Just in time for the holiday season, Metro Parent’s first-ever food issue hits the stands this week. We’ve got some great recipes and kid-friendly restaurant recommendations, but also a closer look at lunchtime at three very different Portland-area schools, by photojournalist (and local mama) Irene Hess. A North Portland family who are on the leading edge of the urban homesteading movement let our reporter into their garden — and their pantry — to see how they’ve managed to can, preserve and grow much of their family’s food. And we’ve got the facts about childhood hunger in Oregon (and what you, and your kids, can do to help), plus great apps and tunes to get you all cooking in the kitchen.
The November issue also features a fun DIY homemade robot project from our friends at The Craft Factory in SW Portland, a field report from a new indoor archery range and our picks for the most kiddo-friendly wineries in the Willamette Valley. Dig in!
Our top playlist for noodling around in the kitchen with kids, plus the facts on hunger in Oregon and PDX’s top indoor playspaces (hello, rainy season).
Lunchtime, from start to finish, in pictures, at three very different Portland-area schools. By Irene Tejarahi Hess.
The Urban Homesteaders
One NE family opens their garden, and their pantry, to Metro Parent.
’Tis the season for excess. Our family-finance columnists tell you how to draw a gift line in the sand, without offending the in-laws.
First Person: Baby Steps
Breastfeeding doesn’t always come naturally, despite what the gauzy pictures in parenting how-tos might have you believe.
Mini Robin Hoods and wanna-be Meridas unite at a new indoor archery range with family-friendly hours.
Noodle nirvana for kids and grownups alike at Grasso, in downtown PDX.
Protein-packed nut-butter balls, dressed up with coconut and cacao, for after-school snacks and holiday cookie parties, from New Seasons nutritionist Christi Reed.
A primer on making your very own DIY robot, from our friends at The Craft Factory in SW PDX. Make sure you’ve got plenty of aluminum foil.
Model railroad mania, festival of trees, Veterans Day freebies and pirate chanteys with the Oregon Symphony, plus more.
Portland in pictures.
I can remember waking up on the day my twins turned 6 months old, and gleefully thinking: “We can start giving them solids today!” Little did I know.
Five-and-a-half years later, I can safely say that feeding the kids has been my most consistently challenging aspect of parenting. It feels a little like being on a hamster wheel – breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, rinse, repeat.
To be sure, there are some high points. I love to bake with the kids (adorably, they always ask to smell the vanilla, and take deep, satisfied sniffs), and I love to watch them eat foods that I didn’t eat until I was an adult – sushi, kale, shellfish of all stripes. But, oh, the many days when I’ve carefully prepared a meal, often something that they’ve eaten cheerfully before, and it’s met with a “YUCK! I DON’T LIKE IT!”
In moments like these, I try to remember the wise counsel of children’s nutrition author Ellyn Satter, who reminds us that parents decide what, where and when they eat, and – for better or for worse – the kids get to decide how much, and whether to eat at all.
It’s in Satter’s spirit that we present Metro Parent’s first annual food issue, including a focus on the burgeoning urban homestead movement in Portland, and a photo essay on school lunches around the metro area. This edition of the magazine also feature great recipes, plus info about the persistent problem of hunger in Oregon and how your family can help. Dig in – and enjoy.
– Julia Silverman
On the cover: Local photojournalist Irene Tejarahi Hess took this great cafeteria shot for us as lunch was wrapping up at Menlo Park Elementary School, in the David Douglas school district. See more of her work at irenehess.com.