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Shelf Reliance Mom

Shelf Reliance Mom

Monday, May 20, 2013

MM - Flourishing Family.....Sneaky Sneaky!!!!

Happy Monday Mamas!!!
Today I am feeling a little sneaky....I have a friend who is trying to get her very picky eater to try new things. Now, SO FAR....I have been really lucky. There are very few things that my little guy will not eat. However, it got me thinkin, what if all the sudden he doesn't want to eat anything but mac & cheese and hot dogs, perhaps in tribute to his auntie who did this very thing when she was little! Oh the HORROR!!! But seriously, can I just let him do that and feel good about it....simple answer is no.
So I put my sneaky mom thinking cap on and did a little research.
Did you know....that it takes a child 7 times of tasting something to either incorporate or reject a single taste from their developing palate?
Did you know....that even at a young age, kids can incorporate very "grown-up" tastes into their palate?
Did you know....that we as Americans are pretty much the only culture that offers our children food options other than what the rest of the family is eating?
Now that we are armed with information, let's get down to business. What are we gonna do about these picky kiddos? I will tell you! We are gonna train their palate....slowly.
I started thinking about the many advantages that we as mama get to give our kids by feeding them THRIVE. First, most of them love that it is weird!! They love that they are eating "astronaut food"!
Second, because these foods are freeze dried, we can use them in ways that the kiddos would never even imagine!
Case in point, the lovely recipe that Tiffany has given us for Mac & Cheese.  You might be thinking to yourself, how could we possibly make this awesome recipe any better? Answer: sneak in some veggies!!! Because we are using THRIVE, we can take any vegetable that our little ones do not like and blend it (while it is in freeze dried form) to make a meal or powder. Once this is accomplished, you can add in this "powder" into anything you are eating already. Do this long enough and the kiddos will start to develop a taste for that veggie!!! Cool right!! The neat thing is, you are making whatever dish you add them to healthier for everyone! You can also use this veggie powder as an awesome on the go baby food, just add water!
One of my favorite things to make is cauliflower pizza. It is an awesome way to sneak in some veggies and they won't even care cuz they just love the pizza. Here is what you need:

Coconut Oil or Non-stick spray
2 ½ cups FD cauliflower crumbles (I like to prepare them the same way I prepare graham cracker crust...although slightly more coarse)
4 Cups of hot water
1 TBL. Whole Egg Powder, prepared (Add 2 TBL. water)
1 cup mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and black pepper (or Peppercorn Blend)
1/4 cup homemade or store bought tomato sauce
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Any of your favorite toppings!! Get Creative!!!
Basil Seasoning for garnish
DirectionsPreheat oven to 425 degrees. Line your baking sheet with parchment paper.
Crush the cauliflower until you have about 2 cups of cauliflower crumbles. Place in a large bowl and add hot water. Let sit for about 5 minutes. Remove, strain all the excess water and let cool. Mix in the egg, mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper. Once combined, pat into the prepared pizza pan. Brush lightly with the coconut oil (or spray with cooking spray) and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden. (Watch this closely, ovens vary)
Top the pizza with the sauce, mozzarella, and your favorite toppings. Bake in the oven until melted and bubbly, about 10 minutes. Top with basil before serving. Yummy!!!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Power Pancakes

Pancake recipe number three is a great way to start your day. If you're trying to eat clean or at least a little healthier this is a yummy way to do it. We all know that oatmeal is good for you and egg whites are a great way to add protein, so let's put them together!

You Will Need:
2 1/2 cups oats
6 egg whites
1 c milk
1 Tbs flax seed
1 Tbs coconut oil
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla

Heat a griddle or skillet and spray with cooking spray or melt some coconut oil (what I use). Put all ingredients in a blender and turn it on. Mix it up good. Pour batter onto heated griddle by the 1/4 cup. Cook until pancakes start to bubble and then flip. Cook an additional 1-2 minutes. These pancakes are really thick and hearty, but cook through easily. Serve with applesauce, peanut butter, banana, agave, honey, whatever floats your boat.

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Thrifty Thursday - Coconut Hair Treatment

Good Morning Everyone!!!
Who else is loving our ode to Mothers this month!?! We hope that you are taking advantage of our thrifty tips on how to keep the special woman in your life pampered!
We have another great one for you this morning!
Who wishes they had the amazing hair that you see in all the hair product commercials that is super shiny and perfect? can all put your hands down....we gotcha covered!
NOBODY knows hair woes better than I do. I have naturally curly hair, and let me tell you it has a mind of it's own! I have struggled to tame my mane my whole life. Dry winter months are almost as hard to manage as humid summer days....Most of the time I just look like a lion or a homeless poodle. Either way, not exactly the hair commercial look I am going for. About a month ago, I found a recipe for an oil treatment for hair, and I decided that it couldn't get any worse, why not give it a try!
BOY am I glad that I did!! I found that for several days after I used this oil treatment, my hair was soft, shiny, and would finally succumbed to my will!!! SWEET VICTORY!!!
As if this isn't great enough, there are actually a couple bonuses that come with! It smells amazing, is also great for your skin, and naturally fights dandruff!!! Give it a try, what could you lose!!

What you are gonna need:
Coconut oil (I use tropical traditions)
Honey (THRIVE Honey crystals work amazing!)
***If you use a lot of hair product, add in some baking soda, about a Tablespoon for every cup of coconut oil***

Mix these together until you get a nice cream. I use my kitchen aid with the whip attachement. It makes it nice and fluffy. Massage into your hair and scalp. Now take a deep breath....smells amazing right? pull your hair into a bun, or if you have short hair, use a shower cap. Leave in for atleast 20 minutes. Shower and wash your hair as normal.
You can also enjoy this treatment as a hot oil treatment. just heat both the honey and the coconut oil together. Put into a squeeze bottle and put directly onto your hair. Follow the same porcedure as the regular treatment above.
Enjoy your new shiny locks!!

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Strawberry Cheesecake or Pina Colada Muddy Buddies

My anniversary is coming up.   8 years of marriage...woohoo!  Annnnd we dated for 3 years preceding that so really to us it feels like an 11 year anniversary.

Even though Drew is training for a triathlon and probably doesn't actually have time to be indulging in a sweet tooth craving, I thought I'd be super considerate and make him something sweet anyway. ;)  He loves to munch (ask what he does after the kids go to bed almost every night to keep himself awake while he works late hours)  so I thought I'd help him switch it up a bit and add some zang to the late night hours.

This post can really be blamed on Dessert Now, Dinner Later who introduced the idea of Cherry Cheesecake Muddy Buddies.  Then, I was talking to Meilea about the Muddy Buddy recipes she's tried and she said her favorite is Strawberry Cheesecake.  I told her, I was thinking the same thing... man, these would taste so much better with Freeze Dried Strawberries added in for REAL Strawberry flavor.  And then my mind started wandering and I thought, self, Freeze Dried Pineapple is ALWAYS a hit... you must do the Muddy Buddies some justice and use REAL Pineapples in at least one recipe.  So I kindly listened to both trains of thought and created 2 recipes that I am SURE you are going to enjoy, like TODAY.

In fact, I'm so sure you'll enjoy them because my sister took a bag of these to her work to enjoy, and brought a baggie for her carpooling friend.  She came home with multiple requests for the recipes and $16 (and more money to come) to pay for baggies to be distributed at work.  Yes, they're awesome!

First up:
Strawberry Cheesecake Muddy Buddies

10 c Chex cereal of choice
1 (12 oz) bag White Chocolate Chips
1 (10 oz) bag of Cherry Chips (or 2 white)
2 T Coconut Oil (you can use shortening)
3/4 c FD Strawberries, ground into powder
2 (4 oz) boxes Jello Brand Cheesecake Pudding Mix
1 c Powdered Sugar

1. Grind Strawberries in your food processor or blender.
2. Get a ziplock bag and combine Strawberry Powder, Powdered Sugar and Cheesecake Pudding Mix.
3. Measure out your cereal into a large bowl.
4. Empty your White Chocolate Chips, Cherry Chips and Coconut Oil into a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave them for 30 seconds at a time stirring well in between each time increment.
5. Pour steadily over bowl of Chex mix and use a soft spatula to mix the melted chocolate around and completely cover the mix.  You will want to make sure there aren't huge chunks that need to be broken up before adding to the Powder Mixture.
6. Dump chocolate covered cereal into the Powder Mixture and shake until it is evenly coated.
7. Put into a serving container and ENJOY!

I like to premeasure everything so once the chips are melted,
we're ready to roll through all of the remainding steps.

Kid tested, Mother approved :)
Yes, even bloggers making a professional post find ways to make incredible messes.
I love how my nephew seizes the moment and thinks, sweet, I'm going to grab some while they're all over.

Second recipe for the day:

Pina Colada Muddy Buddies

10 c Chex Cereal of your choice
1 (12 oz) bag of White Chocolate Chips
2 T Coconut Oil (or you can use shortening)
1/2 c FD Vanilla Yogurt Bites (can replace with 1/4 c powdered sugar)
1/4 c Coconut Flakes, ground up slightly
1 (4 oz) box Jello Brand Coconut Creme Pudding Mix

1. Grind Pineapple, Vanilla Yogurt and Coconut Flakes in your food processor or blender.
2. Get a ziplock bag and combine Pineapple, Coconut, and Yogurt Powder, Powdered Sugar and Coconut Creme Pudding Mix.
3. Measure out your cereal into a large bowl.
4. Combine White Chocolate Chips and Coconut Oil into a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave them for 30 seconds at a time stirring well in between each time increment.
5. Pour steadily over bowl of Chex mix and use a soft spatula to mix the melted chocolate around and completely cover the mix.  You will want to make sure there aren't huge chunks that need to be broken up before adding to the Powder Mixture.
6. Dump chocolate covered cereal into the Powder Mixture and shake until it is evenly coated.
7. Put into a serving container and ENJOY!

I'm a chocolate kinda girl, so of course I had to make a Reese's and Andes (different from this recipe) version.  I also found these Milky Way, and Cookies n' Cream versions to get started on.  YUM!

Thanks for stopping by!

Question of the Day:
  What is your favorite Muddy Buddy Recipe?

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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

30 Days of THRIVE - Peach Chicken

So I decided to get kinda creative with my 30 days of THRIVE dinner this time. You are gonna love this!!! We did!!  This dinner is only only 4 or 5 ingredients! Awesome right? Right!
What you are gonna need:
THRIVE Freeze Dried Chicken Dices
THRIVE Freeze Dried Peaches
THRIVE Peach Drink Mix
THRIVE Potato Beads
THRIVE White Rice
(Adjust to fit your serving sizes!!)

1. Rehydrate your chicken. I like to toss them around in the pan before I add the other ingredients to carmalize them a bit!

2. Prepare your side....either the potatoes or the white Rice. Either taste wonderful!

3. Add to your hot pan about 2 cups of water and about 6 Tablespoons of Peach drink mix. (If you are making more just increase these until you like the flavor.) You want the consistency to be thicker than a drink, but thinner than a sauce. Add in peach pieces that you have broken up into smaller chunks. Allow them to rehydrate. Cook the chicken in this for just a couple minutes to allow the flavor to get into the chicken.

4. Once everything smells really good and is getting thicker, thicken it with a little flour, or you can also make a roux with some flour and butter. I thicken it until it is a thin sauce. Pour this mixture over a bed of potatoes or rice. YUM!

We also tried this on a bed of greens (baby spinach blend) as a salad!! I must say that this makes a great little salad as well!! No additional dressing needed!!

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Monday, May 13, 2013

MM - Prosperous Pregnancy

Good Morning Everybody!
I hope that your mother's day weekend went great! I know mine did!! I feel like the luckiest mama around! My little one took his first SOLO steps yesterday!! SO fun to watch!
My post today is part of the Prosperous Pregnancy Series, and is geared towards all those pregnant mamas who want to have a fit and healthy pregnancy, and maybe control the weight gain a little. What's that you say? All pregnant mamas want to do this? Well then you are in luck! Read on!
First off, let me just say that I am not a nutritionist, so please take everything I post with a grain of salt....or maybe not, we don't want you to swell!! :) I am just a normal mama that loves to eat healthy food and during my first pregnancy I had to do a lot of research. I found out so many things that we should and should not be doing during pregnancy. Let's try and get rid of some of those should-not notions today! Here goes:

I am eating for 2....that means double the food!
WRONG! What this actually means is that EVERYTHING that you put in your mouth, you are putting in your gorwing babies body. That means that everytime you choose that big slice of cake or large milkshake, your little one is getting a taste of all that sugar!! YUM! Now don't get me wrong, I have a sweet tooth the sixe of Texas, but you have to think about what you are putting in the both of your bodies. Allow yourself to enjoy these things every once in a while, but do it smart! Instead of that large slice of cake, try and smaller slice with lots of water! Or try substituting something a little healthier like fruit and honey. One general rule is to make sure that when you eat, you need to make sure that you have a good balance of foods. Anytime you eat you need to accompany your food with a serving of fruit/veggie and a protein. This allows your body to send good nutrients to the baby and have enough left over to take care of your body as well. Especially while you are pregnant, your pancreas is working over time trying to make sure that you are processing the foods you are eating and getting as much out of them as possible. You can help it out a little by eating the right combo of foods. Just remember lots of water, tons of fruit and veggies, and moderation!!!

Fats are not good for me or the baby.
WRONG AGAIN!!! Good natural fats are great for a developing baby! Now I am not saying that you should go out and eat a stick of butter, but don't exclude these from your diet in an effort to keep the pounds away. Fats help the baby develop their brains and they help keep your body running. The key is again to use them in moderation. Pay attention to serving size and pick good fats. Things like avocado, coconut oil, real butter, nuts, these help your body!

Meats and Eggs are the only sources of good protein.
DOUBLE WRONG! Nuts are wonderful sources of protein to pair with snacks or in salads. Cheese can also be a great pairing for snack time. My personal favorite of an awesome source of unexpected protein is Greek yogurt! I will substitute this for sour cream or in salad dressing for a little extra protein in a kinda sneaky way! Beans are another excellent way to get in lots of protein. I know what you are thinking....what about all the gas? Well, mustard seed and mint helped me alot during pregnancy. I just added the in whenever I could.

Excercise is dangerous during pregnancy.
This is a trick question. depending on your pregnancy, this can be dangerous. Please always consult with your OB/GYN. However, most pregnancies are fine with light exercise. Walking is a great way to do this as well as help get you some stress relief. Housework also counts, bonus right?! Another thing that I really loved while I was pregnant, was yoga specifically formatted for pregnancy. This was a great way to help me stretch and release some stress. It also seemed to make my little one really chill, so I would do some before bed time and that helped us both get a little more sleep.

As long as I am drinking lots of liquids, I am good.
This is my most favorite WRONG! I LOVE water. I probably love it more than I should. Something that I have noticed with several pregnant women, is that they think that as long as they are getting plenty of liquids, they are covered. I cannot stress enough the importance of getting WATER. Once you add something into water, such as a flavoring, like mio or flavor packets, your body can no longer process it as water. Your body and your growing baby needs plenty of pure water in order to maintain a healthy balance. This is what makes your babies home for 9 months, why not make it as great as possible right?

The most important thing that you can do during pregancy is to enjoy it. Don't stress too much about what to do or not to do. Just keep it simple and remember to follow the basics. Once that little one comes you will realize that pregnancy actually goes by very slow down and enjoy it!!!

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Friday, May 10, 2013

Whole Wheat Banana Pancake

Ok this pancake was so good! I think this one will become a regular in our house. It's super easy, doesn't use a ton of utensils or bowls, and is healthy!

You Will Need:
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup milk
1 egg
1 Tbs brown sugar
1 Tbs melted coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 ripe banana

Dump everything in the blender and turn it on. Run until smooth. My blender is old and pretty burnt out so I had to stop and scrape the sides every once in a while. After the batter is blended let it sit for 5 minutes. In the mean time heat a skillet with cooking spray or if your like me more coconut oil (I highly recommend the coconut oil). Pour about 1/4 cup batter onto greased skillet and cook until the pancake bubbles around edges, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook an additional 1-2 minutes. Serve with more sliced bananas, natural peanut butter and agave (what I ate it with) or traditional syrup. Yumm-O! You can find the original recipe here.

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