Willing Workers of White Hall’s Extension Homemakers Club met Sept. 24 in the meeting room of White Hall Library for their regular September meeting.

President Karen Needler welcomed everyone and asked Donna Stevenson to read the Thought of the Month “Accept Responsibilities for your life.  Know that it is you who will get you where you want to go, no one else.”   

Vice President Sarah Payton led members in the Homemaker’s Creed.  Sue Medlock read the Handy Hint “Cinnamon is known to improve insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar level, and control weight.”

Malinda Traweek  read the Inspiration from Luke 5:31.  Secretary Peggie Barbaree called the roll with members answering the question “Are you a diabetic?”  Members present were:  Cheri Aronowitz, Needler, Payton, Jo Ann Carr, Dee Kindrick, Barbaree, Catherine Atkinson,  Medlock,  Stevenson, Traweek and Elizabeth Wall.

Barbaree, Community Service Chairman, reported members would be going to Trinity Village on October 11thto teach our second craft class.  She encouraged as many members as can to help with this project.  Stevenson, Medlock, Payton and Barbaree helped with the August workshop.  She asked members to continue to make caps for Arkansas Children’s Hospital and for the Cancer Institute.  Cereal was collected for White Hall Food Pantry.

Atkinson, Nursing Home Project Chairman, announced some of the fall wreaths have been put on doors and a workshop will be held soon to complete more.   

Kindrick, Continuing Education Chairman, gave history information on White Hall’s Bellingrath House. It is located on the historic Dollarway Road just south of the center of the community of White Hall and is a two-and-one-half story, reinforced concrete/brick and stone veneer residence designed in the English Revival style.   The Bellingrath House was designed by the Pine Bluff architect Mitchell Seligman in 1932, with construction commencing in 1934, upon the execution of a construction contract with the Pine Bluff contractor Earl C. Royse, Jr. The house and outbuildings were completed in 1935. There are a total of four original outbuildings:  a small, gable roof hydrant shelter; a gable roof, single-story caretaker’s cottage; a single-story, gable roof workshop and a single-story, gable combination cookout shelter/recreation room that adjoins the tennis courts.  A man-made pond, which was formed in the shape of the United States, is also included.   The house is named for Ferdinand M. and Catherine Oudin Bellingrath, the young couple who commissioned this design. The Bellingrath House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Payton, Education Fellowship Chairman, reported due to some changes at the Cheese Factory in Little Rock, including the name, we did not get to go earlier and a date of November 18th was set for members to have a fellowship trip to Little Rock.  

Aronowitz, Leadership Development Chairman, announced dates of upcoming events including Fall Council in October, at which we are responsible for name tags and registration; County craft workshop on October 19th; District Rally at Stuttgart, October 24th; County Smorgasbord Workshop on November 30th; and dates to work at the fair.

Barbaree presented the program on “Could You Have Prediabetes?” She explained that Prediabetes is a condition where blood sugar level in the body is higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed as Type 2 diabetes.  Diabetes occurs when the body has too much glucose (sugar) in the blood.  In normal conditions, the body uses insulin, a hormone, to pull glucose from the blood into cells of the body.  When the body doesn’t make enough insulin or is not able to use the insulin that is produced (called insulin resistance), sugar in the bloodstream builds up. She said a normal blood sugar reading is 70 to 110 mg/dL.  A person who has a fasting blood sugar (FBS) of 126 mg/dL or higher is diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.  A person whose  FBS is between 100 and 125 mg/dL is considered to have prediabetes.  The good news is that research has shown that lifestyle changes can prevent or delay Type 2 diabetes in persons who have prediabetes. Being overweight and inactive are strong predictors for acquiring Type 2 diabetes. Age and genetics also play a role in our risk.  We can’t do anything about aging or our genes, but we CAN do something about our weight and physical activity  Simple lifestyle changes - trying to be more active every day, being mindful of portion sizes (bigger is not always better) and drinking water instead of sugar-sweetened beverages - all help lower our risk.   If you would like more information or a copy of the “Could YOU Have Prediabetes" hand out, contact Mary Ann Kizer, FCS Agent at 534-1033.

Fall Walk Across Arkansas was discussed and new members were added to team. Certificates from the Spring Walk Across Arkansas were presented to members present:  Wall, Payton, Kindrick and Carr.  Other members of the team were:  Dale Payton, Helen DuHart and Lynn Carr.  

Refreshments of Chicken Spaghetti, English pea salad, deviled eggs, bread, chocolate pound cake and yellow pound cake were furnished by Barbaree, Medlock and Atkinson and enjoyed by all.  

If you are interested in learning more about Extension Homemakers, you can call any member or Mary Ann Kizer at 870 -534-1033.