Munchkin Meals – Birthday Month Edition

Posted on by Susan Posted in Eats, Kids | 4 Comments

What, when did September sneak up on me so quickly? At the same time I am so looking forward to the end of San Diego’s summer, because let me tell ya, it’s hot. I cannot wait for cooler temperatures to arrive.

August was a busy month for us, with paperwork (as usual), trips to Orange County, farmer’s markets, a visit to Legoland and celebrating our little guy’s 2nd Birthday.

I am amazed at the amount of chicken this little guy can pack away. We have recently started to pick up a rotisserie chicken from Costco every now and then (it usually last for 2 – 3 meals), and our 2 year old will eat an entire leg and thigh PLUS white meat!

I’m not a huge fan of the Costco chicken (contains carrageenan and some other weird stuff!), and we have always roasted our own organic chicken breasts or boneless thighs (I absolutely HATE pulling meat off of bones), but we had to cut down on our grocery spending. Additionally, little guy still needs to pack on the pounds, so anything high in calories, protein and iron works for us right now.

We are trying to avoid hormones and antibiotics and chemicals in our diet as much as possible, but the time and money-savings are extremely important to us right now.

Enough with me trying to justifying buying non-organic meat (Mom Guilt?) and back to the Munchkin Meals, which I’m linking up with Brittany from A Healthy Slice of Life once again.

At 2 years old, our little guy’s lunch and dinner favourites include:

  • Bold flavours! He loved this braised chicken I made the other day!

He eats what we eat most of the time. There are exceptions, for example when we had a long day and are getting a late take-out meal, then I will make a separate meal for our son, and that’s usually always a combination of 2 – 4 items below (I’m trying to offer him a little bit from each food group).

Breakfasts are almost always cereal (Joes O’s) + milk / eggs + toast + fruit / smoothies

Weekend Brunches are sometimes more of a treat with cream cheese filled French Toast Sticks (photo below) or crepes.

Lunches are usually quick and easy:

  • Proteins: chicken,  meatballs, Applegate organic hot dogs, scrambled eggs
  • Out and about: Chipotle (we like sharing a chicken burrito bowl)
  • raw veggies: broccoli, cucumber slices, snap peas,  bell pepper slices, carrot – basically anything crunchy
  • dips of all sorts, incl. hummus, sour cream, homemade spinach and artichoke dip, and even “spicy” (= salsa)
  • Cheese – he does not get special “kid” cheese (we don’t buy cheese sticks/mozza/mild cheddar etc.) and eats and loves what we eat, including aged cheddar and gruyere
  • grilled cheese sandwiches
  • buttered pasta / mac & cheese
  • Favorite fruits: peaches, blueberries
  • Stonyfield organic yo-toddler yogurt containers, which he eats all by himself with a spoon. Big boy! :D

Snacks/Treats:

  • banana bread – little man loooves Bananenbrot (banana bread in German)
  • raisins
  • Lärabars
  • HappyTots organic fruit and veggie pouches (Costco find!)
  • Ice cream as a special treat

 Do you have a little one? Check out the Munchkin Meals link-up over on A Healthy Slice of Life.

Looking for previous Munchkin Meals? Check out the following posts:

Munchkin Meals (21 months)

Munchkin Meals (17 months)

PS: The Melissa  & Doug Wooden Food Groups (bottom left corner in the photos above) are great for pretend play and work perfectly for a little toy kitchen or market stand! :)

 

Easy Summer Meals & What I Ate Wednesday

Posted on by Susan Posted in Eats | 1 Comment

You guys? Do you even know how much I am looking forward to cooler temperatures?

I already picked out a pair of fall boots that I fully intend to buy, but I’m still hesitating, because I’m not even sure if San Diego will ever have any fall or winter weather. It makes me a little sad.

At the beginning of September it’s still a whopping 37°C/98.6°F outside today. I’m so glad our AC is cooperating. I’m not even sure how I walked 1.5 miles home from the gym at lunch time.

Speaking of lunch – it’s time for another What I Ate Wednesday!

Peas and Crayons

Because of the crazy temperatures, meals needed to be quick and easy, as I haven’t been feeling like standing in the kitchen above a hot stove or in front of the oven lately. And because I’m a busy toddler-mama, I’m posting eats from the week, because it can be tricky taking photos from ALL of my eats during the course of one day.

By the way, I finally downloaded a photo collage app for my phone and I’m still practicing (see the bottom left corner – ooops! ;) )  - if you know of a collage maker software, please share it with me! :)  

Some summer lunches from last week:

  • Mexican “Pizza” (beans and cheese on tortilla, topped with fresh veggies and salsa)
  • Panang chicken curry (we finally found a great Thai restaurant nearby)
  • Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup (Trader Joe’s Organic Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper is oh. so. good. and will be stocked for fall/winter)
  • Quiche + Salad from Champagne French Bakery
  • Lots of smoothies, including this Strawberry and White Chocolate one

Dinners were still loaded up with veggies.

Salmon and Green Rice:

Braised Chicken with rice and greens:

And last, but not least, Stuffed Sweet Potatoes:

I’m linking this week’s What I Ate Wednesday up withPeas and Crayons, which always has fantastic food inspiration, so head over there and check it out. And don’t forget to congratulate Jenn for the arrival of her little chickpea!

What are you favorite light and easy summer meals? I’m always looking for new recipe ideas, so leave a comment and share! :)

End of Summer Sweet Treat: Strawberry White Chocolate Smoothie

Posted on by Susan Posted in Drinks, Recipes | Leave a comment

Let’s be real here: I am so ready for summer to come to an end! Fall is my absolute favorite season of the year. Crisp and fresh air. Boots. Knit Sweaters. Scarves. Rainy days. Warm coffee drinks. Cinnamon. This is why I loved Vancouver so much. I could enjoy all of my favorite things year round.

Since we now live in Southern California, I’m craving the cool weather like a madwoman. I don’t think my cravings will be fulfilled anytime soon, as I’ve heard it will still be very warm and sunny down here until late October.

Even though it is no longer strawberry season here, I am still able to find organic berries in my grocery store, and I keep buying them every week. I. Cannot. Stop. I usually eat half the basket and, after a day or two, chop up the rest to freeze for later in the year.

To cool off on one of those ridiculously hot summer days, I decided to blend up a refreshing and sweet summer treat to share with my 2-year old.

If you have a sweet tooth, this one’s for you!

Strawberry White Chocolate Smoothie

So easy: 1/2 frozen banana, 1 cup frozen strawberries (note: next time I’ll use fresh), 1/4 cup white chocolate chips, milk (or non-dairy drink of your choice) to thin it out. I used almond milk and the whole thing turned out super sweet and creamy.

The smoothie combines the sweetness of white chocolate and juicy ripe strawberries and I won’t tell anyone if you top yours with whipped cream. ;)

I usually enjoy my smoothies with greens, less sweet and without milk, but for a hot summer day like today, and when I’m in the mood for ice cream but our freezer is empty, this works perfectly for me.

What’s your favorite season? Do you have any seasonal foods you are always looking forward to? What’s your favorite smoothie? Mine is the Green Goodness (apples, ginger, kale, lemon juice) from Whole Foods in Vancouver, BC – unfortunately not available here. Yep, another Vancouver favorite!