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Natural Goodness Blog

  • 5 Fall Foods We Can’t Get Enough Of

    Fall is here and before everyone freaks out about how close we are to winter – let’s just take a moment to enjoy everything the harvest season has to offer. Like, for example, pumpkin spice lattes, apple pies and maple everything. Check out our 5 favorite fall foods (with recipes to match!) and then leave us a comment with your favorite seasonal snacks.

    1. Apple

    Obviously apples had to make this list – an iconic harvest season staple. There are so many delicious ways to cook with apples, but we love how simple this Apple Walnut Overnight Oats recipe is. The apple pie spice is the perfect addition, giving this make-ahead meal a “dessert for breakfast” kind of reputation. Yum! apple-walnut

    2. Pumpkin

    Pumpkin spice lattes are a New England fan favorite – but you don’t have go through the drive thru to get one. This make-at-home recipe is perfect for all the pumpkin lovers that prefer to stay in their PJs all day. PumpkinSpice

    3. Maple Syrup

    Fall = football season, and football season calls for chicken wings. These Maple Glazed Chicken Wings are sweet, spicy, salty and smoky – seriously everything. Don’t forget to use REAL New England maple syrup!maple

    4. Squash

    Healthy, hearty and full of flavor – Butternut Squash is a fall superfood. This Roasted Butternut Squash Soup is perfect for cool, cozy evenings in. Serve with bacon and croutons for the ultimate comfort food feast. squash

    5. Cranberries

    They’re often used as decoration (think: centerpieces, garlands), but cranberries are a yummy Fall ingredient as well. These Almond Cranberry Muffins are an excellent breakfast-on-the-go, and take less than 30 minute to make (including baking time!). Almondcranmuffin

    What are your favorite fall foods?

     

  • 3 Fun Things to Do with Apples This Fall (besides eat them)

    Apple picking season is in full swing – and while we love apple everything (pies, sauce, jam, cobbler, crisp…the list goes on), sometimes you just have more apples than you can eat. Save yourself the belly ache and try one or all of these fun apple projects with the kids

    1.Candle Holders

    Apples are the perfect harvest table décor, and they just happen to make great candle holders as well. Carve out the top of a fresh apple and place a tea light in the center (detailed directions here), then arrange in a dish or on a platter for a beautiful Fall centerpiece.

    Apple

    2. Apple Stamps

    A is for apple – and also – art! Turn your favorite fruits and veggies into beautiful stamps in just four simple steps. Get the tutorial (and all kind of design inspiration) here.

     

    3. Shrunken Heads

    We know – it sounds gross – but this fun and easy project is perfect Halloween prep. Follow the simple steps here to carve and dry your leftover apples into spooky Halloween décor.

    shruken heads

  • Oakhurst Celebrates 20th Year as Beach to Beacon Sponsor

    Since 1997 Oakhurst has partnered with Beach to Beacon, an event we believe aligns perfectly with our commitment to environmental sustainability, healthy active kids, and community impact through giving.

    OakieB2B

    This year, in addition to handing out half-pints of free chocolate milk, we also enhanced our commitment to the organization, becoming the presenting sponsor of the Kids Fun Run and highly competitive High School Mile.

    At the Fun Run, we encouraged children and their families to join us in doing good for the environment by filling out a sustainability pledge card, and gave participants the chance to paint their feet and run across an enormous “Small Footprints” canvas, which will hang at our Forest Avenue headquarters and be used at family-focused events throughout the year.

    Oakie2B2bSFP

    The High-School mile race included Maine’s top 31 high-school-aged boys and girls, and culminated with a winner’s ceremony in which the top three runners in each category (male and female) received $250, $150, and $100 respectively to donate to a charity of their choice.JLboysJLGIrls

    Prior to the race, each competitor sent us their chosen charity, and at the last minute, we decided to expand our commitment and award each competitor (instead of just the winners) with a $50 donation to their chosen organization, more than doubling our financial commitment.

    FInish

    “It was deeply inspiring to be a part of this year’s TD Beach to Beacon High School Mile and to watch these Maine students compete,” said Jim Lesser, Oakhurst VP of Marketing and Sales. “The goal of the High School Mile is to attract the state’s best and then to encourage their best. By allowing each of the racers to select a charity of their choice, we felt it would be an opportunity for them to experience first-hand the satisfaction of helping others.”

    Group

    The charitable funds will be dispersed this week to a total of 13 nonprofit organizations in Maine, including Camp Sunshine ($450), Center for Grieving Children ($400), Seeds of Peace ($350), and Maine Adaptive ($250).

    Thank you to all who participated and came out to support this incredible event!

     

  • 5 Tips To Get Back In The Swing Of School Lunches

    With fall approaching fast, it’s time to start reviving the school-year rituals that – let’s face it – can get a little rusty over the summer. Whether your kids are athletes, musicians, dancers, brainiacs, or all of the above, one sure-fire way to power them through the day is ensure that they have plenty of food packed. Here are 5 tricks that can make it easier for you to make it easier for them:

    1. Pack the night before. Most parents are well acquainted with the chaos that can take place when the bus is coming in ten minutes but little Johnny hasn’t eaten breakfast, has his shirt on inside out, and is missing his hat/shoes/homework. One easy way to simplify your mornings is to pack lunch for all the kids the night before when you have time to breathe – that way, when disaster strikes in the morning, you can just grab a ready-made lunchbox and save precious minutes.Almondcranmuffin
    2. Make breakfast ahead of time.  If making lunches the night before doesn’t work for you, you can always go another route to make room in your mornings by having grab-and-go breakfasts.  Instead of using morning time to prepare a fresh breakfast, try making these muffins (http://oakhurstdairy.com/recipes/almond-cranberry-orange-muffins)  or this oatmeal http://(http://oakhurstdairy.com/recipes/apple-walnut-overnight-oats)the night or weekend ahead of time so that while the kids are munching, you can be packing.Appleoatmeal
    3. Use an assembly line. As your kids will learn in history class, the development of the assembly line led to multiple sweeping Industrial Revolutions, so don’t underestimate its power at home! If you have more than one school-bound mouth to feed, maximize your productive efficiency in the same way that Henry Ford did: spread three pieces of bread with peanut butter, then three with jelly, then fold them together, then add a piece of fruit and bottle of milk, and voila! I’m not sure Henry Ford did exactly that, but you get the idea.
    4. Shop strategically. For some, grocery shopping is soothing. For others, it’s a hassle. Either way, nobody wants to go more often than they have to, so it helps to plan ahead. When you’re making your shopping list, ask your kids what they’d like to have for lunch this week, and make sure that you buy enough for a full week of lunches as well as out-of-school snacks so that you don’t find yourself short on supplies when you’re most in need.
    5. Make it fun. Yes, packing lunches is often a must, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. This can take many forms. Try getting your kids involved– let them have a say in what they eat, bring them shopping for it, and then show them what you do to prepare the box rather than just having it magically appear in their backpack. Surprise them with a silly or sweet note written on their napkin. Pack their food in a pencil box so that they’ll feel extra academic. Even amid the frenzied mornings of the school year, make sure that you’re sending your kiddo a lunch made with love.
  • Five Things To Check Off Your Summer Bucket List Before Fall

    With the chilly New England fall approaching, now is the time to relish the warm weather- and what better way to do that than to take your kids on an outdoor adventure that they’ll remember forever? Here are five family-friendly day trips sure to please the whole family.

    1. Bradbury Mountain State Park 

    BradburyLocated just 10 minutes from downtown Freeport in Pownal, Maine, Bradbury Mountain State Park is a great place for kids of all ages. Its spectacular views are accessible to family members of all ages thanks to the short and easy Summit Trail, and you’re sure to enjoy exploring the surrounding trails as much as your kids. Pack a picnic and you have the makings of a great summer afternoon!

    Peaks2. Peaks Island Peaks Island is the most visited island in Casco Bay for a reason– from the first step aboard the charmingly quaint ferry to the first lick of the Down Front ice cream cone that awaits once you reach Peaks, the small island’s vacation atmosphere is contagious. Explore the island’s many beaches and walking paths on foot, bike, or rented golf cart, and be sure to seek out Rock Sculpture Cove.

    Rattlesnake3. Rattlesnake Flume and Pool If you’re in the mood to get away from the world, you can’t beat this tiny, vividly green waterfall on the New Hampshire border. Just a short hike from its entrance in Stoneham, Maine, this little-known swimming hole has a gradually deepening rocky bottom and a slide-like waterfall that kids and parents alike can have a great time riding. After you’ve cooled off in the water, have a picnic in the sun or walk on the rocks that punctuate the surrounding stream.

    MtWashington4. Mount Washington Cog Railway or Auto Road New Hampshire’s Mount Washington is one of the state’s most beloved landmarks, offering stunning vistas of the surrounding White Mountains. It is also one of the most accessible landmarks for families with young kids– for those of us who may not be up to the foot hike, the popular Auto Road and whimsical Cog Railway allow everyone to enjoy the view.

    AmericanStonehenge5. America’s Stonehenge  This collection of ancient stone structures located in Salem, New Hampshire, has puzzled scientists and locals for generations. The site has gone unchanged for over 4,000 years but is to this day an accurate astronomical calendar. Today, it also serves as grazing ground for a herd of alpacas! Let your kids play in its many stone caves, bridges, and cairns and determine the builders for themselves– Native Americans, aliens, or something else altogether?

     

    Hopefully, these beautiful destinations and all of the others scattered through New England will help you to make the most of your summer.

     

     

  • 6 Simple Summer Smoothies

    Smoothies are awesome all year long – but they’re especially delicious on hot summer days when the thought of turning on the oven is…well….out of the question. Cool, quick and refreshing – smoothies are the perfect way to fuel up on the go. Make them with milk for added protein, calcium and Vitamin D. The only problem with smoothies is getting stuck in a recipe rut – so switch it up with one of these delicious summer blends.

    1. Super Food Smoothie (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/super-food-smoothie)

    For the picky eater who can spot a vegetable in their smoothie from a mile away – this simple recipe contains fruit only. Choose frozen wild blueberries for an extra antioxidant punch, or toss in a quarter cup of frozen greens if you’re feeling daring – the strong blueberry flavor and purple color hides them really well!

    SuperFoodSmoothie

    2. Protein Power Player Smoothie (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/protein-power-player-smoothie)

    With 7 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber and only 238 calories – this chocolate banana smoothie is perfect for fueling up (or cooling down after a good workout). The roasted almonds add a great nutty flavor.

    ProteinPowerPlayer

    3. Go Green Smoothie (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/go-green-smoothie)

    If spinach in your smoothie doesn’t make you green – this recipe is the perfect mix of fruit and veggies. Spinach, grapes, honeydew melon and kiwi give this summery blend a gorgeous green hue – and a touch of honey adds the perfect amount of sweetness.

    GoGreenSmoothie

    4. Mango Ginger Smoothie (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/mango-ginger-smoothie)

    Filled with delicious tropical tastes like mango, mandarin orange and lime, this icey blend is incredibly refreshing. It’s also packed with oats, almond butter and fat-free milk for an 11gram punch of protein.

    MangoGinger

    5. Peach Almond Smoothie (http://oakhurstdairy.com/recipes/peach-almond-smoothie)

    Peaches are perfect in summer – and this smoothie is, too. Blend a peeled and sliced peach with some low-fat milk, brown sugar, almond extract, and ice for a deliciously summery smoothie snack.

    PeachAlmond

    6. Berry and Beet Smoothie (http://foxeslovelemons.com/berry-beet-smoothies/)

    Don’t let the beets scare you away, they’re actually really sweet and give this smoothie the most incredibly gorgeous color. Mix with fruit and milk for a delicious and healthy breakfast.

    BerryandBeet

  • 5 Fun 4th of July Crafts for Kids

    Fireworks are fun but late nights and loud noises aren’t for everyone. If you’re looking for kid-friendly way to celebrate, we’ve got 5 fun crafts you can do as a family.

    What are your favorite 4th of July traditions?

    1. Shaving Cream Fireworks  Make your own (less noisy) fireworks out of shaving cream, food coloring and toothpicks. This is a great sensory activity for little ones and the finished paintings are pretty enough to hang on the fridge!

    Shaving Cream Fireworks

     

    2. Festive flags  These adorable homemade “flags” are made out of cardstock and ribbon. Great for kids working on cutting and gluing, and perfect for the front porch! Get the full tutorial here: http://www.parents.com/parents-magazine/festive-flags/

    Festive Flags

     

    3. Patriotic Berries and Cream This yummy snack is picky-eater approved – and perfect for 4th of July! Hollow out some strawberries and fill them with Oakhurst whipped cream. Top with a Maine Wild Blueberry for a red, white and blue treat.

    Patriotic Berries and Cream

     

    4. Tin Can Luminaries For older kids capable of handling a hammer and nail, these tin can luminaries are a great way to celebrate the 4th. Punch holes in old tin cans to form letters, shapes or fireworks, and then paint and set a candle inside to light them up. So pretty! Get the full tutorial here: http://www.crafts-for-all-seasons.com/tin-can-luminaries.html

    Tin Can Luminaries

     

    5. 4th of July Tie Dye T-Shirts Remember making rainbow tie dye t-shirts as a kid? So messy but so much fun! This tutorial shows you exactly how to create this cute “bomb pop” design using just red and royal blue dyes: http://ilovetocreateblog.blogspot.com/2012/06/firecracker-tie-dye-patriotic-t-shirt.html

    4th of july tie dye tshirts

  • 3 Fun Salad Recipes for Summer

    Finally the weather is warming up an gardens are beginning to grow – perfect timing to switch up those chilis and casseroles for some fun summer salads. If you’re looking for a new recipe to inspire you, try one of these three creative takes on summertime salads:

    1.Lobster on Brioche with Turnip and Potato Salad

    Nothing says summer in Maine like lobsters, and if you love lobster you’ll love this fun take a lobster roll and salad combined. Tender lobster meat is set on Boston Bibb lettuce and brioche roll, topped with a Lemon Caper Aioli dressing and a turnip and potato salad on the side. Get the recipe here. Lobster on Brioche

     

    2. Grilled Watermelon Salad

    You’re probably used to grilling meat and veggies all summer long – but don’t forget about fruit! Grilled watermelon is delicious on this simple and super refreshing salad from Kitchenability.com. Grilled Watermelon

     

    3. Avocado 3 Ways

    Avocado toast may be all the rage, but we think these avocado boats are even tastier. Filled with three different “salads” (tuna salad, watermelon salad, and black bean salsa salad) this healthy and delicious summer recipe is perfect for a dinner party or picnic. Get the recipe here. Avocado 3 ways

    What are your favorite summer salads? Share with us on Facebook!

     

  • 5 DIY Father’s Day Gifts Dad Will Actually Want

    Macaroni necklaces are cute and everything – but we all know what Dad really wants for Father’s Day is a new iPhone, or lawn tractor, or a shirt without spit-up stains. Problem is, all those things require a trip to the store and more than a few dollars – ain’t nobody with little kids got time for that. So instead we’ve pulled together a list of Father’s Day gifts you can make at home without breaking the bank. If all else fails, a couple half gallons of Oakhurst chocolate milk ought to do the trick 😉

    Got a great homemade Father’s Day gift idea? Share with us on Facebook!

     

    1.DIY Coin Jar

    Help dad save for his next big trip (or you know, trip to the golf course) with these DIY coin jars. They’re super fun for kids to make, and actually helpful to dads who always have loose change filling up their pockets, wallets, or driver’s side door. Get the instructions here. DIY coin jar

    2. Mini Tool Boxes

    For the dad that’s got tools for fixing his tools (and leaves them all over the garage) – help him get organized with these adorable mini-toolboxes made out of Altoids tins. They’re perfect for drill bits, screws and other small odds and ends. Get the tutorial here. Mini Tool Box

    3. Kids Car Wash

    Everybody loves a clean car – especially when they don’t have to scrub it themselves. Put the kids to work buffing and shining up dad’s ride – or vacuuming out the inside. You never know, if they find it fun they might just want to clean your car, too!Kids Car Wash

    4. Homemade Shaving Cream

    There’s nothing like a fresh clean shave, especially when it’s irritation-free thanks to this homemade shaving cream. The kids will love mixing it up, and dad will appreciate the gentle scent and moisturizing finish. Get the recipe here. Homemade shaving cream

    5. Toddler Art T-Shirt

    If you’ve got little kids it can be hard to find a DIY that’s age appropriate, but also something Dad might actually wear. This Toddler Art T-Shirt is the perfect solution! All you need is a blank t-shirt, some masking tape and a fabric marker. Get the full tutorial here! Toddler Art Tshirt

  • Celebrate World Milk Day!

    June is National Dairy Month and the festivities kick off this Thursday (June 1st) with World Milk Day – a worldwide day of recognition for the wholesome nutrition of nature’s most perfect food – milk!

    We’ll be celebrating all day long, starting with a $50 Facebook giveaway and an opportunity to share your World Milk Day photos to raise money for the Great American Milk Drive.

    Make sure you check the Facebook page on Thursday morning for all the details.

    We’d also like to share a huge thank you to all of the hardworking farmers and their families that work tirelessly to bring deliciously fresh milk to kitchens across Northern New England. And of course, thank you to all the lovely cows as well! Today is your day!

    Kid and cow

    Looking for a fun way to celebrate World Milk Day with the kiddos? Try one of these homemade flavored milks – yum!

    Vanilla Cinnamon Milk (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/vanilla-cinnamon-flavored-milk-recipe)

    Vanilla Cinnamon Milk

    Lavender Honey Milk (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/lavender-honey-flavored-milk-recipe)

    Lavender Honey Milk

    Chocolate Banana Milk (https://milklife.com/articles/recipe/chocolate-banana-flavored-milk-recipe)

    Chocolate Banana Milk