Amy Kaufeldt – TV Co-Anchor for Fox 35 “Good Day Orlando” and Busy Mom– Stays Focused on Family Health
This well-known career professional and Mom of three little ones proves that keeping the family healthy can be done…despite a demanding schedule.
Amy Kaufeldt, co-anchor on WOFL Fox 35 “Good Day Orlando,” definitely knows what it’s like to juggle a hectic schedule. She has had the pleasure of interviewing several famous people, including Garth Brooks, Jay Leno, and President Barack Obama, and yet still manages to spend quality time with her family and focus on keeping them healthy.
Amy and her husband, Brian, have three children: Kate (6 years), Caroline (3½ years), and Colton (7 months). Amy recently returned to work following maternity leave and shares what it’s like to balance a heavy workload and motherhood. While most of us are still sleeping, Amy’s day begins at 3 a.m. She gets up, dresses, and heads to work. After work, she hops in the car and arrives just in time to pick up Kate from kindergarten. They head for home to begin homework assignments or they go to ballet, dance, or violin lessons. “There’s no rest for the weary,” jokes Amy.
“Probably, the most challenging aspect of my schedule is that there really is no down time. I used to look forward to tucking the kids into bed around 8 p.m. and then I’d have my time to unwind, watch a little TV, pay some bills, or surf the web. Now there’s really no down time, because I go to bed at the same time they do,” says Amy. “I’m usually in bed by 8:30 p.m. every night!”
Amy will admit that the trick to juggling work and family is seeking help. “We are very blessed to have someone that we love and trust and that our children love and trust, who is able to come to the house when my husband and I are at work,” says Amy. “It makes a huge difference to have those extra hands and much-needed help to make life easier. Frankly, as women, we try to do it all ourselves and it’s not as easy as it looks. I think that we’ve been taught from a very young age to try and do it all on our own, and sometimes, it’s just not possible.”
Even though Amy is an extremely busy mom, she and her husband make it a priority to raise their children with healthy habits and a healthy lifestyle. Both parents are very deliberate about the foods that are introduced into the Kaufeldt household. “I’m not one of those moms that believes having gobs of cookies, candies and all those snacks around the house is a good thing,” she says.
Amy feeds her children organic produce, organic milk, and other organic products. “I’m not comfortable with the level of pesticides used on regular produce, and I want to be sure my kids are getting the purest, healthiest fruits and vegetables possible,” she comments. “I’m not as picky about food items such as bananas, but if it’s a fruit or veggie where you eat the skin, I will buy the organic variety.”
She is happy to share her tips for getting her kids accustomed to healthy eating. It’s not always popular among her little ones, but she thinks it’s definitely worth the effort to show the family that eating healthy is a worthwhile goal to have in life.
Tip #1: Organic Baby Food and Vegetables
Organic baby foods have always been Amy and Brian’s choice for their new infants. Organic vegetables were introduced first, before moving onto other foods. “The experts are right when it comes to feeding babies veggies first and then moving on to fruits, when trying solids for the first time. If you start with the sweet fruits, I’ve found they won’t touch the vegetables,” explains Amy.
Baby buy-in to this theory is not always the case. Recently, Amy and Brian introduced their youngest child, Colton, to solid foods, starting with carrots and peas. “I gave him the peas and brown rice, pureed in a jar, and he made the most awful face! I decided to alternate with spoonfuls of banana, so he wouldn’t be so upset, but eventually he’d had enough and threw it all up. Ah…the pleasures of parenthood,” says Amy with a laugh.
Tip #2: Remove The Junk Food and Get The Kids Involved
Amy and Brian are helping their kids create healthy habits by being very careful not to bring junk food into their home. There are occasions, however, when Amy will allow the kids to have a bag of fruity snacks or some potato chips, but most of the time, healthy foods are offered and unhealthy foods are kept to a minimum.
“My younger daughter, Caroline, loves veggies! Broccoli is her favorite, and she’ll try just about anything you put on her plate. My older daughter, Kate, is a lot less adventurous. I’ve been putting grape tomatoes along with baby carrots on both their plates for as long as I can remember, and they both love them. They also love corn-on-the-cob. They get a big kick out of shucking their own corn! Anything to get them involved in the process really helps,” Amy advises.
The Kaufeldt family has dinner together every night, and one of their favorite healthy meals is taco night. “The kids love being allowed to make their own tacos with healthy ingredients, including lettuce, tomatoes, and low fat cheese,” says Amy.
Tip #3: Plan In Advance
“The key thing we try to do is plan in advance,” Amy states. Planning in advance not only will save time, but it will also make healthy foods accessible when kids are looking for a quick snack. Amy makes several trips to the grocery store each week to stock up on produce. “I like everything to be fresh, so the grocery store trip is a necessary evil, but it also guarantees that we’ll have something healthy for each meal.”
If you’re looking for some easy and healthy snacks to pick up from the grocery store or your local organic market, Amy suggests buying pre-packaged bags of mini-carrots, low-fat string cheese, or grapes, which are really easy to grab, rinse well with water, and give to your kids as a snack.
“I think the reason why we gravitate so much to fast food and junk food is that it’s easy and accessible” remarks Amy. “I think if we start them out right, get them involved, and make the healthy foods available, our children will be much more likely to eat right.”