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Saturday, February 24, 2018
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  • Wednesday, February 14, 2018 4:00 AM
    The flu is in the air, and temperatures are plummeting. The one thing that is sure to make anyone feel better? Soup. For a hearty, feel-good soup, I recommend adding aromatic vegetables. These deliver deep, bold flavors along with an aromatic punch that’ll leave your mouth watering. These flavors and aromas are released from vegetables like onions, garlic, chilies, and ginger when they are heated and crushed. Not only are these vegetables delicious and fragrant, they naturally reduce fat, sugar, and salt in your recipes while boosting your immune system. 
    No recipe? No problem! Simply start by adding evenly cut fresh vegetables from the list below. Heat up a small amount of oil, broth, or water. Smell that yet? Now’s the time to add additional broth, meat, grains, and vegetables of your choice. Let that simmer for about 30 minutes and serve with your desired garnish. 
    • Carrots are high in beta carotene and helps control the immune system. Cooked carrots allow better absorption of beta carotene. 
    • Celery is way more than just a low calorie snack- it’s a good source of Vitamins A, C, K, and potassium! You can also find heart-healthy properties in this crunchy morsel. 
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  • Thursday, February 8, 2018 4:00 AM
    New to the 4-H program and have questions? Finished your first year in 4-H and still have questions? Then join us for the “New 4-H Member Orientation” on Thursday, Feb. 15 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Montgomery County 4-H Fairgrounds in the Exhibit Hall. This is a great opportunity to learn about 4-H Trips and Opportunities, Projects, Green Record Books, and get all of your questions answered. The goal of this orientation is to get your 4-H experience started off on the right foot!
    This orientation is just for youth in their 1st or 2nd year of 4-H and are currently in grades 3-12. Please come with any questions that you have and learn about the great opportunities that youth can be a part of through the 4-H program. We will also have a panel of 10-year 4-H members available to answer questions and share their unique 4-H experiences. 
    Please RSVP for this orientation by calling the Extension office at (765)364-6363 or e-mail Abby Morgan at asweet@purdue.edu. RSVP’s must be made by February 13th. Refreshments will be provided. Participants will be getting a packet of information so please be sure to RSVP so I know how many packets to put together. Parents/guardians are welcome and encouraged to attend!
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  • Wednesday, February 7, 2018 4:00 AM
    Small-scale farming has become an increasingly important part of Indiana’s $11.2 billion agricultural industry. According to the 2012 U.S. Census of Agriculture, approximately 75 percent of Hoosier farms were less than 180 acres. Other studies show that nearly half the farms in the state are 50 acres or fewer.
    The annual Indiana Small Farm Conference and trade show provides both novice and experienced small-scale producers with an opportunity to learn about the latest trends, network with fellow farmers and get practical, hands-on guidance from nationally recognized experts on a wide range of critical topics, from crop production and equipment to marketing, new business development and legal issues.
    Registration is now open for this year’s conference, scheduled for March 1-3 at the Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds and Conference Complex, 1900 E. Main Street, Danville.
    “We’ve experienced tremendous growth in the five years we’ve hosted the conference,” said Michael O’Donnell, Purdue Extension diversified and organic agriculture educator and one of the event organizers. “It’s very gratifying that we’ve been able to expand our educational offerings and build such rewarding partnerships to better serve the small-scale farming community.”
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  • Wednesday, January 10, 2018 4:00 AM
    2018 is finally here and the start of new beginnings and many New Year’s resolutions. I would like to encourage you to consider enrolling in 4-H as part of your new beginnings. The 4-H program has many positive experiences and opportunities for youth to discover their passions and build/enhance life skills. 
    One of the opportunities 4-H presents to youth is the chance to learn and enhance their leadership, communication, and teamwork life skills through the Teens As Teachers workshop. This workshop is for youth currently in grades 9-12 (do not have to be in 4-H to participate but highly encouraged) and will occur April 13-15th at Bradford Woods in Martinsville, IN. Teams will consist of 3-5 youth (cost is $100 per team) and they will select from one of the following tracks to spend the weekend learning the tools and resources necessary to come back to their county and teach at various events and opportunities. The tracks are:
    • Biotechnology: Learn how to train, create, and implement a “Science Behind Agriculture” program in your community.
    • Automated Animal Biosecurity: Do you like animals? Do you enjoy science Youth will learn how to teach about animal biosecurity through hands-on “maker” and robotics activities designed for youth learning using creativity and self-discovery.
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  • Tuesday, January 9, 2018 4:00 AM
    The new year brings new events with Purdue Extension’s Ag and Natural Resources program. 
    Energy Efficiency for Farms and Rural Businesses
    What: Workshop to help you learn about energy audits, local incentive programs, and solar energy and how these can help you increase energy efficiency and save money at your farm or business.
    When: January 22nd, 2018 from 10AM-2PM
    Where: Donnelley Room, Crawfordsville Public Library
    Cost: $10 registration fee, includes lunch and payable at the door
    What Now? Estate Planning and Building Your Financial Safety Net
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  • Saturday, December 30, 2017 4:00 AM
    Set yourself up for success in 2018, by setting a SMART New Year resolution. There are estimates out there that 40% of Americans make New Year resolutions and recent research by the University of Scranton suggest that only 8% of those people achieve their resolution. I know I have been a member of New Year resolution failures group, what about you?
    When investigating why I failed I learned that I was not setting a SMART resolution or goal. Let’s take my 2017 resolution for instance. My goal was to put down the phone and read more books. Was I successful, well maybe? I did read about 8 books this year, which seems like a lot. But what’s more? No clue because I didn’t keep track of how many I read in 2016. 
    So this year when setting your New Year’s Resolution remember the Acronym S.M.A.R.T: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. 
    Specific means that the goal is precise and clear. For example “I want to read more books”, could be “I want to read 10 books.”
    Measureable goals provide gauges for your progress. When do I want to read 10 books by? If I want to read 10 books in 10 days. I could measure that. In 10 days I can look back and determine if I read 10 books. 
    Attainable means that the goal you set for yourself is in reach. Is my goal of reading 10 books in 10 days attainable? No, because I am not taking a 10 day vacation where I plan to sit and read all day. So now I need to answer the question of how can I attain this? I believe that I could read 10 books from Jan 1 2018 to December 31, 2017. This is now attainable. 
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  • Friday, December 22, 2017 4:00 AM
    Why do we deck the halls with boughs of holly? – and other holiday plant mysteries
    The lights are strung up, the wreath is on the door, and the tree is settled in the front window. The neighborhood is alight with all kinds of holiday decoration – inflatable snowmen, psychedelic laser displays, lights that dance and strobe with the excitement of a college party... I don’t know about you, but there are some regular Clark Griswolds in my neighborhood that go all out and totally eclipse anything I’m capable of doing with my own home. However, one commonality among the décor is the use of plants, particularly winter-hardy evergreens. Evergreens like holly, mistletoe, and pine are used in wreaths, garlands, and table centerpieces. Entire spruce, fir, and pine trees are brought indoors as our Christmas trees. Other than being some of the only green things outdoors at this time of year, why do we use these plants during the holiday season to brighten our homes?
    European holly (Ilex aquifolium) – Holly is a shrubby evergreen species with bright red “berries” (botanically known as drupes), found throughout Europe and the United Kingdom. Although there are many species of holly throughout the world, European holly is most commonly associated with Christmas. In ancient Celtic culture, the druids associated holly with fertility and eternal life. They believed that hanging boughs of holly in the home would bring good luck. Christian tradition associates the red color of the berries with the blood of Christ and the pointed leaves with the crown of thorns. Holly represents the colors of the Christmas holiday all in one package.
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  • Wednesday, December 20, 2017 4:00 AM
    Tis the season to be bombarded with healthy-living and food guilt, while at the same time having break rooms full of sweet Christmas treats. This time of year can add a lot of stress, especially when we are trying to make good decisions for our health yet enjoy the once-a-year cheer that comes with the holiday season. One day of over eating such as Thanksgiving or Christmas day is not going to ruin your waist line, however, an entire month or two could cause you to notice your pants fitting a little tighter.
    So how do we balance our cravings for treats?
    First, don’t wait until the New Year to hit the gym. There is no reason that fitness should only be our goal for one month of the year. Physical activity helps us to burn those extra calories we may have snuck in, but remaining active has a plethora of benefits such as: reduced chronic disease risk, increased flexibility, improved mental health, increased balance, and increased chance of living longer. 
    Physical Activity guidelines recommended adults participate in 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity physical activity. Moderate intensity means you are able to hold a conversation with the friend you are briskly walking with. Let’s do some simple math; 150 minutes divided by five days equals 30 minutes per day. If 30 minutes is too much, break up a 30 minute routine into three 10 minute routines. This could easily be done as a walk during lunch instead of scrolling through Facebook.
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  • Friday, December 15, 2017 4:00 AM
    I can’t believe that the month of December is already here. With the hustle and bustle to find the perfect gift for family and friends, please consider giving the gift of 4-H to the youth in Montgomery County. Indiana 4-H enrollment is open to all youth in Montgomery County in grades K-12, with a deadline for enrolling by January 15th. Enrollment is easier than ever with the 4-H Online system (https://in.4honline.com) and can even be done while you work on your online shopping! 
    The mission of the Indiana 4-H Youth Development program is to provide real-life educational opportunities that develop young people who will have a positive impact in their communities and the world. 4-H prepares young people to be leaders in their community and around the world through hands-on experiences alongside their peers and caring adults. Indiana 4-H is the state’s largest youth development program for grades 3-12, reaching over 200,000 youth in all 92 counties. 4-H is open to all youth in grades 3-12 and Mini 4-H is offered to grades K-2.
    In Montgomery County, approved adult volunteers teach young people specific skills related to a wide variety of subjects through hands-on, experiential learning. Youth also develop leadership and citizenship skills by participating in one of our organized 4-H Clubs. Subjects include: science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM); agriculture; citizenship; healthy living; art; consumer and family sciences; and more. In 2013, a Tufts University study showed that 4-H members also excel in positive youth development areas compared to peers, including: 
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  • Wednesday, November 15, 2017 4:00 AM
    For many, November is the time of year to reflect on those people, things, opportunities, etc. that they are most thankful for. As a 4-H Youth Development Extension Educator, I am no different. I am thankful for the 4-H Youth Development program and all of the many opportunities that it offers our young people to learn, develop, and enhance the life skills that they will need for years to come. 
    The mission of the Indiana 4-H Youth Development program is to provide real-life educational opportunities that develop young people who will have a positive impact in their communities and the world. Each year the Montgomery County 4-H program strives to provide youth with the opportunities to fulfill this mission statement. With the new initiative of 4-H SPARK Clubs, the 4-H program is reaching new audiences in unique ways to continue to provide all youth the opportunity to learn and enhance life skills. 
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  • Thursday, November 2, 2017 4:00 AM
    Why let the Holidays win? All year we work hard to maintain a healthy weight; then suddenly we hit October and say “Why bother? The holidays are just around the corner - I’ll lose it as my New Year’s resolution!” Instead of the last-minute panic, join me in battling the bulge. 
    Battle 1: “Healthy Relationship with Food” vs. “Why Did I Eat That”
    If we are asking ourselves “why did I eat that,” chances are that we weren’t actually hungry. The more likely answer is that we ate because we were bored, or it seemed like the thing to do. We have all had to have a bag of popcorn while watching a movie, right? Know that there is a party coming up? Plan ahead! Drink lots of water, choose healthy snacks, eat for a purpose, and stop when full. Treating yourself to those once-a-year goodies? Take it home and throw it in the freezer, and you’ll be able to eat it all year long. Stop rewarding yourself or others with food. Instead find a fun activity to reward yourself with! Banning the “Clean Plate Club” is another great step. Requiring someone to clean their plate even when they are full encourages overeating, which could lead to obesity. Also, don’t feel like you have to eat a full meal just because it’s meal time! If you aren’t hungry, grab a snack like some fruit or yogurt. 
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  • Wednesday, October 25, 2017 4:00 AM
    You’ve heard the old adage that the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. While that phrase might feel a little discouraging for the present moment, the second best time to plant a tree is now! Autumn is an excellent time to plant. Planting during the autumn months provides many of the same benefits for trees as it does for lawns – better root growth and more resiliency for the next year.
    If you’re planning on adding some new trees to your landscape, it should be mentioned that hardwoods are better suited to fall planting than softwoods (pines, spruces, firs). Softwoods are better suited to slightly warmer soil temperatures than we tend to get during October. Hardwoods can be safely planted until the beginning of November, when soil temperatures start to drop and precipitation can sometimes make it too wet to plant. 
    As you think about which species to select, consider your goals for your space. Are you looking for a large shade tree for keeping cool during the summer, or a smaller ornamental tree that will provide striking colors in the fall? Also consider what species are already planted around you. If there are maple trees in your neighbors’ yards as far as the eye can see, consider choosing a different species. Having more tree diversity in your neighborhood can help prevent the spread of insects and disease from tree to tree if a major pest issue rolls through the area (think Dutch elm disease and emerald ash borer).
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  •   Taste of Fall; Using Winter Squash in your late season cooking
    Saturday, October 21, 2017 4:00 AM
    Autumn is upon us which means that winter squash season is also nearly here. While it might seem that pumpkin gets all the glory this time of year there is actually a whole world of squash to explore. Pumpkin is itself a type of squash and is related to gourds and melons. Squashes comes in many different shapes and sizes, you have likely already heard of many of them: Acorn, Butternut, and Spaghetti just to name a few. However, there are also many lesser known and heirloom varieties such as: Delicata, Autumn Cup, Hubbard, Fairytale Pumpkin, among many others. Each variety has its own variations in color, texture, and flavor. 
    Almost the entire squash plant is edible including the leaves, flowers, seeds, and even the skin, although the thicker skin of many winter varieties can be tough and is often discarded. While the nutritional profile varies slightly between types all varieties of squash are low in calories. Squashes typically are source of fiber as well as several vitamins and minerals, specifically vitamins A, B6 and C. 
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  • What’s all the talk of carbs mean?
    Wednesday, October 18, 2017 4:00 AM
    You hear a lot about carbohydrates, or carbs, in the media. You have probably heard that they are bad for you, or maybe that they’re good for you. You should eat a lot of them, or you shouldn’t eat very many, or maybe it is only certain kinds you can eat? You have probably heard some combination of things about carbohydrates, with varying levels of accuracy. So what is a carb anyway? A carbohydrate is a chain of sugars that your body can easily metabolize for energy. I’m guessing that didn’t really tell you much about what they are though. 
    The foods we eat contain nutrients that provide energy and other things the body needs. Most of the nutrients in food fall into three major groups called macronutrients (macros): proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Carbohydrates come in primarily two forms, “simple”, known as in sugars known as glucose and sucrose (table sugar) or “complex” in the form of starches, which are really just long chains of sugars, like you find in pastas and potatoes. The body breaks down most carbohydrates into the sugar glucose, which is absorbed into the bloodstream. When this process occurs quickly, when you consume “simple” carbs, you are more likely to feel hungry again quickly. Absorption occurs slowly when you consume “complex” carbs such as those found in whole grains allowing you to feel full longer. Eating starches in their whole food form, such as whole skin-on potatoes or brown rice, brings another kind of carbohydrate to the party, fiber. Fiber is a type of carbohydrate your body can’t digest and it slows down the digestion process which both keeps you feeling full longer and helps keep things moving. However, even complex carbs are, at the end of the digestion process, reduced to sugars.
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  • Wednesday, October 4, 2017 4:00 AM
    The Montgomery County 4-H Program is gearing up for the 2017-2018 4-H year. Last year, there were 755 youth in grades K-12 enrolled in the Montgomery County 4-H program. With each year, the goal is to continue to grow the amount of youth involved in the 4-H program and provide youth with experiences to help them become the best they can be. 4-H enrollment starts October 1st and the deadline is January 15th. Youth can enroll in 4-H by visiting http://in.4honline.com or contact the Purdue Extension-Montgomery County office at (765)364-6363 or visit us at 400 Parke Avenue, Crawfordsville, IN 47933. 
    There are many fun and exciting upcoming opportunities provided by Purdue Extension. The first is STEM Camp, which is October 19th and 20th from 9:00 am- 3:00 pm at the Montgomery County 4-H Fairgrounds. This camp is for youth currently in grades 3-6 and the cost is $15, which covers the 4-H program fee, supplies, and resources. STEM Camp will teach youth topics related to Engineering and Design, Food Science, Makerspace, and Natural Resources. To register for this fun, hands-on, and educational opportunity, please contact the Purdue Extension-Montgomery County office at (765)364-6363. 
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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P.O. Box 272
Crawfordsville, Indiana 47933

 

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