17. A Good Start

A child grows faster during the first few years of his life than at any other time. Thus, good nutrition is very important.

Milk is the child’s first food. It has a large amount of the nutrients needed during the first two years of life. The kind of milk or formula must be chosen with care.

Human milk is custom-made for the baby. It is clean and pure. It saves a lot of work. Nursing can also be a satisfying experience for both mother and baby. Human milk will usually supply enough of all the important nutrients during the first few months of life, except for vitamin D, fluoride and iron.

If a prepared formula, evaporated milk or homogenized whole milk is used, it will usually have vitamin D added to it. If not, the baby will need to be given vitamin D in addition to its regular milk.

The baby needs vitamin C early in life. Human milk and prepared formulas usually have good amounts of vitamin C. If the baby is being fed evaporated milk or cow’s milk formula, then vitamin C should be given in the form of drops. Otherwise a fresh, frozen or canned fruit juice that is naturally rich in vitamin C can be used.

A source of iron should also be added to the child’s diet. Some formulas already have iron added. If the baby is getting a formula that does not have iron, then the doctor may start the baby on iron drops. This is mostly done when the child is about one or two months old.

Solid foods may be added when the child is one to three months old. Slowly, other foods, such as egg yolk, strained meat and fish, are added. Be careful when choosing baby’s food. Store-bought strained foods vary widely. They vary in the amount of calories and other nutrients they contain. This is why many mothers decided to prepare their own baby food at home. At least they know what their babies are getting.

By the time baby is six months old, he or she will be taking some “table food.” When seven to nine months old, a baby is usually ready for foods that are chopped. By then, he or she will likely be on three meals a day.

Choose the foods for year baby carefully. Your baby will be happier and healthier if you do.

16. Moving Along with the Times

Moving from one home to another can be a problem. If your new house is empty, it may seem as cold and as lifeless as a tomb. However, little by little you get settled. Your furniture arrives. Your clothes fill the closets. Before you know it, you look around and realize that all is in order. Moving wasn’t so bad after all.

As a matter of fact, most people seem to enjoy it. Moving is one of the most widely shared adventures of our way of life. Long before the pioneers headed for the West, restlessness had been part of our nature. Today, it shows itself up and down and across the land as 40 million Americans change their homes every year.

Today, those who make long distance moves fall into one of three classes. Some are skilled workers who are seeking better jobs. Others are in military or government service and have been assigned to new posts.

The third class of mover shows the changing pattern of business life. About four out of ten long-distance moves are the result of job transfers. These are usually young businessmen who are often moved from one office to another. Some businessmen move as often as every two years.

Today, a long distance move need not be unpleasant. Just be sure you plan well. In fact, it could be nothing more than a short break in the daily routine. Moving companies now have trained people with years of experience. They know how to ship all kind of things. They can even handle fine art and antiques. Valuable instruments can be shipped without a scratch.

Damage to household goods in packing or on route is no longer a real problem. New ways for crating, packing and shipping have been found. For instance, some movers now use self-adjusting cartons for things like china and glasses. These cartons keep your glassware safe. Also, some companies use stuffing and plastic wrapping materials to protect delicate items.

On the way, the shipment is in the hands of drivers who are considered the best in the world today. The drivers of household moving vans are selected as the cream of the crop. They travel an average of 60,000 to 100,000 miles a year. That’s a lot of miles. and it’s a lot of experience. Moving is not so bad when you know you have skilled movers to help you.

15. Mix It Up.

A mixer in the kitchen can speed up your work. It can make your work easier. This wonderful invention can stir saucers and gravies. A mixer can mash potatoes. It can cream sugar and shortening. And, of course, a mixer can mix batters. Mixers come in three styles: portable, stand and convertible.

The portable mixer is held in your hand. You direct the pair of beaters around a pan or bowl. This type of mixer has a light-duty electric motor. It uses from 100 to 150 watts of current. It is mainly used to stir thin batters. Models with higher wattage can stir thicker mixtures. A portable mixer can be used to make packaged cakes, puddings and gelatin. It is useful for whipping cream and beating eggs. And, it is easy to store. It can be kept in a drawer or hung on a wall.

Unlike the portable mixer, the stand mixer haas a rather heavy frame with the mixer head at the top. There is a wide base big enough for large bowls or a bowl turntable. To make sure that things get mixed properly, the beaters usually turn the bowl and turntable as they mix. Some stand mixers use from 200 to 400 watts of electricity. Those with high ratings can mix thick batters and mix bread dough. Because of their size and weight, stand mixers are usually left in place on a kitchen counter.

The convertible mixer is similar to the stand type mixer except than the head can be removed for portable use or storage. Heads of heavy-duty models, however, may be tiring to hold.

On all mixers, speed control switches or dials should be well located. They should be easy to read. They should have an “off” setting for safety. Some mixer controls only have settings for high, medium or low speeds. Other mixers have speed controls that have a better range.

Some mixers have extra attachments or parts you can buy. For instance, bowl sets, plastic beaters for non-stick pans and hooks for mixing dough are all extras. You can get wire whisk beaters for whipping and flat beaters for creaming. Some of these things may be added at no extra cost when you buy your mixer. Other attachments may have to be bought separately.

Almost all attachments have one thing in common – they make kitchen work a little easier.

14. A Major Concern

There is good reason to be concerned with the eating habits of teenagers. During the teen years, good food habits may be lost. The teenage appetite is often big. But a large appetite doesn’t always mean much. Even with a big appetite, teenagers may not get the good foods they need. Teenage boys and girls grow at a fast rate. Except for infancy, the growth is faster than at any other time. A boy has great nutritional needs during the teen years. His needs are greater than at any other time in his life. The needs of a girl becoming a woman are great. Only during pregnancy and the period following the birth are they greater.

A teenage boy may suddenly shoot up as much as four inches in height. He may gain fifteen pounds a year. A teenage girl’s total gain is not quite as large, but it is considerable. Growth means more than adding inches and weight. It means that body fat is lost while bones increase in density. Muscles develop in size and strength.

Teenage eating habits are often bad. The reasons are not hard to find. School, clubs and part-time jobs keep teenagers away from home at mealtime. Their eating habits are influenced more by friends than by parents. Some skip breakfast because they don’t have enough time for it. Some choose snacks that are too rich in fats and sugar. Teenage girls sometimes eat too little because they do not want to get fat. Diets have to be well planned for both boys and girls. Each has a great need for protein and vitamins. The need is so great that they cannot afford to fill up on foods that have empty calories. Most of the time a teenage boy winds up with a better diet than a girl. This happens simply because the boy has a bigger appetite and eats more. But some boys may shy away from foods that have important nutrients. Instead, they may eat great amounts of junk food. Sometimes this creates a weight problem.

The overweight teenager may eat the same kinds of food as his average friend, but too much of them. Rich desserts and snack foods should be replaced with fresh fruits and vegetables.

Instead of a crash diet to take off pounds, overweight teenagers should develop the well-balanced eating habits they need for the rest of their lives.

13. Busy Blenders

The blender is one of the most useful kitchen tools. Its blades are sharp, small and turn at top speeds. Because of this, it can do many jobs. Blenders chop nuts, cheese, and pieces of vegetables. They crumble bread and crackers. They can puree cooked foods. They can even puree some fresh fruits and vegetables. Of course, they are used for blending spreads, dips, dressings and beverages. A blender with strong enough blades and container and a high wattage can even crush ice.

Most blenders use from 350 to 1,200 watts. If you buy a blender with a high wattage, be sure not to use it on the same circuit with other appliances. You could easily blow a fuse.

The speed controls on most blenders are push buttons. Most have an “off” setting for safety. Some models have as many as 20 speed buttons. Others have only high and low settings. The motor parts on blenders should already be oiled when you buy them. They are oiled in such a way that you never need to oil them again. Outside of soap-and-water cleaning, the blender needs very little home care.

The blades of your blender should be made of stainless steel. If they are not stainless steel, the blades might rust. The blades plus the base cap should come apart to make apart to make it easier for you to remove thick foods. This feature lets you wash and dry both the blades and the container thoroughly.

The container should have a pouring lip and a comfortable handle. It should fit firmly onto the blender base. Sometimes clear cup containers have measure markings on them. These markings are helpful. They cut out extra measuring steps as you follow a recipe. This saves you time.

The container lid should fit tightly. It should have a small removable cap. This little cap lets you add things to the container while the blender is running.

The base of the blender should be heavy. It should also be firm. The base should have rubber feet to stop the blender from sliding while it is on. The blades of a blender can be dangerous. Therefore, it’s a good idea to learn a few safety rules.

Keep fingers and utensils away from blades. If anything drops into the blender, turn off the power at once. Before you remove the blender container, be sure that the blades have stopped completely.

12. The Right Choice

Fresh or frozen, canned or dried, instant or fro scratch? Which foods have the nutrients? Which do not? The fact is they all do. All foods have their place. And almost all food in its place is good food. Some foods are safer to use when they are processed. Some are more appealing when they are fresh. It’s a good idea to know your foods.

Packaged, pasteurized, fortified milk has been around for so long that no one thinks of it any more as a processed food, but it is. Because milk is pasteurized, or processed, it is now safe to drink. Unpasteurized milk may carry many germs that can make us sick.

Buy the mix or do it yourself? It is all the same nutritionally if the ingredients listed on the label are used in the same amounts and are the same ones as you would use doing it yourself.

Which bread is the best? Whole grain breads and cereals retain the germ and outer layers of grain where the B vitamins are. When wheat is milled into white flour, however, t loses these precious vitamins. Therefore, when you buy white bread, it is wise to choose the enriched kind because of added nutrients.

Fresh or frozen? Foods in the frozen food case offer as much food value as those in the produce section of the store. The choice you make depends on which foods you prefer and the amount of money you want to spend. Any loss of vitamin C in frozen fruits is minimal. Well-packaged frozen meat, poultry and fish are nutritious. They have the same food value as those that are bought right from the butcher or the fish store.

Surprisingly, fresh or raw foods are not always better than canned or frozen ones. It depends on how they are handled. For instance, leafy, dark green vegetables packed in crushed ice keep a lot of their vitamin C on the way to the store. But if they are left to sit for five days or so, they lose about half of it. Cooking will also cause some vitamin loss. Although the loss may be great, these vegetables contain large amounts of vitamins. They still provided good amounts of vitamin C and vitamin A when they are eaten.

Choosing the proper food is no game. It is a serious matter and one that we should pay much attention to.

11. A Toast to the Toaster

Electric toasters have come a long way since the 1920s. Today, you can even choose the color of your toast. Modern toasters even shut off by themselves. Some models can also warm and bake. Toasters come in tow styles. They are either upright or horizontal types. The upright toasters hold the bread in an up-and-down position. In the horizontal type, the slices lie flat.

There are two kinds of upright toasters. The first type holds two or four slices of bread. Other upright models have ovens. These ovens can toast, warm or bake.

The first kind of upright toaster has often been called an automatic pop-up toaster. Some people even call them wall toasters. They toast bread, frozen waffles, and thin pastries without toppings or fillings. They are simple machines and are easy to work. The bread carriage has an outside control knob. When the knob is worked, the carriage moves up and down inside the toast wells. The carriage works an on-off switch. The heating elements in an upright toaster are made of fine wires. These are placed on both sides of each toast well. When electricity flows through the wires, they give off heat for toasting. A thermostat inside the toaster is hooked up to an outside toast-color control. The control lets you choose the toasting time.

The second upright model is both a toaster and a small oven. These models have toast wells, bread carriages, and toast-color controls. Plus, they have special doors and controls for baking and warming.

Horizontal toasters are either reflector models or toaster ovens. Reflector models toast and warm. Toaster ovens toast, warm and bake. Both have built-in two and four slice sizes and have a front door or opening. Both can handle most bread sizes.

Choose your toaster carefully. Look for a seal of approval from an independent testing laboratory. This seal is important. It lets you know that this toaster is as safe as possible. The seal might be on the toaster. It may also be on the packing carton. Such a seal shows, among other things, that the toaster has a two-pole switch. This switch is a safety point. It stops a child from getting a shock. Even if a child puts his hand inside the toasting chamber while the toaster is plugged in, he should not get a shock.

The next time you’re in the market for a toaster, look for the seal of safety.

10. Vitamins at Work

Vitamins are important to our bodies. They keep our bodies healthy. They help our bodies to grow. There are at least 25 different vitamins we know of. Each one has its own special use. The best way to get vitamins is to eat foods rich in them. It’s a good idea, then, to know about foods and the vitamins they contain. Let’s take a look at some special vitamins. We can start with vitamin A.

Vitamin A is needed for good eyesight. It helps us to see better at night. It even keeps our eyes free from disease. Vitamin A also keeps the skin healthy and stops infection. This vitamin is found in animal foods. However, deep yellow and dark green vegetables and fruits give our bodies something called “carotene.” Our bodies can turn carotene into vitamin A.

Produce can easily supply all the vitamin A you need. Such items as collards, turnip greens, kale, carrots, squash and sweet potatoes can more than take care of daily needs. Yellow peaches, apricots, cantaloupe and papayas also help.

Liver is another good source of vitamin A. A two-ounce serving of cooked beef liver gives us more than 30,000 units of the vitamin. That’s six times more vitamin A than you would need during the day.

There are plenty of other sources of vitamin A. Whole milk is a source. Skim milk, on the other hand, doesn’t have any vitamin A, unless it is fortified. This means that vitamin A has been added to it.

Three of the best known vitamins come from the vitamin B complex. They are riboflavin, thiamin and niacin. These vitamins release the energy in food. They keep the nervous system working. They keep the digestive system working calmly. And they even help to keep the skin healthy.

Riboflavin is easy to find. It is found in meats, milk, and whole grain or enriched breads. Organ meats also have riboflavin.

Thiamin is found in few foods. Lean pork is one. Dry beans and peas and some of the organ meats give us some thiamin.

Niacin can be found in whole grain and enriched cereals. Meat and meat products and peas and beans also contain niacin. Without niacin, riboflavin and thiamin could not do their work properly.

Vitamins are important to a healthy body. It would pay us to learn more about these amazing building blocks.

9. A Guided Tour

Do you plan to visit Italy someday? If so, it’s a good idea to know about the country and its people. Italy has two very different areas. The business centers and large cities of the North hum with noise. The South, on the other hand, enjoys the sleepy charm of the country. People of the North like the bustle of city life. They enjoy all the things a city has to offer. Those from the South like a slower pace. They like their rural surroundings. One thing all Italians have in common is their zest for life.

The climate of Italy is like that of California. It is sunny and warm all year in the South. Except in the mountains, summers are warm all over the country. Winter brings snow, sleet, cold rain and fog to the North. Central Italy is mild in winter.

Many Italians are happiest when in groups. Wherever they gather, you are likely to hear fine singing and happy laughter.

A building boom is going on in the cities of Italy. Steel and glass skyscrapers tower over ancient ruins.Italy throbs with life and color. Talk on the street corners is lively. The background music coming from open windows could be classical or the latest hit tune. Donkeys and street peddlers sometimes add to the color and noise.

The city streets are busy. Here you will see well-dressed people. These people are going to work in new office buildings. The street traffic includes different kinds of cars. You can even spot some moter scooters and bicycles.

Italians also like food. They are good cooks. Each city and region has its own specialties. Bologna, for instance, is known for its sausages. Live oil, garlic and tomatoes are used more freely in cooking in the South than in the North. Some Northerners use butter instead of olive oil. You will see rice on their plates instead of pasta.

An Italian dinner begins with appetizers and ends many courses later with a fine dessert. In the course of a dinner, you can sample some of Italy’s fine cheeses. There are many to choose from. There are also many fine wines, and they reasonably priced.

You may never visit Italy. Still, it’s nice to read about its lively and colorful personality. Maybe someday you will be lucky enough to see part of this wonderful land.

8. An Indian Hero

Black Hawk was a Sauk Indian who hated the white settlers. For years, the Sauk and Fox Indians hunted and fished in what is now Illinois and Wisconsin. Soon, white settlers pushed into the land. Under a treaty, the land was taken from the Indians by the settlers.

From boyhood Black Hawk learned to hate the white man. His fame as a fearless warrior began at age 15 when he killed and scalped his first man. Black Hawk went on to fight. First he fought enemy Indian tribes. Later he fought the white man.

Above all else, Black Hawk hated the 1804 treaty which had taken away Sauk and Fox lands. He spoke against the treaty. He called it unfair since the Indians who had signed it were tricked into agreeing to its terms. Black Hawk believed that Indian land could not be sold. He was determined to stay and farm the land.

Black Hawk and his followers refused to leave their villages. By 1831, the Indians found themselves unable to farm their own lands. Black Hawk ordered the whites to get out or be killed. Instead, soldiers moved in and threw the Indians off the land.

Black Hawk felt that he could band together enough Indians to fight the white man. He set out to ask help from other tribes. In April 1832, Black Hawk and several hundred warriors returned to Illinois. He was ready to drive the whites from Indian land. The fighting known as “Black Hawk’s War” began. Soon troops from Washington were sent into the field to put down the Indians. For 3 months the Indians managed to escape the troops. They won several small battles and were raiding the Illinois frontier.

The tide turned as more soldiers poured in. The troops chased the Indians from Illinois to Mississippi. There Black Hawk was trapped. He faced the steamship Warrior on one side and the army on the other. Black Hawk’s band was nearly destroyed. The Sauk leader himself escaped to a Winnebago village. There he gave himself up and was taken to a prison camp in chains. A few months later he was set free.

In 1838, at the age of 71, Black Hawk died in his lodge on the Des Moines River. As he wished, Black Hawk’s body was seated on the ground under a wooden shelter, in old Sauk tradition.