Time for a heart to heart and a sip of pink tinted Strawberry flavored Crio Bru! Chocolate has a way of paving the way for the best chit chats, am I right?!
Hello all of you wonderful people! It's so nice to have you here for another round of TIDBITS Talk: April Edition. If you were at my home we'd be taking this chat outside because the weather is GORGEOUS. It has breathed a whole new sense of joy into my soul!
March's TIDBITS Talk was a treasure trove of information from all of you! The comments section is an amazing read!
- Several of you gave your best tips and tricks of how to feed a family, I feel like there should be an ebook with all these tips in one place!
- I cried as I read through your suggestions of how to rediscover your inner child. Nancy inspired me to buy a pogo stick and to dance with abandon whenever I feel like it
- Karen reminded us all that the best vacations can be found in our own home towns. So many experiences and memories to be made just minutes from our homes! She inspired me to drop everything and take a quickie vacation with my sister Cami for Spring Break that involved a crash course on the train system. Our poor children had to put their precious lives into the hands of two clueless travelers, but we did it, we survived, and we laughed out loud many, many times
- Many of you had a good laugh at my son's very poorly orchestrated lie, if you ever need a pick me up in your day, this video will do it
- I found some fellow Butcher Box fans! I never knew I could get excited about home delivery meat, but I'm diggin' it big time. There's a Breakfast Bundle special going on this month if you're interested in trying it
- I've converted a few condiment lovers over to Sir Kensington's side. The Special Sauce, ohhh, it's so good!
And many more goodies! If you have a moment, the comments section is such a treasure to read through.
Congrats to Kellie, our Crio Bru winner. Report back on those Cacao Chips!
Now let's dive into some April chit chat!
IMPORTANT ITEMS OF BUSINESS TODAY
- I'll be answering an email from one of my readers: “Why do you meditate, what does it do for you, and how did you get into it?”
- One of you wants to know what my husband does for work, which I'm interpreting as, “How did you afford to quit your job to stay at home and cook and talk about food all day?” Haha!
- Kids and Manners – someone save me
- Comfortable Jeans and do they exist
- Reader Highlight – The Strength of a Child
- My son is back to tell you where babies come from . . . just watch
- Things I'm lovin' lately: Almond Butter that's good for you and tastes like cookie dough? Yep!
- Crio Bru Flavor of the Month and a GIVEAWAY!
Let's do this!
MY MEDITATION JOURNEY
My meditation journey began in 2013, the year this picture was taken. This might help you understand why I went searching for peace, ha ha!
I'll answer each of these questions individually:
WHY DO YOU MEDITATE?
Oh wow, that's a hard one to answer because the specific answer to this could change on a daily basis. Basically, I meditate to help me feel calm amidst the storm called life. Some may call me a Control Freak (who me?), OCD (Life can't go on until the dishes are done), and/or Impulsive (working on 7 ideas at one time is normal, right?).
I'll admit my toe dips into all of these personalities on a daily basis which sets me up for imminent distress. Three years of regularly practicing meditation has helped me to see the natural waves of life happening around me without feeling like every wave is going to pull me under.
I've learned to observe emotions, acknowledge them, and let them go. No, I'm not an expert at this by any means, but I have come a LONG way and I love that I am able to teach these skills to my children, as well, while they are still young. I sure could have used better mind control in high school and college when I thought every breakup or friend mishap was surely prime time news worthy.
WHAT DOES MEDITATION DO FOR YOU?
It gives me confidence in my ability to do hard things, to feel anxious/scared/sad without thinking I will always feel that way, to see my failures as stepping stones to success, and above all to give myself a break when I'm not the perfect mother. Meditation has helped me be able to show compassion to myself, just as I would show it to another. In short, it's changed my way of thinking and made life's challenges feel lighter.
HOW DID YOU GET INTO MEDIATION?
For whatever reason, the idea of meditation originally seemed kooky, awkward, and extreme. However, something about the overwhelming task of caring for three kids 2 and under makes any possible “fix” sound worth trying.
My first attempts were simply me, sitting on a pillow, quietly humming in the dark (don't laugh, I was just doing what I saw in movies!). That felt strange so I ordered 2 books and a DVD on Amazon. I learned a little, but still felt lost. I took some yoga/meditation classes, did an online course, and still, nothing was clicking for me.
My light bulb moment came when I discovered the app Headspace. This app with it's colorful, playful teaching videos and quiet, peaceful, guided meditations had me finally understanding the meaning and purpose of mediation.
The array of topics from Anxiety to Sleep to Happiness spoke to my organized soul and I was able to confidently jump in and embrace it.
A year ago I discovered Brooke Snow's Gospel Meditation Course and I can honestly say it was the turning point that stopped my inner degrading voice. “LIFE CHANGING” is the best way to describe it and I can guarantee your world will be brighter if you take this course no matter how glum your current situation may be. Listen to her podcast on Finding Your Life Purpose for a little sneak peek of all you can learn in this course. You'll never be the same.
How about you? Tell me what you think regarding mediation! I'd love to hear your thoughts on this one!
WORK HARD, PLAY HARD?
My husband's motto should instead be, “Play hard and call it work” haha!
Never have I ever personally seen anyone else take something they're so passionate about and turn it into a full-time job. My husbandly literally “plays” on a daily basis for his work and the proof is on his Instagram account.
It's absolutely impossible for me to tell you what his specific job title is, but in a large nutshell he is a Dirt Bike/Snow Bike Athlete, Motorcycle Mechanic, Self Taught Motorcycle Engineer, Magazine Cover Model, Riding Coach, Snow Bike Stunt Man, Inventor, Crazy Mom Therapist, Movie Star, Kids' Role Model, and of course, his most important gig, a professional TIDBITS Food Taster. Basically, he does a little of everything and appears to the outside world to be playing his life away. He's an inspiration to many and I'm very proud to be his occasional Stunt Mama Motorcycle Side Kick.
WELL MANNERED KIDS AND CAN THEY EXIST?
Do you ever feel like the harder you try to teach your kids manners, the worse it gets? Like just the mere reminder of, “Remember, no fart jokes at the restaurant” turns into an array of giggles at every sound that even remotely resembles flatulence in front of innocent bystanders who thought they were going out for an enjoyable dinner. Is my husband correct when he says it's a losing battle to insist on perfect manners from twin 6-year-old boys? Any advice on the subject is greatly appreciated! I am not winning on this one at all.
COMFORTABLE JEANS – SAVE ME FROM MY STRETCHY PANTS
I'm no fashionista, you've heard me express my yoga pants love before, but I feel at my “cutest” when I'm in a good lookin' pair of jeans. Problem is that I'm so used to comfy, stretchy “pants” that wearing jeans feels very close to a straitjacket for my legs. Help a girl out!!! Where can I get a cute, comfy, jean?!
READER HIGHLIGHT – THE STRENGTH OF A CHILD
This month's reader highlight comes from Alyssa and her daughter Kimber.
Kimber was born April 2013 weighing just 3 lbs 9 Oz. She didn’t cry, couldn’t eat and hardly ever moved. 2 months and 3 NICUs later she finally received a diagnosis of Prader Willi Syndrome. Prader Willi (PWS) is a rare and extremely complex genetic disorder caused by a deletion of the paternal 15th Chromosome. PWS causes many medical and behavioral complications but is most known for causing a constant sense of hunger. Kimber is hungry 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
Despite facing challenges most kids don’t even have to think about, Kimber is a bright and contagiously happy 6-year-old. She loves to read, ride her horse, and help mom in the kitchen. Kimber is thriving thanks to the support and continued education provided to her family through the Utah Prader Willi Syndrome Association. This association is run completely by volunteers (parents of children with PWS) and funds received during fundraisers and awareness events held every year between April and May. Without funding, Kimber and other kids living with this complex disorder cannot get the support they need to live to their full potential.
Click Here to donate to the Prader Willi Association. It's simple and quick to do, and even $5 will help. If you'd like to continue to follow Kimber's story, you can LIKE Alyssa's Facebook page. It'll make you a better person watching this little girl grow, I can promise you that.
If you have a business, blog, cause, or product you want to be highlighted, send me an email. I am honored to bring recognition to you wonderful people and to help your life passions grow!
WHERE DO BABIES COME FROM – HERE YOU THOUGHT YOU KNEW
In case you were looking for an instructional video to show your kids, my hilarious son is back with some words of wisdom.
THINGS I'M LOVIN' LATELY
RX Peanut Butter and Almond Butter: Now in a jar! I highly suggest the Chocolate Peanut Butter (very Reeses Peanut Butter Cup-like) and the Vanilla Almond Butter (tastes like a sugar cookie!). They have no added sugar in them and are the perfect amount of creamy. I am hooked for life!
Air Fryer: Do you guys have one of these? I can't say I use it a ton, but the 2 – 5 times I use it a week, I really, REALLY love it! I made this Panko Crusted Halibut in the air fryer recently and that was the recipe that finally convinced me it was time to tell you about this wonderful appliance.
Strangely enough, I use the air fryer most for reheating leftovers (it brings them back to life in a wonderfully crispy way – crunchy bites of shredded pork anyone?) and for packaged foods like my favorite Veggie Fries. Other things I've loved in it – tempura vegetables, tofu, reheated rice (crispy, buttery rice clumps, yum!), sweet potato fries, turkey steaks, pot stickers, and so much more. I have this Go Wise brand and I think it's fabulous. I don't suggest going any smaller than the one I'm linking to, in fact, I wish I could have one twice the size!
ART FOR KIDS HUB
I have high energy kids, but one of them in particular really struggles to calm himself down when he's overly excited or upset. To my heavenly rescue – Art for Kids Hub! I originally discovered these “How to Draw (blank)” tutorials on YouTube, but was excited to find there was a blog where my kids could easily search for new things to draw without running into yucky content on YouTube.
These videos include an adult and child drawing and coloring fun pictures with easy to follow steps. My kids all love these videos and have created some pretty impressive drawings. I bought them all a sketchbook and they love filling it with these doodles. Try it out!
CRIO BRU FLAVOR OF THE MONTH – STRAWBERRY!
Now for our Crio Bru flavor of the month – Instant Pot Strawberry Crio Bru. I tried desperately to flavor this Crio Bru with actual strawberries, but both fresh and freeze dried strawberries made the Crio Bru taste kind of funky. I had all but given up on the idea until my daughter suggested making it with Strawberry Milk.
Store bought strawberry milk tends to be loaded with sugar and dyes so I wasn't thrilled about the idea, but with a little research, I discovered a couple of brands that were better than most.
Horizon Organic Strawberry Milk is sweetened with cane sugar and was white, meaning it didn't have any artificial coloring in it. However, I could only find it in single serving containers so that got a little expensive. This was our favorite tastewise.
TruMoo Strawberry Milk is lower in sugar than Horizon and was easier to find in a larger size. It's bright pink color and ingredient “color added” made me think it was artificially colored so I emailed the company who stated that there are no artificial dyes in their milk. “Our strawberry milk uses beta carotene for color. It is naturally found in orange, yellow, and green leafy fruits and vegetables, and milk; also, it may be synthetically prepared.”
I'm still not 100% sure what turns it that bright pink, but honestly, for the occasional times that we enjoy this Strawberry Crio Bru, I'm not gonna stress it.
WHY YOU WILL LOVE STRAWBERRY CRIO BRU IN THE INSTANT POT
- Reminiscent of a Chocolate Dipped Strawberry in warm drinkable form
- If you use TruMoo, the Crio Bru is almost pink which is just delightful!
- Kids love this one! Topped with a dollop of cream and they were in love!
HOW TO MAKE CHOCOLATE STRAWBERRY HEAVEN
- Add all of the ingredients to the pot
- Cook 5 minutes
- Pour through a fine mesh strainer and enjoy!
MORE CRIO BRU FLAVORS TO TRY
TOOLS/INGREDIENTS USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT STRAWBERRY CRIO BRU
- Instant Pot
- Crio Bru on their website or on Amazon – Crio Bru Ghana is the flavor I usually buy
- Fine Mesh Sieve
- Horizon Organic Strawberry Milk
Instant Pot Strawberry Crio Bru
Chocolate dipped Strawberries in a warm, comforting, drinkable form!
- Prep Time: 2 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 4 cups 1x
- Category: Drink
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- 3 cups strawberry milk
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup Crio Bru grounds
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Add all of the ingredients to the pressure cooker pot.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position.
- Cook at high pressure for 5 minutes
- When cooking is complete, use a natural release for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.
- Place a fine mesh sieve over a bowl and pour Crio Bru through the sieve to filter out the grounds. Be careful! The Crio Bru will be very hot.
- Serve immediately with a Frozen Whipped Cream Dollop if desired.
- Store cooled leftovers in a mason jar in the fridge. It tastes delicious cold or warmed in the microwave for 1 – 2 minutes
- A fine mesh sieve is important here so you don’t end up with a gritty beverage
- This can be easily doubled and stored in the fridge. When you want a cup, simply microwave it for about 2 minutes
Keywords: instant pot recipe, chocolate drink, Crio Bru