Thursday, September 20, 2007

September 21st Menu

Caroline's Lunchbox Menu, September 21: Breakfast - O's, Queen's Lace peach; Lunch - fresh mozzarella cheese, carrots, zucchini, broccoli, Sun Gold cherry tomatoes, 100% whole grain toast; Snacks - whole wheat pancakes, cantaloupe

Childcare Center Menu, September 21: Breakfast - oranges, croissants; Lunch - BBQ chicken, peas, carrots, pears, bread, mashed potatoes; Snacks - pumpkin cookies, cucumbers


Linda said...

I just started reading your blog and I love your writing style. I get the impression that Caroline is required to participate in the meal program at day care and that your family practice prioritizes food as a social value. What a collision!

It strikes me as odd that if Caroline had any health or cultural issues that prevented her from eating certain foods the center would accomodate her. Your experience in the day care implies that the health risks of highly processed foods from large scale and industrial farming practices are not really all that serious a health issue. And that is extraordinary.

Betty said...

Hi Linda! I guess the extraordinary thing is that the center is allowing us to continue bringing our own food for Caroline. We have opted out of the food program and apparently, we are the only family in the center's history that has done so. The other extraordinary thing is that the director and cook want to buy organic and local fresh produce for the center's meals and snacks (see post, Farmer Tim). Of course, the price of the produce has to be competitive with what they are currently buying through Gordon Food Service and their other vendors. But taking this first step is a very significant especially since they tried to work with a local farmer many years ago and for reasons I am not privy to, the relationship did not work out.

Linda said...

I am so curious. I hope you don't mind me asking more questions. I will try to ask one at a time.
Can you explain what is extraordinary about the center allowing you to bring Caroline's own food? I understand a bit about K-8 school meal programs but have no knowledge of preschool or day care. Are all day care children required to participate in the meal program?

It sounds promising that Farmer Tim is beginning to play a role at the center. It is hard to create new relationships between partners that are not used to speaking the same languages. In the world of farmers and school kitchens the learning can be in the areas of price, delivery times, product. Beyond that there are often expectations and assumptions that shape the relationship too.

So, have you heard anything about the product and price list Tim was going to bring? I don't live in Michigan, so I am very curious about what is growning there and what the farmers are getting for their hard work.

sorry- that was two questions..


Betty said...

Hi Linda - Caroline's childcare center has had a food program for years. They are unique as most childcare programs don't have a food program, especially one that has a cook who prepares most meals and snacks from scratch. The center has many policies around families bringing food from home for their children. In short, it's generally not allowed. So, the fact that the center is allowing us to bring Caroline's meals and snacks from home is literally, extraordinary. Also, their recognition of my commitment to my food philosophy is significant.

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