Creative Pancakes Contest in Partnership with IHOP in Honor of National Pancake Day, March 8

Pancakes, one of America’s favorite breakfast foods—and most definitely a favorite food for most toddlers—are truly versatile meal options. From their shape and size to the fillings and the toppings, you can get especially creative in the kitchen when you’re making pancakes. Most times pancakes are quick and easy to make, whether you whip them up from scratch or grab your nearest box of pancake mix. In honor of National Pancake Day, which is fast-approaching, taking place on Tuesday, March 8 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., has teamed up with IHOP (International House of Pancakes) to bring you a fun and exciting giveaway.

In 2015, IHOP gave away 6 Million pancakes! This year, March 8 is IHOP’s 11th Annual National Pancake Day and the goal is to raise $3.5 Million for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and other local charities. The hope is that guests ordering their one free short stack of buttermilk pancakes will offer a voluntary donation for these special charities. For more information about National Pancake Day, please visit

We are inviting all of our readers and friends to participate for a chance to win a $20 gift card to IHOP. Here’s the scoop:

Continue reading Creative Pancakes Contest in Partnership with IHOP in Honor of National Pancake Day, March 8

Waffle Maker Recipes + Frozen Snowflake Waffle Maker Review

The day has come where I have to rethink how I offer breakfast choices to my daughter. No longer can I say, “Do you want frozen waffles,” because now that means a fresh, whimsical, snowflake-shaped waffle instead of an ice-cold disc from the freezer. We received the Frozen Snowflake Waffle Maker for Christmas and so far it’s been a hit trying waffle maker recipes of our own creation! With two little girls, I am sure we will get a lot of use out of this small kitchen appliance, should it hold up to the test of time.

Continue reading Waffle Maker Recipes + Frozen Snowflake Waffle Maker Review

Amazing Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Pancakes

It’s no secret that my three-year-old and I are complete suckers for chocolate chip pancakes. In fact, my daughter likes pancakes so much that I think she could live entirely off of pancakes, fruit, milk, and water, if I would let her. Her love of pancakes has inspired me to get a little more creative in the kitchen, so now whenever I have time, I make my own pancakes from scratch rather than turning to Bisquick or Mrs. Butterworth’s. (Not that there’s anything wrong with either of them, mind you—I will still use them both in a pinch and they are delicious. I’m mostly just experimenting with flavors when making homemade chocolate chip pancakes.) Recently I stumbled across a new pancake of my own creation—Toasted Chocolate Chip Pancakes. Before giving you the recipe, I should disclose that these could even pass for more of a dessert pancake rather than breakfast pancakes, but in our house, pancakes are pancakes, so have at it!

Continue reading Amazing Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Pancakes

50 Cheap & Easy Meals (Lunch or Dinner) If You Didn’t Win the Lottery Last Night

If you’re reading this, you’re in the same boat as we are… certainly not sitting on your own personal island, sipping tropical drinks, and eating an endless buffet of Filet Mignon, lobster tail, crab, and just about every delicious food you can imagine, without having to choose just one. Nope, we didn’t win the Powerball Jackpot either, and I’ve decided to spend my time writing instead of making dinner. I guess we’ll figure out something when I get to it, but I can tell you, it definitely won’t be steak and seafood or a several course Italian meal. Instead I’ve been thinking of different budget-friendly, kid-friendly meals for all of those of us who didn’t win the Powerball Jackpot last night.

Continue reading 50 Cheap & Easy Meals (Lunch or Dinner) If You Didn’t Win the Lottery Last Night

DIY Light-Up Cardboard Playhouse

Kids should all get to experience the imaginative fun of playing in a big cardboard box (in my humble opinion). Don’t we all remember those times ourselves? My husband and I were just talking about this the other day. Playing in a cardboard box clubhouse inspires great creativity and it is often one of the most memorable playtime experiences kids get to enjoy. (If you ask me, houses made from cardboard boxes are also a big step away from too much screen time!) If you can get your hands on a sizable cardboard box, your kids are in for a treat. An even better one, I might add, if you can score some battery powered led lights. In this article I am going to tell you how to create a light up cardboard box clubhouse, also referred to as a “twinkle box.”

Continue reading DIY Light-Up Cardboard Playhouse

Natalie’s Chocolate Oatmeal Recipe

I tried for a long time to get my toddler to eat oatmeal – a healthy, nutritious, easy morning meal. She loved oatmeal cookies, but wanted nothing to do with cooked oatmeal or its unique, sticky texture. My daughter finally decided to give oatmeal a try at age three. She gave it a shot one day when I likened it to oatmeal cookies. I tend to eat my oatmeal on the hard side whereas my husband prefers a milkier oatmeal. Natalie seems to like hers somewhere in the middle. She now asks for oatmeal most mornings for breakfast and enjoys making it herself (mostly).

Continue reading Natalie’s Chocolate Oatmeal Recipe

Out to Eat with Kids: Survival Tips

Sometimes going out to eat with your little ones is more trouble than it’s worth. Other times, your kids can be so well behaved it makes you look like all-star parents. The latter is probably more the exception than the norm, but with a few sneaky tricks, you can enjoy more meals out at restaurants without catching all the dirty looks for having a screaming child.

Continue reading Out to Eat with Kids: Survival Tips

15 Things You Can Do with Old Fruit – Using Fruit that’s Past its Prime

The bright, pretty color and the expected sweetness and delightful flavors of fruit make it easy to overbuy, especially with toddler in tow. She wants strawberries at the store, but then you get home and she only wants the apples that you already had. You picked up blueberries with the intention of making muffins, or pancakes even, but there’s just never enough time. Uneaten, old fruit just keeps piling up. Not to fret, though. Even if the fruit is a little past its prime, looking just a wee bit sadder, it’s still in many cases totally fine to bake or whip into another recipe. Here are my favorite 15 ways to use fruit that’s past its prime.

Continue reading 15 Things You Can Do with Old Fruit – Using Fruit that’s Past its Prime

Fully Disposable Brown Bag Lunch Ideas for Kids

Summer’s finally here and we’ve decided to continue school sessions for our daughter since it seems to be going pretty well lately. She enjoys all the activities they do and has made a few friends. (Granted, her closest friend is not attending summer sessions, but there are others.) Recently, we decided to switch one of her days to Wednesday. We did not realize that requires us to stick to fully disposable brown bag lunch ideas. This might have been a huge mistake so we’ll see if we decide to keep going with it.

Continue reading Fully Disposable Brown Bag Lunch Ideas for Kids

Pancake Madness! [Never] Too Many Pancakes

My three-year-old loves pancakes. She would probably eat them every day, for every meal, if I let her. I’ve contemplated trying to make up other kinds of pancakes for lunch and dinner but I just haven’t gotten that far yet. We usually cycle through the same few kinds of pancakes until some kind of inspiration strikes me and we come up with something brand new. Here are a few of my favorite kinds of pancakes to make, along with pancakes from other toddler food bloggers that I can’t wait to try!

Continue reading Pancake Madness! [Never] Too Many Pancakes

Clever Meals for Picky Kids