Recipe of the Week.............. Quinoa "Fried Rice"

          Happy Thursday everyone! Yesterday Ellie and I took a trip to Costco and bought the first of our spring plants. Including a beautiful lavender plant for inside, it already smells wonderful even though it hasn't bloomed. 

Hopefully buying outdoor plants doesn't jinx the beautiful, mild weather we've been having. I was just craving greenery, since after the snow melts in this wonderful city, every plant and piece of green is dead and brown. 
 Its supposed to rain this weekend, so we've been trying to enjoy the weather by spending lots of time outside.

      Now on to the recipe for this week. I sort of threw this together one day when I was trying to get Ellie to eat some vegetables. She ate two servings of this the first time I made it, and every time ever since. I shared the recipe with a few friends and their kids also devoured it!
A lot of the reason is because kids LOVE quinoa. Its a mild tasting, tiny little grain that is absolutely packed with nutrition. I started eating quinoa about four or five years ago when I was a vegetarian, since it contains more protein and nutrients than any other grain. At that time you could only find it in health food stores and it was quite pricey. Now Quinoa is everywhere! You can find it at the best price, by far, at Costco.
 For more nutritional information about Quinoa click here.
 This recipe is sort of thrown together ( as my recipes usually are) so you can decide how much of everything you would prefer to add.

 Quinoa " Fried Rice"

 What you will need:

- Quinoa
- vegetables of choice
- two eggs ( whisked )
- ham, chicken or any other meat of choice
- soy and Worcester sauce.
- vegetable oil ( I use sesame oil but it isn't necessary)

 How to put it all together:

1- Cook one serving of quinoa as instructed. ( one cup of quinoa to two cups of water) You want it to be slightly undercooked, it should still be a little bit crunchy. Set aside.
2- Chop vegetables and meat into small pieces. I chop mine as small as possible so my daughter doesn't realize whats in it.
3- Put chopped vegetables and meat in a large skillet, pot or wok with some vegetable oil and add small amount of  soy, Worcester and seasonings of choice. Cook on medium/high until vegetables are tender.
4- Add the quinoa, stir.
5- Add small amount of soy and eggs ( whisk before adding ).
6- mix and cook well. Enjoy!

  This makes a great lunch, or even an easy dinner if your in a hurry.

   If you noticed that I titled this "Recipe of the Week" instead of "Recipe Wednesday", its because I've decided to post when I can, instead of a certain day of the week. I was setting myself up for failure really, I am NOT organized enough for that! HA!

  I hope everyone is having a great week. Can you believe we're already five days into May?!

- Rebecca



And the winner of the BabyBoo Giveaway is.............................

             Lizzie Fofonove!!

Congratulations Lizzie, BabyBoo will be emailing you shortly! Make sure to post a picture of your little one in your winning hat on BabyBoo's facebook page. I can't wait to see what you choose!

  Thank-you everyone for entering and supporting Baby Steps and BabyBoo, I wish everyone could have won! And thank-you to Olga (owner of BabyBoo) for allowing this giveaway to happen and being so generous.

I am working on more wonderful giveaways for the near future, so keep an eye on the blog!

- Rebecca


These are a few of my favorite things...skin care edition.

     I thought I would throw in a random post about something I would be interested in. There is always a fascination between women and what products they use. Looking into a women's purse....or diaper bag...can be a window into they're soul!
   My purse would have loose cheerios, bobby pins and 5 or 6 random lip glosses to name a few things. How glamorous!
  The same goes for a woman's vanity or bathroom cupboard. I have had a skincare routine since I was about thirteen or fourteen. As soon as I started "wearing" make-up ( No there NOT be photos posted! ) my mother made sure I cleansed my face every night. She threatened the consequence of not washing my face would be pimples galore...which is true, and it scared me into being religious about my routine. I have tried almost everything available for my combination, blemish prone skin.
   Which is why when I moved to Edmonton I got a job as a skincare expert at Sephora West Edmonton Mall. It was very easy for me to help people since I myself, have tried it all. I am extremely picky when it comes to the products I put on my skin, although I am less so now that I am a mother. Now it is more important for me to have highly effective products that are not too complicated.
    I also try to stick to products that are more natural, or at least ingredient driven brands. What I mean by that is, the more non-sense on the bottle that I cannot pronounce, the less likely I will purchase it. I am even more so picky when it comes to the products I will use on my daughter. The studies that link diseases to chemical or unnatural ingredients aren't always the most accurate, but I prefer to take precautions and use products that choose to use more natural plant based ingredients. Better safe than sorry in my opinion, but obviously every mother knows whats best for their own child.
 So for this post I am going to share what I am using at the moment, and also what Ellie uses.

 When ever I try something new I always end up going back to this great, easy cleanser. It takes off eye and complexion make-up so easily and makes your skin feel so clean. It is sold in 4 different sizes at Sephora, and is suitable for ANY skin type.

In the last few months I have been using this set from Ole Henriksen and I LOVE it. Its been really hard on my skin living in such a dry climate. Since I have combination skin and its sometimes hard to find a balance between moisturizing enough and clogging my pores. This set is perfect, it has your exfoliator, moisturizer and a great serum. Its so easy to use and all the products are non-comedogenic ( which means they will not clog your pores). My skin has been looking bright and refreshed from all the brightening ingredients in these products ( vitamin c, licorice root extract, AHA's)  The price is also great for such quality skincare at $70 for the set ( almost half off if you bought them separately) Available at Sephora.

This eye cream is just easy and basic. It a gel so it sinks right in and hydrates. ( available at Sephora )

I am so lazy when it comes to protecting my skin from the sun, so this is perfect for me. I can keep it in my purse or diaper bag and just brush it on when needed. It wont make you greasy or clog your pores. LOVE! ( available at Sephora)

 Last product for me is this great body butter from LAVANILLA. The smell isn't too over powering,  its super hydrating and full of great antioxidants for your skin. (available at Sephora)

  These baby products are TO DIE FOR! If you were to bottle the smell of a baby, this scent would be as close as you could get. We've tried other brands for Ellie but none have even compared to this one. The wash and lotion are natural, smell great and are very affective. The only down side? Live Clean Baby is a little pricey at 7-8 dollars a bottle, but I find the bottles last quite a while. You can purchase it at any drug or grocery store, I find it is usually the lowest price at Superstore.

           I hope every one found this interesting and not too superficial. I think that its important to take care of your skin as a part of your over-all health. Especially when you are a mother, you have to remember to take care of yourself as well. We slather lotions and sunscreens on our babies and then forget about ourselves. I am going to make it a priority to take care of my skin this summer. After all, how can I tell my daughter its important to protect her skin if I'm not doing it myself?
Next week I'll let everyone know whats in my make-up bag and then my curly hair must haves!

Don't forget to enter the BabyBoo Giveaway! The contest ends at 12pm tomorrow (MST) May.2nd, make sure you enter if you haven't already. You do not want to miss out on the chance to win a BabyBoo hat for your little one, they are the ultimate accessory.
Here's another picture of Ellie in a BabyBoo hat strolling around the mall a few months ago. Good luck to everyone who has already entered, I can't wait to see who wins!

- Rebecca