Lunchtime success!

  I am really proud of my planning and research of recipes for my daughters kindergarten lunches. Although I had a lot of things to get done, I am glad i was able to get the Tupperware and groceries needed to make the ideas I found off pinterest and recipes.com. I can now say I followed through on my own plans, rather than spitting out ideas and never bothering there after. Its very easy to do that!

  I was able to get the silicone cups for her lunches as well as a thermos and containers she can open herself (thankgod I thought of that). I love how her lunches look all sectioned out. I have been trying to make smaller portions with bigger selection to help watch her diet and nutrition. Of course I have to pack fun snacks but I like to add a variety of fruits and veggies to her diet. Kids are so darn picky and she’s getting to the age where other kids influence her thought on her once favorite things. (We all know what that’s like).

  I have been sneaky and creative by getting her to eat foods with hidden veggies. It actually works. We are pretty plain eaters. I do not like to put syrup, dressings or heavy cream on or in anything. We eat plain waffles with fruit or plain pancakes because I put peanutbutter or chocolate chips inside. We also do not use ketchup or mustard ever. (Gasp). We don’t add much salt or pepper to things.

  I’m kind of boring in the condiment department. But I do love adding a few ingredients to everything. I love almonds, honey and vanilla extract. I also love cinnamon and nutmeg. I add those things to many common recipes to add variety. I am excited because I tried out a new mini muffin recipe that is really good so far. Introducing the newest flavor combo:

   Chocolate chip squash muffins!

1 Gerber baby food squash container.
1 mix of Betty crocker muffins
1/2 cup water (just add a tad less water)
1 teaspoon honey
1 sprinkle of cinnamon

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I thought about adding some other types of vegetable puree but squash seemed like a good experimental flavor. You can use a whole grain or oatmeal muffin mix as well. Also, honey is just a favorite of ours and it makes it sweet enough to hide the veggie flavor. I couldn’t get my daughter away from the batter.

  

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   I am excited to try more veggie muffins this week. I have decided to use paper cups and then freeze four or six at a time in Tupperware. I originally tried zip lock which was stupid because they stick together. By freezing it, I can defrost small amounts and stick one or two in her lunch box to add some variety.

  

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  So far I am creative and on a roll! She loved her lunch today and helped me pack tomorrows! Ideas are always welcome so please post to me if you have awesome recipe suggestions!

       

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Yum!

feministingmama

Sale-a-holic

   So… I have a confession. I am a sale-a-holic. A functioning one. I do cut coupons. I also love to stock up on sale groceries. But my madness goes so much deeper. My brain is literally hardwired with knowledge of shopping. Where to do it, how to do it and what to pick out for others. When I have to shop for something, I plan it out. I make lists and compare prices. I think of what I have already that would match or go with whatever new thing I want.

   I do not wing shopping. It must be well thought out and saved for. I dig and delve through racks. I like to even go back and circle the same spots in stores like Home Goods, Marshalls and Target. I know if I look hard enough I will find awesome things. So this year,  for my daughter, I went kindergarten clothing hunting. When I say hunting I so do not joke. My friends are always blown away with my finds. And I’m proud of them because I know it took deep thought and plotting to achieve sale shopping.
  
   I love to go to stores like H&M and Gymboree for my belle. I also find awesome things in the racks of JcPennys kids section. I raid the clearance first. I shovel through sizes and sections, grabbing things I like or love. I grab anywhere from a 6x to a 10. I have learned that different materials stretch or shrink on my child. I have also learned what is worth splurging for as well as what is a complete rip off. For instance, elastic waisted, adjustable pants are a total keeper. Those spandex leggings however are a complete waste because they fall throughout the day and give a lovely view of my five year olds ass crack. I also look for cuffable jeans and leggings that scrunch because she can wear them much longer without her ankles having to dangle out from her crazy growth spurts. All this stuff below was from children’s place, H&M and gymboree. Leggings were $4 each. Skirts all on clearance for less than $6 each. Socks five for five.

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   I have remembered and/or noted what colors stain easy. For instance, as lovely as white lace is for my daughter, I always avoid stark white tops. I avoid shirts that have attached necklaces or beading because they always break in the wash. Patches however are awesome. I wish I had a whole bucket of patches for when she rips a hole in her favorite pants or sweater. That’s what my grandmother used to do. I ask my daughter what she likes and she just shrugs, continuing to run around like a nut. So I have gotten to know her quirks. She does not mind tags like some kids. However she hates those pants with the weird little slip cuff button and zipper. Loathes them. So we do not do those. 

   I have come to adore handmedowns. My aunt has given me many bags of clothing, which always spruce up our clothing selection. What I do not like just goes into donation for someone else. And anything too stained or worn— do not throw out people. I have asked my digital spouse what to do and I learned how to make headbands from old shirts! That’s right. There is a use for them after all. Here is proof:

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I made all of the above headbands from old shirts and beads. By hand too. I will post about that another time!

   I have bought clearance shirts from various shirts and then spruced them up at home. Its a good way to save but also unique. I can assure that half of what my daughter has, no one else will. Sure a bunch of six year olds won’t care. I am thrilled because my inner fashion designer is getting to live a little.
  

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    I couponed for Gymboree and children’s place recently. The clothing is always priced pretty good but I know if I go on certain weeks, the clothing is on sale. I’ll buy a bathing suit or jacket for my daughter to wear the following year. I go as far as grabbing things a whole year ahead because it is that dang cheap to do!

  

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  Sweater shopping for kindergarten was the best. I hunted like crazy for comfortable sweaters in a size 7 or bigger so she can wear them a good two solid years. The butterfly sweater was $6 at GAP clearance. The bottom two were from marshalls for $9 each. Still great even though that was their full prices. Adorable. Versatile. Able to be washed and worn a million times.

    My greatest find of all had to be saved for last. Mostly just to see if everyone is still reading. My drum roll find from searching over an hour-no joke and going through every shoe box in the damn kids section were two pairs of Sperry’s. Both were on sale and in awesome colors that match everything. In the mall a pair is about $65 for kids and adults its well into the $90s. Gross right? What the hell are shoes made of that they cost so much? I have always wondered. At marshalls I was able to find these adorable babies for $20 each. That’s $40 for two pairs of shoes….whaaaa???? Unimaginable.

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      All because I am a sale-a-holic.

feministingmama