Monday, June 30, 2014

Healthy eating is hard

I think one reason we as a culture are fascinated by celebrities is we're a little jealous of the fabulous lives we imagine they lead. Gwyneth Paltrow seems to have become the ultimate embodiment of the privileged celebrity disconnected from us mere mortals. I don't find her as annoying as some, but I really loved this article by a woman who tried to live Gwyneth's life for a week, at least when it came to food as described in her cookbook. The big take away: it is great to eat healthy! It does make you feel better! And probably look better! But it's very expensive and labor intensive. Lindy West, who conducted the experiment, wrote "The workload is CONSTANT. This is a meal plan for people with a housekeeper and a chef." Yeah, not surprised to hear that. In my experience it takes commitment to eat yummy, healthy, made at home meals. I have a friend who adopted a raw food diet to battle her cancer naturally. It actually seemed to work wonders but it also meant she spent the entire day making and preparing food. And if you are a working parent without the ability to hire help it's hard to fit in time to prepare food. The vegetable chopping alone on some recipes can take over a half hour if you don't have fancy tools to help. I struggle with it and that's one reason I like to share recipes that I find work well for our family. But sometimes we run out of time and go the easy route. Last night we ordered pepperoni pizza for dinner because neither D or I had energy to prepare a meal. And I'm ok with that. I try not to be extreme about things and it's about balance. If I can make the Pepper a yummy kale and hemp smoothie for most of her weekday snacks, I know the occasional pizza won't kill us. But I do like preparing food and I feel triumphant when our family has a healthy home-cooked meal on the table, so I am jealous of those who find a way to make that happen more than I can.

Any tips or tricks for at-home healthy eating you want to share?

Image via.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Favorites from around the web...

1) I love this idea, and I bet it would be just as fun for adults as for kids :)

2) This is a topic that always makes me uncomfortable, probably because I have two opposing views on it (at the same time!). But I think it's an important debate to have.

3) This is an interesting parenting discussion and I don't know which side I fall on yet since I see benefits to both approaches.

4) I love hammocks, so this is appreciated since we all don't have the right natural setting available to us.

5) Oh my goodness these guys did it again. Well done guys.

6) If you watch Game of Thrones I think you'll enjoy this. Not only is it funny but it's impressive to see an actor get totally into character so quickly.

7) I have not read The Goldfinch but I've heard so much about it. Considering it's popularity right now this was an interesting read.

8) I like seeing this from our celebrities: using the ridiculous aspects of their lives for good.

9) These are very useful to know (I'm definitely going to use #7 and #20).

10) I adore The Little Prince. In fact, it was one of the firsts gifts I ever gave D. This nicely captures why I think it's a book everyone should read.

And on a side not, I recently purchased these for myself in brown as a treat, and I love them. Stylish but also very very comfortable. They will be great for summer!

Image via.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Finding mental space

This week has been a busy work week for me. There has been a lot of meetings and timelines and deadlines and items that we need to be moved forward. At this point in my career I'm good with organization and prioritization. I have my days organized with what I need to accomplish. I have the needed chucks of time set aside in my calendar. I know what needs to be done when and what can wait until next week. But I do struggle when I get to that point in a day when I feel fried; when my mind needs a rest and I'm having trouble putting thoughts together. And I don't have good solutions for how to take the needed break and reset. I like the idea of going someplace and sitting quietly without a screen in front of me. But living in a loft makes it hard to find space. Sometimes I like to cook but when it's a busy day I don't have time to take on a little kitchen project. Do I take a walk? Do I read a few pages in a book? Do I go to the couch and close my eyes for 5 minutes? When I'm burnt out it's hard to even know how to handle it. Normally I take a moment to stand up and put my head between my legs let the blood rush. It seems to help but it's not quite cutting it this week. I need a new approach.

I'm hoping that with our move to Ojai I'll be able to more easily step outside and look at a pretty view and recharge that way. But please send suggestions my way for how you take a moment to give your mind a break when it's reached a saturation point.

Image via.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

When a community disappoints

Do you follow Courtney Adamo's instagram account? It's one of my favorites. I don't personally know Courtney but she is a founder of Babyccino Kids and a mother of 4 living in London. She has a completely lovely life that she captures beautifully in photos. She is one of those people that makes everything look so easy and joyful which is inspiring for a working mom like myself.

Well, her and her husband have been dealing with something troubling over the last week or so and it's been on my mind a lot. Courtney has over 40k followers on instagram. She uses instagram a lot to share her life, make recommendations, and connect with the community of women and moms that she has formed there. But recently someone has started reporting her posts for inappropriate content. This continued until finally her account was deactivated with no warning. Her supporters contacted instagram and used #bringbackcourtneybabyccino to get the issue noticed. It seemed to work since yesterday her account was brought back and it looked like the drama was thankfully over. But then Courtney said today that she is still receiving complaints and now her husband is also having his images reported and removed.

I'm upset for Courtney and her family, but I think this brings up larger issues about being a parent in the modern parenting community. Parents are one group that has really embraced technology and social media. I think it is because it's so easy to be isolated as a parent. You're busy getting through your day and taking care of yourself and your kids and your house. It's harder to get together with friends or have a phone call with family. So social media lets us connect during nap time, or after the kid is asleep, or during those few minutes we're alone in the bathroom. It's certainly been useful for me. Through instagram and blogs I've had access to a lot of parenting recommendations and useful conversations that I benefit from almost every day. There are real communities out there via the current technology and I'm glad to be a part of it.

But, when we open ourselves up to everyone it means that we are also vulnerable. Even if the majority of people who "follow" us are positive and encouraging it only takes one negative person to bring things down. That is what is happening to Courtney. Courtney shares a lot of photos of her kids. Some of them are of adorable naked little butts. Most are not. But if a nude rear does show it is in celebration of freedom and childhood. Nothing inappropriate about that to me. And if it did bother me, I would just un-follow her. But, it seems someone wants to put their standards on Courtney. They want to report her images of her children which is putting their standards on a woman I assume they don't even personally know. While it sounds like there are a number of images reported the one that really sparked this debate is at the top of this post. A picture of a toddler excited to be wearing big-girl undies. To me, I see absolutely nothing wrong with this image. It shows a glorious baby belly. It captures a sweet moment. It represents a milestone. It's a lovely thing. That someone wants to turn this into something offensive or "harmful" feels mean and aggressive. It feels like someone's personal vendetta to impose their morals on a community they aren't fully a part of.

I know it's hard for a tool like instagram to find the balance between being an open tool that can survive on it's own energy, and putting guidelines in place. I'm sure it works 99% of the time. But this time instagram is failing. Instragram allowed a community to flourish but is now letting one person take down that community. I hope instagram will take a look at this incident and use it to help them make their processes better. Until then, I'm routing for Courtney and her family! Save the belly!

Image via (though it has since been taken down again).

Friday, June 20, 2014

Skin update: good news!!

I realized the last couple of posts were sort of a bummer, so I have something good to report today! I think I have finally figured out a skin routine that works for me! After what feels like years and years of trial and error here is what I have done to drastically improve the quality of my skin:
  • If it's a day I wore a fair amount of make-up I'll use a make-up remover wipe to get rid of that "outer layer". I've been using the Neutrogena wipes but am running out and have decided to try these ones by Bioderma.
  • I then use one of these Trader Joe's cleansing pads all over my face. I feel like it does that deeper clean and because the pad is a little rough also helps exfoliate.
  • I finish the cleaning portion of my routine with Bioderma's Crealine H2O Micelle Solution. I've gone the "no water" route! Instead of soap and water I just use the micelle solution and it seems to be working. I think water was drying out my skin. It still feels weird to not rinse my face but I can't argue with the results.
  • Now I start the nurturing part of the routine. For my eyes I use Neutrogena's eye cream and for the rest of my face I use this great Peter Thomas Roth "Oilless" Oil. The oil is so light it feels like I'm not over-saturating my skin but giving it just what it needs.
  • If I do have zits or pimples I finish by using the Burt's Bees blemish stick. I used to apply straight tea tree oil but the blemish stick isn't as harsh and gets the same results. It dries up the area pretty quickly and it works especially well if I can get to the problem area early.
I do this routine morning and night. Time permitting in the evenings I also try to so use the Bioelements Kerofole mask twice a week. And with this new system I finally feel like I can leave the house comfortably without makeup :)

Everyone's skin is so different and therefore it's hard to find the right combo. I have a friend with beautiful skin that is much oilier than mine. She was raving about using coconut oil as a moisturizer which I had always wanted to try. Thinking that it would work great for me since I have dry skin I started using it but within 2 days my skin broke out horribly! Something else I invested in based on how much people rave about it was a Clarisonic. I thought it would make everything better but I don't think it changed much for me at all. Even though the trail and error over the last couple years was tedious and meant many bad skin days it's nice to know that if I work my new routine my skin can get closer to what I want.

Now I just need to stop touching my face all the time! It's such a bad habit...

Image via.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Talking about something personal today

Have you seen this great ad for a new product targeted to tween girls? Bravo. Funny and sweet and effective marketing. But it also makes me think of when I had my "first moon". It's maybe a funny thing to talk about as it's an intimate subject. But, about half the people in the world deal with the exact same thing! And while of course it's an important milestone in a young woman's life, I'm realizing that it's an important parenting milestone too.

While I'm sure my mom did talk to me about this aspect of womanhood, the lesson I remember on the subject was actually the one done at my elementary school. I think I was in 4th grade and I was invited to school for a special evening "sex-ed" class. I don't even remember if my mom was there with me or not but it was an all-girl class (I assume the boys had a similar one) and the part that stayed with me was learning about how to use tampons. They seemed like such an extreme thing! I was interested and a little scared by them. It was a memorable and I have to admit valuable lesson.

I can't remember exactly how old I was when I got my period. Maybe 12 or 13? I didn't feel like I was late or early so either my friends didn't talk about it or I was average to my peer group. But, unfortunately my parents were separated at the time. My mom was out of the country on her first trip with her boyfriend and I was home with my dad and my little brother. Luckily, my dad and I were very close and so I didn't mind telling what was going on and asking him to help me get supplies. But, that was about it. I got what I needed to deal and that was my entrance into "womanhood". It was uneventful.

When my mom did get back from her trip I actually didn't want to tell her what happened. I think I was angry with her for not being there for this very feminine event in my life and I just didn't know how to engage that. I believe I wanted to punish her by keeping it from her. I don't remember how it came out but I recall we were driving in the car probably to pick up my brother from somewhere and I just couldn't avoid telling her. She was very excited and supportive but I think she felt that I was upset about the circumstances and that made her feel guilty. She said we'd celebrate by having some quality mother-daughter time and drinking some red wine. I don't know if that ever happened or not. If it did, obviously it wasn't something that felt meaningful.

My first moon was sort of lonely and isolated. I appreciate my dad being there and rolling with it. But it was a solitary experience for me. I'm sot sure if that is good or bad. Since I didn't have a big sister I think it would have been nice if my mom had been there and we could have marked the milestone more and used it as a way to talk about growing up.

I know it's a intimate subject but if other people want to share their stories I'd love to hear them!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Last night was not my best night

Last night was not a stellar night and I'm having trouble shaking it off. D was working late so it was just the Pepper and me. And I welcomed that after what was a very busy weekend. I was hoping my baby and I could have some nice quality time together. Well, things took a turn around dinner time. I think my baby girl was tired. She had her usual nap but for some reason she just seemed sleepy and cranky. It was dinner time and when I asked her if she was ready for food she eagerly ran toward the fridge. I assumed she'd help me open the refrigerator door like usual but instead she stuck her fingers between the door and the cabinet so that when I opened the fridge her little fingers got crushed :( I realized quickly so I know she was ok but I'm sure it hurt and she understandably wailed and wailed about it. I felt awful, and this seemed to set the tone for the rest of the night. She was happy with everything I gave her for dinner but if it took me a minute to prepare it (toast the bread for avocado toast) she'd cry and cry. And then the second blow of the evening came: I was trying to get her to drink sour milk.

I of course didn't realize it! It didn't pour any different and the expiration date wasn't for another 3 weeks. She did take one sip and then any time I offered it to her after that she'd get so upset. I finally figured out what was going on but it took me way longer than I wish it had. I felt like a failed parent at that moment.

She was just generally upset after dinner. She didn't want to get her diaper changed and she didn't want to get her pj's on and each thing she didn't want was met with tears. And I think I was just not in a strong emotional state myself (PMS I'm thinking, damn those hormones!). So her reactions got to me and we both were just sort of upset and exhausted by the time we got through the tough stuff. Luckily, we were both into story time and that was something we did to reconnect and recenter. And we had a few really nice moments when I was putting her to bed. But I just felt defeated at the end of the day. Nothing horrible happened. We both were fine at the end of the night. We were able to connect and I was able to show the little one that she was loved and safe. But for some reason all the challenges of the evening just got to me and I felt like the night was a bust and I had let my baby down. And then the anxiety that this will somehow have lasting negative effects (will she never want to drink milk again??) comes and it's a spiral that can be hard for me to get out of. But, I slept on it and this morning I was greeted by a smiley happy-to-be-here baby. Of course I don't need to worry. Of course the Pepper is fine and last night will be forgotten. And I need to move on too.

Image via.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Recipes: current favorites

The Pepper has started to get picky about her food. I think this is a combo of her being able to communicate with us ("No No!") and now that she feeds herself she can pick around the healthier items. So I'm trying to get creative with incorporating veggies into meals. Here are my current favorites and as usual, this list includes it's fair amount of soup :)

Lentil Soup with Coconut: Yummy and very healthy vegan soup. The lentils provide a great source of fiber and protein but also help control cholesterol and improve heart health. Plus, you get the added pepper, carrots, and celery that get "hidden" in the coconut-y broth well enough for the Pepper to not notice them.

Parker's Split Pea Soup: Slit Pea Soup was one of my favorites as a kid so I'm thrilled to be re-discovering it. The Pepper loves this soup. And the dried peas have many of the same benefits of the lentils along with tons of Potassium. I make this with our home-made chicken broth and even D who doesn't like this sort of soup always seems happy to eat it.

Velvety Broccoli and Feta Pasta:  The Pepper loves her pasta, so this recipe is a way to sneak some broccoli into her dinner. And I really like it too!

Any suggestions for recipes that help kids eat healthy?

Image of the Lentil Soup with Coconut via.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Favorites from around the web...

1) You've probably all seen this by now but it's important enough that I wanted to make sure to share it here as well. It's a great explanation of net neutrality, told with hilarity.

2) And I couldn't agree with this more! I've never understood the need for goody-bags at parties. Don't we all already have enough stuff? It's a party enough of a "prize" already?

3) I also couldn't agree more with this! Another no-brainer to me.

4) Since I'm not so knowledgeable on make-up I appreciated this (the eyebrow tip I've already started using)

5) Loved this. Always happy for a reminder that we don't need to put so much pressure on ourselves to be perfect parents.

6) This has me wanting to watch that beautiful movie again (I probably haven't seen it in over  decade).

7) Definitely want to get one of these for the Pepper.

8) Wow, these are stunning. Way to turn something negative into something wonderful!

9) This also helps takes the pressure off. Perspective is so valuable, especially when dealing with things like anxiety and stress.

10) And this is just beautiful. What an inspiring kid. What great parents. I'm so glad they are sharing their story.

And because it's Friday make sure to enjoy the Shirk Report, one of my Friday favorites :)

Image via.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Help expose eco-terrorism!

My dad is somewhat recognizable. He was on the first couple of seasons the show Whale Wars which made him a small reality tv star. Whale Wars is about the environmentalist group Sea Shepherd sending a crew to Antarctica to stop what they feel is illegal whaling. Sea Shepherd's method have been very controversial. Through the lens of Whale Wars the organizations approach is to take unskilled volunteers into a dangerous environment and asking them to do life-threatening things. I've watched the show and yeah, it comes off that way. But I also know the organization because my dad has been a part of it for 30 years. I know all the other things they do. And I know what the campaigns are really like.

My dad joined Sea Shepherd and got to know their charismatic leader Paul Watson when I was just a baby. He was filming something for a news station and liked what the organization was doing so much he started volunteering. He spent as much time as he could being involved in their mission to protect marine life. He was gone a lot when I was a kid because of it but I was also so proud of him. He was out protecting the world! but as a camera-man he was also always shooting. This means he has a wonderful archive of the last 30 years of the Sea Shepherds doings. They are sometimes scary sometimes funny, but always admirable.

After the success of Whale Wars my dad saw an opportunity to tell the other side of the story; to tell more than the small view of the organization the tv-show captures. He spent a lot of time going through all his footage and made what I think is a wonderful documentary called "Confessions of an Eco-Terroist". You can watch it on Hulu if you have Hulu Plus, or for free on YouTube. It tries to show the lighter side of environmentalism while still talking about the important issues.

Right now he's trying to fun his next film which will be a follow-up to the first. It will look at the role the media plays in environmentalism again pulling from his 30 years of involvement with Sea Shepherd. If you're interested check out his IndiGoGo campaign and show your support!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Thinking about my dream office

With our upcoming move I'm starting to get excited about one of the biggest changes to our lives: I'll finally have a work space! I work at home and right now and because we're in a loft that means I work at our dining room table. I manage it in various ways but it's started to feel harder and harder. Luckily my husband has agreed that finding a place that will allow me an office is a priority (thank you D!) and I can't wait. I don't know yet what my office space will be like or how big it will be but I have a couple of ideas:
  • I really want to decorate my office space with a little whimsy. D and I are pretty aligned in our styles so it's been easy for us to decorate our home. But I do enjoy more adornment than he does and I think my office will be where I can decorate to my liking. I love the idea of having fun accents around that will amuse me or lighten my mood on stressful days. I definitely want to get a fun vase like this fox or this couple to keep flowers in.
  • I want to improve my ergonomics. Right now I sit on our dining room chairs and while I do move around throughout the day I know it can't be good for my back. I'm various curious about standing desks since I know people who swear by them (one person said they work very efficiently because they are standing so you don't want to waste a moment!). But I also don't know if I'd actually like it. The other thing I'd like to try is using a yoga ball as a chair in order to "active site" and engage those important core muscles.
  • I'm on a lot of calls where I need to listen but not necessary participate (like project demos). I find that I need something to occupy my hands while on these calls so that I can actually listen and not start daydreaming. Someone told me that coloring books is a good way to give yourself something easy to do in order to keep your mind focused on more important and complex stuff. I love this idea so much that I definitely want to get something like this and a set of colored pencils to doodle with while I work. I guess I could do this now but I don't have places to keep anything so I try to have as little work paraphernalia as possible. Once I have my own designated area I'll feel free to expand my footprint a little bit.
More than anything, I think having a separate office at home will give me the space I need to work efficiently and effectively. Not just the physical space but the mental space. A place with no distractions. A place that is my own. A place where my mind can focus on the task at hand. I'm looking forward to it!

Anyone have any suggestions on how they have made working t home easier for them?

Image via.

Monday, June 9, 2014

My favorite time of day

Joanna asked a question today that I was excited to respond to but instead of a long comment I decided to write about it here. I was excited to respond because she asked about my favorite time of day! Well, one of them because really I have two: when the Pepper wakes up and when the Pepper goes to bed.

Morning time is very special. I get up around 6am and start work right away (since I work East Coast hours). My little one usually wakes up sometime between 7am and 7:30am so I try to not schedule any work calls during this time. Once I hear that she's up I go and greet her. I pick her up and take her to daddy in bed and when my schedule allows we snuggle in bed for 10 minutes or so before starting the day. I love this snuggle time. During the day the Pepper is always on the go wanting to play or run or do something. But in bed in the morning she's happy to lie there and be close to us. We may find belly buttons or name parts of the face, but most of the time is spent just holding each other. Such a nice quiet time of day.

Bedtime is less quiet but equally enjoyable. After dinner our bedtime routine starts. Every other day this includes a bath but whether it's a bath night or not before getting her in her pj's we always do some quality naked time. The Pepper seems to love this time and it's become her time to run around and blow off energy which I think works to our advantage. She'll usually put on some sort of show for us by singing or dancing. Once she's burnt out a little bit we'll give her her toothbrush so she can brush her teeth (something she seems to love to do). Once we've been able to convince her to give up her toothbrush we put her pj's on and then do story time. We read about 3 books together as a family on the couch. The first two are more fun books but after we've read those we'll put her socks on and give her a pacifier, hopefully indicating it's time to start winding down. We read the 3rd and last book, which is usually about going to sleep, and then we'll say our goodnights. Daddy turns off the lights and we go to our large living room windows and we'll close each one saying goodnight to somebody or something ( "good night courtyard", "good night neighbors", etc). Daddy gives her a good night kiss and then I take her to her crib. I'll put her down in her crib, sing her a lullaby, maybe rub her back a little but most of the time I stand there and am just present for her while she falls asleep. I sometimes do some audible and slow yoga breathing which seems to help her if she's feeling particularly restless, but luckily most nights she grabs her stuffed animals and soothes herself to bed.

I think I love these times of day because the focus is on being together as a family. There isn't much distraction, there aren't things competing with our time, it's when we can enjoy each other. I know things will continue to evolve especially as the little one gets older. But for now I'm grateful for these transitional times of day.

Image via.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Chronic lateness: are you guilty?

Are you someone who is chronically late? I fall more on the chronically early side, which I think I get from my dad. My dad was always early everywhere. And he was also someone who never really showed much stress. He was always busy and productive but he didn't seem to be rushed or harried. It was very calming to be around him as a child. So I've tried to emulate that and while I definitely get stressed (my dad is always telling me to chill out!) I appreciate my inherited view on punctuality.

I have friends who are chronically late and I've mostly reached a place of acceptance with it. Though one of the only fights I've ever had with one of my good friends was over her being late. I adore her but she is someone who tends to over-plan her time so I'm always squeezed in between other appointments. Her heart is in the right place because she wants to see everyone and do everything! But the result is I'm usually waiting around for her twiddling my thumbs. The time I lost my temper about it she had scheduled a drink with me before she had to go to an event. I had planned my night around seeing her and I ended up only getting maybe 30 minutes with her (the waitress was slow and I didn't even get to drink my glass of wine!). I feel bad for getting angry but it was frustrating to feel like my time had been wasted and I realize now I just wasn't feeling appreciated at all. We've of course made up since then (and it was a few years ago now) but I still find myself in that situation often.

I avoid being late by doing two things: over-estimating and under-scheduling. These things are related. If you estimate the time something takes you correctly you'll be able to accurately know what you can accomplish in a given period of time. People are bad at estimating time, so if we over-estimate we tend to be closer to the truth. For example, even though I know my friend lives 10 minutes away from me, I estimate needing 20 minutes to get to her. This way I account for the time it takes me to get my shoes on, get my bag together, walk to the car, get the Pepper in her car-seat, find parking, and maybe even do a diaper change. Over-estimating works! Think of all the steps you need to take and add time for each and you'll be a step closer to being on-time. And once you have an idea of how long things really take you, you won't over-schedule! You'll be able to go from one event to another without running around frantically and doing things like cursing at traffic.

And I'm not perfect: I'm still late sometimes. But when I do get someplace with a little time to spare I feel good. It's nice to not feel rushed through life. Especially as I am someone who can get anxious giving myself time to breath helps.

Image via.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Deciding to get new glasses

I've worn glasses for as long as I can remember. I got my first pair at some point in elementary school and they were a revelation! I could finally see! I have a vivid memory of driving home from the eye appointment with my new glasses and being transfixed by all the leaves on the trees. Today, I need glasses (or contacts) in order to really see anything. It's not always easy and I don't love that I need to first put on my glasses before responding to a crying baby in the middle of the night. But I've always embraced the look and have found them to be a fun accessory. But you have to have the right frames...

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Baby fever?

I think I might have baby fever, which bothers me a little. I have a craving for another baby. I see babies and I want one! I see pregnant women and am jealous. This emotional (or hormonal?) response is opposed to my head. My head does not want another baby right now. The Pepper is a wonderful almost-15 months old. And while we do want to try for another, that is at least a year away. Luckily D and I are aligned in that. I have friends who chose to have their kids close together and I know there are benefits to that approach. But for me the reasons to wait a little longer are:
  • I love our little family of three. I like our family dynamic right now. We spend time together as a family, but when we do have parent-child one-on-one time the other parent gets some alone time. It's not always easy but we can find balances that work and everything gets the time it needs.
  • Financially it will be better to wait. I'm not even sure right now how we'd cover a daycare and a nanny. We liked having The Pepper with a nanny that first year and I don't think we could afford to do that for a new baby if we had one right now. I hope we'll have more options from a financial perspective if we wait.
  • The Pepper is still learning who she is, and we're getting to know her too. Of course this will never change but I want to give it a little more time before making a big change in our lives.
  • For me and my work, I feel like I just came off of maternity leave. I will be easier for me to take off the next maternity leave if I give more time to my job right now. I'm not saying my employers would have any problem with it, but it's just something I feel.
  • My mother is a psychologist and she always told me that developmentally, children can deal with a new sibling best once they are three yeas old. Something about them being at an age where they naturally want to separate from their parents anyway so it's not as traumatic to introduce a competing element. I have no idea how true this is and if this is a widely held belief in psychology or not. But it was put in my mind and it does make sense to me.
  • I'm not ready to sign my body up for that again. Not ready to go through those changes again right now. I'm happy to enjoy my body as is for a bit longer before starting that journey anew.
I'm not planning to wait forever. And a year from now isn't that far away! I wish my body would get in line with my head and chill out. I'm a lucky lady and I want to enjoy what I have, which is a lot :)

Image via.

Favorites from around the web

1) I agree with these guys, I'm doing it wrong.

2) I really appreciate this interesting and honest article from a self-defined nerd on the dark-side of nerd culture.

3) I love these thoughts on marriage.

4) These are wonderful words to keep in mind, especially now that we're entering with skin-showing season.

5) This film sounds amazing. Fabulous cast as well.

6) I work with a lot of programmers so I found this article pretty funny. 

7) This article talks about how frustratingly hard to overcome human nature can be.

8) I hope this guy found a place to live, and I hope he lives up to expectation :)

9) Ballet dancers are just so impressive.

10) I love the attention the trans community is getting. I look forward to what I hope will be a lot of cultural change in this area during my lifetime.

Image via.

Monday, June 2, 2014

I have something to admit

After seeing this video from Laci Green, I can say that I am a feminist. This isn't something I was always comfortable saying before. Even though I know the definition of feminism is someone who wants equal rights for both men and women, it does get twisted into more extreme stereotypes. I am not a man-hater, for example. And I do acknowledge that men and women are different and we tend to have different talents and skills. But, none of that means we can't be equal in terms of our opportunities in life, and in how we are treated.

None of the facts in this video are new to me but when you compile them together they are just hard to ignore. I'm lucky that I have not felt mistreated as a woman in my life. I don't feel I deal with much discrimination because of my gender. I have not been sexually assaulted or overtly sexually harassed. But that doesn't make the facts or statistics less real. It also doesn't mean that I may just not notice the times where I am treated differently because I'm a woman. There have been times I've been talking to my husband about something that happened during the day and he points out that maybe someone was acting sexist. I usually disagree with him but I know that there is a chance he's right and I just can't (or don't want to) see it. That actually worries me the most. That the discrimination is so normal to me that I don't even know it's there.

And speaking of woman's issues, this post by Gabrielle is a thoughtful look at the #yesallwomen hashtag. Worth a read.