Thursday, December 22, 2016

Teach Your Children Well

Oliver asked me the other day what "bitch" meant because he heard it on a cooking competition. I explained the meaning to him - a female dog - and then explained that people use it in a derogatory manner towards others and that's not a nice thing. He understood and said ok. So, tomorrow, if he calls somebody a bitch, he doesn't have the excuse of being ignorant and will deserve whatever punishment Jeff and I deem ok.

In the same vein, I don't understand how high school kids can claim ignorance of "black face," and "n****r". There is no way they got to their age without hearing that, what win social media. That tells me that either they were never corrected by their parents or were actually encouraged.

I have no sympathy for a thing adult who takes a racist, sexist, xenophobic, hatred towards any group motivated action. It's not a joke. Your parents should have raised you better. And, as high schoolers, you deserve the reaction to your action.

I will not be tolerant towards intolerance.
I will not show love towards hatred.
I will not turn the other cheek when somebody spits on me for who I am.

& that's how I will raise my son to be!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Being untrue to myself

This is fear. This is trepidation for my child. This is what the current political climate made me do tonight.

What is this?

This is me taking a permanent black Sharpie and coloring in pink lines on sneakers. We bought these on clearance at Columbia in CA last year. When we got back here, I saw the color and so did Oliver, and he loved them.

Tonight, he asked if he could wear them tomorrow. Of course he can!!! But, then I started thinking of the hatred that has gained voice and volume since the election results came out. And, I wanted to protect my 6 year old. I wanted to keep him from the ugliness of the world around him that's reared its head in the past few weeks. So, I took a black marker and colored in everything pink on the outside. And, I cried inside the entire time. Because, I'm doing what I've fought against his entire life. Boys can wear pink if they want. Boys can wear dresses if they want. Boys and girls can do whatever each of them want.

And, today, out of fear for my son's innocence, I did something that goes against everything I believe in. And, that kills a little piece of me inside.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Why I am angry!

I didn't unfriend people when President Bush won. I was a staunch Democrat. I didn't even unfriend when they were speaking against President Obama with vitriol, calling him not a citizen and Muslim and what not. But, neither one of them ran on a platform of pure hate against residents of this country.

That's the difference today. If you voted for President Elect Trump, you sided with:

- his call to be violent against the other side, which affects me personally & my family & friends
- his call to target Muslims which affects my friends and coworkers who are now afraid to wear their hijab in public
- his call to target Hispanics which affects my son's classmates who are wondering if they are going to be deported
- his call to hate and conduct violence against African Americans which affects my black friends, coworkers, neighbors
- his call to end same sex marriages which affects so many of my friends, 4 of whose wedding we've taken Oliver to, to show him love comes in many forms
- his call to end funding to very important health services for women which affects a lot of young and poor women
- his call to repeal laws that allow women to have choice over their body which affects me
- his call to end the Affordable Care Act which affects my brother's and sister's (not by blood but holy hell they might as well be) ability to get critical coverage for their son who's on the spectrum
- his call to treat women like possessions to paw at whenever you want which affects me personally motherfuckers. Go talk to any woman around you and you'll hear multiple stories of being treated like that. Groped on a bus. Whistled at and then called a bitch because she didn't reply or smile. Threatened with violence because she wouldn't have sex after he bought her dinner. And so many more!

You cannot tell me you voted for him and don't side with him on any of these. And if you side with him on even one of these, I'd like to not be around you. I'd like my child to not be around you. Because I teach him to be around those who help others, are kind even when not agreeing, who don't bully others and by hanging around you, I will be teaching him it's ok to have hate in your heart.

And no, my intolerance of the hate listed above does not make me intolerant.

Friday, November 04, 2016

40 days of home cooked meals

One of my 40 by 40 goals is to have 40 days of home cooked meals - breakfasts, lunches and dinners. And that begins next Tuesday. We are celebrating Oliver's birthday on Monday at Victoria Gastro Pub, where we go every year, since their brunch is what I attribute going into labor to ;-)

I have my November plan done, and barring 2 days where we have family in from out of town, we are going to eat a home cooked meal every day, every meal. We are going to eat it at a friend's house one day; some are frozen meals I need to use up, but I am hoping it gets us into a groove of eating healthier, saving money and discovering new foods.

Here's my meal plan, totally subject to change:

Friday, September 30, 2016

September update: 40 by 40 in 40 weeks!

It's only been about 10 days since I made my 40 list! I figured I'd do an update at the end of every month.

So far, this month, I have:

1Lose 40 lbs or 40 inches Blech, I might have gained a couple
2Walk 40 miles each month Close to 80 miles total,
3Read 40 new books 2 down, 38 to go
4Try 40 new hot sauces 1 down, 39 to go
5Have 40 phone conversations with family/friends 3 down, 37 to go
6Try 40 new beers 1 down, 39 to go
7Try 40 new exercises/workouts uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
8Read 40 new books to Oli 1 down, 39 to go
9Donate $40 to a charity $175 donated to 2 different things
10Write 40 love notes 2 down, 38 to go
11Try 40 new recipes 2 down, 38 to go
12Send 40 post cards/letters 3 down, 37 to go
13Give 40 hugs a month pretty sure I got these
1440 free activities with Jeff & Oli uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
15Introduce myself to and have conversations with 40 strangers 2 down, 38 to go
16Watch 40 new movies 2 down, 38 to go
17Volunteer 40 hours of my time uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
18Donate 40 pieces of clothing uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
19Get rid of 40 things from the house uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
20Get a tattoo (just 1, not 40) I have a concept, just need to get the designs to the parlor
21Learn to swim uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
22Drink 40 oz of water every 4 hrs been pretty good with this
23Run 40 miles (>= 5 mph) (not at once) think I've run a total of 1 mile if that
24Do 40 random acts of kindness 2 down, 38 to go
25Go camping in a national park need to research and booking a site for Spring 2017
26Donate blood again uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
27Floss at least 40 days uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
28Blog 40 times 2 down, 38 to go
29Have 40 family game nights 2 down, 38 to go
30Present at a professional conf. need to find my topic, write a proposal and be accepted
31Have a girls' only weekend away have 1 planned for December!!!
32Bury a family time capsule to open at Oli's school graduation need to start collecting items
33Buy 40 shares  (after research) need to research
34Drive 40 miles away for dinner need to Google places
35Try 40 new fruits and/or veggies have 2 veggies - Chinese cabbage & napa kale, and 1 fruit - cactus pear, to try
36Buy bikes for us & teach Oli to ride need to research & buy
37Log at least 40 hours at the gym 3 down, 37 to go
38Brew my own beer uhhhh yeah gotta get on this
39Eat 40 consecutive home cooked meals have 40 days marked off in Nov and Dec for no eating out
40Write 40 letters to Oli, with Jeff, to give him when he's grown up have a notebook picked out, that counts, right?

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

40 by 40 in 40 weeks

Thanks to everyone who weighed in! I looked at everyone's suggestions and kept in mind that it couldn't be too easy, like smiling at 40 strangers, that I do in a week ;-). And, it couldn't be so hard that I am setting myself up to fail, like running 40 5Ks, which averages to a week and impossible when I haven't run in close to 2 years.

So ta-da!!!

1 Lose 40 lbs or 40 inches
2 Walk 40 miles each month
3 Read 40 new books
4 Try 40 new hot sauces
5 Have 40 phone conversations with family/friends
6 Try 40 new beers
7 Try 40 new exercises/workouts
8 Read 40 new books to Oli
9 Donate $40 to a charity
10 Write 40 love notes
11 Try 40 new recipes
12 Send 40 post cards/letters
13 Give 40 hugs a week
14 40 free activities with Jeff & Oli
15 Introduce myself to and have conversations with 40 strangers
16 Watch 40 new movies
17 Volunteer 40 hours of my time
18 Donate 40 pieces of clothing
19 Get rid of 40 things from the house
20 Get a tattoo (just 1, not 40)
21 Learn to swim
22 Drink 40 oz of water every 4 hrs
23 Run 40 miles (>= 5 mph) (not at once)
24 Do 40 random acts of kindness
25 Go camping in a national park
26 Donate blood again
27 Floss at least 40 days
28 Blog 40 times
29 Have 40 family game nights
30 Present at a professional conf.
31 Have a girls' only weekend away
32 Bury a family time capsule to open at Oli's school graduation
33 Buy 40 shares  (after research)
34 Drive 40 miles away for dinner
35 Try 40 new fruits and/or veggies
36 Buy bikes for us & teach Oli to ride 
37 Log at least 40 hours at the gym
38 Brew my own beer
39 Eat 40 consecutive home cooked meals
40 Write 40 letters to Oli, with Jeff, to give him when he's grown up

I will update as I do things :-) I have a spreadsheet printed out for me to mark off as I finish things, because it is satisfying to cross things off with a pen.

Monday, September 19, 2016

40 before 40

So, all my close friends know I am dreading the big 4-Oh next year. I have threatened to go away and hide for a week. I have said I won't come out of my bed. I have stated I'd like to find a way to stop time on 6/24/2017 so I didn't have to face it.

But, that's just crazy. So, I started thinking of positive things to do to make my 40th birthday look good. I decided to make a 40 by 40 list!!!

It had things like:
  • read 40 new books
  • lose 40 lbs
  • see 40 different places
  • ...

And I realized that's not me at all realistically!

So, my real 40 by 40 list would start off as:
  • drink 40 new beers
  • lose 40 Facebook friends 
  • sleep 40 hours straight
  • ...
Joking ...

I might want to come to the middle and come up with a realistic 40 by 40 list, that combines the 2 approaches:
  •  read 40 new books
  • try 40 new beers
  • run 40 miles a month
  • ...
Help me?

Sunday, August 14, 2016

I can't sleep

I'm home with Oliver, after a week of being away from Oliver. This is familiar. This is my space, this is what I built for myself and my family.

It's almost 3 a.m. I can't sleep.

I had lowered the thermostat to 72 when we got home; the sounds from it downstairs made me a nervous wreck upstairs. I even walked the entire house with Oliver's Louiseville slugger. There's nobody in here. The house is alarmed,".

Yet, I cannot sleep.

I have emptied the dishwasher, emptied my suitcase and filled the washing machine.

And I still can't sleep.

Every little creak the house makes, every little sigh I hear ... I can't sleep.

I don't have this problem when Jeff's here.  But, without him, I'm imagining all sorts of things. Want macabre? I even imagined the pleadings with an intruder to not kill me because I didn't want my 5 yo finding my body!

Am I crazy? Overly anxious in a huge house without Jeff?

I don't know! All I know is I can't sleep!!!

I just heard a beep. I'm not even kidding you. I have 2 more nights of this bridge Jeff gets home and I'm not sure I can do it without going nuts!

Because I can't sleep!

I close my eyes and hear hordes downstairs, creeping up the staircase ... Maybe I've read too many true crime novels because I can way too easily imagine my fate. Yet, the house alarm is set and all the  doors are locked. So, if somebody were to breach a door, it would lead to a cacophony of sirens!

So, why can't I sleep?

I don't know and I fear I might go insane before I get my answers.

Because sleep deprivation as torture? I totally get it now.

Because I can't sleep!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Never not be afraid

We just watched the movie Croods. Where the patriarch of the prehistoric cave family, what's his family to be afraid of anything new. He doesn't understand or like his daghter's need to discover something new. He wants them to be afraid so he can protect them.

Does that sound familiar?


Think again!

You might not be doing it in as many words, but do you hover over your child at a public playground?

Do you never leave your child at somebody elses's house for a play date by him or herself?

Do you not let your child play in your front or back yard without you being attached to him or her?

If you can answer yes to any of these questions, you are teaching your child to never not be afraid. Because, subconsciously, you are passing the message to your child that they can never be ok alone. Which is so dichotomous to what we want them to be - independent, strong, confident individuals who have the building blocks to become successful adults.

I don't think I may saying leave your kid in the middle of the woods, ala Hansel & Gretel,  but I am saying we need to stop being another appendage for our child(ren).

Let them walk a couple blocks by themselves.,

Let them scrape their knees at the playground.

Let them shed a tear because of that scrape.

Let them grow up like they are supposed to.

While I hang out behind a tree, hidden from Oliver so he can be confident, without knowing his mother's a weak as ;-)

don't teach your kids to never not be afraid!