Spring is in the air so I am feeling green!

I am trying to “Go Green” this year. I think I can improve on my green-ness in 3 easy ways:

  1. Composting. My family has always recycled as much as possible, but I still feel guilty whenever I am throwing out banana peels, vegetable cores, and other compostable waste. So what to do about it? I signed up at our local home show for a composting seminar for which I get a free compost bin, tools, and lessons provided I track my waste for the next few weeks and track my compost for 1 year. If you are interested in learning more about composting check out your city website and you might be surprised what they might offer!
  2. Starting a garden. Since moving into my home 3 years ago I have wanted to garden. Our yard is small and can’t fit the large garden plot I had as a child. So, we started simple the last few years with potted tomato plants since we found most of our summer time was devoted to our boys rather than yard maintenance. This year we are going to step it up since we have achieved more balance in our lives and the boys are old enough to help – so learning to garden will become a family affair. Whatever we can’t grow we will hopefully be able to buy from the farmer’s market or local farms. My friend Leanne gave me a 1 foot “garden plot” tool to help me on my way. It has a map on it to help my kids and I squeeze as many vegetables into our 1 foot plots without over doing it. I am hoping we can at least do a 1 x 12 foot plot along our garage since it is currently a wasted space. Pinterest also has lots of ideas on gardening.
  3. Eating more vegetables! Now I remember I said this was one of my family’s New Year’s Resolutions and I haven’t forgotten about this. My boys seem to be getting pickier and with progressively smaller appetites (help?!) so this has been one challenge among many lately. I feel there is even that much more pressure as I am a Dietitian and talk about food with parents every day! My potential help: I broke down and purchased a Vitamix blender. We’ve used it 3 days and let’s just say the boys have consumed more spinach in 3 days than they have in their combined 6 years of life! I receive no endorsements from this company, but sure wish I did! The best feature of the Vitamix is that it is versatile. It is so powerful it can make flours, hot soups, and can blend anything smooth – even an apple, core and all. Bonus feature: Once the kids saw what went into the blender, they were more willing to try the ingredients (such as fresh pineapple) on its own whereas before they rarely touched it. Victory is mine!

Here is the recipe we tried this weekend: Going Green Smoothie (by Vitamix), serves 4.

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup green grapes
  • 1/2 cup fresh pineapple
  • 1/2 large banana
  • 2 cups fresh spinach, lightly packed
  • 1/2 cup ice cubes

Place all ingredients in the Vitamix container, blend on high until smooth consistency reached.

This provides per serving 1 vegetable/fruit serving for 4 people. 54 Calories, 0 Fat, 237mg Potassium, 14g Carbohydrate, 1.4g Fibre, 1g Protein, Source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Folate.

How do you plan to be green this spring?

Happy Easter!

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Welcome 2013!

Christmas Postcard 2012-001Happy New Year to all my readers out there!

I hope you all have had a happy holiday season and a Merry Christmas. Here is the Christmas card I made this year from a make-shift photo shoot I did with my boys (mind you still to be mailed out – I proudly acknowledge that I am not always a mom who can do-it-all despite what people think!). My boys continue to be the joy of my life and my inspiration to continue to work in the Neonatal Intensive Care and Pediatrics fields. We have had a lot of fun this holiday season as a family with visits from both sides of the family, shopping, tobogganing, and of course making sugar cookies!

Ok, so back to my post. I am not one to usually make New Year’s Resolutions, however experts say that if you write them down it helps keep you accountable. I am not sure why we need experts on how to keep resolutions, but I am going to go with it and try to keep mine this year.

My 5 New Year’s Resolutions:

  1. Blog more! I will be aiming for a regular monthly post, so stay tuned and send me your post ideas and nutrition questions.
  2. Try one new food/recipe EVERY month AS A FAMILY. This one seems easy, though I am more open to trying new foods some days than my kids, and some days they are more keen than myself! My hope is that by committing to trying some new foods and dishes, I can share my food adventures and trials with you.
  3. Learn more about culture specific foods and traditions. I have a lot of multicultural  families frequent my Dietitian services that have specific cultural food choices that I know little about, for example: Ethiopian food! There are some clients for which I honestly know little about the true essence of their food (nutrition content included), and meal time habits and traditions, though I have learned a lot over the past few years.
  4. Have more fun with food! I find it tough some days to “play” with my food and encourage this from my kids. Hoping to try some of the food decor ideas I have pinned to my Pinterest board!
  5. Spend more time as a family being active. I have registered my son for several physical activities to do over the course of the year, but have found it hard to incorporate regular activities into my (and my husband’s) schedules. This is definitely something I want to work on this year to be healthier. Maybe we will try some new activities this year too!

Here’s to creating some inspiring meals in 2013 and beyond!

Melissa Lachapelle, RD