Monday, November 28, 2005

Simple Yummy Healthy Snacks for Kids


Here's a list to get you through a full month of varied snacking:
(I have a calendar version of this list I'd be happy to email by request)

  • Fresh Fruit Salad
  • Bread Sticks & Cream Cheese
  • Orange Slices & Jicama Slices (fruit tastes like an apple with potato texture)
  • Rice Cakes & Apple Wedges with Cheese
  • Assorted Raw Veggies and dip (try a new veggie like Sugar Snap Peas or Squash)
  • Celery Sticks With cream cheese or peanut butter
  • Unbuttered Popcorn with sprinkled Parmesan cheese
  • Whole grain/wheat Crackers with cheese or peanut butter
  • Plain yogurt with Fresh fruit
  • Slice Hard-boiled eggs
  • Cooked broccoli with parmesan cheese
  • Finger sandwich with Tuna or chicken salad
  • Raw carrots and glass of natural fruit juice
  • Baked potato with cream cheese or sour cream
  • Popscicle made from Gatorade
  • Sliced pear and banana wheels
  • Cubed cheese and pretzels (String cheese is always fun)
  • Nuts in shell & Glass of natural Fruit juice
  • Soy beans & fresh melon wedge
  • Cold Cuts and cheese
  • Dry unsweetened Whole grain cereal
  • Fruit smoothie ½ c milk/soy milk ¼ c OJ or apple juice ½ banana ½ cup frozen fruit (if fresh fruit add ice)blend until smooth
  • Cubed Sweet potato (Easy-most grocery stores have bags of these in the produce aisles)
  • Natural white cheddar popcorn (Pirate’s Booty is a good brand)

Special Delivery


I ordered sushi to go the other night. I try to be ready for the knock on the door and have my credit card or cash ready. Well, instead of going straight to my purse after I phoned in the order, I sat my 10-month-old son in his high chair and began to feed him. My husband and our house guest were also occupied and caught unprepared. So when the delivery man knocked on our door, my 3-year-old daughter answered the door...
stark naked.
"Hi," she said to the startled delivery man as he tried to divert his eyes. Ah, to not feel modesty...she started to jump around and tell everyone the "suchi" is here. My husband soon followed behind our daughter with the money and complete embarrassment. Well, Masa Sushi will always remember our address...

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Leftover Turkey?


No More Turkey Sandwiches. Here is an EASY recipe for leftover Turkey...the kid's will even enjoy it again!

Leftover-Turkey Pot Pie
Ingredients:
Leftover turkey (cut into small pieces)
1 can cream of chicken (mushroom or brocolli are good too)
1 reg. size bag of your favorite frozen veggies
2 unbaked pie crusts
salt & pepper to taste

Mix turkey, cream of chicken, veggies, salt & pepper in bowl.
Line a pie plate with one of the pie crusts. Fill the crust with the turkey mixture. Cover with second pie crust. Moisten your finger tips and pinch the pie crust edges together to form a good pot-pie seal. Pierce the top of the pie for steam to vent. Bake at 350 until pie crust is brown and inside is bubbling (about 20 mins). Delicious!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

I locked out my Mother-In-Law (accidentally, really)

Last week, my mother-in-law came for a visit. And, NO, that's not a bad thing-I am very lucky to have a truly good mother-in-law. She wasn't so lucky last Thursday though. My mother-in-law watched the kids during the day while my husband and I went to work. It was good for her to get some quality time alone with the kids without mommy and daddy being around. I handed my mother-in-law what I thought were the keys to the apartment. I actually gave her two of the same gate keys. My mother-in-law took the kids for a leisurely stroll through the neighborhood not knowing that she would be locked out for several hours later. Oh, and she forgot to take her cell phone. On my way to a doctor appointment, I get a cell phone call from my father-in-law. He informs me that his wife is with the kids at a corner liquor mart awaiting my call to the pay phone. The pay phone wouldn't accept my calls. I finally receive a call from my mother-in-law. I told her the bedroom window might be unlocked and that I'd be home as soon as I could. Three hours later I come home. My kind downstairs-neighbor kept my mother-in-law and kids comfortable for the last hour of their ordeal. My mother-in-law said I'd never let her watch the kids again. Honestly, the kids never crossed my mind. All I thought about was, "I've locked my Mother-in-Law out of the house." My daughter-in-law reputation has just gone down the toilet.
TIP: Always check keys before you pass them out & keep a spare set hidden somewhere around your home. (Another error I made-I forgot to replace the spare set!)

Monday, November 21, 2005

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

No More Second-Guessing


Because I started weaning my son about a month ago, my milk ducts are getting clogged. My breasts have been quite sore and tender. I researched some home remedies on the internet. Along with reading about warm-compresses and cabbage leaves, I came across the term "nursing strike." I had never heard of such a thing? I pictured my son crawling around with a picket sign-"No More Garlic, Mommy." The article I read stated that as our hormones change or our child is teething, a nursing strike is common and doesn't necessarily mean that the child is done breastfeeding. Immediately, I started to feel guilty. Had I started weaning my son too soon? He didn't seem to want to nurse anymore and therefore I wasn't producing enough. Was he just on "strike?"
Then, I realized I was second-guessing myself-again. We mother's often do this. And we shouldn't. I had read the signs and felt weaning my son was right and at the right time. I can't beat myself up with "what-ifs." My son was nursed for almost 10 months-a bit shy of my year goal. My son showed great interest in eating finger foods-he even gets angry if I don't share whatever I'm eating with him. He still gets plenty of snuggly-close contact when he drinks from his bottle. He's happy and content-no need to second-guess...

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Teething Tip


The baby safe feeder is essential during teething. It's part teether, part feeder and the ingenious design makes any food safe for baby. My son loves to chomp on frozen fruit to soothe his swollen gums. This mesh pacifier does the trick. I fill the mesh bag with frozen mango or strawberries. It's a lot less messy and I don't have to worry about a choking hazard.

Product Description from Amazon.com:
"The Baby Safe Feeder is an innovative way to aid teething and get your infant to make the transition from drinking to chewing small pieces of food. It features an easy-to-hold teether attached to a reusable mesh food bag. Simply unscrew top, fill the bag with your baby's favorite soft foods, and screw securely back together. Your baby is now free to teethe while learning to chew (through the mesh). The feeder is top-rack dishwasher safe, or can be hand washed in warm, soapy water. Use only with Baby Safe Feeder replacement bags."

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Gently Used


I see absolutely nothing wrong with hand-me-downs and gently-used items. It's hard enough balancing a budget while living in Los Angeles with two children. I am so lucky to have a sister with older children. I have never had to buy my daughter or my son clothes. My 3-year-old daughter wears the hand-me-downs from her 4 and 5-year old cousins and my son receives the clothes my nephew has out-grown. My daughter still enjoys the best of both new and old-her Mimi (who only had boys) just loves to buy my daughter the most precious little girl outfits.
Also, I don't understand the necessity to buy brand new toys, especially larger items, if I can find a good-as-new bargain. Plus, my kids are too young to understand the difference between brand new and used. Though as they get older and wiser, I hope that I teach them to appreciate a gift no matter its origin. Recently, I purchased a small, play kitchen from a thrift store. It includes a little microwave, stove, fridge and sink. The kitchen was clean and in good shape except the faucet was missing and a drawer door. It only cost $3.00! What a deal! I made some simple fixes and the kids enjoy it for hours.
I do shop for "new" bargains too. I hit the sales and discount stores to purchase new toys at used-toys prices. For birthdays or holidays, I usually buy a mix of old and new.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Priceless Postage


You've probably heard about Photo Stamps. Have you seen them? The stamps are created from a photo of your choice and each is authentic 37 cent postage. I ordered some last week for my xmas cards and they are absolutely adorable! I can't believe how good they look and how fast they arrived. The stamps come out to about double the price of a regular stamp, but it's well worth the added touch. Baby announcements, milestone birthdays invites, graduation and holiday cards will truly be special on the inside and outside! The stamps are also about double the size of a regular stamp. Try it out-just go to photostamps.com and create a priceless stamp online. Don't forget to save a stamp for your kid's scrap book! Here's the photo I used for my xmas card stamps

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Solo Parenting

I had always referred to my husband staying home to watch our kids as "babysitting." Just recently, I told a coworker of mine that my husband was babysitting for me so I could enjoy a scary movie with friends. Kelly sternly informed me that my husband was Solo Parenting NOT babysitting. I had never heard the term, but I instantly logged it into my vocabulary database. How did I not realize this before? I completely agree that the phrase "my husband is babysitting" is a misuse of words. Kelly said when she stays home with her kids, she's not babysitting, she's parenting. She added, "I pay the babysitter." I've been looking at this all wrong! My husband isn't doing me a favor, he's doing his job...just solo...parenting

Time Warp(speed)


I swear time does double-time from the moment I get the kids out the door and into the car until I've dropped them off at day care. I drop the kids off mornings Monday through Friday at 8am. Whether I allot myself 5 minutes or 15 minutes to drop the kids off literally a couple of block away, I'm left with a mere 10 minutes to get to work. I can't drop the kids off any earlier than 8am and that's plenty of time to get to work by 8:30am-except for the whole time warp speed thing...
My three-year-old is a "big girl" and has to go down the stairs herself, get in the car herself and buckle herself. While she does her "big girl" routine, I'm simultaneously carrying my 9-month-old son, putting him in the car and buckling him in his seat. You'd think that cuts the time in half? Then, the same scenario in reverse once we arrive at day care, ring the doorbell, kiss & hug and off I go,
hi-ho, hi-ho...where does the time go?
I left the house 10 minutes to 8:00 and now it's 8:17???

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

A Fortune Tee is in your future...

A great gift idea for anytime! Christmas, er, uh, I mean Holidays, Birthdays, Baby Showers, etc.
My friend, Dessa, gave my son a baby bodysuit from Fortune Tee's. It's such a great and unique gift. I had to share...
Check out their website Fortune Tee Shirt Aedan's tee reads: A Surprise Will Appear in my Pants
(and includes lucky numbers)