Summer Food List


One of the first things I like to do before spending a fortune on food shopping is take inventory of what I already have. Being that it is the first week of summer vacation, I actually have a lot of items in the freezer and dry goods stocked to go. My list generally contains foods that do not last or that we just go through each week. Here is an overview of what I consider things I need for the week:

Don’t think I’m crazy here, I just need a few ingredients for the many versions of the BellyFULL pops by The HopeFULL Company my kids love making.

• Strawberries
• Vanilla soy milk
• Cashew butter
• Infant rice cereal

I am not going to wait until Friday for one of the best Farmer’s Markets to roll around, but I am going to visit and stock up once it is here. Until then, I go to a smaller supermarket with unreasonable prices for fresh, locally grown organic produce.

• Salad
• Cucumber
• Tomatoes
• Bananas
• Watermelon
• Kiwi
• Sweet potatoes
• Corn
• Carrots
• Broccoli
• Green beans
• Asparagus
• Mushrooms
• Kale
• Oranges

Snacks to go are always useful:

• Almonds
• Hummus

Not all of these will be bought in one day. I prefer to buy the day I am cooking them. The chicken for roasting may seen a little wintery, but I can assure you, roast chicken is delicious with salad and in sandwiches, and I love the soup too much to give it up in the heat!

• Chicken
• Flank steak
• Chicken for roasting
• Salmon

The kids get a treat with some sugary garbage…once in a while and I may as well confess it here 🙂

• Cheerios
• Frosted Flakes

Nothing but organic and always devoured rather quickly:

• Milk
• Creamer
• Yoghurts

• Pancake mix – lazy I know but I’m a realist! Check out this amazing recipe, though, at One Food Guy
• Eggs
• Bagels
• Cream cheese

Most of the fruit and veg will be eaten raw, in shakes, and grilled. Some may be pureed into tomato sauce so I sneak extra into the kids. All of it will be eaten by the end of the week.

My kids are big on desserts, getting that from their daddy not me, and I try to make the summer months really about fun foods that are still nutritious. The BellyFULL pops mentioned above are a perfect snack or dessert but I also make frozen yogurt pie. I crunch up graham crackers into a dish and spoon frozen yogurt into the bits, top with fresh strawberries or raspberries, then freeze. I will add a scoop of ice-cream if no other junk has been eaten that day.

I also have a battle with soda. I won’t buy it for the boys but hubby drinks it constantly. I cannot persuade him to stop despite my “lead by example” protestations. I am opting for more healthy alternatives such as mixing 100 percent juice with seltzer or adding real fruit to plain old water or tonic. When it’s really hot, I have the kids make fruit cubes – basically water frozen with fruit inside.

healthy drink

So now I just have to plan out our schedule – I keep procrastinating about that, so I can plan out meals. Baseball is getting in the way a little as I still don’t know when the practices and games are going to be held….that’s it…I can blame the coach for a whole week of unplanned meals 🙂

A New Entryway

I am not sticking to my usual script here and it did, in fact, take me some time to decide to write about this, but I am, so here goes. I have been thinking about making my entryway a lot more attractive lately. What has this got to do with being healthy? You may ask. Well, I completely believe that health comes in many forms, both mental and physical. I know that my mind has to feel calm in order or me to even contemplate getting my body into some semblance of healthy. What better way than to boost my mood than to walk in after a long day at work to this:

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Food Labels – What they Don’t Show!

I am constantly learning more about making good choices with food and reading food labels. As my regular readers know, I have been exploring labels for organic foods and looking carefully at what is in the food I buy for my family. I discovered an App for my iPhone that has blown me away…or rather the information I have discovered has!
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Thoughtful Thursday – Invitations

 We have so many invitations in our lives.  As children, we are invited to parties.  We invite our friends to our own parties, but the guest list is usually parent-controlled or dictated by a class list.

As we get older, I’m talking the grand old age of about ten, we begin to question why we should invite everyone ‘just because’ and become more selective in our choices of people we share momentous occasions with.

Though adolescence, invitations become a status symbol….who is or is not invited becomes a crucial element in social standing and ‘coolness’.  Adults poo-poo this as childish; part of the angst-ridden journey teenager takes on the path of self-discovery and self-invention.

Then, as an adult we justify our own decisions to invite a person or group to certain functions. We consider, with great care, the event, the mix of people, the space, and the benefit each guest will bestow on us, the hosts.  This, of course, is far more mature than the adolescent ‘clique’ invitations that can hurt and crush individuals beyond recognition!  The invitation to a friend’s Bar Mitzvah, the wedding of distant cousins, or a children’s birthday party (you know, when you are relying on your child to point out the birthday boy as you have no clue who they are), are just part of the society we have created.  Go along and have fun!  Enjoy being the one who gets the invitation and hope your BFF doesn’t find out she wasn’t invited!

But there are also the most amazing types of invitations….the ones that often do not appear on paper or an Evite.  These invitations are more personal, more connected to the individuals involved.  We are complex creatures driven by primal instincts.  Therefore the invitations from the heart and soul are the ones that really count.   They can be invitations between a man and a woman to begin a discussion that may lead somewhere…or maybe not….but the invitation is implied in body language and signals.  Invitations to ‘come to bed early, darling’ can be exciting and out of the ordinary.

Precious invitations between a parent and a child to have a snuggle or read a book together….bliss!

Look out for the invitations we receive everyday from our fellow human beings; invitations to engage in a conversation, help a friend, an invitation to notice a moment that is precious to someone else.  Invitations that need no RSVP!


Welcome to Company Coffee Girl Blog Hop.  I am getting to meet some wonderful bloggers through this blog and this is a great way to meet more.  Posts have been about all sorts of things so I decided to spend a moment (the time it takes to have a nice cup of coffee) to think about children.

Children are the greatest people on Earth. They speak from the heart, make no judgment about a person based on physical features, and have a knack of making me smile even at my darkest times.
Children don’t come with a handbook, which can lead to a number of issues with their upbringing and dealings in general. Despite every attempt at reading the Mommy Handbook, Parents Guide to Babies, How to Raise Kids who Love Themselves, etc…you could never find one book that actually gave you an answer to the particular question you had at the time….and there have been many questions!
Children grow and change.  Again…no handbook for this!  Children have their own point of view and you have NO idea where it came from….surely you made YOUR point of view very clear about respecting others and their differing opinions?  Why isn’t the message getting across like YOU want it to?  Why does your child insist on thinking and doing the opposite of what you want?  Oh yes, because you are trying to raise them  to think for themselves!  Now, where is that handbook?
Children are exhausting!  They can run faster and longer and with a much higher pitched squeal than you ever did.  They can function on minimal intake of nutritious food and need less sleep than those books we now store in the garage say they MUST have in order to be human!
Children also love to REALLY need to have the latest and greatest gadgety thingy that has just been advertised, just like all the others that now lay broken in the garage along with the handbooks!
But what children REALLY are cannot be put into words.  The first smile, gummy and drool filled.  The hand that fits so snuggly into yours as you walk along the beach collecting shells.  The excitement of Christmas, the Tooth Fairy, the night before their birthday.  The scraped knee and the knowledge that only YOU can really make it better.  The kiss goodnight, sleep tight, mind the bedbugs don’t bite!  The words that come from the person who loves you most in the world…”I love you Mommy.”  And the knowledge that this little person means more to you than anything in the world as you utter, “I love you too!”
Visit other posts on this blog hop by clicking on the button:

Organizing For the New Year

Source: via Gems113  on Pininterst.

Thinking about the New Year, I am plotting a redesign of my entryway. I have a relatively large space which gets overrun with bags, shoes and jackets.  Then, to add to the mayhem, I have random toys, mail and keys to deal with.  I do have a lovely Pottery Barn pin-board with hooks…but it just doesn’t cut it.  There is mess everywhere.  Okay, I admit I do have to train the troops better…they are all slobs!

I rather like the idea pictured above.  The backpack issue would be resolved, and there are baskets for all the junk that accumulates on my tiny table near the door.  Some adaptations to the bench would mean I could have a station for shoes also.  The height is perfect for Peanut and Button….no excuses about not being able to reach!  To top it off (sorry for the pun) the shelf on top is perfect for me to add a little of my taste with a display for the season (I do like to change things up between summer and winter).

Of course I have the hardest job to do first – getting Hubby to change the paint color as I really dislike the one we just put on…you know, the one I chose…wish me luck!

The Best Christmas Present Ever!!!

Boxes!  Yep, you read that right….the oldest joke about gifts is coming true in my household today.  Peanut and Button have way too many gifts to even know where to begin playing with them (as ever), and they are deeply engrossed in building fortresses and myriad other imaginary things with….old cardboard boxes from the garage!

So, next year, I will skip the madness, avoid the parking lots, save my dollars, and wrap up several differently sized empty cardboard boxes on Christmas Eve.  Well, I won’t, but it soooo tempting!  Meanwhile, I’m off to play with the Legos 🙂

A Soap to Try

I know I was going to post about plants helping to freshen our homes but then I found a ‘must have’ that I want to share with you.  I am always looking for greener alternatives to use personally and around my home.  I use organic as much as I can…despite the price.  I have even turned to organic skincare…my face is healthier, but the lines are definitely creeping in!!! I need to do more research into something healthy for my face that will also melt away (not literally) the years.

As skin covers our bodies, and is a wonderful organ for soaking up any ingredient we put on it, I have been looking for a fairly well priced and effective soap that the whole family can use.  With glee I checked into one of my favorite BIG blogs The Simple Mom and discovered some pearls of wisdom and a must try product from Tsh Oxenreider. Please check out The Simple Mom for even more great ideas.  This is my next purchase:

Whole Foods – Castile Soap


Sold by: 16 FL OZ (473mL)

Ingredients: Organic pyrus malus (apple) juice, saponified oils (organic cocos nucifera [coconut] oil, potassium hydroxide*, organic helianthus annuus [sunflower] seed oil, organic sesamum indicum [sesame] oil, organic simmondsia chinensis [jojoba] seed oil), aqua (purified water), organic cyamopsis tetragonoloba (guar) gum, organic mentha piperita (peppermint) oil, organic aloe barbadensis (aloe) leaf juice. *Used to turn oils into real soap.

A similar product is available at Walgreens.

Dr. Bronner – Castile Soap

Ideas for uses – straight from Walgreens

  • For facial packs, scalp & soothing body rub, add dash on bath towel in sink of hot water. Wring out. Lay over face & scalp. Massage with fingertips. Repeat 3 or 4 times ’til arms, legs & all are rubbed, always towards the heart. Rinse towel in plain hot water and massage again. Breathe deeply! Health is wealth. Within 9 minutes you feel fresh and clean, saving 90% of your hot water & soap
  • Concentrated. Clouds when cold. Put in warm room/water: clears at 70°F

Here’s to squeaky clean and healthy!