>The outdoor thermometer reades -1.1. Yes, 1 degree and a tenth below zero, before wind chill. The heater is cranking out warm air, and I can feel it sucking my paycheck in with each degree of warmth it adds to the room. Mornings have been even colder. One of our oldest school building suffered a water main break in the bitter cold earlier this week.
My kitchen is drafty. My classroom is drafty. I dress in layers to work indoors!!
And….(drumroll, please) I eat oatmeal for breakfast.
The children I teach don’t always have a chance for a warm breakfast. Several depend on school breakfasts. While it’s nutritious and often delicious (I love the smell of cinnamon toast in the morning!), it’s not the same as warm cereal at the kitchen table.
As the temperature drops, I worry about kids being warm enough, too. Do they have gloves and mittens? Sweaters? Hats or hoods? In this weather, even the most die-hard Cool Teenagers will wear their warm layered clothing.
I work with some incredibly generous people. When a student needed shoes in October, she had several pair to choose from within hours. A family was displaced by fire, and typical of working poor, they had no insurance. A teacher contacted a friend with an unused set of bunk beds and put out an all-call for sheets. Less than a week after the fire, two young boys were no longer sleeping on the floor.
If you’re making resolutions or setting goals in these hard economic times, please make sharing part of your plan. Whether you’re buying an extra can of soup for the food pantry or dropping coins in a red kettle, people need you.
How did this all come from oatmeal, you ask? Parent Bloggers Network has teamed up with The Quaker Oats Company to spread the word about the Start with Substance campaign to donate up to one million bowls of oatmeal to those in need. Go to www.startwithsubstance.com for more information.