Oven-dried banana

Banana has got to be the grubbiest of all food. My little one holds it in her hands, and squishes it into the day bed. Then it’s squished into her Country Road woollen dress. Of course, I can’t get that out.

But, people, I have a solution. Get your bananas by the kilo at your local farmer’s market – they are selling for around $2 a kilo around our parts – and put them in your oven.

dried banana

I cut them into thirds, lengthwise (thanks, Nellie, for the inspiration), and place them directly onto the oven trays. I put the oven on it’s lowest setting (I think it’s about 70 degrees on my oven) and put it on for 3.5-4.5 hours depending on the quantity of bananas. Check them as you go, and take them out when they are to your liking.

Voila. Transportable, baby-proof banana. A parenting dream. Easy as.

Mums & Bubs fitness, Alstonville

Since having Baby, it’s been tricky to stay motivated with exercise. I always find some excuse – e.g. I’m just going to go with those relaxing breastfeeding hormones. Or – I’m sleep deprived. Or, I have absolutely no time (which is kind of true).

I ran when I could – just a little run, and not too fast. Running felt good. But after a few months, I wasn’t really getting any fitter, and my tummy was as floppy as ever. I was running just to keep my head clear. But there were no other noticeable effects.

Then I met Janelle from Synergy Personal Training. She recently started a Mums and Bubs fitness group, which runs at Geoff’s Oval every Tuesday morning. I could bring the kids. This could work.

Janelle Synergy Personal Training Alstonville

And it did.

The first couple of sessions, I was sore. Sore for days! Janelle really pushes you, which is hard at the time, but I actually like it. Feels like you are doing something.

We do circuits using weights or sandbags, we do punching, hill sprints, running with prams and planks. Plenty of planks.

Synergy Personal Training Alstonville

Within a couple of weeks, I started to feel quite toned. My abs are like rocks. And the other day, I went for a run, for the first time in ages, and it was so much easier.

Synergy Personal Training Fitness Alstonville

We have been lucky with the weather. Most mornings have been beautiful. Sunshine Girl runs around the oval, or helps Janelle with the equipment. Baby just does her thing, either in the pram or on the grass. Occasionally, she needs to go on my back in the sling. When a bubby gets sad, the mum will do lunges or something she can do holding bubby. And Janelle’s excellent with the kids. Sunshine Girl loves her.

Mums and Bubs fitness Alstonville

The classes are only $10 for a whole hour. If you need fitness after having a baby, I completely recommend it. The exercises are tailored for post-natal bodies. You so quickly build up strength again. And I love that my exercise has a time and place scheduled into the week. I can’t ignore it, and I can’t make excuses.

Mums & Bubs Fitness, run by Janelle from Synergy Personal Training, is at Geoff’s Oval in Alstonville every Tuesday morning at 9.30am. If wet, go to My Own Gym on Main Street Alstonville. You can visit Synergy’s Facebook page for images and contact details.

What do you do to keep fit after babies?

Linking with Essentially Jess

This is not a sponsored post. 

Healthy, tasty & simple seed crackers

dehydrated seed crackers I was looking for a cracker of the healthy variety to give my baby. She likes munching on Cruskits, but I am not sure they are the healthiest option.

Then I remembered that a friend made something like these seed crackers for her daughter.

Basically, soak a bunch of seeds and grains overnight. I soaked chia seeds, sunflower kernels, pumpkin seeds, buckwheat and millet.

I squeezed out the excess liquid through a piece of muslin. I then blended them, mainly so the bikkie would dissolve in Baby’s mouth, and she doesn’t have to contend with whole seeds.

I rolled out the mixture onto a piece of baking paper on a large flat tray. I had to use my hands to press the mixture down, in parts, and mend holes, as it can get a bit tricky with a rolling pin.

I sprinkled a bit a salt over the mixture, for flavour. But honestly, they are pretty tasty without anything added.

I then baked in a very low oven (90 degrees Celcius) for 90 minutes. Check that they are properly dried out before taking them out of the oven. If you have a dehydrator, even better!

They break easily into pieces.

After doing my first Fun Run, we are off to enjoy the morning at the Bangalow Markets.

Happy Slow Sunday to you!

 

What I love about winter, homemade tea bags & paleo citrus fudge

What I love about winter.

Gardening with the girls, in the sunshine, without sunscreen
Warm, knitted socks
Hot tea
Hot showers
No sweat
No mozzies, no cockroaches, no snakes
Citrus
Sweet apples
Slow-cooked stews
Wood-fire smoke from chimneys in the early morning
Leather boots
The first Jonquil

Truth is, I will miss winter when it’s over. Not sure the Melbourne folk will be quite so attached to the colder season.

Homemade tea bags

My friend made me these homemade tea bags for my birthday.

homemade teabags

Relax – peppermint & elderflower
Rejuvenate – liquorice root & elderflower
Tonic – Sencha green tea & nettle
Uplift – lemon balm & bilberry
Unwind – lemon balm & camomile
Eyebright – bilberry, marrow & liquorice root

She tied the different tea leaves in cheesecloth, using thread. Such a beautiful gift.

Relax went perfectly with this homemade healthy paleo fudge. It’s all about paleo these days, isn’t it?

paleo healthy fudge

I blended:

1/2 cup of raw macadamia nuts
10 medjoola dates
1 tsp cacao

1/2 cup of desiccated coconut
rind of one lemon
1 tsp vanilla essence

I pressed it into a bread-makers tin, using a tin of the same dimensions to press it flat, then put it in the freezer. Cut into squares and enjoy with homemade tea.

Ah, winter. A time for indulgence and keeping warm.

What do you like most about winter?

Nourishing baby food

The first time round, we did it all wrong.

We have created a toddler that sits on our backs during dinner. We have to feed her morsels when she is playing so she gets enough carbs. We rely way too heavily on car trips and television. And far too heavily on salmon hand rolls. What would our life be like without sushi?

It started with a whole avocado at five point five months, and descended into back climbing, television eating, plain salmon hand rolling.

This is the primary reason for having a second child. So we can get it right-er.

This time, I am following Jude Blereau’s book Wholefood for Children. Because I have an inbuilt inability to read recipes, I use the term “follow” loosely. But it’s a great reference. This book has taught me that babies like highly nutritious food. Like brains and liver. They also like food that taste good – presumably not like brains and liver, and more like pear with coconut oil.

bookpreview03

My baby concoctions taste delicious. This, and the fact that I am actually preparing food for Baby breakfast, lunch and dinner put me in the running for having a three-year-old who eats healthily without fuss.

As long as she doesn’t pick up any tricks from her older sister.

So, I have two little jars. While I am making the family breakfast, I boil up two pots – one with half a chopped beetroot and a few slivers of ginger, the other with half a chopped pear and one chopped carrot. Then I whizz up half the carrot with the pear with 1 tsp of coconut oil. Jar it. The second whizz has the rest of the carrot, beetroot and ginger.

Delicious yum yum

Delicious yum yum for babies

Freaking delicious. Really. This is baby food I would actually eat.

My two little jars easily last two days.

Another combo I try when there is no time to cook and whizz is to mush banana with a tablespoon of homemade yoghurt. Again, yum. And Baby loves it. See?

Beetroot face

Beetroot face

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