Scott Schneider of FOX32 and I talk raising happy kids in anticipation of the Moms Meet WOW summit.

Last weekend I was honored to be part of an amazing conference  in Itasca, IL. The event, the Moms Meet WOW summit is an extraordinary 2-day event full of workshops, panels, parties and more geared towards parents, bloggers and experts in the child development space. The goal: Exploring ways parents can raise happy and healthy kids. In addition to promoting the event on TV, I was also invited to speak on a panel and give a workshop.

 

My panel was on the first day which was a day devoted to  bloggers. The topic: “How to Find your Voice and Rise above the Doubt,” is  always relevant. I mean, who doesn’t have self doubt now and then, especially when it comes to blogging. My biggest take away from the panel was: Ne authentic but careful. You want to be true to who you are and let your true personality shine through but you also need to remember ( just as I keep saying to J-R -“Can I please have Instagram”-B), once you put something out there on social media or a blog, it’s out there. Its a hard balance. My best rule ~ be proactive, not reactive.

 

I also gave a workshop sponsored by National Geographic Kids My workshop, “How to Raise Happy and Healthy Kids” focused  on the sensory diet and how so many of the activities and sensory inputs that I learned about while JRB was in OT and DT are also incredibly beneficial for Neuro-typical kids. I got a lot of really good feedback about the workshop so my plan is to break it down and write about it more in depth in the coming months. I look at JRB now and I can’t believe he presented as autistic at 2 1/2 ~ he is so chatty these days (but everything is “cringy” according to him) It’s hard to remember he really didn’t speak until he was 3.

 

Finally, no conference is complete without meeting quality brands and sponsors. There were so many cool companies and products devoted to helping parents raise happy and healthy kids. Here are just a few of my favorites.

  • Lantana: So this company makes the most amazing Hummus. Not just any hummus, flavorful, full of protein hummus in a variety of different flavors (all topped with a little something extra)… These flavors include white bean hummus, topped with pine nuts and herbs (My FAVE), Beet Hummus topped with pickled beets (2nd favorite) and Edamame Hummus topped with roasted red pepper and toasted sesame seeds. Funny story ~ a few weeks ago I was invited to a dinner party and we were put in charge of bringing an appetizer. I went to the store to pick up pita, carrots and hummus and ended up buying  4 different flavors (I just couldn’t decide). It was a huge hit, even though I’m sure Janine (the hostess) thought I was neurotic but hey when it’s good its hard to choose just one!
  • Revolution Foods  I LOVE their Dinner Hero line and their Lunch Bundles. We were given the fiesta taco kit in our goody bag and it was great. The rice was easy to make and then I used the seasoning with ground turkey and made a terrific taco salad dinner. Super simple and good.
  • Good Culture: One of those “why didn’t they think of this sooner” concepts that combines cottage cheese and fruit in much the same way yogurt companies incorporate fruit into their offerings.  I first tasted Good Culture when I bought a cup at WF, thinking it was strawberry yogurt. I opened it up, ready to give to JRB for breakfast when I discovered it  was cottage cheese! lucky for me,JRB is not a cottage cheese fan so I ate it and LOVED it. they have sweet (Blueberry, mango, etc) and savory flavors (Kalmata olive!!).  I for one am just happy to see people eating cottage cheese again. Reminds me of my youth when we would order the “diet plate” at Kips Deli (canned peaches and cottage cheese).
  • Table 5 Pizza: Okay so I’m not a big frozen pizza gal but this pizza is truly awesome. It’s all about the cornmeal crust and it’s delicious. Try it! Really.

Okay that’s it for now. Hope you are all having a fantastic Wednesday! xo

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