Unique ways to add more iron to your child's diet.

Unique ways I have added iron to my toddler’s meals.

After hearing from our pediatrician that most babies are iron deficient, I made it a priority to monitor my son’s iron intake.  At first it was a pain, but once I realized just how many ways I could get him to enjoy eating iron fortified foods, it was simple.

Everyone has heard of spinach, cooking in cast iron, etc., but have you heard of these?

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Have a Pillow Fight with your Toddler!

Why you should Pillow Fight with your Toddler

Why you should pillow fight with you toddler...Everyone knows that children need play time and one on one connection time.  But did you know that children only need short, frequent segments?  It’s true.  You can do other things as long as you stop every 30 minutes and give them your undivided attention.

One of our favorite games is pillow fighting.  Let’s face it, he has already tossed them around the house for the millionth time.  This gives me an opportunity to collect them and make him laugh like crazy.  He loves it.  I love it.  It’s a win win.

The book, The Happiest Toddler on the Block, called it “feeding the meter”.

I found that when I play with him for extended periods of time, he eventually gets fussy or clingy.  When I throw in frequent short play times throughout the day, the happier he is overall.  He is never looking for “what’s next”.


Overcoming your Toddler's Blender Fear!

Overcoming Toddler Fears… The Blender Edition

My son (to my knowledge) is only scared of one thing – public restroom hand blow dryers.  I am not sure how to tackle that one!  He simply cries and holds me. He refuses to work it out and we only leave with dry hands if there are paper towels available.

We have overcome his fear of the blender.  Here are the steps we took over the course of a few weeks…

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Checkout these cute little reusable food pouches.  #Cutielunchhomemadebabyfoodstorage

A simple, but effective way to make spinach fun to eat.

My son is obsessed with fresh fruit. While I am happy about that, I struggle to get him to eat his veggies. No, I am not that mom that hovers or begs him to eat them. I am the mom who watches all veggies fly across the room before the first taste.

When he was a baby, he loved veggies. He would eat broccoli, peas, corn, carrots, tomatoes, green beans, asparagus, and on one rare occasion, salad.

When he first learned to use sign language, he would sign – banana – several times a day and would get pissed when he didn’t get one. I actually hit up Dr. Google to see if 4-5 bananas a day was bad. It’s not. Thank God.

Now, I have to sneak them in. He only eats carrots if they are soft in soup, chick peas in hummus, beets pureed in water, and spinach in smoothies.

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How to get your toddler to eat beets starting with beet juice!

How to get your toddler to eat beets!

The other day at the farmers market, I noticed a vendor with multiple fresh squeezed juices.  When I saw the beet juice, it was like a light bulb went off.  My thoughts were that if my son drank beet juice, then he will get past the taste of beets and eventually eat beets!

I try everything to make sure that my son will like all foods.  So here is what we did…

 

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Homemade Yogurt – Only the best for my son!

Homemade Yogurt – Only the best for my son!

One day while browsing the yogurt aisle at the supermarket, I became frustrated beyond belief.  Normally I can read a label.  I can usually tell which ingredients that I will not eat, much less, feed my son.  However, with yogurt labels, it is increasingly difficult.  Not only do you have to look for the thousand different ways that the companies like to sneak in sugar, but I cannot simply pronounce the ingredients.  It looks like a foreign language.  You can get lost in a sea of  lactobacillus bulgaricus, lactobacillus acidophilus, L. animalis and L. casei…

I simply wanted a plain yogurt without preservatives and without sugar (of any sort).  I left frustrated and empty handed.

When I got home, I spent several weeks researching homemade yogurt and the MANY different cultures that you can buy as a starter.  Did you know that regular yogurt cultures can only be used once and heirloom varieties can be used indefinitely (if treated properly)?  I eventually chose the Bulgarian heirloom variety.

The process is actually so easy that it makes me sick that I didn’t start sooner. Continue Reading

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6 Tips for Cooking with a Toddler

6 Tips for Cooking with a ToddlerCooking is a passion of mine.  I have always dreamed of sharing my recipes, teaching my techniques and experiencing successes and failures with my son.  He is FINALLY old enough to enjoy it with me.

Since before he could walk, I have had him in the kitchen (standing on his kitchen helper) and pounding on the salad spinner.  It was safe and he thoroughly enjoyed it.  What kid wouldn’t?

He is now 16 months.  The second I say “do you want to help mommy cook”, he drops whatever he is doing, puts a determined look on his face, and heads to the kitchen.  He grabs the kitchen helper / learning tower, pushes it to the counter, and climbs on top…  happy as can be! Continue Reading