Thursday, February 16, 2012

For Christmas, my sister gave each of my kids this big, soft, fluffy 'animal' shaped pillow, with a 'certificate' for a sleepover at her house. The boys redeemed their certificate several weeks ago. They had a slumber party and made a fort in her living room :) Well, Cosette got to go to Aunt Kristin's last night for her sleepover, and, as part of the deal, no school today. One of the many perks of being home-schooled, I reckon ;)

So I was discussing with the boys over breakfast what our day was going to look like. Eli decided that he still wanted to do his school-work after lunch, like he usually does.

So, that left me with an 'open' morning. Normally, I'd be busy from about 8:30 until 11:00 or so helping Cosette with her chores, doing her school work, and practicing her violin. But instead, I found myself with alllll this free time.

Can I just say that even a few free hours for me is AMAZING????

All this stuff that has been bothering me in the back of my mind is now done. All because of a few hours with no school to teach.

My fridge is cleaned and wiped out, even the waaaaay bottom of it underneath all the shelves. My freezer is now so neat and organized it looks like it belongs in a magazine ;) My pantry is cleaned out, all the half-eaten stale bags of tortilla chips thrown away and the cans and boxes in nice, neat rows. The boys cupboards are cleaned out. No wonder they couldn't keep them clean! There was an entire garbage bag worth of clothes in there that were either too small, torn and old, or they just plain never wore them. I love nice, tidy looking stacks of clothes :) The cupboard underneath my bathroom sink has been cleaned out, and there's now room for extra boxes of tissues and my hair-dryer :) Meal plans have been begun for the up-coming week.

*phew* See how much I'd accomplish if I weren't homeschooling? But I guess, in the long run, I'd get all the cupboards and drawers organized, and then I'd sit around and miss teaching my little ones :) So, continue teaching I will, and simply take advantage of mornings like this to try to keep my house from becoming too over-run!

So now, here I sit, rewarding myself for all my hard work with a low-caffeine cup of cappuccino that my wonderful husband brought home the other day. I only have one picture for you today, and that was our breakfast :)

It's a big bowl of homemade, no-sugar oatmeal. Sound disgusting? Give it a chance! It's our new favorite breakfast---it's packed full of yummy stuff like vanilla, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Then, we top it off with a big pile of whatever fruit we happen to have in the house at the time. There's just something about seeing your kids shovel spoonfuls of healthy goodness into their mouths that makes a Mama's heart happy ;)

Homemade Oatmeal

2 cups old fashioned oats (not quick cook)
4 cups water or milk, or a combination of both
1-2 teaspoons vanilla
generous sprinkling of cinnamon
small sprinkling of nutmeg
2 Tablespoons of ground flaxseed (optional, only if you're feeling extra healthy ;)

Mix all in a greased, oven proof dish, and bake, uncovered, at 375 for 20-30 minutes, or until creamy and cooked. Serve with additional milk and huge piles of fruit :) Enjoy each bite, reminding yourself of your ever-lowering cholesterol level as you enjoy your breakfast ;)  (Note: If you're used to the high sugar level, pre-packaged oatmeals from the store, and still can't get used to this kind, try sprinkling just a small teaspoon of brown sugar over the oatmeal. You'll still be consuming way less sugar than the store-bought stuff, and it'll help sweeten it just slightly. Although, my kids are used to eating it with little to no sugar at all and like it just fine ;)

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