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Archive for the ‘Sports’ Category

Adorable dipped strawberries decorated in a sports theme… just in time for a March Madness party or the upcoming Father’s Day. They look like something you would pay top dollar for from one of the large mail order companies but actually cost significantly less and are fun to make!

Making the sports themed strawberries is very easy and only requires five ingredients. To see step-by-step instructions and get the recipe, read below.

This post has been moved to our website. To view the full recipe go to:
http://blog.letop-usa.com/?p=24529

 

CHECK OUT LE TOP CHILDREN’S CLOTHING AT
www.letop-usa.com

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Sunday is the Super Bowl and you are most likely going to someone’s house to watch the game or you are throwing the party! Here is a fun recipe adults and kids love, and can be a great hostess gift or your “go-to” finger food for your soirees.

Panko-Crusted Chicken Bites with Apricot-Mustard Sauce Recipe

Serves: 12

INGREDIENTS:

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 2 pounds), cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup apricot jam or preserves
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves

DIRECTIONS: 

1.    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and fit with a wire rack. Spray with cooking spray; set aside.

2.    Place flour in a large bowl and season very generously with salt and pepper. Whisk eggs in another large bowl with 2 tablespoons water until well combined. Place the breadcrumbs in a third large bowl, and drizzle with olive oil; toss to coat. Stir in cheese and cayenne and mix well.

3.    Place chicken pieces in the seasoned flour and toss to coat. Working in 3 batches, shake off any excess flour from chicken pieces and transfer to egg mixture; stir to combine. Transfer coated chicken pieces with a slotted spoon to the breadcrumb mixture and toss until completely coated. Place the breaded chicken pieces on a rack-lined baking sheet, spacing them evenly apart. Repeat process until all the chicken is breaded. Bake until golden brown and chicken is cooked through, 18 to 20 minutes.

4.    In a small bowl, stir the apricot jam, mustard, and thyme together until combined. Allow chicken to cool 10 minutes before serving with apricot mustard mixture.

CHECK OUT LE TOP CHILDREN’S CLOTHING AT
www.letop-usa.com

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This Sunday is the big game – Giants versus the Patriots – and that means lots of kids, lots of TV sports watching and lots of food! Entertain your little ones with these semi-healthy sweet treats at superbowl for dessert! They are also great to nibble on during the game, I mean, aren’t we all big kids?

p.s. – these are great for a next day kid-friendly lunch-box treat!

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Timing: 45 minutes
(includes cooling time)
Yield: Makes 16

Chewy Oatmeal Blondie Brownies

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
    (not quick-cooking)
  • 1 ½ cups of baking mix (see below)

Baking Mix Recipe: (whisk together and store in a sealed container for next time!)

  • 6      cups of all-purpose flour
  • 3      cups of sugar
  • 2      tablespoons baking powder
  • 1      tablespoon of salt

DIRECTIONS: 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush an 8-inch square baking pan with butter. Line bottom and two sides with a strip of parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on both sides. Butter paper, and set pan aside.
  2. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg, and beat until combined. With mixer on low, gradually add Baking Mix; mix just until combined. Mix in 3/4 cup oats. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  3. Using an offset metal spatula or table knife, smooth batter evenly. Sprinkle with remaining oats, pressing gently to adhere. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with only a few moist crumbs attached, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pan 30 minutes.
  4. Using overhang, transfer blondie (still on paper) to a wire rack to cool completely. Place on a cutting board (peel off paper); using a serrated knife, cut into 16 squares.

CHECK OUT LE TOP CHILDREN’S CLOTHING AT
www.letop-usa.com

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Okay forget the hamburgers, grilling outside, sweating to make patties small and cute for your little ones. We all know it is football season – yes, I stayed up until past midnight for the first Sunday night football last night and I’m exhausted today. I am sure your little ones will want to eat whatever daddy is eating while he watches his Monday night football. Here is an easy and delicious take on pizza (semi-from-scratch) that will satisfy the hunger in your kiddos and hubby! It’s packed with flavor, protein and is a hearty meal going into fall!

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Cook Time: 30 minutes (yay!)
Serves 4

Hamburger and Grape-Tomato Pizza 
Special note for the chef – To ensure even cooking, gently roll and stretch the dough to an even thickness. You don’t have to shape it into a precise rectangle — rounded corners are fine.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil, such as safflower
  • All-purpose flour, for work surface
  • 1 pound frozen pizza dough, thawed
  • 3/4 cup store-bought marinara sauce
  • 1 cup grated provolone cheese (4 ounces)
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced (optional)
  • 1/4 pound ground beef chuck
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Rub a large rimless baking sheet (or a rimmed one, upside down) with oil.
  2. On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin and your hands to roll and stretch dough into a 15-by-11-inch rectangle (if dough becomes too elastic to work with, let it rest a few minutes). Transfer to prepared sheet.
  3. Spread sauce evenly over dough, leaving a 1-inch border all around. Top with provolone, tomatoes, and if desired, onion; scatter beef over top. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake until crust is golden, beef is cooked, and cheese is melted, about 20 minutes. Serve immediately.

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Paulo is wearing Chameleon Camouflage from Le Top's 2011 Spring Summer Collection.

We were complaining last month that summer wasn’t here yet since it even rained in June. But now, summer arrived with a vengeance here in the San Francisco Bay Area. Time to play outside. But wait… It’s TOO HOT! It’s sweltering that playing outside is a challenge. For five minutes, Paulo dribbled his basketball, ran around a bit, then pushed his Tonka truck before we all called it quits and went back in the house. Then we decided to go to the movies to cool off! Phew!

If you’re planning to be outside, remember to:

  • drink lots of water to stay hydrated
  • put sunscreen on to protect your skin
  • wear a hat
  • take a rest preferably under a shady tree

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Who here grew up playing in a portable pool at Grandma’s house? Raise a hand? I did! I personally grew up with a pool in my backyard, but remember as a child going to play at friends’ houses or Grandma’s house where there would be a portable pool to make the warm weather heat of summer a little bit more bearable. I live in New York now and even my nieces play in a portable pool on a city roofdeck because pools are scarce in the city…what was really shocking to find out this week was a new study that suggests portable or inflatable swimming pools are a greater danger to children than many parents likely realize, leading to one death every five days in the United States during warm months. The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, provides harrowing descriptions of 209 backyard drownings and 35 near-drownings that have occurred in portable pools from 2001 to 2009. Scarily, I found out this study is the first U.S. research to probe the role portable pools have played in deaths or near-drownings.

Researchers restricted their study to include wading pools less than 45 centimeters deep to inflatable and soft-sided pools measuring about one meter deep.

The study, published Monday, June 20, 2011 in the journal Pediatrics, found that 209 children died in these pools between 2001 and 2009. In addition, there were 35 near-drownings reported during the same time period. The researchers reported on accidents that occurred in water depths ranging from two inches to four feet. One accident involved a parent who fell asleep in a wading pool while holding a child. Other accidents occurred during lapses in pool supervision when a parent left to answer the phone or was distracted by yard work. Two 9-year-old girls drowned in an inflatable pool after becoming entangled in a pool cover. In another case, 3-year-old twins died after leaving their home undetected and jumping into a neighbor’s unsecured four-foot-deep portable pool.

According to the study, 94 per cent of children were under age five and 56 per cent of the victims were boys. The children were also more likely to be in their own yard when the incident happened, with 73 per cent of incidents taking place there.

In this Aug. 7, 2007 file photo, Todd Fuentes, 4, left, plays with Adrian Girald, 7, second from right, and Anthony Zollinger, second from left, as his father Eugene Fuentes, right, looks on in a portable pool in Brooklyn, New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

“The anecdotal evidence was suggesting that because portable pools are readily available in many convenience stores and malls, and they’re relatively cheap, parents would pick them up, take them home, quickly assemble them, and all this would be done without a lot of forethought about the safety aspects,” said senior author, Dr. Gary A. Smith, director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus.

Why is there a trend in buying portable pools?
Portable pools have become a popular and affordable alternative to expensive in-ground pools or stationary above-ground pools. Unlike the fragile, inflatable pools of the past, portable pools today are sturdy and large, including some that can be filled with as much as water as a small in-ground pool. Large wading pools typically cost $100 or less, whereas very large portable pools can cost $1,000 or less. By comparison, in-ground pools can cost $30,000 or more.

The downside of portable pools?
The downside of portable pools is that they often lack the security fences and gates that most local zoning authorities typically require to surround in-ground and above-ground pools. Among the portable pool drownings that were reviewed by the Pediatrics study, at least 47 could have been prevented if the pool had been surrounded by fencing.

The researchers acknowledge that no single strategy can completely prevent a death or near drowning, and so advocate a multi-pronged approach. On the one hand, manufacturers should develop affordable safety devices for portable pools, including fencing, alarms and safety covers, which are common for in-ground pools. They also say better consumer-education programs are needed to make parents aware of the pools’ risks.

According to the study, children were under adult supervision in only 43 per cent of the cases.

In-ground pools must have fencing on all four sides, while portable pools can be put anywhere on a property, she said. In my opinion, many consumers assume such pools are safer because of their smaller size and that there is only a couple of inches of water, so it’s not that big of a worry. Portable pools can be extremely dangers and should be treated the same way parents see larger built-in backyard pools with the same importance of adult supervision.

“The thing about drowning is that it’s simply different than most other types of injuries, because if you fall from playground equipment, you usually get another chance,” he said. “With drowning, it’s quick, it’s silent and it’s final. That’s why it’s so important to prevent these events from occurring in the first place,” say Dr. Smith.

Note: Researchers obtained data for this study from the four U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission data banks: the Death Certificate file, the Injury/Potential Injury Incident file, the In-Depth Investigation file, and the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System.

Bottom line mommies and daddies? If you are going to use a portable or inflatable pool – you must be vigilant the entire time, never leave your child unattended and treat it as if it were an actual pool in your backyard. What’s an alternative? I loved sprinklers in the grass as a kid – shockingly they are really fun and kids always find a way to make a game or two of it in the summer heat!

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Le Top "Heart's Delight" Swimsuit

I spend most of my weekends in the summer by the pool in the Hamptons and typically it is Bob Marley’s greatest hits on repeat. I love music, and especially a variety of music, but I know it can be tough if you have a big family for everyone to agree upon the music, and especially for it to be appropriate for the kids too!

20 Songs for your Summer Jam Playlist from Le Top:

  1. “Pressure Drop” – Toots & The Maytals
  2. “Crazy (Singer Version)” – Gnarls Barkley
  3. “Dog Days Are Over” – Florence and The Machine
  4. “Rock Lobster” – B 52s
  5. “California Girls” – The Beach Boys
  6. “Steal My Kisses” – Ben Harper
  7. “No Rain” – Blind Melon
  8. “Could You Be Loved” – Bob Marley
  9. “Dancing in the Moonlight” – King Harvest
  10. “Under the Boardwalk” – The Drifters
  11. “Build me Up Buttercup” – The Foundations
  12. “Viva La Vida” – Coldplay
  13. “Take it Easy” – Eagles
  14. “Over My Head” – The Fray
  15. “Coconut” – Harry Nilsson
  16. “Wasting Time” – Jack Johnson
  17. “I Want You Back” – Jackson 5
  18. “Carolina in My Mind” – James Taylor
  19. “Margaritaville” – Jimmy Buffet
  20. “Sunday Morning” – Maroon 5

 What are some of your favorites? Enjoy and boogie down at the pool!

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