Simple [Sim-puhl]

Simple [Sim-puhl]
-adjective
1. easy to understand, deal with, use, etc.
2. not elaborate or artificial; plain
3. not ornate or luxurious; unadorned

Monday, December 15, 2014

When Aunt Flo Comes To Visit

I have been kicking around whether or not to write a post about this for years now. After all, I squirm in my seat a little whenever a tampon commercial comes on as I watch a TV program. It is an extremely personal subject, one that is not mixed company appropriate, so I ask please, "All men, read no further! Leave the room for this doesn't concern you! Have some respect for the mysteries of womanhood!"
... Are they gone?.... Good.

Ok Ladies, there is something I never heard of, or felt any curiosity about until my late twenties. It's a shame, because that means for over a decade of my life once a month I felt anxious, burdened, even plagued by my "Monthly Gift."
I wondered when exactly it would spring forth, endured the humiliation of buying paraphernalia, stressed over whether I would have enough or have to buy more, and if I would have enough money, endured leaks and scrubbing out stains. I bore through TSS, and wondered if pads were noticeable through my pants when I walked, wondered if it could be smelled when I went out, I suffered rash from trapped moisture, and depression.
Ok TMI? I'm just trying to illustrate what horrors some, if not all, women endure on a monthly basis of which they have no control over or choice in. At least that's what I thought until I met the menstrual cup.
At first thought you may cry out in disgust, "Eeww!" After all, it is more hands on than the regularly advertised methods of menstrual care. But, when you think about it/actually try it, it's no worse than anything else we've had to deal with. In fact, I prefer a more hands on approach. It's no worse than cleaning the house or changing a diaper. C'mon! We like men to treat us like we're fragile sometimes, but we are actually strong, resilient, and pretty tough.
For the first time in my life I'm feeling in control of my menstrual week! There are no toxins to make me headachy and sick, there are no repeated shopping trips, there's no hiding byproducts when I go visiting, no worry of how I look, no trapped moisture on car rides, no dipression or embarrassment, no counting hours, no heavy leaks or scrubbing out stains! I'm a new woman! And, I want to encourage others to take control and not have to endure any more than you really have to. My cup of choice was the Diva Cup and you can read all about how it works here. You can also buy it online and avoid any awkward cashier moments! Hooray for one less thing to worry about!
P.S. Lets keep it a mystery between us. Men just don't need to know (or want to know) what's saving them money each month ;).

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Real Challenge of Motherhood

Through all my research and preparation before my son was born, I somehow never clued in to the real challenge of motherhood. I am not talking about long sleepless nights, soreness, bleeding, or piles of laundry and dishes waiting for a spare moment.
I am referring top the mommy wars of coarse. You know, the women who think they could better mother your child than you can. Some aren't even mothers themselves yet, and the ones who are mother's who, one would think they would be supportive, plague me with their own guilt/paranoia/judgements! They were a new mother once too, they should know better! We all have our own worries!
...Sigh, I was not prepared for all the negativity. I naively thought we mothers were on the same team!
So if you are a new mother, and like me you hear comments that say outright or imply, "You don't know what your doing; I would make a better mother than you. You're a terrible mother." or,"You haven't dressed your child warm enough, why aren't you feeding your child 'such an such? He/She has you wrapped around his/her little finger." Don't be discouraged! Feel empowered that you have a clean slate to do this parenting thing the way that is perfect for you and your own family.
These women, and sometimes men, don't see you researching every little pout, or the shade of the most recent poop, or the panic you feel when you check your baby's temperature while He/she sleeps. They can't possibly image the depth of love and care you have for your child and all the effort you make for your precious little one. What they see is a different approach than they have, or think they will, use. We all want to feel like we have the right answer. Just because you are doing things differently than someone else would or has, does not mean your method is wrong.
No one knows your child like you do, and some people may think they know all there is to know about child-rearing and infant-training and they will offer you advice and experience according to what they observe or don't observe in the limited contact they have with you and your child. But the fact remains, this is your child, and no one knows your baby as well as you do. Listen to your mother's instinct. Let these well-meaning people have their say, smile and nod as they reminisce about their own experience, make consideration for their concerns even. Then do what feels right in your own heart and gut for your own child. Any dismay or disapproval that person may feel if you don't follow their council is worth doing what's right for your baby's welfare. The grown ups will get over it.
Feel glad that these people, who may seem a nuisance at times, love and care about your baby too. So much so, they may forget at times that you have a greater love for your child than they could possibly imagine, and they are willing to occasionally risk offending you! It can be a positive experience depending on how you look at it.
In the end, feel confident in yourself to know what is best for your own sweet baby. You created and carried that child inside your own body, felt the reactions of that little person in your belly, and after the tramatic experience known as birth. You have watched that little person react, learn, develop and grow more than anyone else during his/her entire life. You have been through a lot together! Not to mention, God sends YOU inspiration for that child's well-being and your mother's intuition is customed to your specific child, not a percentile and not a family average! 
You are the mother, and Mama knows best! When you need help, you are the one to ask whom, what and when. You are the one who works with the specialists to find out what works for your specific child if necessary. 
Work hard and trust your feelings as a mother, because Heavenly Father trusts you to be the mother your baby needs. That should be good enough for anybody.
PS- That person who says your baby looks like so'n'so, or such'n'such, doesn't know what they're talking about! Babies grow and their features change daily. You and your spouse are probably the only people who can see what your baby's consistent features are.
 "All babies are the Sweetest and the Best."-Marrilla from Anne of Avonlea.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Roasted Poultry

Now and then there will be a good sale on whole chickens, and theoretically one could buy a few and cut them up and freeze them for later use. I have done this.  But, with all the convenience of boneless skinless chicken meat readily available, one may begin to feel cutting up a chicken herself rather tedious.
Enter the Sunday Roast- who doesn't like roast chicken? Guess what, it's easy to make, and the pan is even cheap to buy if you don't already have one. After the Sunday Roast is eaten, pull all the left-over meat off the bones and freeze for future repurposing. -Chicken Salad, Chicken Enchiladas, Chicken and Dumplings, Chicken BBQ Sandwiches etc. As for the left over bones; remove the neck, spine and tail and boil the rest with carrots and celery and then strain for a nice stock to make soup, gravy, or stew with. Economical, easy, and yum nommy!
Here's my tried and true recipe for Roast Chicken that also makes one succulent turkey for us every Thanksgiving! (Just adjust bake time and use a roasting bag.)

Roast Chicken

1 part Salt
1 part Rubbed Sage
1 part Poultry Seasoning
1 part Lemon Pepper
1/4 Cup Softened Butter

Mix seasonings together in a small dish.
Rinse chicken removing extra fat, skin and organs from cavity. Also there are two dark soft pouches on either side of the spine in the hip area or under the ribs.- Pull them off and discard them since they tend to be bitter and can ruin the flavor.
Next place two cleaned carrots in the bottom of the clean roasting pan, celery is a permissible accompaniment to the carrots if you wish. Place chicken breast-side up on carrots.- This is the position we use to roast the chicken. (If using a roasting bag for a turkey, the carrots and celery would be inside the floured bag with the turkey, and it's easier to season the turkey before you place it in the bag.)
Rub butter all over chicken inside and out following butter with seasoning mixture rubbing into meat under the skin where possible. Be sure to rub butter and seasoning all over inside cavity as well.
Place chicken in a 350 degree preheated oven. I used a good toaster oven last and cooked it for an hour and 50 minutes. Then let it rest covered in foil for about 15 minutes. My meat thermometer read 180 right out of the oven deep in the thigh and then the breast.
See, easy peasy using common ingredients kept on hand. Enjoy!

P.S. For easy go to gravy without the fuss of skimming and straining drippings. Use a good bullion powder to make broth, then add to bubbling butter, salt and flour in a pan and cook to disired thickness. Makes tasty and light gravy. This has worked for me when making beef gravy as well.