May 14, 2013

Palm Springs is on fire! Cooling down the healthy way with Fruti

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  I was recently asked to check out some frozen fruit bar options and share my thoughts.  Since summer is quickly approaching I thought you'd want to know about the natural fruit bars I found because I'd never seen them before!  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client. #FreshNFruti

Okay, before you panic Palm Springs is not actually on fire.  But it sure did feel that way this weekend!  Recently I told you about my questionable relationship with Mother's Day.  It's becoming a tradition that we take a  weekend trip with friends in Palm Springs sometime in May or June.  So when we checked schedules and collectively determined that Mother's Day weekend was the only date that worked I found myself feeling both guilty and relieved.

#FreshNFruti ,  Fruiti Pina Colada Natural fruit bar from Sam's Club

Guilty because that meant we'd be unavailable to see other relatives and quite frankly I've got a black belt in self induced guilt.  Relieved because with age I'm beginning to learn and grasp the concept that you can't make everyone else happy all the time and that every once in a while you have to say no and put yourself first.  

Having just come back from a 4 day conference and then a crazy week of catch up I was SO ready to spend some unplugged quality time with my family and friends we don't get to see frequently enough.  After some very frantic last minute laundry and packing we were off to one of my favorite family friendly resorts, The Westin Villas in Rancho Mirage.

We've been going there since Kayla was a baby and honestly, it's just so easy and reasonably priced that I don't even investigate other options these days for a family trip. You get a huge villa with a fully equipped kitchen and the setup is so perfect for people with kids.  I always book a room that opens right out onto grassy fields that have little duck ponds and is conveniently located near the kids pool.

Upon arrival Kayla could not get into her bathing suit and out to the pool fast enough.  Despite the midday heat she quickly wandered over to one of the activities they had set up poolside and started making a necklace.  Like I said, it's incredibly kid friendly.  After that our whole family jumped in the pool to cool down where I was happy to capture this shot that I'm sure will come in handy when Father's Day rolls around.

I can't count how many hours we spent in that pool followed by even more hours in the kiddie pool.  At one point all 6 adults who were on the trip were submerged in the kiddie pool like hippos hanging with our kids, chatting and enjoying some poolside drinks.  Quite frankly it was the most fun I've ever had in 18 inches of water surrounded by children under the age of 5.

When lunch rolled around we all got out and ate poolside.  I always go for the chicken tortilla salad because it's the healthiest thing on the menu.  Yep, I can't really think of anything worse than eating a cheeseburger or nachos in 100+ degree weather. Craig of course went for a hot sandwich (why??) that came with an overly generous helping of potato chips.  Then I watched Kayla beg for his chips.  By now you know I'm pretty health conscious - especially when it comes to my child so I found myself sitting there trying to pretend it wasn't bothering me and let it go because after all we were on vacation, right?

Over the last year I've come to realize that Craig and Kayla have some secrets they keep from me.  When I opened the console in his car looking for a pen and found a bag of Skittles and a bag of gummy bears I instantly knew why Kayla is so much better behaved for him when running errands than she is when she's with me.  Yeah pal, your secret is out.

Magnum Mini ice cream bars Lego size comparison

One more tradition my dynamic duo has started sharing that makes me uneasy is dessert.  I can count on one hand how many times there was a product of the ice cream genre in my fridge before living with Craig and now it's a staple I loathe. I'm all for kids getting a treat once in a while but growing up dessert was just that - a treat, and not a scheduled evening activity in my parents house.

Craig's way of keeping things in check is to buy miniature desserts, like these chocolate covered ice cream bars.  But even the mini ones which are about the size of a few Legos (read: tiny) can be about 200 calories and 9 grams of saturated fat which is pretty gross for a fully grown man and bordering on irresponsible for a 33 lb child.

#FreshNFruti Fruti non-GMO verified frozen fruit bars from Sam's Club

So I saw this weekend away as a getaway from our ice cream filled freezer and a chance to push some healthier frozen treats by the pool.  One of my bloggy besties messages me every few nights letting me know what flavor she's eating of these all natural fruit bars from Fruti.  When I figured out that they were sold at the Sam's Club down the street from our hotel there was no doubt I was sneaking off to pick some up.

I'm not really one to get excited over ice pops or fruit bars, but what I really liked about these was that the first ingredient on the box was fruit.  Not corn syrup, not sugar, not cream like so many other frozen dessert items.  And that fruit is non-GMO verified, another thing that's very important to me since we buy organic produce, dairy and meat products as much as possible.  There are also no added colors or flavors in Fruti, one more no-no on my protective mommy watch list.  If I'm beginning to sound like no fun then hold off a second on judgement because what I can say is...

#FreshNFruti ,  Fruiti Strawberry Cream Natural fruit bar from Sam's Club

These natural popsicles were freaking delicious!  Clearly I was not the only one who thought so.  Kayla  could not wait to get her hands on one the second she saw the box and insisted on alternating bites between her flavor of choice (Strawberry Cream) and mine (Pina Colada)  Craig was off playing tennis while we ate ours and when he came back it was the perfect treat to cool down with.   He immediately wanted to know if we could get these in San Diego and thankfully we can.

#FreshNFruti Fruti non-GMO verified frozen fruit bars from Sam's Club

Oh and if you're anything like me and have a small family you're probably thinking to yourself that you don't buy those warehouse size boxes of any food product.  I'm with you, really I am- most of the time.   However I like that the people at Fruti thought to pack their frozen fruit bars in individual cartons by flavor within the larger carton so you can divide them up to fit in your freezer or send a box to work with your spouse that will otherwise be eating Skittles and chocolate and who even knows what else.  However you do it I have a feeling you'll be surprised at just how fast those 16 bars go. They can also be used in smoothies and dare I mention the fact that they make awesome drink mixers?  I'm going to keep that in mind for next year in Palm Springs!
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