Ep. 169: Healthy Back-to-School

By: Cassy Joy Garcia
Fed & Fit
Fed & Fit

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On today's episode, I'm talking with team member Jess Gaertner about a healthy back to school strategy!

Fed and Fit podcast graphic, episode 169 healthy back to school inspiration with Cassy Joy

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Episode 169 Transcription

Cassy Joy: Welcome back to another episode of the Fed and Fit podcast. I am your host, Cassy Joy Garcia. And I just tickled to be back here today. It feels like this is; I don’t know. It feels like this is a little bit more of a team meeting. I’ll explain.

Jessica Gaertner: It does.

Cassy Joy: Doesn’t it? {laughs} So, today I’m joined by the newest Fed and Fit team member, Jessica Gaertner. Jess, you're probably familiar with her. She is the cohost of the Modern Mamas podcast. And, she is the blogger over at Jess Hold the Space Wellness, if you want to check her out. And she has done us the distinct honor of joining team Fed and Fit. She’s going to help us with all kinds of stuff. And Graysen is also joining us today, so it really does feel like a team meeting. She’s been sitting in her exersaucer thing for a grand total of 7 minutes, so we might be maxed out. {laughs}

Jessica Gaertner: She is such a trooper though, oh my gosh. She hangs in there for long work days, and I imagine she is going to do fantastic on this podcast episode. She has things to add. I’m sure she has valuable information.

Cassy Joy: She does. She’s looking at me right now, like, “Don’t forget that thing we talked about.” {laughs} Ok, anyway. Gus is crying at the door. Everyone is here! It’s really exciting. But what we’re going to do today is, Jess is brand spanking new to the team. And we said welcome to the team Jess. Amber and I are absolutely in the deep end of the pool on trying to get book number two over to the publisher. So we were like; here’s a project. You think you could make this happen tomorrow? {laughs}

Jessica Gaertner: {laughs}

Cassy Joy: And she obliged, and she’s done a fabulous job. So I wanted to welcome her on the show today to introduce her first big project with team Fed and Fit. We can talk a little bit more about what she’s going to be doing in the future. But her first big project was helping us put together a back to school series for the blog. So I’m very excited about it. For four weeks, she has masterminded with everybody, but she’s really taken the lead on putting out some healthier lunches for kids, healthy lunches for adults. And then some other really great articles. Healthy snacking 101. Ecofriendly school products. We’re going to do an article on DIY lunch meat; your own lunch meat. Things like that.

So, that’s going to be throughout the month of August. So if you're listening to this as a replay, then just go back through the blog archives and you can find those. But I wanted to welcome her on the show today so we can kind of walk through it. Give you a little bit of a sneak peak at some of the content coming up. And if you're just thinking; I don’t really have time to wait for all this content all month long, could you please just give me the highlight reel? That’s what we’re going to do today.

Jessica Gaertner: I’m so excited.

Cassy Joy: Because it’s hard to just sit here and recite.

Jessica Gaertner: Right. And that would be kind of boring.

Cassy Joy: Yes, that would be boring. I wouldn’t do that to you. Instead, I have myself a bar of dark chocolate and a gluten free beer and a baby. And it’s a Sunday afternoon. We’re just making it work. And I think that’s a good theme for today’s show. We’re just going to make it work.

Jessica Gaertner: Absolutely.

Cassy Joy: Jess has got some really good insights here. Jess, do you want to tell folks a little bit more about yourself? About your kiddos? And then kind of some of the inspiration that you drew from to help create this back to school series for the website?

Jessica Gaertner: Absolutely. Cassy did a really good job introducing me, Jess. My home base is HoldtheSpaceWellness.com. On Instagram I’m Jess.HoldtheSpace. I don’t even know, most days. Jess.HoldtheSpace on Instagram; and like she said, I cohost the Modern Mamas podcast with my cohost, Laura. So our realm of the internet space is kind of motherhood, the motherhood transition, conception, preconception, movement, nutrition. All of the things that kind of wrap around into a holistic approach to motherhood.

So feeding kids is a huge deal. It’s a huge topic that we get a lot of requests on. It’s something that I’m pretty passionate about. And my personal philosophy has gone from one of being like paleo perfect, essentially. My kids have to eat everything perfectly. I’m going to make every single meal myself. They’re never going to touch a prepackaged food, if I have anything to do with it. That was how I originally started.

And my kids are now almost; well, 2 and 5. We’ll just keep it at that. So I have had a little bit of a mindset shift over the last couple of years. Two is harder than one, and also with two comes less time. So trying to find that really good balance of; I’m going to control the things that are important to me, in terms of food. And I’m also going to seek out really balanced, healthy options for prepacked things that not only meet my general requirements for nutrition, but also allow me to not be tied to the kitchen 24/7.

So that’s a little bit of my personal philosophy. Both of my kids; one of them is in “school”. He’s in a Montessori school, and we pack his lunch every day, and we’ve done that for the last year. The other one, who is 2, goes to a daycare, and they provide food. But we have worked out a situation where they allow us to pack her food, and feed her from the food that we pack.

Not that I don’t; not everything they feed them there was something that I would be like; no, she can never have that. So we’ve worked out a good balance of what she can have that they offer, and what I’d rather replace with our own food. So, again that’s my balanced approach to feeding my children so we don’t all go crazy.

Today’s show is made possible because of our friends at Thrive Market! Thrive Market is an online market place on a mission to make healthy living easy and affordable for everyone. You can shop for thousands of the best-selling organic foods and natural products at 20-50% below traditional retail prices.

Let me tell you what I’m getting from Thrive Market. There are three things that come to mind immediately; number one. Primal Kitchen Foods mayo. It is the mayo that I will always have on hand. It is my absolute favorite. It is the mayo that made me like mayo {laughs}; because I didn’t like it before.

Normally, this avocado oil-based mayo is $11.99 retail; and you can find it on Thrive for $7.49. incredible! This is also the mayo that I use to make a much healthier alternative for ranch dressing. Add some lemon juice and some dill; it’s so good.

Number two thing that I’m getting from them; Bambo diapers. These are the disposable diapers that we use on Greyson when we use disposable. We are using cloth on her, but when we travel, when we go out, I like to have some disposable on hand. Normally $13.50 retail; you can find them on Thrive for $11.49. Incredible!

Number three product that I get on Thrive. I get asked about this product all the time. Where do I find coconut aminos? Well, I’ll do you one better. I’m not just going to tell you that you can find coconut aminos on Thrive Market, but you can actually find them for almost half off. Normally they’re priced at $9.73 depending on where you’re shopping. You can find them on Thrive for $4.99. it’s unbelievable. These are the coconut aminos that we use as a soy replacement. And if you are looking for a recipe, Google Fed and Fit Mongolian Beef and you will find the most killer Mongolian Beef sauce made from coconut aminos. You need one jar of it. It’s so delicious, you're not going to regret it.

You can try these products for yourself today, and get an extra 25% off your purchase and a free 30-day trial from Thrive Market. Just go to www.ThriveMarket.com/Cassy.

Cassy Joy: I love that. It’s very realistic. And that’s something that; we’ve been doing. Oh, peanut. She has that face where she looks at you, and the tears could start coming out. Her face looks sad, but she thinks better of it.

Jessica Gaertner: {laughs}

Cassy Joy: So, I like that approach a lot. Because it’s something that; Jess and I briefly mentioned this before we started recording. It’s a common theme here that we want to really drill down in every aspect of life is that concept of progress, not perfection. And that has to do with how we’re feeding and nourishing our kiddos, as well. Because if we’re stressed out, like you were just saying, about trying to be perfect with our plan; there’s no such thing. {laughs}

Jess and I are sitting here chatting, and Graysen just made an appearance. She’s so excited. “Oh, give me that ‘puter. I’ve got some things to type!” {laughs}

So anyways. I’m really excited. I think this is right in line. Jess, do you want to kind of give folks an overview of what to expect in this series coming up, and then we’ll jump into some of the topics.

Jessica Gaertner: Absolutely. We’ve got 4 weeks of goodness planned for you guys. I think originally when we started we were going to have 20 recipes; something of that nature. We dialed it back a little bit just to keep it realistic. But what we’re focused on with the recipes is providing one kid friendly lunch recipe, one adult friendly lunch recipe. And we really tried, for the most part, during those weeks to pair those recipes to where some of the meal prep can be combined. They’re also great as a standalone recipe. But if you’re looking ahead for the week, there are some things that you can prep together, so that that saves a little bit of time, as well.

And then we’re also going to be talking about; there’s four weeks of those recipes, so two each week. And then the third recipe that’s going to go live for the weeks will be something focused on more products, or some science behind maybe Cassy mentioned lunch meat type of things. Some immune boosting foods that you might want to include. Because back to school, we all know it’s the time that kids start coming home with all sorts of; it’s just part of the thing. It’s part of the nature of going back to school, their little immune systems get bombarded. So some tips on how to support that.

And then also one of my favorite ones, the one I’m looking forward to the most, is the healthy snack roundup. These are going to be a little bit of both homemade and premade snacks that you can purchase, just to make your life a little bit easier. Are they going to be “perfect” paleo? Or whatever it is that you're looking to achieve. Probably not. But they’re going to be one of those areas where you might want to not stress yourself out with perfection. And focus a little bit on the time saving aspect of having those snacks as an option.

So the next four weeks, that is something you can except. We got a lot of requests for cold-friendly meals. So meals that don’t have to be reheated. We have some nut-free recipes, as well, because I know that’s a concern a lot of times with kids’ lunches. And a lot of things that just will keep easily in a lunch box. So that was our focus. I think we nailed it. But we will see what you guys think about it once everything goes live.

Cassy Joy: It was a tasty week, at home. I’ll just say that.

Jessica Gaertner: {laughs} It was. It was a lot o fun.

Cassy Joy: Well that’s exciting. These are wonderful recipes. And they’re easy. They’re approachable. And there’s another member of our team, her name is Kaylee. And her primary role is to help out with Gray; Graysen. But she was joking that she essentially has the palate of a 7-year-old, and all of these recipes were Kaylee approved. So we have that going for us.

Ok, let’s jump into. We’re going to do a quick crash course. Say that five times fast; crash course in healthy back to school. {laughs}

Jessica Gaertner: I have not had enough caffeine for that.

Cassy Joy: Oh man. So, we’re going to run through some quick topics. And maybe there’s something in here that will help inspire a little bit. Whether you are looking to approach this; whether it’s your first time going into this school season, or you're 20th time going into this school season. Hopefully there’s something in here that might inspire a little bit.

So, first of all we’re going to talk about choosing products. What are some healthier products that we can use for our kiddos. Or even for our own lunches. If folks are listening that don’t have children, but do take their lunches to work with them. What are some swaps we can make, Jess, and where should we shop for those?

Jessica Gaertner: Yes. Oh my gosh. So, if you're like me; if you can Amazon it, or Thrive Market it, and not have to go to an actual store, then that is bonus points for anything you're looking to order. So when I was doing some research about healthy snack options, and some school products that you could buy, my go-to is always Amazon first. Can I find it on Amazon? Because I feel like that just takes out the effort and the time of having to go actually visit a store.

Some of my favorites to shop for some of the things we’re going to mention are Thrive Market, of course. If you haven’t checked that out, give it a look. It’s a really great option. Especially if you're in an area where you don’t have a Whole Foods or a Trader Joes or a grocery store that offers a lot of these things. The price, and the ease of shipping is huge. The same for Amazon.

Some of the things we were looking at were ecofriendly back to school products. And a lot of these things, I found on Amazon. I don’t know if you want me to go in-depth on some of these items, Cassy.

Cassy Joy: A brief overview. I can kind of run through those really quickly. Actual containers that we’re taking our lunches to work or school in. There are Lunch Box. There are Planet Boxes. These are stainless steel containers. They’re easy to wash. They don’t infuse any flavor or other harmful toxins into our food at all kinds of different temperatures. It’s just a really safe product vehicle to transport food in. None of the other fuss. So there’s that.

There are things like reusable bags. We’re going to have links to all of these in our roundup. But there are reusable bags. What were they called again?

Jessica Gaertner: Stasher bags.

Cassy Joy: Stasher bags.

Jessica Gaertner: Yeah, those are the ones I love. And to jump in and kind of piggyback off of what Cassy is saying. One of the things I’ve been focused on this year is decreasing my plastic use. And while I’m definitely not perfect, this area, the school lunch packing and the things that I use constantly on a day to day basis. This was an area I really wanted to improve on. So, Stasher Bags is a great product.

And if you don’t get Stasher Bags, you want to look for something similar on Amazon. There’s plenty of them out there. But you want to look for food-grade silicone. Because a lot of times, those bags will say on Amazon “BPA free” and they kind of will mention that they’re made of a BPA free substitute. Oftentimes, that’s just BPS, or something that’s similar to BPA that can be potentially harmful, as well. So what I’ve found is you can’t go wrong with food-grade silicone. So focusing in that, I think. Looking for something that meets that checklist is going to be great.

And the same goes for the Planet Box. The Bento boxes are huge right now, for both adults and kiddos. They’re really cool looking. They’re mostly made of stainless steel, most of the ones out there. Which, again, you're decreasing plastic use, so you're decreasing the chance of anything harmful leeching into the foods. Especially as it starts to get hotter.

And then some of my favorite drink options; I love Pura Stainless. They are water bottles that are totally plastic free. They’re made out of stainless steel. And the straws and things that you drink out of are also food-grade silicone. Those are my favorite. They also have lids that grow with your kids. So they actually have a bottle. If you have an infant that’s still using a bottle; they have a bottle nipple. They have straws. They have an adult lid that goes with it, as well. Super durable. And great for smoothies, too. That’s been a hard find for me, because finding a straw that’s thick enough for a smoothie is hard. And these clean really well. So I love Pura Stainless.

We’ll be talking about some backpacks that are a little bit more ecofriendly. Ice packs, as well, because sometimes those are not so great. And things like yogurt pouches; again, made of food-grade silicone. And a lot of these, you can find on Amazon, as well.

Cassy Joy: She’s having a hard time.

Jessica Gaertner: Oh, baby. Do you want me to just keep going?

Cassy Joy: Well those are great. The only other one I wanted to mention briefly there was a beeswax.

Jessica Gaertner: Oh yeah.

Cassy Joy: And I would love if we jump in to talking about making a healthy lunch plan and why. Versus just winging it. What are the pros of making a plan. How do I make a plan that’s actually reasonable to execute versus having to spend all day on Sunday meal prepping just for lunches?

Jessica Gaertner: Right. This is a good topic. Let’s dive into that. Making a lunch plan and why. The benefits of making a lunch plan; A) less waste. When you go to the grocery store, you know. And we’re going to lay it out for you a little bit with our back to school plan.

So say it’s going to be southwestern chicken salad, and chicken skewers with honey mustard dipping sauce. You know that those are two meals that you can make fairly easily at the beginning of the week that will last you pretty much all week. So what that allows you to do is, instead of going to the grocery store and just buying everything that you think will be fun, and taste good, and you kind of over plan. You can go with a very specific plan, you're decreasing the amount of waste.

And then when you're focusing on the meal prep side of it, like Cassy said, instead of spending all day in the kitchen on Sunday, you can just focus on a few things that are quick and kind of recyclable. And then can also use some of those elements of what you're meal prepping for lunch throughout the week for dinner, as well.

So, I found that when I go in with a plan. Because everyone; if you’ve been here, you know. Come Monday morning, if you don’t have your lunches packed. If you don’t know what you're going to feed your children; 7:30 in the morning is probably the last time and place that you want to be thinking of that. Usually it’s a mad dash. Everyone’s running circles around each other. That circus music is playing in the background. It’s just a total mess.

So having that kind of decreases the stress in the morning. It gets you set up for the week a little bit better. And of course, you can pivot during the week if you run out of things. Or if your plan changes. But I’ve found just going into the week with a little bit of expectation set just allows you to handle the things that don’t run according to plan a little bit better during the week. Does that make sense?

Cassy Joy: That makes a lot of sense. I love that. Let’s jump into quickly the homemade versus convenience. You’ve already touched on this a little bit. But let’s just stare it straight in the eyes. Snacks, or even lunches. There are some convenient options out there. How do you decide when to do what or the other? Could you walk people through maybe some of your thought process, and maybe how to approach it mindfully, from a progress perspective.

Jessica Gaertner: Absolutely. So for me, what it comes down to is time versus; it’s that cost benefit analysis type of thing. So for us, for example. We go to Costco a lot. I forgot to mention Costco as a place that is great for school lunch options. So for us, it is looking; we know some of our non-negotiables. We definitely want to keep everything gluten free for us. This is just us. And we’re trying to keep it dairy free unless it’s a high quality dairy.

And our kids don’t have any particular food true allergies, so we can play within those lines a little bit. We’re trying to avoid some of those junky seed oils or vegetable oils. We’re trying to avoid any food coloring, because our little one does have a reaction to that. So for us, we kind of focus on those non-negotiables, and then we work from there.

So for example, a lot of the things that we get at Costco that are like premade convenience foods, I would say they have these pure fruit bars that are kind of like fruit leathers, but they’re really “clean”. I hate that word, but you know what I mean. There’s not a lot of additives in it. We like the trail mix packs that they have. Though trail mix is a really easy one that you could throw together on your own, too.

What else do we use? They have a really good quality lunch meat. And we’ll dive into that a little bit later in the blog about how to differentiate if it’s a good quality or not a good quality lunch meat. Or if making your own is a better option.

We do some unflavored yogurt from there. Some whole milk yogurt, that’s a really good quality, as well. And we’ll add our own additions to it to make it a little bit more palatable. Because let’s be honest; unsweetened, unflavored yogurt is not the most delicious thing in the world.

We also do canned things; like olives, nuts from there. Jerky, if it’s really, really a clean source of meat.

Cassy Joy: Lorissa’s Kitchen is a good; I mean, this is not meant to be a plug. But I actually am a big fan; if you're looking for a healthier, dried protein. Dried meat type snack. I’m a big fan. It’s all grass-fed beef, pastured chicken, and they don’t have any junk in them, for the most part. So, yeah. Those are great. That’s a really great roundup.

And with the other things; the lunch rolls, or the main dishes. If you want, go ahead and make that homemade. But I really don’t; I obviously don’t have a baby in school yet. We joke that her little exersaucer is her work space. {laughs} She unpacks her lunch while she’s there. But I do foresee approaching it very similarly.

Now, when I used to work in an office, and I took my lunch, just as a shout out to the folks listening who don’t have kiddos, and are looking for some tips, maybe, for the office. When I used to take my lunch to the office, I would do something very similar. That kind of balanced approach to homemade versus convenience. I would prep my lunches similar to the recipes we’ll have coming out.

There’s a recipe up there, for example, Italian lunch rolls is already up. That’s a good example of a very easy meal. It doesn’t need to be reheated. You can take it with you to the office. And then I might have that next to some sort of a prepackaged something or other. Maybe I have fruit with the lunch roll, but for my snack I have prepacked jerky and maybe some freeze dried strawberries, or something like that.

Jessica Gaertner: Right. And my kids love Simple Mills crackers. Those are great. I personally am not going to go make homemade crackers.

Cassy Joy: Jess. Get with it!

Jessica Gaertner: {laughs} I mean, if that’s your thing, go for it.

Cassy Joy: Just kidding. I’ve never made a cracker. I have not yet made a cracker. I should use better grammar.

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I always keep a few in my purse and gym bag for a healthy protein-filled snack when I’m on the go and I don’t want to sacrifice quality ingredients. Lorissa’s Kitchen Products are available nationwide at leading retailers such as Target, Walgreens, Kroger, Publix, convenience stores, as well as on Amazon.com. Use the code 20OFFLK to receive 20% off on Amazon. This is such a good deal. Again, that’s 20OFFLK to receive 20% off on Amazon.

Cassy Joy: I love that. Ok, next. This one; I really like this bullet point we’re going to chat about very briefly. But for all the mamas who are counting down the days until school starts. Jess is raising her hand. For however long your kiddos go to school for, you will have that, essentially, bonus time. Whether you're a stay at home mom, a work at home mom. Whatever it is, your schedule definitely frees up. Maybe you have more time to go to the office. Whatever your balance is.

So this is just a fun thing to think about; what are you going to do with your new time? With this time available to you. So I have a couple of suggestions maybe to think on. I think that these kinds of seasons are great to launch something sustainable. Not like a New Years’ resolution. I’m not saying; kids go back to school, and as soon as they go back to school I'm working out every single day until Thanksgiving. Not one of those.

But this could be a really neat opportunity for you to go try that spin class that you had your eye on, but it was at 2 p.m. and you just couldn’t make it work. So I would encourage you to pick one wellness thing that you can do with the season. Maybe it’s the spin class. Maybe you're finally going to go to that chiropractor you’ve heard wonderful things about. Maybe you're going to go get your hair cut.

My mom recently went and got her hair cut from my sister’s stylist in Austin. Her name is Tina. I don’t know her last name. I wish I did. But apparently she’s fantastic; my mom’s hair looks phenomenal. Kimberly’s hair always looks lovely. And Tina apparently is very honest. This is such a side note. Tina is very honest, apparently, with her clients and will tell them, your hair is really damaged. You need to do this more. You need to do X more. And I was joking with my mom; she’s going to tell me, you need to cut your hair more than once every 14 months. {laughs}

What I would probably do with that extra time is I would go get a haircut. But think about something. Pick one wellness thing you can do in that first week. And if it sticks; if it’s like a spin class that you really enjoy, then maybe visit them once a week every week, and just try to stick to something like that.

The other idea I have for you is if you are a SAHM. A stay at home mom.

Jessica Gaertner: Oh, I was like. Did I miss something here? What is that?

Cassy Joy: I watched this show on Netflix, and this lady was a SAHM superhero. And I thought it was so cute. If you are a SAHM superhero, or you work from home, this may be a really neat opportunity. And you're probably already thinking about it. If this is a desire you have, to do some sort of meaningful work. Find something that you enjoy. Whether it’s hobby based. Whether you are; oh my gosh, I don’t know why this is the example that popped into my head, but it’s one that I’ve done before. I used to make blankets for newborns, and I would donate them to some of the hospitals around San Antonio. That was a really neat thing, I felt great about a service project.

If you're looking to start bringing income into your family’s home, there are some really great companies out there right now that are making it very possible. One of the ones that Jess and I both work on together is Beautycounter. And I’m working now with a team of almost several hundred women. And it has been such an incredible experience. Really, you ladies are incredible. Some of you are probably listening. But really, just making a business and making it work with your schedule, and your family’s time, and what you have available. There are just a lot of possibilities.

So whether it’s Beautycounter or another company out there that really resonates with you. I think Noonday is a really cool company, too. I don’t have time for it. But I think that’s another really neat venture. Pick something. If you're looking to fill that time.

And maybe you're thinking; I’ve got enough to fill that time with. I would like to clean the house, and I would like to fold laundry for the first time in three months. Then that makes sense too. But I would just encourage you to pick one or two things to do with that bonus time.

OK, and then last to go out on. I would love it, Jess, Graysen’s asleep now, which is why I’m now chattering more. I really like this last note. And just in going back to school, with all new seasons, it’s very tempting and it’s very seductive, just like New Year; January 1st. It’s very tempting to say; I’m going to do it, and it’s going to be perfect. It’s very tempting to say, this is it. This is the year. This is the year I’m going to look back on say, that’s the time when I decided I was just going to go for it and I did it.

And then what happens is we set these extraordinary, unrealistic expectations of ourselves, and of our families, our kiddos, our times, our schedules. Real life doesn’t play out that way. So I would encourage us all, when we think about stepping into the school year, to think; you know what. I know a little bit better. Maybe this is the first time you’ve heard about food-grade silicone. When Jess told me about it, it was one of the first times I heard about it. {laughs}

When we know better, we do better. I’m going to go make one of those swaps. I’m going to go make one product swap. And I’m going to watch some of these recipes that are coming out on the Fed and Fit website. And I’m going to poke around on some other websites; get some ideas on how I can home make entrees. But I’m going to go ahead and get store bought snacks, still. Because that’s just what works for me.

I think the note is, and these are Jess’s words. But control what you can control. And then find a way in your heart to let the rest go. Because you're doing a great job. Your family; they just want you happy at the end of the day. And you're doing what you can for them. And I think that approaching it with that very mindful balance; it’s such an overused word, and often misunderstood. But approaching it with a sense of balance. Because I can’t think of another phrase. It will go a long way.

So, I wish you the best. I want to high five all of your women. All of you SAHM’s. All of you mamas who work. Every single one of you; whether you have babies, whether you don’t have babies. Going into August in general, there’s this sense of new that comes with this season. I have no reason to, but every single August I go buy myself a fresh box of crayons. {laughing}

Jessica Gaertner: Some glue and sniff it. {laughs}

Cassy Joy: I just love the smell of crayons. What is it about crayons? Oh my gosh. I want a back to school outfit, and I want a fresh spiral notebook without any creases or anything, and I want some crayons. There’s something about this season. So whether you have kids or not, I think that we can really harness some of this newness, and some of this fresh perspective. This fresh start, and use it in our own lives.

Go try the spin class. Start that business you’ve been dreaming of starting. Reach out to somebody; ask them for advice. Go grab coffee with that person maybe you were interested in chatting with. That’s how Jess and I originally met. We had coffee together, and she gave me these brownies that were really delicious. Straight, honest brownies. I don’t know why I had to clarify that. {laughs}

But anyway. That’s my wish for all of you. Jess, thank you so much.

Jessica Gaertner: You're welcome. Any time.

Cassy Joy: For coming on the show today, and for helping us launch this series. She’s going to take the reins in August, so you will be hearing from her. Amber and I, of course, touched this work. I took the photos. But this is really her (this ceiling fan sounds like it’s about to come off.)

Jessica Gaertner: {laughs} You want to get out of there.

Cassy Joy: So, anyway. She’s going to be taking the reins, but we’ll be sitting alongside, cheering everybody on. If you have questions, please reach out on the blog. Please reach out on social. We would love to turn this into a conversation of healthy back to school. And we’re just excited to be a part of it with you all.

Thank you so much for listening. You can catch a full transcript over at www.FedandFit.com. As always, we’ll be back again next week.

Jessica Gaertner: Bye.

Cassy Joy: Bye-bye!


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  1. Ann Cutler says:

    Please tell me the name of the water bottle you mentioned in this podcast. Thanks!

  2. Virginia says:

    Really loved this podcast and I can’t wait for the rest of the series. I don’t have kids myself, but I have the palette of one! I need quick, easy and pack-able lunches for work. I need to stave off the “Hangry”. Thank you!!

  3. Ellie says:

    Hi! I loved this podcast! Can you help us Costco mama’s out and link to the products you use there? Lunchmeat, yogurt, beef jerkey? Any other favorites. It is time to pack lunchboxes again, and I gotta stock up! Thanks!!!

  4. Steph says:

    Great podcast as always, love the advice for lunches! But, for most working moms school means less free time, not more. Between homework and extra curricular activities there isn’t much time for momma. Would love some more advice in keeping the family healthy with maybe 30 mins a day to cook dinner and pack lunches for the next day.