The Family Table

Educating Families About the Benefits of Family Meals

Archive for the tag “event”

You’re Invited to the Family Table Celebration Dinner – Sept. 27th


Family Table Celebration Dinner – Sept. 27th

Celebrate the success of Family Table’s 2nd year by joining the McMillen Center at Fort4Fitness.

On Friday, September 27, the McMillen Center will announce the year 3 theme for the Family Table project, as well as celebrate “Together, We Eat Better.” In partnership with Fort4Fitness, a family meal is planned from 5 – 8:30 p.m. Bring a meal to Parkview Field, or join us at the Huntington University Picnic Pavilion for a pasta dinner. Contribute $10 to the Family Table project and receive a FREE pasta dinner.

Contribute $10 to the Family Table project and receive a FREE pasta dinner

To make a one time contribution, use your debit card, a Paypal account is not required.

SIGN UP to Receive Prizes:

  • $200 Waiter on the Way Gift Certificate
  • $300 Package from Bussick Orthodonics
  • Admission and Lessons to Ice Skate at Lutheran Health Sports Center
  • 2 Olive Oil Bottles and Gift Basket from The Olive Twist
  • Tanglewood Berry Farm Cookbook
  • Canlin Ice Family Pass Certificate
  • Sky Zone 4 Family Fun Package
  • Crazy Pinz Group Party Package
  • Crazy Pinz Kingpin Membership

For more infromation on Family Meals, visit

McMillen Center for Health Education | 260-456-4511 | | | 600 Jim Kelley Blvd. | Fort Wayne, IN 46816

Thanks to our Family Table sponsors:

Tip of the Week: Tough Talks


This Week’s Featured Recipe

Dinner time is the perfect time to have meaningful conversations with your kids. These moments are ones we can use to discuss their lives and important things you want to teach them. One topic of conversation that many parents will have with their kids at some point is about drinking and drug use, and explaining  family values surrounding alcohol and drugs.

Did you know 28% of Indiana teens were offered or sold illegal drugs at school within the past 30 days and 33% of Indiana teens have had an alcoholic drink within the past 30 days?  NAND, No Alcohol No Drugs, is a local organization that works to reduce drug and alcohol abuse in our community. Studies show that teens who eat at least three family meals a week with their parents are less likely to use alcohol or drugs.

Having trouble starting the conversation about alcohol and drugs? On April 18th the McMillen Center will be hosting the McMillen Center Health Lecture Series where a representative from NAND will be teaching a break-out session. They will be available to ask questions or talk about any concerns you might have regarding teen drug and alcohol use. The lecture series will also cover another important teen topic: Distracted Driving.


Holli Seabury, CEO, wife and mom of 7

Tip of the Week: Easter in Afghanistan


Easter will be a bit different for us this year.  We will still have our traditional jelly bean hunt, with the little kids (ages 5 and 7) searching the house for the jelly beans that are hidden all over.  It’s always fun to come upon an especially well-hidden jelly bean a few months after Easter!  This year,  I am busy packing a large box of Easter candy to be shipped to Afghanistan for my oldest son to share with his combat unit.  I am hoping a box of brightly colored candy, in a basket with plastic green grass, will bring a smile to the face of soldiers who are missing their families and the holiday celebrations happening at home.   Since my son can sometimes call home on Sunday, I am also hoping Easter morning brings a phone call from Afghanistan.  This year, I am very aware of the thousands of soldiers who are missing their children’s Easter egg hunts, missing their families, and missing their homes.


Holli Seabury, CEO, wife and mom of 7

Tip of the Week: Easter Family Trip


Easter weekend conjures up for me a traditional pastel colored dress and big hat. That is what my childhood was like – going to church and singing praise songs, and of course, the big Easter Egg Hunt; followed by a ham dinner with all of my cousins and grandparents… My kids experience is somewhat different.

This year they will participate  in our church’s Easter Extravaganza – a short, interactive event, followed by an egg hunt where the donated grocery store bags flap in the breeze as the kids drop the candy-filled eggs, and a fair bit of grass, into them. Often held the weekend before Easter, the kids run like crazy to find the brightly colored plastic eggs, that ironically, because we are trying to teach them about volunteering, they had helped to fill the weekend before.

The last few years, our spring break has started on Good Friday and with my husband’s work schedule, we have started going out of town that weekend. So, no big family dinner on Easter for my children.  In both my husband’s and my family, our daughters are the only local grandchildren. Instead of one big family meal, we’ll have one big family trip. And together, we’ve all learned about Mammoth Cave, and the vehicles of WWII in Dayton, and the beaches and traditions of Mississippi and Louisiana where my husband went to college. This year’s agenda includes the Gateway Arch and a tour of the Cathedral Basilica St. Louis. Something tells me they are celebrating Easter there, too!

Frances Brooks Casual 2012

Frances Brooks, Director of Marketing and Operations, wife and mom of 2

Tip of the Week: Heart Healthy Conversation

AHA Pinot Party promo image

This Week’s Featured Recipe

As you look around your family table at each person’s face, hopefully you can appreciate the differences that each person brings to your family. The things we have in common are often obvious. The ways we differ are often the most challenging. They also can make for great conversation! When our family sits down together, we often ask about each others’ day and what’s going on in the upcoming days. A couple of weeks ago, we ended up having a chat about ‘what is art’ and I can tell you, my kids had a strong opinion about what was not art! In a few weeks, the McMillen Center and the local American Heart Association are inviting you to a conversation about maintaining a healthy heart and a healthy lifestyle.

We all know that making healthy choices in diet and exercise can benefit in a longer healthier life. Putting it in practice can be a bit of a struggle for some (me included!) The American Heart Association Nutrition Center has several tips on how to make healthy choices at the grocery store, while cooking and when dining out. These simple lifestyle changes can help get you on the right track to a healthy life and a healthy heart. To make the learning a bit more fun, the McMillen Center for Health Education will be hosting the American Heart Association’s 2013 Pinot and Prevention party.

Please make plans to join us in learning about how to stay heart healthy with this women’s only, 21 and older, event on Wednesday, February 13, 2013 at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are just $20.

Frances Brooks Casual 2012

Frances Brooks, Director of Operations & Marketing, wife and mom of 2

Vitality Awards Nominations


Do you know someone who is helps make our community a vital place to live by working or volunteering in wellness, prevention or health education? Nominate them for a 2013 Vitality Award. We will also honor a Student Ambassador with a $500 award. For more information visit the McMillen Center for Health Education website.

Tip of the Week: Together, We Eat Better


This Week’s Featured Recipe

Recently, I took my kids and some friends to Pokagon to go tobogganing. While playing outside, I just couldn’t seem to catch my breath. I was surprised to find myself dizzy from carrying/dragging the sled, climbing the hill and then the stairs. I’ve always been comfortable with who I am but that changed this weekend. It’s past time to admit I’m out of shape.  I have made a resolution to start paying a lot more attention to what I’m eating and how much I’m really on the move.

I’ve known I should be doing more for a long time, but I just ignored it. Please don’t worry that I’m about to update you weekly on my progress and diet; I’m not. The Family Table is supposed to be about practical ideas for our families’ health. And, I eat with my family almost every night of the week, and weekends, too. Eating together at the table is hugely beneficial.

No matter if you’re eating together at 9 a.m., noon or 7 p.m., the benefits of better responses to peer pressure, later onset of sexual activity and lower abuse of alcohol and drugs, as well as the obvious nutritional benefits don’t change. But, honestly, what you put on the table matters. We eat fruit and vegetables. We’re about to start eating a whole lot more of them.

The Family Table tagline for this year is Together, We Eat Better. So, as I am making changes to become more aware of my calorie intake and exercise habits, my husband is doing the same. Research says when you make a commitment to work out with a friend and have someone to keep you accountable, you’ll have more success. We’re going to try it.

Below is a list of some free apps, websites and suggestions for ideas that I’ve incorporated into my new plans. If you have some others, please feel free to share them on our Facebook page or Family Table blog.

My Fitness Pal – A calorie and exercise counter. I love that you can scan the UPC code on the package and it will upload the nutritional information for you.

Fitness Blender – YouTube-based videos for every stage of fitness. They also have a great segment on grocery shopping.

Active Healthy Families – A video series on making better nutritional choices, like A Meal in Less Time Than It Takes to Go Through the Drive Thru.

Fort4Fitness – and their 1 Year 1 Change program – numerous tips and local resources to making a healthy commitment.

IN Shape Indiana – Resources to eat better, move more and avoid tobacco.

Frances Brooks Casual 2012

Frances Brooks,Director of Operations & Marketing, wife and mom of 2

Tip of the Week: Local Food Conference

Share the promotion!
Win tickets to the Finding Food in Farm Country conference by sharing our event on your Facebook page and you’ll be entered to win two FREE tickets! Winner drawn Monday, July 16th.

Finding Food in Farm Country panelist Pete Eshelman of Joseph Decuis Restaurant and Farm is quoted as saying “…every Sunday [my great, great grandmother] served a great meal on a white tablecloth, to an extended family who enjoyed dining together. The food was so good, as a little kid I couldn’t stop eating. Dining together was a bonding experience for our family.” That is exactly the experience we desire the Family Table project to encourage.

He shared this as part of the Hoosier Farmer? Emerging Food Systems in Indiana research, which will be presented at the July 17th event…
This event is designed to spark ideas and continue our regions path toward improved economic recovery and better health for all of our residents. Please make plans for your family and friends to attend the conference. More information available at

Breakout Sessions include:
Get Your Game on – Powerhouse Eating to LiVe! Kathy Wehrle, RD, Parkview LiVe
Learn the amazing health benefits of eating whole foods and learn which vegetables and fruits are “powerhouses” and hold the highest disease fighting capability. Tips on feeding your family and learn about Parkview’s newest health initiative – the “LiVe” program. Locations of local farmers markets and recipes, will be available.

Farm to Fork Margy Hooker, Tanglewood Berry Farm
Learn how to create delicious and healthy dishes using fresh Indiana ingredients from your garden or local farmer’s market. The term “farm to fork” is related to organic farming initiatives, sustainable agriculture, and community supported agriculture. Included in her discussion will be the Ins and Outs of the Farmer’s Market and a cooking demo.

Modern Technology Makes Farmers More Productive, Gonzalee Martin, Purdue Ext. Svcs.
Biotechnology, global positioning systems, and communication are the keys that offer benefit to farmers, consumers and the environment. Change is accelerating and irreversible. Some oppose the use of newer technologies, based more on emotion than on a needed balance between science and emotion.

Tip of the Week: Freedom

Happy Independence Day!
Today’s tip will be honoring a few of the things that we are thrilled to be free from, at least in the shortterm!

1) School schedules… if you are like me, the kids keep you hopping. During the school year, it seems MUCH worse because of the balance required by the school schedule. Now, don’t get me wrong, my kids (mostly) enjoy school, but this month we’re free and clear of homework, gym shoes and bus rides.

2) Darkness in the evening… This is the month to get out and enjoy the sunshine! Truly from up in-the-morning until down-at-night, my family is on the go – making sleeping time that much quieter, and more restful. Being active helps everyone. Get some great exercise and help celebrate Foster Park’s Centennial Year by participating in the KaBOOM! Play Day. NOTE: Date change from July 6th to July 27th. Plan to stop by the Family Table and Parkview LiVe booths and say hi!

3) Canned and frozen foods… With our goal of half a plate of vegetables and fruit, the fresh foods available from our garden and farmer’s markets means the table is full of bright colors and is high in vitamins! Just remember to wash them safely.

To make your own, mix 1 part white vinegar with 3 parts water and put it in a spray bottle. Simply spray the mixture over the produce and let it sit for a minute or so, then rinse well. This also works well on cutting boards and countertops as a disinfectant. Interested in finding out more about eating fresh? Make plans to attend the Finding Food in Farm Country at the McMillen Center on July 17th.

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