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PopEntertainment.com > Feature Interviews - Actresses > Feature Interviews F to J > Jennie Garth

 

Jennie Garth

Having a Garden Party

By Deborah Wagner

 
Copyright ©2010 PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved.  Posted: January 25, 2010. 

 

Anyone who grew up in the 1990’s would know her as Kelly Taylor – the cute girl next door from Beverly Hills 90210.  When the curtain came down on 90210 in 2000, Jennie Garth continued to act in sitcoms like What I Like About You and made-for-TV movies.  In recent years, she’s best known for dancing with some stars and more recently for being introduced to a whole new generation of Beverly Hills kids while reprising her role as a grown up Kelly Taylor in the CW’s 90210 spin-off.

 

Despite her very busy Hollywood schedule, Jennie feels without a doubt her most important role is Mom to three beautiful little girls – Lucia Bella, Lola Ray and Fiona Eve.  Married to actor Peter Facinelli of the Twilight movies, Jennie grew up on a 25-acre ranch in rural Illinois.  She was the youngest of seven kids and learned through her family to eat fresh fruits and vegetables right from their own gardens.

 

That one fact alone probably makes her the perfect candidate to host her latest venture, the internet series “Garden Party.”  Airing on iVillage.com, the series is created by NBC/Universal and the makers of Hidden Valley Ranch.  The shows feature a new vegetable each month and highlight Jennie visiting farms, meeting with chefs, Moms and just hanging with kids – having fun and eating veggies.  Most importantly for parents though, Jennie shares secrets, hints and good advice on how to incorporate veggies into the diets of even the pickiest eaters.

 

Recently, we were one of several websites who were able to speak with Jennie about kids, eating healthy and “Garden Party.”  

 

It looks like you’re having a really good time selling the series and interacting with the kids. How did this project come about? How did you get involved with it? 

Well, you know, I did have such a great time doing “Garden Party.” I didn't know that I would get to interact so much with the kids but we ended up in the middle of a field in LA and we were totally gardening and eating vegetables all day. We had so much fun. How I got involved was, you know, a lot of people my age are moms. I'm a pretty recognizable face for a certain age woman and people that grew up watching Beverly Hills 90210, the original show. Now a lot of us women have kids. One of the big issues is how to make sure our kids are eating healthy. I know I struggle with it with my own kids. I love to talk to other women about relevant issues and this is definitely a relevant issue so they came to me and asked me to do this Web series and ended up being a really fun time. 

You seem also very comfortable talking about the foods and talking about different serving options that exist and making them more appealing to kids. Did you have this knowledge ahead of time or did you find that you learned a lot yourself in doing this series? 

You know, I thought I knew everything there was to know about a vegetable but I learned so much everyday just shooting this. I think that anybody that watches it will be kind of surprised too. I got some really great tips. Everyday I would come home from shooting this Web thing and I would try a new vegetable at home. The kids were into and so it did actually end up teaching me about new vegetables, new little tricks I could try to get my kids to eat them. So it was a learning experience. But I am kind of a foodie, I like food and I love to cook. 

What are some of your favorite vegetables? 

Oh my gosh I love sugar snap peas and asparagus. I love every vegetable I swear to you. When I was doing this series standing out in these beautiful fields full of fresh vegetables I was going crazy because there were gorgeous vegetables all around me. I got introduced to several vegetables that I'd never even heard of. I can't remember the names of them right now but like Japanese turnips and crazy things. And they were so delicious straight out of the field. We cook a lot of carrots and broccoli stuff like that at my house, you know, kid-friendly vegetables. 

Why do you think people will want to take their time to watch “Garden Party?” 

Well I think that there are a lot of moms out there that are like me and they’re a little lost when it comes to how do I get my kids to eat vegetables? I know they’re supposed to eat them and it’s our responsibility to give these kids a balanced diet and not only just feed them but teach them how to incorporate vegetables into their own diets when they get old enough to choose what they’re eating when they’re away from you. So I think that that is the reason I did it, to help educate other moms and educate myself about vegetables. 

Other than a particular vegetable type that you were introduced to was there something about vegetables in particular you learned from doing this? 

Something about vegetables that I learned from doing this? I learned about going straight to the fields. If you can in your neighborhood going to local farmer’s markets to get fresh produce and try to stay away from - try to buy local which was something that I learned about that I didn't really think of before.  When you think about all the shipping and how far the vegetables are traveling when they’re coming from Chile and all these places. It’s best to get the freshest, quickest, closest to you grown vegetable you can. 

Yes I'm sure your stomach appreciates you learning this new... 

I'm sure it does too. I also learned that… I always thought maybe putting dressing or dip or whatever was not so good for kids but this is actually a great alternative; a way to get your kids introduced to vegetables and get them to like them. I think a great tip is when they’re hungry and they come home from school they want a snack and just put out some vegetables that you've cut up and a little bit of Hidden Valley Ranch dressing. They dip it in there, they eat it up because they’re hungry and all the sudden they’re craving vegetables and dip. 

You were mentioning, obviously you as a mom have also struggled to get your kids to eat vegetables and stuff. What is the most dreaded veggie in your household? What’s the one that the kids just run for the halls screaming? 

I don't know. You know, I can't really get them to eat asparagus. I try. But there’s no like Brussels sprouts horror stories happening here because I really only cook the things that I know that they’re going to eat; why waste my time cooking things that they’re going to just spit out? So it’s - it’s all copacetic here; we’re all eating vegetables at every meal and I stress the importance of them having a balanced diet. 

I know you grew up on a ranch. Was that the start of you really liking like fresh foods and things like that? 

Yeah we had a big garden since I can remember growing up. We lived way out in the country and we didn't have a lot of money. So we always had our vegetables grown in our garden and we would be out there taking care of them and growing them and gardening. Doing this Web series really sort of brought me back to my roots I guess - excuse the pun. I can remember when I was little walking in the cornfields in Illinois and just having fresh corn whenever you wanted it right outside your door. So it was quite a luxury. I didn't know it then but I appreciate it now. 

Awesome. And was there ever a vegetable for you growing up that you really dreaded that you did the old hide in the napkin trick at dinner or anything like that? 

I wasn't very fond of zucchini. When you cook it, it gets a little slimy. 

Oh yeah definitely. 

Wasn't really crazy about slimy zucchini. 

I had to laugh when I first saw the press release for this show. I have to douse vegetables in Hidden Valley Ranch to get my kids to eat them so... 

And you know what there’s nothing wrong with that. Don't feel bad about it. I have to too. 

Yeah. Anyway I wanted to follow up on the question that you just answered. I always found that when I was growing up we always had a vegetable garden too. It was such a bonding thing. And my parents, even though they’re elderly, they’re in their 70s, they still have a vegetable garden every year. My children really connect with their grandparents. I was just wondering if you can talk about the bigger picture of gardening, which is, it’s a really bonding experience. If you could just elaborate more on that and what values you hope your own children will take as they grow older. 

Well, I haven't had a garden for a while. We have a garden at our ranch but we don't live there. We live in the city and we didn't have a garden. My husband’s father came in and helped us plant a garden in our front yard. I said I don't care, I want a garden. Rip up the grass let’s get it going, you know. And we made it happen. Over a weekend... We put in this really great little garden. It’s just fun and I can be cooking and I say oh girls go get me a cucumber or go get me some tomatoes and they love going out there and picking it and having that connection with what they’re actually eating. As far as what it means to our family I think any tradition you can pass along to your children that you had when you were younger are priceless. 

Yeah, so this is Peter’s father correct? [Garth is married to Twilight actor Peter Facinelli] 

This is, yeah. He can grow tomatoes on a gutter vine, I don't know, this guy can do anything with vegetables - growing things. 

Is NBC going to be doing more Trojan horse type advertising with a good message in other words picking products? Are you going to be involved in more sort of Web series where the advertisers are worked into a storyline that’s also educational? 

You know, I think it’s a great - it’s definitely a great medium. I'm very proud to be a part of this. I've never done something like this, an educational Web series. But I loved it. I love teaching people and I love talking to other women about what I know and what they know and sharing information. So I think this is a great place to do that. I hope they do, I don't really know about their future plans so. 

Why is it important for children to learn where their food comes from or even how to grow their own? 

It gives them a sense of investment. When you teach your kids instead of just sort of preaching to them, when you teach them about why something is good for them they want to do the right thing. Kids have this inherent quality to want boundaries and they want to do the right thing. When they know how good for them eating fresh vegetables from the garden is instead of packaged and processed foods they want to take care of themselves and they want to be healthy and strong and be able to run and play. So this is vital information to children. To parents to teach their kids that what they’re eating and how it’s affecting their body and their performance at school, you know. 

Plus it probably tastes better if they grow it themselves? 

I'm sure that they get a kick out of going to the garden and being able to pick something right out of the ground and wash it off and eat it. There’s something so cool about that and especially when it tastes good. 

What have you found is the easiest way to introduce vegetables into your children’s diet and make it fun for them? 

Well the old go-to for any mom is to dip it in the Hidden Valley Ranch because that stuff is like magic. It tastes really good and kids think that they’re having a treat but really they’re getting the nutrients from the vegetables and it really makes it a little easier. 

So aside from the dip is presentation key? Like what if you made it into a funny face or something? Does that work? 

Yeah you can. I did some of that in the Web series too… making funny faces out of the vegetables or letting the kids actually participate in preparing them. They love to like cut and peel stuff, so if you can get your kids up on the kitchen counter helping you to prepare their vegetables, that’s always an incentive for them. 

Would it be a good idea around Halloween to show them how to cook a pumpkin? 

Of course that would be a good idea. I don't see why not. You can use the seeds and teach them how to roast the seeds. They love to do that. 

Okay so I'm correct, this month’s vegetable is broccoli. So what’s your favorite way to prepare broccoli? 

You know, I have recently stopped using my microwave for health purposes. Like I was just realizing: oh my gosh I'm microwaving everything. So one day I literally put tape across the microwave saying don't use me. I used to just like nuke it and put some cheese on it. I haven't done it yet since then but I think I will just put it in the toaster oven in some water. I just cook it a little bit because the kids like to have that crunch, you know, instead of all soggy and mushy and disgusting. So don't overcook it. Then I like to sprinkle or lay some like singles - cheese slices – over it and just put the lid back on it and let the cheese sort of melt onto the broccoli. My kids love it. 

You can with cheese or dips, either one. 

Yeah, I'll eat anything with cheese or dip on it. 

So you have a very busy life with your career and your husband three beautiful daughters. How do you keep it all balanced? 

I am just like any other person out there. I make lists and I try to accomplish things everyday. I could lay in bed and take the kids to school and then go back to bed. But I don't, I go and exercise and I just try to keep the ball rolling. You've got to keep it going and keep accomplishing things with your time. I think just prioritizing and really planning out your work commitments and your family time, carving out dinner for family every night. I do spend a lot of time thinking about what I'm going to feed them too. As mom I think about that a lot and I prepare their meals everyday. So it’s just about balance and trying to keep it all together. 

I checked out the Web series today and I saw there are a lot of [episodes] – everything from going to the farm and seeing where vegetables are grown to actually what to do with the vegetables when you get them home. What was your favorite part of filming the show? 

I wasn't sure that I was going to have as much [fun] as I ended up having. Just being out in the fields, we were out at a local farm here. Being out there with the real farmers and with the kids and we got to spray off all the fruits and pick them and chop them and eat them right out there on the farm. It was a lot of fun. I just had a good time. We did a neighborhood veggie party one episode. Just chatting with this woman that we called her grandma because she was everybody’s grandma. Just hearing everybody’s stories and how they like to eat their vegetables and what it means to them to feed their kids and their families fresh healthy foods. I'm kind of one of those women that likes to sit and gab with other women and share stories. So I think that was a lot of fun for me. 

Excellent. And you mentioned earlier some of the vegetables that you learned about that you had never heard of while you were doing this show. Have you tried to introduce any of those to your family? And if so what do they think? 

You know, I did. I came home - I had bushels of fresh vegetables after we visited that farm. We tried everything from the eggplant – which wasn't a big hit; I'm not going to lie because it got a little slimy. I gave them jicama – which they dipped in ranch dressing and they loved it – which they'd never had. Sugar snap peas, which was something that they didn't know about and they liked those a lot because they’re kind of sweet and crunchy. 

I wanted to know what your thoughts are on doing a Web series versus being involved, you know, in a TV series? What differences were there? Or were there were any differences involved in this project from other projects you've worked on in the past? 

Well I've done Web series that were purely for entertainment. I did one other Web series. It was for entertainment. This was more of an educational angle. I thought it was a great way to sort of partner NBC up with Hidden Valley Ranch and not only advertise the product but at the same time teach people some valuable information. I was excited to jump on board and sort of be the vegetable spokes-lady. And I learned a lot along the way. It was very easy filming it. It was something that wasn't a huge time commitment for me. It was quick and voila, now it’s on the Web and it’s going to be reaching thousands of people and it’s going to be teaching so many people about vegetables, these things that they didn't know and different ways for moms to get their kids to eat veggies. 

You mentioned also that fresh vegetables are really important and everyone knows that coming out of the ground they’re a lot tastier. Not everyone can get them right out of the ground. So what’s the next best thing? Should people only get fresh vegetables? Is it okay to go with frozen or canned vegetables? 

Sure. I think I would definitely check your community, search for farmer’s markets. So many areas are having these farmer’s markets or maybe there’s a little farm stand in your town - I have that up in a town that I visit - where they just sell vegetables on the roadside, you know, that they've picked out of their garden. That’s something you can do if you live in a really rural area. My personal choice if I can't get fresh I usually go to frozen next. My last resort would be canned. I don't love canned vegetables. And I don't feel like I'm eating anything when I'm eating them so that would be my preference. 

Yeah. Well they lose a lot of their nutrients so... 

And they’re mushy. It’s weird. 

Have you taken any cooking and nutrition classes to prepare for this role? And if not do you plan to in the future? 

Well, I learned a lot doing this. I think I learned so much about vegetables I don't need to take any more classes. I feel that I brought home some really great healthy tips for my family. It’s just about incorporating those things into their diets, you know. 

Will we be seeing your family on the show? 

No. I did this series with a bunch of really great local kids. We had a lot of fun out in the fields. But those were not my children, no. 

I'm one of those moms that I've been watching you for years and I have three boys... 

Oh thank you. 

...so you with three girls I was like... 

Oh it’s a match made in heaven. 

Yes. 

Do they eat vegetables? 

Well my very first one he’s almost eight now. He started with broccoli because it was the first thing he could stick on a fork so he loves it. Now he’s straying away - he still will do it but... 

Oh gosh. 

...he’s not such a fan anymore. I guess he ate too much at a younger age, I don't know. But... 

You've got to let him dip it. 

Yes, exactly, yeah. I might just have to pull it out raw with some ranch because I've always steamed it for him but. 

Yeah. 

And they also being boys pretend they’re dinosaurs and they’re eating trees. So that was a good. 

That’s good, that’s good, baby trees, yep. 

Yes baby trees. I had one question about if Peter enjoys the vegetables as much as you do? And do you have to do any tricks to get him to eat them? 

You know, he is a boy. I do have to - I honestly have to feed him like I would a child because if it were up to him - he’s from New York - he would be eating pizza at every meal and there’s not a vegetable in that pizza, you know. So he thinks that the tomato sauce is his vegetable. So I consider him just like one of the kids when I'm feeding him. I make a balanced meal and they eat it, you know. When I serve a protein and a vegetable and a carbohydrate they eat it. They eat what I've prepared for them because I think that they love sitting down to dinners as a family. He’s just like another little boy though. 

I completely understand. I do - I have a fourth son, my husband at the dinner table so he’s the same way. Now that you’re stepping away from your time on 90210 are you going to be able to spend more time out there with the girls right now that you’re taking a little less time on TV? 

Yes, we'll be planting our second garden season here in the city and hopefully have time to get up to our bigger garden out of town which they really grow everything up there. 

Do you grow everything organic? When you buy stuff do you buy organic vegetables or is it fresh just either way? 

I used to. I used to go to Costco and buy the fruits and vegetables there and then I realized these are not organic in any way shape or form and why are they so perfect looking like they’re all like giant and perfect. It got me thinking about the organic choices that I needed to start making. I do make every effort to buy organic now. It costs more but sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and do it. There are lots of studies out there that will tell you if you search around on the Internet - I just read an article, I can't remember what magazine it was, but it was talking about there’s major offenders of fruits and vegetables that really cling onto the preservatives and that stuff that they spray on it. I try to buy the ones that are not going to suck up the preservatives as much. I keep that in my mind when I'm shopping. When I'm buying food like strawberries and stuff I definitely go organic. [The food is] going straight into their little bodies and I don't want to put all that chemicals and pesticide. I mean for me there’s no doubt that there’s a connection with why there are so many cancer cases now as opposed to where it used to be... 

When everything was organic back in the day. 

Yeah. So I'm definitely conscious of it. 

I asked my readers what one question they would want to ask you if they could and they commented on your youthful appearance and the fact that you never seem to age. They’re wondering if that has anything to do with your diet with vegetables? That could possibly be an incentive to children for the future to look to so that they know that eating vegetables can help them do the same thing. 

Well they don't even think they’re ever going to age, you know, when you’re a kid you’re like oh I can eat Doritos at every meal and it’s okay. But as you get older you start to realize that there’s such a direct connection with what you put in your body and on your face and your skin. I try to keep everything as organic and pure as I can. There are just so many toxic chemicals out there in our food and in our creams and lotions so I really try to stay organic with my fruits and vegetables and definitely eat like a very [healthy] diet. It’s really important to your overall health so your internal organs and your skin, your beauty. Another thing is to try to keep chemicals out of your skincare products and your healthcare products. 

I agree with you with the connection between organic and us not using it as much and the increase in cancer. I've seen it. I've lost several family members and my husband is only 42 and was just diagnosed with bladder cancer. 

That’s just crazy. I'm so sorry to hear that. It’s like every time you turn around. 

That’s how I feel so I myself am more interested in looking into organic and learning about this myself. 

Yeah. Yeah you should check into the content of your deodorant and your sunscreen and everything that you’re using every day like routine habitual. Think about that because once you start going there you will start buying much cleaner products; you won't be able to go back. 

I agree, I agree. It’s scary what you learn when you start to research it. 

Yeah. Really scary. 

Did any traveling for the show to go to any further away farms or anything or if you mostly stay local? 

We stayed local. We went to Santa Barbara which was great weather and a lot of beautiful vegetables up there. We went to Underwood Farms which is local here about 30 minutes out of town. So, yeah, we stayed within a two hour radius of LA. 

I was curious what other projects you have going on right now if you’re not doing as much 90210 or if you have any more educational-type projects or anything else coming up? 

I am the spokesperson for the American Heart Association so I'm doing a lot of work with them especially with February coming, which is, you know, Heart Awareness Month. I am working on a children’s book. I love kids and I love to read to my kids so I'm working on a book series for kids. I have all kinds of irons in the fire. My husband is writing a script that we’re developing for television so we'll see. 

Our mom got us to eat fruits and vegetables as kids by smothering them in butter and brown sugar. 

Oh yummy. 

So that Hidden Valley Ranch is probably a step up from that. 

You know, I'll take the butter and brown sugar too. 

We were wondering if you ever miss farm life enough that you would want to move back to your ranch permanently and get out of the city? 

That’s something that Peter and I talk about a lot. It’s actually where my interest lies. I just have to get my city boy on board with that. 

Have you always been interested in cooking and cooking shows or is this a new field for you? 

I've never done a Web series sort of with an educational angle like this. My parents are both teachers so it’s sort of organic to who I am and how I grew up and I love to share any kind of little tidbits of knowledge that I have with other ladies or other moms out there. So this was definitely a new venture for me but something that felt really comfortable and easy. 

I was looking over the “Garden Party” press release and two things caught my eye along with the little videos and all that is the Cook and Tell cookbook and the What’s for Dinner meal planner. I have three little ones and I'm always asking myself what I'm going to make for dinner that night, not always prepared. Can you tell us a little bit about both of those elements? 

Right well they go along with the Web series. They’re just really chocked full of helpful information that you can take from the Website. It’s just lots of great tips for moms, ideas, you know… I'm always running out of ideas what to cook for dinner and how to make a vegetable or how to get a balanced meal in my kids. So these are just really helpful tools that parents can sort of have in their toolkit. 

Do any of the recipes hide the vegetables? That seems to be the thing nowadays you’re seeing all these cookbooks where you’re hiding the vegetables. Are you doing that? 

I do that. I do that. I'm not 100% familiar with what the content is on [the website] that they've updated in the product but I definitely do that with my girls. I make their favorite is spaghetti and I can't even tell you how many zucchinis yellow and green, big giant onions, bags full of carrot and fresh garlic that they’re eating and they have no idea. 

Really? 

It’s amazing. 

See my daughter is tuned into that; she picks anything chunky or green. 

No you have to puree it. 

It’s pureed? Okay. 

That’s my husband. You have to puree it really fine then they don't know anything. Also you have to think about the color like red - if you can mix a red sauce with it you can totally hide it and they'll never know. You can also put green - this is crazy - you can put tons of spinach and broccoli - if you steam it and puree it - into meatloaf or turkey meatloaf. They don't even know it. If you just puree it fine enough. Honestly I got that book, you know the first book - the good book - let’s see, there’s two - there’s the book with - what’s it called? Sneaky Chef or something? [It is The Sneaky Chef by Missy Chase Lapine.] It’s not the Seinfeld lady’s one. [Deceptively Delicious by Jerry Seinfeld’s wife Jessica.] It’s not hers. It’s the one that she copied. It’s the first one. I think it’s called Sneaky Chef and it’s genius. You have to take like a day to prepare all this stuff and throw it in your freezer and then you use it and it becomes like habit. It really makes you feel good as a mom because you know they’re getting a bunch of vegetables that they wouldn't be getting. 

My question is kind of similar to the one that was right before me but I was going to tell you that I have a 1-1/2 and 2-1/2 year old and my 1-1/2 year old will eat anything but my 2-1/2 year old will live on pizza and nuggets. What I do is I'll make a whole wheat pita and I will just put all kinds of veggies on top such as spinach, you know, peas, he'll eat anything on the pizza. So I was going to ask you if you did something like that where you hid food but you just talked about the spaghetti. But have you ever done anything like that when you kids were really small? Did they - did you have trouble feeding them vegetables when they were toddlers? 

Yeah, it might sound sort of rigid but when they’re hungry enough they'll eat it. I have three kids and I used to run myself ragged making like three different meals and trying to please everybody. Now I make a meal and it’s balanced and we eat it. If you don't eat it I'm sorry you’re going to be hungry. I have to be really sort of diligent about that because if I'm not they'll just say I want cereal for dinner. They know how to manipulate you and control you. So you have to just sort of take charge when it comes to that. 

Yeah. I'm trying to do better with that because he will eat pretty much any kind of fruit, he loves bananas and things like that but getting him to eat green vegetables and things is really difficult. So I'm going to try the spaghetti. 

Yeah, I would definitely recommend that book and also just let them try different kinds of dip. There are lots of different dips out there in the market and I know Hidden Valley Ranch makes tons of them. They love to dip stuff oh my gosh. 

Yeah, he loves ketchup and I haven't tried the ranch yet so I think I'm going to try that and see how that works. 

Try it. It worked at my house definitely. 

Has having children changed the way you look at nutrition or were you always a sensible eater? 

I took the best care of myself when I was pregnant and when I was about feeding someone else. Now I know it’s my sole responsibility to feed these kids balanced food because if I just let them eat what they want… they wouldn't be very healthy let’s put it that way. I take it really seriously because I want them to have the best performance at school that they can. I want them to be able to run and do whatever they want to do. I know what a direct impact foods and sugars and all the simple carbs out there and things that are available to them. I know how bad that stuff is for them. So I really super proactive about our meals and what I cook and what they eat definitely. 

Now I think the show is based on a great idea. It seems like you’re really giving great ideas to parents like me who happen to have picky eaters. What is it that you think that has caused our kids these days to have a problem with their diets? Do you think it’s just the fast food? Why would they rather grab something that’s not natural and healthy for them? 

Oh my gosh because we’re so busy. I mean, everybody’s running a million miles an hour. And I get it… but it just takes a little bit of thinking ahead as a parent. As a mom you've got to think ahead to stock your cabinets with things that you know that they’re going to want and they’re going to eat. Preparing foods, you walk through the store and it’s just all prepackaged convenience foods now. You think oh I could just buy this and be done with it but if you think about it it’s so much better for you to go home and cook it from scratch – actually make that meal instead of just open a package. They get so many more nutrients. I understand moms are busy, moms work, moms have a lot going on but you just have to sort of plan it into your day how you’re going to better feed your kids. You just start feeding them a more balanced healthy diet. Like I said when I make a meal for my family I set it down and we eat it; there’s no griping about it. I teach them to be thankful for the food that they have. It’s just about taking that time and that sort of persistence as a parent.

That’s great. Now do you feel that alternative venues like the Internet will help bring this information and shows like “Garden Party” out to more consumers?

Absolutely, yeah. Definitely. When I have a problem I search the Internet now. I can pretty much do anything. I had a girlfriend that - she had chickens and she was raising her own fresh eggs at her farm. She was so excited but the chickens were doing something weird so she Googled it and figured out a way to make the chickens lay the eggs the right way. You can be a farmer now because of the Internet. There’s so much available to you on the Internet and it can be such a great educational tool. That was my sole reason for jumping on board with this and NBC and Hidden Valley Ranch putting this project together – that it’s bringing information to people that they wouldn't know about. 

Well thank you so much. I know as a mom I'm going home and pureeing spinach and broccoli tonight and hiding it in the tomato sauce. 

You have to really hide it or else they'll know. Make sure it’s finely ground up.

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