Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Healthy Snacks

I'm on a mission to get Nolan to eat. In general he is just not too interested in food. It's not that he is picky and refuses to eat certain things it's just that he sometimes can't be bothered to stop and eat in general! For a 20lb 17 month old that's not good. he likes variety and wants to try lots of different things.

I got a few great tips from a friend who specializes in pediatric feeding. She recommended making fun smoothies. I had been doing this with yogurt and baby food purees but switching over to frozen fruit seemed to make Nolan actually enjoy them and take more than a sip or two. The smoothies are a great way to hide supplements (Omega 3's, liquid vitamins) and protein. Protein, you say? Yes! I've started adding white mild beans to the smoothies. They don't add much flavor but they definitely up the protein and calories he is getting.

I also came across a great blog: Super Healthy Kids. Amy has some great tips and lots of recipes with an extensive archives section. I started out trying the roasted garbanzo bean snack idea. Last week I took a can of garbanzo beans and rinsed and dried them. I put them on a greased baking sheet and sprinkled with Parmesan cheese. I baked them on 400 degrees for around thirty minutes. They were a hit for both Nolan and I and the dogs who stole them off the counter when I left the house later that day.



Today's snack is still in the oven but it's homemade apple chips. Using my nifty mandolin slicer, I sliced two apples super thin. Then I boiled them in apple juice with some cinnamon. Once they were transparent, I pulled them out and placed them on a cookie drying rack and patted them dry. The cookie drying rack went straight into the over at 225 degrees and will stay there until the apples are crisp. I think these will be a big hit with Nolan and I know they will be with me!

Next up I'm going to try some fun veggie based snacks.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

New Playroom!

Nolan got his wish today...well, mom got her wish! Nolan has a new playroom!!

Our dining room area has never been utilized in the 5 years we've lived here. For a while when we first moved in, it was simply storage. Once we got used to living in a smaller house and stopped saving every item we've ever owned, it just sat empty. I've had grand plans for it but for us utilizing it as a dining room just never made sense.

Last week I drew up the plans and Saturday morning we made a spontaneous IKEA trip. Man, I love that store. It's really dangerous to my wallet though so maybe it's a good thing it's 2.5 hours away. I wasn't expecting for the project to go this fast, as I thought we needed to borrow a friend's truck, but everything fit in the FJ.

Here is the before color. As you can see, only the bird cage is in the room. The color on the walls is pretty dark and makes the room cave-like.

Here are a few after shots. Besides the bright playful colors the living room portion that connects here has a much lighter color now too. It feels bright and warm!

You can see one of the magnetic play boards under the window here.


In the background you can see even mom got a new storage end table!
Nolan's comfy chair and bookshelves.

Not bad for starting the painting less than 24 hours before the entire room was finished. I feel like I just got off of an episode of "Trading Spaces" since we did such a whirlwind transformation in 2 days. The first whole day was spent shopping too!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Crafty Naptime

I decided to be crafty during Nolan's nap today. My cousin posted the cutest blog referral today and I couldn't resist. Check out Tatertots and Jello for the post that started my fun. The original idea came from Running with Scissors. I'm just going to show you the end results. Nol was a little crabby as I patiently waited for him to wake from his nap but as soon as he was we went outside for these pictures.


A moment of appeasement with the paci.
Mom I don't fit!
Even Dinos need their blankies!


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Busy Baby, Busy Momma

Nolan is always on the go these days. He starts bright and early and goes full force all day. His walking is now a run and he wants to do everything on his own. I'm now able to let him walk next to me when we are out and about and he follows about half the time. That's an improvement from when he first wanted to go on his own and would immediately turn in the opposite direction.

Here is a short clip of him out and about yesterday.
video
When he goes the opposite way or decides not to follow I say "Bye Nolan see you tomorrow," and move on a few feet. That usually gets him running towards me. For all you germophobes yep he was chewing on the brush for the goats. Got to love little boys!!

Part of the reason we are so busy is that we found a great group of moms to hang out with. I'm part of a meetup group called Busy Babies and Toddlers of Jacksonville. It's amazing to get together with 10-20 toddlers all at the same stage as Nolan and see them interact. I recently took on a bigger role with the group and am helping to organize it now. That means coming up with new ideas and events so everyone stays involved and active.

Nolan has a pretty active social calendar. This week he attended a potty training party (nope we aren't starting that quite yet), went to the zoo, and has a park playdate scheduled. Coming up soon is finger painting, an eat your veggies event, hands on children's museum, and much more! I'm sure you'll all see the pictures!

If you're looking to meet new people in your area I'd encourage you to check out Meetup.com to see what groups are in your area!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Dino-venture!

Nolan, our baby friend Brooklynn, and I explored the Jacksonville Zoo yesterday. We heard a few commercials on the radio about dinosaurs invading Jacksonville and thought we'd check them out. As members we got an early free sneak peek. I definitely would recommend spending the extra few dollars and going inside at least once.

"Seriously mom! A bit too close!"
We all had a blast. The dinosaurs were very lifelike. They moved, growled, and even were in a foggy jungle. Nolan growled back at a few of them but of course my attempts to videotape that were a failure. At the end Nolan got his first puppet. He thinks it's hilarious when his Pterodactyl flies around on mom's arm and bites at him!
"Mom look over there."

"Uh Oh Brooklynn. I think we are dinner."

We ended our zoo time with a stop at the playground. There Nolan got caught in a spider's web!


He doesn't always have that goofy "cheese" face on but I seemed to capture it a lot on this trip.