#showtherealyou – Lou Carter AKA founder of @babylunoshop

My #showtherealyou girl this week is a #girlboss, a #mumma to two boys, a #basketballerswife,  a #traveller… and I could go on and on with the #hashtag titles for Mrs Lou Carter.
From the first time I spoke to Lou (over email), I was inspired straight away. She was so professional about collaborating together for her business Baby Luno,  yet she had such a calming, nurturing, aura about her and was so supportive to a hormonal pregnant mumma (in my first trimester) like me. I instantly clicked with Lou and we have continued to grow and blossom our friendship since that very first email over 6 months ago.
I haven’t actually met Lou in person because she has been running her business from Europe (even though it is Australian based), while her husband follows his dreams as a professional basketballer. I cannot wait till she returns as we can have a wine (maybe post breastfeed though haha).
I know you will love learning about how Lou manages her online business, deals with the everyday mumlife challenges and  travels Europe.
I introduce to you all …
Lou carter AKA founder of @babylunoshop
Favourite hot drink? 
 
COFFEEEEE! I get way too excited when I about to have coffee and I drink way too much of it. I like it strong a completely black. The coffee is terrible in the UK (sorry UK readers) and I miss my Melbourne long blacks dearly. 
 
Can you tell me who the REAL Lou Carter is?
 
Wow! Tough question! The short version – I am a mother of 2 boys (1 and 3 yrs old), wife to a professional basketball player, living in a different city every year and founder of online baby shop, babyluno.com 
 
Here is the longer version… 
 
I am originally from Sweden but I have hardly lived there. From age 2, I grew up in Luxembourg (a small country in the middle of Europe) then went to Sweden for 3 years of high school and then went to Australia to travel and met my (now) husband. I was head over heels so I decided to move to Australia for University at UNSW in Sydney. 
 
My husband is a professional basketball player and usually his contracts are about 8-10 months so we move around a lot for his career. In the past 10 years we have lived in Sydney two separate times, Melbourne three separate times, twice in Adelaide, a stint in Perth, a year in Auckland New Zealand, three different cities in Sweden, lived in Spain for a few months and are currently living in Plymouth in the U.K. If someone asked me where my home is, I wouldn’t be able to give them an answer. My blood is Swedish and very proud of that beautiful country but when I am in Sweden, I feel like a little bit of a tourist. I probably feel more at home in Australia now but I definitely feel like a tourist there too. I do have 2 little Aussie boys now though who have that beautiful Aussie accent :). I am pretty good at just making wherever we are, our home. Home is definitely just where the heart is.
 
My two sons are 3 and 16 months. I am absolutely loving being a mother. There are definitely tough days, especially when dealing with sleep deprivation and we live far away from family and friends so we don’t get much of a break but seeing these creatures, that I made, develop is the coolest thing in the world. To be honest, I had no big interest in kids before I had my own. I was very career driven, loved traveling and loved a party but now I feel that children are the most important thing in life – both mine and other children. So that is one way how the REAL me has changed a lot in recent years.
 
My newest baby is my online baby shop called Baby Luno babyluno.com, which is based in Australia. My career background is in marketing and especially online marketing so I decided to make use of that and joining it with my passion of babies. It is only over a year old so it is still taking off but I love having my own business especially as a mother. I have something that is mine and something to do other than just being a mum and I am continuously learning new things about having your own business. Running the business having two toddlers around comes with some challenges and running a business from overseas is also challenging at times. The time difference means that the best time to chat to customers and suppliers is in my morning but this is usually when I have the kids. I do have a lot of mum-guilt as I hate being on my laptop or phone in front of the kids so I really try not to be, only for a few urgent matters. However, my husband does help with the kids a lot. Just as I am supportive of my husband’s dreams, he is incredibly supportive of my dreams and goals so we make it work quite well.
 
These are the things that make up the REAL Louise Carter but other than that I am quite open-minded and go with the flow, but also quite passionate about things I care about. I try and always look on the bright side of life, I laugh quite easily (so my husband thinks he’s the funniest person ever), I am very close to my family even though we are all spread out, love meeting new people and love sports!
 
What drove you to create your Instagram account and online business Baby Luno?
 
I have my personal Instagram account @mrsloucarter that I created mainly to keep in touch with all family and friends around the world and to keep them up to date with what we are doing. Since we live so far away from all our friends and family, it is a nice way to share with everyone what happened that day since I don’t have many others to chat to.
 
When we were living in New Zealand when my first boy was just a baby, I found it so difficult to find the baby products that I wanted and I would try to find them online but only American websites would pop up that didn’t ship to where I was so the idea for Baby Luno was born. I finally launched the website when I was 7 months pregnant with my second baby. It was maybe not ideal timing but also because of that, I was my main audience so I would market the way that I would find attractive and bring in products that I loved. I run the Baby Luno Instagram account myself @babylunoshop. I try and add a few bits and pieces that are not just marketing, like some blog posts from, for example, the amazing Alice in Healthyland :). You want to give your followers some extra value. It’s all a learning process.
 
 
Not many people know this about you, but you run your online boutique Baby Luno, you are a mumma and you support your husband by living overseas with him while he chases his dream? Tell us more how you do this with children? This blows my mind! What a life! Amazing Lou!
 
Aww, thank you! Well we started moving around due to my husband’s career before kids and before Baby Luno. It was exciting getting to live in different places so I was loving it. It was maybe not ideal for my career. I was lucky enough to get jobs everywhere we went but we did decide to have children when we did since that way I didn’t need to work for a while and could just focus on raising them.
 
Of course, moving around does get more difficult when kids are involved, especially when you throw in different time zones. Sleeping routines are not always easy to follow and I am one sleep-deprived mama. Right now we are in the process of moving again and I am starting to sell and give away a few of the kids’ toys and it is not easy but I am so impressed at how well they are taking it. My 3-year old is now really excited to give away his toys and the other day he said “the boys who don’t have any toys will get happy”. That melted my heart. We may be raising a little minimalist. We have also started telling him how he will start at a new Swedish Kindy soon and he is so excited about it. I am amazed at how adaptable children can be – probably more than us adults.
 
There are definitely some challenges to living like we do but we just choose to focus on the amazing positives. We get to live in different parts of the world – really become a part of the culture, connect with people that we would have never met otherwise, see how a country really works and have very different life experiences. We love taking advantage of these opportunities especially when the kids are young before they start school. In the end, it is all about your story. 
 
My husband’s career will not go on forever so we will settle down in one place soon but being from different parts of the world, I am sure we will always be travelling a little bit. It will eventually be nice to have our own place and decorate the kids rooms with our own furniture that we love and most importantly make really deep connections with people, be able to attend our friends’ weddings, birthdays etc that we have missed way too many of.
 
 
What is your favourite quote or mantra? 
My favourite quote/mantra is definitely “The happiest people don’t HAVE the best of everything, they MAKE the best of everything”. It doesn’t matter what you have, where you live or what the weather is like, you can still make life into the best adventure by just deciding to be happy and making it the best. It is all about your attitude.
 
My husband and I also always have this saying when crazy things happen or offers come up from teams in cities far away, we always just say “It’s all about your story”. Make life the best story you can. When you are lying on your deathbed, that is what you will remember. 
 
How often do you find the time to move your body? 
 
I go to the gym at least twice a week where I either do a Body Pump class or HIIT class and take my boys with me to the creche there that they love. This is a booked in time that I never miss so no excuse. I get in to different routines in every place we move to. It depends what is best accessible to me – sometimes it’s bikram yoga or playing sports or just running but I have never felt in better shape than what I am in right now, which I am quite proud of. I may also have my boys to thank for that since I am constantly running after them (who are both sports crazy) so I hardly stop moving my body.
 
Favourite activewear? 
 
I almost only wear SIX30 activewear.The company was started by one of my friends and I absolutely love her designs. She is also one of the people that inspired me to start Baby Luno because she also runs the website luxefitness.com.au which is a one-stop activewear shop collecting the best activewear. I love supporting small businesses and especially when it’s someone I know. I also loved Cadenshae’s nursing sports bras while breastfeeding – this is why I started stocking their products on babyluno.com
 
Something you practice daily that promotes self love? 
 
I try and listen to a motivational YouTube video every day to get my mind straight. My favourite is Tony Robbins. He talks a lot about how you are in control of how you feel – it is a decision. The thing that always lifts my spirit though is just putting on some great music and dancing around. It usually turns into a family dance party since my two boys love to dance and sometimes hubby joins in too.
 
Favourite product/outfit currently on Baby Luno?
 
I love every single product on Baby Luno. That is why I bring them in because I want to make my favourites more available to other mothers because I had trouble finding all the things that I wanted when my boys were babies. I am so impressed at all the mumpreneurs out there that have created these amazing innovative products. The nursing activewear is definitely a best seller. Also I am really trying to collect the best baby bags out there and have brought in my favourite Swedish baby brand, Elodie Details, to make it easily accessible for all my fellow Aussies :).
 
What advice would you give to other people out there wanting to start a blog/business? 
 
Just decide to do it and decide that it will be a success! You don’t have to have all the answers before you start, you can figure it out along the way. Just make a decision about something and go 100% – if it is the wrong decision, you will either quickly realise it or you will be so invested in it that you will make that the right decision in the end and you will be a lot further than if you hadn’t made a decision at all so don’t be afraid. Everyone makes mistakes but you just make sure that you learn from each mistake so the more mistakes you make, the better you will be because you will have learnt so much.
 
It is also great to have a mentor. Talk to someone that has done it before and get some tips rather than trying to reinvent the wheel on your own. They would have already made some mistakes and learned from them so then you don’t need to make those mistakes again and you can learn from their mistakes as well.
Want more from Lou?
 
Instagram private: @mrsloucarter
Instagram Baby Luno: @babylunoshop
Thanks for reading,
Big Love,
Alice xoxo

#aliceloves @krewactive feat. Bloembee Blooms

Thank you to everyone that read last weeks first ever #aliceloves mini Instagram & blog segment featuring a Posy of Bloembee Blooms. Your support meant so much to me and thank you for all the lovely likes and comments too, you made my week. I always get so anxious starting a new segment. I look forward to sharing a product or brand I love with you weekly.

This week I am excited to be telling you a little more about the Krew Active Cleo Express Feeder Crops. If any of you have ever read my Alice In Pregnancyland blog, you would know that I am a huge fan and have worn these crops throughout my pregnancy. I love to wear bright active wear so these two vibrant colours that Krew Active have to offer totally did it for me.

Firstly a little about Krew Actice – Krew Active is founded by Kylie Rae Anderson and was launched in the Australian market in 2015. Kylie is a mumma for 3 and fektvtheir was a need in the market to start the maternity and nursing activewear company, due to feelings of being ignored when seeking maternity activewear in the major activewear chain stores.

 Her vision is to allow mums to experience the convenience of breastfeeding on the go and allow more opportunities to stay fit, get active and remain social while feeding discreetly. Her garments combine style, performance, support and comfort. 

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I have found this crop great to wear throughout my three trimesters. The Cleo Express Feeding Bra has a wide non roll band feature, which is soft & comfortable providing support for your growing bump. I have worn these crops during high intensity workouts, yoga and for my everyday walking.

I look forward to using the crops for my post pregnancy exercise routine too ( I will keep you posted on the support of them with breasfeeding boobies). I love that they have a quick accessible clip, so you can promptly nurse your baby on demand (I have been practicing haha). When I was breastfeeding my first born, Cruz it was so hard to just lift a non feeding crop up to breasfeed him prior or after the gym session. So I cannot wait to trial these crops out.

Cleo Express Feeder in Purple Obsession (Pictured below)


Cleo Express Feeder In Pink Fever (Pictured below)

A special thank you to @bloembee for collaborating with me on this little project of mine.In this weeks Posy of blooms we  had beautiful yellow gerberas, light purple chrysanthemum, yellow and white lillies, and snapdragon. Bloembee provides the posy of blooms, delivered to the Brisbane area for just $30. 

If you would love to be apart of this segment please email me at aliceinhealthyland@hotmail.com

Want more from the collaborators, Krew Active and Bloembee? Check them out in the links below. You won’t be disappointed.

Thank you for reading.

Big Love,

Alice In Healthyland xoxo

Instagram for Krew Active – Click Here

Website for Krew Active – Click Here

Instagram for Bloembee – Click Here

Website for Bloembee – Click Here

 

 

Bib & Spoon – “the way baby food should be”

Just 10 days ago the amazing Clare & Danny (creators of Bib & Spoon), dropped off a package to my front door step. Inside the package was the delicious goodness of organic and chemical free, made with love, toddler food for Cruzie. Wow this couldn’t of came at a better time in our lives.

The toddler meals came stored in a conveniently packaged container, which you could stack and store in the freezer. The baby purées came in easy to store, resealable bags. Reading the ingredients on these meals I was blown away. It was all just good food for my little guy to eat. No additives and no chemicals. Tick tick.

Now you all know I love creating all my food for Cruz as I love to know what’s in it (except when his Aunties or grandparents look after him). So I was very pleased to know that these frozen meals were filled with the goodness I would personally give to my son. Plus life gets so crazy at times that I can honestly say, that grabbing something that is healthy for your child, straight from your freezer, can certainly come in handy st times and a win win for us parents too (especially when you are in a rush to get your little babe down for the night).

Clare and Danny are the Brisbane based, creators of Bib & Spoon.  They are the parents to beautiful twin girls, Olivia and Hannah. They were on the hunt for delicious, fresh produced meals for their babes and could not seem to find anywhere that sourced these type of meals. So they got an idea,  teamed up with a dietitian, who then helped to make their dream become a reality. They are now helping out busy mummy and daddy’s and feeding the mouths of lots of hungry baby and toddlers around Australia. Congratulations to you both for chasing your dreams and making it work. So inspiring!

After a busy rainy day, this meal was enjoyed by Cruzie as he loved all the bits in it. Mummy even got fed a few teaspoons!
Shell bolognese. A winner! (Even I licked the spoon).
Cruzie enjoying his little toddler meals.
Perfect to stack in the freezer. Just poor ingredients straight into the saucepan to heat.
A favourite purée of ours, we add it to our bolognese sauce for the whole family!

Even though the purées state 6 and 8 months, sneaking extra fruit and vegetables into our little picky, toddlers food, is a cheeky way to give them the extra goodness in their diet and bulk up their daily intake with the natural vitamins and minerals they require to grow!

Below is a little idea you can do with the pre made purées.

Zucchini & Pear Oats

Zucchini and Pear Oats 



Ingredients 

1cup almond milk

1 cup organic raw oats

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp organic vanilla essence

2 frozen bib and spoon zucchini and pear slabs

Method

In a saucepan place 1 cup or almond milk or milk of choice, add in 1 cup of organic raw oats

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Sprinkle I’m cinnamon, nutmeg and a little vanilla bean or essence

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Continues to stir

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I the added in some bibandspoon pre made zucchini and Apple purée (CLICK HERE TO BUY)

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Allow to cook for 3-5minutes on low heat (continue stirring)

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Can add more milk or water if you prefer more milkie consistency

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Serve and poor left overs into container for the next few days, store in the fridge
Want to know more about Bib & Spoon check out their Instagram here – 

www.instagram.com/bibandspoon

And their website here to order the goodies for your little babes – 

www.bibandspoon.com.au

My Little One Eats #showtherealyou

This weeks #showtherealyou feature is Michelle Tess from https://www.instagram.com/mylittleoneeats/ I have featured this beautiful women on my blog a few times already but thought it would be great if we could all get to know the women behind the blog that little bit more. Michelle is shares her honest motherhood stories, photography skills and delicious recipes with her followers and has a gorgeous daughter that could make anyone smile with her adorable piccies.

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Favourite hot drink?

Oohh that’s a toughy. That would have to be a toss up between roasted dandelion tea or warm homemade bone broth. I love the flavour in a roasted dandelion tea, it is just so earthy. When I was pregnant I heated up homemade bone broth every morning and drank it on my drive to work (1.5hour drive… don’t miss that). Bone broth has so many healing properties and the collagen I believe helped with my stretching belly!

 

Can you tell me who the REAL Michelle Tess is?

If I was to describe myself in three words it would be sensitive, driven & happy.

 

Honestly the real ‘Michelle Tess’ is an unsure Mum trying to do the best for her family and herself. Plain and simple. There are many more layers to me but that is the crux of it and I like people to know that behind what you see on my IG page, there is a Mum who doesn’t necessarily have her sh*t together.

 

I have always had a love for fitness and my dream was to represent my country as an adult. I reached my goal as a junior but quickly realised as I went into adulthood that there is so much more to life than training twice a day, 5 times a week. Whilst that dream faded, my love for fitness and health always stuck around. In 2012, I completed my studies at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition (IIN) and while Health Coaching was not for me (listen to your gut & don’t just do things because you feel you have to), the principles and lesson learnt were so valuable to me.

 

My husband and I turned our nutritional lives around. We started to rely on our garden, local and organic produce to sustain our diets.

We now live on 10 acres in the Gold Coast hinterland. We have a happy 1 year old daughter, 2 cows, 20 chickens and a very large veggie patch.

 

Tell me about a day in the life of Michelle?

 

I usually wake to the murmurs of my LittleOne at around 5.30am. I bring her into bed the me where she plays with her toys, usually wacking me in the face repeatedly with her plastic phone.

 

I breastfeed her and then we get changed to walk up and down my street, I am sure my followers are over me capturing my morning walk but we usually say hi to the horses, geese and wallabies as we walk past them.

 

We come inside, eat breakfast and then play until she goes down for her first nap at 9am.

 

When she wakes, she has her bottle and then we usually head out for a few hours to meet up with her bubba friends, catch up with Grandparents or do really boring mum stuff.

 

She goes down for her second nap at 2pm. When she wakes she has a breastfeed and then we eagerly await at the mailbox for her father to arrive home….. Usually my arms are stretched out saying ‘Take her’ if it has been a rough day.

 

We play, cook/eat dinner & have a bath before putting her to bed around 7pm. I then eat, watch some trashy TV, plan my food shoots/recipes and get to bed by 9.30pm.

 

What drove you to create your My Little One Eats?

Being a new mum can leave you without a sense of purpose (for yourself). As mentioned above I have always been very driven and whilst I do enjoy the Mum gig, I felt I had lost myself in all of it.

 

I spoke with my mummy friend Mel and we were talking about how difficult it can be getting ideas for recipes with a baby who is just starting solids. That day I went home and started ‘MyLittleOneEats’ where I was documenting recipes that were of help to me.

For my 29th Birthday I got a new DSLR camera and fell in love with the art of shooting food. BAM…. purpose had arrived. I love the whole process of food photography and am learning all I can by reading books, watching tutorials and experimenting as often as I can.

 

What do you think attracts mumma’s to your site?

I think beautiful images may bring many people to my page. I hope they then quickly think ‘WOW, the recipe for that beautiful image is so simple, delicious and healthy”. I hope people enjoy the simplicity of my recipes and the realness of my stories.

 

Favourite quote or mantra?

 

You gotta stop watering dead plants.

 

Don’t be afraid to let go of what doesn’t serve you in order to give love to the things and people that do!

 

How often do you find the time to move your body?

Not as often as I used to pre-baby. I try to go for a walk up and down my hilly street six times a week. It is about a 25 minute walk which is great for exercise but absolutely clears my mind too!

 

Go to healthy recipe for the family?

Cold Rice Paper Rolls.

I can’t claim this recipe but you can include so many veggies in one roll. I love it!

Wet rice paper roll, add vermicelli noodles, mince, sliced egg, kale, sprouts, cucumber, capsicum, mint, coriander and crushed nuts. Add a little sauce of your choice, I used tamari.

 

As a mumma how do you find time to juggle your blog, Instagram and #mumlife?

 

Planning my week is key. I try to have my Dad/Mum come and hang out with my daughter on one day of the week, which is normally when I cook/shoot 2-3 recipes. I then edit the photos and create my website content in the evening once my daughter is in bed.

 

If I didn’t love what I was doing it would be a struggle. But the fact is, I love connecting with other mums and love creating images and content that inspire others.

 

What advice would you give to other people out there wanting to start a blog/business?

 

Do it because you love it, not because you want to make money or be famous. Being fake bleeds through every word and people will pick up on it instantly. Find what makes you excited and makes you want to go to the library and read about it. If you’re not sure what that is, keep looking and just follow your bliss.

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Want more from Michelle ?

Instagram – @mylittleoneeats

 

BAKED CHICKEN FINGERS – @mylittleoneeats

BAKED CHICKEN FINGERS

INGREDIENTS
500G skinless chicken breasts
1 cup almond meal
1 tsp smoked paprika (can omit for younger babies)
1 Tbsp Nutritional yeast flakes
1 tsp herbamare or sea salt
2 eggs
olive oil
** For the adult version you can also add 1 teaspoon of cumin, garlic and paprika.
METHOD
Preheat your oven to 180degrees Celcius
Cut the chicken breasts into fingers about one inch wide
Mix together almond meal, smoked paprika, yeast flakes and salt in a bowl
Mix two eggs together in a separate bowl
Place each piece of chicken in the egg mixture and then coat in the almond meal mixture
Place onto your line baking tray, drizzled with olive oil
Bake for 25 minutes until the coating is a nice golden brown colour
Want more from Michelle?
Website

@mylittleoneeats – 2 ingredient pancakes

Michelle is a lover of all things simple and healthy and is the founder of the MyLittleOneEats community. After studying at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition she knew that she wanted to make a difference to the coming generations. Falling pregnant and raising her LittleOne has made her understand the importance of simple and healthy recipes for parents who may be time poor or overwhelmed by the world of weaning.

I am very grateful to have crossed paths with Michelle being a first time mum, it can be very overwhelming knowing what to feed your little one. I love creating recipes for Cruz, however I think it is great to source out other mammas that are doing so as well to give you heralthy ideas and inspiration.  I just know you will love Michelle’s page it is filled with beautiful food photos and delicious recipes.

You can find a range of simple, quick and healthy recipes for your LittleOnes & You on her website www.mylittleoneeats.com.au or follow her on Instagram @MyLittleOnEats

Michelle loves baby & toddler recipes that are easy and require minimal thought and effort. She has an abundance of eggs from our generous hens and she usually will have one over-ripe banana hanging around in the fruit bowl.

These mini pancakes are a perfect snack for your LittleOne or you could add some avocado on top to make it a finger licking (messy) meal.

 

Makes 10 small pancakes

INGREDIENTS

1 large Banana or 2 smaller Lady Fingers (100g)

2 Eggs

Half a Teaspoon of Baking Powder *This is optional but I find it makes them slightly fluffier and not as dense.

METHOD

Mash Banana in a bowl and whisk in eggs OR

Add all ingredients into a food processor and mix until you have no lumps and a nice batter

Pour small disks of batter (5cm diameter) into a frypan over medium heat

Flip over once underside is brown

 

Serve immediately or store for up to two days in the fridge.

Sweet potato and egg bites.


Sweet potato and egg bites are perfect for your baby or toddler
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RECIPE
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1 cup of sweet potato steamed and mashed

1 carrot steamed and mashed

4 eggs 

1/2 cup of organic oats or flour of choice

1/4 cup of milk of choice

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METHOD

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Blend all ingredients in a food processor or blender, I use my @omniblendaustralia 

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Pour into mini muffin trays

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Bake on 180degrees for 15-20min

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Allow to cool

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NOTE

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Perfect for snacks or breakfast for your baby or toddler. Can refrigerate for 3 days in a air tight container or freeze for a month. 

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Can add 3 tbsp of cheese if you wish.