Back to School with Bentos

Back to School with Bentos

Bento: a single-portion takeout or home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine.  Bento's can be arranged in "kyaraben" style (character bento) to look like popular anime or comic book characters or they can be "oekakiben" (picture bento) style to look like people, animals, flowers, etc.  (Source: Wikipedia) In the US we can adapt traditional bento's to make lunch fun for our kids (and ourselves) using regular lunch ingredients with fun bento boxes and accessories.  It's a great way to encourage your kids to eat healthier and is so much more fun than PB&J.  My kids went back to school this week and it's been a fun project for us to do as a family to prepare for the next day of school. Basic supplies:  Reusable lunch containers.  Preferably BPA-free, metal, glass, or fabric.  Come in a variety of sizes and may be traditional bento style or our more modern "tupperware" type containers.  Some traditional bento boxes even come with stackable tiers for holding more ... [ Read More ]

Blissdom Bound

Yesterday I spent the morning packing my little bag for 10 days, 2 cities, and 2 different climates.  I went to bed before my 4 yr old (she’s a night owl) and woke up shortly after my regular bedtime.  My shuttle to the airport arrived 30 minutes early and didn’t have any additional stops after me.  By the time I arrived at the airport it was only 3am and I beat most of the airport employees in.  After waiting for about an hour, I was finally able to drop off one bag and wait some more.  Another hour before security was operational.  Finally after 2 hours I finally opened my eyes, with the help of Starbucks and my iced chai latte. Today I’m heading to Dallas, TX for the Blissdom blog conference.  This will be my 3rd year attending Blissdom and I love that it’s in Dallas this year.  I’ll be meeting old friends and making new friends.  With me I have a brand new DSLR camera which I intend to learn how to use while in Dallas.  I’m looking forward to learning the manual camera skills ... [ Read More ]

Welcome to my newest app addiction – Vine!

Vine Profile

As I was settling into bed last night I do what I do every night; I opened up Instagram.  Then I saw it - a few of my followers starting sharing their Vine profiles.  What's Vine?  What's #vineapp?  What's all this chatter I see on Instagram. Of course I do what every good social media junkie does - go to iTune and search for Vine.  I actually had 3 different "Vine" apps come up so I had to figure out which one they were talking about.  Vine - Make a scene, by Vine Labs.  It appears that this app was just released by Twitter actually and combines all of the things I love about Twitter and Instagram with a twist; 6 second videos! Once you create an account (I linked mine to my Twitter account to keep my profiles consistent) you can start following your friends and have them follow you back.  It looks very similar to Instagram (but green) with a place to "like" a post and leave comments on posts. The thing that makes Vine different is that it's not photos but videos.  Short, six ... [ Read More ]

#marchphotoaday Challenge on Instagram (and everywhere else) with @FatMumSlim


February is almost over and my favorite month is coming up - March!  Why is March my favorite month?  #1) My birthday is on the Ides of March, #2) My anniversary is the first week of March, and #3) My oldest turns 9 on St. Patty's Day!  I am 100% Pisces and my son shares many of my traits as well.  I love spring!  I love seeing flowers in bloom (but I hate the pollen).  I love the first real beach trip of the year.  I love Spring Training baseball.  I love everything about March!!   It's also time for a new Photo-a-Day challenge with @Fatmumslim!  Every month I get a little better and one of these days I may actually finish a challenge!  For February I did great until I left for Blissdom.  I'm a few days (ok - 5 days) behind and should probably catch up! What is #MarchPhotoADay?  You can read all of the 'rules' over on the @Fatmumslim blog.  It's amazing how many people are participating in the challenge and I love following all of you on Instagram (and Twitter and Facebook) and love ... [ Read More ]

#Febphotoaday Challenge on Instagram with @FatMumSlim


I don't do well at challenges so I'm challenging myself to do more challenges!  Last month (#JanPhotoaDay) I started a few days late and failed miserably at the end.  It's a new month and a new chance for me to actually finish something I started...we'll see how it works out! What is #FebPhotoADay?  You can read all about it on the Fat Mum Slim blog. To follow my photo stream on Instagram simply like me on Twitter @TheEcoChic and watch for my #FebPhotoaDay post.  If you are already on Instagram be sure to "Follow Me" there.  Beware - I have an iPhone 3gS and my pics aren't always the greatest quality - still holding out for the iPhone 5 (if and when that ever happens)!! Here is a sneak peek at my Day 1: Your view today I'd tell you what this is but that would ruin the surprise later in the month!  Any guesses? ... [ Read More ]

Instagram #JANPhotoaday Challenge


Aside from Pinterest I have one other addiction...Instagram! If you follow me on Twitter you have probably already noticed that I like to share photos of my babies, my pug puppy, and lots of other random photos.  I noticed some of my Instagram (a photo app on my iPhone that is linked to my Twitter account) followers were posting #JANPhotoaday pics each day and couldn't help but join them.  Do you have an iPhone or other photo-enabled phone?  Join us - or at least follow along for some cute pics.  You can find me @TheEcoChic/Calley P. and Follow Me!  (I don't know how to link that from my laptop...just search for me and you'll find me!)  I started the photo challenge a bit late but I've been on Instagram for a while now.  Enjoy! About the January Photo-a-Day Challenge:     ... [ Read More ]