Instead of informing my kids I was slamming down the hammer on snack time [and boy the thought of that felt good], I decided to make it about their own independence and growth. No longer was I to be a short order snack chef, now if set into place an easy access snack system where they'd become self-sufficient chefs of their own making.... Ok, I had really high hopes for a 6, 4 and 2 year old ;)
But here's what did help to make my mommy life easier.
Water: allowing kids to supply access their own water independently is a huge step towards independence. We used a simple water jug with a spout left in the fridge for cup refills.
Mason Jar snack cups: I grabbed some 4 ounce mason jars at Wal-Mart and started preparing a small snack when I made breakfast for my kids. Our rule has normally been that snacks need to be a fruit or vegetable, and out of the graciousness of my heart, I decided to peel and cut some fruit or vegetables and place them in the fridge. Then, to make things even simpler, I picked up organic frozen berries at BJ’s and put them in the jars to thaw and allow all the little hands to pick out their own cups when their bellies called.
Knowing that fruit would merely hold their hunger for 20 minutes, I add cheese sticks or sliced cheese for them to easily access. Then, I discovered these overnight oatmeal cups and added some small portions in our 4 ounce jars. They’ve been a huge, EASY, hit in our house.
Now, I have aspirations of baking some muffins to add to our snack tray, but that hasn't happened yet. Instead, I added some jars filled with yogurt cups which is another easy, healthy snack.
I’ve found that making changes in small steps helps the change to actually stick, so that's where our snack station will start. Hopefully in a few years, my cooking duties will be split up with little helpful hands, but we'll get there slowly!
Do you have snacking “rules” in your house? How do you handle snack time?
We love music in our house! My girls (4 and 2) can spin in circles for hours... at least it seems like that. With dreary November weather in tow, dancing to music indoors is one of our favorite ways to get the wiggles out.
Normally, we throw on some worship music. To my delight, Paul Wilbur's Rosh Hashanah is most frequently requested because it includes colorful dancing and songs performed at Regent University (our former stomping grounds). But we just got to check out a brand new release from Hillsong Kids, "Can You Believe It? Songs of Truth" through Flyby Promotions.
“Can You Believe It!? - Songs of Truth” is both a question and a challenge... a statement of gratitude to a loving God and an invitation to explore the very foundations of faith. Classic songs like “My Best Friend”, “Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)” and “What A Beautiful Name” join brand new declarations of faith such as “As The World Shakes” & “Heaven Is Our Home”.
This DVD comes with 4 music videos, performed by kids who instantly grabbed my 6 year old son’s attention. In the past, he's expressed feeling left out during worship time because he can't spin the way that the girls do [I'm pretty sure spinning is their super-power]. So I've tried to get creative with homemade worship flags and encouraged jumping and whatever else would get him moving, but worship time just wasn't his favorite.
As soon as we hit play on the videos and he noticed a boy who was a bit older than him singing and performing and he was hooked! He was equally amused by the “Funny Man Dan” skits that aim to educate and entertain kids while they watch!
Besides the 4 music videos and Funny Man Dan show, the dvd includes lyric videos for some beautifully done Hillsong songs. A few I was familiar with, like “Oceans” and “What a Beautiful Name,” but I think my new favorite is “Made in Your Image.”
The refrain goes: “I'm trusting in the Lord on a day to day, picking up strength all along the way, you know what you're doing in me..."
THAT’S a reminder I need constantly!
Want to win your own copy??? Enter below!
“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win. Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
The Connecticut Mom
Connecticut, and much of New England for that matter, is a place of beauty, peace, and stark stone walls set up by settlers hundreds of years ago. The people are much the same.
Spending most of my life thus far in quaint towns, I've met wonderful, vibrant, loving people who I call my friends but as life matures and changes, I've also swam in the sea of loneliness called Motherhood, which feels a lot deeper in this small state.
It's quite common for Connecticut moms to go to the playground with their kids, stand within 5 feet of each other, smile (maybe) but never utter a word. When we ventured to Virginia, I was incredibly perplexed the first time a mom, who I didn't know, started to chat with me as I watched my kids slide and climb. I enjoyed our morning chit-chat about the weather and struggles of getting kids out the door, but remained completely surprised that women would talk to other women they didn't know in locations far from ye olde pilgrim's influence.
In the cold Connecticut social life of a mom, I've often noticed that women are enraptured on their families appearance and keep strangers far away, less any flaws be noticed. But breaking the wintery ice, that is a joy!
We all await spring, the new life of friendships blossoming, and in any relationship, especially a New England one, it starts with the ice melting and revealing that we don't have our lives all together, our husbands aren't perfect and the bills might not always get payed on time. Then, and only then, is there something to relate to. The real human story, not the designer facade. And there good soil lies.
I've been fortunate to stumble upon a wonderful homeschooling group, filled with different people from many backgrounds. We've been joining in over the last year, and one of my favorite moments came when another mom expressed her vulnerability and desire to completely quit. I knew that feeling well, and to my great surprise, so did most of the moms. We laughed about the tears we'd shed before and bonded knowing the journey of motherhood is long, exhausting, and lonely- but it doesn't have to be if we open up our hearts, even in Connecticut.
is a writer & tired homeschooling mom of five.