The New Look of Nicotine Addiction: Talk with your kids about the dangers of vaping

While cigarette smoking among youth has declined, the use of other tobacco products, including e-cigarettes has increased. In their efforts to eventually hook kids on tobacco, the tobacco and vaping industries target young people by using three primary tactics – making products sweet, cheap, and easy to get.

Talk with Your Kids. Talking with your kids about vaping is one of the most important things you can do. Below are tips to help you prepare for and start the conversation.

  • Be patient and ready to listen. Your goal is to have a conversation, not to deliver a lecture.  So avoid criticism and encourage an open dialogue.
  • There is no “perfect time” to talk. Driving in the car together or waiting at an appointment is often the best time. You can start by mentioning a news story, a TV show, or something that you heard about vaping. Or ask your child what he or she thinks about a situation you witness together such as seeing someone use an e-cigarette, passing a vape shop when you are out, or seeing an e-cigarette advertisement.
  • There is no “perfect talk.” Consider your talks with your child about vaping as a learning opportunity for both of you, and perhaps just the beginning of an ongoing dialogue. You may have some facts about vaping at hand, but concede that you don’t know all the answers. It will go a long way to keep your kids from going on the defensive.
  • Ask what your child thinks. Show some genuine curiosity. Ask your child, “What’s your take on vaping?” or “Do you know kids who use e-cigarettes?”
  • Be open and honest. Be truthful about what you know about the dangers of vaping, and what you don’t. You can honestly say, though, “Vaping isn’t harmless. I hope you can steer clear of it.”

You can’t always control everything your children do when they’re not with you. Talking with your kids about vaping will let them know that you’re concerned about their health.

The information and resources shared in this article are from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health at http://makesmokinghistory.org/. You can also find helpful resources, from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, at https://resisttobacco.org/.

By: Nora Rhoades

Do you Wash your Poultry?

The practice of washing or rinsing raw poultry can actually put you and others at a higher risk of foodborne illness. Quite simply, there’s no need to do this.

Participants in an observational study were observed in handling and preparation practices to see how bacteria moves from raw foods to other foods or surfaces. They were divided into a control group and a treatment group. Food safety messages were sent via email prior to observation sessions to learn how effective those messages were in preparing chicken.

Some reasons consumers feel rinsing raw poultry is necessary is to remove blood/slime, because a family member said to do so, or it washes off the germs or bacteria. Most do this under the faucet with water running without any other container. Because of this, water splashes onto other items or food causing cross contamination. Then, many improperly washed their hands by not using water or soap, or did not rub their hands with soap at least 20 seconds. They also were ineffective at cleaning and sanitizing equipment and countertops.

Bottom line. There is no need to wash poultry or meat prior to cooking. Cooking to safe temperatures is the best and safest defense against foodborne illness. All poultry should reach 165°F; ground meat should reach 160°F; and roasts, steak and chops should reach 145°F.

The final report of this study can be found at https://bit.ly/30qbG3h.

By: Ashley Svaty

Garlic Planting Times

October is a good time to plant garlic if you want large quality cloves next summer. Apply 3 pounds of 10-10-10 fertilizer per 100 square feet and mix into the soil before planting or fertilize according to soil test. Plant individual cloves point up and spaced 6 inches apart and 1 to 2 inches deep. The larger the clove planted, the larger the bulb at harvest. Water in well and mulch with straw to conserve soil warmth and encourage good establishment.

Harvest will not occur until next summer. Test dig when the lower 1/3 of the foliage is yellow. If the cloves have segmented, it is time to harvest. If they haven’t segmented, wait another week or two.

Inchelium Red has an excellent storage life and Chesnok Red isn’t bad.  Others you can try include Armenian, Music, Purple Glazer, Carpathian Mountain, Metechi, China Strip, Ajo Rojo, Asian Tempest and Silver White.  Kansas has the type of climate that allows us to grow a wide variety of garlic types well.

By: Cassie Homan

Youth Enrichment Offerings

Each school year, the Post Rock District team offers a variety of opportunities to collaborate with educators and community leaders. Our supplemental activities will provide hands-on learning for students and help you meet academic standards. Youth enrichment offerings are scheduled with the presenting agent on a first come, first serve basis throughout the school year. To view the 2019-2020 youth enrichment offerings contact your local Post Rock District Office or visit www.postrock.ksu.edu under 4-H Youth Development.

By: Nora Rhoades

Dividing Peonies in Fall:

Peonies are a favorite perennial of gardeners because of their beauty and low maintenance. In Kansas, peonies provide a beautiful display of flowers each spring around Memorial Day. Though peonies can be left in place indefinitely, many gardeners wish to increase their plantings and use a process known as division to accomplish this. Keep in mind, however, that peonies often take about three years to return to full bloom and size after division.

Fall is the traditional time to divide these plants. Peonies are essentially dormant by mid-August even though the foliage is still green. The first step in division is to remove the foliage. Then dig out the entire plant. Shake and wash off as much soil as possible so that the pink buds or “eyes” are visible. Peony roots are tough, and a sharp knife is needed to cut the roots into separate pieces. Make sure each division has three to four buds. Make sure the location chosen for planting receives at least a half-day of full sun. However, the more sun, the better. Space the plants so that there is at least 2 feet between dwarf types and 4 feet between the standard types.

Follow the same rules for planting these divisions as you do for new plants. Make sure the pink buds are about 1 inch below the soil surface. If they are set more than 2 inches deep, flowering may be delayed or completely prevented. As you set the plants, firm soil often as it is added around the plant. If the soil is not firmed, it can settle and pull the plant down with it. Water in well after planting and water as necessary through the fall and winter to keep the soil moist.

It is often a good idea to add mulch to the new planting to protect it from heaving. The alternate freezing and thawing that commonly occurs during Kansas winters can “heave” weakly rooted plants out of the ground. Add a mulch of straw, leaves, compost or other material after the soil freezes. Remember, it is not the cold that harms these plants but the alternate freezing and thawing of the soil.

By: Cassie Homan

Move More, Feel Great

We were meant to move, and when we do we reap the benefits!  Capitalizing on opportunities throughout our day to maximize movement will help us move more without even realizing that we are doing just that. Take a minute to think about the modern day conveniences we use to reduce the amount of physical activity we do. Cars, dishwashers, automatic car washes, push button garage door openers, TV remotes, riding lawnmowers, the list goes on and on! The more we use these modern day conveniences the less we move, which is detrimental to our health in countless ways.  Let’s challenge ourselves to move more each day. Let’s walk to work or to run errands instead of driving, hand wash dishes, push mow our lawns, and play games with our friends and family that encourage movement. There’s no better time than now to get moving and feeling great!

Want more ideas to increase movement at home, work, and play? https://www.choosemyplate.gov/physical-activity-tips

By: Ashley Svaty

Free Books Available for 0-5 Year Olds

The Dolly Parton Imagination Library is a literacy program for children ages birth to five who are residents of a county with an active program. All counties in the Post Rock Extension District have an active program. These counties include Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Osborne and Smith. Books received through the program are a free gift! There is no cost or obligation to your family. The Dane G. Hansen Foundation graciously provides financial support for the local programs.

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a 60 volume set of books. Each month a new, carefully selected book will be mailed, in your child’s name, directly to your home. By mailing high quality, age-appropriate books directly to a child’s home, the Dolly Parton Imagination Library encourages children and their families to be excited about books and to feel the magic that books can create. Reading is a valuable experience for young learners as it promotes positive brain development, helps a child understand the world around them, and enhances positive relationships with the caring adults they rely on.

Information about the program and steps to enroll are outlined at https://www.postrock.k-state.edu/home-family/dolly-parton/.

By: Nora Rhoades