Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Blogmania Starts Tomorrow!

Tomorrow starts off the first of 2 days of Blogmania. There are over 100 blogs involved in this that are giving away things that are worth between $100-$1000. If you have the next 2 days free, you may find some really great giveaways to enter!

One blog that is giving away a great mommy giveaway is Home Grown Families. She is giving away a Peapod Creations organic wrap with matching burp cloth. This is valued at $120! Another great things is that she is offering several ways to enter a day early. Head on over and get a head start on this great giveaway!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

5 Lessons Every Kid Should Learn

As parents we know that we have a responsibility to our children to teach them life lessons. There are so many things to teach them and as they grow we see the importance of each and every thing. My son is 2.5 years old and I feel like I am constantly teaching him another lesson. Whether it is preventative or disciplinary, we teach them because we love them.

If you had to make a list of 5 lessons that every kid should learn, which would be your top 5? Here is my list of 5 things that I have found I have already started teaching my little man.
  1. Listen to your parents no matter what.
  2. Look both ways before crossing the street while holding an adult's hand.
  3. Share your things, don't be selfish.
  4. Save your money.
  5. Say please and thank you.

In the comments below, tell me how old your little one(s) is and what your 5 lessons would be for that age group.

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Nanny McPhee Returns blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

EcoMom Giveaway

Here is another great giveaway hosted by Closet of Free Samples for a $15 EcoMom Gift Card. There are so many ways to enter this giveaway so go and check it out! You have until September 1st to get your entries in.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Beat the Heat, Homemade Popsicles

It has been awefully hard to beat the heat around here lately! There are some easy ways to make popsicles that are healthy and delicious for your little ones and yourself for that matter! Today my mom and little guy and I went to Eckert's which is a local orchard that you can pick your own fruits. Right now peaches and blackberries are ripe. We picked a basket of peaches and were then too hot to pick blackberries.

Here is what I did with some of the peaches. First I washed the loose fuzz off the peaches. As you probably now peaches are very fuzzy. It is definitely okay to eat the fuzz but washing off the loose stuff is best. I took about 6 peaches, washed them and cut them into big slices.

The first 3 I blended as is and put the puree into ice trays. This will be a great treat to add to Sprite, lemonade, water or a spritzer. You can even use these puree cubes for homemade baby food. It will stay good in a deep freeze for about 6 months only 3 months in a fridge freezer.

The second 3 I blended up and added a cup of water. If you have yogurt, add 1/2 cup on yogurt and 1/2 cup of water to make it creamier. I then poured this puree into popsicle trays for a delicious frozen treat in a couple days. Mine made 12 popsicles. My little guy won't eat peaches but he may eat a frozen peach popsicle. We'll see!

Do you have any other ideas or recipes for fresh fruit frozen treats. The things I listed can be done with any fresh fruit. Most fresh fruit mixes are delicious too!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Another Great Cloth Diaper Giveaway!

Head on over to Home Grown Families and enter for your chance to win one of these cloth diapers from Green Acre Designs.

There are several ways to enter so do as many as you would like!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Fluff Envy

Are you on Facebook? If so, would you like the chance to win a Knickernappie cloth diaper? All you have to do is visit Fluff Envy's Facebook page and "Like" them. When they have 1500 "Likes" they are going to offer a giveaway! You can then watch their page and when they post details about the giveaway, enter to win.

Want a chance to win Seventh Generation products?

If you would like the chance to win free products from Seventh Generation, be sure to become a Nation Member. Sign up at their website and enter the giveaways that they post on occasion.

Right now they are giving away Disinfectant Spray Cleansers or Wipes if you answer a simple question. Check it out and enter for your chance to win!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Smartipants Giveaway at Mom Most Traveled!

If you are interested in cloth diapering, you may want to head over to Mom Most Traveled and enter her giveaway for Smartipants!

I try to enter every cloth diaper giveaway I can find and have yet to win. Maybe this will be my lucky contest. How about you? Win any cloth diapers or still crossing your fingers?

FREE Advertising Here!

If you look to my right side bar, you will see a box that says Your Ad Here. This is set up by Project Wonderful. All you have to do to get FREE advertising right here on my blog is to set up an account with them (FREE) and bid on my ad space (search for Mommy & Me, Naturally!). If you are first to place a bid, your bid will be FREE. If you are not first, it will be very inexpensive. Try it!

My 1st Giveaway EVER!

In honor of opening my Etsy shop, I would like to offer a set of cloth nursing pads up to one of my readers. The nursing pads you will receive will not be the ones pictures but they will look like these.

These nursing pads are handmade from fleece, cotton and decorative material. The fleece side goes against your skin for absorbency and the design is on the outside. They have a waterproof lining just inside the decorative material that prevents leakage onto your clothing. They can be machine washed in cool/lukewarm water and must be dried flat. DO NOT machine dry them, it will break down the waterproof lining and cause them to leak. If you accidentally dry them once, they should be fine but the lining will break down if they are continually exposed to the dryer.

If you are a breastfeeding mommy, you have or will experience sore nipples from time to time. If this happens to you, place a pair in the freezer after you have washed them. After a few hours, they will work as a wonderful cooling agent for your nipples. They are also great to use this way as a gentle teething pad for your little one. My little guy loved to teeth on frozen cloth and the softness of the fleece and cold were a perfect combination.

It is mandatory for you to be a Google follower of this blog to enter the giveaway. Fill out the form below and you are entered.

Congratulations to Donna who won this giveaway. Thanks to all who entered!

Where have you been?

I know, it has been a while since I have posted anything here. Life has just been so busy! Since I posted last, I have gotten pregnant (4.5 months now) and opened an Etsy shop. I have been extremely busy making products to sell in my shop.

I opened a shop because I have decided to not go back to work when I have this baby. I feel it will be better for my family and I if I focus all my time and energy on my growing family. We know that God will provide though finances may be tough at first.

I am excited to have more time to do house chores, teach my son and watch my soon to come baby grow. Have you had to make the decision between work and stay-at-home mom? What was your conclusion? How is your decision working out for you. I'm sure there are other moms besides me out there wondering. Please share with us!

Monday, May 24, 2010

20% off at BabyGanics

If you are in need of organic cleaning supplies, you may be interested to check out BabyGanics. If you find something you like, be sure to use this code: THANKYOU20 to get 20% off. This code is good from May 24-28th so hurry and order if you are interested!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pregnancy a Disease????

So apparently Barnes and Noble Bookstore considers pregnancy a disease. Shame on them! They have pregnancy books listed under the disease section of their bookstore. A friend of mine went there today and saw this and was offended as am I. Pregnancy is a blessing and miracle from God and should never, under any circumstances be considered a disease! I have sent them an email expressing my opinion about this. I will follow up with a response from them when I receive it.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Composting, Naturally

Did you ever wish you could do something other than throw away all the fruit and veggie scraps that you get from cooking? I did. I recently heard about composting. I actually saw a commercial for a kitchen composter. It was very expensive but I thought the idea was awesome! I decided to put together a little of what I found while researching the topic.

Easiest Homemade Composter:

  • Use a galvanized metal trash can. You will need to drill several holes into it and it will need a tight fitting lid. You will also need to dig a hole in the ground.
  • Use a plastic storage container with tight fitting lid. You will need to drill holes in this as well. This can be for indoor or outdoor use. This can also double as a seat!
  • Click here for how to make them.

What Can Be Composted:

  • Vegetable Scraps
  • Grains
  • Pasta
  • Fruit Rinds
  • Fruit Peels
  • Breads
  • Coffee Grounds & Filters
  • Tea Bags
  • Egg Shells (only if washed out so no more animal product is in it)
  • Paper Towels
  • Paper Napkins
  • Toilet Paper (not soiled w/ human waste)
  • Paper Plates (no animal products on the plate)
  • Leaves
  • Sticks
  • Grass
  • Other yard waste

What Cannot Be Composted:

  • Any animal products
  • Meat
  • Fish
  • Poultry
  • Cheese
  • Oily Foods
  • Butter

Here are a few resources that I found very helpful:

Do you compost at home? What do you use as your compost bin? What have you found to be benefits/negative of home composting? Please share any ideas on the subject that you may have. I hope to start this process soon so any helpful tips would be greatly appreciated!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Yeah, I Won An Award!

Thanks to Ashley at Mommy & Son for giving me this award. This is my first award and I am so happy to receive it!

The Rules:
1. Thank the person who gave you this award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Pass the award along to 15 bloggers who you have recently discovered and who you think are fantastic!
4. Contact the bloggers you've picked and let them know about the award.

So, the 7 things about myself are:
  1. I am a wife & mommy of 1 and hopefully more.
  2. I have a passion to help mothers interested in natural childbirth.
  3. I love cats!
  4. I love to read and my favorite author is Nicholas Sparks (before all these movies on his books came out).
  5. I love to be outside.
  6. I plan to open my own Etsy shop very soon.
  7. I love to save money!

Here are the 15 blogs that I would like to pass this award along to:

  1. Sarah @ Crazy House
  2. Tree @ Mother Of Pearl It Is
  3. Janet @ Grammy Janet's Place
  4. Heather @ I'd Rather Be Changing Diapers
  5. HiLesha @ Green & Glam
  6. Jenna @ A Mom's Balancing Act
  7. Jenny @ I'm a Full-time Mummy
  8. Lillian @ The Mini Beach Bird
  9. Coupon Clippin' Daddy
  10. Marsha @ Taste and See God's Goodness
  11. Life is a Sandcastle
  12. The Professional Family Manager
  13. The Beckers @ Baby in the Big City
  14. Leslie @ Live, Love, Laugh With Leslie
  15. Chrissy @ Traveling Light

Monday, May 3, 2010

Get FREE Points at Recyclebank

If you recycle, why not earn freebies in the mean time? Have you heard of RecycleBank? If not, check them out here. I have earned several free products such as Kashi Cereal, Seventh Generation Cleaning products, and more.

RecycleBank now also partners with Nature Made. If you are a user of Nature Made, you can earn even more free stuff! Get the details here.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

On the Look Out

I am on the look out for Organic, Eco-friendly, natural Supporting blogs or online stores. If you know of one, please send comment below with the link.

If you are the blog or store owner, please also let me know that. If you are not the blog or store owner, I will contact the owner to see if I can add their link to my blog.

Thanks for helping me to collect this awesome information for you and my future readers!

Pregnancy Fun Fact

Have you thought maybe the doctor got your due date wrong or you just aren't sure. There is one fun way to double check your due dates.

Watch for the first day that you feel baby kick. Now, add 5 months to that day and consider that as your due date.

It is very hard to know exactly when you conceive and the doctors only guess at the date. This is another way to check your dates.

Resource: Husband-Coached Childbirth (Fifth Edition): The Bradley Method of Natural Childbirth pg. 170.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Sunflower Project!

If you are interested in planting something new this year and would also like to help the environment then consider joining The Great Sunflower Project.

I have never tried to plan sunflowers before so I am kind of excited to try them out this year and see what happens. I had a friend that grew them last year and they looked awesome and the seeds he got were fabulous.

Not only is this a great way to try out your gardening hand but it also helps the environment. Did you know that there is a bee shortage in the US? That's right, there are too few bees. You may see bees as a pest that you are allergic to but they are actually very beneficial to the environment. They are the ones that pollenate flowers that produce fruits. They are also the source of honey. Without bees, we would not be able to enjoy honey, the most natural organic sweetener!

So, what do you say? You in or you out? Leave a comment and let me know if you will join the Project.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Friday Follow

Friday Follow

If you are looking for new followers for your blog, be sure to enter the Friday Follow! Welcome to any new followers!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Seventh Generation Cleaning Kit Giveaway!

Are you in need of Eco-friendly cleaning supplies? Be sure to check out this giveaway over at Mom On A Mission 2008. Have you tried Seventh Generation products before? Which is your favorite Eco-friendly cleaner?

Sunday, April 4, 2010

How to Recycle Old Office Supplies

I wanted to talk about how to re"ycle old office supplies. So lets think, what items are usually in an office stapler/staples, writing utensils, paper/folders, tape, ruler, envelopes, envelope sealers, pencil sharpener, pencil holder, paper clips, push pins, or page clasps.
  1. Staplers & staples can also be used for scrapbooking. If you have a bunch of old staplers and staples laying around, use them to attach things to your scrapbook pages. Instead of using glue or tape, use a staple! I have learned that when you are on a budget, you use what is on hand instead of buying more stuff.
  2. Writing utensils can be used for several things. If you have a pencil and it is getting too small for your to use, give it to your kids (if they are old enough to handle sharp objects). Their hands are smaller and you will get more use out of a pencil.
  3. Paper or old folders can be used several times. If you print something and only use part of the page, use the rest as scrap paper (cut it down to post-it size) or shred it. The shredded paper can be used as packing material if you need to ship anything.
  4. When you use Scotch tape, what do you do with the little ring that is left when the tape is gone? It is perfect size to use as napkin rings. You can use them white like they are or you can decorate them. You can add ribbon or glitter or any other type of material that matches your dinning room decor. The picture below is an example of the type of dispenser.
  5. Rulers can be used for lots of things. Kids love them when they color, they can make straight lines which seems to make them happy. If you have a playroom for your kid/s, you can affix old rulers on the wall long ways up the wall. You can then mark your child's growth on the ruler with a sharpie! The kids will be thrilled. You can use any color of ruler or paint wooden onnes to match the room decor.
  6. Old envelopes can be used to organize receipts. At the end of each week, take all your receipts and place them in an old envelope that can still hold things. Write the week's dates on the front and store your receipts in them.
  7. Envelope sealers can be used in scrapbooking as a stamper. You can dab ink on the end and sponge it onto your paper for colored blots on a page. You can also fill them with accent paints for colored blots. The picture below is the type of sealer.
  8. Pencil sharpeners can also be used as eye liner sharpeners. If you use a pencil liner, these are great! The below picture is an example.
  9. Pencil holders can be used to hold q-tips and cottonballs in your bathroom, small scrapbook items, or crayons for the kids. You can use the holders as they are or paint/decorate them to match your decore.
  10. Paper clips are a great addition to a scrapbook page. You can glue decorations onto the paper clip and attach it onto your page or use them as they are if it fits your theme. You can also use them as a bookmark like in the picture below.
  11. Push pins flatten so easy, don't they? If you have flattened push pins, use them on a scrapbook page as well. The below picture is an example of how you can decorate with them. Just glue them onto the page!
  12. Page clasps can be used to keep your receipts & rebates together until it is time to send them. Just clasp it around them. You can also attach them to scrapbook pages for decoration. Do you see the theme, scrapbooking is fun!!!

    What are your ideas? Leave a comment and share them with everyone!

    Renpure Organics Mail-In Rebates

    Have you tried Renpure Organics yet? A while back they were offering Try Me Free offers on the bottles. Several stores no longer have the tags available. If you would like to try this hair care product and your store doesn't offer the Try Me Free tag, request one here. All you need to do is leave a comment below with your email address and I will send it to you. This is being offered on my other site as well so if you want it, you better hurry!

    Tuesday, March 30, 2010

    Go Green Coupons

    If you purchase Go Greens, be sure to sign up at their website for valuable coupons and offers here.

    Monday, March 29, 2010

    Recycle a Chandelier!

    I thought it would be fun to figure out what to do with an old chandelier. Chandeliers are very beautiful and can be used to make many more beautiful things!

    Here are some examples:

    1. 1. Have you heard of Chandelier earrings? Well, why not save the money and make your own! This is perfect if you have an old chandelier laying around. All you need to do is take part of the chandelier that you would like as earrings, get earring hooks (only a couple dollars for a multi-pack), and a pair of pliers. Example earrings can be viewed made by craftjuice who runs an etsy shop of homemade items.
    2. 2. You can also make necklaces, bracelets, or anklets in the same manner. Just purchase the chain to strin it on or use one you may have laying around the house. You can then have a perfect matching jewelry set to wear.

    3. You can use chandelier pieces to make beautiful scrapbook pages or to decorate a card. You could use either glue dots to affix it to the page or sew it on with a needle and thread.

    4. You can use them as ends to pull strings. You could put them on window blinds, ceiling fans, ceiling lights, etc. All you need to do is pry open the ring on one of the chandelier pieces and put it into the pull string. Use the pliers to clamp the ring tightly so that the chandelier will stay attached to the pull string.

    5. You could make windchimes out of it. Take an old lamp shade, fishing line, needle, hanging hook and some chandelier pieces. Tie the fishing line to the rings of the chandelier pieces and sew the other end through the lamp shade. Make sure it is tied securely. Place as many chandelier piece strings as you desire for look onto the lamp shade. You can then tie fishing line from the lamp shade to the hanging hook. Now your windchime is finished, hang it out where desired.

    Thanks to Colleen for the idea to recycle old chandeliers. Do you have an object that you would like to recycle but you aren't sure how? Post it here and let me know. I will do a post of it!

    Friday, March 26, 2010

    Greener House, Naturally!

    Here are some simple ways you can have a "Greener" home.

    Save Energy:

    *If the weather is nice, dry your clothing on lines outside or set up lines in your laundry room.

    *Use manual appliances instead of electric. Instead of a leaf blower, use a broom. Instead of the dishwasher, put just enough water in your sink and wash by hand. Instead of lights/lamps open the shades/doors in your home for lighting.

    *Turn off your refrigerator when you go on vacation. Unplug electric items when they are not in use.

    *Replace your lightbulbs with energy efficient ones. I did this and really did see a difference in our electric bill!

    *Defrost your freezer every 3 months. This will prolong its life and help it work for efficiently.

    *Wash your clothes in cool water. Most washers now have a Cold/Cool/Warm/Hot setting. Choose the Cool setting which gets the clothes cleaner than Cold but uses less energy than the Warm or Hot setting.

    Help Environment:

    *Plant trees, plants or your own garden. This helps improve air quality in your area.

    *Compost organic materials. This is basically everything except animal products. You can add food (fruits, vegetables, etc. just no animal products) as well as outdoor items (leaves, sticks, etc.)

    *Use natural pest control. You can go to your local garden shop and ask for organic pest control products. Most if not all will carry them or can give you remedies to rid the pests, naturally.

    *Use non-toxic, biodegradeable products whenever possible in your home. These items are generally washable and reuseable.

    *Paint the outside of your home a light-color. It will help reflect unwanted radiant heat.

    Clean Green:

    *Baking Soda - Cuts grease & oil, cleans, deodorizes, inhibits mold, extinguishes fires, & can be used to clean your teeth.

    *Lemon Juice - Natural bleach that can remove stains, deodorizes and inhibits mold as well. You can also use it to dye your hair blonde if interested. Squeeze lemon juice on your hair, rub it in and lay out in the sun to desired color. You will want to use moisturizers in your hair afterwards because the acid in the lemon juice can dry your hair out a little.

    *Salt - Gentle abrasive & disinfectant, cleans drains, & scours kitchen utensils.

    *White Vinegar - Removes bathroom scum & hard water deposits, removes discoloration from metals, & removes rust. Perfect cleaner for the bathroom.

    Thanks to Clean House! for some of these tips.

    Do you have other "Green House" tips? Leave a comment below with your tips!

    Monday, March 22, 2010

    Sore Throats, Naturally!

    Lately I have developed a little bit of a sore throat. Not bad, just the annoying scratchy feeling. I am trying hard to avoid medications whenever possible.

    I looked through my stash of stuff I got FREE through deals from my other blog to see what I had to avoid going out and spending money.

    I found Sambucol which is a natural preventative remedy made from Elderberries & Ricola Vitamin C supplements made from all natural products. I have been taking both in combination as well as hot tea and rest. Hopefully they will help boost my immune system and this will not get bad.

    Do you have natural remedies that you use to try to avoid an illness getting worse? I, and I'm sure several other readers, would be interested to hear what has worked for you!

    Organic Valley FREEbies!

    If you are a supporter of Organic products, you may be interested in joining M.O.O. (Mothers & Fathers of Organic). Each month you will receive a eRootstock newsletter which contains recipes, research, news constests, coupons and organic parenting bulletins.

    You can also sign up to receive a FREE Welcome Packet which includes Kids' activity flyer, newsletter, bumper sticker & coupons for Organic Valley products. I was excited about this and thought I would share it with you!

    Monday, March 15, 2010

    FREE Green Smoothie e-book

    If you are interested in some good, healthy recipes to make for your family, request your Green Smoothie Recipe e-book now. The recipe book is designed for use of a Vita-Mix but could be done in a blender too. I am going to try some of these recipes one of these days.

    If you try one and like it, let me know what one and I will try that one!

    Lighting, Naturally!

    One thing I absolutely love about spring is natural lighting! One awesome way to save on electricity is to utilize natural lighting when available. My favorite thing is to sit by an open window and read. What could be better than getting a cool, fresh breeze through the house to air things out and read by God's lighting!

    Have you been able to do this yet this year where you live? Just open a door or window and let nature fill your house? I love comments, let me know what you think!

    Saturday, March 13, 2010

    Going Green, Naturally!

    Exchange Bottled Water for Tap:

    Instead of buying bottled water, use tap water for drinking and cooking. If you don't like the taste of tap water or you live in an area of unsafe water, you can either boil it or purchase or make a water filter. Not only do you avoid the chances of BPA exposure, save money and you help the environment by having less waste product. Most plastic bottles are recycleable but recycling uses more energy than not having the need.

    Exchange Paper Towels for Rags:

    Paper towels and rags do the same thing, right? They both clean up messes, soak up spills, and wipe messy faces. Constantly buying paper towels costs more that using rags and washing them. We have to do laundry anyways, what is another couple rags, right. Besides the cost, paper towels add waste. They come in plastic wrapping, each paper towel gets trashed and the cardboard center. Did you ever wonder why there is a cardboard center? What a waste! There would be 2" more paper towels without it.

    Exchange Chemical Cleaners for Homemade:

    Most of us have baking soda, white vinegar, club soda, salt, lemon juice, olive oil, and spices. Thats pretty much all you need for all your cleaning needs. The Tree Hugging Family has a list of 25 safe, non-toxic homemade cleaners. Whatever you need to clean, can be done with homemade products. This will save you lots of money as well as make your home and family cleaner, healthier and happier over all. Chemicals tend to cause increased allergies, in some cases cancers, and skin issues. Why not avoid those things if you can?

    Do you have another simple way to go green in the kitchen? Please post it here and share with all of us!

    Green Festival or Expo

    If you are interested in attending a
    Green Festival, click here for more information. The Festival locations are San Francisco April 10-11, Chicago May 22-23, Washington DC October 23-24, & San Francisco November 5-7.

    There is also a Go Green Expo going on. Click here for more information. These locations are New York City March 19-21, Philadelphia April 16-18, or Atlanta May 21-23. You can get 50% off tickets by using code: KIWI50.

    Going Greener Guidebook

    If you are interested in learning how you can go green, download a FREE copy of the Going Greener Guidebook from StonyField.

    Herb for Health Catalog

    If you are interested in ordering herbs or spices in bulk. You can request a Herbs for Health Catalog here.

    Burt's Bees Natural Toothpaste!

    Click here for a sample of Burt's Bees Toothpaste.

    Selina Naturally

    If you are interested in learning about new brands of natural foods, here is one you can try out. Selina Naturally uses whole foods that have not been highly processed. You can request a FREE catalog & salt samples here. You could also download their catalog here and save a tree! (Thanks to The Thrifty Couple for this tip!)

    Nutrition, Naturally

    I went to a La Leche League International meeting this morning and the topic was nutrition. A lot of great recommendations were made about how to get your kids to eat healthy.

    My toddler does not willingly eat nutritious foods. He will not touch anything that is green! I asked them for suggestions on how to help with this. The main suggestion they had was to only have healthy foods/snacks in the house so that there are no "bad" options. Kids will not starve themselves. When they get hungry enough, they will eat what is offered. I am a very thrifty person by nature and tend to buy what I can get for really cheap. This means I don't check the labels all the time so only having healthy foods at my house will mean a HUGE change for us.

    One mom who was there is a pediatrician that focuses on nutrition with her patients. She said that what you eat during pregnancy affects what your child will be more likely to eat later. She referred to a book (I will get the name and update this post with it) that did a study on pregnant women. Half of them were given carrot juice to drink and the other half were not. They followed the eating habits of these children and found that those children whose mothers drank the carrot juice, were more ready to eat and actually desired carrots. The other children had to have it offered several times before they would accept it and some never did. This just shows that the foods that you eat when you are pregnant set the forground for your child's eating habits. This also continues with breastfeeding and what you offer them when they start to eat solids.

    She also stated that when introducing new foods to children, the younger you introduce it, the less times you will have to offer it before they will accept it. For instance, 6-12 month olds will need to be offered it 8-10 times where a 18-24 month old will need to be offered it 15-18 times.

    Another suggestion was if your kids don't like raw vegetables, try to offer them frozen ones. Some kids see this as more of a popsicle like treat then a veggie. I am going to try this with my little guy and see what happens. I have also tried a couple of recipes from a book called Deceptively Delicious by Jessica Seinfeld. She has a recipe for Spinach Brownies that is the next on my list!

    Many of the moms expressed the importance of cage-free, hormone-free meats. We definitely know that protein is essential to healthy eating. Protein does not have to be obtained by meats though that is the easiest way. Lentils are very high in proteins and have a bland taste which is appealing to many kids. If you do chose to eat meats, try to go for the cage-free, hormone-free meats. You can buy chicken eggs at the regular grocery store that are in this category. Other meats are harder to find. If you know of a local farmer that butchers and sells, that is probablly the way to go. Be sure to ask him if his animals are free of hormones and live naturally. Unfortunately, the meat industry has come to control even the smaller farmers. If you would like to watch a good movie about that, I would suggest Food, Inc.

    I was not aware that partially hydrogenated oils are trans fats. The food companies can place on the labels that their foods contain no trans fats if there is less than 1/2g per serving. What if you eat 2-3 servings in a day? Then you have eaten 1-1.5g of trans fat! Unfortunately, hydrogenated oils are in almost every packaged/processed food we buy. The more foods you can make from scratch the better! If you make from scratch, you at least know what you are eating, not being tricked by food companies.

    There are several grocery type stores that tend to carry more of the natural, organic foods such as Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, Food Co-ops, open air Farmer's Markets, etc. If you know of any in your area, be sure to post here in the comments to let others know. Yes, most Farmer's Markets are open year round. There are obviously different items available fresh depending on the time of year. The best way to find out is to go visit or call your local market and ask what is fresh. Then you can find recipes and eat the freshest possible.

    My family has vowed to visit the Farmer's Market every weekend to get enough fresh produce to last the week. Did you know that the fruits and vegetables you buy from most grocery stores have already lost over half of their nutrition. Each day a produce item sits after it has been picked, it loses more and more nutrients. The best thing would be to visit the open market daily and only buy what you will use for that day. For most of us, this is not very practical but if you drive by one every day then you are set up for successful eating!
    What have your healthy eating struggles been? What have you don't to help your family eat healthier? The more you comment, the more each of us will learn!

    Cloth Diapers, Naturally!

    I was searching the web today for cloth diaper patterns and came across this company, Zany Zebra Designs. They offer several links to patterns for cloth diapers. They also sell them if you decide making them is too hard.

    Have any of you tried to make them before? I thought I would give it a shot one of these days. I got a bunch of fabric from my mom, an entire bucket full. So, I thought maybe I would take on a new challenge.

    I am currently working on a baby blanket. It seems to be taking me FOREVER to make but eventually it will be done!


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