The Thing About Millennials

bizarro_comic_millenials_workplace_baby boomers_silent generation_hashtaggovegan_#govegan

I’ve been hearing for the past few years that Millennials are lazy, narcissistic, entitled  people who are ruining everything the previous generations worked so hard for.  Millennials, previously referred to as Generation Y, are the ones who were born in the early 1980’s through about mid-1990’s (some places say early 2000’s as well).  I’m not going to get into social media or the increase in depression/anxiety in this age group.  But I came to the realization recently about the bad-rap we get.

First off, here are the names of the current generations*:

  • Gen Z, iGen, or Centennials: Born 1996 and later
  • Millennials or Gen Y: Born 1977 to 1995
  • Generation X: Born 1965 to 1976
  • Baby Boomers: Born 1946 to 1964
  • Traditionalists or Silent Generation: Born 1945 and before

*There are some discrepancies on specific start/end years but for the most part it’s fairly accurate.

This all started when my husband and I were having a discussion about parenting for Baby Boy (BB) and previous generations and their parenting styles.

First I’ll start out saying every generation wants things better for their children than it was for them.  Think back to your childhood.  I’m sure there are things you liked about how you were raised that you want to continue for your children and things you didn’t like that you’d like to stop. For example, spanking.  The Silent Generation used to spank their kids often as a form of punishment. Some Baby Boomers (my parents included) did not like that from their own childhood so they decided not to continue that parenting style for their children.  Now most Millennials (me), wouldn’t even fathom spanking our kids. (Yes there are some people who still parent like that; please see “Share if you (insert childhood trauma/danger here) and lived” section of the internet. This is my personal feelings and viewpoint).

So this Silent Generation either came home from the war or the younger of the generation who didn’t have a war enlisted, served and came back to have their children.  These Baby Boomers were raised under a strict, male-dominated household.  It was a lot of “wait until your father gets home”.  When the Baby Boomers became parents they created more of an equal household. (I know this in’t how all households where run but mine definitely was). Some may have kept the strictness some may have not but the all raised their kids differently. These are the Millennials.  These are the ones who were told they were special.  These are the ones who got trophies for participation.

I keep hearing over and over (usually from the youngest of the Silent Generation) how this is ridiculous-how people my age aren’t willing to work for things and that their parent’s always come to their rescue.  To be quite honest, I’m getting pretty sick of hearing this (hence the reason for this blog post).

Did anyone ever stop and think that maybe the reason we were raised that way was because the Baby Boomers wanted that from their parents? That they were made to feel unimportant. That they wanted more support from their parents.

I’m not blaming any generation for their parenting flaws; each generation wants to do better than the previous, including me. I want my kids to know they are special. I want them to be able to come to me when they need me-when they’re scared, or upset, or excited.  I want them to work at things in their life and make themselves proud of what they’ve accomplished.  But at the same time I wont hesitate to help them when they need it. I want them to play outside like I did as a kid.  I want them to not be addicted to screens like it seems a lot of kids are these days.

It’s a different world than the Baby Boomers were raised in and completely different from the Silent Generation and I feel like I’m going to do a pretty darn good job.  Parents criticize parents, just look at any comment section. We should just try to believe that every parent is just trying to do what is best for their kids, based on their experiences. And our kids…they’re going to conquer the world.

lets raise children who wont have to recover from their childhoods_pam leo_#govegan_millennials

Check out this Buzzfeed article for more evidence!

Also, this article is hilarious!

 

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Brain Food

#govegan_blueberries_brain food_alzheimers_panara_vegan.jpg

I was really excited to see this article posted on Huffington Post.  I thought I was going to learn a bunch of new information but in the first [paragraph I saw “we partnered with our friends at Panera” and was immediately turned off. Whenever a company partners for something that doesn’t seem like an ad…it’s an ad and they’re trying to get something out of it.

So hopefully you learn something from this. If not, enjoy the sarcasm…

“Avocados specifically are another great way to get the blood flowing. According to research conducted at Penn State, the good fats in avocados have been linked to reduced levels of LDL, aka ‘bad cholesterol.”

Good thing they’re trending among the hipsters! I kid! I kid! Avocados are a great for you!

“They even found that incorporating good avocado fats might be even more beneficial than simply cutting fats out altogether”

SMDH (Shaking my damn head)…Seriously? MIGHT be even more beneficial. Might? How about IS?! Our bodies need fat. The problem is that we’ve been getting an over abundance of BAD fats, like those found in milk, creamers, cheeses, meat, sugar, etc., hence the ‘low-fat’/’no-fat’ products.  So people just automatically think that fat=bad, which is so not the case.  “Low/no-fat” is just another term for “chemical shit-storm”. There is nothing natural about what is being used to replace the fat.  Good fats come in the forms of avocados, coconuts, olive oil, nuts/seeds, etc. These fill you up and give your body the nutrients it needs while also not leaving you feeling heavy, sickly-full, or leaving the residue behind to clog up your arteries.

One study found that delicious blueberries improved memory function in older adults with early memory decline

This info has been out for a while now…I learned this in my high school psychology class and from my recent post about turning 30, we know that was 14 years ago so thanks for that ‘new’ information.

These next two facts I did find interesting:

Broccoli is another great brain food due to its high levels of choline, a chemical found in the brain shown in laboratory studies to be essential in early brain development, as well as positive effects for older individuals who might be at risk for general memory loss and Alzheimer’s

Hurray for broccoli!

As for foods best taken in moderation, be wary of salty snacks and sauces, which have been shown to increase hypertension which restricts blood flow to the brain. Soy sauce, for instance, contains up to forty percent of your recommended daily sodium intake in a single tablespoon. Some sodium in the diet is totally fine, but eating too many sodium-packed foods can impair focus, organizational skills, and memory. When available go for the low-sodium option to keep your mind sharp.

Obviously we know too much salt is bad, especially over processed table salt, and that it’s insanely easy to over eat because of packaged foods (even sauces, broths, ice creams…) but I was surprised that it can impact your focus, organization, and memory. Do you think that the reason there is so much sodium in foods is done purposefully to affect people’s brains? Am I asking a rhetorical question?

I noticed through the majority of this article that they’re toting non-animal product food as being the best for your brain (side note…why aren’t walnuts mentioned?). The only animal product they mention is tuna and how that should only be in moderation…what about other kinds of meat? Can’t mention that because Panara makes a ton of money off oh ‘healthy’ meats?

Doing more research I decided to go to Panara’s website and holy shit you guys! So I clicked on their soups and they’re shown with a really nice picture and the amount of calories next to it (because that’s all that people are concerned about). I decided to check out a pretty neutral one which the Low-fat Vegetarian Garden Vegetable Soup with Pesto seemed like a good choice. The ingredients look ok minus ‘natural flavorings’, canola oil, and animal products…oh and the fact that they’re not organic but anyway. The amount of sodium in one bowl of this soup? 750 mg! One cup of the soup is 500 mg. Screw the calories, THAT is a problem! Why am I concerned about the sodium? Because the called out how bad salt is for you in the f-ing article!

In fact out of their 316 menu items 167 items are 500 mg of sodium or more and 51 of them are over 1000 mg of sodium.

That 316 menu items includes drinks, salad dressings, and cream cheese spreads so if you take those out (78 drink options, 18 dressings, and 12 cream cheeses) that equals a total of 208 menu items that are ‘food’ items which include sandwiches, salads, pastries, soups, etc.  In doing those calculations using the 208 menu items, 80.3% of them contain 500 mg of sodium per item. 24.5% are over 1000 mg.

It varies but it looks like the general consensus is 2300 mg of sodium is recommended per day (1500 mg for people over 51, have high blood pressure, diabetes, or a chronic disease).  That means that if you get their large bowl of mac and cheese at 2450 mgs of sodium you’re over your daily limit.

No where on their website does Panara mention that they’re a healthy alternative to traditional fast food. Which is probably good because they’d totally get sued.  However, they know what they’re doing and they know what people think of them.  Many people, my past-self included, thought this was a ‘healthy’ option to Culver’s.

Please be wary of restaurants making themselves seem like a good alternative over another (looking at you too Subway) and do some research for yourself before just assuming they’re a healthier option (ahem McDonald’s salads or yogurt parfaits ahem).

In closing, staying close to nature, knowing what’s in your food, and staying away from animal products will make your brain and body function at its highest potential. And you don’t need a restaurant-funded study to prove it to you.

A Letter to the Wonderful Politicians

#govegan_wild horses_trump_environment_national parks_conservation_vegan.jpg

Dear Politicians (all of you…on both sides),

I’m just sick…

Sick after hearing the current administration wants to sell off protected land that belongs to our national parks.

Sick after the approval of the Dakota pipeline which DID end up leaking.

Sick after reading this article and seeing it’s more of the same.

You snuck it into the 2018 budget plan…the removal of the protection of wild horses and burrows because according to the author “apparently, it’s more convenient to kill defenseless horses than to responsibly address a man-made problem in their management.” Yep…that’s not shocking. You’re only about money.

“The BLM’s primary argument – that insufficient rangeland for horses and burros necessitates their inevitable removal and slaughter – is incredibly hypocritical. It’s by the BLM’s own hand that these lands have been repurposed for the cattle industry and other uses, and the BLM has, for decades, been using helicopters to terrify, round-up, and remove tens of thousands of wild horses and burros.

These actions are in complete contradiction to the spirit of the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971, which was enacted to not only protect wild horses and burros from harassment and death, but also to preserve the federal land these animals inhabit.”

The original Act was enacted was because someone over-hunted the wild bison in this country…who was that again? Oh yeah, the rich white men who pushed the true indigenous people out of their land because ‘everything the light touches belongs to me’. And you call millennials entitled.

The land and national resources belong to everyone and it’s not ok to sell these protected ares to the highest bidder, these horses and burrows are included.

It’s one of my dreams in life to see wild horses in their natural habitat, ever since I watched the Disney movie Horse Sense when I was a kid. And I plan on being able to do that one day and my kids and their kids being able to also. You can’t take this away from us.

I am going to teach my kids to have an appreciation and love for nature. They are going to understand that there are more important things than money, like love, family, friendship, nature, and experiences.

And guess what? One day, you’re going to die. Guess what else? This next generation knows there are more important things than money. The world you think you’re creating…it’s not going to stick, (#sorrynotsorry). These national treasures, some of the most beautiful places on this earth, will be here for generations to come.

Sincerely,

#GoVegan

C is for Cookie

#govegan_cookies_cookie monster_recipe_vegan

Guys I did a thing! I made cookies!

I found this recipe literally on Pinterest. There was no link. It was a photo that someone uploaded with the instructions below. I haven’t baked in a while and with BB (Baby Boy) that becomes more difficult but I thought I could do this recipe easily. *Full disclosure-I had to do it on two separate days because BB wasn’t cooperating* And I don’t have pictures from the mixing process because I wasn’t sure it’d turn out.

#govegan_oatmeal_chocolate_cookies_recipe_vegan_easy

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups oatmeal, blended in a food processor to make a flour
6 ounces pure maple syrup
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup chocolate chips

Blend the oatmeal in the food processor to desired consistency (mine was a little more ‘oaty’ than ‘floury’). Measure the 2 cups and put in bowl. Mix in the syrup and salt. Stir in chocolate chips.  The consistency will be different than standard cookie dough.

#govegan_oatmeal_chocolate_cookies_recipe_vegan_easy_2

Then put in fridge and play with BB and save for another day. Oh wait…that’s just me.

Cook for 10-15 minutes at 350 degrees. The cookies will stay together better than the dough makes it seem once they’ve been cooked. I used a medium scoop from Pampered Chef to get the same sized cookies (also works great to do one handed while holding BB).

#govegan_oatmeal_chocolate_cookies_recipe_vegan_easy_1

Makes about 12-14 cookies after you’ve sampled some dough.  I also used parchment paper because I’m lazy and don’t like clean-up.

They turned out super yummy! I probably wouldn’t use as much syrup next time but otherwise definitely plan on making these again!

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Vacuum Up the Fluff

butterfly_monarch_etsy_#govegan_earrings

I came across this posted in a Facebook group.

butterfly wings 2

Card reads:
Butterfly: Danaes Plexippus/Monarch
Origin: North/South America
Monarch butterflies go through 4 generations each year. The first 3 hatch from their cocoon and live up to 6 weeks.  The 4th generation lives 6 or 8 months and is the only insect that migrates up to 2,500 miles to escape the cold weather for hibernation.

butterfly wings

Back of card:
Our butterflies live a full life and are collected after their natural passing in preservation farms worldwide.  Eggs laid on leaves in the wild rain forest are collected and hatched in the farms.  About 5% of butterfly eggs survive to adulthood in the wild, whereas this number jumps to 80% in preservation farms.  Butterflies are then released back into the wild and the cycle repeats.  Since butterflies live an average of 2-3 weeks some pass on before being released, which are acquired by Asana Natural Arts.  All our species are approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Organization.  Your purchase supports butterfly preservation and actually saves butterflies and their existence in the rain forest.

Before fulling reading the cards I thought they were fake and the money went to help save butterflies. After reading I was surprised. The member of the group who posted it said was really excited to get these was most excited because they didn’t have to die for her fashion. I know what she meant but…

I feel like this is good wrapped in bad and it’s deceiving people who think they’re doing something to help the butterflies while receiving something beautiful.

So without the fluff they’re basically saying they go searching for butterfly eggs, take them from the wild, raise 4 generations in captivity, then release the last generation back into the wild so they can migrate and lay more eggs to do it all over again. Meanwhile they are also harvesting and dismembering the dead bodies of the previous generation and making their body parts into jewelry.

Too harsh?

Ok so 80% survive in captivity, that’s a great number but what are the living conditions like for the butterflies? Are they at least able to fly around a nice greenhouse with many plants to eat and land on or are they treated like factory farmed animals and just basically force-fed sugar?

Of course I want to believe that they’re flying around a beautiful environment with a multitude of plants to eat and sun themselves.

But part of me thinks it’s how they call chickens ‘free-range’…all trapped in one room…but you know, no cages.

Before thinking a company is doing good because of the writing they have worked hard to carefully word (fluff), think about it from all perspectives and ask the tough questions. There is no harm in asking for more information. The worst a company/person can do is not get back to you and then you’ll just be in the same boat as before you contacted them and it’s up to you to go with your gut.

Anonymity

#govegan_vegan_mysterion_anonymous

I wanted to write a post explaining why am I anonymous on this blog.  I’ve been thinking recently of opening up and saying who I am but I keep going back and forth.

No one apart from my husband actually knows who I am. There may be some who have put the pieces together but I have not confirmed anything to anyone.

There are some posts I want to do where I interview others (non-vegans) about their experience with me becoming vegan which I think would be really good to read.

However, I am afraid that if everyone knew I would be constantly over thinking what I’m writing. I want to be truthful in what I write and not feel I need to censor myself because I’m worried about offending someone. As I’m sure you know I can get pretty raw about things and I pull from my personal life and can totally picture someone reading this saying ‘hey, I’m the one who said that! No everyone knows that I’m not supportive!” The last thing that I want to do is rethink things and add fluff or worse, leave it out entirely because I’m worried about someone being mad at me.

This is my platform for releasing thoughts and feelings that I can’t really discuss with other people because they don’t care (honestly).

So I think for now I’ll remain anonymous, for now at least.

‘Grade A’ Labrador

vegan_#govegan_all_created_equal_dog meat_festival

I’m sure that reading this article is going to put many people in a tizzy. They will feel physically sick thinking about someone eating a Labrador while they pet their own.

I agree. The thought of eating a dog or cat sickens me…as does a chicken, cow, pig, or any other animal. But I’ll be honest the thought of dog or cat meat is not even in the same realm. It’s all based on how we were raised. In this country, we are raised to believe that certain animals are ok to be farmed and eaten and others are downright disgusting. Other countries may not necessarily follow the societal norms of the US…SURPRISE! (Yes, that’s sarcasm again).

Carnism is the invisible belief system, or ideology, that conditions people to eat certain animals.  (Check out Beyond Carnism for some great info and videos!)

Anyway, this article says that the younger Chinese generation is more against eating dogs and that’s partly why the ban is being talked about (hasn’t been fully confirmed). “The ban is set to last until the festival is over and that there’s no evidence the ban includes any restrictions on cat meat.” (Why not cats?!)

The Lychee and Dog Meat Festival (aka the Yulin Dog Meat Festival) takes place every year since 2009 for about 10 days and an estimated 10,000-15,000 dogs are consumed. Though it looks like less and less are consumed every year. Sound gross? You bet! But I wonder how many pigs and cows are consumed during let’s say…Brat Fest.

The Wikipedia article says that dogs have been eaten in China for over 400 years.  “The local residents and festival organizers claim that the dogs are killed humanely and that “eating dog is no different from eating pork or beef”. Animal rights activists and campaigners, however, claim that the animals are “treated abominably”, based on photographs of the event.”

Which honestly is not any different from the way cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, and other animals are treated every day in factory farms across the US.

It seems like the reason for the ban is that some people have claimed that the “dogs killed in the festival are often stolen pets'”. Which is corroborated in the Wikipedia article: “A witness claimed that some of the dogs eaten appeared to be stolen household pets, judging by their collars.”

Back to the original HuffPost article, Peter Li, the Humane Society International China Policy Expert, says that “Dogs slaughtered for food come from suspicious sources. Many are stolen pets and rural guard dogs.” He noted that Chinese activists would protest a beef festival, too, if the animals were stolen cattle.”

I highly doubt as much of a fuss would be made over cows being slaughtered and sold, regardless of if they had been stolen or not.

*Side Note: I wonder if most people in the US know that it’s legal to eat dogs and cats in quite a few states. I didn’t until today. *

To be fair the HSI group does “actively fight for the rights of all animals that suffer in the food industry”. They also say, “Whilst we realize that we can’t stop the suffering of all animals for the food industry overnight, we shouldn’t use the suffering of pigs or chickens in one country as an excuse for inaction to stop the suffering of dogs in another country.”

Bringing attention to this dog-eating festival might get more meat eaters on our side but unfortunately what’s probably going to happen is you’ll get half that will disgusted while they eat their cheese burgers and half will say ‘I’d try it”.

No matter what we try to do there will always be people who will turn the blind eye. Cognitive dissonance is STRONG, my friends. So I leave you with some quotes to help reaffirm the vegan lifestyle! We all need it sometimes.

  1. “May all that have life be delivered from suffering.” -Buddha
  2. “Life is too short to make others shorter.” -Anonymous
  3. “Compassion is the best side effect of being vegan.” -Anonymous
  4. “Animals are my friends. And I don’t eat my friends.” -George Bernard Shaw
  5. “The idea that some lives matter less is the root of all that is wrong in the world.” -Dr. Paul Farmer

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V is for Vegan Review

v is for vegan_childrens book_#govegan

We ordered a new book for Baby Boy (BB). This is nothing new. We have tons of books for BB. It’s not another Dr. Seuss, of classic children’s book, or Baby’s First Farm Book (seriously we got that one as a gift). What is new is that it is the first one that shares the values that we live our lives by. And it is adorable!

V is for Vegan; The ABCs of Being Kind is written by the same person as That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals, Ruby Roth. I read the later a few years ago and the illustrations are gorgeously detailed but the story wasn’t my favorite for kids.

I don’t know of too many vegan books for kids that aren’t scary or honestly gross.  I’m not saying that BB will never see videos or pictures of animal cruelty but I don’t want to start off his young life with such violent images.

I was very happy that V is for Vegan is absolutely perfect for BB!

It has cute rhymes and illustrations and it covers more than just animal rights, such as environment, food options, and choices.

v is for vegan_childrens book_#govegan_animals_a

We’ve read it more times than I can count to BB in the past few weeks!

I think what I love most about it is that each letter follows exactly what we believe, down to what oils are mentioned.

v is for vegan_childrens book_#govegan_g_grains

My favorite page! “Go get in my belly!”

This is definitely a must have for vegan kids and would be a great baby gift for like-minded people!

Do you know of any other vegan kids books?

30 for 30

30_turning_birthday_dirty thirty_nerdy thirty_#govegan

I am turning the big 3-0 this year and in honor I’ve put together a list of 30 things I’ve learned throughout my 30 years on this planet.

  1. Be who you are and be unapologetic.
    I am a self-professed nerd who likes 60s and 70s classic rock, Harry Potter, and can quote Monty Python from memory. If you don’t like it that’s your loss because it’s awesome, and so am I.
  2. Speak your mind.
    I used to sit shyly by, not wanting to stir up trouble and have people be mad at me. Now, you will get an earful from me if I hear you use a derogatory term or make someone else feel less than. (This is better in a face-to-face atmosphere.  I don’t condone internet bullying or trolling).
  3. Vote with your dollar.
    Money makes the world go round. Your time standing in line to vote for the next round of politics is not as effective as spending your money on things you believe in (organic, vegan, sustainable).
  4. Don’t be forced into things you’re not ready for.
    This is different from taking a leap of faith and getting out of your comfort zone. The main thing I’m thinking about here is kids. Throughout our relationship, we were pressured into having kids. We decided to when it was right for us and it was absolutely perfect. I don’t know if I would have been as good of a mom a few years ago.
  5. Your health is the most important thing.
    Without your health you have no quality of life. “If I’d have known I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself,” I knew a 75-year-old say once.  When I am 75 I want to keep exploring and don’t want my health (or lack of it) to hold me back from things I love to do. I’m not saying don’t indulge in that piece of cake; I’m saying make time for your health. Make it a TOP priority.
  6. Collect experiences instead of things.
    Is that 45th knickknack going to bring you joy or will gaining a new experience bring you more joy? Memories matter more than things.
  7. It’s ok to move on.
    We all grow and change (hopefully at least) and it’s ok to move forward with your life. It’s ok to move on from friends and hobbies that you used to have. It’s ok to not want to be the same person you once were. You can still have love for the people and be appreciative for the good times you had while not living in the past.
  8. Don’t get so caught up in how things are ‘supposed to be’.
    Things happen for a reason, when they are supposed to and not before. Stop paying so much attention to what others your age are doing and focus on what you are doing.
  9. Sleep!
    Turn off the computer. Put your phone in a different room. Keep the TV out of the bedroom and get some sleep. All that stuff will be there in the morning. GET SOME SLEEP!
  10. Invest in a good camera.
    Not a new phone with a ‘better’ camera. I mean a separate camera that only takes pictures. Learn how to use it and take some amazing photos! It will be worth it to look back on high quality images of your kids, your travels, or events instead of blurry, tiny ones from your phone.
  11. Learn to be without technology.
    Even if it’s just for a walk. It’s ok to not be accessible 24/7. You’ll return that call/text/Facebook message in 20 minutes, but for now just be without.
  12. Be frugal, not cheap.
    I’m all for saving money and I research different options and prices. However, I am more than happy to spend more money for a quality item as opposed to something that’s going to break in two weeks and be back where I was.
  13. Go neutral.
    Furniture is expensive. Go with something neutral colored and timeless. You can always change up pillows, paint, or rugs but you will regret that bright green couch in five years.
  14. Learn to let things go.
    I am not super good at this because I seem to remember every detail about everything, but it is definitely something that is important and I need to work on more. It makes life less complicated and helps you de-stress.
  15. Drink water when you’re thirsty.
    Our bodies are made from mostly water. Drinking that coffee, soda, or other beverage may taste good but it’s not what your body really wants or needs. Sure, you’ll be going to the bathroom more often but you’ll look better and feel better.
  16. Don’t be afraid of getting older.
    I hear it so often, “I am going to stay 29 forever” or “Don’t say ’40’, it will upset them.” Seriously people? There are so many who never get the chance to make these milestones. Appreciate it and the wisdom you get with it.
  17. Don’t just do/like/believe things just because others do.
    It could be sports teams, religion, eating habits, whatever.  Just because you were raised a certain way doesn’t mean you need to continue with those beliefs.  If something doesn’t feel right to you, find something that does feel right.
  18. Treat your credit card like a debit card.
    Pay it off right away and don’t spend more than you make.  Seems pretty simple but we live in an instant gratification society with many spending way more than they make.
  19. Life goes on.
    This is a blessing and a curse.  When you lose someone you love it hurts that life can just keep moving on without them when you don’t know what you’re going to do without them. But the sun will always rise again and tomorrow is a new day.
  20. Happiness comes from within.
    You are in charge of your happiness. No one else.  Those purchases wont make you happy. That house wont make you happy.  You make you happy.
  21. Be flexible.
    I’m really really bad with this.  It’s something I’ve struggled with since I was a kid.  I have learned that I need time to wrap my head around plans and get my self mentally ready for them, and when things happen out of the blue I can get upset about it because it messes with the plans I have in my head.  Being flexible is very important and it’s something I truly need to work on.
  22. Take time for yourself.
    Many people run themselves ragged with their days (and weekends) planned down to the hour.  Take some time to be with yourself and re-charge.  Even if it’s just a little bit of a longer shower.
  23. Be with the people who are here.
    When you do have face-to-face plans with people you love, be with them.  Turn off your phone, or at the very least, put it away (OUT OF SIGHT!) and give them your full attention.  You don’t need to Google every answer to a question that is asked or immediately check your notification for that junk email you received.  Your phone will still be there later and the conversation, laughs, and love will stick with you longer than that phone will.
  24. Wear a helmet.
    I don’t care if you think it makes you look dumb, a smashed in head will make you look dumber. Your parents worked very hard to make sure you have that nice round head. Protect it. And while we’re at it, wear a seat belt too. (Do you hear me BB?!)
  25. Don’t be an ass.
    There’s a famous quote, “A person who is nice to you but is not nice to the waiter, is not a nice person.” Be nice to everyone. Waiters, retail workers, telemarketers, CEOs…everyone. It can make someone’s day to hear a few kind words. Plus (and this comes from a long line of retail/service jobs), they don’t make the rules; they just have to follow them or they’ll get fired.
  26. Cognitive dissonance is ok.
    That’s what lead to my veganism. If some kind of information is making you feel uncomfortable, try to figure out why. Maybe it will challenge your beliefs; maybe it will make you re-think everything, and maybe that’s ok.
  27. Get in the pool and get in the pictures!
    No one else cares about that extra fat on your tummy or those dimples in your thighs or the way your hip bones and shoulder blades stick out.They’re all too worried about themselves and how they look.  If you keep focusing on that and that’s your reason for not going in the water or getting in the pictures then you are going to miss out on so much. If you jump in, your kids will remember how much fun it was that you were swimming with them. They’ll get to look back on those pictures and see how much love you have for them when you hold them or smile at them. They can look back forever on that. And you will have those great memories too instead of sitting on the sidelines being too self conscious to join in the fun.
  28. Have a hobby.
    It’s so easy to go from work, to TV/computer, to bed day after day until one day you realize you aren’t happy.  This happened to me a few years go and for some reason sewing kept popping into my head. So I bought a new cross stitch kit and the rest is history! Even if I can only do a couple of lines a day I still feel like I accomplished something just for me. I have other hobbies to fill the void when I get tired of this one too. Find joy in doing something for no other reason than the fact that you enjoy it and your life will be richer for it.
  29. Laugh.
    Laugh loud. Laugh long. Laugh often.
  30. Love.
    No matter what the outcome, love is always worth it.

 

And lastly, one to start off with that is very very important and I think everyone needs to remember:

  1. There is ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS someone willing to help.  If you think that you’re alone, you are not. No matter how bad you feel, there is always someone willing to help or just listen.  Reach out if you need help. Reach out if you need someone to talk to. It doesn’t make you weak. It makes you strong to admit that you need help. And the people who love you will be so grateful you did.

If Done Correctly…

vegan_baby_raising_healthy_no_cows_milk_#govegan

 

*This entire post is dripping with sarcasm. Please be advised.*

New article called:

Breast milk in, cow’s milk out: Vegan diet can be healthy for children

Saskatchewan pediatrician says vegan diet not a concern if done correctly.

 

Before we delve into the article, let’s just look at the words chosen shall we?

“Vegan diet CAN be healthy”… meaning the standard American (Canadian) diet is the most healthy even with all the cancer, heart disease, diabetes, the list goes on and on…but diet isn’t the cause of that…no it’s genetics…

Next: “if done correctly”…isn’t that true for all diets whether they be short-term or a lifestyle? I mean if you’re going to eat only processed junk food that’s obviously not correct. So thanks for that insight.

 

Now for my comments on the article:

First off, why is this even an article? Choosing to go against the social norm now requires news coverage? Well then my whole life should be reported on! (I kid I kid!) If anything it does get out the word out about vegan diets.

“Millham’s son Xavier, who is now 21 months old, has never drunk cow’s milk nor eaten meat. He hasn’t had a bowl of yogurt or a spoonful of ice cream.”

Oh that poor deprived child! There are vegan replacements for all of these things and in my opinion they are better than the ‘original’ (Shout out to Coconut Bliss ice cream!)

“A pediatrician agrees it can be a healthy way to eat, even for a growing child, as long as parents are able to provide all the child’s nutritional needs.”

Sure because Froot Loops and Pop Tarts provide nutrition for kids…

She [the mom] said she isn’t worried that he doesn’t drink cow’s milk, despite a recent study saying it makes children taller. Last time she took her son to the doctor, Millham said, Xavier was in the 84th percentile for height and weight.

Who funded this study? The failing dairy industry?

“My doctor’s known that I’ve been vegan the whole time I’ve been vegan. She had no concerns,” Millham said. “It’s really common for pregnant women to be anemic. Everyone always assumed that, ‘Well, Alyx will be anemic because she’s vegan,’ but I wasn’t and my doctor was shocked that my numbers were so good.”

I got that too throughout pregnancy from people who were suddenly nutrition experts. “Are you getting enough protein?” was mostly what I got. I don’t understand why a doctor (or anyone) should be shocked because her iron level were so good. There is tons of iron in greens which (hopefully) is a big part of a vegan diet (though we eat tons of other foods #notjustsalad). And besides, cow’s milk has iron and vitamins added back into it which are synthetic and there is some skepticism about if the body absorbs them in the same fashion as naturally occurring vitamins. But I’m sure the doctor already knew that with their advanced nutrition degree. Oh wait….

Plant protein sources aren’t as easily digestible as meat, according to Kurji, so more has to be eaten to reach the required amounts.

What?! Where is the source on this? Oh, it came from a doctor with one semester of nutrition classes, oh yeah. I have never heard this in my life. Meat is one of the hardest things for your body to digest. How else do you explain feeling light after eating a vegan meal versus having to take a nap after meat (see Thanksgiving)?

Those who eat a common Western diet tend to get iron, zinc, calcium, omega 3 and B12 through animal sources, but it is possible to get all nutrients needed through fruits, vegetables, oils, nuts and grains.

No shit Sherlock.

For those who say feeding children a vegan diet is too extreme, Millham said it’s not different than anything else.

“I think everybody forces their way of life on their family. That’s what parents do, they parent,” she said. “As long as a person’s not hurting other people — and vegans clearly are not — you’re OK.”

Why do non-vegans think veganism is extreme for their kids? Seriously. Christians/Jewish/Buddhists who raise their kids in a Christians/Jewish/Buddhists household aren’t seen as extreme. People who love reading who give their kids tons of books aren’t seen as extreme. People who love biking who take their kids along aren’t seen as extreme. So why is it that it’s not extreme to eat animal flesh and secretions? …

Although one day Xavier might choose to get off the vegan bandwagon, Millham said she isn’t too worried. In the future when she sends him off to birthday parties, she said she’ll be ready with vegan options for him to take.

Oh that’s right…because our vegan kids are deprived of good-tasting food. I forgot that all we eat is grass, twigs, and berries.

I’ve been asked this question too: “What happens if BB eats pizza at a friend’s house?” To which I ask you a question: what happens if your kids watch a movie at a friends house that you don’t think is appropriate? At a certain time we have to let our kids make their own decisions and hope we raised them to make good choices. Like any good parent ever. (See my Raising a Vegan Baby post for more details).

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