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March 2012

Be a tourist in Tallahassee Learning can be fun and games

Stop mealtime meltdowns For March, we’re seeing green! Like us at Facebook.com/TLHmoms

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How’s Your “Green” Knowledge? Which one of these is ashade of green?

Which one is not a green vegetable?

1. Cerulean 2. Chartreuse 3. Vermilion

1. Celery 2. Potato 3. Watercress

A green thumb is:

Which one is not a green fruit?

1. 2. 3.

A first time hitch hiker Someone who is good at gardening A rock group

A person who is green around the gills is: 1. A lover of seafood 2. Happy 3. Nauseous

Grab bag

1. Grape 2. Lime 3. Cantaloupe

The slang “Greenbacks”mean: 1. Football players 2. A terrible disease 3. U.S.Dollars

A green horn is: 1. 2. 3.

A musical instrument A person with little or no experience A french pastry

Answers: 2. Chartreuse, 2. Someone who is good at gardening, 3. Nauseous, 2. A person with little or no experience, 2. Potato, 3. Cantaloupe, 3. U.S. Dollars

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first word

March into springtime,

Tallahassee! S

pring is upon us, and our Capital City is bursting with the brilliant colors and sounds of this lively time of year. March is a fun-filled month as packed with activities and excitement as this issue of TLH Moms! As a mother of three, I am always anxious for the consistently warm temperatures that support our family’s love of boating, fishing and the outdoors. Spring break is a favorite of mine, a much-needed breather after multiple school projects and test prep work. We have traveled and we have stayed in town — either way it’s good family time.

277 N. Magnolia Drive Tallahassee, FL 32301 Call 850.599.2225 Fax 850.942.0185 PRESIDENT AND PUBLISHER

Patrick Dorsey

850.599.2124 Tlh-publisher@ tallahassee.com

MARKETING AND NON-DAILY MANAGER

Marjorie Schoelles 850.599.2232 mschoelles@ tallahassee.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Amanda Corbin Tricia Dulaney Heather Fuselier Candice Grause Mikkie Hoard Kathy Radford

If your Spring Break consists of a “stay-cation,” read on for suggestions on how to be a tourist in Tallahassee. There is no shortage of educational, historical, and recreational ways to entertain your family here. My family loves to pack a picnic and make a day of the hiking and biking trails in nearby St. Marks, an outing suitable for a wide range of ages. We really live in a beautiful place, surrounded by beautiful coasts and history.

Mikkie and Brad Hoard with their 3 children, Gable (16), Hadley (5), and Gavin (13).

Game night is the best. Even better, check out the article about games that teach important skills. Also, enjoy suggestions on how to pinpoint your picky eater’s preferences and come up with a well-balanced diet. Somehow, my son we labeled “The Negotiator” due to his efforts to negotiate his way through mealtime is healthy and smart (thanks to Flintstone vitamins) at 16. Oddly enough, my 13-year-old son would eat raw sushi and raw veggies, but not a hamburger or hot dog. They both now eat anything that isn’t running from them, but that may change by the time this prints! The Alphabet Kitchen feature is always loaded with ways to make food fun and educational. Elsewhere in this issue, the Department of Environmental Protection challenges Kermit the Frog’s theory that “it ain’t easy being green” with easy green things to do. In a nod to the perennial fun of St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, we offer St. Patty’s Day crafts to make. Or put your family’s movie-making skills to the test and make a family video. Photographs are priceless memories, but a family movie can prove to be priceless entertainment. We enjoy those the kids made themselves. Whatever your spring brings, make it official on the first day, March 20, by soaking up the warm temperatures and delighting in beautiful people, family and surroundings. You can’t go wrong! Wrap up your month with the Springtime Tallahassee Parade and Festival on March 31. Best to all, Mikkie Hoard 4 

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CONTACT US ADVERTISING

Lisa Lazarus.Brown 850.599.2333

TLHmoms Magazine is published 12 times a year by the Tallahassee Democrat at 277. N. Magnolia Drive, Tallahassee, FL 32301. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without the consent of the publisher. TLHmoms Magazine is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, photos and artwork.

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Contents

10

22

March 20

10 COVER STORY Why travel for spring break? There are tons of great things to do in Tallahassee

03 Grab bag How’s your Green Knowledge? 04 FIRST WORD March into spring with a myriad of fun activities

14 LET’S GO A garden gets kids thinking green

06 HEALTH KIDS G! This burger’s good for you 08 NOW Look like a video and photo pro

20 FEATURE Banish mealtime meltdowns 22 Best Bets 30 Learn A Little Get Nutty with National Peanut Month

16 JUST FOR FUN St. Patty’s Day deserves green gear 18 FEATURE Sneak in a little learning with a game

“Like” us on

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healthy kids

Green starts with ‘g’

By AMANDA CORBIN

S

pring is upon us! There are tons of fresh vegetables and fruits in season in the months to come that are light and fresh, bursting with flavor. Spring is the perfect time to “go green” with your children. Talk about locally grown foods and cooking with fresh ingredients. With a little flavor and creativity, incorporating more vegetables in your meals will be a breeze!

G is for …

be found in the grocery store pickled, dried, and powdered. It can also be candied! Fresh ginger root has a really strong, spicy and sweet flavor. It can add great flavor to your dishes but, trust me, a little goes a long way! Ginger is used frequently in Asian and Caribbean cuisines.

Ginger! And …

• Guava • Garlic • Greens • Grapes

Gary’s goat ate all of my grapes! Ginger Ginger root, or “ginger” as it is plainly called, comes from the root of the ginger plant. Fresh ginger has to be peeled before it is eaten. Vegetable peelers work best for this. Ginger can 6 

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Global Garden Burger (Serves 4-6) 1 eggplant peeled and diced small (2-3 cups) 1 Tbsp. ginger, minced 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 green onions, thinly sliced ½ red bell pepper, diced small 1 tsp. cilantro, chopped 1 cup seasoned panko breadcrumbs 1 Tbsp. ponzu sauce Salt and pepper, to taste

In a tablespoon of vegetable oil, sauté the onions, ginger, garlic, eggplant and red pepper until soft. Season with salt and pepper.

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Let mixture cool in a clean bowl. Gently stir in cilantro and ponzu. Add breadcrumbs to vegetables, mixing them in with your hands until firm patties can be formed. Form each burger into patties on a plate or a sheet pan and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 15-20 minutes. Fry each burger on medium high heat for about 2 minutes on each side to get a nice color. Serve on a whole wheat bun with lettuce and tomato. Sweet potato fries pair well with this burger and add even more fresh flavor. Tip: These burgers freeze well if you need to get a quick meal on the table.

and shapes are all fundamental math skills that you can bring to life right at home. (Skills involved: critical thinking, logical thinking, math skills)

G is for garden fresh!

‘G’ activities to try this month:

G is for game! Kids love games, and when it comes to food you can make one from just about anything. Have them count the ingredients you cook with or guess the spices or seasonings being used. You could even “sell” dishes to them to help them learn how to count money. Fractions, patterns, counting

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Experience fresh produce from local farmers. Make it an adventure by visiting a farm where you can pick your own vegetables. The kids will love this, and you in turn get to teach them about fresh ingredients while boosting your local economy. Visit www.pickyourown.org for a farm near you. (Supporting local business, independence, ingredient identification)

G is for granola! Granola is a nutritious and super easy to make. Mix whole oats, pecans and

equal parts of brown sugar and maple syrup and bake on greased sheet pan at 250 degrees for an hour. Get creative with this, adding any type of dried fruit, nuts or even candies like M&Ms if you’d like. Cut the granola into bars for quick snacks or use it to top fruit and yogurt, or oatmeal. (Creativity, nutrition, ingredient identification, critical thinking) Amanda Corbin is a local mom and owner of The Posh Concept Event Planning & Couture Catering. She can be reached at 850-345-6522 or theposhconcept@gmail.com. More recipes and resources for cooking with children can be found on her kids blog, thechewychalkboard. blogspot.com. t

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Now

Ready for your

close-up?

Digital tools make it easy to capture and display images like a pro By Candice Grause

you can pick up a 12-megapixel Nikon Coolpix for just over $100. Similarly, video cameras were even more expensive than cameras in the 1990s and now only cost a few hundred dollars, like the uber popular Flipcams running only $100 to $200.

H

ooray for the digital age! Thanks to technology, we live in an engaged culture interconnected with Internet, television and smart phones, constantly sharing documents, files, music, news, videos and ourselves, all at the touch of a button. Everyone from the highest CEOs to Grandma is plugged in.

While it can be a little overwhelming at times, life in the digital age has many perks. For example, photo and video technology continues to do more and cost less. In 1999, Nikon’s first digital camera, the D1, was 2.7 megapixels and cost $5,000. Today, 8 

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But who needs more than one device? Video cameras capture images, digital cameras capture video, and phones now do both. The good news is that with a good device and some cool editing programs out there, anyone in the family can be an amateur videographer or photographer. Just in time for spring break vacation, here is a simple three-step plan to ensure maximum enjoyment of those unique memorable moments caught on film.”

not to forget your camera at home (again) for that weekend in Destin or that road trip to Universal Studios. Snatch up precious moments playing in the sand, riding rides, playing mini golf and cruising in the car. If your kids are younger, they probably already love playing it up for the camera. If they are older, just ignore the grumbling – they will appreciate it when they are grown.

2. Once you’ve fully recovered from your vacation, you will want to collect

1. Capture, capture, capture! Hello?

Beautiful home videos or digital scrapbooks don’t just happen by themselves. You need good material to make it all come together. Try

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Creative ways to showcase images Want to think outside the frame? Here are some great ideas for making your home videos count. Independent Journalism – When my daughter was 7, I gave her our camera and she held it while running from one end of the house to the other, then “crash landed” on our bed. That clip is one of our all-time favorite home videos to this day.

those loose clips into something more polished. Video editing software like Windows Live Movie Maker or iMovie (for Macs) have a few more features than free online services such as VideoToolBox, Stroome and Pixorial, but all are easy to use and allow you to upload, cut, add transitions, text and audio, and then share your end product. Video creation sites like Stupeflix allow you to combine both your still shots and your video to create one beautiful piece that will leave your relatives wondering if you do this for a living.

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3. Finally, for simple photo prints,

books and souvenirs, there are great sites such as Shutterfly and Snapfish that serve as both online storage solution and magic birthday gift creator. From these sites you can whip up collages, albums, coffee mugs, T-shirts, mouse pads and all the standard mementos.

Whether you know your way around a camera or not this spring break, you can’t go wrong with these photo and video resources to help you create that one-of-a-kind documentary of the family time spent together. Have fun with it. t

Slide Out – Using a digital frame or even your TV, streaming a slide-show of pictures and video is a great way to remember good times. This is also a great way to showcase your family moments during get-togethers, at house parties or just for fun. Digi-scrapping – Whether you use online services like Digital Scrapbook Place or throw something together in PowerPoint or Photoshop, a digital scrapbook is an inexpensive way to keep or share your favorite pictures. YouTube It! – While most videos are shared publically on YouTube, the video site also offers really great privacy settings that can make your uploaded videos accessible to only those you choose. Depending on your preference, you can make videos public, unlisted or private. So don’t be afraid to use YouTube’s sharing potential.

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COVER STORY

Be a tourist in your own town BY KATHY RADFORD

S

ometimes we get so caught up in getting to day care, to work and then to soccer practice that we forget all about the rich heritage and good old fun to be found right here in our own backyard. If that sounds like you, why not take advantage of the school closings for spring break this year, have a “staycation” and take the kids out to explore Tally town like a tourist would? This year, the Leon County public schools are closed for the spring holidays March 19-23, which can be the perfect time to get out and about in this part of the state. It’s not too hot and not too cold, and the springtime birds and buds are showing their glory. STOP AND SMELL THE FLOWERS. If birds and blooms tickle 10 

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your fancy, this can be an opportune time to visit Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park. Commonly called just Maclay Gardens by most Tallahasseeans, the park is a beautiful place to take time to smell the roses … and azaleas and magnolias and so much more blossoming plant life. There are also water features and winding cobblestone paths that seem to make kids tremble with the notion of stomping their feet. If you bring a field guidebook about flowers with you, you and your budding scientist can look up the scientific names of what you find. Consider taking a late morning trip to Maclay Gardens in the northeast part of town and then grabbing a bite to eat at a kid-friendly restaurant before heading home for the afternoon.

Eat breakfast for dinner. An awesome restaurant here in town, The Canopy Road Café, serves breakfast all day, and I assure you they are some todie-for breakfasts, too. Lots of folks gravitate toward the pancakes that are served with nuts on top. Why? Because they are not just any old pancakes — they are made with sweet potatoes. Indulge your kids one day and watch them smile. For that matter, you will likely be indulging your own inner child with these Canopy Road delicacies. There are two locations, one tucked away on Monroe Street and the other on Shannon Lakes Boulevard in Killearn. Both venues are family-friendly and not too fancy to let your kids be kids.

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HAVE A CAPITOL TIME. Look for your house or the kids’ school from the observation floor at the top of the Capitol building. Have you ever actually toured either the old or the new Capitol buildings? It can be a challenging thing to do for most locals since the hours are pretty much the same hours we all work: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. So, spring break is the time! Look for a clear, bright day and go up to the 22nd floor and see what you can see. Even the elevator can be fun for young kids. If you simply must, you can turn the adventure into a lesson on directions. CHECK IN AT A LIBRARY. I loved the library as a child, and now, as an adult observing folks among the racks, it is rare

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that I see a child there who isn’t smiling. And libraries aren’t the total silence museums they used to be. There are story-telling adventures, special sections and furniture for young ones, DVDs and CDs as well as books, and other activities. Go on a day when something different is scheduled or simply go on a regular day and take your time to leisurely allow your children to explore and pick whatever they want to check out. GO TO MARKET. Scoop and bag up goodies from the bins at Fresh Market. From nuts and trail mix, to lemon-chili crackers, to licorice and chocolates, no child can resist the deliciousness that resides in the bulk bins at this cool grocery store.

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MAKE A SPA DATE. Soak up some relaxation with a mother-daughter spa date. Tallahassee is loaded with salons and spas, and a day when there is no homework to worry about is a perfect day to indulge a bit. Get a mani-pedi together, and let your girl pick any color polish she wants, for herself and for you. Even green or purple! Or maybe a facial is more like it. Whatever the two of you would like. FROLIC SEASIDE. Catch crabs, swim or be surprised by starfish on the shore at St. George. All you need is a net. Don’t forget the sunscreen because even in March it’s best to protect everyone from the sun’s rays. Don’t have a net? Want a golf cart to cruise around the tiny island? Think a bike would be fun? Check out Trader Joe’s. They have everything. TRAVEL BACK IN TIME. See the Old South at Goodwood Museum on Miccosukee Road. There are tour

guides who will take you through the former plantation and tell the tales of the people who used to live in the mansion-turned-museum. There are acres of gardens, as well, now there is even a place to get lunch. Fanny’s Garden Café is open Tuesday-Friday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. The homemade potato salad is a yummy choice to go with a traditional sandwich. Romp with the pooch. Out east at 5600 Miccosukee Road is the Canopy Road Greenway. There is a long trail amidst shade trees and also wideopen spaces for everyone to walk or run. Or, try the dog park at Tom Brown Park. Bring a ball for playing retriever and a bowl for some water, and remember what it was like when your best friend had four legs. Fido will thank you and so will your children as they get some exercise with that puppy they don’t get to play with enough during the school year.

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GET TO KNOW THE LOCAL MARINE LIFE. Touch some gulf critters in the touch tanks at FSU’s Gulf Specimen Marine Lab in Panacea. You will be amazed to discover how much your youngsters know about the marine life around our area, and you will wonder at how much you didn’t realize. Don’t expect a touristy dolphin show, however. GSML has mostly small gulf creatures like sponges, jellyfish, hermit crabs and seahorses. The purpose of the lab is to study and teach about our area’s marine life. It’s always a favorite. If you go and your child loves it, why not ask your school if they can schedule a field trip there near the end of the school year? Consider joining the student and teachers this year and take spring break right along with them. It is a splendid time to reconnect with your kids by seeing Tallahassee through their eyes and the eyes of a tourist. t

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Fun for later Once you get around Tallahassee with your perspective changed, you might want to take some more time later in the year to explore some more family-friendly activities that you couldn’t squeeze in or that didn’t quite fit the spring-break time frame: Enjoy “Adventures of a Wimpy Kid” at the Young Actor’s Theatre on Glenview Road. The story of a wimpy kid’s first year in middle school is adapted for the stage. It is scheduled for April 5-7. Pack a picnic lunch and take the short drive down to the St. Marks Lighthouse. It’s not really a great beach for swimming, but bring a Frisbee and kites for the kids and an easy read for you. Don’t forget the camera — this place is beautiful and relaxing. Sample the ice creams all around town and rate the top five. Look up all the locations on the Internet or in the phone book and make a map. Then traverse through the traffic to Bruster’s, Marble Slab, DQ, Cold Stone Creamery, TCBY and wherever else your treasure map takes you. Head on over to John Knox Road and delight in the water slides and waves of the Trousdell Aquatics Center. Run by the Parks and Recreation Department of the city of Tallahassee, Trousdell is like a mini water theme park just down the road from the Tallahassee Mall.

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LET’S GO

Plant green lessons with a garden

BY FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION

M

arch 17, St. Patrick’s Day,

continue that green theme in your

importance of thinking green. And, as

brings visions of green –

own backyard by planting a garden

Floridians, planting a garden in March

from four-leaf clovers to

and engaging the kids. What a great

little green leprechauns. So why not 14 

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opportunity to introduce them to the

is absolutely doable. What’s so green about planting a gar-

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den, besides the green beans, green peppers or green tomatoes? Well, to begin with: Plants help to improve air quality by filtering the air. If you only have to walk outside to pick out your vegetables and not drive your car, you contribute zero emissions into the air, and save on gasl. You also eliminate the grocery bags needed to carry your vegetables home. You won’t contribute to all the energy and products that go into packaging the foods for display, nor to the enormous fuel costs required to transport the foods. And by using rain collected in rain barrels, or any type of container, you haven’t relied on drinking water for gardening. Besides the green benefits of planting a garden, the outcome is extremely rewarding for kids. It teaches responsibility and patience, and instills a sense of pride and accomplishment when the fruits (or vegetables or flowers) of their labor are finally ripe. For an extra treat this year, plant some sunflower seeds and watch the kids ooh and aah when they see the flowers grow two, three and sometimes even four times taller than themselves. And don’t forget to roast the sunflower seeds when they finish blooming for a final tasty treat. Learn more from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Easy As One campaign about other easy, everyday actions to a greener Florida by visiting www.dep.state.fl.us/easyasone. t

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JUST FOR FUN

Make green gear for

St. Patty’s Day Paper Leprechaun Hat What you’ll need: Green, black, and yellow construction paper Green poster board Glue Scissors Tape How to make it: Cut a head band out of the green poster board that is slightly larger than the child’s head. Cut a hat shape out of the green construction paper. Cut a 2-inch black strip. Glue onto the hat above the brim and trim the edges to align with the slant of the hat. Cut a yellow square that is slightly taller than the black strip.  Cut the center out of the square, leaving a quarter-inch border.  Glue on the middle of the black strip. Tape the hat to the headband (that works better than gluing it). Tape or staple the head band so that it fits around the child’s head. Cut off any excess. Have fun!

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St. Patrick’s Day Pasta Necklace What you’ll need: Rubbing alcohol Liquid food coloring Bowls Dried pasta (unique shapes work well) Spoon Cookie sheet Paper towels Green foam Glue How to make it: To make dyed pasta, begin by pouring rubbing alcohol into a bowl. Add a few drops of desired color of food coloring to the rubbing alcohol and stir.  You can always add more food coloring later to get a more intense color if needed. Add dried pasta to the mixture and stir.  Make sure the rubbing alcohol mixture is covering the pasta. Let pasta sit 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the pasta onto a paper towel-lined cookie sheet to let dry.  Move the pasta around while it’s drying so that one part of the pasta doesn’t dry faster than another and leave a discolored mark.  Cut the length of string that you would like your necklace to be — it’s best to cut this slightly longer than you will need. String the yarn through the pasta to create your necklace. If you would like to include a shamrock on your necklace, print our template and cut it out. Trace onto green craft foam and cut out the pieces. You will need two shamrocks. Glue the pieces around the string on your necklace. Tie the ends of your necklace together and trim any excess. Wear proudly! t

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FEATURE

Don’t tell the kids!

That game’s educational F BY TRICIA DULANEY

lash cards make your eyes cross? Want to help your child learn, but can’t face another spelling drill? Imagine how the kids feel! School’s tough these days; today’s kindergarteners are learning stuff we might not have faced until second grade. Giving them a boost seems like the Good Mom thing to do, but forcing learning down their throats feels more Cruella Deville than Mary Poppins. Luckily, plenty of educational games keep the focus

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on play — the kids might not even realize they’re learning. Some of them are old favorites you might not have even realized were teaching tools. Everyone knows Scrabble helps with spelling and vocabulary, but have you ever considered the kind of math skills involved in games like Monopoly and Yahtzee? For younger children, Old Maid and Go Fish aid in memory and matching skills, and even the simplest board games, such as Candyland and Hi-Ho Cherry-O, teach colors and counting. Learning games can start even earlier. Teacher Shannon Bonn’s preschool students love games of Memory Match, where they turn up two cards at a time to find a match. Not only do they get practice remembering where each card is, they learn to match pairs such as mama and baby animals, upper- and lower-case letters, or numerals with number sets. Cheryl Mitchell, mom and first-grade teacher at Hawks Rise Elementary, knows the value of games. To her students’ delight, she will occasionally replace a math or reading lesson with a game of bingo – math bingo or sight-word bingo, that is. The competition and the thrill of covering those little spaces keeps the most reluctant students focused – and learning. A more active game of Math Baseball engages even the older kids. For that game, each corner of the room becomes a base, and students are divided into two teams. Each “pitch” is a math question, and if the batter answers correctly he advances to first. Three missed questions and a player retires to the side. If your children are bored with board games, send them outside for a scavenger hunt. For younger children,

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consider a color hunt: “Find something small and red.” Give older ones a ruler or a measuring tape and a list with items such as “something 13 inches long,” along with a small notebook to write down their finds. Or try it with a scientific twist, asking for specific leaves or flowers – check out a book on local flora at the library to use as a field guide. Don’t overlook the learning possibilities in the kitchen. Have older kids halve or double a recipe for some serious applied fraction practice. Reading recipes, following directions and measuring ingredients all reinforce necessary skills in the sneakiest way, and eating their handiwork provides yummy positive feedback. When it’s too hot to cook, take all those measuring tools outside for a water relay, scooping up two-thirds of a cup at a time to fill a bucket. Just don’t tell them it’s educational. That’ll be our secret. t

Do-it-yourself word games and more Don’t have cards, board games or props handy? You can still mix a lot of fun with a little learning. Try one of these games! • The Rhyming Game – my son’s favorite when he was a toddler. Simply choose a word, such as “tree,” and take turns coming up with a rhyme for it. This reappears as a phonics exercise in kindergarten. • Categories – name the category (movie titles, dog breeds) and take turns filling it. • License Plate Addition – add the numbers on plates of passing cars. Highest score at the end of a set time wins. • I Spy – “something that begins with a P,” “something rectangular,” etc. • “My name is Annie, my boyfriend’s name is Andy, we live in Alabama and we sell apples” – take turns using every letter of the alphabet. (My high-schoolers still play this one!) • Storyline – everyone adds one sentence to a story. • Hangman – elementary school favorite. Players try to guess the letters of the secret word or phrase. Each wrong guess adds another part to the Hangman. • Tangrams – cut colored paper into classic shapes to assemble different puzzles. • Playing Store – pricing, paying, making change – the money may be pretend, but the skills are real.

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FEATURE

Take mealtimes from manic to marvelous By Heather Fuselier

“Ewwwww! I hate this!” “This is so gross!” “Mom, are you trying to poison us?”

T

hese supportive words of affirmation are just a sampling of those heard around dinner tables every night, leaving mothers to wonder if they will ever prepare a meal that doesn’t inspire Oscar-worthy performances of spontaneous illness, pretend gagging and sometimes even a dramatic death scene. Sound familiar? You’re not alone!

These days, it is not surprising that for many families,“dinner” is more a random collection of food than a meal, with each family member eating something different. In fact, the Institute of Food Technologists reports that while more families are eating at home, nearly half of those meals are fast food, delivery or takeout.

never heard of can be the fast track to disaster. Letting them “vote” on dinner can help. Assign each family member a night when they get to plan dinner. If this seems too risky for your family, make a list of mom-approved options and let them select one. Giving kids a sense of control at mealtime can help diffuse conflict and lead to increased confidence in decision-making later. You never know, pancakes and scrambled eggs might become a new dinnertime favorite!

So how do we get everyone around the table, eating the same meal, and sending their compliments to the chef? Try treating your children as VIPs and remember to Vote, Involve, and Prepare.

Involve

Vote

Little hands can count bite-sized veg-

Many times kids reject food because they perceive that they will not like it, so presenting something they have

etables and sprinkle low-fat cheese

Getting kids involved in the food they eat is a proven way to encourage an appreciation for healthy food. Weekends can be a great time to let kids try their hand at helping prepare a meal.

atop a hearty hidden-vegetable lasagna. Kids also can be involved in

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preparing their snacks for the week ahead: Assign the task of counting 15 crackers and 15 raisins to be packed into a lunchbox later in the week. By involving the kids in the family’s food preparation, they are invested in the process and gain a sense of pride, which just might motivate them to actually eat the food they helped prepare.

Prepare It is said that success favors the prepared mind, so it is also important to prepare our minds with realistic expectations. Expecting every meal to be an idyllic experience of peace and tranquility may be unrealistic, but it is certainly possible that four out of seven meals could be free of meltdowns. In addition, preparing children for what will be served can help alleviate their grumbling when the meal arrives. Post a menu where everyone’s suggestions are included (but mom gets the final vote). Then remind children when their chosen dinner is coming up, which reinforces the positive experience of being involved in meal planning. Mealtimes can be stressful for a busy family. By slowing down the process and making meal preparation a family activity, mealtime can go from manic to marvelous. Bon appetit! t

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Dos and don’ts for healthy food relationships Help your child create a positive relationship with food with these easy guidelines. DO model positive behavior. If parents never eat vegetables, neither will their kids. Share stories of a food you used to hate but have grown to enjoy and ask what food they might like when they get older. DO learn about nutrition with your kids. Teaching children that chicken makes their muscles strong and bananas give them energy to play helps them connect food to its function and become less likely to use it as comfort or a reward. DON’T use food as a reward. As tempting as it is to promise a cookie in exchange for a drama-free grocery trip, it reinforces that food is something we deserve, not a tool we use to fuel our bodies. Instead, reward with small splurges like dollar-bin items, trips to fun playgrounds and family experiences. DON’T obsess about your weight or diet. Girls as young as 5 years old contemplate diets and shape their fragile body image with us as an example. If you are trying to lose weight, talk about the positive changes you’ve made, not what you are restricting, and celebrate greater health together.

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Best Bets

Spring into

March!

March 1

Benefit Concert with Barrage 

7 p.m. This special event will feature musicians from the Tallahassee Youth Orchestras and Leon County Schools’ orchestra programs in collaboration with Barrage. More than 200 musicians will fill Ruby Diamond Concert Hall with music. This concert is presented by Capital Eurocars. For ticket information, visit tallahasseeyouthorchestras.org or call 224-8966. Ruby Diamond Concert Hall, Westcott Building, FSU Campus

March 3

St. Francis Wildlife “Behind the Scenes”

12-1 p.m. If you’re interested in a “behind the scenes” visit, join the volunteers at St. Francis Wildlife on the first Saturday of each month. Call the day before so they know you’re coming: 850-627-4151. St. Francis Wildlife, 5580 Salem Road, Quincy, stfranciswildlife@gmail.com 22  March 2012    Tallahassee.TLHmoms.com

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March 3

A Lesson on Florida’s Snakes 10 a.m.- 12 p.m. In this workshop participants will learn about both the venomous and non-venomous snakes of Florida. This workshop will include an animal encounter with a live non-venomous snake. Participants will also learn how best to prevent snake bites and what to do should one occur. Fee: $5 members/ $8 nonmembers. Registration deadline: noon March 2. Class is limited to 20 people. Information: 575-8684, tallahasseemuseum.org. Tallahassee Museum, 3945 Museum Drive

March 3

Forever Changed: La Florida, 1513-1821

This permanent exhibit commemorates the 500th anniversary of Ponce de Leon’s landing on Florida shores in 1513. See a recreated ship, a native hut, original artifacts, beautiful graphics and interactive components, and get a sneak preview of the continuation of the story. Admission and parking are free. For more information: Wanda Richey, 245-6400, museumoffloridahistory. com. Museum of Florida History, 500 S. Bronough St.

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March 10

March 9-11

Red Hills Horse Trials

Florida’s capital city is the site of the Red Hills Horse Trials, an annual United States Eventing Association Area III competition. Named for the sloping terrain and rich red earth known as the “red hills” of north Florida and South Georgia, the Horse Trials features a challenging cross-country course. Four dressage rings, the stadium course, stabling, the Red Hills Avenue of Shops, Saddlers’ Row, Red Hills Food Court, and a variety of exhibits, educational demonstrations and park and botanical tours are staged on adjoining Northwest Florida Water Management District land known as the Elinor Klapp-Phipps Park. Information: www.rhht.org. Klapp-Phipps Park, 1700 Miller Landing Road

The Joys of Keeping Chickens

11 a.m. Come learn about all the joys of keeping your own chickens. Master gardener and living history interpreter Judith Stricklin will share how easy and rewarding it is to raise your own backyard flock from chicks. Not only will she give you suggestions on how to build a predator-proof coop and how to care for your chickens, she will also share the benefits of having compost on hand, as well as a bounty of fresh eggs. Fee: $10. Registration deadline: noon March 9. Tallahassee Museum, 3945 Museum Drive, 575-8684, tallahasseemuseum.org

March 10

Train Rides!

Ride the train at Veterans Memorial Railroad for free on the second Saturday of each month. Plan a trip on the Veterans Memorial Railroad and make your birthdays, company outings or family reunions a time to remember. Call 850-643-6646 or 850-643-5491 to schedule or for more information and cost. Check out www.Veteransmemorialrailroad.org for more information and YouTube-Veterans Memorial Railroad for video footage of the trains in action. Donations are appreciated. Veterans Memorial Park, N.W. Theo Jacobs Road, Bristol 24  March 2012    Tallahassee.TLHmoms.com

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March 11

Tallahassee Jewish Food and Cultural Festival 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Homemade and NY Carnegie Deli Jewish Food, art, and entertainment for adults and children alike. Bring the family and enjoy the best in Jewish food and culture. Free shuttle from parking at Radiology Associates off Phillips Road. Come hungry, leave satisfied. Wine shop will be open from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. Free entertainment and shuttle. Food and art vendors individually priced. Temple Israel, 2215 Mahan Drive, 877-3517, talahasseejewishfoodfestival.com

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March 24

Sustainable Community Gardening

9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. This is the beginning of a long-range vision of the Tallahassee Museum’s 1880s garden. In this workshop series, participants will learn what it takes to prepare, plant, maintain and harvest a garden as it was done in the 1880s. Through hands-on guidance, participants will learn how to maintain the essential nutrients in the soil using natural fertilizers. The series also will teach methods of maintaining pest control without the use of harmful chemicals. In today’s world, people are paying more and more attention to the foods that they put into their bodies and the nutrients that are found in those foods. For many, growing a household or community garden seems out of reach. This workshop will demonstrate otherwise. Participants should commit to maintaining the garden on a weekly rotating schedule (Saturdays), and can take home the fruits of their labor during harvest time. Seasonal fee: $20 members/ $25 nonmembers. Age: participants, 18 and older; helpers, 12-17 years; observers, under 12 years. Registration deadline: noon March 23. Space is limited to 15 people total. For more information: Natasha Hartsfield, 575-8684 ex. 136, tallahasseemuseum.org. Tallahassee Museum, 3945 Museum Drive.

March 17

Annual Herb Event 10 a.m. Join professional herb grower B O’Toole of O’Toole’s Herb Farm and Native Nurseries’ Donna Legare to learn how to grow and enjoy herbs. They will discuss how to use herbs in cooking and how to incorporate them into the landscape. It will be fun, and there will be a couple herbal treats to sample. Cost is $5. Call 386-8882 to register; class size is limited. Native Nurseries, 1661 Centerville Road

March 24

WALK, RUN, ROLL  7:30 a.m.-noon. Ability 1st will host its Sixth Annual WALK RUN ROLL in Myers Park. The event features a 5K for runners. The one-mile walk/roll alternative is perfect for individuals and groups that want to share a wheelchair for the Accessibility Roll experience. Registration is $20 with a T-shirt or $15 without ($25 on March 24). Live music by the Black Sheep and food will be available for participants following the event. 5K Run: Register 7:30 a.m. , start 8:30 a.m. Walk/Roll: Register 9 a.m. , start 9:30 a.m. For more information: Maria Folsom, 575-9621, mariafolsom@ability1st.info, www.ability1st.info. Myers Park, 913 Myers Park Drive 26  March 2012    Tallahassee.TLHmoms.com

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March 25

Pops at the Pond 1 p.m.- 4 p.m. Featuring performances by local musicians, Pops by the Pond is presented by the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition and Teal Magnolias. Cost: $15 single, $25 couple and $5 for kids 12-18. Kids under 12 admitted free. For more information: www.PopsAtThePond.com. Willow Pond, Monticello MARCH 17

Birthday Party for the Girl Scouts 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Celebrating 100 years of Girl Scouts …from 18 members in 1912 to 3.7 MILLION today! There will be pony rides, hayrides and crafts. Learn about girl scouting, sign up for Girl Scout summer camp (The Painted Pony will be providing the horseback riding program this summer for Camp For All Seasons and Camp Kolomoki), and just have a good ole time!  Plus Girl Scouts will be selling hotdogs and Girl Scout cookies. $8 general admission covers all activities. Kids under 3 years old and Girl Scouts FREE (wear your Girl Scout shirt).   Call Bob for more information, 850-997-5590, 15 miles east of Tallahassee, 12 miles west of Monticello, (4 miles south of I-10 from exit 217), rain or shine, follow the signs, PaintedPony.us.

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March 31

44th Annual Springtime Tallahassee Festival and Grand Parade

9 a.m.-5 p.m. Come join us for the 44th Annual Springtime Tallahassee Festival and Grand Parade, featuring more than 100 colorful units and floats, marching bands, dance groups, Springtime Krewe Floats and much more! The Grand Parade begins at 10:30 a.m. at the intersection of Monroe Street and Brevard Street and travels south on Monroe Street past the Florida Capital, ending at Gaines Street. With more than 200,000 attendees and featuring the finest arts and crafts vendors, gourmet foods and festive floats from throughout the Southeast, this is one event you don’t want to miss! For more information, call Springtime Tallahassee, 224-5012 or visit springtimetallahassee.com

March 31

Barbershop Harmony Quartet Extravaganza!

7-8:30 p.m. This is the third annual quartet extravaganza! Enjoy an energetic and lyrical evening of four-part harmony sung by quartets from The Capital Chordsmen. The group will sing traditional and contemporary music in a musical evening of family-oriented barbershop fun for all ears and ages. Enjoy a wine, cheese, and soda “afterglow” with the quartets in the lobby following the show. Cost: $12.50 for adults, $10 for seniors (65+), $5 for students. For more information: Robbie Brunger, 224-7729, capitalchordsmen. org. Tallahassee Little Theatre 1861 Thomasville Road

28  March 2012    Tallahassee.TLHmoms.com

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March 31

Children’s Garden Workshop —Grow Your Own Italian Garden

10 a.m. The children will mix soil and mushroom compost in a 3-gallon nursery container and then plant a tomato, basil, parsley and garlic chive under the guidance of Native Nurseries employees and a parent. Siblings can work together. Cost: $7 per container. Call 386-8882 to register; class size limited. Native Nurseries, 1661 Centerville Road

Welcomes your submissions for Best Bets events. Send an e-mail to llazarus@tallahassee.com to be listed.

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LEARN A LITTLE

March is National Peanut Month…

did you know?

• It takes about 540 peanuts to make a 12-ounce jar of peanut butter. • There are enough peanuts in one acre to make 30,000 peanut butter sandwiches. • Two peanut farmers have been elected president of the USA - Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter. • Grand Saline, Texas holds the title for the world’s largest peanut butter and jelly sandwich weighing in at 1,342 pounds. • The peanut is not a nut, but a legume related to beans and lentils. • Americans were first introduced to the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup in 1928.

• Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth. • The oldest operating manufacturer and seller of peanut butter has been selling peanut butter since 1908. • The world’s largest peanut butter factory churns out 250,000 jars of the tasty treat every day. • Americans consume on average over 1.5 billion pounds of peanut butter and peanut products each year.

30  March 2012    Tallahassee.TLHmoms.com

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Go nuts over

peanuts!

st Bars nut Breakfa Double Pea e cereal Ingredients: hole grain flak 1 1/2 cups w aped cereal grain “O” sh 1 cup whole ed peanuts ped dry-roast es, raisins, 1/2 cup chop as cranberri ch su t ui fr 1/2 cup dried cots or figs chopped apri ey 1/3 cup hon rown sugar ked golden b ac 1/3 cup p er s peanut butt 3 tablespoon

ried fruit. eanuts and d p s, al n: re io ce at ther Prepar in medium bowl, stir toge peanut butter d In a medium an ar g su constantly. ey, brown heat, stirring m iu ed Combine hon m er ov ith back of ring to a boil ell coated. W w l ti n u saucepan. B ir st and uare pan. real mixture sed 8-inch sq ea gr y tl gh Pour over ce li into press mixture oiled spoon, 9 pieces. Cool. Cut into Cooling, Re Ingredients:

freshing Pe

anut Parfait

Clear plastic or glass con tainer: 1 Cup lemon or vanilla yo g urt (nonfat or 1 Cup total of low fat) your favorite fruits (e.g. b 4 Teaspoons lueberries, st of peanuts, w rawberries) hole or chop ped Preparation: First wash fr uit. If needed , carefully ch pieces. Kids op or slice in should have to bite-sized ad ult assistance chopping eq when using kn uipment. Nex ives or t, measure 1 in the bottom /4 cup of yog of your cup. urt and place P la ce yogurt. Place 2 tablespoon s of fruit on to 1 teaspoon of p of the peanuts on to p of the fruit. Repeat the st eps above, la yering yogurt reach the top , fruit and pea of your cup. nuts until yo u

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2012 March TLH Moms  

Moms and kids for fun!

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