Notes from the Field: Mother’s Day & Women’s Health Week

It's Your Time! National Women's Health Week 2011Go Folic! was out in the community on both May 7 and May 8.  In celebration of the National Women’s Health Week, which began on Mother’s Day, we created a blackboard for people to express their love and concern for their mothers.  Sometimes we have a hard time saying that we care.  Through this activity we were able to express the love that is buried deep inside our hearts.

Self Portrait, Lilah, Age 4

Self Portrait, Lilah, Age 4 (Doesn't she look healthy and happy?)

On May 7th Go Folic! was at Dolores Park, celebrating Cinco de Mayo. This non-alcoholic event was coordinated by Mission Neighborhood Centers. Throughout the day, people danced to the music of local bands, sampled food – some of it healthy (our favorites included pupusas with folate-rich spinach from

Estrellita’s Snacks), and got information from community booths.

We invited people to write/draw messages to thank their moms for helping them be healthy.  By the end of the day, the board had been filled 5 times, including once by a budding artist named Lilah, who included a self-portrait with her message (at right).  We also talked to over 200 women about Going Folic!

May 8th was our first time tabling at Sunday Streets.  (We’ll be at Bayview Sunday Streets on June 12th). Again, the team put up the blackboard for people to draw on.  People came by  for some vitamins and would stare at the blank board.  Then, all of a sudden, a little boy picked up the chalk, and wrote “Te Amo” for his mom.  After that, more people wrote messages for e their mom.  The board had at least 3 languages: English, Spanish, and Chinese.  It was so lovely.  We can still see the smiles on people’s faces when they were writing the message or when moms saw their children showing them love. (Visit the Go Folic! Website to see all of the message boards.)

Happy belated Mother’s Day to all current and future moms, from Go Folic!

Foodie Friday – Mother’s Day Special

Mother’s Day is coming!  Have you planned what to do on this special day to thank your mother and yourself (if you are a mom already) for all the work she had done for you and the family?  One suggestion we have is to make her a meal.  Make something that she likes.  It doesn’t have to be fancy as long as it is filled with love.  Below is a simple recipe that you can try making for her.

This recipe, “Sun-Dried Tomato and Carrot Meatloaf with Fabulous Creamed Spinach”, comes from Eat Fresh Food – Awesome Recipes for Teen Chefs by Rozanne GoldThis book has simple but tasty recipes.  It is a great resource for young chefs.

Starting this Saturday, the Go Folic! Project will have a list of events to celebrate Mother’s Day and National Women’s Health Week.  Check back tomorrow for a list of events in May.  Come by and get a bottle of FREE multi-vitamins!

Sun-dried Tomato and Carrot Meatloaf with Fabulous Creamed Spinach

Serving Size: 4


For Fabulous Creamed Spinach

  • 1 small onion
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 16 ounces fresh spinach leaves, washed, with any thick stems removed
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1½ tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • Sprinkling of grated nutmeg

For Sun-dried Tomato Carrot Meatloaf:

  • 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1 ½ pounds ground sirloin
  • ½ cup grated carrots
  • ¼ cup finely chopped fresh chives


Fabulous Creamed Spinach

  1. In the very large pot you use for pasta, put 1 cup water.  Cut the onion into paper-thin slices and add to the pot.  Peel the garlic and cut in half lengthwise.  Add to the pot and bring the water to a boil.  Boil for 2 minutes.  Add the spinach and ½ teaspoon salt.  Cover the pot tight and cook over high heat for 5 minutes, or until the spinach is wilted and tender but still bright green.  Transfer the mixture to a colander and press down hard to release all the liquid.
  2. Put the warm spinach mixture in the bowl of a food processor.  Add the cottage cheese and butter and process until very smooth (all the white flecks will have disappeared).  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Sprinkle with the cheese and nutmeg

Sun-Dried Tomato Carrot Meatloaf:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Drain 2 tablespoons oil from the tomatoes and put it in a nonstick skillet.  Finely dice the sun-dried tomatoes.  Peel the onion and finely chop.  Heat the oil in the skillet and add the onions.  Cook over medium-high heat for 10 minutes until very soft, stirring often.
  3. Put the ground beef in a large bowl.  Add the diced sun-dried tomatoes, cooked onions and any juices, carrots, chives, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/3 cup ice-cold water.  Mix thoroughly.
  4. Place in a rimmed baking sheet and form into a heart shape or into an 8 x 14½ inch loaf.  Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until browned and firm to the touch.  Let rest 5 minutes and serve with hot creamy spinach.

Tip: The secret to the very juicy meatloaf is the ice-cold water that gets added to the mixture before baking.

Upcomg Events – Where to find Go Folic! in May

May is here!  Which means a new schedule of events – starting with Mother’s Day and National Women’s Health Week, from May 8-14.  It is going to be busy but fun.  We are planning art activities, raffles for movie tickets and Safeway gift cards, and free vitamins.

On Mother’s Day weekend, write a message to your mom on our graffiti wall; we’ll take a photo of your drawing or quote that you can tag on Facebook and send as a Mother’s Day greeting.  (Or we’ll take a photo of you standing in front of your quote and you can email it to her yourself!)

The theme of this year’s Women’s Health Week is “It’s your time!” As women, we always put our family, friends and romantic partners before ourselves.  So when you come by our booth, put yourself first – pick up a bottle of FREE vitamins – it’s on us!

It’s Your Time! Celebrating National Women’s Health Week

National Women's Health Week "It's Your Time" LogoNational Women’s Health Week, coordinated by the U.S. Office on Women’s Health, empowers women to make their health a top priority. At Go Folic!, we realize that it can be difficult for women to make our own health a priority.  When we’re younger, activities like studying, working, socializing and building a life take a lot of time.  As we get older, we often focus on meeting the needs of our partners or spouses, children and parents before taking care of ourselves.

Why National Women’s Health Week?

Woman ExercisingNational Women’s Health Week will help us remember that we are as important as the others we take care of.  And when we take care of ourselves, the health of those we love – our family and friends – can also improve. Even taking one or two simple steps to improve our physical and mental health can have big results.

Some Easy Suggestions

The Office of Women’s Health suggests doing one or more of the following:

  • Exercise moderately for at least 2 hours and 30 minutes each week. Want some support? Join the 8-week Women’s Challenge to find a peer group of other women who also want to start or increase their exercise.
  • Visit a health care professional for a checkup and preventive screening. Don’t have insurance? Healthy San Francisco makes health care affordable, no matter what your income!
  • Vive LogoVow to avoid a risky behavior like smoking, not wearing a seat belt or having unprotected sex. Want extra motivation? Vive will send you customized text messages or emails to encourage you to meet personal health goals.
  • Pay attention to your mental health! Get enough sleep and manage stress. This quick stretching routine from Dr. Oz could make it easier to do both.

Of course, at Go Folic! we want to remind every woman to take a daily multi-vitamin with folic acid  (click here to find out how to get free Go Folic! Multis). Benefits include better physical health, help for dealing with stress, and better hair, skin and nails.

What are you doing to improve your health?

We’d love to know.  So please leave a comment telling us what your plans are.  Or submit your Healthy Woman Bio for a chance to win a $50 Visa Gift Card and be featured on our blog! (Click here for details.)