Aug 29, 201212:35 PMReal Moms of NJ

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Solutions to Summer Bummers

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hot summerNew Jersey Family has published some great advice about serious summer issues like avoiding Lyme disease and protecting kids’ ears during fireworks. Wondering about other serious issues, like why West Nile has been so rampant and whether July’s record-breaking heat means global warming is worse than we thought? Can’t help you there, but here are some common, not-so-serious-except-when-you’re-experiencing-them summer bummers for which I’ve finally found solutions. 

Bummer #1: I can’t find a bathing suit that covers what needs to be covered but doesn’t make me look 70 years old.

Solution: The skirted MagicSuit tankini by Victoria’s Secret. One word of caution: I have actually pulled a muscle trying to stuff myself into this suit. But let me tell you, it was worth it. I don’t know how, but this suit manages to fully cover problem spots while still looking mildly sexy. Genius! You can see the top here. The skirted bottom is sold out for the season (don’t worry, they always bring it back!), but you can see a similar one here.

Bummer #2: My elementary school-age kids want to go swimming all the time, but taking them to the beach/lake/town pool is a big pain.

Solution: Two words: Intex pool. Let’s face it: Sometimes a day at the beach is no day at the beach, if you know what I mean (and I think you do). This summer, my family got a 12’ x 30” Intex pool, which cost us about $150 and requires minimal care. We chose one with a metal frame, since I heard from friends and online reviews that, without that support, the sides of the pool can cave in if your lawn isn’t perfectly level. It’s three feet deep so my 5-year-old can stand in it, but it isn’t too babyish for my 8-year-old and her friends.

Some of my most relaxing summer moments were spent sitting on the deck with my mom friends while the kids played in the pool (we even went in ourselves once or twice!). If you’re a working mom, letting the kids go for a quick swim after dinner makes a nice ending to a hectic summer day (much more relaxing then schlepping them to the town pool and facing an absurdly late bedtime). 

More summer bummer solutions—>

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Aug 30, 2012 02:51 am
 Posted by  GinnyB

I love the ice cream for dinner suggestion, but I'd use nonfat frozen yogurt instead. You can even make your own with 0% Greek yogurt, which I always have on hand as a sour cream substitute for weekly taco salad night. It's also nice to add a dollop to my husband's ice cream serving in place of one of the many scoops in the bowl -- the sour, unfrozen, creamy contrast is not unlike whipped cream in that context, and yet it's tons healthier. To make your own Greek yogurt ice cream, you can blend or food process a favorite fruit, then mix in the yogurt and freeze in a tray for an hour or so, then scrape it out in its slushy form into another container and refreeze for longer. Chia seeds make great sprinkles and add Omegas, and I'd use walnuts instead of peanuts (again, Omegas). I keep a bag of walnuts in the freezer at all times, cause you never know when you're going to have a walnut emergency.

Aug 30, 2012 12:14 pm
 Posted by  tamm

My favorite tip is a blender. I can't count the endless struggles i've had trying to get healthy food into my picky eaters. Fortunately, i've found that i can blend an endless variety of fruits and veges (with a little juice and yogurt) into a healthy smoothie or ice pop. The dark blue of blueberries will always mask the color of kale or spinach - add a little ground flaxseed or chia seeds as mentioned above and you have a yummy healthy snack...and i never run out of ingredients. whenever i have extra fruit that's starting to go soft, i just wash and slice it and put it into a freezer bag. if organic berries are on sale in the summer, i buy extras and pop them into the freezer for the winter when fresh berries are hard to come by.

Aug 31, 2012 04:55 pm
 Posted by  Renee

Awesome ideas! I am definitely going to have to try Greek yogurt (which my kids love) for taco night. I knew I could count on my fellow "real moms" for the best tips :). Have a great holiday weekend!

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There's nothing artificial in these blog posts from New Jersey's hardest-working women. Where to go, what to do, and how to do it—with kids—are all part of the mix.

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Editor Judy Grover is the mom of two rambunctious boys, who, she admits, completely run the household. Like this "jokey" line admitting her feelings of parental inadequacy, her posts focus on the joys and challenges -- in the rawest, "real mom" way -- of raising her toddlers into considerate, thoughtful men in the face of demands from both career and peers.

Essex County Real Mom Anna Sandler lives happily ever after with her Jersey-raised husband and three NYC-born children in the land of jug handles and disco fries. She loves baking and crafting with her kids, even if everything they make doesn't turns out Pinterest-perfect. Anna has never met a holiday she doesn't want to celebrate, and enjoys sharing ideas for everyday fun (indoor beach party, anyone?), as well as how to commemorate bigger moments from birthdays to first days of school.

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Middlesex County Real Mom Renée Sagiv Riebling is a mom of two who never irons (Quick! Grab it out of the dryer while it's still hot instead!) or cooks anything that requires dicing, but she does love sweet sticky faces and family outings (check out her Jersey Jaunts column for ideas). She understands all too well about the minutiae of mothering, and her blog posts focus on parenting pointers--from experts or experience.



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