Sweet Potato Biscuits

Sweet Potato Biscuits (2)

Biscuit recipes can be sticky and tricky to work with, but this one comes together like a dream. It’s definitely worth the effort to make fresh sweet potato puree, instead of buying a can.

Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/8 cup plain almond milk
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Peel and cube the potatoes and place in a saucepan. Cover with water and bring to a boil, then continue to cook for about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are very tender. Drain and mash to equal 1 cup, reserving any additional sweet potato for another use.
  2. Meanwhile, combine the applesauce and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder in a large bowl. Add the sweet potato puree, olive oil, and almond milk.
  3. In a second bowl, combine the flour, remaining 2 teaspoons baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the applesauce mixture, stirring slowly to combine.
  4. Drop the dough by spoonfuls onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.
  5. Bake at 425 degrees F for 10 minutes.

Sweet Potato Biscuits (1)

These are delicious with a pat of Earth Balance butter for serving. You can store leftover biscuits in an air-tight container.

National Mustard Day

Mustard Day (1)

Sometimes it’s fun to celebrate the simplest things around us for a day, which is why I love learning about silly “national holidays”. Today (August 1) it was mustard’s turn!

After telling Travis about this “holiday”, I spooned two varieties of mustard into jars for him: yellow mustard and classic Dijon mustard. I asked him to describe any differences or similarities he noticed, the most obvious being the “dots” in the Dijon. Travis thought it was wild that these were really the mustard seeds.

Mustard Day (2)

Then it was time for a blind taste test! The coarse texture of the mustard seeds was the giveaway, so he could easily tell which was which. You can have fun with this and add lots more varieties, especially if your kids are older.

Mustard Day (3)

Now of course we were hungry, so the lunch menu was grilled Beyond Sausages served with yellow mustard down one side and Dijon down the other. Travis loved spooning the mustard on by himself!

Mustard Day (4)

Extend the celebrationany way you like! Watch a video on how mustard is made, or see who can tell the best mustard joke. I’ll leave you with this:

Q: What do you give a dog with a fever?
A: Mustard, it’s the best thing for a hot dog.

Summer Gross Motor Skills

Hula Hoop Workshop (6)

In these last few days before Travis starts summer camp, we’ve been doing lots of gross motor skills here at “Camp Mom“. Here are a few great ways to get moving in the heat!

Hula-Hoop Workshop:

Forgot traditional twirls around the waist; hula hoops are a fantastic summer boredom buster even if your kids haven’t mastered the hip swirling yet.

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To wit, today the kids decided to pretend they were the rings of Saturn with hula hoops!

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Simply put a hula hoop around your waist and spin!

Hula Hoop Workshop (1)

You can also practice rolling a hula hoop along the ground. Or jumping from one to the other. Hula hoops are fun any way you spin it!

Hula Hoop Workshop (4)

Jumping Bee:

Even if your child doesn’t know how to skip rope yet, you can turn it into a prop for a spelling bee. We laid the rope down on the ground and I had Travis think back to some of his kindergarten sight words. For each letter in a word, he jumped back and forth across the rope.

Jumping Bee (4)

He was so proud recalling sight words. “There is a sight word of the day and the sight word is ‘the’,” he sang to the tune of BINGO. T!

Jumping Bee (1)

H!

Jumping Bee (2)

E!

Jumping Bee (3)

After we’d gone through sight words, little sister Veronika started shouting out silly words for him to spell. Bigger kids, of course, can do this activity with longer words and while truly honing their jump rope skills. Last person still spelling without getting tangled in his or her rope wins!

Jumping Bee (5)

Dribbling King:

Some cheap bouncy balls from the grocery store were the perfect prompt to work on Travis’s dribbling skills. Take this activity to your nearest park and hop on the basketball court (or just outline a large area with chalk) and show your kids how to dribble.

Dribbling Queen (1)

If you want to make it a competition, have the kids dribble with one hand while trying to knock away an opponent’s ball with the other.

Dribbling Queen (2)

Travis got very protective of his ball when we played this wat though, and preferred to hone his new skills solo.

Play “Spud”:

If you need a reminder on this classic, here are the rules: The player who is IT tosses a ball in the air and shouts out a number. Other players can take that many steps away.

Spud (1)

Now, IT tries to hit another player with the ball (choose a relatively soft one). If IT misses, he or she gets an S.

Spud (3)

If IT makes the shot, the other player gets the S and is now IT. Play continues until someone spells out S-P-U-D.

Spud (4)

I hope these ideas get you moving!

Activity Course with Balloons

Activity Course with Balloons (11)

I recently took apart the alphabet mat that’s been in the kids’ playroom, but before stowing it away, I realized it made for a great indoor obstacle course. Leftover balloons from a birthday party only added to the fun!

I set up sections of the alphabet mat in lines, so they were close but not touching. I then added a few other items good for gross motor skills like a play tunnel and hula hoops.

Activity Course with Balloons (3)

Veronika immediately wanted to walk along the mat…

Activity Course with Balloons (1)

…but now I added to the challenge. The kids had to make it from start to finish while holding a balloon the whole time!

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At various intervals I had them stop to do an action, like jumping in place 3 times, spinning 3 times, or chasing a balloon through the play tunnel.

 

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There was even a section to transport the balloon across a longer gap in the mat via dolly carriage.

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It turned out that big brother Travis enjoyed the physical challenges more than my toddler, and in retrospect the direction-taking involved was more suited to older kids. But Veronika still had fun!

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