A little over a year ago, I was gifted with the task of having to bring food to one of my early morning small group meetings. Everything was planned out until it wasn’t. For some reason, the night before the meeting I forgot about the breakfast quiche.
It was such a blessing that my friend picked me up late. I quickly threw the ingredients together and everything was ready before I left out the door. I even had time to cut out a section for my son to celebrate his 21st birthday, make guacamole, and pile it on top of the quiche just the way he liked it. God reminded me that he was in control and I didn’t have anything to worry about.
The quiche was good and simple, without crust, and it didn’t require a lot of ingredients. I am posting the recipe below.
Total Prepping and Cooking Time:
1 hour 10 minutes
1 can cut-leaf spinach
1 can of fire-roasted salsa tomatoes
2 tablespoons of curry, cumin, turmeric, parsley, chili powder, onion and garlic powder
1/2 cup of almond milk
1 cup of cheese
Mix all of the above ingredients into a bowl.
Pour the mixture into a small to medium-sized casserole bowl and bake for 55 minutes.
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No matter how old we are, it can be difficult getting up in the morning. We can have every intention in the world, but we seem to repeat the same patterns of behavior. When we don’t take charge of our morning routine, it often sets the tone for the rest of the day. This sets up a domino effect. We end up being more anxious, screaming at our kids for small things, and discombobulated for the rest of the day. Here are ten things you can do when you get up 2 1/2 hours earlier in the morning.
1. Reflection Time (25 minutes)
Reflection time is best when we first wake up in the morning. Instead of hopping up and rushing, we allow ourselves time to meditate on God’s goodness. During this time, I praise and thank God for life, health, and strength. This is also the time when God reveals clarity in regards to relationships, parenting, and the trauma that I have suffered during my life. Grieving is also part of my reflection time.
When I don’t allow myself reflection time, my mornings feel stressful and rushed. A few times, I hopped out of bed too quickly and threw my back out. Other times, I rushed out of the house without any time to process the grief that I was feeling when I woke up. The end result of that was dysregulated emotions for the rest of the day. Grief from trauma has to go somewhere.
2. Devotion (20 minutes)
Devotion time is a good time for reading and meditating on God’s word. It is also good when we have a devotional book or online devotional study. This helps us to place our meditation time on a central theme. If we don’t use a book or study, we can always pray for God to lead us to a particular scripture as our focus.
3. Face (5 minutes)
Using five minutes to wash, cleanse, and moisturize our faces in the morning makes a world of difference. I usually feel refreshed and more awake after this process.
4. Water (5 minutes)
Drinking two glasses of water helps to jump start the day. It also helps to replenish the liquids that we lost during sleep. In the spring, summer, and early fall, leaving the house without drinking water on a warm day can lead to dehydration. If it’s sunny outside, then you will feel even worse. Water helps to hydrate the skin and improves the under-eye puffiness. It also improves red blood cell circulation and removes toxins from our skin. Room temperature water is best in order to avoid an upset stomach.
5. Prayers (10 minutes)
When we start our mornings with prayer, it also sets the mood for the day. We get to go before God’s throne of grace. Next, we get to put on our spiritual armor. Then, we get take our thoughts captive as we bask in God’s perfect love that drives out all fear.
6. Gratitude Check (5 minutes)
The gratitude check can be done verbally or on paper. The nice thing about doing a gratitude check is that the list of things that we are grateful for always outweigh our problems. I had a major gratitude check recently. You can check that post out here.
7. Movement (20 minutes)
For the majority of us, when we get to work, we are sitting for the majority of the day. This 20 minutes gets our blood pumping and oxygen flowing before we get to work to sit again. Movement time has a lot of flexibility involved. We can do a combo of things during this time, or focus on one single thing. Here are some ideas: cleaning, dishes, walking the stairs, yoga, dancing, making the bed, Zumba, etc.
8. Breakfast (15 minutes)
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. A good breakfast consists of lean protein, fruit, dairy or dairy substitute and whole grains. Fruit juice is a great substitute for the fruit. Some people need coffee for a boost. I am an orange juice kind of person. It is always good to throw in some healthy fat such as avocado, vegan butter, or olive oil in the mix.
9. Makeup or Shaving (15 minutes)
Having a set time slot for makeup or shaving also reduces anxiety. I don’t use a lot of makeup. However, rushing in this area could lead to makeup getting all over the bathroom sink, and in turn all over your clothes. And of course, quick shaving leads to nicks. The Canvas Women Toiletry Bag pictured below is the Perfect Bag to House Makeup and Shaving Kits. Click here to take a look.
The Retro Vintage Roll Up Cosmetic Bag Pencil Pen Case Bag Pouch is the perfect roll up and go makeup bag. Click here for details.
10. Hair (30 Minutes)
Having enough time for hair and showering is just as important as makeup time. A quick shower takes about ten minutes. This leaves twenty minutes for your hair. For women, twenty minutes could be a blow dry, french braid, or pony tail. For men, twenty minutes might be a shampoo, blow dry, and gel. It’s up to you.
I hope that these tips will encourage us all to start our morning a little bit earlier.
For the last five mornings, I have been making pancakes for breakfast. On the first two mornings, I used bananas as a filling. My mom and niece took the train out here to spend some time with us, and I ended up using the last of the bananas on Saturday morning when I decided to make us pancakes for brunch after my Writer’s Group.
On yesterday morning, I used chia seeds, and then today, I used a combination of chia seeds and sunflower seeds. Believe it or not, it was filling. I got full after eating the second thick pancake. Another new thing that I tried was using honey instead of syrup for a topping, along with vegan butter. They were delicious!!
2 cups of Bob’s Red Mill Pancake & Waffle Mix
4 tablespoons of olive oil or vegan butter for the mix (2 for bowl mixture) (2 for skillet)
1/3 cup of sunflower seeds
1/4 cup of chia seeds
2 cups of Almond or Soy milk
Jar of honey or syrup
vegan butter for the topping
Dump the pancake mix into a bowl.
Toss the seeds, 2 tablespoons of olive oil/butter, the milk and 2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal.
Mix all the ingredients with a whisk, wooden spoon, or whatever you have.
Heat up 2 tablespoons of oil or vegan butter in a skillet or pan.
Use a 1/3 cup measuring cup to pour the scoops of batter into the skillet, turning the pancakes over once you see the holes coming through.
Drizzle honey or syrup and butter on top.
Send me a line letting me know if you try it. You definitely won’t be disappointed!
When it comes to breakfast, most of us eat the same few things every morning. I know I do. I am one who has always needed the extra protein boost. I always start off by munching on two to three brazil nuts in the morning. If there’s orange juice available, you can believe that a small glass is just enough to get me going. Sometimes, I immediately figure out what I am going to eat for breakfast. However, most times it’s just too early to process everything, and so, if it’s a weekday, I then proceed to figure out what I can make my kids really quick so that they can head out the door for school. Then, I can take my time to fix myself something to eat. This time, I decided to something different with grits.
I love cheesy grits. On this past Monday, I wanted to do something with a little bit of a twist than the usual, so after making the grits the regular way, I decided to add quinoa and bake it for twenty minutes. I liked the end result, and I hope that you do too. Have a blessed rest of your week!
Activity: Grits & Quinoa Casserole Pie for Breakfast and/or Brunch
Total Prepping and Cooking Time: 40 minutes
(2) cups of grits
(1/2) cup of quinoa
(1) teaspoon of onion powder
(1) teaspoon of garlic powder
(1/2) cup of cheddar cheese or vegan cheese
(1/4) cup of grapeseed, butter, or whatever oil you have
(1/2) cup of soymilk or almond milk
(1) tablespoon of parsley
Bring three cups of water to a boil.
Boil the quinoa for twenty minutes.
Add two cups of grits to the boiling water.
Stir the grits ever so often with a whisk.
Add the milk, butter, cheese, quinoa, seasoning, and parsley to the pot and whisk together.
Bake at 365 degrees for 22 minutes.
Cut into triangle pie wedges after ten minutes.
Makes 6 servings.
For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.
27 Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.
28 Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.
I find that there’s nothing as comforting than something warm and soothing in your stomach in the morning. For me, a bowl of oatmeal seems to do the trick every time. This recipe is just what you need to get the day going. Ideas for variety for this oatmeal bowl would be switching out the pumpkin seeds for sunflower or other seeds, trying goji berries, golden raisins, and other fruit. On some days, switching out the oatmeal for grits, polenta, or malt-o-meal might interest you as well. Brazil nuts can be swapped with walnuts, pecans, almonds, cashews, etc.
The thing that I like is that you don’t need to use a lot of the ingredients to get in all of your nutrition. Just the quinoa alone gives you a great protein boost. Plus, I love the colors that are in this bowl. Yes, I do like the aesthetic appeal of things. Just as a tip, quinoa, oatmeal, coconut, and chia seeds are inexpensive when you buy them by the bulk, or you can go to places like Whole Foods to scoop them in your storage containers or bags. I just recently learned this secret.
For example, I measured out about $1.30 worth of chia seeds, and it’s been almost three weeks since I bought them, and I still have some left over. I have found out that every store has certain things that they sell that are inexpensive compared to others. The sacrifice is the time and energy involved in finding out what items are cheapest in what stores. If your valley is financial like mine, it is worth the adventure and planning. Happy eating!
Activity: Making an Oatmeal Bowl
Total Prepping and Cooking Time: 20 minutes
(8) 42 oz. containers of oatmeal – $24.00
scoops of coconut flakes – $3.00
scoops of chia seeds – $3.00
(1) bag of pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds – $8.00
(5) lbs of quinoa – $16.00
(1) 24 oz. container of honey – $2.20
(1) container of regular butter or vegan butter (I like Earth Balance.) – $3.80
(6) cartons of milk – $15.00
(1) pound of brazil nuts – $16.00 (excellent source of selenium)
(2) cartons of raisins – $6.00
Total Cost: $ 97.00
Cost for one day: $3.23
Estimated Duration of Food: 1 month for a family of 4 to 6, 2 months or longer for a family of 1 to 3
Boil two pots of water, one having just water in it, and the other, along with quinoa.
While the water is boiling, place the following in small, clear glass bowls, or whatever bowls that you have:
Chop up about three brazil nuts, placing them back into the bowl when finished.
Add the oatmeal to the boiling water.
After quinoa is done, you can drain off excess liquid with a strainer, and place it into a clear bowl.
When oatmeal is ready, add butter and milk.
Pass out the bowls and everyone can add their own toppings.
I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing.