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Who’s Your Daddy?

Who’s Your Daddy?
I believe that one of my greatest contributions to the classroom was that I was maternal.  I was filled with passion for what was right and would act like an agitated Mama Bear if I felt like someone was doing wrong by my students.  Maybe I'd get upset because there was disrespect in a relationship between two students; sometimes students were treated as if they didn't matter; and often, their health was ignored by others who should have been making it a priority. Now that I am no longer in...

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Lesson Plans Aren’t Just for the Classroom

Lesson Plans Aren’t Just for the Classroom
It has finally come and gone - the start of the new school year. And for the first time in several years, I didn't return to the classroom with my children and former students.  After losing my job, I wasn't sure how I would handle the transition.  But I am handling it.  Because I have to. Of course, I couldn't resist thinking about what I would have done on the first day of school with my students.  How would I have inspired them or lit the spark to encourage them to try harder than ever...

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Life Has No Reset Button - So Organize the Kitch...

Life Has No Reset Button – So Organize the Kitchen
When life feels out of control, I like to purge.  It somehow gives me the sensation that I am in charge.  Of something.  But usually not the things that matter.  It makes no difference, though - it still leaves me feeling somewhat more satisfied. Lately, I can't escape the feeling that I am caught in a cyclone.  Our son's transition back home started smoothly, but is rapidly leading back to where we began.  My daughter's riding instructor asked her how I was coping, and she replied that...

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Plant-Based Diet Myths Debunked: Protein

Plant-Based Diet Myths Debunked: Protein
Just ask any vegetarian what they hear the most after telling somebody that they don't eat meat.  I am not a betting gal, but I'd put money on this:  "How do you get enough protein?" All joking aside, you do not have to eat meat in order for your body to get enough protein.  I thought it might be helpful to share the basics of how proteins are built and what they are used for in your body. Some basic biology vocabulary: Mono = one; Poly = many Monomers are single units (like train...

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5 Reasons Real Life Should Be Like a Dude Ranch

5 Reasons Real Life Should Be Like a Dude Ranch
This has been a time of great transition for our family.  We have gone from the hectic schedule of a busy school year to the relative ease of summer, jobs are in transition, and our son has returned home.  We were sorely in need of a family vacation...and while most people consider a trip to the lake or beach to be an ideal destination, we had something else in mind.  We yearned for something adventurous, but also easy.  I didn't want to worry about making meals (or even a week's worth of dinner...

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Summer Quinoa Salad – a Simple “Go-To” Dish

Summer Quinoa Salad – a Simple “Go-To” Dish
My first Rouxbe assignment was to make my "go-to" plant-based dish.  I know it sounds odd, but I don't really have a specialty.  I usually do a little-of-this and a little-of-that (although I do make a mean coconut macaroon...)  So, I decided to keep it simple and make a summer quinoa salad.  This dish represents how I like to cook - with fresh ingredients that I already have on hand.  Quinoa, filled with protein, serves as an ideal canvas to combine with cucumbers, bell peppers, kalamata olives,...

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Rouxbe – Starting My Online Culinary Education

Rouxbe – Starting My Online Culinary Education
It's hard to believe that I ran a successful mobile cooking school for children without having attended culinary school.  Of course, you have to remember that the number 1 priority of working with children is, in fact, liking  children. And it doesn't hurt to be an experienced educator, who's goal is to make learning feel like playtime.  But I digress... After my involuntary hiatus from the classroom this coming school year, I was given the opportunity to participate in the Professional Plant-Based...

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Challah, Our New Family Tradition

Challah, Our New Family Tradition
It has been said that when I put my mind to something, I resemble a dog on a bone (figuratively, I hope!). I ponder, I mull, I research, and of course, I turn to social media for advice. About a week before our son was due home from residential treatment, I wanted to come up with some new ways for us to spend time together and to develop traditions in the kitchen. He is a major holiday lover, so I decided that there wouldn't be anything better than a weekly celebration that would bring our family...

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Gotcha Day, revisited

Gotcha Day, revisited
Two days ago, as I flew to New Mexico to pick up our son from residential treatment, my mind was overwhelmed with thoughts, hopes and fears.  Would we be reduced yet again to the "walking on eggshells" state of existence that we experienced for the nearly 7 years before making the monumental decision to seek residential therapeutic care for Ari?  Or would the past 16 months of treatment, maturation, and extensive support be enough to reunite our family and ease us into a state of peaceful and...

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Backyard Bounty: Apricots

Backyard Bounty: Apricots
Every summer, our vacation plans seem to overlap with the ripening of fruit on our apricot tree.  But it looks like we will get lucky this year - and there are several recipes that we would like to try. Our backyard is bursting with crows and squirrels this time of the year - so we have our competition cut out for us.  My daughter is part monkey, and can climb trees like a champ - so she reached what she could from inside the tree, and then used a ladder to grab fruit on the thinner and...

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