Clutter Free Living Lucas County

In spring of 2024, OSU Extension Lucas County is partnering with the Toledo Lucas County Public Library to offer a free, community class on Clutter Free Living.  This same class will be offered at different days/times and locations.

2024 flyer Clutter Free class (March through May)

If you have taken this class, we would love to have your feedback. Click here for a brief online survey.

Handout: (coming soon)

PowerPoint: Lucas County Lucas Clutter Free Living





The Value of Professional Organizations

One of the many resources offered by professional organizations include toolkits to promote the good work! In 2023, I created this summary of resources shared online (for free) from national professional organizations related to Family and Consumer Sciences and Family Studies.  There are many other complementary organizations that we can work with and learn from but I started with a short summary of these …

2023 Letter to colleagues in the field: Letter FCS Colleagues (note the date of FCS Educator Day changes each year to land on the Wednesday of FCCLA Week)

Summary of online resources from national organizations: Links National promotional campaigns

Idea Starter to create in-person display to represent FCS: Career Day promote FCS

To colleagues: if you have any questions – or ideas – please contact me (Patrice) at








A few Ohio FCS Colleagues at 2023 Healthy Relationship Team Meeting

Promoting Extension, FCS and Family Science

Thank you Dr. Rachel Arocho for the invitation to speak with Utah Valley University Students. If you have any questions, please email Patrice Powers-Barker

Today’s session was an example of County Extension Educator with Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS). I hope you will continue to consider:

  • ways to utilize Extension as a community partner, possible employer, and/or personal resource
  • the role of Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) within Extension and our local communities
  • how to best use your professional organizations and resources

Cooperative Extension Services (National Institute of Food and Agriculture)

A few links and resources we talked about:

Q&A and links:

Question: Some of the work and topics of Family Life Education sound similar to Social work but there’s definitely an emphasis on education, how do they work together?

Answer: One of my favorite articles to help understand the value and role of different fields of family study and different careers is Reconceptualizing the Domain and Boundaries of Family Life Education. They do not specifically list Social Work, but they compare and contrast FLE (Family Life Education), FT (Family Therapy), and FCM (Family Case Management). Depending on your line of work and your local partners, this article and their concepts could be used to help discuss roles that different organizations and professionals can provide in the community.

It is not unusual for Extension to partner with community sites that are offering additional services and resources to participants. While we focus on education, some families have immediate needs  (like food or transportation, etc.). It makes sense to partner with organizations that can also help with those immediate needs and those sites might have Social Works on staff.

Even for partners who do not have emergency needs, partners are often offering something different than Extension Education. Some typical community partners might include parks, libraries, places of worship, schools, community centers, senior centers, etc. These sites have additional resources and programs for participants that are complemented by Extension Education.

Question: Does Extension do it’s own research, use established research by others, or both?

Answer: Yes, both. There are many opportunities for Extension professionals to do research. This will look different in different program areas and for different job roles. The example I gave in class was about Agriculture and Natural Resources where county Educators are working with local farmers who are all part of a larger research project in partnership with state specialists. In Family and Consumer Sciences I might be working with state and/or field specialists and the research is based on behavior changes. This most often is self-reported by class participants. I might also be evaluating the educational methods. Those are some examples for County Educators. At the regional or state level, especially for roles like field specialist or state specialist, there are often more examples and opportunities for research.

There are often opportunities to partner with others. This might be other state Extension programs, or multi-state teams. Some of my colleagues are part of Dining with Diabetes.  Other times, when educational programming is needed in the community and we don’t have a specific program or curriculum in Ohio Extension, we will look at what other state Extension’s use and other educational resources that are available. The example I shared in class was PAX Tools. They have done the research and offer training to professionals in different fields of work. It is not our Extension research but it is a recognized and valued program.

It was great to hear examples of relatives who currently work with Extension or had in the past!

The emphasis of our education is preventative and therefore future facing, but the history of Family and Consumer Sciences (previously Home Economics) is intriguing. Although sewing and cooking are important skills to have, that isn’t necessarily the entire history or goal of Home Economics. Here’s a short highlight about the science contributions from one of the founders of the field, Ellen Swallow Richards.

This 2021 book is very detailed but has given me a much better understanding and appreciation for the dedication and work of the women who came before me in this field, The Secret History of Home Economics: How Trailblazing Women Harnessed the Power of Home and Changed the Way We Live, by Danielle Dreilinger and lists examples of great work by many, many individuals over many decades in the US.





Learning the Lingo: Health Equity is for All of Us

2023 Ohio Conference on Service and Volunteerism  November 2, 2023, Westerville, Ohio

Title: Learning the Lingo: Health Equity is for All of Us  (Workshop 1C)

Description: Service to others should not only strengthen the community but also strengthen volunteers. We will offer strategies for personal and professional development to connect with partners to solve large community issues. Don’t let the term “health equity” make you think that it’s only related to the focus area of healthy futures. Whether you focus on education, health, economic opportunities, or environmental stewardship, this session is for everyone as we work towards strong communities.

Target Audience: General Audience

PowerPoint: Learning the Lingo: Health Equity is for All of Us



  • Patrice Powers-Barker, CFLE (Certified Family Life Educator) – Extension Educator, Ohio State University Extension,
  • Emilee Drerup – Program Director, OSU Extension Public Health AmeriCorps,


Artiga, S., and Hinton, E. (2018). Beyond Health Care: The Role of Social Determinants in Promoting Health and Health Equity. Kaiser Family Foundation.

Dean, — Stacy, Regan, — Michael S., & Dillard, — Maria. (2022, November 16). Vital Conditions Framework. Health.Gov.

Health Affairs Forefront. (2023) Organizing around vital conditions moves the social determinants agenda … Organizing Around Vital Conditions Moves The Social Determinants Agenda Into Wider Action.

Rethink Health-A Rippel Initative. (n.d.). (rep.). Definitions of the Well-Being Portolio (pp. 1–5).

References for Models and Infographs

Equality vs Equity in Healthcare: Both Are Important. (2021). Copenhagen Institute for Future Studies.

Gauldin, K. (2020). Equity vs. Equality – Diversity in the Classroom.

Healthy People 2030. Building a healthier future for all.

Ndugga, N., and Artiga, S. (2023) Disparities in Health and Heath Care: 5 Key Questions and Answers.

Social Determinants of Health.

Social Determinants of Health at CDC. (2022).

Thomas, O. (2021). What Is Health Equity and Why Is It So Important? Nationwide Children’s.

University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. County Health Rankings & Roadmaps 2022.

“Vital Conditions for Health and Well-Being.” ReThink Health, The Rippel Foundation, 10 Sept. 2019,

What are the social determinants of health? (2022). National Academy of Medicine.

What is Health Equity? (2022). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.











Navigating an Ocean of Opportunities and a Call to Action: Using National Resources for Local Benefits

The 2023 NEAFCS (National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences) Annual Session, “Exploring Oceans of Opportunities” is September 11-14, 2023 in Providence, RI.







A team of OSU Extension, FCS colleagues are pleased to present “Navigating an Ocean of Opportunities and a Call to Action: Using National Resources for Local Benefits”.

This list serves as a virtual handout for participants:

Thank you participants for sharing information on What national resources do you use to inform your work?


Names and Emails for Presenters – OSU Extension Educators, Family and Consumer Sciences (in order of photo)


March is Living Well Month (2023). National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences. 

McGregor, S. L. T. (2022). Justifying Home Economics: Fight the right war. International Journal of Home Economics, 15(2), 33-45.

Monk, J. K., Bordere, T., & Benson, J., (2021). Emerging Ideas. Advancing Family Science Through Public Scholarship: Fostering Community Relationships and Engaging in Broader Impacts. Family Relations. 70:1612-1625

National Partnership to Recruit, Prepare, and Support FCS Educators. (2022). 

Nickols, S., Ralston, P., Anderson, C., Browne, L., Schroeder, G., Thomas, S., & Wild, P. (2009). The Family and Consumer Sciences Body of Knowledge and the Cultural Kaleidoscope: Research Opportunities and Challenges. Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal, vol. 37, No. 3: 266-283.

Scheer, S. D. (2021). Introducing the Human Development-EcoLogic Model: A Practical Approach for Outreach and Extension Education Programs. The Journal of Extension, 58(2), Article 29. 






Applying Cooperative Extension’s National Framework for Health Equity and Well Being at the County Level

NUEL’s North Central Regional Conference will be held June 7-9, 2023 on the beautiful campus of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Recommended reading:

June 8, 2023 Presentation:

Learning the Lingo: What ‘Social Determinants of Health’ Mean for OSU Extension

Megan Arnold ( and Patrice Powers-Barker (

Issue Briefs:


Now and Later: Living in the Moment and Creating a Hopeful Future

University of Idaho Extension, Professional Development Network

March 30, 2023, 1pm MT

Acknowledge the good and the bad  

Be in the moment

Additional information from Jamie Derrick, PhD (email February 2023): The resources on mindfulness are available to everyone — faculty, staff, students and community. The focus on those drop-in sessions is basic, welcoming, accessible, simple practice.  Noon-12:20 on Wednesdays (MT). I also have other resources if anyone is curious:

Plan ahead

The paradox of now and later

  • Now and Later: The Paradox of Living in the Moment and Planning for the Future Blog


Coyne LW, Gould ER, Grimaldi M, Wilson KG, Baffuto G, Biglan A. (2020) First Things First: Parent Psychological Flexibility and Self-Compassion During COVID-19.

Kumar, A., Killingsworth, M., and Gilovich, T. (2014, August 21). Waiting for merlot: Anticipatory consumption of experiential and material purchases. Psychological Science.

Leung, Mega. (2019). Tragic optimism: an integrative meaning-centered approach to trauma treatment. Counselling Psychology Quarterly. 32. 1-19. 10.1080/09515070.2019.1633497.

Lieberman, M., Eisenberger, N., Crockett, M., Tom, S., Pfeifer, S., and Way, B. (2007). Putting feelings into words: Affect labeling disrupts amygdala activity in response to affective stimuli. Psychological Science.

Neff, K., Rude, S., & Kirkpatrick, K. (2007). An examination of self-compassion in relation to positive psychological functioning and personality traits. Journal of Research in Personality. Volume 41: 908-916.

Neupert, S. (2020). Knowledge is power: learning more about COVID-19 can reduce your pandemic stress. North Carolina State University.

Neupert, S. (2020) Quiz: Pandemic stressbusters. Accolades Magazine. North Carolina State University.

Pearman, A.,  Hughes, M.,  Smith, E.,  Neupert, S. (2021). Age differences in risk and resilience factors in COVID-19 related stress. The Journals of Gerontology: Series B, Volume 76, Issue 2, February 2021, Pages e38–e44,

Polk, M.G., Smith, E.L., Zhang, L.-R., & Neupert, S.D. (2020). Thinking ahead and staying in the present: Implications for reactivity to daily stressors. Personality and Individual Differences.

Praharso, N., Tear, M/, Cruwys, T. (2017). Stressful life transitions and wellbeing: A comparison of the stress buffering hypothesis and the social identity model of identity change. Psychiatry Research. Volume 247: 265-275



Facing the Future Together: Living and Working Well in a Complex World


2024 International Federation for Home Economics (IFHE) World Congress 


June 23-28, 2024, Galway, Ireland IFHE 2024 | International Federation for Home Economics | Ireland

Poster: Sharing Our Professional Story: Charting Our Future in a Complex World







2023 OAFCS, Ohio Affiliate of American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS), Elevate Family and Consumer Sciences Conference, October 19-20, Columbus, OH.

Facing the Future Together: Living and Working Well in a Complex World POSTER

Authors: Sandra Slater, Patrice Powers-Barker, Marie Economos, Margaret Jenkins, Heather Reister, Katie Schlagheck, (OSU Extension Educators, Family and Consumer Sciences)

References Below


OSU Extension Annual Conference 2022   Facing the Future Together: Living and Working Well in a Complex World poster 

Poster Description We live in a complex world. Family and consumer sciences is the field of study focused on the science and art of living and working well in our complex world. We would like to share that “art and science” with our colleagues. The ESP Extension Professionals’ Creed states: “I believe that education is a lifelong process, and the greatest university is the home.” Not only is education a lifelong process for those we serve in our communities, but we are also fortunate to be lifelong learners. Using the theme of “facing the future together,” we will share real-life examples of learning across the life span and leveraging the work of the family in the home to increase Extension’s impact and empower individuals, families, and communities to thrive.


Authors: Patrice Powers-Barker – educator, family and consumer sciences; Marie Economos – educator, family and consumer sciences; Margaret Jenkins – educator, family and consumer sciences; Heather Reister – educator, family and consumer sciences; Katie Schlagheck – educator, family and consumer sciences; Sandra Slater – educator, family and consumer sciences


American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences

Heckman Equation. (2022). Quantifying the Life-cycle Benefits of a Prototypical Early Childhood Program

Lin, J. T., Bumcrot, C., Mottola, G., Valdes, O., Ganem, R., Kieffer, C., Lusardi, A., & Walsh, G. (2022). Financial Capability in the United States: Highlights from the FINRA Foundation National Financial Capability Study (5th Edition). FINRA Investor Education Foundation.

National Council on Family Relations 

Nickols, S., Ralston, P., Anderson, C., Browne, L., Schroeder, G., Thomas, S., and Wild, P. (2009). The Family and Consumer Sciences Body of Knowledge and the Cultural Kaleidoscope: Research Opportunities and Challenges. Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal, vol. 37, No. 3: 266-283.

Scheer, S. D. (2021). Introducing the Human Development-EcoLogic Model: A Practical Approach for Outreach and Extension Education Programs. The Journal of Extension, 58(2), Article 29.












Nurturing Environments for Positive Care

November 22, Nurturing Environments for Positive Care by Patrice Powers-Barker, CFLE, (Certified Family Life Educator). This webinar is one lesson in the Connection Cafe: Caregiving Around the Clock, 2022

All References are listed at the end but this list will help direct participants to specific resources:

Safe storage and disposal of medication:


Wellness Wheels:

All References:

Holiday Expense Planning

Starting Today:

  • Choose the best options for this year’s holiday spending
  • Ask your loved ones about their preferences
  • Create a holiday spending plan (or commit to listing your spending this year)
  • Identify your hidden holiday costs
  • Make a plan for next year’s holiday expenses (Jan. Apr. June)


To help prioritize, asked loved ones ….

  • If you could only choose one favorite activity for the holidays, what would it be?
  • Is there a food dish, treat, or drink that you would really miss if it weren’t on the holiday menu?
  • Do you have any ideas about simplifying our holiday schedule?
  • Do you have any ideas about reducing our costs?


Handout: My Holiday Savings and Spending Plan.


Apps (there are many options, this is just a sample of some of the apps to help organize planning and spending)

  • Giftster
  • Santa’s Bag
  • GiftPlanner
  • Gift List Diary
  • Christmas Gift List



These food ideas are not to replace favorite holiday dishes but instead to think about easy foods to add to the holiday season – from the larger get together pot-lucks to other times like hosting out-of-town guests or planning meals when the kids are off school for holiday break.


Find Your Local County Extension Office:



Rupp, M. (2021). Preparing for Holiday Expenses. Webinar. Ohio State University Extension.

Stefura, B., Scammahorn, R., and Kline, R. (2022). Give the Gift of Financial Fitness This Holiday. Live Healthy Live Well Webinar. Ohio State University Extension.