When You Wish You Could Just Call it Quits

For the past five months, I’ve been doing the work of two people at my job. One of my teammates left and the department has yet to replace him. Because I am the only person on the team who had the same job title/level of work that he did, I’m the one who got saddled with most of it. Now another teammate is on vacation for two weeks and I am virtually her only backup, again due to type of work, so I am now doing the work of three people.

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Creative Blocks

Do you ever feel like you lose yourself when you have kids? You spend so much time trying to figure out how to be the perfect parent, how to ensure your kids survive, how not to traumatize them for life, how to make sure their lives are made of butterflies and rainbows…You stop hanging out with your friends as much as you used to because you’re all just so busy with your jobs and your families…You don’t engage in your hobbies as much as you used to. I mean, who has time when you’re busy reading fifty different parenting books during the small spans of time that you’re not playing with/caring for your kids?

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Go the *bleep* to Sleep

Hiding under the covers (in order to be on my phone without baby seeing) during A’s “bedtime routine.” It goes like this…

Bring baby upstairs against his will (2-year-old baby). Get in bed and wrestle baby to nurse. Fight to keep him from leaping off the bed. Finally get baby to nurse (and calmly). Husband walks into room, bumps into something, baby notices him and starts CRYING. Refuses to drink more milk, refuses to go to husband, just cries.

Now B’s rocking him in his infant car seat and singing ABC’s. You know it’s bad when he resorts to singing–he hates it.

Go to sleep, baby…Go. To. Sleep.

The Importance of a Varied Diet: Avoiding Natural Toxins in Food

This is a really great article, by the FDA, about arsenic in baby food:

For Consumers: Seven Things Pregnant Women and Parents Need to Know About Arsenic in Rice and Rice Cereal

I’m not going to paraphrase the article and make you, essentially, read the same information twice. But what I want to point out is that a lot of people tend to have a really bad reaction when it comes out that a poison is in certain foods, like arsenic in apple juice, as if the food industry is adding ingredients that contain poisons. What’s really happening, though, is that this poison exists naturally in the foods in the first place, processed or not. Instead of being appalled by the food industry and afraid to eat the foods that are outed, what we really need to do is remember that the healthiest, safest diet is well-balanced.

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Morning Glory Muffins: Optionally Grain Free

If you’ve never heard of a Morning Glory Muffin and, certainly, if you’ve never tried one, you are in for a treat! They have just about everything in them but the kitchen sink and are DELICIOUS. Chef Pam McKinstry created them in the 70’s for her restaurant and this is my own take on her recipe. Bonus, they’re easily translated to grain free.

The flavor of these muffins is out of this world. They have just the right amount of sweetness, but no processed sugar, and you’d never know they’re chock full of nutrients–carrots, apple, coconut, dates, almonds, walnuts…Just try them, I promise you won’t be sorry. And if you’ve never had a grain-free muffin and want to try that option, you will be impressed at how good these are. I know this carb lover was! If you’re on the search for a healthy baked treat for your little ones (or yourself), you’ve found it.

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Navigating the World of Orthotic Braces

When you’re told that your child needs to wear braces on his feet, the last thing you’re probably immediately worried about is what shoes to buy. But once you have the orthotics in hand and realize how difficult they are to get into a pair of shoes, suddenly you’re looking for anyone who can give a helping hand. So that’s what I’m here to do, at least as best I can (my son only just got his, but I’ve done a LOT of research already!) 🙂

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Mini Salmon Biscuits

These tasty treats are like a cross between a biscuit and a muffin–light and tender with an airy crumb. When you first bite into them, they taste like a simple biscuit, but afterward the flavor of sauteed leeks and a hint of rich salmon lingers on your tongue. I came up with them as a way to introduce a savory flavor to my son, who would rather eat baked goods than whole foods, but they’re perfect for the whole family.

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Recipe for Success: Instant Oatmeal

Instead of heating up a packet of instant oatmeal in the microwave, soak rolled oats overnight in milk. They’ll soften just as if they’d been cooked and then you can either heat them up or eat them cold (which I highly recommend!). If you’re like me and eat oatmeal every day, make a big batch for the week and just keep it in the fridge to use when you’re ready, even divide it up into individual containers (I love wide-mouth ball jars) if you like! But first, let me convince you why this is such a great idea.

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Recipe for Success: Steak and Hamburgers

It’s starting to warm up outside and you know what that means. Time to take the cover off the grill!

When you’re cooking a steak or hamburger, whether on the grill or stove top, resist the temptation to press on it with your spatula. This doesn’t give it a better sear, ensure a flat burger, or drain the blood (as I’ve heard one person claim), it just squeezes out a lot of those wonderful, all-important juices!

Instead, here’s how to guarantee a beautiful, dark sear full of flavor:

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