Heart Choices: Culinary Camp Blessings -->

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Culinary Camp Blessings

I'm continuing to count my 1,000 blessings and I hope to keep on going ...

I'm teaching a two week summer session of Culinary Camp at Rancho Solano Private School.  It's been lots of fun but takes much planning.  I have a group of first through fourth grade girls and they are eager to learn.   After the second day of Culinary Camp, the girls wrote some things on the board when I was occupied elsewhere.

#89  A broad smile after reading the girls' words and pictures they drew.  We had prepared watermelon pie using ice cream and sherbet.  The pie tasted great but didn't look as good as the recipe photo.  I think it needed to stay frozen a bit longer. :)

Each student created three emotion masks.  After tasting a recipe, they would place one of the emotion masks on their face.  The choices were ...loved it, so-so, and disliked it.

#90  The students used their loved it mask 99.9% of the time so far.

Since I have a long history of working as a cardiovascular nurse, I wanted to include some healthy recipes too.
Our class used a variety of fresh fruit and then made several dips.  The coconut dip was quite a hit!

#91  Teaching children to enjoy and prepare healthy foods too

#92  Seeing a sense of accomplishment on the faces of the girls as they prepare their recipes

#93 Eager hands ready to taste good and healthy food

#94 Watching the creativity at work as the girls decorated their chef hats

#95  Alyssa reported back that she remembered the strawberry smoothie recipe and made it for her dad

I've been trying to also teach manners in the Culinary Camp.  Upon observing some of their table manners, I realized they needed some help.  So I created a chart with stickers.  When I observe them using good manners, they receive a sticker.  One of the girls seemed so sad and sullen during our morning.  When it came to giving stickers, she hadn't been using good manners all morning.  Later that day, as I moved to my after school group of PreK 3 and 4 year olds, I suddenly heard voices calling Miss Debbie.

They reported that they had observed this one girl using good manners and ...she was all smiles!

Of course, she got her sticker too.

#96  Being able to see the girls practice what they are learning

The week has been hectic and tiring.  My hours are a bit later than usual and I often stop at the grocery to pick up ingredients for the next day's recipe.  I phoned my hubby Greg telling him how tired I was.  When I got home, this is what greeted me.

#97 The joy of having a husband who is also a kid at heart.  I love that about him.  He knows how to bring a smile to my face!

Are you looking for those everyday blessings in your life?  I know that since I've been on the lookout it's been changing my perspective.  I encourage you to do so too.

Blessings and love,

Debbie Petras
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  1. Sweet blessings :o) Sounds like Culinary Camp is full of smiles, fun times and blessings all around!

    Blessings & Aloha!

  2. Debbie, What a wonderful post. Those kids are so blessed to have you for a teacher...What wonderful memories you are making with them.......

    Hugs and blessings,

  3. Dear Debbie,
    I knew it, I knew it; this would be a tremendous success for you.
    The children always feel who really cares, and that make them more available for even learning good manners.
    I love the story about the girl who finally got her sticker.
    It's all-right to be tired when you have done such a good job.
    I don't even feel sorry for you. Depression tired is awful and devastating, but success tired brings new brain muscles and lots of smiley faces at the end of the day.
    Have a blessed Pentecost
    from felisol

  4. This just put such a huge smile on my face. Because you see Debbie - you thought this was going to be good for the children - yet it is turning out God is using it to be good for YOU! I'm thrilled to see how many ways He is blessing you through each child and experience!

    Love you!

  5. I love this! I started doing my list of gists. I posted the first 100 and have more in my little book. I really need to keep adding more! This is so inspirational! Love it! Pxo

  6. Thanks for that cute post, Debbie. I know those girls are so blessed to have you as their teacher. You are very creative. Love you ~

  7. This sounds like a fun job. I would love to teach that age girl cooking etc. Soo fun. And yet I am also certain lots of work. They are so obviously enjoying you too. You do have a great list of blessings. Loved your hubby's pic, haha...Have a wonderful week!

  8. I enjoyed this glimpse into your week, what fun thanksgiving!

  9. What a fun class, I would like to be in it! :)
    I love that your husband drew you a picture, that's great!
    (visiting from Ann's place

  10. It certainly sounds like you're enjoying camp and teaching the kids. Good luck and have a happy summer!

  11. What joy it is to see how those kids bless you; and you them!

  12. That class sounds so fun. Glad you and the girls are having a good time.

  13. Such fun! I like the emotion masks, what a cute idea. It looks like both you and the kiddos are having a good time. I have a dip I make with fruit, a recipe my Mom passed on to me from a baby shower years ago. The coconut one sounds good.

  14. What a happy post! It sure put a smile on my face (and I'm going to admit that it got me emotional. Am I hormonal? Maybe!!) It sounds like you are having such a wonderful time teaching at Culinary Camp! What a blessing you are to the kids (and to your readers!!)

    Love & smiles, Joan

  15. This is a great post! Not only does the food look great, but the smiles on their faces, as well as reading their card, and your hubby's too--that was really encouraging! Keep up the great work! :) It's a wonderful idea to count our blessings! And as the "Great Madame Blueberry" from Veggie Tales learned, "A Thankful heart is a happy heart." LOL

  16. Debbie,
    I really enjoyed reading this post and seeing all those pictures.

    It takes time to upload pictures and then do the captions, so I do appreciate all that you did to come up with this special post.

    You were awesome, I never did doubt that you would have an impact in the lives of the first through fourth grade children!

    The strategies you used are good - like making three emotions masks, and giving away stickers for good manners...

    What touched me the most was the drawing that Greg did for you. That was really so sweet.

    Glad I came by your place today to read about your Culinary Camp blessings!

    Much love

  17. Debbie - What sweet encouragement those little girls offered to you.

    And what a wonderful teacher you are for them. blessings to you - Marsha

  18. This is just awesome and made my day. I love seeing God just bend down and giving you a kiss on the cheek through these precious kids. You have blessed them and in return you are being blessed and encouraged.
    Yea for your wonderful, loving husband...through it all he has continued to be a source of encouragement.

  19. Culinary camp looks like a lot of fun. I love the hats and am glad you are being blessed by the experience.

  20. What a great post....and what a wonderful blessing you are to those children!

    That coconut dip sounds yummy. Would you consider sharing the recipe?

    I know your job is tiring, but oh what enjoyment to work with those sweet children!



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