Pin it Tuesday: Frozen Yogurt Melts

One Good Thing by Jillee

Ok, so here goes another pinterest find I actually made as well. I usually buy Cas Happy Yogis or Gerber Graduates Organic Yogurt Melts and he loves them. So while I was on pinterest one day (like always, actually) I came across an idea to make homemade yogurt melts. I knew I just had to try them for baby Cas and I thought it would also be good to soothe his teething gums. I’m sure everyone has already made them by now but I am way too excited about them! Like, I totally love them!!!

So you first start out with any yogurt you like, I really like the Yoplait yogurt brand (I know greek yogurt is better but I prefer Yoplait), and then you put it inside a ziploc bag.

Then you cut a tiny piece of the corner of the ziploc bag and then you make swirlies (<- not a real word but whatever) onto a baking pan and freeze anything from 40 minutes to an hour.

And enjoy!! I usually put the yogurt melts into little baggies to keep them in the freezer (like the picture below).

I also made some with Stonyfield Yobaby Yogurt in the banana flavor for Cas. Since he usually loves to eat the Happy Yogis in the banana peach flavor. (see below) Anyways these are yummy and I am wanting to experiment more with yogurt melts… I’m thinking maybe making them in a chocolate flavor or making a banana peach mixture for Cas.

First Birthday Party Themes

Classic Blues Birthday Theme
So as you can tell I have been obsessing over Cas’s first birthday party theme. It is kind of crazy because his birthday will be in January of 2013. So I may be getting to ahead of myself but it is so much fun!!! I like it way more than wedding planning. The only thing I have done is watch Say Yes to the Dress and look at wedding gowns online. Anyways I have three themes in mind that I am in love and have lots of ideas for. For starters, I have created inspiration boards using Polyvore.
The first theme is the first inspiration board above that I have named as Classic Blues. So I am thinking of using fabrics, balloons, and cupcake holders in many shades of blue. I am also planning on having lots of blue serving ware and flatware. It wouldn’t have to be fancy or anything.
Monkey, Yellow, Brown, White/Ivory Birthday Theme
For the second theme I want to have monkeys as a theme with the colors yellow, brown and white to help bring the theme together. I also want to have lots of food items based around bananas!!! I also wanted to get banana milk and chocolate milk, as well as root beer and pineapple soda. Too cute!
Teal Orange Brown Birthday Theme
Finally the last theme is just based around the colors teal, orange and brown. Just like the monkey theme, I would have food and drink items that match the colors of the theme.
Now, which one to choose???!!!

Goodbye tiny apartment, I will miss you

the living room at our one bedroom apartment (obviously before cas was born and it looked clean!)

It is that time again to move and we have been moving from our one bedroom apartment to a two bedroom townhouse/apartment since friday of last week. I just want to be done with moving; we still have the “little stuff” or the “random stuff” or “just trash” left at our tiny apartment and I’m tired of driving back and forth. To be honest I am so sad to leave my tiny apartment. I get so sentimental every time we go back to get more stuff.

the kitchen and dining room. (i was 4 1/2 months pregnant when I took these pictures)

I mean this was the first place my fiance and I actually lived in alone! Before this apartment we had always lived with roommates because of college but this, this apartment was “our” home! This was our home before Cas was born and this was Cas’s first home as well. This is where I remember getting contractions from 7 minutes apart to 2 minutes apart on a saturday morning and rushing to the hospital. (I mean the whole 5 minutes apart within one hour so did not happen to me!)

our bedroom before chaos and mess ever happened to it. it used to be so peaceful…

This is where my fiance got ready for his graduation ceremony from college and spent almost 2 months finding a “real job”. This is where I went to school a full semester all the way until 2 weeks before I was due. This is where I became a stay at home mom and where a tiny little baby changed my whole world around! This is where I had the sleepless nights and days for almost 3 months because newborns need to eat every 2/3 hours!! This is where I got engaged in the park behind the apartment complex. This is where two of our favorite restaurants are not even a minute away.

I mean so many things happened in this apartment that it is heartbreaking to leave behind. I know that new memories will be made in our spacious 2 bedroom town house and I cannot wait for them. But… it just does not feel like home just yet. I am having a hard time dealing with all the space we have. I mean even Cas now has his own room and I am also having a hard time dealing with that!!

He used to have a corner to himself (eventually he took over the whole apartment with all his things) and I always just put him on our bed when he would cry because for some reason sleeping with mom and dad was more comfortable. And its been day 4 in our new place and Cas is still in his room sleeping and it is 8:40 in the morning. Well, he is starting this new thing where he takes four naps instead of three and goes to sleep really late at night and wakes up late the next day. But anyways back to what I was saying, this apartment holds many great memories for me that I could never forget. Au revoir, petite apartimente (< wrong translation i’m sure)! Adios depa pequenito! Goodbye, tiny apartment!

———————————————————————————————

Dear Apartment 211,

Thanks for a good year!! I will miss you dearly and even though I complained every day about how small you were and that there was not enough space. You know that deep down I adored you! Thanks for welcoming my baby and for the good times we had with our friends coming over almost every saturday night.

I hope you make the next family just as happy as we were.

Sincerely,

Jesse

Making baby food is easy, fun and cheaper

yellow squash puree (top), apple and banana puree (bottom left), raspberry and pear puree (bottom right)

I have been having way too much fun making Cas’s food. I love coming up with different combinations for him. His favorite fruit is definitely pears! He eats small pieces of pears that I put into a mesh fresh food feeder, he also likes pears mixed with bananas, pears with apples, and pears with raspberries (his favorite puree of all). He pretty much likes pears with anything or by itself.

A few things I have discovered making baby food are:

  1. Making baby food is extremely easy. – The only equipment you really need is a blender or a food processor to make baby food. You can prepare the food in advance and refrigerate it for later. I usually make his baby food when I am making myself or for the fiance breakfast, lunch and dinner.
  2. Making baby food is lots of fun! – I never thought that I would have fun creating baby food. I used to think it would be extremely hard and that I would get frustrated every time. I actually enjoy it and can’t wait to make his baby food.  Since I am starting to learn his favorite fruits and veggies, it has been fun creating combinations like pears and raspberries for him. (I’ve also found new combinations to add to my morning smoothies because of this.)
  3. Making baby food is cheaper. – My fiance and I have found that by buying fresh fruits and vegetables for Cas means more cash in our wallets. For example, the other day I made Cas a sweet potato puree, but the sweet potato was so large I only needed about half to make enough for 3 days. So with the rest of the sweet potato I made baked sweet potato fries. Yumm! I didn’t throw away the sweet potato instead I used it to make fries for me and the fiance. Money well spent!

I would definitely recommend to moms or dads who have time to consider making their baby homemade baby food. Or to at least give it a try to just see how it goes. I was afraid that Cas wouldn’t like it but he actually loves it! The pear and raspberry puree below is by far his favorite, he is always wanting more of it. He also used to hate apples and bananas from the jars but when I made him the homemade version he loved it! I guess kids really do like homemade food from their mommies!

raspberry and pear puree

yellow squash

peach and banana

apple and pear sauce, super yummy!

Are their any parents who made or are making their babies homemade purees? How is it going and what is your baby’s favorite?!

Baby food making craze

So, last time I mentioned that I would start making baby food for baby Cas. I have been inspired by a website I found called, weelicious! Weelicious has many healthy recipes for children and families. There are so many baby food puree recipes on there, that I have gone crazy! I love this website so much that I have made about 4-5 of the recipes on there. The first recipe I decided to make was the plum and banana puree. Cas loves bananas and I thought that plum and banana sounded really good!

This recipe is so simple to make and it only takes a few minutes! I made it using a nutribullet but i’m sure you can use a blender or a food processor to make this puree. This puree wasn’t Cas’s favorite but it tasted delicious to me. 😀 (Plum banana link)

The next recipe I made was the raspberry banana puree and this one was a hit! Cas and I both loved it so much. This recipe just needed one banana and a cup of raspberries. It made enough for 2 servings and Cas just devoured it. This puree also came out in a pretty hot pink color which I really liked.

I also decided to make a butternut squash puree because it is one of those vegetables that you just need to bake and then puree. Cas also happens to like butternut squash so it was nice to give him some homemade food. I was really scared to cut the butternut squash but it was really easy thanks to this video I watched.

Lastly I made myself a kale-rasp-banana shake. I loved Cas’s raspberry banana puree so much that I decided to make into a shake.

So far making baby food is a lot easier than I thought. I make enough baby food for 2 to 3 days. I have yet to freeze baby food since  the idea of it doesn’t sound so good. I guess I won’t know until I try it out. Anyways for new parents who want to make their baby homemade purees, you should check out weelicious.com!

Grocery haul from Whole Foods

Romaine lettuce, kale, red onion, mangoes, bananas, pears, avocados, butternut squash, raspberries, black plums, carrots, sugar snap peas

Normally on Mondays my “fiance” (it is so weird saying it 😀 ) has flag football with his co-workers who then play other companies. (what a bore..) I usually never go but yesterday I decided to go grocery shopping while he was at the game. The park where they play flag football is only 2 minutes away from Whole Foods, so why not get grocery shopping out of the way.

I also decided I would take Cas grocery shopping with me. Now you might be wondering why I even mentioned that, a lot of moms take their babies grocery shopping. Well I have a special baby who hates, no more like loathes the car seat. I normally have to have someone else come with me when I go grocery shopping with Cas. So, to make things easier for me  I decided to use the Ergo wrap. It was given to us as a gift and I have found that it is a lifesaver! Cas really likes it and while I was shopping at Whole Foods he took a little nap in it.

I have gone to Whole Foods before but only to get things I couldn’t find in H-E-B or to get something to eat since I used to work in the same shopping center. Yesterday I decided just to go ahead and get everything I needed there. It was interesting, in a good way. I really liked that they had loose carrots! My fiance thought I was being weird that I was super happy to find loose carrots. When I usually buy carrots, they come in a bag but I usually never use more than 2 or 3 carrots. So I never buy any but at Whole foods I picked up a few carrots. I’ll probably use some for salads and steam the rest. I’m planning on steaming 1 or 2 and make them into baby food for Cas. (oh yeah, I’m going to start making some baby food) I also really liked that they had a lot of vegetables to choose from that you can’t normally find.  For example, leeks, I can never find them in supermarkets.

steel cut oats, green lentils, fruit and nut mix, tazo passion tea, naked green machine juices (the fiance is obsessed with these), walnuts, stash hibiscus tea, strawberry rolls (first time buying them)

I also bought a few random items, like the Tazo teas and Naked juices. My fiance really likes the juices and the reason is because sometimes he is really tired at work but doesn’t have time to eat so he will drink one of these instead of an energy drink.

You might notice I didn’t buy any meat. We already have chicken and tilapia at home so I didn’t feel the need to buy anymore. Honestly, I hate beef and my fiance and I have been really bad about not eating at home. Which has to stop! I am also trying this vegetarian diet as of today, lol. I can do it but my fiance’s family is Mexican and man is it hard to be a vegetarian around really good food!

Ella’s kitchen baby food, happy baby puffs in strawberry (they were out of apple), multi-grain cereal, teething biscuits, earth’s best baby food

I also picked up a few items for Cas. I didn’t buy very many since I will be experimenting with homemade baby food this week. I got him some more puffs which he has gotten really good at chewing and I also got him teething biscuits for his chewing-on-everything-frenzy!

yummy salads

It might not seem like a lot of food but my fiance and I have this problem where we buy a lot of food and then we don’t eat it. This will not be the case this time! I will use every item I bought this week!  I have started by preparing salads for 2-3 days. I will also make some of the beans and rice I have in advance so I can just grab some to make meals throughout the week.

Overall, I really liked shopping for groceries at Whole Foods. It is really hard to buy bad food since there wasn’t any Hershey’s chocolates in the check out area for me to buy. It wasn’t as crowded as other supermarkets I have gone to and the selection on vegetables is awesome!

The story of my freak out over rice cereal

I remember the first time I gave rice cereal to Cas. He hated it! He would cry and cry every time I tried and I got really frustrated with myself. I started coming up with this idea that if Cas didn’t like cereal that he wouldn’t like fruits and if he didn’t like fruits then he definitely wouldn’t like vegetables. I also thought that if he didn’t eat rice cereal at four months, that he wouldn’t be developing correctly. (whatever that means) I mean I went insane over a few tries of getting Cas to eat mushy rice cereal! At some point, I decided to give my mom a call and ask for advise. (always my last resort and you’ll see why) So I called my mom and told her that the baby didn’t like cereal and wouldn’t eat it. She freaked out and told me that the baby was too young for cereal and what was I thinking?!! While she is freaking out, I am trying to get her to let me talk because its obvious she was thinking that I tried to give cocoa puffs to Cas… Sigh. ( i was right too, she thought i was giving grown up cereal to a baby!!! seriously mom?!) Finally, after ten minutes of her freaking out, she tells me to not worry about and to try again in a few days.

So I wait. A week.

And guess what?! He loves it! I couldn’t believe it, he actually ate all the cereal I prepared him! (about a few tablespoons worth) I was jumping up and down and making phone calls (as if he just won the Olympics) to everyone about my big boy’s accomplishment.

Looking back, well, I shouldn’t have freaked out. Every baby will grow up at their own pace. So what if my friend’s baby loved cereal at his first attempt . My baby is healthy and growing, and at the end of the day that is all that should matters to me.

Cas (who is close to seven months now) loves fruits, rice cereal, oatmeal cereal and veggies. What I love most about the stage he currently is in, is that I am figuring his favorite foods. The picture above shows a banana puree and oatmeal cereal. It happens to be his favorite meal when I mix the two together! His favorite fruit puree is pears, he just loves pears! (i also loved them when I was pregnant, ironically) His favorite vegetables are carrots and sweet potato. He absolutely hates peas, I cannot get him to eat more than two tiny spoonfuls. He has even learned to do this new gagging thing every time I give him peas. Babies are funny and just too cute!

If I could just go back and tell myself, “Just relax, it is only cereal. When he is ready he will let you know.” I sometimes wonder if I am the only new mom that freaks out…