"When I look at these materials, it just looks normal, like any parent would get…..Just because we’re poor doesn’t mean we’re dumb."
WIC participant


Select a material from the pull-down below.


Click above image to view 8.5" x 11" PDF

THTM #31: Mommy, this is the best meal ever! (Pork recipes)

What is the key message?

  • “Investment” cooking—making larger amounts of core foods and dividing them into multiple meals-- makes serving healthy foods easier.
  • Parents who prepare healthy meals for their children feel good about their offering their children the best.

Who should receive this message?

  • Any parents or caregiver, especially those who say they don’t have the time or energy to cook.

How can this message be used?

  • How do you decide what you and your family will have for dinner?
  • What is it like in your home as you get ready for dinner?

Idea for a group:

Anyone read “Dear Abby?” (“Dear Abby” is a daily column where a wise woman—Abby—answers readers’ questions.)

Suppose you were hired to be the guest write for “Dear Abby” and you received this letter:

Dear Abby,
I have the world’s best child. I want to be the world’s best mother. My problem is finding time to cook meals. I know healthy foods like fruits, veggies, milk and meat are best for us. But at the end of a busy day, the fast food drive through is my best friend. I want to feel good about what I serve, not guilty. Help! How can I cook healthy meals at the end of a long day?

Signed, Lost in Fast-Foodville

  • What advice do you have for this busy mother?
  • When you think about cooking and preparing meals, what are the pros? What are the cons?
  • Does it really make a difference if parents prepare and serve meals to their children? How? At a young age, can children really know the difference?
  • What would make it easier for you to prepare more meals at home?
  • How do you feel when you and your children have finished a fast food meal of burgers or chicken, french fries and soda?
  • How do mothers who prepare healthy meals for their children feel?
  • (Offer recipe handouts.) These handouts feature “investment cooking” recipes. That means you can make larger amounts of core foods like meats or beans and then divide those foods into three smaller meals. Tuck them in the refrigerator or freezer and pull them out later. Presto—fast meals that come from your loving hands but without a lot of work or time. All recipes are guaranteed to be kid-pleasers and healthy.
  • “Investment” recipes suggest that there is a pay off later—a dividend. How does investment cooking reward mothers? Children?
  • Which of these recipes do you think you’d like to try this week?
  • What will you do this week to make meal preparation a little easier for you and your family?


Emotion-Based Messages