"Tuesday's Tip" (Vitamins)

Today I thought I'd share with you my tips on keeping my kids as healthy as they can be. First and foremost I pray a lot, but secondly I believe it's the supplements that I give them on a daily basis. I don't give the girls the flu shot, much to the dismay of their pediatrician. I have my reasons and beliefs on that, but figure I will save that for another blog sometime. I truly believe that if I can build their immune systems up strong enough that their bodies can fight off the germs that are out there. The girls go to school twice a week, church twice a week and the gym daycare about 3 times a week so they are definitely around other kids. Don't get me wrong, they do get their occasional cold, but nothing that I have to take them to the doctors for. It's kind of nice just to see their doctor for their annual checkup.

So here is what they take on a daily basis. I give them Juice Plus as their daily vitamin. This has all the fruits and vegetables that their bodies need. There is no corn syrup or any junk in it, just the good stuff. You can order juice plus online or find someone who is local that can order for you. I have to be careful that I don't leave them laying out because the whole jar would be gone. Sydney will sometimes cry because she wants more and I have to tell her I am only allowed to give her 3 green (veggies) and 3 red (fruits). Next up is Vitamin D. I would tell you that if you could only add one supplement to your child's daily routine it should be this one. There is a reason God put this in sunshine. The problem is that we can't come close to what our bodies need especially in the winter time. Think about that for a minute. Is there a correlation between cold and flu season being in the winter instead of in the summer? My belief is yes. There is less flu in the summer because we are exposed to so much vitamin D through the sun. The brand I love is Carlson. It comes in a 2,000 IU gel and as you can see they are about the size of a pea. When my girls could swallow food, they were taking these. Brooklyn loves to chew hers up. You can also hide them in yogurt or applesauce. They go right down. During the summer I give them 1(2,000 IU's) gel. During the winter I give them 2 (4,000 IU's) and if I think they are getting sick I give them 3 (6,000 IU's). The great thing about Vitamin D is that you cannot overdose on it, so it's completely safe. In fact the FDA this year upped the dosage from 400 IU's for kids to 1,000 IU's. Experts now say that lack of Vitamin D may cause heart disease, cancer, diabetes, MS and a host of other diseases.

Next on the list is a good pro biotic. I give the girls 1 tsp. everyday in their sippy cup of milk. They can't taste it and the benefits are terrific. This is definitely a must if your child is on an antibiotic. Antibiotic wipe the good bacteria out of your system so it needs to be replaced. I like the girls to have this daily because it helps keep their digestive system strong and working properly so they can again fight off the bad bacteria that comes their way. Fish oil is also one of the best things you can give your child. It is brain and heart food. I took it when I was pregnant and as soon as the girls could take a bottle they were getting fish oil once a day. It's great for skin problems as well. They have it in gummies, but for some reason my kids won't take it that way. They spit it out. It would be so much easier if they did, because the liquid is smelly and is harder to clean out of their cups. I'm hoping one day they will like it in that form. The last on the list is Aloe Vera juice. I like this brand because it is tasteless. I put a little each day in their apple juice and they can't taste it. This is great for their digestive system and also another great immune system builder. I also noticed it worked great for Sydney's eczema.

I buy all of my vitamins, except for Juice Plus and the fish oil, at The Vitamin Shoppe. I love that store. The sales people are extremely knowledgeable and if you buy something and don't like it you can take it back for store credit.

One more thing when picking a vitamin. You want to stay away from tablet form if at all possible. Tablets are filled with glues and binders because it's the only thing that will keep them together. I always look for a capsule. When I was pregnant, I wouldn't take the prescription vitamins my OB recommended because they were in tablet form. I found a brand made by TwinLab called PreNatal Care that I love because it's in a capsule. The next time you go to the store look at how many vitamins are in tablet form. You will be amazed. I will get off my soap box now. In case you are wondering, Brian and I take all the same things that the girls do, just tweeked a little bit for our needs. I know there is alot and I hope it's not too overwhelming. Please feel free to email me with any questions you might have. As you can tell, I love this kind of stuff and I love my precious girls, so anytime I can learn about how I can keep them healthy I jump on it.

P.S. I do not sell or get paid to endorse any of these products. I am just a fan. Also, you may want to consult your child's physician before starting any of these supplements. Felt like I had to put that in there. :)

"Tuesday's Tip" (Storage)

I love to clean. Well, I used to before I had kids because I could do it a couple of days a week and be done. Now I have to clean daily and sometimes I feel like most days that's all I do. I know so many of you can relate. I told my mom I was looking for a mini dustpan and she said she had one I could have. She wasn't using it. She found this one at Walmart. (Thanks Mom!) I use it only for cleaning the counter tops and table. It never touches the floor. I have another one for that. It works great for getting all the messy crumbs off the counter. It's just easier than using a paper towel and trying to catch the mess in your hands. When I do that it seems like it falls on the floor and then I have another mess to clean up.

This next tip is one of my favorites. Once again I am recycling. I try to do that as often as I can. I have a bunch of these around the house (thanks to my parents who drop them off when they are done eating their snacks) and one day I got the idea of transferring my unused paint into these containers instead of keeping it in their original metal ones. I like to do "touch ups" from time to time when I can. I will never understand why kids feel the need to color on the walls. Can someone explain that one to me please? My walls look like we've lived here for 10 years and it hasn't even been 2 yet. I digress. Anyway, this is great because you can see the color through the container and you just unscrew the lid, dip your brush in and screw the lid right back on. No messing with the screwdriver to help you pop open the lid of the can and then hammering it back on when you are done. This is air tight so it keeps the paint from drying out. I keep mine in a cupboard in the garage so sunlight can't damage the paint. That reminds me that I have about 6 paint cans that I need to transfer into containers. Guess I should go do that now.

Our first date

I was going to write about our trip to the aquarium this past Friday, but then I noticed the date July 8th and remembered this date has significant meaning to me. 9 years ago today, Brian and I had our very first date. We had briefly met back in 1999 when he served me and my sisters lunch. No he wasn't our waiter, per se, he had a job working at The William Morris Agency here in Nashville. He was an assistant at the time and the agency had us in for a lunch to talk with us about signing on as our booking agents (my sisters and I were in Christian Music for 6 years). I remembered Brian walking in with some food and thinking to myself, oh he's pretty cute. That was really it. I think I told one of my sisters afterward, but then forgot about it after that. My family was getting ready to move from California, where I grew up, to Nashville because our first album was getting ready to be released. So that year was a busy one for us. We were on the road constantly and didn't have time for much of anything, let alone dating. One day I was walking into Schlotzsky's Deli with a friend when I saw a guy walking out and he stopped me. He said, "Excuse me are you one of The Darins?" I said, "Yes I am. I am Krista". I'm thinking, ok how does this dude know me? I had only been in Nashville about 6 months at the time so I didn't know how I would have known him. He said, "My name is Brian Lord and I used to work at The William Morris Agency". Oh now I remembered who he was. I said, "Oh good to see you". He said we should get together sometime and he gave me his business card. He had just gotten a new job and was proud to hand me one of his new cards. I really didn't think anything of it and filed the card away somewhere in my room. Well about 3 months past and I was cleaning and ran across his card. I took it out and thought, I should email him. I think I was desperate to make some friends and I thought to my self if nothing else I could have a new friend. We emailed each other back and forth and decided to set up a group date to go hang out. He said he would get some guys and I would get some girls. Ok that's fine, but I really didn't know anyone in town. What was I thinking? We plan a date and to our surprise no one shows up. So it's just the 2 of us. Something even more crazy is that we learned that we lived in the same apt. complex and had never ran into one another. I lived with my roommate Jennifer, but my sisters all lived together in the building right next to his and they never saw him either.

So here we are, Saturday July 8, 2000 and we are on our way to our first date. Now remember it was supposed to be a group date so it was definitely more fun in nature, than romantic. We headed to OpryMills where we dined on some yummy Cajun food from the food court. :) Then we walked to Jillian's (which is now Dave & Buster's) and we decided to play a game of bowling. Here's where it gets interesting. We are both very competitive by nature. I certainly didn't want him taking it "easy" on me. I will say now that bowling is not my game, but I put up a good fight. About half way through the game, I bowled a strike. I was so excited. As I was walking back we decided to high five each other, which was fine, except for when Brian's hand was coming back down he smacked me across the butt. I was embarrassed, he was too. I knew it was an accident. Brian is a perfect gentlemen and would have never done it on purpose. I pretended like it was no big deal. We still laugh about it to this day. After bowling we went to play Laser Tag. Did I mention this was a fun date? By this time it's late but we're both having fun and enjoying each other's company that I didn't really care. He beat me at Laser Tag too. No surprise there. I had never played before. I always tell him, let me get you on the soccer field and it's game on. I will destroy him.

So that is how we met and the happenings of our first date. We were engaged the day before Thanksgiving that year. If you are doing the calculations, I will save you the headache. We dated for 4 months before we got engaged and were married 4 1/2 months later on April 7, 2001. It's one of the best decisions I have ever made and I am so glad I married my amazing husband. I love you babe more than anything. You are my rock and I am proud to be your wife.

Tuesday's Tip (Glass Jars)

I decided to start doing a "Tip of the day" on Tuesday's. Some of these tips will be ones I have come up with and some will be ones that others have given me. This tip I came up with when I decided to stop storing my food in plastic containers. From everything I have read plastic is not a great option and never heat anything up in the microwave in plastic. There are toxins that are released from the plastic that get into your food. Yuck! Anyway, I buy Del Monte peaches in bulk at Costco (4 to a pack for $7.99) and they come in glass jars. I thought why not reuse those jars to keep my fruits and veggies in. The other great thing about this is that everything is prewashed and cut and all I have to do is get the jar out of the refrigerator and eat. It makes it handy that I can see through the jar and know when it's time to buy more. Cleaning them is simple. I just put the jar in the dishwasher and I'm done. I think I've accumulated about 15 jars.

The original jar of peaches you can see on the left. Then I have olives, grapes, strawberries and carrots. You can really put so much in these jars and you are recycling at the same time. I love it.
Another thing I stumbled across this week has to do with raisins. The girls love raisins. They like them in the little boxes. Well that gets expensive to buy them in the little boxes instead of the big container, so I bought a big container and a package of little boxes and as the girls finish their raisins out of the little boxes, I refill them with those from the big container. Just another way to recycle and save money.

If you have a tip that you would like to share please email me. I would love to hear it.


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