Friday, November 29, 2013

Keep Mealtimes Stress Free and Fun

Making a healthy super fast meal is one way to keep mealtimes stress free, like this protein packed Turkey Wrap.

Here are our five tips to keeping mealtimes stress free and fun, for your own sanity and theirs.

1. Mentally prepare yourself because they may not eat what you prepared.  You need to act nonchalantly when this happens. Mental preparation is key.  When they don't eat much of what's on their plate, that's okay.  Don't make them another meal, just offer it to them again later if they're hungry. They won't die of hunger, but you will want to have yourself committed if you keep letting it get to you.

2. Play music - it is scientifically proven that music can change your mood.  It will make your kids happy and it will put you in a good place and take away temptation to have the T.V. on.

3. Speaking of T.V....turn the T.V. off.

4. Tell stories together, sing songs (this is a good trick for toddlers) engage with each other.  Kids love attention from their parents.  This is the perfect time to give plenty of that!

5. Realize that how much your kids eat, is out of your control. But what they eat totally is.  As long as you keep to a food schedule, offer balanced meals and do not make a second 'kids meal,' they will learn to eat when they're hungry.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Children's Books About Thanksgiving

We love pairing books with food and Thanksgiving is the perfect day to do just that.  Here are two fun books that we really enjoy. Thanksgiving is also a wonderful time to expose children to a wide variety of new foods and traditions.  What are some of the unique family traditions that you enjoy with your kids?

Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes, illustrated by Dorris Barrette.  This book was recommended to us by a friend, and boy did it deliver.  With its gorgeous illustrations and its beautiful message of finding appreciation and gratitude in all things, it is a heartwarming tale that will keep you and your children enthralled.  The best part is at the end where you have a page to write out your child's thankful thought, year after year.  Love that idea! This book is an absolute must.

The Night Before Thanksgiving is a really fun, inexpensive little book by Natasha Wing and illustrated by Tammie Lyon.  This amusing poem, which takes its cues from The Night Before Christmas, is a great way to get your kids excited for the big day. We love the illustrations of the kids cooking with their mom.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sautéed Red Cabbage

Stuck in a rut with the usual sides? This sautéed cabbage recipe is warm and comforting, just in time for fall.  It's a simple dish that makes for great leftovers, too. If you're worried that your child won't try it, have them help you cook it!  Kids are always more willing to try dishes they've had a hand in making.

1 large onion, diced
1 large red cabbage, diced
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons brown or Dijon mustard
Salt to taste

1. In a large pot, heat coconut oil then sauté onions over medium heat until translucent, add a dash of salt.

2. Add diced cabbage and apple cider vinegar, stir and cover over medium heat. Stirring every few minutes.

3. Once cabbage has begun to soften, drizzle honey and mustard, stir well until everything is thoroughly mixed. Season with a bit more salt to taste.

4. Lower to medium low heat and cover, stirring on occasion. Ready in 45 minutes from start to finish. Cook a few minutes longer if you would like your cabbage a little softer.