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For the duration of my middle school years my four younger siblings and I were home-schooled. My parents decided to home-school us for several reasons (but mainly because they felt the public schools weren’t challenging us enough) and they wanted to take a more hands-on approach to our schooling. My mom was the one who managed our lessons at home while my dad was at work and I was able to assist in the educating of my younger siblings as well. I was happy to be schooled at home, it allowed me to study subjects that weren’t being offered in my public school like:  poetry, journalism, creative writing and of course gardening. We would wake up at 8am to the sight and smell of fresh bread baking in the oven and would always start our day with warm rolls that my mom had made for us. Some days we helped make the bread with her. We worked, in the capacity of stirring in the yeast and watching it foam up, kneading the dough as best we could with our little hands and (the best part) punching it down after it rose to enormous proportions and was over-spilling the bread bowl. We then would help her roll the dough out into cylinders and tie the little ropes into knots. The dough knots would rise again and then be brushed with egg and sent straight to the oven for 20 minutes. After about 10 minutes you knew a good thing was happening because the whole house would smell like warm bread and all you wanted to do was station yourself in the kitchen with butter and a knife in hand, waiting for one of those steaming hot rolls to hit your plate. After breakfast, work would resume and I would return to my old fashioned wooden school desk in my room to diagram sentences, solve math equations or write poems. The real lessons from my childhood, however, always took place in the kitchen and because of my mom I now have the ability to make a pie crust on a whim, bake a tasty quiche, throw together some homemade pasta or best of all prepare a fabulous batch of bread. Thanks mom.

Fresh rolls

My mom’s bread recipe