Nutella Brownies! A Nutella Update:

So after my Nutella post, I got a tip to try Nutella Brownies!
I thought I’d take a picture before it was touched, but this is after three people sampled it!!! Doh!

The Nutella is IN the brownies (not on top) and the result is a very moist delicious brownie. If you’re used to the box brownies – I have to warn you that this is more involved (and I cut the recipe in half) but the family has deemed it SO worth it!

NUTELLA!!!

Nutella sent me a big box of goodies: a huge jar of the stuff, 10 awesome biodegradable travel mugs (biodegradable?!? yes, really!), samples, and gift bags to divvy it all up.  They asked me to introduce Nutella to 10 moms and give these bags out.  When the box arrived, the kids acted like it was Christmas.

Until they heard it wasn’t for them.

True Confessions:

Before I could use the big jar to introduce moms to Nutella, my family got into it. On bagels, on english muffins, and even (this shocked me) on celery!! In fact, I now know that it’s the only way to get my kids to eat celery. Even more shockingly, when a missionary friend came to visit us, I expected he’d cringe when he saw me serving celery and Nutella as a snack to my kids, but instead his eyes widened and he said, “Missionary food!” and gobbled it up.

I guess Nutella really became popular around the world before it got going here.  A friend told me that someone from Belgium sends her a jar each year.  Until recently she didn’t know we had the stuff in our local grocery stores.

So, within a week the jar was gone.  And I had to go buy a new one.

And with the moms found out it was good with bananas on top and strawberries on top and… the list goes on.

There was some left when my snack time with moms was over and the kids dug in.

Another true confession: we are striving to eat a more healthy diet.  Occasionally that healthy diet allows me an ounce of dark, cocoa-bean-full chocolate.  The kids were having dessert of a whole grain half bagel with Nutella and Mike started laughing.  Why?

Because I was busted.  I had Nutella on top of my dark chocolate.  I admit this weak moment merely to save myself from being blackmailed. ( ;

If you want to try this stuff chock full of hazelnuts and chocolate (and a decent amount of protein), Nutella has a coupon on their website.

World Water Day

Photo By Kristian M

I love water.

I can’t imagine not drinking at least 8 glasses of the stuff (usually more) a day.  I can’t imagine my children not being able to just go to the kitchen to get some. Or just go to the water fountain at school.

I love that they are such good hand washers that I don’t have to remind them to wash their hands before they eat, or before a snack when they’ve just come home from school.  My eldest daughter knows the joys of a long hot shower (often with me pounding on the bathroom door after fifteen minutes hollering, “That’s enough!”)

Yet today is World Water Day, and according to Compassion International over 3.5 million people die from water-related disease.  Even more heart-breaking is that 84 percent are children.

The link shows an article detailing many organizations and ways to help.  Which I’m thankful for — which brings me to today.  I want my children to be aware that running water is something to be thankful for, and to grow up knowing that they aren’t entitled to running water, they are BLESSED with it.

I have a friend who organized a walk for water.  Ever since I read about this group walking 2 miles to get a bucketful of water at the closest creek, I thought this would be an absolutely awesome family activity.

And even if you can’t get to a creek with your family, if it inspires you, you could plan with a friend and walk your buckets to that person’s house (with their permission obviously) and fill the bucket with their bathtub faucet.  Ask the kids to imagine that it’s a village well.  Walk all the way home trying not to let it slosh out of the bucket.  Then let your kids know that one person in America typically uses 90 gallons of water a day (showers, laundry, etc.).

Eye-opening.

Spring is Blowing in the Air

Yesterday was a beautiful first day of Spring, but no one was outside celebrating – most likely because of the strong gusts of wind that got up to 50 mph.

Instead, my kids played with toys. Or rather rediscovered ways to play with toys.  Sam pulled out a robotic spider that he’d been given a couple of years ago and realized it could act as Aragog to his Lego Harry Potter sets.  All the kids took to it.

Katarina, without telling anyone, pulled out a couple of magnetic stuffed animals and placed them in funny poses.  She kept moving them, so for awhile there I thought they were reproducing.  It almost turned into an iSpy game.

They always seem up to something – in this case, clearly the cat is rescuing the mountain goat/bighorn sheep (I can’t tell what exactly it is).

I thought the animals had disappeared until I went to leave today… apparently someone else was trying to leave as well.

Yesterday also marked the beginning of Bubble Week but the bubbles would pop before blowing away in the strong currents.

So, we began making SUPER BUBBLE SOLUTION!   The link will take you to the recipe. This solution will let you bounce bubbles on your hands!

We’ll let you in on a secret:  you need to let this solution rest for 24 hours before it can perform at its peak. We’ll show you how to use it later this week! It’s so fun!

We know it’s officially Spring because Katarina starts the Tennis season while the wind blows wildly.  Last year during tennis, every match seemed to be a contest to see who could keep the ball in the court despite the wind, rather than a game against each other.

The season also gets the other two kids thinking that they want to play tennis.  Which means a lot of running around the courts getting balls which means exercise so I’ll take it.

Happy Spring!