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Kids Lunch Box Idea: Strawberry Lovers Lunch

I Heart California-Strawberries #BuildABetterLunchBox

This post is sponsored by California Strawberries. All thoughts, opinions, and ideas are my own.

Lunch box meals are an enormously difficult challenge. You need to have the ability to create a meal that will dazzle a tiny human (no small feat), have the staying power to last in a little box that’s been tossed around in a kids backpack and probably sit at room temperature for a while, be quick to throw together the night before, and packed with nutrition. It’s not surprising that I find it easer to plan my Thanksgiving menu than a weeks worth of unique lunch box ideas.

Lunch Box Idea- Strawberry Lovers Lunch #BuildABetterLunchBox

Strawberries are one of my favorite items to include in the lunch box, she loves strawberries as much as she loves candy but they have incredible health benefits that my growing tiny human needs in her little body. Strawberries are a super food, packed with fiber and vitamin C, plus strawberries are one of the most antioxidant dense fruits, packed with cancer fighters.

Strawerry Filled Apples #BuildABetterLunchBox But more than anything, they’re so pretty. I know she’ll reach right for them. The sauce I make is just a combination of apple sauce and strawberries giving it a gorgeous natural pink color that inspired her to name it "Princess Sauce." When trying to move my family away from all artificial food coloring, strawberries are the perfect way to add stunning color in a natural and health filled way.

Lunch Box Idea- Strawberry Lovers Lunch #BuildABetterLunchBox

I also really love to make her these Strawberry Peanut butter Burritos. The sliced berries hold up better to a lunch box environment better than jam, there isn’t the risk of soggy bread. She also loves that it’s different than your average sandwich.

Lunch Box Idea- Strawberry Lovers Lunch #BuildABetterLunchBox

This lunch box meal takes less than ten minutes to throw together, and it’s packed with fiber, antioxidants, and general goodness, although she only sees fun finger food. Just the way I want it.

Lunch Box Idea- Strawberry Lovers Lunch #BuildABetterLunchBox

Brewed Mary: Beer Bloody Mary

Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 cup tomato juice
  • 1 cup IPA beer
  • 1/2 tsp celery salt (plus additional for glass rims)
  • 1/2 tsp Chipotle Tabasco sauce
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp brine for a jar of spanish olive
  • 1/4 tsp cream style horseradish
  • 1 tbs lime juice (about 1 medium lime)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (about 1/2 medium lemon)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • Ice
  • Optional garnish:
  • celery stalk, olives

Directions

  1. Rim glasses with celery salt. Add all ingredients to a shaker half full of ice, swirl to combine. Strain into prepared glasses, garnish if desired.
https://domesticfits.com/kids-lunch-box-idea-strawberry-lovers-lunch/

 

Catch more great strawberry recipes on the California Strawberries Facebook page! They always find the greatest strawberry concoctions.

Yarn Ball Party Favors

When you have a blog, and you post instructions about how to make or cook something that you have dreamed up, you want all of the mistakes to happen to you. You want to be the one to discover the holes in the theories, the lapses in the instructions or the possible interpretations that will end up in failure.

Lucky for me, and for any who attempt to make these, those failures bestowed themselves upon me during this craft project.

These yarns balls have been popping up in craft books since the 70’s but made a resurgence a few years ago when Martha Stewart posted a rough DIY on how to make these as christmas ornaments.

Craft bloggers began posting these as decorative balls for baskets, ornamental garland and even colorful Easter eggs. (Other tutorials: Happy Hour Projects, Ruffled Blog, Make and Takes, On Shore)

Reading the comments on the post it seem as if half the people who attempted this had glowing success and the other half had epic failures. I fell into the latter half. Which ended up being a good thing because I was forced to seek out the answers to the most common failure:

WHY didn’t the yarn harden??

Most of the bloggers who did respond didn’t seem to know the answer: Too much glue? Wrong type of glue?  Too humid in your part of the Country?

None of those answers really seemed to fit the issues I was having, but I could tell by the next morning with string that was soft and not stiff, that I had to fix the problem or there would be no party favors for Taters "Lets Have A Ball" Party.

I consulted my sister, from whom I stole the idea to put toys inside these decorative balls in the first place. She’s completely brilliant and epically creative Polaroid photographer.

Her advice: "More glue, it won’t have a choice but to harden."

True. I traced the lines of the yarn with my Elmer’s glue bottle, blotted it in with a sponge brush and in three hours, I had Yarn Ball Party Favors ready to go.

Another common factor that I saw in success was glitter. It seems to act as a binder of sorts. Add it to the glue and it helps to hold shape.

Other than the threat of failure looming over my head, I loved the way these turned out.



Materials:

8 ballons, about 6 inch round

Toys, I used squishy balls, temporary tattoos and Lady Bug Bubbles (Small enough to smash into a balloon and large enough not to fall through the yarn holes)

2 bottle of Elmer’s glue

1/4 cup warm water

2 tbs glitter

Step one:

Squish the toys into the balloons. You might want to have extra incase you break some trying to get the toys in. Also, it helps to have an extra set of hands to help. I used my husbands:

Step Two:

Blow up the balloons and securely tie the end.

Step Three:

Mix the glue, water and glitter in a large bowl.

Step Four:

Place a few feet of yarn into the glue and press down, try not to stir or you’ll end up with a tangled yarn mess.

Step five:

Wind the yarn around the balloons, cutting of the end and tucking it into an inconspicuous spot and then place on sheets of wax paper to dry.

Step Six:

Allow to dry completely until the yarn has become very stiff and there is no give to it. Then pop the balloon in the middle.

Step Seven:

Wrestle the toys out of the popped ballon and remove the deflated balloon from the ball.

Tips:

If your yarn never hardens, don’t remove the balloon. Trace the yarn with the glue bottle tip and then pat the glue into the yarn with a sponge brush.

Yarn must be hard and stiff for this craft to work.

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Let’s Have A Ball Themed Kids Party & Apple Slice Party Balls

I am now the mother of a two year old. 

Of course I’ve been warned about the Terrible Two’s and the nightmare that I am now  a party to. 

And no offense to those who have gone before me, but I rather enjoy this age. Every age, every situation and every person is not without drawbacks. There is no such thing as a perfect situation. Quality of life is built on figuring out what is great about the situation that you are in and enjoying the crap out of it. 

So, what is great about 2 year old?

You get to have all the answers. You are able to solve all of their problems. These tiny little humans see you, their moms, as the Fair Princess Goddess of The Universe. You have control over everywhere they go and who they play with. And all of that will end way too soon. As much as I long to have more freedom and independence, sleep past 6:30am, set my schedule on a whim, travel to exotic places and be able to pee in private again, I know without a single tiny doubt that I will miss the hell out of my 2 year old once she is all grown up. 

For Tater’s second birthday, my little tomboy wanted to run around the back yard and play with balls, her favorite thing in the entire world. So that’s what we did. 


I had huge gigantic balloons from Sweet Lulu


I made Yarn Ball Party Favors, You can see the DIY here:

Dozens of red and white beach balls covering the lawn, that I bought from Oriental Trading

Tater was in love with this. 



I filled a red baby pool up with a bag of ball pit balls. 

And as I shared with you a few weeks ago, I’m tring to rid my life of food dye. Quite a challenge for someone who is used to spending hours concocting the perfect frosting color for cakes. I let go and accepted the fact that the frosting I made with beet powder was just going to be purple and that was OK. More on that in a later post. 


A least I was able to sneak some antioxidants and vegetables into her cupcakes, at fine compromise in my opinion. 

And the food went largely unphotographed. A pretty shocking thing in my world, given the frequency with which I snap food pictures. 

We did, however, reserect the Tater Tot Bar from last year.

I used white cone cups and made the cone holder out of a cardboard box and wrapping paper. 

I also made the Hanging Paper Lanterns, one of my very first post was how to make them.

And I remade the paper Happy Birthday banner. 

I did get a few shots of my Apple Balls, cored and sliced apples held together with rubber band and bakers twine. I replaced the core with string cheese. This will keep them fresh, un-browned and party ready for hours. 

First, core and slice the apples using an apple slicer. 

Remove the core and replace it with string cheese. Reassemble the apple and secure with a rubber band, then tie a ribbon or bakers twine around the rubberband. This will help your apple slices to stay fresh longer, without turning brown. 

If you can, try to find string cheese that is the same size, or just a bit larger than your apple corer. 

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