Play Right: Springtime Activities for the Kids

Bug's Life PJ Short Set

New Jammies Bug’s Life PJ Short Set

To spring means to move or jump suddenly or rapidly upward and forward, so it’s only appropriate for New Jammies kids to get out and get some exercise this month. Enter Spring, and Earth Day on April 22, and the chance to establish an active lifestyle while celebrating Mother Earth.

“Regular exercise in nature is proven to improve children’s physical and mental health. Outdoor activity helps kids maintain a healthy weight, boosts their immunity and bone health, and lowers stress,” says letsmove.gov, a government initiative to raise a healthier generation of kids.

“Kids need at least 60 minutes of active and vigorous play each day to stay healthy, and one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to meet this goal is by playing outside. By linking parents to nearby parks, trails and waters – and providing tips and ideas – Let’s Move! Outside can help families develop a more active lifestyle.”

Let’s Move! Outside was created to get kids and families to take advantage of America’s great outdoors. Earth Day and Spring are the perfect moments to try some new games and activities outside with the kids, including biking.

“Biking is a fun, family-friendly activity that can help improve endurance and balance,” says letsmove.org. “Use your bike as a means of ‘active transport’ to get places faster while also getting healthier. Explore your community by bike with your family and get everyone active.”

Walking and hiking around, exploring the outdoors, and collecting found items while learning about science can also be great springtime activities for the kids.

“Traveling by foot is a fun, easy and affordable way to get moving and get outside. From a walk around the block to a mountain hike — there are a lot of new places to explore,” says letsmove.org. “Activities like hiking and walking have been shown to improve cardiovascular health and build stronger bones. Stay healthy by making physical activity a part of your family’s routine.”

New Jammies StripesOn PBS.org, PBS Kids encourages children to turn off electronics and play, offering a variety of games to play outdoors. One includes Clothespin Tag, a game submitted by Craig of Moultonborough, New Hampshire. Here are the fun and easy rules:

• Keep your clothespin to win.
• This game is for 5 or more players and should be played outside or in an open area.
• To play, you need one clothespin for each player.
• Clip a clothespin to the back of your shirt. On the word “Go!,” try to steal the other players’ clothespins without letting anyone get your clothespin.
• When your clothespin is taken or falls off, you’re out.
• The last player with a clothespin wins.

Another creative game to encourage imagination outdoors is Snake in the Grass, sent in by Alexis of Texas:

A slithery game of tag, this game is for 4 or more players and should be played in an open area.

• To play, mark off an area to be your playing field.
• One player is the snake. That person has to crawl around and move like a snake.
• The snake tries to tag the other players, who run around trying to stay away from the snake.
• If the snake tags you, then you become a snake, too. (That means you have to move like a snake and try to tag the other players!)
• Snakes and runners are not allowed to go outside the playing area.
• The last runner left is the winner.

This game challenges the mind and stimulates imagination as well, and can be played indoors if the spring weather turns to rain or cold:

Casting Call, sent in by Lyndsay of Blythe, California
If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. To play, you’ll need at least 3 people.

• Pick one person to be the director.
• The game is played like Simon Says. The director tells the other players what to do.
• Instead of saying, “Simon Says,” the director will say, “Action!”
• The other players will only stop when the director says, “Cut!”
• If the director says, “Act like a chicken, NOW!” and a player acts like a chicken, he’s out because the director didn’t say, “Action!”
• The last person left in the game gets to be the director in the next round.

Lastly, from allfreekidscrafts.com, these activities are perfect for Earth Day, Earth Month and all year long:

Mason JarsMini Mason Jar Grass Heads
By Jennifer Martin from Mom vs the Boys

Your kids can learn how to grow grass in a jar with this craft idea for kids. A great spring craft idea for all ages, you and your little ones can use these Mini Mason Jar Grass Heads to celebrate the coming of spring or to celebrate Earth Day. This easy kids’ craft also doubles as a cool science project idea. This recycled craft is budget-friendly because it gives you the chance to reuse empty baby food jars, and it does not require too many crafting supplies. Your kids can use whatever materials they wish to create their funky and fun jar faces. Each jar turns out with its own, unique personality!

Materials: Nature Crafts, Recycled Crafts, Mixed Media/Miscellaneous
Age Group: Preschool & Kindergarten, Elementary School

Read more at http://www.allfreekidscrafts.com/Kids-Outdoor-Crafts-and-Activities/Mini-Mason-Jar-Grass-Heads#9MfL4twrs5RRh6RB.99

Homemade Chalk PaintHomemade Chalk Paint Adventure Trail
By Craftingconnections.net

“Sidewalk chalk paint is a great way to enjoy these cooler summer days (when you dont melt every time you step outside) and is a fun twist on your typical outdoor chalk. Take it a step farther by letting your little one take you on an Adventure Trail that they create. By letting your toddler or preschooler lead the way, you both are sure to go on a grand adventure. And when you are ready to head back? Just follow your trail home!”

What you’ll need:

• 1/4 cup of corn starch
• 1/4 cup of water
• Fold coloring
• Container with a tight-fitting lid
• Paintbrush
• (Optional) Bucket

Age Group: Toddlers, Preschool & Kindergarten

• Pour the 1/3-1/2 cup of water into a container.

• Add 1/4 cup of corn starch to the water.

• Add a few drops of food coloring, making it as light or dark as you would like.

(Psst – we tried this with washable tempera paint too, but found that the tempera-colored sidewalk paint didn’t wash away easily, so we suggest that you stick with food coloring. If you are concerned about staining, use just a little bit of food coloring – your paint will be more pastel, but will easily wash away.)

• Shake it up and paint!

Read more at http://www.allfreekidscrafts.com/Kids-Outdoor-Crafts-and-Activities/Chalk-Paint-Adventure-Trail#fQVjc0TDdjp0C9hz.99 and craftingconnections.net

Eat Right: Celebrate American Heart Month with Heart-Healthy Recipes

New JammiesThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention designates February as American Heart Month. And all month long New Jammies has been focusing on a lifestyle committed to heart health.

One way the CDC suggests focusing on heart health is making small changes that can lead to a lifetime of healthy choices. According to the CDC, heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women. High blood pressure is a leading cause of heart disease and stroke.

The CDC encourages these simple changes to make a big difference. Try these ideas for getting started:
• Talk to your doctor about ways to control high blood pressure.
• Add physical activity to your daily routine.
• Quit smoking.
• Make heathy eating swaps, such as using fresh or dried herbs and spices instead of salt.
• Serve food lower in salt and fat content, provide more fruits and vegetables, and make less sugary sweets.

New Jammies is a big supporter of healthy eating practices for parents and their kids, and we love any recipe that makes family meal planning easier. These recipes from the CDC and the American Heart Association are heart-healthy and delicious. Give them a try this month and all year long!

Oatmeal WafflesOatmeal Pecan Waffles (or Pancakes)
Source: National Institutes of Health, “Deliciously Healthy Family Meals”
Serving Size: 3 small (2-inch) or 1 large (6-inch) waffle (depending on waffle iron size) or pancakes

Ingredients
For waffles
1 C whole-wheat flour
½ C quick-cooking oats
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sugar
¼ C unsalted pecans, chopped
2 large eggs, separated (for pancakes, see note)
1½ C fat-free (skim) milk
1 Tbsp vegetable oil

For fruit topping
2 C fresh strawberries, rinsed, stems removed, and cut in half (or substitute frozen strawberries, thawed)
1 C fresh blackberries, rinsed (or substitute frozen blackberries, thawed)
1 C fresh blueberries, rinsed (or substitute frozen blueberries, thawed)
1 tsp powdered sugar

Directions
1. Preheat waffle iron.
2. Combine flour, oats, baking powder, sugar, and pecans in a large bowl.
3. Combine egg yolks, milk, and vegetable oil in a separate bowl, and mix well.
4. Add liquid mixture to the dry ingredients, and stir together. Do not overmix; mixture should be a bit lumpy.
5. Whip egg whites to medium peaks. Gently fold egg whites into batter (for pancakes, see note below).
6. Pour batter into preheated waffle iron, and cook until the waffle iron light signals it’s done or steam stops coming out of the iron. (A waffle is perfect when it is crisp and well-browned on the outside with a moist, light, airy and fluffy inside.) (Or make pancakes.)
7. Add fresh fruit and a light dusting of powdered sugar to each waffle, and serve.
Tip: For pancakes, do not separate eggs. Mix whole eggs with milk and oil, and eliminate steps 4 and 5.

Lettuce Wraps
Asian-Style Chicken Wraps
Source: National Institutes of Health, “Deliciously Healthy Dinners and Deliciously Healthy” Family Meals
Serving Size: 2 wraps, ¼ C sauce

Ingredients
For sauce
1 small Jalapeno chili pepper, rinsed and split lengthwise—remove seeds and white membrane, and mince (about 1 Tbsp); for less spice, use green bell pepper
1 Tbsp garlic, minced (about 2–3 cloves)
3 Tbsp brown sugar or honey
½ C water
½ Tbsp fish sauce
2 Tbsp lime juice (or about 2 limes)

For chicken
1 Tbsp peanut oil or vegetable oil
1 Tbsp ginger, minced
1 Tbsp garlic, minced (about 2–3 cloves)
12 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into thin strips
1 Tbsp lite soy sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil (optional)
1 Tbsp sesame seeds (optional)

For wrap
1 (small) head red leaf lettuce, rinsed, dried, and separated into single leaves large enough to create wrap
8 fresh basil leaves, whole, rinsed and dried
2 cups bok choy or Asian cabbage, rinsed and shredded

Directions
1. To prepare the sauce, add all ingredients to a saucepan, and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat, and let sit in hot saucepan for 3–5 minutes. Chill in refrigerator for about 15 minutes or until cold.
2. Prepare the chicken by heating oil in a large wok or sauté pan. Add ginger and garlic, and stir fry briefly until cooked but not brown, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
3. Add chicken, and continue to stir fry for 5–8 minutes.
4. Add soy sauce, sesame oil (optional), and sesame seeds (optional), and return to a boil. Remove from the heat, and cover with lid to hold warm in hot sauté pan.
5. Assemble each wrap: Place one large red lettuce leaf on a plate, then add ½ cup chicken stir-fry, 1 basil leaf, and ¼ cup shredded cabbage and fold together. Serve two wraps with ¼ cup sauce.

Green Chile Stew

Green Chile Stew
Source: American Heart Association
Serving Size: 4

Ingredients
1 Tbsp. corn or canola oil
1 lb. beef sirloin, beef round or flank steak (whatever is on sale), cut into 1/2-inch cubes, all visible fat discarded
1 small onion (yellow or white), chopped
2 clove minced, fresh garlic OR
2 tsp. jarred, minced garlic
2 Tbsp. whole-wheat flour
2 cups fresh tomatoes, chopped OR
14.5 oz. canned, no-salt-added, chopped tomatoes
6 Hatch chilies, roasted, skinned OR
2-3 oz. no-salt-added, canned green chilies
1 jalapeño or Serrano pepper (skip this if you don’t like spicy food), chopped, (optional)
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 cup low-sodium, fat-free chicken broth

Directions
1. In a stew pot, heat oil over medium-high heat and add beef. Stir occasionally, until browned ? about 5 minutes.
2. Stir in onion and garlic, cooking 2-3 minutes until onions begin to be translucent.
3. Add flour, stirring until well mixed.
4. Add all remaining ingredients and stir well.
5. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 1 hour.

Banana Split Yogurt ParfaitBanana Split Berry Yogurt Parfaits
Source: American Heart Association
Serving Size: 4

Ingredients
2 6 – oz. packaged, fat-free pineapple yogurt
1 cup sliced strawberries OR
1 cup mixed berries
1 large banana (about 1 cup sliced)
1/4 cup low-fat granola (4 Tbsp)
1 Tbsp. cocoa, unsweetened
1 Tbsp. confectioner’s sugar
2 tsp. hot water

Directions
1. To assemble parfaits, in small dish, layer about 1/3 cup yogurt, 1/4 cup sliced strawberries, 1/4 cup sliced bananas and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon granola.
2. In small cup, stir together cocoa, confectioners’ sugar and hot water until smooth. Drizzle 1 teaspoon over each parfait.

Tips
Instead of fresh berries you can substitute 1 cup frozen mixed berries, thawed.
Substitute any flavor of nonfat yogurt you enjoy.

Eat Right: Soup’s On for a Healthy New Year

With every new year, eating better is something New Jammies can really get behind as a resolution. One easy way to eat healthier without the pressure of a resolution commitment is to make a warm batch of soup for the family using fresh, vitamin-packed vegetables and nutritious, low-fat ingredients. Light a fire, stay warm, dress the kids in comfy New Jammies, and enjoy these soup recipes to feel great in the new year:

Hearty Greens SoupHearty Greens Soup with Bowtie Pasta and Tomatoes
wholefoodsmarket.com

With only 200 calories, 5 grams total fat and 7 grams of protein, this vegetarian soup recipe from Whole Foods incorporates hearty greens such as Swiss chard or kale, escarole, garlic and fresh tomatoes for a low-sugar protein punch for an easy dinner with leftovers for a quick lunch. Serves 6 to 8.

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
4 plum tomatoes, cored and chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 bunch Swiss chard (about 3/4 pound), roughly chopped (and/or kale)
1/2 bunch escarole (about 1/2 pound), stemmed and roughly chopped
1/2 pound dried bowtie (farfalle) pasta
1 (3-inch) Parmigiano-Reggiano rind, plus grated Parmigiano Reggiano for garnish
1/4 pound baby spinach

Instructions:
1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic, onion, bay leaf, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 15 minutes.
2. Add tomatoes and cook until most of the liquid is released and absorbed, about 5 minutes more.
3. Add carrots and 8 cups water and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot.
4. Stir in chard, escarole, pasta and Parmigiano-Reggiano rind.
5. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until broth is flavorful and greens and pasta are tender, about 15 minutes.
6. Stir in spinach and season with salt and pepper.
7. Remove and discard bay leaf and cheese rind from soup then ladle into bowls, garnish with grated cheese and serve.

Rustic Italian Tomato SoupRustic Italian Tomato Soup
goredforwomen.org

As part of its Go Red for Women campaign, the American Heart Association offers this low-calorie, low-sodium soup to help beat heart disease. It’s often called the Silent Killer because heart disease victims often don’t even know they have it, so they aren’t treated or make healthy lifestyle changes. The AHA reports that 80% of heart disease in women is preventable, and more women are beating heart disease than ever before. So fix this heart-healthy soup for the women you love in your life. Serves 4; 1 cup.

Ingredients:
16 ounces frozen mixed bell pepper strips (may be labeled stir-fry mix)
1 14.5-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained
1 3/4 cups fat-free, low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 15.5-ounce can no-salt-added navy beans, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 medium garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon olive oil (extra virgin preferred)
1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions:
1. In a food processor or blender, process the bell pepper strips, tomatoes with liquid, broth, beans, basil, parsley, vinegar, garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes until slightly chunky or smooth.
2. Pour into a large saucepan.
3. Bring to a boil over high heat.
4. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, or until the flavors are blended.
5. Remove from the heat.
6. Stir in the oil and salt.

California Avocado Spiked Corn SoupCalifornia Avocado Spiked Corn Soup
californiaavocado.com

Using fresh California avocados, and a kick from white and cayenne peppers, this corn soup from the California Avocado Commission is low in sodium and a great source of potassium, fiber, protein, Vitamins A and C, calcium and iron. Serves 4.

Ingredients:
1 medium onion, chopped
2 small celery stalks, diced
1/3 cup coarsely shredded carrot
1 Tbsp. canola oil
8 oz. yellow corn kernels
3/4 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
2 cups water
As needed Salt, to taste
As needed Freshly ground white pepper, to taste
As needed Cayenne pepper, to taste
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
2 ripe, Fresh California Avocados, peeled and seeded
As needed Carrot threads*, as needed for garnish

Instructions:
1. Sauté onion, celery and carrot in oil until soft, about 10 minutes.
2. Stir in corn, thyme, water and a little salt; simmer 20 minutes.
3. Coarsely puree mixture; return to pot.
4. Stir in salt, white pepper and cayenne to taste.
5. Remove from heat; stir in lemon juice.
6. Dice half of the avocados and stir into soup. Slice remaining avocado.
7. Divide soup among warmed soup bowls. Garnish with avocado slices and carrot threads.

Serving Suggestions:
Stir in diced roast chicken or turkey for a main-meal entrée. To make carrot threads, pull a zester down a large carrot. Try with a glass of Pinot Noir.

*Large avocados are recommended for this recipe. A large avocado averages about 8 ounces. If using smaller or larger size avocados adjust the quantity accordingly.

Sweet Coconut Tapioca Soup with Bananas Sweet Coconut Tapioca Soup with Bananas (Che Chuoi)
Cooking Light, myrecipes.com
Photo by Karry Hosford

This traditional dessert soup called Che Chuoi, made healthy with low sugar, tapioca, light coconut milk and fresh bananas, is a favorite for kids of all ages as a feel-good soup after dinner or a tasty after-school snack. According to myrecipes.com, it can be eaten hot, at room temperature, or chilled, and the cooler it gets, the thicker it becomes. Serves 4.

Ingredients:
2 cups water
1 (14-ounce) can light coconut milk
1/2 cup sugar
4 cup uncooked granulated tapioca
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large ripe bananas, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted (optional)

Instructions:
1. Bring water and coconut milk to a boil in a medium saucepan.
2. Stir in sugar, tapioca, and salt. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 30 minutes, stirring frequently.
3. Stir in bananas. Remove from heat; cover, and let stand 15 minutes.
4. Serve warm, or chill 3 hours. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, if desired

Sleep Tight: Family Sleep Goals for the New Year

New Jammies Sleep SackAs New Jammies winds down after the holidays, we welcome a new year of learning, adventure, discovery and fun.

Not to mention plenty of sleep to get us through our busy days.

As the calendar advances to 2016, we’ve set some goals we think might be easier to achieve if our New Jammies friends are joining in the challenge. From infants to adults, we all appreciate a good night’s sleep. These New Year’s resolutions will help sleep dream’s come true in 2016, friends!

Tune Out to Zone Out at Night

Young and old, beware of the effects of electronics use at nighttime. According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), robust scientific data documenting the role of light in promoting wakefulness is stressing the point that electronics and sleep really don’t mix.

“Signaling of light and dark helps us to be alert in the morning and be able to fall asleep at the appropriate time at night,” reports the NSF. “Careful studies have shown that even our small electronic devices emit sufficient light to miscue the brain and promote wakefulness. As adults we are subject to these influences and our children are particularly susceptible.”

The Foundation suggests that many children are not fulfilling basic sleep requirements and adequate sleep is essential for growth, learning, mood, creativity and weight control. Solutions, and in this case new year’s resolutions, include less TV in the bedroom and electronic media, including watching Internet videos and using social media, before bedtime.

“Understanding the influence of light and evening engagement on sleep is the first step in helping parents address the dilemma of electronics in the bedroom,” according to the NSF.

Eat Right to Sleep Tight

Studies consistently prove that better nutrition equals better overall health. Including how well we sleep. So it only makes sense to eat foods that help us get some proper ZZZs. The website health.com suggests including these nutrients in your diet for better sleep each night:

GrapefruitLycopene, found in grapefruit, tomatoes, papaya and watermelon.

Selenium, in fish such as halibut, tuna and cod, as well as shellfish, barley, turkey and nuts.

Vitamin C, from fruits such as pineapple, strawberries, papaya, and citrus, and veggies such as bell peppers, broccoli, and kale.

Carbohydrates, in cereal, rice, potatoes or white bread. Health.com reports that a study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition said eating easily digested carbs four hours before bedtime led people to fall asleep faster.

Quit Bad Habits to Improve Sleep Hygiene

Losing weight. Eating better. Quitting smoking. New Year’s resolutions can sound like a broken record, but for many adults who can’t shake their bad habits, and even kids battling childhood obesity, the struggle is real. And many bad habits lead to poor sleep hygiene, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines as the promotion of good sleep habits and regular sleep. We encourage kids and adults to get outside and play for a healthy exercise regimen that encourages best sleep practices. Both the CDC and the National Sleep Foundation agree that the following sleep hygiene tips can be used to improve sleep:

New Jammies Football• Go to bed at the same time each night and rise at the same time each morning.

• Avoid large meals before bedtime.

• Avoid caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime.

• Avoid nicotine.

These all sound like achievable New Year’s resolutions that can lead to better sleep and a healthy 2016.

Happy New Year from New Jammies!

__________________________

New Jammies Butterfly Magic Sleep SackSleep sacks are where it’s at!

Keep your little ones crib safe while they snooze with our study and comfortable New Jammies double-layered sleep sacks. They’re great over footies in the winter months and onesies in warmer weather. New Jammies sleep sacks promote safety while encouraging infants to sleep on their backs and keep babies warm without loose blankets in the crib for the prevention of SIDS. Offered in a plethora of colors and age-appropriate sizes, our 100% organic cotton sleep sacks are breathable to prevent overheating. A great way to start off the new year in comfort and safety!

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Eat Right: Healthy Kid-friendly Thanksgiving Recipes

The holidays are a chance for New Jammies families to sit down together and be thankful for the year that has passed and the new one ahead. Especially at Thanksgiving.

The annual Turkey Day dinner offers a bounty of fruits, vegetables and sweet and savory cuisine that often appeases adults more than kids. Picky eaters sometimes become even pickier when yams, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie are involved.

Thankfully, New Jammies is here to help.

We’ve found healthy Thanksgiving recipes sure to make everyone at the table happy. Even the kids. Happy holidays and bon appetite. Gobble gobble!

thanksgivingThanksgiving Apple and Dip Appetizer
Courtesy http://www.superhealthykids.com

Ingredients
One large Honeycrisp apple

Peanut Butter Yogurt Dip
1 cup plain Greek-style yogurt
1 tablespoon natural peanut butter
1 tablespoon honey

Instructions
The key to this appetizer is to prevent your apples from turning brown. To prevent browning, use lemon juice for the tart flavor. Slice apple in wedges and arrange slices in a fan shape like a turkey tail. Place every other apple up and then down. Fill small dish with peanut butter yogurt dip and garnish with a piece of candy corn for beak and raisins or chocolate chips for eyes.

Salad Greens with Pears, Fennel and Walnuts
Courtesy http://www.mayoclinic.org

Ingredients
6 cups mixed salad greens
1 medium fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced
2 medium pears, cored, quartered and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions
Divide the salad greens onto 6 plates. Scatter the fennel and pear slices over the greens. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and walnuts. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar. Add black pepper, to taste. Serve immediately.

Healthy Cranberry Sauce (adapted from WH Foods)
Courtesy http://www.superhealthykids.com

Ingredients
1 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
12 ounce bag of fresh cranberries
1/2 cup honey

Instructions
Place OJ, ginger, and cinnamon in a sauce pan. Turn on medium heat until it reaches a boil. Then add the package of cranberries. Stir over heat for 10 minutes. Add honey. Stir until well combined.

zucchiniZucchini Oven Chips
Courtesy http://www.myrecipes.com

Ingredients
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fat-free milk
2 1/2 cups (1/4-inch-thick) slices zucchini (about 2 small)
Cooking spray

Instructions
Preheat oven to 425°. Combine first five ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Place milk in a shallow bowl. Dip zucchini slices in milk, and dredge in breadcrumb mixture. Place coated slices on an ovenproof wire rack coated with cooking spray; place rack on a baking sheet. Bake at 425° for 30 minutes or until browned and crisp. Serve immediately.

pumpkinbarsPaleo Pumpkin Bars
Courtesy http://www.hummusapien.com

Ingredients
¾ cup creamy almond butter
½ cup pumpkin puree
1 overripe medium banana
¼ cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
⅓ cup chocolate chips and/or walnuts, optional

Instructions
Preheat oven to 350F. Spray an 8x8in square baking dish with cooking spray. Place almond butter, pumpkin, banana, maple syrup, and vanilla in a medium bowl. Stir until well-combined. Add the rest of the ingredients, stirring until smooth. Pour into prepared baking dish, smoothing with a spatula. Bake for 30 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Serves 12.

Sleep Tight: Tips for New Moms on Helping Baby Sleep

New Jammies WhalesAt New Jammies, we know that all babies need sleep. In fact, they spend at least 50 percent of their time doing so. Newborns sleep when they’re not being fed, changed and nurtured, so it’s important they’re as comfortable and safe (see our sleep sacks collection) as possible when doing so.

The National Sleep Foundation suggests it’s best to put newborn babies to bed when they are sleepy, but not asleep.

“They are more likely to fall asleep quickly and eventually learn how to get themselves to sleep,” the NSF says. “When infants are put to bed drowsy but not asleep, they are more likely to become ‘self- soothers’ which enables them to fall asleep independently at bedtime and put themselves back to sleep during the night. Those who have become accustomed to parental assistance at bedtime often become ‘signalers’ and cry for their parents to help them return to sleep during the night.”

The NSF says newborns can be encouraged to sleep less during the day by exposing them to light and noise, and by playing more with them in the daytime. “As evening approaches, the environment can be quieter and dimmer with less activity.” The foundation also offers these sleep tips for newborns:

• Observe baby’s sleep patterns and identify signs of sleepiness.
• Put baby in the crib when drowsy, not asleep.
• Place baby to sleep on his/her back with face and head clear of blankets and other soft items.
• Encourage nighttime sleep.

Baby’s sleep patterns for ages 4-11 months can change as eating schedules adapt and social and developmental issues arise. The NSF says by six months, nighttime feedings are usually unnecessary and many infants sleep through the night; 70-80 percent will do so by nine months of age.

“Infants typically sleep 9-12 hours during the night and take 30 minute to two-hour naps, one to four times a day – fewer as they reach age one,” the NSF says. “Secure infants who are attached to their caregiver may have less sleep problems, but some may also be reluctant to give up this engagement for sleep. During the second half of the year, infants may also experience separation anxiety. Illness and increased motor development may also disrupt sleep.”

The Baby Sleep Site

Along with nonprofits that offer advice on baby’s sleep including the NSF, the March of Dimes and more, the experts at babysleepsite.com, provide information on sleep methods, scheduling routines, and baby’s development needs. Nicole Johnson, owner of the Baby Sleep Site and a senior baby sleep consultant, started an Internet-based message board and later a website to offer e-books, articles, a blog, and customized sleep consulting.
“I overcame my son’s sleeping issues in a way that matched my own parenting style, and knew it was my mission to help other tired parents ‘find their child’s sleep,'” she says. ”

The site provides free e-Book Sleep Guides, available at http://www.babysleepsite.com/free-baby-sleep-books. After entering an email address, download the top 15 sleep tips, five ways to help your child sleep through the night, seven secrets to better naps, and how to help your toddler sleep better. Each of the free e-Books come with a blank sample sleep plan.

Bedtime Sleep App

Johnson's Bedtime baby appFor those parents and caregivers who utilize their smart phones and tablets to track and monitor baby’s development, the Johnson’s Bedtime baby sleep app is a convenient tool. Log babies’ daily sleep habits, including how long they sleep and when they’re awake. Records of baby’s sleep log can be stored and shared with your pediatrician. Also, sleep questions can be answered by experts and they can get advice from baby sleep expert Dr. Jodi Mindell on sleep-related topics such as nap time, before bed, and night wakings.

The app also allows users to create their own mix of ambient sounds and baby lullabies to a playlist. A timer automatically quiets the device, and there’s also a dimmer for nighttime viewing.

On the Johnson’s Baby YouTube channel, parents can watch videos on the clinically proven Johnson’s 3-Step Routine, which involves a warm bath, soothing massage and quiet activity.

Safe sleeping with New Jammies

Sleep SacksNew Jammies double-layered sleep sacks are perfect over a onesie for warm nights or with footies for cooler evenings. Sleep sacks encourage infants to sleep on their backs and keep babies warm without loose blankets in the crib for the prevention of SIDS.

Made with 100% organic cotton, New Jammies sleep sacks are breathable to prevent overheating, and come in a variety of sizes and designs. We hope you love them as much as we do!

Eat Right: Healthy Fall Recipes for Football Season

Football FieldNew Jammies celebrates the start to the football season each fall with playful designs for the tiniest of fans. Our navy-and-kelly-green Football Field collection is always a fan favorite. And this autumn, we’ve introduced the fun Football Tough design for a new twist on our gridiron action prints.

With every new football season also comes the chance to try new tailgating recipes. And New Jammies found these healthy alternatives to game-day snacks that will make football fans of all ages happy:

Oven-roasted CauliflowerOven-roasted Cauliflower Bites with Cilantro Yogurt Dip
Courtesy Simply Organic

Simply Organic organic spices, seasonings, and baking flavors provides this spicy oven-roasted cauliflower recipe featuring freshly grated ginger and organic turmeric for a golden texture perfect for fall. This easy Greek yogurt sauce with green onions, cilantro and garlic adds a burst of cool flavors.

Cauliflower
1 large head of caulilfower
2 tablespoons extra light olive oil, plus more for the pan
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger root
1 teaspoon Simply Organic Turmeric
1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon Simply Organic Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 teaspoon Frontier Sea Salt
1/4 teaspoon Frontier Organic Black Pepper
Juice from half a lemon

Dip
1 cup Greek yogurt
2 whole green onions, minced
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
3/4 teaspoon Frontier Sea Salt
1/2 teaspoon Simply Organic Garlic Powder

Directions
1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees and lightly oil a rimmed, aluminum baking sheet.
2. In a medium bowl combine the Greek yogurt, minced green onions, cilantro, garlic powder and salt. Stir to combine; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.
3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl combine the oil, butter, ginger, turmeric, red pepper flakes, black pepper, salt and the juice from half a lemon. Whisk to combine.
4. Cut the cauliflower into bite size pieces (not too small) and toss them in the spicy ginger-turmeric dressing until evenly coated.
5. Scatter the cauliflower on the lightly oiled baking sheet and slide them into your preheated oven. Roast the cauliflower for 20 to 25 minutes until golden, rotating the pan halfway through. Do not toss or flip the cauliflower or you will not achieve a good caramelization.
6. Once the cauliflower has finished roasting, let it cool for 5 minutes before serving.a

Avocado BruschettaBruschetta with California Avocado and Basil
Courtesy California Avocado

Whip up these fresh and savory bite-size snacks from California Avocado. Place the thin slices of avocado on the toasted bread first so the tomato-avocado mixture stays on the bread better and is deliciously moist. If you prefer a drier bruschetta, omit half the avocado. Also try the tomato-avocado mixture over pasta, rice, grilled chicken or beef. Serves 8.

Ingredients
1 to 2 ripe Fresh California Avocados, seeded and peeled
1/2 lb. Roma tomatoes, sliced lengthwise and diced
1/4 cup diced red onion
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil leaves, plus additional for garnish
1 to 2 medium cloves garlic, minced
As needed freshly ground pepper and salt, to taste
1 sourdough baguette (about 10 oz.), diagonally cut into 1/2-inch slices and lightly toasted

Directions
Thinly slice half of the avocados, then cut the slices in half crosswise. Reserve.
Dice the remaining avocado.
In medium bowl, lightly combine the diced avocado, tomatoes, onion, olive oil, basil, garlic, pepper and salt.
Top each slice of toasted bread with 2 or 3 of the reserved avocado slices. Top with about 1 heaping Tbsp. of the tomato-avocado mixture.
Garnish each with small leaf of basil, if desired.

Green ChilesTex-Mex Squash Casserole
Courtesy Mountain Harvest Organics

Mountain Harvest Organics is an organic farm based in the Appalachian Mountains whose website, mountainharvestorganic.com, features a blog about the farm-to-table lifestyle and a section with recipes. From Swiss Chard and White Bean Stew to this quick-and-easy Tex-Mex Squash Casserole and a sweet oatmeal Pear Crisp, there’s an abundance of options for healthy fall eats on the inspirational site.

Ingredients
2 small yellow squash, sliced
1 teaspoon cumin
2 small zucchini, sliced
4 ounces green chilies, chopped
1 medium onion, sliced
2 cups yellow corn
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1/2 cup cheddar, grated
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup Monterey jack, grated

Directions
Lightly sauté the squash, zucchini, onion, and garlic until just soft. Toss with the remaining ingredients.
Place in a lightly oiled 2-quart casserole dish.
Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Serve warm.

Pear Crisp
Courtesy Mountain Harvest Organics

Ingredients
6-7 pears
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup butter
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice pears and combine with 1/4 cup of the brown sugar, lemon juice and raisins. (The brown sugar is optional and used to sweeten the fruit some. The raisins are also optional).
2. Combine flour, oats, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt together in bowl. Cut butter in with the dry ingredients until mixture is crumbly.
3. Cover bottom of buttered cake pan with fruit mixture (square 8 inch pan that holds 6 cups). Sprinkle flour/oat topping over fruit and bake for 30 minutes. Serve warm, plain or with whipped cream or vanilla bean ice cream.

PumpkinPumpkin Cookies
Courtesy EatingWell

Those familiar tastes of fall, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice, make for a rich and flavorful pumpkin cookie to top off any game-day tailgating spread. These cookies are packed with Vitamin A in the pumpkin puree — a 1-cup serving contains more than seven times the daily value — which is great for vision, a healthy immune system, and proper functioning of the heart, lungs and kidneys. And the cup of raisins provide fiber, vitamins, minerals and poly-phenol antioxidants. Makes enough for a football team at 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

Ingredients
3/4 cup canned organic pumpkin puree
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup raisins
2 cups sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions
Position rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray.
Whisk together pumpkin, sugar, yogurt, oil and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth. Stir in raisins. Stir together flour, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, salt, allspice and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet with a wooden spoon, mixing just until just blended.
Drop the batter by tablespoonfuls onto a prepared baking sheet, spacing cookies about 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake until lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.

Eat Right: Healthy Back-to-School Lunchbox Ideas

LunchboxSchool is back from summer, and the perks of packing lunches for New Jammies kids is the ability to control what they eat for lunch.

That means more fruits and veggies. And less fillers and high fructose sugars.

At New Jammies, we love lunchbox recipes that are simple and nutritious, making prep time quicker and lunches more healthy. For her toddler, New Jammies founder Nicole Ludlow makes easy snacks that can easily be adapted to lunchbox fare in the next few years as he heads to class.

“I cut up all kinds of fruit — grapes, strawberries, peaches, plums, bananas, avocado, etc. Harder fruits or veggies like apples, pears, carrots I might steam,” she says. “Fruits and cheeses are also the easiest snack for me right now.”

The Cooking Light website is a helpful resource for nutritional lunchbox ideas, for kids. In the “Healthy Eating for Kids: Recipes and Nutrition Advice” article, which suggests delicious foods kids will eat and nutritious meals moms will love, Sidney Fry, MS, RD, offers several ideas for back-to-school, including:

OrangeFor the Rabbits
Give salad greens some oomph with lots of lean protein.

Veggies: Mixed greens, 2 oz. rotisserie chicken, 1 tablespoon sliced almonds, 1/4 cup chopped tomatoes, 1 hard-cooked egg, 2 tablespoons oil-and-vinegar dressing
Fruit: 1 orange, peeled
Snack: 2 cups 94%-fat-free popcorn
Stats: 444 calories, 4g sat fat, 460mg sodium

The Pita Pocketeer
Low-fat Greek yogurt is the base for this tangy chicken salad. Chocolate kisses are perfectly portioned treats.

Protein and veggies: CL Creamy Chicken Salad (1/2 cup) with mixed greens in half a 6-inch whole-wheat pita
Fruit: 1 medium apple
Snack: 4 milk chocolate kisses
Stats: 446 calories, 4.6g sat fat, 451mg sodium

Creamy Chicken Salad
Courtesy Cooking Light

Ingredients
2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1/2 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup chopped celery
1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries
7 tablespoons (about 2 ounces) coarsely chopped smoked almonds
6 cups mixed salad greens

Preparation
1. Fill a Dutch oven two-thirds full of water; bring to a boil.
2. Wrap each chicken breast half completely and tightly in heavy-duty plastic wrap. Add the chicken to boiling water. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until a thermometer registers 165°. Remove from pan, and let stand for 5 minutes. Unwrap chicken and shred; refrigerate for 30 minutes or until cold.
3. Combine mayonnaise and the next 7 ingredients (through black pepper) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk until combined. Add chicken, 1/3 cup celery, cranberries, and almonds; toss well to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Serve over salad greens.

On its yummy website, the Food Network’s chefs provide recipes for kid-approved lunchbox ideas. Soup is universally known to be good for the soul, and it can be an easy addition in a lunchbox thermos to a cheese sandwich and goldfish crackers. Soups from the can are the go-to solution for on-the-go families. But this Food Network recipe for tomato soup only takes a blender or food processor and 10 minutes while the kids are doing homework to make for an homemade and healthy (less sodium and mystery ingredients) lunchbox option.

tomatoTen-Minute Tomato Soup
Courtesy the Food Network Kitchen

Ingredients
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, in juice
1 rib celery, roughly chopped
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1 to 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 to 1/3 cup cream

Preparation
1. Puree the tomatoes, celery and broth in a blender until smooth. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Season with lemon juice and maple syrup. Stir in cream.
2. Transfer to a microwave safe bowl. Heat in microwave on HIGH until warmed through, about 4 minutes. (Alternatively heat the old-fashioned way in a pan.)
3. Pour hot soup into an air-tight thermos. Pack in a lunch sack and send off to school.

Total Time: 14 min (Prep: 10 min, cook: 4 min)
Yield: 4 servings

If your kids love store-bought oatmeal bars but you’re not crazy about all the food additives and preservatives, take some time to bake and control what they eat. Ree Drummond, best known as the Food Network’s Pioneer Woman, home schools her kids and makes their food from scratch as part of her family’s farm-to-table ranching life. In the episode “Little School House on the Prairie,” the Pioneer Woman whips up a batch of strawberry oatmeal bars that make 24. Freeze them to have bars available in advance.

StrawberryStrawberry Oatmeal Bars
Courtesy Ree Drummond

Ingredients
1 3/4 sticks salted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for greasing pan
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cup oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
One 10 to 12-ounce jar strawberry preserves

Preparation
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch rectangular pan.
2. Mix together the butter, flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Press half the oat mixture into the prepared pan. Spread with the strawberry preserves. Sprinkle the other half of the oat mixture over the top and pat lightly.
3. Bake until light brown, 30 to 40 minutes.
4. Let cool completely, and then cut into squares.

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Ranching Cowboys

Ranching Cowboys

New for Fall!
Head back-to-school with new designs now featured on the newjammies.com website. Check out these fun collections your kids will love:
Elephant Kites
Trains
Ballerina Slippers
Monster Trucks
Space Cadets
Moose Tracks
Rainbow Unicorns
Ranching Cowboys
Bicycle Hills

Eat Right: Healthy Summer Eats Perfect for Picnics

With fresh produce in abundance and plenty of sunshine to help gardens grow, summer is the perfect time for New Jammies kids to eat healthy. Picnics are an ideal way to share a meal outside while enjoying summer activities and bond with family and friends.

At New Jammies, we especially love anything organic and farm-to-table, in this case farm-to-picnic blanket, to keep our kids as healthy as they can be. These healthy summer picnic ideas make eating fun and nutritional for kids of all ages:

imageUpdated Waldorf Salad
Recipe courtesy health.com
Photo: Amy Kalyn Sims

Using low-fat mayo keeps this salad creamy but under 10 grams of fat. Plus the lemon juice adds a tangy taste and keeps the apples from browning. At 153 calories, this is a traditional salad made healthy with

Ingredients
2 tablespoons low-fat mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 small (Gala or Fuji) apples, cubed
1 cup seedless red grapes, halved
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1/4 cup thinly sliced celery (about 1 stalk)
8 Boston or Bibb lettuce leaves
Preparation

Directions
1. Combine mayonnaise and lemon juice in a medium bowl. Add apples, grapes, and cranberries; mix well.
2. Add the walnuts and celery, and mix well. Serve it on a bed of 2 lettuce leaves. The salad can be refrigerated up to 2 hours before serving.

Vegan Strawberry-Banana ‘Dillas
Recipe courtesy onegreenplanet.org

This is a delicious, healthy snack to satisfy any sugar cravings with the natural sweetness of fruit. Bananas have a low glycemic index, meaning that the body absorbs the sugar gradually, eliminating spikes in blood sugar. Strawberries are very high in Vitamin C, extremely important for a good immune system. Cinnamon boosts the metabolism by slowing the rate at which the stomach empties after meals.

Ingredients
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 whole wheat tortilla (use corn for GF)
2 tablespoons crunchy, salted almond butter
½ banana, chopped
2 – 3 strawberries, chopped
dash of cinnamon

Directions
1. Melt 1 teaspoon of coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Place tortilla in skillet and rotate so that it gets coated in the oil.
2. Spread out almond butter over one half of the tortilla. Top the almond butter with the banana and strawberries.
3. Sprinkle fruit with cinnamon.
4. Fold the plain side of the tortilla over the covered side. Flip.
5. Remove from pan when golden brown and slightly crunchy. Cut up in four pie-shaped pieces and enjoy.

imageLemony Orzo-Veggie Salad with Chicken
Recipe courtesy Ivy Manning, Cooling Light on myrecipes.com
Photo: John Autry; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross

This colorful orzo and chicken main dish salad is packed with an assortment of chopped fresh vegetables and tossed with a tangy lemon dressing. It’s a great use for leftover or rotisserie chicken.

Ingredients
3/4 cup uncooked orzo
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon honey
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup shredded skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast $
1/2 cup diced English cucumber
1/2 cup prechopped red bell pepper
1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled goat cheese

Directions
1. Cook orzo according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and rinse with cold water; drain and place in a large bowl.
2. While orzo cooks, combine lemon rind and next 6 ingredients (through black pepper), stirring well with a whisk. Drizzle juice mixture over orzo; toss to coat.
3. Add chicken and next 4 ingredients (through dill); toss gently to combine.
4. Sprinkle with cheese.
Blueberry Lemonade
Recipe courtesy Bobby Flay and foodnetwork.com

This refreshing, fruit-filled drink can be modified with a sugar substitute or honey, if preferred, to cut down on calories.

Ingredients
3 cups blueberries
3/4 cups sugar
2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 cups cold water
Ice cubes

Directions
Place the blueberries and sugar in a blender and puree.
Place the lemon juice and water in a pitcher and strain the pureed blueberries through a medium mesh sieve into the pitcher.
Stir well and pour over ice.