It’s that time of year again, to don the green attire and celebrate the luck of the Irish with a wee bit of tasty fun! To help its guests get into the St. Patrick’s Day spirit, The Fresh Market will offer samplings of Irish soda bread, Kerrygold Cheese, pretzels and more through March 17th!
For those looking to create a hearty Irish meal at home, The Fresh Market suggests its Irish Cottage Pie recipe. Traditionally topped with a thick layer of creamy mashed potatoes, the specialty grocer’s delicious recipe saves a few steps by topping the comforting casserole with thinly sliced potatoes and shredded cheese.
Fresh Market Irish Cottage Pie
1.5 lb. ground sirloin
3 tbsp. Kerrygold Unsalted Butter
1 tbsp. The Fresh Market Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 c. sweet onion, chopped (about ½ large onion)
2 celery ribs, chopped
2 c. carrots, peeled and diced (about 2 large carrots)
2 tsp. kosher salt
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp. garlic, minced
1 tbsp. tomato paste
5 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 ½ c. The Fresh Market Beef Stock
1 c. Guinness
1 tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
2 bay leaves
1 c. The Fresh Market Frozen Green Peas
1 ½ lbs. red potatoes
1 c. Kerrygold Dubliner Cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Heat a Dutch oven or a large, wide skillet over medium high heat. Add beef and cook until crumbled and no longer pink. Drain beef of any excess grease and transfer to plate.
Add olive oil and butter to the same pan. Once the butter melts, add onion, celery, carrots, salt and pepper and sauté until vegetables begin to soften and brown, about 7-10 minutes. Add garlic and tomato paste and cook until garlic is fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium and add flour, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Vegetable mixture will become very thick. Whisk in beef stock, beer, rosemary, thyme and bay leaves. Use a wooden spoon to scrape any bits from the bottom of the pan.
Stir in beef and peas. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook 7-10 minutes. While mixture simmers and thickens, thinly slice red potatoes (the thinner the better).
Spoon mixture into a 10 x 13” or 10 inch round baking dish, both at least 2 inches deep. Top with sliced potatoes, heavily overlapping each. Sprinkle cheese evenly over potatoes. Cover dish loosely with aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, remove foil and return to oven for additional 30 minutes or until pie is bubbling and potatoes are nicely browned.
Remove from oven and allow to rest a minimum of 20 minutes before serving.
Boca Raton is HOT! Like, really, really (real estate) hot. Redfin just released its predictions for the hottest neighborhoods (including the hottest Boca Raton neighborhoods) to look for in 2017. I’m proud to say Boca took ALL 3 SPOTS in the West Palm Beach category.
To rank the neighborhoods that are heating up the most, the brokerage analyzed hundreds of millions of page views to Redfin.com and homes that users favorited to monitor for price and status changes. The analysis also takes into account insights from local Redfin real estate agents who specialize in Boca Raton neighborhoods.
Creative arts will SPARK at Sugar Sand Park at their annual Arts Spark Kids Fest on Sunday, February 19th! Local kids will have a chance to ignite their interests at a variety of interactive areas at Arts Spark Boca throughout the day.
I am a huge supporter of the arts personally, especially in schools, so #dailybocaavery and I are really looking forward to this annual event! We’re crossing our fingers for great “winter” weather too.
Families will enjoy hands-on Arts Spark workshops, performances, demonstrations, make & takes, strolling acts, expressive arts, balloon art, activity booths, and more!
Sugar Sand Park is excited to offer over 30 unique festival activities to Arts Spark Boca Raton festival attendees. Our calendar is already marked!
ARTS SPARK BOCA KIDS FEST DATE/TIME: Sunday, February 19th from 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
COST: $10.00 for children 16 and under; adults free with paid child. Separate fees for select activities and food. Wristbands will be on sale the day of event only.
Hope to see you there, Boca mamas!
Sponsored: This post is sponsored by Sugar Sand Park. All opinions expressed in this blog post about Arts Spark Boca Raton are my own. They are not influenced in any way by the sponsor. Any statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with provider. Please refer to this site’s Disclosure for more information. I have been compensated for this post, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
Now that #dailybocaavery is in “school,” it feels like I’ve already encountered my fair share of pushy Boca parents. I have to be honest– it’s been a little shocking. During some instances, I’ve rolled my eyes and shrugged these pushy moms’ opinions off (and then ranted to my girlfriends). But other times, I’ve been shocked into literal silence.
I know we all care about our kids, but isn’t there a better way to make change happen or share your feelings with other parents who are in the same boat…or school?
I decided to poll some of the best teachers at Grandview Preparatory School to find out about their experiences and strategies for dealing with pushy Boca parents. Here’s what they had to say…
So be honest– have you had much experience dealing with pushy Boca parents in your careers?
Susan Rose, Academic Support: We don’t have a problem with “pushy parents” per se, but we do find that parents of this generation, including myself, have a little trouble in the ‘helicopter’ department. We want the best for our children, and may go a little too far in helping them, rather than doing our real job, which is helping them grow into autonomous adults.
Sharon Michael, Kindergarten: I think in Kindergarten, I don’t really look at parents as being pushy Boca parents. I see them more as overprotective. My students are all coming in to class at 4 and 5 years of age. They are still their parents’ babies. I understand that and I try to start off slowly making the parents feel comfortable and as the year progresses, I try to persuade them to let go a bit and let their children have a voice and be able to make some decisions on their own.
What has been your go-to strategy to handle parents when they have intervened in an excessive way on behalf of their kids?
Aileen Palmer, Director of Professional Development: My go-to strategy is always to involve the student as much as possible. Even with young ones it is important to not only give them a voice, but a platform to use their voice. It is imperative that students learn to self advocate. Not only does it empower them, it empowers their parents and teachers.
Susan Rose, Academic Support: We don’t have one go-to strategy for working with our parents, since every family and every situation is completely unique. One thing we really stress though, beginning in 6th grade and sometimes before, is letting students be their own advocates. We want students to learn to communicate with teachers (directly and in email), when they have ideas, questions and concerns about their learning.
At what age should parents consider stepping back and letting their kids advocate for themselves in school?
Aileen Palmer, Director of Professional Development: As soon as the child is able to speak! A parent should always be there to support and guide, but the child should be involved at all times (unless the issue is of a sensitive nature).
A perfect example of kids speaking out on their own is our Equal + Empowered team. They recently won $9500 in philanthropic funding after starting an organization dedicated to raising awareness about feminism and the empowerment of all individuals. While parents helped to support them and practice their presentation, they achieved this accolade on their own.
Susan Rose, Academic Support: As young as possible! There are certainly small steps they can take from the time they start school. By mid 6th grade, we expect Grandview students to take over most of the communication with teachers about school work, homework, grades, etc.
When is a ‘pushy parent’ considered a positive thing?
Aileen Palmer, Director of Professional Development: In my opinion, never! Although the squeaky wheel gets the oil, it does not mean the wheel will roll forever. And when it needs more oil, you are back to square one.
If the parent and child and teacher work together on a plan, solution, or just a conversation, the ‘wheel’ will always be guided/aligned if you will…and run smoothly for much longer.
Susan Rose, Academic Support: I think the phrase “pushy parent” obviously has a negative connotation, so it would never be an positive strategy.
However, advocating for your child is a different thing. Parents are a child’s most important and consistent advocate. If they feel their child has an important need that is not being met, and a need that the student cannot or should not deal with on their own, it is a parent’s responsibility to go to bat for their child.
Sponsored: This post about pushy Boca parents was sponsored by Grandview Preparatory School. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor. Any statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with provider. Please refer to this site’s Disclosure for more information. I have been compensated, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
Whether you have a mini (2-3yo), a classic (3-5yo) or a premiere (5-8yo) player in your home, Soccer Shots South Palm Beach is ready to make a positive impact on your child’s life through the game of soccer.
What is Soccer Shots South Palm Beach exactly?
It’s an engaging children’s soccer program with a focus on character development on and off the field. Soccer Shots coaches are the best-trained in the business and their expert-approved curriculum is age-appropriate and aligns with childhood education standards.
Soccer ShotsSouth Palm Beach also provides an exceptional customer experience and ongoing communication with parents. You gotta love that.
Just when you were out of ideas for activities for your 2-year-old, something like this crosses your inbox. Modern Boca Mom is so excited to partner with this wonderful local program and help our readers feel completely confident that their kids will learn from amazing coaches and a curriculum that is built for their age group. It’s so important!
Once you find and sign up for a program and location that fits with your family, you will receive:
A weekly summary of what your child learned at Soccer Shots.
Pro-active communication regarding any cancellations due to weather or other circumstances.
Timely, responsive communication from coaches or staff. You can expect to receive a response to any questions within 24 hours.
Let your Boca kid take their best shot…with Soccer ShotsSouth Palm Beach!
Daniel Villegas is the Owner/Director of Soccer Shots Palm Beach County. He comes from a very strong soccer background that includes coaching and developing young children’s soccer skills. As an adolescent, he grew up playing the game in Miami, FL, and his fiery passion for the game earned him a professional contract out of high school. Once signed, he went on to play the game in different parts of the world from Brazil, Mexico, Spain, USA, to his own native country of Colombia. Daniel currently dedicates his time to giving back to the game by coaching at a local youth club.
Daniel believes that giving back to young kids is the most important task on his agenda, which is why he specifically works with children to promote healthy and active lifestyles at a young age. He knows first-handedly that soccer doesn’t just create good fitness habits, social and teamwork skills, but it also creates a good character for young kids that will last a lifetime!
Sponsored: This post was sponsored by Soccer Shots South Palm Beach. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor. Any statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with provider. Please refer to this site’s Disclosure for more information. I have been compensated, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
The holidays have arrived! Festivities are already in full swing, trips to the toy store will start to happen as often as visits to the grocery store and family trips are booked! You might even be considering looking into title loans Orlando with how many “Very Mickey”Disney World trips you have on the calendar.
But in the midst of all the merry chaos, it’s important to take a step back and reflect on where you are as a parent and how your family has evolved throughout the year. As we gear up to embark on another year of life changes, reflection can help us better prepare for the future of our families- both in the short term, and the long term, like family estate planning.
Certainly, the near-future is at the forefront of our minds: How will our finances look next year? How will the kids do in school? How will life be different after the baby arrives?
These concerns are all valid, and naturally a part of being a parent and caregiver. But what about the long-term?
Who do you want to be as a parent?
How will you transfer all of your important values and lessons to your children?
If something happens to you, who will ensure that your children are taken care of and your values passed on?
So before the festivities begin, take a moment to sit down and reflect on your values as a parent. Notice how your values have changed or developed this year. From disciplinary methods to financial values to education and community- what impression would you like to make on your children?
Then ask yourself how you plan on infusing your family unit with these values. Will you go on family trips or have a weekly game night? And if for any reason you can’t pass these values on yourself, who will?
One of the greatest advantages of reflecting during the holidays is that everyone comes together. This is a prime opportunity to take a look around and see where your loved ones are in their own lives- notice who is most like you when it comes to parenting and who you could trust with the task of passing on your values if you couldn’t be there for your kids. On the other hand, is there someone in particular you wouldn’t want to raise your kids?
Once you’ve taken the time to reflect, put your intention into action.
For the short term, start planning your family trip for the year and schedule quality time together. For the long term, make sure your estate plan is up to date, that you have considered planning for college and retirement, and most importantly, nominate legal guardians for your children.
Even though you’ll also be planning for the distant future or an eventuality that may never happen, you’re parenting readiness will be immediately strengthened. When you clarify the way you want your children raised and the beliefs you want them to carry into the world, you naturally become more conscious about your relationship with your children now.
Embark on the New Year with the right mindset and intention of practicing, preserving, and passing on your values as a parent in your family estate planning! Your family will benefit greatly.
Elise Rodriguez is a South Florida attorney who focuses on helping families preserve their legacies through estate and family planning. To learn more about planning for your family’s future, call (305) 860-8338 and mention Modern Boca Mom to schedule a FREE Family Wealth Planning Session with Elise (worth $750).
I have a love-hate relationship with Xbox and I know I’m not alone.
One on hand, that little console is solely responsible for my newfound ability to sleep past 6:30am on the weekends, but on the other, it’s cause for a lot of yelling in my house.
“Just wait until the quarter is over!”
“Thanks, Mom, you made me lose a life.”
Pros and cons aside, when I finally accepted the fact that my son’s 7th birthdayhad to be dealt with, naturally I didn’t have to think too hard about a theme: Xbox-themed birthday party. Boom.
My son was born in Boca, so I understand the birthday party pressure. I went all out for the first birthday…I had it catered, I rented chairs and tables, I even put down a foam floor in my dining room and brought in Miss Cathy for a mid-party ‘Mommy and Me’ class. And that was completely overshadowed the next week by a party at the Boca Raton Resort, complete with the cast of Sesame Street Live and “Dorothy’s” as favors. (You wouldn’t believe how many fish were left in the elevators because mothers of one-year-olds just can’t deal with another organism to feed and worry about dying.)
So just when I said I’d never have another party at my house (I actually said it three times), I started planning the big birthday bash—at my house.
But it’s a whole new ball game at age 7, so I did my best to keep things in check. And lo and behold, this Xbox-themed birthday party was our best ever! Here’s how I did it.
I have a thing for stationery, and I’ve had invitations printed for all of our previous birthday parties. But with elementary school comes no need to invite the ENTIRE class, and 7 year-old boys don’t like 7-year-old girls. We decided on keeping it to just “the posse” (which actually came to 15) so an Evite was in order. They have great video game options, and an even better selection if you spring for the “Premium.”
To keep the number of bodies in my house to a minimum I included two things on the invitation… The first was “No siblings.” Why? Because I was trying to keep the number of mouths to feed and seating necessary to a minimum. And I’m not fully baby-proofed anymore. The second was “Drop-off optional.” When your kids get to 7, this is a beautiful thing. Why did I do this? Because I didn’t want a bunch of grown-ups hanging out (and eating) either. All the boys pretty much got dropped off, though a few moms stuck around. This was totally okay because those moms are actually my friends.
Side note: When one dad arrived with his son, he sat himself down at my kitchen table. I’ve known him for a while so I said, “You’re welcome to stay, but you’re welcome to leave, too.” He was in shock. “Really?” It’s like it didn’t compute. And then he was gone so fast you might have thought his pants were on fire.
There’s this beautiful thing called the Game Truck, and you absolutely, positively CANNOT have a video game themed party without one. It’s kitted out with couches, huge TVs and video games and it parks outside your house. You basically throw up to 16 kids in there for 90 minutes—which gives you time to brace yourself for when they stampede into your house for food.
Repeat after me… Etsy is your friend for an Xbox-themed birthday party. A quick “Xbox” search yielded an awesome poster and centerpiece. I was done with decorations in under 5 minutes—except for the 8:30am run to Party City for balloons the day of the party.
Note: The poster was delivered to me as a PDF file, so I had to send it to a printer to get the actual poster.
Obviously pizza is the birthday party go-to after the age of 1, so pizza it was. I did have to make a Costco run for chips, water and juice boxes, so I did pick up a tray of wraps for our grown-up family members (and a large tray of salad when I ordered the pizza, too). As for the cake, my son wanted cookie cake and Shea’s Bakery was more than happy to adhere to our theme.
Who’s sick of goody bags filled with crap from China? I either throw that stuff away the second I get home or my son hoards it in box after box for years. That’s why I asked Shea’s Bakery to make cookies in the shape of controllers. They looked amazing and tasted amazing, too.
So there you have it… An Xbox-themed birthday party in 5 simple steps. A great time was had by all (especially my son), but I think we’ll go away for his birthday next year…
The brain behind the beauty blog InsiderBeautyBuzz.com and the innovative self-tan remover, Bronze Buffer, Paige Herman-Axel is a modern (and busy) Boca mom. When she’s not blogging, bronzing or buffing, Paige is a freelance beauty writer and consultant for skincare companies big and small, dermatologists, plastic surgeons and more. In the rare time spent away from her computer, Paige can be found shuttling her seven-year-old son to and from basketball practice.
According to tutoring experts Cender Scholars, “Common Core Math is essentially a foreign language to most parents and almost virtually impossible to help children with their math homework/studying at night. When a parent tries to get involved to help, they often mistakenly get them even more confused.”
Ok now. The last thing I want to do is teach #dailybocaaverythe incorrect way to do her (future) math homework and bring her 10 steps backward. If your child is struggling with math, you might want to consider bringing in an expert.
Cender Scholars math tutors connect with the student’s teachers to see and evaluate the areas that they are struggling with and bridge the gap to help the student make gains.
They are very different from your cookie cutter tutoring company because Cender Scholars realize that every child learns in a different way. So, they make every effort to teach each student in the way that works best for them. Having the tutors collaborate with teachers and parents helps to create an individualized education plan for the child.
Sponsored: This post was sponsored by Cender Scholars. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own and not influenced in any way by the sponsor. Any statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with provider. Please refer to this site’s Disclosure for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
If there’s one thing I know…it’s that MBMoms run on COFFEE! And Monday, September 29th, is National Coffee Day!
Sweet nectar of the mommy gods…
To celebrate, Dunkin’ Donuts is celebrating the one-year anniversary of its premium Dark Roast with a special free offer: guests can walk into any participating Dunkin’ Donuts restaurant across the country and receive a free medium cup of Dunkin’ Donuts hot or iced Dark Roast Coffee (limit to one per guest).
I am an especially BIG FAN of Dunkin Donuts coffee.
I give you Exhibit A:
Yep, I was the DD Fan of the Week back in 2012 and even got my picture up in lights in Times Square. NBD.
I also had my first pumpkin donut of the season yesterday. YUM.
Hey, the leaves may not be changing here in Boca Raton, but at least you can experience the flavors of fall at DD!
MOMpreneur: n. defined as a female business owner who is actively balancing the role of mom and the role of entrepreneur.
Happy Monday Modern Boca Moms! Welcome to our next installment of MOMpreneur Monday, highlighting Florida businesses and brands that were founded by female entrepreneurs and fellow Mommas.
Today’s featured MOMpreneur is…Rosalie Farnsworth, creator of COOL KIDS buckle covers.
Tell us a little bit about yourself, Rosalie, and why you launched COOL KIDS™…
As an veteran “MOMpreneur” with a marketing background, my passions for parenting (I have an 18-year-old and a preschooler), health education and hands-on problem solving can be seen in my everyday life. I try to find fun ways to teach my children that innovation can be found hiding in plain sight.
Building a business around something you love brings challenges in line with being a parent – the rewards are immeasurable as you watch it grow.
Living in sunny South Florida can be brutal sometimes – not just in summer. It can truly feel like your insides are baking. In a rush one suffocatingly hot day, I moved the buckles out of the way so I could put my young daughter in her car seat and immediately burnt my fingertips – I am usually careful about this, but was glad it wasn’t her tender skin.
I had previously tried full-cover sunshades, but quickly found them to be cumbersome – I wanted one less thing to juggle when exiting a car with my arms and mind full. Florida children wear short clothing with their legs exposed almost year-round – I was tired of worrying about that scalding metal buckle.
I began thinking: What other options existed?
I began searching for a solution that tackled the problem at its source, the actual buckle. Unable to find a practical product in the car seat aftermarket (accessories), I sketched out a pattern for what I envisioned: A type of cover that would stay in place to protect the entire car seat buckle without interfering with its restraint function, or the bustle of my day.
Determined to bring my idea to life, I retrieved the brand-new sewing machine I had bought years before from a high shelf in a closet, searched YouTube tutorials on how to sew, cut up an old t-shirt and stitched the very first pair of COOL KIDS Buckle Covers – the only ones I ever wanted to make!
The design features a pocket with a small collar and snap that fastens to the strap right above the two buckles. It stays securely in place for constant use but can be easily removed by an adult when necessary. To use, a parent simply pulls the pocket over the buckles while the restraint is disconnected.
To unshield the buckles, just pinch the bottom of the pocket with two fingers and pull up – the buckles pop out ready for use (you can watch the video above for a complete demo).
I fastened what became our prototype to my daughter’s car seat harness and began “testing and telling.” Soon, other parents wanted me to make a set for their kiddos.
So I did…
Suddenly, I imagined there could be a marketable interest in the design.
What challenges did you face when starting your business?
When I decided to put them for sale online – they did well! I couldn’t keep up. Months later, we took a few more serious steps: we have a patent pending, hired a manufacturer, showcase 20 stylish patterns, and continue to sell our functional, fashionable car seat safety accessory online.
What is unique about your product and why should MBMoms purchase it?
COOL KIDS™ fit practically all domestic car seat brands and are, of course, machine washable.
You can match them with other accessories: strap covers, seat covers or pads, head supports, a favorite dangly toy, bibs, blankets…virtually anything! Give them as part of a baby shower gift or newborn starter pack.
Really, any child who uses a car seat could benefit from COOL KIDS™. Car seat buckle covers are a straightforward product like non-skid baby socks and many other children’s safety items.
What exciting things are coming up for you and your business?
We’ve begun to garner interest from baby product retailers. COOL KIDS™ buckle covers are a contemporary product that will certainly perform best at point of purchase while the market becomes familiar with them.
The future is open. We’ll continue to build the business and product line, form partnerships and collaborate with other baby gear MOMpreneurs. One day, we hope to be in a position to donate a portion of our proceeds to medical facilities that aid burn victims.
For instant access to updates and promotions, it is best to monitor our social feeds. We really look forward to hearing what your readers think about our ‘accidental’ business!
We now know what you don’t like about South Florida, but what do you love?
My family and I are proud to call Delray Beach home. We live near the ocean and love experiencing the fresh energy of a fast growing, All-American town.