Sugar free toddler top 5 (for today)

I've been feeling this uncomfortable need to apologize...only I don't know to whom or why. I guess the awareness of a sort of manic inconsistency is a little discomfiting, and I wanted to acknowledge it. Last week I was spitting out blog posts, relative to my usual old faithful once weekly, and even stashed some starter posts in drafts that may well be destined as forever drafts. This week we're back to a place that lacks space for free focus like that,  and a return to the quickest little shares. They're still shares, however, and if sharing of all emotional levels and haphazard planning isn't acceptable the week of Thanksgiving, then when? toddler_5 (2)

Parenthood sure has forcibly helped me make enormous strides in the quest to learn to relax and go with the flow of things. That doesn't mean there isn't room to quietly obsess sometimes, though. And I do love obsessing about exploring sugar free healthy snacks for Little Monkey. (I know, sugar is sugar, and everything breaks down eventually into sugars, but you know what I mean.) I'm far from alone in this preoccupation, so in the spirit of Thanksgiving I wanted to share our current fab favorite portable, easy-to-make refined sugar-free treats of the moment. I'm a little chagrined to be posting, when only 3 of the 5 on my list are actual recipes, and of those, I can only take credit for two, if that. But I do love these treats as much as Little Monkey does.

monkey_treatsToddler Time is a whirlwind like none other I've ever experienced. Everything changes lightning-quick, and who knows what we'll be eating tomorrow. But today, here's a sample of what we like best. Before you read on, I should probably divulge: 1) This list is heavy on the nuts and dried fruits for the most part. Maybe next week we'll veer more into nut-free veggie territory. 2) As much as I love that Little Monkey loves these treats, I confess I probably love them more. And I do love even MORE, his real favorites are too basic to list--halved grapes and clementine segments still trump cookies. That's one thing that doesn't seem to change at breakneck speed. I hope it stays that way a long, long while.

5. Pecan date flax cookies. These have been an easy favorite with taste testers from the teens and up. Toddlers like them, too, but aren't as wildly enthusiastic as their older counterparts, who adore the sort of velvety richness of them. This is about Toddlers, though, so this one trails the others, but just by a hair.

4. Pumpkin raisin cookies. I posted about these awhile back, and how thrilled I was upon finding that accidentally omitting sugar didn't detract from taste at all. I'm even more thrilled to report, swapping chocolate chips for raisins is equally successful, and my Little Monkey's eyes light up at the results.

3. Quinoa banana muffins. Oh my gosh, I LOVE these muffins from the Ancient Harvest collection! I only wish I could take credit for them. Dairy, nut,oil and gluten free, quick and easy to make, and DELICIOUS. And Little Monkey loves them, too. The tough part is holding back from gobbling up the pan. I will for sure be working multiple variations of these, including pumpkin, zucchini, carrot, apple, and who knows what else. I'll keep you posted. ;)

2. Almond butter coconut balls. Some moms told me about these, and they are exactly what they sound like--balled up almond butter rolled in unsweetened shredded coconut. I admit I sometimes wish these weren't quite so yummy or easy to pop into one's mouth while making them for another who could make better use of the calories.

1. Almond butter stuffed dates. Simplest wins! These are as easy as they sound, less messy than the aforementioned ball (no mess at all, really), and how can you beat the winsome sounds of "mmmmm...mmmmm....mmmm" that accompany them?!

Happy Thanksgiving! :)