Wednesday, November 11, 2015

After School Questions cards

As a BoyMom, I'm really aware of the fact that I need to get my boys to be able to embrace and understand their feelings and learn to discuss hard or difficult things with us. (It seems all the studies show that females do more talking and thus have an easier time discussing things like that.) I don't want my boys growing up thinking mad, sad, glad are the only emotions that exist! In one of those naive thoughts before I had kids, I was adamant that they wouldn't just say "fine" "nothing" "ok" to questions we would ask about school. And then I had kids and guess what they say when I ask how school was that day! "Fine."

The boys are currently only 7m, 3 and 5, so I don't expect the big two to say a whole lot of super in-depth stuff, but I definitely found that asking pointed questions helps. If I ask who they sat by at lunch, I can get a whole paragraph out of them about who they sat with, who they actually wanted to sit with, do I think they could ask the teacher to let them sit where they want to, etc. But I can't just ask about their lunch partner every day, so I was looking for some other questions to ask them.

And then someone posted a link on Facebook to this blog with free, printable After School Question Cards and I didn't hesitate to take a look, print, and make our own jar of them! The questions are all really good, and they even include a few blank ones for you to write your own questions. I mostly added things incorporating our faith into them, so "Who should we be praying for? Why?" was the first one I thought to include. After printing, writing, and cutting, I had them laminated. (It's a lot of work cutting all those little things out, so I wanted them to last!) Then I stuck them in a jar I already had sitting in the closet and voila! easy-peasy way to get the boys to talk more about their day at school. (I'm so thankful that people know how to create things like this and then leave them on the internet for us to get for free!!!)

Love it!
I should mention that the questions are aimed at slightly older kids, ages 5 and up, I'd say. Some of them won't be applicable to us for quite a while, but it's good to have already!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Meal Delivery Services: Blue Apron vs. Hello Fresh

I recently got some coupons for two different meal delivery services and thought I'd compile our journey with them, comparing and contrasting our experience. First, let's start with the pictures!

Blue Apron

Everyone loved this recipe!
So much so that we wanted to scrape the bowl clean!
This was lasagna with zucchini noodles instead of pasta noodles.
So much lighter and still all the flavor!

The Results:

First of all, I'm sorry I didn't take more Blue Apron pictures. It was simply because I forgot. Not because the meals weren't as good or anything having to do with them. That was totally my fault.

If this was in our budget, I would TOTALLY do this again. Maybe not every week because having three meals planned for me felt a little too much, a little too confining (we're in the stage of life where I text the hubs on his way home to grab take-out or we have a day where eating cereal for dinner seems like a success!), but certainly every other week would be great! The recipes were easy-enough to follow (and I don't consider myself a cook!) and meals were delish! The boys loved pretty much everything we cooked from them. I loved that we had yummy dinners awaiting me but I didn't have to search for the recipe and wander around the grocery store finding everything we needed.

For each service, the recipes were printed on large cards, about the size of a piece of paper, the ingredients were fresh and pre-portioned for you, the meals yummy. The box would show up on the porch and I would transfer the food to the fridge, ready to pull out when we had time for dinner. I think there's so much they had in common that it's really hard to say which would be considered the "winner" and which the "loser."

But, since it's not much of a review if I don't pick a winner, based just on the two weeks we had delivered, I would select Hello Fresh to be our service. The ingredients came in boxes with cool packs for each service, but Hello Fresh went a step beyond and had all things you needed for each meal in a little box, so finding everything you needed for that night was EASY. And, at this stage of life EASY is a big factor. The white boxes were a bit of a challenge to fit in the fridge, but grabbing a box to start dinner more than made up for that in my mind.

Overall, I really enjoyed having the meal delivery service. Like I said, if this was in our budget, I would totally have it delivered every other week. It's not right now, so I'll just have to pine away wishing it was...

So, have you tried a meal delivery service? Have you Loved it! like I have?