Thursday, March 31, 2011

Earth Day is coming!

Earth Day is April 22nd!  Are you ready?  I am challenging everyone to do something good for Mother Earth this year.  Every little step matters when getting to our destination.  We are a throw away society.  Pretty much everything we use is disposable.  Even our electronics don't last as long as they used to.  How many cell phones or computers have you gone through in the last ten years?  TV?  When something newer and better comes out (and they always do) we chuck the "old" one and get the new.  Find somewhere local that recycles electronics.   Start using reusable grocery bags. I must admit that I feel pretty good about myself when I put my bags on the check out counter.  The cashier might not love it though but oh well.  On a big shopping day I can fill 8-10 normal size cloth shopping bags.  If I use plastic it adds up to about 20.  Yikes.  Cloth bags save you time, energy and the environment.  There are a ton of cute ones out there too.

Find out if your town or city has a recycling center.  We have one in my town but hardly anyone knows about it.  I have made it my mission to share this with as many people as I know.  Recycling is easy.  Get a box or a bin and put your recyclables in it.  Then if you are lucky enough you can put your bin on your curb and it is picked up.  If you can't do that, like myself, then pick a day of the week or every other week to drop it off at your recycling center. 

Eat less meat.  If you read my last post you know that I have decided to go vegan.  This is my choice not my family's so I still cook meat for them.  I do plan to have 2-3 meatless dinners a week.  Why meatless?  It takes 2500 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef.  Just one pound.  That is a ton of water.  Just try to imagine how many cows there are in our country.  Most are used for the fast food industry.  The less meat we eat, the lower our needs are for all those cows, the more water there is.  Not to mention the safety of our water sources.  All the cattle have to poop.  And yep, since they are animals they poop on the ground.  Where does that poop go?  You got it.  When it rains it runs off and will run off into our streams, rivers, lakes and oceans.  I encourage you to watch Food, Inc.  Its an incredible documentary that will open your eyes to what you put into your mouth. 

Walk or ride a bike.  Use less gas by using your own energy to get to where you are going.  Gas prices are insane.  Why?  Because they is less of it and a huge demand for it.  So lets stop demanding it and find an alternative way to be mobile.  Take public transportation. 

These are just a few ways to celebrate Earth Day.  Get your family involved.  Think of what the Earth was like when you were little.  Its not the same now is it?  Think of what it will be like when your children are your age.  Hmmm.... Scary isn't it?  I am petrified of what the future holds for this planet.  We are the answer.  We are the solution.

Make every day Earth Day!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My Veggie Tales

I have gone an entire week of no meat, eggs or dairy (except for a bit of ranch dressing).  Why?  Well, last Tuesday night I was thinking about my body and how out of control my weight is.  I have had blood tests done, hoping that the results would scare me into doing something about the weight.  Well all my levels were healthy.  Yay for me.  So I registered for a circuit training class at school.  I am doing well in it but haven't seen any real results just yet.  Tuesday, I was thinking about what I put into my body.  All the cheese and the meats that I eat.  All the chocolate whatevers that I cannot live without, or so I thought.  I watched a few videos online about how our food is made. It made me cringe.  I'm against animal cruelty but I have also been of the opinion that they are there for us to eat. Now I think I have changed my mind.  Have you ever seen an animal butchered?  Most of the time it is inhumane.  Plus, it is extremely dirty.  And we eat that?  Not to mention all the chemicals that are pumped into these creatures to keep them healthy so that we can eat them. 

I tried going veggie my senior year in high school.  It lasted two days.  I was only doing it because there were a few of my friends that were vegetarians and I thought they were super duper cool.  I still have friends who are vegan/vegetarians but now its not so cool. Its not the norm of society.  There are people who think I'm nutso for trying this.  This decision is based on my health and on those creatures that are literally murdered to fill our bellies.

Now I am not going to try to persuade you to go veggie.  This was my decision for myself.  I'm not making my family go veggie. We will have a few meatless dinners a week but I'm not cutting it out of their diets completely.

Anyway, this post is about my first week without meat, eggs and dairy.  I did have a bit of ranch dressing for my sweet potato fries but that was it.  Let me start off by saying that it was so much easier than I thought it would be.  I had even gone out of town to visit my family.  When we arrived at my Dad's house I went shopping and bought a few things that I could eat when they had their meat.  I was able to order at restaurants without any trouble.  I said no to chocolate cream pie (ya that one did hurt a bit).  When my sisters and I ordered coffee I had a soy latte instead of a regular one.  I could barely tell the difference.

This week proved to me that I can do this.  This lifestyle change can happen and I will be the better for it.  I bought Alicia Silverstone's (Clueless) book- The Kind Diet.  Its a great book that helps you decide how to go about this change in diet.  There are even recipes.  Its a really good book and I recommend it to anyone thinking about going vegan.  I know I still have quiet a journey ahead of me but I am looking forward to it.  This will force me to pay more attention to what I eat and what my family eats. 

The downside to this is that where I live we do not have very many options as far as shopping.  I wish we had an Earthfare or a Whole Foods Market where I can buy better products. I'm pretty much stuck with the local shopping store or Super Wal-Mart and neither one has all that great of stuff.  So this will be a challenge for me.  I am also afraid that I will become bored with it.  So in order to avoid boredom I am checking out all kinds of recipes to try. 

I will be sharing with you the trials and tribulations of my vegan adventure.  Wish me luck!

This clip is of Alicia Silverstone promoting her book, The Kind Diet. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Shit Has Hit the Fan!

shit hits the fan Pictures, Images and Photos

Yup, the shit hit the fan earlier today.  And you know what happens when shit hits the fan?  It is flung all over the damn room!

Here is what happened...

It was a sunny morning.  The kids were sent off without a worry and surprisingly enough no yelling to hurry up  After the house was void of kids I sat down with a cup of coffee and started to study for my test.  I had been studying a little here and there.  I thought I was doing pretty good.  My test was at 1200.  Right off the bat I knew I wasn't doing well.  After taking the test our instructor went over the answers.  As each question went by I was getting more and more upset.  I knew I had flunked my first nursing test.  The questions were horrible.  When I asked my instructor about a certain question she couldn't give me a reason why the answer was what it was.  Instead I was told to find what I thought to be correct in the book and challenge it on paper.  Like, I have time for that!  So before I exploded in front of my classmates I turned back in my test and left the room, walked to my van, drove like a bat out of hell to my house, stormed into my house, flung my purse across the living room and bawled like a child.

I had an A.  Now this new grade did not make me fail the class and I still have a high B but I was so upset because I couldn't get a straight answer from my instructor.  Fine, my answer is wrong.  Please let me know why your answer is correct.  Isn't that how we should be learning?  Instead of because the key said so.  So I was in a pretty shitty mood.

When you are in a bad mood it makes everything worse.  I was such a grouch and very mean to my husband.  My shit was spreading all over the room.  I was so upset with myself.  I should of studied more.  I should stay off facebook.  Finally, I began to calm down and regain my senses.  It was one test.  I was still passing.

Then I got a text from a classmate making sure I was okay.  She did not do very well on the test either.  While I was texting her another classmate messaged me on FB to make sure I was doing okay.  She also cried when she left class.  Once grades were posted I checked the class average.  We don't see individual grades but can see how we do as a class.  77%  A passing grade for nursing program is 78%.  So as a class we failed the test.  That should be a sign to our instructor that this test is for the birds.  After seeing this I began to feel a bit better.  Still pissed that I flunked the test but knew that I was also in good failing company.

I cleaned up the mental shit that was spread all over.  Moved onto other things that needed my attention.  Like the Girl Scout meeting I had to plan for...Becoming Teenagers.  Yup, periods and all that.  And that will be another post for another day.

Now, after my disappointing day, I am ready just to sit on my butt, watch tv and not think about nursing at all.  At least for tonight!