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Holiday Decor with Children

December 9, 2014 Nancy Schneider, PHEc Segment 1 Wreaths have traditionally been used to decorate for the holidays. We will learn some simple ways to make wreaths with children, using items most people have around their home. We will discuss different “forms” that can be used to create the base of the wreath. This will include cardboard, pool noodle, and a grapevine wreath. Next we will discuss what can be used to decorate or cover the wreath. We will look at suing tulle, fun foam shapes, ribbon, pipe cleaners and greenery. During the discussion we will “building” demonstrate one or two wreaths. Examples of other seasonal wreaths will be available to see how these items can be used throughout the year. Segment 2 Wrapping paper or gift bag? How about a combination of both! Wrapping paper generally can be used only once, but if you create a gift bag out of it you can reuse the paper over and over. We will learn a simple way to fold and tape wrapping paper that will provide you with a gift bag when done. There will be a completed sample to view and we will demonstrate the folding and taping so people can see it being made. If your child is an artist, you may want to use some of their paintings to create the gift bags!

Gingerbread Crafts

MAHE TV – November 14, 2014

Let’s plan a Gingerbread House Party!

Presenter: Myrna Grahn, PHEc

Children: Julianna Grahn (9), Anna Laldin (10)

Organization: Manitoba Association of Home Economists

Contact: www.mahe.ca


Gingerbread Houses and Gingerbread Men cookies are a time honoured family tradition in our home during the holidays. Children and adults of all ages love to decorate a Gingerbread House and Gingerbread men cookies. Why not invite a few family members like nieces, nephews or grandchildren or have a few of your child’s friends or neighbours over to decorate gingerbread. We all know how to prepare for this activity, make the gingerbread shapes in advance. Have lots of icing and bowls and bowls of candy! Now let’s take this theme to the next level. In each of the segments the girls will go through the supplies that you will need and the steps to making these crafts.

In the first segment we will explore a couple of ideas that you can make with your children as you prepare for the party. Create homemade party invitations to hand out. This hands-on craft will build excitement as you include your children in the preparations.

Gingerbread House invitation

  • Using left over brown compost bags from your fall yard clean up, draw the shape of a house with a chimney and cut it out.
  • Using white paper or felt cut out a snow covered roof and glue it to the brown paper house.
  • Draw on a window and door with a black marker. Decorate the house by using colourful markers or gluing on decorations and colourful pieces of felt.
  • On the back of the house can be all of the party information, including the date, time and location of your party and don’t forget who your guests should RSVP to.
  • Deliver the gingerbread men invitations to your guests.
  • You will need to repeat these steps until you have made enough invitations for your guests.

Gingerbread person invitation

  • Draw your favourite shape of gingerbread person on a brown paper bag or roll of brown craft paper or find a template that you like online. The template should be large enough to be able to write the details of the party on it. Make sure to make enough invitations for your guests.
  • Cut out the people using pinking shears or decorative edge scissors.
  • Draw a face with colourful markers or glue on decorations .
  • Include the date, time and location of your party and don’t forget who your guests should RSVP to.
  • Deliver the gingerbread men invitations to your guests.

In the second segment we will make a few crafts to take home as party favours. Not every guest will try to “glue” every candy onto their house or cookie so you may need to keep some idle hands busy with this craft.

Gingerbread Man paper doll garland family

You can create this sweet garland of paper-doll-style gingerbread boys & girls by using a brown paper grocery bag or brown craft paper, scissors and some crayons. Each child could customize their garland to represent their very own family or group of friends.

  • Open the paper bag flat and cut into strips as tall as you want your gingerbread people to be.
  • Accordion-fold each strip of paper, making the folds the width of your gingerbread man template. Or you could use a cookie cutter to draw or trace a gingerbread shape onto the top of the folded strip.
  • Cut around the shape (this is a grown-up job!) but remember not to cut any parts that are on the folded sides. In this case the ends of the arms and legs. Unfold and see the string of gingerbread people holding hands!
  • Now your guests can start decorating! Use crayons or washable markers to create your family of gingerbread people or your very own circle of friends.

Gingerbread person tree ornaments

Use the same steps to make the gingerbread person invitations but his time you can punch a hole in the top of the head and string a festive ribbon or sting of twine through for a more rustic look. Have different buttons, stickers, sparkle blue, markers and other stick on decorations that could be used to create your own one of a kind tree ornament.

Farm to School Fundraiser


Farm to School Manitoba September 9, 2014


It's Veggie Time: Farm to School Veggie Fundraiser Goes Province Wide to all Schools and licensed daycares in Manitoba.


Celebrate with Farm to School’s Harvest Vegetable au Gratin


Presenter: Adriana Barros, PHEc


Organization: Executive Coordinator, Farm to School Manitoba Healthy Choice Fundraiser


Contact:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




Title: Farm to School Healthy Choice Fundraising and Harvest Vegetable au Gratin


Summary: Adriana shares about the return of a healthy choice fundraising opportunity for schools and daycares across Manitoba. She shares information on student benefits associated with the fundraiser as well as its past years success. The veggie bundles will be on display and why this type of fundraiser is so important.


Adriana shares Vegetable Au Gratin recipe using veggies featured in the fundraiser. Adriana will also highlight how to get your kids involved in food prep and eating more veggies!


More Information: http://www.farmtoschoolmanitoba.ca has information for parents, teachers and fundraising coordinators. http://www.peakmarket.comfeatures many recipes with Manitoba veggies.


Harvest Vegetable au Gratin


Ingredients 3 medium boiling or baking potatoes


2 carrots, peeled and sliced 3 parsnips, peeled and sliced


¼ cup butter or margarine 1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)


1 tablespoon all-purpose flour


1 teaspoon salt


¼ teaspoon pepper


2 cups milk cups


shredded natural sharp Cheddar cheese (8 oz)


¼ cup dry bread crumbs (any flavor) sprinkle paprika to taste Directions •


 Heat oven to 375ºF. • Scrub potatoes but do not peel, cut into 1/8-inch slices, peel and slice carrots and parsnips to measure about 4 cups. • Melt butter in 2-quart saucepan over medium heat. Cook onion in butter about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender. Stir in flour, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until bubbly; remove from heat. • 


Stir in milk and 1 1/2 cups of the cheese. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. • Spread potatoes in ungreased 1 1/2-quart casserole. Pour cheese sauce over potatoes. • Bake uncovered 1 hour. Mix remaining cheese and the bread crumbs; sprinkle over potatoes. Sprinkle with paprika.


Bake uncovered 15 to 20 minutes longer or until top is brown and bubbly.

Summer Memories

Presenter: Nancy Schneider, PHEc Organization: Manitoba Association of Home Economists Contact: www.mahe.ca Summary: Nancy shares ways to help keep summer memories alive all year long. Segment 1 The collection: Every child loves to collects shells, rocks, twigs etc. when at the beach. What do you do with treasures when you go home? We will explore a couple of options that will allow the child to safely keep their treasures and remember their vacation. First, why not display them. All you need is a clear container. In the container place sand from the beach. Next add any of the treasures that were brought home. You may need to move the treasures a bit to find the perfect fit. Finally, you may want to add a note or photo of the trip. Close the lid and secure. This can be placed on a shelf or dresser for the child to see. We will create a display container. If the child was a stone collector, you may have larger stones that won’t fit in a container. These can be used for gifts or decoration. Painted, the smaller ones can become paperweights; larger can become doorstops. Or you can look at the stone and imagine what it is. Paint to reflect your vision. Or you may have several stones that together create a new shape, for example a foot step. You now have a lovely decoration for your garden or home. I will bring a couple of examples.

Segment 2 Shirt pillow For older children, memories are often made at camp. A shirt from camp or purchased for camp can hold wonderful memories of the camp experience. Unfortunately, children grow so quickly that the shirt will probably not fit next year. What do you do with the shirt to help the child remember the fun times? You make a pillow that can go with them on other adventures. Learn how to transform a shirt into a pillow in five easy steps. Detailed instructions can be found at homefamily.net under the blog summer memories. I will bring a shirt, partially done so we can complete it on the segment. .

Easy, Upscale Make and Take Summer Food

Segment one: BBQ on the go!


In this segment we will prepare a simple marinade, add it to a re-sealable bag of skinless boneless chicken thighs and freeze it for safe travels. We will talk about food safety when taking food on the go and have the host(s) pack a cooler while keeping food safety in mind. So you've been invited out to a cabin, how can you ensure you'll get invited back again?


Take food, flavourful, easy to make food! It's easy to grab a pack of hot dogs and sure it will feed the crowd but how can you stand out and ensure you are top of the guest list next time? Bring BBQ ready marinated meat that you prepared at home, freeze for safe travels and thaw for a delicious meal that will have everyone asking you for the recipe. Here is a basic and easy marinade that is perfect for chicken, turkey or pork. My personal preferred pick is skinless, boneless chicken thighs. They are perfect for the BBQ as the extra fat content helps them stay moist and they are the exact right size to toss on a bun – no slicing or dicing needed.


BBQ Food Safety Tips: -Keep cold foods, cold. Your cold foods need to be kept at 4C or lower. -Pack raw meats at the bottom of your cooler and make sure they are in sealed containers. -Do not eat the loose ice in your cooler, it is not clean. Better yet, take frozen water bottles that can be used as drinking water once they thaw. -Boneless chicken pieces are fully cooked when your meat thermometer reaches 77C. -Promptly chill food once served. Food that is not on ice or being kept hot needs to be refrigerated within 2 hours of serving to prevent spoilage.

Herbed Citrus Marinade INGREDIENTS: 2 Tbsp canola oil (30 mL) 1 garlic clove minced (1) 1 orange zest and juice (1) 1 lemon zest and juice (1) 2 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme (30 mL) 1/4 tsp pepper (1 mL)


DIRECTIONS: In a small bowl, combine canola oil, garlic, orange zest and juice, lime zest and juice, lemon zest and juice, thyme and pepper. Mix well. Use as a marinade for 1lb. (500g) of chicken, turkey or pork. Recipe courtesy of www.canolaeatwell.com