It’s a beautiful sunny day in the village of Suttons Bay, Michigan. Our month in Florida seems like a distant memory already sad to say. But we’ve been very productive since we’ve returned to winter in Michigan.
I’ve made good on my New Year’s goals of incorporating healthy oatmeal into my breakfast routine. I’m pleasantly surprised to admit publicly that after all the years I’ve given it such a bad rap…..the taste and texture is actually growing on me. Of course the taste is so greatly enhanced by adding just a few sprinkles of our Korner Kottage Krunch granola . All in all I am honestly accomplishing this goal. Not that I eat it every day, but at least a couple mornings a week.
Another goal I’ve made and keeping is working out regularly at our local Body Balance gym. I’ve been going almost daily~well 5~6 times per week. I’ve have back at it only 2 weeks and seeing and feeling noticeable results. Oh it feels so good to get back in shape. I was pleasantly surprised to discover our gym offering Zumba, a dance style exercise one evening a week. It’s such high energy, fun and a real work out…..total booty kicking fun.
Our weekends have found us busy at the bed and breakfast with a full house which is always nice having some company (guests) around in the off season. People still want to come “up north” for the snow, the wineries, the shopping and of course the foodies always find us here. This weekend (Feb. 12/15) is Traverse City’s Cherry Capital Winter Wonderland Festival with all sorts of outside and inside winter activities being planned. It’s good to know that no matter what season you come for a visit, there is always plenty to do.
We (Jim and I) are still into the reading mode ~ a by product of vacation. We’ve decided to tackle some of the old classics that we read YEARS ago but that are worthy of rereading. I’m in the process of Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, and Atlas Shrugged. I’ve already finished Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, The Pearl, Cannery Row and Of Mice and Men. Boy if you ever start feeling sorry for yourself these days…just reread some of his works and you will reevaluate your circumstances. Next, I’ll be digging into some of Charles Dickens ,if I don’t run out of time before we really get busy again.
Another of our winter evening past times is playing games…board games, cribbage, cross word puzzles and our new favorite~Banana Grams. We took it to Florida and got everyone hooked. We took it home for the holidays and got more family hooked and now we’re getting our friends here addicted. If you’ve not tried it you should give it a whirl. It’s easy, fun and makes your brain actually get a little work out. Your kids can play it as well.
Here’s hoping every one else is having some success accomplishing their goals for 2010, whatever they may be. Here’s another Oatmeal recipe we’ve been enjoying while on this journey of eating healthy.
Sweet English Breakfast Porridge~shared from Inn Cuisine
Yield: 4~6 cups
*4 cups water
*2 teaspoon salt (I omit)
*2 1/2 cups uncooked oats
*3 tablespoons butter (I use about 1/2 of this amount)
*1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (more or less if desired)
*1/4 teaspoon nutmeg (more or less if desired)
*1 cup packed brown sugar
*1/4 cup maple sugar (we use locally made)
*1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
In a medium, heavy~bottomed saucepan, bring water and salt to a rolling boil. Stir in the oats; stirring constantly, cook over medium heat for one minute. Remove from heat. Add remaining ingredients, mixing well until thoroughly incorporated. spoon into individual bowls and top with additional cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar and/or maple syrup if desired.
****This is NOT the way I eat my normal morning oatmeal. But this is a real sweet treat…..