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Posts Tagged ‘romanesco

Our dear friend Amy mentioned a local farm to us quite a few months back.  It’s only about a 10 minute drive from our house, and we didn’t know about it.  King Family Farm and Market is a local, family owned farm in our area that uses organic practices.  I can’t say enough great things the farm itself and the kindness of the King family and staff.  I did a previous post on Earth Day about a baby sheep at the farm which was a special experience for my kids.  King Family Farm‘s latest addition, “April”, a baby sheep.

In the last few months, my 2 and 4 year old have learned what plants look like when they grow, that insects and bugs ARE an important part of growing plants, that knowing your local farmer makes you appreciate your food and most importantly my kids get to CHOOSE the vegetables and fruits they are going to try that week.  Since we’ve been visiting the farm, my kids now eat, broccoli, kale, cauliflower, romanseco, leeks and even ask for tomatoes for a snack.  Everything is packed with nutrients because it hasn’t been shipped anywhere.  In fact, it’s usually picked that morning.  One day I asked for collared greens because I didn’t see them, and they had someone cut me a fresh bunch.  I was floored.  We love eating local and supporting our neighbors.  The only drawback for us is that most of the farms here close for the summer.  It’s already about 90 degrees every day which doesn’t make for ideal growing conditions.

The best part about visiting the farm for my kids is that it’s an open space for them to run.  They can climb a big tree or two, run in the field and all while they learn where their food comes from.  There is also a fenced area with sheep and a donkey better known as Bubba the burro.  Bubba is there to protect the sheep from coyotes.  We immediately fell in love with Bubba.  At first we just went to check out the animals.  Now my kids start chanting Bubba in the car if they think it’s been too long since we’ve seen him.  We even buy fresh carrots from the farm to feed Bubba and the sheep.

What’s not to love about this face?

When we returned yesterday from visiting the farm before they close for the summer, I made the girls these lunches.

What’s my point?  I am always trying to help friend and families find new ways of introducing kids to new foods.  Kids embrace new experiences with enthusiasm.  They will be more willing to try new things if they choose them on their own.

I am encouraging you rather than taking the kids to the grocery store, save your produce shopping for the local farmer’s markets, the u-pick farms and seek our local farmers like these for your fruits, vegetables, and other local foods, plants and homemade products.  Not only will you eat better, but your food will be fresher, contain more nutrients, most likely more affordable and you will get your kids to try the new things they choose themselves.  Our rule at home is that they don’t have to like it right away but they do have to try it.  Very often they decide they like it and eat it anyway!

Here are some resources for you no matter where you are in the country:

http://www.localharvest.org/

http://www.pickyourown.org/

http://www.eatwellguide.org/

Field of zinnias at King Family Farm and Market, Bradenton, FL

One last very important thing!  THANK YOU to all of you who voted for me!  I am unofficially in the Circle of Moms Top 25 Foodie Moms list!  Voting ended last night, and I came in at #17.  They will officially publish the list next month.  I appreciate everyone who took the time to vote!  Thanks again!

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Having kids made me much more aware of everything.  Taking care of our bodies & the Earth were two of the main reasons I started to do bento boxes for the kids.  I think one of the most important thing parents can teach their kids is to appreciate the things around us that we have.  Don’t waste resources.  Working hard even at 2 & 4 to help do your part so you will value the things you have and the effort it takes to get them.

Since we’re eating a plant-based diet now, we go each week to the local farms to get our fruits and vegetables.  The kids get to choose what they want to eat or try that week.  They have tried more vegetables than even by choosing their own, buying locally, organically grown crops and eating what is in season.  We are lucky to live where we do because it means we can do so almost year-round.

We went to our favorite local farm today, King Family Farm and Market.  We adore the farm.   Today we were lucky enough to have the girls hold, pet and feed a 2 week old lamb which was the highlight of their week.

Almost everything is grown there or locally.  The girls get to see how the food is grown, picked or cut and get dirty if they so choose.  Today we picked up romanesco.  We had never tried it until last month, and now we’re hooked! This is what it looks like:

It’s in the broccoli family but it’s like broccoli and cauliflower gone wild.  The best part is that it’s taste is much more mild.  My kids have tried but never eaten broccoli or cauliflower.  After they ate the romanseco cooked with leeks, they will eat all 3 now!

Miss G is having a Love Your Mother (Earth) tree.  At the top right, she has a cup of broccoli & romanseco and on the bottom right is a cup of heart shaped kiwi slices with blueberries around it.  The tree sandwich is on Rudi’s whole grain bread with Justin’s Almond Butter & blackberry jam and a crust for the trunk.  The hearts are made from vegan cheese and fruit leather.  The “love your mother” is all in cherry fruit leather.  In the green cup is israeli cous cous dyed with India Tree food coloring and a green apple heart on top packed in her Easy Lunch Box.

Little A has little leaf sandwiches of the same almond butter & jam.  At the top left are blueberries with a kiwi heart on top.  The top right green square has frozen peas in it and the bottom right blue cup has sliced red pears underneath a honeydew melon recycle symbol packed in her LunchBots stainless bento box.

For a special Earth Day treat, I colored some So Delicious brand dairy free coconut milk ice cream with blue food coloring and froze a green kiwi heart in the middle.  Each day the girls have filtered ice water packed in their CamelBak reusable, BPA free bottles.

Please click on the Earth Day Globe button below to check out what Marie at Healthy Eating Starts At Home cooked up and follow the links all the way through!


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