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Eating Healthy Costs Too Much! (Snack RECIPES)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Eating Healthy Doesn’t Have To Be Expensive
So Stop Whining About It

"It seems to me, if you slashed your spending on junk and instead put all of that money towards good, nutritious foods, the “good stuff” wouldn’t seem so expensive.... I think the root of the problem is, in an attempt to eat better, people spend more on good stuff without cutting out the junk, thus the appearance that healthy food causes them to blow through their budget.... When you get past all of the data and a little bit of editorializing, the point of this article is that eating well doesn’t have to add to your monthly expenses if you’re willing to make it a priority. Make it a priority."

With dread, I've been counting down the days until the Divine Miss O goes back to school... why?

...because she finds school challenging beyond her abilities?
...because she has a hard time making friends and socializing?
...class size and lack of appropriate individual attention?
...lack of teaching support, appropriate values and quality inherant in the classroom environment?
...a lack of faith development?

In every respect above my daughter's school excels on every level!

What I have been dreading is the reintroduction of poor quality food into my daughter's daily life (despite the fact that I pack her an AWESOME, healthy, sugar-free lunch full of food she LOVES) in the form of...
...less than nutritious (and gluten/sugar laden) 'hot lunches' once a month (pizza, subs, hot dogs, fruit 'drinks', cookies)
...candy as reading rewards (SERIOUSLY?!? Never mind that THIS is why she is in school, my kid will read books back to back for hours just for the FUN of it!)
...junk food for 'treats' and incentive to behave well offered by substitute teachers (being a pretty respectful and diligent student, one day last year she came home with a bag of candy to rival Halloween from one day with a particular sub... the principal heard about that one) who bring nothing but junk in their lunches and 'trade' my kid for her freggies (so even if they get nothing but *kid friendly* food in their lunch, apparently kids still want what they don't have... and my kid comes home starved, feeling unwell and grouchy... because she's only 8 and some temptations are too hard to resist... not to mention her own need to be kind and 'share')
...DAILY treats for seemingly anything and everything... it seems that JUNK food has become an unavoidable aspect of school life... what happened to earning 'privileges'... or pencils, or erasers (they're always losing that stuff anyway, and they are cheaper than candy if you get them at the dollar store!!!)? Heck, I did my best for a gold star on the launch ladder chart so my row could be the first group of students on the 'moon' (a cheesey picture at the top of the chart) with crowing rights!!!
...monthly bake sales (where the wares are NEVER home-made anymore, and comprised of all manner of hydrogenated, over-processed and refined anti-food)


...But next week, my daughter is heading off to school with her own personalized snack bin, for those (seemingly daily) moments when treats are made available, filled with nutrient-rich, but appealing-to-kids snacks all her own... with enough to share with everyone if she hasn't consumed the contents by the end of each week (no preservatives means limited shelf-life)!

My goal is that, by the end of the year, all of the kids in her class will be raising the bar on food currency... "Because [I'm] not the mom who says “no,” and [I'm] not the mom who brings boring old carrot sticks. Nope. [I'm] the mom who brings yummy gummy goodness that kids are sure to love!"

Can't we ALL be that mom?
(Because when you're not looking, your kid is eating my kid's nutritious, colourful, fresh, freggie-rich lunch!)

Here are my top choices (I found replacements for her favourite 'candy' consumables, and will include stuff she likes even better than candy):

"Pop a few in your mouth too, because not only are these babies loaded with high quality protein and helpful when it comes to healing digestive disorders, they’re also rich in an essential nutrient for gorgeous skin, lustrous hair, and strong nails – collagen! The amino acids which increase your metabolism and balance your hormones? Well, they’re just the icing on top!"

"Sesame seeds offer a rich source of minerals including calcium and zinc, and they frequently make the list of the best sources of vitamins and minerals. Indeed, sesame seeds are a rich source of thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, calcium and magnesium."

(She likes nuts in any way shape or form, but salted is more treat-like: SO... I control the salt, and reduce the phytates)
(these can't actually go to school due to nut-free policies, but I wanted to include them as they are a favourite snack in our house)

(I'll cover hers in cocoa powder... she doesn't *sigh* care for coconut!)
"Now, we don’t make just any old marshmallows. We make vanilla bean, gingerbread, chai, lemon and even peppermint ones." Don't you just want to try the gingerbread ones?!?

My kid will choose olives over candy any day of the week, LOL!!!

(If my Mr. asks nicely, he'll get his own bin, too, LOL!)

May today and every day bring to you a ridiculous abundance of whatever you need. May all your concerns, struggles, anxieties and fears fall like ashes as you rise on eagle's wings, SOARING above all that would hinder you along this tremendous adventure of being and becoming all you are created to be. May the grace of God simply "overtake" you moment by moment. May the joy and victory of the risen Lord be yours in a very personal way... may you always be overwhelmed by the grace of God, rather than by the cares of life!

{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}


...Because YOU are worth too much to settle for less!



'BEFORE' Pictures (May 31, 2009 - September, 2011) & Continuing PROGRESS (February 2012)! Next pictures September 1, 2012!

(I'm now keeping these right under my nose... in addition to being part of every blog I post, they are printed off and taped to my bedroom mirror)

Measurements, Musings & Motivation to MOVE!

(UPDATED/rewritten: JUNE, 2012)

I've Reached My Goal Weight!!!!!!!

NOTE: My weight tracker is NOT a truthful representation of my weight. Instead, I am using it as a tool to help me visualize my goal as though it's already been achieved!
(Tom Venuto)

UNTIL. (My 'Just Do It' blog)

DONE Girl Love...

(the footsteps into which I place my own feet)

Leaving NORMAL

Why I'm STILL here... my SparkJourney Saga

Words CAN Be Enough... page 3

Paleo... Do you really know what you're talking about?

Breakfast is Served! (RECIPES)

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I'm so jealous of how cool your daughters school sounds, even if they reward system is somewhat left to be desired. The fact that they reward at all and encourage makes me sad for Aimee who starts back to school on Monday with the same apalling teacher that she had last year who is only interested in kids being sat still and quiet and if they show curiosity or (God forbid) enthusiasm they get punished without playtime.At 6 yrs old. Now at 7 yrs old, I've just picked up her new school books for the year, and instead of excitedly grabbing them from me to see what she'll do this year she shrugged her shoulders and said "I've got all year to see them" and broke my heart at how one year with this teacher has killed this childs thirst for learning. I wouldn't mind if she came home with a few candies at the moment to show that he's valued something that she had done.

    Anyway, there I am going of on a tangent again (!). This blog has wonderful ideas and I would definately have Aimee be your daughters best friend so she could savour the wonderful treats her amazing Mummy had made for her!!!! Hahaha!! I know the idea is that I'm meant to try and do them myself but.....I just know I won't.Can't get the ingredients here for a start off. But even if I could I'm no cook in that way. Poor Aimee. No wonder she likes chocolate so much ( but only ever if she'd had fruit too). I try to do my bit. You're a great Mum emoticon emoticon
    1483 days ago
    What a great mother you are! Love the look of all these healthy treats. It always makes me chuckle at the grocery store when the check out gal asks worriedly if I really want the $12 bunch of grapes off season . . . but never asks the other folks in line if they really want the $40 roast of pork or the $26 gateau or the 17 bags of chips!!
    1491 days ago
    My son's school had a no junk food policy! That was great, but it was a very small Montessori school. His class ate lunch together in the classroom at a proper wooden table with a tablecloth, wooden chairs, pitchers of water, real plates, silverware, all that stuff. Obviously that scenario wouldn't be possible in a typical school, but we were very fortunate.

    I can't believe they are giving out candy as rewards in your daughter's school. That is just teachers don't already have enough to deal with in the classroom without a bunch of kids zooming around on all sorts of sugar. Ugh!

    When I was a kid, we got stickers, and were extremely happy with that! My friends and I collected them. We kept them stuck to the backing papers and arranged our collections in photo albums that we carried around school.

    1491 days ago
    Great blog. Hopefully the other kids will go home and tell their moms the wonderful lunches that you pack and talk them into buying some healthy stuff! *Go figure!*
    1491 days ago
    1492 days ago
    Don't despair. It took me until 22 or 23 to discover that I do actually like coconut ;) I still am not particularly fond of coconut as sweets. I will, however, take a coconut curry at any time. Yum! Now that I've tried it different ways, I think I just don't like the sickly sweetness of the shaved bits that are in pastries and chocolates and whatnot.

    I love your treat bin idea! I've saved a couple of your recipe links for myself too. My fiance has been talking babies for a while now and being able to feed them properly from the start and ensuring that they eat real food at school is one of my bigger concerns... pretty much for all of the reasons you've mentioned.
    1492 days ago
    What a great blog, lovely ideas and great determination!
    1492 days ago
    Ramona, I couldn't agree with your more. Nicholas had a teacher last year that stated for their first snack of the day, it had to be a healthy one. I loved that! Nicholas brings his lunch everyday (as do his father and I) because I was selfishly thinking when he started school that I would spare him the fight of his life of dieting when he got older. As I saw what the other kids were bringing, I was/am convinced I am doing the right thing. I understand parents have to work, I am one of them, but there should be no laziness in nourishing my child! I take the time to make him a good lunch and he is better for it. If he has anything "sweet" in his lunch I have made it from scratch.

    Thanks for your blog, it usual wonderful.

    1492 days ago
    Kudos to you for taking back snack time and (hopefully) influencing your daughter's peers and so-called educators.

    And people wonder why there is an obesity epidemic, when crap food is pushed on us continuously starting from early childhood.
    1492 days ago
    Wonderful post! Thank you for addressing the issue of nutrition and schools. I recall when I went to school that the snacks were soda, chips, and candy with pizza, hamburgers, and french fries for lunch. I wondered if it was still like that today. Well-written with lots of recipes I plan on trying. emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1493 days ago
    Excellent blog Ramona, good info and great recipes , thank you so much for putting this together! emoticon
    1493 days ago
    Great blog with some cool recipes. Our school system just created a policy forbidding kids from bringing homemade treats like cupcakes on your birthday. Only snacks purchased premade with ingredients listed can be shared--don't remember if the snacks must be individually wrapped. They made suggestions of HEALTHY snacks parents might send--the only one I can remember is graham crackers. It's because of food allergies that we are cracking down. Also the cafeteria is trying to provide healthier choices. I hear there is not going to be pizza and french fries every day of the week. My kids take their lunches and forgo the delights of the school cafeteria. Not confident that their lunches are super-healthy, but they consist of foods the kids truly like and the portions are controlled.
    1493 days ago
  • JUNEAU2010
    Not being a parent and my teaching years way in the past, I wonder...Is it possible for you to talk to her teacher and some of the parents who might share your concerns and switch the rewards to stickers, color pencils, fun shape erasers and stuff like that? Or, if it can be done - a pay-it-forward or share with others kind of thing where the rewarded student gets to choose what school supply gets donated in a student backpack?

    Then, when that backpack is filled, all the students in the class get to sign a card and that backpack is donated to any number of charities that do school supply drives. Then, that backpack becomes the gift from her entire class. How powerful that could be!
    1493 days ago
  • BERRY4
    Awesome! -- You don't just mention a "need"/concern, but you have provided helpful, useful resources to help solve the problem.

    Truly, these are just what I needed now that my own kids are a week away from school as well. The recipes will have to become part of our "staples" around here.

    Thank you so much for the HELPFUL solution(s).
    1493 days ago
    Fabulous! I completely agree that food costs more if you add the junk and healthy together - I mean sheesh! That would also be a lot of food! The next thing we'll hear from those same folks is that all the healthy stuff went to waste...don't even...

    I agree Ramona, how come we can't all be that mom? I agree the bake sales of grocery store food, the junk food served as school lunch, candy as rewards (this one makes me furious!) because not only is it candy but it's teaching children to reward themselves with food! Aahhhh!!!! Completely unbelievable...and it's all about to start for my son next week too. My daughter is in virtual school this year and it's a PERFECT fit for her! ANd she is eating nutritious food at home!

    I agree that you should be writing for a subscription blog or for the local paper or newspaper, definitely need a wider reading audience...your bogs are completely worthwhile, worth the read! Hugs and thank you! Karen
    1493 days ago
    Yum to all the recipes! I can't wait to try them ALL! I have a co-worker that I was planning to make fruit leather for at Christmas for her gift. I can't wait to have time to take a look at that recipe!
    1493 days ago
    Ramona I agree with Eliz. and wow what a great blog. I agree if you check carefully and don't buy the junk stuff, eating healthy is not that much more. I find we do spend a bit more but hey I would ratther feel well and know my innards are doing better. lol
    Thanks for the recipes. one of my fav candy type is gummies so awesome. and to tell my dil about the "marshmallow sqares" as she still make the rice k. ones even though my son does paleo and she tries. Lucky the kids dont get much but she does give thomas tastes. so I will let her see that for sure.
    THANKS and yea if you get on TV let me know. hey Marilyn Denis may want you!!!!

    I think we all should LIKE this blog so more mothers get this message!!!
    1493 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/27/2012 8:00:24 PM
    OH MY GOODNESS.....I do believe you need to present a program for the PTA or whatever they call it in your school OR START A FOOD DISCUSSION GROUP or go on local the very least get in touch with your local news person....preferable a woman & get her interested in having you as a guest or blogger for your local news outlets. I believe you are "so great" that you can write a professional blog, if you are not already doing so....write & publish a book...oh yes, I could go on & on.

    1493 days ago
  • -LINDA_S
    Once again, you're making me hungry! Everything looks great!
    1493 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon awesome Mom!
    1493 days ago
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