Getting By With A Little Help From Our Friends

Longtime friends, Rebecca Bodeen and Jennifer Anderson, 1992 graduates of Morse High, had

an idea to help homeless people in their area.  Their intention was to have a very small operation and

have a few bags of necessities to give out if the opportunity arose, but their small idea turned into a

larger operation in a very short amount of time and the Midcoast Maine Bags of Blessings Project was

born. “The idea was to make some bags that we could keep on hand and give if the opportunity came about.

However, what Jennifer and I discovered as we started to share the idea was that a lot of people wanted to

give, and what began small turned into fifty bags in a very short time, with enough items to make more bags the

next month”, says Rebecca.  The bags include simple necessities such as; combs, brushes, toothbrushes,

toothpaste, shampoo, conditioners, hats, hand warmers, mittens, feminine hygiene products, and lotion.

In addition to the adult bags, Rebecca and Jennifer have also been able to put together 30 teen bags

and deliver them to local area schools!   What a kind thing to do for someone in need.  The simple necessities

that come so easily to you and me are truly a blessing to those who so often go without.  Items that are most

needed are feminine hygiene products, both pads and tampons. These things will be included in the teen bags

and would be greatly appreciated as the number of homeless teens continues to rise in Maine.

I asked Rebecca what her favorite part of this program was and she said, “I think what touches both

Jennifer and I is the giving spirit of our community.  There are so many people willing to give and

contribute to this project.  It is humbling to learn about the heart of our community.”  People helping

people and loving thy neighbor are such large pieces of being a part of a community. Sometimes we need

a little help from our friends and the Bath community is so fortunate to be blessed with friends like Bags of

Blessings.

The topic of long term goals came up and we all know they can be ever changing as it depends on what the

future holds. With such a small program and what seems like an endless homelessness crisis,  her response

was perfect and shows the heart and dedication she has for what she and Jennifer are doing; “I am not sure we

have a long term goal as of yet. I know I am amazed by what we have done so far.  I also know that we are

willing to organize, do the work, and continue giving bags for as long as we are able and we both know we

cannot do it without support from others.”  The success of this is completely in the hands of the community.

We lean on each other to help get through the next day and Rebecca has invited us to participate in the next

bag making day which is March 8th. Casco Bay Organics will be matching  the donations of our customers, so if you would like to donate to this amazing project, we will be collecting:

feminine products

full size shampoos and conditioners,

and full size lotions!

Your produce fairies will be more

than happy to collect those items and we will personally be packing them into Bags of Blessings on March 8th!

We would like to extend a HUGE, WARM, ORGANIC THANK YOU to Rebecca and Jennifer for their time,

humanity, and kindness to those who need a little help from time to time.  You have amazing hearts and your

selflessness is a precious gift.

Thank you

Getting By With A Little Help From Our Friends

Longtime friends, Rebecca Bodeen and Jennifer Anderson, 1992 graduates of Morse High, had

an idea to help homeless people in their area.  Their intention was to have a very small operation and

have a few bags of necessities to give out if the opportunity arose, but their small idea turned into a

larger operation in a very short amount of time and the Midcoast Maine Bags of Blessings Project was

born. “The idea was to make some bags that we could keep on hand and give if the opportunity came about.

However, what Jennifer and I discovered as we started to share the idea was that a lot of people wanted to

give, and what began small turned into fifty bags in a very short time, with enough items to make more bags the

next month”, says Rebecca.  The bags include simple necessities such as; combs, brushes, toothbrushes,

toothpaste, shampoo, conditioners, hats, hand warmers, mittens, feminine hygiene products, and lotion.

In addition to the adult bags, Rebecca and Jennifer have also been able to put together 30 teen bags

and deliver them to local area schools!   What a kind thing to do for someone in need.  The simple necessities

that come so easily to you and me are truly a blessing to those who so often go without.  Items that are most

needed are feminine hygiene products, both pads and tampons. These things will be included in the teen bags

and would be greatly appreciated as the number of homeless teens continues to rise in Maine.

I asked Rebecca what her favorite part of this program was and she said, “I think what touches both

Jennifer and I is the giving spirit of our community.  There are so many people willing to give and

contribute to this project.  It is humbling to learn about the heart of our community.”  People helping

people and loving thy neighbor are such large pieces of being a part of a community. Sometimes we need

a little help from our friends and the Bath community is so fortunate to be blessed with friends like Bags of

Blessings.

The topic of long term goals came up and we all know they can be ever changing as it depends on what the

future holds. With such a small program and what seems like an endless homelessness crisis,  her response

was perfect and shows the heart and dedication she has for what she and Jennifer are doing; “I am not sure we

have a long term goal as of yet. I know I am amazed by what we have done so far.  I also know that we are

willing to organize, do the work, and continue giving bags for as long as we are able and we both know we

cannot do it without support from others.”  The success of this is completely in the hands of the community.

We lean on each other to help get through the next day and Rebecca has invited us to participate in the next

bag making day which is March 8th. Casco Bay Organics will be matching  the donations of our customers, so if you would like to donate to this amazing project, we will be collecting:

feminine products

full size shampoos and conditioners,

and full size lotions!

Your produce fairies will be more

than happy to collect those items and we will personally be packing them into Bags of Blessings on March 8th!

We would like to extend a HUGE, WARM, ORGANIC THANK YOU to Rebecca and Jennifer for their time,

humanity, and kindness to those who need a little help from time to time.  You have amazing hearts and your

selflessness is a precious gift.

Thank you

Go Shawty, It’s Your Verde! -By Samantha Rispoli

Go Shawty, It’s Your Verde

 Mullet

(Never have I ever had a mullet)

Never have I ever eaten a tomatillo until I received some from Casco Bay Organics.

….Okay your turn

I love that they send me things I wouldn’t normally buy in the grocery store because it forces me out of my habitual eating routine and allows me to experiment with new tastes! I feel like the macguyver of modern produce.  Although, he has much cooler hair.

Do you ever go out of your way to try new foods?  Or are you super comfortable right where you are with your bowl of buttered noodles PLAIN?  Feed your appetite for adventure and you may just come away with new favorite foods and flavors.

I have likes and dislikes just like everybody else.

Likes: tropical fruit smoothies, ice cream, pumpkin flavored anything.

Dislikes: seafood, pickles, olives, mayonnaise.

I liked pumpkin spice

 I distinctly remember turning away a pickle at a birthday party when I was all of 7 years old. I can remember saying “No thanks, I don’t LIKE pickles!” and the mother of the birthday girl said “Keep trying them, your taste can always change!”

WAIT….what?

Everything I’ve ever known to be true in the world has been a LIE.

Well…not really. But since then, I have made it a point to always try the foods I dislike. I was so fascinated with this idea that one day I might ENJOY eating that which makes me cringe.

 And you know what? My taste has TOTALLY changed. I’ve learned I like certain spicy seafood dishes. I actually enjoy pickle flavor, just not the actual pickle. You never know, someone could prepare a dish completely different than you ever imagined and you could fall in love with your least favorite food!

Some things turn my stomach and so I physically can not consume them. Avocados were very hard for me to eat because of this reaction and I thought it was a life sentence! I knew the crazy benefits of avocados and I just kept thinking “I gotta make this work!”

I began by hiding avocados in sweet smoothies and puddings. I would mask the weird flavor with chocolate and over time, I began to enjoy consuming avocados. Fast forward a year and now I can enjoy avocados on their own with a little salt!

I encourage everyone to try this simple idea out in their own eating endeavors. This is a wonderful way to discover new tastes, get to know your body, see how it changes and its a wonderful example for children who are picky eaters. It was a lesson I learned when I was very young and I stand by it today, 20 years later.

This week, I made a refreshing salsa verde with the avocados, tomatillos and jalapeno peppers I received from Casco Bay Organics! This recipe is too easy NOT to try! Just toss the ingredients in a food processor and voila!

                                                                                   SUPER EASY Salsa Verde

                                                                             1 organic avocado

                                                                                         7-10 organic tomatillos husked and rinsed

Avacado3 TBS fresh cilantro

½ red onion

2 jalepenos

2 garlic cloves

salt and pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients together in a food processor until smooth. Enjoy with some chippies, fresh organic veggies,  or spoon on top of salad or grilled chicken! YUM YUM YUM.

 avacado2Salsa Verde