One Week 1800 Calorie Meal Plan 3.31.16

So, we decided to do a weekly meal plan again this week. I think I stick better to my meal plan when we have a shorter time (though we actually already switched Thursday and Friday). We’ve decided that grocery shopping is now to be done on Wednesdays. Sprouts has double ad days on Wednesdays. 

  Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday
Breakfast Cheerios and Milk (350) Cheerios and Milk (350) French Toast – 2 slices and apple slices (380) + syrup + chocolate milk (150) Monkey Bread (half recipe) (515) + Apple slices (80) 1 cup cheerios + 1 cup milk (200) + coup of canteloupe (100)


1 cup canteloupe (100), 1 cup cottage cheese (180), brioche toast and cream cheese or butter (350) Cheerios and milk (350) + 1 cup cantaloupe (100)
Lunch 2 Tablespoons peanut butter and apple slices (280), ham and cheese croissant (400) Ham and cheese croissant (400), 1 apple (80), 1 sliced cucumber (15) Leftover chicken thigh, quinoa and carrots (451) 1 sliced cucumber (15), 1 banana (100), peanut butter (200) Ham and cheese croissant (400) + 1 cucumber (15) Leftover taquitos (792)


Leftover Pork chops and stuff (389)
Dinner with rice (565) and quinoa + cooked carrots (451) (512) Pork Chops + canned green beans + mashed potatoes (500) with sour cream in corn tortillas (792) – five taquitos with ¼ cup sour cream (550) Date Night
Snack 1 cup cottage cheese (180), 1 banana (100) 1 cup chocolate milk (150), 1 cup cantaloupe (100) 1 cup canteloupe (100) 1 cup cottage cheese (180) Apple Slices and Peanut Butter (280) 1 sliced apple (80) 1 sliced apple (80), ½ cup cottage cheese (90)
Total Cal: 1875 1546 + Ice Cream! 1593 + syrup 1570+ dessert 1787 1772


1009 + date night




Book Reviews and a Garden Update

So, I mentioned a couple of posts ago that one of my goals was to read 20 books this year. I’m still working on The Explorer’s Guild but, I’ve read a couple of others in the meantime.

As Sisters in Zion 

Pages: 80

Genre: LDS Biography

Review: I really enjoyed this book. It was perfect for an afternoon read. It is about the woman, Emily Hill, who wrote the lyrics to the song “As Sisters in Zion.” It tells the story of her and her sister’s conversion to the LDS church and subsequent moving to America and joining the pioneers in their trek west. It is a short summation of their lives but the succinctness made it an easy read. I do wish it had been a little more in-depth, but Debbie Christensen might’ve shared all she knew.

Recommend: Yes, good to buy and good to check-out at the library

Marriage isn’t For You: It’s for the One You Love

Pages: 20 (I don’t know if I can actually count this as a book)

Genre: Self-Help Relationships

Review: This was a cute little story about a father’s advice to his son before his marriage. I really liked the advice given and thought that the pictures in the book (of Seth Adam Smith and his wife) really added to the message.

Recommend: Yes, but check-out at the library

Pregnancy: The Beginners Guide

Pages: 245

Genre: Woman’s Health

Review: This is my favorite non-textbook pregnancy book (Infancy by Alan Fogel is my favorite one but, it covers from pregnancy to 3 years and it is a textbook so, it’s really an unfair comparison). I love the infographics and how easy the book is to read. It really breaks down what a pregnant woman wants to know in simple terms. My favorite part is that every month has a two page “Dad’s Survival Guide.” Mr. B is always bothered that anything pregnancy (and weddings but, I think he’s over that now) seem to completely ignore the father (though he does easily acknowledge that mom’s need more information, he just thinks dad’s need info too). I agree with him and want him to be able to prepare through my pregnancy too. The book includes month-by-month information, natural and non-natural birthing options, pregnancy exercises, and newborn information. It is packed with the little tidbits that sometimes get lost in the slew of pregnancy information.

Recommend: For first-time parents YES! For 2nd (or more) parents, maybe, the information might be repetitive.

Have you read any of these books? Do you recommend them?



As a side note, our strawberries are flowering!


This post contains affiliated links. You don’t pay more, but I can make money if you purchase through these links.



3/11/16 – 3/18/16 Meal Plan

This week we decided to do a one week meal plan and see how that worked out. We’ve always had a bit of trouble sticking to the meal plan by the end of the second week. We get lazy and want to eat based on our mood. So, a one week meal plan it is.

We also shopped at Sprouts in addition to Smiths this week and it was GREAT! The produce was so affordable. We’ll be shopping at Sprouts from now on for most of our produce unless there is a sale at Smiths.

Here is this weeks meal plan:


Here are the links to the dinner recipes:







In case you were wondering, Monday was Pi, we had to have pie… or cheescake that appears as pie.



Fitness during Pregnancy

I’ve had a pretty fun past few days. We planted the garden on Saturday and then it snowed Sunday! Really? It was 74 last week. Then I was sick Sunday night… and Monday night. I think Little C rolls on or into my stomach and makes me want to puke. I just remind myself I am so very grateful for this baby.

Onto the article of the day. I thought I’d continue the health theme and share a paper I wrote about a year ago for my Pregnancy and Infancy class at BYU (please don’t plagiarize it but honestly, I wouldn’t know either way, it’s just bad form).

Here is a quick summary for those who aren’t interested in the academia speak:

There are tons of benefits for both the mother and child if a woman exercises while she is pregnant. Any amount of exercise is good but, it is generally recommended to switch to low impact workouts or, if you weren’t active before, to slowly start an exercise program with guidance from your doctor.

So, what are the benefits you may ask? First of all shorter labor. Women who worked out had an average of 30 minutes less of labor. Now, that’s not huge, but I bet during labor it’d be pretty nice. You’re also less likely to have a c-section. I don’t know how many of you that’s encouraging to, but I don’t want to have a c-section so I’ll offer it as incentive. There are the benefits during labor, but there’s also benefits during pregnancy and postpartum. You’ll have less weight gain during pregnancy (obviously), but you’ll also (statistically) retain less weight postpartum! Maybe I’m vain, but I like the idea of that. The final benefit mommies is that exercise reduces negative emotions (like anxiety or depression), just like they do before you’re pregnant!

What about your darling baby who is the whole point of the debacle? Guess what? You get to start taking care of him/her before they come. So, if you work out, your baby should have a higher placental weight. To contrast that, low placental weight is associated with blood problems and smaller than average children. The baby will also be at a lower risk for pre-term birth (why this is bad?).  Yeah exercise!

Here are my favorite pregnancy exercise videos to give you some encouragement:

I didn’t work out the first two months of my pregnancy but, around the third I started feeling better and started doing 10 minute workout videos every night. During month 5 I moved up to 20 minute workout videos. This isn’t a lot but, it wears me out.

So, tell me gals, what do you do to keep fit during pregnancy?




Below is my entire paper for more info:

The Benefits of Exercise during Pregnancy


            The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists states, in the absence of either medical or obstetric complications, 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise a day on most, if not all, days of the week is recommended for pregnant women” (Women’s Health Care Physicians, 2009, line 6 – 8). But, what are the benefits for pregnant women who exercise? This paper explains the mental and physical benefit to mothers as well as the benefits for babies if a women exercises while pregnant.

Synthesized Review of Literature

Benefits to Mother

Delivery Outcomes

Labor is a very difficult and painful time for women and many women would love to shorten their labor times. Ghodsi, Asltoghiri, and Hajiloomohajerani (2011) found that women who completed light intensity training three times a week for 30 to 45 minutes had shorter first stage labor times. There was not a large difference however. Women who trained had between 4.18 hours to 6.9 hours of labor whereas non-training women had labor between 4.7 hours and 7.5 hours of labor. There was no difference in second stage labor times. However, with thirty minutes less time in first stage labor, one may presume that a mother would have more energy to complete second stage labor. More research is needed to see if more exercise, such as the amount the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends, will lead to wider differences in labor times.

Women that are active are also less likely to have a cesarean section. Price, Amini, and Kappeler found that only 6% of their subjects that were active had cesarean section compared to 32% of the women in their control group (2012, p. 2267) Cesarean sections are invasive and also lead to longer recovery times and thus are a detriment to mothers.

Mental and Physical Benefits

There are many benefits to the mental and physical state of the mother, if the mother exercises during pregnancy. Haakstad and Bo (2011) found that not only did women who participated in an exercise program gain less weight during pregnancy but they also had significantly lower weight retention postpartum. This is both a physical benefit, for obvious reasons, and a mental benefit for women who place value on being a certain weight and bouncing back from their pregnancy weight quickly. This study also studied an exercise program that had less than the recommended amount of exercise. This study’s program consisted of aerobic exercise for 60 minutes twice a week. More research is needed to see if the benefits continue with more exercise.

Furthermore, Guszkowska, Langwald, and Sempolska compared exercise to relaxation techniques and showed that both resulted in, “the emotional state of pregnant women improve[ing]” (2013, p. 129). However, there were notable differences in the way each variable affected the women. Guszkowska, Langwald, and Sempolska state:

Relaxation caused a distinct decrease of negative emotional states – anxiety and tense arousal and an increase of hedonic tone – while energetic arousal did not increase. In the physical exercise group, the decrease in anxiety and tension was smaller, the increase in pleasure feeling was not as distinctive, but the increase in energetic arousal was more significant …Therefore, physical exercise seems to be less effective in reducing negative emotional states than relaxation sessions, but more successful in increasing positive states. (2013, p.129)

Women that have anxiety and depression benefit more from relaxation techniques because of the decrease in negative emotions but also benefit from exercise as a way of lowering the amount of anxiety and depression they feel while raising their energy levels. Women who feel lethargic and exhausted during pregnancy benefit most from exercise because they feel “a surge of vitality, vigour and vital energy” (Guszkowska, Langwald, and Sempolska, 2013, p. 130). Thus women who exercise during pregnancy, contrary to what one would suppose, feel more energized rather than more fatigued.

Benefits to Baby

Many women are more concerned about how their actions during pregnancy will affect their baby more than themselves. Exercise during pregnancy also benefits the baby. Firstly, Price, Amini, and Kappeler found that, “[a]lthough the exercise regimen was vigorous enough to improve fitness, it had no adverse effect on overall pregnancy length, fetal birth weight, Apgar scores, or placenta weight compared with sedentary controls” (2012, p. 2267). Thus, women seeking to change from a sedentary lifestyle to an active lifestyle during pregnancy can do so without risking harm to their baby. Price, Amini, and Kappeler furthered their research by stating, “placenta weight was slightly higher in the active group, consistent with evidence that exercise augments placental growth during early and mid pregnancy” (2012, p.2267).  Low placental weight is associated with short umbilical cord length and velamentous cord insertion (McNamara, Hutcheon, Platt, Benjamin, and Kramer, 2014, p. 102). It is also associated with “high hemoglobin values in neonates and lower-than-expected body size in later childhood” (Naeye, 1987, p.387)

Other findings suggest that maternal exercise while pregnant decreases the risk of pre-term delivery. Guendelman, Pearl, Kosa, Graham, Abrams, and Kharrazi found that, “each incremental hour per week of moderate exercise during the second trimester was associated with a reduced risk of PTD. Furthermore, the benefits of moderate exercise appeared strongest for those with a pre-pregnancy BMI C 24 kg/m2” (2013, p.726). While exercise benefits babies from all mothers, mothers were overweight before pregnancy benefit even more than those that had normal weight. Owe, Stigum, Nystad, and Bo’s findings also support this claim. They found that engaging in regular exercise during pregnancy shifts the GA distribution slightly upward resulting in a moderately reduced risk of preterm births and a few more postterm births  (2012, p.1072)


            It is evident that exercise is beneficial for both a pregnant woman and perinatal baby. There

are multiple applications for this research.
Delivery Outcomes for Mother
Mothers that are at risk for long labors and cesarean sections would benefit from exercise

(Ghodsi, Asltoghiri, and Hajiloomohajerani, 2011 and Price, Amini, and Kappeler, 2012). Labor is

generally a long an arduous process and any woman would benefit from shortening it. However, first

time mothers, who generally have longer labors, will benefit from the shortening the most Long

labors can lead to exhaustion and necessitate non-natural labors in mothers that wish to have natural

labors. Doctors, midwives, and birthing class instructors can also this as an incentive to mothers to

exercise. One of the most dreaded parts of pregnancy is the long labor. Pregnant women that are not

encouraged to exercise by the other benefits noted may exercise to reduce their own pain.
 Mental and Physical Benefits to Mother
Pregnant women can benefit physically and mentally from exercise and relaxation training

(Guszkowska, Langwald, and Sempolska, 2013). Birthing class teachers can learn from this research

and encourage or implement exercise and relaxation training to lower stress levels. Doctors that are

treating clinically depressed or anxious mothers should encourage and teach relaxation techniques

and/or exercise either as an alternative to medication or in conjunction with lower medication dosage

depending on the severity of the depression and anxiety and the type of medication the mother is

taking. Stress during pregnancy can result in low birth weight or preterm delivery which leads to

possible negative outcomes for the infant, so, it is important to decrease stress for pregnant women.

The encouraged exercise and resulting invigoration is also beneficial for women who feel extremely

lethargic, which is common during pregnancy.

Women can encourage themselves to participate in exercise programs by committing to work

out with a pregnant friend or their partner. There are also many gyms that offer pregnancy work-out
classes that women can participate in and gain not only the benefits mentioned here of exercise but

also the benefits of having an emotional support group.

Benefits to Baby

Babies benefit from having healthy and happy mothers, which exercise during pregnancy adds to. But, babies also benefit physically from their mother exercising. Pregnant women who exercise at least one hour a week decrease their risk of preterm delivery (Guendelman, Pearl, Kosa, Graham, Abrams, and Kharrazi, 2012). “This modest amount of exercise seems clinically important given that women are mainly sedentary and PTD remains a leading cause of infant morbidity and mortality” (Guendelman, Pearl, Kosa, Graham, Abrams, and Kharrazi, 2012, p.726). Furthermore, according to the Mayo Clinic, preterm delivery can cause breathing problems, heart problems, brain problems, temperature control problems, gastrointestinal problems, blood problems, metabolism problems, immune system problems, cerebral palsy, impaired cognitive skills, vision problems, hearing problems, dental problems, behavioral and psychological problems, or other chronic health issues (2014). By exercising a woman can decrease the chances that her child will suffer from these because of their decreased chance of preterm delivery.


Numerous studies show that exercise during pregnancy is beneficial to both mother anc child (Ghodsi, Asltoghiri, and Hajiloomohajerani, 2011, Guendelman, Pearl, Kosa, Graham, Abrams, and Kharrazi, 2013, Guszkowska, Langwald, and Sempolska, 2013, Haakstad and Bø, 2011, Owe, Stigum, Nystad, and Bø, 2012, Price, Amini, and Kappeler, 2012). Doctors, midwives, and birthing instructors should all encourage exercise to those women who are able to do so. Pregnant women should understand the benefits of exercising during pregnancy and not believe in the myth that exercise hurts infants.


Ghodsi, Z., Asltoghiri, M., & Hajiloomohajerani, M. (2011). Exercise and pregnancy: Duration of labor stages and Perinea tear rates. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 31, 441-445. Retrieved March 8, 2015, from

Guendelman, S., Pearl, M., Kosa, J. L., Graham, S., Abrams, B., & Kharrazi, M. (2013). Association between preterm delivery and pre-pregnancy body mass (BMI), exercise and sleep during pregnancy among working women in Southern California. Maternal And Child Health Journal, 17(4), 723-731. doi:10.1007/s10995-012-1052-5

Guszkowska, M., Langwald, M., & Sempolska, K. (2013). Influence of a relaxation session and an exercise class on emotional states in pregnant women. Journal of Reproductive And Infant Psychology, 31(2), 121-133. doi:10.1080/02646838.2013.784897

Haakstad, L. H., & Bø, K. (2011). Effect of regular exercise on prevention of excessive weight gain in pregnancy: A randomised controlled trial. The European Journal Of Contraception And Reproductive Health Care, 16(2), 116-125. doi:10.3109/13625187.2011.560307

Mayo Clinic Staff. (2014, November 27). Premature Birth: Complications. Retrieved March 9, 2015, from

McNamara, H., Hutcheon, J. A., Platt, R. W., Benjamin, A., & Kramer, M. S. (2014). Risk Factors for High and Low Placental Weight. Paediatric & Perinatal Epidemiology, 28(2), 97-105. doi:10.1111/ppe.12104

Naeye, R. (1987). Do placental weights have clinical significance? Human Pathology, 387-391.

Owe, K., Stigum, H., Nystad, W., & Bø, K. (2012). Does Exercise during Pregnancy Affect Gestational lenght at Birth. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 44(6), 1067-1074. Retrieved March 8, 2015, from OvidSP.

Price, B., Amini, S., & Kappeler, K. (2012). Exercise in Pregnancy: Effect on Fitness and Obstetric Outcomes—A Randomized Trial. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 44(12), 2263-2269. Retrieved March 7, 2015, from OvidSP.

Women’s Health Care Physicians. (2009, January 1). Retrieved March 7, 2015, from

What Does Your Community Have to Offer?

So, today I went to our City Hall for the first time. I luckily found out this past Friday, that this Monday was the last day I could register my dog (a yearly thing) without paying a late fee. So, I stopped in to register Wheatley and I’m pretty sure the three people ahead of me in line were doing the same thing. Procrastinators Unite!

Anyways, while I was there, I stumbled across the library newsletter. Bear in mind, we had been to the library on Saturday and I skipped over the newsletter because it had this giant head “1000 Books before Kindergarten” and I thought it was a flyer for that program. But, this time I stopped to look at it and there were so many cool things!

First of all, I learned that our county has subscriptions to a bunch of eMagazines that I can get for free with my library card. So, I spent the afternoon looking through CookingLight. I’m also excited for Better Nutrition, Bon Appetit, This Old House, Interweave Crochet, Southern Living, Good Housekeeping, and Time. I can download them to my phone too, like an ebook (which our library has a lot of too)!

Secondly, they have this streaming service called Hoopla through the library. This is limited and I can only borrow six seasons or movies a month but, that’s okay. It has a lot of older movies but, they look like fun. We recently gave up Netflix (in favor of only using Amazon Prime) so, this might give us another outlet.

Third, the community offers “Financial Literacy for All” classes. After reading descriptions,  the classes seem fairly basic and not like something we would need to attend but, I think it is awesome that they offer these classes.

Fourth, they offer all kinds of events and performances for the community. There is a Celtic Music Performance we might go to. There’s also things like “Utah Puppet Theater,” “Star Wars Gala & Dancing,” ” Sensory Faire,” “Literary Arts Spring Into Books Festival,” and a “Burgers and Brownies” get together. I’m 90% sure these are free and if not, I’m in for a rude awakening. They also have some classes. I think we are going to attend one called “Tesla Coil Science.” It’s a class on you guessed it Tesla coils and it includes a light show and the opportunity to experiment with mini coils as well. There’s a gardening class, a duct tape craft class, a storytelling lab, etc. The classes are for different age groups. I’m jealous of some of the teen classes.

There is a lot that focuses on kids and I keep thinking, “when Little C is old enough, I get to do all these fun things!” But, there is also a lot of opportunities for free date nights!

I know I just sounded like a massive ad for getting involved in your community, but I’m excited! I’m also planning on looking at our city’s website now and seeing what the city has to offer.

Are you involved in your community? What fun things does your community do?



Meal Plan 2/28/16 – 3/11/16

It only took me like 5-6 hours to make this meal plan. I am all meal planned out. Hopefully it will get easier. I don’t remember it taking this long last time I did meal plans like this. Of course, I never checked that I was hitting all of the food groups so, I suppose that added time.

The number one lesson I learned this week while meal planning? Use a pencil on my check mark sheet. As you can see above, I had many scratch outs and it looks awful and became a little confusing to read.

Otherwise, I’m quite happy how the plan turned out. Now here’s hoping I don’t forget anything at the grocery store!

Here is the link to the (almost) 2-week menu:

What do you think? Too much effort for a meal plan or is it a great idea?



Nutrition in Meal Planning

Monday kinda got me on a nutrition kick. Before I got pregnant I was actually really good at tracking my food. We had trouble conceiving and my doctor told me if I lost weight, it would be easier. At the beginning of 2015, I was 170 pounds (I’m 5’4″) and wore a medium/size 8. I wasn’t huge but, that was the biggest I’d ever been. After my doctor told me loosing weight would be best, I took to it with vigor. Difficulty conceiving was completely out of my hands but, my weight – I could control that. My type A-ness was completely stoked. In April, I put myself on 1500 calories a day which was the lowest (according to somewhere on the internet) I should go. I am dead set against doing diets that restrict what you can and can’t have because I know I would fail in a minute if I couldn’t have potatoes or chocolate milk or things like that. So, I allowed myself to have anything I wanted, but if I ran out of calories it sucked to be me. Anyways, about halfway through the year, I had to switch doctors (I graduated college and could no longer see one of the schools doctors). He flat out told me that 1500 calories was too high for me if I wanted to lose substantial weight and told me to go down to 1200. (Don’t freak out anyone! It’s because I have PCOS which basically makes it difficult for my body to transfer food into energy and instead just stores it. I need less food than a normal person). I dropped down to 1200 calories. For those of you who have never eaten that few calories before, it isn’t a lot and you really have to plan your food well to not end up eating celery for dinner. So, for a couple months, I planned every individual meal and snack for the day and how they related to the other meals so I wouldn’t go hungry. I had all the foods listed and all of their calories next to them. I lost 25 pounds between April and October (when I found out I was pregnant). I lost another 5 pounds the first month I knew I was pregnant because I couldn’t eat anything. Fast forward to my last doctor’s appointment and my doctor tells me this: ‘So, you didn’t gain almost any weight your first trimester so this is okay but, this past month you gained 8 pounds. You don’t want to continue doing that.’


The past couple of weeks, I’ve really been trying to scale back my eating and I aim for 1800-2000 calories. (Side note: When you’re pregnant, you should add about 300 calories to what your body normally needs. When non-pregnant 1500 calories had me loosing a little weight so, I aim for a little above 1800. Everyone is different though so, ask your doctor!). As, I was reviewing nutrition information for my article on Monday, I realized I probably wasn’t getting all the nutrients me or Little C needs. So, I consulted the handy-dandy MyPlate. Thanks government! I mixed the recommendations of how many servings of each food group I need for someone my age/weight/height that isn’t pregnant vs that is (hence why they are optional). The reason I did this is because, MyPlate decided that I needed 2400 calories as a pregnant woman. Which might be true normally but, definitely isn’t for me.

Anyways, after that long rambling explanation, here is what I came up with:

I meal plan by two weeks, which is why there are two checkboxes under each day of the week.When I meal plan, I have the chart printed and check the boxes as I assign food to each day. I also check calories as I go along. I use My Fitness Pal (non-affiliated link, I just love them so much, and it’s free) to check calories for each food item.

I will post the full 2 week menu on Friday!

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Fruit 1
Fruit 2
Vegetable 1
Vegetable 2
Vegetable 3
Grain 1
Grain 2
Grain 3
Grain 4
Grain 5
Grain 6
Grain 7 (opt)
Grain 8 (opt)
Protein 1
Protein 2
Protein 3
Protein 4
Protein 5
Protein 6
Dairy 1
Dairy 2
Dairy 3


2 Servings of fruit:

  • 1 cup raw fruit
  • ½ cup dried fruit
  • 1 cup 100% fruit juice

2.5 – 3 Servings Vegetables

  • 1 cup raw/cooked veggies
  • 2 cups leafy salad greens

6 – 8 servings Grains

  • 1 slice of bread
  • ½ cup of cooked rice/pasta/cereal
  • ½ cup cooked Oatmeal

5.5 – 6.5 Servings Protein

  • 1 oz meat
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • ¼ cup beans

3 Servings dairy

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 5 oz cheese

How do you make sure you eat healthily?



Nutrition in Young Children

I often write articles for NAFCC (The National Association for Family Child Care). Here is the article I wrote for this month’s featured standard (NAFCC requires their accredited providers to meet certain standards to be accredited with them).

4.73 The provider serves nutritious and sufficient food following Child and Adult Care Food Program guidelines. If parents bring food, the provider assures that it is nutritious or supplements it.

Young children’s stomachs are only about the size of their fists. This is why small but frequent feedings work best. Try to feed your toddler ever 3 or so hours. A child’s body uses nutrients from food to function properly throughout the day. Children that are fed a healthy diet can learn, grow, and play!

Some of the benefits of good nutrition in children are:

  • A healthy weight for their height
  • Mental well-being
  • Ability to concentrate
  • Strong bones and muscles
  • Good energy levels
  • The ability to fight off sickness and disease
  • Easier recovery from illness or injury
  • Lower risk of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, joint problems, breathing problems, and obesity

Remember that offering nutritious food is not enough. It is important to encourage learning about good nutrition so, that older children can learn to make good decisions on their own.

Tips for encouraging healthy learning:

  • Offer a variety of healthy foods so children don’t see healthy foods as boring foods.
  • Expect children to like new foods but, don’t be discouraged if they don’t. It takes multiple tries for children to adjust to the texture and taste of new foods.
  • Encourage children to eat slowly and enjoy their food.
  • Allow the children to determine how much they eat. Encourage them to listen to their bodies and when their bodies tell them they are full.
  • Avoid using food as a reward or a punishment.
  • Use real food labels in imaginary play areas. Encourage and teach older children to read labels.
  • Encourage children to safely help prepare health meals and snacks.

While children may spend a great deal of time in your care, parents have a huge impact on the health of their children. Encourage parents to continue offering healthy choices at home. Make sure to offer them a menu so they can plan their meals  and supplement the nutrients the child is already getting in your care. Offer parents a copy of the CACFP Meal Pattern. This offers a simplified checklist for busy parents to make sure they are providing all the food groups their child needs.

The above tips are not all inclusive.  After all, there are Many Right Ways! Find your own creative ways to encourage children to eat healthily and teach them about the importance of good nutrition.

For more helpful information conduct your own internet search or visit the sites listed below.


Chan, By Amanda. “10 Ways to Promote Kids’ Healthy Eating Habits.”LiveScience. TechMedia Network, 22 Sept. 2011. Web. 22 Feb. 2016. <>.

Editorial Staff. “Nutrition: Healthy Eating for Kids.” Nutrition: Healthy Eating for Kids. American Academy of Family Physicians, Mar. 2015. Web. 22 Feb. 2016. <>.

“Healthy Eating for Kids.” Healthy Eating for Kids. Memiah Limited, 2016. Web. 22 Feb. 2016. <>.

Photo Credit: Bruce Tuten

Amazon Welcome Baby Giftbox Haul

So, last week I did my Haul of Target’s Welcome Baby Giftbag. This week I’ll do my Amazon haul. Amazon will send you the box for free for registering with them. I believe you have to complete your registry before they will send the box but, we were planning on registering with Amazon anyway so, it wasn’t a hassle. We registered with Amazon for our wedding and absolutely loved it!

Reasons we love registering with Amazon:

  • You can add from any site. The most disappointing thing for us, when registering for our wedding, is that Ikea didn’t have a registry opportunity (we really like Ikea). But, with Amazon we could add anything from their website to our registry! Same thing for a baby. The crib and mattress we’ve registered for are from Ikea. We also got to register for a lot of cloth diapers from Kelley’s Closet and Nikki’s Diapers, which was awesome.
  • If it is cheaper to buy on Amazon, Amazon will tell you and suggest registering for that item through Amazon instead. So, if I registered for a Chicco stroller from Buy Buy Baby an it was cheaper at Amazon, they’d point that out to me. I love saving money for me and my family.
  • It lets us put notes. This is one of my favorite features. I can make a note on any item of what color or size I’d prefer. This is important for something like our diaper bag. The diaper bag we registered for is a Burberry print with colored accents. We want the one with blue accents because we aren’t getting a second diaper bag for Mr. B. We chose the bag because it was more gender neutral. It isn’t so gender neutral with pink accents. I also used this because I registered for one newborn diaper (we got the rest we need on eBay for a great price). However, I wanted a white diaper to bless little C in. We registered for the diaper and explained we only needed one and we need it in white for his blessing.
  • Amazon’s checklist. Amazon makes an awesome little checklist for you to go through so you don’t forget to register for anything! Which, pregnant ladies, we all know is important with #pregnancybrain!

Anyways, on to the point of this post, which is to tell you about my Amazon Baby Box!

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    The Box: Oooohhh Ahhh, box. The only thing to note is that Chicco didn’t actually include anything in the box. I’m guessing they sponsor shipping? Way to go Chicco. Thanks for shipping me stuff.

  2. 3 Samples: Babyganics Lotion, Burt’s Bees Babywash, Burt’s Bees Renewal Serum (form mom). The Babyganics lotion is the same I had in the target giftbag. I’m really exited for it actually because the sample is kind of small so, two of them will actually give me an idea if I like it for my baby or not. I tried it on myself and thought it was good. I’m really excited for the Burt’s Bees Babywash! I love Burt’s Bees and I would love to use their whole baby line but, it is a lot more expensive than Johnson and Johnson. However, this sample gives me enough that I might just fall in love with it and decide it is worth the splurge (or I might hate it, I’ll let you know). The Burt’s Bees Renewal Serum is to “[h]elp restore the appearance of your skin’s smooth, firm, texture with powerful, natural anti-aging ingredients.” It’s supposed to be for mom. This was my least favorite part of the box. I feel enough like a bloated chimpanzee without Amazon including something that makes me feel like I need to improve my looks more. (That is probably my oversensitive pregnancy mind speaking though).
  3. Enfamil Supplementing Formula Sample: In the box are 4 samples, each has enough for a 4 oz bottle. It can be used from 0 to 12 months and is specifically for supplementing. It will be interesting to try. Mr. B will probably use the samples but, hopefully we won’t have to supplement.
  4. Avent Breastpad Sample and Booklet: Disposable breastpads are great and I will probably keep them in the diaper bag for emergencies (I plan on using reusable pads). I also liked the booklet they included. I only skimmed the first couple of pages but, it had some really helpful information!
  5. Avent Bottle: 2nd bottle (I received one in the target bag)! I don’t know if I’ll have to even buy a bottle. I’ll be at home most of the time and I feel like two bottles is sufficient for Little C’s feedings with Mr. B if we keep up on washing them.
  6. MAM Pacifier: I received one of these in the Target giftbag as well but, this one doesn’t have a little bunny on it. But I think it’s important to have multiple pacifiers if you’re going to use them (which we plan on doing). With my luck I’ll need at least 10 because I loose everything that is the size of my phone or smaller.
  7. Not Pictured (sorry, I forgot!): Amazon Sensitive Baby Wipes 80 count: I haven’t opened them because I don’t want them to dry out before Little C makes an appearance but, they are an 80 count! That isn’t a little sample! That’s substantial. The package is about 3″x 7″. I also like that they are made in the USA.

So, there is everything I got in my box! What did you get in yours?



Target Baby Registry Gift Bag Haul

Portuguese Podengo
Don’t I look handsome mommy? Don’t I?

So, on this ridiculously cold day (seriously, it was below freezing all day! Why am I not living in the south?), while a certain someone was getting his hair cut…

Mr. B and I went to wonderful world of Target to pick up our baby registry gift bag and burn time by using their fun little scanner!

I’ll admit, we probably would’ve had more fun if it wasn’t 6:15 and time for dinner but, it wasn’t awful. We primarily registered on Amazon (I’ll do a post on that gift box later) but, we figured we should register in a brick and mortar store for our lovely friends and family that don’t like shopping online (see: Grandmas).

Here is everything that came in the gift bag:

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#1 Bag: I really liked the reusable bag target gave the gift bag in. My favorite part was that it said “You got this” at the bottom. Target knows new parents are feeling overwhelmed and it’s little things like that that make me smile.

#2 Coupons: So we got this on 2/1/16. The Zarbee’s coupons expired 1/31/16. I probably wouldn’t have used the coupons anyways but, it would’ve been nice if there weren’t expired coupons in the bag (it was only by a day but, still). There is also a little booklet from Johnson’s/Desitin that has a $2 off 2 products coupon that expires on 3/31/16. The booklet basically tells how to use each one of their products… which felt a bit like a waste of paper. The coupon is probably enough encouragement for me to use your product. I don’t know if I will use the coupon though because my baby shower is in April and every shower I’ve been to, someone has given baby wash and I can’t use Desitin on my cloth diapers so, that is out. There was a BOGO coupon for Enfamil Newborn Infant Formula that expires 4/30/16. Finally, there were three target coupons for mommy’s use: 10% off a nursing bra or cami, 15% off liz lange maternity, and BOGO starbucks beverage. They all expire 8/1/16. Because of the coupons, I would highly recommend getting the gift bag closer to your due date. I was just so excited to get mine and most of the coupons (except the target coupons) will expire before it is useful for me to use them.

#3 Medicine Sample: There was a Zarbee sample. I’m not quite sure what it was for because the attached coupons had expired; I assumed the sample had expire as well and tossed it. The second sample was Mustela lotion. I accidentally pictured this as medicine. When I took the picture I had just scanned the info card and it was talking about dermatological research. But it is lotion. It is pretty watery lotion and smells like facewash to me and not the good-smelling kind. The kind of facewash you get at the dermatologist because you have bad acne. It also leaves my hands feeling coated in something instead of absorbing into my skin. I’m not a fan.

#4 Lotion Samples: There were two lotion samples one from Babyganics and one from Aquaphor. The Babyganics lotion came with a $1 off coupon that expires 3/31/16 and it smells like something spicy but, I can’t put my finger on it. It feels like normal lotion and absorbed nicely into the skin. I really like the Babyganics brand so there is a high chance we’ll use the coupon (if I don’t forget about it). The Aquaphor didn’t smell like anything and it felt like Vaseline when applied, which has its uses, so I’ll probably toss it in my diaper bag until it is used up.

#5 Lansinoh Breast Feeding Kit Samples: The kit included a $2 off coupon that expired 12/31/15. The kit itself had a breastmilk storage bag that was pre-sterilized and medical grade. I’ll be honest, I don’t know what that means. I think I have some research to do on pumping breast milk. There were also two disposable breast pads. I think those will be nice to stick in the diaper bag for emergencies (I plan on using reusable pads mostly).

#6 Honest Wipes: This is a pack of 10 wipes. It also came with a $3 off coupon but, that expired in 12/31/15. I think as long as I keep these sealed they’ll be good, so they’ll be nice for the diaper bag too!

On to the most exciting stuff:

#7 Bottle: This is the Munchkin Latch Stage One Four-Ounce Bottle. It is supposed to be easier for breastfed babies to latch to. I like that it has a cover. It also has an anti-colic air valve at the bottom that allows air to escape. It’s a really nice bottle for the awesome price of free.

#8 Paci: This is the MAM Newborn pacifier. It’s BPA free, which frankly everything baby should be. It has a cute little bunny on the front which is cute.

#9: Diaper, Wipes, and Wristlet: Pampers included a newborn size diaper (which made me squeal at its adorableness) and a pack of 6 wipes. My favorite part is the little wristlet that has two pockets. I love the pattern and I think it will be awesome for helping organize the diaper bag. I think I’ll either have it as the mommy pocket or maybe I’ll use it to carry things like hand sanitizer, coconut oil, and sunscreen. We’ll see!

What did you get in your target bag?