Yesterday marked my final Cooking Project Meeting for 4-H.
Not just for the year, but for good.
I have mixed feelings about stepping down but have given it a lot of thought.
It has become increasingly difficult for me to schedule the meetings around my own kidnicks' schedules and I am just plain, old tired.
The 4-H kids are the reason I continued each year and I will miss that and them. They feel comfortable in our home and I like having them here.
The group has grown from 6 kids 5 years ago to 15 this year.
I feel proud that I have stuck to my initial plan in teaching cooking.
I wanted to teach these kids, anywhere from 9 - 18 years old, how to make things that they might normally get prepackaged and/or processed.
I did that.
They learned to cook a raw chicken, process the meat and make soup with homemade stock.
They learned how to boil an egg properly and make fresh applesauce with only apples and cinnamon.
They learned how to cook from scratch and have fun while doing it.
They learned that if they can't pronounce an ingredient, they probably don't want to put it in their body.
They learned what curds and whey are and will never forget it.
They learned the difference between a pastry blender and a whisk.
They learned that cooking can help others. They learned that Jamba Juice Smoothies made at home is a ton of fun!
Food from other countries is not intimidating and is yummy!
They learned how to set a table and fold napkins in a variety of ways. They learned how to plan a brunch and make a timeline to get everything prepared and ready at the proper time.
They presented their skills to the entire 4-H Club.
After each meeting, I gave the kids a recipe card with that meeting's recipe on it.
It is my hope that those recipes with be used for years to come.
We did make a couple treats over the years as well, but all from scratch.
Biscuits, Chocolate Gravy and Homemade Butter was one of the favorites and we did that a couple years, and knowing how to make marshmallows is a fun talent to posses.
The 4-H year still has a way to go before the end with the upcoming fairs, but I will miss our meetings together.
As I was chatting with the last girl to leave last night, I realized that I won't just miss the teaching and cooking part, I will miss the times that these kiddos invite me into their lives and let me experience just what wonderful people they are.
Each and every one of them.
List of what our Cooking Project prepared over the years.
Homemade Cocoa Mix and Packaged it for gifts
Hot Spiced Apple Cider
Cook a Chicken...made Stock and Soup
Boil Eggs and make Devilled Eggs
Apple Tart and Applesauce
Taco Meat with Beans and salsa