Tips for Making Great Smoothies

Almost every mom I know is making their kids smoothies nowadays. What a great way to get your kid to drink their vegetables or fruits. Most kids just don't know the difference between a smoothie and a milkshake if you make it right.
I love smoothies because they are quick, nutritious and I know my kid will not starve during the day. One smoothie can help prevent your kid from snacking on junk food. One reason my kids seem to like them is because they look so attractive. If you serve them in a frosted mug the kids think even more that they are being given a special dairy treat even if there is no milk in it! Even kids with allergies to dairy can drink a creamy cantaloupe shake or a vegetable smoothie.
The smoothie is a great way to sneak more fiber and vitamins into your kid's diet. Making a smoothie is also not very expensive. You don't need a fussy recipe and you can improvise with what you have on hand. Furthermore there is no reason at all why you can't put overripe fruit in a smoothie and help save even more money.
Over the years I have learned some tricks for making greet smoothies. For instance I up the antioxidant factor in each shake by adding frozen fruit instead of ice to the recipe. I have also found that if you freeze bananas they become a good substitute for ice cream. Don't mash up stuff until it is liquid.
You can also 'hide' protein in smoothie. Add yogurt, milk, flax seeds, silken tofu, wheat germ, or protein powder to the blender for an extra hit of nutrition.
If a smoothie recipe calls for sugar, try it first without the added sweetener. You really might not need it, depending upon the natural sweetness of the fruit. Adding a little honey or fruit syrup might be okay. Try to avoid sprinkling pure white syrup right into the shake. That is nothing but a recipe for diabetes!
Don't let the mess of making smoothies get you down. I have a Magic Bullet blender that works pretty well. Take a second to rinse out the blender right after you use it, even if you’re planning to wash it later; dried-on fruit on the blender glass or plastic makes for slow clean-up!

Bread is the Stuff of Life

I know carbs are bad but my children and I will never do without our bread. I even bought a breadmaker a few months ago. I make good healthy bread every day for them to eat. They don't get fat eating my bread because it is not store bought and full of refined sugars and grains.
I am in my early forties so I grew up eating that supermarket bread. My parents baked their own bread because they grew up in that lifestyle where making bread was part of a daily lifestyle. Buying bread only became in style during the post World War II era in the 1950s. This is when as a society we were introduced to the concept of being able to buy anything that we want.
The art of breadmaking was almost lost when I was young. In fact you had to go to a restaurant to get fresh bread – usually an expensive Italian or French one. As I was raised in that supermarket era of white bread eaters I never really knew how great eating fresh homemade bread could be until I got this breadmaker. I was introduced to the concept after tasting some fresh made bread at a friend's house. I was intrigued because she was having us dip it in flavored olive oil rather than smothering it in butter which is why I had been avoiding home baked bread in the first place. The temptation to slather cow fat all over it was just too much.
My homebaked bread is the centerpiece of every meal we have in my home. The kids love it. It is healthy for them and I get to control what goes into the bed. My bed is all natural and there is no preservatives in it. I make a new loaf every day or every second day depending on how much of it we actually gobble up.
I got so enthusiastic about making my own bread that I even bough a Magic Bullet for grinding up my own grains. I make ordinary breads but I also make savory and sweet loafs as well. My olive and sundried tomato bread with coarse salt is to absolutely die for.
Now I also know that my bread is always fresh. The worst thing about buying bread from a store is that you never know how truthful the expiry dates on it are going to be. Remember opening up those bread boxes and seeing loafs of breads covered in green or black mold. Those days are completely over for me. This is why I can now truthfully pray 'Give us our thanks this day for our daily bread!'