Enter the Yummy in My Tummy storefront in Sunrise and you're sure to find more than just baby food. You may, like I did, find babies rolling on beach balls. It's baby yoga time! What exactly is going on here?
When chef Michael Stanley and his wife Karen started planning their Yummy in My Tummy organic baby food line, they had their own daughter Sophia in mind. Karen Stanley recalls what it was like to be a new mother, "I just remember walking up and down the aisle of one of the baby stores ... and not knowing what was safe and what wasn't."
The Stanleys say they do as much as possible to stock their store in a way that ensures parents have an easier time than they did (it's expanded now to include clothing and baby gear). For instance, they allow customers to sample the baby food before buying, and after classes (like the baby yoga class), there's a tasting so the babies eat and the parents can see which flavors their kids will like.
There are three stages of organic baby food that correspond to babies' growth - the first are basic flavors (for example, sweet peas), the second stage adds a new ingredient to the mix (say, sweet peas and carrots), and the third, adds even more texture (peas, carrots, and lentils). To get more protein into the baby food at the later stages, ingredients like garbanzo beans, white beans, or lentils are added. They also try to create seasonal flavors whenever possible, like the mango and strawberry flavor available now.
Chef Stanley says the idea behind Yummy in My Tummy baby food was always to make a product that is less expensive and safer than you could make at home.
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"We're not going to price this out so it's an elitist product," says Karen. (The baby food costs $1.33 per unit for Stage 1, $1.53 for Stage 2, and $1.73 for Stage 3.) She knows a lot of parents make their own baby food, but cautions that usually homemade baby food only has a 2-3 day shelf life and so many parents end up freezing the leftovers.
Then, she says,"if you defrost it and if your child doesn't want that, then they start screaming their heads off, and then you have to defrost something else." It can become a time consuming and frustrating process.
Her conclusion is that buying the food from a place you trust is just so much easier.
While the Stanleys tested their flavors out on their daughter, Sophia, it's their one-and-a-half year-old-son Sage that is truly benefiting. Raised on the Yummy in My Tummy baby food line, Sage "eats like a horse". For more info on Yummy in My Tummy organic baby food, visit the store or click here.