Thursday, July 31, 2014

A (Grape) Slice of Life

No doubt you stumbled upon, and were amazed by the simplicity of, this grape cutting technique on Pinterest, Facebook, or YouTube!

I don't cut grapes for my kids any more, but I do cut grapes for chicken salad. So I was excited to give it a shot.

The plate is wet because I had just washed the grapes, and didn't dry them.

My anticipation quickly dwindled. This was NOT going to work. Turns out, if your plate has any depth to it the grapes will sit too low and the knife wont have room to pass through.

The trick looked so seamless and easy!

But I didn't give up. I turned the bottom plate upside down!

This did work...


But resulted in grapes cut about 1/5 instead of 1/2, and many rolling off the plate. So yes, this is a great time saver and maybe a fun party trick, but I doesn't work well (with MY plates).

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Baby Powder is Magical

I don't know about you, but I hate the feeling of sand in my sandals, and even worse having sand all over my car. So I pinned this beach tip. I was a little skeptical since there was no accompanying article or blog to explain and/or show that it actually worked to remove that stuck on sand from your skin.

I finally got around to trying it yesterday with my 4yr old. First, dry off as you usually would. Then sit your bum on your towel or beach blanket, with your sandals nearby.

Lake Nokomis - Minneapolis, MN
This was not staged. She really did have that much sand stuck to the TOP of her feet.

Okay, now sprinkle the baby powder anywhere there is sand on your skin. Don't forget to check the back of your calves, sand likes to hide there.

Next, wipe off sand (and powder) with your hands.

And that is a successful pin! There may be some baby powder residue left but that's so much better than sand. That and the powder has a pleasant scent and leaves your skin feeling & looking a bit softer. Now slip on your sandals and walk away sand free!

Don't worry, we trimmed and painted her toenails today so she's prepared for any additional impromptu photo shoots in the near future!

Go forth and enjoy the beach!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Repurposed Wipes Container Turned Educator

I love all the pins showing how people reuse containers from various infant and toddler care items (bum wipes, wet wipes, formula etc.). But I had yet to come across one that seemed useful for our family.

I did like when I came across ones that were an activity or game for babies or young kids. So I've been keeping an eye out for items I thought would be a good fit for the size container I had as well as something potentially educational for my 4yr old and (almost) 2yr old.


Last week I found some small, soft, colorful foam shapes in the dollar spot at Target. It was a pack of 20 with 5 shapes, each shape a different color. So I grabbed a few supplies, and got to work!

And here's what I came up with...

A fun way to learn vowels, upper vs. lower case letters, colors, and shapes! The game rules are that the kids take turns picking one block out at a time. If the letter on the block was in their name they get to keep it. If the letter is in their sibling's name they need to give it to them (encourages sharing). The first one to collect all four of one letter (in their name) wins! So they also learn about the vowels in their own name, as well as their sibling's name. The game works best with 2 players.

We tried this out for the first time tonight before bed. It turned out to be a fun and exciting way to settle down and be calm. Have you ever heard those words in the same sentence? My 4yr old asked if we could play again tomorrow night. This makes me happy.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Oven Fried Cheddar-Garlic Chicken

Tonight's dinner was brought to us by this pin titled "Kittencal's Moist Cheddar-Garlic Oven Fried Chicken Breast"
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 tbsp minced garlic
2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp seasoning salt
3/4 cup dry bread crumb
1/2 cup finely grated cheddar cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

This easy to make and delicious pin was a real crowd pleaser. A definite re-pin! I didn't have any wedge/block cheese in the house so I used shredded in its place. Also, to accommodate the kids, I cut the chicken breasts into small pieces (nuggets perhaps).

This allowed additional surface space for the extra yummy (and extra crispy) breading! The chicken was definitely moist (sorry if you aren't a fan of that word haha). So much flavor, no need for any ranch or ketchup.

The only reason I would recommend going out of your way to purchase a block/wedge of cheese (if you didn't have any on hand) is if you have picky eaters that would otherwise pick off the "crust".

I thought the amount of liquid in the wet mixture was very slightly too little. I think I'd simply add a bit more butter next time. Also, I had a lot of excess bread crumbs. So I'll use less of that in the future.

At nearly 9pm, I'm STILL thinking about this meal. I wish I had doubled the recipe so I'd have leftovers for tomorrow!