Tag Archives | local farmers

Support Your Village – That Includes Our Toyshop!

How exciting that our local village toyshop has recently gone ‘online’ with an awesome, new web site.  I couldn’t be more thrilled for the owner Kirsten. She already has a monthly guest spot on Global TV for hot tips on new toys and trends because her suggestions were SO popular from Christmas.   I discovered her store, shortly after having Francesco and boy is it a magical place.  You walk through the door and find toyologists wearing lab coats armed with more product knowledge and recommendations that you can handle!  <smile> Not only do they know all my kids by name and are super friendly, they are able to answer any question!  Each toyologist can tell you about a toy’s manufacturer, the materials it’s made from, and how you can maximize the toy’s value. Their customer service is amazing and the intimate shopping experience is one that everyone should experience.

In a time where cheaper toys are being recalled for malfunctions or paint is testing high for chemicals, upper scale toys are in demand for parent’s peace of mind. I don’t mind Playmobil’s prices because I’m confident they’ll never be recalled or have any problems (haha…have I mentioned I’m a hug fan of Playmobil?).  This may sound really paranoid, but I’m certain right before a company like Mattel or MEGA Brands recalls millions of toys, I’ll see these products at highly reduced prices at Winners. I remember being tempted to buy the Magnimals game for next to nothing the week before they were recalled.  I’m sure there’s a big conspiracy between large toy manufacturers and discount retail stores.  In recent years, I’ve realized that buying crappy toys just adds to the clutter in my house and doesn’t offer much value with the kids and how they play.  Toys offering a social message, that teach science or math, dress up clothes, puzzles, card games, or Playmobil sets encouraging imaginative play are the focus of our toy purchases these days.  These are sustainable items…not massive amounts of cheap plastic that will end up outlasting my life span at the landfill.

I’ve written many articles about supporting local farmers or purchasing clothing through Etsy to support a stay home mom that can sew, well the small toyshops are no exception.  Continue Reading →

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Improving Kids Nutrition via Organic & Local Food

I’m just going to say it, and I’m fully expecting to hear your gasps from my computer chair… I don’t think I’ve ever bought organic food and I know I’ve never looked to see if a food item is produced locally.   There, I’ve said it and I feel SO much better.  

When I decided to ‘green’ up my family, I was already on a mission to educate myself and improve my kids’ nutrition.   My sons are always asking me to cook with them and my response is “mommy isn’t cooking….I’m heating things up!”   I really only make Shepard’s Pie from scratch…. everything else is heated or broiled in/on the stove.   I know changes need to come.

I’ve recently been SO inspired after listening to an amazing speaker, a nutritionist named Jen, who specializes in children’s eating habits and nutrition.  I’ve already started begging her to contribute to this site, as her message needs to be heard.  She touched on key points during her presentation of small things you can do to improve the large nutritional picture for your family.  Topics like what ingredients to look for on the packaging of brown bread, the importance of Vitamin D for kids, the top worst foods we feed our children, and when it’s important to buy organic.   I was glued to the information she was presenting and I only wish I had attended her presentation 4 years ago.  I would have done many things differently in my house….  

To kick start healthier habits for my clan, I’m excited to learn that my local Farmers Market begins in early May.  Canadians can check out their Farmers Markets via this site and Americans, click here. I am so excited to start weekly planning of fresh, local, organic, food and will be prioritizing this activity to the top of our busy list.  Weekends are pretty jammed packed with activities, birthday parties, church, but I think the kids will enjoy selecting and learning about where their food comes from.  They are already big fans of farms, so it won’t be hard to start the dialogue of why it is so important to support local farmers and reduce the carbon footprint that importing all our food increases. Local food doesn’t have to travel far, so this reduces carbon dioxide emissions and packing materials

These are the foods that Jen recommended are bought organically.  While I’m at my Farmers Market, I’ll have this list and be on the lookout for some of these local, organic products.  Thanks for this Jen!

Apples
Grapes
Nectarines
Peaches
Pears
Raspberries
Strawberries
Bell peppers
Celery
Potatoes
Spinach
Cherries

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