PB&J Bars

PB & J bars are the perfect summer snack for you and your family. I stumbled upon this great recipe while watching one of my favorite Food network chefs, the Barefoot Contessa. Check out the following link to view her recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/peanut-butter-and-jelly-bars-recipe/index.html

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You Month!

It is that time of year again- back to school. As a mom you are nothing short of Super Woman; waking up early to make their lunch and get them ready for school, taking them to after school activities, running errands at any opportunity you have, making dinner, helping with homework, and the list goes on! It is a wonder how you get everything on the to do list done (well almost everything) without missing a beat. But don’t forget the world has women for a reason and that’s to keep the world spinning around.

Although every day can be stressful and provide difficult and forever changing boundaries, it is important to think about you as not just a mother but a women. This is the time, now more than ever, to do something fro yourself. Whether it is listening to Natalie Merchant and the 10,000 maniacs in a bubble bath while sipping a wine cooler or engaging in a new work out routine.

I am a member of my local YMCA and I do not know what I would do with all my extra stress and frustration without the gym. To me, taking a 3 mile run at the end of a long day is almost euphoric. I know not everyone enjoys this strenuous activity as much as I do and that is why trainers have created innovative ways to exercise and get out all that negative energy pent up throughout the day. This needs to be you time so go ahead, take a Zumba class or Power Yoga. Try out a Strength Training course or morning boot camp (ok maybe that is too much, at least fro me it is but you get the idea). Do something for you this month ladies!

Scenic Boat Tour

For those of you who have not taken advantage of the intellectual adventure that is the Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour, you should! The tour, that lasts about an hour and takes you through neighboring canals and lakes, has been operating for over 50 years. The Scenic Boat Tour is not only a fun and relaxing way to spend an afternoon, but for only $12 per person, it is a great way to learn more about the beautiful city of Winter Park and its foundation.

To find out more information of service hours and location, visit their website at: http://www.scenicboattours.com/

After School Snacking

Creating a tasty afternoon treat can be nothing short of an art form when it comes to kids. Often times their idea of the perfect snack involves combining all the contents of the fridge and pantry (and for some of us adults, that still is). However, to avoid a cooking crime scene, get involved with your kids to make an afternoon snack that is both fun to make and great to eat! I came across this great recipe by Martha Stewart the other day, that I just have to make for myself after a long day of work. Try this today with your little ones. Enjoy!

PITA NACHOS

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Ingredients

  • 1 regular size (6 inch) whole-wheat pita, split in half horizontally and cut into quarters
  • 1/3 cup mild salsa, plus more for serving (optional)
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese (2 ounces), such as cheddar or Monterey Jack

Directions

  1. Heat broiler, with rack set in top third of oven. Arrange pita pieces in a single layer, cut side up, on a baking sheet; dividing evenly, top each first with salsa, then cheese.
  2. Broil until cheese has melted and edges of pita are crisp, 2 to 4 minutes. Serve with extra salsa, if desired.

How to Train a Puppy

For those of you how are familiar with animated films, the title of this blog probably has a ringing similarity. Did you guess it? Yes, it’s How to Train a Dragon- a seemingly similar and daunting task to training and housebreaking your new puppy.  Training your puppy often involves long nights of cries, distinguishing between chew toys and designer heels, and learning to go outside for potty time. I am the proud parent of a recent addition to the family, Gunner- a not so fluffy black and brown Pomeranian puppy that weighs less than my handbag. I love that little man, right down to when I catch him chewing on my laptop charger and peeing on my boyfriend’s imported rugs, and although I am not much of an enforcer when it comes to obscenely adorable faces, I had to train him and break him of these bad habits.

My boyfriend will probably be the first to tell you that I am not much of a disciplinary and that I will be the first to fabricate some excuse like “He didn’t know that rug was expensive” and “Well at least he made an effort to show us he had to go outside by getting somewhat close to the door.” These are the times he will interject and say, “Hayley, peeing in the kitchen is not remotely close to the backdoor, but nice try.” That was the moment I realized I really had to crack the whip and start training my puppy, but how? I thought it could not possibly be that difficult. I was wrong. I felt like a new parent. I began staying up at night ready articles on potty training and teaching tricks, when to feed meals, and proper reinforcement techniques.

It has been a couple months now and I cannot say that I have converted my little dragon into a complete angel, but he has improved. We still have occasional accidents in the house, but overall the number is getting less and less every week. I recently read an article that stated most puppies are not house broken until they are 6 months old, yet some breeds may take longer. My puppy is taking a bit longer but I still have plenty of hope as he progresses. I will not lie; I did have to cave and purchase doggie diapers online to avoid his random spills on the carpet. This may seem like a copout but I do stick to my regimented potty times so he knows how long to hold it for before outside time. My boyfriend and I also purchased a doggie bell that hangs on the back door. Every time we open the door to take him out, the bell rings, letting him know it is potty time. The articles I read said that puppies begin to associate the bell ringing with potty and will eventually ring the bell on his own to let us know he needs to go outside. I really hope this works because as of now, I am the only one ringing that bell (except for our cat that uses it as his new toy). All and all I think of myself as quiet a decent trainer but I did need a little help. I encourage all owners of a new puppy to do their research and find helpful tips on training.

Here is an article to get you started. Enjoy!

http://www.dailypuppy.com/articles/

Back to School

It’s that time of year again. Summer is coming to an end and the new school year is beginning. Every parent remembers when they were their child’s age and were starting to feel the back to school jitters setting in. The constant worry of what this year will be like, new subjects to learn, new tests to take, and new people to meet (or just redeeming yourself for some practical jokes made at the expense of your old classmates). With all these new things occurring in your child’s life, it is hard to accept the fact that you may also need to bring a new sitter into the mix to watch your child once the school day is over. That is what we are here for! We are the super heroes of sitting and are here for parents every beck and call. As some of ours sitters are getting over their back to school jitters as well, they are also extremely eager to meet and sit for new families in Winter Park.

So, if you are a parent living in the area of Winter Park and are looking for a fun and charismatic sitter to not only play with your child but help them with their after school studies, please contact Sitters on Park (407)490.4205. You many also visit our website at http://www.sittersonpark.com to learn more information on this small but growing local business!

Your Money Changing Lives

Sitters on Park is teaming up with St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital and the United States Humane Society to save lives everyday! For every child care bundle purchased we will make a $1 donation to St. Jude’s and for every pet service purchase we will donate $1 to the United States Humane Society. It may not seem like much but every dollar adds up to make a difference. Please help us save the lives of children and pets across the country!

Hello world!

Sitters on Park Blog is a space for us at Sitters on Park to share with our sitters and members. Please visit the Just for Moms page for special promotions offered by local small business in Winter Park (and watch out for gift certificates and discounts on spa packages and services for a special mom’s day off!). The Activities page has great ideas for family fun and trips. Our Recipes page has great recipes ranging from entrees to snacks to delectable desserts. Finally, the Sitters page provides helpful tips for our sitters to keep providing the best care for our members children, pets, and homes.

For more information about Sitters on Park, visit our website at www.sittersonpark.com