I remember the struggle of getting my daughter to sleep when she was a baby…I would plead to her as if she was listening “Please go to sleep” rocking and cradling her. And then a few months later she was big enough to sit in a high chair and drinking her whole milk and picking up her cereal piece by piece with the hopes one would enter her mouth. And when she started preschool, I would drop her off at the door and she would hang on my leg as if she would never let go. Yet, now in elementary school, a different goodbye with a quick wave as she closes the car door shut. Recently, I imagined my daughter 10 years from now… after I tucked her into bed the night of her birthday – one marking the age of double digits. While I thought about what the first 10 years looked like, all the holding and the rocking and the feeding and the playing, not to mention the loss of sleep… I then started to think about the next 10 years and what they would be filled with. I imagine the next 10 years will be completely different (except for maybe the loss of sleep!). And 10 years goes by in an instant.
As a mom, I have many things I want to teach my kids before they enter adulthood. One that is high on the list? Teaching them how to nourish themselves well and make good choices and to live a good life.
I can’t just wish for this to happen though. I need to recognize that everything I do today with them, for them or do while they are watching me, will eventually become their steps too. I must give everything the 10 YEAR TEST. If I want it for my kids in 10 years, then I must start doing it today. I can’t pour the glass of milk for my kids and not one for myself. It’s a simple act – getting three servings of dairy a day – but one that holds a high priority. After all, dairy carries nine essential nutrients including protein, potassium, calcium, vitamin D – all things we need daily.
Something you can start today? A simple snack of fruit and cheese in the mid-afternoon. It’s one of my favorite choices!
Here are some other ideas too.
Whip up a yogurt-filled smoothie. Full of live and active cultures, yogurt keeps our digestive tract healthy and able to fight off bacteria. It’s an immune booster, shortening the duration and severity of illnesses like colds and flu. Try this Raspberry-Strawberry Yogurt Smoothie.
Put milk in your glass. It’s filled with nine essential nutrients that we all need. Feeling sluggish? Another great reason to grab milk – it’s filled with phosphorus, a nutrient that helps generate energy in our body’s cells.
Pass the cheese, please. Did you know it takes 10 pounds of milk to make one pound of cheese? That means cheeses like cheddar, Colby, Monterey Jack, mozzarella and Swiss are packed with protein, are naturally low in lactose, and the perfect snack between meals. Pair cheese with fruit in these delicious Rainbow Fruit & Cheese Kabobs.
While it’s easy to forget, I must remember nourishing my mom-self is just as important as feeding nourishing meals to my family. I’m a better mom when I take care of my mom-self! My kids are watching and following right along! Speaking of those kids – this week is a great week to cash in all those homemade Mother’s Day coupons from last year! Use them up, let them spoil you!
And I’m celebrating my birthday this week as well, it’s got me thinking about bucket lists – have any chart toppers to share with me? Leave them in the comments!
Also, a quick thanks to Cabot Cheese for the cheese samples (if you haven’t tried their cheese yet, you must!). And be sure to read more about dairy’s goodness at www.dairymakessense.com.