Thursday, September 30, 2010

September 30 Nutrition Recap

We had a wonderful month focusing on nutrition. Once we made a few small changes it was very easy to eat healthier. If you need ideas about feeding your family please visit the following blogs for ideas:

These are just a few places to get you started. The Internet is full of wonderful ideas.

What's for Lunch Wednesday September 29

I have seen several moms put those cute little baby cheeses in lunch boxes so I had to pick some up. My girls love cheese. The only small cutters I have are alphabet so I just put the girls initials on them. The rest of the lunch is just what we had on hand, which is not much right now. The tiny containers have sweet gherkins in them because I wanted the girls to try them but not have the juice get all over their lunches.

A part of the What's For Lunch weekly link up. Check out the other entries!

September 29 Freezer Jam

Because the price of strawberries is still really good and Audrey's daddy loves strawberry jam I decided to make freezer jam. It is such an easy way to enjoy homemade jam for those not comfortable with canning.

Freezer Jam

  • 1 2/3 cup crushed fruit
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 package freezer jam pectin
Mix pectin and sugar, stir in fruit. Place in containers and freeze or refrigerate. 

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Cut fruit
  2. Mix ingredients
  3. Help pour into containers
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Crush fruit
  3. Help pour into containers
This task took about 30 minutes total and now we will have jam for several weeks. I am thinking about purchasing some more fruit so we can put up jam for the entire winter. Audrey's daddy really likes his strawberry jam.


September 28 Banana Sandwiches

While searching through the Internet I found a wonderful idea for a new lunch for the girls. I wish I had bookmarked the site so I could give proper credit. Unfortunately I have no idea where the idea came from. If you have seen this posted somewhere before please leave a comment because I would love to link back.

Banana Sandwiches

  • 1 banana
  • 1 hot dog bun
  • peanut butter
  • honey or jam
Open bun and spread peanut butter on one half. Place peeled banana on bun, drizzle with honey or jam.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Spread peanut butter
  2. Peel banana and place on bun
  3. Help drizzle jam
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Help drizzle jam
I have to admit to sharing this wonderful lunch with Audrey. I made these again for lunches for the girls and cut the banana in half because it was too big for the girls to eat.

September 27 Oven Fried Chicken

One of the first meals Audrey learned to cook was oven fried chicken from Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook. In an attempt to make it a healthier meal we decided to make it using olive oil instead of butter.

Oven Fried Chicken

  • boneless chicken
  • olive oil
  • seasoned breadcrumbs
Brush chicken with oil. Place breadcrumbs in a container and add chicken. Shake to coat. Place in an oven proof container and bake at 400°F for 30 to 45 minutes or until cooked through.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Brush chicken with oil
  2. Make seasoned breadcrumbs
  3. Coat chicken with breadcrumbs
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Help Audrey make seasoned breadcrumbs
This is always an easy meal. We like to have sugar glazed carrots and strawberry salad with this.

Pesto, Tomato, & Rice Soup

Because I have been working late several days I decided to start using my Biggest Book of Slow Cooker Recipes and have dinner ready when we get home. We had the homemade pesto in the fridge.

Pesto, Tomato, & Rice Soup

  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 3 stalks celery with leaves, chopped
  • 1 14 oz can Italian stewed tomatoes
  • 1 6 oz can tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 14 oz can chicken broth
  • 1 cup quick cooking rice
  • 1/4 cup pesto
  • Grated Parmesan cheese
In a 3 1/2 to 4 quart slow cooker combine onion, carrot, celery, undrained tomatoes, paste, oregano, thyme, and pepper. Stir in water and broth. Cover, cook on low for 8 to 10 hours or high for 4 to 5 hours. Turn off cooker. Stir in rice and pesto. Cover and let stand 7 to 10 minutes or until rice is tender. Ladle into soup bowls and sprinkle with cheese.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Add ingredients to pot
  2. Add rice
  3. Stir in pesto
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Chop vegetables
This was one of the best soups we have had in a long time. Everyone loved it, even Audrey. The small amount of leftovers were served to Audrey's great-grandparents and they enjoyed it as well. If you have access to fresh basil I recommend making some pesto and using it in this recipe. It would freeze well to bring a summer taste to a cold winter night.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Muffin Tin Monday September 27

We may be late to the party but we are still here. Monday was a fabulous day with a walk to the lake and friends for lunch. They had Muffin Tin Monday with us.

Muffin Tin Monday at Her Cup Overfloweth

September 25 Spaghetti Bolognese

Audrey and I decided to make Spaghetti. She found a recipe in her 30 Healthy Things to Cook and Eat cards. After helping me peel the garlic she ran off to feed her babies and did not want to return. I was able to find a replacement Sous Chef.

Spaghetti Bolognese

  • 1 onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 stick celery
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 lb lean ground meat
  • 1 bouillon cube
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 14oz can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 6 oz can tomato paste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 14oz dried spaghetti
Peel and chop carrot, garlic, and onion. Chop celery. Put oil and onion in large sauce pan and cook for 5 minutes on medium heat. Add garlic, carrot, and celery. Cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add meat and cook about 10 minutes or until no longer pink. Put bouillon cube in heat proof container and add boiling water. Stir well the add broth to the pan. Add tomatoes, paste, salt and pepper to pan. Boil and reduce heat to simmer, covered, for about 40 minutes. Remove lid and cook 10 more minutes. While sauce cooks, boil a pan of water for spaghetti. Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Drain well and then place in a serving bowl. Add sauce to top and serve.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Peel garlic
  2. Add ingredients to pan
  3. Help cook sauce
  4. Add noodles to pan
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Chop vegetables
  3. Help cook sauce
  4. Cook noodles
Audrey has had a few moments recently when she is not interested in cooking. This was one of those times. I listed Audrey as the helper of sauce and noodle cooking but it was actually her sister, Maurene who helped.



Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Wordless Wednesday September 29



This is part of the 5 Minutes for Mom linkup. Check out the other entries.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

September 24 Be Snack Ready

The girls and I like to go places. We pack a bag with diapers, drinks, and snacks and hit the road. Some times these trips are planned but other times we decide to go last minute. Our snacks keep us full when we are out past lunch or during snack time. They keep us from stopping at a fast food restaurant to purchase expensive and nutritionally questionable food. I purchased a few small containers for snacks when the girls were very young and try to keep a few in the refrigerator and pantry. These containers also work well for mornings when mom wants to sleep in a few extra minutes but a certain toddler is ready for her day. She knows where to look for her milk cup and some fruit. If I know I will want to sleep in I will prepare a small container of cereal as well. Endless possibilities, endless help.

September 23 Pack Lunch

One of the things we do well around here is lunch. We participate in Muffin Tin Monday and we have started to link up with What's for Lunch Wednesday. On other days we enjoy a nice Rainbow lunch. All of these websites, people, and link-ups help us remember to focus on healthy, homemade lunches and not fast food. Audrey and her sister have started going to a day care facility three days a week so lunches are a necessity. If I do not pack lunches for the girls it cost $3 per child for the place to provide them. That is $6 a day! And I have no idea what type of meal they are getting. If we make the lunches at home I can be certain of what foods are offered and try to make them appetizing. Audrey has been a big help when it comes to helping with lunch. She cuts the fruits, fills the containers and I get her the supplies. She also likes to help cut sandwiches into cute shapes. They taste better that way. Here is a lunch from last week:

Thursday, September 23, 2010

September 22 Enlist a Friend / Rainbow Party

When trying to make any change the best thing to do is to tell your friends. They can be there for advice and support when you need it. Audrey and I decided to share our Eating Rainbow challenge with friends at our playgroup this week. It was our turn to bring snacks and we shared healthy, rainbow snacks. Audrey went shopping with me and we purchased a full rainbow of fruits and one of vegetables. At the end of our playgroup the only thing left on either tray was a few eggplant. The eggplant was picked this weekend by Audrey, her sister and I from a local farm.




September 21 Sunshine Toast

While looking through the blog I found an old post for Sunshine Toast Audrey and I made from her 30 Healthy Things to Cook and Eat recipe cards. We have not made this recipe in a while and I think we need to remedy that. Audrey has gotten so much better at cooking and can now do so much more. I will need to get us eggs tomorrow and maybe we can make these for her daddy this weekend. If we find fresh eggs at the Farmers Market we can have a local meal. Be sure to try them with strawberry jam, Audrey's favorite. What is your favorite weekend breakfast treat?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

September 20 Pesto

Audrey, Maurene and I went to a local farm recently to glean. We got eggplant for 70% off and basil for almost 90% off. I already had a plan for the eggplant but as not sure what to do with the basil. While browsing through the Ball Blue Book guide to preserving I found a pesto recipe. An easy way to preserve basil! And Audrey got to use the food processor.
Pesto

  • 1 cup pine nuts
  • 4 cups fresh basil leaves, firmly packed
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup plus 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Spread pine nuts on a baking sheet and toast in oven at 450°F until lightly browned. Puree toasted pine nuts, basil and garlic in a food processor until smooth. Add Parmesan cheese. processing just to blend. Add 1 cup olive oil through feed tube in a slow stream while machine is running. Place in container and drizzle remaining oil on top.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Pick basil
  2. Help measure and add ingredients
  3. Run the food processor
  4. Laugh!
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Pick basil
  2. Gather ingredients
  3. Help measure and add ingredients


Creamy Chicken

So yummy!
Audrey and I pulled out her 30 Healthy Things to Cook and Eat and found a great recipe for Creamy Chicken. It was a wonderful dinner.

Creamy Chicken
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube dissolved in 1/3 cup boiling water
  • a pinch of salt and ground pepper
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
Cut chicken breasts into 3 pieces. Mix cornstarch and 2 tbsp yogurt in a bowl. Then mix the rest of the yogurt in, a little at a time. Chop the onion. Put the onion into a large saucepan with the oil. Cook for 10 minutes, add garlic, ginger, turmeric, coriander, and cumin. Gently heat the mixture for 2 minutes, stirring the entire time. Turn the heat down and add chicken. Stir in the yogurt 1 tbsp at a time. Add milk, broth, salt and pepper. Place lid on pot and cook for 30 minutes, stirring often. Add chopped coriander. Serve with rice.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Mix yogurt
  2. Help chop onion
  3. Peel garlic
  4. Help measure and add ingredients
  5. Help cook
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Slice chicken
  2. Help measure and add ingredients
  3. Cook chicken
Audrey loves to peel garlic and some days enjoys stirring. This was one of those days. And dinner turned out really well. The coconut milk really gives the chicken a great taste.

Adding ingredients.

What form she has!



September 18 Pear Preserves

On the campus of the University of Kansas there are a number of pear trees. Audrey's daddy is taking a class on campus and walks by the trees on his way. He brought us a few pounds of pears and asked us to make some preserves. Audrey was happy to oblige because that meant she got to use her cutting board and knife.
Pear Preserves

  • 3 cups sugar, divided
  • 3 cups water
  • 6 medium halved or quartered, peeled, cored pears
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced and seeded lemon
Combine 1 1/2 cups sugar and water in a large saucepot. Cook rapidly 2 minutes. Add pears; boil gently 15 minutes. Add remaining sugar and sliced lemon, stirring until sugar dissolves. Cook rapidly until fruit is transparent. Cover and let stand 12 to 24 hours in a cool place. Remove pears from syrup, set aside. Cook syrup 5 minutes or longer, to thicken. Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary. 

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Cut fruit
  2. Help measure ingredients
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Peel pears
  2. Help measure ingredients
  3. Cook fruit

September 17 Apple Butter

One of the easiest prepared items to make at home is apple butter or apple sauce. We found a recipe recently and a deal on apple seconds. For $5 I purchased 11lbs of apple seconds. Let me just say it takes a  little while to process 11lbs of apple seconds. I doubled the recipe but you only need half that.
Apple Butter
  • 4 pounds apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/8 ground nutmeg
Place apple slices in a 3 1/2 to 4 quart slow cooker. Stir sugar, water, vinegar, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, and nutmeg. Cover and cook on high-heat setting for 5 to 6 hours. Stir and cool. Ladle apple butter into canning jars.

Audrey's Tasks:
  1. Place apples in cooker
  2. Help measure and add remaining ingredients
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Process apples
  2. Help measure and add ingredients
This was a very easy and wholesome recipe. I doubled the apples but did not increase the sugar. Apples are so sweet they do not need much added. Audrey had a lot of fun putting the apples in the crock pot. I placed them in water after processing so she fished them out for me. 


What's for Lunch Wednesday September 22

I have turned into a partially working mom. That means I am spending at least 20 hours a week at the office. Some of those hours are in the evenings after the girls are asleep, but others occur during office hours. The reason I mention this is because I have started taking the girls to a day care facility a few hours a week. They play and eat lunch there. I have tried to start packing really cute lunches that they would want to eat anywhere but I am not up to the adorable animals and cute shapes I see posted. That said, I am linking up with the 'What's For Lunch' crowd for inspiration and hopes that I will do better next time. This is all I have this week:

http://www.bentolunch.net/search/label/what%27s%20for%20lunch%20wednesday

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Wordless Wednesday September 22

Monday, September 20, 2010

September 16 Read Together


Audrey has several books for children her age devoted to healthy eating habits. I let her pick her own books to read before bed and nap but sometimes I select these books to read when I feel we need a reminder. We only have a few so we are going to visit the library soon to see if we can find a couple more. When we read these books she always asks a lot of questions that are good starters for a healthy eating conversation. In the Berenstain Bears book the family has to change their eating habits like we are trying to do. And Lola is a picky eater like Audrey. The Rainbow Bunch is a group of children who see the benefits of eating a rainbow every day. She enjoys connecting with these characters. The Rainbow Bunch we got from the Today I Ate a Rainbow site.
Any recommendations for other books that help with nutrition? It is such a powerful subject right now with a lot of focus on child nutrition. We would love to benefit from any fun information out there for two (almost three!) year olds.

Muffin Tin Monday September 20

Again a Monday with nothing in the house. Fortunately we had a few fruits left over from last week but that is it! I had to scrounge up the rest. And there was not a decent vegetable ready to eat. I am going to have to prepare some in advance because our fall vegetables are not quick to prepare. The good news is that Audrey ate every bite and asked for more. When I questioned what she wanted more of she replied, "Muffin Tin Monday!" Mondays are a good day for us.
Audrey also got to help put some of the items in the tin this time. I wanted her to help with more but she was busy building a fort and trying to keep her sister out of it.

Muffin Tin Monday at Her Cup Overfloweth

Sunday, September 19, 2010

September 15 Know Your Ingredients

Since we have been working to Eat Rainbows and consume healthy foods a natural outcome has been an increased awareness of what is in our food. I have started trying to purchase fresh, local, organic, or natural foods whenever possible. We have also tried our hand at making several of the items we usually purchase prepared. A perfect example of this is a Peanut Butter and Jelly Toasted sandwich we learned to make. It is so tasty and extremely easy to make. We also have had success at making our own Peanut Butter and Bread. Not all for the same meal yet but I think we could pull that off if we staged it properly. One small change like making freezer jam; baking bread; or grinding peanut butter will help you see how easy it is to change your eating habits. Audrey and the entire family are working at this right now. What are some changes you have made to start eating healthier?

Saturday, September 18, 2010

September 14 Be Prepared

One of the best ways to make sure your family eats well is to plan. I have a friend who plans everything from the menu to what she needs to purchase at the store. She also tracks how much she spends on everything. I am not this organized. I have tried many different ways to plan and found the best for us was to write everything on the refrigerator. This way I can see what needs to be purchase or pulled out of the freezer to thaw. I put the meals Audrey is helping with so I can plan accordingly. Also, Audrey's daddy does not have to ask what is for dinner.
Here is what is for dinner this week:

As you can see we are a family that is still focusing on meat as a main course. Audrey's daddy was raised this way and is the reason for the difficulty in changing focus. I am trying to find  meals that satisfy the entire family while still feeding us healthy foods. This is hard. What you see represents a very typical week for us. I was not able to plan side dishes this week because I have been so busy. I ended up cooking anything that was about to go bad. How do you plan for your week?

September 13 Cheese Scones

Everyone loves cheese. Audrey made some tasty treats and learned to cut out shapes with a cookie cutter. This was such an easy recipe I think we are going to use it again with other flavors. We found the recipe in Audrey's 30 Healthy Things to Cook and Eat cooking cards:
Little Cheese Scones

  • 1/3 cup cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 2/3 cups self-rising flour
  • 1/2 level tsp baking powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
Preheat oven to 425°F. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces and add to the bowl. Rub it in until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs. Mix in the grated cheese and milk and mix well. Gently squeeze the mixture together with your hands to make a soft dough. Roll the dough out on a floured surface until it is about 1/2 inch thick. Use 1 1/2 inch cookie cutters to cut out the shapes. Squeeze the scraps together and roll them out again. Cut out more shapes. Put the shapes  on a greased baking tray and bake for 7-8 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool.

Audrey's Tasks:

  1. Add ingredients to bowl
  2. Mix
  3. Help roll dough
  4. Cut shapes
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Help roll dough
  3. Place shapes on baking sheet
  4. Bake
We tried to make a video of this post but had technical difficulties. Fortunately I took a photo before and after.


September 12 Chicken Bake Samm

My mother-in-law found this recipe in an old diet cookbook at some point and it has been a paternal family favorite every since. Many because it is so tasty and healthy. I have adopted it for our family as well and Audrey learned to cook it.
Chicken Bake Samm

  • 3 pound chicken fryer, cut up, skin removed
  • 4 tbsp chicken broth
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 3/4 tbsp garlic salt
  • 1 small onion, sliced very thin
  • 1 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tbsp thinly slivered almonds
Brush chicken with broth and broil on all sides until chicken is browned. Add everything except almonds and cover and bake at 350°F for an hour or until cooked through. Brush with broth or water to keep moist. Add slivered almonds and serve.

Audrey's Tasks:

  1. Brush with broth
  2. Chop onion (I let her use the slap chop instead of slicing it)
  3. Place ingredients on top
Mom's Tasks:
  1. Gather ingredients
  2. Skin chicken
  3. Place in oven
Audrey also helped me with the corn. It was a team effort. A hit as usual. I never seem to remember to put the almonds on top so I stopped buying them. I have also used canned mushrooms in a pinch. If you keep frozen chicken and onion and canned mushrooms you can always have the ingredients on hand.


    September 11 Everyone Can Help

    We had a visit from our Parents as Teachers coordinator who shared and activity about cooking with Audrey. Apparently it is an age appropriate skill to learn! She loved it. The girls (Maurene gets in the middle of everything now) helped me make a simple Trail Mix which we then divided into individual containers for them to enjoy. We got a recipe book with several fun foods and a list of ways to let your child help. I thought I would know and have tried all of the ways. Boy was I wrong! Here is a list of some great ideas on how to engage your child in the kitchen:

    • Let them tear lettuce
    • Have them help set the table
    • Provide a few unbreakable items for them to wash
    • Let them rinse fruits and vegetables
    • Have them stir
    • With a butter knife have them cut soft foods
    • Let them pour

    After our visit I asked Audrey if she wanted to help me unload and load the dishwasher and I got a positive response! It was not in any way helpful but she did have fun. This continues to cement a positive relationship with cooking. And if she feels good about cooking good, healthy foods now there is a significant chance she will continue. There is a fun looking recipe for Shake it up Pudding that we are going to try soon.

    Friday, September 17, 2010

    September 10 Lasagna

    What is so healthy about lasagna? The fact that we use low-fat cheese; cottage cheese instead of ricotta; turkey instead of beef; and organic or homemade sauce. And we do not make it the main portion of the meal. With our lasagna we will have any of a number of favorite side dishes: corn on the cob, strawberry green salad, buttered carrots, frozen peas. If you have a favorite meal that is on the comfort food for end of the spectrum, don't leave it out of rotation. Let your family help you make it healthier with low-fat substitutions and smaller portions. Now if I could only get Audrey's daddy to let me makeover his famous goulash recipe...

    No-Boil Lasagna

    • 1 box no-boil noodles (recipe on the box)
    • 2 eggs
    • 15 oz cottage cheese
    • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
    • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
    • 1 lb ground turkey, cooked
    • 2 jars sauce
    Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray baking pan with cooking spray. In medium bowl mix eggs, 2 cups mozzarella, and Parmesan. Layer 1/2 jar of sauce, 4 noodles, 1/2 cheese mixture, 1/2 meat, 1/2 jar sauce, 1 cup mozzarella, 4 noodles, remaining cheese mixture, and meat, 1/2 jar sauce, 4 noodles, 1/2 jar sauce, and 1 cup mozzarella. Cover and bake 50-60 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes before cutting.

    Audrey's Tasks:

    1. Crack eggs
    2. Help grate cheese
    3. Add ingredients to cheese mixture
    4. Help layer ingredients in the pan
    Mom's Tasks:
    1. Gather ingredients
    2. Brown meat
    3. Help layer ingredients
    4. Bake
    This is not the first time Audrey has made this dish. She had improved significantly in the 4 or so months since we made it together. I loved being able to give her a task to do on her own.

    Thursday, September 16, 2010

    September 9 Freezer Meals

    We all have those days when there is not enough time to get it all done. Those are the days when you want to stop at the Golden Arches and pick up something quick that everyone will like. I have been there. When I know a day like that is coming I pull out a freezer meal that is ready to eat in 20 minutes or less. Audrey loves to make Rachel Ray's Muffin Tin Meatloaf and the extra always goes in the freezer for a busy day. You can even make mashed sweet potatoes and freeze them in the muffin tin as well. Pull it all out for individual servings already prepared. Add some frozen peas, broccoli, or corn and you have a much healthier meal than comes in that Happy Box with the cheap toy. It is also a good standby when you did not make it to the store and the baby naps until dinner time.

    Wednesday, September 15, 2010

    September 8 Eggplant Snack Sticks

    Yum! I had no idea what to do with eggplant but I purchased it anyway. It was a Japanese eggplant and it looked so pretty. We have really been focusing on Eating Rainbows and purple is a hard color to find. Eggplant fits the bill but I did  not know what to do with it. Now I do, and so do the girls. I may need to change the name of the blog. Check the pictures below to see why.
    Eggplant Snack Sticks (via Allrecipes.com)

    • 1 medium eggplant
    • 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
    • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan (not shredded, oops!)
    • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
    • 3/4 tsp garlic salt
    • 1/2 cup egg substitute (we used one egg)
    Cut eggplant into 1/2 inch pieces lengthwise and then into 1/2 inch sticks. Dip sticks in beaten egg. Mix remaining ingredients and shake eggplant sticks in breading. Place on greased baking sheet and broil for 3 minutes. Turn and broil another 2 minutes.

    Audrey's Tasks:

    1. Crack eggs
    2. Mix breading
    3. Dip sticks in egg and breading
    Mom's Tasks:
    1. Gather ingredients
    2. Cut eggplant
    3. Bake
    Yum! They even taste good cold. The girls liked them as well.

    September 7 Marketing

    They use it to get your children to want sugary cereal and fruit snacks in the shape of cartoons. You should use it too. I have found that food presented in it's normal state might barely get a glance while the same food cut into the shape of a flower or star will at least get a taste.

    • My friend Libby purchased fun shaped cookie cutters and was able to get her son to eat cheese for the first time in a long while. 
    • Audrey likes to make Salad on a Stick and will actually eat what normally would end up in the trash. 
    • There are many websites devoted to Bento meals that really do a good job of marketing meals to children.
    • On Mondays I have Audrey shop for and pick out foods for Muffin Tin Monday. Both girls love eating out of the tins and eat more than if I have put the same food on a regular plate.
    These are just a few points on  marketing that I know work for us. What have you done to have  make food more fun for your child?