Archive for January, 2010

Stealth Fruit/Veggie Recipes

This morning I made the MOST delicious french toast and it was healthy!! I quietly stirred pumpkin puree into the egg batter before dipping in the toast. I added a hint of cinnamon, dipped in the toast, cooked it and VOILA! It had a wonderful warm wintery flavor and the kids munched it right down. Never even knew that pumpkin was there.
I followed this up at lunch with pancake mix blended with a winter squash/apple/banana puree. I happened to have pieces of each handy, so blended them together after steaming the squash just a bit. I then blended them and beat them into the pancake batter and added a touch of honey. I made silver dollar size for little hands and mouths. I served them with a bit of honey for dipping too. These were so good. Coko, who doesn’t eat anything but peas and noodles and grilled cheese ate 5! I even ate some. The squash gives them a really smooth texture and the banana a touch of sweetness. LOVED IT! Give it a try!

Clothes!

I don’t know what it is like in your house, but the clothes in my kid’s drawers are always a mess. They root through there every morning trying to find that “perfect” shirt.

I got to the point a few weeks ago that I just couldn’t handle all the mess. The clothes I attempt to keep nice were all mixed in with the play clothes and most of the time everything just ended up on the floor.

Then I came up with a great idea….a play clothes box.  I put the soft sided box in their closet and told them that each morning, unless otherwise informed, they could pick out whatever they wanted to wear from the box.  Elijah’s and Coko’s shirts both went into the box.

Honestly, I could care less if Coko wears a Bob the Builder shirt of Eljah feels like wearing a pink rainbow lollipop. I just want them dressed in play clothes and ready for the day.

So now they have the freedom to root through the clothes (nothing has to be folded because it is all play clothes) and pick out whatever they want. It has made our morning SO much smoother!

A Walk in the Wilderness

We had a beautiful walk this afternoon in along the swampy waters of the bay we live on.

Free Range Inspiration

I have been reading the blog Free Range Kids a lot lately and this picture captures it for me. My son Elijah just learned how to scooter and is scootering everywhere. He scootered 3 miles on a walk with us the other day. YAY! to exercise and the wind in your hair.

Beware of bodily fluids!

Ok…an email advertising a new product was just sent to my  email box that truly is ridiculous.  This is insane. Are you ready for it?  It is a pee-pee teepee.  You cover your baby boy’s penis with it while changing his diaper and yes, it is decorated and looks very much like a real teepee.

First, how is not incredibly insulting to Native Americans?

And second, someone please explain to me why a mother can’t get through a diaper change without experiencing the risk of being peed on.  I feel well versed in this area. I have two boys.  I have changed them countless times.  Have I been peed on? Yes. Did I survive? Yes. Was it slight inconvenient? Yes, but then again so is most of parenthood. If we don’t want to be inconvenienced, we shouldn’t have children.

Why can’t these companies spend some time inventing things that are actually helpful and not just frivilous, like an infant carseat that doesn’t weigh 1,000 pounds or a disposable diaper that biodegrates naturally while fertilizing your garden.  Am I asking too much here?

Television, Computers, iPhones, OH my!

The AMA makes a recommendation of no more than two hours of television a day for children starting at age five.  However, I just did a search and it doesn’t seem that the AMA has a recommendation for computer time or iPhone time.

I see parents all the time handing their iPhones to their kids for entertainment. I personally don’t have one.  I kinda don’t want the responsibility.  It seems so delicate fear the kids might break it or more likely I will break it (lol)!

I feel as parents, we have to start limiting exposure to computers and iPhones, just as we have done with television.  We need to be interacting with our children.  Just as parents have campaigned long and hard to get kids off the couch, we need to campaign get kids away from computers too.  If kids are sitting in front of a computer or an iPhone, they aren’t interacting, learning how to be bored and find something to do.  As parents, when we hand our child an iphone to play with, we are depriving them of the experience of being bored and using their creative mind to find something to do.  Yes, they may play with their silverware, pick their nose, play in their water glass or run cars all over the table, but that is ok.  Children are supposed to do those things. Children are NOT supposed to be silent or even well behaved all the time.  Yes, going out to eat or in the car with a kid  can be an unpleasant experience, but who said life was supposed to be all peachy keen and roses.  That is NOT the point!

We are bubble wrapping our kids against unpleasant experiences and ruining their creativity, their ability to think of something they might enjoy and experiment with that idea. We need to limit the computer time. We need to end the iPhone time.  These are not appropriate developmental activities for a child.  Children should be talking, reading, drawing, running, jumping, screaming, crying, LEARNING.  That is what being a child is ALL about.

NOW…let me be the first to say that is WAY easier to let your kids watch TV or use the computer or iPhone.  I have had many mornings I have wanted to plop them in front of the television and run screaming from the house. I don’t think I am alone in this sentiment.  The iPhone is much cleaner to carry in our purses than the leaking pen, the melting crayons and quieter than the toy ambulance that has the siren that keeps going off.  But the truth is, interacting with our children over the crayons and the leaky pen or negotiating the use of the siren, is the fabric of life.  These interactions are part of what our relationship with our children is built upon. Electronics seem to white wash these experiences and keep us from interacting with our children.  It used to be that parents carried a bag of cars or a coloring book in their bag to entertain their children. Now we all reach for our cell phones and it just isn’t the same.  These devices ZAP! creativity and ZAP! our relationships.

They draw us farther apart, not closer together.

I might just Flip!

I have used cloth diapers on and off over the years. My son, who is now 5 had them for most of his diapering life.  Then when our daughter came along, my husband and I gave them the axe. We just felt overwhelmed with two babies and cloth diapers.  Not to mention we were living in a tiny NYC apartment.

When our third baby came along, I didn’t even attempt it. But now…..we have been trying to “green”our family a bit and I have just discovered Flip diapers. I ordered a set for $50 last night. In the box set you receive 2 diaper covers and 6 inserts. Definitely enough to get you started.  And what is even better, if you order from diaperjunction you can give them a 30 day trial run and if you don’t like them you can return the for a full refund. Whether you are an experienced cloth diaper user or a newbie, this is a great deal.

I have always loved the idea of cloth diapering and have always wanted to do it, but often found it cumbersome and time consuming.  I am hoping that these new Flips solve those problems. In our fast, paced 21st century world, unfortunately, there is not time for the inconvience that most cloth diapers impose.  It is truly unfortunate because I think the beautiful handmade wool covers, in an ideal world, would be stables in all homes and women would gather to help each other do the laundry, folding diapers, sewing new covers and talking about their families.  Sadly, those days are gone…or perhaps they only existed in our imaginations. I’m not sure.  I just hope that these news diapers help our family lead a little gentler life, a little greener existence and ultimately lead to a happier world. Happy diapering!