healthy family

Unique Ways to Celebrate Your Kid's Birthday (Sugar-free, too!)

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Unique Ways to Celebrate Your Kid’s Birthday!

(Sugar-free, too!)

In our house March is a busy month.

We have lots of family birthdays including the birthdays of both of my girls. With school celebrations, family celebrations, and everything in between, this month can easily slip into the “sugar overload zone”.

It was a few years ago when I first started organizing two class trays of treats, two family parties, plus celebrating the day of their actual birthday that I quickly started feeling overwhelmed by the back-to-back-to back presence of cupcakes, brownies, birthday cake and then leftover birthday cake in our home.

Around this time I decided there had to be a better way… a healthier way.

Don’t get me wrong. Everyone here gets a birthday cake for their birthday. (I am not that mean.) However we try to remain mindful eaters, “birthday month” or not, and that is where many of these ideas can fit in.

Unique Ways to Celebrate Your Kid’s Birthday (Sugar-Free, too!)

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1. Share a healthy (but fun!) snack.

There are so many ways you can make something simple that has lots of fresh, bright colors, and kids will love. Depending on your craftiness, you can really dress up your kid’s class treat or keep it fairly simple. Melon kabobs or fruit-filled butterflies are manageable choices but feel free to challenge yourself with some Pinterest inspiration if you are up for it!

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2. Take a trip!

Whether it is an afternoon visit to someplace local or a weekend getaway to a nearby city, spoiling your birthday kid with experiences rather than a sugar overload is always worth it. My girls don’t need to go far, they simply LOVE the idea of staying overnight in a hotel with a pool and a breakfast buffet.

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Try a bucket list item!

3.Try a bucket list item. Is your child adventurous? Or maybe trying to come out of his or her shell? Why not try something worthy of anyone’s bucket list!? Take a trapeze class, try snorkeling, go whale watching, try paddle boarding, go parasailing!

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Get active!

4. Get active. Gather up the family or even some friends and get moving. Spend the afternoon bowling, rock climbing, playing laser tag, or racing each other through a local ninja obstacle course. Whatever you choose, you are sure to have a lot of laughs and an overall good time.

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Go Camping!

5. Go camping. Want to really connect with your child and celebrate their special day? Unplug and head outdoors!


There are lots of ways to celebrate your child (without the sugar overload) and maybe your next celebration idea is listed above!

Maybe you have a unique idea of your own that you can share with us in the comments or in our online mom community, The Real Moms Collaborative.

Either way, I look forward to keeping the idea list growing.


Thanks for being a part of this awesome community!


Nothing helps you prepare for a healthy week like a healthy shopping list. Fill your home with the right stuff!  GET YOUR FOR FREE TODAY!

Nothing helps you prepare for a healthy week like a healthy shopping list. Fill your home with the right stuff!

GET YOUR FOR FREE TODAY!

5 Ways to Feed Your Family Organic on a Budget

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Moms like us are always looking for ways to keep our families happy and healthy. Homemade meals, fresh snacks, and lunches packed with love are just the start. 

If you are a mom on a healthy mission like me, you might prioritize eating organic as well. Organic foods are produced with less pesticides and other toxins and can often have more beneficial nutrients than conventionally grown foods.

Personally, I wanted to reduce the amount of toxins my family was consuming for many reasons but doing so without a plan has the potential to break bank! 

But it doesn't have to! 

You can absolutley include organic food in your family meal plan without breaking your weekly food budget. I want to share with you some simple ways to do just that.

 

Here are 5 ways to

feed your family organic on a budget:

 

1. Know the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15.

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You don't have to buy EVERYTHING organic. If you know which produce is the dirtiest (contains the most pesticides and other toxins), you know which produce to prioritize. The dirtiest produce is a great list to start buying organic. If you know which produce is the cleanest (contains the least amount of pesticides and other toxins), then you know which produce you don't necessarily need to buy organic. 

If it is a choice between one of the other, your Dirty Dozen list should go organic first.

Here is the Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen list to get you started.

 

2. Shop Your local Farmers' Market.

Your local Farmers' Market can be a treasure trove of less expensive organic foods. Without having the expenses of packaging, shipping, and marketing products to different stores over long distances, local markets usually feature area farmers who are just trying to sell their latest harvest, including organic farmers. Most of the time, this is much less expensive than organic foods in your supermarket.

Want to find your local Farmers' Markets? Click here. 

 

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3. Plant a Garden.

You really can't get less expensive than growing your own! Besides saving money on organics, you get the added satisfaction of cultivating your own food. One of our personal favorite sources of seeds is Seed Saver Exchange. Definitely worth checking out. 

 

4. Reverse Meal Plan.

Instead of selecting recipes and then shopping for all of your ingredients, first see what is on sale. Shop for discounts and sale items first and then get creative with your bounty! This is a great way to save money. 

This can be a little scary at first but did you know there are websites like this one where you can search recipes by ingredients? That might help! (This is one too!

 

5. Coupons! 

I know what you are thinking, healthy, organic foods rarely have coupons in the Sunday paper. However, coupons for organic foods are out there. Companies like Organic Girl, Earthbound Farm, and others will send you coupons upon request! Check them out! 

 

Saving money on organic is possible. Try these 5 tips will help you feed your family organic on a budget. Which one of these strategies is first on your list to try?

 


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Healthy Dinners for Busy Nights

Let's see, today is Monday... so that means art class for one child, boxing gym for another and at least one responsible adult needs to get to the school event by 7pm. 

As I look at the rest of the week there is kid yoga, kid fitness classes, language class and a few other things that I am probably forgetting. 

I love that my kids are passionate about so many different things and we try to give them the opportunity to experience as much of the things they are interested in as we can. The tricky part is making it all fit and not derail our healthy lifestyle. Their busy schedule can make healthy dinners a challenge. 

However, with a little creative thinking even the busiest mom can make healthy dinners a reality even on those really busy nights! I wanted to share with you a few ideas I use to make sure that we keep up a healthy lifestyle that includes nutritious dinners even when we are busy!

 

Here are 4 creative ways to make healthy dinners work on your busy nights:

  1. Pack an extra lunchbox. Instead of worrying about getting dinner on the table, pack an extra lunchbox when you are preparing lunches for the day. Many families eat on the way to the baseball field or dance studio. Avoid drive-thru's and take-out by packing a second healthy lunchbox.
  2. Eat dinner at 4PM. On night's that we have enough time to sit and eat as a family before activities and extra curriculars, I make a point to definitely do just that. The fact that we do so at 4pm, a little early for what most people think of as "dinner time", but it actually works in our favor. If I have dinner ready at 4PM we can still sit and eat together without the rush. We also get some quality time before the pace picks up! 
  3. Prep dinner in 20-minutes or less. Having a few "go to" recipes and even some "mom hacks" to create quick healthy meals can be a real game changer for busy moms. Leftovers, crockpot and instapot meals as well as simple recipes can all be great ways to create a healthy meal in a snap. Check out this article for more on about dinners in 20 minutes or less! 
  4. Breakfast for dinner. For some reason I have no problem making a big, healthy breakfast quickly. I have a few standard recipes that I use a lot, greens & eggs, zucchini pancakes, pumpkin pancakes, and others. They are easy for me to whip up in no time. So, when I am pressed for a quick meal for dinner I sometimes declare it to be, "Breakfast for dinner night!" and whip up one of my quick and healthy breakfasts! Not only do I still get a healthy meal on the table, but the kids love it!

I know that our kids' after-school schedules can make healthy dinners a challenge but there are ways to have a busy schedule and continue to make eating healthy a priority. Pick one of these simple strategies to try and let us know how it helps you make healthy living a little easier! Join us in our free online community for busy moms, The Real Moms Collaborative, and share more ideas like these! 

 

Thank you so much for reading! Until next time...

 

Eat well, be well, 

Michelle