Food Feed

Apples to Applesauce

October - 1 (2)
October - 1 (2)

Earlier in the week I took a walking field trip to an apple tree a couple blocks away from the school.  Each of my kindergarten students got to pick a couple of apples from the tree and we brought them back to the school to make applesauce right in our classroom during the school day.   

Click on the image below to read a post where I share the simple instructions to do this at home or in your classroom.   

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As I mention in the post, I am not sharing this because it is new concept or even a unique, creative recipe.  I am sharing this today just as a reminder how easy this is!

Every child should share in the experience making applesauce in the fall!

Let me know how yours turns out if you find opportunity to make some yourself.


Around Here....

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Around here - 5

Around here...

The seasons are starting to shift.   The landscape of my lush green summer trail runs is changing to where I am seeing yellows, browns and even an occasional red leaf making its appearance.  Although we are in summer mode subtle changes are hinting of the onset of fall.   

The rhythms of our activities are changing as well as we are gradually gearing up for the start of the new school year.   I have been in school, getting my classroom ready for my new students.  This year will mark my 18th year of teaching!

The cross-country running season has also started.   Our eighth grader is training hard, gearing up for the first meet next week.  I am helping with the team as an assistant coach, as I have been doing the past couple of years.  We have both been running and doing some other cross training all summer long.  I am working through a running injury (plantar fasciitis), but still on track to complete a half-marathon in late September.   My daughter and I have been inspired by the newly published book:  Run Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow.: Quick-Fix Recipes for Hangry Athletes by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky.  There are lots of great recipes, tips and training advise including the Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups (pictured above) that my daughter has been making from the "Power Snacks" section of the book.  

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Around here - 4
Around here - 4

 Around here...

I have been keeping up with our bountiful garden and lining my pantry shelves with canned goods.  Lately, I have been busy pickling cucumbers and beans.   We are having a great year for tomatoes as well!   We're eating a lot of garden suppers (BLT's, salads, and quick pasta dishes celebrating and savoring the gifts of the garden.

Around here - 1 (1)Around here...

I am still working on new and different avenues of publication.   I recently received the exciting news (and payment!) from Highlights for Children that two of my submissions will be published in upcoming issues of Highlights High Five. 

Around here - 2
Around here - 2
Around here...

We are making progress with our sauna building!  James is working hard and the rest of us are pitching in when we can. We have the slab poured and we just started framing up the walls.   We will be slowing down just a bit as we wait for our trusses order.   We are so excited about this new addition to our homestead. 


Minnesota Parent Magazine - August

The August Issue issue of Minnesota Parent Magazine is available throughout Minnesota and online now.

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My School Days Column, for this back to school issue, is titled: "Getting Ready for K".

Megan Devine - Minnesota Parent Magazine

This month I also wrote a recipe feature, sharing my mom's recipe for zucchini chocolate cake for the "In the Kitchen" column.  Be sure to check it out!

Megan Devine - Minnesota Parent Recipe

Pick up a print copy, or read the full issue by clicking --> HERE.

Find the online link to my article ---> HERE.

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If you like what you see, social media 'shares' are appreciated!

As always - thanks for reading!


Minnesota Parent Column - School Days - April

The April Issue issue of Minnesota Parent Magazine is available throughout Minnesota and online now.

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My School Days Column this month is "The Family Dinner."  Megan Devine - Minnesota Parent - April 2018

Pick up a print copy, or read the full issue by clicking --> HERE.

Find the online link to my article ---> HERE.

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If you like what you see, social media 'shares' are appreciated!

As always - thanks for reading!


Around Here

Ski

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Ski 5

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Outside:

Although we are experiencing some sub zero temperatures, we are finding our way outdoors.    We have a solid base of snow for cross country skiing and between after-school ski practices, MYSL and weekend outings, we're logging a fair amount of kilometers on the trail.

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Coffee shop 2

Duct tape crafts
Duct tape crafts
Duct tape crafts

Inside:  

We are staying warm, even given our recent sub-zero temperature cold snap.   We recently tried out a new coffee shop in town with a welcoming atmosphere after a cold and snowy ski.  We have been keeping ourselves busy inside, the kids experimenting with duct tape crafts, the mama with some knitting projects.  On these winter days we are also savoring summer blueberries and backyard maple syrup with pancake breakfasts.

Wishing you a great start to your week!


North House Folk School

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As part of our weekend getaway to the North Shore we took part in several events at the Family & Intergenerational Learning Weekend at the North House Folk School.  Friday evening we participated in the Contra Dance, Saturday my daughter and I took an afternoon knitting class (where she learned the craft and I worked out all of my bad habits) and Saturday evening we joined in a wood-fired pizza bake with other families that participated in classes and offerings over the weekend. We had a lot of fun connecting as a family, meeting some new people and participating in these fun events at the North House Folk School.


pumpkining in kindergarten

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Here are a few snapshots from short, busy and fun week in kindergarten.  

In the lesson plans were:  pumpkin investigations!

Monday:  Pumpkin seeds (My garden was generous this year I grew 16 pie pumpkins - and I had a couple donations - so each student was able to investigate their own pumpkin.  I brought home one 5 gallon bucket of pumpkin "guts" for the chickens - and two 5 gallon buckets of cut and seeded pumpkins.

Monday night:  The kindergarten teacher (and husband) roasted pumpkin seeds, the kindergarten teacher also bandaged the blisters that she got from slicing and cutting the tops off of 18 pumpkins.

Tuesday:  Roasting pumpkins.   In class we roasted a crockpot full of sliced and seeded pumpkins throughout the day, sharing with the kiddos one way pumpkins can be cooked.

Tuesday night:  Roasting pumpkins - I had two crock pots going at home roasting pumpkins overnight and during the daytime to make the most of our harvest.

Wednesday: Pumpkin puree and pumpkin smoothies.  In class I showed the kids what part of the pumpkin that we make into pumpkin puree and we celebrated our efforts by making (and enjoying) pumpkin smoothies.

Wednesday night:  Before we went out and celebrated our anniversary, I finished up making pumpkin puree from all of the baked pumpkins.  I was able to put up over 26 cups of fresh pumpkin.  (I freeze it in 2 cup servings in quart freezer bags.)

Another successful year of pumpkining at home and school - done!

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Now I just need to make it through a Halloween on a Monday night.

If you are looking for some pumpkin inspired ideas, check out my recent post on mothering.com:

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herbs, ketchup, peppers and pizza

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I had a productive afternoon in the garden, kitchen and pantry.   I harvested some herbs to use and to dry.   When I was tidying up and taking inventory in our pantry I found some hiding pickles, salsa and canned tomatoes from last season.   I decided to use up our canned tomatoes to make some ketchup - a family favorite, especially in the summer when we do a little more grilling.   I also ground up the peppers I dried last fall so they are a little easier to use.

 The season of harvesting, preserving - and enjoying the garden's bounty has officially began!

 

 

I spent a good part of a rainy day yesterday in the kitchen and pantry drying herbs, making ketchup from the last of our canned tomatoesI gathered my big first harvest of herbs.  I collected some basil, parsley, rosemary, sage, thyme, oregano and chives.  After those were washed and drying I decided to go through the pantry, where found our last jars of pickles and four jars of home canned salsa that were overlooked in all


 


Easter Egging

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This past weekend we spent some time dyeing some Easter eggs.  I know these moments will all four of my children gathered around the table doing projects like this are not going to last forever - so I am making the most of this time with them.  This year we used a kit and also made some of our own natural dyes (our 11 year old taking the lead).  It was fun to see the unique colors that come from boiled onion skins, blueberries, cabbage, coffee, beets and turmeric.  Everyone had fun with the process, and we were all happy with our products!


in the kitchen

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The August harvest is beginning! I am happy to be collecting cucumbers, peppers, raspberries and herbs from my garden.  I have also been supplementing our garden harvest with beans, and salsa fixings from farmer's markets and road-side stands to fulfill my desire to line my pantry shelves with home canned goods.  Along with my pickled beets I have recently made salsa, dilly beans and my first batch of garden dill pickles.  

I love this season of harvest that accompanies our short summer season!