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5 steps to find your mission-driven career: The Peeled Snacks story

1. In business, and in motherhood, following your intuition will always pay off.

5 steps to find your mission-driven career: The Peeled Snacks story

Working in the food industry, entrepreneur and mother Noha Waibsnaider was shocked by the pervasiveness of added sugar, preservatives and chemicals in common snack foods. So
she started a company, Peeled Snacks, that is committed to making snacks people could feel good about eating. Here, we asked Noha to share with Motherly’s aspiring #mombosses the steps she took to turn a simple idea for organic fruit and veggie snacks into a successful business.


1. Go with your gut.

My husband likes to say I had a great idea six years too early. It took a lot more time and money than I expected to get Peeled Snacks through the early years. I was fortunate to find supportive investors who share our vision to provide real food. In business, and in motherhood, I know following your intuition will always pay off.

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2. Stay focused on your mission.

A photo posted by peeledsnacks (@peeledsnacks) on

Many so-called makers of healthy snacks take shortcuts that allow them to make food more inexpensively, garner larger profits and grow the company faster. Over the years, it’s been tempting at times to follow in their footsteps. It’s so much easier to make food with unnatural preservatives, sugar and starchy fillers. But I always come back to my guiding principle: it’s critical that all of our fruit and veggie snacks are foods that I would personally eat and feed my family.

3. Believe in your ideas.

When I started Peeled Snacks, people thought dried fruit was for baking or old people. We shook up the category by making it fun and accessible for the modern family. We rethought everything from the packaging to the portions to the retail strategy, going into airports, cafeterias and convenience stores—places no one expected to find anything healthy. And we recently shook it up again with Peas Please, the only organic baked pea snack on the market. Don’t ever listen to naysayers when you know you’re on the right track.

4. Success is a team effort.

A photo posted by peeledsnacks (@peeledsnacks) on

You’re only as strong as your support network. Over the years, my staff, investors, family and friends have been a huge part of my success. No one can do it alone. When someone makes an introduction, take the meeting. Be open-minded about where it can lead and try to be helpful in making connections for other people. And make sure you ask for what you need. As a woman, it can be harder to ask for things. Remember that people love to help, and they love to be part of your success story.

5. Help others along the way.

A photo posted by peeledsnacks (@peeledsnacks) on

I believe our company should make a positive impact in everything that we do. Peeled Snacks make you feel good because they are good for you and good for the earth. We work closely with sustainable farmers and suppliers to find the tastiest organic and non-GMO ingredients and encourage fair labor practices all along our supply chain. It’s not easy or cheap, but it’s the right thing to do. I want to show my children how to make the world a better place, and Peeled Snacks helps me do that.

More Motherly wisdom from Noha—

The key to making sure my mornings run smoothly is. . .

Prepping the night before: we make our breakfast muesli and the kids make their lunches at night. They also pick out their clothes the night before.

The lifehack or tip that has changed my life:

1) I walk laps around the conference room during conference calls, so I get an hour of walking in and feel more energized.

2) I don’t check email after 9pm. It’s hard enough to decompress without new work activity late at night.

3) My husband is really involved with the kids and household care. It makes all the difference.

The superpower I discovered as a mom:

I make my most inspiring meals when I’m working with limited resources. I can get home and find three random ingredients in the fridge, race around the kitchen doing five things at once, and manage to get dinner on the table within 20 minutes.

The quote that inspires me on the hard days is. . .

The simple person lives the way he breathes, with no more effort or glory, with no more affectation and without shame. . . . Simplicity is freedom, buoyancy, transparency. As simple as the air, as free as the air. . . . The simple person does not take himself too seriously or too tragically. He goes on his merry way, his heart light, his soul at peace, without a goal, without nostalgia, without impatience. The world is his kingdom, and suffices him. The present is his eternity, and delights him. He has nothing to prove, since he has no appearances to keep up, and nothing to seek, since everything is before him. What is more simple than simplicity? What lighter? It is the virtue of wise men and the wisdom of saints. —André Comte-Sponville

To me, being "Motherly" means. . .

Your job is to work your way out of the job. The book “How to Raise an Adult” encouraged me to give my kids more responsibility and autonomy to make them independent and resilient. The more they own their lives, the more interesting humans they become and the more they can contribute to the world.


Noha Waibsnaider is the founder of Peeled Snacks, a maker of organic fruit and vegetable snacks. Committed to organic, clean food, Peeled Snacks makes a variety of vegetable and fruit snacks available in Whole Foods, Amazon.com, Target and grocery stores. Find out more at www.peeledsnacks.com, Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

I felt lost as a new mother, but babywearing helped me find myself again

I wish someone had told me before how special wearing your baby can be, even when you have no idea how to do it.

My first baby and I were alone in our Brooklyn apartment during a particularly cold spring with yet another day of no plans. My husband was back at work after a mere three weeks of parental leave (what a joke!) and all my friends were busy with their childless lives—which kept them too busy to stop by or check in (making me, at times, feel jealous).

It was another day in which I would wait for baby to fall asleep for nap number one so I could shower and get ready to attempt to get out of the house together to do something, anything really, so I wouldn't feel the walls of the apartment close in on me by the time the second nap rolled around. I would pack all the diapers and toys and pacifiers and pump and bottles into a ginormous stroller that was already too heavy to push without a baby in it .

Then I would spend so much time figuring out where we could go with said stroller, because I wanted to avoid places with steps or narrow doors (I couldn't lift the stroller by myself and I was too embarrassed to ask strangers for help—also hi, New Yorkers, please help new moms when you see them huffing and puffing up the subway stairs, okay?). Then I would obsess about the weather, was it too cold to bring the baby out? And by the time I thought I had our adventure planned, the baby would wake up, I would still be in my PJs and it was time to pump yet again.

Slowly, but surely, and mostly thanks to sleep deprivation and isolation, I began to detest this whole new mom life. I've always been a social butterfly. I moved to New York because I craved that non-stop energy the city has and in the years before having my baby I amassed new friends I made through my daily adventures. I would never stop. I would walk everywhere just to take in the scenery and was always on the move.

Now I had this ball and chain attached to me, I thought, that didn't even allow me to make it out of the door to walk the dog. This sucks, I would think regularly, followed by maybe I'm not meant to be a mom after all.


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14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

$30

Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!

$75

Detective set

Plan Toys detective setDetective Set

This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.

$40

Wooden doll stroller

Janod wooden doll strollerWooden Doll Stroller

Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.

$120

Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

$30

Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

$100

Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

$40

Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

$121

Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.

$100

Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.

$45

Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.

$179

Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.

$100

Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.

$33

Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.

$88

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It's science: Why your baby stops crying when you stand up

A fascinating study explains why.

When your baby is crying, it feels nearly instinctual to stand up to rock, sway and soothe them. That's because standing up to calm babies is instinctual—driven by centuries of positive feedback from calmed babies, researchers have found.

"Infants under 6 months of age carried by a walking mother immediately stopped voluntary movement and crying and exhibited a rapid heart rate decrease, compared with holding by a sitting mother," say authors of a 2013 study published in Current Biology.

Even more striking: This coordinated set of actions—the mother standing and the baby calming—is observed in other mammal species, too. Using pharmacologic and genetic interventions with mice, the authors say, "We identified strikingly similar responses in mouse pups as defined by immobility and diminished ultrasonic vocalizations and heart rate."

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