>U Mom Knows Best: June 2020

Monday, June 29, 2020

Zego Is The Best Allergy Friendly Food Giveaway

Do you want the cleanest food possible to support your health?

  I was sent samples from Zego Foods to facilitate this post.

 What I put into my body is important for my health. Our bodies were made to run on healthy food and I want my food to not only be nutritious but also made with clean ingredients. I want to eat wholesome food that is not loaded with chemical crap like preservatives and artificial things. For me personally, I just feel better when I eat food that is made with real ingredients and not loaded with toxic chemicals. Having many food allergies has made me more aware of the food that I eat. Having a dairy allergy has turned me into a food label reader. I also have soy and mushroom food allergies so what I put into my body is important as my food allergies can cause severe asthma attacks.


Purity tested 

 I am glad that Zego Foods cares about clean food for people. I discovered Zego Foods last year at a conference and I am glad that I did. I just love the peace of mind that comes with buying food from Zego as their organic food items are purity tested for things like glyphosate, pesticides, and allergens. So that means that I don't have to worry about hidden dairy in their delicious food. The food that Zego produces is allergy-friendly and doesn't contain the top 12 food allergies. So you can relax and enjoy your food. Their food products are also vegan, Paleo-friendly, diabetic-friendly, and gluten-free.

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Piece of mind food

 When you purchase products from Zego, you also purchase a piece of mind that you food is safe to eat. Zego tests their food items for over 400 chemicals and allergens to ensure that the food is clean as possible. I love that Zego makes clean food that is also full of nutrition. When I eat Zego Oats, I am getting 2X the amount of protein over the typical oatmeal that I used to buy. My boys love snacking of Zego Fruit + Chia bars and the Zego Mix-Ins are an awesome straight out of the bag snack. If you are looking for a plant-based protein powder that is free of lead and arsenic, then you are going to love Zego Plant Protein. I use this clean protein powder in many recipes like for my Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Protein Breakfast CookiesThese are just some of the many clean allergy-friendly foods that Zego produces.

Head here to see all the delicious clean food that Zego produces. 

Introducing Berry Chocolate Decadence

    Zego is about helping people achieve their dreams by cleaning the food system so it truly nourishes them. Zego is also about making food that tastes good and they made a healthy snack for chocolate lovers. Their new Berry Chocolate Decadence bars are so delicious! These yummy indulgent fruit bars taste like chocolate-covered berries and they are dairy-free! So I can enjoy chocolate and not have to worry about an allergy attack. Right now you can only purchase the Berry Chocolate Decadence bars on Zego's website.


Want to try Zego Berry Chocolate Decadence?

  Zego Foods wants to share the love with Mom Knows Best readers and they are hosting a giveaway on my site for 20 full-sized Berry Chocolate Decadence bars. So make sure to enter the below Giveaway for a chance to win these delicious indulgent chocolate fruit bars. To thank Zego for this giveaway make sure to visit their Facebook page to find out more about the things they care about: food purity and transparency, clean food, food allergies, and general yumminess.





My Daily Fitness Routine To Stay Fit

I am proof that you don't need crazy amounts of exercise to look amazing. Discover my daily fitness routine that takes less than an hour. 


This page may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases 

  I am a firm believer that diet and exercise can transform your body when you place importance on it. Most everyone wants a healthy body but not everyone wants to do the daily work for a healthy-looking body. I get tired of hearing people tell me that I am lucky that I have a slim body as they think that I was born that way or have good genes. Having a healthy body does involve work but it is not as bad as you think. For most a slim in shape body does not come naturally so check out the Twelve Things Your Skinny Friend Wants You To Know and find out what I do every day to maintain my healthy body. Some would think that just by looking at me think that having a healthy body requires way too many hours at the gym so they think that a healthy body is unattainable for them and they don't even try.


Thirty minutes a day is all you need

 Having a healthy body requires commitment and planning. It also requires one to look at their body in a new way. You need to think that you want your body to feel great and have energy. It is about a healthy body and not about a clothing size. People come in all different sizes as God made us unique. So change your attitude right now and not exercise for a skinny body but start exercising for a healthy body as ending body shaming starts with ourselves. I decided many years ago to not step on a scale as I will not let a number on a scale define who I am. I exercise every day to keep my body running in a healthy way and in return for the most part it looks awesome. I don't have a picture-perfect body but I have a body that makes me feel awesome. I choose to exercise as a healthy body makes me feel better and it keeps my heart healthy. I know that exercise keeps my muscles strong and my fat levels healthy so I don't have to worry about things like heart disease. Since I don't step on a scale I use a Full Body Composition Analysis device to monitor my muscle mass, fat ratios, and other body items.

So how much exercise do I do a week to have a strong, healthy, and fit body?

 To keep my body in shape, I exercise 5 days a week for 40 minutes. Right now I am running for my cardio exercise as I am training with my boys. My boys are on the track team at their school so I enjoy running with them. One of my boys loves running and is faster than I am so he challenges me to run faster. My other son has the desire to run but his asthma makes it hard for him to run fast so I am helping him learn how to run while managing asthma naturally. I too have asthma but I am able to run when I take my ClearLungs. This amazing natural supplement opens up my airways and helps me breathe better. I used to just take Clearlungs when I had an asthma attack but I decided to try it on a daily basis and it has been even helping with my seasonal allergy-induced asthma symptoms.


Ten Tips For Exercising With Asthma

 My opinion about exercise is one should at the minimum do 3 days of exercise, at 30-40 minutes, a week for a healthy body. The type of exercise should be at a pace that gets your heart rate up, a good way to judge if you have your heart rate at a good level is you should not be able to carry on a conversation. Having your heart rate at a good rate gets your blood pumping which is good for your heart and circulation.

  If you are trying to make changes to your health or body, I recommend exercising 5 days a week for 30-40 minutes. This exercise should also get your heart rate up also. When my husband went from 3 days to 5 days of exercise he started to lose weight and it helped lower his blood pressure.

The type of exercise does not matter as long as it gets your heart rate up. So if you are not a runner, fast walking is an awesome exercise as well as these other types of best exercises to stay in shape. Don't tell me that you don't have time to exercise. You need to make time for exercise as it is important for your well being. People who don't place importance on exercise, tend to have more problems later in life. These are the people who have the "oh crap, I turned 40 and I have high cholesterol, heart disease, or high blood pressure among other problems. Why be miserable and out of shape when you are older, when you can prevent so many illness and diseases with exercise. You make time to brush your teeth because you don,t want cavities. You go to work to pay your bills. So place the same importance on exercise. So get outside and exercise or watch your favorite TV shows while walking on a treadmill. This folding treadmill stores out of the way when not in use.


Weightlifting for strong muscles 

  I also lift weights 2-3 days a week for about 30 minutes as this keeps my arms toned and strong. I did not think that I needed strength training but when I hit 50, I developed bat wings. There are many benefits to weightlifting for older ladies and this article about weightlifting for older ladies is an awesome read. So be smart and do some type of muscle exercise. You don't have to lift heavy weights and have big beefy muscles, as lifting 5-10 pound kettlebell weights will keep your muscles strong and toned. You don't even need to buy fancy equipment as you can use your body resistant to tone your muscles. Think pushups or invest in some exercise-resistant bands.

 To get started with lifting weights to tone and strengthen your arms, here are some arm workouts that I like to incorporate into my fitness routine. I like to do my arm exercises with weights every other day so my muscles have a chance to repair. I also make sure to consume a high protein snack after I lift weights as protein helps my muscles recover faster. These homemade vegan chocolate protein pancakes are my favorite after workout snack.


I am too busy to exercise

  I get it when you say you are busy and don't have time to exercise let alone lift weights. I am a mom and know how hard it is to squeeze in the exercise. When my kids were little, I would push them in a stroller while fast walking but as they outgrew the stroller it was harder but these exercise tips for moms helped me with exercise. I also wanted to set a good example for my kids with exercise.

 If you have a hard time finding 30 minutes a day to set aside for exercise. These tips for ways to sneak in exercise might just motivate you to get in shape. You can do 10 minutes of fitness 3 times a day and that will benefit your body the same way as a regular fitness routine. So make today the day that you stop with the excuses and commit to making your body the best it can be.


Combine fitness and strength training together

 If you are pressed for time and don't have time for both weight exercises and cardio exercises, then combine them both into a HIIT workout. This type of workout will strengthen your muscles and get your heart rate up at the same time. Trust me a HIIT workout will get you sweating as sweating is good for you. Another at-home way to combine cardio with strength training is with TRX straps that you can hang over a door. This total body workout device is portable and is small enough to tuck into a suitcase for fitness while traveling. The TRX straps at the gym helped me to define my arm muscles and it is a fun way to workout.

I don't diet

 Many people think that I must follow a strict diet with no carbs to have an athletic body but the truth is I love my carbs and I love eating. Sure I eat a healthy diet but I don't count calories or macros nor do I diet as I believe diets do not work. I recently reviewed a weightloss plan book that expelled all diet myths and I even tried the meal plans that were in the Eat After 7pm book. I really recommend this book if you are trying to get back in shape or even lose some weight as this book is similar to the way I eat. This meal plan even helped me shed some fat from my middle section and helped me lower my visceral fat, that's the fat that you can't see but puts you at risk for heart problems. The part that I loved about the teachings of this healthy body book was it confirmed to me that eating carbs is a good thing and so are late-night snacks. The recipes in the Eat After 7PM book were so delicious too!


Ready to make a change?

 Are you ready to make a change and start exercising for a healthy body? When you focus on health and not the number on the scale it is easier to stay fit. When you don't feel like getting your butt off the couch and going for a walk, just do it for a healthy body and a healthy future. Exercise can even make your mind feel better. I know that the days that I don't exercise, my mind feels sluggish and I even feel depressed. The days that I exercise first thing in the morning makes a big difference in how much work I get done. Morning exercise is good for the mind and the body 

Check out these items that will help you with exercise



Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Protein Breakfast Cookies

These cookies are perfect for a healthy breakfast


Mornings can be busy for most people and finding time for a healthy breakfast can be tough. So if you are like me, you love healthy grab and go breakfast items. My favorite breakfast to go is a protein smoothie as I can place all the ingredients in my blender container the night before and then blend it up in the morning. Another healthy breakfast that I enjoy is vegan chocolate protein pancakes but these are hard to eat on the go. My favorite healthy breakfast food is cookies. Yes, you heard correctly, I said that I eat cookies for breakfast. Cookies can be enjoyed for breakfast when they are made with healthy ingredients. 



   These yummy breakfast cookies are packed with healthy ingredients that will give you the energy to get your day started. The delicious cookies are loaded with protein and have plenty of fiber. These cookies are easy to grab when you don't have time for breakfast. They are also low in sugar and fat. When you add superfood ingredients like flaxseed or chia seed, they provide your body with healthy omegas.

This healthy breakfast cookie can be made dairy-free or gluten-free with a few simple swaps of ingredients. This is a versatile recipe that you can add or subtract ingredients depending on your dietary needs or food allergies. When I first made this cookie recipe, I did not discover that a dairy allergy was the cause of my severe asthma symptoms. So I now make these delicious wholesome cookies with vegan chocolate chips. If you have gluten problems, you can omit the wheat flour and add more oatmeal to the cookie recipe. Even those with food allergies like a peanut allergy can enjoy these cookies as they are made with sunflower seeds.

Delicious ingredient swaps and additions

The magic of these yummy healthy cookies that are also great for healthy snacks is the fact that you can change the ingredients around to accommodate food sensitivities and allergies. Below are just some of the many different ways you can adjust the flavor of the cookies.
 Here are some delicious ingredient additions:

+ Chia seeds instead of flax meal
+ raisins instead of dried cranberries
+ Sliced almonds instead of sunflower seeds
+ white chocolate chips instead of chocolate
+ Add 1/2 cup of peanut butter for a peanut butter taste 



These healthy cookies are awesome for after school snacks

I don't know about your kids but it seems that my boys are always hungry. So I make sure to have plenty of healthy snacks for them to enjoy. So when my kids ask for a cookie, I can say yes, when my cookie jar is filled with these healthy oatmeal cookies. Oatmeal is such a healthy food and it is also great for the heart as it is known to help lower cholesterol. So once the kids go back to school, I will make sure to make a batch of these Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Protein Breakfast Cookies for after school snacks. These cookies are also great for school lunches.

Cookies and coffee

 When I enjoy my morning cup of coffee, I like to have a couple of cookies. These cookies are a guilt-free snack that I can enjoy with my coffee and not have to worry about blowing my health plan. Healthy cookies are just one of many things that I do to keep my body healthy. I work hard to keep my body in shape and I am not going to let some unhealthy store-bought cookies get in the way. Most packaged cookies that you buy from the store usually contain milk. So my dairy allergy won't let me enjoy them but I would rather have homemade cookies that are made with less sugar. 



Cookies that are loaded with plant-based protein

    My healthy cookie recipe also has plenty of protein in each delicious bite. The protein powder that I enjoy using in many of my dairy-free recipes is made from 100% sacha inchi seeds. This vegan protein powder has a nutty flavor even though it contains no nuts. This allergy-friendly protein powder has no added flavors or sweeteners so it is perfect to use in recipes. I love that Zego Foods purity tests this protein for pesticides and glyphosates so I can be sure that it does not contain lead and other bad ingredients. 

Baking tips
Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners to prevent the cookies from sticking. The cookies will not burn either.
The cookie dough should be moist and sticky, so if they feel too dry, just add a couple tablespoons of almond milk.
These cookies store best in the fridge for the best flavor and it prevents the chocolate from melting.
+ The cookies will not spread on the baking sheets. So make sure to flatten them down with a spoon



If you love this recipe, you will enjoy these other healthy recipes

Plant-Based Healthy No-Bake Salted Chocolate Brownies

Keto Salted Caramel Chocolate Cookies

Gluten-Free Chocolate Mocha Protein Brownies

Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Pretzel Protein Bites
https://www.momknowsbest.net/2018/01/peanut-butter-pretzel-protein-bites.html

Non-Dairy Salted Caramels


Make sure to follow me on Pinterest and pin this recipe so you can make it later



Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Protein Breakfast Cookies
Print

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Protein Breakfast Cookies

Yield: 36
Author:
Prep time: Cook time: Total time:
Made with wholesome healthy ingredients so they are perfect for breakfast.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 scoops of plain protein powder
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds

Instructions:

  1. Heat the oven to 350 F. 
  2. Combine the flaxseed meal, bananas, honey, coconut oil, and vanilla until well mixed.
  3.  In a large bowl, combine the oats, whole-wheat flour, coconut, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Pour in the banana mixture, chocolate chips, dried cranberries, and sunflower seeds. Mix well.
  4.  Scoop 1 heaping tablespoon of batter onto a cookie sheet lined with a silicone mat or parchment paper and flatten slightly with the back of a spoon. Repeat with the rest of the batter. 
  5. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool the cookies on a plate or wire tack. Store these cookies in the fridge or in an airtight container at room temperature.
Calories
86.18
Fat (grams)
4.34
Sat. Fat (grams)
2.52
Carbs (grams)
11.75
Fiber (grams)
1.49
Net carbs
10.26
Sugar (grams)
6.26
Protein (grams)
1.38
Sodium (milligrams)
161.80
Cholesterol (grams)
0.00
Created using The Recipes Generator

Monday, June 22, 2020

No Peel Summer Apple Crisp Recipe

An easy way to enjoy the taste of apple pie without all the work

This page may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases ~ I received a set of knives from Knively to facilitate this post.

 My husband loves homemade apple pie but I don't like all the work that goes into making an apple pie. So we compromise and I make him an apple crisp. An apple crisp tastes similar to a homemade Dutch apple pie but since it is made with oatmeal and does not have the rich buttery crust, it is healthier also. I say healthier but while an apple crisp has fruit in it, it still is not a healthy dessert. Once in awhile I break all the healthy rules and make my family something sweet that is loaded with sugar, butter, and white flour. My motto is if you are following a healthy diet than occasional sweets are not going to hurt your body. If you are looking for a healthy low sugar dessert, take a look at these Non-Dairy Salted Caramels.


An explosive apple crisp



 Since it was Father's Day and we were having a BBQ for my husband, I decided to make him a dessert that he would enjoy. Plus, I owed my husband an apple crisp from a couple months back when I blew up the apple crisp in the oven. Word to the wise, don't ever add cold water to a hot Pyrex baking dish. It will explode! Thankfully the glass dish was in the oven when I added the cold water to it. The dish with the apple crisp exploded in the oven and glass pieces shattered all over my oven. The oven was ok but it was a mess to clean up. Months later, I am still finding oatmeal crumbs in the oven warming drawer.

 The best part of an apple crisp recipe is the crumb topping. This vegan dessert, (when you use vegan butter), has plenty of that delicious crunchy oatmeal crumb topping. Sp with each sweet bite you get plenty of sweet apples and crunchy topping. This sweet apple crisp can be made plant-based and dairy-free when you use plant-based butter. It is a perfect summer recipe that tastes like apple pie without all the work. In the fall when it is apple season, this apple crisp is a great way to use all the apples from apple picking. Apples are a healthy fruit that my family enjoys and it was a perfect dessert for Father's Day.

Slicing the apples with Knively knives



  For Father's Day, the boys gave their dad a set of new kitchen knives. So I had to try these sharp premium kitchen knives out. What better way to break in new knives but with slicing apples for apple crisp. Having sharp knives in the kitchen is a must if you do any kind of cooking or baking. My husband loves to cook and he happy to get new kitchen utensils for a present.

Why is it Better to Cut With a Sharp Knife?



  A sharp knife is not only easier to use but it is safer. There is nothing more dangerous for a new cook in the kitchen than cutting with a dull knife. A sharp knife blade will cut food more evenly so your apple slices will look pretty. Did you know that cutting onions with a dull knife will release more gas? When you use a sharp knife to cut onions you will cry less.


 My husband was excited to get a set of Pressure Treated, Carbon Stainless Steel knives that were going to perform well in the kitchen and last for a long time. These quality kitchen knives even came with a lifetime warranty My husband loved the way that these knives felt in his hands and thought that the feather pattern on the knife blade was cool. These were going to be his cooking knives for his hands only. My husband loved that the set of knives from Knively came with knife storage sleeves to protect the knives so he could store the sharp knives in the utensil drawer.


To peel or not to peel the apples



 The magic of this easy apple crisp is that you don't need to peel the apple. Peeling apples is a lot of work and the apple peels are loaded with fiber. Trust me the peels soften up while cooking so they don't affect the taste of the apple crisp. If you don't like the apple peels, then you can peel the apples for this apple crisp recipe.

What kind of apples should I use for apple crisp?



 You want to select a crisp variety of apples for an apple crisp recipe as it will not turn mushy. So a soft variety of apple, like red delicious will not work for apple crisp. My favorite apples that I like cooking with are Honeycrisp, Gala, Fuji, and Pink Lady apples. Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, and Braeburn are also apples that taste great in a baked apple dish. For this recipe, you are going to want to buy about 7 medium apples as that will yield about 5 cups of sliced apples. Buy a couple more apples, just in case. You can always snack on the extra apples later. Apples are great healthy snack ideas for kids. My boys love apple slices with peanut butter or in apple nachos.

How to keep the apple slices from turning brown



  Apple slices can quickly turn brown when sliced. So my baking tip is to toss the apple slices in lemon juice to keep them from browning. I just have a bowl with a couple tablespoons of lemon juice next to my cutting board and I toss the slices of apples into the bowl as I slice each apple, making sure to stir them up. Other juices will work too and I have used apple juice and fruit juice to keep my apples from turning brown. It is the vitamin C in the juice that prevents the apples from turning brown.

Can I make this apple crisp dairy-free?


 Since I have a dairy allergy, all my baking is dairy-free. I simply replace the butter in the recipe with a non-dairy vegan butter substitute. This does not affect the sweet delicious taste of the apple crisp. You can also make this apple crisp low sugar by swapping out the sugar in the recipe with a low-calorie sweetener. I like to use a monk fruit type of sweetener for baking as it has the closes taste to real sugar. My favorite sweetener to use is Lakanto as they have a golden sweetener that is similar to brown sugar.


More tips



+ To make slicing the apples easier, you can use a hand-held apple slicer. An apple slicer will also take out the core of the apple, so that is one less baking step.

+ If you crumb topping is browning too quickly but the apples need more time to cook, cover the baking dish with foil. This will prevent your crumb topping from burning.

+ If you like nuts, you can add chopped pecans, walnuts, or even peanuts to the apple crisp.

+ This dessert can be served warm from the oven or you can cool it down. If you are like me and don't like cooked fruit, you can chill this in the fridge and serve it cold.

+ For an even more delicious dessert, serve this baked apple crisp with vanilla ice cream or whip cream.

If you like this apple recipe you will enjoy these recipes



Simple Dairy Free Apple Pie Cookies 
https://www.momknowsbest.net/2019/11/simple-dairy-free-apple-pie-cookies.html

 Strawberry Shortcake With Balsamic Glazed Strawberries
https://www.momknowsbest.net/2019/03/dairy-free-strawberry-shortcake-with.html

Make sure to Pin this recipe on Pinterest for later



No Peel Apple Crisp
Print

No Peel Apple Crisp

Yield: 8
Author:
This delicious apple crisp is so easy to make as you don't have to peel the apples.

Ingredients:

  • Filling:
  • 5 cups fresh apples, sliced- about 7 medium apples
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Topping:
  • 1/2 cup  white flour
  • 2/3 cup old fashioned oats
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a deep-dish pie plate or large baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Slice each apple into 8 slices and remove the seeds. Toss the apple slices in the lemon juice.
  3. To the apple slices add the sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Mix well until all of the apples are evenly coated. Pour into the prepared baking dish.
  4. In a separate medium-size bowl, combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, salt, and cinnamon. Pour in the melted butter and stir until well coated and crumbly. Sprinkle the crumb mixture evenly over the top of the apples.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 45-60 minutes until fruit is soft and the topping is golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before serving. Serve warm or cold.
Calories
322.29
Fat (grams)
6.45
Sat. Fat (grams)
3.76
Carbs (grams)
68.36
Fiber (grams)
6.33
Net carbs
62.03
Sugar (grams)
51.64
Protein (grams)
1.96
Sodium (milligrams)
119.78
Cholesterol (grams)
15.25
Created using The Recipes Generator

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Summer Self Care While Helping To Stop The Spread Of A Virus


The lazy days of summer are even lazier

I received samples from Childlife to facilitate this post.

    Summer for me is usually a time to slow down and this summer seems to be a way too slow for me. I usually like summer but I am not sure about my feelings for summer this year due to the C virus pandemic. I am sure that my kids are thinking the same thing about their summer experience too. 

Our second summer this year

My kids have been out of school for more than 2 months as the online school thing was not really a school for them. The online school time that my boys had was already like their summer break as the weather here in Albuquerque was already warm. My boys only had about an hour of school the past couple of months and it was way too easy for them. So school online was more like their fun computer time. So now that their school is officially over for the year, the boys are even more bored and want to go back to school but this ugly lung virus outbreak is making that impossible for a while. I am worried that my boys might catch the Covid Slide. It has been hard for me to do the things that I need to do to prevent the Covid Slide in my kids.



Stuck at home is boring

  Being stuck at home is boring for the whole family but we realize that we have to do our part to stop the spread of this lung virus. Our day starts with my youngest son and myself going running and then the boredom sets in for the boys. The boys can't do their typical summer activities like playing with their friends, playing at the park, or swimming at the pool. We did buy a hot tub for summer fun but it has not been delivered yet. 

We are running out of books

My boys were happy when the library opened back up last week as they had no more books to read. For now, the boys can only check out books as the library wants people to be quick with their visit. The library even took out the chairs so people would not linger. The library was the boy's first time having to wear a face mask but they did it for some books to read. I have never seen two boys so happy to have books to read! The boys have been reading all day and have not even asked for computer time. I think the boys are even bored with playing games on the computer. They want to go back to school. My kids never thought that they would be saying they want to go back to school.

Lunch is the highlight of the day

The highlight of my boy's day is lunchtime. The city and schools are providing free lunch for kids, 5 days a week. So every day we drive to the school or park to pick up a free lunch. The free lunch is not a new thing for my boys but having to take them to go is. My city, in the past, has had a free lunchtime at the park but in the past, you had to eat the free lunch at the park. With the new rules, the city does not want anyone to stay at the park so that means not being able to play with their friends. So the boys bring their lunch home and join me at the table with my vegan tuna.



Even mom is bored

I never thought that I would be saying that I was bored but I am. Just don't tell my kids. It might be the heat that is making me bored as I don't feel like doing anything. I really wish that I had a pool or hot tub to cool off in. Living in the desert makes me super jealous of people who have water to swim in. I even looked up on Airbnb a house to rent that has a pool but there was only one and it was $800 a night! I am missing my trips to hotels with pools. The pools and hotel pools are not scheduled to open yet and pool operators are getting anxious for answers as I hear my husband, one of the cities pool inspectors, repeating the same thing day after day. I think I have memorized my husband's answer that he gives to pool operators.

A bucket of water for self-care



So my summer self-care has been happening with a bucket of water. My bucket is really an empty flower pot as the stores are sold out of kiddie pools. So my flower pot bucket of water is how I cool myself off on a hot day and pamper my feet at the same time. I even toss some bath salts into my foot soaking bucket. That way my dry feet are getting some much-needed self-care.


The dry heat of the desert does wonders for my feet. In the summer my feet are always dried and cracked. So I soak my dry feet daily and then use my foot buffer or foot sander as my husband likes to call it, to sand off the dry skin off my feet. Yes, I am so bored that I am daily buffing my feet.
I am not going to show you a picture of the heels on my feet as they are pretty ugly. My boys used to be fascinated with my dry feet but even that does not entertain them during this boring summer. 



Self-care for the boys


  Even the boys are getting some self-care in with a delicious non-gummy gummie vitamin. ChildLife sent us samples of their newest ChildLife Essentials® Multi-Vitamin SoftMelts™ and Healthy Vision SoftMelts™. These delicious soft orange-flavored and berry flavored vitamins are naturally sweetened and are free from the sugar found in many gummy supplements. My boys love the taste of the SoftMelts and the gummies did not stick to their braces. 


 So the boys are getting some added nutrition to their diet which is always a good thing during a virus outbreak. This multi-vitamin is filling in the gaps in my boy's diet as so many of their favorite foods are still hard to find at the grocery store. First, it was eggs and now it is pasta and frozen mangos. Grocery shopping sure has been a challenge lately.



Are you tired of baking bread?

   I think that I am even tired of baking bread. I am not tired of eating bread though. Maybe it is the 97-degree weather that is making me tired of baking 60-minute white bread. The boys are not even asking me to bake frog bread. I might be able to convince the boys to make focaccia flower bread.

  For now, we are only making sweets that don't require baking. So we have been making no-bake peanut butter granola bars and dairy-free salted caramels. Summer meals have been pressure cooker meals with beans and rice. The hot summer days call for endless pitchers of Fruit-Infused Cold Brew Ice Tea and tall glasses of cold brew coffee. Cold brew coffee is so easy to make so head here for an easy recipe for cold brew coffee.

How are you spending your summer?



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Mom knows best