Motherhood Defined http://www.motherhooddefined.com There are no boundaries in motherhood! Wed, 29 Jul 2015 19:43:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 What’s Really in Your Baby’s Food? http://www.motherhooddefined.com/whats-really-in-your-babys-food/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/whats-really-in-your-babys-food/#respond Wed, 29 Jul 2015 19:34:10 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49857 By: Andy Dahlen As consumers we put our trust in the packaging we buy off grocery store shelves, but how often do we turn over the package to scan the ingredient list and find ingredients we don’t recognize? Front labels can be misleading – especially when it comes to the foods we’re feeding our babies and children. At Beech-Nut we believe in […]

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By: Andy Dahlen

As consumers we put our trust in the packaging we buy off grocery store shelves, but how often do we turn over the package to scan the ingredient list and find ingredients we don’t recognize? Front labels can be misleading especially when it comes to the foods we’re feeding our babies and children.

At Beech-Nut we believe in the transparency of our foods. That’s why we became the first baby food company in the U.S. to reveal the percentage of each ingredient used in our foods on our website in May.

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Parents want the best nutritious, wholesome food for their babies. They want to know that the ingredients listed on the front of the package are represented among the top ingredients in the jar or pouch of baby food. Many families are making homemade baby food because they don’t believe store bought baby food is good for their babies. We know parents’ busy schedules often don’t allow for the time it takes to make homemade baby food, which is why we offer a solution that’s as close to homemade as possible. Parents deserve to know exactly what they’re feeding their babies and we’re here to tell them.

Nutrition early on in a baby’s life is important for their growth. Babies need a well-rounded diet of fruits and vegetables. Providing the best nutrition for babies is our mission. It’s why we constantly re-evaluate our foods and work directly with real moms making baby food at home. It’s why we have invested in a new preparation method for our 100% naturals and organic lines. We know it’s important to maintain the integrity of the fruits, vegetables and grains we use, and when we say just apple, raspberry and avocado on our organic jars we mean it. You can taste all three ingredients, from the tartness of the raspberries to the creaminess of the avocado.

Our foods and labels speak for themselves. Rotate the jar and take a look at the ingredients we use. What you see is what you get. The clear jar design is no mistake. We want parents to see the great color and texture that is a result of our simple preparation.

We’ve listed the percentage of each ingredient for all of our products, even the ones that don’t meet our long-term vision for the brand. We have nothing to hide and we’re sharing our recipes even as we continue to improve them.

Don’t just take my word for it. Head to your local retailer and pick up a jar or two. You can see the real colors of the foods we use. Pop open a jar to smell our food – the organic just butternut squash & sweet corn smells just like those two vegetables. Dip a spoon in and sample itwe have quite a few adults who love our 100% naturals just honeycrisp apple.

Author Bio

Andy Dahlen joined the Beech-Nut team in 2012 as the Vice President of Marketing. Previously Andy

spent 15 years at General Mills and was responsible for leading growth on brands like Green Giant, Yoplait Smoothies and others. He also served as a marketing leader in the Small Plant Foods division of General Mills that focused on smaller organic and natural brands like Cascadian Farms, Muir Glen and Lara bar.

Much of the new Beech-Nut mission and core values stem from Andy’s personal and professional beliefs in what a successful brand should be: honest, transparent, and always growing. Andy was one of the key influences of the Beech-Nut transformation – stemming from his desire and request of the entire Beech-Nut team to “make the best baby food in the world”.

Andy earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics & German from St. Olaf College. He received a Master of Business Administration from Cornell University shortly after.

Andy and his wife reside in upstate New York with their three children.

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Weekend Getaway in Chicago http://www.motherhooddefined.com/weekend-getaway-in-chicago/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/weekend-getaway-in-chicago/#comments Sun, 12 Jul 2015 13:40:27 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49842 Let’s Have A GRAND Weekend Getaway In Chicago! Chicago or Chi-Town as it is affectionately called is loaded with excitement and fun. Here are a few must see and do activities when visiting which are sure to prove a grand time. Known for it’s a great theater, rich history, Wrigley’s Field and dynamic cuisine there […]

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Let’s Have A GRAND Weekend Getaway In Chicago! Chicago or Chi-Town as it is affectionately called is loaded with excitement and fun. Here are a few must see and do activities when visiting which are sure to prove a grand time. Known for it’s a great theater, rich history, Wrigley’s Field and dynamic cuisine there is so much more to Chi-Town. Below is a list of a few. Enjoy….

Chicago Walking Food Tour ~
Is a great year round alternative to the famous Taste of Chicago. With this tour you sample your way through Chicago’s most popular food districts. From the Walnut Room at Macy’s to the lobbies of some of the most desired Chicago cuisine you are guaranteed to delight your taste buds.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ Chicago Cubs & Wrigley Field

Chicago Cubs & Wrigley Field ~
All who know baseball know about this famous field. Wrigley, named for William Wrigley, the chewing gum magnate, became famous during World War I as a result of the World Series. Built in 1914, home to the Chicago Cubs since 1920, Wrigley Field is the second oldest ballpark in the nation for major league baseball.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ John G Shedd Aquarium

John G Shedd Aquarium ~
Placed along Lake Michigan and within Grant Park’s Museum Campus Chicago the aquarium houses over 32,000 aquatic animals from around the world! It is one of the largest indoor aquariums in the world and a must see.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ Lincoln Park Zoo

Lincoln Park Zoo ~
One of the oldest zoos in the country Lincoln Park houses over 1,200 animals from 230 different species. The zoo is free to all and open all 365 days! How can you not add this into your weekend?

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ Magnificent Mile

Magnificent Mile ~
Michigan Avenue is the Magnificent Mile. Chicago’s largest shopping district presents hundreds of retail stores, restaurants, museums and hotels. This is the strip for Chicago. Loaded with historical landmarks and some of the tallest buildings in the United States it is no wonder it is affectionately termed the Magnificent Mile.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ Millennium Chicago Tours

Millennium Chicago Tours ~
Is jackpot heaven! This park is so rich with Chicago history that you cannot help but to indulge. There are many of Chicago’s must-sees and many artists’ creations here. Located in AT&T Plaza add this to your list.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ Navy Pier

Navy Pier ~
Is like the best thing ever! Sitting over Lake Michigan, Navy Pier has 50 acres of everything from an array of restaurants to every shop imaginable to carnival rides and more. Plus they show fireworks throughout the summer.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ The Art Institute of Chicago

The Art Institute of Chicago ~
Located in the heartbeat of Chicago The Art Institute of Chicago is the second largest art museum in the country! There is plenty of rich history here. The Art Institute has the world’s largest Monet collection plus interactive rooms for families and children.

Weekend Getaway in Chicago ~ Willis Tower

Willis Tower ~
Willis Tower, reaching over 1,300 feet in the air, is the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere. The Skydeck Chicago is located on the 103rd floor. At the Skydeck you can explore up to 4 feet outside of the building onto a seemingly floating edge.

Southside Gangster Bike Tour ~
Now this a cool must see. We have all heard about the Chicago gangsters for years even decades and this private bike tour actually takes you on a bike ride through one of the most notorious neighbors on the Southside.

Now who is off a grand weekend in Chicago? Are you in?

Author notes ~ photo credit: Rex Hammock, Ron Cogswell, Roman Boed, Bernt Rostad, Marcin Wichary, David BrossardPat Hawks

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How To Throw the Perfect Party for Your Child http://www.motherhooddefined.com/how-to-throw-the-perfect-party-for-your-child/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/how-to-throw-the-perfect-party-for-your-child/#comments Thu, 09 Jul 2015 22:07:33 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49832 Planning birthday parties for your child can be stressful, but it’s always worth it once you see your child’s face light up on her birthday and hear your child talking about the celebration weeks after. Creating a fun and memorable birthday can be easy with smart planning. Make your next birthday party a success with […]

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Planning birthday parties for your child can be stressful, but it’s always worth it once you see your child’s face light up on her birthday and hear your child talking about the celebration weeks after. Creating a fun and memorable birthday can be easy with smart planning. Make your next birthday party a success with these five simple tips for a perfect party:

How To Throw the Perfect Party for Your Child

1. Theme. Having a theme is important because that will determine the venue, decorations, food and activities. Party themes can be as simple as your child’s favorite color, animal, or TV show character. Narrow down your theme options to three and make your child feel special by asking him or her to help you pick the final theme.

2. Invitations. Once you have finalized your guest list, send out your invitations three weeks before the party. Consider eco-friendly online invitations rather than paper invitations as these can get easily lost at the bottom of backpacks or left behind in class. Online invitations sent to the child’s parent’s email also ensures that children at school don’t feel left out when they don’t receive an invitation. With PercyVites (www.percyvites.com) – the coolest new digital party invites – your child can feel like a star and shine bright alongside their favorite animated friends like Max & Ruby, Caillou or Johnny Test. New characters are added all the time! Simply upload your child’s photo, party details, and messages directly into a PercyVites template and watch your child’s reaction as he or she sees themselves interacting in the world of their favorite character! The Percy Party Dashboard makes it easy to keep track of guest RSVPs.

How To Throw the Perfect Party for Your Child

3. Menu. Be sure to keep in mind of your guests’ allergies as well as your chosen theme when you plan your menu. Party food should be easy to eat and easy to serve. Simple and familiar finger foods, like pizza and sandwiches, are great options. If your guests are old enough, involve them in the food preparation process with a do-it-yourself taco or sundae bar. Invest your time in baking and decorating the birthday cake, or bring your child with you to the grocery store to help pick out the cake beforehand.

4. Games and Activities. Plan a party schedule of a mix of games and activities. If it is an outdoor party, come up with some indoor activities, just in case it rains. Simple crafts will entertain younger children, while older kids can play high-energy games that require more instruction. Pay close attention to how the guests are responding to each game and activity – move on if they seem uninterested, or run the game or activity for longer if they are enjoying it.

5. Party Favors. Party favors are a great way to say thank you to your guests. By hosting an arts and crafts activity, you can have guests create their own party favor or you can send them home with a loot bag filled with simple and useful items, like pencils, erasers, small notebooks, bookmarks, etc. Take into consideration of how old your guests are when buying party favours. Small objects may not be safe for younger children. Instead, you may want to consider plush toys or small books.

This article was written by Julie Steiner, wife and mother of two and CEO and founder of PercyVites, an innovative line of personalized video invitations and thank you videos for kids starring your child’s
favorite characters, your child’s photo, and all of their party details. For more information, visit www.percyvites.com.

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Get the Skinny on Your Summer Barbecue http://www.motherhooddefined.com/get-the-skinny-on-your-summer-barbecue/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/get-the-skinny-on-your-summer-barbecue/#comments Wed, 08 Jul 2015 22:28:48 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49827 An afternoon barbeque is the symbol of a relaxing summer. A time when you let go of the hustle and bustle of the school year and an over packed schedule, a great summer BBQ is like a reward for all of that running around. Yup, you earned that time…so kick back and enjoy it! The […]

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An afternoon barbeque is the symbol of a relaxing summer. A time when you let go of the hustle and bustle of the school year and an over packed schedule, a great summer BBQ is like a reward for all of that running around. Yup, you earned that time…so kick back and enjoy it!

The summer sun and long afternoon make it easy to consume more than you mean too, especially when faced with many hours of fantastic foods and delicious drinks. A few changes to the menu and a plan for keeping relaxation and fun the top priority is all you need to avoid over doing it.

Build a better burger

Build a better burger:

Choose…whole wheat sandwich flats – Instead of…regular bun (save 60 calories)
Choose…90% lean ground sirloin – Instead of…80% ground beef (save 90 calories)
Choose…50% Cabot Sharp Light cheddar cheese – Instead of…regular cheddar cheese (save 30 calories)

Build a better beverage:

Choose…flavored seltzer with a splash of lemonade – Instead of…all lemonade (save about 100 calories)
Choose…frozen juice ice cubes (for water or seltzer) – Instead of…glass of juice (save about 100 calories)
Choose…light alcoholic beverages and drink 1 glass water for every beverage – Instead of…high calorie beverages with no other hydration

Build a better side salad

Build a better side salad:

Choose…Hellmann’s Canola Cholesterol Free Mayo – Instead of…Hellmann’s Real Mayo (save about 50 calories)
Choose…whole wheat/high protein grains such as Barilla ProteinPlus, quinoa or farro – Instead of…white flour, low protein grains like white flour pasta or couscous
Choose…colorful sides like Green Giant Broccoli slaw – Instead of…traditional one color cabbage slaw
Choose…non-fat Greek yogurt based cream salads – Instead of…creamy dressings made from mayo or sour cream

Build a better grilled menu:

Choose…a balanced plate with Grilled Avocados – Instead of…adding another carbohydrate rich side to your plate
Choose…Grilled Fruit (add a side of light ice cream) – Instead of…more decadent desserts
Choose…plain grilled corn – Instead of…corn basted in butter first (save about 100 calories per tbsp
Choose…grilled portabella (to make a “burger”) – Instead of…meat or chicken
Choose…salt free spice rubs – Instead of…sugary bbq sauces

A few other things to keep in mind:

Know your portion! Avoid going straight for the bag, box or bowl because you won’t know how much you consumed. Use a napkin or plate as a “sight” check on how much you are eating.

Engage in lawn games and summer fun instead of sitting by the snacks…corn hole anyone?

Bringing a dish to help out the host? Make sure it is healthy and then you will know there is at least one great choice for you!

Allison StowellAllison Stowell, M.S., RD, CDN, is the registered dietitian for the Guiding Stars Licensing Company, a company devoted to helping you find the good, better and best choices at the supermarket. A working mom of two, Allison enables individuals to make positive, sustainable changes in their eating habits by stressing conscious eating, improving relationships with food and offering a non-diet approach for reaching and maintaining ideal body weight.

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Omaha Adventure Information & Special $$ Off Offers http://www.motherhooddefined.com/omaha-adventure-information/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/omaha-adventure-information/#respond Wed, 08 Jul 2015 17:04:20 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49824 Go to www.omahaadventure.com to download more than $100 in savings to Omaha attractions.  The app is available on iOS and Android phones, and the offers are good through September 30, 2015. This year, we have multiple offers for select locations. The offers include: Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo – Visit the “World’s Best Zoo” and home […]

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Go to www.omahaadventure.com to download more than $100 in savings to Omaha attractions.  The app is available on iOS and Android phones, and the offers are good through September 30, 2015. This year, we have multiple offers for select locations. The offers include:

Omaha Adventure App

Omaha’s Henry Doorly ZooVisit the “World’s Best Zoo” and home of the world’s largest indoor desert, under the world’s largest geodesic dome next to America’s largest indoor rainforests.

  • Special Offer: $2 off Admission – Up to 6 per visit

Joslyn Art Museum – Explore this pink marble masterpiece and come face to face with works by Monet, Rembrandt, Degas and more.  The new interactive space, Art Works, let’s little artists run wild with creativity. Special offers:

  • 10% off purchase of $10 or more at the Hitchcock Museum Shop
  • $2 off General Admission ticket for Special Exhibitions – Up to 6 per visit

Lauritzen GardensStroll 100 acres of botanical beauty including rose and Victorian gardens, an Arboretum, a model railroad garden and a 200,000 sq. ft. conservatory filled with rare plant collections.

  • Special offer: $2 off Admission & Tram Combo – Up to 6 per visit


Omaha Children’s MuseumLearning and fun go hand in hand, where a colorful array of interactive exhibits focus on art, science and early childhood learning. With more than 40,000 square feet of exhibit space, special events and jam-packed calendar filled with daily programming, OCM continues to engage imaginations and create excitement about learning.

  • Special offer: $2 off Admission – Up to 6 per visit

The Durham MuseumHop aboard history and explore one of the country’s best examples of art deco architecture.  See some of the rarest coin collections, walk through fully restored train cars and stop by the authentic soda fountain for a phosphate.

  • Special Offer: $2 off Admission – Up to 6 per visit

Village Pointe – Shop more than 60 specialty shops, catch a comedy show or a free outdoor concert on Saturday nights all summer long.

  • Special Offer: Free Village Pointe Coupon Book with up to $300 in Savings

Amazing Pizza MachineEnjoy 60,000 square feet of indoor rides and attractions including laser tag, go karts, mini-bowling and more.  Dining is unlimited at the 100+ item buffet. Special Offers:

  • $2 OFF Omaha Adventure Deal #1 –  Up to 6 per visit
  • $13 OFF Omaha Adventure Deal #2 – Up to 6 per visit
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Ways to make cleaning fun for kids http://www.motherhooddefined.com/ways-to-make-cleaning-fun-for-kids/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/ways-to-make-cleaning-fun-for-kids/#respond Wed, 08 Jul 2015 16:09:11 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49818 In most of our homes there is no way children could assist us with cleaning due to the dangerous toxic chemicals that we use. These chemicals have the ability to trigger allergies, asthma and recent studies have shown they could have a major effect on a child’s IQ development. But in this day and age, […]

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In most of our homes there is no way children could assist us with cleaning due to the dangerous toxic chemicals that we use. These chemicals have the ability to trigger allergies, asthma and recent studies have shown they could have a major effect on a child’s IQ development. But in this day and age, it is now possible to teach your kids to clean in a chemical free environment that is productive and also fun.

Ways to make cleaning fun for kids

You must be wondering, how is it possible for cleaning to be fun? Well, in the 21st century, Zabada has introduced a microfiber product which only requires no chemicals, just the use of fiber and water to remove 99.9% of bacteria. This means it is now safer, simpler, healthier, and faster to clean your home, even with the kids involved (winning!).

The Zabada range is fluffy and colorful on the surface but serious when it comes to results. Zabada and its chemical free cleaning technology now helps us and our kids achieve unbeatable cleaning results every time. Having the kids involved with the cleaning has never been simpler, faster or safer, it turns cleaning into a fun activity rather than a chore like it has been for so many years in so many American homes. (Hint: Let’s play ‘spot the dust’)

Is your home really clean

To explain how this revolutionary product actually works is simple. Zabada uses a WET-WIPE-DRY method to effectively shave off dangerous contaminants and trap the bacteria amongst the fiber network. The bacteria remains trapped until the fiber is washed under the faucet, this eliminates any cross contamination.

Science proves that Zabada outperforms traditional chemical and green cleaners for an effective, and safer clean for your home. Other added benefits include product reusability, each product can be washed and reused for up to 3 years. This means, Zabada replaces all the products you repeatable purchase down the cleaning aisle including sponges, surface sprays, polishers, paper towels, dusters, mops, buckets, chemical cleaners, anti-bacteria wipes and cloths which saves you money and is an added benefit for the environment as you reduce the waste you bring into your home!

Zabada Clean

To top it off, Zabada comes with a 30-Day Money Back Guarantee which enables customers to give it a try and see the results for yourself. There is nothing more important than a parent who cares, and now you can enjoy a cleaner clean with your children in a safe and fun environment!

Check out Zabada’s Product Range – https://www.zabadaclean.com/shop
Connect with Zabada Clean on FacebookZabada Clean on TwitterZabada Clean on Pinterest, and Zabada Clean on Youtube.

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Violence. Anarchy. Absurdity. Heartbreak. Hilarity. Redemption: Substitute Teaching In 25 Manhattan Public High Schools. http://www.motherhooddefined.com/substitute-teaching-in-25-manhattan/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/substitute-teaching-in-25-manhattan/#comments Mon, 06 Jul 2015 15:26:12 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49815 Violence. Anarchy. Absurdity. Heartbreak. Hilarity. Redemption: Substitute Teaching In 25 Manhattan Public High Schools. ~ by: Elizabeth Rose So I had this cool gig in Manhattan, teaching song- and creative writing in a small public high school. I also raised $330,000 for classroom smart boards and a shiny new iMac lab for the kids, most from […]

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Violence. Anarchy. Absurdity. Heartbreak. Hilarity. Redemption: Substitute Teaching In 25 Manhattan Public High Schools. ~ by: Elizabeth Rose

So I had this cool gig in Manhattan, teaching song- and creative writing in a small public high school. I also raised $330,000 for classroom smart boards and a shiny new iMac lab for the kids, most from the projects (S. Bronx +). The NYC Department of Education cut my position (too artsy?) and in September 2011, assigned me to substitute teach in a different school every week in hopes that I (and 2500 other teachers) would resign.

I figured I’d go back to my freelance life as a performer. I was developing a one-woman musical comedy for Off Broadway. But when I went to my first substitute assignment (for the paycheck) it hit me like a tossed eraser:

The DOE is going to send me to a new public high school every week for a year! Hello! The Universe is handing me a gift on a gold platter. Stories! It’s irresistible! If I leave, Comus, the god of comedy, will drown my sense of humor in a torrent of his tears.

So I stayed. And I wrote “Yo Miz! (1 Teacher + 25 Schools = 1 Wacky Year)

From el barrio to Wall Street, from our most gifted to our most challenged students, I chilled with the kids. We talked physics, we rapped, solved Rubric cubes and prepped for standardized tests. It was hilarious and heartbreaking. Especially when I was given a class of English Language Learners from the Ivory Coast, Yemen, and Mexico who hadn’t gotten their land legs yet. How they wanted to fit in, like other American teenagers they admired. Instead, they were given 5 Regents exams every January and June that they inevitably failed…every time. “Thanks, Miz. I not gonna pass. Sorry, Miz. You nice lady.” Guess who doesn’t get a high school diploma? Guess who falls through the cracks when they have to leave the public school system at 21 years old?

So why care about these “marginal” kids? For me, as we struggled and laughed together, they crept into my heart. As if they were my own kids, I want them to succeed. I want them to love learning. I want them to be happy, new Americans, enjoying our extraordinary freedoms and unfathomable possibilities.

Elizabeth Rose“Edu-tainer” Elizabeth Rose, who has created music and comedy for stage, film and TV, swore she would never follow the advice of her parents, both teachers, and become a teacher. But she took a gig teaching songwriting in a NYC public high school. When the job was cut, she was asked to sub in a new school each week, a temptation no storyteller could resist. During this same wacky year, she performed her one-woman musical comedy, Relative Pitch, at the Cherry Lane Theatre, Off Broadway.

Connect with Elizabeth on www.yomizthebook.com and www.twitter/yomizthebook.

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Redefining Grief for Our Children http://www.motherhooddefined.com/redefining-grief-for-our-children/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/redefining-grief-for-our-children/#comments Thu, 02 Jul 2015 19:50:03 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49810 By Tiffany Papageorge, author of My Yellow Balloon  One of the biggest joys of being a parent is that we get to be the ones to introduce our children to new, often monumental, experiences and by doing so we get to relive the wonder and importance of those experiences ourselves. The same is true of […]

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By Tiffany Papageorge, author of My Yellow Balloon 

One of the biggest joys of being a parent is that we get to be the ones to introduce our children to new, often monumental, experiences and by doing so we get to relive the wonder and importance of those experiences ourselves. The same is true of the not so wonderful experiences. Out of deep love and a longing to protect our children we try to rescue them from unpleasant or difficult life situations. However, life is both good and bad. The bad things are every bit as much of our life experience and are just as important.

Life teaches us over and over again about loss and we grieve over those losses. Some losses seem small to us: the loss of a beloved toy that breaks, the loss of a tooth, the loss of a teacher at the end of the school year. Then there are the losses that are bigger and more difficult: a friend moving away or changing schools. Finally, there are big losses: divorce, illness, and death.

I believe it is important not to minimize any loss, even though it may seem insignificant. Each one provides our children with the opportunity to learn how to navigate through the terrain of grieving. Small losses help to prepare for bigger losses.

As a parent, a few ways we can help our children are to be present and to give opportunities for their questions and emotions to come through. Don’t be afraid to give them answers that are honest, true, and, of course, age appropriate. Teach them that loss andgrief is a part of life and you have to know the bad to really know the good. By learning this, they will grow through the richness of all of their life experiences.  We get to be the ones to be there for them, wrapping them in the safety of our love as we stand strongly by their side.

Tiffany Papageorge

Tiffany Papageorge is an author, speaker and works with parents, teachers and mental health professionals whose mission is to find new ways to reach, capture and engage children who are dealing with the issue of loss.

Her extensive theater background spans a 25-year period, and includes work withCBS, Disney and The Sundance Institute. Tiffany holds an MFA from the American Conservatory Theater. She is a member of the Healing Story Alliance, the National Storytelling Network, SCBWI, and SAG-Aftra and has spoken for such prestigious organizations and events as Head Start, The National Alliance of Grieving Children and throughout Pennsylvania for Children’s Grief Awareness Day, to name a few.

YellowBalloonArt vertical

The multi-award-winning My Yellow Balloon is her first picture book and was recently featured on the cover of Foreword Reviews. 

Learn more about Papageorge at and My Yellow Balloon at www.myyellowballoon.com and connect on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

My Yellow Balloon can be purchased from Amazon, Barnesandnoble.com, Booksamillion.com, Chinaberry.com and through all major booksellers.

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World Showers Charleston With Amazing Grace http://www.motherhooddefined.com/world-showers-charleston-with-amazing-grace/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/world-showers-charleston-with-amazing-grace/#respond Thu, 02 Jul 2015 19:28:27 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49807 THE WORLD SHOWERS CHARLESTON WITH AMAZING GRACE; AUCTION FOR COMMUNITY UNITED CHARLESTON INCLUDES ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME LUXURIES 100% of Proceeds from July 9 Event to Benefit Families; Online Auction Opens July 3 Organizers of the Community United Charleston fund and event have been showered with auction items best described as extraordinary. The fund sprang up hours after […]

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THE WORLD SHOWERS CHARLESTON WITH AMAZING GRACE;

AUCTION FOR COMMUNITY UNITED CHARLESTON INCLUDES ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME LUXURIES

100% of Proceeds from July 9 Event to Benefit Families; Online Auction Opens July 3

Community United

Organizers of the Community United Charleston fund and event have been showered with auction items best described as extraordinary. The fund sprang up hours after nine individuals were shot in the historic Mother Emanuel AME church.

Auction bidders can pre-register and participate from anywhere at www.bidr.co/communityunited and are invited to bid on hundreds of auction items ranging in value from $50 to $50,000. The auction opens at noon on Friday, July 3 and closes at midnight on Thursday, July 9. Bidders need not be present to participate. Rare items that will be auctioned off include:

· A City and Safari package with round-trip business class tickets to Capetown, featuring stays at the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel and one of Belmond’s safari reserves. Business class airlines tickets for two included.

· More than 100 pieces of original art, valued from $500 to $15,000.

· A weekend for two in New York City, including all-access tickets to the New York Wine Experience. Business class airlines tickets for two included.

· Tickets to the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, an event that typically sells out.

· A ticket package including access to the Grammy Awards.

· A Brazilian Bucket List from the Belmond Group, offering round-trip airfare and nine nights on the iconic Copacabana Place and the Hotel das Cataratas in Iguazu National Park (named one of the seven wonders of the world.)

· 75 hotel stays.

· 52 weeks of dining out in Charleston’s world-class restaurants.

· A Tuscan Grand Tour featuring eight nights in the Italian wine region, including a three-night stay at Belmond Hotel Splendido. Business class airlines tickets for two included.

Organizers place the total value of auction items collected thus far to be in excess of $500,000.

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Top 7 Baby Shower Menu Ideas http://www.motherhooddefined.com/top-7-baby-shower-menu-ideas/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/top-7-baby-shower-menu-ideas/#comments Tue, 30 Jun 2015 14:32:26 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49803 Cheryl Seidel, etiquette expert, and regular contributing writer for the Huffington Post, shares her expert advice on the coolest trendiest items to put on a baby shower menu! Summer is a great time to host a baby shower! If you’re planning one for your bestie and her new bundle of joy we know that you […]

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Cheryl Seidel, etiquette expert, and regular contributing writer for the Huffington Post, shares her expert advice on the coolest trendiest items to put on a baby shower menu! Summer is a great time to host a baby shower! If you’re planning one for your bestie and her new bundle of joy we know that you have a lot to think about- location, theme, décor, games and food. We’ve created this cool and easy menu to help you check something off your list. Because it’s hot outside, everyone wants cooler, lighter fare, and we know you don’t want to spend days working over a hot stove. We kept that in mind as we selected these great recipes that require little to no heat!

Top 7 Baby Shower Menu Ideas

Veggie and Dip Cups

These portable little appetizers can be customized to your specific party. Fill the bottom with humus or ranch (or any dip!) and add in whatever fresh veggies you’d like.

Sandwiches are a popular choice at baby showers because they’re easy to prepare and easy to eat. Though we like the ever popular chicken salad, we also love unique recipes and thought you might want to try something new at your next event. Both of these sandwiches are family favorites and we’re sure your guests will love them too!

Roast Beef and Arugula Sandwich

1/4 cup Mayonnaise
1 Tbsp. Dried Onion Flakes
1 Tbsp. Spicy Mustard
1 Tbsp. Horseradish Sauce Or Straight Prepared Horseradish
2- 8oz. focaccia loaves
1 lb. thin sliced roast beef
2 oz. Fresh Arugula
1 tsp. Olive Oil
2 Tbsp. Shredded Parmesan

  • Combine the mayo, onion, mustard and horseradish to make the sandwich dressing.
  • Toss the arugula with the olive oil and parmesan.
  • Cut the focaccia bread horizontally so that you have a top and bottom piece.
  • Spread the dressing on the cut side of both pieces. On the bottom piece, layer the roast beef, top with arugula and the top piece of bread. Cut each focaccia into small sandwiches and serve. Enjoy!

Dressing adapted from Pioneer Woman Hot Roast Beef Sandwiches

Caprese Sandwich

If you’d like to offer a lighter or vegetarian option to your guests, try this simple Caprese Sandwich. Start with a French baguette or ciabatta bread, layer fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil. Top with salt, pepper and balsamic glaze. Click here for a more detailed Caprese Sandwich recipe.

Mango, Watermelon, and Tomato Salad

How’s this for a summer salad? It’s a colorful array of mango, watermelon and tomato in a tangy, but sweet dressing- sure to delight your guests!

Savannah Cheesecake Cookies

These little cheesecake cookies aren’t really cookies at all, but mini bites of scrumptious cheesecake! They can be prepared one week prior to your event and only take 20 minutes to make.

Strawberry Country Cake

There’s something about strawberry shortcake that just screams summer. And the addition of the lemon and orange zest give this cake an extra dose of summer! The cake is easy to make and will be a lovely addition to your table.

Summer Peach Tea Punch

Summer days are hot so be sure that you serve a beverage that’s cold and refreshing. With hints of mint, peach and lemon, this sparkling iced tea will get the job done! If you’re looking for a summer cocktail, try one of these recipes from Pottery Barn. They’re wonderful for a large crowd!

About Cheryl Seidel:

Seidel is a sought after etiquette expert and regular contributor for The Huffington Post and author of the popular Ask Cheryl blog. She helps advise readers with handy tips on how much to spend, when gift giving is appropriate and other would-have-loved-to-know-that-when moments in gift giving, She is also the founder and President of www.RegistryFinder.com, an intuitive search engine that helps gift givers quickly and easily find online registries for weddings, baby showers, graduations and more.  Seidel  has 22 years of business experience, with concentrations in new product development and consumer advertising and promotion.

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10 To-Die-For Kahlua Recipes http://www.motherhooddefined.com/kahlua-recipes/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/kahlua-recipes/#comments Tue, 30 Jun 2015 00:35:16 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49800 It’s time to sit back, relax and enjoy some fun with Kahlua. Sweets to cocktails oh my! Here are a few of our favorite recipes including Kahlua: Spiced Eggnog Cocktail | A Family Feast Kahlua and White Chocolate Amish Friendship Bread | SusieQTpies Cafe Nutella Cocktail | What’s Cooking, Love? Kahlua Chocolate Torte with Coffee Whipped […]

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Kahlua-recipes

It’s time to sit back, relax and enjoy some fun with Kahlua. Sweets to cocktails oh my!

Here are a few of our favorite recipes including Kahlua:

  1. Spiced Eggnog Cocktail | A Family Feast
  2. Kahlua and White Chocolate Amish Friendship Bread | SusieQTpies Cafe
  3. Nutella Cocktail | What’s Cooking, Love?
  4. Kahlua Chocolate Torte with Coffee Whipped Cream | Turning the Clock Back
  5. Chocolate Espresso Bean Cookies | Beyond Frosting
  6. Extra-Fudgy Kahlua Brownies with Kahlua Icing | Wall Flour Girl
  7. Peppermint Mocha Kahlua Truffles | My Baking Addiction
  8. Chocolate-Malted Mousse | A Family Feast
  9. Almond Latte | Call Me PMC
  10. Kahlua Tiramisu | SusieQTpies Cafe
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Getting Starstruck at the Hollywood Wax Museum in Branson, MO! http://www.motherhooddefined.com/hollywood-wax-museum/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/hollywood-wax-museum/#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 23:21:22 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49786 Hollywood Wax Museum is a wonder-filled landmark located on Highway 76 in Branson, Missouri and the only wax museum in the country devoted solely to celebrity figures. A recent multi-million dollar renovation *que – wow!* brought more star power and glamorous style to the attraction. Located in the Hollywood Entertainment Center on the strip, visitors can go all […]

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Hollywood Wax Museum is a wonder-filled landmark located on Highway 76 in Branson, Missouri and the only wax museum in the country devoted solely to celebrity figures. A recent multi-million dollar renovation *que – wow!* brought more star power and glamorous style to the attraction. Located in the Hollywood Entertainment Center on the strip, visitors can go all fangirl and fanboyed out, getting up close and personal to some of the most famous people in show business.

King Kong Hollywood Wax Museum

One of the most surprising aspects of the Hollywood Wax Museum was the ability for patrons to step right into the spotlight with their favorite icons and even some of those not so so well-loved. Each character was recreated so completely that my daughters and I would swear they are were alive. In fact, the horror room found inside the Hollywood Wax Museum in Branson MO houses several terrifying replicas that will have you looking over your shoulder and those with fear will refuse to enter *aka – my daughter Natalie whom walked through attached to my side with her eyes closed*.

Horrors of Hollywood Wax Museum

It is rare that you will get to meet a celebrity figure. Even more so for you to get to make faces and cozy on up the way you would in your mind when doing so. An easy stroll through this attraction will have you getting into the action and even occasionally fighting along beloved stars like Star Trek, Johnny Depp, Charles Angels, and the Terminator.

Hollywood Wax Museum Branson, MO

I even had a chance to get into the fun and act younger than my years. The Hollywood Wax Museum definitely has a way of bringing out the humorous side of us all. Oh, Hugh!

Hugh Hefner Hollywood Wax Museum

Get back to the kid at heart and act silly with classic entertainers like The Three Stooges. Even though my Natalie had no clue who these guys were, she definitely could tell they could spark a laugh along the way.

The Three Stooges Hollywood Wax Museum

Then, go back in time with the classics: Loyal and Hardy, Marilyn Monroe, and John Wayne.

The Classics Hollywood Wax Museum

While the Hollywood Wax Museum was not on our preplanned travel itinerary, it was certainly worth the evening we spent exploring. The girls and I arrived around 10pm and there were only a few others present. So the attraction was quiet and we got to spend as much time as we wanted in each section. I will say that this is one place that I stress you should add to your must see list. I never imagined I would have such a great time. Every corner was a surprise waiting to be found. The figures were so lifelike and often you could find props available to assist you in striking the perfect photo pose!

Deal Alert – The best value in Branson is a Hollywood Entertainment Center All Access Pass, which includes admission to Hollywood Wax Museum, the world’s first 5D ride Castle of Chaos and Hannah’s Maze of Mirrors!

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How to Blast Booger Picking http://www.motherhooddefined.com/booger-picking/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/booger-picking/#respond Mon, 29 Jun 2015 15:05:50 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49778 It seems that every time you turn around in the car, your little one has their finger so far up their nose you are afraid it might get stuck. No matter how many times you tell them no they just continue and continue to dig for gold. You must stop this booger picking madness! Hold […]

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It seems that every time you turn around in the car, your little one has their finger so far up their nose you are afraid it might get stuck. No matter how many times you tell them no they just continue and continue to dig for gold. You must stop this booger picking madness!

Hold a Booger Picking Intervention – Gather all the members of your family and calmly explain to your little one that booger picking is not an appetizing thing to witness. Explain to them that although many kids do it, it is not a good habit to have.

Break the Cycle – Chances are if your little one is digging for gold than they are developing a bad habit. Break the cycle! Begin a new habit by waking up and adding nose blowing to their morning hygiene schedule. A fun way to get them excited is by buying fun products. Boogie Wipes are great wipes to use on little ones; they have fun smells like grape and are super gentle saline wipes.

Keep Their Hands Busy

Keep Their Hands Busy – Breaking a habit takes time and distractions. If your child picks their nose while riding in the car, begin by introducing new tasks they can do to distract them from digging for gold. Hand your child a tissue every time you see her put her finger in her nose. Chances are she’ll get so frustrated with having to wipe her nose every time you catch her picking she’ll turn to the tissues more often instead.

Check that thing out – Take a look at their nose, if it is red and itchy no wonder they run for the hills at the site of a tissue. Invest in some nasal TLC products that will get their little honker up and running. Run a humidifier in your home or in your child’s bedroom. If your child’s nose itches, he might be picking it at to relieve the itching. A humidifier increases the moisture in the air, which can help with the dryness in his nose.

If All Else Fails – Take charge and keep your kid’s nose clean. Use a suction bulb, tissue or cotton swab to remove boogers and crust. When nothing’s in your their nose to pick out hopefully your kid will get the hint and move on. Plus they will hate being treated like an infant and will begin to take on cleaning their own noses.

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Kickstart Your Day With a Dose of Positivity http://www.motherhooddefined.com/kickstart-your-day-with-a-dose-of-positivity/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/kickstart-your-day-with-a-dose-of-positivity/#comments Thu, 25 Jun 2015 14:00:14 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49764 By Deborah K. Heisz Co-founder, COO and Editorial Director, Live Happy As we move through the day, we know life is going to throw all kinds of curveballs at us: one of the kids is expelling green slime from her nose; a tropical storm decides to blow through, even though I live in a landlocked […]

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Deborah Heisz headshotBy Deborah K. Heisz

Co-founder, COO and Editorial Director, Live Happy

As we move through the day, we know life is going to throw all kinds of curveballs at us: one of the kids is expelling green slime from her nose; a tropical storm decides to blow through, even though I live in a landlocked state; and when I get to the office, presentation notes have walked away by themselves.

One thing we can do to take control of our own happiness, however, is choose to start the morning on a positive note. This sets us up—not to avoid difficultiesbut to handle them with a better attitude.

How can you build positivity into your morning? Start with these 5 excellent tips, including the all-important message of getting a good night’s sleep. In addition, you might try adding some mindfulness to your morning, whether that comes in the form of mindfulness meditation, or simply sitting quietly with yourself, unplugged, and being in the present. This will reset your brain for a better day.

Another surefire way to start out your day feeling great? Exercise. Get those endorphins flowing first thing in the morning, and not only will you feel physically great, but your well-being will soar, setting you up to accomplish the rest of your goals.

If you’re not quite ready to hit the gym or the pavement first thing in the morning, there are other science-tested ways to exercise your positivity muscles. You can read something positive, whether it’s a book of beautiful poetry, a volume of positive affirmations—or of course, Live Happy magazine.

Finally, try writing down three positive goals for the day. Make sure these are small and achievable things that you will be able to accomplish without pushing yourself too much. Would you like to reach out to an old friend by email? Have you been meaning to thank a coworker for his or her help? Does your spouse deserve an extra hug this week? Think of this as a “Gratitude Goals” journal. Then go back and check it at the end of the day to see if you were able to accomplish what you set out to do.

Pick and choose which one of these practices works for you. Whichever you choose, if you start out your morning with a jolt of positivity, your whole day will settle into place. Your will have a greater sense of well-being, and that positivity will spread to those around you.

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Marveling in the Dixie Stampede Experience http://www.motherhooddefined.com/dixie-stampede-experience/ http://www.motherhooddefined.com/dixie-stampede-experience/#respond Tue, 23 Jun 2015 22:47:06 +0000 http://www.motherhooddefined.com/?p=49767 Dixie Stampede began as a dream for Dolly Parton. Today it is one of the most spectacular dinner and show attractions in the country. We recently experienced this wondrous event first hand on a family adventure in Branson, MO. To be honest, I am not sure if I was more wowed by the show, the […]

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Dixie Stampede began as a dream for Dolly Parton. Today it is one of the most spectacular dinner and show attractions in the country. We recently experienced this wondrous event first hand on a family adventure in Branson, MO. To be honest, I am not sure if I was more wowed by the show, the atmosphere or the meal.

Tango - Dixie Stampede

Tango – Dixie Stampede

With 32 horses, dozens of cast members and family-style seating for 1,100 in a giant 35,000-square-foot arena, Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction is a true vision from Dolly Parton herself. In true Dolly fashion, nothing is to be but the best for each attending guest. From the moment you begin to walk up to the entrance passing by the stalls of strong, stunning horses to the moment you leave with a smile from the kindness of the servers and doggie bag in hand, your senses will be happily overwhelmed with a magically tingling planting memories for years to come.

Service with a smile - Dixie Stampede

The show beings with a comical chatter separating the audience into the North and South. He explains that each team will have it’s own army of sorts to fight for the win of the show. Of course, it is all in good fun and the win/lose aspect of the series of events is lost along the way. I see this is a good thing keeping the environment playful yet expectant and exciting.

Dixie Stampede pre-show look

From barrel races to tests of strength, each side’s fighters battle it out to claim a flag for their side *aka – the audience*. The hoops and hollas of an excited crowd to see the action swore all around us as we smile looking on at the action below. We did have a few favorites though: the Roman Ride of Fire and humorous chicken dance was two skits that will not be forgotten and make me wish I could see the show again soon. Everyone needs a healthy does of suspense and laughter while on vacation.

Roman Ride - Dixie Stampede

As if the show wasn’t nearly enough (though be sure to know that it was), the meal was something right out of grandma’s kitchen. Mouth-watering, all eat with your hands goodness. Really, imagine cooking 1,100 whole rotisserie chickens, 250 pounds of hickory smoked pork loin, creamy, delicious vegetable soup, corn on the cob, potatoes, biscuits and crispy apple turnovers each day. Now imagine serving it up to 5 times daily. Wow! Now really, wow. I can only imagine each time being magnificent perfection as the last.

Dixie Stampede Meal

In the this show like Branson itself, celebrates spending time with one another, the way it once was before the fascination with electronics emerged. A reemerge of family value and speaking to one another. I am so glad that my daughters and I experienced this show and more while in Branson, MO. I never realized how much we need to just get away and be mom and daughter(s) once again. For anyone considering a vacation to regain some of just being a family again, Branson is definitely the place to be!

I wanted to share what my youngest daughter thought of Dixie Stampede in her own words. This is a great example of no matter your age, this show is one all will enjoy.

For Dixie Stampede tickets and additional information, visit: dixiestampede.com

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