If you love those "fancy" vanilla-flavored oatmeal packets but balk at paying the outrageous price, here's a tasty and much more economical substitute: Start with "quick" or "old fashioned" oatmeal. (I buy the big 2 pound 10 ounce canister of Great Value brand, which costs $1.77 in my local Wal-Mart, and provides me with about 21 days' worth of breakfasts.)
For one hearty serving, place 1/2 cup oatmeal and 1 cup water in a generous-sized microwaveable bowl. (If the bowl is too small the oatmeal will erupt over the sides while cooking. Use a bowl that can hold 2 cups or more.) Microwave as directed. Cooking time is anywhere from 1 1/2 minutes for the "quick" oatmeal to 5 minutes for "old fashioned" type. When done, add your syrup, brown or white sugar, butter etc. -- along with 2-3 drops of vanilla and 1 tsp. dry milk powder. Stir well to blend.
The result is a great breakfast that tastes every bit as good as the "designer" stuff, costs less than ten cents per serving and is much better for you, too!