Finished Work Leads to Granola – 1½ minute read including a recipe

Delicious Homemade Granola

My daily goal as an engineer was to finish all of the work waiting for my attention. Not just the daily tasks, but any future work others expected of me. Only occasionally did I manage to achieve nothing-to-do. But on those occasions, I’d savor the moment and then get creative. Some of my best work for my employer, including twenty-three US patents, was initiated during those creative moments.

2020 gave Kit and I crushing workloads. 2018 and 2019 had been equally challenging. Now we’ve completed our relocation to Washington and all FamilyLife has asked of us, for now. (You can see Kit and Drew teaching online at )

I’ll remember November 11th, 2020 as a day I achieved nothing-to-do. Unlike my engineering years, the first thing I did was fall asleep. I woke a few hours later asking myself, What to do now? Admittedly, Covid limits our options. Washington’s cold and rainy winter further restricts us. Both require holing up indoors, a delightful prospect after difficult years.

My first creative work was a mess in the kitchen. Who doesn’t enjoy making up new recipes? I love granola. But that cereal is expensive. And Kit likes to point out the saturated fats and other unhealthy ingredients listed on packaging. Therefore I set out to create a simple, healthy, and inexpensive granola.

One cup of dry old-fashioned oatmeal
One half cup of water
Four tablespoons of sugar (white will do)
A tablespoon of imitation vanilla

Dissolve the sugar in the water then mix it and the vanilla with the rolled oats. The oats will absorb the sugar water. Bake, thirty minutes for chewy granola an hour for crunchy, on an lightly oiled sheet at 300 F. The sugar will make the oats clump after baking.  Although the recipe has a little sugar, you’ll find the resulting cereal is not very sweet. Of course the recipe is scalable and you can change the proportions to fit your taste.

Unless you are a healthcare worker or other essential worker, please find creative ways to sit-out the pandemic.


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