Somewhere between the typical nausea and exhaustion of pregnancy followed by the sleepless nights as a second-time mom, cooking went from being a favourite hobby to a dreaded chore last year. With that meant countless breakfast-for-dinners, Thai and Greek takeout nights, and hubby-stepping-up-in-the-kitchen meals during what felt like a one-year hiatus from the kitchen.
Then Fall came. The postpartum fog lifted along with my girl sleeping at more predictable times, and I started cooking from scratch and experimenting with new recipes once more. And I actually enjoyed it! I finally got out of my “just surviving” funk and into “thriving!” Hallelujah!
The best part? My sweet three-year-old starting paying me the cutest little compliments at dinner time...
Up until this week, the only vegetables my preschooler hadn’t turned his nose up at were cucumbers and green salads. It’s oddly difficult to admit this as a dietitian, because I feel as though my kids should be adventurous little eaters with Brussels sprouts and quinoa as favourite foods. (But I also know as a dietitian that’s just nonsense.) So what have mealtimes and snacks looked like in our home?
Are your kids continuously hungry and constantly asking (perhaps whining) for more snacks? When my son, Liam, transitioned from nursing to requiring snacks, I felt that was him. He was always hungry. And, I’d find myself stuffing a quick snack into my purse as I left the house “just in case” the hunger monster emerged. I naively thought this “foolproof” method was the key to avoiding meltdowns. However, without planned, balanced snacks, children’s hangry mood swings start to run the show. And, on-the-go snacking often consists of designed-for-kids snacks (e.g. Goldfish-like crackers and fruit snacks) that usually contain all simple carbohydrates with limited micronutrients (vitamins and minerals), protein, and fibre. Without balancing simple carbs, you'll be greeting those familiar hunger pangs an hour later, much to every parent's dismay.
So before I get into three strategies to improve snack time and finally cage the hunger monster, let’s first look at why snacks are important for children.
It’s that time of the year. Everyone is getting the stomach flu. You know—nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramping, headache, and sometimes fever. Unlike true influenza, there’s no flu shot to prevent the stomach flu (also know by professionals as viral gastroenteritis). All you can do is practice serious hand washing and food safety… and avoid people with it. Well, with a two-year-old, that’s not always the easiest thing to do. In fact, my little guy brought it home twice in the past month, and obviously you can’t leave a child to fend for himself when a virus comes knocking on your door. Which means, this mama got her fair share of days hovering over the toilet, too.
So to celebrate saying farewell to our home’s stomach bug (for now), I’ve compiled info for the best remedies to help your household fight this winter nuisance.
Picture this. It’s a sweltering August day—the air stagnant with humidity—and your child comes zooming up to you with bright red cheeks, sweaty brow, and a few hungry neighbourhood kids trailing behind. It’s snack time. They’re famished. After all, the kids have been nonstop running and climbing trees for the past two hours. So you retreat to the freezer and retrieve your childhood favourite “Mr. Freezes.” The kids gladly accept the treats and are on their way again. Then no less than thirty minutes later, they’re back. They’re hungry. And, they’re grumpier than before. You glance up at and turn from the clock in defeat--how can there still be two hours before dinnertime?!
Does this scenario sound familiar? If so, keep reading. If not, still keep reading… there’s a delicious recipe headed your way! Here’s three reasons why you should make homemade popsicles today:
Hello, I'm Erin – a follower of Christ, wife, mama of two, and registered dietitian. Welcome to my blog where I write about intentional motherhood, intuitive eating, inspired discipleship, and whatever else I feel like!
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