Monday, 17 January 2011

Getting out the Seed Catalogs

Yes, I know it's still January. I don't care. I'm planning my garden now anyway. The seed catalogs started arriving weeks ago, and it took so much will power to not start placing orders right away. I normally order a huge seed assortment from several companies, but this year I plan to do things differently.This year I am taking the following things into consideration:

What do we eat a lot of? Last year I had far too many eggplant starts. Rather than waste them I planted them all. We had too many eggplant to eat, and couldn't find enough people to take them off our hands, so many went to waste. This year I will plan to only grow what we will eat or can preserve. I also tend to order a lot of interesting purple carrots, or those really long green beans. This year, I'm not going to order things just because they look so cool.

What costs the most at the grocery store? There is a good case to be made for growing more of the produce that would cost more for you to buy. For example I love to eat green beans and sugar snap peas, which are both on the higher end of the grocery cost spectrum. Since I know that we will eat as much as we can grow, I plan to use more garden space and pay more attention to these.

What preserves well? As I said above, I hate to waste produce. I'm taking into consideration which crops will freeze, or can well, which can be pickled or put into sauces. I want to get the most out of our work and space.

What do we need more of in our diet? My increasingly picky eaters need a bit more "adventure" in their eating habits. I think that if B took a part in growing our food, he might be more apt to eat it. (perhaps that is wishful thinking) While my boys do well with the regulars of green beans, peas, carrots, and sweet corn, they turn up their noses at pretty much every other veggie. We rarely eat beets, turnips, Brussels sprouts, radishes and squash, (things that the hubs and I both enjoy) so this year I plan to try and introduce those to my kiddos.

I don't have much worked out yet, but I'm glad to be started with the planning. I can't wait to get my hands in the soil and show my boys how to grow healthy food in our back yard. I hope that you are all enjoying browsing through your seed catalogs as well.

Monday, 3 January 2011

On to Sippy-Cups: Tommee Tippee Review

How is it possible for my babies to grow this fast? I don't have babies anymore, they are toddlers. This week we are officially ditching the ba-ba, and moving on to the sippy! We really should have made the switch months ago, but with the weight gain issues we've had, I decided to let them eat however they wanted to, rather than switch it up.

L is particularly sensitive when it comes to the food and eating category. He's been through months of occupational therapy for "eating aversions". Things that wouldn't matter to the average child are huge setbacks to him. For example, he was very slow to take to feeding himself solid foods. Once he finally had the hang of it, we had a bout of the stomach flu and he was so sick that we ended up in the ER. Somehow, he associated vomiting with feeding himself. It took a full month to get him to feed himself again.

Understandably, I've been very nervous about the transition from bottles to cups, particularly for L. I decided to start with a sippy with a soft spout and work up to a more "toddler" cup in stages. After a bit of research I decided that I wanted to try the Tommee Tippee system. They were kind enough to send each of my twins an Explora L'il Sippee Spill Proof Training Cup. This is their stage 1 cup, for ages 6 months and up. These cups feature a soft spout, which is a great transition from the nipple of the bottle. They have handles, making them easier to hold and the one piece valve is a cinch to clean.

I was pleasantly surprised at how well they have handled the transition. It was not a big deal at all! Both twins took to it seamlessly. I went to my local ToysRUs and stocked up on them. I bought a few of each of the next stages and even a couple for B. They have several different spout styles to choose from. If you're in need of some sippy-cups, head on over to TRU, or order at TRU online.

Thank-you tommee tippee for sponsoring this review. I was not compensated in any way for this post, other than receiving 2 free sippee cups, I did end up going and purchasing more. All opinions expressed are truly my own.

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