Saturday Mornings mean one thing in our house…homemade breakfast! My husband is the breakfast chef around here, and Saturday breakfast is a tradition we enjoy sharing with our children. I love using coconut milk in baked goods…the coconut milk gives it a wonderful fluffy texture. If you don’t have or don’t care for coconut milk, you can substitute buttermilk. (See how to make homemade buttermilk here.) This recipe yields about 5 or 6 waffles. You can also freeze these for a quick weekday breakfast. Because of the oats, these are heartier and more filling than regular waffles.
Oatmeal-Chocolate Chip-Coconut Milk Waffles
- 1.5 C all-purpose flour
- 1 C quick cooking oats
- 1 TBS baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- 1.5 C coconut milk
- 6 TBS butter melted (or butter substitute if dairy-free)
- 2 TBS brown sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3/4 C chocolate chips (vegan if dairy free)
*In large mixing bowl mix flour, oats, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. In a smaller bowl, mix eggs, coconut milk, melted butter, brown sugar, and vanilla until combined. Sir into flour mixture until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
*Spread batter onto preheated waffle iron and cook until brown and crispy. Serve immediately.
*To keep in the freezer, place parchment paper between each waffle and freeze tightly in a zip bag. Remove waffle, break in half, and put in toaster to reheat.
I know, it’s only January and you’ve already seen enough Play-Doh, blocks, and toy cars to last you the next six months. You’ve turned on more DVDs than you’d care to admit, and you’ve been known to lock yourself in the bathroom just for five minutes of quiet. What is a parent to do? Try these fun activities that will break up the days the little, and hopefully give you a little more sanity to make it through the winter!
1. Balloon Toss
Note: Always supervise children when playing with balloons. This is a better activity for children over age three, as balloons can pose a choking hazard for small children if accidentally popped.
My little one LOVES this game. It will keep her occupied for an hour. Which, in kid time is roughly the equivalent of two years. All you do is blow up a balloon, and hit it back and forth like a volleyball. This game teaches hand-eye coordination and is also just plain fun!
2. Scavenger Hunt
This breaks up the day a little, and provides a little treat for your child at the end. First, send your child into the other room while you write out clues on small strips of paper. For a smaller child, the clues should be simple such as “Check the place you sit while eating dinner” (dining room chair). For an older child, you can do more complex clues like “Go to the cabinet where we store the NaCl” (in the kitchen cabinet that houses the salt).
Do several clues (I do four or five), with a different strip of paper in each clue location. At the end of the scavenger hunt, hide a small treat or snack as the “treasure”.
3. Indoor Picnic
Play fun summertime music (think ukulele) and lay out a blanket on the carpet for lunch. Serve a picnic lunch such as tuna, egg salad, or BBQ chicken sandwiches, pasta salad, potato salad, fresh fruit (if you can find it), and popsicles or ice cream for dessert.
4. Board Game Bonanza
Okay, okay, I’m not going to say Candy Land. (Though we do play it daily here.) But, there are lots of board games that keep little ones amused and have an educational bonus as well. Some of our favorites here are:
Sequence for Kids. Teaches pattern recognition and logic.
Let’s Go Fishin’. Teaches hand-eye coordination.
Chutes and Ladders, Memory, and obviously Candy Land are old stand-bys as well. Hasbro offers printable coupons every few months for these games. I was able to score Chutes and Ladders and Candy Land for $2 each after pairing coupons with a sale!
A deck of cards can help your child learn numbers and shapes, and you can play Go Fish with a regular deck of cards.
5. Make Your Own Band
Don’t try this if you already have a headache, but you can make lots of musical instruments at home!
To make a guitar, wrap rubber bands around a shoebox.
To make a tambourine, staple together two paper plates and hole-punch the edges. Hang jingle bells using string or ribbon.
Make a xylophone by filling glasses with differing amounts of water. Gently tap a spoon on the glasses to create different pitches.
Create cymbals out of pot lids.
Make a drum by using an old oatmeal tub or a tupperware set, and use a wooden spoon for the drumstick.
Create your own maracas by filling old plastic water bottles with rice or dried beans.
Don’t forget to look through our collection of art projects as well!
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We all get tired and weary. We all need a break. Unfortunately, life goes on–seemingly more out of control–in the midst of trials and personal struggles. This is also the time in our lives when it is most difficult to live joyfully. So, how can we have joy when we’re tired and weary with life?
- Take a Step Back
- When feeling overwhelmed, step back from the situation and take a few deep breaths. Don’t think about your issues, just think about taking a little break. Sometimes a few minutes of being alone and taking cleansing breaths will help put things in perspective. On difficult days with my little one, I can sometimes get two minutes to myself while she’s playing, and that little respite helps me refocus for the rest of the
- Find Your Motivation
- Everyone has a driving force that keeps them going. When we’re weary, we need to remember what that motivation is. We’re expecting our second child in the spring. I sometimes get weary and tired of being sick and not being able to do all the things I’m used to doing. When I step back and think about my motivation: serving my family and growing a healthy baby, things become a little less overwhelming, and I have a goal before me.
- Count Your Blessings
- This is the most important, yet most difficult, part of being joyful when you’re “just done.” It can be hard to see past current circumstances, but there is always something to be grateful for. Thinking of all your little blessings can help put everything else in perspective.
Life can be exhausting, and times of calm seem too few and far between. But, by taking a step back to regroup, finding your motivation to put things in perspective, and counting your blessings, you can be joyful in the midst of weariness.
|Grilled Pineapple Glazed Pork Chops, Cilantro Lime Rice, Broccoli|
In a cooking rut? Tired of looking through recipes and scouring the internet for meal ideas? Try this instead…think of 10 of your favorite restaurants. Go to their websites and check out their full menus. This should give you some fresh new ideas for your menu this week!