Toddler Meals: 15 Months Old

Happy August everyone! Another month has come and gone, which means it’s time for a roundup of toddler meals over here! James is now 15 months old, and if you’re curious what he’s been eating lately, keep on scrolling.

I’m always trying to add more variety to James’s meals, especially since some of his old favorites, such as toast with nut butter are no longer quite as appealing. His latest at meal times has looked like ignoring everything on his plate and reaching out to our food saying “nom nom nom” continuously until we start handing him random food from our plates or the table. The grass is always greener, am I right?

I have zero idea what I’m doing when it comes to feeding a 15 month old, so my strategy is mostly intuition and trying to read James’s cues. I hope that these meal ideas offer inspiration for you and your little ones, and like I always say, I post the best of what we’ve got around here and there are a lot of “not so pretty” meals eaten as well.

  • Breakfast

Blueberry bagel, blueberries, and yogurt. I usually try to mix a flavored yogurt with some plain yogurt because the flavored ones are super sweet and the plain is super bland, so a mix tastes perfect!

Must be blueberry season! We’ve got a blueberry almond flour pancake (slightly burned), cheerios, and yogurt.

Oh my gosh more blueberries! Along with a buttermilk waffle topped with PB and a banana chocolate chip muffin.

4th of July patriotic breakfast! But really nothing fancy. Mixed berries, bananas, cereal and PB toast.

Pancakes topped with sunflower butter, banana slices, and fresh picked raspberries from a friend.

Pancakes topped with PB, bananas and blueberries (!!), along with some life cereal and milk.

Ok we’re obsessed, blueberries, yogurt and french toast sticks.

Veggie egg scramble, plain donut, and yogurt.

  • Lunch

Peanut butter and jelly, mozzarella cheese stick, and watermelon.

Tuna salad sandwich, cheese crackers, and blueberry applesauce.

A hummus plate! Naan, hummus, cheese stick, peppers, cucumber, peaches, and cherries. He ate chick-fil-a french fries for dinner that night…#balance.

Roasted vegetable pesto couscous, applesauce and shredded cheese.

Pizza squares, peanut butter crackers, peppers and cucumbers.

Sunflower butter and jelly toast, peppers, cherry tomatoes, and cherries.

Peanut butter on sourdough toast, chickpeas, celery, and cherry tomatoes.

Leftover chicken parmesan, naan, veggies with hummus, and cherries.

  • Dinner

Cheese quesadillas, black bean and corn salad, and watermelon.

A slightly blurry photo, oops! Coconut rice, chili maple lime salmon, and mango salsa.

Chicken parmesan, watermelon, and tossed salad.

We had salads for dinner, James had everything but the lettuce. Roasted corn, cherry tomatoes, figs, chicken, avocado, goat cheese and a croissant.

Pasta with marinara sauce, toast and butter, cherries, and celery…at the beach!

Vegan egg roll in a bowl with ramen, blueberries and a granola bar.

Buttered couscous, salmon, roasted broccoli, and watermelon.

Peanut butter and jelly, peppers, cucumbers, hummus, and blackberries.

And for DESSERT?!

Ice cream of course πŸ™‚

Question of the Day: What do meals look like for you and your family?

We’re in a stage of life where meals are often hectic, messy, loud, and all around unpredictable. Not the most ideal circumstances for someone who looks forward to each and every meal of the day, but I value eating as a family and if it requires a lot of noise and food thrown everywhere, I’ll roll with it. Or try to at least πŸ˜‰

Happy eating everyone!

A Morning on Foot

Hey guys, coming at ya late today. I hope you’re all having a wonderful Wednesday so far. We have had a good day over here, but also a trying one. Parenting is TOUGH some days, and I’m only dealing with one baby, bless all of you out there juggling more! Yesterday in therapy we spent a lot of time talking about limits and today has been a perfect example of pushing my limit. It has been all I can do to make it to James’s nap time and I’m going to have to rally hard for the energy and patience to get through the rest of the day.

James and I spent the first half of our day on foot. I am always looking for new ways to spend the morning rather than doing the same routine every day, so today I packed a backpack, water bottles, snacks, and blankets for a morning around town. James hopped in the stroller (as if), more like I strapped him into the stroller and we were off!

First stop, the grocery store. Did we go grocery shopping yesterday morning? Yes, but of course I forgot a few things in the madness of scrambling together a list at the last minute. A quick in and out and we were on our way to the park.

James and I explored a park right down the road from where we live. This is the first time he’s been since becoming mobile and I have a feeling we will be frequenting this park on a regular basis. James was having so much fun he didn’t want to leave when it was time to make our way to story time about an hour later. Let the toddler battles begin.

Sure enough, we managed to successfully leave the park and walk over to the library just in time for a story. What. A .Disaster. There was so much potential for story time to be a great experience, but it just wasn’t for us. James wanted to be on the move, and was moving everywhere he shouldn’t have been. Such as climbing onto the stage where our sweet leader was charismatically telling a story, picking off the flowers that were next to the stage, walking into the pond to be with the ducks, trying to chase the (not so friendly) geese near the pond, and eating goose poop. And between all of those no-go activities a lot of screaming and story time disruption. So we left.

Homeward bound! And my companion quickly passed out on the walk home. Phew. The sign of a busy morning for sure.

Let’s not forget about the day starting with James smearing poop all over his onesie. Like I said, it’s been a long day already. I am trying to give myself grace in all of these situations however in the moments leading up to nap time I was at the end of my rope of patience. Hopefully an afternoon recharge is just what I need to power through the remainder of the day.

Thanks for following along on the ups and downs of life!

James’s Monday Face

This is James’s Monday face and honestly I can relate. We both spent the weekend battling runny noses, sneezing, coughing, and endless amounts of tissues. Not my favorite way to spend a summer weekend, but it happens.

We are having ourselves a Monday over here. I gave James cereal for breakfast, he hated it. We went to the library for a dance party, he screamed. Because he was in such a bad mood, we went home. I cannot handle a screaming child in public, it’s the worst. After a quick nap in the car we ate lunch, and then I cleaned the apartment with my trustworthy diaper wipes while James alternated between indoor and outdoor play.

He looked cute for our walk this morning. We’ll count that as a win on this somewhat blah Monday.

How are you doing on this Monday afternoon? Fill me in on all of the fun weekend activities you did!

Friday Favorites #4

Hello and happy Friday to you! What’s everyone got planned for the weekend? I’ve got a brunch with my women’s bible study tomorrow morning, a birthday party, post-church celebration and who knows what else! Hopefully lots of outdoor time with family and friends. I find myself already dreading the winter months even though it feels too early to be worried about that. I just don’t want to be stuck inside! Moving on from that thought, I hope that you’ve all had a good week and if you’re interested in some of the things I’ve been loving this week, keep on scrolling.

5 Minute Lunches

I’ve discovered a secret for super quick (and healthy) lunches. This past week James and I have been filling our mornings with lots of activities. It’s been a lot of fun but we’ve been coming home around lunchtime starving and cranky. Needless to say, there isn’t much time to throw lunch together before we both collapse into a meltdown. I sound dramatic, but you get the idea. Lunches have been so rushed in fact, that I’ve barely taken any photos and I’m usually really good about food photos these days. My lunchtime secret is this, use leftovers to make a salad. That’s what I’ve been doing all week and it has actually worked. Granted, salads tend to only keep me satisfied for an hour or so and I always eat a snack while James is napping in the afternoon, but it’s enough to get me through the lunchtime craziness and fill my body with some decent nutrition. I buy a large box of mixed greens every week which is the base of every salad, and I’ve topped my salads this week with all kinds of random fridge items. Earlier this week I noticed a lot of deli meat and cheese so I made a chef salad of sorts. I’ve also enjoyed salads topped with roasted veggie and pesto couscous and find that I barely need to add dressing to that combo. I made a black bean and corn salad on Tuesday night and Wednesday for lunch I topped my mixed greens with that along with a BBQ ranch dressing, literally just BBQ sauce and ranch mixed together in a small container and poured it on my salad with some crushed up tortilla chips. Kind of like the pancake situation over here, I eat a lot of salad. And I get sick of it. So I find the best way to keep salad interesting is to try new combinations, and leftovers have proven to add pizazz to my salads this week.

Wireless Bras

Yup, they’re going on the list. Ever since giving birth to James I stopped wearing all of my wire-lined bras because of nursing and I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to go back. My favorite nursing bras are this one from Amazon, and this one from Gap (unfortunately sold out right now). Honestly I still wear those bras even though I’m not nursing because they are so comfortable. I’ve also been wearing my favorite wireless bra from Aerie, and so bummed that they are sold out right now because I could use a new one. With all of the wireless bras on the market these days, does anyone still wear one with wire? If so, is it comfortable? I put on an old bra the other day (it’s practically new), but the wire was so uncomfortable and irritating. Thank you for the invention of wireless!

Cardomom & Vevitir Candle

Currently in love with this candle from Target. I ordered it for my sister for her birthday after I fell in love with the scent the other day browsing Target. I haven’t bought one for myself (I feel like I need a reason?), so I can’t remember the smell enough to describe it accurately, but it was addicting. If you’re looking for something special to give yourself or a loved one, I would highly recommend this candle.

Diaper Wipes for Household Cleaning

Yes, I now use diaper wipes for household cleaning. Hello motherhood. In particular dusting, but really any area of the apartment that needs a wipe down. There are so many cleaning products to choose from, but one afternoon I noticed dust sitting on all of our surfaces and I had a pack of diaper wipes close by, so I pulled a few out and started dusting. They worked wonderfully! I have to credit my mom for the idea because she used to wet down a paper towel and use it as a dusting rag. Diaper wipes are way cheaper than paper towels, they are soft, and perfectly moist. Give it a try!

Trader Joe’s Focaccia Bread with Roasted Tomato & Parmesan

This bread. I’m in heaven. It’s SO GOOD you guys! Head on over to Trader Joe’s ASAP and get yourselves a loaf. What an awesome grocery store. Wegmans is my first and forever love, but Trader Joe’s is close behind. I haven’t bought a disappointing product yet!

As usual I’m curious…

What are you loving this week?

I hope that you have a great weekend friends! Thanks for stopping by πŸ™‚

When You Want It All

I just want to be able to do everything and have it all. Not material items necessarily, although if I think about it hard enough I could certainly come up with a list. I’m thinking more in the sense of wanting to be two places at once.

I love being a full-time mom, but it can get boring along with a whole lot of other things. Challenging in terms of coming up with fun activities to do. Exhausting because you have a tiny human looking up at you all day waiting for what’s next. Lonely because the conversations are always one sided. Repetitive because you are doing the exact same thing 7 days a week.

I want to live in all of those mom moments, but I also want to be somewhere else. Interacting with people, stimulating my mind in new ways, stretching my creativity (thank you blogging), and I hate to say it but earning some kind of income.

As I have mentioned before, we currently live close to family and friends. I am so happy here. But there is an adventurer inside of me that wants to get out and explore the world. I don’t want to be confined to one geographic location for the rest of my life. But it’s not feasible to pack up and move a family at the drop of a dime.

So what’s next? That is the question I am always asking myself. I tend to be a restless person. Goal driven. And when it feels like there is no goal in sight I feel anxious. I try to reframe my thoughts to focus on the here and now, but in all of the uncomfortable moments (and there are a lot of them) my mind starts to race.

I feel stuck. It’s hard to sit in this mindset of being fulfilled in motherhood but also feeling empty. To love where you are, but to crave new places and experiences. I do not know where God wants me in this moment and I am probably not spending enough time in His Word or prayer in order to figure it out. I want all of the answers from God without putting any time or effort into the relationship. My good friend Lauren has recently inspired me to think about my time with the Lord. I want to grow in my relationship with God and trust that His plan will come as a result. This will require time. But we are human and there are a whole lot of distractions in the world.

This feels like an uncomfortable moment. Not knowing the direction of this blog post and not being able to conclude with a clear resolution. I know there’s hope out there. I know that the Lord holds all of the answers that I am seeking. I feel Him testing my patience and strengthening my faith. As He exhibits upmost patience for me, waiting for me to rest my soul on His promises and seek Him first and in all things.

I will continue to resist. I know myself, and I will not just magically be obedient to God or give Him all that He’s looking for from me. I will continue to grab the steering wheel of my life from Him. I will come up with a list of things that need to get done before I can pray or read. But I can feel His call. I can feel His love. And I know that He will be there waiting with open arms when I come running.

Colossians 1:11-12 “May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share the inheritance of the saints in light”

Galatians 1:10 “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

A Peek into Our Monday

Happy Monday to you! How’s everyone doing? I’m getting a bit of a late start on this Monday. I’d love to have all of my blog posts published in the morning, but sometimes life gets ahead of me. James was up bright and early today and our day has been filled with all kinds of activity.

We started the morning with Kodiak cake waffles topped with peanut butter and bananas, and quickly made our way out the door for a walk around the neighborhood. Before long it was time to head to the library for a dance party. At the last dance party James seemed to be the only child not staying within our designated cones, but this morning he blended right in with the kid chaos. In fact, one of the little girls decided that it would be a good idea to scoop up all of the cones, and before long she had a full stack in her hands. Our dance leader wasn’t too thrilled with this, but I was happy that James wasn’t the only one not following the rules.

Post dance party, we walked around the pond nearby before making our way into the library to do some exploring. James wandered all over the library in his usual one year old random fashion. I simply followed. We signed up for the kids reading program, mostly because there’s a raffle at the end of the summer and the prizes sound really cool! We also walked over to the bank and I FINALLY got the last name on my credit card switched over to my married name. Almost two years after marriage thanks to a global pandemic, baby, and a whole lot of procrastination but I’m glad to finally have it done.

James and I were quite hungry when we got home from our morning activities so I put together a 5 minute lunch and called it a day. I’m using a recycled salad photo here for my lunch and it looks a lot prettier than the salad I threw together today. Also, James and his pizza, crackers and watermelon…health food 101. The perfectionist in me dies in moments like these.

I’ve been working on some household chores while James takes a nap, read a few chapters in the book of Danielle, showered, and am now sitting down to blog. I’m hoping that James stays asleep so that I can hit “publish” and finish up some laundry before the afternoon activities begin. I’m craving something extra fun this afternoon but I really have no idea what that would be. We are attending a free dinner at the church tonight, and that may be the main activity for the evening.

I hope that your week is off to a wonderful beginning!

Saturday Coffee Date

Happy Saturday afternoon everyone! I always seem to sit down for blogging coffee dates in the afternoon, but I’m certainly not drinking any coffee right now. What’s everyone up to today? I’m sure you’re all out enjoying some kind of summer activity. I’m staring out at a beautiful day over in our neck of the woods.

We are having some down time while James naps. I am in the middle of making healthy peanut butter twix bars, that we miraculously had all of the ingredients to make, praise! I’m finding these bars to be easy as well. They are only time consuming because of the cooling process in between steps. I don’t mind a recipe with built in down time. Still questioning where to set my expectations with these bars, they are labeled as “healthy”, but I’m holding onto hope that they taste good. Stay tuned!

Josiah took James out for a hike this morning and I got a little solo time at the apartment. It always goes by too fast, and I feel like I’m either unsatisfied by the things I get accomplished or I have no idea what to do with myself. Today I did a quick barre workout. Literally haven’t done any kind of workout for months besides walking, and this 15 minute workout kicked my butt. Plus I’m not sure how I feel about exercise these days. I wish I had more time and energy to exercise but I just don’t. Mothering a one year old, while it doesn’t tone my muscles, somehow feels like a workout every day. I also showered and next thing I knew the boys were home.

We went to a graduation party around lunchtime up at the church and James made a new best friend, Danielle. Well I’m not sure how James felt about the relationship, but Danielle was more than thrilled to cling to James the whole time. James is in one year old independent mode these days. Meanwhile I’m in invisible mom mode trying to keep an eye on James without invading his space. It’s a great time.

Let’s get back to the coffee, shall we? I worked in a coffee bar for almost 5 years and barely drank a sip of coffee, yet I have a fondness for the art of coffee and espresso. It smells amazing, latte art is fun, and creating different drink flavors and names is also a hobby of mine. Would I ever go back to working in a coffee bar? Absolutely! My husband thinks I should aim for higher stars, but I’m content with the low ones.

Coffee dates around here seem to equate to me talking about whatever comes to mind. Basically just a one sided conversation because my company right now is working away at his computer and I’m trying not to be a distraction. Life of a pastor’s wife…

Ok folks, off to finish those bars. Thanks for taking the time to stop by the blog today. I hope you have a great day πŸ™‚

Reframing to Thoughts of Gratitude

James just got into trouble in the bathroom and I sat there passively watching him. That’s where my mom motivation is at the moment. My mind wants to go to a place of criticism for not disciplining James as well as other mom’s, and questioning why I even let him get into the bathroom in the first place, I could have easily shut the door and prevented the whole scene. James is a walking tornado these days, or so I like to call him. His mom on the other hand is a total neat freak that is challenged by the constant mess in our apartment. That’s just the beginning of the mindset shift I need to make. Hence the title of this post, reframing to thoughts of gratitude.

I wish I could express gratefulness in ALL moments of my life, because as Josiah says to me when I’m down in the dumps “there’s always something to be grateful for”. And he’s totally right! I just get sucked into these negative spirals and comparison traps and completely lose sight of the blessings. Last week I wrote an post titled “How I’m Really Feeling” and expressed some raw feelings including our desire to have another baby. Let’s reframe for a second and acknowledge what a huge blessing James is in our lives. Even if we were never able to have a second baby we would still be content and overflowing with joy and love for James.

Motherhood has been a challenge, but in the moments of tears and clutter and loneliness and repetition I am incredibly grateful to be home with James, sharing his whole life with him and watching him grow.

Marriage has been a challenge as well, but in the moments of anger and resentment and doubt I am grateful for a husband who stands by my side and lifts me up when I am down on the ground ready to give up.

Life itself is a challenge, but in all moments I am grateful to have a God that hears my prayers and answers them, who has blessed me with the most loving and supportive family and friends, who has brought me out of my darkest moments, and loves me unconditionally. If your hope lies in Jesus, there is no amount of darkness in your life that can’t be overcome by His magnificent light. And if that’s not something to be grateful for, I don’t know what is. Praise God!

Question of the day: What is one thing you’re feeling grateful for today?

Have a lovely Wednesday everyone!