Thursday, August 30, 2012

My thoughts about food

Nothing is good in excess. Most things are fine if not overconsumed (our bodies can even handle things like arsenic at low doses for a small time period, not that I condone eating poison).

Some things are better for the body, and we should eat primarily those things if our goal is health. These things are vegetables and whole grains, nuts and seeds, and water...lots of water. This is where the body is going to get the things it needs: hydration, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

But our body needs some fat,too. Really. It is the substance that bubble wraps the organs, that keeps the skin supple, that burns for extra fuel, that insulates. It can be found in nuts and seeds, in delicious avocados, and in my favorite: cheese.

The key is balance and good choices most of the time. I'm not really a sugar eater, some days I crave a hunk of dark chocolate or a bowl of vanilla icecream with maple syrup, but those days are rare. My craving is salty crunchy,and when I really want a cracker or a chip or a bowl of stuffing with onion and celery, I usually go for it. It's fine. I am not eating the wholebag or a bucketfull every day.

I refuse to make food my enemy. I refuse to label it as good or bad. Food is just food, not a rapist or robber. I made calories my enemy for too many years. Codger is complaing about his weight. He has made bread the bad guy. He tries to tell me that Pasta is my enemy, but I talked to pasta and we are cool. Codger gains and loses the same ten pounds about four times a year, according to stats, yo-yo ing is unhealthy. But at least Codger is not counting calories and over doing it at the gym. If he wants to weigh 'this amount', that is his choice. I just refuse to hop on any band wagon....the protien only, no carbs, raw food, do not eat after six, grapefruit, lemon and maple syrup water, vegetarian, juicing, fat free, preboxed food, calorie counting, point counting, or diet pill wagons are all too bumpy for me. I refuse to believe that eggs can be good one moment and evil the next. Same with red wine (it helps bone density, you know...and think of the antioxidants!).

I want to enjoy my food. We have to eat every day, usually more than once, so why not make it enjoyable, and even tasty? There is no reason it can't be delicious and healthful. But there is no law it has to be good for me either...if I choose to eat preserved chemical crap every day, it is my choice...I just know that I like the way I feel without crap invading my body.

I make a point to eat veggies. I love veggies. The other night I roasted eggplant and tomatoes brushed with basil oil in the oven. Each day I have dropped them on a whole wheat bread with chipotle mayo, gouda, basil, and spinach yummy. Tonight I will make black beans, canned seasoned tomatoes, rice, and maybe cilantro...that will last me a few days.

My goal is to get back to buying brown rice ( why is it more expensive when it takes less processing to make than white rice?), whole wheat pasta, and whole wheat flour. I want to use less meat and cream in my cooking (mmmm bechamel sauce) and find more veggie sauces. I'm hopefully planting a winter garden with zucchini, carrots, lettuce, and cilantro. I have my basil planted already and am hoping it doesn't die.

I can't wait til the weather cools down and I can make veggie soup and pumpkin biscuits!

What are your thoughts or goals?


Sunday, August 26, 2012

Zentangle #20

@> see the button?

Trace the pattern....

added paradox

Then Chainging


Cockles and mussels



I love it! It is so hard not to fill in all the negative space.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Why You will die earlier than I


Oldest Best Friend's husband picked me up this morning so I can use their minivan to taxi their kids and feed them bad food for a few days. He happened to show up at crack of 8:30. I was still in bed. Awake, but not bothering to get up.

OBF's husband teased. I made the comment "why bother getting up If I do not have to?". He laughed and said "where is your work ethic?".

Sometimes I don't have one, I guess. Sometimes I feel that it is OK to sleep in until noon, or nap in the afternoon, or lay on the couch and watch movies (read a book) all day. I think that is fine.

I hear the work ethic thing a lot. I have heard "someone has to work and bring home the money", or "some of us have a job, have to work". In my past, I have been berated for "just being a housewife" or "not having a real job". Boyfriend even argued once that the go to work dad was more important than the stay at home mom. ( I think that argument is a lot like which came first: the chicken or the egg?.)

I will admit, I enjoy more cerebral things than labor intensive jobs. I would rather write a twenty page report than go outside in the heat and do yard work. My at home days are spent sewing, crocheting, and cooking. Two of three which take place with my big butt on the couch.

BUT....what is the problem with that?

When I have a job, I show up early, work my butt off, and often bring home work if needed. In the six months that I long term subbed I only missed one day, and that was because I had the flu! I bring home a paycheck that pays my bills and allows me a few luxuries. I drive a scooter because I know that I can not afford a car until I get a full time job. I have no credit cards and any debt I have was incurred when I was married (and agreed that he would pay since he got the stuff on the card). My only debt is my student loan, created for an education to get a career that was "non-gettable" since I graduated.

If I dirty dishes, I wash them. I take out trash. I create beautiful gifts. I dust occasionally. I clean the bathroom. I make my own dinner, and often others'. I take care of my own crap,yo.. My fish is fed and clean. My hamster is fat and happy. The dog knows to ask me for dinner.

And I can be relied upon. Ask OBF.

Just because I take most of summer off to visit my family, just because I sleep in, just because I nap, just because I know how to relax and not have to always be doing something that makes me appear like a go-getter, does not mean I am a bad person.

To me, it means I have my stuff straight. I am finally on the road to self ownership. I take responsibility for both work and leisure time. I have my priorities straight, even if they are different than yours. They are mine and I can put them in any order they want.

In a few years, hopefully, I will have my own classroom, and I will be busier. Hopefully I will have my own crappy little trailer home and a garden. I will have less leisure time. I am good with that, I will be happy with that. But you better believe, I will still take time off in the summer to see my family, and my downtime will be spent on whatever I damn well please.

I will not bow to an aggressive capitalist society's dictated standards of "work ethic", I will march to the beat of my own tambourine.


Monday, August 20, 2012

Zentangle 19

The Bright Owl ( gave us a very geometric tangle this week:

Here is the pattern transfered to a circle.

I added my favorite tangle , Puf


Then paradox and purk.

in the end I surrounded it with Pegs, and filled in space with Printemp.

I thought the whole thing looked too harsh, so I added circles to soften it.

I might try this one again with more organic shapes.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

What's a girl to do?

I think I am experiencing a bit more anxiety. The school year is coming up, I realize that I will not have a long term sub job like I adored last year, and job opportunities are scarcer than milk in a turnip. Bad analogy.


That is what is available near me....see the numbers bigger than 0? Those are jobs for lunch ladies, nurses, special ed, japanese teachers, and softball coaches. None of which is covered by my Masters in education.

Oh, I still have my subbing job to look forward to; coming home every day to sit for hours hoping to win a job in the luck of the draw, dealing with behavior issues children like to have when the teacher is gone, never really getting into the meat and potatoes of teaching, never experiencing a-ha moments or watching the students grow and flourish. At least I don't have report cards or planning (which I actually enjoy).

I watch my brother get ready to run off with his cat to Oman where he has accepted a teaching job. He has taught in Los Angeles (ca), Long Beach(ca), China, Korea, Santa Cruz (ca), and now Oman. He has very few to no qualms about picking up and running across the world to teach. I am jealous.

I would be frightened to teach elsewhere. I would feel disconnected from my friends and family , upon whom I rely for emotional sustenance. I am certain boyfriend would not come, so I'd have to make a choice between a career or my man.

Somedays this feels like a riptide. Like a funnel. Hopeless. How can one possibly survive without a job, how can I get a job when none are available? Do I need to make a choice to leave? Am I stuck forever living in another person's house until and if California deems education important again?

Oh, and the student loan is asking me to start paying...oh joy.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Body Changes

I'm very excited that Ragen's book "Fat: the Owner's Manual" ( is waiting at home for me.

Changing body sizes is a hard thing to do alone. I know, I have great friends and family who accept me as I am, and who understand that I studied the decision to never diet again before I did so. I also know it would be fine and my choice to stop dieting without studying. As Ragen says, "I am boss of my own underpants". But I know there are others who might cringe at the weight I have gained.

See the belly?

I might go in circles here as I try to collect my thoughts....

I like me. I like my body. The fat would not bother me if I weren't constantly told that it is bad or ugly. Most days I can ignore these messages and know that I am damn cute as I am. I wouldn't say sexy, I don't think I could ever pull off sexy no matter what my weight...but cute, heck yes!

Gaining weight reminds me a lot like pregnancy. I am getting bigger, I can't seem to change that and don't think I should anyway. My body feels different, it moves differently. I feel more substantial, I have a handy place to set a plate. Shaving becomes yoga. My chonies look like a sail for a dingy. I have boobs. All like when I was pregnant.

But unlike pregnancy, I can't really discuss this and share it with some people. Boyfriend would probably not giggle at the chance to wield a razor for me. He won't want to express suprise (as I have) at my new back fat. (it just appeared one day). I can't ask my friend what she does about chub rub (deodorant on the thighs...godsend). Any discussion about my changing body would open conversation as to why I am allowing it to change (why I don't just starve myself to get to a publicly ideal weight again). Whereas we all know why preggies go through changes.

Then I go through discussions with myself. Yes, I am worried that I will never stop gaining weight, and I don't think I can be healthy at 400 pounds. Yes, I want to integrate exercise into each day. Yes, I want to keep eating loads of veggies. Yes, I should eat brown rice and wheat pasta.

Yes, I want to separate all this from weight.

This decision feels like a lonely one. It saddens me to think that I am worrying about what people in my life will or do think.

But I will tell you, even skinnier, I had the same damn body issues and questions of self value. At least now, I am not starving my brain and screwing with my body to fit into society's narrow view of health or beauty.

One point for me!

Monday, August 13, 2012

This is your brain on Pinterest

Pinterest makes you hungry. I know it is filled with pictures of twenty year old women who have six pack abs, extreme diet tips, and faux food with only one ww point....but....

When a Kappy and a Geppy are up late, and Kappy has had wine, and Kappy is looking at pinterest, and Kappy sees this:

Even when the caption reads "this is your brain on drugs"

Kappy thinks egg sandwiches are delicious.

Kappy shows Geppy and Geppy says "egg sandwiches are delicious with ketchup and cheese"

Kappy goes into the kitchen and Geppy says "well, if you are making one, two shouldn't be so hard"




The Geppy cleans up :)


Saturday, August 11, 2012

Zentangling again

I cant help it...The Bright Owl offered a challenge, and I can't resist. Especially after mojitos.

I was going to tell you that I took pics in a wheat field and a graveyard...but...

I started with the pattern


Then added Golven, Gothic, Girdy, Groovy, Girland, Grass, and Gingham.



Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Zentangles and Zendalas

I decided to join a challenge this week, a zentangle challenge. The post ,if you would like to join as well, is attached to that button-----> The Diva Zentangle one. She has a great blog.

So here is the finished product :

Let me tell you my fascinating process. First, I discovered Zentangles, worked a bit with them on my own ( some old post of mine has links to the official site and a pattern site), and brought them to the classroom. Both fourth and sixth graders seemed to enjoy making them.

Then, I saw a zendala. a mandala+ zentangle. I couldn't just make one right away..I had to make a kit and buy all of the supplies!


Then I made a pattern to separate the circle into however many equal bits I wanted it to be. I keep this pattern in my big book of everything.

Today I placed my circle on the pattern and made 16 bits.


I added another circle, some squares, and an octagon. Then a smaller octagon.

My first zentangle was Brayd around the outside, because that was the challenge! This was my first Brayd.

Then I added a version of Betweed ( sticking with Bs here)

I added Bubbles .

Then Boomerangs around the bubbles and a quilt star thing in the middle.

I love it, and I think I will take the Zendala to the classrooms!





Saturday, August 4, 2012


One thing that has been taking up my time lately is fat activism and body acceptance. I think it was imperative that I start researching this because my self esteem and self efficacy was so wrapped up in my skinny body that I obviously could no longer keep.

As you saw through past blogs, I was working out and counting calories, and still comparing myself to the ideal...and wondering why people could not just accept women of all sizes. Silently, while yelling that my body was Ok, I was still wanting to be thinner...thus the dieting and working out.

Why? Why was this my wish? Was it really MY wish at all? Or was it the inner voice that builds up via advertising and the people I associate with? (Ragen discusses this today on her blog "Dances With Fat ") Boyfriend, though a very good man, has no idea in his infinite skinniness, asks "Why get chubby?" sigh. That I will discuss later (why).

A comment today on Facebook...."I am baffled by people who think there is a wrong way to have a body"

I want to be more like my beautiful sister and niece...who don't think there is a wrong way to have a body. Who don't look at others, perhaps their skinny siblings or aunts, and think "I should look more like her". Who don't worry about love or affection or acceptance based on body size.

I am getting closer to that..Most days I know I am beautiful..some days are ruined by outside comments that I stupidly take internally.

My sisterdog and furniece. Who both exercise regularly, eat the same or less than the others, and are built like me. They know they are fabulous and do not care what society says.


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Excuses, Excuses

I have not blogged in a year, or thereabouts. Oh, I've blogged in my head, sure, but it never quite makes it to the computer or internet. My mother has frequently blogged twice a day, showing me it is possible if I put my mind to it.

My reasons? Work, for one. I was lucky enough to get a long term preschool subbing job. It kept me very busy and very tired.

Crafts, that's another...things like the beaded magic doll I decided I had to make last night because it was a full moon, or the quilts and crocheted blankies I feel compelled to create for all the new babies my young friends are having.


Self discovery. That's my last excuse, though I could come up with more if hard pressed. I've been reading fat activist blogs and books on why dieting is so horrible for your body. I've been getting my head and heart together. I feel very positive lately.


So now that I have the blogsy app on my ipad....I should have no more excuses, right? Because I sure do have a lot to say...Mostly about crafts, religion, stupid people, tolerance, acceptance, and weight....but hey, that is who I am!