Sharing recipes, crafts and frugal living, the challenges and triumphs of parenting a neurotypical child and a child on the Autism Spectrum. Yoga Instructor said goodbye to her nightly glass of Chardonnay to give up habits that were not serving her purpose in life! The CocktailMom name remains, however with a new focus on healthy and authentic living.


Gluten Free Eggplant Pizza

I'm really trying to eat everything in our fridge before it goes bad. It sometimes means that I am less than thrilled to make dinner. Living in the bottom vegetable drawer of our fridge was an eggplant. Don't get me wrong I like eggplant, it is okay. It's not my favorite but it came in our veggie box delivery and it has to be eaten. I scoured Pinterest for recipes that didn't involve a lot of prep work and would possibly get my kids to eat this eggplant as well.

I found this recipe from Clean Food Crush and decided to tweaked it for my family. We only had cheddar cheese in the fridge so that was what I used and it tasted delicious. Also I added more cheese than she did because I wanted my kids to eat it. And let me be honest with order for vegetables to cross my children's lips without them gagging as if I am trying to kill them with must be covered with cheese. I am happy to report that both of my kids ate a slice without complaint. HUGE WIN FOR ME!!!!

Here is what you'll need:

  • 1 eggplant, sliced to the size of a fingernail's width.
  • Cheese of your choosing, shredded
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Dried basil
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes or pre-made marinara sauce
  • Garlic salt or diced garlic, whatever you have in the cupboards

To make the sauce:
I put a can of diced tomatoes in the Ninja blender with a ½ tablespoon of diced garlic (the refrigerated jar kind) and a splash of dried basil. A few quick spurts and it was ready.

Preheat oven to 430.
Place eggplant slices on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with oil. Top each eggplant slice with the sauce and cheese. Simply eyeball it and keep in mind it's supposed to look like pizza, so you don't want the eggplant swimming in sauce. Bake for 25 minutes and serve immediately.
For the adults I added dried basil to the top of each slice as well, but not for the kids. I think you can guess what their reaction would have been. :)


Facebook Reminds You

You know how Facebook pops up memories into your news feed from years ago? Suddenly before your eyes you see where your life once was, a memory that you might want to share to remind everyone else that you know that time is passing way too fast! Today the picture in my newsfeed was of my boys as babies.
It's hard to imagine that they were once small enough to hold and sit on my lap now that both of them are almost if not over 5 feet tall.

So much has changed and yet there are moments in our daily lives that haven't changed at all. Logan, my oldest child who is on the Autism Spectrum, is now in middle school. We have the same script as we are about to depart each other as we did when he was in kindergarten. In elementary school I stood at the top of the hallway, Logan refused to be dropped off with the rest of the kids in the front of the building, which was OK by me as I enjoyed having that last moment together just as much as he did. We had a routine that we did everyday. Memorized lines we would say to one another. It made him feel "safe" he told me once. We would stop at the mural and I would kneel down for a hug and kiss. I'd use that moment to remind him of something in his backpack that he needed to give his teacher, practice his clues one more time for his Friday mystery bag item etc, etc.  
I then would say "Have a great day sweetie", he would reply "OK take care of Dharma and Zane for me." 
"Okay I will", I would respond.
On one particular day he turned to walk down the hall, waving his left hand goodbye but not looking at me... as he did every school day. But this time he turned around, tears in his eyes and ran back to me on the verge of completely breaking down.
"You didn't say it Mommy!!! You didn't say it!!"
I was scanning my lines in my head as if I was on center stage and the spotlight was on me and everyone was waiting for me to deliver my line....

"You're going to be great!"

A huge smile then spread across his face. A deep sigh of relief. He turned to leave again.
I call out, "You're going to be great Logan! You always will be."
"I know, Mom. Thanks!"

Our script hasn't changed all that much, instead of standing at the mural I stand at the bus stop. And instead of saying "Take care of Dharma and Zane" he says "Have a good yoga class, Mom.", marking my transition from Stay At Home Mom to Working Mom. Today as he stepped on the first step of the bus, waving his left hand goodbye but not looking at me he paused and turned towards me. I smiled at him instantly acknowledging how grown he looks now and said, "You're going to be great!" A smile spread across his face and instead of his usual line "I know, Mom." He said "You are too." Thanks Logan. Sometimes we moms need to hear it too. 

For all you moms out there parenting kids on the spectrum; memorizing scripts, living by routines and wishing your child would eat something new.

"You're going to be great!"


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