Thursday, May 24, 2012

Family Meals

So the arrival of our fourth mouth to feed has me all in a tizzy. I have M-cube's nutritional needs covered for the immediate future, no preparation necessary, always ready on demand and free! 

But the other 3 all have very different eating habits and tastes- other than their shared desire for all things sugary or sweet!

This past couple of weeks we have been incredibly loved up on by some awesome mamas who have brought us meals. It has made all the difference for me in being able to maintain our family tradition of eating at the table as often as possible- which has allowed us to bond as a family while we adjust to the new arrival of another human being to share our daily lives with.

Last night G-pie said she loved people bringing us dinner. And that she has enjoyed all of them -although the Pasta with Ground Turkey & Corn was her favorite- and the delicious star cookies that came with it! I loved the casserole dish and realized I should make more 1-pot meals. This one really made me think of my dad, who loved to add corn to pretty much anything...

Sugar Daddy's favorite was the chili which he simmered all afternoon, adding spices and seasonings... the hard prep work was all done, and he got to tinker with the flavor the way he loves to do!! An added blessing to this wonderful dinner- which I appreciated both ways. Such comfort food, and the aroma of the house all afternoon was delicious!

Last night we feasted on Salmon with Brown Rice, Garlic & Lemon Green Beans and Apples & Yams, with Girl Scout cookies for dessert. Totally gluten-free & dairy free. Packaged for ease & convenience- it came together like a gourmet meal.

We were also so grateful for the snack foods- and the soups that people brought, this one was perfect in it's simplicity and so good. It was a great way to give myself a boost before or after a marathon nursing session! 

Another mom brought soup too- these wonderful, wise women know how to supply a postpartum mama with nutritional needs and delightful indulgences, as well! 

This experience left me wondering how this might work even beyond the babymoon- and how it would be such a benefit to busy mamas. It is a great way to expand our own familiar menu and try things made a different way than we do.

Tonight I will be trying out a frozen meal from my friend at Dinner This Month: Chicken Pesto. I have been considering forming a meal assembly group through DTM. I am not sure if the recipes will fit with our dietary preferences, and it seems like a lot of work. I found this option- discovered on Pinterest: for fresh food, sorted & stored in sustainable servers.

Right now I think I like this option best:

Search OAMC- once a month cooking, freezer meals, meal assembly groups & meal sharing for other options.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

KISS crafts

Keep It Simple Sweetie
J-cakes found a book in the pile I was sorting to sell or give away. She wanted to keep it. My first thought was, no way! we have so many craft books that we never use- and I suddenly stopped short hearing my own internal dialogue...

So I said sure. To make sure my end goal was accomplished (the ongoing quest to simplify our cluttered lives) I asked her to choose a book or toy from her room to trade for it. Win-win.

She sat flipping through it while her big sister read the dust cover of a Jean Auel book that looked interesting, (now that she has finished Hunger Games, she is in the market- suggestions?) and little brother tried to master the buckle on his old car seat. With M-cube asleep, I thought I might actually get those boxes of homeschooling resources sorted and priced.

Alas, J-cakes found a craft she wanted to do, and I decided we could quickly do a simpler, more sustainable version of it. The original project involved wallpaper scraps & poster board. Ours uses a felt board and shapes I cut quickly- as J-cakes looked at the book and told me what to cut- she wanted exactly the same items.

Even my big girl got involved: G-pie was the first to arrange it (precisely like the picture in the book).

I cut an extra banana, blueberries & a "cutie" for C-dough to play with (he pretended to peel & eat them over & over).

A sweet time shared by simply keeping it short and capturing the moment. G-pie has started on another project from the book...

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

No Sew T- Shirt Bags

Last night we did another handcraft from our always growing Pinterest projects board. This one was easy- a no sew tote or market bag made from an old T-shirt. G-pie & I both chose sparkly purple T's and it took less than half an hour. More detailed instructions can be found here...

This has me thinking about adding another workshop to the Learning Barefoot fall schedule- a projects, handcrafts and reduce, reuse, recycle series for girls (and their moms?)- there are so many options. There are so many creative and crafty homeschoolers out there. What fun to share the fun of making things that are useful and unusual.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Science Kits

My 10 year old is very into figuring things out (and telling us all about how it works, or how it is made). With the last of our charter school funds for the year I ordered her a couple of kits. She seems to enjoy either a small-group, multi-age, hands-on learning activity (which is ultimately WHY we started or doing it totally on her own. Although this option includes showing her little sister how she is doing it and guiding her through other experiments, crafts or projects, more and more often these days. (Check out their web-show tomorrow morning at 10am)

Today the interest is in "Snap Circuits, Jr" and the "Magnetism Kit"- we ordered both from, a company I have been totally happy with for several years now. The kits are perfect for small group or individual family use and you can just keep the main components and order replacement parts for future barefoot learners- or Sugar Daddys who love science, too...

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