Celiac Disease Awareness: Overnight Oats Recipe!

Yesterday was National Celiac Disease Awareness Day! Fun fact: September 13th was chosen because it is the birthday of Dr. Samuel Gee who was a research pioneer for Celiac disease.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder where a person’s small intestine is damaged by consuming gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Many food items found in a typical American diet contain some form of wheat so people with celiac disease need to be educated on foods that do not contain gluten and get creative with recipes.

 Untitled design (22)Oats are a great carbohydrate alternative for those that are gluten free (just check the ingredients list to make sure it has no additives that may contain gluten). Have you heard of overnight oats? They are so easy to make and are a great quick grab and go option for breakfast, making them perfect for busy mornings before school!

Try this overnight oats recipe with the family and everyone can make their own fun flavor combination!

  • 1/3 cups almond milk
  • 1/3 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds (They add protein and healthy fats which help fill you up in the morning)
  • 1/2 mashed banana

The night before, add all ingredients to a jar and stir well. Put jar in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, you can add more milk if you want to make it a thinner consistency. Then everyone can add their own fun toppings to the base. Some good toppings would be fresh fruit, any kind of nut butter, dried coconut, figs or raisins, spices like cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg or vanilla extract. Yum!



National Arts in Education Week

artsineducation.pngDid you know that September 9-September 17 is National Arts in Education Week?  The arts are an essential part of a complete education. Students of all ages – from kindergarten to college to creative aging programs – benefit from artistic learning, innovative thinking and creativity. National Arts in Education week—September 9-17—celebrates and recognizes the importance of the arts to a well-rounded education.

Passed by Congress in 2010,  National Arts in Education Week is an opportunity to focus on arts education in communities across the country to tell the story of the impact of the transformative power of the arts in education.

    • Celebrate. Host a celebration in your community, whether big or small, an existing event, or a new one. Download and use the shared logo and be sure to register your event on ArtsMeet, a national arts event calendar. You can even purchase #ArtsEdWeek swag in our Bookstore. Be sure to download the 5 Ways to Partner Packet for other ideas of how to celebrate in your community!
    • Participate. Share your story in the social media campaign, #BecauseOfArtsEd, to bring national visibility to the issue of arts education. See below for more information and download the Social Media How To Guide. Also, be sure to attend and invite friends to the Facebook Event.

Wow!  So many ways to celebrate and recognize the importance of the arts in our student lives.   and for our 4-H families to get involved in an important aspect of individual and community health.  Happy Arts in Education Week!

Sources: National Education in the Arts
And Delaware Division of the Arts newsletter

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

According to the CDC, 1 in 6 children in the United States is obese. National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month is a chance to learn more about this serious health condition. There are ma

ny ways communities can support youth in the journey to good health!

Obesity is influenced by physical activity, sleep quality, and food consumption. Obese youth are more likely to have asthma, diabetes, bone and joint issues and even sleep apnea. They are also at a higher risk for heart disease later in life. It is so important that youth build healthy eating habits at an early age so they can live at their physically best!

Here are some easy suggestions that the whole family can support and join in on to help manage obesity if it already exists or to prevent it from occurring!

  • Make a healthy dessert or snack as a family! Try making baked apples and peaches covered in cinnamon and a little bit of honey, or some healthy oatmeal cookies.
  • Go for a family hike, walk or bike ride. Being in nature has amazing health benefits but the additional physical activity and social support will also help to improve total wellness.
  • Drink lots of water. Making sure water is always available to drink is a great way to maintain a healthy weight. Add fruit like strawberries, vegetables like cucumbers, and even some herbs like mint to your water for some fun color and added flavor and nutrients.
  • Have family meals with no distractions. Have dinner as a family without any cell phones around or technology on. Distracted eating leads to over eating! Try to keep conversation to a minimum and really learn to eat mindfully and appreciate the food.
  • Start a small family garden. Having a small garden outdoors or a container garden indoors is a fun way for families to work together to grow their own fruits and vegetables. Growing them yourself makes you much more likely to want to eat them so this is a good trick to add more fruits and veggies into a child’s diet.

Try one, or if you’re feeling bold, try all of these suggestions for the next month. Practicing healthy behaviors as a family, helps model good behaviors for each other and can help to hold each other accountable for your actions.

Be Kind to Humankind Week

Kindness is the quality of being friendly, understanding, generous and considerate. We can be kind to others, as well as kind to ourselves. While it is important to be kind, each and every day, Be Kind to Humankind Week gives us a chance to take our kindness to the next level.

The energy we give, such as communicating in the form of words, can have a powerful impact on others. Tomorrow is Speak Kind Words Saturday, which is a great chance to set an intention to speak more kindly and lovingly. It is so important to be aware of what you say, as well as how you say it. Being mindful of the words we use and the way we speak allows us to correctly convey our thoughts, feelings and emotions. In the heat of a moment, it may not be so easy to slow down and really process your thoughts before speaking but it is a great practice to improve your mental narrative and your social connection to others.

Your mental narrative is the running dialogue you have going on in your mind. It is the story we tell ourselves of who we are, and what our life is like. Using kind, gentle and loving words in our mental narratives can boost our self-confidence and make us feel good. We then begin to use these words when speaking to others and can help make others feel good too.

Try this self-kindness meditation to start your morning tomorrow and go into the day with the intention to speak kindly!

  • Start by sitting in a comfortable, attentive but relaxed, position.
  • Begin to notice your breath. Notice the physical sensation of the belly pulling in air, and releasing it.
  • Follow the breath for a few moments. Anytime the mind drifts off into a day dream or runs away with a thought, gently bring the attention back to the breath.
  • Say these three positive self-affirmations in your mind, pausing for 3-5 breaths between each one.
    • “I am kind and loving to myself.”
    • “I am worthy of receiving kindness and love from others and from the universe.”
    • “I accept myself as I am, and am grateful for all that my life has provided for me.”
  • Slowly bring the attention back to the feeling of the breath. Notice the breath without changing it.
  • Follow the breath for a few moments. Then when you are ready, open your eyes and gently welcome your surroundings.

Join us for the UD 9/11 Hero’s Run!

911RunBannerDo you have a passion for serving and helping others?  

Here’s a way you can do either or both so watch this video!

Click here for video!

Join us on Sunday September 30th at 9:30 AM at the University of Delaware for the 9/11 Heroes Run, a national 5K race held annually by the Travis Manion Foundation which brings communities together to remember the sacrifices of the heroes of the September 11th attacks and wars since. The 9/11 Heroes Run has spread from a small grassroots event with a few hundred people in one small community in Pennsylvania in 2007 to an event that spans over 50 cities around the world. Last year, more than 30,000 participants joined with their communities to run, volunteer, donate, cheer, but most of all: honor our nation’s heroes.

Register to Walk, Run, Volunteer, Donate, or Fundraise by clicking here!

Race Day Registration opens at 8am and the opening ceremonies start at 9:11am. We hope to ensure that the UD 9/11 Heroes Run brings our community together. The 9/11 Heroes Run is one of the only race series that invests funds raised back into the communities that host a race. Through a progressive grant process, the Travis Manion Foundation invested nearly $240,000 last year into community organizations who are assisting military personnel, veterans, first responders and their families locally.


Photo from https://www.travismanion.org/community-engagement/911-heroes-run/2018-university-of-delaware/

So who’s joining DE 4-H for this great cause?

If members of our 4-H family would you’d like to make a donation of water, gatorade, snacks, or fruit, please contact Karen Johnston at 302-831-8866 for logistics.  Financial donations can be made on the event website.

Looking forward to seeing everyone on Race Day 9/30/18!  Happy Trails!

Kid-Friendly Panini Ideas For Any Meal

PaniniAugust is National Panini Month, meaning it is time to bring out the panini press that has been sitting in the back of your cabinet. You can use a panini press so many different ways – anything from grilling veggies and fruits, to making perfect quesadillas, french toast, grilled cheese sandwiches, pizza, and breakfast sandwiches.

Panini is derived from Italian origin and is basically a grilled sandwich made with non-sliced bread. National Panini Month is an opportunity to break the regular old sandwich habit and panini away!

There are many different ways to make a panini. Panini’s taste great with ciabatta, rosetta and baguette bread.

Try these panini variations:

Breakfast Ideas:

  • Bacon and egg
  • Banana and peanut butter
  • Breakfast Bistro – bacon, eggs, brie, apples and spinach
  • Veggies Hummus English Muffin
  • Peach, fontina and bacon

Lunch & Dinner Ideas:

  • Kale, garlic and cheddar
  • Ham, cheddar and apple
  • Turkey, Mozzarella, Kale, Pesto
  • Peanut Butter and Jelly
  • Pizza – pizza sauce, mozzarella and pepperoni
  • Grilled macaroni and cheese
  • Caprese – Mozzarella, tomato and basil


  • Nutella, Banana and Marshmallow
  • Blueberry White Chocolate
  • Strawberries, Nutella and Sliced Almonds
  • S’mores – Chocolate spread and marshmallow

The Importance of Water For Your Body, Community, and Planet!


Water is one of the most powerful nutrients that helps to sustain life on earth, from plants to animals. Ecosystems of the earth rely on water to survive and thrive. August is National Water Quality Month. It is important to be educated on how water impacts our personal health, the health of our communities, and the planet we call home.

In the body, water aids in digestion, keeps skin glowing and young, and helps regulate our internal temperature. It is recommended to drink half your body weight in ounces worth of water per day. So if you weigh 100 pounds, you should drink 50 ounces of water every day. Drink more water if you exercise, are out in the heat, or are feeling under the weather to help keep hydration levels up. It can be fun to add fruit, herbs and even certain vegetables to your water for some colorful visual appeal and added nutrients as a sweet swap for soda or juice. Try this nutrient infused water recipe for added H2O power.

Watermelon Cucumber Mint

For our communities, water is crucial. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American family uses more than 300 gallons of water per day. The United States is fortunate to have easy access to clean water, but in other communities around the world, they may not have this luxury. Being conscious of how you use water daily can help to improve the water quality of your community. Here are some clean water practices to be mindful of:

  • Do not flush expired or unwanted medications down the toilet. They can contaminate the water sources of your community.
  • Avoid the use of pesticides or chemical fertilizers. Run off from these products when it rains can collect in the community water source.
  • Try to use nontoxic household products such as vinegar for cleaning instead of grabbing for the Lysol.
  • Pick up after your pets when you walk them. Runoff from rain again, yikes!

Despite how much water humans use, on earth most of the water is found in the form of salt water in the oceans, or frozen water in the polar ice caps. The water cycle of the world is constantly recycling the same water supply. Many animals live in the water or use fresh water sources to drink from and humans drink this same water too. We can be sustainable with our water by practicing clean water use as mentioned above and reducing our use of plastic to help keep the oceans clean. Eliminating or reducing the use of single use straws, cutlery, plastic bowls, plates, bottles and toothbrushes can be a good step to being more environmentally friendly for our planet and water systems.