Saturday, April 28, 2012

Adventures with baby food and iced coffee...

I am a big fan of putting good things into my family's bodies.  I am by no stretch of the imagination perfect at serving only healthy, organic meals though.  We are on a budget, and let's face it, milk and bread come before organic beets.  As a mom, however, I want to give my kids a head-start in the food arena by exposing them to a lot of different flavors early on.  So, I make most of my own baby food.

Here are some things I have learned:

I do NOT make my own beans and peas.  I can't get the consistency right without boiling all nutritional value out of them.

I DO have a stock of store bought baby food for times when I can't get to the store for fresh veggies and fruit.

I do NOT use recipes.  Never have.  Don't feel the need to.  Cook the veggies then mush 'em in a food processor...that's how I roll.

I store my baby food in used (washed and sanitized) baby food containers.  They're the perfect portion and stack nicely in my freezer! I also write on the lid with a permanent marker what is in the container. The marker wipes off with a rag later so I can reuse them.

I like to experiment with flavors..mad scientist style!  Kids don't know if things "go together" or not.  Case in point, my 21 month old dipped his grapes in ketchup at lunch today.

I use the leftovers from store-bought rotisserie chickens for meat.  Those things feed us for days, so I soak some in boiling water for a bit then puree it up.  I usually mix meat with a veggie tho b/c the texture of ground up chicken makes me want to rub my teeth with my finger!

Blueberries, prunes, and mango make kids poop...A LOT! I usually don't serve these alone, but mix them with things.

Apples and pears can be mixed with ANYTHING (fruit or veggie) so I try to keep them in my fridge at all times.

Black beans make a good protein, but also make babies poop a lot, so I use them sparingly!

Give 'em lots of color!  I LOVE looking in my freezer and seeing the rainbow of colors in those tiny containers!  It makes me feel like I am feeding my child ever vitamin/nutrient possible. And, the stuff I make at home is much more colorful (and flavorful) than the stuff at the store!

When I put them in the freezer, I stack them strategically.  I usually give my kiddo a fruit in the am, and a green or orange veggie at lunch then the opposite color veggie for dinner.  So, to make my life easier, I stack my fruits and veggies so that the flavors are all mixed up.  This way, my kid doesn't have to eat squash for 5 days in a row when there are carrots in there too.

My kids aren't perfect, but so far they'll eat anything!  I like to give myself some of the credit for this since I am the one choosing what goes in their teeny tiny bodies :)

Above: a batch of baby food I made this morning using: 2 zucchini, 1 butternut squash, about 6 carrots and about a cup of chicken.

Above: my stock of fruit in the freezer.  I think there's apple, pear, apricot, mango and blueberry represented. 

I don't want to leave myself out here.  I like to freeze a lil somthin' for myself too...Coffee!  That's right, ice cube form!  It's summer after all and this mama's budget does not allow for Starbucks.  So, when I've got some coffee left in the pot, I pour it into ice cube trays.  Then, in the afternoon, when I need a little pick-me-up, I can pour some coffee (left-over from that morning) over some homemade creamer (recipe below) and coffee cubes.  This way my coffee doesn't get diluted, or as I like to say POLLUTED, by melting regular ice cubes. I can also throw them in the blender for a yummy iced coffee drink that, again, doesn't get watered down.  

My husband laughs, but let's be honest, it's pretty stinkin' genius! 

Homemade Creamer:
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
2 cups of milk*
*I like almond milk or coconut milk
**my fave is caramel sauce and almond extract with a little touch of vanilla :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Body Butter

Body Butter!

Ahhh warm weather! Windows open, grilling, playing in the backyard, and....shaving...eck!  My legs are dryer than dry after winter, but this stuff has seriously been a miracle for my skin!  I always want super silky soft looking legs that girls on shaving commercials have, but I never could figure out how to get that w/o being greasy.  This stuff gives me that look...for real!  This is some left over from a batch I sold a while back (it lasts a long time bc a little bit goes a long way!) and it smells like lavender vanilla.  It's one of my favorite smells right now, and I really like how this stuff makes my skin smell good all day without being super strong smelling. If you're interested in buying some, let me know.  A jar is only $7, and it can be paired with sugar scrub and/or bath salts for a really great Mother's Day gift!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sidewalk "art"

I'm not sure who had more fun with this one, me or Sully!  I've been wanting to try this since I saw it on Pinterest.  Here's the blog I got it from: 

The "paint" took less than 2 minutes to make (no, seriously!), I didn't measure anything (just mixed cornstarch w/water then added food coloring), and it's a breeze to play with and clean up (washes away w the rain)! 

Sully kept pointing to it and telling his daddy, "art"!

Monday, April 16, 2012

I haven't been crafting much this past week.  We've been pretty busy around here!  My dad had surgery last week, my grandparents were in town, this weekend was our church's youth retreat, and last night (and today) we are keeping a friend's little girl while they are at the hospital with their other child.  Like I said, busy!

Last week, Sully made his first loaf of bread.  I am the granddaughter of an Italian baker, so making bread is just something you do as soon as you can walk.  This was his first loaf, and it's a new recipe, so it's not too pretty.  It was tasty tho!
Here's my little man kneading the dough...

Here is the final product...

I'm hoping to start crafting again soon, but first this mama needs a BIG NAP!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

As promised...

As promised, here are the rocketship and music stationary:

And, just because he's cute and cracks me up, here is a pic of Sully's am antics :)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Ta Da!

Ta Da!
Here are some new stationary packs...
(each pack is $5 for a set of 6 w/o envelopes.  Envelopes can be added for $2)

yellow paisley with "faith" "love" and "joy"

blue birdie "every single day, I am grateful for you!"

flower and curls "I love you!"

tree variety

simple flower "j_st to let yo_ know, I am missing yo_."

house "thank you"

house "congratulations on your new home!"

love birdies

trees "Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." -The Lorax

love birdies and paisley

Coming soon: A rocket ship and a music staff!
Enjoy :)
O, and order please!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Osito meets the Lexington Rescue Mission

I am so excited to bring my first official load of Osito things to the Lexington Rescue Mission tomorrow!  I got the "ok" to sell my Sugar Scrubs and Body Butter, so I made a few up and am taking a trip in the morning to drop them, and a variety of other things, off.  I am pumped about getting my stuff "out there", but I am also so so so glad to have been given the opportunity to support a local mission.  If you're in Lexington, or the surrounding areas, check it out!  It's a great cause and there are lots of other local artists/crafters represented!  For more information, visit:

Here's a dose of cuteness for your day:

Yup, this actually happened...and with it, their cuteness factor increased ten-fold!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Peas, popsicles, and redneck pool parties...

Harmon really does like peas...I swear it!

I think he was jealous of the popsicle Sully got when his (Sully's) intake of Harmon's peas started getting a little out of control.

We had to have popsicles at our redneck pool party!

After our redneck pool party, Sully got to work and watered our new iris plants!

H was a lot happier when he was dry and clean.

Ah, the joys of staying home with my boys!  It's pure joy to know that I am doing exactly what I was made to do...I was created to be a mom.  I have a deep respect for women who have careers.  I am not one of those women.  I have known in the depths of my being that I was created by God to be a mom.  I could not be happier with God's choice for my life, and I intend to be the best I can be for the men in my life!  Bring on the peas, the popsicles and the redneck pool parties!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Better than barn wood!

I have been trying to figure out how to get my hands on a piece of old barn wood for a few weeks now.  My search was not going well and I was getting very discouraged...until today!  I was walking through the Habitat for Humanity ReStore with my mom and my boys, and their selection of wood was unimpressive to say the least.  Then, laying on the ground, calling my name with a price tag of only $5 was a GORGEOUS plank of wood!  Not barn wood, but an ~8' planed piece of tree...the bark was still intact and everything!  Beautiful!!!  I hauled that sucker home (Sully thought it was a fort in the car. He had to duck his head to see me b/c it was propped on the dash and the seat.)  What, you ask, am I planning to do with a piece of wood?  Well, a few of the youth group kids came over today and one cut it for me.  Tomorrow, I am hoping to paint tick marks on it in one inch intervals, and I want to hang it in the house and use it as a growth chart for the boys!  I am pumped! When it's done, I will post pics.

I made a new product today too.  They're called Diaper Belts.  They have adjustable velcro and wrap around a travel wipe container and a stack of diapers for the diaper bag.  The first one I made (also in the dino pattern) I wrapped around the diapers and wipes in our diaper bag, and I don't plan to get rid of's much cuter than the rubber bands I was using :)

Diaper Belt $8

And, true to form, I made a new Sugar Scrub today :)  This Honey Almond SS has honey, sweet almond oil and crushed almonds added to it to show your skin some extra lovin'!

Honey Almond Sugar Scrub $7

As my dearest Sullivan Bear so often says, "Wow! Awesome!"