roadschooling, Oak Glen and gluten-free vegan snacks
Summer, I’d like to say I’m sad to see you go but I am not! With the temperatures still hanging here in the 115-118 range (in late Aug!) I have my arms open wide for fall. Bring on the pumpkin picking, the cool weather camping, the chucky knits and all of the homeschool adventures I can cram into one season!
This is my first year homeschooling two kids. Two kids, one me, the equation doesn’t seem to add up, but so far so good. I was recently inspired by parents around the world who call themselves “roadschoolers”. It is basically homeschooling with a huge emphasis on travel and adventure (and lots of play) – I think I’ve found my people! I haven’t opened up much about my homeschooling journey here on the blog, but this year I want to inspire others as others continue to inspire me. That means I’ll be sharing our “classrooms” all year long – so let’s start with yesterday in Oak Glen, California.
Have you ever driven 45 miles just to get some really fresh apple cider? That’s just what the kids and I set out to do yesterday and ended up having the best adventure along the way. I just love when that happens, when we get distracted by the journey on the way to our destination. It is easy to do in a cool town like Oak Glen, which is an unincorporated county near Yucaipa in the high desert.
I’ll be honest, this accidental adventure was my fault. My plan was to wake up nice and early, have the kids complete their school lessons online and then head to Oak Glen where we would frolic in the apple orchards and press our own cider. Sounds amazing, right? I thought so too. First problem was, we didn’t start school as early as I wanted. Second problem was, I forgot that the Honda needed an oil change – like the oil light is already on needs a change – and didn’t remember until everyone was ready to go. So, to the auto shop I went to first, and by the time we arrived in Oak Glen, the U-pick farms were closing up.
I wasn’t about to leave without my cider, so we drove to another farm/store that was open. We scored the cider…
but then I saw it, an entrance to a wildlife preserve and trailhead that I had never seen before. It was like finding treasure!
A large part of why I continue to homeschool is the freedom to explore, travel and experience new places – any day of the week we want. There is no substitute for hands-on and so homeschool really makes sense to me. I get great joy from researching and executing these adventures from little day trips to museums to longer vacations (schoolcations?) and camping trips.
Both of my kids are in virtual schools, meaning they do have to complete assignments online. I recommend it highly to any who think it might be right for their family as it is like “light homeschooling”. The lesson plans are provided, the kids interact with their teacher (in person with my youngest, via video chat with my oldest) and the school offers lots of fieldtrip and meetup events. It’s awesome. The virtual schools do most of the heavy lifting for me and I get to focus on making memorable experiences with my kids.
While I don’t have to pack lunch boxes early in the morning, I do pack MANY a purse, hiking backpack and road trip sack. Keeping kids fueled while on the go is so crucial for a smooth trip and everyone’s sanity. There have been days where I’ve raced out of the house, frenzied, ready to get on the road, and not brought snacks. Huge mistake. Kids get cranky and then you’re stuck buying something fast and/or processed, which can sometimes just make things worse.
Giving my kids healthy, nutritious foods on a regular basis is so important to me. It keeps their bodies going and their attitudes positive. I try to keep their diets as clean as I can, but we all know kids won’t eat anything that doesn’t taste good. I may throw back green algae shots in the morning and drink strange-smelling elixirs throughout the day because “it’s good for me” but my kids aren’t quite there yet. So the joy that comes when your kid LOVES superfood treats like Sejoyia Coco-Roons is REAL.
Coco-Roons are the original superfood cookie and they are de-lish. No one needs to feel guilty about these cookies because they are choc full of nutritious ingredients my 10 year old can pronounce. They are also organic, gluten-free, Paleo-friendly, non-GMO, vegan, and Kosher! As a gluten-free vegan, yeah, I’m pretty stoked to have my pantry stocked with Coco-Roons.
I’m gluten-free vegan for health reasons, partially due to my kidney health and partially due to my intolerances. Certain ingredients just do not mix with my body, dairy and wheat being the biggest problem-makers. My kids eat a diet that spans the entire food pyramid, but I do limit wheat and they do maintain a (heavily) plant-based diet. Coco-Roons are just perfect for all of us, which is nice and doesn’t happen too often.
I often forget to eat because I’m busy preparing meals for everyone else, leaving me grazing throughout the day. Grazing can lead to bad choices, but not if you keep the right foods in your pantry and fridge! After a long day of schooling and adventuring with my kids, there isn’t much I like more than curling up in bed with a bag of Coco-Roons I stashed for myself! What could be more satisfying than chewy, rich chocolate cookies made with the finest, raw cocoa powder?
I found Coco-Roons at Walmart in the gluten-free set (which I’m already quite familiar with). Check the Sejoya website to see if your locations carry these delicious cookies, which can be found in two flavors: Brownie and Lemon Pie. Not gonna lie, I think Lemon Pie is my favorite out of the two but it is a tough call. I’m a bit obsessed with lemon flavored anything and the Coco-Roons have the perfect, light and bright citrus taste!
Take advantage of the $0.75 off ibotta offer when you purchase 1 Sejoyia Coco-Roons at Walmart, while supplies last! Also, get an additional $.50 for redeeming the rebate on 3 different shopping trips!