Me, really?

June 28, 2010 at 3:29 pm (Random rantings)

When I started this blog, it was mostly just an online diary.  I never really thought anyone wold read it.  A week or so ago, a moderator from JustMommies.com suggested that I should consider applying to blog for the website.  I did, and they chose me!  Woo Hoo!  It’s truly so flattering to even be asked.  I’ve never really fancied myself a writer, but I guess I must not me too bad at it.

When I first found out I was pregnant with Junior, I needed to find a place where women were going through the same things.  I wanted to learn from real women what was normal and what to expect.  I found JustMommies in June ’07 and I’ve been an active member ever since.  I joined the Jan ’08 DDC (Due Date Club).  It was a group of women who all had due dates that month.  We went through morning sickness together, sleepless nights both before and after having our babies, labor, first baths, rolling over, and everything since then.  I’ve never met any of these women in real life, but I consider them my friends.

To be asked to blog for a website like JustMommies that I respect so much, is truly an honor.  It’s a place where I’ve felt so loved, welcomed and not-crazy for the last three years.  I can only hope that I can help someone else feel those same things.

Advertisements

Permalink Leave a Comment

Heath Bar Cheesecake

June 22, 2010 at 4:49 am (Food)

I wanted cheesecake the other day, and I”m in love with this new recipe.  I figured I’d share!  Don’t be afraid of cheesecake.  It’s really not that hard.  It’s not quick, but the results will be worth it!

Crust:

1 package chocolate graham crackers, crushed (just the individual package in side the box, about 9 crackers, I think)

1/3 cup butter, melted

1/4 cup sugar

Filling:

4 (8oz) packages of cream cheese

1 1/4 cups sugar

2 Tbsp flour

1/4 cup heavy cream

4 whole eggs

2 egg yolks

2 tsp vanilla

1 package of Heath Toffee bits (I found them in a bag near the chocolate chips)

1. Leave all of the filling ingredients out on the counter for about an hour.  They’ll mix together better this way.

2. Preheat oven to 350*.  Mix together the crust ingredients and press into the bottom of a 9″ springform pan.  Bake for ten minutes.

3. In a small bowl, mix eggs, yolks, vanilla and cream together, set aside.  In a large bowl, mix cream cheese, sugar and flour together.  Gradually add in egg mixture.  Gently fold in the toffee bits.

4. Pour over crust in spring form pan.  If you have a pan large enough to put the springform into (and at least 2″ tall), you can bake your cheesecake in a water bath, which is my first choice; if you don’t, don’t sweat it.

5. For water bath baking: set the springform pan on a large single piece of 18″ foil.  This must be a single piece, otherwise water will get through.  Wrap the edges of the foil up the sides of the pan, but not over.  Set into your larger pan.  Add water about half way up the side of the springform.

6. Baking with or without a water bath: Bake cheesecake for one hour at 350*.  DON’T OPEN THE OVEN.  Turn off the heat and leave it alone for 2 hours.  Remove your cheesecake from the oven and refrigerate it at least 2 hours (preferably longer) before unpanning and cutting.

7. ENJOY!

The reasons for the water bath and leaving it in the oven so long is simple: cracks.  Cheesecakes crack for two reasons.  One is when cheesecakes heat quickly and end up with peaks that will fall and crack upon cooling.  The water in a water bath will allow the cheesecake to heat more evenly and reduce this risk.  The other reason for cracks is cooling a cheesecake too quickly.  After baking one hour, the cheesecake will probably not be 100% baked, but leaving it in the warm oven will finish off the baking and help it to cool slowly.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Kim Kardashian’s Breastfeeding Tweet

June 22, 2010 at 4:19 am (Random rantings)

I’m usually not one for following celebrity nonsense, especially people who are celebrities just for being celebrities.  This story really caught my attention and I can’t help but not comment on it.  Kim Kardashian (who’s sister has a baby boy she BF’s) made a comment on her Twitter that blew me away…

“EWW Im at lunch,the woman at the table next 2 me is breast feeding her baby w no coverup then puts baby on the table and changes her diaper”

This is a woman who poses provocatively for photos, including a nude pictorial in Playboy.  She’s ok with her breasts being exposed in a sexual fashion, but not for breastfeeding, which, of course, is what they’re intended for.  I’m a big breasted woman, and when I BF’ed Junior, less of my breasts were exposed then if I wore a skimpy bikini (which I could buy at any store and nobody would stop me for that).

I know that not everybody is comfortable with women nursing in public, but I’ve never said anything to a woman formula feeding her baby.  I would love for every baby to be breastfed.  I think the world would be a lot less squeamish of BF’ing.  Before I get jumped on, let me clarify.  I would love to see every baby breastfed, but that’s a perfect world.  We don’t live in a perfect world.  Sometimes BF’ing doesn’t work out or isn’t the best choice for a certain family, and that’s ok.  I would just love to see some of those extenuating circumstances reduced.  If women who went back to work quickly were encouraged to pump at work, maybe they wouldn’t have to switch to formula to keep up with their baby’s needs.  And maybe if more OBGYNs and pediatricians were better trained in BF’ing, new mothers would get better information and would have better luck.  But sometimes, it just doesn’t work.  Sometimes a mother’s milk just doesn’t come in, or a baby has a medical issue that makes BF’ing impossible.  I get that.

I just still find it a little sad that exposing breasts for sexual interests is not a big deal, but heaven forbid a woman do the natural thing a feed her baby.  I guess its just a touchy subject for me.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Playgroup

June 21, 2010 at 9:23 pm (Random rantings)

A while ago, Junior and I (well, mostly just me!) were going stir-crazy in the house every day.  We needed to get out and do stuff once in a while.  And I need time with grownups that isn’t at work.  I found a moms group on meetup.com and it’s awesome.  I get some serious anxiety when I meet new people.  The first few meetups I went to, I was freaked out.  I was totally sure everybody would hate me.  I just decided to go and enjoy it.  More than anything, I wanted Junior to have fun and meet friends.  So, I put on my big girl panties and went.

These girls are awesome.  They welcomed me with open arms and most of all, they love Junior.  He loves to play with the other kids and that’s something he doesn’t get at home.  After only being a member of the group for a few months, they’ve asked me to be an event organizer.  I was honored for women I hardly know to trust me enough to organize events at my own will, for them to want to come to events I host, for them to want to learn things from me.  It reminded me that I’m not so bad.

Permalink Leave a Comment

Updates on life in Mommyland

June 19, 2010 at 6:02 am (Uncategorized)

No, I’m not pregnant, yet anyway.  AF is still a couple of days away, so really, it still remains to be seen.  I got a BFN today, but it’s early yet.  I don’t feel pregnant and I honestly don’t really think I am, but I’m still optimistic (cautiously, at any rate).  Hey, it could happen!

Junior is a riot.  He’s always got me laughing.  He comes up with these random things sometimes.  Today he was messing with the blinds for the thousandth time.  I told him he’s not allowed to touch them.  This evening when Hubs was closing the blinds, Junior says “No touch blinds!  Not OK!”

And don’t get me started on potty training!  Junior is a BIG fan of being naked.  During which time, he’s totally cool to go sit on the potty.  As soon as he has a diaper on, he won’t tell us if he needs to go.  Everybody says “just put underwear on him”.  My kid is very comfortable in his own skin; he rips them off as soon as they are on.  Aside from duct tape, I’m not really sure how to keep underwear on him.  And that creates issues with getting to the potty in time.  Hmm… I guess I’ll have to rethink that tactic.

Hubs’ new job is great.  Even though the pay is certainly less than we were hoping for, he’s been more than making up for it in overtime.  They love him there, which is always a good sign.  I willing be subbing a few days this summer at the culinary school I attended.  It’s always an honor to get asked to come back and teach, even if it is only a few days.  Teaching there full-time would literally be my dream job.  Hubs and I could actually work similar schedules and get to see each other once in a while.  Wouldn’t that be lovely?  Wait… I might want to rethink that too…

Permalink Leave a Comment

“Kids on Race”

June 7, 2010 at 6:24 am (Random rantings)

I just watched the “Kids on Race” show Anderson Copper did on CNN (I found it on youtube).  It’s genuinely heartbreaking.  They took, I think, 130 kids in 2 age groups, 4-5 and 9-10, and asked them a series of questions like “which kid is the bad kid?”, “which kid do teachers like better?”, and “which kid do other kids want to be friends with?”.  The kids participating had a card with a cartoon kid repeated 5 times, each picture was the same other than the skin colors which varied from very light skinned to very dark.  Overwhelmingly, the kids pointed out the lighter pictures for the positive attributes and the darker ones for the negative attributes.  The kids in the survey were black and white, from the North and the South, and varying economic backgrounds.

I forget exactly what the question was, but it pertained to one of the negative attributes, but one set of responses really struck me as 76% of the kids attributed one of these negative questions to the two darkest skin tones.  76%!  The white kids were most likely to attribute the negative questions to the darkest skin tones.  What really struck me as sad though was that even the majority of the black kids gave the same answers.  Even the four and five year black kids pointed out that teachers and classmates like the white kids better.  It’s bringing tears to my eyes right now just thinking about it again.  What are we doing to our kids?

Clearly, we need to do a better job of teaching kids not to think negatively of kids who look different than themselves, but part of me feels like there’s another issue on the table too.  It tears me up that these kids feel bad about who they are.  One of the younger black girls, who was must have been four or five, was later interviewed about one of the questions she answered.  The question was about one of the positive attributes, to which she pointed out one of the lighter pictures.  When she was asked why, she said that the lighter skin looked better.  Then, she pointed out when of the darker pictures and mentioned that it looked like her.  She said that one wasn’t attractive because it had dark skin like hers and used the word “nasty” to describe her skin.  I cried.

I’m white.  I grew up in suburbia with two working parents, a brother and a dog.  I went to middle/upper-middle class schools.  I never experienced racism.  There were a few minority kids, and I never felt any different about them than any of my other classmates and I never saw anyone else treat them any different.  I think the Pacific Northwest is generally a pretty welcoming place, so that probably made a difference too.  I honestly didn’t know how prevalent racism was/is until I got older and branched out of my little pocket a bit.

Hubs is Korean.  He moved to Guam with his family as a kid and came to the US a few years later.  I can’t imagine the things he’s felt and heard.  As a kid living in Arizona, older kids would drive by and yell racial slurs at him.  He was the only Asian kid in his school.  He constantly felt like the odd one out.  In middle school, his family moved to the Northwest.  Suddenly, he was surrounded by a diverse group of people.  But more importantly, accepting people.  People who didn’t make him feel like his ethnicity made him a lesser person and people who didn’t make assumptions about who he was.  At least, people who didn’t openly do these things.  It’s not like he’s never experienced racism here, but it hasn’t been overt, open, unabashed negativity.

Maybe as racism slowly becomes more and more the minority, more bigoted people will keep their negativity to themselves.  Maybe then, these kids can have more confidence in themselves.  My husband stopped speaking his native language as a child to try and fit in.  Now, we can’t teach Junior Korean unless we learn it first.  I want Junior to be proud of who is, not to feel like he needs to hide it.  He should be proud to be the child of a man who has gone from living in a mud house to living in America.  It’s that why Hubs’ family came here in the first place?  Isn’t that why so many families did?  To make a life to be proud of.

I’m all for being proud of who you are, but we always need to remember to be proud of who other people are, what they’ve done and where they’ve come from.  Only then, can we really hope to move beyond racism.

Permalink Leave a Comment

The lowdown on babymaking…

June 2, 2010 at 7:42 pm (Baby making, Family, Junior)

No, I’m not pregnant.  Yes, we’re still trying.  I decided I was getting a little crazy about planning everything and not just enjoying it.  So, now we’re sort of NTNP, although I am paying attention to when I’m expecting to ovulate.  The last couple of months, I got really bummed seeing all those BFNs, and I don’t want to keep doing that to myself.

Hubs got pretty bummed over it too.  I think he felt bad that I was getting disappointed.  Not that he doesn’t want another baby, but he’s more of the “it will happen when it happens” type of guy.

Right now, we’re just enjoying Junior and lots of fun time with just the three of us.  We took Jr bowling for the first time last weekend.  That was interesting.  Jr did impressively well and had an awesome time, but reminding a 2.5 year old to wait his turn and watch out for other bowlers was difficult.  We’re definitely going to be going again!

Permalink Leave a Comment

Corndog muffins

June 2, 2010 at 7:34 pm (Food)

Junior LOVES cornbread and hotdogs, so I decided to make my own versions of corndogs this afternoon and they are fabulous!

This recipe makes 48 minimuffins.  I bet the extras would probably freeze pretty well or you could just eat them all!

  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup flour (I used half whole wheat and half all-purpose because I like the nuttiness of the wheat)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup corn (I just used drained, canned corn)
  • 6 hotdogs, cut each into 8 slices

Mix together all ingredients besides hotdogs.  Lightly grease the bottoms of your minimuffin tins (I used a new non-stick pan and didn’t bother with greasing it.  They came out just fine).  Fill each space about half full of the cornmuffin mixture.  Push a chunk of hotdog into each.  Be sure the hotdog is completely covered as the muffin won’t cover is while baking otherwise.  Bake at 400* for 10 minutes.  Allow them to cool for a couple of minutes and enjoy!

Permalink Leave a Comment