Like most working parents, I feel like there is just not enough time in the morning. Between getting myself ready for work, getting my daughter ready for school, finding her missing shoe, (and/or finding MY missing shoe), packing lunches and backpacks…. it feels like we are rushing from the moment we wake up. No surprise then, that I like breakfast to be as quick and easy as possible. Of course, I want to keep breakfast healthy as well, and lucky for me, my daughter has always been great about eating healthy cereals. I’m so proud of her when we are in the grocery store, she will walk right past all the brightly colored cereals in boxes that practically scream “pick me, pick me!” and always go for the healthy option. So, cereal it’s always been. Easy, healthy, she eats it, all is good.
Until two weeks ago.
As she sat down to eat her breakfast, she says to me “Mommy, what else do you know how to make for berakfast? How come you only know how to make cereal?” I laughed and reminded her that I know how to make eggs, french toast, pancakes and bacon and that I just made those things for her a few days ago. To which she replied “yeah, but you need to learn to make those things on the days we don’t go to church!” Okay, she had me. She was right. Anything that required more effort than opening and emptying a box and pouring milk on top was reserved for Sunday mornings only.
Yogurt wasn’t an option (she’s never liked it, even as an infant) and really, I asked myself, what else is there that’s as fast as cereal? I mentioned my delima to some friends when one asked “what about a smoothie?” Ding! She was right! Quick and easy–and something I could eat as well! It was such a simple solution, and it turns out, it not only solved my what to make for breakast issue, but it solved my “I can’t stand to let food go to waste” issue as well. I really try and vary Allison’s meals so she doesn’t eat the same thing every day. But, it’s just her and myself, so If I buy a bunch of bananas, a carton of strawberries and a bag of peaches, inevitabley something winds up in the trash because it didn’t all get eaten before it started to go bad. When she was a baby, this was never a problem, as I would just pop fruit in the belnder, puree it, then freeze it. Homemade baby food. It was easy! Now I realize I can do the same thing and make smooties instead. It doesn’t even have to be pureed, just throw the fruit in a ziplock bag and put it in the freezer. We even tackled a third issue with this solution–the “Allison I told you HURRY UP AND EAT YOUR BREAKFAST WE CAN’T BE LATE FOR SCHOOL!” issue. Smoothies are portable! Woohoo! Just pour into a kids cup with a lid and straw, and they can take them anywhere.
Here is my basic recipe — experiment with different fruit and tell me what you and your little ones like best!
1/2 cup milk (I use 1% organic)
1/2 cup plain yogurt
Just a squirt of honey
1/2 cup berries (we like strawberries or blueberries)
1 small or 1/2 large banana (remember, these freeze well too)
Blend in the blender and enjoy!! As always, I love hearing from you! You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org