Friday Family Affirmation

The last day of the work week is here. Set your sights high on that long laundry-list of whatever it is… paperwork, housecleaning that was overlooked during the week, the three defrosted chicken breasts in the fridge that you never had time to bake… today throw out what you don’t need & move on. Literally, let go of the chicken =) … Figuratively…. leave your work at work today. Let your weekend be for you, your family, your kids, your spouse, & that book you bought 6 months ago & haven’t ‘found the time’ to crack open yet, or the bath tub you scrub but can’t remember the last time you laid in…

Not sure how the weekend always slips away while you have the best intentions to fulfill it? Try this:

Set aside 1 hour for each member of your family. Just that person. 1 for your spouse, 1 for you, 1 for each child, etc… & of course mix in some family time but don’t double dip, the one-on-one they will each appreciate & the kids will likely hold onto that little memory for a very long time. I know that my one-o-one time with my mom was very precious since she was a single mom who worked to support us and so was very often busy.

If one child comes in to interrupt your time with the other, simply say, ‘this is …..’s time, give us (x amount of time, put on a movie/go play outside) & I’ll come find you in a little while.’ By saying you will come get them this should help them get the idea that until you come they’ll play on their own, instead of them continuing to check in, ‘is it my turn yet?’ This is how I help my little girl stay in bed through the night ‘mommy will wake you up in the morning.’ So she knows unless she has to go potty, if mommy hasn’t woken her up yet (aka if it’s 4am & she’s waking up for 20 seconds.. it’s not time to start her day).

Mother’s Day, now that I’m the only one

For me, I don’t think I miss my mother any more on holidays than I do when I can’t sleep & I reach to call her because I think she’s working the night shift and fiddling with her phone, or when I’m hurting & I just want to lay in bed next to her and watch a funny movie, or when I drive my truck (which was hers) and I remember her singing off key while she drove wildly.

I can tell you I am certainly not over my mother’s death, even now years later. But really, how long does it take to forget your mother? I hope never.

But I am content with the loss of her, I am grateful to have had the 19 amazing years with her I had & grateful still to have today even without her because I am with myself, my daughter, my partner, & everyone who makes up my family & community.

While my mother was alive she taught me how to survive, as a mother should. With her death my mother taught me to live well and live now.

For those of you who’ve lost your mother or any loved one: I know it hurts, believe me I do, but the pain lessens over memories and the joy increases. I wish you the best in your process, and wish you all a happy and joyful Mother’s Day.

Why Plastics are Dangerous: Understanding BPA

What is it?

Bisphenol A is a hormone disruptor. Hormone disruptors interfere with the normal functioning of the hormone system of people & wildlife to produce a wide range of adverse effects. These effects include problems with reproductive systems, developmental, & disabilities related to healthy behaviors.

Why is it harmful exactly?

Even low doses of BPA have been linked in studies to have very negative effects on our systems…

In men: increasing prostate weight, making prostate cells more sensitive to hormones & cancer, lowering testosterone, causing hyperactivity & permanent changes in the genital tract.

In women: making breast cells predisposed to cancer, reducing fertility, &
In pregnant women: studies have shown increased risks of cancers and developmental disruptions to the fetus, BPA may also contribute to behavioral problems such as hyperactivity in the unborn child.

Infants, children near puberty are the most at risk to develop harmful effects from BPA. Fetuses are especially sensitive to BPA as they have the most immature detoxification system.

How do get BPA in our system?

BPA is in most polycarbonate plastic food & beverage containers, plastic food wrap, & epoxy resins used to line metal cans for food (including formula).

Recently, the U.S. court has ruled NOT to make BPA illegal, however many companies have responded by choosing to remove BPA from their packaging. Read labels & recycling codes & show consumer support by choosing products that do not contain BPA.Most plastics with the recycling code #7 contain BPA. The simpliest way many people get it in their bodies is from drinking water from a plastic disposable water bottle.

Additionally, most food is packaged in plastic, but it is the liquid that poses the most problems (and especially frozen liquids & even solids).

I was once told in a retail store, when inquiring about BPA free plastics, that BPA only leaches out of plastic when it is heated in the microwave. I also found articles online relating this. This is NOT true. Chemicals such as BPA leach more in the microwave, but they do still significantly leach into drinks or food when at room-temperature, refrigerated, or frozen, especially when we re-use plastic which breaks it down further.

Simple Avoidance in our Diets

We should all make steps to avoid BPA in our diets to protect ourselves, but because of the high risk groups, pregnant women, nursing mothers, infants, & children should be especially mindful to avoid it. If using plastic, do not put it in the microwave as it will break it down & leach the BPA or other chemicals into the food sooner. Avoid drinking soda or juice from cans. Avoid eating vegetables, fruits, & soups from cans. Instead, eat food that is packaged in glass jars, frozen, or fresh. Use a refillable stainless steel water bottle. All of these avoidance steps will not only protect your health but will help you save money.