Monday, April 20, 2015

Birthday Girl Talks Beef

The baby of the family had a birthday!   I'm not exactly sure where the time has went, but as people say, it goes fast. The youngest of the Hadrick 5 has entered into the final few years of the single digits. This year we held a Art Studio Party for her friends.  Miss R's favorite subject is art and unfortunately she doesn't get enough of it, so what better way to celebrate then to buy some canvas and let there be paint! 
The party started out with tacos and dinner conversation that consisted of meat.  Of course, what else would 7 & 8 year old girls want to talk about... Miss R was quick to point out that the meat we were eating came from the cows outside our window. That left a few of the girls with confused looks on their faces. 

One friend said, "How can you eat something you care for?"  Which is a common question for many people.  Miss R never missed a beat and quickly respond, "We care for them, but they also make good beef that helps us grow strong." 

Another friend suggested we quit talking about cattle at the dinner table. But, the girls had many questions and comments about eating meat and they just kept coming.  

The class had recently been to the veterinary office on a field trip and started to relive moments from that adventure.  The discussion about how to make a steer was probably my favorite and the point where My Cowboy and I started to laugh and had to turn our backs. Apparently Dr. B explained how to band the scrotum to the kids and then the bull becomes a steer. The girls all laughed and I thought this is certainly not the usual conversations these girls have at their dinner tables. All of them were Miss R's town friends. To my kids, these are normal conversations we have at the dinner table. 

But for one last comment, from Miss Grace (I can put her name because her mother will know it was her anyway) "Well your dad raises some good beef and I need another taco!" BTW all the girls ate their tacos. We went on to paint some really cool pictures and of course did cheers and played games. 

I always tell My Cowboy that we can never get away from talking cows at the dinner table. I guess even at our daughters birthday party, we talk cows.  Maybe it's the table...

Friday, April 10, 2015

Not All Protein Created Equal

We’re not a normal family for many reasons, but one that I often have to remind myself is that we eat beef at almost every meal. I have a freezer full of meat that we raise ourselves.  It is the same beef that we raise for thousand’s of families to serve at their tables. But, I have to always stop and think that not every family eats beef like my family does. 

I strive like most moms to make sure my kids get a balanced diet. I am always thinking, did they eat enough fruit and vegetables today; how about milk, did they get enough calcium today; am I instilling these important eating habits that they will carry with them throughout their life? But one thing I don’t worry about is their protein intake because I know that feeding them beef means I am getting a big bang for my buck. Beef is packed with the good stuff that their bodies need.

Tumbleweed captured in fence on our farm
Not all protein is created equal.  Sure, I’ve found myself packing peanut butter sandwiches in lunches, thinking well that’s good enough for protein. But is it? When I look at this list, sure it is. All of these foods have 25 grams of protein. But, it’s not realistic for me to get my kids to eat 1 ¾ cups of black beans. I also have to admit that I’ve never even served Quinoa in my house. After all it’s related to the tumbleweed and where we come from that’s not food.

In a world that is concerned with kids and obesity this chart also explains the calories involved with getting 25 grams of protein. That is where not all proteins are created equal. The dietary guidelines have proposed to cut lean red meat out of our diets. Looking at this comparison of foods and calories, it takes twice the calories to get the same 25 grams of protein from beans and grains compared to lean beef.  

So what can you do? Take the time to comment on the proposed guidelines. This link takes you to the comment section, you can read what others have commented and the full proposal. Remember that you can make difference.  Comment period closes May 8th.