Household Mag.

Mom and Dad Made a Podcast - Episode 5

MotherhoodHailey AndresenComment

On our next episode of Mom and Dad Made a Podcast we're talking about traveling with kids. It’s been awhile, but we will be heading out of the country with Owen after the first of the year and we figured we would share our tips and tricks for traveling with little ones. Listen as we chit chat, share some new segments and get into how we suggest maintaining your sanity while traveling this season! Fair warning, we do get into S-a-n-t-a so you know, maybe listen to this one during nap time or after the kids are down. Listen, download and subscribe here. Thanks guys! 

Photo by Amy Frances

Balancing it All, Mealtime Included

Food + Drink, MotherhoodHailey AndresenComment

If you’ve been following along here for even a small chunk of time you already know that the time we spend as a family around the table consuming meals is just about the most cherished part of our days. Food is important to us to say the least and instilling this distinct belief and appreciation in Owen is something that Zack and I discussed before Owen was even born. These conversations first came up when I was pregnant, and at that time it seemed a little daunting, but somehow it seemed far enough away that it was easy to put in the back of our minds. It wasn’t until we were truly in the thick of it that we really started to weigh our options on exactly how we would introduce foods to Owen. When he hit the six month mark we decided to start with Baby Led Weaning which has been fantastic for us ever since. Over time, Owen has proven to be an incredible and adventurous eater and mealtimes (provided everyone is well rested) are generally very enjoyable for us all - which I didn’t realize was such a rarity with small kids until recently so I feel really lucky.

All of that being said, it’s often difficult to get quality meals on the table three times a day. I’m fortunate enough to work from home, so not only to do I have the opportunity to make a living and take care of Owen, but we have the opportunity to eat each and every meal together. But, life is busy and shopping, prepping and cooking for three meals a day feels basically impossible. Most weekdays I’m juggling work, Household Mag, taking care of Owen and quality meals often times fall by the wayside. Whether it’s acceptable or not for myself is one thing, but it’s something I really struggled with for Owen. Our busy lifestyle shouldn’t mean that he’s lacking nutrients or that we are rushing through meals to get to the next activity or task. I was beginning to feel a little desperate for some help and then like magic, I stumbled upon Nurture Life’s website.

For those of you who don’t know, Nurture Life is a ready-to-eat, subscription based food service for children between the ages of six months and eighteen years, which delivers fresh, wholesome, organic meals, weekly and straight to your door. Nurture Life’s passion is to impact the healthy development of our children. When you sign up for their service you provide your children’s ages, dietary preferences and their chefs get to work. Each week you have the option to make adjustments based on your child’s eating habits and your schedule - you can even pause your subscription if you know it’s a week where you won’t need the assistance quite as much. Nurture Life offers a menu designed by their team of chefs and a pediatric dietitian, full of flavorful options and kid-friendly favorites, so that you can choose the meals you’d like for your little ones. They even offer a “Chef’s Choice” menu that auto populates your order for you if you are too busy to choose or just want to try out something new. Meals are delivered once a week and are cold, but never frozen - you simply refrigerate once you receive your shipment and reheat throughout the week as needed. Prices vary depending on the age of your children and the amount that you order, but for our weekly box, which includes five toddler meals, we pay $47, and they also have an option for ten meals which costs $89.

Since placing my first order with Nurture Life, I had the chance to chat with one of the co-founders to hear a little more about their story - a story that sounds all too familiar. The founders of Nurture Life started the company because they too, were busy and were finding that there weren’t nearly enough hours in the day to balance it all, mealtime included. After working our way through a couple weeks worth of food from Nurture Life there are a few aspects of their service that have really sold me on making their subscription part of our weekly routine. I wanted to share this with you guys because I realize it takes a village and sometimes we all need a little support - especially during the busy holiday season we are in the midst of.

One, the option for five meals is perfect for us and our schedule - although I can see how nice having ten would be as well. I essentially look at our subscription as five meals I don’t have to worry about prepping or cooking for Owen. Often times we turn to his Nurture Life meals for lunch because midday is the busiest time of the day for me while I’m working at home which is such a relief for me. Two, not only is the preparation and cook time completely removed, but I’m also saving the time I would spend recipe planning and grocery shopping for these meals - so helpful! I am able to pause each day for lunch and really connect with Owen over our meal rather than hustling to get food on the table and rushing through the meal. It’s given me some time back and that’s such a treat! Three, because of the team of chefs and pediatric dietitian Nurture Life works with, I know that I can trust that their ingredients are the highest quality and that they are developing recipes that will support Owen’s growth and development.

So, if you’re finding yourself in the same position as me, take the help. I know I have a hard time letting go of control, but sometimes you need the support and it’s okay. In this situation it’s especially okay, because Nurture Life has you covered. Learn more about Nurture Life’s services by visiting their site here.

Photography by Amy Frances.

This post was sponsored by Nurture Life. Use the code HOUSEHOLD2016 through December 31st to receive $30 off your first order. 


#togetherwemother Series

MotherhoodHailey AndresenComment

This month we're talking about "what motherhood has made you grateful for" in our #togetherwemother series. Don't forget to visit the rest of the bloggers in this series at the end of this post to read their unique experiences, and thanks for taking the time to read mine.

Normally I would go on one long rant about what I’m grateful for, especially since Thanksgiving is tomorrow and that in itself has me feeling all sorts of sappy and thankful, but in order to keep myself organized and sane, I’m going to stick to a light hearted list style here. Here are the five things motherhood has made me grateful for.

1. Showers. I wish someone would have told me when I was pregnant to take long, luxurious showers - honestly. Shampoo your hair twice, sing, daydream - whatever it is you do in there. Why doesn’t anyone tell you that a shower without interruption will soon be a vacation? I will never take another shower in peace for granted again, and I will always use being a mother as an excuse to shave my legs as infrequently as I’d like, because if you can’t beat ‘em join ‘em, right?!

2. Sleep. Ever since daylight savings the majority of the country set their clocks back, but Owen didn’t seem to get the memo. He is now waking up an hour earlier and it’s dark and I feel like a teenager before school in the morning. So needless to say,  I wish that I would have listened to everyone who told me to rest when I was pregnant. And more than anything else, I want to grab all my pals without kids and shake them like this when they say they’re tired. “Cherish it!”

3. Health. I was so lucky to have had a healthy pregnancy and to have given birth to a healthy baby, and I try to remind myself of this each and every time Owen catches any bit of sickness. He tends to run high fevers that send me into overdrive with worry anytime he is slightly under the weather, but they also make me realize that I am so lucky that it’s this and not something else. I am so unbelievably thankful.

4. Mothers. Before I had kids I seriously didn’t get it. I know I was that bitchy twenty something that was judgmental about mothers and their struggles - their sweatpants and their kids clutching iPads and smartphones in restaurants. While I try to combat those same challenges daily, I really understand just how tough it is to get yourself and your kiddo out the door. Sometimes sweatpants are the only option and well, fresh air and conversation are far more memorable in my opinion than the perfect outfit. So mothers, I admire you all, because I know if you're anything like me you are simply doing your best and loving you kids the best way you know how. 

5. Family. There’s nothing quite like building your own family. The idea that Zack and I chose each other twice (yes twice, if you haven’t read the full story do so here) and then made Owen is still insane to me. There is so much to say here, but ultimately I love that we are establishing our own traditions with each holiday that passes and that we are forming memories that Owen will carry with him as he gets older. Being a family isn’t always easy, but this year I am especially thankful to call Zack and Owen my teammates. Love doesn’t even begin to describe it.

Photo by Amy Frances

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