Northeast Region FCS Newsletter, December 2023

Quincy Vidrine, Robinson, Carolyn, Newsome, Brittney, Jackson-Jones, Jocinda

January Calendar

3rd - "Small Changes, Healthy Habits" - West Carroll Parish Extension Office 10:30 a.m.

10th - Ag Alley for 1st & 4th graders - Ike Hamilton Expo Center, West Monroe

11th - Ag Alley for 1st & 4th graders - Ike Hamilton Expo Center, West Monroe

12th - Ag Expo - Ike Hamilton Expo Center, West Monroe

13th - Ag Expo - Ike Hamilton Expo Center, West Monroe

17th - "Small Changes, Healthy Habits" - West Carroll Parish Extension Office 10:30 a.m.

22nd - Teen Chef Workshop - Franklin Parish - Info: 318-623-5217

24th - "Small Changes, Healthy Habits" - West Carroll Parish Extension Office 10:30 a.m.

Kids' Corner

by Jocinda Jackson-Jones

Staying active during the Christmas holiday offers numerous benefits for children. Firstly, it helps them maintain their physical health and prevent sedentary behaviors. Secondly, physical activity promotes mental well-being, reducing stress and improving mood. Lastly, engaging in physical activities during the holiday break allows children to socialize and bond with family and friends. Here are ways kids can participate in physical activity over the Christmas/Holiday break:

Indoor exercises and workouts: Encourage children to participate in indoor exercises and workouts. They can follow along with exercise videos or apps specifically designed for kids, such as dance routines, yoga sessions, or simple bodyweight exercises.

Dance or movement sessions: Encourage children to have dance or movement sessions at home. They can put on their favorite music and dance freely or learn dance routines from online tutorials.

Active play and games: Encourage children to engage in active play and games at home. This can include activities like indoor obstacle courses, or even setting up a mini sports area in the backyard.

Remember to provide a safe and suitable environment for these activities, ensuring that children have enough space and proper supervision when needed.

The New & Improved Germ Cave

feature article by Quincy Vidrine

Germ Cave

The LSU AgCenter has used the Germ Cave interactive walk-through exhibit across the state since 2008 when it was first developed in Rapides parish by FCS Extension Agents, Lou Altazan-Brown (retired) and Quincy Vidrine. The exhibit has been updated and improved to be more impactful and allow for a much larger area which will allow room for social distancing while touring the exhibit. There are a total of 5 Germ Cave exhibits in the state – 1 in each region.

Thorough and proper hand washing is crucial for maintaining good personal hygiene and preventing the spread of infections, illnesses, and diseases – this is the focus of the Germ Cave exhibit.

The official Germ Cave roll out for the Northeast Region Nutrition & Community Health team will be at the Ag Alley & Ag Expo Events in West Monroe in the Ike Hamilton Expo Center January 10-13, 2024. Participants will have the opportunity to explore the new and improved exhibit and learn how to practice proper hand washing. For more information, please contact your local extension office.

Recipe of the Month

by Carolyn Robinson

Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping

  • 7 cooked medium sweet potatoes
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 6 Tablespoons reduced fat margarine
  • ½ cup fat-free milk
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons flour
  • ¾ cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray large baking dish with non-stick spray. In a large bowl, mash sweet potatoes until smooth. Add sugar, salt, egg, cinnamon, 2 tablespoons margarine, and milk, mixing well. Pour into baking dish.

In a small bowl, combine remaining softened margarine, flour, and sugar. Mix until crumbly. Stir in pecans. Sprinkle topping over the sweet potato mixture. Bake approximately 1 hour.

The Germ Cave: The Importance of Handwashing and Food Safety

by Brittney J. Newsome

During September and November, the germ cave was held at the West Carroll Parish Community Health Fair and the Richland Parish Ag Safety Day. This fun and interactive station was designed to bring awareness to both youth and adults about the importance of handwashing, identification of germs, and food safety. Over the course of the two events, approximately 392 participants learned about the major three types of germs (bacteria, viruses, and fungi), when and how to properly wash hands by using “The High Five” method, and the four steps to food safety (clean, separate, cook, and chill). Then participants received faux germs “GLO Germ/Glitterbug Lotion” as they entered the cave filled with LED lighting to highlight what germs would actually look like if you could see them with the visible eye.

To learn more about the Germ Cave Exhibit, please contact your local parish FCS Agent for more information.

12/19/2023 7:05:56 PM
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