Mom always said that breakfast was the most important meal of the day. When it consisted of oatmeal, I sure didn't want to believe her. And that was most mornings of my childhood. Consequently, I haven't made oatmeal a daily part of my adulthood or my children's childhoods. I like the instant Maple & Brown Sugar Oatmeal, but the regular kind? Uh, no thanks. And the instant? Not much nutritional value.
As I was growing up, our morning ritual was that Dad would set the table for breakfast (oh yeah—full on!), he would make the toast, Mom would cook inordinate amounts of oatmeal (I DID have four brothers, but come on, there's a limit to human consumption!), the peanut butter (I know, I know, peanut butter isn't for breakfast in most homes, but in mine, it was! AND it was homemade—that's another post, for sure!), honey, and jellies would appear on the table, and breakfast was promptly at 7:15 each morning, followed by a reading from "Our Daily Bread", and hitting the school books at 8. The good thing that came of the inordinate amounts of oatmeal was Oatmeal Spice Cake made from the leftovers. Now, that was a way to eat oatmeal that ANYONE could endure AND digest without supplemented enzymes! (I guess that recipe will appear in an upcoming post.)
I endured the oatmeal breakfasts, loved the French toast ones, and hated the egg ones. As an adult, I still hear Mom's voice repeating in my head, "Tammy, eat your oatmeal", but I just can't bring myself to do so. I even tried again last week! Old habits die hard. I've always hated to eat first thing in the morning. I prefer my morning ritual to include my latte (sugar-free vanilla, non-fat) and my e-mail and blogs just after the kids go off to school. Mom used to have HER coffee with her Bible reading. Not only did she eat better than I do, but she also is more spiritual! I prefer to have the Scriptures de-caffeinated! J After the C 'n C (coffee and computer), I have a protein shake, a fiber shake, and my vitamins. Then I hit the treadmill. Most mornings.
My friend, Julee, is a VP with Nordstrom, travels extensively, works full-time, makes a killer Blackberry Pie, is the Brownie Mom, the Home Room Mom, the class mom, the team mom, the carpool mom, the mom, the mom, the mom. . . . and her morning ritual is to get up each morning and make eggs and toast for her kiddos! I wish I had her drive, stamina, and endurance. Maybe she's just crazy, but it sure makes for great aspirations! And to top it off, she's a wonderful person and friend!
So Monday was a holiday, right? I had my latte with e-mail and blogs while the kids slept in—till about 11:30!! For those of you with little ones, the day will come when you'll have more quiet morning moments. You switch from the quiet evening hours to quiet morning hours, and you'll long for the quiet EVENING hours with no worries. Ben finally comes down about 11:30 and proceeds with his morning ritual of cereal. I had read some of my French friends' blogs and had developed a hankering for tartines avec de la confiture and encore un café! (toast with jelly and another coffee!) Not a terribly nutritional breakfast, but the whole of France has subsisted on it for centuries so I suppose it won't hurt me for one morning!
Ben and I sat at the table. I, with my French re-creation. He, with his American mound 'o Apple Jacks! And we were both happy as clams! (How happy ARE clams anyway? Is there any research on that concept?)
Thank God, Ken isn't a huge breakfast fan either and doesn't insist on a cooked breakfast. We're two peas in a pod—at least in THAT department.
I'm happy to claim the "cereal-phase-of-life" as long as possible! And probably long after!
- Develop rituals to guide your days.
- Listen to what your body tells you.
- Enjoy a meal with your kids—even if it's Apple Jacks for breakfast!
- Relish the past and appreciate your heritage.
- Learn how to make Oatmeal Spice Cake!