Arizona Dreaming….

ImageSince spring is taking it’s time to be steady in NYC, I still find my self reminiscing about our latest vacation. I’m all about the luxury resort (always have been), but now that Aria is usually in tow, I also have my eye out for “family-friendly” spots. Our latest find was the Fairmont Princess Scottsdale, which is totally kid-friendly without feeling kid-friendly (yes, that’s a compliment)!

The expansive resort combines lots of great amenities for all ages, and still feels like a luxury resort. They have 5 pools on site, two of which are great for the whole family. We spent most of our days lounging at the zero entry pool, where we could keep a close eye on the little one but still enjoy pool service, palm trees, and amazingly (for a kid’s pool) a good degree of peace & quiet. The same pool area also boasts a water slide on the back end, playground on the far end and a great covered sandbox for the littles to enjoy. Aria LOVED them all and also made a few little friends that made her time (and ours) more enjoyable.

ImageThe Fairmont also offers an amazing kids camp. Aria was still too young for that, but The Trailblazers Kids Club is another way kids get to enjoy and mom and dad get some free time to enjoy the adult amenities– which incidentally include 2 Championship Golf Courses and the AMAZING Well & Being At Willow Stream Spa (a must visit!).  We also loved that all the restaurants on site (including the high end ones) offered kid’s menus, and the resort’s VIP lounge made grabbing a drink or snack at any time of day easy (another necessity with little A).

All in all, we so enjoyed our time there. The Fairmont Scottsdale is the best of luxury & family friendly, without any pretense and with plenty of relaxation. So, until we can return (or until the sun & warm temps return here), we’ll all be Arizona dreaming…

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Whole Wheat Mixed Berry Muffin

Aria is by far a muffin queen– requesting one each and ever time we walk into a coffee shop or out to lunch. I’ve told her one can’t exist on muffins alone but she doesn’t quite seem to understand. Often we grab a Chia Muffin from Le Pan Quotidien which I feel is better than most, but unfortunately, most muffins out there are filled with sugar and fat (and have very little nutritional value).  I recently decided to bake some myself modifying a typical blueberry muffin recipe with whole wheat flour and a few other healthier alternatives. These are still moist and delicious and make me feel a whole lot better about passing them into her little muffin grabbing hands. They also freeze very well!

Very Berry Whole Wheat  Muffins

Ingredients
very berry healthy muffins wheat 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup of light brown sugar (optional)
1/3 cup vegetable oil (or 6 oz of plain greek yogurt for a healthier version)
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 pint (total) of fresh raspberries, blackberries & blueberries (frozen organic mixed berries from Trader Joe’s work great also!)

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 12 muffin cups, or line with paper liners. Whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl.

Whisk vegetable oil, egg, milk, and applesauce together in a separate bowl until smooth, and stir the liquid ingredients into the flour mixture until moistened. Lightly stir in the blueberries. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling them 2/3 full.

Bake muffins in the preheated oven until they rise and the tops are golden brown, about 20 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin should come out clean.

 

Product Review: Dubble Trubble Organic Bath Products

We’ve graduated from using solely baby shampoos, and now bubbles and fun scents are in demand when Aria’s in the tub. I recently received a line of bath products called Dubble Trubble that contains certified organic ingredients and comes in fun fruity scents (like bananaberry and cool cucumber). It also creates bubbly suds in the tub (a must these days!).

dubble trubble line

Dubble Trubble is put out by Galvin & Galvin London Kids, a company founded by UK hair stylist (and dad) Daniel Galvin Jr.  Galvin started focusing on the little ones after he had a son of his own, and wanted a shampoo for him that didn’t have harsh chemicals. Following that Dubble Trubble was born– a line that is completely free of harsh chemicals, parabens, SLS and mineral oils. There are still a few preservatives in there (some long words in the list of ingredients!), but fortunately the line highlights natural organic ingredients and botanical extracts.

What I really love about the line is they are extremely eco-friendly and also give a percentage of sales to charity (The Prince Of Wales Foundation). Also, it’s very affordable (retailing at just $4.99 at Target) and comes in super cute packaging. Galvin & Galvin London Kids also makes a hair de-tangler that I can’t wait to try (yes, we’re at that stage!). For more info go to DubbleTubble.com.