A Pretty Good Day (and lunch)

Today was a good day (do you Ice Cube’s song in your head now? I do…don’t make me rap it, because I will). My Bigs had school and I took my Smalls to a sweet pumpkin patch. He (mostly) listened to a story about pumpkins and proudly picked out his very own, teeny, little, adorable, curly-stemmed pumpkin. We ate burritos and tacos afterwards. Yes, it was a good day. My Bigs had a good day too! And all of us had a great nap after school. I even made a good dinner – gluten-free baked chicken cutlets, smashed garlic mini potatoes, and fruit salad.

Here’s to a good day tomorrow, too – we are on a roll.

Here is the lunch I packed for my Bigs:

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My hands typed “Ham & Cheese” at the top of this picture, but they meant to type “Chicken & Cheese”. Oooooops! I would lose my head if it weren’t attached, my attention to detail is declining with age! I’m not even going to fix it (I deleted the original!!). Oh well. Ain’t nobody got time to worry about that. I packed a chicken, cheese, and mayo sandwich on whole wheat, some organic TJ’s peanut butter crackers, fruit salad (bananas, plums, pineapple, apple, grapes), carrots with ranch dressings for dipping, and a teeny homemade pumpkin chocolate chip brownie cut into pieces.

I hope he enjoys it!

Blessings!

Kristin

“A person who respects the Lord will have security. And his children will be protected. Respect for the Lord gives life. It is like a fountain of water that can save people from death.” – Proverbs 14:26

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The Ghostess with the Mostess

My unfortunate run of cooking this week has been hit AND miss today. Dinner was a just okay. I made chicken. Nothing special. What is wrong with me?! If only I had the same passion about cooking as I do baking!

I gotta get back on track with cooking dinners that are both complete AND edible, so my family doesn’t starve.

I did make something really yummy earlier today, that I served with tonight’s chicken. I also was hoping to put it in my Bigs’ lunchbox tomorrow, but alas, he did not care for them.

Vegetable Macaroni and Cheese Muffins:

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http://www.produceforkids.com/meal-planning/mac-n-cheese-muffins

My Bigs can sniff out a green vegetable like a hound dog. These “muffins” had broccoli, carrots, and onions in them. A trifecta of deliciousness, if you ask me. I was really hoping Bigs would love them and want to enjoy one for lunch tomorrow. Oh well. My Smalls enjoyed them. He doesn’t love noodles, but he’s crazy about savory food…broccoli in particular. He ate about a pound of broccoli today. And enjoyed the noodles because of the broccoli. I even convinced him (no convincing needed, actually) to eat broccoli as his prize for going twosies in the potty. Funny kid.

Anywho, because Bigs did not like these, I had to come up with another lunch.

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I made a turkey, cheddar, and mayo sandwich. I shaped it like a ghost and added candy eyes. I also packed seasoned corn, plum slices, a honey zucchini muffin, two TJ’s ginger cookies, and some dried blueberries.

I made the muffins on Monday. They are delicious – whole wheat, honey, zucchini. What’s not to love?

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Another great recipe from 100 Days of Real Food. Although I think I didn’t grate my zucchini small enough, my Bigs doesn’t seem to mind these. Maybe because I call them “Army Men Muffins”. I never thought I’d be the parent to HIDE vegetables.

Here’s the recipe:

http://www.100daysofrealfood.com/2010/06/25/recipe-zucchini-bread/

My Smalls has school tomorrow too (and his “school” pictures, so cute!!). I made him a special lunch:

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I turned a PB&J into a pumpkin shape and used my Food Writers to add some details. I also packed banana chips, two ginger cookies, and some dried blueberries. I hope he knows what his sandwich is!

Blessings,

Kristin

The Ferocious Fours & Lunch

Have you guys ever heard of the “Terrible Fours”? Apparently it’s a thing. It’s pretty terrible and it’s actually called the “Ferocious Fours”, according to my research. I did the research to make sure I wasn’t the only parent pulling out my newly highlighted locks, due to my four year old’s behavior. They are also referred to as the “f*****g fours”, but I don’t use that language (out loud). I thought the twos were bad. I really did. But nothing, NOTHING, could have prepared me for the fours. It’s been something else. Bigs’ desire to be independent, his unreasonable demands, his constant questioning of my authority, his flat out yelling “NO!” to everything I request him do, followed by some kind of caveman-esque grunt in anger…yes, it’s been something else. My Smalls is two now, so I can easily compare said phases, and I’m pretty sure the fours are worse. At least I can pick Smalls up and tote him or hold him down. When I pick up Bigs now, to remove him from the situation or to gently force him into timeout, he yells that I’m hurting him (which I’m not), and I get those looks from passerby-ers (if in public…they have a timeout spot everywhere we go, you know), you know the look. The “I’m going to call the authorities” look. No mind that my four year old just had a complete meltdown about me not letting him buy a toy, or eat ice cream, or have screen time after he’s given me a huge attitude or has even dared to swipe at me.

I’m going bald from all the hair I’m pulling out.

I must not be alone. I can’t be. The internet had actual articles on this phase. And everything on the internet is true, right?? RIGHT?

It’s times like these that are very discouraging for me, as a parent. I want to remember (and want my Bigs to remember) the great times, but it feels like the times are filled with bad attitudes and disciplining. I feel like a bad Mom a lot of the time. I know that’s partially par for the course. But I am ready for that to change. His behavior and my reactions to it. Constant works in progress, we are.

Earlier this morning, with the promise of a new day (after a particularly rough-behavior-weekend), I went to work making fun food for my Bigs’ lunchboxes this week. I baked up pizza rolls, mini chocolate chip cookies, and made homemade fruit snacks. I had big plans for a fun lunch for tomorrow. But alas, that Ferocious Four Behavior put the stop sticks down on my plans. As another consequence for that behavior (we also had to leave the mall immediately upon receiving the attitude, etc.) Bigs is not allowed to have a lunch dessert tomorrow. This make him sad. It’s happened before, so apparently it doesn’t make him sad enough to stop the attitude. But whatever. Someday he’ll be five. And this will be better. Right?

So, I packed him a “this will have to do” lunch. An “I still care about you and I’ll show it through your lunch, but you aren’t getting a dessert” lunch.

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I packed two pizza rolls (recipe in an upcoming blog post), some seasoned corn and peas, blueberries, plums, and some dried fruit (mandarin oranges and mango).

So here’s to a much better day, filled with good attitudes, fun lunches, and well-earned desserts.

Kristin

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest – Matthew 11:28