Lynda Gordon's second-graders got a sweet and healthy alternative to candies, cookies and cakes on Valentine's Day.

Lompoc Unified School District Food Service Manager Kathy Bertelsen received this email note from Miguelito School 2nd Grade Teacher Lynda Gordon:

“I wanted to share a story with you about my class Valentine Party for my 2nd graders.  As someone who spent many years being morbidly obese before gastric bypass surgery in 2006, I did NOT want another party filled with cupcakes, cookies, and other other sugar filled treats.  I told the kids we would have a “heart healthy” theme and serve healthy, delicious foods.  There were a couple of groans when I said there would be no cookies or cupcakes, but once we brainstormed healthy choices and children signed up to bring these items, they were excited.  You would not believe the GORGEOUS fruit and veggies the students brought in today! The students are very excited to have fresh fruit and veggies, string cheese, and yogurt parfaits for their party today. We will then have heart healthy PE activities to end the day.  I will take some pictures and forward them to you.  Just wanted to share with you that healthy parties work!!”

Here at the Orfalea Foundation, we believe in strengthening communities by empowering individuals, and teacher Lynda Gordon reminds us all that one person with initiative can have a great influence on the health and education of children.  We think Kathy Bertelsen said it best in her thank-you note to Lynda: “You are giving the kids the best and most loving gift on Valentine’s – the hope of being healthy for life.”

Gordon's 2nd grade class also engaged in fun, heart-healthy activities on Valentine's Day.

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