Category Archives: K-State Extension

Kelly Perry: Kansas State Food Fellow Offers Free Workshop For Local Food Sellers

Kelly Perry. Sumbitted photo.

Kelly Perry answered a job ad from the Healthy Bourbon County Action Team posting in October, 2023 for a local food fellow position.

“I was so excited and quickly applied and in January was interviewed by Amanda Lindahl, Local Food System Program Coordinator with Kansas State, and Rachel Carpenter with HBCAT,” she said. ” I love food, small business, and local so this was right up my alley.  The duties were pretty vast for an 18-week program that is brand new across the state…and I landed this awesome opportunity!”
“As part of my job duties, I am required to hold an educational workshop,” she said. “I wanted to focus on food labeling at the farmers market. I know our local Fort Scott Farmers Market is growing like crazy, pun intended. I figured it would be a great topic for people to learn what the state requires at pop-up shops, festivals, bake sales, and farmers’ markets. I also wanted to cover the proper food licenses required by the state.”
“The main reason for this is that I receive about three calls, texts, or messages a week asking food-related questions from everyday people who own, run, or are thinking of starting a business full-time, part-time, or occasionally,” she said.
Kelly and her husband Thadeus Perry own Perry’s Pork Rinds and Country Store in Bronson.

“People know me and know I’m willing to help if I can,” she said. “Sometimes people get intimidated or scared of the inspectors or do not know who to contact to ask the questions so that leads them to me. I, for one, have had to attend countless seminars, online Zoom meetings, and hours of reading to learn about my family’s business Perry’s Pork Rinds, and our food laws and regulations.”

“I remember having the state Inspector show up at our front door needing to look over our home-based business back in 2018,” Perry said. “I remember the federal meat inspector showing up as well, due to the product we make being a meat product. I cried each time someone would flash their badge at the front door and I’d panic. After years of visits, and our yearly renewal inspections I came to realize food inspection, safety, and visits were not intimidating or anything to be scared of.”
“They had a job to do and if we were doing something wrong they would answer questions and tell us what to do to fix it and be in compliance,” she said. ” It’s in the state’s best interest to HAVE business in operation and to generate revenue. They want the businesses but they also have standards and regulations to help keep us all safe, both the consumer as well as the producer.”
“I figured a food license discussion would help so many who were just unsure, curious or didn’t know where to start,” she said.
The workshop is FREE to anyone from any part of the state, from 6-8 p.m. at the HBCAT offices, 104 N. National Avenue on Monday, April 15.
“We ask that you register so we can make sure to have enough handouts and packets created,” she said.
“We are so fortunate to have From the Land of Kansas’s very own Robyn Dolby attend and present a slide show and answer questions,” Perry said. “We will also have the K-State Local Food System Program Coordinator Amanda Lindahl coming to discuss the Local Food Fellow Program as well.”
Robin Dolby, From the Land of Kansas Marketing Coordinator, Kansas Dept. of Agriculture. Submitted photo.
Amanda Lindahl from her LinkedIn page.
“My goal with this Local Food Fellow position and HBCAT goal is to provide knowledge, access to resources, and networking,” she said. “We can then grow as producers, growers, suppliers, and a community! HBCAT always has the saying  Stronger Together and it is just that simple.”
 A description for the position she accepted is
– Update the Bourbon County Wholesale Food Directory
– Create a storytelling campaign on food-related business.
– Organize an Educational Workshop in Bourbon County.
– Complete the final report to be submitted to the K-State Research and Extension Local Food Systems Program Coordinator

Helping Children Self-Regulate

Cassidy Lutz
K-State Research and Extension 
Family and Consumer Science Agent 
Southwind District 
211 W. Butler 
Yates Center, KS 66783


K-State Research and Extension Southwind District – Family and Consumer Science Agent

Helping Children Self-Regulate

Self-regulation is defined as the ability to manage thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. These skills develop in young children as they interact with their family, caregivers, and environments.

Children who are able to keep themselves calm during a frustrating situation, instead of having a tantrum, are using their self-regulation skills. These skills can be learned throughout the lifespan but can be extra beneficial for young children. By controlling their emotions, children can focus more on achieving their goals while keeping an open mind that stimulates learning.

Brain development plays a big role in self-regulation. Infants rely on the “survival center” near the bottom of the brainstem to maintain things like breathing and digestion. Toddlers and preschoolers start to use their “emotional center” known as the amygdala to communicate and express themselves through feelings. Young children and adolescents begin to use their “thinking center” or the cerebrum to problem solve, think before acting, and organize their behavior. Without the development of self-regulation skills, children will be stuck relying on the survival and emotional centers in their brains. This makes it hard for children to control their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

To develop these skills, the brain needs safe and meaningful interactions with family members, peers, and the world around them. This helps the brain make new connections that help with thought process and learning. To help your child(ren) develop these skills, start by focusing on building a strong connection with them. Respond warmly and consistently to their emotional and physical needs and encourage exploration and learning. Family routines and rituals are also beneficial to foster learning. This can look like family meals together, playtime, or bedtime routines. Focusing on positive rules can also encourage critical thinking. Focus on what things they should do instead of what they shouldn’t.

Practice makes perfect for children and adults alike. If your child has a hard time controlling themselves in certain environments, continue to practice what that should look like and focus on what they are feeling. If you encourage them to share openly some of the things that frustrate them, you will be able to talk through those things and help them overcome them. Practicing through play can be a positive way for your child to practice new skills. Encouraging breathing and mindfulness exercises can also help children calm down and be aware of what they are feeling. These activities help them return control to their “thinking center” of the brain, which will help them make good choices.

Self-regulation is a skill that can be developed with time, help, and support. Therapy, counseling, and parent support groups may be helpful resources for you to seek out as you support your child(ren)’s healthy development. For more information, contact Cassidy Lutz at [email protected] or by calling 620-625-8620.


Reducing Food Waste on Earth Day (And Every Day!)

Clara Misenhelter (Wicoff) Submitted photo 2023



By Clara Misenhelter

Southwind Extension District


With Earth Day coming up on April 22nd, it is timely to be thinking about what you can do to make a difference. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports that wasted food is responsible for more than half of landfill methane emissions. Clearly, reducing food waste can make a difference for the environment. However, did you know that reducing food waste can also save you money? According to the United States Department of Agriculture, the average U.S. household can save about $370 per person each year by reducing food waste.


So, how can you reduce your food waste to help both the environment and your wallet? Check out these tips from K-State Research and Extension:

  • Shop your refrigerator first. Check to see what you already have before you create your weekly meal plan.
  • Don’t forget about leftovers! Label your leftovers with the date to ensure you will eat them or freeze them within 3-4 days. All leftovers should be reheated to 165°F as measured by a food thermometer for food safety.
  • Make a shopping list and stick to it. This will help curb that pesky impulse shopping that can cause you to purchase items you won’t be able to use in time.
  • Store your food properly. Food stored improperly will spoil more quickly and need to be thrown away. One key tip is to place an appliance thermometer in both your refrigerator and in your freezer. Keep your refrigerator at 40°F or below and your freezer at 0°F or below.


However, it is also important to keep in mind the following rule: When in doubt, throw it out! If you are not sure whether a food item is spoiled or still safe to eat, it is best to discard it.


For more information on the tips listed above as well as others, visit In addition, consider attending one of the free educational programs I will be offering on Earth Day (April 22nd) to learn about food waste, meal planning, reducing a recipe, strategic grocery shopping, proper food storage, extending the life of food, and checking food product dates. Join me at the Woodson County Ambulance Building in Yates Center (114 N. Main St.) from 12:05 PM to 12:50 PM or at the Southwind Extension District Office in Iola (1006 N. State St.) from 5:15 PM to 6 PM. Contact me with questions at [email protected] or 620-365-2242.


Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


Children in the Garden

Jennifer Terrell, K-State Extension Agent



Children thrive when outdoors. It provides them the opportunity to observe, explore, and interact with their surroundings.


Like other forms of nature therapy, gardening decreases stress by increasing our connection to the natural world around us. It prompts kids to tune in to the changing seasons and weather conditions, teaches mindfulness and promotes physical activity and healthy eating. Add to that the development of confidence, a strong work ethic, and the ability to accept that some things are beyond our control, and it’s no surprise that growing things can result in a growth mindset!


Children can be involved in all stages of gardening from designing the garden space to tending the plants. What’s great about gardening is the ability to adapt how children help depending on their age and ability. A few gardening activities could include: germinating seeds, preparing soil, labeling plants, watering produce, pulling weeds, gathering produce, and tasting the produce.


While engaging in gardening activities, it is important to set limits with children. Talk with them about the difference between a weed or new plant growth. Discuss the importance of watering and caring for plants. For example, offer a watering can for young children to assist with watering duties.  Children need guidance to learn about their surroundings while having fun.


Don’t forget, gardening is a sensory experience. Call attention to the tactile feeling of the soil, the warmth of the sun, the sounds of the birds, the smell of the flowers, and the taste of fresh-picked produce. Each of these senses will be engaged while outdoors in the garden. Take advantage of these teachable moments to explore the world around them.


The hard work children put into the garden can be showcased at the local county fair as well. There are opportunities in both the open class and 4-H divisions to submit an exhibit. K-State Research and Extension has great resources to assist with learning more about gardening and selecting items for judging.


For more information, reach out to Jennifer Terrell, 4-H Youth Development Agent for K-State Research and Extension – Southwind District by email at [email protected] or by phone 620-223-3720.

Starlite FCE Minutes March,2024



The Starlite Family and Consumer Education Unit held its March meeting at the Presbyterian Village Meeting Room.  Before the meeting the members stuffed two hundred plastic Easter eggs for the Tri-Valley clients.


President Glenda Miller called the meeting to order.  Vice President Joyce Allen led the club in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and the Club Collect. Ten members and one guest were in attendance.  They reported that they had volunteered for thirty-eight hours and had recycled one hundred and ninety-five pounds.


Terri Williams read a Thank you note from Preferred Home Living and also presented the Treasurer’s report in Doris’s absence.  Karen Peery presented the Council report.  She announced that the FCE Recognition Day will be May 2nd at the Neosho Vallely Event Center in Erie, and that the Spring Tea will be held April 11th at First Southern Baptist Church in Fort Scott.  Bourbon County is providing salads and has been requested to bring the recipes also.  Karen also reported that Deb Lust had been named the Heart of FCE recipient for the SE Kansas.  The Council had awarded a $200 scholarship to Mackenzie Robertson.  Karen also reminded us that the State FCE meeting will be October 7-9 in Chanute and that she is looking for footed glasses for the table decorations.


Glenda Miller presented the Citizenship spotlight.  She highlighted Vietnam War commemoration day which is March 29th.


Old Business consisted of Discussion about the Operation Christmas Child, Karen Peery announced that she will obtain the boxes for us and Glenda announced that she had copies of suggested items for the boxes if anyone needed one.

Betty Johnson moved that the meeting be adjourned, LeAnna Taylor seconded the motion, motion carrier.  After the meeting Terri Williams present the program on “Make Active Habits Stick.”  Glenda Miller and Terri Williams provide refreshments of Irish brownies, pretzel shamrocks, mints, candy Easter eggs, nuts and water for the club.



Aging with Attitude Regional Expo Set for April 26th


It’s taking place every day, for everyone….aging that is, and it is an opportunity!  Let’s come together to learn and ensure we can all thrive as we age, on Friday, April 26th, for the Aging with Attitude Regional Expo.


The expo aims to promote positive attitudes about aging and educate on issues that support physical, mental, and financial health.  K-State Research and Extension along with community partners invite you to connect with others for information and resources on April 26th. The event includes presentations, activities, prizes, a resource fair, and lunch from 9:00a.m.-1:00p.m. at Foursquare Church, 98 Main Street, Parsons, KS.  Registration fee is $15 per attendee.  Register with flyer registration form or by calling 620-244-3826.


Keynote Presentations include:

Container Gardening

Hear from horticulture expert on creating your own garden.


Medicare Q&A

Senior Health Insurance Counselor and Coordinator will answer top Medicare questions and hear your specific needs.


Make the most of your life by attending this year’s regional expo!  For more information you may contact [email protected] or 620-244-3826.


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Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director of K-State Research and Extension, Kansas State University, County Extension Councils, Extension Districts.


Teaching Kids About Money Management

Amanda Clasen- Community Vitality Agent    

March 2024


The Southwind Extension District just finished hosting our first Youth Entrepreneurship Challenge in Allen County with the partnership with Humboldt High School, Allen County E-Communities and NetWork Kansas. A part of this event is students learning the importance of developing a business plan, learning how to make a profit off of their business and product as well as marketing their product to be successful. After completing this event, the participants were awarded cash prizes for their work and efforts and it got me thinking, I wonder how many of these youth will continue the entrepreneurship path in life and what money management skills have they developed through this project?

Money Management must be learned and practiced in everyday home and family life to prepare children for real life situations. Think of how day-to-day activities and errands that you are already completing in your already busy life, to incorporate “lessons” on money management skills for youth.  Making or earning money for a job is the way most adults get money to spend, but think about what youth need to know to be successful in their money management. The following are examples of ways to incorporate learning into daily life lessons.

Things a 5 year old should know:

  1. A dime is worth more than a nickel even though it is smaller. Also that coins can be exchanged for “fun” things.
  2. Toys that are seen on the cereal box or on TV won’t always be flashy and look or work as well at home as they are advertised.
  3. Saving money can be fun when they know they can use it to buy something later.
  4. Asking for something they want, doesn’t mean they will always get what they want.

Things a 10 year old should know is obviously different from a younger and older Siblings. Below are examples of those teaching lessons.

  1. They should be able to navigate a grocery store with a cart and list to help shop for a budget friendly grocery trip.
  2. They should have a savings account in a real bank. They should learn that although you can withdrawal from that account, it won’t be the same cash and coins that they put in.

A 16 year old is often the age looking to be hired by local business and able to work outside of the family and friends circle to gain a paycheck. A few things they should know when coming to earning money:

  1. They should have a reasonable idea of the family finances.
  2. They should know how to write a check and balance a checking account.
  3. They should save half of everything they hear from a job for any major high school expenses such as a class ring or trip.

Adults may work 40 hours or sometimes more each week to bring home a paycheck to live on. Youth should be able to  find small jobs from their parents or neighbors to earn money for those burning “needs” and “wants”. Those jobs can take as little as 10 minutes for as much as hours to complete. Paid jobs at home are usually things beyond those a child is expected to do as part of the family. Make sure to be on the look out for a job that neighbors, grandparents, friends are willing to pay for. Think of other ways your child can earn money from their hobbies, for example, sell jewelry, show adults how to use a computer application or setting up a new cellphone.

For more information please contact Amanda Clasen, Community Vitality Agent, at [email protected] or at any Southwind Extension office.

Cooking for One or Two

Clara Misenhelter (Wicoff) Submitted photo 2023

By Clara Misenhelter

Southwind Extension District


Cooking for one or two people can sometimes feel like a burden. While it can be tempting to skip meals, opt for convenience foods, or go out to eat instead of cooking for one or two people, preparing meals at home can be good for your health and for your wallet.


Here are some tips to consider when cooking for two or just for you:

  • Start with MyPlate to create balanced meals. Before you plan a meal, imagine what your plate will look like. The MyPlate recommendations encourage us to make half of our plate fruits and vegetables, focus on whole fruits, vary our veggies, make half of our grains whole grains, vary our protein routine, and move to low-fat or fat-free dairy options. To learn more, visit
  • Create “planned-overs” to repurpose leftovers. One of the burdens to cooking for one or two people is the amount of time required to prepare, cook, and clean up from meals. To reduce this burden, think about how you can plan meals that will use the same ingredients so that you can cook once and eat twice. (Make sure you use the item within the next 3-4 days.) For example, if you are cooking ground beef to make chili, consider cooking additional meat that can be used on baked potatoes for another meal.
  • Use leftovers safely. The USDA reports that leftovers can be safely kept in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. If you have leftovers, they should be placed in the refrigerator or freezer within two hours (or within one hour if the temperature is over 90 degrees Fahrenheit). When reheating leftovers, they should be reheated to 165 degrees Fahrenheit as measured by a food thermometer.
  • Become friends with your freezer. Tape a piece of paper to the outside of your freezer to keep an inventory of what you stored in the freezer. List the item and the date to remind yourself to consume it within 3-4 months. It can also be helpful to freeze leftovers in smaller portion sizes.


For more information, please contact me at [email protected] or 620-365-2242. To learn even more about this topic, consider attending the “Cooking for One or Two” program I will be hosting at the Chanute Library on March 13th at 5:30 PM. This program is free, but an RSVP is required by calling 620-365-2242.


Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


Walk Kansas registration is open

Walk Kansas registration is open

March 4, 2024

The weather is warming up, which is a sign that it is almost time for Walk Kansas! Walk Kansas is an eight-week healthy lifestyle challenge that will inspire you to lead a healthier life by being more active and making better nutrition choices. You are part of a six-member team which selects a goal and supports one another in reaching it. If you don’t have a team, you can be assigned to one or you can fly solo! The cost to participate is $10 per adult. Registration is open now at, and the program will take place from March 31st through May 25th. The benefits of participating in Walk Kansas include:

  • Weekly newsletters filled with motivational healthy lifestyle information, resources, and recipes;
  • Access to the online tracking system, as well as the Walk Kansas app, to help keep you on track as you work to reach your goals;
  • Support in working towards leading a healthier life, including support gained from your teammates and exclusive membership in a closed Walk Kansas Facebook group;
  • And more!

For more information, contact Clara Misenhelter with the Southwind Extension District at (620) 365-2242 or [email protected].


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Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service

K – State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Fruit Tree Dormant Oil Application

February brought us above normal temperatures. I’ve heard the frogs signing on several days, which is always a welcome sound to my ears because I know spring is near! When the nice, warm days grace us in March, make time to apply a dormant oil on your fruit trees.

There are a number of dormant sprays used on fruit trees and other plants to control various diseases and insects. However, a dormant oil spray is designed to control scale insects, aphids and mites. Just like the name implies, dormant oils are applied before the tree begins to bud. Dormant oil sprays are important because some pests attack before visible growth even begins. If you have a problem with scale, now is the time to start watching the weather and look for an opportunity to spray.

Scale insects can be seen easily this time of year since there a no leaves. Scale insects are easily overlooked because they are small and immobile most of their lives, and they do not resemble most other insects. Many of them resemble small shells that are oval or circular. Coloring varies but can include white, tan and brown. Plants that should be inspected for scales include apple, pear, other fruit trees, lilac, crabapple, oak, ash, elm, maple, arborvitae, juniper, pine, spruce, euonymus and yew.

Plants are not harmed if only a few scales are present, but scale population can increase dramatically during the growing season. Heavy scale infestations can damage fruit crops, destroy branches and kill entire plants.

Normally sprays should be applied around March 1, especially with peaches and nectarines. Apples are tougher and application may be delayed up to the green tip stage. Temperatures need to be at least 40 degrees so spray has a chance to dry before freezing. If the spray does freeze before it dries, plant injury can occur. Applying the spray during the morning will help insure that it dries properly. It is much easier to achieve good spray coverage if the tree is pruned before spraying.

The Extension office has several publications outlining the fruit spray schedule for the entire growing season.

Now is an excellent time to prune. Pruning can be done in March. Prune on days when the temperature is above 20 degrees to prevent injury. Prune older trees first because older, larger wood tolerates lower temperatures than young trees with small diameter wood.


If your trees are overgrown, out of control and you just don’t know where to begin, stop by the Extension office and pick up a pruning publication. This publication offers step-by-step instructions on pruning overgrown trees and it also has nice diagrams.


Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension Horticulture agent assigned to Southwind District.  She may be reached at [email protected] or 620-244-3826.


K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


Herbs – From Plant to Plate

Herbs – From Plant to Plate

Whether for culinary or medicinal purposes, herbs are versatile plants. Learn how to grow herbs and how to utilize them with different foods in this free workshop hosted by the Southwind Extension District! Workshop topics will include how to grow herbs, the easiest herbs to grow, how to store herbs properly, and the health benefits of cooking with herbs. There will also be samples to try! If you have questions about this workshop, call 620-244-3826. This workshop will be offered in two locations.

K-State Research and Extension is committed to making its services, activities and programs accessible to all participants. Reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting Krista Harding at 620-365-2242 or [email protected]. Notify staff of accommodation needs as early as possible.
Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service. K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Krista Harding is the horticulture agent for
the Southwind Extension District. With her
green thumb expertise, she will show you
how to grow herbs both indoors and in the

Clara Misenhelter is a Nutrition, Food, and
Health agent for the Southwind Extension
District. Clara will share her knowledge
utilizing the natural seasoning of herbs to
make meals healthier.

Monday, March 25th
6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Uniontown City Hall
206 Sherman Street

Questions? Call 620-244-3826


Kansas Made Workshops for Youth

Jennifer Terrell, K-State Extension Agent


A series of workshops will be held for youth over the week of spring break by the Southwind Extension District at no-charge! These workshops will be for all youth who are 7-18 years of age.


Families can expect youth to participate in hands-on learning about many products that come from the great State of Kansas. Each product will be explored through a variety of formats like photography, entomology, food & nutrition, health & wellness and visual arts to name a few. Not to mention some great guest speakers.


Workshops will be held from 1pm to 5pm at a variety of locations. Dates and locations are:

  • March 11 – Yates Center – Community Building
  • March 12 – Fort Scott – Buck Run Community Center Gym
  • March 14 – Erie – Neosho Valley Event Center
  • March 15 – Iola – Southwind Extension Office


Registration is required and can be completed online at: or by calling your local Southwind District Extension Office. Visit our website at for a list of phone numbers.


For more information about the workshops or how to become involved in the Southwind District 4-H Program, please reach out to Jennifer Terrell at [email protected] or 620-223-3720.