Monday, March 26, 2012

Kid's Clothes: Tea Collection

Ever since I read my first pregnancy magazine when expecting my son, I have kept seeing pictures from the Tea Collection. But I haven't tried their clothes yet. Do they sell them in stores? I don't like to buy a brand without feeling them for myself first. Do you have their clothes for your little ones? What do you think? I am hoping to find out for myself by entering to win a gift card over at In the Know Mom. The Tea Collection has some unique pieces that would be fun, with a new collection of Bali temple garden designs (the Bali beach designs are pretty too, but not my thing). We could definitely use a few pairs of light-weight pajamas for this summer!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Dessert: Shamrock Shakes Review

I decided to try out a simple recipe for making "Shamrock Shakes" that are supposed to be similar to the ones McDonald's has been hawking for St. Patrick's day. It is perfect for the person who loves mint-chocolate ice cream but feels like the crunchiness of the chocolate gets in the way. My son agrees: "I like it green minty ice cream!"

Just a warning about portions: The amounts listed below made the perfect amount for two portions. It would be easy to go overboard with this one, as that resulted in nearly 300 calories each! It is amazing how easy it is to drink down large amounts of melted ice cream, but it's nice for a special treat.

1 C vanilla ice cream
1/2 C whole milk
1/8 t mint extract
3-4 drops green food coloring
fancy themed sprinkles, if desired

Throw the first four ingredients in the blender, serve in glasses, and top with sprinkles!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Toddler in the Kitchen: Delegated Task #1

I am always eager for new ways to get my toddler involved in the kitchen. But putting away groceries quickly turns into him taking things off the shelves and running out of the kitchen with a bottle of ketchup. (It's not in his nature to let things go unexplored.) Adding dry ingredients into a mixing bowl resulted in puffs of flour flying into the air, then landing and getting stuck between the creaky old floor boards.

Although I know my son got great enjoyment (and maybe something useful?) out of these experiences, it made food prep harder for me. The perennial question: What's out there that a toddler can handle and is also helpful?

Answer: Husking corn. My son loves to eat corn on the cob, and it turns out he has just enough attention span to pull back the husk on four cobs (and put them in the trash if the ends are pre-cut). After convincing him not to eat the corn raw, he handed the ears over to me. I still had to pull off most of the silks, but next time I will let my son rinse the ears. There was some mess, but I think a large tray as a work area would solve that. Even without these improvements, the project kept him happily (and safely) occupied while I got the water boiling and was time neatral. Success!

Stay tuned for another food prep task that can be delegated to your ever-helpful toddler!