Shapes, Colors & Butterflies!

Today’s craft was fun. Aeriella loves butterflies, and has these butterfly wings that she loves to wear with her princess dresses. I decided to cut the shape of a big butterfly out of paper, then I used various colors of construction paper and cut them into small shapes. Even though Aerie has known her colors for a while now, I still used it is an opportunity for her to divide the colors into individual muffin tins just to pass some more time. You can also sort them by shape if that’s what you are working on.

Next, she dabbled dots of glue all over the butterfly cut out. Then she attached the tiny shapes of colored construction paper all over the butterfly. After she started, she decided she wanted to also draw pictures on the individual colored pieces, and even called her daddy over to draw some things. She thinks Josh makes the best princess castles, waves and diamonds. She handled drawing pictures of TV’s, remotes, and airplanes. I love her imagination.

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Homemade Granola and a Kid Friendly Snack

Josh has been into granola lately, and I came up with a pretty good homemade toasted coconut/almond granola that the whole family loves.

Ingredients:
½ cup brown sugar
4 cups oats (can use gluten free)
½ cup sliced almonds
¾ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1/3 cup honey
¼ cup olive oil
½ tsp salt
Optional: dried fruit (I skip this part)

Method: Preheat oven to 300. Break up any lumps in your brown sugar. Mix brown sugar, oats, almonds and coconut. In a separate bowl, combine honey, oil and salt. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix well. Spread evenly onto baking pans or baking sheets (I used two pans). Bake for 1 hour and stir every 15 minutes for even browning. If you find your granola is browning quickly, reduce temp to 250. Remove from oven and place in a separate bowl and allow it to cool. If you wish to add dried fruit, add it after it has cooled and store it in an air tight container.

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If you are interested in a strictly Paleo granola, check out this recipe of Caveman Crunch granola that I’ve made in the past. It is also very yummy.

There are so many things you can add granola to. I even made some strawberry granola muffins. I just added things as I went, so I don’t have an exact recipe, but if I make them again, I’ll be sure to jot down what I used. They were pretty good and were great for breakfast, paired with some hard boiled eggs.

The kids particularly love these “peanut butter”, banana, granola bites. It’s easy. Slice bananas, put peanut butter (we use sun butter or almond butter, too) between two banana slices to form a “sandwich,” and roll it in granola. Instant yumminess!

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Give it a try, I’m sure your kiddo’s will love it.

What a difference a year makes.

Wow, what a difference a year makes. It’s easy to get caught up on not seeing changes every single day, but this comparison puts things in perspective.

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Pregnancy is never “easy on the body.” While I was pleasantly surprised how fast I was able to bounce back after having Aerie (with a healthy diet and exercise, of course), I knew it would be a much different journey after the twins.

Besides the obvious of gaining more weight, having a much larger belly, and just the extra wear and tear it puts your body through, I was also faced with the quick reality of having two infants at once, plus a busy toddler to take care of during the day (and don’t forget those sleepless nights.) I’m not going to lie, it took me a while to get into a good groove. I didn’t have as much free time to prep and plan meals. I was exhausted during my workouts. Lucky for me, the twins started sleeping pretty good through the night at about 3 ½ months, so at least I had some extra sleep.

But, when it all came down to it, I knew that excuses would get me nowhere. Of course I was tired. Of course I had less time to prep and plan meals, let alone actually eat. I decided enough was enough, I put on my big girl pants (determined to shrink out of them 🙂 ), and was on a mission to get my body back. After having twins and all. Heck, after having 3 kids in 17 months.

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The bottom line is, YES, your body DOES change after pregnancy. For most women, it’s not as easy to bounce back. But it is possible. Yes, it takes work. But it’s worth it. Nothing feels better than being able to throw on any outfit and know that you will be comfortable in it. And nothing feels better than being able to carry all three of your kids all over the place, keep up with them, and just be everywhere at one time without feeling out of breath and overwhelmed. Nothing feels better than feeling STRONG, and knowing you worked hard to accomplish yet another hard task.

Get out there and make it happen. It is possible. And remember, if you have ANY questions, ask me. It’s my mission to help other moms feel comfortable in their own skin.

Now get out there and conquer the world! Or at least your own little world. And while you’re at it, don’t forget to smile and pat yourself on the back every once in a while. Because, lets face it, you are amazing! 🙂