Little City Kitchen Co. Blog

My stories about local food, fermentation, and formerly organic baby food
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A New Mantra: Trust More, Fear Less…Even Just a Little

I recently did something that I’ve never done before…I took up meditation. Never having meditated a single day in my life, I booked myself for a 6-day meditation retreat at a place called Expanding Light in the Sierras.  Decided to go totally “unplugged” and forego any internet, email or phone during the retreat as well.  Go big or go home…right?

In the beginning of building this business, my brain was overwhelmed with creativity, possibilities, and just overall enthusiasm.  There were many sleepless nights, but what an exhilarating time.

As I referenced in one of my last Food Entrepreneur blogs, the thoughts that now occupy my mind are increasingly laced with worry and doubt, which besides being really heavy and annoying, tend to be counterproductive in the forward-progress department.

I will say that I caught onto meditation pretty quickly, but it wasn’t until day 4 or 5 that I actually started to like it.  During my retreat, I spent considerable time thinking about the fears I have, both as and entrepreneur and as a person.

Along the way, one realization hit me: the opposite of fear is trust.  So that is what I’ve decided to build my own mantra around.  When I start to feel the worry creep back in (or bulldoze as the case may be), I just say to myself:

Trust more, fear less…even just a little.

And Now What…

And every entrepreneur out there knows, there is a lot of fear and uncertainty when starting a new business.  I don’t expect to get rid of all that stuff overnight, but if I could just make a little progress each day, then I think that’s a big step forward…

One of the goals I have for the next month is to get really (really) clear on what parts of the business I love, and what parts I don’t.  You’ll probably be seeing some changes in the Little City kitchen…many little tweaks, but possibly some larger changes coming too.  An exciting time!

Food Allergies Rock

Food allergies are a common concern for new parents…so for anyone who’s kids deal with food allergies on a regular basis, check out this awesome free event called Food Allergies Rock next Sunday, Nov 6 at Golden Gate Park.  Nibble on some great food, chat with other parents, and rock out to songs by Kyle Dine that specialize in teaching kids about food allergies.

The first 300 people get goodie bags, and since Little City Kitchen Co. is a sponsor, you’ll find in there a $5.00 coupon off any of our baby food!

November Farmers Market Schedule

Many of you have noticed that Little City Kitchen Co. has moved to an every-other week schedule at the Burlingame farmers market.  Here are the upcoming November/early December dates:

October 30
November 13
November 20
December 11 (probably our last day at the market)

Hope everyone has a great week!

A Common Sense Approach to Introducing Solids: Scoop on Starting Solids Blog Series

I’m a common sense girl.  I’d like to think that it’s one of my more redeeming qualities.  Some may find it annoying, but I’ve found that questioning everything can help weed out the superficial stuff and get to the heart of an issue.

As I’ve dug deeper and deeper with Little City Kitchen Co. into the world of baby food and infant nutrition, I’ve come to rely even more on this trait to help sort through the maze of antiquated guidelines and marketing messages from large baby food companies.  I can understand why parents are confused…everyone you talk to has a different opinion or suggestion!

The goal of every conversation I have with parents – be it during a baby food cooking class, demo, farmers market – is to provide another perspective to be considered as you’re are deciding what is best to feed baby.  To me, one of the beauties of being a parent is getting to decide what makes the most sense to you.

With that being said, I’ve assembled some common sense rules around introducing solids and deciding what to feed your little one.  And if any of these don’t makes sense to you, that’s okay, just skip over it and pick out the ones that do.

Five Pieces of Common Sense Advice

Educate yourself: Seek advice from at least 3 qualified people and don’t wait until your kid is 5 months old to start reading up on it.  A lot has changed in the baby food world in the last 3 years…  Suggested reading to open up your mind: Feeding Baby Green and Real Food for Mother & Baby.

Don’t always listen to your friends: Everybody parents in a different way, so you can listen to them, but don’t assume they’re always right.  Friends have a way of “guilting” you into things (“what do you mean you haven’t started rice cereal yet?”), so just add their opinion to your repertoire of resources.

Question your pediatrician: Doctors know a lot, but they don’t know everything.  I had a parent who’s doctor told her to avoid coconut because it was a “nut”.  (ps – it’s a fruit guys, not a nut). You guys know by now the value of healthy fats like coconut oil in baby food.

Many doctors don’t know about the 2008 revised AAP guidelines and are still telling parents to hold off on introducing allergens for several years…  There’s no reason you can’t bring your own research to your pediatrician and have a conversation if you have conflicting opinions.

Feed your baby (and yourself) real food whenever possible: To me, carrots that can last 24 months on the shelf aren’t carrots anymore.  They’ve either added preservatives or heated it to a high enough temperature to kill all the good stuff.  If at all possible, make your own food, buy some of mine, or buy fresh/frozen baby food from someone in your area. Grab the pouches for a long road trip, but use them sparingly if you have another option.  Do the best you can on this one; I know it’s not easy.

And finally, my cardinal rule: If you wouldn’t eat it yourself, why would you ever feed it to your kid?  Look folks, baby food should taste great.  If you cringe at some of the stuff in the jars or pouches, think about how you can start incorporating more real food into baby’s diet.  Roast four sweet potatoes, two for you for dinner, and two in the fridge to make some baby food.  It doesn’t have to be fancy, but it should be real.

Birth & Baby Fair

We had another great time at the Birth & Baby Fair this past weekend.  The baby food cooking demo was the biggest crowd yet…close to 60 people came and participated.  Check out the photo album here.  Special shout out to my rockstar helpers: Kate K, Penny C. and MaLanie F.  You guys were awesome!

Hope everyone has a great week!