Tuesday, July 22, 2014

When Life gives you Lemons....

Make Lemon Bar Roll Ups!

Picnic season is officially here and this month we are reinvent one of our favorite summertime desserts: lemon bars! While Lemon Bars are an ooey gooey treat, they are definitely not picnic basket friendly. Try our version, Lemon Bar Roll Ups, that taste just as good without the mess, eggs and added fat. Plus they can be prepared in about 15 minutes!

Lemon Bar Roll Ups
1 Package of Crescent Rolls
2 Meyer Lemons thinly cut into rounds
1 Meyer lemon only to be used for the juice
½ cup of powdered sugar
¼ of stick of butter (melted)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Slice 2 Meyer lemons into 1/4” rounds, then gently slice off the rinds and cut each slice in half.  

On a separate clean surface un-roll all of the crescent rolls and divide them into their triangle shapes. Brush each piece of dough with a generous amount of butter and then sprinkle a 1/2 teaspoon of powdered sugar over the butter.  Cover the powdered sugar with a small squeeze of the unsliced lemon.

Lay out two halves of the sliced lemon onto the dough and follow the crescent roll instructions to roll up the dough. Place all of the Lemon Roll Ups onto a non-stick baking sheet and bake for about 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool for about five minutes and dust with more powered sugar to finish.

Makes 8 rolls.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Get Our Perspective!

Here at Peas of Mind we love figuring out ways to make parent's lives easier and more fulfilling. We make all natural frozen food that's loaded with veggies and quick to prepare so that Moms and Dads don't have to worry about their picky eaters not getting enough veggies. This week Get Our Perspective is back a monthly blog post where we answer your questions about health, nutrition and overall wellness. 

This month Alison from Omaha, Nebraska wrote in and asked, "What are some easy ways to make sure that my children have a healthy summer? I'm doing my best to avoid marathon tv binges and too many trips to the ice-cream shop but what else can I do?"

Thanks for writing in Alison! The good news is the Peas Perspective is loaded with simple ways to make sure that your children stay active, healthy and happy during their summer break. Here is our "best of" list:

1) Bring your little ones into the kitchen.  With all the free time summer break has to offer, encouraging your kids to prepare healthy snacks and meals for themselves (with your help of course) is an easy way to spark interest in food and health that will last a lifetime.  With the right foods, time in the kitchen can feel as fun as craft time!  Here is a list of our best recipeas that encourage kids to play with their food (and then eat it!)
-Sandwich Sushi
-Breakfast Split
-Veggie Wedgies garlic fries
-Natural food coloring to decorate your favorite cookie recipe
-Healthy Fudgesicles
-Bug Juice

2) Stay Hydrated! During the warm summer months when kids are running around outside, it's so important to keep them hydrated with WATER.  If your children turn their noses up to good ol' H2O, check out our list of easy ways to get your little ones to guzzle water.

3) Take extra care of their skin! What's the largest organ in the body? That's right, your SKIN. So during these hot and humid months, your family's skin needs extra care.  Click here to find out three simple ways to take special care of your Epidermis this summer.

4) One of the best things about summer is having the time to devour a page-turning book. Encourage your little ones to fall in love with books this summer by following our post on summer reading.

5) We've said it before and we'll say it again, EAT SEASONALLY! Summertime is far and away the best time for produce; take a field trip to your local farmers market and let your family help pick out your weekly supply of fruits and vegetables.  Our number one produce choice this summer is the sweet and juicy peach, find out why here.

We'd love to feature your question next month! Simply email feedback@peasofmind.com with your question, name and the city you're from and we'll give you our Peas Perspective!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Reinvented Fudgesicles

The 4th of July has come and gone and we are officially in the middle of summer!  Time for neighborhood block parties, slip n’ slide action, fireflies, camping trips and FUDGESICLES!  And because we’re Peas of Mind and love reinventing your favorite classic foods, we’re taking the cool and creamy fudgesicle and turning it into a treat that you can feel good about feeding your little ones any time they want a sweet treat. Peas of Mind’s reinvented fudgesicle’s are dairy-free, contain agave instead of sugar and because of the secret ingredient, avocado, our dessert is full of fiber, vitamin K, folate and B6.  Let’s celebrate June with some super food infused, super delicious: FUDGESICLES!

·       Ingredients:
1     1 large, very ripe avocado (or about 1 cup Avocado flesh)
·      1 cup almond milk
·      ¼ cup agave
·      1 tsp Vanilla extract
·      2 TBL cocoa powder
·      ½ tsp of salt (to stop ice crystals from forming)

Method: Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. The consistency should be that of slightly runny pudding.  Pour mixture into your favorite Popsicle mold. Freeze for about 6-8 hours.  Makes 4 Fudgesicles.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Camping with Kids

One of the greatest gifts you can give your family is time playing in and exploring the great outdoors. Teaching your children to love the smell of fresh air, sleeping under the stars and letting go of the daily comforts of life are all important and magical parts of learning to camp.

But the truth is, without adequate planning and preparation a family camping trip can be stressful and uncomfortable for both you and your kids.  This week Peas of Mind is here with five important and easy to follow tips that will make camping with your kids a peaceful experience the whole family will never forget.

1) Plan a dress rehearsal:
If your family has never camped before, plan a practice run in your backyard.  Set up the tent, blow up the air mattresses, wear your headlamps, unplug from technology and get your little ones used to the dark. This way you and your family will be certain that the gear you've purchased works, you'll all have a better idea of what you're in for and hopefully your night under the stars will leave you wanting more.

2) It takes a village…
We all know that one family that LOVES to camp; they getaway any chance they can and make packing up their car and kids seem as easy as making a Peas of Pie pizza. Well, GO CAMPING WITH THEM! Having double the adults means more eyes on the kids and this might even allow you to have a moment or two to yourself (it's your vacation too). Your camping buddies will also be great at teaching you the ropes, showing you tricks of the camping trade which will no doubt, help you find your own camping groove. Plus more kids means more playmates to play with and lessens the chances of there being a sibling squabble.

3) Camping kit must haves:
Besides a first aid kit, you'll want to stock up on a camping kit. This should include: bug spray, extra sunscreen, sun hats, hand sanitizer, lotion (extra if you're camping in an exceptionally dry place), lip balm (higher altitudes can cause chapped lips) and the largest container of baby wipes you can find.  Camping is about getting down and dirty BUT a little pre-bed feet and face clean up can make all the difference in the world when it comes to a good night sleep.

4) Let them eat cake…
Because many of the comforts of daily life are gone, it's a nice treat to let your little ones indulge in their favorite (not usually allowed) foods.  Sitting around the camp fire while popping a tin of jiffy pop or roasting the perfect marshmallow are what camping memories are made of.  One thing that will make your life easier while camping is to pre-plan EVERY meal to the T.  Things to think about before hand: what will your camping kitchen look like? Will you have a stove or are you using a fire? Exactly how many meals will you need? How many coolers do you have? Once you know what you're working with - have each adult on the trip plan out and take charge of one meal, rotating order so that all of the responsibilities don't fall on just you.  Check out our Camping with Kids pinterest board for healthy and delicious camping meals!

5) The toy box is back:
Camping is a time where a rock becomes much more then just a rock; it can become a treasure that helps them forget all about their iPad and their favorite television show.  Bring toys that help expand their imagination like a magnifying glass, nets to catch butterflies, water toys, potato sacks and a frisbee.  Also most kids love getting creative with arts and crafts while surrounded by nature so plan at least two craft afternoons. Our favorite outdoor inspired crafts include a God's Eye out of found sticks, a lantern (don't forget the glow sticks so you can light up the lanterns at night) and the camping craft tradition: painted rocks.

If organized and planed well, a family camping trip can be a bonding experience unlike any thing else.  Here's hoping that your family camping trip this summer is the first of a yearly summer tradition.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Food of the Month: PEACHES

One of our favorite things about summer time is PEACHES, PEACHES AND MORE PEACHES! There's nothing like a perfectly ripe peach on a hot summer's day. We love them so much that while we eat them, we can't stop singing "Millions of Peaches, PEACHES for me. Millions of Peaches, peaches for free!"

Not only are peaches the tastiest summer stone fruit, they're also highly nutritious and surprisingly low in calories!

Did you know that peaches are high in potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C and fiber? Not only are they good to eat, you can also add peach puree to your natural homemade beauty mask as Vitamin A and C are great skin moisturizers!

Peaches are a natural stress-reliever and tend to have a positive effect on anxiety. When you think about it, have you ever felt stressed while eating a peach? We didn't think so. Not to mention the fact that they're also known to calm an upset stomach. Next time you're feeling stressed out and a bit woozy, bite into a peach and let your stress and nausea float away.

Peaches are great at supporting weightless as most medium sized peaches are about 58 calories but due to all the fiber, they make you feel full. Not to mention the fact that they help fight against obesity related diseases like diabetes and heart diseases this is because peaches are loaded with antioxidants.

Normally at this point in our food of the month post, we'd list a few easy recipes and ways to incorporate the food of the month into your diet. But this month, we can confidently say that the best way to eat a peach is to simply eat it. Whether you just devour it whole or cut it up into wedges, the choice is yours, but whatever you do eat millions of peaches this summer!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Summer Reading

Here at Peas of Mind we believe that health is much more then what you eat. Yes, part of a healthy life style is eating veggies and a well balanced meal, but to us, being healthy is also about laughter, playing, exercise and joy.  We not only believe an apple a day keeps the doctor away, we also believe a book a day does too!

Our favorite book here at Peas of Mind
So this week we're changing gears a little bit and focusing on the importance of reading, especially this time of year when school is out of session and silent reading is no longer enforced.

First things first, if you don't have one already, get a library card. Summer is a great time to introduce your children to the library and the freedom that comes with browsing the aisles for a new (used) book.  Make a weekly date out of it: a late breakfast at your favorite cafe, then a few hours at the library followed by a play date at the park so your little ones can share and read their new books. Also, libraries usually have free, kid friendly activities scheduled during the summer; contact your local library and find out what fun activities you can add to your library date day!

For those long car trips, always have a box of "car only books." This way they'll get to immerse themselves in new books they've never seen or read. The box of "car only books" will become one of their favorite things about being in the car.

Find time to read. That means you Mom! Set a good example and enjoy some quality family time together reading instead of watching a movie or TV.  This is a great way to spend time together as well as secretly set a good example. During this time ask questions about what's going on in the book, what characters do they like and how do they think it will end.  This will not only encourage them to process what they're reading but it also shows them that you're interested and that reading is important to you.

Let this summer be the summer your little ones learn to LOVE to read. Besides feeding them their Veggie Wedgies, it's the greatest gift a parent can give.