Thursday, September 27, 2012

First Cheerios!

One of the big milestones in any baby's life is starting on solid foods. I know everyone has their favourite methods and recipes for baby's first foods, whether it's homemade organic or store-bought, but I think just about every parent I know included Cheerios in with the first finger foods.

With their high fiber, low sugar, and low fat content, Cheerios are a winner for both parents and tots. The size and shape make them easy to pick up for little fingers (and great for practicing the "pincer grasp", improving fine motor control), and once baby is able to chew, they love them.

I still like Cheerios for breakfast myself - Mia and I often share a bowl. One of her favourite things is to drop Cheerios one at a time into yogourt and eat a bite with both on the spoon. Maybe a little weird, but she likes it!

General Mills (the makers of Cheerios) has a fabulous campaign again this year to celebrate First Cheerios moments. You can join them on their Life Made Delicious Facebook page, and share a photo of your little one enjoying Cheerios - and it may even be included on the special edition 400g Cheerios box, in stores in Spring 2013! What a neat way to commemorate a fun moment in your child's life.

The first 1000 participants receive a coupon for a free box of Cheerios (one per household), and after that everyone gets a $1 off coupon towards your next box (one per calendar year)!

I added my photo to the group and loved seeing the photos other proud parents have submitted. How fun! When I was going through my photos, I realized just how many pictures I have of Mia having Cheerios. Of course, those can't just sit in my files - here's my own little mosaic of her Cheerios moments!

I hope you take advantage of this fun opportunity to share your baby's First Cheerios moment - and get a great coupon as well!

Disclosure – I am participating in the First Cheerios Blog Tour by Mom Central Canada on behalf of General Mills. I received compensation as a thank you for participating and for sharing my honest opinion. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Hey, Anonymous -

- go bug someone else.

I've been getting about 30 comments a day from anonymous spammers lately, so have disabled anonymous comments on the blog. I'm pretty sure my real readers won't mind. Just letting you know.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Need business cards or playdate cards?

one of my playdate cards
Last year, I ordered some fabulous playdate cards from They were half-size business cards ("Minicards"), and had a picture of my daughter on the front, with our names on the back with "contact my mum to set up a playdate", my number and email address. Super cute!

Of course, then we moved shortly after and my number changed... now they are fun toys for my daughter.

I should really order some more. They're a fun way for mums to connect. Sometimes you run into someone you kind of click with (or your child clicks with theirs) at a park, play group or at a friend's house, and it would be nice to meet up again.

Just now, I ordered some business cards to promote my Facebook page for my business - again from I was really happy with the quality of the playdate cards, so I was comfortable applying that to my business as well.

Another great thing is how easy the interface is to design cards. They really do make it simple. It took me less than 5 minutes from start to finish to design and place my order. 

Both offers I received were free, just pay shipping - but I can see myself ordering from them in the future as well, now that I have seen samples of their work. If you are interested in ordering cards, I can recommend Order through this link, and you'll receive 10% off your first purchase!

Disclosure: This is NOT a sponsored post, but the link is an affiliate link. If you're thinking of ordering, I honestly think you'll be happy with the results, which is why I'm recommending the site. And if you do place an order through my link, thank you for supporting my blog in a small but meaningful way. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012


 It's apple season. Our new house has a little apple tree. It hasn't been taken care of (we'll do a heavy prune once it goes dormant), but it still produced 35 little apples this year. I have no idea what variety they are. They were only about 3" diameter, but were sweet, ripe and edible, so we harvested them. Mia helped.

What to do with 35 tiny apples? Applesauce, of course. It took a while to chop them up, but we love homemade applesauce, so it's worth it! (It's much easier with regular size apples :) )

Applesauce is so easy, everyone should do it. Here's how I make it:

  • 2.5 quarts of chopped apples. I leave the skins on - that's where all the nutrients are, and I hate peeling. Bonus: if the skins are red, they will turn your applesauce a lovely pink colour!
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (or to taste). Dark brown is yummiest, but you can use golden or regular granulated white, or honey, or agave... or none, if you don't like it sweet.
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla. Use real vanilla, not simulated flavour. I love Mexican vanilla and am dreading the day when the big bottle we got last time we were down there runs out. I guess that'll mean we're due for another Mexican holiday :)
  • 1 Tablespoon rum (optional. But it's just "applesauce" without it). Use the good stuff. We like Appleton Estates.
Chop the apples finely - about 1/2", especially if you're leaving the skins on. I suppose you could do this in a food processor, or with a grater. I did it the old-fashioned way with a knife.

Add the apples to a 5qt (medium size) pot and add water to about halfway up the apples. Stir in the cinnamon. Pop that on the stove, cover, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for a while until the apples get mushy. Check every 10 minutes or so, give it a stir, and add a little more water if you feel like it. These ones took about 30 minutes.

Smash them with a potato masher, if you like lumpy applesauce. I usually do, but these apples were a little grainy - in that case, use a stick hand blender to puree. Add water if the consistency is too thick.

Add in the vanilla, brown sugar and rum, stir.

**If you want to make Rumple Butter, leave the pot on low, uncovered, until the mixture reduces to a spreadable consistency.

Ladle into jars. Freeze what won't be eaten in the next week (leave about 1/2" head space for freezing).
Makes about 8 cups of Rumplesauce. This recipe is easily adjusted for different amounts of apples. Add or use other fruit, if you like! Pears make great sauce or butter (reduce the water as needed, or add berries or even sweet potato (add more water as needed) for a different flavour, whatevs! If you're adding sweet potato, try using orange juice for a bit of the liquid! So yummy.