Notes on Home, Food, and Grace

Everything in the house is sleeping (although I daresay the ants who are invading in honor of spring are still relatively scampering about – take note, dear ants, I will be the winner of this battle!) and now is the time to take advantage of the peace and do something.

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We are finally all moved in to our house. I officially emptied out our rental’s fridge on friday and here we are eating the food we have, sleeping in the beds as we find them, skirting boxes and piles of belongings and generally enjoying the concept of having space, being outside, losing things, and springtime yard work (who knew grass grew so fast?? It’s almost time to find a lawnmower).

Our house is lovelylovely. We keeping finding more fun things nearby. 3 minutes to and from the interstate (we were pleasantly surprised), literally 3 minutes to the nearest grocery story, less than a mile to two different parks – one huge and full of picnic tables, playgrounds, and trails for running and one smaller playground park for tromping.

We have a yard surrounded by trees (even though we have no trees), flowerbeds with growing things (I’m still waiting to see what everything is..so far a strawberry plant and some primroses have given up their identities). Ranger loves the outside space and has quickly learned what ‘want to go outside?’ means.

On friday we got back from a week at the ocean with my family. The oregon coast is usually much colder this time of year than it was last week and we were pleasantly surprised by the lovely weather and warm beaches.

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Somehow between moving, packing, and traveling I have not found time or energy to run or blog, sadly. But I cannot wait to share pictures and stories of it all (Ranger’s birthday, the coast and the house spaces especially!).

We finally had the internet installed yesterday morning. I had the honor and surprise of being veryvery productive with cleaning and moving in during our dearth of distraction. I’m hoping to keep my productivity high while still enjoying some connected time on the webs and here.

(Do any of you have internet use rules in place for yourself to keep your time well assigned and worthwhile?).

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This morning I’ve decided that learning to feed this little family well could be a full-time job.

Because of this second pregnancy my production of breast milk has slowly gone downhill – not completely gone yet, but getting there. We’ve been giving him bottles with whole milk in them as an alternate, but my little guy is in need of food he’ll actually eat, as filling up completely on cow milk is an option I’d like to avoid for various reasons (diaper rash, family history of a milk allergies (i’m sorry child that was me), and not wanting to overexpose or upset his tummy.). He tends to be a skimpy eater at home, but while we vacationing he ate and ate. And slept!

Surprisingly.

While we were at the coast and one night before we enjoyed some nights where Ranger only woke up 1-3 times! It was surprising. I think it had something to do with having plently of people to play with (thus getting extra tired), more of momma’s attention (more solids), someone cooking three meals a day ( more solids), and less access to the easy quickfix bottle (again, resulting in more solids!). Hopefully I’ll be able to cook something up to help him stay interested in food and able to sleep more soundly at night.

Some things I’m going to try are:

  • Putting more work into preparing and planning meals for my child AND my poor husband. Planning is the key, I think.
  • Cutting Ranger’s food into bitesize pieces. You’d think this would be obvious, ut I’ve only recently discovered how dreadfully lazy I am. My poor child only has four teeth and may appreciate this.
  • Challenge myself to have good healthy toddler accessible snacks on hand instead of always handing out the easy and overused cheese and milk. I’m off to the store later to stock the larder (or pantry, if somehow your vocabulary has been deprived of such a singular word).

Any mamas out there have tips or tricks for feeding the littles well without resorting to baby food or junk?

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Places I’ve found grace recently:

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14 thoughts on “Notes on Home, Food, and Grace

  1. So glad the move went smoothly and you are getting settled into your new digs. It all happened so fast! Your new home location reminds me a lot of my neighborhood – we’re also super close to a grocery store (not to mention the library, the post office, and our bank) and the interstate and several nice play areas for kids. Can’t wait to see pics of your new place!

    The only thing that helps me mind my internet time is my digital kitchen timer. I like to use my internet time as a reward for doing something on my to-do list. So typically I will work for 45 minutes on something and then take a 15 minute recuperating break to drink water, have a little snack (pregnant, lol!), and check out my reader/FB/email, etc. or read a magazine article. The trick is to STOP when the timer goes off! I usually keep it in the other room so I don’t just absentmindedly turn it off and keep surfing.

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  2. Ascher has recently been introduced to scrambled eggs and really likes those, though he tends to play in their funny texture and needs help to really get a good bit down him. He will finger feed fried eggs. Last few days we’ve been splitting a banana first thing while I fix eggs for us both/all, which has the added benefit of me eating some good protein first thing instead of easy cereal. Hard boiled is an easy prep-ahead.
    I have found it useful to have a container of mashed potatoes in the fridge for easy meal-like snacks. Instant mashed potatoes are easy for this, with lots of butter and sometimes a little chopped ham for satisfaction/fullness.
    Cooked, chopped chicken or turkey is great. You saw the box I brought with cheese, chicken, grapes and peas. Prepped like that it’s super easy to put a bit of each on his tray.
    Ascher will happily gobble a whole cutie(little orange) by himself. Veggies(cooked tender, not mushy) make good finger food that is easy to prep ahead and have last several days – sweet potatoes, carrots, peas, beans, broccoli, etc.
    Pretty sure we’ve bored the boy with his soup, so I’m experimenting for a couple days to see if I can get the good stuff down him enough to skip it. I’ll be making our soups with bone broth with the mind to share them with him. Anyway, it’s something I’ve been thinking about the last few days too. :)

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    1. Cool! Thanks! Your box was definitely an inspiration and we’re doing little things like that now. :) i should try the potato thing. i don’t know if I’ve given him many mashed potatoes!

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  3. One way I find to make things easier and faster is to use scissors to cut food into bite sized pieces. I keep a pair in the diaper bag (but be careful where you store it if you do that) and a pair in the kitchen just for cutting up the littles food. It makes things so much easier and faster than a knife and fork. I use this for everything and our baby (now 17 months, but we started this when he started solids at 6 months) eats everything we do, just in bite size pieces.

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  4. Snacks that go down well here are(all organic) breadsticks, chopped fruit, dried fruit: banana, apple, raisins, cranberries, goji berries, hard boiled eggs( boil a lot in one go and keep them in the fridge for quick easy snacks during the week). We also have quite a few ranges of organic baby cookies sweetened with nothing but fruit and cold pressed fruit bars for babies.

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  5. Over here raisins are THE toddler snack. My kids also love grapes (wash a bunch and stick them in the fridge), crunchy breadsticks (not sure if they’re available over there), rice cakes, apples (get one of those apple cutter knife thingies). Also, cold cuts or cheese. Macaroni with a tomato sauce is a big hit, leftovers for lunch are gobbled up. Both kids love a grilled ham and cheese. One kid loves grape tomatoes and bell pepper sticks.

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    1. Those sound like good ideas! We’ve tried raisins…he likes them, but let’s just say he needs to be able to actually chew them (more than just four teeth maybe?) before we’ll try them again. ha. :) we have hard crunchy pretzels that ranger really likes and are good snacks. We just did grilled cheese today! He actually surprised me and ate it! :)

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