Blackberry Chia Seed Smoothie

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The Blueberry Kale Smoothie I posted awhile back is one of my most popular posts and was even featured at Adventures in Mindful Living, so I thought that I would share one of my other favorite smoothies!

Blackberries are rich in bioflavonoids and vitamin C and have high antioxidant levels. They also have a high tannin content which can help to reduce intestinal inflammation. They provide a sweet, rich flavor which is the part I like best! Chia seeds are a wonderful source of both Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids (they contain more Omega-3 than salmon!). They are also packed full of fiber and minerals. I find them in ground form on the natural food aisle at my grocery store.

Blackberry Chia Smoothie

1 cup organic frozen blackberries

1 cup organic greens (I usually use spinach or kale)

1/4 cup organic vanilla yogurt (you could replace this with a little more water for dairy-free)

1 tbsp ground chia seeds

1/4-1/2 cup of water (start with 1/4 and add as needed)

Add the yogurt first, followed by the greens, chia seeds and blackberries. Pour the water over the top and blend! Enjoy!

-Moving Mommy

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Sunshine Award!

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I am truly honored that Echo from Domain of the Mad Mommy nominated me for the Sunshine Award! Stop by and check her awesome blog out!

Sunshine Award Rules

1. Thank and recognize your nominating blogger

2. Give 11 random facts about yourself

3. Answer the 11 questions given by your nominating blogger

4. Nominate 11 bloggers (cannot be your nominating blogger)

5. Post 11 questions for your nominees

11 Facts about Me

1. I have lived in 5 states in the past 6 years

2. I secretly wish we could have backyard chickens

3. I love to read more than any other of my hobbies

4. I make tutus

5. I play more video games than my kids

6. I plan to run a half marathon next year

7. I am an only child

8. My husband and kids are the best things that have ever happened to me

9. My favorite season is spring

10. I’m from northeastern Ohio

11. I LOVE all things Ohio State!!!

Questions from Domain of the Mad Mommy

1. If you had to listen to one song, on repeat, for a whole day, what would it be?

#34 by Dave Matthews Band

2. You have to change your first name, today! What do you change it too?
Rosita, after my grandmother. I think it’s a beautiful name!
3. Why did you start blogging?
I started blogging to share our moving journeys and my crazy life with the kiddos.
4. Are you where you pictured yourself 5 years ago?
Not at all. 5 years ago I lived in South Florida with one child. I have lived in 3 states since then and had twins!
5. Spaghetti’os, Kraft Mac N Cheese or Tombstone Pizza. Pick one.
Kraft Mac N Cheese
6. If you could have any pet in the world, what would it be?
A horse
7. If you could only watch one movie for the rest of your life, what movie would you pick?
X-Men
8. Do you shower everyday? (Be honest)
Nope, every other day
9. What is your most dreaded chore?
Folding the laundry
10. Do you have any tattoos or piercings?
I have 5 tattoos
11. What TV commercial gets stuck in your head the most?
State Farm (Discount Doooouuuuuble Check!)
My Nominees
My 11 Questions to the Nominees
1. How long have you been blogging?
2. What is your favorite hobby?
3. What is your favorite thing to write about?
4. If you could live anywhere, where would it be?
5. What is your ideal vacation spot?
6. What is your greatest accomplishment?
7. What’s worse, laundry or dishes?
8. Do you have a TV show that you watch but don’t like to admit? Which one?
9. Sweet or salty?
10. What state or country if you aren’t in the US do you live in?
11. Snow, do you love it or hate it?
Thanks again to Echo at Domain of the Mad Mommy!!
Moving Mommy

Tuesday’s Trials

I think that we all have things that we struggle with as parents. None of us are perfect, and for the most part we do a better job than we think we do. That’s a good thing, because it means that we continue to strive to be better. One of the things that I struggle with the most is managing my time and trying to do too much. For example, last week I had a meeting, practice, or event every single night. It was annoying and stressful and by the end of the week I should have been riding a broomstick instead of wearing the Super Mom cape my wonderful husband thinks I deserve.

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My life has been like this for several years, and I never change it. Each of the things I’m committed to I love to do, it’s just piling them all together at the same time that makes life crazy! Throw the CPA exam on top of it and I’m pretty sure it’s not good for any of us. My husband reminds me of this frequently:) When we first moved to New Jersey, I didn’t have anything to do and I hated it. I love staying home with the twins, but I need to get out of the house to keep my sanity! Once I had the opportunity to get myself and the kids involved in things, I was thrilled. Now I’m just trying to find a balance that isn’t too much but not too little.

What are the things you struggle most with in this crazy parenting world??

Until our next adventure,
Moving Mommy

Violence in Schools is… Down?

I read an article the other day titled Two Killings Do Not a Trend Make: Homicides Remain Rare in Schools. Seems ironic coming on the heels of two homicides in schools in three days, right? Statistically speaking, violence in schools is down from what it was thirty years ago. I think that statistics are valuable tools, especially for those of us who work with numbers. They make a lot of things possible that would not be otherwise. But statistics are not infallible, and they often do not tell the whole story.

Violent incidences in schools do not have to be reported. If they had to report every playground skirmish it would probably use an enormous amount of time and resources, not to mention it would make the school systems look bad. I get that, but it doesn’t mean I think it shouldn’t be required. What that means is that the statistics we have are from federal surveys. The schools can report what they want, which also means they are unreliable. Better than nothing, but definitely not perfect. I don’t disagree that certain types of violence are down in schools. I’m sure there are less fights on the playground than there used to be, because the punishments are more severe and it’s not worth it. But does that mean the schools are safer?

I certainly think that there is a difference between the type of violence that occurs in our world now than 30 years ago. Parents may have worried about fist fights, maybe they didn’t have to worry for their kids’ safety at all, but they certainly weren’t worried about someone coming in and shooting a classroom full of 6 year-olds. Because back then, it really was a rare occurrence.

Here’s some more statistics. The first mass shooting on record (defined as killing 12 or more people), was in 1949. It took 50 years for five more to occur, that’s a long time. The most recent 7 of the 13 total have occurred in the past six years. 4 of the 13 have occurred at schools (this includes universities). There are others, with less fatalities as well.

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This is why I’m sometimes afraid of sending my kids to school. I realize that these incidences don’t happen everyday, which is why I still send my kid to school everyday. Living in fear of what could happen isn’t good for them. But the fact is, this horrific type of violence does happen, when before 1999 it didn’t.

So what do we, as parents, do about it? Hug our children tightly, love them with all we have, and get them help if they need it. Other than that, I haven’t the slightest idea.

Sources: The Rachel Maddow Show
Two Killing do not a Trend Make: Homicides Remain Rare in Schools

Learning Apps for Littles

Over the last year or so I’ve been back and forth with myself about my kids’ use of technology. How much is too much? Should they be using it at all? I think the answer is different for everyone, but we do allow it in our house. We try to limit their screen time, although some days I could certainly be better about following through with it. I don’t believe that tablets are the best learning tools, but I do think that exposing them will be helpful in the long run. Luke started using iPads in class in kindergarten, and they have technology class once per week on top of that. I’ve compiled a list of apps that are educational and loved by my littles!

ABC Mouse- We bought a subscription to ABC Mouse after seeing the commercials for it 1 million times. It’s $7.95 per month and the app is free. It can also be done on a regular computer. I really like that it has specific learning paths designed by age and ability and the lessons are small and enjoyable. There are songs, chants for letter sounds, games, puzzles, and coloring. You can also add up to three children per account, and they will each be able to do the lessons at their own pace.

Letter School- I believe this one is $2.99, and it is one of my favorites for the twins. You trace letters, then write them on your own. It shows them the proper starting and ending points and is great for working on forming their letters properly.

Spelling City- I use this one a lot for my oldest’s spelling tests. You sign up for a free account at Spelling City, then enter your spelling list. You can then use the app or website to practice the words and play games, such as hangman, with them. It changes it up from just memorization and allows them to learn to use the words in sentences.

Doodle Buddy- There are plenty of drawing apps out there, and we use doodle buddy. It has a lot of features, including shake to erase which the kids enjoy!

Computer Carl- This is a great game for practicing addition and subtraction facts!

StoryKit- Luke loves this app! You can write and illustrate your own stories. They use this app in writer’s workshop at his school.

Zorbit’s Preschool Math- This app reinforces counting and numbers through fun games with Zorbit the alien!

Montessori Number Maze- This app is helpful with fine motor skills and sequencing!

What are your favorite apps for kids? We are always looking for new ways to learn!

Until our next adventure,
Moving Mommy

Eco-Friendly Toy Companies

We are going to try this again! I apologize for the first draft, I was having technical difficulty with the site!

As I look around our playroom, I see so many toys that are broken and destined for a landfill someday. I decided that this year, for the twins, we are going to ask for Eco-friendly toys for Christmas. They are better quality, safe, and much better for the earth. Before I started researching, I had no idea how many sustainable toy companies there are! And the best part is that almost all of these brands are sold on Amazonwhich makes things much easier when giving Christmas lists to our families. Most of these companies are unfortunately not based in the USA, it seems that Europe has a head start in the area of sustainability.

Hape- Hape specializes in developmental, Eco-friendly toys. They are based in Germany, and provide high-quality toys made from sustainable materials.

This rocket ship is a little pricey but Santa may have to bring it for Will!

Hape Discovery Space Center

This clock is one that we will be adding to our preschool supplies!

Hape – Happy Hour Clock – Time Learning Puzzle

Plan Toys- Plan Toys is based in Thailand and has been offering sustainable toys for forty years. They use rubber wood, which is used after its latex producing cycle. Previous to using it in toys and furniture, plantations would burn them down and replant them, which is why this wood is considered highly sustainable.

How cool are these water blocks!

Plan Toy Water Blocks

Haba- Haba is another company that is based in Germany, and all of its wooden toys are made from reforested timbers. They also use water-based lacquers instead of paint.

I really like these blocks because they are wooden and actually fit together!

Haba sticky bricks (sticky building blocks) 13 Piece

Melissa and Doug- Melissa and Doug are the most recognized sustainable toy manufacturer based in the USA. They have shipped their manufacturing to China as they have grown though. They still have the widest variety of toys in this group that you can feel good about.

This band set is on our wish list!

Melissa & Doug Band in a Box

KidKraft- KidKraft has been around for a long time, and although all of their products are manufactured overseas, they are still a decent choice for sustainable kids’ furniture.

We bought this train table for Luke about four years ago and it’s still going strong!

KidKraft Ride Around Train Set and Table

Be sure to check out these other sustainable toy brands!
Holgate
Green Toys
Maxim Enterprise
Begin Again

What are your favorite Eco-friendly toys? I’d love to hear your opinions!!

*This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links

Until our next adventure,
Moving Mommy