Tag Archives: whole foods

The Skin-eater

26 May
With baby in her 'office'

With baby in her ‘office’

Miss Malaika is now 20 months old; 4 months shy of 2 years old! Wow, time really does fly. It’s taken me 2 weeks to actually complete this blog post; I had to change her age from 19 months. Somehow I thought at this stage I would have more time, I don’t know why… there’s no harm in dreaming.

Our child is still a picky eater and despite both of us swearing she must weigh 10kg/22pounds she’s not quite there yet. She may get there soon though because she’s taken to eating chicken skin, yes my child is a skin eater! The pediatrician said she needs to eat lots of fat and protein, she was listening and she took it to heart. How did we figure this out you ask? It started with chicken wings, she wanted to gnaw at the bone so I gave a whole one to work on, she only ate the skin, usually with meat she chews it for an age then hands it to me to dispose of. So I gave her more skin and she just kept eating. We had reached a stage where I would buy a whole chicken, roast half of it and she’d eat the whole lot in one sitting, as disgusting as it is for us to watch she’s in heaven,

Please sir, I want some more...

Please sir, I want some more…

she keeps asking for more, more, more, complete with the hand action.

We can’t eat the chicken meat as quickly as she does the skin, luckily enough the nice lady at Whole Foods meat department has agreed to keep me the skins once a week instead of throwing them out! So there you have it, she eats crispy roast organic chicken skin free of anti-biotics and all the bad stuff. She is an African for sure her go-to foods are: mealie-meal porridge with her Grandmother’s homemade peanut butter, sadza, biltong (salt content makes me cringe but it’s protein), popcorn (maputi), rooibos tea (yes she still doesn’t drink milk or juice, just tea and water, sophisticated toddler some would say).


Sleeping her big bed now

Sleeping her big bed now

She has also started swimming lessons at Aquaventures; it’s a joy to watch her take to the water more and more each week. She can stay under water for a few seconds and wants to do the routines, one more time over and over again. Now she wants to walk around the house in her swim diaper and swimming cap, what else would you on a hot summer evening! With any luck she’ll teach her mum how to swim. Seriously I should learn, I may need to save her one day… my one day should come sooner rather than later.


The most popular word is NO. I am sure this is the case in most households with toddlers. Is it an indication of what everyone is always saying to them? Perhaps… Once they learn it , it’s not easily un-learnt, in our house it’s been upgraded, now instead of no we get ‘No waaaayyy’, accompanied with a head shake that has a slight shoulder shuffle… oh dear, we’re in trouble now. Her vocabulary is increasing though some things are just blanket words, in Zimbabwe every soft drink is coke and for Malaika every liquid, even the sea, is tea and most foods are sadza. Also much to my dismay every older white man is Unko a.k.a Uncle, serves us right for trying to teach her to respect her parents friends! Ha ha ha! For some reason Auntie hasn’t caught on as well. She can definitely say Harro or Hi (the former seems reserved for when she’s ‘on the phone’ with the remote, fridge magnet or anything else she thinks can pass for a phone). She also always says ‘Bye bye see you’ when we leave the elevator much to the amusement of people in our building.


All dressed up in Portland

All dressed up in Portland

She reads lot of books, or puk-puk as she calls them. She has to read during breakfast and when she’s on the toilet sometimes. Point of correction when I say read I mean: I read and she points and grunts! Occasionally she’s say the words or things she recognizes or go ‘oh-wooowww…..’ at something she deems amazing. What I find interesting is that she can always tell when a book is upside down and she goes to great lengths to put it the right way up. She’s been doing it for as long as she’s shown in interest in books from about 10 months old when she was painstakingly crawling to get to them and trying to flip the pages.


I didn’t think much of my request that Baba should pass by IKEA and get a few things one of which was a step for the bathroom. She’s getting too heavy to carry whilst we go through the bedtime teeth brushing routine: first I rub them with a cloth, then she ‘brushes’ whilst I brush, then we both rinse and wipe clean the sink. I made the mistake of introducing the step just before bedtime last night, wow, she was soo excited and then she didn’t want to step down. It took 15 minutes to eventually drag her away kicking and screaming. Then she took an age to actually fall asleep, she was too wound up to sleep. I firmly believe she dreamt about all the things she can now do 5 inches taller….Now she carts the step all over the house trying to see what she’s been missing out on and she quite figured out she can use it to reach all those things we’ve trying to keep out of her reach….

So the grass is singing and summer is here! We are already starting to be able to wear shorts, turning on the fan to cool down and missy has learnt that she can say ‘ice biz’ (please) pointing to the freezer with a little bowl in her hands, ice will appear and she can happy suck away at it. Of course she’s not doing this for the purposes of ‘cooling down’ it’s just a kids-ice-thing!

p.s. No more breastfeeding, stopped at 17 months when I went to LA to meet Auntie Nove for a few days, came back and it had dried up! Whoop whoop! Seriously, it was a relief…

Games on the iPhone, friend or foe?

Games on the iPhone, friend or foe?

Mealie meal porridge: The Final solution

20 Mar
Carrot delight

Carrot delight

So we started solids a few weeks ago. This was really the second attempt. The first time she was about 4 1/2 months old. She was sitting on her own, showing a healthy curiosity and reaching out to our food. We talked about it and I kept saying lets wait for 6 months because that’s the recommended. Karl said a few times his mother said to give her porridge, this was from about two months which I definitely felt was way too soon. Especially given her earlier digestion issues. Anyway, one morning we are having breakfast and she’s persistently reaching for the banana. So we mashed it up and gave it to her. She eagerly gobbled it all up, made a huge mess, stained her bib but she was happy as Larry. Since that went quite well and it was an organic banana I did it again a second day. For whatever reason I didn’t give her any on the third day and that is when the grunting kicked in … Poor baby was grunting and squirming to get her poos out. Bananas can cause constipation apparently, really? Karl and I both have one on a daily basis, never had these issues, maybe that’s cause we are more than 4 months old, hmmm… Research Fail modern-eco-mama!

She went from 8 poops a day to three! She cried sometimes when she was uncomfortable… OH MY WORD I damaged the baby! This carried on for 10 days, even in her sleep, needless to say I stopped the bananas and prayed for the squirming to stop. It did eventually, phew! No permanent damage (we hope). About a month later, after one of the nights when the night-feeding is every 2 hours I thought I would try solids again, maybe she’ll sleep better ( I have read any times that there is no connection between the two but I still hope it’ll make a difference ). So this time I am more prepared. I buy a hand blender, organic veggies, 2 oz containers for the freezer, we already have cutlery, plastic bibs and her high chair so we’re good to go. I spent a whole afternoon boiling , pureeing, portioning, cooling and freezing. We had carrots, mbambaira (sweet potatoes) and pears, avocados ready to mash and watermelon ready to chop. So because of food allergies you try one new thing for two or three days then move on to the next. Carrots started off well, then mbambaira but when we got to the pears ‘lemon face’ kicked in. She makes this face like you just gave her lemons, complete with the shoulder shuffle we all do when you taste something bitter… from then on it was a downward spiral…. I gave it a break for a day to and then went back to carrots that had been the most successful of all the experiments. Further reading indicated that one grain cereals were really the best thing to start off which. So organic-fresh-is-best mom gave her porridge rehupfu (mealie-meal porridge)! Success! It’s like manna from heaven! She gobbles it up and even opens her mouth for more….hmmmm…. she definitely African… or is the little bit of brown sugar in there…whatever it is, she’s sold on it and I probably should’ve listen to my mother-in-law earlier though I still maintain two months was too early!

An apple a day

An apple a day

So now we have porridge in the morning and veggies in the afternoon, fresh out of the pot and into the freezer today is potatoes and green beans. Hopefully Lemon-face doesn’t come back.. and oh she’s also into apples. The story is that her father was eating apples even before he had teeth, she is her fathers-daughter for sure!

New Year’s Resolution: The Weekend Vegetarian

2 Jan
  • I can’t remember the last time I actually even contemplated a New Year’s resolution. I have probably thought of doing something for lent more than I have thought about a ‘New Year New Me’. Now that I am living in North America I am more horribly aware of the mistreatment of the animals that are breed to nourish us. Recent health issues have prompted me buy local, organic, eat grass-fed and try not to consume anything I can’t pronounce. Since I was born and raised in Africa and became a young adult in Aotearoa (New Zealand) what I ate was rarely in danger of being artificially modified or obtained by dubious means, at least this what I think…. I am sure someone will set me straight.  The recent launch of African Sally has prompted further research into eco-friendly; sustainable and pro-life options that any person who has even a tenth of a brain realizes are essential for the survival of future generations.If you ever shared a meal with will know my mantra when it comes to food: “No meat, No meeting” with perhaps the exception of breakfast, but even then a sufficient amount of protein in some form should be consumed. As an African I feel it is my responsibility as part of the circle of life to consume meat, they’d be little reason to eat let alone keep breathing! That being said, times are changing………… well, more that my mind is changing…………… In my quest for all things sustainable I came a across a line of vegan shoes founded by New Yorker Elizabeth Olsen.  From Olsenhaus you will find a stunning variety shoes from anything but leather, hard to believe you get the same look and feel as you would from a pair of plush Italian leather boots but a recent purchase of shoes made from recycled TV screens proved just that. Elizabeth is pioneering the shoe industry and highlighting The Truth about leather sources.

    So with 2013 upon us I found myself thinking how can I make a difference? A recent post on twitter from @SLOSolstice informed me that becoming a weekend vegetarian and cutting meat out of your diet for just two days a week can decrease your carbon footprint by about 1/3 of a ton, I don’t know what time period we are covering here but this doesn’t seem like too much to ask. I have heard from a few people about the terror of dairy farming and how if only you knew, you wouldn’t eat that. In the last 18 months I have developed a palette for wholefoods such as quinoa, cousous, lentils, organic vegetables, fruit and nuts. According to @Skinnygirldaily, “whole foods are unprocessed and unrefined food products or processed and refined as little as possible before being consumed”, easier said than done in today’s world……….. The more I increase the variety of vegetables that I eat, the more I realize that they can be pretty wholesome and tasty and the more I think I can survive without meat two whole days week……….

    Any recipes would be most welcome………. Here’s wishing you all a Happy 2013. What’s your New Year’s resolution?

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