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Product Talk: Bolthouse Farms 1915™ Organic Juices


Bolthouse Farms 1915™ Organic JuicesHappy New Year!

I can’t believe it’s 2018 already.

I don’t know about you, but I want to start the new year off on the right foot for my health!

That’s where Bolthouse Farms 1915™ Organic Juices come in. Sold in individual bottles in the refrigerated section of the produce department of your local Brookshire’s, these delicious, organic juices have their roots on a carrot farm established in 1915. Made from non-GMO ingredients, 1915™ juices are cold-pressed to extract the best flavors from all of their natural ingredients.

Flavor combinations include Apple, Romaine, Cucumber, Spinach, Kale and Lemon; Strawberry, Blueberry, Coconut Water, Apple, Spinach and Blackberry; Beet, Carrot, Orange and Lemon; Coconut Water, Strawberry and Pear; Apple and Lemon; Coconut Water, Pineapple, Mango, Avocado and Lemon; Apple, Grapefruit, Peach and Raspberry; Orange, Carrot, Pineapple, Apple and Lime; Carrot, Apple and Lemon; and Pear, Coconut Water, Mango, Spinach, Banana and Lime.

There are also two varieties of smoothies, and they are all a great way for you to feel great about what you’re drinking in the new year.



Family Matters: Potty Training Tips


Potty training may start during this time period in your child’s life, but let me just stress to you that if it doesn’t, don’t fret and don’t push it.

While some little girls may potty train right around age 2, some little boys might not be ready until they’re well over age 3. They will do it when they’re ready. From my experience, there’s only so much you can do until they are ready!

In the meantime, let them pick out some fun underpants! For my younger son, potty training amounted to a basic request, “Don’t pee pee on Thomas the Train, okay?” He didn’t. My older son didn’t care who was on his underwear, however.

Get a potty chair that your child likes. For some, this is a small, freestanding chair. Others might prefer a stool with a potty insert for the “big” potty, like they see mommy, daddy or an older sibling using.

Plan to stay home in the early days of potty learning, and bring them to the potty often. Read books about the potty. Sing songs about the potty. Watch videos about the potty. Camp out on the potty, if necessary. Some children’s first success on the potty is by accident! They just go, realize that’s what all the fuss is about, and that helps them learn.

Some parents choose a reward system. My mom kept a jar of M&M’s® in the bathroom (eww, maybe in the kitchen instead). My brother got one every time he went, after he washed his hands of course. For him, this was major motivation. For your child, it might be a sticker or a success chart.

Praise him when he goes and expect some accidents along the way. Again, just wait until he’s ready!



Family Matters: Teething Pain


Right around this time, if not already, your baby will be sprouting teeth!

For some, this is a painless process, and they seem to wake up one morning with a pearly white popping through their gums. That’s how it was with my first baby; I didn’t even know he was cutting a tooth until he bit me!

My second son didn’t have it so easy. He drooled so constantly that we had to change clothes frequently. His gums were swollen and irritated. He was irritable and didn’t sleep.

There are many ways to help relieve teething pain.

You can give your baby something to gnaw on, like a teething biscuit or a toy designed for teething that’s made of hard plastic that has textures that feel soothing to baby’s gums. My son liked a soft, rubbery teething toy that we kept in the freezer, and I let him gnaw on it when he needed relief. He also liked a cold drink in his sippy cup to help relieve some pain.

A small dose of Tylenol® or ibuprofen is probably fine to help relieve pain, too. Just check with your pediatrician on the correct dosage for your little one.

Some doctors recommend a topical pain reliever, like Orajel™, applied directly to the gums.

Sometimes, you’ll need to try all of the above, but know that this too shall pass!



Family Matters: Sucking to Soothe


Studies (and tons of moms and dads) have shown that most all babies use sucking as a soothing mechanism.

Whether it’s the breast, a bottle, a finger (yours or his own), pacifier or other object, sucking is reflexively soothing to your infant.

You can help facilitate baby learning to self-soothe by leaving his hands free (no mittens or hand coverings) so he can find his fingers, or by providing a pacifier for the times he’s not eating.

Besides sucking to soothe, some babies like motion, white noise or skin-to-skin contact. You might have to try all of these, sometimes in combination, to help meet your baby’s needs. He’ll eventually learn to seek out what he needs and provide it for himself.



Product Talk: Brookshire’s Party Trays


Brookshire’s Party TraysIs the holiday season as hectic for you as it is for me? I’m betting that it is.

Don’t get me wrong. I love the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. I love the class parties, the work potlucks and the glittering celebrations under the mistletoe, but sometimes preparing for all those things is beyond my supermom capabilities.

That’s where Brookshire’s comes in. Brookshire’s Party Trays make the holidays a breeze. I can order a party tray, pick it up laden with savory meats and cheeses, and voila! The work potluck or evening event is taken care of in a flash.

Party Trays do need to be ordered 24 hours in advance, and there’s a variety to choose from, including meats and cheeses, deli sandwiches, cheese and crackers, seafood and, of course, desserts. The deli specialist at Brookshire’s can help you decide how large of a tray you’ll need, what ingredients you’ll want on it and how far in advance to order.



Product Talk: Fresh Cranberries


Seasonal, fresh cranberries are one of my favorite things ever. They’re tart, tasty and so good for you.

You’ve probably already seen all of the amazing things you can do with cranberries in the November/December issue of Celebrate Cooking, but did you know how good they are for you as well?

Often referred to as a superfood, cranberries are rich in antioxidants and only contain 25 calories per one-half cup. Studies have shown that the nutrients in cranberries have been linked to a lower risk of urinary tract infections, prevention of certain types of cancer, improved immune function and decreased blood pressure.

Cranberries are high in vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin K. They also contain proanthocyanidins (PACs), an antioxidant that may help prevent a range of diseases.

There are so many ways to incorporate cranberries into your dishes. Here’s a tasty one!

Apple-Cranberry Chicken Salad

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 cup apple, chopped
1/4 cup cranberries, chopped
1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
2 Tbs light mayonnaise
2 tsp lemon juice
2 Tbs parsley, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:
Combine chicken, celery, apple and cranberries in large bowl. In smaller bowl, mix yogurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice, parsley, salt and pepper. Gently fold dressing mixture into the chicken mixture. Chill to blend ingredients.

*Chef’s Tip: Use leftover holiday turkey in place of the chicken.

Serves 4

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 625, Fat: 13 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 286 mg, Sodium: 324 mg, Carbohydrates: 12 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 9 g; Protein: 108 g.

View this recipe to print or add items to My Shopping List.



Product Talk: Southern Comfort® Egg Nog


Southern Comfort Egg NogMy older son loves eggnog so much that he starts asking for it before Halloween. I start keeping an eye on the Brookshire’s dairy case around that time, too, because it usually appears right after.

Southern Comfort® Egg Nog is his favorite (Note to shoppers: It comes without the southern comfort). It’s thick, rich and creamy, and he enjoys it with a dash of Vietnamese cinnamon on top.

Southern Comfort® Traditional Egg Nog is ultra-pasteurized, Grade A and only available during the holiday season.

Today, we had a brainstorm while making breakfast. We replaced most of the milk in our waffle batter with Southern Comfort® Egg Nog. My son LOVED it. You need to keep some of the milk to make the batter the right consistency, but he said these were delicious.

Southern Comfort® Egg Nog Waffles

Ingredients:
2 cups baking mix
2 Tbs vegetable oil
1 egg
1 cup Southern Comfort® Egg Nog
1/3 cup milk
1/4 tsp Vietnamese cinnamon

Directions:
Combine baking mix, oil, egg, eggnog, milk and cinnamon in large bowl. Whisk batter to combine. It will be slightly thicker than traditional waffle batter. Spray waffle iron with nonstick cooking spray, and heat according to your iron’s directions. Cook waffles until golden-brown.

Makes 10

Calories Per Serving: 166, Fat: 8 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 32 mg, Sodium: 315 mg, Carbohydrates: 18 g, Fiber: 1 g, Protein: 4 g.

View this recipe to print or add items to My Shopping List.



Family Matters: Thanksgiving Fun for the Kids


Thanksgiving Fun for the KidsGrowing up, Thanksgiving with my mom’s side of the family was a big, raucous affair.

We’d load into the three-seat station wagon (you know, the kind with the rear seat facing backward) early that Thursday morning and head north to my aunt and uncle’s home about two hours away, depending on traffic.

When we got there, we’d tumble out of the two-toned station wagon: ourselves, the bountiful side dishes we’d provided and usually a few boxes of hand-me downs for assorted cousins or gear promised to various relatives. “Do you want Amy’s box of old Nancy Drew books for Megan?” “Sure, just bring them at Thanksgiving.”

Then, the food preparation would ensue, and the kids would be left to their own devices, which usually involved messing with Uncle Jerry’s big-screen TV (the very first of its kind) in the basement, or knocking cans of soda off the soundproof wall onto the Beltway below. Neither were sanctioned activities.

The adults finally caught on to the fact that they needed to keep us busy in order to direct our energies into a productive manner, so they put us to work making fun foods for the holiday meal.

One year, we made Thanksgiving cornucopias.

We took ice cream sugar cones, dipped the openings in melted chocolate, let them dry, and then filled them with candy corns and candy pumpkins. We set them on top of each plate for decoration. They were a sweet treat and lovely table décor for that year’s feast.

One year, we made turkey cookies. You could use Brookshire’s bakery sugar cookies. Then, you simply need white piped icing from the bakery aisle to pipe on a half-moon, outlining the top of the cookie. Line about a dozen candy corns over the icing (the icing adheres the candy corn to the cookie) to make the turkey “feathers.” Pipe on an icing face and use as a fun dessert! You can also use M&M’s® chocolate candies for the eyes instead.

One of our favorites was the “acorns” that we made for dessert one year. We took doughnut holes from the bakery, dipped them in melted chocolate bark found on the baking aisle, and then rolled them in crushed pecans (or the nut of your choice). They were delicious!

You can also make a turkey appetizer platter using pepperoni, salami and assorted cheeses to make a “turkey” on a platter or cheese board. Start by cutting a round head from a slice of cheddar, and then cut an oval body from a slice of Colby-Jack. Under that, fan an arrangement of pepperoni to represent the first layer of feathers. Under that, lay squares of cheese in a fan arrangement for the next layer of feathers. Alternate cheese and meats until you have a full plate and a festive turkey. You might have to visualize this from the outer layer to the inner layer, though, to make it easier to execute.

There are so many fun ways to include your kids in the holidays, and we have so many options to make it easy at Brookshire’s.



Product Talk: Holiday Deli Dinners


Thanksgiving can be an intimidating holiday.

Holiday Deli DinnersJust ask my friend Megan. She’s not a cook. She’s a brilliant attorney and a tri-athlete. She also has three kids under the age of 5. She doesn’t enjoy cooking, though. She’s not very adept at cooking, and she’d rather just skip it all together.

Thank goodness there’s Brookshire’s because, otherwise, Megan’s Thanksgiving holiday would be spent in abject misery, trying to put a meal on the table of which Martha Stewart would approve.

Instead, she can buy a Holiday Deli Dinner from Brookshire’s. For just $49.99 (and you just go ahead and calculate how much money that saves you), you can get a 10 to 12-pound smoked turkey with 2 pounds of cornbread dressing, 2 1/2 pounds of mashed potatoes, 1 pound of giblet gravy and 1 pound of cranberry relish. That will easily feed a family of 8.

If you want to do something different or in addition to turkey (or if you’re looking ahead to Christmas), you can also get a 7 to 9-pound spiral cut ham, 2 1/2 pounds of green bean supreme casserole, 2 pounds of broccoli rice casserole and 2 1/2 pounds of seasoned mashed potatoes for the same price.

All you do is thaw, heat and serve.

This frees up your time to enjoy your holiday, visit with family and friends, (or in Megan’s case, probably run a Turkey Trot race) and relax. These are great for family get-togethers, Friendsgiving, work affairs, potlucks and any other holiday occasion you can think of.



Family Matters: Choosing Your Dog’s Food


Choosing Your Dog's FoodWhen Astro first bounded out of his foster mom’s car onto my driveway, I had two immediate thoughts.

The first was, “Oh my gosh, he’s huge.” The second was, “Oh my gosh, he’s so cute.”

I picked Astro off the SPCA Facebook page. My boys and I were ready to get another dog, and we (I) fell in love with Astro’s soulful eyes and his hound face. We adopted him sight unseen.

We found out later that the SPCA was overjoyed because dogs his size are difficult to adopt out. People tend to be frightened of them, but little do they know that our gentle giant is the kindest, most docile, most loving, most friendly dog in the history of dogs.

Back to the issue at hand though… When we got Astro, he was still a puppy, and he needed puppy food.

You wouldn’t feed your baby a steak, right? So, you don’t want to feed your puppy any food that’s formulated for an adult or senior dog.

Now, I’ll be honest. It probably won’t hurt a dog like a steak would hurt a baby. However, take care of your puppy like you would your baby, and you and your four-legged family member will have lots of good years together.

Puppy formulations are designed to give your dog the best nutrients for growth; to develop the building blocks he needs for a long, healthy life; and to sustain his playful energy.

Brookshire’s Paws Happy Life™ foods have Puppy Formula that will do exactly this for your growing pup.

As your dog grows, he needs more protein, more balance or other formulations to serve him well through his life. Paws Happy Life™ helps with that, offering Butcher’s Choice, Kibbles, Complete, Lamb Meal & Rice, and Nutritionally Complete formulas. Paws Happy Life™ also offers formulations in cans and pouches that your dog will love, including beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, filet mignon and more.

Now that Astro is a 4-year-old, 100 lb. adult, we give him a variety designed to meet his large-breed, adult needs. I can personally attest that he is healthy, happy, and loves his morning and evening meals.



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The products mentioned in “Share, the Brookshire’s Blog” are sold by Brookshire Grocery Company, DBA Brookshire’s . Some products may be mentioned as part of a relationship between its manufacturer and Brookshire’s.

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