Easy & Healthy Lunch Ideas for Kids

The Easy, Fun and Healthy Lunch Ideas – Nourish Interactive

Here is a list of healthy lunch ideas for kids:
  • Get out the cookie cutters – no not for cookies, but for sandwiches. Kids love food in shapes. You can make a star-shaped sandwiches or even one shaped like a pumpkin. Surprise them with different shapes over the week. Serve sliced ham, chicken, tuna or egg salad sandwiches. Some kids love mustard and mayo but some kids may just want a pickle with it. Go with what your child likes. Similarly, some kids don’t like peanut butter but will enjoy cashew or almond butter as a spread.
  • Serve sliced meat rolled up into tubes and offer the bread separate (some kids just aren’t into sandwiches). Similarly, tuna salad can be offered with crackers. Remember, bread doesn’t have to be sliced bread; offer bagels or tortillas. Even just plain sticky rice or couscous can be a hit.
  • Toothpicks can add some fun too – kids love bite-sized food. So make a mini-sandwich and place a toothpick in it. You can get toothpicks with fun designs at party stores.
  • Other bite-sized food includes cucumber and avocado rolls (many grocery stores now have a section of Japanese food). Or make your own roll: Use Korean roasted seaweed (this has a nice sesame flavor to it) and sticky rice (these are simple versions of kimbap”. Just roll up the rice like into a mini-cylinder shape. Have your sons help you make it the night before.
  • Tea sandwiches: These are bite-sized sandwiches. Although adult versions usually have spices and onions, you can make your child a cream cheese tea sandwich with very thin cucumber slices. If you want more ideas on tea sandwiches check out: http://www.cooks.com/rec/search/0,1-0,finger_sandwich_ideas,FF.html
  • Use leftovers for school lunch. If your child ate the beef stew last night for dinner, serve it up for lunch. Either use a thermos after heating it up in the morning or just serve it cold (place an ice pack in the lunch box though to prevent food illness).

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Labor Day Cookout Menu

Are you ready to have the perfect Labor Day weekend backyard cookout?

Melon Salad


  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup raspberry or orange juice
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh mint leaves or 1/2 tsp. dried mint
  • 4 cups cantaloupe balls
  • 2 cups honeydew melon balls
  • 2 cups watermelon balls


  1. In a small microwave-safe bowl, combine honey with sugar. Microwave on high power for 30 seconds; remove and stir. Microwave 30 seconds longer until sugar dissolves.
  2. Stir and let stand for 10 minutes. Add raspberry or orange juice, lemon juice, and mint and mix well.
  3. Place melon balls in large serving bowl and pour honey mixture over. Toss gently to coat and serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until serving time. Serves 12

Shish Kabob


Dijon-Rosemary Steak:

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, stemmed
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch cubes

Citrus-Tarragon Chicken:

  • 1 orange, zested, then juiced, remainder discarded
  • 1 lemon, zested, then juiced, remainder discarded
  • 1 lime, zested, then juiced, remainder discarded
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes

Lemon-Garlic Shrimp:

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 1 bay leaf (fresh or dried)
  • 2 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 pound (16 to 20 count) shrimp, shelled and deveined

Veggies For Kabobs:

  • Bell peppers
  • Onions
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Italian squash
  • Baby potatoes, boiled until cooked through
  • Corn on the cob, husked and sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds

Balsamic Basting Vinaigrette for Veggies:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper
  • If using bamboo skewers, soak them in water for 1 hour to retard charring.


  1. Whisk together all of the Dijon-rosemary steak ingredients (except the steak) in a bowl. Toss the steak in the mixture until evenly coated. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for 2 hours.
  2.  Whisk together all of the citrus-tarragon chicken ingredients (except the chicken) in a bowl. Toss the chicken in the mixture until evenly coated. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for 2 hours.
  3.  Whisk together all of the lemon garlic shrimp ingredients (except the shrimp) in a bowl. Toss the shrimp in the mixture until evenly coated. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for 2 hours.
  4.  Cut vegetables into bite-size pieces.
  5.  Puree balsamic basting vinaigrette ingredients in a blender for 30 seconds.
  6.  Place meats, shrimp, and veggies in individual bowls and set out buffet style. Instruct your guests to skewer their own kabobs and baste veggies with balsamic vinaigrette.
  7.  Grill kabobs directly over heat source for about 10 to 15 minutes, turning 1/4 rotation every 2 to 3 minutes, or until the meat and/or fish is cooked throughout.
  8.  Recommended beverage: Beer

Corn on the Cob


  • 8 medium ears sweet corn
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. Soak corn in cold water for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the butter, basil, parsley and salt. Carefully peel back corn husks to within 1 in. of bottoms; remove silk. Spread butter mixture over corn.
  2. Rewrap corn in husks and secure with kitchen string. Grill corn, covered, over medium heat for 25-30 minutes or until tender, turning occasionally. Cut strings and peel back husks. Yield: 8 servings.


Sticky Ribs


  • 2 1/4 pound(s) baby back ribs
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Granulated garlic, for sprinkling
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 1 tablespoon(s) whole cloves
  • 1 12-ounce bottle of lager
  • 1 cup(s) ketchup
  • 1 cup(s) peach or apricot jam
  • 3 tablespoon(s) fresh lemon juice


  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, season the ribs with salt, pepper, and garlic. Drizzle with oil and scatter the cloves over the ribs and in the pan. Pour the beer over the ribs, cover with foil, and bake for 2 hours, until the meat is tender.
  2. Strain the pan juices into a saucepan. Whisk in the ketchup, jam, and lemon juice and boil over high heat until reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 20 minutes.
  3. Preheat the broiler. Set the ribs meaty side down on the baking sheet, brush with glaze, and broil 4 inches from the heat for 7 minutes. Turn the ribs and brush with half of the remaining glaze. Broil for 10 minutes, until starting to char. Brush with the remaining glaze and broil until browned, 10 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes and serve.

Mixed Berry Spoon Cake


  • 4 pint(s) strawberries (2 pounds), hulled and quartered
  • 2 pint(s) blackberries (12 ounces)
  • 2 pint(s) raspberries (12 ounces)
  • 3/4 cup(s) sugar, for the filling
  • 2 tablespoon(s) cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cup(s) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup(s) sugar, for the batter
  • 2 teaspoon(s) finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon(s) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon(s) kosher salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup(s) milk
  • 1 teaspoon(s) pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 stick(s) unsalted butter, melted


  1. Make the filling: In a bowl, toss the berries with the sugar and cornstarch and let stand for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, make the batter: Preheat the oven to 375°. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the sugar, lemon zest, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs with the milk and vanilla. Whisk the liquid into the dry ingredients until evenly moistened, then whisk in the melted butter until smooth.
  3. Spread the filling in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Spoon the batter on top, leaving small gaps. Bake in the center of the oven for 1 hour, until the fruit is bubbling and a toothpick inserted into the topping comes out clean. Let cool for 1 hour before serving.

Posted by VMPcares.com

Back to School Supplies

Must-Have School Supplies for your Kids!

Get ready for your kids to go back to school by having all of the supplies they will need!  Parents often buy the supplies that cost more, look more entertaining and are more distracting. Teachers actually prefer to stick with the basic, store brand supplies so that there aren’t issues or hurt feelings on what supplies other classmates have. Not only that, but the flashier supplies typically don’t work as well as the basic supplies!

Make sure you have everything before their first day of school:

  • Ballpoint pens
  • No. 2 pencils
  • Colored pencils
  • A pencil sharpener
  • A large pink eraser
  • Scissors
  • Water-based markers
  • Glue Bottle
  • Glue Sticks
  • Highlighters
  • Spiral-bound or composition notebooks
  • Three-ring binder
  •  Loose-leaf notebook paper
  • Pocket folders  
  • A ruler with English and metric measurements
  • Scotch tape
  • Stapler
  • Backpack
  • Box of Kleenex
  • USB Drive
  • Pocket Dictionary
  • Colorful Pens


Super Noggin Classes at VMP

Super Noggin – 10 Steps to Brain Fitness!

Only 30% of how well we age is controlled by our genes… the other 70% is up to you!

That’s right. The bulk of how well you age is affected by your activities and the lifestyle choices you make.

Super Noggin’s “10 Steps to Brain Fitness” teaches you what you need to know to stay as mentally sharp as possible. This fun and interesting class covers important topics such as diet, sleep, humor, stress, exercise and memory fitness.

So what are you waiting for? Take control of your future! Join us for an introduction to Super Noggin and brain fitness. We’ll explain the program in detail and have some fun while enjoying lunch.

Date: Sept. 10, 2012
Time: 12:30pm Information Meeting with Complimentary Lunch
Cost: $30 for 13 sessions
Location: VMP Manor Park – 8621 W. Beloit Road, Milwaukee 53227
RSVP: 414-607-4235
More Information: Visit our webiste at VMPcares.com

Learn, Practice, Track!

  • Learn what the latest research says about keeping your mind sharp (diet, sleep, exercise)
  • Practice healthy new lifestyle habits and brain fitness exercises in a fun social setting (don’t worry, there won’t be any grades)
  • Track your progress with an easy to follow work book
Posted by – VMPcares.com

John McGivern at Potawatomi Bingo & Casino

An Afternoon with John McGivern

Tuesday, September 18th
Two Shows: 1pm and 4pm
Northern Lights Theater
(414) 607-4130

Join VMP and Emmy Award-winning actor John McGivern as he explores living, working and playing ni Southeastern Wisconsin’s unique communities. John will entertain you with his hilarious stories and his life, his family and the seniors that he comes in contact with daily. It’ll be a guaranteed fun-filled afternoon!

Ticket Prices:

Great Seats ONLY $25! Includes ticket to show AND $25 in Rewards Play from Potawatomi Bingo Casino.

Optional Package:

ONLY $30! Includes ticket to show, $25 in Rewards Play from Potawatomi Bingo Casino, transportation from VMP to Potawatomi and back, plus a light lunch prior to 1:00pm show. Limited seats available at this special price… first come, first serve!
Handicapped seating available by request.
Proceeds benefit VMP Foundation’s Active Seniors Fund – to support and promote active senior lifestyles at VMP and in the community.

For more information, visit VMPcares.com!
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Checklist for College Dorm

Checklist for College – eCampusTours.com


What to Pack:

The Big Stuff
Make sure your student gets in contact with his roommate before purchasing any big items for the dorm room. They can divide up what to bring so there will be enough space for everything. These big items may include:

  • Mini fridge
  • Microwave (if allowed by the college)
  • TV
  • Seating

Room Essentials
The dorm room should be your child’s home away from home, so don’t forget to pack:

  • Bedding (extra long twin-size sheets, comforter, pillows, mattress pad)
  • Computer
  • Desk lamp
  • Phone
  • Alarm clock
  • Rug
  • Wastebasket
  • Filing cabinet
  • Small fan

If your teen will be able to come home from time to time during the school year, she doesn’t need to pack clothes for every season. She should pack for one season and then switch the clothes out the next time she is home. This will leave her with a lot more closet space. Just make sure she packs:

  • Jeans
  • Shorts
  • T-shirts
  • Long sleeved shirts
  • Walking shoes
  • 10-day supply of underwear and socks
  • Two formal outfits
  • Swimsuit
  • Raincoat
  • Pajamas

Laundry Essentials
You won’t be there to do laundry for your child, but you can make sure he has the right items to do it himself.

  • Laundry bag
  • Detergent
  • Fabric softener
  • Stain remover stick
  • Rolls of quarters
  • Sewing kit
  • Iron

Your child will have to share a bathroom, so be sure to pack a tote so she can carry the following items to and from the restroom:

  • Shampoo/conditioner
  • Soap
  • Razor
  • Deodorant
  • Comb/brush
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste/dental floss
  • Lotion
  • Hair dryer
  • Towels/washcloths
  • Robe
  • Shower shoes
  • Makeup/perfume

Miscellaneous Items
These items are often overlooked during the packing process, so be sure to put them on your child’s list:

  • Hangers
  • Umbrella
  • First-aid kit
  • Mp3 player
  • Checkbook
  • Health Insurance Info
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Flashlight
  • Surge Protectors 
  • Basic tools
  • Plastic cups/plates/utensils


What to Leave at Home

Basic Furniture
The dorm room should already be furnished with the basics, so leave these items at home:

  • Bed
  • Dresser
  • Desk
  • Desk chair

Objectionable Items
Your child’s college has a list of items that students CANNOT bring, so be sure to check that list. The most common items on these lists are:

  • Some electric appliances
  • Candles
  • Halogen lamps
  • Gas/charcoal grills
  • Weapons
  • Explosives/fireworks
  • Pets

Items She Just Thinks She Can’t Live Without
Because your teen is so used to her bedroom at home, she probably wants to pack as many items from her room as possible to try and recreate it. But make sure she keeps it at a minimum; there will not be room for:

  • Her collection of stuffed animals (she should pick out her favorite one)
  • High school yearbooks
  • A lot of frames with pics of family, friends, pets, etc. (she should toss out the picture frames and make a collage to hang on the wall instead)
  • Knickknacks


Healthy Foods at Wisconsin State Fair

Healthy Alternatives

Healthy alternatives are available throughout the Fair Park for Fairgoers to enjoy. Popular items available at multiple vendors include grilled chicken sandwiches, rotisserie chicken, caesar salads, fruit kabobs, chicken strips, corn on the cob, turkey breast sandwiches, grilled chicken wraps, chicken caesar wraps, Italian salad, fish boils, cheese and fruit plates, nuts, dried fruits, string cheese, pickles, spinach, broccoli and cheese rolls, chicken and shrimp kabobs.

A variety of healthy eating options are provided below along with the vendors where they can be purchased. – Wisconsin State Fair


Adeline’s Dairy Lane – Baked Potatoes & Baked Sweet Potatoes 

Billie’s Baked Potatoes – Stuffed Baked Potatoes

Chef Aaron – Kosher Falafel Sandwich, Deli Style Sandwich

Cracovia – Roast Pork Tenderloin with Onions (Plate & Sandwich)

Double K Ranch – Turkey Burger

Eleni’s – Shish-Kabob, Greek Salad

Golden Guernsey Dairy – Milk, Swiss Iced Tea, Orange Juice

Island Noodles – Island Noodles with or without Chicken

Leadfoot’s Bar & Grill – Fruit Kabob

MaMa Mary’s Italian Deli & Pizza – Italian Salad with Chicken or Italian Beef

Meatball Factory Deli, Inc. – Greek Salad

Mike Murphy’s Turkey Legs – Sausage Kabob’s, Turkey Legs, Pork Tenderloin on a Stick, Baked Potato

Rupena’s – Lamburger, Boneless Butterfly Pork Chop, Chicken Breast Sandwich

Slim McGinn’s Irish Pub – Galway Chicken Salad Wrap

Steak Stop – Char Grilled Veggie Bowl

Tropics at the Fair – Coconut Mahi Mahi, low carb Jamaican Jammers

Usinger’s – Chicken Sausage

West Allis Shrine Club – Chicken Sausage with Asiago Cheese & Spinach

Wisconsin Apple Growers Association – Apples

Wisconsin Bison Producers – Buffalo Burritos, Buffalo Jerky, Bison Sandwich, Buffalo Mozzarella Salad

Wisconsin Dairy Goad Products – Cheeses, Milk, Goat Cheese/Veggie Wrap

Wisconsin Lamb – Lamb sandwich, Pulled Lamb Sandwich

Wisconsin Ostrich and Alternative Meats – Alternative meat Burgers (ostrich, deer, elk, bison), Snack Sticks, Jerky (ostrich, deer, elk, bison)

Wisconsin Potato Growers Association – Baked Potatoes with Toppings 

Wisconsin Poultry and Eggs – Egg & Turkey Sandwich, Omelettes, Turkey Hotdogs

Wisconsin Red Cherry Grower – Cherries and misc. Cherry products

Wisconsin State Cranberry Association– Cranberries and misc. Cranberry products

Posted by VMPcares.com