Archive for the ‘ Food ’ Category

Sea Creature Bread Snack: FamilyFun Test Drive

Friday, August 15th, 2014

There’s something about eating food that’s in the shape of something else that makes it super fun. Why is that? And especially if it has arms, legs, eyes, tentacles…that just adds to the enjoyment! I became the best mom on the block today when I served these octopus bread treats to Oliver and his friends. The original recipe in the August issue of Family Fun called for olives as eyes, but in order to win the Mom-of-the-Year award, I used chocolate chips. This is the easiest project in the world…here’s how you do it.

  1. Unroll crescent rolls onto 2 cookie sheets.
  2. On the short side of the triangle, cut 7 2″ slits. 
  3. Roll top point down towards the 8 legs. Then press your eyes of choice into the dough.

Bake them in a 350 degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Et voila! Adorable, edible sea creatures!

Octopus Cupcakes
Octopus Cupcakes
Octopus Cupcakes

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Tags: | Categories: FamilyFun Test Drive, Food, Fun, kids

Playing with Food at Lunch

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

This is a post from Holly Homer of Kids Activities Blog provided by our sponsor Del Monte. This content was commissioned by our brand partner.  Such content is not written by, and does not necessarily reflect the views of

I have to admit that lunchtime has gotten boring. When the time to eat rolls around, the kids and I just open the fridge and hope a meal falls out.

To date, that hasn’t occurred.

And then the other day, I had a moment of motherhood brilliance. We added an activity that was a lunch sidedish…or was it a lunch sidedish that was an activity?

Del Monte Fruit Bursts

Inspired by the many flavor combinations of the Del Monte Fruit Burst Squeezers and the convenient pouch, we used them to create fruit & veggie puree pictures!

I started by giving each kid a clear plate.

DIY Lunch Monster Plates

Under the plate, the kids positioned a simple coloring page. We used these free monster coloring pages, but any coloring page with simple, large graphics will work.

Then a variety of Del Monte Fruit Burst Squeezers were used as paint. Our research showed that the Simply Fruit Strawberry, Simply Fruit Apple-Cinnamon, and Fruit + Veggie Peach-Mango had the most diversity of color.

DIY Lunch Monster Plates

Each creation used approximately 1 1/2 Squeezers – the kids shared the “colors” using the pouches as pre-filled paint brushes.

My kids continued coloring until their artistic vision was complete.

DIY Lunch Coloring Plate

We loved how the final art creations turned out.

But the most fun came at the end with art destruction! Each of us had a custom-flavored creation that was rapidly scooped up with a spoon.

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Tags: | Categories: Food

Decorating Their Lunch Sacks

Monday, August 11th, 2014

This is a post from Jamie Reimer of Hands On As We Grow provided by our sponsor Del Monte. This content was commissioned by our brand partner.  Such content is not written by, and does not necessarily reflect the views of

We don’t do home packed lunches very often. Usually only for field trip days. And on those days, my kids are so excited to pack and take their lunch.

I’m very honored and excited to be partnering with Del Monte fruits and vegetables to share with you a creative way to get kids excited about eating their fruits and veggies in their lunches during school.

To make these sack lunch days extra special and even more exciting for my kids, we’ve decided to add their own little touch to their lunch sacks.

This time we made a lunch sack that’s also to get them excited for back to school (we always have fun getting the kids excited to go back to school!).

We did some apple printing!

Its really simple to do and its kind of magical to the kids.

Apple Painting

I simply cut an apple in half [top to bottom]. With half of an apple, the kids dipped it in some red paint [though green would work great too!].

Its best if they stamp the apple somewhere before stamping it onto their lunch sack. That gets the excess paint off so there’s no globs.

They can stamp an apple on a paper lunch sack a couple of times until the print becomes faded and then just dip in the paint again.

Apple Painting

Apple printing is a quick and simple process. We made up several lunch bags in a matter of minutes!

Apple Painting

We let the sacks dry for the afternoon and I came back later to add in finishing touches of the stem, leaf and seeds using permanent markers.

All that’s left is to pack them with healthy snacks and food for lunch. I always drop in a fruit pouch like Del Monte Fruit Burst Squeezer.

At home, we always have Del Monte plastic fruit cups. But for packed lunches, I always prefer the mess-free and spoon-free Squeezers. And the Fruit Burst Squeezers offer the goodness of 1 ½ servings of fruits and vegetables, with no artificial flavors.

Apple Painting Lunchbox

Through the back to school season, Del Monte would love to have you share a photo of your kids’ favorite Del Monte snack. What do you prefer – to squeeze or spoon? The Fruit Burst Squeezers or Plastic Fruit Cups?

There’s a contest on the Del Monte Facebook page through all of August [August 1 to September 1] for you to share and have a chance to win!

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Tags: | Categories: Crafts, Everyday Fun, Family, Food

Sweet and Salty July 4th Pretzel Sticks: FamilyFun Test Drive

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

Ever since I can remember (all 4 years of his life), my son Oliver has loved to cook and bake. When I’m doing anything in the kitchen, he pulls his little red chair over to help, even dropping a piece of bread into the toaster. When I suggested that he help road-test these Sweet & Salty Sparklers from the June/July issue of FamilyFun, I’ve never seen him hop to anything faster. And then when I said they involved chocolate and M&Ms, he nearly fell over. I decided to really let him do each step (brave, I know), so here’s what we got…

As far as ingredients go, it couldn’t be any easier. All you need is red and blue M&Ms, pretzel rods, and white chocolate chips. (You can also add red and blue sprinkles, but I had to draw the line on the sugar.)

1. First, line a tray or cookie sheet with parchment paper.

2. Then, the fun begins. It’s time to sort M&Ms—red in one bowl, blue in the other. Sommer joined in the fun on this step, mostly enjoying the taste of the yellow, orange, green, and brown ones.

3. Next melt the white chocolate until its runny enough to drizzle. (Hint: follow melting instructions on the package.)

4. Drizzle white chocolate on each pretzel rod, one at a time. I must admit that I took over the step because I saw the impending disaster!

5. And lastly, decorate the sticks with the blue and red candies. Put these in the fridge for about 15 minutes until they set.

As per usual, and this is evident from the photo above, both my kids licked these like lollipops, ate off the M&Ms, then asked for the next one.

If you want to see what they should REALLY look like, check out this great photo. These are quick and easy to make—a festive, sweet, and salty snack to celebrate the Fourth of July!

Never have a boring afternoon! Check out our activity finder.

July 4th Confetti Popper
July 4th Confetti Popper
July 4th Confetti Popper

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Tags: , | Categories: DIY, Family, Food, Fun, Holiday

8 Fabulous (and free!) Father’s Day Printables

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

The Father’s Day rule in my household is simple. Dad gets to choose whatever he wants for that day (and ditto on Mother’s Day). So for example, if Dad wants to lay in the park with a bagel and lox and play catch for 7 minutes then lay in the sun then nap when the kids nap then choose his own restaurant for dinner, then so be it. That’s what he gets. If he decides that he doesn’t want to make any decisions, then Mom and kids take over. It’s our way of relieving the pressure of gift giving—we have birthdays and other holidays for that. But there’s always room for a little bit of surprise, even in a day totally prescribed by Dad. And these adorable printables are sure to bring a smile to his face!

Top: Paper Dad Rocks—Mr. Printables / Sugar cookie fries (we are making these!)—Bakerella (those are sugar cookie fries!) / Gummy bottle labels—Get Creative Juice

Middle: Love you to the moon and back photobooth printables—B Kids / Dad Coupons—The DadaBase

Bottom: Etch-a-Sketch card—Zakka Life (via Cool Mom Picks) / Nuts About Dad—Design Dining Diapers / We Heart Daddy banner—Paging Supermom

Kids Talk about Loving their Daddy
Kids Talk about Loving their Daddy
Kids Talk about Loving their Daddy

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