Good morning!  Thanks for stopping by today to learn more about my friend, Farrah Lelond, and her delicious food journey.  I’ve known Farrah since we were about 8 years old and I must say, we did have our fair share of sugary treats together.  A colourful memory that stands out in my mind is when we went to the public swimming pool for an afternoon; on the way out, we stopped at the vending machine and bought a pack of Skittles each.  One of us had the brilliant idea to see if we could fit an entire package of Skittles in our mouth.  I can tell you, we came close.  So.  Gross. 

Thankfully, our idea of food has changed and in becoming more acquainted with Farrah again recently, I believe she can teach me a lot about taking care of myself and my family.  An inspired and conscious mother, Farrah took her passion of good nutrition and created an informative, easy-to-read guide to feeding first foods to infants.  After the interview, read how you can enter (multiple times!) to win a copy of her book, Wholesome Beginnings!   

Please welcome Farrah!

So, Farrah, I know you and I loved our treats as kids!  Tell us a little about your relationship with food and how that changed over the years. 

My love of eating was always there; I was an overweight child who ate emotionally and really at every opportunity possible.  I started to become more aware of food as I grew up but what really triggered it was my dad having a minor heart disruption in 2001. We always ate “healthy” or so I thought, but we were still eating a lot of wheat and flours and refined sugar to some degree.  My husband’s grandma really gave me an insight as to what real food was/is and even better, she taught me how simple it was to grow your own.  My family eats very clean and very little wheat.  We enjoy brown rice and grass fed meats like bison, cow, and lamb. Our chicken comes from a friend who raises cage free, organic chicken and eggs. Our veggies are either grown or bought organic for the most part and all of our dairy is full fat (3 percent or higher).

How did this new way of life lead to a cookbook/guide to feeding infants?

I really believe that nutrition is very important and I wanted to make sure I was able to provide the best first foods for my son, Gray.  I wanted him to have a broad palette and enjoy a variety of foods.  I was scared of introducing him any allergic foods and when I started doing my research, I found so many contradicting information.  Some references recommended feeding babies everything and anything, others said the complete opposite. It was actually pretty confusing and overwhelming so I decided to do what worked for me and Gray.  He was eating so much “real” food at 7 months that I started documenting it and this is how I started writing the book.  I wanted to be a little unique in my approach so the book is easy to read, informative and not overwhelming.  There are four main sections (0 to 4 months, 4 to six, six to 9 and 9 to 12 months).  I outline why certain foods are good for babies and what nutritional and developmental benefits come with that food.  There is also a glossary at the back.

A lot of moms, me included, struggle with the contradicting information that is out there on so many issues.  How great that you were able to move forward in  your own authentic way!  And every mother reading this wants to know how you found the time to put together all your thoughts and meal ideas into a formal book – and a comprehensive one at that!

I would find time to work on the book once Gray went to sleep.  Even if I spent 30 minutes on it, I would feel a sense of accomplishment. Smart phones are just that – smart. I was able to keep track of meals quickly in my phone and then email it to myself.  There were many days when I was too tired to even think about the book and in the end, it took a little longer than I would have liked but I am very happy with what I produced.

Well, good for you!  That is an accomplishment for anybody – parent or not.  In fact, time, or the lack thereof, is something that holds many people back from achieving their dreams.  Do you have any advice for my readers who want to start their own passion project?

I think the feeling of accomplishing anything is one of the best in world.  My advice for anyone wanting to start a project would be to tackle it one step at a time and make little goals for yourself.  Don’t expect it to be done overnight.

That’s great advice!  Thank you for your time and for your generous giveaway!  One lucky winner will receive a copy of Farrah’s book, Wholesome Beginnings, by participating in the Rafflecopter draw. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Contest closes Thursday Jan. 24/13

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My background is as far removed from nutrition as it possibly could be. I have my Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, during which I spent most evenings reading recipe books as opposed to textbooks. I look back now and see where my true passion lied.

After graduating, I got married and, shortly after, pregnant. I wanted to provide the best that I could to this little person growing inside of me. Thanks to my husband’s grandma, Thelma, I was introduced to a whole new world of natural, healthy eating. I fell in love with the simple concept she taught me: grow your own food and know exactly what goes into your body.

I try to eat and provide the best whole, clean foods for my family and myself. I watch the way my son is developing and interacting with his new world and I know his nutrition has every part to do with it. Our second child is just over five months and is enjoying egg yolks and bananas.  She is looking forward to trying out mom’s recipes 😉

You can like Wholesome Beginnings on facebook here.

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