Muffin Tin Monday

Welcome to another edition of Muffin Tin Monday! San Diego weather has been super chilly (well, chilly for San Diego) and this blogger is freezing! I have had to wear *gasp* something other than flip flops on my feet whilst out and about.

February's theme suggestions are
Read, Hearts, President's Day, Dr. Seuss (birthday March 3rd)

March's theme suggestions are:
Dr. Seuss Green, Rainbows, St. Patrick's Day, Spring

We made a fruit sampler Muffin Tin Meal today and it was delish! 

        Bananas, Tangerines, Apples in a mini muffin tin

I am still loving my muffin tin necklace from Luxe Adornments...and I get compliments daily:

Now, it's your turn! What did you make for Muffin Tin Monday? Add your link below and be sure to link back to!

No Need For The Sunday Paper

 For this week's links be sure to visit


1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

Panera Bread: A Passion For Baking

If you have ever made bread, you know that kneading the dough is a vital step in the process. The harder you knead the dough, the better  the texture.  I have been thinking about this concept - baking bread - and how it applies to life.

In the hands of the Baker, dough is kneaded, shaped, molded, given time to rest and rise and finally sent into the heat of the oven. Without all those steps however, without the kneading, and shaping, and the application of heat - the loaf of bread will never turn out right, It will just be a flat, lifeless, burnt and crusty mess. Sometimes, I can feel deeply worked over, flipped upside down and all around by life. But in the end, I find that it's a necessary  part of my process.

But when it's right, a good loaf of bread is full of flavor and ready to be shared. This rightness, this process that turns out a delicious product, is what Panera Bread is all about. They have a whole section of their website devoted to sharing their passion for bread called The Baker's Table.

And the more I have been researching Panera Bread for this post, the more respect I have for this company. They tell a story with their baking. They savor and celebrate the process as much as the product. Panera Bread's commitment to fresh ingredients and incorporating healthier choices to their menu is something I appreciate, respect and admire and both consumer and advocate.

For more on Panera Bread, including where to find your nearest location, be sure to visit

One of my favorite parts when learning about bread baking is when they talk about in the "Fresh Ingredients" video about the baker setting aside the dough to rest and rise for a day. When was the last time you took a day to "rest and rise"?

 I was compensated by Panera for this post, which makes it advertorial content and not a review. But I think Panera is a company worth promoting and putting my influence behind and can't recommend it enough. I am among a group of bloggers who are taking part in a 3 month promotion for Panera Bread and will be getting to share more delicious goodness with you.

Heart Health: Teaching Kids About Physical and Emotional Health

February is American Heart Health Month and this simple foam heart band-aids craft can help you and your child talk about the importance of physical and emotional heart health.

You'll need:
Band-aids, Construction paper, Large Foam Heart

Glue a foam heart to construction paper, add band-aids at will
Talk about why some hearts need healing and what kinds of things you can do to be more "heart healthy"
*Age appropriate for 2 years and above

Don't forget that maintaining a healthy heart (or working towards that goal) involves making heart healthy choices about the food we eat, the activities we do everyday and even our minds and the words we use. Below are a few links to help you educate your kids about the importance of heart health.

Simple Heart Healthy Exercise Game For Kids from Make and Takes
Heart Healthy Recipes from The Mayo Clinic
12 Tips For Increasing Children's Physical Activity from NAEYC found via We Teach
Bring Physical Activities Indoors During Wintertime with ABC/123

Emotions and Preschoolers One of a series from Let's Explore
Help Teach Emotions with Family Paper Roll Dolls An activity from Teach Mama
7 Ways to Help Anxious Kids from Let's Explore
Feel What You Want, Control What You Do from PBS Kids

The Boy Loves Science

Every Wednesday, Muffin Tin Boy brings home a library book. For the past eight weeks in a row, it has been science related.

What are your kids reading these days?

Muffin Tin Monday

Happy Muffin Tin Monday everyone! If it's Monday, then that means around here we are celebrating all things Muffin Tin Meal!

What's a Muffin Tin Meal, you ask? Simply put, it's a meal (or snack or dessert) served in a muffin tin. It's a great way to introduce new foods to kids in a fun and interesting way. Have a little one who won't eat their vegetables? Then, Muffin Tin Meals might be for you!

To find out more about Muffin Tin Meals and Muffin Tin Monday visit the FAQ page.

We are no longer posting weekly themes, but that doesn't mean you can't get creative. Every month, I will showcase theme suggestions in the sidebar area of this blog.

Here's what we made today:

In this tin: star shaped mini PB and J sandwiches, green grapes, mozzarella cheese and fruit snacks, tangerine pieces, ranch dip and fresh broccoli 

Just as a reminder, please only post food served in a muffin tin, muffin pan, silicone cup or paper liner. Please no bentos or easy lunch boxes. I do not want to take away from those communities. For more info, read this post.

Now It's your turn! I would love to see what you made for Muffin Tin Monday! Link up by clicking the blue "add your link" button below. Email and RSS subscribers, I hope you will click through to see all the fun MTM ideas!

No Need For The Sunday Paper

This week's links:

Zakka Life (photo credit above):  Check out this adorable super hero lollipop "bling" with free printable.
While made for Valentine's Day, these would be fun for any time!

Alisa Burke: love this unique painted butterfly wreath on old encyclopedias found via the Crafty Crow

The Cupcake Blog: Artist's palette cute! And google "artist's pallette cupcakes" (with misspelling) and you get more great ideas.

Scripture For Sunday
Psalm 3:3-4

But You, O LORD, are a shield about me, 
my glory, the lifter of my head.

Dr. Suess: There's A Wocket In My Pocket

Dr. Seuss's Birthday is March 2nd and you can celebrate his contribution to literacy, early childhood education, and children everywhere with this Dr. Seuss There's a Wocket In My Pocket phonics activity. This activity is geared towards kids ages 5-7 and early readers (see below for adaptations).

You'll need:

  • Foam Core Posterboard
  • colored mini envelopes (Mine came from The Dollar Tree)
  • Word Strips (From the Dollar Tree)
  • Black Marker
  • Tape
  • Letter Stickers (optional)

If There's A Wocket In My Pocket, Then There's a _________ in my __________"

  • Top in the mop
  • Cat in the hat
  • Ran in the can
  • Star in the car

The Muffin Tn Kids matched the words according to their ending sounds.

...It doesn't have to make sense, the activity is to increase awareness of and teach ending word sounds like -ake, -an, -at, -en, -op, etc.

We reinforced the activity over dinner by talking about beginning and ending sounds...The word combos got pretty silly. I am sure Dr. Suess would be proud.

Tips, tricks and hints:

  • Add photos to the envelopes to make it easier for pre-readers to participate
  • Adapt this activity for pre-readers using only letters on the alphabet or numbers
Happy learning and Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss

Exploring The Canvas - Just For Fun

Recently we explored the blank artist's canvas and it was so fun! It's has a permanent feel and makes for some pretty wonderful teachable moments. I told the kids they could use any medium or work with multiple mediums: pencils, crayons, paints, glue.....They chose paints and glue. And we set up the art space!

 We used a crayola gel paints.

We explored the canvas back to front. We talked about how it's made and what we though each medium might look like on the canvas.

The kids enjoyed creating unique masterpieces that they could proudly hang in their rooms or around he house.

Lastly, we added clear gems with glue

Have your kids painted on canvas? 

Muffin Tin Monday - Valentine's Day

Welcome to Muffin Tin Monday. Today is Valentine's Day and you would think it's Christmas what with all the anticipation. The kids have been cheerily counting down to today's festivities and I for one couldn't love it more.

Here is the love-ly Valentine's Day themed MTM I made.

In this "tin": Strawberry yogurt, with heart shaped sprinkles, craisins, heart-shaped toast, bananas with heart shaped picks.

Heart shaped cups are made by Wilton. :)

Now it's your turn. Did you make a Muffin TIn Meal? Won't you share it with us? Click on the blue "add your link" button to submit your blog post or photo.

Dinosaur Chicken Nugget Foodscape Adventure

The Nuggetus Dinosaurus peacefully enjoyed a nice leafy healthy snack before they were engulfed in hot lava Ketchup.

"Return To Dino Island" Starring:

Broccoli as the Low Lying Indigenous Vegetation.
String Cheese and Spinach as The Tree
Cheddar Cheese as The Sun
Grapes as Dangerous Coconuts That Might Fall On Your Head
Ketchup as Hot Lava
Dino Chicken Nuggets as Nuggetus Dinosaurus

I can neither confirm nor deny that dinosaurs ever lived on tropical islands.

Muffin Tin Monday

Happy Monday everyone! Welcome to Muffin Tin Monday, the weekly blog carnival that celebrates the Muffin Tin Meal. To find out more, please visit the MTM faq page or visit previous MTM posts. 

This week there is no theme. 

We put a healthy spin on today's muffin tin lunch. I often will try and create a healthy balanced meal and the separated cups are a great tool for that purpose.

Does anyone else's child eat fresh spinach leaves like their chips? No? Just mine then? Well, I count myself blessed and am wondering who's cloth she is cut from because spinach was (and dare I say is) the only veggie I absolutely will not eat unless it is in a dip or disguised in a salad.

**Important Info** We are going to stop doing official weekly themes indefinitely. It doesn't mean you can't still do them. In fact, I will be posting monthly theme suggestions and creating a theme suggestion page for those of you who enjoy the challenge. It's just something that has gradually been in the works and well, it's just time. I am also going to spending a lot more time on the "back end" of the site, categorizing posts, creating more MTM info pages, etc....

**Another Important Reminder** While I enjoy all of the submissions received each week, some participants have been posting bento box meals, Easy Lunchbox meals, and food served on a divided plate. While this is sooo awesome and I know your kids are loving it, for our purposes here at, please only post meals in an actual muffin tin, cup, or paper liner. Please email me at vistamommy(at)yahoo(dot)com with any questions or see the faq page.

Now, it's your turn! Did you make an Muffin TIn Meal? Won't you share it with us? Click on the link below! (Note, we are going back to Inlinkz thumbnail format. :) yay!

No Need For The Sunday Paper

I'll keep this short today. In case you miss the Superbowl (in America), I thought you might enjoy this little commercial sneak peek:

Here's the link, you are viewing this in email format. It's so cute!

And for links I have been collecting this week, be sure to visit my tumblr page.

Friday Find: Cupcake Mosaic Craft

Super cute Cupcake Mosaic Craft kit found at Michael's Arts and Crafts this week!

My Muffin Tin Necklace: One Of Life's Little Luxuries

I wear my Muffin Tin Necklace everywhere.

I can't get enough of it. I smile as I put it on each morning. And if you follow Muffin Tn Meals on facebook, you will know that I have been gushing about this necklace for some time and was so excited when Muffin Tin Dad surprised gifted me with for my birthday.

Photos property of Luxe Adornments

If you love Muffin Tin Monday as much as I do, I know you will want one of these for yourself. Recently,  I shared with Tambra of Luxe Adornments about MTM and how I thought my readers would love her exceptional jewelry as I do. Well, I am pleased to announce and welcome Luxe Adornments as a sponsor to Muffin Tin Mom! You'll see their spot on my sidebar now and I hope you will check them out.

Luxe Adornments has so many other gorgeous pieces of jewelry. You should know that all of their pieces are handcrafted and yet are affordable enough you won't break the bank. Their tagline of "Little luxuries for everyday life." is so true! I love that I can transition through my day - from play dates to dinner dates wearing these pieces without sacrificing on style.

Luxe Adornments doesn't forget those fine finishing touches and attention to detail. Each piece is delicately wrapped in beautiful packaging that is perfect for gift giving or receiving on Valentine's Day or any occasion!

Welcome to Luxe Adornments!

Valentine's Day Easy Foam Heart Craft

Valentine's Day is fast approaching! This year I decided that I would again help the kids make unique handmade Valentines for their classmates. But I wanted to keep it simple. Large foam hearts and foam sticker buckets are on sale at Michael's this week for $4.99 so we scooped up a pack to make these easy Foam Heart Craft Valentines.

 With a few extra items like scissors, craft paper, and glue, we had a bunch of Valentines made in no time!

More Valentine's Day ideas: