Homemade Play Dough

Making ducksThree ducks in a row

What you need:

  1. 1 cup flour
  2. 1 cup warm water
  3. 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  4. 1 teaspoon oil
  5. 1/4 cup salt
  6. food coloring
  7. cookie cutters
  8. plastic bag or coffee container (trash to treasure)

Lets Play:

Mix all ingredients, adding food coloring last. Stir over medium heat until smooth (parents only). Remove from pan and knead until blended smooth. Place in plastic bag or airtight container when cooled. This play dough will last for a long time.

By your child’s age:

3-5 years:

  • Make the play dough with your child. Help your child measure out the ingredients emphasizing the quantities used.
  • Have your child make certain shapes or objects.

2-3 years:

  • While making the play dough, let your child pour the ingredients into the bowl. Narrate the steps with your child.
  • Help your child make shapes and identify them.

1-2 years:

  • Let your child help you mix up the ingredients.
  • Allow your child to play freely with the play dough. Emphasize the texture, color and size of the dough.

*Every moment you spend with your child is precious.  Try giving each one at least 10-15 minutes of individual attention a day! Having this one-on-one interaction will help their motor and verbal skills.  Be totally in the moment, don’t think about whats for dinner or going to the grocery store later. Ask your child open ended questions and allow them to have an open dialog with you, even if its just babble! 😉

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“You can play a shoestring if you’re sincere”

Hello! Well, as usual I’m up before the sun comes up. Some might feel a little sorry for me, but in a house with a husband, two kids, a giant dog, a water turtle, two snakes and at any given time a couple of snails I will make the sacrifice to wake up early to have a little peace. And to also try to find a little piece of me.

 Ever since I moved from Colorado I feel like I have been trying to I guess figure out who I am. Brett had given me this magnet set as a gift and you can pick a quote for each day, but the only quote that I chose for every day since then was; “Find your Passion.” I’m in the kitchen a lot and I look at that phrase many times. Still I don’t think I have a true passion for anything. So, that brings me to my post title…You can play a shoestring if you’re sincere. I think that phrase will always stick with me from now on. I heard it on the radio and the host made the point that if you truly are passionate and believe in what you are doing you can do anything you set your mind to. Of course that sounds easy to do–just in my case I don’t know why I’ve never found my passion.

All through my life I have been good at things. I loved ballet as a girl and truly dreamt that I could go dance in Paris (reason why I took French instead of Spanish!), then I played the flute and I was very good at that for my age, but never pursued it after high school, I loved to act in theater and I let my insecurities stop me from pursuing that too. I was good in art, I remember winning awards as a kid. Now I took up crocheting which I enjoy doing, but now I feel like I don’t have time to really do it. When I was making Christmas presents I would jokingly be called the “twiddler” and felt guilty for doing something that I enjoyed because I wasn’t giving my full attention while I was crocheting.

That’s when I started to wake up earlier than everyone. So, that I could do the thing that I enjoyed in peace.

Well, I guess this is something that most people go through as they enter adulthood. Or am I already an adult?! I’m 26 with a family trying to find myself. I suppose most people do that before they have kids and responsibilities–I just did things in reverse. One thing is for sure–I have been passionate about my kids. They were my and are my life. This last year we as a family went through a very hard time, battling addiction and depression, and I centered everything I had around my children. Now the dust has cleared and I kind of feel like I’m still in the dust. Even though things are challenging I would never change my situation for anything because from it I have grown as a woman and a mother. I want to be the strong one even when I feel weak.  I will never regret giving Journey and Faith the attention and dedication I gave them, but now I ask myself daily, who is Kalisha? What is my passion?

You know one very important thing that having children has taught me, kind of corny, but it has showed me how to enjoy each little moment and I’m still working on the patience part! On Friday we joked about longest distance is when your two year old wants to walk all by herself–it does take us about fifteen minutes to a half an hour sometimes to get to the park because Journey stops to look and discover everything. Flowers, rocks, bugs, walking on the ledge then jumping off, chasing squirrels and living each moment for the moment. Living in the NOW–that is the key to I suppose finding my passion and just being happy. Because right now in this moment I have no worries, no problems–just a keyboard in front of me! That is my goal this week–to just be in the moment and not forget my struggles but to just focus on what I have and be happy with it. Take it easy through the rest of your week and come back tomorrow and check out what we have to say again! Love, Kalisha

 

 

Crunchy Chicken Fingers

This is a collaboration from both Reneca and I. One day I was trying to figure out what to cook for dinner–how to make chicken a little different and Reneca suggested Chicken Fingers. But I didn’t have any breadcrumbs so she told me to make my own with the ends of the bread. This is an easy way to spice up your own chicken without going to the fast food place and getting whatever part of the chicken they give you! Also, a good way to get the kids involved in cooking because the more they help you cook the better they eat. Ok–so here it is:

You will need: Use more or less to fit your family size, these measurements are for 3-4 family members

  • Bread ends 4 slices
  • Chip crumbs or Planko Bread Crumbs 1c.
  • Chicken (cut into strips) 1 lb
  • Egg 1 or Milk of your choice 2 tbsp
  • Sweet Potato 1 med
  • Flaxseed meal 2 tbsp

What to do:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  2. Toast your bread on high, let it sit and cool down. Then put in a zip lock bag with chips crumbs and smash until crumby (**let your kids do this part)
  3. Put all your crumbs into a bowl and your flaxseed–this is your breading
  4. Bake your sweet potato on 375 for about half an hour until soft, then puree in the blender or with hand mixer with a little milk until smooth. Add your egg and blend well. This is your coating so put into another bowl
  5. Season your chicken how you like, I do a little salt and pepper.
  6. You will do the Reneca double dip; Dip in breading first, then coating mix, then dip in the breading again. Place chicken on greased pan.
  7. Bake for 20-30 minutes turning once during cooking time. Serve with your favorite dip a side of steamed veggies and ENJOY!
  8. Save time on a future day by making extra and freezing them in individual servings (7-10 stips a bag). Then when you want to eat them, place them frozen on the pan and bake for 15-20 min on 350 degrees or until heated through.

You could tweak this recipe however you like. It is important that you find chances when you cook to incorporate nutritious food into your everyday meals. That’s why at every chance we get we put flaxseed meal into anything we can; pancakes, biscuits, bread, oatmeal and even cookies! It’s like adding hidden nutrition because you can’t even taste it, but flaxseed meal contains 4grams of fiber, it’s a natural antioxidant, the equivalent to 30 c. of broccoli, 2400 milligrams of omega 3’s and maintains breast and colon health. By adding the sweet potato you also help to stabilize blood sugar levels and it’s good for skin and eyes.

Tell Me Why

So, both of our mornings started way too early! It’s hard sometimes as a Mom to remain nice and pleasant at all times. Taking some time to lounge and sip your coffee or tea slowly is the key! We wrote some “tell me why’s” to hopefully give you a chuckle. Happy Friday!

 

  • Tell me why as moms we have the ability to multitask: cooking dinner, and cleaning all the while holding a baby on our hip. Ask our husbands to accomplish this feat and you’ll have total chaos.
  • Tell me why your kids can be happily playing by themselves, Daddy joins in.   After playing Daddy  says “Here take the baby”… Did I miss something, I wasn’t holding the baby before you started playing with them!
  • Tell me why having your baby really makes you remember to take your birth control…and maybe one more for luck!
  • Tell me why my 4 year old thinks she’s a famous shoe designer, cutting the strap of my Minolo Blanikas sling backs!
  • Tell me why the longest distance between two points is you, your two year old and the park.
  • Tell me why when you think you having a peaceful quite moment while the kids are playing, you check on the kids only to find a big mess.
  • Tell me why my husbands one mission in life is to get the kids riled up and then leave!
  • Tell me why ever since my two year old learned to undress herself my house has been turned into a nudist camp
  • Tell me why my husbands idea of cooking is buying pre-cooked food from the Whole Foods buffet
  • Tell me why no one told me that after I had pushed my baby out I needed to call and get them on the waiting list for preschool!

Bringing Sexy Back

Put on a pair of sexy panties today! Just wearing them will automatically bring your sexy back!

Mud Pie

Can you remember how great it was to play in the mud when you were a kid?  I Remember the feel and, although I hate to admit it, the taste of mud.  Me and my brother would pretend to be chefs in our backyard, making everything from steak to the ever so popular, mud pie.  Last night I was able to go back in time and “play” in the mud.  A friend of mine is in school to become an esthetician.  While in school, she has to do several clinicals in order to complete certain requirements.  So, being the great friend that I am, I went to her school last night to let her practice on me. It was an experience I would recommend for any one, especially moms.  I opted to go with out the paper bra they give you (I’m not very shy about my breast anymore since they have been on temporary loan since Kiara, and now DJ), but it is totally up to the client.  First, she rubbed me down with a sugar scrub. Let me tell you, after rinsing off, my skin felt sooooo good.  Then came the mud. Just like when I was a kid I was covered in mud, except this time I was mud burrito.  She wrapped me up in the mud and I  relaxed as the mud’s detoxifying properties went to work.  To make a long story short, after my mud wrap was over I felt refreshed and ready for what ever my kids had to throw at me next. 

Its hard as moms to do things for ourselves.  But it is something we all need to do.  Whether its a trip to get our nails done, to get a body wrap, or even 15 minutes with a good book, we all need some time to ourselves to regroup. Now I will be able to face the day refreshed and rejuvinated!

 

Let’s have a parade!

What you need:

  1. Rectangular Tissue box (trash to treasure)
  2. Empty oatmeal container or coffee container (trash to treasure)
  3. Rubber bands
  4. Beads or dry beans
  5. Wax paper
  6. Decorating items; paper, crayons, markers, glue, glitter, whatever your heart desires!
  7. Toilet paper or paper towel tubes (trash to treasure)
  8. Empty water bottles with lids (trash to treasure)
  9. Chopsticks (if you don’t have drum sticks)
  10. Tape

Let’s Play:

  1. For your drum; Use the oatmeal or coffee container with  the lid on and decorate as you want, use your chopsticks to beat the drum! or hands!
  2. For your guitar; Take the tissue box and decorate and leave the hole uncovered, then take the rubber bands and pull them over the box length wise so that they make the strings. Make sure you tape the strings down on the back of the box so that they don’t slip off.
  3. For your kazoo; Cover one end of the toilet paper tube with wax paper and secure with rubber band
  4. For your shaker; Add as many beans or beads into the water bottle then screw the cap on. I like to add a little glue to the cap before screwing it on to make sure the beads don’t come out.

By your child’s age:

4-5 years:

  • They can decorate their own instrument
  • Let them cut shapes or whatever they want with your supervision
  • Play different Rhythms and have them repeat it back to you

2-3 years:

  • March around the house playing music with your child
  • Emphasize that that they are hearing the music with their ears

1-2 years:

  • Let your toddler play freely with the instruments

 

Men are our 1st babies

I feel like I had a breakthrough or something. I don’t know, but it is funny and made me a little sad. I wrote some notes to Brett and one was by the bed and it said “Let’s Spoon!” I thought I was just being silly, but he was serious and really wanted to just spoon.  I hadn’t really realized until that moment that  I have been neglecting my first baby! That moment made me really see that through my busy day and sometimes nights with the girls, Brett is the one who gets left out. In many ways men are like our babies. We just have to realize that before our kids we had our spouse and long after the kids are grown and starting their own lives, we will still have our spouse. So, its not good to put all your efforts into just your kids and neglect your husband. Maybe I’m the only one, but either way I will try each day to give him the love and affection he deserves even through groggy mornings and exhausted nights.

Ways Men are like our Babies

  • Babies like to breastfeed and so do men!
  • I find myself always cleaning up toys and sippy cups. Also, ipods,hats and sunglasses
  • Babies want to be held; Men want to be held
  • Gotta clean dirty diapers and gotta clean dirty underwear!