Irreverent Reviews: Homemade Ice Cream Is As Easy As Rolling A Ball (sponsored)

Thanks to my partnership with Stonyfield Organic, we made ice cream with YayLab!’s SoftShell Ice Cream Ball™ 

We’ve always wanted to make homemade ice cream, but I’m terrible at desserts beyond my kids’ birthday cakes. Scott had seen these ice cream balls online, but we hadn’t made the plunge because we couldn’t imagine ice cream being as easy as rolling a ball for 15 minutes. Luckily, Stonyfield rescued us from our lack of homemade ice cream and faith in balls.

For our first time, we decided to make vanilla frozen yogurt in honor of Stonyfield.


  • Stonyfield Vanilla Whole Milk Yogurt
  • Ice Cream (Rock) Salt
  • Ice
Ingredients – easy to find at the grocery store.
Putting them together
Working together to fill the ball. One side with yummy yogurt and one side with ice and rock salt.
Making ice cream
Next time, I would put the rock salt then ice because everything overflowed and not in a good way.
Start rolling for ice crem
We put the tops back on and start rolling for ice cream. (Definitely review the rules of no kicking or throwing before playing with the ball or overflowing rock salt will be the least of your mess)
Rolling the ice cream
Five minutes later: More rolling? Seriously?
Dog making ice cream
Only the dog stayed interested during the ten minutes. I’m thinking of enrolling him in a gifted dog program.
Add more ice
Add more ice after ten minutes and scrape the sides (which we did a poor job on and paid for it!)
Ice cream scrapings
After another 5-10 minutes, we had frozen yogurt although scraping the sides was not fun. I would’ve checked every few minutes after the 10 minute mark had I known the workout in store for me. I hate working out.
Yummy homemade ice cream
All worth it! No one was lost interest in the ice cream.

You can purchase YayLabs! ice cream ball here or on Amazon (currently with a $5 coupon). I’ve also seen it at LL Bean and REI.

Disclaimer: Stonyfield teamed up with YayLabs! to provide Stonyfield’s blogger team with them for free plus a coupon for Stonyfield yogurt. I was not told what to say or eat.

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Kid Books

KonMari Cannot Convince Kids To Get Rid Of Books (Parenting Win?)

We are still KonMari-ing, but we have entered the most difficult phase of our never-tidy-again existence: THE KIDS’ STUFF.

Clothing is one thing because we have size and dirt and seasons but books? toys? My kids love everything! And how do you tell a kid to not like a book? Plus, as a foster family, we can talk ourselves into keeping any book for any age.

But we got rid of so many of our own books that our expectations were still high. Too high.

As you may remember, we started out with this downstairs.

So Many Books
Books. We love to love to you.

We also had two more bookshelves of kids’ books upstairs, which I didn’t take pictures of but here they are in piles downstairs.

Kid Books
They just keep coming.

The big kids were not only adamant about keeping most of their books, they were very sweet and made sure the baby wasn’t left out of the book-keeping mojo they had going.

Box of giveaway books
We managed to give away one big box of books.

It was tough but at least our shelves look nice and neat now!

E Bookshelf
E’s KonMari bookshelf in his room.
N bookshelf
N’s KonMari bookshelf looks sad, but she asked for most of her books to be kept downstairs and now we had the room!
Kid Bookshelves
Much neater and full of books for N and T and a few for E as well!

While I’m proud of all the organizing we have accomplished so far, I’m terrified of our upcoming adventures in toys and furniture. We will be sitting on the floor and staring at each other in no time.

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We Have No Idea If French Kids Have Lower ADHD Rates And Other Reasons Not To Compare Parenting To Other Countries

Every few months? years? articles pop up in my newsfeed about how French children have lower rates of ADHD because they’re so French in France.

Theses articles list many French reasons for the lower ADHD rates but forgets to mention (or glosses over) the important point that the medical community in France defines ADHD different from doctors in the United States. Their definition is much more narrow, which means less kids can be diagnosed with ADHD even if those others kids have ADHD.

It’s like defining women as only women if they have a size B cup or higher. Does this make women with A cups not women? No, it merely cuts them out of the statistic we’re given.

Or think of it as having a variety of apples — some red and some green. France is only counting the green apples while the U.S. is counting both the red and the green apples. Both counties describe the groups as “apples,” but America has SO MANY MORE APPLES it must be fancy French parenting and therapy.


But we can’t assume that the other apples aren’t apples or French growers made them into socially acceptable pears. We don’t know that they have less apple trees or apple growers or people who like apples. All we know is that they can only gives us the number of green apples and since the U.S. medical community doesn’t only count green apples, we learn nothing else.

Well, we learn that if we want to reduce apples and women and ADHD, we can just change our definition and our rates will be the same as France and no one will have to eat stinky cheese or be denied snacks in between meals.

Now the French ADHD rates aren’t the only “this other county does 18 things better than all the parents in the U.S.A.” articles circulating. Who knew that the parents in other countries all get together and say: “Let’s raise our kids the exact same way so when we’re compared to America, we win.”

People everywhere have parenting opinions and actions that differ. The only thing I have in common with every one of my neighbors is we want what is best for our children. For some of us that looks like public school and for some private school and some wish they could afford private school. Some eat dinner at the exact same time every day and some have a four-hour dinner window. Some are over-protective and some are under-protective and some have struck a wonderful balance for the three months their kids behaved until their children grew a little more sassy and they needed a new approach.

So the idea that other countries, often smaller than the U.S. but certainly not smaller than an American neighborhood, have some set parenting code to which they all agreed and this special parenting toolbox works for every child at every age because FRENCH! GERMAN! JAPANESE! is ridiculous.

Parenting is a huge undertaking to which we all get a little credit for keeping our kids relatively safe and broadly educated so they can move on and up and maybe even to another country where they’ll find more in common with their neighbors than these silly articles would lead us to believe.

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