Friday, August 28, 2009

Happier Children

My husband told me about a sermon he heard on the radio during his drive home from work. The message shared a lot of wisdom and insight about raising children.
Parents do not provoke your children because it easily leads to discouragement. And when children are discouraged, they easily sway from the light of the Word of God.

Here are three common ways parents can easily provoke children.

1). Overprotection
2). Nagging
3). Comparisons (to siblings, cousins, friends, etc. )

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


"We ought to be comfortable to live with, because we are not demanding, but understanding. Controlled by Jesus Christ, we are free from obsession with self, and can listen, love and pray.

Our basic fulfillment does not come from marriage, from prestige, from position, or from possessions. It comes as we are so indwelt by God that his fellowship meets our inner need and we experience the outworking of his love through us."

-Gladys M. Hunt-

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Melissa & Doug

I am a BIG fan of Melissa & Doug toys. During the past two decades, this company has produced a variety of SAFE, EDUCATIONAL and FUN toys for babies and toddlers! These toys are known to promote hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, plus early shape matching, color recognition and sequencing skills.. not to mention VOCABULARY!

They are well known for their colorful wooden puzzles such as:



They also have a TON of wooden toys like this STACKING TRAIN:



Other fun and creative toys:




As you can see, they have a HUGE selection.. you are sure to find something that your little one will enjoy! You can find their products at most toy and department stores such as Target, Toys R Us & Nordstrom.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Feel Better Fast

For mothers who catch a cold or flu-like symptoms and need a homeopathic remedy - Oscillococcinum by Boiron is a must! You can get it at Whole Foods and other organic grocery stores.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Psalm 127:3

"Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one's youth."

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ode To Edamame

I'm greatly surprised at the enthusiasm both my boys have towards edamames. They are more than content to eat them as a snack or as a vegetable side dish. I simply open one side of the pod to make it less challenging to open for my little one years old's fingers. It's easy to find in the Trader Joe's frozen food section. Thaw in the fridge or microwave and serve. According to an article in titled, The Secret of Edamame, I was happy to read that the nutritional value is very encouraging and also a favored snack by celebs.

Here's what you'll find in a half-cup serving of shelled edamame (or 1 1/8 cup edamame in the pods):

  • 120 calories
  • 9 grams fiber
  • 2.5 grams fat
  • 1.5 grams polyunsaturated fat (0.3 grams plant omega-3 fatty acids)
  • 0.5 gram monounsaturated fat
  • 11 grams protein
  • 13 grams carbohydrate
  • 15 mg sodium
  • 10% of the Daily Value for vitamin C
  • 10% Daily Value for iron
  • 8% Daily Value for vitamin A
  • 4% Daily Value for calcium

As you can see, that little serving of edamame gives you a bunch of fiber: 9 grams, about the same amount you'll find in 4 slices of whole-wheat bread or 4 cups of steamed zucchini. It has almost as much protein as it does carbohydrate. It contains around 10% of the Daily Value for two key antioxidants; vitamins C and A. And for a plant food, it's quite high in iron; it has about as much as a 4-ounce roasted chicken breast.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Building Memories

I remember the time an older man asked me when I was young, "Do you know what you are doing now?"
I thought it was a trick question.

"Tell me," I said.

"You are building memories," he replied, "so make them good ones."

("Walking From East to West" -Ravi Zacharias)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Simple Meals

SIMPLE, FAST, EASY and HEALTHY meals are every mom's heart's desire right?!

Well, I recently purchased a Real Simple magazine and tried some of their recipes which were very easy to prepare and delicious!! So.. I went on their website and found a plethora of wonderful recipes!! The best part is, you can look up recipes by: main ingredient, course, occasion, cuisine, and/or convenience. There is also a "kid-friendly" option which is super helpful.

I typically check my refrigerator, see what kind of meat I have and search via "main ingredient" and viola! I've also done this with other recipe sites such as, but what I like most about Real Simple is... well, it's just quite SIMPLE and tasty!

Below are some recipes that I've prepared and really enjoyed:


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds flank steak
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 10-ounce box couscous
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup crumbled Feta (1 ounce)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the steak with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook to the desired doneness, 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Let rest before slicing.
  • 2Cook the couscous according to the package directions; transfer to a large bowl.
  • 3Wipe out the skillet. Cook the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, the garlic, and pine nuts over medium heat, stirring, until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Fold into the couscous with the spinach, Feta, lemon juice, and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Serve with the steak.


  • 4 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 2 medium red onions, sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 3 peaches, cut into wedges
  • 1 bunch arugula, thick stems removed (about 4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 ounces blue cheese, broken into pieces
  • 1Heat grill to medium-high. Brush the chicken with 1 teaspoon of the oil and season with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. In a bowl, toss the onions, peaches, 1 tablespoon of the oil, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper.
  • 2Grill the chicken and onions until the chicken is cooked through and the onions are tender, 5 to 6 minutes per side. Grill the peaches until charred, 2 minutes per side.
  • 3Toss the arugula with the onions, peaches, vinegar, and remaining oil. Top with the cheese; serve with the chicken.

CHICKEN WITH TARRAGON AND LEEKS- 4h30min (slow cooker meal!)

  • 1 1/2 pounds baby new potatoes (about 16)
  • 8 small skinless chicken thighs (1 1/2 pounds)
  • 3 leeks (white and light green parts), halved lengthwise and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen peas
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
  • 1Place the potatoes on the bottom of a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker. Add the chicken, leeks, wine, and 1 teaspoon salt.
  • 2Cook, covered, until the chicken and potatoes are tender, on high for 3 to 4 hours, or on low for 6 to 7 hours.
  • 3Transfer the chicken and all but 4 of the potatoes to plates. Using a fork, smash the remaining potatoes into the cooking liquid to thicken.
  • 4Add the peas and cream and cook just until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes. Spoon over the chicken and sprinkle with the tarragon.

Monday, August 3, 2009

What's Your Child's Play Style?

As I was perusing the Focus on the Family website, I stumbled across a great description of different toddler's play styles. I didn't even know there was such a thing, but it totally makes sense. Here are a few examples mentioned:

Bob the Builder

These toddlers love to build. But before investing in Thomas or Brio train sets start small. Begin with Duplo blocks or cardboard bricks for stacking. Help your toddler set up a fort with chairs and a blanket. Be sure and join in the fun by crawling inside with a flashlight and a picture book to share. You may want to drive by a nearby house under construction each day and watch its progress. Have dad help your little builder set up a tent in the backyard and then camp together under the stars… or streetlights.

Dora the Explorer

This toddler wants out! Be sure and take your little explorer to the park, on a hike, or down a bike trail. It's also fun to create maps leading to hidden treasures in the house or backyard. You may want to purchase a bug terrarium or butterfly net for backyard exploration. Try visiting the local pet store, zoo, aquarium, or space observatory. A family camping trip is a must.

Lionel (Between the Lions)

Make sure you have your library card ready, ‘cuz books are candy for this little one. Check out story time opportunities in your town at the public library or bookstores. Start a toddler book swap, by asking moms to bring over any used picture books to trade. Take in a theatrical performance of your child's favorite book. Host a literature party where children dress up as their favorite storybook character. Then invite a parent in costume to read some of the books aloud.

To read more about toddler play styles go to It's all Fun and Games for the complete descriptions.

Proof of Love

"The very best proof of your love for your Lord is obedience....
nothing more, nothing less, nothing else."