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NOVEMBER 2014 | FREE | capitalparent.ca | Ottawa’s Parenting Toolbox

PHOTO BY KATE SETTLE

WHAT’S COOKING? It’s our “kids in the kitchen” issue! Cooking classes for kids, a cookbook for hockey fans, family friendly recipes & more!


From The Editor

ANDREA TOMKINS andrea@capitalparent.ca

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I have always believed that gratitude is a learned skill. But here’s the question, how can something like gratitude be taught to children? And how can it be incorporated into our days, especially given the demands of our busy family lives? And why do we only reserve the act of giving thanks for special occasions, such as Christmas and Thanksgiving? I remember learning how to make paper chains when I was in kindergarten. I was amazed at how these single pieces of flat paper added up to something much bigger when they were all glued together. I decided to revisit the idea of the paper chain and turn it into a family project that focuses on gratitude. Enter, the gratitude chain. 1) Choose pretty scrapbook paper that has a pattern on one side and is blank on the other. We chose fall colours, but anything goes here. 2) Cut each sheet into even strips. 3) On the blank side, have each of your family members write one thing they are grateful for. 4) Tape each strip together to make a circle, looping them around each other in chain formation. 5) Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you’ve achieved a length that makes you happy. Display your chain in a prominent place: draped over a window frame or mirror, along the fireplace mantle, or Christmastree style around a big houseplant. You know what I’m grateful for? Having kids who eat well and know how to make themselves a healthy meal. This issue of Capital Parent is all about kids in the kitchen. Cooking is a life skill, and it’s never too early to start. Don’t miss Paula Roy’s article about cooking classes for kids on page 5. Not only do classes take the pressure off parents, but it might be the inspiration they need to develop an interest in cooking on their own time. Another way of getting kids in the kitchen is by finding a cookbook they’ll enjoy. Sarah Niman looks at a new cookbook for hockey families on page 7. And of course, our issue would not be complete without our columnist, Lynn Jatania. Flip to page 4 to see what foods she’s serving to her family. And lest we forget, November is also Remembrance Day. See page 12 for a round-up of Remembrance Day events and a family craft you can make before you head out. Wishing you and your family a happy November,

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editor ’s

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PUBLISHER Mark Sutcliffe mark@greatriver.ca EDITOR

>Biggest and best! Kids seem to have special interest in knowing about the biggest and best of everything, don’t they? Canadian Geographic Biggest and Best of Canada is a lively read with full colour photos with broad appeal for kids of all ages. While it may be understood that Canada has the most polar bears in the world, did you know that we also have the most snakes? This is just one of 1,000 cool facts which span categories that include weather, sports, pop culture, and wildlife. $24.95.

Andrea Tomkins andrea@capitalparent.ca twitter.com/capitalparent CONTRIBUTORS Katharine Fletcher • Jason Haug • Lynn Jatania • Marcia MacQuarrie • Sarah Niman • Misty Pratt • Paula Roy • Kate Settle COPY EDITOR Bhavana Gopinath CREATIVE DIRECTOR Tanya Connolly-Holmes 613-238-1818 ext. 253 creative@greatriver.ca DESIGN & PRODUCTION Sarah Ellis sarah@greatriver.ca

>The bees knees There’s nothing worse than opening a brown sugar container only to find a hard, solid chunk when you’re ready to bake a batch of something yummy. These fair trade terracotta bees are just the thing to keep sugar soft and fresh. Made in Bangladesh, this set of two bees comes in a pretty paper box, and makes a sweet gift for aspiring bakers of all ages. $6.00 at Ten Thousand Villages and online at tenthousandvillages.ca.

ADVERTISING Alison Stewart 613-238-1818 ext. 226 alison@obj.ca CAPITALPARENT is published by

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Cover Story We want to hear from you! We love to hear from our readers. Email your feedback to editor@capitalparent.ca or leave a comment on our Facebook page. Thank you! 2 NOVEMBER 2014 | c a p i t a l p a r e n t . c a |

>See the light

Who’s on the cover? It’s Rose Lumley (4), Maeve Lumley (9), and Charlie Lumley (7). Photographer’s note I truly believe that the best photos of our children are taken when they are simply being themselves. I practice this in my photography work every day. Encouraging children to feel relaxed and have fun is a priority. Often, during the first 10 minutes of shooting I know the photos I take will never see the light of day simply because the children are just warming up. We staged this baking shoot for Capital Parent to exaggerate the most fun being in the kitchen could be for a child: chcolate chips to eat, spoons to lick, and flour flying everywhere. The mother of our fabulous models, Vanessa Gale, is also a professional baker. She was very accommodating of the semi-chaos that lead to such lovely, genuine moments to photograph. She admits, however, she’d never let her kids bake in such a mess! – Kate Settle facebook.com/CapitalParent |

@capitalparent |

It’s amazing what a little light can do. If you find yourself dragging your feet during the fall and winter, you may be suffering from some degree of Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.), a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons and the low light conditions we tend to get north of the border. You’ll want to check with your doctor before trying anything new, but this Lightbook Advantage may help you increase your energy and improve your mood. $109.00, online at litebook.com. p i n t e r e s t . c o m /c a p i t a l p a r e n t /

Terry Tyo 613-238-1818 ext. 268 terry@greatriver.ca OFFICE LOCATION: 250 CITY CENTRE DRIVE SUITE 500, OTTAWA MAILING ADDRESS: P.O. BOX 3814, STATION C OTTAWA, ONTARIO K1Y 4J8

capitalparent.ca Capital Parent Newspaper is a monthly publication. 15,000 copies of each issue are printed and distributed across Ottawa, wherever families are found.


CARING FOR KIDS

Cough! Achoo! Here comes the flu! BY JASON HAUG, PROGRAM & PROJECT MANAGEMENT OFFICER, OTTAWA PUBLIC HEALTH

T

here seem to be four seasons in Canada: spring, summer, fall, and flu season. The seasonal flu virus makes its comeback in full force late fall, often right after Halloween. When you start hearing the familiar holiday music in stores… it’s time. The flu has arrived.

The flu, also known by many as the “holiday dream crusher,” is a serious, and very contagious, viral infection. It has been known to take kids out of school, parents out of work, and many away from parties and holidays. Some even end up in the hospital with complications. The flu affects the nose, throat, and lungs. It’s spread through droplets that have been coughed or sneezed by someone who has the flu. You can get the flu by touching surfaces that have come into contact with flu droplets, and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth. THE FLU VACCINE Each year, different strains of the flu virus appear. Scientists predict which strains will most likely affect us for the coming year. These strains are used to make up the seasonal flu vaccine. This year’s flu vaccines are made to protect you against three different flu viruses: • Two influenza A viruses (an H1N1 and an H3N2) and • An influenza B virus. The flu vaccine is safe for anyone 6 months of age or older and prevents about 300 deaths and 1,000 hospitalizations each year in Ontario. Children under the age of five have higher rates of serious illness and death from flu, which means it’s even more important for them to get the flu vaccine. Children aged 6 to 9 years have the highest rate of flu and are considered to be the “big spreaders.”

The earlier you get the flu vaccine, the greater chance there is to prevent the flu. The vaccine will trigger your body to fight off the virus if you come into contact with the flu. This means you either will not get the flu, or the symptoms will be greatly reduced. Different flu viruses can affect people every year, so you need to get the flu vaccine each fall. You can get your flu vaccine from your family doctor, your pharmacist (if over the age of five) or at one of the Ottawa Public Health (OPH) community clinics at no cost if you work or live in Ottawa. Ottawa Public Health offers free appointment-based clinics for children between the ages of 6 months and five years of age as well as their immediate families. To book an appointment for a child who is under five, call the Ottawa Public Health Information Line at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656). HOW TO TAKE THE “OUCH” AWAY The type of vaccine that is publicly funded is given using a needle, which is injected into a muscle. Some kids really hate needles, but there are options. There is a new version of the flu vaccine that is not part of Ontario’s publicly funded program. This vaccine option may be covered by your private medical benefits. FluMist® is a needle-free way of receiving the flu vaccine. It has been approved for people aged 2 to 59 years. A fine mist is sprayed into your nose rather than the traditional

The flu is nothing to sneeze at! Read on to find out how you can protect yourself, and your family.

needle. Ask your healthcare provider about what the best option is for you and your family. To find out more about taking the “ouch” away from vaccines, visit Ottawa Public Health’s “Reducing Pain During Vaccination” page (ottawa.ca/en/residents/public-health/ disease-and-medical-conditions/reducingpain-during-vaccination) for special strategies for babies to teens. IS IT SAFE TO GET THE FLU VACCINE IF YOU’RE PREGNANT? The flu vaccine is safe and recommended when pregnant. The flu can cause serious problems when you are pregnant. Pregnant women who get the flu are at higher risk of hospitalization, and even death, than non-pregnant women. The flu can cause serious problems like premature labor and delivery. The flu vaccine will help produce antibodies. This helps your body protect itself when you come into contact with the flu. This immunity will be passed along to your unborn child. This is very important as

children under 6 months of age are too young for the flu vaccine. Your baby will also get antibodies from breast milk. STOP THE SPREAD OF GERMS You can also stop the spread of the flu or other germs by following a few easy steps. • Wash your hands with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer. • Cover your coughs and sneezes with your arm, not your hand. • Avoid crowds and public gatherings, and stay at home if you are sick. • Do not visit hospitalized patients if you are experiencing flu-like symptoms. To find out more about the flu, including flu clinics, visit ottawa.ca/flu or call 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656). You can also connect with OPH on Facebook (facebook.com/ ottawahealth), Tumblr (ottawahealth.tumblr. com), Twitter (@OttawaHealth) and on Pinterest (www.pinterest.com/otthealthsante)

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THIRD TIME’S THE CHARM

Little Foodies BY LYNN JATANIA

O

ne of the things I dislike most about being a stay-at-home mom is the ongoing responsibility for feeding everyone all the time. I have zero interest in cooking. Before my husband and I were married, I survived mainly on what he calls “hodge podge,” which you prepare as follows: Open fridge. Reach into fridge. Remove whatever you touch. Eat it. Once we were wed, I led my husband down a similar path. The poor guy used to bemoan our lack of actual cooking all the time, but in truth, he has only slightly more enthusiasm for meal planning than I do. Since I was more than happy to come home from work to bagels and cream cheese six nights a week, with microwave popcorn and processed cheese slices for Sunday dinner, he never did get too far when it came to improving our diet. Sad to say, I was also able to survive for quite a while after we had our first kid on five-minute-

meals and other such hodge-podge-ian snacks, despite being at home full time and, in theory, trying to raise a healthy child. Our oldest was a very hesitant eater – partly due to allergies, partly just his personality. I’m like that too; completely unadventurous when it comes to food and willing to eat the same thing day in and day out. So we found a few favourites – and by a few, I mean literally three or four things – and that’s what the two of us ate. Every meal. Every day. All the time. But when we added a couple more kids to the mix, I started to worry that my super casual attitude towards, like, feeding them some stuff whenever, was going to turn them into gremlins. (At least I wasn’t feeding them after midnight…yet). So I sighed and decided that despite my dislike of actual cooking, it was time to become our family’s Jamie Oliver (or at least, its Ronald McDonald). I got myself some cookbooks, and read through them diligently. Then I put together a meal plan – just one week’s worth, at first – and eventually expanded it out into a four week rotation. I tried new things, added a vegetable or fruit to every meal, and invested a good half hour daily on dinner prep. I was a regular Julia Child. My husband and I were eating better than ever,

feeling healthy and losing weight. But just when I was starting to feel proud of myself, the kids made it clear they had other ideas. We added an exciting new phrase to our vocabulary: picky eater. Here are their rules for food, which are surely carved in stone somewhere based on their devotion to the cause, or at least embroidered on a sampler. They will eat: Nothing lumpy; Nothing too creamy; Nothing orange or green (red is evaluated on a per food basis); Nothing too chewy; Nothing with bits in it, unless those bits are made of chocolate; Nothing with a mark, or a dent, or a brown spot; Nothing where two foods are touching; And absolutely no leftovers. Clearly, I broke them in their early years. There’s nothing that makes a parent feel more guilty and stressed than a non-eating kid. Eat, eat, I implore them, in my best Italian grandmother accent. An apple a day keeps the doctor away! You are what you eat! Man doesn’t live by bread alone! I have a hundred more clichés, so

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just give in now and have a bite! All I get in answer is lips clamped shut like the 30 tonne vault door at the Diefenbunker. Apparently my children are the next generation of super mutants, capable of living on air alone. Once I read an article in a magazine in which the mother of three teenaged boys lamented that her kids went through two whole loaves of bread a day. This story gives me hope that one day a golden moment will arrive when I won’t have to throw away a moldy uneaten half-loaf that’s been sitting in the bread box for two weeks; the day when I put a meal in front of everyone and it goes down without a discussion of “how many bites”; the day when they finally taste my awesome blueberry pie and rue the fact that they’ve been missing out all these days. They will RUE. I am pretty sure that day is coming – because I’m a reformed picky eater, hodge-podge maker myself. It may take 40 or so years, but – my mother assures me, from experience – they’ll figure it out eventually. And I’ll be right there waiting for my new little foodies with a blueberry pie, a banana with a spot on it, and leftover tuna casserole. Bon appétit!

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CREATIVE KIDS

Culinary classes offer many delicious lessons BY PAULA ROY

F

ew families manage to avoid mealtime struggles. We all want our kids to eat a wide variety of healthy, nutritious foods, but too often it becomes easier to give in and serve kids the familiar foods they like, rather than expanding their palates. While we might fantasize about the joy of preparing meals with our children, for most parents, teaching your child to cook when you’re stressed and they’re hungry – and you just want to pull a meal together as quickly as possible – is simply not going to work. There is a good alternative, though, to battling it out over the kitchen counter. Cooking classes not only impart essential life skills, they also encourage young eaters by exposing them to the satisfying joy of preparing wholesome foods. Learning to cook gives kids confidence, offers a great way for them to express themselves and encourages them to work in teams – all while discovering that nutritious food can also be fun and tasty. A greater appreciation for what foods are good for us comes hand in hand with learning how to cook in a safe and hygienic way. Along with the sense of independence that comes with learning a new skill, cooking classes enable kids to learn about other cultures through their cuisine. Best of all? Students can share their newfound abilities in the kitchen with family and friends. Options abound in the Ottawa area for kids’ culinary instruction. The Ottawa Chinese Cooking Studio (chinesecookingstudio.com) for example, has been offering a variety of hands-on classes for children and adults for over ten years. “We are very happy to teach children how to work together in the kitchen and enjoy new foods together,” says the school’s Allan Yin. “Kids quickly develop good kitchen habits as well as the habit of enjoying more nutritious, better-tasting food. This is something that will help them for a long time as it is much more affordable to cook at home than to eat at restaurants all the time.” The Ottawa Chinese Cooking Studio’s classes,

March Break camps and birthday parties are ideal for kids aged 5 and up. “Our students come from a wide range of ethnic backgrounds,” notes Allan. “Sometimes they are kids who already like to cook and their parents want to encourage them to learn more. Almost all children arrive interested in learning good kitchen fundamentals. They are inquisitive, open to a wide variety of flavours and experience tremendous pride when they get to taste what they have prepared. Their parents are often surprised when they see what their children have created.” The City of Ottawa offers a number of cooking opportunities, delivered at community centres across the region, including Christmas, March Break and Summer Camp Programs, geared for kids aged 3 to 14, as well as offerings throughout the school year. For more information go to ottawa.ca/en/residents/parks-and-recreation. C’est Bon Cooking (cestboncooking.ca) is one of the city’s most prestigious private cooking schools, run by a Cordon Bleu Grande Diplome master chef. The Food Fundamentals – Teen Chef program is a March Break Camp which engages youth aged 14 and older in an intensive, weeklong exploration of kitchen fundamentals. The Urban Element (theurbanelement.ca ) welcomes 9 – 15 year olds into its bright, spacious cooking studio every summer for their very popular week-long culinary camp. Budding chefs learn basic cooking skills and techniques, food safety, ingredient selection, recipe reading and more; food related field trips round out the week. Cuisine & Passion (cuisinepassion.ca) offers a Kids in the Kitchen program at its Orleans studio. It consists of 90-minute long Saturday afternoon classes for young people between the ages of 8 and 12. They make a great birthday party option too; participants prepare and enjoy a meal then take home the recipes. The Glebe Neighbourhood Activities Group (go to gnag.ca and search for “culinary”) offers

Charlie Lumley (7), plays in the flour. Time in the kitchen can’t be all work and no play, right? If you make their time in the kitchen enjoyable, they’ll want to come back. Photo by Kate Settle.

cooking workshops for children and youth aged 6 to 17, as well as family events. Various ethnic cuisines are explored in a fun, delicious way and their two-day gingerbread house-making workshop in December is always a sellout. President’s Choice Cooking School (pccook-

Sound advice about getting kids in the kitchen We asked Capital Parent readers on Facebook how they got their kids cooking, and here’s what they told us: Danielle Browning: “My son, now 5, has been cooking and baking with me since he could stand on two feet! I encourage him by letting him gather all the prep

materials and to also choose some of the ingredients. He can now crack an egg with one hand and will drop video games in a second to come bake some fresh muffins.:)” Judy Lincoln: “We let our 6 year old pick his own kitchen tools, like a rolling pin,

ingschool.ca ) provides culinary programming at seven Loblaws and Real Canadian Superstore locations across the city. Geared to kids aged 3 to 11, the hands-on sessions cover a wide range of cuisines and themes. Also popular are PC Cooking School birthday parties, for kids aged 4–10 or youth 11–16.

spatula, etc. to help with. He now measures all the pizza dough and rolls it out after his dad kneads it.” Brenda Galambos Asselstine: “We had a Learning Tower when the kids were little. It is a wooden raised platform, adjustable for height, with guard rails around it. Kids were the right height at the counter to “help” and safe (usually!) from falling off like they would from a regular chair.” NOVEMBER 2014 5


CREATIVE KIDS

Banana pancakes? Yes please. BY ANDREA TOMKINS

O

ne of the best ways to get kids in the kitchen is to get them helping as soon as they’re able. Even toddlers are capable of rinsing fruit, tearing and washing lettuce, stirring, and pouring ingredients into a bowl. Take childrens’ culinary skills to the next level by introducing a few recipes they’ll love to make from scratch, and love to eat as well. Good ones to start with could include scrambled eggs, spaghetti sauce, and pancakes.

SUPER EASY BANANA PANCAKES Give your kid an apron, a chair to stand upon, and watch the magic happen. Not only are these pancakes simple to make, but it makes great “flipping” practice for kids. Don’t worry if the pancakes happen to get a little scrambled in the pan. They’ll taste just fine.

One or two ripe bananas, cut into pieces Two eggs Two tablespoons of all-

purpose flour Oil for frying 1) In a medium sized bowl, use a fork or a potato masher to mash up the banana until it’s really gooey. 2) Whisk in the eggs until the mixture is smooth. 3) Add flour and stir until the mixture is well combined. 4) Prepare the frying pan with a little bit of oil. 5) Use a tablespoon to pour the batter on the hot pan. Making

one at a time is a good idea for beginners. 6) Use a spatula to peek at the underside of the pancake. If it’s light brown, it’s ready to flip over. These pancakes are fairly sweet on their own, but you can top with a bit of maple syrup, cinnamon, or dress them up with sprinkles if you’re celebrating a special occasion. They are also good the next day, and can also be eaten straight out of the fridge.

Mashing, flipping, cracking, this recipe has got it all! Plus it’s a really good way of using up spott y bananas. PHOTO BY ANDREA TOMKINS.

KIDS & PETS Have kids? Have pets? Have a great picture of them together? Share your snaps with Capital Parent and each month we will publish our favourites in print and online.

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ockey families don’t often sit down together to a relaxing meal until the offseason. Once the puck drops in September, meals are often taken on the go, in the car, or late after practice. A new book from two Ottawa hockey moms offers hope with a host of recipes to feed families quality food. The Ultimate Cookbook for Hockey Families began when Erin Phillips, hockey mom to three kids who bounce between arenas, and wife of Ottawa Senators defenceman Chris Phillips, was scrambling to prepare healthy meals. As a registered nutritionist, she became frustrated there wasn’t enough time to prepare and eat healthy foods amidst everyone’s schedules. She teamed up with healthy eating advocate and rink mom Korey Kealey to produce a cookbook by and for hockey families. Featuring recipes submitted by NHL superstars, this book is tailored to fuelling hockey players and their families with nutritious meals and snacks. The goal, said Kealey, was to help players and their families avoid scrambling for fast food and sugary drinks. “Game day is not the time nor the place for junk food,” said Kealey. “Half the battle is knowing what to make in advance.” Since its October release, the cookbook has met immediate success, as measured by kids’ approval. Kealey said young players are going through the cookbook, finding meals they’d like to try, and then defying picky-eater stereotypes. The cookbook features recipes like Daniel Alfreddson’s Swedish meatballs and Mike Fisher’s slapshot spaghetti casserole. It is hard to tell if kids are eating the dishes just because they are endorsed by some of the pros. Even if they are, said Kealey, what matters is they are choosing nutritious dishes and nixing the junk.

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The book is also a how-to guide, instructing families how to fuel players’ physical needs, maintain energy levels, stay hydrated, and make nutritionally sound choices. Each recipe includes instructions, nutritional information, serving sizes and tips, to help families understand why proper fuel is important. It changes the way readers approach nutrition, starting with game day. A post-game guzzle of brand name sports drinks is typical behaviour, but Kealey said the sugar, additives and preservatives are not a good choice for young players. Rather than kibosh a habit entirely, the cookbook offers a homemade sport-aid replacement that uses no sugar. (See recipe below.) Kealey and Phillips also offer help feeding players during tournaments, a scenario where families typically rely on restaurants and junk snacks. Pair inferior food with back-to-back games and less sleep, and players quickly become cranky, tired messes. “The key is to keep them fed and hydrated immediately after games,” said Kealey, who organized a potluck with other parents during her son’s tournament last year. Using crockpots and basic kitchen tools, parents were able put together healthy meals in the hotel rooms so players nd had hearty meals ready after games. The book can be found online and in stores across Ottawa. For locations, see Hockeyfood.com.

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NATURE NOTES

How do birds stay warm in the winter? BY KATHARINE FLETCHER

A

s we know, many birds survive Canadian winters by completely avoiding the bitter months. Many migrate to warmer climates, some even flying as far as Florida or South America. Some sub-arctic and boreal forest species such as snow buntings, great grey and snowy owls, and rough-legged hawks migrate from the north to our more southerly region to overwinter. Believe it or not, Ottawa is their Florida! Have you ever wondered why, when winter temperatures plunge to -40C, birds’ spaghetti-thin legs don’t freeze solid? How can these extremely tiny animals survive winter’s frigid conditions? Three design factors assist them: feathers, specialized blood heat-exchange systems, and fat. To help explain how these work to birds’ benefit, we asked Ottawa’s very own birder-specialist couple and nature guides extraordinaire: Tony Beck and Nina Stavlund. They lead local birding expeditions and are always eager to help us all learn more about birds. “Birds have several morphological (physical) as well as behavioural strategies to combat extreme cold by conserving energy,” says Beck. “In fact, some birds actually modify their physical structure before the cold season strikes. In fall,

ruffed grouse grow additional surface area to their toes, creating something similar to snow shoes.” “Birds are warm-blooded and fluff their feathers to keep warm,” adds Stavlund. “Often they will tuck one foot into the fluffed feathers to keep it warmer, and they will do the same with the beak, tucking it under a wing. They moult [lose feathers] in autumn and develop a warm winter coat, which is different from their summer coat. They need a lot of food to maintain their fat reserves, and some species will clump together in huge flocks during night while roosting.” A bird fluffing its feathers keeps warm just like mammals do when they puff their fur. Air is trapped between the feathers or hairs, and is warmed by the animals’ body heat. Thus, fluffing their feathers provides birds with cozy insulation and protection from the elements. HOW DO BIRDS’ SKINNY LEGS AND FEET KEEP FROM FREEZING? Beck explains that the hardier winter birds – such as chickadees –regulate their temperatures by exchanging heat between arteries and veins. “As warm blood flows out of the heart, it raises the temperature of the returning blood. This is called a counter-current heat exchange,” says Beck. “Birds’ legs have more tendons than muscles. Their leg muscles are deep inside their body, protecting them from the cold while the exposed

tendons have lower metabolic demands.” The presence of overlapping scales on their legs and feet also prevent heat loss. They trap heat, rather than letting it escape.

How do birds survive the bitter cold, skinny legs ’n all? Read on to find out! PHOTO BY ANDREA TOMKINS.

Beck also notes that birds don’t have sweat glands; therefore, in winter their legs won’t stick to metal. We can all remember (can’t we?) wet fingers sticking to metal or to ice cubes. Because birds’ legs and feet don’t perspire, they aren’t in danger of this happening to them. However, it’s

imperative not to leave water out for birds in winter, so they won’t get wet and possibly die from the chill. During the night many birds roost together and share their body heat. As well, they go into torpor – a state of reduced metabolism – which conserves their energy. WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP BIRDS? Because they require extra energy (and fat) in order to stay warm in winter, feeding birds is a good idea as well as being both educational and fun. Oily black sunflower and niger seeds allow resident birds such as chickadees, nuthatches, mourning doves, American goldfinches, redpolls, and others to find energy-rich, nourishing foods. Adding a suet block in a small plastic-coated metal cage gives woodpeckers, chickadees, and nuthatches an extra-energy boost during winter. LEARN MORE! Want to learn more about birds? Tony Beck and Nina Stavlund host year-round excursions for people who like to get outside and learn more about nature. For details go to alwaysanadventure.ca. Katharine Fletcher is a keen outdoorswoman who loves observing nature and exploring wild spaces. Check her books and her blog at katharinefletcher.com.

Travel back in time with a visit to these ruins in Ottawa BY ANDREA TOMKINS

G

oing on a Sunday stroll in the woods is becoming the thing to do in Ottawa, and it’s easy to understand why. Burning off some steam and getting some fresh air while taking in pretty views is a great thing to do as a family. Plus it’s great family time! We’re fortunate here in Ottawa to be close to a number of different places to go for a walk, no matter what our skill and stamina level might be. Lime Kiln Trail is one of several short walks within the NCC network of trails. It’s in the Stony Swamp area, and it’s perfect for young families. It’s flat, short, and there’s something fun to see at the end. Kids love a good payoff, and in this case, it’s a group of old stone ruins, and hungry chickadees that are happy to fly to your hand for a snack. The ruins at Lime Kiln are actually the remainders of an old pioneer lime factory that operated on this site in the 1800s. The factory originally

comprised of five buildings, and the lime produced was used for agricultural purposes and by local industries for mortar and whitewash. The rocky walls are a great place to let your imagination run wild.

And then there are the chickadees. They love small black sunflower seeds. You can some up where pet food is sold or at Bulk Barn. If they spot you with seed, they’ll land on your hand (or your hat!) to get it.

Getting there Lime Kiln Trail is located on Moodie Drive. From downtown Ottawa, take the 417 W/ Trans-Canada Hwy. Take the 416 exit, then exit 72 toward West Hunt Club Road. Turn right on to Hunt Club and after about 2 km, turn left onto Moodie Drive. Park at P10. The walk to the ruins and back to the parking lot is approximately 2 km. For maps and info about this scenic area go to: ncc-ccn.gc.ca/places-to-visit/greenbelt/ stony-swamp.

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Look way down! This is the view looking down into the kiln.

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Checking out the stone ruins at Lime Kiln Trail in Ottawa’s west end. PHOTOS BY ANDREA TOMKINS.


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613-742-5500 NOVEMBER 2014 9


GAME NIGHT

A simple, social card game for a November night

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PA RT N E R S

BY ANDREA TOMKINS

N

ow that the cooler weather has settled in and the evenings are longer, we’re reaching for new and fun games to play with our family around the table. This one is an easy card game that requires simple math skills and is suitable for kids of all ages. It’s called 31, but it’s also known as Scat or Ride the Bus. We love it because it involves luck and strategy, and lets us all practice our poker faces. It’s also a good way to win a few quarters from grandma and grandpa. GETTING STARTED All you need to play is a 52-card deck and 2 to 9 players, which makes this a perfect game to play when visiting extended family.

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DEAL ‘EM OUT In our house, Dad deals first. (For subsequent turns, the player to the right becomes the new dealer.) The cards are shuffled and the dealer deals the cards one at a time, starting with the player to dealer’s left and continuing clockwise until everyone has three cards in their hand. The last card is turned face up on the table. This is the discard pile, and the remaining undealt cards are placed face down next to it. This is the stock pile.

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THE GAME The goal is to collect three cards in a single suit worth 31 points, or as close possible to that total. The ace is worth 11 points, kings, queens, and jacks are worth 10, and all other cards are worth their face value. The value of a three-card hand is calculated by adding up the value of the cards held in any one suit. So if you have three cards of the same suit, the player adds up all three. If only two cards are in the same suit, you add those together. The best possible hand totals 31 and will consist of an ace and two ten-point cards in the same suit. So for example, an ace of spaces, a queen of spades, and a ten of spades. PLAY Each player begins with three “lives,” which are represented by pennies or bottlecaps. (Older kids appreciate playing for bigger stakes like quarters or loonies!) Play always begins the dealer’s left. The first player has two options: drawing the top card from the stock pile, or the discard pile. Once a card is drawn and the player assesses his or her hand, a card needs to be discarded. However, if at the beginning of your turn you think the value of your hand is better than your opponents’, you can knock instead of drawing a

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Shuffling cards is a good skill to have. Read on to learn how to put that shuffling practice to good use!

card. Knocking can occur at any point during the game. The act of knocking (not surprisingly, kids seem to really like the knocking part of this game) is a signal that the round is closed. The person who knocks should be holding cards with a high point value. The player who knocked must keep the hand they had at the start of their turn, but each other player gets one final chance to draw and discard. After the last player to the knocker’s right has discarded, all players tally their score and reveal their cards by laying them on the table, face up. The player with the lowest hand value loses a life. If there is a tie involving the knocker, the other player lose a life, but the player who knocked is safe. If the knocker’s score is the lowest out of all the players, he or she forfeits two lives. If there’s a tie for lowest between two or more players other than the knocker, then both (all) of those players lose a life. If a player draws 31, he or she must show their cards immediately and all the other players lose a life. KEEPING SCORE When a player loses a life, he or she has to put a coin into the bank. If you have no lives left, you are said to be playing “on your face” with one last chance at staying in the game before being permanently eliminated. The game continues until all the players have lost their lives. The remaining player is the winner and gets to keep everything in the bank.

p i n t e r e s t . c o m /c a p i t a l p a r e n t /


ParENtiNg BloGs

we LOve Definitely Not Martha BY LYNN JATANIA

O

kay, it’s possible that Leslie Meerburg of the blog Definitely Not Martha (definitelynotmartha.com) isn’t actually Martha Stewart. But you’d be forgiven for making that mistake, because the mouth-watering recipes and photos on her blog look oh-so-divine. In fact, just between us, we actually think Leslie’s foodie blog is even better than the real thing – because not only are her recipes delicious, but they’re accessible, too. As mom to two young mini-gourmands, Leslie has her hands full, but she’s still committed to cooking wholesome food for her family. Every dinner she pulls together is beautiful, but more importantly, nutritious, using a wide variety of ingredients. From glazed shrimp skewers and veggies on the barbeque, to cauliflower and chickpea tagine, to (mmm) Nutella frozen pops, there’s something for everyone, and recipes that can work for any family. Those funky new foods might seem scary at first, but with Leslie’s sweet assurances and confidence backing you up, you might be surprised at what your kids will eat.

And the best part is that she makes her dishes seems within reach of the busiest amateur cook, too. A puffed pastry mushroom tart comes together with just a few layers, a simple carrot-ginger dressing and kale make a quick side salad, and vegetarian curry with mushrooms gets served straight out of the slow cooker. She’s got some great, accessible birthday party ideas, too, from finger foods to feeling-fancy punch to amazing room transformations with dollar store tissue and streamers. If you’re ready to step up your cooking game, there are a few more complex dishes on the blog – and there’s some fantastic food photography for those of us who just want to play along at home over frozen pizza. But in either case, Leslie is sure to have your mouth watering – and that’s definitely A Good Thing.

Noteable Quote If you’re a regular reader, you probably already know that I have two little girls. This means that my house, more often than not,

is filled with strains of “Let it Go” and “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” Accurate lyrics and pitch are optional, but spontaneous outbursts of song are not. My eldest just turned six, and with her Frozen obsession in full bloom (frost?), she wanted a Frozen-themed party. And she wanted to invite the whole class. Naturally. Since we recently moved to a place where a backyard party was a viable option, I decided to go with it, and cross all fingers and toes. Luck was with me - the day was a little warm (30C), but it was a beautiful day for a party. With having an afternoon party, I kept the food simple and sort-of healthy – a rainbow fruit tray (huge hit), a rainbow veggie tray (slightly less of a hit), a cheese and kielbasa tray, crackers, pretzel stick “Olaf arms,” tortilla chips and salsa. We also had a separate bowl of “Olaf noses” (baby carrots) and some Melted Snowman Punch. I try to avoid artificial colours as much as I can, so my only cave to blue dye was a splash of blue Gatorade in the punch.

Meet Leslie Meerburg of the blog Definitely Not Martha (definitelynotmartha.com). PHOTO SUBMITTED BY LESLIE MEERBURG.

Read the rest of this post and get Leslie’s Melted Snowman Punch recipe at Definitely Not Martha (definitelynotmartha.com).

All of Elmwood’s outstanding teachers lead, inspire and encourage our students’ confidence, sense of responsibility and academic excellence in a supportive and collaborative environment. At Elmwood, we go above and beyond to ensure our girls receive a well-rounded, rigorous education that will prepare them for life and work beyond the classroom. Come for a private tour, meet our faculty and see them in action. You’ll also have an opportunity to speak to our students and hear more about the Elmwood difference.

Mrs. Strachan doesn’t just teach addition and subtraction,

Call (613) 744-7783 or email admissions@elmwood.ca to set up your tour.

SHE TEACHES GIRLS TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. elmwood.ca NOVEMBER 2014 11


ACTIVE FAMILIES

Remembrance Day ceremonies in Ottawa BY MISTY PRATT

“I

n Flanders Fields” is the influential war poem written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae. The poem references the red poppy, which subsequently became one of the world’s most recognized memorials for soldiers who have died in conflict. Generations of people have grown up with family members who fought in one (or both) of the Great Wars, and the poem highlights the extraordinary sacrifices that families made to live in a democratic and safe society. The children growing up today know nothing of the Great Wars, but modern day political and social life is a direct consequence of those events. Canadian citizens continue to travel around the world to fight in wars where democracy and freedom are at the heart of the conflict. By encouraging children to remember and pay honour to fallen soldiers and veterans, the hope is that the next generation will be inspired to help shape the future of their country and world. Although it’s important to discuss these issues yearround, Remembrance Day is a yearly tradition in which children and families can participate. Living in Ottawa provides a wonderful opportunity to take part in some of the biggest Remembrance Day ceremonies in the country. Here are just a few events

that will take place on November 11. NATIONAL CEREMONY legion.ca/honour-remember/the-national-ceremony The biggest ceremony in Ottawa, this gathering takes place in front of the National War Memorial on Elgin Street with a parade beginning at 10:30 a.m. Arrive early to get a good vantage point. The ceremony is also shown on several jumbo screens and is broadcast through loudspeakers. The CF-18 flyby that occurs right after 11:00 a.m. is a highlight for plane enthusiasts.

Meet at The National Military Cemetery for a Remembrance Day ceremony at 10:30 a.m. (280 Beechwood Ave.)

ORLEANS LEGION BRANCH 632 rcl632.com Orléans is home to a large veteran population and this ceremony is the second largest in Ottawa. The CF-18 flyby usually makes an appearance over the legion as well, on its way to downtown. The parade begins at 10:30 a.m., and refreshments and entertainment will follow the ceremony at 11:00 a.m. (800 Taylor Creek Rd.)

CANADIAN WAR MUSEUM warmuseum.ca/remember Each year the War Museum runs Remembrance Day programming throughout the month of November. Memorial Hall Visitation and webcast begins at 10:40 a.m. On Remembrance Day, at exactly 11 a.m., sunlight shines through a single window in Memorial Hall to frame the headstone representing Canada’s Unknown Soldier. A limited number of free tickets will be available at 9:30 a.m. at the Information Desk. No reservations are permitted. Special Remembrance Day tours (10 a.m., 11:15 a.m., 12 p.m.,1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m., and 4 p.m.) highlight the areas of the Museum that touch on Remembrance, including Memorial Hall, Regeneration Hall and the Royal Canadian Legion Hall of Honour. Register at the Satellite Information Desk.

BEECHWOOD CEMETERY beechwoodcemetery.com/index.php/en/home. html

WESTBORO LEGION BRANCH 480 rcl480.com A parade leaves the legion at 2 p.m., with an

informal gathering at the Carlingwood Shopping Centre at 11 a.m. (2121 Carling Avenue). BARRHAVEN LEGION BRANCH 641 rcl641.ca A parade with the legion and 28 Field Ambulance will take place behind the Walter Baker Centre at John McCrae Secondary School (103 Malvern Dr.) MANOTICK LEGION BRANCH 314 rcl314.ncf.ca The ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at the Watson’s Mill Cenotaph in Manotick (5525 Dickinson St.) SCHOOL BOARDS Every school will have its own Remembrance Day event, so make sure to find out what’s going on in your child’s school on November 11. ANNUAL LITERACY AND POSTER CONTEST Many local legion branches are hosting a poster contest for youth in grades 1 through 12. If your child wants to create something which honours our military heritage, contact your legion branch for information: legion.ca/youth/contests.

Remembrance Day poppy craft BY ANDREA TOMKINS

N

ovember is the time of year to wear a poppy. Why not try making your own this year? Not only is this an easy craft to do with the kids, but it’s a great opportunity to talk about the importance of Remembrance Day and the significance of wearing a poppy. You will need: red felt black felt or black buttons chalk scissors black thread and a needle alligator clips glue gun You can make this craft in two different ways, either by gluing each layer of felt together or by sewing them together. We took the sewing route in order to get some much needed button-sewing practice! 1) Using the chalk, trace three circles

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on the red felt in descending size. The largest should be about 2-3” in diameter. Don’t be afraid to freestyle it! Precision isn’t important here, in fact, it makes the finished product look nicer if the circles are a little bit uneven. 2) Thread the needle and sew the layers together, largest to smallest. This is great sewing practice, especially if you’ve used a black button for the centre of the poppy. 3) Glue the finished poppy to the alligator clip. That’s it! The poppy can be worn in the hair or clipped to a coat or sweater. Traditionally poppies are worn over the heart, as a symbol of our respect and gratitude to those who serve. Pro tip: if you have the supplies, make extra poppies for friends and family, and wear them with pride on November 11.

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With a little bit of help, kids can make their own felt poppy broaches. PHOTOS BY ANDREA TOMKINS.

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top 5 books

best

Top toy picks BY MARCIA MACQUARRIE, THE NOISE ON TOYS

T

his month is all about remembrance. What better way to discuss the subject than with a good book? This month’s book list comes to us from Sherri Ryan at the Hazeldean branch of the Ottawa Public Library. A Bear in War, by Stephanie Innes (Ages 8+)

1

This book is narrated by young Aileen’s stuffed bear, “Teddy.” When Aileen’s dad is sent to Europe to fight in the war, she and her brother Howard decide to send Teddy to keep their father safe and remind him of home. Teddy’s storytelling and the exchange of daily letters chronicle their father’s wartime experience as a medic in France and the day-to-day life of a farm family during WWI in Canada. This story is based on actual events, and you can visit the real Teddy at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa.

A Poppy is to Remember, by Heather Patterson (Appropriate for all ages)

2

This juvenile non-fiction book contains simple prose that is a good introduction to the poem “In Flanders Fields,” the significance of the poppy, and why we commemorate Remembrance Day on November 11.

Brothers Far From Home: The World War I Diary of Eliza Bates, by Jean Little (Ages 8-12)

3

This book is written in journal format and is part of the Dear Canada Series. It is juvenile historical fiction, and while the publisher indicates that it is written for girls, boys would certainly enjoy this novel as well. Set in Uxbridge, Ontario during World War I, it gives an account, through the diary of 12-year-old Eliza Bates, of what it must have been like on the battlefield in Europe and on the home front in Canada.

5

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IDE SALE

STORE W

F 20% OHINFG

dough, finger paint, face paint, giant soap bubbles, dog biscuits and even a ‘how to’ for growing an avocado plant, quality time can extend well past meal time. To read more about this and other great activity kits, visit thenoiseontoys.com.

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Soldier Bear, by Bibi Dumon Tak (Ages 9+) Soldier Bear is a fictional story that is based on actual events. The story is about Voytek, an orphaned bear cub, who travels through Egypt, Italy and Scotland with a group of Polish soldiers stationed in Iran during World War Two. The author captures the spirit of war and weaves historical facts and details into this novel, while telling an engaging story.

4

This is a classic “very slightly messy manual” for introducing your child to the everyday wonders in your kitchen. The Klutz Kids Cooking book helps make early cooking projects into wonderful quality time memories. The recipes are both fun to make and yummy to eat, and testing parents really appreciated that the sturdy, laminated cardboard pages are so easy-to-wipe clean. Illustrated ingredients make it easier for your child to help find what’s needed for the recipe, and our kid testers loved the colour-coded measuring spoons that helped them measure the correct amounts. Even the instructions, while written for an adult reader, are voiced from the child’s point of view. And with extra recipes for making play

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The Sky is Falling, by Kit Pearson (Ages 10-14) Ten-year old Norah and her younger brother Gavin are evacuated to Canada from Britain during World War II. Pearson’s strong characterization makes the situation very real for children, who will identify with the feelings of the characters. The setting goes from Britain to Toronto and to cottage country, north of Toronto. So we see war from a distance, but through the eyes of Norah who is very much affected by the changes in her life.

s e i t r a p y a d h t r i b We do !! s p m a c g n i z a m and a 613-482-4029

www.ottawa.madscience.org NOVEMBER 2014 13


FAMILY FUN Meet the Plancic family! They live in Ottawa’s west end in Central Park. Pictured here are Edin and Anela, their son Aidin and daughter Leila. Sun, fresh air and being active is what they love most. They enjoy going to different beaches, parks, and participating in all kinds of outdoor festivals and activities in Ottawa.

SEND US YOUR PICS We’d like to see your BEST family photos and selfies! Submit your favourites and you might see one or two in a future issue. For more details go to capitalparent.ca

family snap

Even if you fall on your face, “you’re still moving forward. ”

COLANDER GRIDDLE TONGS BLENDER WHISK

- Victor Kiam

OUR family

CaleNdaR

Ottawa Storytellers Children’s Festival NOVEMBER 8

The Ottawa Storytellers proudly presents its annual day of storytelling for children at the Nepean Centrepointe Library. Performances run from noon to 4:30 p.m. The Baobob Community Drummers will start things off at noon, followed by a series of enchanting and engaging tales. This free event is suitable for children ages 2 to 10, but please note that children must be accompanied by a parent or

guardian for all storytelling events. For more details go to ottawastorytellers.ca.

and 12. Book it at dovercourt.org.

Kanata Santa Claus Parade NOVEMBER 15

Date night! NOVEMBER 15

Dovercourt Recreation Centre is helping parents achieve what may be an elusive goal for some: date night! Drop the kids off for an evening of fun for them and a much-deserved night out for you. The kids start the evening with organized water activities and a swim in the pool, followed by a healthy snack and some quieter activities designed to wind down the night and get ready for bed. Drop off is between 6 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. and pick up is between 8:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. Cost is $16. This program is intended for kids between the age of 3

Dovercourt Recreation Centre

cember 1st Winter session starts De

613.798.8950

www.dovercourt.org 14 NOVEMBER 2014 | c a p i t a l p a r e n t . c a |

Registration Open!

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The Nutcracker NOVEMBER 29 & 30

Santa is taking a day off and dropping by Kanata! The fun starts at 10 a.m. and the parade route runs from Castlefrank to Abbeyhill Drive to Hazeldean Mall. Proceeds go to the Kanata Food Cupboard. For information go to hazeldeanmall.com.

This is a great opportunity to start a new tradition of seeing the Nutcracker, and do it early in the season before the holidays take over. This OYP Theatre School production at Shenkman Arts Centre is easy on the pocketbook too. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children. For more information go to shenkmanarts.ca

Ottawa Help Santa Toy Parade NOVEMBER 22

The Magic Horn at the NAC NOVEMBER 29

Every year since 1969, the Ottawa Professional Fire Fighters’ Association has been organizing the Help Santa Toy Parade and collecting toys along the parade route for distribution to the less fortunate children in Ottawa-Carleton. Once again, fire fighters will collect new toys and cash donations along the route, so don’t forget to bring your loonies and toonies! The parade starts at 11 a.m. For details and parade route info go to toyparade.org. Families can also drop off donations of new toys at any Ottawa Fire Station up until mid December.

Holiday Pottery Sale NOVEMBER 28-30 Check party dates, details & availability online!

CORKSCREW DECANTER LADLE TUREEN SKILLET

The Ottawa Guild of Potters is back with their holiday pottery sale. It’ll be taking place in the Horticulture Building at Lansdowne Park and there will be great items by local artists as well as demonstrations, a clay craft area for kids, and doors prizes. For information go to ottawaguildofpotters.ca.

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When “Sahara Bob” brings his exotic musical instruments to the concert, he meets the Genie of the Magic Horn, and the audience witnesses the legendary powers of exotic musical instruments.  Arrive early for the Tunetown pre-concert activities. These free learn-and-play activities take place in the lobbies and begin 45 minutes prior to each concert. For ticket information go to nac-cna.ca.

Vintage Village of Lights BEGINS NOVEMBER 29

Experience a village of lights at the Cumberland Heritage Village Museum every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from November 29 through December 21. Christmas lights, a gigantic reindeer and sleigh, and a visit with Santa Claus await. Have fun playing broomball or street hockey, making a snow globe, decorating gingerbread, and sending your Christmas wish list to Santa via telegram. For more information go to ottawa.ca.

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Capital Parent November 2014  

Ottawa Parenting Newspaper…for Smart, Savvy, Mom's & Dad's.

Capital Parent November 2014  

Ottawa Parenting Newspaper…for Smart, Savvy, Mom's & Dad's.