Sailboat Themed Kindergarten & 3’s School Lunches

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To reach a port we must set sail –
Sail, not tie at anchor
Sail, not drift.

-Franklin D. Roosevelt

Change is so hard. Not for everyone. Some people thrive in change; reach their full potential in it. Not me. I have to force myself to stretch, to grow, to change. And it’s hard. It’s so uncomfortable. It makes me so ridiculously nervous, giving my anxiety a chance to reach its full potential! But, it’s good for me. Growth is good. Necessary. To reach our port, we must set sail.

Even though it’s important that I grow and change, it’s so very comforting to me to know that Jesus does not change. He is the same today as He was yesterday, and will be the same tomorrow (Hebrews 13:8).

My precious boys don’t even know the reason I chose these sweet little sailboats for their lunches, but they will enjoy them! I made sailboat shaped PB&J (Smalls) and sunbutter and jam (Bigs) sandwiches. I added details with my new favorite food-safe pens. I also packed baby goldfish crackers, red grapes, a teeny mandarin orange (Bigs), cantaloupe (Smalls), and chocolate crinkle cookies.

Blessings!

Kristin

HAPPY Friday Lunches

As I sit here, eating store-bought pudding out of the tub and pondering my week, I feel eternally grateful that tomorrow is Friday. It is a day to celebrate. The end of a long, long week.

I am celebrating with pudding (Could I BE any more fun?!). My kids will celebrate with fun lunches.

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I made present and ice cream cone shaped sandwiches (sunbutter and jam for Bigs and PB&J for Smalls) and threw a bunch of sprinkles on there, because…sprinkles. In my lunchbox. I used Food Writers to add details. I also packed Cheese-Its, red grapes (a few plums for Smalls), one cinnamon roll Oreo, and a Swedish fish each for dessert.

Party Time! Excellent!

Have a great weekend,

Kristin

Spring and Summer Themed Lunches

Sunny Florida is living up to its name this week! It’s been gorgeous! We’ve had chilly mornings that burn off into beautiful blue skies with a perfect 70-something degrees. I LOVE Winter, but I think I’m ready for Spring now. There is always something so renewing about this season. I’m ready for renewal.

Here are some fun lunches I made this week, in the spirit of such gorgeous weather:

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For my little guy, I made a “bludderfly” shaped peanut butter and strawberry jam sandwich (with two little heart shaped sandwiches – had extra bread!). I used Food Writers to add some deatils. I also packed Goldfish crackers, half a Cosmic brownie, and  some red grapes.

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And for my big boy, I made a sunbutter and strawberry jam tortilla sandwich (quartered). I also packed a teeny mandarin orange, blueberries, Goldfish crackers, and the other half of the Cosmic brownie.

Have a great week!

Kristin

Valentine’s Themed Kindergarten School Lunch

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So, a funny thing happened this week – I made pizza for dinner. Because pizza (I don’t need no stinkin’ excuse). I put the leftovers in a Tupperware that looks a lot like the one above. The next day, when I went to pull out the leftovers for lunch for my Smalls, I pulled out Bigs’ lunch! That meant that HE got a bajillion pieces of leftover pizza for lunch at school! I texted his awesome teacher and she sent me a picture of his smiling face and said he loved his lunch! He won Kindergarten that day. 😀

Between that pizza lunch and this one above, I’d say I’m on top of things (but only according to my Kindergartener; to the rest of the world, I’m slowly unraveling!)

For this particular lunch, I made a cheese sandwich, shaped like a heart. I also packed cheese crackers (everything’s better with Cheddar! – it’s my life’s motto), blueberries, red grapes, and a strawberry truffle cookie. I used plastic Valentine’s rings to decorate.

Kristin

Love Themed Kindergarten School Lunch

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I get headaches. Quite often. And migraines. And they can be debilitating. I get nauseous. I can’t eat. I can’t do much of anything. Any noise is too loud; I can literally feel each noise throbbing in my head, neck, and shoulders. Being in pitch black is still too bright. I am working with a Neurologist to get them under control, but it’s a long process, of trial and error. For people who don’t get them, it’s really hard to understand their magnitude, much like anxiety and depression, of which I also suffer.

[I’m a bag of fun 😀 ]

So, when I have a good day, I am SO very thankful. For the little things, things that I shy away from, on a bad day – the beautiful warming sunshine, the gentle breeze, the [loud] sounds of my boys. I relish in my energy, baking cookies, painting my boys’ bathroom, cleaning the house, running errands. I am grateful. Today, I am grateful. I know that ALL of this is in God’s plan, even if I don’t understand why. I don’t believe that God gives us only what we can handle; God gives us what He gives us, and then we lean on Him.

Day by day. Sometimes, minute by minute.

For tomorrow’s lunch, I packed a cream cheese and raspberry jam heart-shaped sandwich, pita chips, dried cranberries, mandarin oranges, blueberries, and a homemade gluten free chocolate brownie cookie. Love themed. Because I am thankful.

Blessings,

Kristin

Cooking with my Kids: “Pilgrim” Meatballs With Cranberries

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My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving, hands down. Any chance I get, I’ll find a way to  Thanksgiving-ize something. I came up with this recipe a few years ago and it’s been a favorite. I’ve since made it gluten free and simplified it for my little (big) sous chef.

These turkey meatballs are the very essence of Thanksgiving – tender sagey turkey, studded with tart cranberries. I served them (obvi) over mashed sweet potatoes and with  sweet corn.

Pilgrim Meatballs with Cranberries

1 lb ground turkey

1 egg, beaten

2/3 C corn flake crumbs

1/3 C chicken stock

Handful of dried cranberries (I used Trader Joe’s orange flavored ones and I soaked them in cooking white wine/sherry)

1/2 t sage

S&P to taste

Preheat the oven to 400F. Prepare a baking sheet with tin foil and Pam. Mix all the ingredients, except for ground turkey. Once fully combined, add the ground turkey. Form into balls and place on the baking sheet. Bake for about 25 minutes.

Gobble Gobble!

Kristin

Cooking with my Kids: Easy Roasted Chicken & Vegetables

As of late, my oldest, who will be six in a few short months (cue tears), has been very interested in helping me cook. He pulls his little IKEA chair up to the countertop while I’m prepping for each meal. It’s terribly cute. We’ve been checking out kid-friendly cookbooks from the library and he’s been helping me come up with meal ideas.

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It’s these moments, where we talk over saucepans of oatmeal, and over racks of herbs and spices, that we bond over life, and that we share the same language of love – for each other and for food.

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So, I am starting a new series on this blog about kid-friendly recipes that are easy for the little hands. These recipes will be simple, but delicious.

Easy Roasted Chicken & Vegetables

Serves 4, with leftovers

One whole fryer chicken

Olive oil

Lemon juice

S&P

Carrots

Onions

Potatoes

Rosemary

Preheat the oven to 425F. Place tin foil down in a roasting pan. Spray the pan with Pam. Place the whole chicken in the pan (make sure you take out all the innards and that the chicken is patted dry). Drizzle the chicken with olive oil and lemon juice. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Place the plan into the oven to roast.

Chop up the vegetables and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, and rosemary. You can place the around your chicken, but I did them separately, so that they wouldn’t get too dark in the oven. I placed them in the oven about 25 minutes after the chicken. Bake the chicken for about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Let the chicken rest for about 7 – 10 minutes before slicing. Pour the juices into a saucepan and add a tablespoon of cornstarch. Whisk to make gravy.

Enjoy!!

Kristin