A Guest Post: Lunchbox Oops!

I’ve got another guest blogger for you guys!  I like hearing new voices here on my blog and this one is chalk full of GREAT ideas… that I am going to put to use immediately!  This is written by a friend of mine, Jenn.  If you like what you read today, go check out her site!

Hi all! I was asked by my friend and fellow Blogger, Ms Queen of the Jungle to bip on over to her blog and write a little something for yʼall. I am a mommy, wife, RN, and real foodie who loves to blog about health, nutrition, yummy clean recipes, and of course what goes on in our crazy household. You can check me out at my website/blog www.rnforwellness.com anytime you are looking for any of those things I listed above.

So lets get to it! Being a mom of two crazy boys and a real foodie means life is always interesting in our house. When you live the life of real food your ideals do not always match up with the ideas of a 4 or 6 year old. I am constantly faced with the challenge of getting my kids excited about eating clean healthy food over prepackaged salt and sugar filled treats.

My husband also struggles with this and it was quite evident the other day when he packed my oldest sonʼs lunch. Now because we have to do this lunch thing five days a week my husband and I share the dreaded task of packing the lunches. When we were new to eating this way I would assist my husband along but now that we are a few years in I let him figure it out. I do the shopping and food prep so I make sure there are lots of options in the house that would not only make me happy but Jake as well.

Sooooo that brings me to Monday two weeks ago. On Mondayʼs I help out in Jakeʼs class. At the end of reading lab all the kids grab their snack form their lunch or line up for a classroom provided snack. Jake came up to me and asked if it would be OK if he got the class provided snack instead of his own. Looking over I see that the class provided snack is a standard boxed cookie from the market. I let Jake know that he could not have a cookie (partially because those are for kids who did not bring a snack and because the snack was crap) and that he needed to get his snack from his lunch. He proceeded to glare at me, cross his arms, and stomp to his backpack. I ignored the mini-fit and headed out as well. When we got to his backpack he began to get more and more upset, tears were very close. I peeked into his lunch and this is what I saw:

1. Sandwich (turkey/cheese)

2. pretzels

3. string cheese

4. tangerine

5. water

UGH! I immediately thought Doug! are you kidding me? How completely boring and unappealing. I wouldnʼt want to eat this either. Of course Jake wanted the cookie!

Now because Doug and I always try to look like we are a united front I encouraged the string cheese and tangerine and coaxed him to the cafeteria. Jake followed suit and begrudgingly ate the snack. I reassured him that I would make sure daddy understood  that he needed to add some fun food in there as well. When I left the school I immediately called Doug and started with WTF buddy what are you trying to do get our kids to hate us and hate healthy food. I kindly reminded him of the most important key component to raising nutritionally sound healthy kids. As parents we need to make it fun, tasty, and appealing on multiple levels. He of course agreed (kind of ) and then said he was just being lazy. Well lazy aint gonna cut it big guy. So let me repeat again…

Key point!!! What you feed your child must be fun, tasty, and appealing on multiple levels. If it is not those things they will seek food elsewhere. And better yet, lie to you to cover up. I want kids to get to be kids and not feel like they are missing out. Now because I know we all struggle with this I wanted to include a few lunchbox solutions to help you out.

1. Snackanimal cookies

2. Kettle chips/sweet potato chips/veggie straws

3. Organic graham crackers (these do not have HFCS or PHO)

4. Yogurt (greek fruit in the bottom)

5. Applesauce

6. Different types of cheese sticks

7. Homemade trail mix (you can find a recipe on my blog)

8. Granola Bar (Kids Cliff or TLC)

9. Cliff kids twisty fruit bars/ Anneʼs bunny fruit snacks

For more suggestions you can check out the blog or subscribe to my monthly nutrition newsletter by emailing me at wellnessrn@sti.net.

Thanks Queen!!

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Roots of my Heart

I have an amazing friend. Her name is Carrie. Part of what makes her so amazing is that she grew up in Africa. Amazing, right? I asked her to write a little somethin’ somethin’ for this here blog and she did. Here it is. When you’re done reading this, go check out her blog. It’s amazing!

Hello, Queen of the Jungle Readers!  My name is Carrie.  I’m friends with the Queen of this domain and she invited me to write a little something for you, her readers.  Normally you can find me blogging over at roots of my heart about my childhood in Kenya.  You’re welcome to join me there any time you like.

If you came over to my house in California today just for a little coffee and a chat, I would be delighted. (You’d have to excuse the mess because housekeeping is not my strong suit.)  If, when you came, you brought me a little gift, I’d be even more delighted.  If that gift was a large bunch of green bananas, I would smile politely and thank you all the while wondering if you’d lost your ever-lovin’ mind.

But in Kenya, you see, a gift is not something you go and purchase in order to please your friend.  A gift is something you already have that you choose to bestow upon your friend; like a bunch of green bananas off of your banana tree, or a few ears of maize out of your shamba (vegetable garden).  We always took a big bag of loose-leaf tea or sugar when we went visiting.

This is a picture of my cousin and me nestled among the bountiful gifts our family had just received.  The maize and bananas were undoubtedly freshly picked from the shamba that very day.  Local women often delivered milk to us.  My mom distributed these glass bottles that had once contained Tree Top concentrated orange drink.  If she didn’t distribute the bottles, women often brought the milk in a gourd that was sterilized with coals, leaving the milk tasting quite smokey.  We were clearly content to munch on the delicious sugar cane.

Over the years we received goats, chickens, pumpkins and other produce.  But perhaps the most memorable gift was a freshly killed warthog!  My mom canned most of the meat.  It was surprisingly delicious, especially with barbecue sauce on a bun.  It tasted a lot like a pulled pork sandwich.

There is nothing better than a gift given sacrificially from the heart.

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Guest Post at Momma Be Thy Name

Awhile back I gave a shout out to my fellow blogger, Stephanie, over at Momma Be Thy Name for her fabulous post titled Why Our Parents Put Us To Shame.  (And I swear the rest of this post will not rhyme.)  Anywho, a few weeks ago she asked me to be a guest writer on her blog and of course I said yes!  So, here’s a bit of my post to entice you and then click the link over to her blog to read the rest.  (And, hey, leave a comment while you’re over there.  I have a reputation to protect here, people.  Make me feel loved!)

I live in one of the nine states that prohibit handheld cell phone usage while you are driving your car.  I get the premise behind it.  Holding a cell phone to your ear leaves only one hand on the wheel and distracts you from driving responsibly.  Although, if we’re going to ban handheld cell phones, we should probably also ban eating in your car, applying makeup in your car, and most importantly, driving in your car while children are present…  

Read the rest HERE