Whole juice!

Okay, I admit it. I am a bit of a smoothie fanatic. It looks like it's rubbing off on the little one. His first word in the morning is "moomie", and it is often the last word he utters before drifting off at the end of the day. This seems like a positive habit to foster, so I am trying to mix things up a bit to keep him interested (while getting those fruits and veggies in him!).

Sometimes I work in lighter fare with a good amount of liquid and it comes out more like a juice. This morning we enjoyed that sort of "smoothie". I like to call it a "Whole juice".

I like to get creative with my ingredients (and, honestly, I have rarely had an unpalatable experience). We work in as much homegrown, local and organic as possibe. The chard & spearmint were grown with love in our garden. The celery is organic. The grapes are big, dark & oh so sweet. The cucumber really need to be eaten as it was beginning to shrivel. I added about 10 oz. of liquid... 5 oz. water and 5 oz. cranberry juice. I try not to overdo the juice, though it is sometimes required (as with greens... hard to choke down without some extra flavor).

This is where I get all gushy about equipment. I *LOVE* my VitaMix. We have a blender. We have a fantastic juicer. Nothing quite measures up to the VitaMix. This machine pulverizes everything! A run of the mill blender would leave your smoothie or whole juice too lumpy (or stringy as the case may be with celery). A juicer, no matter how nice, requires the tossing of valuable fiber. The VitaMix gives you all of the nutrients you put into it. It truly is one of the best gifts I have ever received. If you don't have one, but are serious about juicing or smoothie-ing for health, I highly recommend trying to get your hands on one. If the cost is too high, you may be able to find them on Craigslist or Ebay. They are expensive new or used, but they live forever (and the new ones come with a sweet warranty). Okay, wow. I didn't plan to plug the machine, but it is really *that* awesome.

Voila! Delicious, nutritious, energizing way to begin the day for Mama, Papa & Toddler.

As you can see, this kid will stop at nothing to get his "moomie". He wants to drink it like a big boy, so he climbs up onto the chair and drinks it by himself. This is one obsession I can get behind.

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