Taco bean tostada, the good old days & curiosities about homeschoolers

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If you’re looking for a quick and easy meal for your family, this taco bean tostada hits the spot. It’s super easy, so before I share the recipe I thought I’d fill you in on a bit around here. As most of you know I’ve traveled the past 2 weekends. It’s been FUN, but I sure am relishing my first Saturday morning in a long time that I can lounge around in my pj’s without a strict agenda. Isn’t it fun to have a free day once in a while? How long has it been for you? Is it time to “schedule” a free day into your calendar? ;)

I find it hard to believe summer is around the corner. You? Last week my girls took their first ever standardized tests. As a family that has always homeschooled, one of the benefits was my husband and I were able to decide when we felt they were ready to take these tests. My older daughter is in 7th grade, and my middle one is 3rd grade. It felt right this year….I’m proud of them and know they did their very best. We’ll get the results in a few weeks, and though we already know their weak areas and strong areas, we’re curious if there are any surprises. As a former public school teacher, I can tell you the purpose of a test like this is to see where we need to step up our game. As teachers, we should use this information to drive our education….where to focus and help our kids.

Somewhere along the way….the school system has lost sight of this. I’m not trying to be controversial in a food blog or take a stance. But I know from friends and peers that kids in the traditional school system feel pressure to perform at an early age, especially down here in Florida. In fact, how they score actually determines whether they advance to the next grade. They also use the results to gauge how well a teacher is teaching, and how a school is performing. Gosh….that’s a lot of pressure all the way around. It seems when I was a kid testing was just a few days a week, and it was kinda fun to get out of our regular work those days. I don’t remember any stress or pressure! Do you?

I don’t know how we get back to basics, and I certainly know that homeschooling isn’t the answer for every family. I just know it works for ours. It is becoming a hugely popular option for many parents, even if it’s just schooling them for the ever tumultuous middle school years….or sometimes even just a year or two. And if I can say one thing to fellow parents…..don’t be intimidated when you hear the term homeschooling. We homeschool moms are not super parents. I always say if you read with your child and help them with their homework, then you’re already homeschooling.

And homeschool parents aren’t judging you if your kids are in school. In fact, we mostly don’t like conflict, controversy and what not…..we’re just doing what we’ve found works for our family….and gasp, we don’t always know what we’re doing….just like you at times. Parenting is hard!! Whether your kids are in homeschool, public or private. We’re all dealing with most of the same issues. Kids are still kids!

But if I can end the testing and schooling talk with one thing in mind….let it be that sometimes you have to change things up. If you have been feeling for awhile that your schooling choice isn’t working for your or your family or a certain child….just be aware that you are the parent….and you have a choice! Homeschool kids are not the rare, strange breed you may think they are. Large support networks exist all over the country. From online message boards, I probably know a homeschool family in almost every state. And there are literally millions now.

There are times for whatever reason, you feel something has to change in your child’s education or maybe they just need a year home with mom. A time to stretch their wings and have the time to explore their learning interests. Please let me assure you….you know what’s best for your child. Deep down, you know. Just don’t shut the door on a viable option, because you’re scared or not sure what homeschooling is all about. Or think your child would fall behind. If you’re doing it for all the right reasons….that just won’t happen. Remember you are their very first and most important teacher!!

I really didn’t intend to get on any soapbox today. If you’ve been around here a long time, then you probably know I’m not one stir the pot. Sometimes when homeschool parents share things about their lives, it’s deeply personal and opens us up to criticism since we’re not doing things the traditional way. I like to keep my head low unless I feel I’m in a safe arena. But hopefully this little post will give you a sneak peek into the mind of a homeschool parent. And if you have any, questions feel free to ask. I’m happy to help!

Back to the taco bean tostadas….you can use whatever refried beans or corn tortillas you want. In case you’re interested, I shared the items I buy from Whole Foods to use in this recipe. You know I’m kind of a nut about buying “organic” non-gmo corn. ;) I also use my homemade taco seasoning mix.

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Taco bean tostada
Author: 
Recipe type: Dinner, Lunch, Mexican, Easy
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 5
 
Ingredients
  • Corn tortillas, cooked and crisp
  • I can refried beans
  • ½ to 1 pound ground beef, cooked
  • taco seasoning, homemade (can use packet)
  • lettuce, chopped
  • tomatoes, diced
  • onions, minced
  • monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • sour cream
  • salsa, hot sauce or crushed red pepper, optional
Instructions
  1. I buy frozen organic corn tortillas at Whole Foods....10 to a pack for $1.29. I lay them out on my big electric griddle/skillet or place in my toaster oven or under broiler and cook till crisp, turning halfway through (about 4 to 5 mins). You can also use regular soft corn tortillas.
  2. Cook ground beef, and add taco seasoning (homemade or in a packet). I use homemade...very easy! After ground beef has become prepared taco meat, mix in one can refried beans. I use a can of organic refried pinto beans with roasted chili and lime (around $1.39 a can, 365 brand - their own generic brand)
  3. Prep all ingredients that you enjoy on tacos (lettuce, onions, cheese, tomatoes).
  4. Spread bean/meat mixture on tostada shells. Spread sour cream on. Top with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, cheese and whatever else you like on your tacos.

 

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16 Responses to Taco bean tostada, the good old days & curiosities about homeschoolers

  1. Tracy Wood says:

    I love that you home school your children. I am a teacher in a small Lutheran school, we only have about 80 kids from pre-school -8th grade. We like to say we are a link between the big public schools and the home school families…. It’s like ‘somewhere in between’ the two. Oh, and your tostadas? Lovely also!
    Tracy Wood recently posted..Broiled Green Beans

  2. Eva says:

    I just discovered I had bookmarked a very old post, so sorry about that!
    This Tostada looks delicious and I would definitely have mine on a baked soft fajita shell. This looks perfect for a quick meal.
    Eva recently posted..The Anything-but-Boring Egg White Omelet

  3. Well said! We concluded our 12 years of homeschooling a couple years ago when our youngest started 10th grade. The choice to do so and the community served our family well. Unfortunately, there is an atmosphere of competition sometimes between public schools and homeschoolers–the wiser school administrators have adapted, reaching out to keep the door open for homeschool families with enrichment classes, sports, etc. It is important for parents to not abdicate their authority over their children’s education, no one knows your child like you do. BTW – just because your blog is primarily about food doesn’t mean you don’t have a voice for other parts of life — thank you for sharing your heart and experience on this.
    Judy@Savoring Today recently posted..Roasted Green Chili Burgers: Cinco de Mayo & National Burger Month

    • Denise says:

      Judy,

      Thank you! So glad you shared your homeschool experience with me & other readers. I don’t share much about the homeschool aspect of my life since this is a food blog, but I have come to realize it is such a big part of my life and who we are. And hey, maybe others are a bit curious. ;)

  4. Kristen says:

    I agree that there is so much more pressure on kids when it comes to testing these days… a lot of emphasis is put on it and stress on the kids.
    I’m blessed to live in the top school district in Kansas (which is saying a lot as we are lucky to have great schools). I have friends who have moved to other places, such as Florida, who have discovered how blessed we are.

    I admire your ability to homeschool – I’m not patient enough! You are doing the right thing for your kids and I think that’s what matters most!
    Kristen recently posted..Because I’m the Mom {Recipe: Buttermilk Biscuits}

  5. Dee says:

    I totally agree! We are also homeschoolers and we’ve been discouraged with school testing systems as our children have aged out of school. We’ve homeschooled for, hmmm, 8+ years now, three out of our four children, and while it isn’t without its challenges, it works for us. Beautifully. My son is thriving and developing on his schedule. He’s ahead of grade-level work in all subjects and getting in trouble at school for fidgeting rather than being given more difficult work to keep him occupied. Now at home, I can fine-tune his work so he is challenged and enjoys learning rather than dreading going to school. I’m not against public schools, but I just don’t think it works for us right now.

    One thing we felt about testing was that it frequently is for the school’s benefit, not ours. They graded their education rather than how each child was doing, and we’d lose a week or two at a time while they did it, sometimes twice a year. I understand there’s no perfect system, but the stress to ‘do your best! do your best!’ made for some anxious, tired kids, and I want my kids to have more in life than school. Like eating and baking in the kitchen with me! ;) Now we get to do that frequently and we have family fun in addition!

    Great blog, I’ll be back for more!
    Dee recently posted..Cinco de Mayo celebrating!

    • Denise says:

      Thanks for stopping by Dee! I’m glad you found me. The lifestyle that homeschooling has afforded us has been so rewarding. Glad it’s working for you guys too.

  6. Linda says:

    I have thought about home school especially that I am so protective yet just like Judy said my kid being with kids his age will not only introduce him to competition but also improve his socialization skills.
    Linda recently posted..DTS Home

  7. Jann says:

    I am so proud of you and what you are doing for your girls. Public schools aren’t right for all children. In fact, I think they are lacking in so many ways.

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  9. I love how easy and simple this dish is. I’ve definitely bookmarked it for those busy weeknights.
    Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious recently posted..Nutella Chocolate Chip Cookies

  10. Pingback: Make your own taco seasoning ~ SUPER easy! | Creative Kitchen

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