Thursday, February 26, 2015

My Complaints About Taking My Children to the Doctor and What I Did About Them

Last week I was approached by Bankers Healthcare Group to write a post about things that have frustrated me when I have taken my kids to the doctor and share how I think patients, families, and healthcare providers can help make these trips easier and more enjoyable.

Bankers Healthcare Group provides loans for doctors (I didn't even know there was such a thing) and also has a great blog with the latest in health care news for both patients and doctors. They post about things like the top fitness trends and how Obama is seeking to double the budget for combating antibiotic resistance. There's even an article about an advocacy group fighting against pit bull abuse. How wonderful that they care about animals too! Better treated animals leads to less people being bitten. 

As the mother of five children, the list of my complaints about my experiences in a doctor's office has been building and I am grateful to finally voice this list. My oldest is 21 years old, so this list is over two decades old. You would think the complaints I have from twenty years ago would be different from today, but I find they haven't changed much at all.

My first complaint is with the insurance networks I have been in and how certain doctors are only in certain networks.

I have lived in four different cities in two states over the last two decades and have found this to be an issue no matter where I went. My biggest problem has been finding doctors in the network that are close to where I live. Often the doctor's office is a good drive from my home. 

Right now my children's pediatrician is completely across town which is a 30 minute drive. Years ago when gas prices were lower, I found this wasn't much of a problem but with current gas prices I often have to save money in my fuel budget just to take my children to the doctor. I've considered changing to someone closer but I've finally found a pediatrician that I love so I'm willing to make the drive.

However, I am constantly in fear that my insurance will change how they structure the networks and I will be forced to change doctors. This happened to me once before and I had to leave a doctor that I liked.

My second complaint is about doctors that don't listen to me, are rushed, or that do listen but treat me like I'm stupid.

I have taken my children to doctors that refused to listen to my concerns. I had two in particular that were like this for different reasons. The first doctor seemed to care more about getting us in and out of his office as quickly as possible. I felt like we were part of an assembly line of patients. The worst part about it was that he would make us wait fifteen to thirty minutes for him but would do the exam as quickly as he could! Any questions that I asked were given a one sentence answer. If I asked further questions he would cut me off by giving a blunt answer and then getting up to leave before I could ask anything else. If I stopped him to ask one more thing he would act impatient and irritated. It got to the point that I just stopped asking questions and Googled them instead. 

The second doctor would listen to me but treated many of my questions as if they were silly. Often she would say "Well you have other kids, so you should know." If I knew I wouldn't be asking! I was made to feel stupid for sharing my concerns or lacking knowledge about something, so again I stopped asking the doctor questions.

The pediatrician I have now is the most wonderful, caring doctor I have ever met. She is never in a rush and even makes small talk sometimes during the exam. She listens to my questions and answers them patiently and thoroughly. She never makes me feel silly for asking anything. She also understands that since I haven't had a toddler in a decade, I don't remember everything from my other kids.

I have experienced doctors being too rough or unfriendly to my children.

Not to mention that my poor child often picked up on the doctor rushing through the exam and his impatient, irritated attitude and would become upset or uncooperative. (I have experienced this with emergency room and walk in clinic doctors as well.) My son hated going because this pediatrician treated his little patients as if they were grown adults who understood what was happening. He didn't explain what he was doing but would just grab an arm or shove an instrument into an orifice. I finally left the doctor for good when he was so rough with my son that he started to cry. The doctor didn't stop what he was doing to comfort my son. This doctor was ill suited to be a pediatrician. He didn't seem to even like children.

I recently changed dentists because of this exact reason. My daughter was fearful of this dentist because of how he treated her. The staff was constantly rude to me and any appointment I made was always scheduled several weeks away. 

As great as my current pediatrician is she has no entertainment for children in the waiting area.

The entire building is for several pediatricians so I was shocked when I found the waiting room didn't have any toys, books, or anything for children. It's not like they don't have the room. The waiting room is huge and even has two large areas. There is a television in one part of the waiting room but instead of showing cartoons or children's movies, it inexplicable always plays HGTV the home improvement channel. This gets terribly boring for most adults much less children! 

To remedy this, I now bring toys, books, and electronics with me when I take my youngest kids to the doctor to keep them entertained. Although ironically, my 13 year old son likes going so he can watch HGTV. 

Having too many toys in the waiting area that are never cleaned.

However, there is an issue at the other end of the spectrum regarding entertainment for kids in the waiting area. My two oldest children loved going to the pediatrician when they were little. Why? Because this doctor had a waiting room so full of toys it looked like a Toys R Us. It had a playhouse, slides, and riding toys. There was a television that constantly played Nick Jr shows. My son once cried because I took his little sister to the doctor without him. The place was that much fun.

The problem with this is that there were far too many toys to keep clean. Whenever I took my kids there for a check up, I knew another visit to the doctor may not be far behind because they would always end up sick about a week later. I knew it was because the toys were covered in kids germs. It would take hours to clean all those toys thoroughly.

Another complaint I have about my current pediatrician is that they never answer the phones.

After navigating a phone system that involves listening to a long list of "press this button for this doctor" I am always greeted by an answering machine never an actual person. I leave messages and they are always returned later that day or the following day, but I worry that if I ever need to speak to my doctor's office immediately it simply won't happen.

My last complaint is about doctors that make you wait far too long.

Most doctors have the policy that if you are more than 15 minutes late to your appointment gets canceled. However, it seems all you do rush to wait. With some doctors you finally get called back to the examining room only to wait even longer.

Fortunately I haven't had too much of a problem with family doctors or pediatricians when it comes to waiting. My ob/gyn is another story. His wait times are so long that his office is locally famous for them. I would arrive to my appointment on time and wait anywhere from 30 minutes to over an hour. I watched a few times when patients with scheduled appointments would get up and leave because they were so tired of waiting. My longest wait was an hour and fifteen minutes.

For parents that had to bring their other children or grumpy partners to this appointment it was a nightmare. It got to be a sort of live entertainment and educational social experiment. I would watch the happy couple arrive alone or with their other child or children in tow, excited to learn how their unborn child was doing. As time progressed and they were still waiting, the couples would get grumpier and start snapping at each other. If they had children, their kids would start getting whiny and misbehaving. I remember wondering several times how all this stress was affecting the health of the unborn babies and their families.

I made sure to always schedule my appointments for when my other children were in school or if that wasn't possible I would find a babysitter. As my pregnancy progressed the wait times got longer and longer. It got so there wasn't just one or two couples with unhappy children but an entire room full of them. This started to stress me out. In an attempt to escape this I would sit in a far corner that was somewhat isolated. I seriously considered leaving my ob/gyn but he delivered four of my five children. I was sentimentally attached and he was a good doctor.

This post ran far longer than I intended it to and I'm sure I could add to it, but I feel lighter now that I've gotten over twenty years worth of complaints out of my system! What are your biggest complaints? Do you have any helpful hints for visiting the doctor? Please share them in the comments.

Guest Blogger: Points To Keep In Mind While Choosing An Umbrella Stroller


If you are a mother or father who always would like to give the best to your child, then there is no doubt that that you would like to take it around with the best of umbrella stroller. If you have a kid with special needs there is no doubt that choosing the right stroller would go a long way in making life easy for you and also for the little one. If you are keen on hitting the road for some fun and adventure there is no doubt that these strollers can well and truly come in handy. However, there are some points to be kept in mind while choosing these strollers. Let us try and find out more about it over the next few lines. First and foremost when you are planning to buy this item, you have to be very sure about the child’s size and weight. You have to bear in mind that even the best of strollers are not made for all children irrespective of their height and weight. There are some threshold limits beyond which the strollers will not work. Therefore you should be aware of this before buying it.

The next important point to take into account while buying these strollers is the end use for which they will be subjected to. The condition of the roads, the duration of such outings are all important points that should be kept in mind while choosing these strollers. If you are planning to move around on rough terrain then you may have to look for strollers with stronger wheels and a bigger wheel base. You could also look for special types of strollers if you are keen on jogging and hiking. These are specially suited for those parents who are keen on sharing their excitement and adventure with the little ones.

If you are keen on closing and stowing your stroller and carry it around then you may have to look for options that are made from light materials and which are easily foldable. The basic objective should be to look at strollers that are capable of performing this function. They should also be easy to refix and convert it into a folder within a few minutes. Hence you may have to find out the right source of information and then decide on the one that specifically suits certain needs and requirements. You must be prepared to gather information and look at several options before choosing the best one. 

Author Bio : Stella loves writing about baby care products and safety, currently she is working as a guest post author for www.doublestrollerhq.com.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wannabe Crunchy Wednesday: Climate Change...Fact or Myth? Part 1


There are several reasons to live a more crunchy lifestyle. For some it means living in a more simpler way. It can be a spiritual path. It is done for health reasons. It's done to be closer to nature. It is kinder to animals. It's a more sustainable lifestyle. And of course there's the big one...

It helps with climate change.

But is climate change an undeniable fact or is it a myth? If climate change is real, is it simply part of the natural cycle of the earth or is it caused by people?

I wanted to know the answers to these questions so I went to my local library and checked out several books and documentaries. I started to read the first book in my pile, Global Warming for Dummies, and realized it wasn't as simple as I wanted it to be. I wanted to be able to write a nice, neat post about whether or not climate change is real and what the definitive evidence is, but reading the book made me realize how ignorant I really am about the entire subject.

If someone were to quiz me on the evidence of why climate change is indeed real, I couldn't defend the position. I realized that I wanted to be able to explain to climate change deniers why I believe climate change is indeed real but I didn't have the knowledge to do so. I also wanted to be able to explain it to you.

Sure I could make a nice bullet list like this:
  • 97% of the worlds scientists believe climate change is real (NASA)
  • Extreme weather is being caused by climate change (NDRC)
  • Animals are affected by climate change (WWF)
  • Climate change is indeed created by people (OSS)
But I want to explore each topic individually in one or several posts. I want to explore questions like: Is it too late to save the planet from climate change? When are the most cataclysmic changes from climate change predicted to happen? I want to research these topics and present the evidence for and against it. I don't just want to make a bullet list.

I also want to write posts about the evidence that climate change deniers give. What do those other 3% of scientists believe? Why is the United States so behind on addressing climate change? 

I've never been the type of person to shove my beliefs down anyone's throat. I don't want to write this series standing on a holier than thou soap box proclaiming you must do these things or you're a bad parent! If I ever start doing that please call me out.

But I also don't want to be someone who suggests you recycle, become a vegetarian, or explore sustainability without explaining why these things are good for the planet. I've always been like a nagging child in that I ask "But why?" to everything. I want to be able to explain to you why it's good to live a crunchy lifestyle. 

Going Further
I won't just explore climate change either. I also will explore those reasons I gave earlier; living simpler, spirituality, improving health, and living closer to nature. I've never been so excited about a blogging series. It feels like an adventure to me and I thank you for joining me on it.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

When Your Toddler Isn't Talking Like She Should



My daughter had her second birthday on January 29th. She is a healthy toddler in all ways. Her pediatrician described her health as perfect at her check up. She can climb furniture, take her own clothes off and put them on, but there's one thing she doesn't seem to be doing. I don't think she's talking like she should.

She can say some words but she mostly babbles. She holds entire conversations in baby babble. She doesn't tell me when she is thirsty by saying milk, juice, or cup. Instead she hands me her empty cup. So she can only let me know she's thirsty if the cup is around. Nor will she tell me that she is hungry. When food is in front of her she will say "Num num" which is what she calls food but she has no way to indicate that she is hungry without food in front of her.

However, if you ask her where something is and she doesn't know she will say the full sentence "I don't know." She will shake her head yes or no when you ask her a question but she rarely will say the word "no" even though it was her very first word. She can also say "don't" but will only do so when she is really upset. The only word she consistently uses is "Mom." 

She used to say "kitty" whenever she saw the cats but now she has stopped saying the word. She used to say "nice" when she would pet the cats but she has stopped doing that too. In fact, it seems like all the words she used to say, she has stopped using.

I am so concerned that I brought it up with her pediatrician. The most frustrating thing is that the nurse who took Skylar's measurements and asked me about her development gave different talking milestones than the pediatrician. So even at her doctor's appointment I was confused as to what is normal.

Her pediatrician thinks there most likely isn't a problem but did find my concern about her speech valid and put in a request to a therapy company called First Steps. They are scheduled to come out next week for a consultation appointment but won't actually evaluate my daughter until the second appointment. It's frustrating to have to go through red tape just to get my daughter evaluated!

I've done hours of research on the internet about what is considered normal speech at 2 years old but for the most part this left me more confused than helped me. (If they can't even agree at the doctor's office what is normal for a 2 year old, what's a parent to do?) The milestones they give vary.

What I do know is that many of the milestones she should be able to do by 24 months, she hasn't reached. 

According to Babycenter my 2 year old should be able to:
  • Understand and respond to questions
  • Be able to say nouns like "spoon" or "car"
  • String words together to form sentences such as "carry me"
  • Use the word "me" to refer to herself
My daughter responds to questions and can string a few words together but the idea of her naming objects, asking to be carried or picked up, or saying me in reference to herself are things she's not even close to doing.

Parents says during the 2nd year a toddler should be able to:
  • Use 50 words regularly such as "more," "juice," and "grandma"
  • Link together words like "car go"
  • Use pronouns like "me" and "you"
  • Identify body parts
See here's where it gets confusing. Babycenter said a 2 year old should have already reached these milestones but Parents says these milestones should happen during the second year. (I could share more websites but let's not add to the confusion.) 

So if I gauge my daughter's speech ability by the first website, she is behind and is not where she should be, however when I read the milestones given at the second website I'm less worried because these are things she should learn to do during the second year. She's not even 25 months old yet so there should be no reason to worry, right?

The truth is I don't know. Using these internet resources just leaves me more confused than ever. This is why I want to have her evaluated. What I like about First Steps is that during my daughter's evaluation there will be two people there to do it. I will post about the results of her evaluation after it's done.

Was your child behind in speech? Do you suspect your child to be behind? Let me know and leave your experiences or concerns in the comments.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Still Here? Thanks to My Readers for Sticking Around


I know I haven't posted in awhile and I'm truly sorry. I want to thank all my regular readers for patiently waiting for me to return. I know this is "just a blog" but it means a lot to me. I'm actually pretty angry at myself for neglecting my blog the way that I have. It's downright unprofessional.

Here's why I've been neglecting the blog...

I can make excuses like I've been busy (I have), time got away from me (it did), my schedule has been crazy because my kids always seem to have school delays or snow days (they do), and my computer broke (it did).

All of those are true but the reality is I've been fighting my severe depression from coming back.  It always starts with me ignoring my blog. When I stop posting regularly I know I'm starting to slip into a severe depression again. If I don't start taking care of myself things will get bad.

I could have just started posting again like nothing had even happened but part of what has helped me get better is acceptance. For the longest time I would only talk about my struggle with mental illness on Alice in Borderland. It felt like if I talked about it here, then...I don't know what. I just didn't want to talk about it here. I didn't want to be judged. I didn't want people going "OMG, she's a parent with mental illness!?" 

That is exactly the kind of stigma I have become an advocate to fight against, I have a mental illness and I shouldn't feel like less of a person because of it. It's no different than diabetes, heart disease, or cancer. I can pretend the reason I haven't been posting is any of those other things, but that wouldn't be the truth.

This blog is important to me and I will be getting back to my regular scheduled posting but I wanted to explain what was going on with me.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Wannabe Chrunchy Wednesday: Green Christianity


I apologize for posting this week's edition of Wannabe Crunchy Wednesday a bit late. 
Last week I was on Overdrive and I borrowed a book called The Green Bible. I assumed the book was about different ways to live green. It was a delightful surprise to learn the book was actually a the Bible that focuses on green living.

Environmentalism, climate change, and green living is not something one would normally associate with Christianity. However, there has been a growing movement that has brought these two subjects together.

The Green Bible from Harper Bibles book description says:

Is God green? Did Jesus have anything to say about the environment? With over 1,000 references to the earth in the Bible, the message is clear. All of God's creation—nature, animals, and humanity—are inextricably linked to one another. As creation cares for us, we too are called to care for creation and engage in the work of healing and sustaining it. Read the scriptures anew with The Green Bible as your guide and discover how caring for the earth is not only a calling, but also a lifestyle. 


There is an accompanying Green Bible devotional. Here is the book description:

THE GREEN BIBLE  has struck a nerve in the religious and environmental community as it highlights in green over 1,000 verses in the Bible that speak directly to how we should think and act as we confront the environmental crisis facing our planet. THE GREEN BIBLE DEVOTIONAL will focus on these "green-letter" passages in the Bible, using them as a starting point to lead readers into sixty daily readings that provide a biblical understanding of caring for creation.
Each reading will give depth to the issue of environmental awareness and will be organized by the following six concerns: clean water, clean air, responsible use of land, protection for animals, health for all humanity, and our role as stewards of God′s good earth. Structured by these themes, each reading will begin with a green-letter passage of scripture, a meditation, and a prayer. For those unfamiliar with what the Bible has to say about the environment or for Christians who want to better understand their role in caring for the earth, THE GREEN BIBLE DEVOTIONAL will provide meaning and hope in humanity′s role towards a sustainable world.

There is also Earth Gospel: A Guide to Prayer for God's Creation by Sam Hamilton-Poore. The book description says: 

Do something for the environment - pray. The icecaps are melting. The air we breathe and water we drink are polluted. Forests are being cleared of oxygen-making trees and ecosystem-integral wildlife. Our daily lives impact our earth - mostly leaving negative footprints. The environmental challenges we face are real and almost out of control. We're free to enjoy the earth's bounty and beauty, but that privilege brings responsibility. How are Christians to respond as stewards of God's creation? Explore through prayer the interconnecting love that binds God, humankind and creation - forming a sacred trust. Hamilton-Poore found himself thinking about nature and preservation while being drawn to a certain riverside when he lived in Iowa. "...Every time I came within sight or sound of the river, I found myself in prayer," he writes. "'Wading into Willow Creek' was like walking into a sanctuary where a divine liturgy was already in progress - a liturgy that the creation itself was singing to its Creator. I experienced myself and creation 'held' in the hands of Christ, the 'first-born of all creation,' who holds together all life, all creation." He came to realize that loving God means also loving God's creation. Christian love-in-action on behalf of the earth is essential. How we live should be informed and shaped by prayer, and how we pray should be informed and shaped by how we live. God's beloved creation is groaning. May we rediscover hope and be led to a renewal of prayer and action on behalf of our home. Tread lightly.


Serve God, Save the Planet: A Christian Call to Action by J. Matthew Sleeth M.D. is described as:

Not long ago, J. Matthew Sleeth had a fantastic life and a great job as chief of the medical staff at a large hospital. He was living the American dream—until he saw an increasing number of his patients suffering from cancer, asthma, and other chronic diseases. He began to suspect that the Earth and its inhabitants were in deep trouble. Turning to Jesus for guidance, Sleeth discovered how the scriptural lessons of personal responsibility, simplicity, and stewardship could be applied to modern life. The Sleeths have since sold their big home and given away more than half of what they once owned. In Serve God, Save the Planet, Sleeth shares the joy of adopting a less materialistic, healthier lifestyle, stronger relationships, and richer spiritual lives. With the storytelling ease of James Herriot and the logical clarity of C. S. Lewis, Sleeth lays out the rationale for environmentally responsible life changes and a how-to guide for making those changes. “Creation is groaning. And Matthew Sleeth has responded. Serve God, Save the Planet is not an alarmist call of despair, but a hopeful invitation to re-imagine the way we live. Sleeth’s words have the urgency of an ER crisis coupled with the deep faith that the Church is ready to join God in healing the wounded world.” --Shane Claiborne, activist and author of The Irresistible Revolution.

Friday, January 16, 2015

FriD.I.Y. Control Journals


The project for this week is not a craft. Instead I will be sharing how to make a Control Journal which is a manual for your household and routines.

I have always loved Flylady and have used her routines for many years. The number one tool that I use from her book and website is the Control Journal. 

The Control Journal is your own personal manual for listing and keeping track of your routines. My Control Journal also has important phone numbers, my short term and long term goals, menu plans, and a section for house hold tips and advice. 

You can use a notebook or bound blank book for your control journal. I use a binder so I can add or remove sections or move them around. 

My first Control Journal was the premade one that Flylady sells. However, over the years I have created my own pages for it using my computer but they have always been based on the original Control Journal pages.

You don't need to buy the premade pages. Step by step instructions for making a Control Journal can be found here as well as suggested sections for the journal. 

I love the idea of adding a spiritual section and think I will make a section for all my usernames and passwords because I constantly forgetting them. 

These instructions are for the main Control Journal but Flylady also has free premade focused Control Journals. There is one for finances, the holidays, students, office, packing, Camp GonnaWannaFly, home maintenance, teachers, and college students.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Crunchy, Scrunchy, or Silky and a Series Mission Statement



While I was researching what it means to be "crunchy" I came across three different terms; silky, crunchy, and scrunchy. What I found wasn't so much definitions as a list of how each type of person parents, various interests they may have, and differences in beliefs and lifestyle. 

You may recognize this as a post that I have written before but I decided to research a little deeper and have expanded the list considerably and provided resources. This updated extensive list provides and overview of topics I will be exploring in this blog series. 

What is a silky parent?
A silky parent likely:
  • gives birth at a hospital using modern medicine (including drugs) and an OB/GYN
  • disposes of the placenta and cord (but may take advantage of modern medicine and store the cord blood)
  • bottle feeds
  • uses disposable diapers
  • is pro-circumcision 
  • is pro-vaccination 
  • follows traditional parenting and medical advice  
  • uses antibiotics and other drugs to treat illness
  • uses traditional baby furniture and toys
  • uses the cry it out method
  • does traditional spoon feeding
  • does traditional potty training
  • uses traditional methods of discipline such as scolding and spanking
  • doesn't care if food has GMOs, is free range, is local, etc.
  • buys most products out of convenience 
  • uses plastic containers, bottles, etc.
  • drives everywhere and doesn't care if their automobile is green (and may refer to small smart cars snidely as micro machines)
  • sends kids to public school 
  • practices little or no green or natural living
  • spends time outside only for recreation not for enjoying nature
  • has political views that are conservative or Republican
  • does not believe global warming is real or man made or doesn't care
  • is in favor of the status quo, established order, and in favor of capitalism
  • favors marriage, traditional family values, and traditional gender roles
  • has traditional religious views and values organized religion

    What is crunchy parent?
    A crunchy parent likely: 
    • has a natural birth usually at home using a midwife or doula
    • waits to cut the cord until it has stopped throbbing
    • eats the placenta or turns it into pill form
    • has adjusted or altered their lifestyle for environmental reasons
    • practices natural living
    • uses alternative and natural medicine
    • practices gentle parenting and gentle discipline
    • uses elimination communication (EC)
    • is against circumcising
    • is against vaccinating completely or does selective vaccination
    • practices babywearing 
    • breastfeeds (usually for at least a full year and may do extended breastfeeding)
    • does baby led weaning
    • bed shares 
    • uses cloth diapering
    • practices attachment parenting
    • homeschools or unschools
    • does homesteading and may slaughter animals for own food
    • or instead be a vegetarian, vegan, and avoids any non-food item made with animal products or that is tested on animals
    • refuses to use plastic products
    • drives as little as possible or drives a smart car
    • recycles
    • practices green living
    • makes a conscious effort to spend time in nature
    • has progressive, Democratic, or third party political views
    • doesn't believe in traditional marriage or gender roles (and may be a feminist)
    • may be anti-establishment, against consumerism, or have anarchist tendencies
    • may reject organized religion in favor of alternative religion (usually earth spirituality)

    What is a scrunchy parent? 
    A parent who is a mixture of crunchy and silky

    My Crunchy Series Mission Statement
    Because I am researching how to live a more crunchy lifestyle and am not yet a practitioner, I will be presenting the pros and cons of the opposing views. I have no interest in convincing you one way or the other what to believe or what to practice, however do expect the series to share ways to live a crunchier lifestyle. For example. I will not tell you whether or not you should circumcise or vaccinate your child but I will share the latest research on the topics. I will not try to convince you that global warming is an indisputable fact, but I will present the conclusions experts have made and share ways you can make the world a greener place. Nor will I tell you that you should become a vegetarian but I will explain the benefits of doing so.

    I've been living a very silky lifestyle and don't expect to change overnight. This blog series will be about learning how to make gradual changes in one's lifestyle. It's not about becoming someone I'm not nor is it about judging people who live differently. I also don't want to guilt trip anyone for living a silky lifestyle. 

    It's important for me to state these things from the very beginning. It's for myself as well as you. I'm not out to prove anything or change anyone. I want to have a mission statement to refer back to because I have no idea where this adventure is going to take me or how it will affect me. I don't know if I'll still parent or live the same way after doing this series but I do know I want to remain authentic and judgment free.

    Friday, January 9, 2015

    FriD.I.Y. How to Make a Casserole or Pie Dish Carrier


    Welcome to the first ever FriD.I.Y meme! This is something I have been wanting to do for a long time now. Each week I will post a D.I.Y. project. Right now I am doing projects and tutorials I find around the web but hopefully in the near future I will post some of my own D.I.Y. projects. 

    I was on Facebook last week when I found this wonderful vine of a casserole/pie dish carrier. Please note you do need to be signed into a Facebook profile to view the vine.

    Fortunately underneath it someone had posted a Youtube tutorial on how to make it. The tutorial video is done by The Crafty Gemini. She has a blog as well.


    Let me know what you think of this project in the comments. Also if there are any specific projects you'd like me to post about please let me know in the comments.

    Wednesday, January 7, 2015

    Announcing a New Weekly Meme: Wannabe Crunchy Wednesday


    Announcing this new meme is bittersweet for me. It's bitter because I am discontinuing Widowed Wednesday and sweet because it is a topic I have been wanting to explore on a regular basis for a long time.

    I've decided to discontinue Widowed Wednesday because this was never a topic I could get into writing about and because I've been a widow nearly a decade. I know it shouldn't matter how long I have been a widow but it just isn't a topic I want to write about on a regular basis anymore. I'm sure I will still write about being a widow on occasion, but I just don't want to hash through what being a widow means every week. It's just too depressing. I can't write about something I don't feel any enthusiasm for.

    So I have set my sights on a topic that will be a bit challenging for me. Hence the title "Wannabe Crunchy Wednesday." I am not a crunchy mom but I want to be and am very excited about this weekly meme. I have not yet earned the title of "crunchy" so I will refer to myself as a "wannabe" for now. Maybe down the road, if I get a handle on this crunchy thing and actually make it a lifestyle, I will change the title.

    I also know that there are a lot of people that are going to be turned off by this topic, but the good news is since the posts will always be on Wednesday you will know when to avoid my blog. (But I'm hoping you won't and will learn a little about being crunchy along with me.)

    What does it mean to be crunchy?
    Urban Dictionary describes it as:
    Adjective. Used to describe persons who have adjusted or altered their lifestyle for environmental reasons. Crunchy persons tend to be politically strongly left-leaning and may be additionally but not exclusively categorized as vegetarians, vegans, eco-tarians, conservationists, environmentalists, neo-hippies, tree huggers, nature enthusiasts, etc.

    The good news is I won't be discussing any politics on here but I will be discussing green living, nature enthusiasm, simple living, vegetarianism and whatever else catches my interest about being crunchy. I'm new to this topic so I can't honestly say what I will be blogging about. (I have a whole list of blogs in my blogroll to show me the ropes.)

    I am really excited about this meme. It will definitely be a learn as I go journey and I hope you will join me. I went through the archives and found the first article I wrote on the topic where I talk about what it means to be silky, scrunchy, or crunchy.

    If you hate this weekly meme, you may like a different new one I am starting. I also am going to be doing a DIY weekly meme called FriD.I,Y. where I blog about different craft, home decorative, or beauty DIY projects on Fridays, so look for that meme coming soon! 

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