Stephanie moved to the Boston area for college, and has lived here ever since. She is a boy mom of two and runs a personal blog where she shares recipes, mom hacks, and lifestyle tips. Through her own experience, Stephanie has shared with us her ideas on how to navigate the challenges of food allergies. We are thrilled to introduce her to our community, who will get to see lots of delicious recipes of hers future!
Which town do you live in?
Where are you from originally?
I’m originally from Northern New Jersey – I came to Boston for college, met my husband my senior year, and have been here ever since!
How many kids do you have? Names and Ages?
We have two amazing boys. TJ just turned 3 in October, and Jacob is 18 months.
What is your favorite thing about living here?
I love the proximity to everything – we can be in the city in 20 minutes, on the beach in less, and in the mountains in an hour. There’s always something to do and an adventure to go on!
What do you love to do with your kids around town?
Our boys love to be outside as much as possible. Some of our favorite places to spend time are the Hingham Fire Station Playground and the Hingham Shipyard – the boys love watching the boats! We also love the Scituate Lighthouse, Hornstra Farms, and exploring the Blue Hills.
What is your favorite moment as a mom to date?
Having two little ones so close in age definitely has its challenges, but there is no better feeling than watching their little bond grow everyday. The first day TJ came home from preschool and they ran to hug each other because they were so excited to see each other, my heart just about burst.
Have you always loved cooking? We’d love to hear a childhood story!
Yes! I come from a big Italian family so cooking and food is very much an expression of love for me. I learned to cook from my mom and my Grandma, and their recipes are my greatest comforts. I was a very picky eater growing up and went through a phase where I didn’t like meatballs. My Grandma got me to eat them again by having me help her make them and I got to be the one to add in the “magic ingredient” (grated parmesan). I truly believed I had made magic meatballs!
What is your #1 go-to meal on a busy night? Feel free to share the recipe!
Roasted red potatoes, sauteed chicken, and asparagus. I love it because you can make everything at the same time and nothing takes more than 3 ingredients!
Do you have any tips for moms dealing with picky eaters?
Definitely get them involved in the process. My oldest is pretty picky, but he loves helping me cook. He still doesn’t try everything, but he’s much more likely to try something if he’s helped to make it.
What is your favorite restaurant in the area?
We love Burton’s Grill in Hingham – so delicious and unbelievably conscious when it comes to food allergies!
Your favorite grocery store?
Whole Foods in South Weymouth
Do your kids enjoy cooking with you?
Yes! We just got TJ a set of toddler knives and he really loves being my little sous chef. He also loves helping to measure and count all of our ingredients.
Any food allergies in your family? How do you work around them?
If there is a food allergy, we have it! I’m severely allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, and shellfish, and Jacob has a condition called FPIES in addition to a milk protein allergy so we have about 15 allergies that don’t overlap between the two of us. We’ve found great substitutes for things like peanut butter and dairy products, and we always make sure to make family meals that are safe for everyone. We also have special “just for Jacob” treats that he has when TJ has a snack or meal that Jacob can’t eat.
Tell us a hack for busy moms when it comes to cooking for their families.
Leftovers! I double every recipe I make so that there is always enough for the next day. Even if I meal plan, meal prep, schedule time to get everything ready for dinner in the afternoon, there is always the possibility that something could come up so having leftovers or stocked meals in the freezer is a great fallback system.
What is one thing you never leave the house without?
A bottle of peach flavored water. I’m terrible at hydrating, but keeping flavored water with me helps!
Anything else you’d like to share?
I’m so excited to share our family’s most loved and newly found recipes with the South Shore Moms community!