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Kid Friendly Zucchini Brownies

Categories: Food & Cooking, Health & Wellness

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Trying to get your kids to eat healthy is no easy task. The key is feeding them healthy foods without them knowing it! Sneaky, but hey a mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do! These brownies are  made with zucchini, bananas and applesauce, giving you a brownie with only 120 calories, 2 grams of fat, and a whole bunch of vitamins and minerals, and egg free. They taste just as delicious and sweet as your typical chocolate brownie, but come with much less eater’s remorse.

What you need:
1/2 C applesauce
2 small or medium bananas mashed
1 1/2 Csugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 C cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 C finely shredded zucchini
2 C all purpose flour
1/2 C walnut pieces

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour an 9×13 inch baking pan. In a large bowl, mix together the applesauce, mashed bananas and sugar. Add vanilla and cocoa and mix together. Then add baking soda, salt, and zucchini and mix together. Add flour and walnuts and mix together. Spread evenly into a prepared pan. Bake for 25 minutes until brownies spring back when gently touched.

Staying Healthy(ish) during the holidays

Categories: Health & Wellness

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By Hillary from two L’s please
Three separate family Christmas dinners and three December birthdays, along with work parties and friends parties and holiday baking, make eating healthily during the holidays a struggle.
I try to eat a well-balanced diet full of vegetables and for the most part I’m successful. Until December hits and all of a sudden cheese is a food group of its own and my cookie consumption increases tenfold. It’s silly to undo a whole year’s worth of healthy eating with a month of excess so this year I came up with a plan to combat the craziness of holiday eating.

How an altered diet helped my ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorder child

Categories: Food & Cooking, Health & Wellness, Kid Matters, Work & Career

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By Rebecca from Cherry Apple Life

Hi. My name is Rebecca, and I am that Mom who brings homemade food to your kid’s birthday party. (Insert cringe here).

A few years ago, at my wits end, and my son’s wits end, we made a radical change. After months of doctors waiting rooms and a solid diagnosis we were told to accept that our 4 year old boy Seth had Autism Spectrum Disorder and ADHD. When advice for handling the behaviour didn’t work, and the medication caused nasty side effects I was over the whole system.


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How to make Bento lunches

Categories: Food & Cooking, Health & Wellness, Kid Matters

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By Jennifer Howard from Chasing the Firefly

My two youngest children began going to school long enough this year to require a lunch. These two are the picky eaters of the family. One lives on air and Pixy Stix, the other would be happy drinking milk all day long. I knew I would have to be a little more creative when making their lunches. I decided that making Bento Box lunches would work perfectly.

There are many reasons why I chose to make Bento lunches but the biggest reasons would be:


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How to eat (somewhat) healthy while you travel

Categories: Balancing Act, Health & Wellness

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By Britt Reints from Miss Britt

It’s hard enough to eat right in the comfort of your own kitchen, but add time changes and airport delays to the mix and staying healthy can be about as convenient as traveling with toddlers. Alas, much like hitting the road with kids, eating well on the road can be done - but you’ll need to do a little mental prepping to get it done.

1. Pack snacks. What makes eating on the road so difficult is the last-minute frantic search for food we often find ourselves doing in the most inconvenient places. Here’s a hint: you will want to eat. Guaranteed. Plan for this inevitably by throwing some travel-friendly food in your purse.
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Tips for healthy eating while at work

Categories: Balancing Act, Health & Wellness, Work & Career

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By Jenny Grace from Miss Grace’s Disgrace

Between working full time and parenting full time, food can really fall by the wayside, especially when it comes to feeding myself. I’m generally pretty good about feeding my son meals that more or less end up balanced, but when it comes to me? During the work day? You have got to be kidding.

Over the years I’ve gotten better about (a) remembering to eat at all and (b) having something on hand so it’s not just straight from the vending machine into my belly.

I rely heavily on the following strategies:


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What’s for dinner?: Homemade macaroni and cheese

Categories: Food & Cooking, Health & Wellness

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By Katie Workman of Cookstr.com

If you’ve been a slave to that blue box of mac and cheese, you owe it to yourself and your family to whip up a vat of homemade mac and cheese once in a blue moon.  I keep changing up the cheese, depending on what I have lying around, and it never tastes the same twice, which I find part of the thrill. You should by all means toss in other interesting cheeses that you have around, like goat cheese, Fontina, Manchego, even that leftover hunk of  brie (remove all rinds you wouldn’t want to see floating around your mac and cheese).

The Dijon mustard and red pepper flakes give this a little kick, a little edge, and save this dish from being too intensively rich and creamy (not that there’s anything wrong with that).  This photo shows the topping-free version.

And, no, this isn’t low fat. Thanks for asking.

For the topping (optional):

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 cups panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • 1 /2 cup coarsely grated extra-sharp Cheddar or  Gruyere cheese

For the pasta and sauce:

  • 1 1/2 pound ziti, penne, or any short pasta
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes
  • 4 1/2 cups 2% or whole milk (however indulgent you’re feeling)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 6 cups coarsely grated firm flavorful cheese (this is the part where you use up whatever you have around; some good basic cheeses to start with are extra-sharp Cheddar, Gruyere, and Swiss)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:
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