Sugar

When R was a little baby Matt and I watched the Katie Couric movie, Fed Up. If you haven’t seen it, it’s about the obesity epidemic in America and how sugar in processed food is a huge cause. A portion of the movie talked about how all of this sugar affected children too. This part especially stuck with us.

So as R is growing up I try to be incredibly conscious of the processed foods and added sugars that are in the food I feed R. My friends probably think I’m a little crazy but I’m hoping  that I can teach R how to make good choices with food.

Now don’t get me wrong, we still enjoy going out to eat. I just make sure that when we are eating at home we make sure to stick to healthy eats. Here is an example of a daily menu for R:

Breakfast: One egg, plain greek yogurt, and blueberries – The only whole fat greek yogurt I’ve found consistently is Fage so we go with that. I never even realized how much sugar is added to the flavored yogurts! Now we use greek yogurt for everything (it replaces mayo, sour cream and cream)

Lunch: Half a PB&J sandwich, avocado and fruit – I use “healthy” bread, although bread really isn’t healthy ha, All Natural Peanut Butter, and homemade Jam (I LOVE making my own) so the peanut butter and jam have no added sugars and bread has very little

Snacks: Cheese stick, hummus & veggies, freeze dried fruits

Dinner: This one varies a lot, just depends on what we are eating but this is where we try to get her most of her veggies and meat (my kid will definitely never be a vegetarian ha)

Costco is also a great place to find healthy, no sugar added, and organic snacks for the little ones. They have an apple sauce R is obsessed with, fruit leathers,blueberry seed bars, and more. Unfortunately they tend to rotate through all of these goodies so you never know what you’re going to get on any given trip. I also try to make fun snacks to have on hand too. In the picture there are blueberry oatmeal muffins, they use honey, and broccoli cheese balls that are deliciously yummy! Plus the homemade jam, I’ll share that recipe soon!

So I’m no where near perfect. We love Mod Pizza, Chipotle and lots of other eating out but that’s why I try to focus on eating healthy when we are at home. It’s all about balance, the 80/20 rule. I’m better at sticking to it for R than I am for myself, but I’m getting there 🙂

What are your favorite healthy snacks for the kiddos?

 

Family Vacation

For Christmas 2015 Matt and I gave his parents a trip to Hawaii! It was pretty cute, we actually make a basket for them with a pineapple shaped cutting board, macadamia nuts, a coconut scented candle and a few leis with no note about what it all meant. So we opened presents via Facetime so that we could see the confusion on their faces before we told them what it all meant 🙂 It was quite fun!

So fast forward to May 2016 and we are all headed on a fabulous vacation to Kauai. We prefer staying in condos or houses so I scoured VRBO to find the best fit. We finally landed  on  a place on the Central Coast about 10 minutes north of the airport near Kapaa. It was SO beautiful!! We were right on the beach and the complex had a wonderful pool surrounded by a gorgeous lawn for Ryley to run in.

This was our first big trip with Ryley so we weren’t sure what we were in for. But honestly inn the end it was amazing! We tried to do a mix of kid stuff and adult stuff. Luckily with the in-laws along with us we were able to do that. Matt and I got to go ziplining with Skyline Adventure. They are located at The Shops at Kukuiula which was an adorable place. We enjoyed a quick snack at Living Foods Market. Loved that place, wish we had one here. It is a grocery market with a great lunch counter where you can get sandwiches and lots of other delicious options. Afterwards we enjoyed lunch at Tortilla Republic Grill and then the most amazing Mai Tai at Merriman’s. OMG you have to try this, so good!!

IMG_20160504_130843

The other thing we did on our own was attend a luau. It was also really fun even though it rained HARD the whole time. Luckily we were under cover but the poor dancers were out in the rain! It was still a blast. I highly recommend checking out Smith’s Family Luau. It was quite a fun show.

So on to the activities that we did while with Ryley. Aside from lots of pool and beach time we enjoyed a few spots I’d highly recommend for people heading over with young kiddos. Here is our list of our favorites:

  • Fern Grotto Cruise – this is a big boat where they sing and dance while you head over to the Fern Grotta. It’s a beautiful geological wonder! The hike to it from the boat is short and easy for Ryley to walk as well. Perfect and easy for young kids
  • Sprouting Horn Park – it’s the Old Faithful of Kauai. It’s cute and then there is a little tourist market  to walk through and check out cute stuff. Ryley got a little stuff chicken to commemorate all the chickens they have in Kauai 🙂
  • National Botanical Garden – right down the street from Sprouting Horn is this awesome garden. It is truly beautiful and even has some great Lego statues the kids love
  •  Lydgate Beach Park  – an AWESOME place to take the little ones swimming. There is a rock formation that reduces the waves coming so the little ones can more easily play in the water. R had a blast playing in the water, going in the ocean and playing in the sand. They also have a really cool playground that R loved, it was truly unique
  • Koloa Rum Company – although it’s a rum thing this is a great place for kids. They have an awesome train ride that takes you around the grounds. Then the kids get to feed pigs and goats and you all get to check out awesome scenary. They also have a great rum tasting available BUT no one under 21 is allowed in the room so you’ll have to find someone to watch the little on20160506_102455

We also had some great food! Both more Hawaiian and more “boring”. Here are a few of our faves:

  • Merriman’s – not only was the Mai Tai good but they had a great kalua pork quesadilla
  • Puka Dog – this comes from a friend of mine, we never had the chance to try it but some of the locals also told us it was great
  • DaCrack – we also didn’t try this one but our zipline instructors highly recommended it
  • Street Burger – this place had seriously the BEST burgers ever! And amazing service

Hopefully this gives some of you some ideas for an upcoming trip you might have. Really most of our time was spent relaxing on our patio and our beach. It was such a great week and a much needed time to relax!

Out to Eat

I would consider Matt & I to be some what foodies and this is definitely a trait we’d like to pass on to R. So I’d say we indulge often in the going out to eat fun 🙂 But as R has gotten older, taking her out to eat has gotten a bit more difficult. So one day I went on over to my trusty Pinterest and searched for “restaurant bag”. There weren’t a ton of ideas but this is the one I enjoyed the most: Restaurant Kit

The next day I went to Target and found the perfect bag. Deciding what to put it in was the hard yet fun part. I wanted enough things so that I wouldn’t have to change it out often (I’m lazy) but not too many that it’s too heavy for R to carry herself.

So here is my bag:

20160512_124546

It has two large compartments that have smaller compartments inside. Check it out:

 

In the end I included quite a few things that R loves. Here is my list:

  • Color Wonder paper that I cut down to fit on a small clipboard
  • 4 Color Wonder markers (I choose markers so that crayons didn’t melt in the car)
  • 3 mini puzzles
  • 1 magnet board with alien magnets
  • Reusable sticker books (thank you to my MIL for getting these for our trip to Hawaii!)
  • A set of lacing cards
  • Mini books (also thanks to my MIL)

So…..quite the array of items to keep her occupied and happy. So far we’ve used it twice and it’s been great! I don’t pull it out right away. We start with just letting her be and then when we can tell she’s getting antsy, that is when it break it out. I love that it’s all contained in such a nice and compact way too! R also LOVES the bag. She gets excited to carry it and knows that fun is coming when we pull it out. So far I’d call this one a success!

What are your tricks to keep the kids occupied while out and about?

 

Growing up with Color

R is a toddler that tends to catch on to things pretty quickly. She’s always been great at recognizing things, especially animals. So when we started working  on  colors and it seemed to be going  nowhere Matt and I were *kind of jokingly* worried. We both have color blindness in our family, and although rare in girls it’s not impossible.

So being the determined person that I am, I wanted to keep working on colors. I made up a very simple activity. Pulled out my trusty, and rarely used, scrapbook paper in all the colors  of the  rainbow and used a 2.5″ hole punch to make 3 circles out of each color. Then I taped one circle of each color to the wall, in rainbow order of course (ROYGBIV anyone??).

The exciting part was next. I put tape on the  back of the other circles and mixed them  up so they weren’t in the same order as the ones on the wall. And guess what?!?! My little genius matched up all the colors! Very proud momma moment! We are still working on learning their  names but this activity definitely made Matt and I feel much better. Plus, it’s always so exciting when your little one finally gets something you’ve been working on.

img_20160511_091922

But this whole thing got me thinking….what would it be like to live without color. Our world is so vibrant and to not be able to distinguish between all of it…well  I can’t even imagine. I know those who are color blind know no different but I’m definitely glad R will grow up with the ability to see all the color in the world.

My Journey

This is the excerpt for your very first post.

Back to blogging? Giving it another try and we’ll see how it all goes. I’ve tried this a few times and I end up getting busy and not being able to keep up. But we’ll try again 🙂

I’m hoping to share with everyone my life with the little one. Things about crafts, play dates, parks, vacations, recipes, and all the other exciting things this little lady brings to my life!

So here’s to starting something new…again. Join me on my journey on this SAHM adventure. The ups, the downs, the craziness that it is. Not every day is sunshine and blue skies, although we do live in California so it’s most days, so I will be sharing those cloudy days too. Come along for the ride.