Homemade Squeezy Pouch Food

So, as you know by now, little L is extremely picky. So much so that it drives me nuts. If I give him delicious vegetables for dinner, he’ll either pretend they aren’t there, or he’ll throw them onto the floor. 

Recently, he’s been trying to live off of Puffs and Cheeze It’s. Yes I give them to my child, tough noogies.

Anyway, because of this, I, being in a hurry and loving convenience, I purchased the Organic Gerber Pouches. I bought the ones that had zucchini and spinach included in the recipes, assuming it would be healthy and worth it. 

So after I gave him one, I being the genius that I am, read the back label of ingredients. 2/5 of an apple, okay, 2tbsp blueberries, okay…1 HALF of 1 leaf of spinach! 

SERIOUSLY??! It has THAT little spinach in it and you claim that it’s really in there and good for the child. Wow. 

I was so peeved. I felt lied to and cheated but it was my own fault. I used to buy other brands, like Earths Best, that really were packed with veggies, but I went for the Gerber brand because they were cheaper. You really do get what you pay for. Oh well.

I then decided that I was going to make my own. This way I controlled what and how much was going in them.

I purchased these pouches by Kiinde. They’re called the Twist Pouches and I bought them here. It comes with 80 pouches.

I had been given their feeding gift set as a baby shower gift, and it came with the feeding nozzle, but you can buy it here

Now, I used what fruits and veggies I had, and you can certainly use what you have as well. 

For the first batch, I blended some organic plain greek yogurt, organic blueberries, organic Pineapple chunks, organic spinach, and organic baby oats. 

For my next batch, I blended bananas, pineapple chunks, blueberries, spinach, and greek yogurt. All organic. 

And my final batch was probably my favorite. Yes I taste them haha. But it was mixes berry. I added organic frozen mixed berries, greek yogurt, spinach, and baby oats. 

Once I blended all my batches, I used a funnel to fill my pouches. After they were filled, I wrote the date and ingredients on the bag, and threw them in the freezer. 

It took me about 30 minutes from start to finish, so it honestly wasn’t very time consuming, and I have the peace of mind of knowing what my child is consuming. 

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A little advice from a first time Mother

Today, I messed up.
I let someone negatively influence my parenting skills. They told me how they discipline when their child was acting like mine, and hinted not so subtly, that I should do the same. I felt inferior and I felt like if it was working for them, then I should do it too. 

I tried it, and immediately, I felt guilty. I felt like I had broken him, and I held my child and apologized again and again. That style of parenting just isn’t for us. 

What works for you, doesn’t always work for everyone. And that’s okay. What worked for your Mother, doesn’t always work for you, and that’s okay. What works for your best friend, cousin, sister in law, etc, doesn’t always work for you, and THAT’S OKAY! 

YOU were given that child to raise. Not your Mother, not your best friend, but you. They are your responsibility. 

Once you find what works for you and your child, don’t let others try and tell you what you’re doing is wrong (unless abuse is present), or is going to spoil your baby. They don’t know them like you do. 

Sure some parents (and people without children) might think and/or call you lazy, but once again, they’re not responsible for your tiny person. 

Love your child and do what you believe to be best, and you’ll be a good parent. 

Now, I’m going to go grab my little L and play a game of ball. 

Homemade Chocolate Nut Butter Cups, with Homemade Chocolate

So, 2 or 3 days turned into 2 or 3 weeks. I apologize. As soon as we kicked one cold, we caught another! But we’re finally better and have been better for a few days. Let’s hope we stay that way!

While I was sick, I learned how to make chocolate from scratch. That’s right, CHOCOLATE from SCRATCH! And it’s all the fabulous deliciousness you’d think it would be. 

So. Chocolate. There’s two ways (that I know of) to go about making it. And today, I’ll be sharing the easier quicker way, and how to make Nut Butter Cups. I personally love to use Almond Butter, but you can use peanut. 

*~* I apologize in advance for the quality of the photos. It was very late when I made these, so lighting wasn’t the best.*~* 

What you’ll need

Unsweetened cocoa powder

Powdered sugar

Food grade cocoa butter

Vanilla extract

Nut butter, you can use Almond or peanut 

Unsalted butter, softened 

Coconut oil (to keep chocolate semi soft, if you want a firm chocolate, forget this ingredient)

Cupcake liners

Cupcake pan

First, you’ll need to melt your cocoa butter down to a liquid. I use about 3 tablespoons of melted cocoa butter. Next start adding your cocoa powder. Add 1 tablespoon at a time, until you reach a thick creamy consistency (think creamy peanut butter consistency) then, add your powdered sugar. This one is really just by taste. Some like really sweet dark chocolate, some like semi sweet, some like unsweetened. I personally add about 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar. Stir it together then add about half of 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Next, add 1 half teaspoon of melted coconut oil at a time until you reach a consistency that looks like melted chocolate lol, but really, a consistency that’s similar to syrup. Runny, and loose.

Now you have chocolate!!

Now, insert your cupcake liners into your cupcake pan, I used 6 liners.

Carefully spoon a thin layer of chocolate into the cupcake liners, and spread the chocolate half way up the sides of the liner with your spoon. Then place into the freezer.

Now start on your nut butter mixture. 

Take about 3 tablespoons of your nut butter. I used almond. Add 2 tablespoons of soft unsalted butter, and powdered sugar to taste. Mix until a fluffy consistency. Then, microwave for 15 seconds until runny.

Remove chocolate from freezer, and spoon thin layer of nut butter on top. Then top with another thin layer of chocolate. Freeze for 20 minutes, then enjoy! 

Is it an update when it’s THIS late?

Goodness! 

It’s been awhile hasn’t it? Sorry about that. I feel like I should reintroduce myself haha. Right after Christmas, we were bombarded with hoards of germs. I’ve been sick 3 times now in the month of January, and when I’m not sick, L is. It’s been rough, and while I’m currently on the mend, L started coming down with it on Sunday night. I AM SO READY FOR SPRING!!

Bring on the seasonal allergies cause at least I can keep them at bay with some Allegra. 

A lot has been happening in our household of late, as you may know, we have a new POTUS in office and it’s caused quite the displays of emotion. 

If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll know that we are a Blue Family. My husband is a LEO and I’m so proud of him. There have been protests in our city, and I do mean actual protests, no rioters or things like that. Just people exercising their rights. It has caused a little bit of worry to slip into our home. But I have faith that it will all be fine.

As for my weight loss, it’s still going. It’s taking me a lot longer than I originally thought that it would. I saw how women were dropping 100 pounds in 1 year so I thought this wouldn’t be a long journey. Turns out I was wrong, and every body is different. Mine just so happens to REALLY like it’s extra padding so it’s having a hard time letting go. But it will. Because my body ain’t Rose and my fat ain’t Jack. 

It’s been nearly a year and my body HAS changed, I no longer wear a 3x but a 2x, and I no longer wear a 22/24 pant size, but an 18/20! 

I’ve also noticed lots of muscle building. I have calves popping out, and when I bend over at the waist to pick something up, I always notice how muscular my thighs are looking.

If you’d like to follow my journey more closely, you can hope over to my Instagram. I post more pictures there and more regularly. 

I hope to soon be back at my regular posting of fun things, ideas, and things my picky toddler will actually eat, but it may be another 2 or 3 days. This cold ain’t no joke!

But until then, I hope you enjoy what is already posted. Remember to check out my Instagram for some meal ideas, updates, and whatnot on my journey to be healthier. 

Tata for now!

Christmas Scripture Countdown

For the last 4 years, I’ve done a Scripture Countdown leading up to Christmas, and this year, I’d like to share it with you! What I do, is I write scripture down that begins with the prophecy of Christ’s birth, all the way through the “Christmas Story”. It’s just something that helps me focus on the real meaning of Christmas. I’ll continue to update this post every day with a new verse until Christmas Morning, so be sure to check back regularly. 

Feel free to share them with your family and friends.

~*~ December 1st ~*~ 

~*~ December 2nd ~*~

~*~ December 3rd ~*~

~*~ December 4th ~*~

~*~ December 5th ~*~

~*~ December 6th ~*~

~*~ December 7th ~*~

~*~ December 8th ~*~

~*~ December 9th ~*~

~*~ December 10th ~*~

~*~ December 11th ~*~

~*~ December 12th ~*~

~*~ December 13th ~*~

~*~ December 14th ~*~ 

~*~ December 15th ~*~

~*~ December 16th ~*~

~*~ December 17th ~*~

~*~ December 18th ~*~

~*~ December 19th ~*~ 

~*~ December 20th ~*~

~*~ December 21st ~*~

~*~ December 22nd ~*~

~*~ December 23rd ~*~

~*~ December 24th ~*~

I’m already looking forward to tomorrow! 

Christmas Quiche

Quiche is one of my favorite foods ever. Especially when it’s cold outside. 

When I was a child, instead of leaving out cookies and milk for Santa Clause, my mother and I laid out mini quiches and milk because unbeknown to me, “Santa” was a diabetic, and didn’t need those cookies ­čśŐ

So today when lunch time started rolling around, I decided to whip up a quiche for my son and I to enjoy. 

I’m calling it my Christmas Quiche, because of the beautiful red and green colors, and because of the memory of my childhood at Christmas time. 

This recipe is super easy. It has red bell pepper, feta cheese, fresh baby spinach, bacon, sharp cheddar cheese, and obviously, eggs. 

It has a smokey taste from the bacon, sweet from the bell pepper, and a saltiness from the feta cheese. It’s now a favorite of mine.

Here’s what you’ll need. 

1 pie crust 

1 Diced red bell pepper

3 strips of cooked bacon, diced

5 eggs

1 1/2 tablespoons of crumbled Feta cheese

1/3 cup of chopped fresh baby spinach 

1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Salt and Pepper to taste
Preheat your oven to 400┬░ 

Mix all ingredients together and pour into pie crust. Bake quiche until golden and bubbly. It took me about 30 minutes.

Let it cool slightly and serve. It’s a great breakfast, lunch or supper idea. It’s not too heavy, not too light, but just right. 

Momma’s Sweet Potato Casserole┬á

So the weather around here is FINALLY cooling down. We’ve been in the 80’s every day this Fall until this last week, we got a bit of a cold front and today’s high was 66! 

Now that the weather has cooled, cooking all the traditional Fall foods feels more festive. Today The Hubs requested Sweet Potato Casserole to go with our dinner. I’ve ever made it before, but my Momma Sylvia over at Christian Homekeeper makes the best, so I messaged her and got her recipe! 

You’ll want 1 large sweet potato per person, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, an egg, orange juice, vanilla extract, and a topping of your choice, I used some large marshmallows. 

First you want to cook our sweet potatoes. you can cook them now the oven, but I used my microwave and just used the baked potato setting and it worked like a charm. 

Next, once your potatoes are cooked through, you want to cut them in half and scoop out the good stuff. I recommend waiting until they’ve cooled to do this, I did not, I just held them with a thick rag and it still burned my hand. 

Once you’ve scooped out your potatoes, add your butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, egg, orange juice and vanilla. I didn’t have any orange juice in a carton, but I did have one Navel Oranges, so I just juiced one of them. 

Begin mixing, you can definitely use a stand mixer but I did it by and because my mixer broke, sad day, I know.

I mixed at first with a spoon, and then once I saw clumps, I used a whisk to smooth most of them out. 

After its mixed, spread it in a baking dish. I used a Cast Iron Skillet but you can use any dish that’s oven safe.

Next, add your toppings. I don’t  really like marshmallows, but The Hubs and L do so I added a few large ones with a few pieces of butter.

I then baked it at 350┬░ until the marshmallows were brown and bubbly. 

It tastes great! And the best part is that L will actually eat it! We’re just waiting on the Hubs to get home and try it out. 
Recipe

1 large sweet potato per person, I used 2

Brown sugar to taste, I used 1 half cup

Cinnamon to taste, I used 1/4 teaspoon

1 egg

3 teaspoons of butter

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract 

1 tablespoon of orange juice 

Preheat oven to 350┬░

Cook sweet potatoes, scoop out insides, blend potatoes and other ingredients. Spread in greased baking dish, top with favorite toppings such as marshmallows or pecans. Bake until topping is golden and bubbly. 

The Mess

It’s been awhile since I’ve written anything recently. If you’re wondering why it’s because my sweet little L is now a toddler and is extremely mobile, therefore getting into everything. Everything. EVERYTHING. 

Whew. 

Since becoming mobile he’s discovered the joys of pulling every book off of the shelf and asking me to read the 1st page of each one. He also enjoys throwing everything he possibly can over the baby gate and into the kitchen. 

This is my view as I type. 

Books in the floor, about 6 pairs of shoes by the door, groceries in the kitchen floor for nearly 4 hours now, and yes, that is in fact, a cat eating it’s dinner on my kitchen table. I know, its bad. And you haven’t even seen the bedroom yet. 

Ugh.

Am I proud of this mess? Of course not, am I going to clean it? Yes, as soon as I finish my cheesecake. But this is real. This is life.

 Life isn’t always what you see on Instagram and Pinterest. Children aren’t perfect, Mother’s aren’t perfect, and our houses aren’t always perfect. Children, especially young children, make messes and sometimes we moms are just too dadgum tired to do anything about it, and I don’t know about you, but when I’m overly tired, I can’t be a good mother or a good housekeeper.

I’m not saying we should just live in mess, but I am saying that sometimes it’s ok to just put the cleaning on the back burner for a few hours. Sometimes, it’s ok to put the kids to bed and enjoy a treat while you watch your favorite show surrounded by a pile of laundry. 

Sometimes, it’s ok to take a little time for you, regardless of how the house looks.

Now, I’m finished with my cheesecake, and it’s time to tackle the Mount Everest of laundry. 

Homemade Pumpkin pie from Scratch

A few years ago, I learned that Pumpkin Pie filling in the can wasn’t made with ACTUAL pumpkin. It’s made with Butternut squash. I’ll never forget the first time I had a REAL pumpkin pie, it was stringy, sweet, and ok tasting, but it wasn’t my favorite. My favorite is the typical pumpkin pie, or as my uncle calls it, Mud pie, because of its texture. 

I recently found some butternut squash on sale and I figured I would try to make my own “Pumpkin” pie from one of them. The end result was so delicious! I was really impressed and I don’t think I’ll be buying the canned stuff ever again. 

First, I started with a whole butternut squash. I chopped off the stem, and then I microwaved it for 2 minutes. I had read somewhere that it helps with cutting the hard squash.  

After the 2 minutes, I sliced it in half and scooped out the seeds, then I steamed it until it was soft.

Once it was soft and cooled, I began to scoop out the delicious squash. I added sugar, salt, milk, eggs, vanilla, and my homemade pumpkin pie spice, and beat it with a whisk until combined. I then noticed that the squash had a but of texture to it and I knew my son wouldn’t touch it, so I ran it through the blender to smooth it up. Then, I added it to my pie crust! I baked the pie at 425┬░ for 15 minutes, then I lowered the temperature to 350┬░ until the pie was set and firm.

And there’s the end result! It was so creamy and delicious and I swear it tastes better because it’s homemade. 

Recipe

1 large butternut squash

1/2 cup of sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 large eggs

1 cup of whole milk 

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon allspice 

1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 425┬░

Remove stem from squash and cut in half, vertically. Remove seeds from squash, and you can either roast your squash at 400┬░ until soft, or steam. I chose to steam mine until it was soft. Once the squash is softened, remove it and place into bowl with eggs, milk, vanilla, salt and spices. Beat with a whisk until combined. If you’re pleased with the texture you may pour the filling into your pie shell, if you’d like a creamier filling, blend the squash mixture. I blended mine until it had a “mud” like consistency. 

Once blended, pour your filling into your pie shell and bake at 425┬░ for 15. Then, lower the temperature to 350┬░ and bake until the pie is set and firm. I encourage you to use a pie crust guard. It will keep your crust from burning, and as you can see in the last image, I didn’t use mine. But it still turned out delicious.

Making a List…

So if you’re anything like me, you tend to get overwhelmed with all the cleaning that has to be done around the house and you have no idea where to even start, so you don’t start, and that just makes things worse. Yeah. Well, I recently saw on Pinterest, a checklist of household cleaning chores. I thought that maybe since it was so organized I could do it. So I came up with my own checklist to fit my house. It’s a very basic house so I think it would apply to most homes as well. I printed out my checklist, and I put it inside a dollar tree 8×10 frame, that way I could use a dry erase marker to just check off the list as I went, and at the end of the day erase it all and start again. 

If it’s something you’re interested in, feel free to download the checklist for yourself! Just right click and save.

It really has helped me get and keep my house clean. It helps me stay organized and I always know what’s next.

List of supplies you’ll need

One 8×10 frame, can be bought at dollar tree

One dry erase marker

Printed out check list

   Place the checklist inside the frame, hang frame wherever desired, use dry erase marker to check list off. Wipe away when done. It’s that easy!