Happy 2015! Try this Mocktail for All Ages

Cocktail or Mocktail?

Looking for a special way to ring in the New Year with the younger or non-drinking set?  Here’s a festive, tasty “mocktail” that everyone can enjoy.

Organic Juice Sparkler

This is a fun and healthy way for children to join in on a fancy toast with a sparkling drink of their own. This recipe is really simple and can be made with any kind of fresh, organic juice such as orange, pear, or apple. At holiday time I like pomegranate juice because of the bright and festive color. Pomegranates are a rich source of antioxidants and flavonoids. The juice can be found year round in the fresh refrigerated juice section of most supermarkets.

Makes 1 cup

¾ cup sparkling mineral water
¼ cup fresh pomegranate juice

Combine water and juice in a glass.

Variation

If serving a crowd, combine three parts sparkling mineral water with one part fresh pomegranate juice in a pitcher. Serve over ice cube cuties for older children and adults.

Kids Korner

For a really festive drink, add a few cranberry ice cubes (just add cranberries when freezing water in trays) and a straw. Or a simple piece or rosemary or mint on the top is fancy for all ages.  You’ll be surprised how much those touches will excite your child.

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Lead in Juice Boxes and Baby Foods

Here’s another reason to make your own juice and baby foods at home, and package in glass or stainless food and drink containers…

On June 9, 2010 the Environmental Law Foundation filed Notices of Violation of California Proposition 65 Toxics Right to Know law, alleging the toxic chemical lead was found in a variety of children’s and baby foods.  The specific food categories included apple juice, grape juice, packaged pears and peaches (includine baby food), and fruit cocktail. 

Read the entire store here.

Products are made by a large range of manufacturers, including:  Del Monte, Trader Joe’s, Kikkerland, Beech Nut, Gerber, Hanssen’s, S&W, Kroger, Santa Cruz, O Organics and others.  To see the entire list by the Environmental Law Foundation click here.

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Drink Up for the Challenge

So what we were drinking during the challenge?…lots of things.  Most of what I drank was water.  Although I did factor in two bottles of Tejava iced tea.  This was mainly for my husband, but I didn’t realize how much I missed it too.  I don’t reglarly drink coffee (sometimes a decaf drip or cappucino).  However I do have a glass of unsweetened iced tea per day (either fresh brewed or Tejava).  I woke up with a headache a few days into the challenge.  My mid-day I think I missed the caffeine and had a glass of iced tea.  Abracadabra!  I felt better.

My kids drank their usual – milk, water, juice (1/3 juice mixed with water) and splashes.  What’s a splash?  It’s simply a way of getting more flavor from water, but lots less juice.  This is a good money saver (and sugar saver), which works well anytime and especially during the challenge.  I even put it in my book, but there’s really no recipe required.  Simply add a splash of juice to water.  We had orange juice this week, but would also usually have cranbery or pomagranate.  We also do this with bubble water.  Makes a refreshing drink (and good non-alcoholic drink) for all ages during the holidays, etc.  Along the same lines of adding flavor to water is what I call “hints”.  This is simply squeezing a citrus slice into water.  Kids love to do this.  This week we used some lemon and lime slices.

There were two other drinks we made this week with the ingredients on hand – smoothies (see previous post) and a watermelon juice.  This simply means place fresh watermelon (remember we had a whole one) in the blender.  You can even add some bubble water (not this week) for a special watermelon spritzer.  Super refreshing.

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