FEBRUARY 2019
Greetings!

PARENTS DESIGN-A-VALENTINE
We would like to continue a new tradition we started a few years ago and will need your participation!! We would like parents to design a Valentine for their child(ren) to be hung in the hallway at Especially for Children during the month of February. This is your opportunity to be creative and have fun!! Due to limited space, the size restriction of the Valentine will be letter size (9” X 13”). Please have your artwork to Kathy in the office by Tuesday, February 12 . Have fun!!
UPCOMING EVENTS
VALENTINE’S DAY PARTIES
The toddler and preschool groups have their valentine exchange and party on Thursday, February 14 . The teachers will provide more information regarding their classroom parties. Please see Kathy if this is not a scheduled day for your child and you would like them to have the opportunity to participate in the Valentine activities.  
PUPPET SHOW
On Wednesday, February 13 , Merlajean and her Parading Puppets will be here to put on a Valentine theme puppet show for the children. She will perform a 15-minute toddler show at 10:00 and a 30-minute preschool show. This should be a fun event for all!
DENTAL VISIT
February is Dental awareness month. This month-long national health observance brings together thousands of dedicated professionals, healthcare providers, and educators to promote the benefits of good oral health to children. Zeis Dental, around the corner from us, has visited us in the past and we hope to schedule a visit from them this month. More information to come. 
PARENT REMINDERS
EXTRA CLOTHES
Please make sure your child has extra clothes, labeled with his/her last name, at school in case of accidents, spills, wet playground, etc. Our “extra” clothes bin here at the center is getting quite low. We appreciate your help! 
STAR WELLNESS
star wellness
STAR WELLNESS RECIPE
COOKING WITH CHILDREN: CHICKEN AVOCADO ROLL-UPS
Ingredients
2 avocados, cubed
Juice of 1 lime
2 c. shredded chicken
1 bell peppers, seeds and cores removed, chopped
1/2 small red onion, chopped
1/2 c. shredded Monterey Jack
1/2 c. shredded Cheddar
2 tbsp. sour cream
2 tbsp. finely chopped chives
4 large flour tortillas

Directions
In a medium bowl, combine avocado and lime juice and mash until only small chunks of avocado remain. Add chicken, bell pepper, red onion, Monterey Jack, cheddar, sour cream and chives and stir until evenly combined.
   
Spread a thin layer of the chicken avocado mixture onto a large tortilla, leaving a small border around the edges. Roll the tortilla up tightly, then cut off the edges and slice into 1” rolls. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Serve cold or at room temperature. 

ESPECIALLY FOR PARENTS
LITTLE CHEFS, BIG BENEFITS
Sundays are cooking days at our house. My husband loves to use the weekend as an excuse to simmer, roast or slow cook. With weeknight mealtimes often feeling a bit chaotic (serious understatement), we both relish the opportunity to slow down a bit. And mostly thanks to him, the results are usually pretty tasty.

But what I have come to love even more than the food is the opportunity to watch our 3-year-old in the kitchen. He is the ultimate helper. Loving to get involved, he is constantly asking me what jobs he can do. On busy weeknights, when there are onions to chop and tantrums to sooth, I sometimes find myself rushing through things on my own. My desire to include him butts up against my desire to get the food on the table before our 16-month-old implodes. But on the weekends, when things slow down, we make a point to find ways for him to help.

This often involves stirring, measuring, scooping, spilling (!) and pouring. And always, without fail, it involves several requests to taste each ingredient as it goes in. Even the baking soda - ew! That simple act of tasting is actually an incredibly important step in developing healthy eating habits. Tasting exposes kids to different flavors and textures, making them more likely to grow up as balanced eaters. For my son, there are times when he will taste something as we cook it, only to reject it once it is on his plate. But that’s ok with me, because I know that those little tastes build up to a lot of exposure over time. 
Last Sunday, I walked into the kitchen and saw his face beaming with pride. He and his dad were making pasta, and my littlest chef had chopped all the (soft) cheese on his own. With a butter knife. It was the most excited I have seen him in the kitchen. He felt a sense of accomplishment, knowing that he had done it all on his own. And when the time came to eat, he couldn’t wait to tell his cousins all about “his” pasta.

It was a good reminder to me that with just a little adjustment, kids can do many things alongside us in the kitchen. There are age appropriate ways to get all kids involved and help them grow their skills as they get older. The pride they feel in working alongside us helps them to develop confidence, coordination and patience – and as a bonus, the results are delicious.  
Allison Zomer
Director of Operations
TWIN CITIES
FAMILY EVENTS

Now-2/3   Winter Carnival , Saint Paul
Now-2/3   Wells Fargo Winter Skate , St. Paul
Now-mid-February   Centennial Lakes Ice Skating , Edina
Now-2/18 The Three Snow Bears , Stages Theatre, Hopkins
Now-2/23 Night Trains , Twin City Model Railroad Museum, St. Paul
Now-2/24 Mr. Popper’s Penguins , Children’s Theatre Company, Mpls
Now-5/12   Wild Kratt's Creature Power! The Exhibit , MN Children's Museum, St. Paul
2/2   TC Field House Kid's Run , U of MN, Mpls
2/9   Valentine's Day 5k , Lake Nokomis, Mpls

Especially for Children
5133 W. 98th St. 
Bloomington, MN 55437  
(952) 831-1435 

Center Director:
Kathy Hane

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