Halloween Haul…What To Do With It?




The Switch Witch- what to do with Halloween candy

This is a post from my archives.

I wish the “Switch Witch” had been around when my kids were little.

Posted on October 29, 2011
As Halloween approaches there is always the dilemma of what to do with all the candy. Well, here is what I am going to do this year with my granddaughter’s haul complete with a “fairy witch’s tale”.

The Switch Witch is a nice way to “get rid” of the Halloween Haul.

  • Your child can eat some of his candy on Halloween night
  • Then lays out the rest for the Switch Witch before he/she goes to bed.
  • The Switch Witch makes rounds and takes the candy
    and leaves a new toy!

switch witch

What a great way to deal with the Halloween dilemma!

Any suggestions as to what the “Switch Witch” should do with the candy? I would love to read your comments?

TGIF-Wedding Weekend Newport RI



Happiness always…


As I sip my morning coffee and nibble on my Portuguese raisin muffin from Amarals Bakery this morning, many thoughts run through my head.

It is a beautiful sun filled view of the Sakonnet River outside my window here in Rhode Island.

My mind is reflective about my younger daughter who is about to be married tomorrow.

She came into to the world a tiny little newborn, struggling for her first ten minutes of life to catch her breath and open up her lungs to the world around her in a Miami Hospital.

Her dad held his breath until she finally let him know she was along for the ride.

What a wonderful ride it has been these years.

I am so proud to be her mom and be here this weekend ready to celebrate the beginning of her newest journey.

Best of the best to Adrienne and Rich!


TGIF-Some Weekend Reading



I love reading about the brain and all of the discoveries that have been made since I first began studying to be a nurse at NYU in 1970. At that time, we knew relatively little about the brain compared to the present. With the advent of MRI and the PET scan, we now know much more about the brain’s plasticity, how the brain works and changes as we develop and age.

Read about how “curiosity” affects how we learn…


“Curiosity may put the brain in a state that allows it to learn and retain any kind of information, like a vortex that sucks in what you are motivated to learn, and also everything around it“. This means that once the brain is stimulated via curiosity, it is much more effective at learning and memory functions.



Vaccines are important, as is herd immunity, which has become a news item very recently since the outbreaks of pertussis in some areas of the country.

I believe it is important to understand all the facts about vaccination and community living before you choose to leave your child unprotected and susceptible to a deadly disease which has been under control for so many years.

We now have Ebola on our shores…I am wondering how many people would opt for a vaccination against Ebola if it were available?

And that’s where I feel like it’s legitimate for us to examine what they’re doing around vaccination. Because it is a question of citizenship. That can get forgotten as we get more and more isolationist in the way we approach parenting and families. There’s so much emphasis on making it a perfect world within the home, on making it non-toxic and sealed off from the world and safe in every way. It becomes this bubble we bring up the child within. And the more we bubble ourselves, we let ourselves pretend that we can create an alternate little world in the home. It lets us forget the ways in which we are essentially dependent on the community at large and what we owe the community at large.



Is parenthood a type of religion? Are you afraid to criticize your own child even if it is “constructive” criticism? How does your own marriage fare compared to your relationship with your children?

All interesting thoughts to consider as we raise our children and grandchildren. How is our culture determining the future of our kids and our marriages. Remember, Amy Chua and her book about being a Tiger Mom? The reaction was fierce…it was a cultural difference.

Have a look at our own culture!

Another sign of the parenthood religion is that it has become totally unacceptable in our culture to say anything bad about our children, let alone admit that we don’t like them all of the time. We are allowed to say bad things about our spouses, our parents, our aunts and uncles, but try saying, “My kid doesn’t have a lot of friends because she’s not a super likable person,” and see how fast you get dropped from the PTA.

This week TGIF is posted late…but I sure hope you read it!

Related posts: https://parentingintheloop.com/2013/01/25/weekend-reading-2/

TGIF…Some Weekend Reading!




Fall Weekend


For too many reasons to list, I have been absent from ParentingintheLoop for awhile.

I missed writing and hopefully will be getting back into my routine.

This week there were so many things that caught my eye while looking through parenting posts. Back-to-school is always a time of year that has been a struggle for me. Getting settled into a routine and the shortening of daylight leaves me sometimes anxious for what the winter will bring. I am an optimist but Fall has its sentimental moments which are not always my favorites.

Cooking is my time to relax and lately I have been throwing my efforts into more healthy choices for all three meals of the day especially lunches. I have been drawn to some interesting recipes and since we have a nut allergy in our family that is something that keeps me looking for homemade food choices especially when it comes to snacks.

Here goes some of my choices from this week. TGIF!

I love granola and most are exposed to nuts in the processing or contain nuts so they do not have a place on my kitchen shelves. I haven’t tried this recipe yet, but it looks very promising and a great snack or something to throw in my bag to munch on while running the day’s endless errands.

In case you’ve missed the commercials and advertising that we have been inundated with since mid-July, it’s Back-to-School time! Parents everywhere are reluctantly turning their attention to that universally dreaded task—packing the lunchbox. While I am a well-known proponent of unexciting lunches, I do like to dazzle the children with a variety of homemade treats.



Don’t get me wrong, I do not and simply cannot make everything from scratch… with my schedule this is impossible . As much as I would love to do scratch cooking there are some shortcuts that I do take. As a grandmother, I have learned to accept my limitations albeit sometimes not so gracefully. Limitation is not something  to which I willingly succumb, being limited makes me feel old but on the other hand I have to be realistic and acknowledge that I cannot do everything. It is better to prioritize what is truly important and let the other things take care of themselves. This post from Yummy Mummy Club Canada made me think about some of the convenience foods that although they sound healthy their ingredient list belies their nourishing label.

See what you think. TGIF.


But when I do buy packaged foods—after all, they do come in handy now and again when you’re a busy parent—I rarely read the nutrition facts table. Instead, I skip right to the ingredients list, which is the most important bit of information on the package or box. The shorter the list, the better, and ideally you want to see real food ingredients instead of fillers, stabilizers, and additives.


One of my favorite cook books Homemade With Love is from Jennifer Perillo. She is an exceptional scratch cook and I love her recipes. A few years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting her and actually enjoying a luncheon she prepared at her hotel her in Chicago. I credit Jennie with bringing me back into the kitchen after being an empty nester for several years. If she could prepare such a lovely lunch in a hotel room kitchen I should be able to return to my kitchen easily with her cookbook in my hands.

Jennifer just announced yesterday that her first issue of Simple Scratch Cooking : A Homecook’s Journal for Making Easy, Everyday Meals will be out in October. I am beyond excited to receive my copy soon…in time for the winter when I find the most comfort in cooking a lovely meal at dinner time. TGIF


I’m leaping, and my heart is beating out of my chest as I do so. Finally taking a little control of my professional destiny with this project. So, here it goes…
The first issue of Simple Scratch Cooking: A Homecook’s Journal for Making Easy, Everyday Meals is available for preorder. If you believe in me, and my work, please share with everyone you know. I’m offering a 10% special discount for orders placed by 10/15/14 (use code SSC1015 at checkout). I plan to spend what would’ve been our 10th wedding anniversary on 10/16 packing, and shipping, the inaugural issue.


Here’s to a wonderful weekend. TGIF everyone!