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breakfast, bumper stickers and baby LIVE

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It seems odd, but one of the biggest challenges I’ve had with home schooling Emma this year has been keeping her well-fed and full of energy. She is a lot like Dan I think–high metabolism, low blood sugar tendencies and when she’s the least bit hungry she has no energy and gets very grumpy. It seems like I’m having to constantly give her snacks to keep her focused and "with me" so we can sit down and do a little concentrated school work together. I often find myself wondering how she’d ever cope in school–going all morning without a snack before lunch.

So I’ve been starting with breakfast–trying to wean them off cold cereal and juice and on to things with a little more substance–eggs, granola and yogurt, oatmeal. I’ve been setting up for breakfast each night before bed, hoping it will keep me on track with making them a hearty breakfast, instead of falling back on the easy box of cereal. Yesterday’s eggs seemed to go over well and help us get a little farther into the morning before a meltdown indicating snack. And today’s oatmeal was a moderate hit–thanks to some cream and raisins on top.

I’d love to hear some of the things that you feed your children for breakfast? Or do you have a great snack that you give them mid-morning for a boost of energy? Is there something I should be cooking up? I’m hoping Emma will grow out of this "eat every 90 minutes" kind of lifestyle, but maybe not.

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Speaking of food–a little giveaway. I recently got some mail from American Farmland Trust, which included a few bumper stickers. I kept one for myself, but I’d love to give one away. They say, "No Farms. No Food." If you’d like it and use it, leave me a note in the comments and I’ll get in touch. If more than one of you want it, then I’ll just draw a name.

And for your viewing pleasure–she kept squawking at me while I was trying to write this post–I think she just wanted to be on camera. please ignore my mommy voice. yuck.


Hello Elizabeth from molly balint on Vimeo.

P1010004

It seems odd, but one of the biggest challenges I’ve had with home schooling Emma this year has been keeping her well-fed and full of energy. She is a lot like Dan I think–high metabolism, low blood sugar tendencies and when she’s the least bit hungry she has no energy and gets very grumpy. It seems like I’m having to constantly give her snacks to keep her focused and "with me" so we can sit down and do a little concentrated school work together. I often find myself wondering how she’d ever cope in school–going all morning without a snack before lunch.

So I’ve been starting with breakfast–trying to wean them off cold cereal and juice and on to things with a little more substance–eggs, granola and yogurt, oatmeal. I’ve been setting up for breakfast each night before bed, hoping it will keep me on track with making them a hearty breakfast, instead of falling back on the easy box of cereal. Yesterday’s eggs seemed to go over well and help us get a little farther into the morning before a meltdown indicating snack. And today’s oatmeal was a moderate hit–thanks to some cream and raisins on top.

I’d love to hear some of the things that you feed your children for breakfast? Or do you have a great snack that you give them mid-morning for a boost of energy? Is there something I should be cooking up? I’m hoping Emma will grow out of this "eat every 90 minutes" kind of lifestyle, but maybe not.

P1010001

Speaking of food–a little giveaway. I recently got some mail from American Farmland Trust, which included a few bumper stickers. I kept one for myself, but I’d love to give one away. They say, "No Farms. No Food." If you’d like it and use it, leave me a note in the comments and I’ll get in touch. If more than one of you want it, then I’ll just draw a name.

And for your viewing pleasure–she kept squawking at me while I was trying to write this post–I think she just wanted to be on camera. please ignore my mommy voice. yuck.


Hello Elizabeth from molly balint on Vimeo.

43 comments on “breakfast, bumper stickers and baby LIVE”

  1. Molly, I just played your video and my labs went nuts! Running from the back door to the front door barking like we’d had an intrusion. Funny dogs.

    Nash eats oatmeal with raisins and dried cranberries, touch of honey, couple of walnuts every morning without fail. Won’t touch anything else. He’ll eat an egg in the hole for a special occasion and wants pancakes on the weekends, but his weekday breakfast is always oatmeal.

  2. My son is a bit young yet for these kinds of foods, but I remember my mom making me several such snacks. I remember little dishes of frozen berries (that we’d picked in the garden, then froze – but store bought would be fine)microwaved warm, with a little sugar on top; grahame crackers and milk; half a bagel with a piece of cheese melted on top; apple slices and peanut butter. The trend seems to be a little protein via dairy, and a little natural sugar via fruit. Good luck! How old is your baby?

  3. Hmmm..Gabe likes waffles, pancakes, yogurt and fresh fruit, a dutch baby (like a giant popover) is nice every once in a while and I like to make breakfast muffins too. Soft boiled eggs are good and are fun to eat! Uuuh yeah, so we I guess we like breakfast here in our house. Gabe really likes dried organic dates and Annie’s cheddar bunnies for snacks.I would LOVE that sticker if you feel like sending it on over. I’ll slap in on my car as soon as I get it! =)

  4. One of our favorite breakfast foods are oatmeal with homemade applesauce on it. My kids adore it, and well, so do I! We also do green or fruity smoothies. Anything with nuts in it too will help to keep her fuller. (is that a word?). My son is like that, if he gets hungry, watch out. I think he gets it from me though ;)Oh and I adore those bumper stickers!

  5. I love that Elizabeth is playing with the camera cord! So cute. I totally rely on cereal for breakfast. I just can’t seem to make a kitchen mess first thing (and I don’t like the smell of cooked eggs early in the day). We do oatmeal a few mornings a week, and I recently bought some frozen french toast sticks (I’m against packaged prepared foods, but Avery loves them and I had to mix it up a bit).

    One thing I do love to make when we have extra bread is overnight french toast. I layer sliced bread in a 9×13 and cover it with a mixture of 3 eggs, 3/4 cup milk, dollop of syrup, spoonful of sugar, vanilla and cinnamon. Cover and store in fridge overnight. Cook at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, flip toast over and cook for about 5 minutes more, until egg mixture is cooked. We all love this dish and it is very easy to prepare before bed.

    Yesterday morning Avery had a tamale for breakfast. Sometimes I just have to think outside the cereal box.

  6. We’ve hit on something lately that everyone in our house loves, try cooking granola like hot cereal. It’s splurge to be sure but very tasty and keeps all sizes happy. Rather than asking for the bumper sticker I’ll look them up, I know I’m already an ASA member but I think that’s only local.

  7. i love the bumper sticker!! farmland in our area is being gobbled up by subdivisions and sprawl – yuck.

    i suffer from low blood sugar, so i know what it’s like to move from snack to snack to get through the day.

    we usually have a pretty substantial breakfast followed by a fruit or fruit+cheese snack in mid-morning. peanut butter toast is a great breakfast, with a banana on the side. jack loves a chopped boiled egg – very easy since i boil up several at once early in the week.

  8. first offcutie!We eat a lot of pancakes and breakfast pizzas- small pizza crusts (ww) and eggs or such and Angry Chicken has a great idea for NAN bread- that in the morning with some toppingsI try and keep a little grazing bowl on the table with fruit/nuts/cereal?I am also always searching too

  9. Breakfast: pancakes are a staple around here. We use Pamela’s gluten free baking mix, add blueberries, and some local maple syrup. Pretty carb filled though.Quinoa flakes cook up like hot cereal and are loaded with complete protein. Add some raw honey and cinnamon.Buckwheat cereal also cooks up like hot cereal and we eat it with the same honey and cinn.Goat yogurt with granola, smoothies, french toast, fruit salad, etc. Just some ideas. It is hard moving away from the carbs without adding meat…

    Good luck and cute video 🙂 I’m another low-blood sugar person and eat CONSTANTLY and a lot, yet don’t gain weight. I know, don’t hate me…

  10. I’ve just weaned Josiah off of oatmeal and onto Cheerios. Mostly because the mornings I teach school (other people’s homeschooled children) or Josiah goes to school (until 12:30) we are so crunched for time I can’t even wait 2 extra minutes for it to cook in the microwave. I cook old fashioned oats in the Microwave with raisens. A light dusting of brown sugar and milk and both kids gobble it down. If we are at home watching PBS they still ask for food every 15 minutes. If the morning is long at home they get half a bagel with butter as a snack. Our neighborhood bakery (www.niedlovs.com) has these great WW breads with raisens and nuts in them. The cranberry bread with some cream cheese is practically dessert!

  11. Two of our standby breakfasts are oatmeal bar, where I scoop the steel cut oats into the girls’ bowls with a pat of butter, then set out a variety of toppings such as raisins, fresh or frozen berries, soy milk, chopped pecans, honey or if I am feeling really nice brown sugar for the girls to top their bowls with. The other is breakfast sundaes which requires a true sundae dish:) I layer plain yogurt that I have flavored with OJ and a bit of honey with crunchy granola and fruit always topped with a sprinkle of cinnamon. My girls are hit and miss with the eggs, preferring hard boiled to scrambled. The beauty of hard boiled is the opportunity to use the egg slicer and eat them in circles.

  12. I have blood sugar thats lower than my feet most of the time and a metabolism that seems to run at warp speed..so i’m with Emma!? Breakfast can be pancakes with scrambled egg or oatmeal, bran and apple muffins! Bizarrely..its savoury stuff i CRAVE first thing in the morning and not sweet cereals or honey etc. My absolute favourite is ready salted potato chips! My mother used to go crazy about it, (now DH does) but its the carbohydrate! I bake the muffins the night before and if its pancakes make the batter. I pick on celery, carrot, grapes and cherry tomatoes. There are other things that i can’t remember because its late and i’m on my fourth night of a sleepless 2yr old! When i’m more together i’ll post again!

  13. 1. Your voice is lovely.

    2. So is Elizabeth.

    3. I eat a bowl of oatmeal with raisins and brown sugar every morning. Will your kids eat nuts? Or trail mix? Because those have lots of protein.

    You should look on Familyfun.com, because it’s the best site and I’m sure they have ideas.

  14. I love eating (drinking) smoothies for breakfast! And my kids do too but they usually want something else with it like a waflle (frozen) or something. My smoothie recipe is this (everything is eyeballed):about 8 oz juice (i use oj or pomegrante)frozen blueberries 1/4 cup?frozen mango 1/4 cup?plain yogurt 1/2 cup?protein powder (from trader joes)sometimes flaxseedcod liver oil (and the kids don’t even know! hahaha)You’d have to experiment with the amounts. This would make a large adult size or maybe three small kid sizes.My 5 year old eats cherrios all day long. maybe keeping a bowl of something like that on her desk/table would help.

    I also just made some yummy granola and had it on top of yogurt. I think the kids liked it too.

    I like that bumper sticker. 🙂 It’s so true.

  15. oh that baby is sweet. and so is your voice. hi elizabeth!

    emma sounds just like kate. i give her high protein snacks like edamame and apples to dip in peanut butter. trail mix is a great idea, too.

  16. So cute, Molly! She’s just darling. And waving?– I’m so impressed! I didn’t read through the comments so sorry if it’s been mentioned a million times but we like smoothies in addition to all of the boy’s carb loading. You can toss lots of good stuff in and as long as it has a hint of vanilla it seems to go over well.

  17. How about rice with nori, miso soup and an egg/fermented beans/salad/piece of fish? Sometimes we make oatmeal with lots of fruit-banana, persimmon, apple. Or what about omelettes stuffed with allsorts of goodness? and bread. This is what keeps us full until lunch.

  18. At Becca’s school, she does get a snack before lunch, thankfully, so they are eating about every two hours in public school. That said, I still send her off with a warm breakfast, like frozen silver dollar pancackes (4 take about 30 seconds in the microwave) with a dab of peanut butter and preserves on each, or toad in the hole, or eggs, or a breakfast roll-up of ham/scrambled eggs/cheese. Good luck, my kids do tend to eat every 90 minutes or so, but honestly I think that’s what we’re intended to do. Lots of little, small snacks instead of three huge meals, right?

  19. Sorry to just include a whole recipe, but these are my kids favorite and you can pack a ton of good nutrition in them. They really are good! Sounds like a wise plan of attack, by the way.

    * Exported from MasterCook *

    Granola Bars

    Recipe By :Serving Size : 0 Preparation Time :0:00Categories :

    Amount Measure Ingredient — Preparation Method——– ———— ——————————–1 cup brown sugar1/4 cup sugar1/2 cup butter or margarine — softened2 Tbsp. honey1/2 tsp. vanilla1 egg1 cup flour1 tsp. cinnamon1/2 tsp. baking soda1/4 tsp. salt1 1/2 cups rolled oats1 1/4 cups crispy rice cereal1/2 cup wheat germ (optional)1 cup chocolate chips or other addition

    In a large bowl, cream sugars and butter until fluffy. Add honey,vanilla and egg. Mix well. Blend in flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Stir in remaining ingredients. Press firmly into the bottom of a greased 9X13″ pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Bars will firm as they stand. Cool and cut into bars. Save the crumbs for yogurt or ice cream topping. Makes 24 bars.

    **Use instead of or in addition to the chocolate chips:1 cup coconut1/2 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter1/2 cup nuts1/2-1 cup raisinsdried apples, apricots

  20. Oh gosh! You and Elizabeth are both completely adorable!

    Smoothies and french toast or muffins or pancakes are pretty big here.

    Also, we make our own egg mcmuffins. You just crack an egg in a small glass bowl (spray it with cooking spray first), whisk it with a little salt and pepper, add in a piece of ham if you like, cover with saran and microwave for 1 minute. Then toast and butter and english muffin. , plop on a slice of cheese and the cooked egg, and voila, portable breakfast.

  21. We love banana shakes (milk & bananas pureed with hand held stick mix), then served in cups with straws. My children have 1 almost every morning for morning tea (aka snack).

  22. Oatmeal does the trick in our house. my son has it with milk & brown sugar & it keeps him full for most of the morning. If he has cereal then he is looking for a snack 1/2 hour after eating.

    Elizabeth is cute as pie!

    Love your blog 🙂

  23. I am a new poster, I love your site and your BabyCenter stuff! I wanted to comment on the snacks/breakfast. I have the same issue with my eldest daughter (5), she is in a private school and does great, but when she’s home, we have breakdowns. For breakfast I make Cream of Wheat, it is an easy alternative to Oatmeal, both my girls prefer it over Oatmeal. Or I make them Eggs and Grits. They LOVE grits. I put cottage cheese in the eggs, which makes them very hearty and I only butter and salt the grits. This fills them up until 10:30. Then we do snacks. (We eat breakfast 7:30-8:00). For snacks I do fruit and trail mix. I cut the apples in sticks (like Carrots)that way my toddler can eat them w/o choking and she still feels like a “big” girl! The trail mix really holds us up. It is a mix of dried cereals, raisins, crackers and every once in a while a chocolate chip or fruit gummy. I try to leave these items where they can reach them in the frig so they can be accessible when needed, I also have their water glasses in the frig accessible to little ones. I also buy cheese that is bite size (I am a fulltime working mom, I prefer to spend my time with my kids rather then dicing cheese!). A new favorite at our house are rice crackers (in the gluten free section). Thanks again for your site, I LOVED the box you gave your daughter for Christmas!

  24. I love the bumper sticker. My dh is an Ag Instructor at the local high school. I would love to put one of those on his truck. You baby is beautiful!!! I am now inspired to get off the cold cereal as well….thank you.

  25. WOW! I just came back to read other comments and and geez….what a variety! My son is definitely getting to the age where he wants to snack more. He seems to be getting pretty cranky these days and I was totally NOT associating it with hunger. Hmmmm, and I think I’ll try giving him more snacks! Thanks for this post Molly. =)

  26. Hi Molly, from one homeschooling mom to another!

    I would like to recommend a book to you to get you started on kid nutrition: “Nourishing Traditions” by Sally Fallon. A good place to start.

    BTW, I’d love that bumper sticker as I am a local, small farm supporter!

    Haven’t had a chance to look at your whole site today, but I am fascinated with the rise in crafting/sewing/etc in this country among young women.

  27. I try to give Amalia oatmeal or peanut butter on or with something. She has finally started eating eggs too. We do the swedish style breakfast with open faced sandwiches with some kind of fruit soup or cream. I would love to have the bumper sticker, we live in a big city but we dream of living out in the country preferebly on a farm.

  28. My kiddo’s have snack at first recess. School starts at 8:10, and recess is at 9:50. I just have to send a snack separate from lunch, and they gobble it up!

  29. i forgot to comment yesterday. and there are so many, now! wow. breakfast. it’s a big deal at our house. my son is actually indignant when i suggest cold cereal. yeah. so oatmeal is big for us. we put peanut butter and honey in ours. eggs (sometimes a thin omelet, sometimes fried whites only – they don’t like the yolks) and toast, eggs on toast. and our favorite and most regular is waffles. i bought a waffle maker last year, and i’ve got a great recipe. whole grain, some yogurt, a bit of maple syrup or honey. i’ll email it to you if you’d like. the recipe makes 6 big waffles, the kids eat about 3, i freeze the other 3 for a rushed morning. the best.

  30. I don’t have time to snack at work in the mornings, so I find that eating a good breakfast is absolutely key. I also have weird culinary tastes, but I think the average person (or kid) would probably like this stuff (I make it for my friends when they visit and get lots of positive reviews).

    When I make my 2 scrambled eggs in the morning, I often crumble up some tofu to add protein (and make the meal sit in my stomach longer). I know lots of people who don’t like the taste and/or texture of tofu, but I promise you that mixed in with the eggs, nobody can tell. Even my dad liked it! I recommend getting firm or extra firm tofu (and make sure you drain it)–these consistencies make for the most egg-like feeling to your scramble. I find that when I add a few ounces of tofu to my scrambled eggs, it makes a HUGE difference in my need to snack later on. Plus, tofu is cheap and nutritious.

    My other great snack idea is greek yogurt. As a general rule, I buy only full-fat yogurt varieties, and full-fat greek yogurt can contain a ton of calories, so definitely have it in small portions (it’s really filling, though, so it won’t be hard to have it in small doses). Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods always have greek yogurt, and Giant usually has it in the naturals/organics section. Mix in a tiny little bit of honey, some raspberries or blackberries (I actually like the thawed frozen ones better because they are softer and have more juices than fresh) and a few chopped walnuts/almonds/pecans, and you have a sweet but nutritional AND filling snack.

    Also, I remember my mom telling me that when she was a nanny for our aunt Paige, they used to eat peanut butter in little bowls with a tiny bit of powdered sugar/honey and a few chocolate chips as a snack. We wanted to be just like the Larsons, so we used to do that too. It’s a snack that a kid can assemble, which is an added bonus.

    xoxo

  31. I have low-blood-sugar tendencies too, and my pregnancy-and-beyond eating plan has helped a LOT. Every morning I have rye toast, a fried egg, cottage cheese, and occasionally some fake bacon, otherwise I have oatmeal + fruit. I also have a big glass of Super Food (although I’m thinking any other healthful juice could do as well) and my vitamins. I take a prenatal still, but what got me the most energy during preg. and now is calcium pills. If I skip the calcium I’m just dragging through the day. I think the trick is to combine something that metabolizes quickly (fruit/cheese/protein) with something that metabolizes slowly (toast/grains). Hope this helps!

  32. My computer isn’t cooperating with the flash player, so I am missing out on the video. 🙁

    I don’t have a ton of specific suggestions for you in the food area, but I do remember really liking a book I checked out from the library a while back that had lots of good healthy recipes geared towards kids.

    It’s called The Parenting Cookbook, written by Kathy Gunst (with the editors of Parenting magazine). I thought it was great and renewed the book several times when I had it checked out. Now I’m wondering why I didn’t just buy it. One of the things I really liked was that it is categorized by meal type and includes snack ideas (so it might be really helpful for what you’re looking for). There are some used & new copies on amazon.

    http://www.amazon.com/Parenting-Cookbook-Kathy-Gunst/dp/0785813292

  33. What about a burrito (tortilla spread with lowfat refried beans, scrambled eggs, and a little cheese)?

    Sometimes I add a spoonful of natural peanut butter into my son’s oatmeal since he’s not big on eggs.

    I saw that a couple others mentioned toast and fruit, but try this one. Piece of toast spread with natural peanut butter, slice a banana lengthwise and place it on the peanut butter, then drizzle some honey over the banana, and finally top with a sprinkle of wheat germ. All my boys love this!!

  34. We have a regular breakfast schedule, else I tend to run to the cereal box too often. Eggs twice a week, pancakes and/or waffles twice, and granola/oatmeal twice. Sunday is always a large dutch baby (guess that makes it not a baby but maybe a dutch adult). From an old la leche league cookbook I have a recipe for pancakes that are very high in protein – oats and cottage cheese (not tastable for the picky) are the main ingredients. I like these since they think pancakes (with a swirl of watered down maple syrup) are a treat, and they are still getting tons of protein.Good luck – it’s been great getting ideas from the comments as well!

  35. i hear you with the breakfast. it sets the tone for the day.i’ve had lots of luck sneaking ground flaxseed into things to add fat, protien, and fiber. great in oatmeal, yogurt, even boxed cereal. even toast and peanut/almond/cashew butter sticks with you well.

    ps-i’d love the sticker if it works out.

  36. We love this granola http://skiptomylou.wordpress.com/2008/01/15/breakfast-treat/. For the yogurt I mix the large container of plain low-fat yogurt with a large container of vanilla or strawberry. This is just my way of cutting back on the sugar! This yogurt sprinkled with the granola is great and all three of mine eat it (age 3, 11, 15).We also make a lot of breakfast burritos! We fill whole wheat tortillas with whatever we have on hand—eggs, ham , cheese, veggies etc. Mine also love ‘Egg McMuffins’ In a small ramekin (the size of and English muffin)I layer a piece of Canadian bacon then crack an egg on top, cover and microwave for about 1 min add some cheese maybe another 30 seconds then flop the whole thing on a toasted English Muffin.

    Your daughter is so cute!

  37. Have your child checked for pre-diabetes. My mother-in-law told me of a fifth grader she taught. She described her as fresh and fun after breakfast and lunch but a lazy, lethargic one after that. Come to find out she was diabetic. She felt awful to have made such rash judgement about her.

  38. eating many smaller meals and snacks is MUCH more healthy than 3 meals….don’t feel bad!I teach fourth grade and we do a healthy snack in the AM and PM every day….I took a brain-based learning class that really focused on how important it is to fuel and hydrate your brain while at work and school hence the healthy snacks and drinking lots of water daily(everyone gets a water bottle from me at the beginning of year to keep at their seats) Also….don’t know how much h20 she drinks but hunger if often confused with thirst…watch the level of H20 consumption 🙂 Good luck! I really enjoy reading your blog too!

  39. Hi there, I’m sorry to drop in on an older post…but I was just looking through your”homeschooling” stuff and thought I might add my 2 cents here. I struggle with my 5 year old daughter constantly being hungry too. The way I get her to stay full is to feed here a smoothie. The key is packing it full of stuff (more than just fruit and milk.)

    I like to add the following:frozen fruitkeifer or yogurt (healthy live cultures)protien powder1 T peanut butter1-2 T flax oil (the healthy fats in the pb and flax will reall help to hold them over)honey or agave nectar to sweetenI have even added uncooked oatmeal before (they never even noticed)

    I don’t call it a smoothie, I call it a breakfast milkshake- makes it sound all dessertish and stuff. It seems to work well.

    Good Luck!!

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