Monday, August 29, 2011

Laughable Labels

I find food labels to be highly entertaining. Mostly because food companies often make some pretty ridiculous claims. I have just been chuckling like a complete dork to myself about a can of black olives I recently ate...

The label contained a picture of a bowl of black olives sitting next to a bowl of potato chips. Then there was a comparison checklist in which black olives were proven to be far superior to potato chips in the following categories.
  • Fewer Calories 
  • Less Total Fat
  • No Saturated Fat
  • Fit on your Fingers
While I do not question the validity of these claims it seems a little odd. When did anyone who was reaching for a bag of chips stop and say, "Hey, I think a handful of black olives would really calm this potato chip craving." How in the world can you compare olives to potato chips? I suppose this diagram could be useful if you were at a party and you had a choice between a bowl of chips or dipping into the relish tray. 

No offense to olives, but it's pretty easy to beat out potato chips from a nutritional standpoint. I wonder if perhaps they are trying to tap into some of the success and profits of the potato chip industry...

Good luck black olives... you have your work cut out for you. Oddly enough when I read this I was putting black olives on top of a plate full of nacho chips.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Just to Post

I just wanted to write something as I sit at the computer. For some reason I have numbered them... it is some weird organizational habit that I have.

1. A turkey flew over my head during my morning walk. A TURKEY. Seriously I have never seen a turkey fly, let alone so close to my head. Turkeys are pretty cool birds, they look like prehistoric creatures, and Fiona loves it that when ever we see the wild heard by our house, her mommy makes the gobble gobble sound to try and communicate with them.

2. IZZEs. Blackberry and Clementine to be exact. I hate soda-pop, but I love me an ice cold IZZE. I cracked one open when Fiona layed down for nap and then when she went down for bed. I felt like a person who cracks a beer at the end of a hard day to relax. ONLY... and IZZE is a completely guiltless pleasure. 70% fruit juice with a splash of sparkling water... Oh ya, thats good stuff.

3. Fiona kept telling me that Frodo was hiding today. I am reading the Lord of the Rings series for fun and there is a picture of Elijah Woods on the front cover and I told Fiona his name once and she never forgot it. I put the book high up on the shelf today so Fiona wouldn't rip the pages out, and she was obviously concerned about. She cracks me up with the stuff she remembers sometimes.

Fiona and a big class of almond milk

4. Cookie break at Auntie's house. My sister in law Julia makes some killer vegan chocolate chip cookies. We are all hooked, and it is oh so much fun to watch the girls get messy. It is fun to see how "healthy" you can make things and still have them taste incredibly good. I put healthy in quotations because there is only so far that you can take a cookie... her recipe uses raw honey, whole wheat and coconut oil.... yum yum yum.

Rae Rae shows off her chocolate chip hands.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Keeping Busy

At this point in pregnancy (35 weeks) I am trying to keep myself as busy as possible to take my mind off how hard it is getting to move around and the fact that soon-ish a human being will be coming out of my body. Am I ready to be a mother of 2???!?!?!?!? A question that pops into my mind multiple times a day. A question that I can't really answer because I don't know exactly what it will be like. Onward and Upward they say.

These past few days have been really special. Spending lots of family time and doing fun activities as this will be the last few weeks it's just the three of us.

Outside the Logan temple after Chuck's cousins (Brent) sealing.

This last week Chuck and I watched, "Stranded: I've come from a plane that crashed in the mountains." It is a foreign documentary (on instant Netflix) about the rugby team from Uruguay that crashed in the Andes mountains. The film "Alive" is the dramatized version of it. The documentary is incredible. 14 men survived TWO MONTHS in the Andes mountains without proper food, clothing, shelter or pretty much anything. They had incredibly profound experiences and it changed all of their lives forever.

I have been thinking a lot about it, just because I think we often underestimate what we are capable of. It really reminded me of the scripture, "With God all things are possible". They walked half starved over like 4 mountains without equipment in the middle of winter. I felt inspired; and so I did something I previously thought my pregnant butt would be incapable of doing. I went on a hike in the mountains with Chuck. I didn't die or go into labor and it felt really great to get out and see something so beautiful. It was wonderful, here are a few videos to highlight.

This video cracks me up because you can tell how nervous I was. As Chuck slide down I coiled in my arms and slid with him as you can tell by the camera angle sliding as well. I kept envisioning him cracking his skull on a rock and then carrying him, Fiona, the stroller and my pregnant self back down the mountain. I have an overactive imagination... and I worry quite a bit. In reality this waterfall slide has seen many sliders and is quite a popular destination. It is literally just down the street from us.

I will sure miss the place we live in right now. Only two more weeks until we move again. This summer has seemed like a huge vacation in paradise. It will definitely be one of those "Happy Places" I go to in my mind when I am having a rough day in the future.

Hope you are all creating great family memories as your summer comes to a close!!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

I'm a Groupie

Everyday I sit down on this computer during Fiona's nap and tell myself I am going to post... but after hunting through the Amazon and stopping in the kitchen for a much needed food break I find I have no time.

I signed up for Amazon Mom and specifically the subscribe and save diaper delivery. Who would have thought that a gigantic box of diapers showing up on your door step could make a person so happy. It is the best deal and I LOVE not having to run to Walmart so much!!!!

I have also been finding some really cute kids books too to add to our collection. My new favorites are these two... Can you tell what things we are working on in our house?

For the past month or so I have been attending a once a week support group. There are about 12 women or so, all mothers. Every Tuesday we have a 2 hour long meeting and discussion. I love it. I have been craving interactions with other women, and to have MEANINGFUL conversations. We talk a lot about dealing with issues in our homes and with our kids... but really we talk about how to change ourselves to better our families. The last few weeks we have talked about codependency and how our children can be mirrors of our own behavior or attitudes towards life. The class is run by my brother in law who specializes in personal healing and his mother who works a lot with children and families. She focuses a lot on building safe and healthy relationships. We also learn about different types of meditations we can do and how to express ourselves through free writing and coloring.

It's interesting but my brother in law says that of anyone on the planet, mothers need meditation and time to reflect inwardly the most, yet they are the group that gets it the least. I even found myself feeling guilty leaving for two hours each Tuesday to go to this class. But I have realized that the more I take care of myself the better I can take care of my family.

I think it is common for women (especially Christian women) who are raised to sacrifice and give all we can to God and our families, to feel a certain amount of guilt when we take time for ourselves. We feel that it is noble to "Forget about yourself." But I have been reflecting on how Jesus Christ himself took time away from the crowds and disciples to be alone, to meditate and re-group. He was often interrupted by those who followed Him, as is often true with mothers, but he showed the example. I have had the following scripture running through my brain as of late:

"He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it."

I have been asking for people about their opinions about what Jesus meant when he said it. Most people talk about it in the context of serving others. Like, we forget about ourselves and serve others and then we will have a rich and meaningful life. But if we are "selfish" and do things for ourselves we are doomed.

Someone offered me the following interpretation, that Losing our life is about shedding the false perceptions and expectations that are put on us by the world and people around us, and that we figure out who it is that God knows we can become. They proposed that this scripture is about reaching our true potential by following God, and not thinking that we have it all figured out or know who exactly it is we are. This person explained that Selfishness is really self-neglect because how can we serve in love and lift others if we are in the pit of despair. We need to be working on our own sins, problems and weaknesses that we may become Whole and better able to serve.

I can think of something that I have often heard from others like, if you are having a bad day just forget about your problems and help someone else. I understand the good intentions behind this statement, but honestly if you feel like crap I don't think the answer is to bake cookies for your neighbor. Maybe you should figure out why you feel like crap and address the issue rather than ignoring it. Once it is addressed and dealt with and you are feeling better perhaps reaching out to someone else will feel much more natural and not so forced.

That is what I think meditation is for, it is opening yourself up to be still and figure out who you really are, and shutting out all of the voices that are constantly running through our heads! Meditation for me can help me to be quiet with myself and reflect on things that I could work on or improve. If I take the time to do that I find that I can love people more freely... because I take time to love myself.

This image just popped into my head when I typed that...

As a side note, I really do appreciate comments that I receive for good or for bad. That I why I have my blog open to commentary. Just know that my intentions are NOT to start arguments or drama of any kind. And I do think that there is GREAT value in being accountable for the things that you post and say, so please do not feel intimidated to use your identity.