Marin Mommies presents a guest article by Jennifer Tyler Lee, author of The 52 New Foods Challenge, with a kid-friendly recipe that's perfect for an after-school snack or lunch box treat. We're giving away a copy of The 52 New Foods Challenge! To enter to win, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with "52 New Foods" in the subject line by Friday, September 18; we'll select a random winner on Saturday, September 19.
I’m a big fan of making your own granola bars. First, because you can control the ingredients which means healthier choices for your little ones. Second, it’s an easy way to stretch your grocery budget. Homemade granola bars are a fraction of the cost of the bars you’d buy in the box. Better for you and your budget. Love it!
Homemade granola bars are fun to make together and can easily be modified to feature your favorite fixings. When you’re done cutting the bars, the rimmed baking sheet will be filled with yummy chunks of granola. Perfect for sprinkling over yogurt parfaits!
Marin Mommies presents a sponsored article from UrbanSitter.
In homes across Marin, parents are preparing to attend back to school events at their child’s school. The evening is a chance for parents to meet their child’s teachers and fellow parents, and find out about the class plans for the year. Here are helpful tips for making the most of the evening.
Find a sitter to cover for you. You wouldn’t want to miss out on seeing your child’s classroom or meeting their teacher, so find a babysitter in advance. UrbanSitter is an easy way to find, book, and pay a sitter online—and you can even find local sitters who have been reviewed and hired by other parents from your child’s school!Introduce yourself to the teacher. Even if you’ve already met, you don’t want to miss the opportunity to say hello and introduce yourself as the parent of a student they’re just getting to know. Every other parent in the room will be waiting to say hello, too, so keep it brief.
No matter how prepared for the new school year you think you are, it can always be challenging to figure out what to pack for school lunches and snacks. Trying to balance healthy, nutritious food and things the kids will actually eat can be difficult, too.
Here are a few of my family's favorite lunchbox treats that are not only good for you, but delicious and fun to eat, too. The kids love to help make them—I find that they usually eat food they prepare themselves (even vegetables!), so I usually let them help out in the kitchen when I can, especially when we're making their school lunches.
My daughter absolutely loves cheese tortellini (and what kid doesn’t?) so we make these neat little skewers for a lunchtime treat.
1 8-ounce package of fresh cheese-filled tortellini
When it comes to back-to-school, green is the way to go! Instead of throwing away plastic and paper products and sending them to the landfill every day, why not invest in some reusable eco-friendly lunch box supplies for your kids this school year?
The examples listed below are stylish and durable and should last for years. Our family owns several of the products that I’ve listed here, and we use them all the time for school lunches, snacks, and picnics. Many of these products can be purchased at local retailers throughout Marin and the San Francisco Bay Area.
Reusable lunch bags and boxes:
San Rafael-based company PlanetBox creates stainless steel lunch kits that fit neatlly into soft cloth carrying cases. They come in three different sizes—Launch, Rover, and Shuttle—in a variety of designs and colors. Sets come with a cool magnet set of your choice with which to decorate your lunchbox. Prices range from $34.95 to $87.95. (see photo above)
Marin Mommies presents this week's guest recipe from Nicole Cibellis, Marin mom and author of the blog A Family that Eats Together, where she shares meal plans and recipes that will please foodies and children alike.
I haven’t met a kid yet who doesn’t love the sweet and salty taste of teriyaki. So, this week, we will focus on an Asian inspired lunch box with fun to eat and dip skewers, sweet and tangy fruit and salty Japanese rice sticks. To make your life easy, make the chicken using my Ginger Soy Chicken Thigh recipe the day before and eat it for dinner while reserving some as leftovers for the next day’s lunch. Both parents and kids will love this lunch the next day.
It's August, and summer vacation will be over before we know it! But we still have a couple weeks to go, and if you're looking for something for the kids to do in the last days of summer, check out the camps for kids 3 to 13 at Novato's Rolling Hills Club.
You can sign up for the whole week, or attend the club's Sports & Splash Camps and Junior Tennis Camp on a daily basis. Extended camp is available daily from 8:30–9 am and 4–6 pm.
Nestled at the foot of Mt. Burdell, the club's seven-acre campus features two outdoor swimming pools, 12 tennis courts, two racquetball courts, an outdoor sports court, an outdoor playground, grassy fields for outdoor play, and more.
In Sports & Splash Camp for ages 5–12 campers play basketball, tennis, soccer, and wild and wacky games, and of course swimming is offered every day, too. August 4–8 is "Have a Ball" week, and August 11–15 is "Spy Week". Daily fee is $70 ($60 members); weekly is $320 ($270 members).
Chicken Nuggets are a kid’s favorite. In this recipe, I have spiced up chicken by making Chicken Parmesan using chicken tenders. Instead of ketchup, we use a simple tomato sauce for dipping. Make this as dinner the night before and you have dinner and lunch taken care of! How easy is that?
This week’s featured lunch box is all about comfort food. Everyone has their favorite soup but when the cool weather comes and we need something to warm our bellies Tomato soup with grilled cheese is always one of our favorites. For this lunch box, I have chosen my Roasted Tomato Soup and instead of a grilled cheese sandwich (not an ideal lunch box sandwich) I have added a child’s favorite—cheese crackers. Below I have linked a few of our favorite soups. Pick your favorite soup and explore the possibilities.
Kids generally love meatballs. My son loves them in any form or flavor so, this week I wanted to do simple Italian meatballs with pita bread for dipping or for making sandwiches.
Ideally, I would recommend making my Sunday Sauce with Meatballs recipe on a Sunday night for dinner and use the meatballs in lunch the next day for the kids. I bet the parents would even love them for lunch the next day. This is my family's traditional sauce with a few touches of my own. The meatball recipe has been passed down for many generations now and originates with my Italian ancestors in Italy. We are from a small farming community outside Naples so since we are Southern Italian we love our Sunday sauce and meatballs on the rich side but if you prefer them lighter, try my Healthy Bolognese Meatballs or my