WIAW #54: In the Classroom

Hello hello!

Welcome to another What I Ate Wednesday edition here on My Food ‘N’ Fitness Diaries!

Peas and Crayons

I mentioned a couple months ago that I was going to be substituting for the school district we live in on my days off from my job at church (Tuesdays & Fridays), and it’s been keeping me a busy bee the last few weeks! Even though it’s exhausting – especially when you pair it with pregnancy fatigue – it’s been so rewarding and I love it.

Yesterday I got the opportunity to hang out with a bunch of first graders, and they were so stinkin’ adorable! Of course they are a little more work thanks to their two second attention span and high dependence levels, but their cuteness easily made up for it.

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I started out my day bright and early with a bowl of custard oats. Into the saucepan went:

  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/2 tablespoon chia seed
  • 1 egg (whisked while oats cook)
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin
  • a couple hefty shakes of pumpkin pie spice
  • topped with Justin’s Maple Almond Butter

Ohhh boy, was this bowl of oatmeal delicious! It was the first time I had tried Justin’s Maple Almond Butter, and I am certainly a fan! It topped my pumpkin themed oats perfectly.


My appetite has been on overdrive the past few days, so I found myself feeling hungry just a couple hours later. I rummaged through the foods I packed and ate a few handfuls of roasted pumpkin seeds and a cheese stick while the kids were out at recess.

The rest of my food was inhaled come lunch time…

  • peanut butter + banana + honey sandwich
  • plain Greek yogurt with strawberries
  • Asian Pear (pear/apple combo)


By the time I got home around 4 PM, I was starving again. I am thinking the baby is growing extra this week? Who knows, but we’ll chalk up my hunger levels to that. Winking smile I grabbed a couple spoonfuls of peanut butter and a mug of milk and was good to go until dinner.


I have been eyeing this salad since Lauren first posted it, and instantly knew it was going to be on the dinner menu this week. The only differences I made from her original recipe was I left out the roasted turkey and walnuts since I didn’t have any on hand. This salad was SO good – it’s definitely a must try! Also, a big cheer for salad being back in my life! This is huge people!


My day ended with another couple spoonfuls of peanut butter and some milk. Apparently my love for peanut butter is back full force? I’ll also owe it to the fact that I just bought a new jar of Adam’s All Natural Peanut Butter (my favorite!), and there’s something I just love about a brand new jar of nut butter. Yum!

I read for a little while before I proceeded to fall face first into my pillow. Those little 1st graders wiped me out!


  • If you’re a teacher, what grade do you teach? If you’re not a teacher, what grade do you think you’d like to teach?
  • What do you usually pack in your lunch?
  • What is your favorite brand of peanut butter?
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  1. says

    I teach third grade and LOVE it, but I taught first grade my first year and totally loved it, too! I love the team of girls I teach with now, so for that reason I wouldn’t change grade levels, but first graders are just so darn cute that their dependency issues and silly little quirky things didn’t bother me!!

    • Ashley says

      I’m glad you love it! I’m sure it makes it so much easier to teach with a team of teachers you love too.

  2. says

    I would LOVE to teach 5th grade. But now more and more I am thinking I will be in the collegiate world forever and maybe teach at a university one day!

  3. says

    Hi Ashley! I’m a new blogger that stumbled upon your awesome blog! I’m currently a “teacher candidate” as my professors like to call it and Im going to school for high school math! I currently observe a class of Freshman in algebra and I have to say- they’re a handful. The school I’m in is considered to be “urban”- if you can goeth the setting. But I have to say I love it and being there once a week makes me SOOOOOO excited to have my own classroom!

    Today I get to go an observe them and plan on writing it in my new blog! Hopefully you’ll get a chance to check it out @ http://thewanderingsneaker.wordpress.com/

    Looking forward to reading some more of your blog!

  4. says

    Your salad looks phenomenal!!! Seriously girl, way better than mine! I think I’ll be making it again for dinner tonight. It’s just so darn good. :)

  5. says

    Your post made me laugh. My daughter is in 1st grade and had the shortest attention span ever! I cannot imagine dealing with 20 little children like that! wow.

    Lunch is always dinner left overs. (If it’s a small amount they are usually thrown on a salad). Today’s lunch is black bean and lentil soup I made in the slow cooker allllll day yesterday. Hopefully it’s good because we’ll be having it for dinner too! lol.

    • Ashley says

      No kidding! I’m obsessed! We got a huge bag of the Asian pears from a lady at our church. She has a tree and is always trying to get rid of them since they get so many. They’re good!

  6. says

    The boyfriend is a “hopeful” teacher (he graduated from teacher’s college in 2011 but still trying to break into it) and he teaches intermediate. I think he’d be an awesome grade 7 or 8 teacher! I’ll leave that to him, if I was going to teach I think I’d want to do college level.

  7. Carly71722 says

    Glad you are enjoying subbing! Thinking about teaching full time?? I teach HS and comm college math! I couldn’t do elementary :)

  8. says

    I’m perfectly content with generic bulk chunky PB. Hand me any kind of natural PB and I’m happy as a clam!!
    My lunch for work is usually either a spinach and cheese omelet sandwich with veggies on the side and a few nuts or tuna with sweet potato, veggies and nuts. And of course an abundance of snacks!!
    I think that it would be great to teach either the younger kids (grades 1-2) who are simply adorable or the older grades (7-8) because they’d be a little more inquisitive (hopefully!) — I know that I was a peer mediator through middle school and it was the middle years that were the most difficult to deal with overall!!

  9. says

    Sometimes I totally think it would be fun to be a teacher (minus when the kids are super hyper haha).

    Wait til the third trimester, I definitely don’t put a limit on what I can eat haha. Before the third trimester, I wondered if your body would naturally start to want to eat those extra calories, and yup! it does! haha

  10. says

    Funny you posted the pear/apple pic. I just saw them for the first time at the store yesterday and took a pic to blog about…bazzaar. :) I think I’d like to teach second or third graders. I home schooled for a few years and that was my favorite age (or maybe my favorite child ha ha). When I use to pack lunch back in my working days, I’d always include yogurt, chopped veggies and pretzels or wheat thins in which I’d take off every piece of salt first. Ha. Jessica


  11. says

    My B.A. is in English and I planned on teacher’s college after, however, the jobs in Canada and very, very slim, so I decided against it. I’m not in a situation where I am willing to sit and wait for a job for 5+ years. I would have gone to teach high school English and Family Studies courses, though.

    My favourite PB brand is Maranatha Smooth with Sea Salt, mmm!

  12. Rose says

    I would love to teach kindergarden. I taught dance for years, and before that was a camp counsellor to 4-5 years olds, and they were always my fav age group.. lots of work but just so adorable, fun and kind of inspiring! I just love kraft pb :)

  13. says

    Your hunger levels are probably due to running around after the kiddos all day (oh, and pregnancy, too ;)! I definitely think my metabolism sky-rockets when I’m at work because I’m always always always moving, squating down to the kids eye level, and talking. I teach 3-year-olds and I LOVE it. They’re a ton of work, but I love them so much :)

    • Ashley says

      Have you ever tried Adam’s PB? They carry it at our Costco, and it’s super creamy for a natural peanut butter.

  14. says

    I think I would like to teach high-school age U.S. History. ….Or 4th grade.

    Today’s lunch is a slice of Dave’s Killer Bread (Powerseed), two scrambled egg whites, and a Sweetango apple.

    My favorite peanut butter is the Ralph’s/Kroger store brand (with the oil on top….I drain it off!) CHUNKY. I also love Skippy SUPER CHUNK! (I love saying “SUPER CHUNK!”)

  15. says

    My appetite has been pretty crazy lately too, but I don’t have a baby to attribute it to! I’m thinking it’s the changing weather… and the fact that my body just needs more fuel to keep itself warm. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it 😀

    I loooooove the nut butter/banana/honey sandwich combo… probably one of my favorites. I can’t do peanut butter because of allergies, but replace it with roasted almond butter and I’m in heaven!

  16. says

    If I were to ever teach it would be for either grade one or two. I love the younger crowd! I used to volunteer at a preschool and it was the best time!
    I don’t really like peanut butter actually. Its too savory for me ha ha. I LOVE artisana coconut butter. Simply the best.

  17. says

    I’ve been eyeing that Justin’s Maple Almond Butter for weeks now (obsessed with the chocolate and vanilla flavors)…I wasn’t sure if the flavors would work, but I think it’s definitely worth a try next time I’m at the store. Yay for salads being back in your life!

    • Ashley says

      I love PB & Co too, but probably a little too much. I have little to no self control around some of their flavored peanut butters!

  18. says

    That is so nice you are experiencing 1st grade! I feel like there are a lot of times that cuteness helps to get people/animals out of trouble lol. My kitten is sooo darn adorable but annoying as heck sometimes! But then I look at his face and i just cannot stay mad 😉
    I think I would like to teach… 3rd of 4th grade. Never ever middle school, perhaps junior year of high school too! That salad does sound like a tasty combo too

  19. says

    I teach 7th grade (English and reading), and I absolutely love it! Most people try to avoid middle schoolers at all cost, but I adore working with them. I don’t think I could do the little bitty kiddos – but they are cute! I think either 5th grade or 7th grade is where I need to be. I could also see myself teaching a college level class one day (maybe on teaching creative writing, reading comprehension, or classroom management).

    My favorite nut butter….I can’t pick just one. Justin’s is amazing, and so are all the Wild Squirrel varieties.

    • Ashley says

      I think 4th-6th grade would be my favorite. The little ones are adorable, but I think they’d exhaust me in the long run.

  20. says

    Hi Ashley! I actually used to teach at a Christian preschool. I enjoyed it at the time, but ultimately felt that it wasn’t what I was ultimately supposed to do. I have a lot of respect for those who have the patience for it though! I’m sure some grades are easier than others. In my experience babysitting and working at after-school programs, if you can get 2nd or 3rd graders, you’re really lucky!

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