sad truth: Freelancers don’t get snow days. We’re like the postal service: Rain, snow, sleet, flu… we’re prepared to stamp our timecards and get the job done. And there was a job to be done: The Biggest Loser season 15 grand finale had taken place earlier in the week and our site was still flooded with traffic from people interested in hearing what the trainers had to say about the whole debacle. To make the day a little sweeter I decided to start my morning with a cinnamon roll. Not a monstrous Cinnabon-style treat. Just a small pastry from a neighborhood bakery.
My neighbors might be skiing around the block (seriously) and sledding down their sloped driveways, but I was enjoying a little of the white stuff (frosting!) too. (more…)
Waking up to pancakes, French toast, or waffles in my house is a staple of the weekend. My soon-to-be three-year-old daughter asks to make pancakes most mornings of the week and every day I have to sadly decline. I make up for it by giving her a frozen waffle so we can all eat and get out the door. But she knows when it’s Saturday and she expects bowls full of batter and big drizzly pours of honey.
I would alternate between the Van’s or Earth’s Best frozen waffles. They’re both organic, whole grain, have a few bites of blueberries, and taste really good. They both also run almost four dollars for six waffles. Lately I’ve been trying to make more of our own bread and homemade salad dressing to save money and ensure we’re eating the best quality food. I figured the waffles would fit right in there andI was right. (more…)