Bowls of Plenty – Healthy Hearts Giveaway

For many eating out is a thing of the past. Between supplying proper nutrition to our families and gathering around the dinner table to interact with family, even if only for a short time, eating is has become the new norm for most families. Finding great inspiration for preparing these meals is important and with Bowls of Plenty, Recipes for Healthy and Delicious Whole-Grain Meals by Carolynn Carreno, you’ll have a great place to start. Continue reading “Bowls of Plenty – Healthy Hearts Giveaway”

Making Life Easier Robert Rose Cookbooks

One of my favorite gifts that I receive year after year are cookbooks. As I age, my cooking ages as well. Not only my cooking but my recipes, my style, and my interests. So this year was no exception when the folks at Robert Rose shared their newest Fall/Winter 2016 titles. The two that really jumped out to me, out of the almost two dozen titles, were The Compassionate Chick’s Guide to Beauty and The Complete Sous Vide Cookbook.

Cookbooks for Interests

DIY beauty, compassionate chicks guide to beautyAs you may or may not know, I have opted for a natural and alternative lifestyle with my essential oils, etc. To my delight when I saw The Compassionate Chick’s Guide to Beauty I squealed with excitement. Making my own soaps, lotion bars, tonics, air fresheners, cleansers, etc are my way to rid toxins in my life. This book is chock full of goodies with DIY Vegan, Gluten-Free, Cruelty-Free Makeup, Skin & Hair Product recipes that I have been terrified to wing on my own but have this fantastic recipe book at my disposal.

sous vide, cookbooksThe second book I received was The Complete Sous Vide Cookbook. What is Sous Vide you ask? Well it is the height of cooking at a precise, controlled temperature by placing food in a vacuum sealed bag. Tender meats, crisp vegetables, buttery fish, and mouthwatering desserts. Sounds too complex? Oddly enough, anyone can cook using sous vide in their home because I found everything I needed on Amazon.

Cooking for Any Topic

Robert Rose offers a wide variety of books and is North America’s leading publisher of bestselling and award-winning cookbooks and health books designed to guide, inform, advise, and do everything possible to make your life easier. From nightly meals in slow cookers to mastering leading chef’s techniques in some of the most noted Michelin restaurants, the vast selection of cookbooks are the most comprehensive line from the experts in the field.

If these are not exciting enough, we are offering a giveaway to four winners. One will each receive a copy of the following:
The Compassionate Chick’s Guide to Beauty: 115+ Recipes for DIY Vegan, Gluten-Free, Cruelty-Free Makeup, Skin & Hair Products, Sunny Subramanian + Chrystle Fiedler

The Complete Sous Vide Cookbook: More Than 175 Recipes with Tips & Techniques
, Chris McDonald

Best of Bridge: The Family Slow Cooker, Best of Bridge featuring Julie Van Rosendaal, Sue Duncan, Elizabeth Chorney-Booth

The Chile Pepper Bible: From Sweet & Mild to Fiery & Everything in Between, Judith Finlayson

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Disclosure: The bloggers participating in this event have NOT been compensated for this post. Networking Perks provides honest opinions, beliefs or experiences on products reviewed. Networking Perks is NOT responsible for prize fulfillment, Robert Rose Publishing will be sending the prize directly to the winner. This event is in no way associated with, sponsored, administered, or endorsed by Twitter, Google, Pinterest, Facebook or any other social media. If you have any questions or would like help in promoting your own product please contact me at The disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising

Baking with Kids

baking with kids, kids cook, kids bake, kids cookbook

Last year I had the blessing to stay home with my kids and keep them occupied over the summer. Charades, swimming and bike rides can only fill so many hours and minutes of a kids day. So this summer we are taking fun up a notch. With my love of food, grilling, cooking and baking, the kids started to catch on. Along with their desire to help, we had a winning combination. So I took advantage of my love of baking, their help, and a new way to bond as a family. I also had a great guide that was driven more for their audience so I could cater to their needs as kids in the kitchen. Continue reading “Baking with Kids”

First Bites: Superfoods for Babies and Toddlers

Food is such an integral part of our lives. As a conversation piece, comfort and of course sustenance. For new moms, feeding your infant and or toddler can be worrisome, frustrating and concerning. Am I giving them enough options? Am I feeding them the right foods? Should I feed them these foods? When I had my twins I threw the traditional thoughts out the window and gave them everything. Brussels Sprouts were my favorite when they were teething, as were apples, bell peppers, the whole gamut of different fruits and vegetables. From the time they could sit up unassisted and gnaw on foods, I experimented on them. With G-man I was more concerned on being the perfect mom, giving him the “right” foods and never rocking the boat. I wish I had this book with my oldest, First Bites: Superfoods for Babies and Toddlers, so I had some sort of compass and guide to tackle simple struggles like picky eating.

Picky Eaters

I’ve been interviewing experts about dealing with picky eaters for years and there are times when all that I have learned goes out the window! Do your best and when all else fails, take a deep breath and let it go. Don’t get up and make something different, let your child take ownership and decide not to eat, they won’t starve to death if they skip dinner one night. Allow them to have some of the control, it will empower them believe it or not they will (almost always) come around.

first bitesTry to:

  • Lead by example—parents have to be willing to eat and try things too
  • Offer a combination of foods your child likes along with things that may be a bit outside their comfort zone
  • Have a discussion about where food comes from
  • Get to the farmers’ marker or plant a garden
  • Make mealtime fun—eat, talk, share
  • Prepare meals together

Try not to:

  • Freak out!
  • Get noticeably frustrated
  • Fight over meals
  • Use dessert or other food as a reward
  • Insist that your child eat everything on their plate

(Photo and excerpt from FIRST BITES: Superfoods for Babies and Toddlers with the permission of Perigee/Penguin. Copyright Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, 2015.)

Today I do one of the “try not to” with my kids, but they are now 7,7 and 12 so having them finish their plate usually consists of did you at least eat all of your vegetables on your plate? When I was growing up I was limited on my exposure to foods, fruits and vegetables. I wasn’t even aware of farmers markets, local farmer co-ops, or the like. At the young age of 17 I was exposed to artichokes and capers. I never looked back. My children were a fraction of my age when they were exposed and that is one of their all time favorite requests, including asparagus, roasted Brussels Sprouts, stuffed bell peppers, bok choy, spinach, mushrooms, onions and kale.

What I found with my oldest is just as Dana suggests, have your kids take ownership. I let my kids rummage through the fridge when they were toddling and we discussed the different fruits and vegetables and I let them try. I also tried. I stock my fridge to this day with an assortment of foods. Such an empowering feeling to have your children try and share and tell others about the foods they like.

Seth defined that moment and humbled me as a parent when at his Boy Scout den meeting he explained the various foods on his plate as part of a nutrition project. Mind you, my little gem is barely six at the time and he explained grilled chicken or salmon as his protein, quinoa or brown rice as his grain, broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, asparagus and green beans (because he clarified those are his favorite) as his veggie, strawberries as his fruit and Gouda was his choice of cheese (dairy) but he also likes almond milk. His dessert, of course, was my gluten free, dairy free, caramel apple cake. Of course, a meal would be incomplete without dessert!

When his den leader and The Chad shared this with me I felt so proud. I felt like we crested a hump. A pressure was relieved regarding the work I put into my kids to ensure they are eating the right foods and are educated about proper nutrition.

However I know I am truly blessed because my children do not lack a food allergy. Many children these days have or develop food allergies which can make meals tricky and tough to navigate, First Bites: Superfoods for Babies and Toddlers helps provide helpful tips and insightful information on how to ensure we as parents are maximizing our children’s diets. The book release and copy could not have come at a better time as a friend from church was experiencing her own frustrations and concerns as a new mom. Her post on Facebook immediately prompted me to provide her with my copy of the book, to give her the tools I wish I had when I was a new mom, the tools I just figured out with having twins. If you are facing some of these struggles: food allergies, picky eaters, maximizing a vegetarian/vegan diet, or food transitions First Bites: Superfoods for Babies and Toddlers should be in your arsenal of tools in the kitchen and your home. First Bites was released on February 3rd and is available nationwide and on Amazon, get your copy today and take the frustration out of navigating meals and foods for your child with amazing meal options and friendly recipes sure to transform even the pickiest of eaters.

The Wellness Kitchen

As we embark into the new year many of us are gearing up to execute on our new resolutions. One of your resolutions may be to wrangle your health which means taking hold of the foods we eat. Wellness begins in the kitchen. We do not lose weight by fitness alone, our bodies are living machines that process foods for optimal performance. However, we often go on fad diets for quick results and then experience a boomerang affect where the weight returns. Continue reading “The Wellness Kitchen”

iCookbook for iPad and Android

The holidays are creeping up on us and with them fast approaching some of us are scrambling for those perfect holiday meals, treats, or even alternatives. Furthermore, even after the holidays families struggle to find meals for their families or even for functions such as potlucks, a get-together, or just because they want to make that one meal.

A great holiday gift is one that is affordable, one you are able to use year after year, and for people like our family, one that is green and economical. So a great gift for anyone in your family is the iCookbook for iPad, Android, and coming soon to the iPhone. With access to over 2000 recipes, color photos of all the mouthwatering recipes, personalize the recipes by adding your own notes and reminders, and the app even provides a substitution list for those recipes that you may want to tweak. But the recipes don’t stop there, with diet specific recipes like gluten free, diabetic desserts and holiday recipe favorites, and fun recipes the kids are sure to love. Plus this is one of the most affordable gifts that keeps on giving for your loved one, your family, their family.

The first cooking app with voice activated instructions keeping your screen clean while your hands are messy.

My family has been enjoying the app, especially with my husband taking the reins at home and is such a gentleman with making dinners for our family that are fun, tasty, healthy, and everyone loves. No more griping and complaining from my three kids, plus with work being extra busy trying to plan meals together is nearly impossible so we can scan together on his iPad and my iPhone and make decisions in a snap while messaging one another.

Great for a stocking stuffer or as a fun gift for the amateur chef in your family, now available on iTunes for $4.99 where you can add it to your iCloud so it is available on all your Apple devices and available on the Android market and Marketplace to download to your Android products.