January 17, 2013

Show Your Love with a Fun and Healthy Breakfast

Is breakfast during the week a struggle in your home?  I'll be the first to say it is in mine.  These days I have two goals in the morning and sadly neither involves putting makeup on. They are getting Kayla dressed without tears over which shirt she's going to wear and getting her to eat a decent breakfast before hitting up the preschool drop off line.

The other morning I realized I was on auto-pilot as I heated up some silver dollar pancakes, Kayla's "usual" and that made me sad.  Hello realization that I should think of some creative, quick breakfast options to change things up and make sure that Kayla gets a more balanced meal in the morning.  After all, that first meal is what's going to power her brain at preschool and keep her focused on learning.

With Valentine's Day on the brain I headed to Target in search of some cute decor and decided that along with cute dishes I would bring home some ideas for more exciting healthy breakfasts for Kayla.   

One thing I have learned about my child is that like me she really does need carbs to fuel her through the morning and keep her from feeling hungry.   So I did some cereal comparisons and chose a Special K multigrain cereal with a touch of honey, but low sugar and some Nutrigrain whole wheat waffles to replace those pancakes.  

I know what you're thinking...not exactly fun stuff for a kid.  True, but I flat out refuse to buy those kiddie cereals packed with marshmallows and food coloring.  Instead, I'd rather find ways to make things fun...

Like taking a stack of boring grown-up waffles and turning them into silly fruit faces.  It's the easiest thing to do and the 45 seconds I spent cutting up strawberries and sticking some raisins on saved me about 5 minutes of reminding/nagging Kayla to eat.  Now that's a nice return on investment, right?

Bananas used to be a total staple in our home but I think Kayla got sick of them and now refuses to eat them.  I thought these cereal coated banana pops would be a good way to bring them back.  They are super easy to make and look like a dessert.  In fact, I just might try to pawn them off as dessert one night this week to see how that goes over.  

All I did was crush some of the Kellogg's Special K cereal in a plastic bag, put it on a plate, cut a banana in half and stick some bamboo skewers in before rolling the bananas in the cereal.  From my experience this summer with non-stop playdates, anything on a stick is extremely interesting to kids, so this was an easy sell.

I had been wanting to try this cool trick I had seen making the rounds on Pinterest which takes advantage of a banana's great weakness, bruising.  You just grab a toothpick and write your message on it the night before. Try riddles, math problems, a message of encouragement or explore your drawing abilities and your picture shows up about an hour or two later without damaging the fruit inside the peel.

Paired with a bowl of wholegrain cereal and a baby box of raisins this is a breakfast you can lay out of the table the night before if mornings are hectic in your home.  Cover the cereal with foil or plastic wrap and your kids can dig in on their own.  If you're really in a rush you can make a few little bags of cereal ahead of time to keep in the cupboard and let your kids take them to go.

I used some of my leftover Valentine's Day treat bags from the Target dollar section instead of a plain plastic bag.  It's amazing how much these things matter to kids and will change their mindset.  One last trick I have always relied on?  Fun plates and cups to make healthy foods more exciting.

Kayla knows that her mom only buys "plain milk" despite begging for chocolate milk on several occasions, but I will indulge her in a new fun cup like this muscle man crazy straw cup...how cute?  It's also the perfect way to bring up healthy eating to grow those muscles for the monkey bars on the playground.

Just so you know, I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ #CBias #SocialFabric everything you see is my personal and incredibly picky opinion and we are loving mornings with #Kelloggsfuel
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