beautiful images

some days all I need is a boost of a good image...and then I found this blog...'in a garden...a canadian gardeners photoblog'. I'm so glad that I happened upon her blog, she can take me to a different world immediately! thank you!


indu...for YOU

no joking headline...this really is for you! I found indu at our local yoga shop and I just can't do without it! and from the moment you take your first deep breath of indu you will be hooked I guarantee it! I think it's the geranium, because I love that scent, but it also could be the lavender or the bergamot...together they create an amazing combination. Marni Task, who is the creator of indu, mixes the lotion while chanting a mantra, (I love the thought of that)...she also told me that along with amazing relaxing properties, the lotion has helped some people with eczema and other skin irritations...I tried it on my sons very mild eczema and it was gone instantly. Marni uses indu while her students are in shavasana, I hope that you love it! it's on my website now click here.

happy halloween!

don't forget your pumpkins! we had so much fun carving ours we want to make them every week!! ...we decided it's the best part of HALLOWEEN!


tofu made easy

we don't eat tofu very often, because somewhere along the line I was told that it is hard to digest, but when we do I like to use this very easy recipe that the kids always gobble up! I think it's an easy meal for kids when you have next to nothing in the fridge (and I was just reminded of it last night)...

olive oil
1/2 to whole onion (depending on size) sliced into slivers
firm tofu cut into cubes
tamari (I use 1 part tamari to 2 parts water) or you can also use miso diluted into a cup of water

I like to cook with an iron skillet to add iron to our meals

use olive oil to sautee the onion and add the cubed tofu, cook the tofu on medium heat until it browns a bit (this takes awhile) and then add the tamari/water and cook as it browns and serve with brown rice...YUM!


hand knit hats from the netherlands

I received an email from angelique of the dutch design label BENK. angelique creates these wonderful handknit hats and sweaters...as I may have them in my store next year I wanted you to be able to see them right away and visit her website here to see more! BENK's hats are made of 100% merino yarn and in true european fashion they come in the brightest and most wonderful colors! I love kids in bright colors...and there is really nothing better than a bright color hat or a handknit sweater for kids, it's really special! thank you angelique!


Alternative Healthcare: Ayurveda

Ayurveda is a traditional Indian healthcare system that was developed by the seers and has been practiced for over 5,000 years. In Sanskrit it means “science of life” or “practices of longevity”.

It is a system that emphasizes the prevention of disease and the rejuvenation of our body system. Using intervention techniques and natural therapies Ayurveda seeks to harmonize the mind and body. Practitioners use Ayurvedic herbal preparations along with other therapies to treat their patients.
www.ayurvedahc.com - is a very comprehensive site complete with childcare information, recent news items, recipes and blogs –the site can be translated into several different languages as well
www.ayurvedic.org - has a wealth of information and products
www.everydayayurveda.org - tips on incorporating Ayurvedic principles and a book review page

*Alternative Healthcare refers to a diverse range of healing practices (some have been around for thousands of years!), which we currently view as “alternatives” to the Allopathic method we have become accustomed to. Many of us have dabbled in these so-called alternatives with encouraging results and some of us rely on Homeopathy, Reflexology and other natural options as our primary defense against disease and discomfort.

At Nonchalant Mom we believe that parents, working with the support of their trusted doctors and healthcare practitioners are the best advocates for their child’s optimum health. If you are curious or feel instinctively drawn to a particular method then arm yourself with information! To jump-start your investigation we have provided you with some basic definitions and a wealth of informative websites.


Body Burden

Every parent is, or should be, worried about the environmental impact to their children. As parents, we are increasingly aware of our children's potentially harmful exposure to chemicals in the air, in food, in toys, in clothing, in household items..... almost anything you can think of. A lot of data is still supposedly out on the issue, or is still somewhat incomplete. But, it does pay to be creatively suspicious of the things that do surround us in our daily lives. At Nonchalantmom we are NOT encouraging everyone to make a mad dash for the exits! We are just trying to suggest that we start paying more attention. Here is a link to an article in CNN.com that suggests a new study, and some pros and cons on the issue. Have a look and tell us what you think.

Kick the Can !!

this has to be one of my favorite games to play and I can't wait until my kids are old enough...soon....it's terrific when you are traveling, camping, and visiting families so there are lots of people and it's fun for all ages.

Here are the basics of the game:

1 person is “it” and their job is to protect the can which is placed in the middle of an open space (front yards are perfect)

“It” counts to 50 with his or her eyes closed while everyone else scatters and hides, the can remains in the middle while “it” tries to find the other players

When a hider is found she/he runs to the can and tries to kick it over before getting tagged by "it"

If the player is tagged the game continues, all of the tagged people have to sit near the can and wait to get out of "jail" by someone who comes to "KICK THE CAN", if "it" tags everyone and nobody was able to kick the can then the first one tagged now becomes "it".

so we used to play this every night at our cabin in Minnesota "up north" (if you are from Minnesota, you know what I mean by that). it's the most fun to play at night or dusk, and you can also play with using a flashlight, so "it" would have a flashlight and have to tag people with the flashlight...this is an amazing amount of fun that can last for hours and hours!


sugar cravings? Millet to the rescue!

is there always a place in your day when sweets just make their way into your daily routine? well then, we have something in common...BUT here comes millet to the rescue! this is not a cure-all recipe but I certainly think it can work, and it has worked for me in the past. sometimes sugar and sweets just become an everyday part of our diet, even when we know better! I believe that sugar is a very powerful drug, just think about how debilitating it is to your system, it's long term effects are harmful, yet, somehow we feed it to our children! read the book "Sugar Blues" by william duffy and you will learn much more about how sugar became a daily drug. cut sugar out of your diet and you will find that any PMS symptoms will disappear (even better, cut out dairy as well), if you have frequent yeast infections you are literally feeding the yeast with sugar. sugar is addictive and this recipe can help you fight those sugar cravings!

1 cup millet
1/2 sweet yellow onion
2-3 carrots
1/4 kobacha squash cut into cubes
pinch of good seasalt (si seasalt is great!)
2 1/2-3 cups water

wash millet in water and use a fine colander to rinse off (I usually wash it three times). cut ingredients into simple chunks and put in large pot with millet and water and pinch of salt. turn flame to lowest setting possible on your stove (I even use a flame-tamer) and cook for 45 minutes, if there is still water just continue cooking until water is cooked off, fluff with a spoon and you are ready to go!

you can eat this as a side-dish and it's wonderful with a pinch of salt and toasted seasame oil (this brings out a nice nutty flavor). I even eat it as a main dish! kids love it...and with the next day leftovers you can make croquettes (I would tell you how, but mine never stick together in a ball very well...but it can be done!). but like I said before, you are not going to suddenly have no craving for sugar but you will see it lessen as time goes on and you continue to use this recipe.

you will find that without sugar in your diet, for a long period of time, you will have much more energy! AND your cravings will disappear...


breastfeeding/losing your milk

This is one of the stories from my website that has the most comments and I have had mothers come to me crying that they were so happy to find this information, and it really works!

Breastfeeding Difficulties: Losing Your Milk
There are so many surprises and frustrations that go along with breastfeeding that losing your milk can send you off the deep end. It did for me. My son Sander was only six months old when our little family took a trip to New Mexico. Sander had a cold, so I was not sleeping well, and traveling threw off my schedule enough that I forgot to eat and to drink enough fluids. New Mexico’s dry climate and the fact that I caught Sander’s cold made things so much worse. By the time we got back from that trip, my milk was all but gone. Back home in New York, when Sander woke up one night for his regular feeding, I could tell there was nothing there. I got very upset, woke my husband and started crying (the worst thing I could do…loose even more fluid). Once I had recovered from my panic, we made rice cream at home (see recipe below) instead of opting for formula, and Sander loved it. In the meantime I was still frantic to get my milk back. I called friends in Italy to help (it was 3:00 a.m. in New York and 9:00 a.m. in Italy). They suggested that I too eat the rice cream, to eat as much Mochi as I could, to make my dinners with millet, and above all, to stop crying and relax. In the morning I got up and went directly to a La Leche League meeting with Sander. It just felt good to be around other breastfeeding mothers and their compassion made me feel stronger. I told them about my problem and they were so helpful. I became confident that my milk would return, and it did, on the second day. I had to continue to use the rice cream for a while and to pump to stimulate milk production, but my milk was back full flow within no time.

Recipes and Tips:

Mochi – Pounded sweet rice is one of the best things to eat during breastfeeding. You can buy Mochi in any health food store, in the refrigerated section. Cut Mochi into 1x1 inch squares and put them in the oven on a cookie sheet; When they “pop” they’re ready to eat. My son loves mochi as well; it was one of the first things that he ate when he started solids.

Amasake – A grain sweetener that is a delicious drink on its own, amasake can also help breastmilk production. Available in health food stores.

Rice Cream – In a large pot combine 3/4 cup organic brown rice, 3/4 cup organic barley, an umeboshi plum and a small piece of Kombu. Fill pot with water and cook for five hours on lowest possible flame. After five hours skim off top (rice cream), put through strainer, and combine with warm spring water for baby’s milk. The bottom (we call it rice mush) can be eaten with vegetables (savory) or with a purée of adzuki beans (sweet). Don’t be surprised if it grows on you!

Millet - you can buy this in any health food store, just cook like brown rice or I like to add yellow onion, kobacha squash, and carrots (this is also a recipe to help to loose cravings for sweets!--eat every day for a week or so and you will find your cravings lessened)...delicious with a bit of olive oil or toasted sesame oil on top.
To find a La Leche League meeting near you click here.


Travel Tip: A Weekend in New Hampshire.

Nonchalantmom has asked our blog readers to submit any ideas they might have for fun trips with the kids. We have a few submissions and continue to ask for more! The following submission is from Meredith.... Thank You Meredith!

New Hampshire has always been a frequent vacation spot for my family. New Hampshire is a beautiful state that offers great skiing in the winter, refreshing lakes and rivers in the summer, and amazing foliage and views in the autumn. Two weeks ago, my husband and I packed up our truck and drove north to New Hampshire. In addition to our luggage, we also packed our four children.

Our first stop was Mt. Washington Auto Road in Pinkham Notch, NH (www.MtWashingtonAutoRoad.com). Mt. Washington is the highest peak in New England and it’s summit is the home of the “World’s Worst Weather.” At the base of the mountain, we were given an audio tour on a CD. As we drove up the Auto Road, we listened to the CD, which detailed the mountain road’s history. The road is very narrow…especially for a Ford Expedition holding six people! The truck was just inches from the edge of the road with a steep fall at the edge. Our children loved it! It was a beautiful day, 78 degrees, the sky was clear, we could see all the way into Canada. As we drove up the last mile of this 6,288-foot mountain peak, the weather dramatically changed. All of a sudden we were in a cloud and the wind blew strong. Moments later, we reached the summit, the temperature was 32 degrees and the wind was blowing 76 mph! Yes, we did get out of our truck to go into the summit building and museum. My husband and I carried our youngest two children for fear that they would blow away! After downing some hot chocolate, we headed into the summit museum, which provided an in-depth look at the mountain’s four climate zones, geology, history and ecology. All four kids loved the experience and are still talking about their fascination with the rapid weather change.

Following our family decent from Mt. Washington, we drove to the Flume Gorge (flumegorge.com) located in Franconia Notch State Park. The Flume is a natural gorge that has amazing waterfalls, paths, vistas, and covered bridges. Our children ran to and climbed every boulder that we came across. It was a beautiful hike after a long drive.

That night, we were all unconscious by 8 o’clock!

The next morning greeted us with another beautiful day. We drove to North Woodstock, NH. There, in the Kinsman Notch, we set out to explore the Lost River Gorge and Boulder Caves (www.findlostriver.com). This Gorge and river is flanked with many spectacular caves. The Judgment Hall of Pluto cave has an amazing “indoor” waterfall. Other caves to explore are Thor’s Workshop, The Devil’s Kitchen, Center of the Earth, Cave of Silence, Bear Crawl, the Rotunda, the Hall of Ships, and the Lemon Squeezer (my husband and I skipped the last one). At the end of the river walk, the kids panned for fossils and gems at the Lost River Mining Co. We all left the Lost River in awe of the rugged land and with a very cool bag of rocks!

We managed to pack many adventures into our two-day trip. We all (including four children of various ages) had a wonderful time. The best part…we had a fun, action-packed weekend with our family and there wasn’t an amusement park in sight!



it's upon us again, one of the worst allergy seasons (or at least it is in our area)! I just got reminded by a friend of one of my favorite remedies....HONEY! Take one spoonful two times of day of local honey and WHOLA! gone, almost immediately! remember LOCAL honey from your area....it's the bees from your area collecting the pollen that you are allergic to that cures your sneezing (and even your itchy eyes)! but remember honey is not good for kids under one year of age.
...good luck!


Alternative Healthcare: Acupuncture

I am new to acupuncture and I wanted to share some things that are going on because I am quite amazed by the results. I first went in because I have had horrible allergies/colds since I had my daughter (two years ago!) that's two years of waking up sneezing! I first saw my favorite doctor, dr. warren king, when I was in minneapolis this last summer, he did some acupuncture as well as moxibustion because he felt that my immune system was very low and afterwards I was without a sniffle for about six weeks! he suggested that I seek more acupuncture when I got back to rhode island. I am now seeing the wonderful sanford lee here in providence. he also felt that my energy was low and he is focusing on my core strength. just a little background I want to tell you that during yoga when they said "now lift your legs" I couldn't! after two kids my stomach muscles were gone...or so I thought, I honestly couldn't even hold my stomach in anymore, the muscles just weren't there! I have had three sessions with mr. lee and he is also using acupuncture and moxibustion and my core strength has been awakened! yoga has been totally different, I had almost given up on my stomach muscles and now that strength is there, and I think it's completely fascinating. I am very interested to try this on my kids if they have any ailments and I would be very curious to hear from anyone that has used acupuncture on their kids! mr. lee said that it works very well with sleeping troubles, ear trouble, allergies, and many more ailments in kids... in the meantime I am enjoying a flatter stomach, yes!


where does the time go?

so I was reading up on my feng shui and I came upon at interesting item that I need to share with EVERYONE I know...because I know we all have at least one of these in your house...it goes like this: do you have a clock in your house that doesn't work (we had TWO!)? these non-working clocks will bring stagnation (any symbol of dead time impedes progress) to the area of your house/sector that it is located. for example one of ours was in my office! yikes...I took it out, immediately, and I can't tell you how much I got done yesterday! (notice all of the updates to nonchalant mom!)...it just makes sense doesn't it? the other one is in our bedroom...yikes! (which is in the money sector of our house!) I have been looking for the perfect bedroom clock/radio for years now...and we always end up with an Ikea clock that works for a week or so...I threw that one out too! (I'm a little worried about the double stagnation in the garbage can right now). but seriously, I think this is an easy way to move on!

as for the bedroom clock, in my search for an image for this story I came upon this terrific website and CLOCK! click here to visit furni! (clock above)