Routine Makes Me Happy

Type A.  Oldest child.  ESTJ.  I like routine.  I like order.  I’m just wired that way.

You don’t like routine?  I don’t know what to tell you.  Well, yes I do…you stress me out.

My little banana is now in preschool, everyday.  I have to drop her off and pick her up, on time.  Now, as much as I like order, I hate to get out of bed.  So, I need all the help I can get to get us all up and out the door on time.  I mean, I can’t be late.  She can’t possibly be late to preschool.  It will ruin her record and she’ll never get into the right college and her hopes and dreams will all be ruined.  Ha  I don’t actually believe that for a second, but I do believe that it’s important to have her there on time, even if I go in my workout clothes with my teeth not brushed and smelling like a sweaty mess.  But, we’re on time, by golly.

This chore chart has drastically improved our mornings.  It has helped establish our routine.

We lay clothes out the night before so the girls are responsible for getting themselves dressed, making their bed, getting their own bowl and spoon out, and last, I help them brush teeth.  We save picking up toys for our nighttime routine.  We only do the chart during the week.  I have a selection of prizes/rewards that they can choose from on Friday afternoon.  I tell them they need 20 or whatever stickers (nobody’s perfect) and then they count them up and get super excited to choose their prize.

That helps them tremendously in the mornings and things run much more smoothly than they once ran.

My routine includes exercise.  On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I do a lovely little at-home workout.

(Oh, and that is not me.  I thought you might be confused.  Don’t worry, my abs will never look like that.  2 c-sections guarantee they won’t.)  Photo Credit: Women’s Health

I modify some of the moves, but I can tell a difference already and have only been doing it 3 – 4 week.  I dare you to try it.  10 minutes and a timer.  DO IT!

On Tuesday and Thursday I get up and run 1.5 – 2 miles before anyone else is up.

So there you go.  Morning routine.  It’s a really good thing.

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What is your favorite morning routine?

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We Remember

The loss.  The sadness.  The evilness.  The pain.  The change.  The impact. The ripples.

9/11 has impacted my marriage.  I didn’t even know my husband then.  He was deployed in the ripples of 9/11.  6 weeks after I met him.  He shipped out to Germany.  We built our relationship with a sea between us.  He is honorable and earned my respect back then.  He and the men and women that make up the strongest army in the world.  The servicemen and women.  Those in uniform.  The police officers, fire fighters, the paramedics, and all those in uniform.  They give in a way that is quiet and humble and yet they are the strong, the resilient, the ones that carry us through.  They do the unthinkable and serve, protect, and defend every day.

I am so grateful to the backbone of our nation.  The citizens that are behind the scenes, calling the shots, doing the hard jobs, losing sleep, earning gray hair.

I am indebted to you.  That my children are protected and fought for.

I know the impact that 9/11 has on my husband.  He wasn’t there.  He didn’t see the sights, smell the horror, but he feels it.  It’s in him to go on defense and be prepared and wonder and plan and fight and mourn and remember.

He remembers.  I remember.  We mourn.  We are Americans.

We are teaching our children.  We are thanking our God.  Our God gives hope to the hopeless and strength to those that are serving.

We pray today for those that are mourning their loss of loved ones that day.  We pray for those that were there that day and still have nightmares and see and smell the terror that was there that day.   We pray for those that are caring for them.  We pray for all of us that feel the loss and tragedy.  Today, we pray for you and yours.

God bless America.  Land that I love.

Apples Apples Apples

Apples everywhere.  We have a Golden Delicious apple tree.  Our neighbors have a Jonathon apple tree.  We have a lot of apples.  So far this year we’ve simply been collecting the apples that have fallen off the trees.  I think we’ve probably done 4 – 6  5 gallon buckets.  Until yesterday.  We started picking.  Oh my.  I think we did about 10 gallons of apples yesterday.    We have a lot of apples right now and we’re loving it.

So, yesterday, we ended up with 12 quarts of canned applesauce, 10 pints of canned apple syrup (was originally planned as apple jelly, but the humidity and human error has deemed it syrup instead), 4 frozen apple crisp fillings, and 6 pkgs of 2 cups of diced apples.  We also made apple cinnamon muffins and an apple crisp.  We were appled out after that.

Today, you are the lucky winners of the apple cinnamon muffin recipe.  Ok, so you’re not that lucky…it’s only a recipe.  I didn’t even get a full picture.  There’s a chance that we might have started eating before I remembered to take a picture.  Oops.  Don’t worry, you still get the recipe.  ha  See, still your lucky day.

Apple Cinnamon Muffins

Adapted from these Banana Oatmeal Muffins

* 2 1/2 cups old fashioned oats

* 6 oz applesauce

* 2 eggs

* 1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar

* 1/4 cup honey

* 1 tsp cinnamon

* 2 cups diced apples (reserve 1 cup for final step)

Note: I would recommend using foil liners or sprayed silicone muffin pans.  This is a pretty sticky batter.

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Prep muffin tins (line with foil liners and/or spray).

2.  Blend all ingredients in food processor or blender.  (Reserve 1 cup of the diced apples.)

3. Once batter is blended fold in the remaining 1 cup of diced apples.

4. Fill pans with batter.  I got 12 muffins.

5. Bake for 20 – 25 mins.

Also note:  This is a “healthy” muffin, it will not taste like a cakey-sweet-dessert muffin.

“How do you like them apples?”  hahaha  Sorry, for the quote, I just can’t get it out of my head!

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What’s your favorite apple dish?

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