Take a look at this month's edition of The Nourish Letter!
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THE NOURISH LETTER
Meet the Team Behind Your Meals AUGUST 2020
OctoberKitchen.com | 860-533-0588 | 309 Green Rd., Manchester, CT 06042
What makes someone a hero? We tend to think of heroes as the kind of people who make grand, elaborate sacrifices for the greater good of others. But recently it occurred to me that we all have heroes in our lives. Unsung, everyday heroes rarely get the celebration they deserve. This month, I want to celebrate some of October Kitchen’s everyday heroes, a couple of people who are truly responsible for helping October Kitchen become what we are today: Ed and Sheila Stupenski. Way back before October Kitchen was even an idea, we used to have donation bake sales at our church. These bake sales soon grew into an elaborate project in the church kitchens. We could always count on Ed and Sheila to be there for every baking event, peeling apples, wrapping pies and helping with whatever else needed to get done. They were pillars of the operation, just like they were pillars of our church. Ed and Sheila were both on the church vestry for years and Sheila was the church clerk for decades. The Stupenskis were the kind of magnanimous people who would always do what it took. When I started October Kitchen, we spent the first couple years working part time out of the same church kitchens where we did the bake sales. After a while, we found Celebrating Ed and Sheila Stupenski EVERYDAY HEROES
ourselves making 40 deliveries a day. That’s a fraction of the deliveries we do today, but at the time, it was huge. When we needed extra help to make the deliveries, Ed and Sheila were there. Shelia would show up with her car, load it up, and deliver a carload of boxes for us. She never wanted anything — she just wanted to help out. Ed was the same way. In fact, Ed was one of our first delivery drivers. Ed and my dad came down when we started and ran deliveries together in my mom’s Toyota Highlander. Neither of them knew how to use technology very well. They called us on the company cellphone for directions and then failed to hang up the phone a number of times. We’d hear their whole conversation! They were just a couple of old guys and they’d spend the trip yakking away, just enjoying each other’s company. These are the unsung heroes that it takes when you’re growing a business from scratch. You rely so much on your friends
“We truly couldn’t have done it without them.”
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THE POWER OF INVENTION
“Years ago, a friend of mine was very ill. A group of us got together and contributed to October Kitchen
gift cards for her. I remember how helpful it was to her to have those meals delivered. At the time, I was a teacher working 14-hour days. I was never home and when I was home, I was exhausted. I decided to check out October Kitchen myself and see if it was something that would help my family and me. It was so simple to walk in and pick out your meals and the people were so friendly. I went in having no idea what to do and they were happy to help me out. October Kitchen is a simple, easy, friendly place I highly recommend!”
Christine Knows Kids Who Will Change the World
W hat if there was a biodegradable balloon that helped plant flowers or a face mask that was as stylish as it was functional? These are the kind of amazing inventions Christine Lawlor-King gets to see all the time, not from scientists in labs or researchers in think tanks, but from school children around the world. As Invention and Entrepreneurship Learning Manager for Invention Convention Worldwide, Christine knows firsthand how intelligent and creative kids can be when given a little encouragement. “It’s the best program ever,” says Christine, a former STEM teacher who works with schools locally and internationally. “Our program is for students, kindergarten through 12th grade, who create inventions at their school. They present their work at escalating events, all the way to global presentations. It’s a lot of work, but when I get around the kids and the teachers, it’s so much fun.” There are a number of STEM programs that encourage students to create something new. But while most programs give students a specific problem to solve, Invention Convention Worldwide encourages students to look around and solve problems they see in their own lives
When Christine was a teacher, she was teaching invention. Eventually, she became the STEM coordinator for her school district and had the opportunity to bring Invention Convention Worldwide to her district. She loved the program so much that when a position with them opened in Connecticut, Christine was thrilled to make the leap. Now she works for The Henry Ford Museum, who took on Invention Convention Worldwide as an international project. “When I suddenly found myself working from home, I thought I would have all this extra free time,” Christine admitted. “Turns out when you work from home, you don’t have any time away because the work is always there. I love what I do, but it could be a 24-hour job if I let it. I’m really glad we started using October Kitchen. It makes things simple. I can pop a meal in the oven, keep working, take the food out when it’s done and have dinner with my family. Getting meals from October Kitchen takes me away from my work less and gives me more time with my family when I’m not working.”
or communities. Christine has met kids who created a way to prevent splatter from stand mixers, used the technology of Tide Pods to create environmentally-friendly balloons that dissolve over time and even pipes that distribute disinfectant spray when people go in and out of buildings. “We see kindergarteners coming up with things adults haven’t invented,” Christine says. “They come up with everything themselves. Three years ago, well before COVID-19, I met a sixth-grader who was reworking face masks. After seeing how her grandmother had to wear a mask in her nursing home, she felt masks had bad energy related to them. She came up with Epic Mask, a mask that’s both fashionable and effective to protect against viruses and bacteria. This girl has been working on her mask for the last three years. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, she’s been making masks and donating them locally here in Connecticut.”
_____________________________ Write your name here and fax the completed puzzle to 860-533-0585, send it via empty delivery box or bring it to the shop and receive 10% off your next order . Limit one per customer. Expires Aug. 31, 2020. WORDSEARCH When the COVID-19 pandemic struck and Rachel lost her job as a waitress, the future looked bleak. Fortunately, Positive Tomorrows awarded a financial grant to the Handys to help them through this difficult time. The family used part of the grant to pay upcoming bills and the rest went back to the homeless community in Oklahoma City. They donated blankets to the homeless and were able to feed almost 300 people. The family has prepared and delivered food to the homeless every week through the pandemic. In the United States, over 550,000 people experience homelessness on a nightly basis and many of those people are families. In 2018, the Handy family was living in a YWCA homeless shelter in Oklahoma City. Rachel Handy and her children had escaped a dangerous domestic violence situation and were struggling to get by. Thanks to the support of Positive Tomorrows, an organization that provides resources to homeless families, Rachel was able to get back on her feet and buy her own house. LENDING A HAND
Formerly Homeless Family Gives Back During Pandemic
“We started off really small, just 10 meals,” Rachel explained in an interview with The Kelly Clarkson Show. The whole family pitched in to help cook, pack and deliver the meals. Rachel says she wants to help people who are in the same place that she used to be while also setting a good example for her children. “My mom has been through a lot,” says Kiara, Rachel’s eldest. “I admire that she’s a hardworking woman. She teaches us responsibility and helps others … She might have lost her job during COVID-19, but she never lost her hope.” Though the Handys have been struggling themselves, they have continued to give back. In addition to making meals, the Handys are also raising money to put together backpacks of school supplies for families affected by COVID-19. If you’d like to help support the Handys’ mission, then visit Bit.ly/TheHandysGiveBack .
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ALISON CAMPING FIREPIT FRIENDSHIP PAUL POPPY RAFTING STEPHANIE SUNDAE THUNDERSTORM VIRGO WATERMELON
and family that come and help you out and I want to celebrate them. We truly couldn’t have done it without them. Ed passed away around two years ago and Sheila is living with one of her daughters now. I’ve told their daughters that if they ever need anything from October Kitchen, they basically have Willy Wonka’s golden ticket. If they ever need any food, then they just need to give us a call. We owe Ed and Sheila a great deal. What they did selflessly helped us so much. They really were heroes. Ed and Sheila Stupenski were important to us and I don’t ever want to forget them.
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Have You Met Christine Lawlor-King?
The Handy Family Helps Out
Exercise Your Way to a Clean Home
Everyone knows how labor-intensive cleaning can be. A long day of scrubbing down your house is a great way to work your muscles and get your blood pumping, so crank up some tunes, grab a mop and get ready to transform your cleaning routine into a great workout. To get physical benefits from cleaning, you need to turn up the intensity of your methods. Exaggerate your motions, pick up your pace and keep your abs tight and knees flexed. Nearly any chore can be turned into an exercise but here are some ideas to get you started. • Vacuum: Vacuum briskly nonstop for at least 20 minutes, switching arms as you go. For an added challenge, do lunges as you vacuum and remember to keep your toes pointed straight ahead and your knees bent at 90-degree angles. • Pick Up: Instead of simply bending over to pick up toys or clothes, do a squat with every item you grab. Your ‘Clean’ Workout Routine Turn Household Chores Into Effective Exercise
Remember to use your legs, not your back. You can also do squats while unloading the dishwasher or with any other chore that involves repeated bending. • Wipe Down: Whether you’re wiping windows or scrubbing appliances, do big, exaggerated arm circles until your muscles start to burn and make sure you’re switching arms as you go. • Cook: It’s not cleaning but it’s still a chore with useful downtime. While food is simmering or thawing in the microwave, do some pushups, situps or planks to get your muscles moving. You can implement dozens of exercises to turn mundane activities into beneficial workouts. Some chores will burn more calories than others but every bit of activity helps. Now’s the time to work your way to a cleaner house and a healthier you.
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