Saturday, July 23, 2011

Looking Ahead to August

So.

It's been awhile.

How have you all been?

Is it sad that I am looking forward, in a small way, to the beginning of the school year?  That always seems to mark the start of routine, of focus.

For example, this week.  Last weekend, my two sons (12 and 6) picked the recipes for the family dinners for the week.  I did the shopping.  So far, so good.  We had delicious meatball subs on Monday and amazing chicken pot pie on Tuesday.  I did the prep work, and Brent finished up with the cooking.

Then, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday we dined out.  Even though we had a menu.   Neither my husband or I felt like cooking.  Neither of us had willpower, either.  Bad, bad, bad, bad.

Oh well.  Right?  I am already looking ahead to August.  This family seems to eat best when it's faced with some kind of challenge.  It is probably time for the No-Restaurant Challenge.  I wouldn't mind trying the Homemade-Bread-For-An-Extended-Period-of-Time Challenge someday.  Here's one I brought up to my family:

Going-Without-Boxed-Breakfast-Cereal (for a month).

See, cereal is primarily me being a lazy mom.  It's surpassingly easier for my children to get their own breakfast, leaving me time for...whatever it is that I might do in the morning.  I recently came across a blog HERE, which referenced me to the Weston A. Price Foundation website.  And there's where you can read all about the complicated process grain goes through to become a cereal.  Ultimately, cereal is not a food, it is a food product.

Okay, take all this in whatever way you want...I mean, after all, this info comes from a dot.com.  A quick cursory dip into some academic databases I have access to don't turn up much to corroborate the opinions on the Nourished Kitchen blog.   And I don't believe breakfast cereal is the devil incarnate.  But...I did purchase a box of Bran Flakes in the last month.  Just Bran Flakes.  No dried fruit, no sugar-coat, no frills.  Third ingredient on the list: sugar.  Why?  Fiber is good for me, so I purchase a product I *think* will be high in fiber...and in fact, has been recommended to me as such.  But, I've also read dozens of stories about the health dangers of sugar.  I've come to terms with the fact that sugar consumption is unavoidable.  I eat an apple or a serving of peas, I'm going to eat some kind of sugar.  But, it's a naturally-occurring sugar.  What naturally occurring sugar is there in bran?  Why is it added to Bran Flakes?

You see the quandary I face.  And, of course, remember, this is supposed to be a "healthy" cereal.

All this information spurred me to ask my family if they would give up breakfast cereals for a month.  The response was lukewarm, as I suspected it would be.  Keep in mind, the sugariest cereal I purchase for the home is Honey Nut Cheerios.  But, as we discussed the idea more, my children were able to generate dozens of cereal substitutes: fruit, oatmeal, eggs, yogurt, bacon, etc.  From there, we get into egg and sausage bakes, pancakes/waffles, French toast, breakfast burritos, homemade granola, etc.

I do suspect that soon I will be posting about an all-breakfast preparation weekend!  There will be double or triple batching and freezing, I foresee.

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