HELPING HANDS

Providing Family Child Care Services - Ventura, CA

Nutrition



I know that parents want their children to eat the foods they need to grow and develop. That’s why I serve healthy meals and snacks based on the federal and state requirements and guidelines established by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) USDA Food Program Guidelines.  


Well balanced and healthy meals help children grow strong.  We know that it sometimes takes children time to adjust to new foods and they don't always take to new foods right away.  I encourage children learn to love a variety of foods by serving new foods many times and serve them in a variety of ways.  I give the children just a taste at first and am patient with them while they adjust to the new flavors.

Meals & Snacks

Breakfast, lunch, supper and two snacks per day are served at scheduled times throughout the day to children arriving at or before the scheduled meal and snack times.  These meals are provided at no additional cost to parents.  Also, meals are served to all enrolled children regardless of whether the family qualifies for the food program or not.


Meals and snacks will include items from the basic food groups such as fruits, vegetables, grains, protein foods and dairy.  Infants 5 months and younger are only given breast milk or formula, infants 6 months to 1 year old will primarily be given breast milk or formula as meals and simple first foods will be given as a supplement while children 2 years and older will primarily given food and liquids as a supplement. 

Beverage Provisions

Breast milk or formula is served to infants 0-5 months old, whole milk is served to children 1-2 years and children 2 and older are served 1% milk. Milk is served only during meals such as breakfast, lunch and supper and filtered, fresh, cool water is available at all times throughout the day.


The daycare serves fruit or homemade juice instead of commercially prepared juice. The daycare also does not serve beverages with added sweeteners (natural or artificial).

Meal Plans for Children

Our menus are prepared and then appropriate portions are served to the children based on the following ages:


  • Infants 6 months through 11 months
  • Children 1 and 2 years 
  • Children 3 through 5 years


 Meal
 Time Served
Breakfast
  7:00 am
 AM Snack
  9:00 am
 Lunch
  11:30 am
 PM Snack
  3:00 pm
Supper
  5:00 pm

Meals for Infants

Infants of one year and younger are fed on demand.  Clients with bottle fed infants can supply breast milk either fresh or frozen which can be refrigerated or frozen at the daycare.  Breast milk is thawed and warmed in warm water.  Breast milk is never heated in boiling water or in a microwave.

INFANTS
 Birth through
5 months
 6 through
11 months
Breakfast
  4-6 fluid ounces breastmilk or formula
6-8  oz breastmilk or formula; 
0-4 tablespoons infant cereal, meat, fish, poultry, whole egg, cooked dry beans, or cooked dry peas; or 
0-2 ounces of cheese; or 
0-4 ounces (volume) of cottage cheese; or 
½ cup of yogurt; or 
a combination of the above; and 0-2 tablespoons vegetable
Lunch & Supper
4-6 fluid ounces breastmilk or formula
6-8 oz breastmilk or formula; and 0-4 tbs infant cereal, meat, fish, poultry, whole egg, cooked dry beans, cooked dry peas; or 
0-2 oz of cheese; or 
0-4 oz of cottage cheese; or 
0-4 oz or 
½cup of yogurt; or 
a combination of the above; 
and 0-2 tbs vegetable or fruit or a combination of both
Snack
   4-6 fluid ounces breastmilk or formula
2-4 oz breastmilk or formula; and ½ slice bread; or 
0-2 crackers; or 
0-4 tablespoons infant cereal or 
ready-to-eatbreakfast cereal and 0-2 tbs vegetable or fruit,or a combination of both
I offer Kirkland brand iron-fortified formula at no additional charge.  Clients may decline to use this formula and can supply their own choice of iron-fortified infant formula at their own cost.

Meals for Children


These meals are all prepared and served based on the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) food guidelines.  Food portions are served as follows:

BREAKFAST
(one of each component)
1 -2 years
3 through 5 years
Milk, fluid
1/2 cup
3/4 cup
Juice, Fruit or Vegetable
1/4 cup
1/2 cup
Grains
bread or 
cornbread or biscuit or roll or muffin or 
cold dry cereal or 
hot cooked cereal or 
pasta or noodles or grains 

1/2 slice 
1/2 serving
1/2 serving  
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup

1/2 slice 
1/2 serving
1/2 serving  
1/3 cup 
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup
LUNCH/SUPPER
1 -2 years
3 -5 years
1 - Milk , fluid
1/2 cup
3/4 cup
2 - Fruits/Vegetables
Juice, fruit and/or vegetable
1/4 cup
1/2 cup
1 - Grains/Bread
bread or 
cornbread or biscuit or 
roll or muffin or 
cold dry cereal or 
hot cooked cereal or 
pasta or noodles or grains

1/2 slice 
1/2 serving 
1/2 serving
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup

1/2 slice 
1/2 serving
1/2 serving 
1/3 cup 
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup
1 - Meat/Meat Alternative
meat or poultry or fish or
alternate protein product or
cheese or 
egg or 
cooked dry beans or peas or
peanut or other nut or 
seed butters or 
nuts and/or seeds or 
yogurt

1 oz. 
1 oz. 
1 oz. 
1/2 
1/4 cup 
2 Tbsp.
2 Tbsp.
1/2 oz. 
4 oz.

1½oz. 
1½ oz. 
1½ oz. 
3/4 
3/8 cup 
3 Tbsp.
3 Tbsp. 
3/4 oz. 
6 oz.
SNACK
(2 of 4 components)
1 - 2 years
3 - 5 years
1 - Milk, fluid
1/2 cup
1/2 cup
1 - Fruits/Vegetables
Juice, fruit and/or vegetable
1/2 cup
1/2 cup
1 - Grains/Bread
bread or 
cornbread or biscuit or 
roll or muffin or 
cold dry cereal or 
hot cooked cereal or 
pasta or noodles or grains

1/2 slice 
1/2 serving
1/2 serving  
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup

1/2 slice 
1/2 serving
1/2 serving  
1/3 cup 
1/4 cup 
1/4 cup
1 - Meat/Meat Alternative
meat or poultry or fish or
alternate protein product or
cheese or 
egg or 
cooked dry beans or peas or
peanut or other nut or 
seed butters or 
nuts and/or seeds or 
yogurt

1/2 oz. 
1/2 oz. 
1/2 oz. 
1/2 
1/8 cup 
1 Tbsp.
1 Tbsp.
1/2 oz. 
2 oz.

1/2 oz. 
1/2 oz. 
1/2 oz. 
1/2 
1/8 cup 
1 Tbsp.
1 Tbsp.  
1/2 oz. 
2 oz.


The menus for children 1 year and older are rotated on a six-week schedule to provide the children a meal variety.  Here is one example of one weeks worth of meals.

 
 Monday
 Tuesday
Wednesday
 Thursday
 Friday
Breakfast
Banana
Cereal
Milk
Applesauce
Oatmeal
Milk
Banana
Cereal
Milk
Apple slices
Oatmeal
Milk
Applesauce
Cereal
Milk
AM Snack
 Apple slices
Graham crackers
Banana
Milk
Apple slices
Milk
Apple slices
Banana Bread
Apple slices
Graham crackers
Lunch
Baked chicken
Carrots
Apple sauce
White rice
Milk
Quesadilla
Mash Potatoes
Peaches
Biscuits
Milk
Meatloaf
Broccoli
Peaches
Biscuits
Milk
Cheese
Fruit cocktail
Mixed Veggies
Spanish rice
Milk
Ground beef
Spaghetti
Apple slices
Milk
PM Snack
Apple Slices
Banana Bread
Applesauce
Milk
Carrot sticks
Crackers
Cheddar Cheese
Crackers
Yogurt
Graham Crackers
Supper
Parmesan Chick.
Broccoli
Apple slices
W wheat roll
Milk
Bean burrito on W grain tortilla
Diced peaches
Carrots
Milk
Sweet/sour chick.
Steamed carrots
Orange slices
White rice
Milk
Macaroni & cheese
Peas & carrots
Fruit salad
Milk
Pizza pocket
Green salad
Applesauce
Milk

Allergies & Adaptations

If your child needs a specialized meals for a special nutritional need due to medical reasons such as an allergy to certain types of food or other medical reasons please let me know so that I can determine if I can make adaptations to our menu.


I do not offer specialized meals for children if they are due to personal preference such as vegetarian, vegan, religious or spiritual beliefs however food can be provided from home for the child and served at the daycare. All food from home must be free of any allergenic foods if another child enrolled has a food allergy and must be healthy as well as meet the USDA food program guidelines.