How Smoothies Changed My Life

You know that mom who rises an hour before her children, gets everything prepped for the day and still has time for personal primping before her sweet angels awake at 8 AM, babbling happily until she’s ready to go get them? I am not that mom. My little guy is usually up by 6:30. And as someone who regularly stays up until midnight, either squeezing in a few hours of work or just relishing my adult time, I find it difficult to arise before him. His current favorite word is “up,” as in “Mom, up! Mom, up!” barked directly into my ear as he stands next to our bed. (On a side note, how unfair is it that he went directly from Mama to Mom? What happened to Mommy? Is there an emoticon for self-pity? If so, please imagine me inserting it here.)

SmoothieSo, where was I? Oh yes, my not-so-calm mornings. As every mom knows, if you don’t get up before your kid(s), you can spend all day feeling two steps behind. On top of that, breakfast was becoming a huge sore point for us. Owen never wanted to stop playing and eat. And since independent play is basically the holy grail of parenting, I didn’t really want to interrupt his playtime either. But the fact is, whether you have to be somewhere in the morning, or you just want to keep your kid from becoming a constant snacker, breakfast needs to happen by a reasonable time each day. For us, this meant one of two scenarios: I would strap Owen into his chair kicking and screaming where he would proceed to not eat for as long as I felt like torturing myself OR I would let him eat while playing, which led to widely dispersed Cheerio crumbs, smeared banana, sticky toys and lots of food being snatched by the dog when no one was looking. With these two less-than-ideal options, something had to give.

Enter, my knight in shining stainless steel: the smoothie. One morning, while Owen was playing, I threw frozen blueberries, a banana, peanut butter, milk and some Greek yogurt in the blender, pressed the smoothie button and poured the results into a Take ‘n Toss straw cup. Magic. Owen slurped down the whole thing in less than a minute and asked for more. I mean, can you imagine getting your kid to eat blueberries, banana, peanut butter, milk and yogurt in less than one minute if it were not in liquid form? As a bonus, there was enough left in the blender for me, so as I sat there alternately slugging coffee and sipping smoothie, I got to check “make self breakfast” and “eat said breakfast” off the list as well. For me, it was nothing short of a miracle. And the best part is, my early-rising husband got into the smoothies too, so he often has them made by the time Owen and I get to the kitchen. Win, win, win.

SmoothieWant to try my morning miracle? There’s no recipe or even any measuring. All you really need is a creamy element, some favorite fruits or veggies and ideally some protein. You can see my ingredients in the photo: frozen organic blueberries, one banana, natural peanut butter (the real, fresh ground stuff from Black Hog Farm when available), some 2% milk and a few scoops of Greek yogurt. The blueberry/peanut butter combo makes it taste a lot like a PB&J. So what are your favorite smoothie ingredients? Let me know in the comments!

Beach addict, magazine lover, beer geek, political junkie, runner, design snob, tree hugger, amateur travel agent, and rabid HGTV devotee. A native of Delaware, Erin’s advertising career took her from New York City to Detroit to Charlotte before bringing her to the Jacksonville area in 2006 where she promptly met her husband Shawn. They married in 2009 and their wild and wonderful son Owen was born in 2010. Since then, Erin has continued her advertising career as a self-employed writer and consultant working on a part time basis. Some days, she longs to be a full-time stay-at-home mom; on really hard mom days, she daydreams about being a full-time professional. But most days, she feels fortunate to have a balance of both. Although she’s spent her career in advertising primarily as writer, working with so many talented artists, designers and photographers has led to her keen interest in all things aesthetically pleasing – including great style, which will be her main focus as a Jacksonville Moms Blog contributor.

18 COMMENTS

  1. I’ve been doing smoothies for my son for over a year! He’s still picky as hell, but the smoothies are a miracle! Sometimes, if he doesn’t like his dinner, I take what I can and toss it in a smoothie. One night he got a carrot, sweet potato, banana smoothie! (I added cinnamon). I frequently add baby spinach to all of his fruit smoothies. He LOVES the ones I add pineapple too. A fave: banana, milk, strawberries, baby spinach and pineapple. We omit the ice as he doesn’t like it too cold. I tell him it’s his “juice” and I put in in a straw sippy. Voila!

    Every once in a while he will tire of a smoothie and won’t have it, but 99% of the time I get it in!

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