Tag Archives: family

Rye Month

Rye Month

It’s Rye Month, and if you’ve never played with the classic whole grain, we can help you get started with healthy rye recipes.

Make the classic at home with this recipe for Spelt & Rye Sourdough Bread.

Spelt & Rye Sourdough Bread
Image and Recipe via In the Mood for Food

 

These Healthy Cherry Muffins with Dark Chocolate Chunks are made with whole grain rye flour.

Healthy Cherry Muffins with Dark Chocolate Chunks
Image and Recipe Hey Nutrition Lady

 

Don’t skip the bread with this Steak and Rye Panzanella salad.

Steak and Rye Panzanella
Image and Recipe Woman’s Day

 

Impress guests with a fancy cheese platter and homemade Crispy Rye Crackers with Seeds.

https://jernejkitchen.com/recipes/bread-and-doughs/crackers-seeds
Image and Recipe Jerne J Kitchen

 

Lighten up your family’s favorite comfort food with Cauliflower Mac ‘n’ Cheese with Rye Crumbs.

Cauliflower Mac ‘n’ Cheese with Rye Crumbs
Image and Recipe Healthy Food Guide

 

Salmon Tartare & Avocado on Rye is the perfect light and easy meal for warm summer nights.

Salmon Tartare & Avocado on Rye
Image and Recipe House & Garden

 

Whip up a healthy Dark Chocolate Chip & Rye Banana Bread for the perfect weekend brunch.

Dark chocolate chip & rye banana bread

Homesickness in College Students

How to Deal with Homesickness in College

One of the main causes of distress in students is homesickness. According to the UCLA Higher Education Institute, over 30% of college students experience low-level homesickness, and about 69% of first year college students experience severe homesickness.

Homesickness is more than the concept of missing home or missing family — it’s the feeling of longing and feeling out of place. Whether they’re nearby, out-of-state, or studying in a foreign country, college students are not only experiencing a new phase of life, but they’re also at a new school, in a new place.

Although it’s normal to feel homesick, wanting to enjoy a home-cooked meal with family or not wanting to deal with adult responsibilities and academic pressures may quickly make homesickness grow. Homesickness builds in waves and can turn into more serious mental health issues if not taken seriously.

Last year, Assist America worked on a severe case of homesickness, helping an 18-year-old student from Germany who was hospitalized after his homesickness transformed into serious depressive episodes.

In the weeks leading up to his hospitalization, the student had shown increased signs of homesickness, including mentioning that he wanted to go home, a decrease in the desire to participate in activities and social events, and suicidal thoughts.

After a while, his roommates told the university staff about his behavior, and he was later admitted to the hospital. Once he was stable, Assist America arranged for transportation supervised by a medical escort to take him back to Germany.

Tips for Overcoming Homesickness

Some preventive measures can be taken by both parents and students to help overcome homesickness.

For Parents

  • You can help your child prepare for college life by visiting the campus ahead of time so they can familiarize themselves with its surroundings.

  • In the years before college, consider sending your child to summer camps, activities, or to visit family away from home , so they can gradually learn to deal with separation anxiety.

  • Avoid expressing your own anxiety about your child leaving for college in front of them. Instead, talk optimistically and positively about their new experiences to come.

  • Encourage your child to find trusted friends and adults on campus. These relationships will help them build connections in their new community and ease the transition.

  • Consider sending little surprise care packages to your child. Include their favorite cookies or candies, a new book, gift cards to their favorite stores, a letter, and a funny family photo.

  • Make the most of technology. Staying in touch on the phone or through video chat is easier than ever and can help the whole family feel connected.

For Students

  • Stay engaged in campus activities. Many colleges organize welcome week events to help students get used to college culture.

  • Establish and stick to a daily routine, even if it’s difficult to stay on track with exams and events around every corner. Routines are good for dealing with stress and anxiety and will help you adjust to your new community and class schedule.

  • Feeling homesick is normal, as long as you can handle the situation. To help battle feelings of loneliness, keep a family picture on your study table, video-chat often, or go old-school and write letters to family and friends back home.

  • Find ways to reward yourself as you make gains in your new routine. For instance, after submitting an important assignment or taking a big exam, take some time to do something fun or treat yourself with something you like.

  • If campus is only a drive away, you and your parents and friends can plan a few weekends throughout the school year to visit each other on campus, at home, or to meet at a halfway-point.

  • When packing for college, take some of your favorite decorations from your room to make your new room feel more like home.

  • Know what services are available to you to help you cope with homesickness. Too often students don’t realize all the things their college has ready to help them with exactly these issues. Never shy away from seeking advice from a trusted adult on campus about these services. Or you can look into these services privately on your school’s website.

While Studying Abroad

  • Students who study abroad are even more likely to feel homesick since they have to adjust to a whole new culture and lifestyle, learn to speak a new language, and meet all new people from many backgrounds.

  • A challenge while studying abroad is knowing who you can ask questions and how and where to get help. Before leaving, create a reference list with the names, contact details, and roles of people that will be helpful during your stay. Once you arrive, be sure to add anyone important you meet to your list. 

  • Schools often have an international student department who will organize welcome events and get-togethers. Be sure to attend those activities, especially at the beginning of your time abroad.

  • Many international programs also have Facebook groups where former and new students can exchange tips and experiences. Joining these groups to make connections and prepare before leaving home.

  • Make friends with people from the same country as you. When you’re missing home, spend time together. Your shared experience of studying abroad can make you feel a little closer to home.

How Assist America Can Help

Assist America provides useful services that can reassure parents and students studying out-of-state or abroad.

For example, Assist America can help students find where and how they can refill certain prescriptions before they even leave home, so they can plan their departure with peace of mind.

Students who know they will need to see a doctor while away from home can call us or Assist America for referrals. Assist America also provides emergency trauma counseling for students on the phone, with referrals for follow-up sessions with specialists.

Finally, students going to a foreign country can use the Pre-Trip Information tool on Assist America’s website and the mobile app to familiarize themselves with their destination.

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Exercise with Your Child Week

Exercise with Your Child Week

It’s Exercise with Your Child Week, and we can help your family get moving all week.

How much exercise do your kids really need at different ages? 

How Much Exercise Do Kids Need?

 

If you’re trying to squeeze in a quick workout with your kids, here are 10 exercises you can all do together.

How to Exercise At Home with Kids

 

Dad can make playing with the kids a workout with these exercises from Men’s Health.

Playing as a Workout

 

Balance time spent on sedentary play, like reading books and playing with toys, with play that requires physical activity, like tag, hide and seek, and hopscotch.

Make Time for Active Play

 

Set aside daily time for active movement together, maybe it’s swimming at the pool in the summer, walking the dog, or playing catch.

Daily Time for Movement

 

Instead of going to the movies, pick family activities that get you moving, like bowling, mini golf, or laser tag.

Get Moving for Family Night

 

Have weekly sports nights where you use a set of exercise cards, play lawn games (like shuffleboard, bags, or badminton), or even get moving with physically active video games.

Competition with the Family

National Child-Centered Divorce Month

National Child-Centered Divorce Month

July is National Child-Centered Divorce Month. Thinking about your kids if you’re going through a divorce doesn’t mean staying together for their sake. It just means you’re considering their feelings and emotions while making choices.

Considering Your Kids During Divorce

 

If you’re getting a divorce, take the time to sit down together with your kids and explain the decision whenever possible. Presenting a unified front, even at this difficult time, is important for your family.

Discussing the Decision as a Family

 

Put yourself in your children’s shoes and validate their feelings while handling a divorce. They have a right to have feelings about the situation and to express them.

Safely Expressing Feelings During Divorce

 

Remind your kids that they’re not at fault or a cause of the divorce, and reassure them at each step that mom and dad will always be their parents. 

Don’t ask them to take sides or put them in the middle of arguments. Make sure they feel comfortable loving both of you and talking about it.

Avoiding Putting Your Kids in the Middle

 

Focus on change and not blame. Help them understand the changes that are coming to all of your lives and how you’ll work through it together. 

Focusing on Change as a Positive

 

Be confident and consistent when discussing the divorce with them. You should both decide on how you’ll handle issues with the kids upfront and be ready to communicate with them about these issues consistently.

Consistency During Divorce

California Avocado Month

California Avocado Month

It’s California Avocado Month, and we can help you use the versatile produce in many different kinds of healthy avocado recipes this summer.

First up are Blueberry Avocado Muffins that are tasty and probably healthier than what you grab at the coffee shop.

Blueberry Avocado Muffins

 

Whip up this Avocado and Egg Breakfast Pizza for a fun breakfast your kids will love.

Avocado and Egg Breakfast Pizza
Image and Recipe via The Kitchn

 

These Coconut Avocado Frozen Pops are a refreshing, tropical summer treat.

Coconut Avocado Popsicles


This easy Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce is as beautiful as it is delicious.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Creamy Avocado Sauce

 

Whip up Avocado Black Bean Quesadillas for a healthy appetizer or meatless entrée.

Avocado Black Bean Quesadillas

Avocado Black Bean Quesadillas

 

This Turkey Bacon and Avocado Grilled Cheese is sure to become a new comfort food favorite.

Turkey Bacon and Avocado Grilled Cheese

 

Lighten up your family’s favorite dessert with Fudgy Avocado Brownies with Avocado Frosting.

Fudgy Avocado Brownies with Avocado Frosting

Ready for Summer Fun

Vantage Point: Summer Is Here

Every season, I can’t wait for the next season to be here (like when it’s finally summer, I’m waiting for fall and the cooler temperatures). I’ve always done that, but I’m getting better about living in the moment.

Now that summer is here, I’ve started thinking about a few questions. How do you want to enjoy the season we’re in? What would you like to accomplish this summer that maybe you’ve wanted to accomplish in summers past and haven’t?

Here’s my goal list for a really fun family summer:

  1. I want to camp more, much more. We have a family cabin where we can escape into the outdoors, but it really isn’t the same as camping. I want to work on my camping skills while teaching my children the awesome aspects of nature.

  2. I want to take a nicely planned trip to the beach.

  3. I want to have more family dinners where we eat outside with extended family, share a good meal, and converse. I think the summer season allows the perfect time to do this.

  4. In the vein of family dinners, I want to try more fun summer recipes that will make me a culinary legend in my family’s eyes.

  5. I would like to take more family walks. Not only is being healthy a focus for me and my family, but I would also love for us to have those summer memories of being together, talking, and walking.

While you’re out accomplishing your summer goals, don’t forget about summer safety tips. Remember to never leave little ones or animals in any hot car or hot area, drink plenty of water, and make sure that your loved ones are getting enough hydration as well (fur family included).

If you happen to take walks later in the evening or early morning when the light is lower, remember to wear light or bright clothing, and maybe have a reflective light or flashlight with you (or a reflective vest) so that people can see you and you stay safe.

Sunscreen is always important, no matter what time of year. Don’t let a cloudy day fool you when it comes to sun protection. Wearing sunscreen on cloudy days is as important as wearing it on sunny days, but on cloudy days, the sun is being sneaky, and you don’t realize how much sun you’re getting.

Have a safe and goal-filled summer!

Breck Obermeyer is a community liaison with Health Alliance Northwest, serving Yakima County. She is a small-town girl from Naches and has a great husband who can fix anything and 2 kids who are her world.

Healthy Bean Recipes

Healthy Bean Recipes

Lighten up meals this summer by sneaking in more healthy plant protein with this week’s healthy bean recipes.

Dinner will be ready in 30 minutes with this Creamy Polenta with Mushrooms and Beans.

Creamy Vegan Polenta with Mushrooms and Beans

 

Skip the meat in today’s Taco Tuesday with Pinto Bean Fajita Tacos with Cilantro Chile Lime Marinade.

Pinto Bean Fajita Tacos with Cilantro Chile Lime Marinade – Vegan Fajitas

 

Add some protein to your sweet tooth treat with White Bean Blondies.

White Bean Blondies

 

This plant-based Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger is perfect for summer nights.

Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger

 

Whip up Chocolate Black Bean Blender Muffins the whole family will love.

Chocolate Black Bean Blender Muffins {High Protein}

 

Meatless Black Bean Loaf with Creamy Avocado Verde Sauce is a great alternative to traditional meatloaf.

The Most Delicious Meatless Black Bean Loaf with Creamy Avocado Verde Sauce (vegan, gluten free)

 

Make this beautiful Butternut Squash and Black Bean Enchilada Skillet for a tasty dinner together.

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Enchilada Skillet