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Has the hustle of school and soccer season started to make your evenings as frenzied as mine?! To top it off dance and piano began this last week my efforts has Suzy homemaker have started to lack! I have four wonderful kids who are active and involved. Right where I want them.. busy with homework, exercising on the soccer field and still able to have a few minutes to cuddle up and read with mom and dad in the evening. I’ve tried to maintain a good balance of not being overly involved but between four kids, some nights it just doesn’t matter! All things collide and boom, I’m left scrambling trying to keep it all together.
When these nights hit, which is more often then not, the first thing to go is dinner because let’s face it- the drive-thru is so easy! The bummer part is the drive-thru is typically not all-star quality food and adds up quick. My husband and I have made an agreement that we are going to try and eat at home more often, even if it’s simple meals. I have a few tips that will help make this back to school season a little more awesome by eating healthy at home. Plus a great deal to share.. Get 40% off Kidfresh meals with your Cartwell App!
Meal plan! Being prepare with a few easy meals is so important. We have a few articles on our blog about meal planning and the advice they give is great! I typically pick out 3-4 meals for the week. I vary them with quick and easy, crockpot, and maybe throw in a nice dinner if I know I have a night I can spend some time in the kitchen. The other nights I leave free- we eat leftovers and other simple dinners like grilled cheese and fruits. Something the hubs can help fix when I need a break! It usually works out great to get us through the week.
Have a back up plan! When I grocery shop, I love to grab a few simple options as a back up, incase I really have a wild night and no time to cook. Target has had this thought too. They even gave us our own door… well they gave our kids their own door, which is basically for us! So when your shopping at Target for the 3 time that week (you know you’ve done it) do your self a favor and grab a Kidfresh Meal as your backup plan. It’s a great new line Target is carrying to provide a healthy fast snack or meal for our kids. But really it’s for us! The hashtag #keepingmomscool says it all. Healthy meals in minutes and being on time to soccer practice really does keep make me happy. No artificial flavors or ingredients, they add hidden veggies, and more! So get on your Cartwheel app and go get 40% off!!! to try out this new line! (That coupon code is for a limited time Sept. 24th and you are getting meals for pennies. Umm- that’s kind of an amazing deal!)
Have healthy produce on hand and have it ready to go! For instance, when I buy a carton of strawberries, we are more likely to eat them when they are washed, sliced and ready to eat. I store them in a little container in the fridge and the kids can grab a few when they want a snack. Same with grapes- my kids consume them so fast when they are washed and picked off the vine. Other great healthy options are blueberries, carrots, cucumbers, apples or any produce you enjoy eating raw! We are lucky enough to have a neighbor with a peach tree and she loaded me up with a box full of ripe beauties. Oh they are so good you guys! The kids love them and it’s so easy to slice a few up and add to their plates!
Present the healthy option! If they are hungry enough and familiar with the food, chances are they will eat it. It has taken me a while to get my kids to love raw, sliced tomatoes but they do! My kids really are great eaters and a large part of that is that even if I know its something they will turn their nose up to, I put it in front of them regularly. If something looks foreign and weird, kids will probably not want to eat it. (Well duh!) They more they see it, smell it and see you eating it, chances are they will give it a try too (maybe with some encouragement)! Present all the healthy options and you will be surprised how many times they grab for them.
Keep it simple! Dinner doesn’t have to be an overly complicated meal. I think sometimes we get caught up in the thought that a good dinner means that it took a lot of effort. A good dinner is a fulfilling healthy dinner. My kids love raw carrots and cucumbers, which basically takes no time to prep. If I had time to roast and season those carrots then all the better but if not, they are still getting great nutrition.
We gave the Kidfresh Wagon Wheels Mac + Cheese a try.. my kids loved it. I served it up with some raw fruits and veggies and dinner was done in 5 minutes. We raced off to dance and soccer and the night was great. Some nights you need a back up plan, and that’s ok! Then we get to spend more time with these cute faces and life is good.