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Monday, January 23, 2012

The Best Healthy Meals For Kids Before School

My alarm went off this morning and I was actually ready to jump up and start my day.  I even got up 15 minutes early which I was sure was going to pay off for me.  I slipped out to the kitchen and put on 2 cups of water, waited for a boil and popped in a cup of Bob’s Red Mill gluten free oatmeal, a handful of raisin and a lot of cinnamon (they love cinnamon).  I put on the lid and turned it down to low so it could cook while I went to wake up my sleeping 1st grader.  If you are looking for easy and healthy food in the morning while getting your kids off to school, this is one of my favorites and I will share how I implement in a panic.
Every morning I sneak into Arleena’s room and cuddle under the covers with her to slowly wake her up for school… hopefully I don’t fall back asleep in the process.  All the time I am praying we have a “good” morning. I am sure you other mom’s know what I am talking about… Almost all of my mornings are pretty good but today on this beautiful morning I had a grumpy daughter that stayed up to late at a sleep over this past weekend.  But today the heels were in the floor and she was determined to convince me she had a belly ache and could not make it to school.  In the midst of this I hear Bowen, my 1 and half year old, yelling MOM! MOM!  In my head I understand I have 35 minutes to be out the door, which is not a problem when my little princess gets up on her own accord.   I said a prayer and left Arleena’s room after sternly explaining to her that she has had her last sleepover if she does not get up and get moving…in a very loving and calm voice of course.  So I have Bowen dressed and out in his chair to eat… The trick to creating the best healthy meals for your kids is to make sure they are flexible as well as healthyThe oatmeal takes a long time to cool down, so I spread it out very thin on a large plate and hand him half a banana in the mean time.  By the time he is done I have the oatmeal in a bowl ready to go.  While he is eating I am preparing a healthy lunch for Arleena and eating oatmeal with a scoop of peanut butter in the process.  Normally I would have a shake but today there is no time and eating breakfast is so important for moms!  So I always eat something.  I will spare you the details but Arleena made it to the car and ate her oatmeal on the way to school.  Oatmeal is a very healthy and flexible food before school.  Remember that instant oatmeal is NOT healthy and is loaded with sugar.  If time is an issue you can always make regular oatmeal the night before and have it ready to heat up first thing in the morning. 
In the morning, something that is way more important than the best healthy meals, is making sure that my kids know that I love them no matter what they do.  I was praying out loud in the midst of this chaos because I wanted things to go the way I wanted them to go.  I wanted Arleena to respond to my threats of being tardy and not having anymore sleepovers but today there was not rationalization behind her eyes.  When I got in the van with all children in tack I had a burden on my heart.  I didn’t want to see her walk into school without making things right and new.  We had a long talk on the way and I forgave her for her actions and assured her that there was nothing she could ever do to make me love her any less.  I also reiterated that she made a bad choice and that did not mean she was bad just that the choice was not good. Her smile returned and I hugged her with all I had before she went into school.  Those few minutes of exchanging forgiveness was worth all the chaos.  I always remember that each time I kiss anyone goodbye it could be the last time so make it count and do not leave anything unsaid! 

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