Daily Multi Vitamins for Kids

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In a post a couple months ago I had mentioned how I was determined to keep the green yukky thick goopy noses at bay this year once my daughter started school. Well it has been 2 months now, and I am happy to say that so far, so good!! What I have been doing differently this year from previous years, is that I committed to giving my kids a daily dose of multivitamins. Not the store bought, industrialized, incapsulated, who-knows-whats-really-in-them-anyway?, and does-your-body-even-assimilate-all-this-stuff?, multivitamin. The real kind. The kind of vitamins you get from eating, or in this case drinking, fruits and vegetables. Every morning for the past 2 months, I have been making our family a green juice before I drop my daughter off to school. They drink it first things in the morning. It’s not always easy to get them to drink it. Some days it goes down fine, others I have to hold the cup for them, or sometimes make up games to get them to drink it. But it’s been SO WORTH it. By this time most school years, my daughter has brought home some gross runny nose. No other symptoms, just that nasty stuff all over her face that she wants to kiss and hug us with. Then she sometimes gives it to her brother. Not this year. I love kisses and snuggles too much to have them be ruined by excessive mucus. Up until now I have been making a juice that consists mainly on the stuff you see in the picture. Ingredients change a bit depending on what I find at the farmers market, but up until now it’s been pretty green pretty cleansing and detoxifying, as well as immunity boosting and all around just amazing. I really love having this kind of juice being the first thing I put in my body, and although my kids aren’t aware of it just yet, I am really happy that they get to experience such goodness too.

Here is a not exact recipe of what I have been making:

  • 4-5 cups of greens ( I rotate my greens weekly, you should too)
  • 1 cup herbs (I rotate mainly between parsley and cilantro)
  • 1 big chunk of ginger
  • 1 lemon, with peel
  • 2-3 stalks of celery
  • 1 small cucumber
  • 1 green apple, or 1 carrot, or 1 beet

Juice everything and drink it immediately!!!

I am about to switch up this juice recipe as I am feeling the need to get into more fall vegetables and I feel like our bodies could use some other nutrients than the ones we have been getting through so much green. But I am definitely committed to continuing juicing for my kids (and my!) health. Without a doubt, they are the reason I am keeping this up everyday. If I were juicing only for myself, I know I would have skipped a bunch of days or even would have taken a break from it by now. But why take a break from taking vitamins daily? Which is what juicing essentially is. While smoothies are great since we get a good dose of fiber in them, we tend to add other things in them as well and they are a little heavier to digest. And we cannot put nearly as many greens in a smoothie without feeling full as we can in a juice. Which makes it that we don’t get as many vitamins and nutrients. As the weather cools down and I have built up a good immunity for us up until now, I will be adding more smoothies in our diet and more colors to our juices. Stay on the lookout for those recipes coming soon 🙂

The Snack Plate

It’s 10:30 am on a saturday. The kids have been up for several hours. They have had breakfast and snacked on fruit. Yet they keep on asking for food. I don’t like refusing them food because I don’t want to pretend to know when they are hungry or not, but I also do not want to be serving them food all day and then have them not eat at meal times. My remedy? The beautiful, nutritious Snack Plate.

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I tell them if they are hungry they can eat as much as they like on this plate. I make it a point of not putting any fruit because I know that that is all they would eat and although fruit has many benefits, it is still loaded with sugar and I do not want them eating that all day long either. I try and feed them a balanced diet, and providing this kind of snack plate makes it that they have no other option but eat vegetables if they are hungry. It works. This morning there were only 2 and a half celery sticks left on this plate by the time lunch came around. They weren’t super hungry for lunch, but since they had already eaten a good serving of fresh vegetables, I didn’t really care how much they ate. It takes away from my worrying if they are getting enough veggies in their diet, and it also takes away from the stress of constantly asking them to eat their vegetables during meal times. If all they wanted for lunch was eggs and potatoes, that’s fine by me.

Kids love to snack. Heck, I do to. Keeping healthy convenient food around makes snacking a nutritious stress free thing. Plus, as snacking can often be a mindless habit, it is even better to have this kind of food available for my kids. If they are watching a movie and want to snack during, putting a plate of fresh veggies guarantees they will eat them, because they barely pay attention to what they are putting in their mouth while watching a movie. This is Ninja Parenting right here folks 😉

The better we eat at home, the more relaxed I can be with our diet when we are out. And I love being relaxed about my diet when when we are out 🙂

Ratatouille

This is a very simple dish that I ate a lot as a kid. Since we grew up on an organic farm we had an abundance of very colorful vegetables and this dish is a great way to get them all together in a pot and freeze for later use if need be. Being a family of 4 it’s nice to have a big batch of homemade delicious food that can last for several days, or freeze for a couple months. Making my life easier in the kitchen allows me to spend more quality time with my family.

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Ingredients:

  • 3 bell peppers ( I used a variety of colors)
  • 1 onion
  • 3 zucchinis
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 4-6 fresh tomatoes or 2 16 oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 3 TBS mixed fresh herbs ( I used rosemary, oregano and thyme)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cloves of garlic sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Steps:

  • I chopped all the veggies pretty big, about 1 inch or more
  • melt the onions in olive oil about 5 minutes
  • add peppers, stir and cook about 5 minutes
  • add eggplant and cook another 5 minutes
  • add zucchini and garlic, mix well, cover and let cook on low for about 20 minutes
  • add tomatoes and herbs and cook uncovered on medium for another 10 minutes or so
  • eat as is or serve over rice or your favorite grain
  • I like to add a drizzle of olive oil right before eating for a little added richness