7 Ways to Enjoy National Ice Cream Month with Your Children & Stay Healthy

| Admin

July is National Ice Cream Month. This probably makes your kids very happy and your waistline a little concerned. It’s hot, and eating the cool treat sounds like a fun way to turn the temperature down. However, one cup of the dessert has about 260 calories and 14 grams of fat. How do you celebrate National Ice Cream Month and stay healthy at the same time? Chill out. It’s possible.

  1. Try Low Calorie Ice Cream

You don’t have to pack on the calories to enjoy your favorite icy delight. Many brands offer low-calorie versions of your favorite flavors. These alternatives aren’t always so healthy, though. They’re often loaded with artificial sweeteners and preservatives. After all, you have to replace the fat and calories with something else, right?

Eat This, Not That ranked Halo Top Vanilla as the best diet option out there. One pint contains 240 calories. You don’t have to challenge yourself to stop when you’re halfway through. Plus, it contains healthy fats, has no fake sweeteners and is low in sugar. Your kids won’t know the difference. Neither will you.

  1. Go For Low Sugar Ice Cream

When you cut back on sugar, you may end up consuming fewer calories. Plus, keeping sugar away from your kiddos can prevent them from turning into hyper little monsters.

So Delicious No Sugar Added Coconut Milk Frozen Dessert is sweetened with natural stevia. It contains healthy fats from coconuts. You can feel good about feeding this to your family.

  1. Make Your Own

low calorie ice cream | Watch Me Grow in Las Vegas

Opt for homemade healthier options

When you make your own frozen treats, you can control the ingredients that go into it. A quick internet search will deliver lots of options for homemade recipes.

Here’s one to try:

Ingredients 3 ripe peaches, diced ¼ cup cream or coconut cream ¼ tsp vanilla extract Stevia to taste

Directions

  • Freeze the peaches for four hours.
  • Blend the peaches with the cream in a high-powered blender.
  • Add the stevia if you want more sweetness. You might not need it.

This produces a soft dessert that you can eat right away. Stick it in the freezer for another hour if you want a harder treat.

  1. Turn Bananas Into Frozen Deliciousness

Did you know that frozen bananas can be whipped up into a creamy snack or dessert? Slice bananas and freeze them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Transfer them to plastic bags or an airtight container, and store them in the freezer. Whenever you want some frozen goodness, place some bananas in a high-powered blender. Add cocoa or peanut butter for an added punch. Blend them until they become smooth.

  1. Try Strawberry Banana Frozen Lemonade

ice cream | Watch Me Grow in Las Vegas

Experiment with natural ingridients

Ditch the dairy altogether. Make a refreshing indulgence without using milk or yogurt. In a blender, combine strawberries and bananas. Mix them until they’re smooth. Add them to your ice cream maker along with some lemonade. After about 30 minutes, you’ll have a combination that tastes like a snow cone. You can also make these into frozen treats using molds.

  1. Make Themed Play Clay

Purchase or make dough for your kids to play with. Provide utensils and options for them to pretend that they have their own sweet shop. Make your own ice cream play clay by mixing one can of pre-made frosting with one cup of cornstarch. This recipe is great for toddlers. It’s edible, and it won’t harm your child if he or she makes the mistake of eating it. However, it won’t taste as good as the real thing.

Materials you need to make your own faux sundaes:

  • Play clay or dough
  • Small bowls
  • Cones made of paper or cardstock
  • Large scoops and spoons
  • Small spoons
  • Glitter or confetti for sprinkles
  • Beads, pebbles and buttons for chips and cherries
  • Straws
  • Wooden sticks for making “frozen” dessert bars
  1. Print Out Some Coolness

Use paper and scissors to celebrate the month without making your kids crazy or worrying about your weight. Print out images of cones and scoops, and have kids glue them onto paper to make their own creations. You can also make 3-D popsicles and other colorful delicacies. The best part is that these won’t melt in the summer heat.

You don’t have to fill up on fat and calories to celebrate National Ice Cream Month. Get creative. Buy something new from the store. Purchase fresh ingredients to whip up healthier options at home. Use your art supplies to make a cool dessert that won’t melt.

June is National Great Outdoors Month! Tips on How to Celebrate it with Your Children

| Brandie Heiseler

June is National Great Outdoors Month, and what better way to create great summer memories with your family than by experiencing the beauty of nature together? But how can you, with little ones in tow, take advantage of all that June has to offer? Here are five fun suggestions to engage even the smallest of outdoor adventurers.

  1. Take Advantage of Your State Park’s Programming!

National Great Outdoors Month | Watch Me Grow in Las Vegas

Playing outdoors is great fun

Your local state park is a treasure trove of fun, family-friendly activities. Consider going to a Firefly Walk! June is a particularly active season for fireflies, known for dancing through the night air with their magical twinkling. If your family plans to go firefly-spotting, plan ahead! Some parks, such as the Smokey Mountain National Park, are in such high demand that you must enter a lottery for admission to the perfect viewing ground. If parks strike your fancy, be sure to pick up a “Park Passport” from the park gift shop. Your child will not only be able to keep memories from your trip, but will delight in collecting unique stamps in their passport from all the parks you visit.

  1. Find Treasure….Go Geocaching!

Any child can tell you that there is a thrill in searching for buried treasure, but who would have thought that it could be educational experience? Geocaching is the perfect fusion of technology and nature. Using a downloadable phone app or GPS-supported device, your task is to navigate your way to a hidden box containing a “treasure” left by the last Geocacher. If you decide to take the treasure you find home, you must leave something of equal value for the next group to discover. And who knows where your hunt may lead you? Cache boxes may be hidden anywhere from a friendly suburb to a mountain summit! When home, you and your little adventurer can log your finds on geocaching.com together.

  1. Unplug with a Creative Camping Experience Your Kids Will Love.

Throwing the good ‘ole tent and cooler into the back of the car can be the start to the perfect family weekend. There is a reason that traditions like eating s’mores with sticky fingers are passed on through generations — they’re too good to let go of! There’s plenty of variety in the camping scene that can add color to this classic summer staple. For starters, think about trading out the tent! If your family become guests at Cloudland Canyon State Park in Georgia, for example, you have the option to stay in a cozy furnished yurt. Yurts typically accommodate up to six guests and include access to your own personal fire ring and a shared bath house. Or if riverside is more your fancy, stay in a family-sized “treehouse” over the Edisto river in South Carolina.

  1. Teach Your Child Your Favorite Outdoor Pastime.

Nothing beats seeing your child enjoy something that, as a child yourself, used to create dirt under your nails and laughter for days. Were you an avid kayaker in your youth? Rent a two-person kayak and teach your novice paddler under the safety of your gaze. Are you keen to hit a forested trail? Have fun building your own personalized trail mix with your little ones, then strap on your hiking boots together. What could be better way to foster a love of nature in your kids than by introducing them to your favorite way to get out there and play?

  1. Start in Your Own Backyard.

National Great Outdoors Month | Local Child Care Marketing

Backyard play is awesome

Though this commemorated time comes but once a year, you can feed your child’s love of outside play all year long. Even if you don’t have much space to create a garden, buy a few washtubs or large planters. Tomatoes, cucumber, and squash are great starter plants you and your child can grow, even in confined space. And as a bonus, you can break out the paint and decorate the planter pots together for a sweet memory that will last well after summertime.

There you have it, five ways that you and your children can soak up the sun and build appreciation of Mother Nature this June. May this fuel your inspiration to get out and go! Whether you enjoy PB&J sandwiches on the front lawn or drive hours to explore a new-to-you state park, you won’t regret embracing National Great Outdoors Month with your great kids.