In the kitchen more since sheltering-in-place? You’re not alone. Chances are, some of you are probably using today’s Mother Essentials subject as a “what do I make now?!” resource. Catherine McCord is all about solving family meal conundrums over on her 13-year-old website, Weelicious, which was inspired by her entry into motherhood and is filled with healthy, fresh, and fast recipes that appeal to all ages. In 2015, she took her offerings up a notch, launching One Potato, the first organic home meal delivery kit focused specifically on the mealtime needs of families. Below, the mother of three (Kenya, 13, Chloe, 10, and Gemma, 4) and best-selling author of The Smoothie Project (amongst other titles) shares her current essentials.
Daily Hike. “My 75-minute hike every morning is now one of my essentials. I haven’t exercised for 5 years—who knew having 3 kids and 2 jobs would take up so much time! With shelter-in-place, I now have an extra 90 minutes a day when I’m not driving my kids to and from school. It has turned into a win-win for me mentally and physically.”
Air Fryer. “I live for my XXL air fryer. We use it every single day for making healthy, crispy vegetables, reheating pizza, making quesadillas, cooking chicken, salmon, and much more.” Philips Kitchen Appliances Digital Twin TurboStar Airfryer XXL, $349.99, Amazon.
Mama Jewels. “I always have on my Maya Brenner letter and heart necklace with my kids initials. It just completes me.” 14K Gold Letter Necklace, $420, Maya Brenner.
One Potato Meal Box. “Thank goodness for my weekly One Potato delivery. Life is so crazy these days, so knowing I will have 3 dinners and frozen smoothie packs that my kids all love and only take me 12-30 minutes to prepare start to finish is a life saver!” One Potato Box, starting at $59.95 a week, One Potato.
Smoothie Love. “Every morning I have a smoothie out of the Smoothie Project Cookbook for breakfast. It makes me feel like I’m doing something good for my body. I always add plenty of protein to keep me full and especially adding a scoop of collagen peptides for my hair skin and nails.” Smoothie Project: The 28-Day Plan to Feel Happy and Healthy No Matter Your Age, $22.99, Bookshop or Amazon; Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides Powder, $15, Amazon.
Candle Time. “Every day when I’m working at my desk, I light a candle. There’s something very soothing and spiritual about it and it makes working more peaceful. I’m obsessed with Scent & Fire’s line of candles.” Candle, $18-$30, Scent & Fire.
Brain Games. “Before I go to bed at night, I play brain and word games on an app called Peak. I fall asleep thinking about words, which is somehow soothing!” Peak Brain Training App, free, via the AppStore.
Mini Farm. “My parents gave me a Lettuce Grow tower for my birthday/Mother’s Day this year and I can’t tell you how much fun we’ve had growing endless herbs, varieties of lettuce, tomatoes, and even watermelon on it.” Lettuce Grow Farmstand, $348 and up, Lettuce Grow.
Crowd-Pleasing Toys. “It’s hard to find a toy that all ages of kids enjoy. I have a subscription to KiwiCo that my kids all eagerly await each month. The other toy I can get them all to play with at the same time is this kinetic sand set.” KiwiCo Subscription, $19.95/month, KiwiCo; Kinetic Sand, $15.99, Amazon.
Kombucha Pick-Me-Up. “I’ve been getting up around 6 a.m. these days, so by 2 p.m. or 3 p.m. I need a pick-me-up. Hand me a Health-Ade kombucha and I’m ready to go.” Health-Ade Kombucha, $19.99 and up for a case, Amazon.
Dry Skin Remedy. “I’m in love with Prima skin care for my dry skin. It’s incredibly hydrating and feels incredible on my face, day and night.” Prima Skin Therapy, $38, Sephora.
Kids’ Knife. “My kids have always loved cooking and in quarantine, when you’re preparing 21 meals plus snacks, it feels like you’re living in the kitchen. I hand my 4-year-old a kid-safe knife and a cutting board and she becomes my sous chef. It’s a great way to learn math, science, and do an edible project, all in one.” Curious Chef 3-Piece Knife Set, $21.99, Wayfair.
Daily News Blasts. “I don’t have a ton of time in the morning, but reading the news is paramount. I wish I could read the newspaper cover to cover, but I’m grateful for Katie Couric’s spot-on newsletter along with the Skimm and The New York Times email blasts.”
For more Mother Essentials, peep our past columns with mega-influencer Chriselle Lim, Matana Organics founder Gabriela Babila, interior designer Susan Work, author Tiffany Dufu, Les Gamins founder Veronique Nguyen, Lonny editor Angela Tafoya, Wiley Body founder Vanessa Wade, DockATot’s Roma Patel, designers Anna Wallack, Cynthia Rowley, Rebecca Atwood, and Dana Haim, Olympian Alysia Montano, cookbook author Hetal Vasavada, model and muse Slick Woods, children’s author Serena Minott, clean living expert Kristian Henderson, Oakland retail queen Sherri McMullen, wellness influencer Joanne Encarnacion, author LaTonya Yvette, and many, many more!