Banana Breakfast Cookies

As part of my writing program we spend time talking about and practicing persuasive writing.

Kids love doing persuasive writing…especially when it feels like there is a real world application to it.

Every year the kids and I write Andrew a letter trying to convince him to get me a kitten for Christmas. The kids take this very, very seriously because they feel strongly that I should have a kitten and can’t imagine why Andrew would not get me one. I do leave out the fact that, though I love kittens, I am very allergic to them and would probably have to move out of my house if we actually got a kitten…

After we craft our oh-so-persuasive letter, we email it off to Andrew, and he, being the good sport he is, replies to the kids.

His response this year was over the top.

Dear students of room 4,

Are you kitten me?

I’m sure you think having a cat sounds like the purr-fect idea, but let me tell you, cats can be real trouble. It’s not all cuddly snuggles, crumb cleaning and pest hunting. For example, what if you get a bad cat? (Warning: all cats are a bit bad). They have been known to knock things off counters just for fun. Even fictional cats have been known to be bad. Meow, consider Sylvester from Looney Toons, always trying to catch poor Tweety Bird; or the awful Lucifer from Cinderella, constantly picking on sweet little mice, like Gus. I am sure having a kitty wouldn’t be all bad –cats are bound to have their purr-ks. However, I would be lion if I said you have completely purr-suaded me to purr-chase a kitten for Christmas this year.

Instead, we may remain kitten-less for the time being, but will consider the paw-sibility in the future.
Thank you for your thoughtful letter.
If you have time, purr-haps you would consider drawing a picture to help me better understand the benefits of cat ownership.
Mr. Skinner

I’m so glad he plays along.

After we sent the email off to Andrew, I was sitting at the back table with a little boy in my class.
He was working away when he looked up at me and said “Mrs. Skinner, we should have told Mr. Skinner to get you a hypothermic cat.”
I immediately suppressed my giggles and nod contemplatively. “Yes that would be good.” I said.
“Yeah, my dog is hypothermic, which is good because he doesn’t lose any hair or make anyone sneeze.”

I never did correct him…it was just too cute…

And the very first day back after Christmas break another little boy ran up to me and asked me if Mr. Skinner got me my kitten for Christmas. Needless to say he was a little disappointed that the persuasive letter didn’t work.
With the new year, I have changed up my breakfast routine.
Banana breakfast cookie
Overnight oats were my go-to breakfast since school began (chocolate peanut butter are my all time favorite), but I was like a change back to smoothies was in order.
Here is the problem:
I like to chew my calories…so a smoothie, though it is filling, just isn’t as satisfying to me as oats or cereal or…well…almost anything else.
So I decided to find a high fiber breakfast cookies that is not too high in calories or sugar that I could have with my coffee in the morning to go along with my smoothie.
Banana breakfast cookie
These little cookies are quick to whip up and are only about 100 calories per cookie. Plus they are high in fiber since I added a whole whack of flax to them.
To make these cookies, mix the following ingredients in a bowl:
  • 3 ripe bananas mashed
  • 2 cups quick oats
  • 1/2 cup ground flax
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Banana breakfast cookie

I scooped the dough out by tablespoons onto a greased cookie sheet and gave them a flatten with a fork, then baked them for 17 minutes at 350 degrees.

Banana breakfast cookie

I let them cool completely before I moved them to a container in my fridge.

The verdict- These cookies are chewy and have a the perfect amount of sweetness. They are going to be perfect with my coffee in the morning and I won’t feel guilty about eating one.

Guilt-free cookies? Yes please…I will totally make these again.

New Year- New Plan

Our Christmas break was wonderful! Long days of sleeping in, lounging with coffee and fun with friends and family.

It was a little difficult to get up Monday morning and return to work…not only for me,  but for the little ones that I teach too.

We made it to Friday even though it was a lot of indoor recess. Thankfully, my sweet students had lots of funny moments to keep me going through the week.

On Friday, when everyone’s patience was coming to an end, I had to take some time to talk about friendships, treating others kindly and respectfully and sharing feelings in a clear way.

After my discussion everyone was quiet for a moment. A little girl in my second row put her hand up.

“Yes?” I said.

“Mrs. Skinner” she said thoughtfully, “You are kind of like a kid therapist.”

Yep…kind of.

Thanks for noticing all the hard work I do. Now let’s go to the gym…I’ll teach you badminton.

I still meal plan every week, but a Christmas gift that Andrew and I got has changed my meal planning ways.

I have to admit, I only bought the meat that we needed each week for our meals. I know that is not the most economical way of doing things, but I HATE repacking meat when I buy it in club packs. And then after I fought with the repacking, I would take it out of the freezer to use, only to find it freezer burned.

Well this little food saver is supposed to make it far easier to repackage, and cut out the freezer burn entirely.

So I sat down and decided I would make a MONTHLY meal plan. I didn’t want to go load up on things I could vacuum seal and then not know what to do with it all.

So here is what I came up with:

From this I figured out I needed

  • 8 servings salmon
  • 1 club pack of ground beef
  • 1 club pack of ground pork
  • 1 club pack of chicken thighs

Now to get repacking!

The chicken thighs were easy. I just split it up into amounts that we would use and vacuum sealed away. It took minutes. Next I split the ground beef into 3 parts. 2 packages of just ground beef, and then I made a double recipe of mozzarella stuffed meatballs and sealed those.

Lastly, I made an entire club pack of ground pork into Asian flavored meatballs. I use these in stir fry bowls and to make my wontons for soup. Before I sealed my meatballs, I did freeze them on a cookie sheet so they would retain their shape…and it was a good idea because that machine sucks all the air out! It would have just been a pile of mush.

The salmon was already frozen so no need to deal with it at all.

I couldn’t believe the difference in price for our club pack meat! I knew I would save SOME money, but I literally saved HALF!

And, my meal planning/grocery shopping lists are ready for a whole month…what will I do with all my free time?

Here are the recipes that I will be making over the next month. I hope you find a few new (or old) favorites to add to your meal plans.

Split Pea Soup


Lemon Rosemary Lentil Stew

This Slow Cooker Lemon Rosemary Lentil Soup is one of the easiest soups to ever come out of your kitchen. Fresh vegetables, lemon and rosemary become an amazingly hearty soup with minimal effort. Carrots, onion, yellow bell pepper and red lentils are flavored with garlic and a dash of cayenne pepper and slow cooked until tender.

Crockpot Bolognese

Crockpot Bolognese

Heavenly Salmon Salad

Heavenly Salmon Salad

Coconut Curry Noodle Bowl

Coconut Curry Noodle Bowls

Teriyaki Meatball Bowls

Juicy pork Teriyaki Meatball Bowls seasoned with ginger and garlic coated in a sweet and tangy teriyaki sauce served over fluffy rice.

French Dip Cupcakes

French Dip Cupcakes

Broccoli Cheese and Potato Soup

Loaded Broccoli, Cheese and Potato Soup - so full of flavor and so many delicious ingredients. This soup will keep you warm and full any time of year! { }

Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs

Mexican Red Lentil Stew

Mexican Red Lentil Stew -