Bambino Sitters Blog


Bambino Sitters knows that parenting is not easy, and neither is babysitting! These are kids we're talking about so it probably isn't designed to be. The Bambino Blog is filled with parenting hacks, sitter tips, and other info we think you'll find useful.

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babysitting

5 Healthy & Easy Snacks Every Sitter Should Know

5 Healthy & Easy Snacks Every Sitter Should Know

The constant bustle of watching kids, cleaning up after them, and making sure they are being productive while staying organized and on top of it. Every sitter needs a list of healthy go-to snacks to keep the kids energized, while staying healthy. Here are some of our favorites, tried and tested by Bambino Sitters! 

1. Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Allison Fishmans

Allison Fishmans

A super healthy alternative to regular french fries that are just as easy to make!

  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 4 small)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Cut each sweet potato in half lengthwise, and place it flat side down on a cutting board. Cut the potato halves into 1-inch-wide wedges. In a small bowl, combine the oil, chili powder and 1 teaspoon of the salt. Place the potatoes on a roasting pan and brush with the oil mixture. Lay the potatoes flesh side down on the pan and put the pan in the oven. Cook until potatoes, turning once, are soft, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and season with remaining1/2 teaspoon salt. Let the wedges cool for a bit, and serve warm.

Bonus Tips: For dunking, ketchup always works (at 15 calories per tablespoon) or try a squeeze of fresh lime juice for a British chips-and-vinegar effect.

Recipe from Allison Fishmans You Can Trust a Skinny Cook


2. Carrots with Peanut Sauce


Trying to break the peanut butter and jelly habit in the under-12 set is no easy task, but this mellowed peanut-sesame dip just might do the trick. It's equally good with carrots or tossed with cold noodles.

DEB PEARLMAN

DEB PEARLMAN

What you need:

  • 3 tablespoons of peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • A splash of soy sauce
  • A few drops of sesame oil
  • Water to smooth
  • Carrot sticks

Mix everything but the carrot sticks together with a fork or whisk in a bowl. Add water as needed to thin mixture to a dipping consistency (all-natural peanut butter needs more; everyday brands need less).

Kids can help: Scrape carrots, stir ingredients
Extras: Torn up cilantro, basil, a squeeze of lime juice or sliced green onion tops. Try apple slices instead of carrots
Bonus tip: Store carrot sticks in water to keep them crisp and juicy

Recipe from Deb Perelman at Smitten Kitchen


3. Juice Jelly Cubes

Even if you're wary of those red and green mystery "fruit" powders, you can still give your kids the jiggly treats they want. The trick is to use a juice with ingredients you approve of and set it in a plain gelatin. These cubes are not only healthier, but they're also just as easy to make as the boxed stuff.

What you need:

  • 2 cups of your kid's favorite juice (we used grape and grapefruit in the photo)
  • 2 packets of unflavored gelatin
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or honey (optional)

Pour 1/2 cup of juice in a bowl and sprinkle gelatin over it. While this sits, heat the remaining juice to boil (can do this in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes). Pour hot juice over juice and gelatin mixture and stir, adding in extra sugar if desired. Pour mixture into the bottom of a loaf pan and chill for three hours, or until firm. Cut into squares.

Kids can help: Measure, mix
Extras: Pour mixture into miniature or regular-sized muffin tins for different shapes.

Recipe from Deb Perelman at Smitten Kitchen


4. Coconut Cashew BonBons

The perfect snack that's on the sweeter side for kids that sticks with the healthy nutrients they need, but doesn't stray too far from the desserts they want. 

Levi Brown

Levi Brown

What You Need:

  • 1 cup crisp rice cereal
  • 1/2 cup cashew butter
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

Mix together the cereal, cashew butter, maple syrup, and salt in a medium bowl. Form the mixture into 12 1½-inch balls. Roll the balls in the coconut. Refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Kids can help: Mix, roll

Recipe from Real Simple


5. OJ Shake

A refreshing drink to thirst their quench and give the kids some extra vitamin C after some fun at the park or running around the yard. Super easy to make and able to hold off the hunger strike until dinner!

Levi brown

Levi brown

  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 seedless clementines, peeled
  • 1 small banana, frozen
  • 2 ice cubes
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Puree the milk, clementines, banana, ice cubes, honey, and vanilla in a blender until frothy and smooth, 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Kids can help: Peeling fruit

Recipe from Real Simple

Tips for Every Babysitter

Tips for Every Babysitter

Stay Positive

  • Keep an upbeat attitude during your time with the children.  Smile, laugh, and play with them.
  • Welcome the parents home after their night out and check in with them, let them know how your day or evening went.
  • If you have a disagreement with a child, don't let it affect your mood or the way you treat them. Make sure they are listening, but remember that you are not the parent, always be sweet and caring, and firm when necessary. 

Be Safe

  • Make sure you have the parent's phone numbers and that you know where they are going to be in case of an emergency.
  • Have your phone on you when you are out to make sure you are able to call someone if absolutely necessary.
  • Before the parents leave, ask them about who their emergency contacts are. Recommend that they have a list of emergency numbers on the fridge for you just in case.  This list should include an at-home neighbor and numbers for their family pediatrician, dentist, and preferred hospital / emergency room.

Have Fun

  • Stay active! If whether permits, make sure you spend enough time outdoors, playing soccer or other yard games. 
  • Get creative indoors as well by drawing or painting, playing with clay or playdoh.  You can play dress up, play music and have a dance party, or even race matchbox cars across the kitchen floor.  Use your imagination!
  • Read books and talk to the kids.  Remember that this is a special time for them too and they love nothing more than a "grown up" paying extra attention to them.

Be Attentive

  • Pay attention to the needs of the child, like if they're getting tired, thirsty, or hungry.
  • Don't use your phone while you're sitting, the children should be your main focus and have all of your attention.
  • Clean up after yourselves; wash the dishes, and put away toys after using them.  The parents will appreciate this more than you know!