Lifestyle, Parenting, Relationships, Uncategorized

Give The Children What They Need, And Put A Little Something Extra In Your Child’s Lunchbox – It’s Time To Go Back-To-School

Image result for food productsA portion of my summer, was spent doing product trials with my child, to determine some of the best items to add to a kid’s lunchbox, or snack bag when school began again. And now that the time is upon us, I am confident that I will not have to be on the receiving end of the teachers concerned phone call or little handwritten note, to tell me that my child “seems to still be hungry, after lunch.”

Imagine how I felt, momentarily… that one time in April, when my child’s teacher reached out to me, via text, to give me a “heads-up.” She said that my child doesn’t appear to be getting enough to eat, and seems hungry. First thought, wow- I have been paying child support and my child does not have lunch? Second thought, who’s packing my child lunch and why were they not giving him enough? Third thought, dads claim to fame is how much money he makes, certainly he can afford to pack a healthy, hearty and wholesome snack and lunch for our son.

Ok, so then I calmed to a normal pace, to avoid jumping to conclusions and to try to understand what was going on. I got a little emotional, because I wanted to advise my sons dad of what the teacher said, as well as, to ask the appropriate questions regarding my child nutrition. However, due to the nature of our relationship being what it is, I walk on egg shells with what I say, out of concerns about how he will take it. For instance: Will he think I am taking jabs at him? Will he think that I am saying that he is not winning at parenting, if I relate this concern?

I paused, to allow the anxiety to subside, and to truly look at the situation, as one that could be an easy fix. Especially with the bottom line being, IT NEEDS TO BE FIXED, and I have no time to sugar-coat anything. I 86’d the above questions and I emailed him. I offered my assistance to find amazing snack ideas, if he had been too busy to do so himself. I offered to price them at three different stores that was near his home, to make shopping easier and most affordable for him. I offered to make the list for Monday-Friday, on what should be packed each day, where to get it and how much it would cost. While my proposal wasn’t accepted prior to the summer beginning, and before school ended; I will be pitching it again this week, in hopes that going forward, it will.

So, anyway, over the summer, during my quest to find something, I came across the following:

Black Forest Gummy Bears

Black Forest Organic Gummy Bears: “America’s Best Tasting Gummy Bears! Black Forest Organic Gummy Bears are made with thoughtful ingredients like lemon juice, organic cane sugar, potato starch, carrot and beet juice. These lovable little Gummy Bears are made with love and feature a taste YOU WILL LOVE. Every bag includes cherry, orange, lemon, apple and pineapple flavors. USDA Certified Organic. Gluten Free.” (http://www.blackforestusa.com/products/)

Image result for clifbar

CLIF Kids Zbar: “CLIF Kid Zbar® is an organic, baked whole grain energy snack, made with a blend of carbohydrates, fiber, protein, and fat to give kids energy so they can keep zipping and zooming along. Our products never include high fructose corn syrup or artificial flavors.” (http://www.clifbar.com/products/clif-kid/zbar)

SunButter

SunButter: With nearly three pounds of shelled, roasted sunflower seeds in each jar, SunButter has 7 grams of protein per serving, and it has more vitamins and minerals than nut butter. SunButter provides 45% of the US recommended daily allowance for Vitamin E with no trans-fat and less saturated fat than the leading brand of almond butter.

SunButter is free from the top 8 food allergens: peanuts, tree nuts, soy, milk, eggs, wheat, fish, and crustacean shellfish. SunButter is also free from Canada’s ten priority food allergens, which include mustard, sulfites, and sesame.

SunButter is made in the US from locally-grown, specially-roasted sunflower seeds, which are processed in our dedicated peanut free and tree nut free facility. Our sunflower seeds are grown in a region of the country where peanuts are not grown, eliminating the risk of cross contamination. SunButter is vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, non-GMO, and certified kosher.

This is not an ad for the companies above. I am sincerely recommending these products, because I have tried them for myself, and because I got the stamp pf approval, from my First-grader. The good thing is, these snacks don’t just work for the kids, they make great on-the-go snacks for the working mother.

Double check the lunch box, making sure that your child has something filling, and of nutritional value. Moms, I am not the mom Nazi! However, sometimes we just need reminders, from other moms who may have heard a suggestion or two from a teacher… and before hearing it in a less than sensitive memo, I am giving you the heads up.

Unfortunately, I won’t get to be the one who packs my child’s lunch box, to ensure that it is done with a lot of extra love to fill his belly. But it is with all my heart, that I hope he’s getting all he needs from it, when it’s time.

Here’s the perfect starter guide:

Fresh fruit.

Crunchy vegetables.

A meat or protein food such as slices of lean meat, hardboiled egg, peanut butter or nut paste*

Dairy food such as a cheese stick or slice, grated cheese, milk or yoghurt.

Starchy food such as bread, a roll, pita or flat bread, fruit bread or crackers.

Water.

Article Originally published HERE, at Working Mother

Lifestyle, Parenting

HEY SUNBUTTER! He Likes It

HEY SUNBUTTER! He Likes It!

It would be awfully selfish of me if I didn’t share this tidbit of information with Mom Bloggers Club. As much as I would like to be the keeper of this secret, I just can’t. It’s totally worth sharing, and you can thank me later. Unless of course, it was something that everyone else already knew about. Lol! I found something else that my son gave his stamp of approval on, and so, I proudly gave it my Mom Approved stamp of approval as well, after trying it for myself. SunButter came into our lives last week, while setting up for a Moms Group, to try out the product and see what we all had to say. I wasn’t 5 minutes in, before my own son had cracked open the On The Go sized, SunButter Single cups.

It was a hilarious moment, because as I was trying to video the real, raw reactions and thoughts of the moms that attended, my son can be heard, butting in, to say: It’s good! I’m eating it all up! There couldn’t have been a more natural and unrehearsed moment, as he continued to dig into the cup with his saltine cracker. Take One, Final cut- My work was done! He dismisses us, to ask “Can I have another cracker?”

Where do you go from there? Does it get any better? I found a snack, on my hunt for some back to school goodies, and I got one that he took to, off the bat. #Winning I know that moms everywhere can absolutely agree, that this is a monumental moment, when you have a picky eater; one who is hard to please sometimes, who judges food by the smell, the texture, the look, the everything else that frustrates you while you’re saying, “Just Eat The Cake Anna Mae!” All the while, wondering if your child is malnourished, because he won’t eat anything on his plate.

He’s an active 6- year old boy, who’s always running, jumping, flipping, bouncing around off walls, beds, sofas etc. He’s a playful ball of energy who thinks that sleep is the enemy. To get him to sit down is one thing. To get him to sit still is another thing. While getting him to eat, is not impossible, it has been a challenge.

However, on that one-day last week, and every day up until the SunButter On The Go Single cups were all gone, I accomplished a moment of silence. That’s the big secret I had to share. Thank GOODNESS, we had more!

This has made it onto our list of top 5 things to add to your child’s lunch box, while considering that its Back to School time. It also makes a perfect on the go snack for adults! Check out these awesome recipes for incorporating Sun Butter into y…

SunButter Curry Meatballs

Here are a few fun facts: 7g Protein, USA Grown and Made, More Vitamins and Minerals than NutButter, Top 8 Allergen Free, Non GMO.  SunButter Sunflower Butter comes in 5 choices:

Natural -most popular variety – with 7 grams of protein per serving!

Creamy- Creamy, delicious and easy to spread – perfect for snacking

Natural Crunch- Delicious roasted sunflower seed flavor with a crunch you’ll love

No Sugar Added-Simply roasted sunflower seeds and a hint of salt for flavor.

Organic-SunButter Organic is made without added sugar, salt or hydrogenated oil.

SunButter On The Go Creamy Singles -Six convenient 1.5 oz. cups of Creamy SunButter with 9 grams of protein per serving!

Originally posted on Mom Bloggers Club, Here

Lifestyle, Parenting, Travel

4 Essential things to knock out before inviting your moms group over

4 Essential things to knock out before inviting your moms group over for product testing.

  1. Clean the house. This includes, but is not limited to:
  2. The Kitchen. The kitchen can be a reflection of hygiene. When someone has a nasty kitchen, apart from the normal disarray from cooking supper and/or breakfast for the family and going to sleep or running out to make a last minute appointment; it gives off the wrong signals. This is the place where people eat, and is seen as a vulnerable place in your home, where germs could easily spread, because of the immediate contact to your mouth; through using dishware. You want to make sure that all cups, plates, glasses and silverware are clean. Spotless! Sitting dishwater is a playground for bacteria. So is food that is not stored properly and it also attracts gnats. Both can give an unattractive smell to the attention of your home. Wipe your stovetop and counter tops clean of any nasty residue from the existence of food left behind. The inside and outside of the refrigerator, where germs linger on the door handles as well as spilled drinks and wasted food on the inside should be wiped down and disinfected. And don’t’ forget the floors – especially if you require guest to leave their shoes at the door and walk barefoot in your home.
  3. The Bathroom. The bathroom can be another reflection of hygiene, but on a much more personal and intimate level. An uncleanly bathroom can be borderline offensive. Lol. Seriously, when a person goes into the bathroom, where they will be removing their clothing, they are exposing another part of their body to what may be in your bathroom. The last feeling you want them to have is the feeling of being in a health hazardous, portable bathroom on the street corner of a project under mass construction. The bathroom toilet should be disinfected. That includes cleaning the top and bottom of the bowl, as well as inside and outside of the bowl. (Flush handle, bowl, tank and seat and the trapped dirt at the bottom back of the bowl) Give some attention to the toiletries, such as: hand washing soap, or wet wipes, lotion and air freshener. Be sure to refresh the toilet tissue and paper towels or supply hand towels for drying hands. This encourages your guest to wash their hands before leaving the bathroom and returning to the living areas of your home. This is one that should be practiced by the occupiers of the home anyway, so shouldn’t pose any extra planning in getting your home visitor-ready.
  4. The Guest Bedroom and Bath (for overnight guest) in addition to the same attention to the bathroom, as listed above, attention to the tub/shower, sink/vanity and mirrors should be pampered when prepping your guest-bedroom bathroom. Of course your half bath has a sink and mirror and some hallway guest bathrooms are full baths instead of whole, but lets not get caught in the logistics… the point is to make sure that whatever bathroom in your home that will be open to guest/visitors is clean. That means whichever bathroom, occupies the features of the aforementioned, and is clean and sterilized. The guest bedroom In this room, you want to make it as friendly, warm and welcoming as possibly, without giving the impression that you are inviting your guest to turn into roommates. I say this with all sincerity, because I found out long ago that while it is important to make houseguest feel welcomed, they often extend and overstay their welcome when they are too comfortable. So, with that being said, you definitely still want to provide them with fresh linens on the bed, plush pillows with clean pillowcases. You want to make sure the lights or lamps have bulbs that work. We will not be cleaning their room for them each morning or turning back the covers with hot chocolate or breakfast in bed. We will not be leaving mints and notes in the room about how we’d love for them to stay another night. Just make sure that upon arrival the room is vacuumed, dusted and smell good.
  5. Do the dirty laundry While I am referring to the dirty laundry that is sitting in the laundry room and hallway upstairs that your children have not realized will not wash itself, it’s not a bad idea to consider the “dirty laundry” at home; which includes the indifferences that your other housemates or spouse may have about your arriving guest and or your decision to invite them to stay over. This comes down to, not being rude to your guest. Moms, before you plan a moms group meeting at the house, make sure you run it by all decision-making occupants in the house. It does not mean that if your husband can’t stand the way Meredith smacks when she eats, or the way Alex picks her teeth, that they cannot come. It means that you should give your spouse or other occupants the heads-up out of consideration so that they can excuse themselves during that time or make plans of their own to do something during that time. For the guest that is staying over, it’s also wise to inform your spouse or housemates just so that tension is not present during their stay. Its just good housekeeping protocol.
  6. Grocery shopping for food and drinks If you’re a good host, you will take into account the diets and nutrition of your guest who are visiting, whom you will be offering a beverage and food service to. You should consider their allergies, more so over their preference and likeness. But of course, if you want to go all out for guest that you are preparing dinner for, you can certainly pick up something they requested.

When it comes to the mom group for product testing, there’s an exception: The exception could be that each individual are assigned the task of bringing certain items on their own. For example: If we are pairing wines, we delegate things like cheese, meat, and crackers to the vets of the group or the newbies of the group. Depending on who’s home been hosing the group, we could make our decisions based on that. Many factors to be considered to make it work, but the most important thing is that if it’s at your home, that you have a ready supply of things that will be needed for your guest.

On the flip side: This is also an area where we are going to consider the rules of overstaying a welcome. We are not asking our guest to come move in with us, while we provide them with the lap of luxury, of which they get to live, eat and drink for free. We want them to leave, but we want them to enjoy their stay.

As Seen on CafeMom.com