If you tune in with us regularly, you probably already know that my daughter loves to read. She has many favorites that we read all the time, but we try to introduce new books as much as possible. We visit the library every two weeks & pick out our new reads & look for potential new favorites.
‘First the Egg’ is a charming book with beautiful and simple illustrations. It shows the development from egg to chicken, tadpole to frog, caterpillar to butterfly & more. It uses cut-outs to form the initial form & then reveals the transformation when you turn the page. We enjoyed this one so much that it inspired an art project based on its lovely cut-out concept.
Fold a piece of tan construction paper in half like a book. Sketch out an egg shape on the top page & cut it out.
Lightly trace around your cut-out onto the bottom page. Open the page up & paint a picture of a chicken. Make sure to cover all of the light outline. My daughter kept the book open in front of her & did a great job painting. My daughter blended the blues & yellows into the chicken just like in the book.
Set the painting aside to let it dry & then glue one googly eye onto your chicken.
When you close the page, it will show the egg on the front.
When opening the page, the egg is revealed to have the chicken underneath.
This was a fun project & it sparked my daughter to want to create similar crafts using the same cut-out technique. If you haven’t already, I recommend checking out this delightful book.
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There are some things in parenthood that do not make sense to me. The most recent in a long line of things that puzzle me is this, you have all heard me cry & whine over what a difficult eater our daughter is, then how do you explain this…
If the daily battle with my daughter at mealtime wasn’t frustrating enough, I now find out that she is capable of eating at each meal, just not for us. Siiiiggh! There are a few foods that I can count on that she will eat, pancakes, French toast & spaghetti. As you can see she likes her carbs. When possible we try to sneak in meat and our fruits & veggies, but it does not always work. Today’s menu had a couple of wins and a definite loss.
Breakfast: Banana & Nutella Pancakes
I had a couple of over-ripened bananas that needed to be used, so pancakes were a great place to use them.
Smash the bananas with a fork in a small mixing bowl. Add the egg & beat together & set aside. In a medium sized mixing bowl add 1 cup of all purpose flour, 1 tbsp of brown sugar, 2 tsp of baking powder, 1 tsp of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp salt, 3/4 cup of milk & 2 tbsp vegetable oil & stir. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture & stir well. Stir in 1/3 cup of Nutella. Pour about 1/8 of a cup of batter into a griddle or in a frying pan set on medium heat. Cook until the pancake is bubbly & the edges are cooked. Flip the pancake & cook on the other side until cooked all the way through.
Breakfast was a success. She ate 4 pancakes of her own & a few bites of mine too. Score one for mommy.
Lunch: Monte Cristo Roll Ups:
Preheat the oven to 375. Cut the crusts off of 6 slices of bread. With a rolling pin, roll out each slice off bread. Beat an egg in a medium sized bowl. Brush one side of each slice with the egg. Cut a slice of ham so that it fits inside the slice. Cut a slice of Swiss cheese so that it only covers half of the slice. Roll the bread started at the cheese end. Dip the whole roll into the egg mixture covering the entire roll-up. Place on a greased cookie sheet & dust with confectioner’s sugar. Bake for about 7-8 minutes until golden brown.
While this was a big hit with mommy & daddy, Mai refused to try it. I tried bribery & pleading. “Just take one little bite.” Negative. This was a lunch time fail. The score now is 1-1.
Mexican Chicken Rice Bake
1 cup of uncooked white rice
1 pound of chicken cut into strips
1 cup of water
1 cup of milk
1 can of regular tomato soup (10.75 oz)
1 can of corn drained (8.75 oz)
1/4 cup of diced red peppers
1/4 cup of diced orange peppers
1/4 cup of diced yellow peppers
1 packet of taco seasoning
1 cup of shredded Mexican cheese
Preheat oven to 375. Dice your vegetables & cut your chicken into strips & set aside in a casserole dish (I used a 9×12) add the rice, water & taco seasoning, stir well until seasoning is broken up & evenly distributed. Stir in the tomato soup & milk. Pour the corn & peppers over the top. Place the chicken strips over the top. Cover with foil & bake for about 45 minutes (cook times may vary). Remove foil, add the cheese & bake for 5 more minutes. Remove & let sit for a few minutes to cool. The top may appear slightly watery. The sauce will thicken upon standing. Scoop & serve.
It was a pretty good eating day other than lunch, but you win some & you lose some.
I love fried foods. The problem is they don’t feel the same way about me. With all my tummy issues, it is impossible for me to eat anything deep fried. I miss french fries, chicken wings & fried chicken. Luckily, all of these naughty foods can also be baked in lieu of frying.
Oven Baked “Fried” Chicken
A family size package of drumsticks (about 12 drumsticks)
2 cups of Panko bread crumbs
1 cup of parmesan cheese
1 cup of flour
2 eggs beaten
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp paprika
Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 425. Combine the bread crumbs, parmesan, oregano, garlic salt, paprika & pepper in a large bowl. Pat the chicken dry. Dip the chicken in flour & then dip into the egg. Put a 1/4 of the breadcrumb mixture into a large Ziplock bag. Put 3 chicken legs in the bag & shake until well coated. Dispose of the leftover contents of the Ziplock bag. Do this 3 more times until you have coated all of the chicken legs and have used all of the breaded mixture. Place the breaded drumsticks on a foil lined baking sheet & bake for 45 minutes.
When you have a toddler, there are good days & there are bad. Some days, you want to just rip your hair straight from your skull and others like today make you grateful beyond belief.
Our daughter is such a love bug & loves when mommy and daddy are both home together. They don’t happen often, so when they do she takes advantage of it. I was equally as happy to have us all together this evening. Since we were all home for a family dinner tonight, I made one our favorite meals, Asian style drumsticks over rice.
Asian Style Drumsticks
1/4 cup of orange juice
1/4 cup of soy sauce (Golden Mountain or Maggi are recommended)
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp crushed garlic
1/4 tsp powdered ginger
1/4 tsp cayenne powder
Flour for dusting
Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 450. In a bowl mix orange juice, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, cayenne & honey. Stir well. Dust the chicken with flour lightly & place in a baking dish. Pour marinade over the chicken, turning and coating each piece well. Add pepper to taste. Place them on a foil lined baking sheet. Spoon the marinade over the top of each drumstick. Bake for about 45-50 minutes, flip & move the chicken around in it’s sauce occasionally.
After dinner, Mai wanted the whole family to retire to the couch & sit under the blankets. We were snuggled up so sweetly that I wanted to take a family photo to capture it. I set the camera on the coffee table on self timer & took a photo. What developed from there was a fun filled selfie evening that had all of us smiling. Even Dukey got in on the action & fun.
I recently discovered that my little girl loves ham. It was an amazing discovery considering that she does not eat anything. Mommy wanted to make a family dish tonight using ham in hopes that my little picky eater would gobble it up. Did it work? Join us for dinner & see.
Chicken Cordon Bleu Risotto
2 cups of rice
1 1/2 cup of diced ham
1 1/2 cup of cubed cooked chicken
6 slices of swiss cheese
2 cans of heated chicken broth
1/2 cup of water
1 cup of heated milk
1 tbsp of olive oil
1/4 cup of grated parmesan
1/2 tbsp paprika
1/2 tsp pepper
In a large skillet, add oil & ham. Cook over medium heat just for about a minute or 2 stirring the ham and browning slightly. Add the water and rice. Stir constantly until all liquid is absorbed. Stir in chicken broth, adding only a 1/2 cup at a time, letting all liquid get absorbed in between adding more. Continue until you have used all of the broth. Add the chicken, parmesan & spices. Stir in milk a 1/2 cup of milk and stir until it is absorbed & then add another 1/2 cup, also stirring until absorbed. Remove from the heat & add the cheese and stir until melted.
*Risotto is meant to be al dente but if you prefer a softer texture you may continue to add liquid until you reach your desired consistency.
Unfortunately, the little one refused to eat mommy’s risotto but hubby, Nanna & me all enjoyed it.