06 July 2010

Fun with your kids - go pick fruit!

So far this summer, I've taken Little Man strawberry picking (alone), Cherry Picking (with his Nana), and Blueberry Picking (with Daddy).  He's not even two yet, but he had a BLAST each time and enjoyed a ton of fruit while we picked (thank God they didn't weigh him before & after or my bill would have been a lot higher!). He even helped pick some to put in the buckets (although most went directly to his mouth).

Little Man picking blueberries.

I'd encourage anyone to take their kids to go pick fruit (or veggies). These have been great outings - both fun and productive (I've gotten plenty of fruit to eat, freeze, and can). I love that my little guy is getting an understanding at a very young age that food doesn't just appear in the grocery store.

Little Man & myself after a hilarious cherry picking adventure.

Suggestions for success:
1) Go early in the morning before it gets too hot. Nobody, your little ones included, wants to be out there in the heat of the day. That will zap the fun right out of you!
2) Wear old clothes & shoes that you don't mind getting dirty. Farm life is rarely pristine.
3) Take a snack & a drink. I never leave the house without these anyway! :)
4) Be patient and don't expect them to be perfect pickers immediately (or maybe even at all). I didn't think Little Man would know which berries to pick, but after  me repeatedly pointing out the ripe berries and taste testing a few that weren't ripe, he became a pro. It's also very important to teach them proper "etiquette" of walking up & down the rows and not trampling the plants.

05 July 2010

Meal Plan Monday

I've been a bit MIA on the "Meal Plan Mondays" lately, but I've still been meal planning! I think I'd just go nuts if I didn't have a plan in place. While I've been gone, she came up with this great new logo. I just LOVE all the fresh fruit in that picture. My Little Man would probably try to eat the screen if he saw it!

This week is an easy week with only one item on the grocery list - yogurt for my Little Man! Now that's a grocery bill that I'm going to love! :)

Monday - Cookout with the in-laws
Tuesday - Grilled Pork Chops, Rice, Green Beans
Wednesday - Spaghetti
Thursday - Sandwich Night or Leftovers

This weekend we'll be celebrating my grandfather's 95th Birthday! No meal planning for the weekend, just enjoying my mama's cooking and good company!

04 July 2010

Kids in the Kitchen

It's summertime, which means it's pickle time! I've spent many hours in the kitchen making pickles, but my little man doesn't want to be ignored during that time. He always wants to help me, but there's only so much an almost-two year old can do. This year, I have given him the job of cucumber washer. He LOVES this job, does a pretty good job of getting the dirt off, and makes an excellent mess!

Step 1: Fill the left side of the sink with water (cucumbers in the right side).

Step 2: He throws the cucumbers in the water washes the cucumbers neatly.

Step 3: Then hands them to me to slice on the mandolin.

He gets just a LITTLE wet in the process! He has fun and I get to be productive - a great combo!