Link Love (2016-10-22)

U.S. Election 2016

Remember that time a firework tipped over? – The Oatmeal

““My students are terrified of Donald Trump,” reports a teacher from a middle school with a large African-American Muslim population. “They think that if he’s elected, all black people will get sent back to Africa.”
Another educator from a Tennessee school says a Latino kindergartener was told by his peers that he will be deported and barricaded behind a wall. “Is the wall here yet?” he asks daily.
One teacher reports that a fifth-grader told a Muslim student “he was supporting Donald Trump because he was going to kill all of the Muslims if he became president.”” The ‘Trump Effect’ in Schools: How Trump’s Hate Speech Is Traumatizing America’s Children – Alternet

Trump Does Not Know What Civil Liberties Are, and That Should Be Terrifying – Love, Joy, Feminism

““I put lipstick on a pig,” he said. “I feel a deep sense of remorse that I contributed to presenting Trump in a way that brought him wider attention and made him more appealing than he is.” He went on, “I genuinely believe that if Trump wins and gets the nuclear codes there is an excellent possibility it will lead to the end of civilization.”
If he were writing “The Art of the Deal” today, Schwartz said, it would be a very different book with a very different title. Asked what he would call it, he answered, “The Sociopath.”” Donald Trump’s Ghostwriter Tells All – The New Yorker

Trump’s Childcare Plan Helps the Wealthy, Not the Poor – Love, Joy, Feminism

“In a speech carried live from Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, on at least three TV networks last December, soon-to-be Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump was telling the world he wanted to ban Muslims from entering the United States. “It’s temporary,” he later tried to soften. And then I heard my name.
“She’s back there. Little Katy. She’s back there.”
I was six months into covering the Trump campaign for MSNBC and NBC News, and there I was, in the belly of a World War II battleship, in a press pen made out of bicycle racks, surrounded by thousands of whipped-up Trump supporters.” Katy Tur Talks Covering Donald Trump’s Candidacy for NBC – Marie Claire

First Debate Highlights: That Moment Every Woman Knew What It Felt Like to Be Hillary – Love, Joy, Feminism

Christian culture is a haven for abusers.
It’s a shelter for rapists and molesters because of the redemption narrative they cling to. If a rapist or abuser says “I’m sorry, I’ve repented,” anyone who questions that is harshly censored. If a woman wants to divorce her husband because he enjoyed watching people rape children, she’s censored by her church and shunned. Or if your husband “repents” of sexually abusing a child for years, you’ll be the one seen as “breaking your marriage vows” if you decide to leave him. Even if he’s abusing you, according to John Piper you’re just supposed to stick it out. After all, if you listen to Debi Pearl, maybe if he beats you long enough you’ll bring him to a saving knowledge of Christ. Or, maybe Debi Pearl’s too extreme for you– how about Lori Wick, one of the most popular Christian fiction authors?
This is why Trump is succeeding so well among evangelical voters. He’s an abuser, but now he’s converted to their nationalistic, dominionist, theocratic, white supremacist and misogynistic faith, and through that has been Redeemed.
He fits right in.” what hast thou wrought: Christians and Trump – Samantha Field

Why Trump Answered the Wrong Question on Race – Love, Joy, Feminism


“I know that many of us in the autoimmune community have faced injustices while seeking help for our diseases, regardless of what they are, so why do I hold endo apart as a distinct social justice issue? The core of a social justice is unequal access, support, or treatment, which is based on a trait. After dealing with endo for over twenty years, I’ve come to recognize something I would never have considered early on…the trait that results in unequal access and support for endo is gender. Menstruation is unique to women and dismissal of this disease as a “female problem” has lead to not only difficulty classifying endo as an autoimmune disease, but also even larger failures in thorough medical research and appropriate healthcare options.” Four Reasons Endometriosis Is A Social Justice Issue – Autoimmune Paleo

Did You Know Hospitals “Sell” Body Parts – Love, Joy, Feminism

“Girly-shaming lifts traits typically considered “manly” up onto a pedestal. It implies the only way to be successful or be powerful is to adhere to a set of values commonly associated with conventionally strong men. It forces men and women into tiny, separate boxes of acceptable ways to act. Basically, it blames girls that you would classify as girly for all the problems women face.” Pink is a dirty word – Medium

Working at Planned Parenthood: ‘Every day, someone threatened to kill me’ – The Guardian

“‘All over the world, girls are raised to be make themselves likeable, to twist themselves into shapes that suit other people.’
‘Please do not twist yourself into shapes to please. Don’t do it. If someone likes that version of you, that version of you that is false and holds back, then they actually just like that twisted shape, and not you. And the world is such a gloriously multifaceted, diverse place that there are people in the world who will like you, the real you, as you are.’” Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Gave A Speech About Feminism – Marie Claire


“But in actuality, he just saw me as his development tool. The human bystander that he used, hurt, crushed and exhausted on his way to glorious improvement, or at least on his way to maybe possible glorious improvement. Of course he adored hearing my important thoughts about his existence because if I analyzed him critically and told him exactly what he needed to do to fix himself then he wouldn’t have to lift a finger. Having me around made things easy. I was his living, breathing, talking, walking moral barometer that explained right from wrong and hit a buzzer when he was being vile and gave him detailed advice on how to prevent his shittiness. When he behaved badly, I was there to slap him on the wrist and say, “Naughty boy!” and point out his mistakes. He wanted me around simply because he wanted free emotional labour that he didn’t return but was happy to take.” I Do Not Exist to Fix You – She Does the City

#817: “Death, strained relationships, and ‘what if’?” – Captain Awkward

“In fact, empathy is so effective in reconnecting with our upset child and helping her calm down that it takes us by surprise when it “doesn’t work.”
But empathy isn’t a trick to control the other person.  It’s a means of connection, and of helping our child process emotion.  So when empathy doesn’t “work,” consider whether you’re really connecting, and whether you’re helping your child with her emotions.” Why empathy is your #1 parenting. – Aha Parenting

Why Romantic Love Is Essential to Human Experience – Mark’s Daily Apple

“What I’m suggesting is that we should think about to what extent to which we do or do not give children political agency. Growing up in a politically active family, it was simply assumed we children would support whatever candidates our parents did. We were never asked or given an option. I don’t know whether that is the case here—and even if it is, it’s not as big a deal as it is when parents are pushing their children in front of microphones—but I do remember what that was like. You can’t make a decision when you are offered only one option, or are never given a choice to begin with. What I’m trying to get at here is that we need to think consciously about the framework we use for understanding children’s political agency.” How Should We Understand Children’s Political Agency? – Love, Joy, Feminism


Let it be easy – Christy Tending Healing Arts

“The combination of circumstances which allows it to exist at all are so implausible that the Schistostega is rendered much more precious than gold. Goblins’ or otherwise. Not only does its presence depend on the coincidence of the cave’s angle to the sun, but if the hills on the western shore were any higher the sun would set before reaching the cave… Its life and ours exist only because of a myriad of synchronicities that bring us to this particular place at this particular moment. In return for such a gift, the only sane response is to glitter in reply.” The Magic of Moss and What It Teaches Us About the Art of Attentiveness to Life at All Scales – Brain Pickings

How to Stay Optimistic When Everything’s Horrible – Yes and Yes

Chronic Illness & Pain

The Dilemmas of Exercise and M.E. – Just ME

““Smoking was established long ago as a strong predictor of failure of pain treatment,” writes Dr. Tim Taylor, a chronic pain specialist. “Smokers are so difficult to treat that I will not accept smokers as patients.”
Smokers often assume that they’re mostly just hurting their lungs and risking cancer, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. Smoking compromises so many aspects of health — nearly all of them, really — that quitting is a vital pre-requisite for beating pain.” Smoking and Chronic Pain – Pain Science

A more useful pain scale. Boyfriend Doesn’t Have Ebola. Probably. – Hyperbole and a Half

“For a long time, fibromyalgia was thought of as a medical mystery. Technological advancement has allowed us to look closer. Today, it is a recognised disorder, part of a group of chronic pain syndromes described as central nervous system disorders.
The condition affects more than four times as many women as it does men. With as many as 2-5% of the developed world living with fibromyalgia, it is far from uncommon. Yet targeted and effective treatment options aren’t available for the condition. And compared to fibromyalgia’s impact, this area of research remains highly underfunded.” Hidden and unexplained: feeling the pain of fibromyalgia – The Conversation

Using Diet to Help With an Autoimmune Disease – PopSugar


3 New Reasons to Take a Walk in Nature – Sara Gottfried MD

“There’s nothing like charcoal-grilled meat. It’s not just the food itself, although that’s amazing. It’s the entire experience: being outside in fresh (albeit smokey) air, the sizzle when you slap that meat down on the hot grill, the smell of the smoke. Even the tools we use when grilling are bigger and savager and more rewarding than the dainty implements used inside. We don’t gently flip the steak. We grab it with huge metal tongs and throw it down. There’s less precision and more art. And the flavor can’t be found anywhere else. The smoke, the flame, the char, the grill marks, the color, the dripping fat—they are irreplaceable.
But is it healthy? Is that perfect sear costing you years off your life? Are those BBQ ribs adorning your colonic interior with pre-cancerous polyps?” How Bad Is Charred Meat, Really? Mark’s Daily Apple

Is GERD an Autoimmune Disease? – Chris Kresser

“You’re twentysomething. Or thirtysomething. And you’re tired. Tired of another month of looking in the mirror and being unhappy. Tired of another night where you feel exhausted yet wonder why you couldn’t get more done. Tired of getting burned by another weight loss scheme your friend told you about. It was wraps this time, or weight loss pills, or the ab coaster. It doesn’t matter. None of them have worked, and you’re just freaking tired of it all. You just want to smile and feel good about yourself, and that hasn’t happened since you were younger.
But there’s a teeny tiny part of you that doesn’t want to give up yet.” A Fitness Epic: Your story of love, health, and self-discovery. – Nerd Fitness

6 Paleo Snacks to Fight Cravings – Paleo Hacks


Ounces and Grams: Why Mass Is Not the Best Way to List Ingredients Serious Eats

Lazy Citrus Salt – Local Kitchen Blog

How to Transport Goodies Safely – Cook’s Illustrated

10 Creative Ways to Use Leftover Vegetables – Smithspirations

How to Make Caramelized White Chocolate – Bon Appétit


Paleo Pumpkin Bolognese – Strictly Delicious

Gluten-Free Pumpkin Bread – Against All Grain

Salty Crackers – Paleo Pumpkin

Spiced Pumpkin Tea Latte (AIP, Paleo, Low FODMAP, Vegan) – Sweet Treats

Paleo Meatballs that will fool your Italian grandmother! (AIP-friendly) – Gutsy by Nature

Pumpkin Spise Cake with Gingersnap Crust – Autoimmune Paleo


Link Love (2016-10-16)

U.S. Election

“All else being equal, I will vote for the female candidate over the male candidate, because gender matters. Representation is not irrelevant, it’s critically important. In fact, all else being slightly unequal, I would probably still vote for the female candidate because gender is a factor I would weigh when making my decision. That means, yes, that I would vote for a slightly less qualified female candidate over a slightly more qualified male candidate, and potentially even for a female candidate I disagree with slightly over a male candidate I agree with entirely.” Why Hillary Clinton’s Gender Matters – Love, Joy, Feminism

The white man pathology: inside the fandom of Sanders and Trump – The Guardian

“Race plays a part in each of these analyses, but its role has not yet been central enough to our understanding of Trump’s rise. Not only does he lead a movement of almost exclusively disaffected whites, but he wins his strongest support in states and counties with the greatest amounts of racial polarization. Among white voters, higher levels of racial resentment have been shown to be associated with greater support for Trump.” How Donald Trump happened: Racism against Barack Obama

How I Came to Identify with Hillary Clinton – Love, Joy, Feminism

“Criticise Hillary Clinton all you like. Rant all day long about her political history. Take her policies apart. Question her integrity if you like. Dig up dirt on her. Publicise any mistake she’s made in her career. Shout every questionable act of hers from the rooftops. Please. Do that. She’s trying to become one of the most powerful people on the planet. Pick apart everything she’s ever done and if you find her wanting, tell everyone. As engaged voters, tis a isn’t just acceptable. It’s your job.
But remember this: if you claim to be progressive, don’t use bigotry against people.” Making it Weird: what I didn’t say when you called Hillary Clinton a man. – Consider the Tea Cosy


The National Review’s Somali-Syrian Refugee Comparison Is Extremely Disingenuous – Love, Joy, Feminism

“The scientific method may be impartial, but the scientific culture is not. From grad-school admission on up through tenure, every promotion can hinge on a recommendation letter’s one key passage of praise, offered — or withheld — by the most recent academic adviser. Given the gender breakdown of senior scientists, most often that adviser is a man.
Perhaps she decides to ignore this first email — and this is often the case — knowing that she has little to gain, and a lot to lose, from a confrontation. Once satisfied with her tendency toward secrecy, the sender then finds a way to get her alone: invites her to coffee, into his office, out for some ostensibly group event. At said meeting he will become tentatively physical, insisting that if people knew, they just wouldn’t understand. At this point, any objection on her part wouldn’t just be professionally dangerous, it would seem heartless — and she’s not a horrible person, is she?” She Wanted to Do Her Research. He Wanted to Talk ‘Feelings.’ – NY Times

Carrying Feminism – Robot Hugs

“Still, as I sat in my car listening to NPR yesterday evening, I found myself grieved by something else entirely. I have a Facebook friend who posts frequently about terrorist attacks across the world—Nigeria, Pakistan, Yemen. When an attack happens, she posts it. And yet, as I listened to wall to wall NPR coverage of Brussels, I grieved for the fact that this level of coverage only occurs when the victims are white. I grieved for the fact that the victims of last week’s Maiduguri mosque bombing received barely a mention, and I grieved for the victims of last week’s bus bombing in Peshawar. These two attacks cost more lives than the Brussels attack. Where was our grief then?” Do Western Lives Matter More? Let’s Talk Terrorism. – Love, Joy, Feminism

Secrets of a #BossBitch: On Parenthood, Marriage, and Leaning In – A Practical Wedding


“Your friends are, sometimes literally, your life.
And when friendships have such power and importance, they carry the potential not only for beauty and healing, but for violence and abuse as well.
Nobody tells you this when you’re little.
Society gives us a map, however flawed, for the trajectory of romance: Most people have some sense of what is “health” and “unhealthy” in a romantic partnership (however skewed those ideas may be by gender stereotypes and Hollywood tropes).
We tend to give some weight to the idea that romantic and sexual relationships can be violent and abusive – even if we are taught to understand this primarily within a heterosexual and monogamous context.
But we are rarely, if ever, taught to nurture and tend to the health of our friendships. There is no socially accepted formula for beginning or maintaining a friendship, and even less for ending one.
This means that we are even less equipped to recognize – let alone respond to – violence or abuse between friends when it occurs.
But it does occur – and often in similar ways that abuse happens in other kinds of relationships, and for similar reasons. Because abuse is the misuse of power against others by those who do not know how to get their needs met in better ways – and like I said, sometimes friendships are the only route that we have to getting our needs met.” 8 Signs Your Friendship Might Be Abusive – Everyday Feminism

Marriage Secrets of Highly Successful Couples – Huffington Post

“One effect that under and over-functioning has on romantic relationships is that it keeps the people bound together by more than choice. Two people that take care of 100% of their responsibilities are more free to choose their partners. In contrast, UFs and OFs often report there being a “need” to be together. The UF “needs” the OF or else his/her life would ‘fall apart,’ and the OF “needs” to be there for the UF so this doesn’t happen and the guilt of it happening can be avoided. In that sense both people can feel important and “needed”. This has historically been referred to as “co-dependence”, although classic co-dependence almost always involves an addiction problem with the UF.” Overfunctioning & Underfunctioning – Will Meek PhD

How to Leave a Toxic Relationship When You’re Still in Love – Tiny Buddha

“In times like this, when mosques are being fire bombed and Muslims spat upon and planned parenthood shot up and San Bernardino shot up and all the schools shot up and all the life bombed and Donald Trump white supremacist hate-conjuring as if the Japanese Internment never happened and old friends are dying and getting sick and newer ones too, and, and.
Each Thursday I sit at a table with my friends and our whirling-dervish mayhem, good food and love become a tiny shelter in an insane unjust bullshit world. It’s all falling apart, out there, it seems, but tonight we share something we made or they made for me, taking in the love of humans still in my arms, now in my arms. Our kids. Our bellies. Lives move on and on and yet stay right here at our table.” How I (sort of) manage Donald Trump and the rest of the bullshit – renegade mothering


On Being Vulnerable and Connecting – Not To Be Trusted With Knives

“Do we have an obligation to do our best by the people we love? Well, yes—to an extent.
But we have to remember we have an obligation to ourselves first—for our happiness, our health, and our spiritual well-being. If we are not respecting our time, feelings, and energy, no one else will either.” Are You Being Too Supportive? (Yes, There Is Such a Thing) – Tiny Buddha

The Myth of “No Regrets” – Everyday Small Stuff

“The question is: how do we overcome these insecurities?
How do we become OK with ourselves? How do we learn to find contentment and peace?
The answer isn’t simple, but it requires one thing to start with: a willingness to face what we usually don’t want to face.
That means a bit of courage. Just in small doses, to start with, but it means a willingness to set aside all the distractions for a little bit, and just focus on what you’re struggling with.” A Roadmap to Overcoming Insecurities – Zen Habits

Relinquishing Control of Others: 5 Ways It Serves You – Tiny Buddha

Chronic Illness & Chronic Pain

Your tips for keeping warm in the winter months – A Prescription for M.E.

“Those of us with chronic illnesses are masters of coping. We learn to smile through the pain and anguish, we conserve what little energy we have by not bothering to cry, and we count out our spoons to figure out how much we can get done in a day.
Part of the reason it’s so hard to believe that many of us are truly sick is because of the ways we cope with our pain. It’s more than most people will ever experience, yet we have no choice but to bear it.” 6 Things You Need to Know About Invisible Illnesses – Everyday Feminism

What’s Self-Care When You Can’t Care for Yourself – Grace Quantock


5 Good Uses for Your Citrus Peels – The Kitchn

“These differences are subtle, the kind you might not notice if you’re brewing flavored tea, making a pitcher of iced tea, or planning to add lots of milk and sugar. But in fine tea, the kind that’s meant to be drunk straight, subtlety is everything. Brew a tea one way and it might taste nice. Brew it with some extra care and it can floor you with its complexity, aroma, and finish that lingers for minutes after each sip.
Ask tea experts about brewing and they’ll tell you how your source of water is critical, how better water turns a good tea great and bad water can make even pricey tea taste sour and acrid. Anecdotally I’ve seen this claim in action, but I’ve never put numbers to it—until now. Can we quantify the impact of water source on tea?” Taste Test: Should I Use Filtered or Bottled Water for Tea? – Serious Eats

How to Use Up a Heck of a Lot of Extracts – Food52

“For one, it must be said that the non-drinker does not aspire to drink a rum-free piña colada like it is his tenth birthday at the Rainforest Cafe. Nor does he wish to toast with sparkling Martinelli’s like a child play-shaving his face beside a group of Champagne-drinking dads. In the briefest terms, a good non-alcoholic party drink should not seem to be missing a key ingredient (alcohol), nor should it seem like a mere ingredient itself. While any drink is fine on an ordinary day, the booze-free party drink should be able to stand alone as a great drink in its own right.” The Ultimate Hostess Challenge: Non-Drinkers – The Cut

Kitchen Resolutions You Should Make for a Delicious 2016 – LifeHacker


Fall Spice Coconut Butter (AIP, Paleo, 21DSD) – Joy-Filled Nourishment

Scooped: Jasmine Tea and Rose Petal Sorbet – Serious Eats

Pumpkin Spice Soup with Ginger Sage Meatballs (AIP, Paleo) – Adventures in Partaking

Eggs Five Ways for Instant Pot – Dr. Karen S. Lee

Pumpkin Pie Pepitas (Pumpkin Seeds) – Against All Grain

Braised Cube Steak with Onion Gravy (AIP) – Gutsy by Nature

On the Blog

12 Years of Remembering My Dad

October 2016 Quick Reviews

So many wonderful books out there, and I’m slowly, but surely starting to catch up on my backlog of books to read.


perfection-deception-cover2The Perfection Deception: Why Striving to Be Perfect Is Sabotaging Your Relationships, Making You Sick, and Holding Your Happiness Hostage by Jane Bluestein*: This is an excellent book for those of us who struggle with perfectionism. Bluestein shows us how perfectionism isn’t a good thing, how it develops, how it hurts us, and how we can learn to live with more authenticity and vulnerability rather than hiding behind the walls of perfectionism. Highly recommended.

custom-knitsCustom Knits: Unleash Your Inner Designer with Top-Down and Improvisational Techniques by Wendy Bernard: Great information on techniques, construction and customization. Most of the patterns weren’t really my style though, so I’m happy I just borrowed it from the library.

awakenings-2-1Awakenings by Oliver Sacks: I listened to this on Audible. It was a fascinating and simultaneously heartbreaking story of a group of patients with sleeping sickness who had been in a sleep-like trance for decades. Given the new drug L-DOPA many “woke up” – even if only for a brief time.

things-i-learned-from-knittingThings I Learned from Knitting… whether I wanted to or not by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee: This is the first book I read by the Yarn Harlot and I loved it. A hilarious collection of essays on the trials and tribulations of a knitter – I think even the non-knitters would be amused.

great-catherineGreat Catherine: The Life of Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia by Carolly Erickson: I listened to this on Audible – I really liked the narrator. This is a great insight into the life of Catherine the Great and how she went from a young German princess to become one of the most powerful women at her time.

knitting-in-circlesKnitting in Circles: 100 Circular Patterns for Sweaters, Bags, Hats, Afghans, and More by Nicky Epstein: A good collection of different circular patterns and motifs, but I didn’t like any of the actual patterns and I’m not sure I would find it that useful.

written-in-my-own-hearts-bloodWritten in My Own Heart’s Blood (an Outlander Novel) by Diana Gabaldon: After the last couple of Outlander novels being a bit lacklustre (in my opinion), Gabaldon has found her stride again with Written in My Own Heart’s Blood. If you’ve read and enjoyed any of her previous Outlander novels I highly recommend it – if you haven’t I would start at the beginning with Outlander.

crochet-one-skein-wonders-for-babiesCrochet One-Skein Wonders for Babies: 101 Projects for Infants & Toddlers by Judith Durant & Edie Eckman*: This is another excellent edition to the series of One-Skein Wonders books, this time full of cute projects for babies and toddlers – perfect for using up those leftover skeins and bits of yarn. There’s so many delightful projects, many are excellent for beginners too.

ill-see-you-in-parisI’ll See You in Paris by Michelle Gable*: Loosely based on the real life of Gladys Spencer-Churchill, the Duchess of Marlborough, I’ll See You in Paris is both a mystery and a love story. The story had great premise, but the execution was only so-so – still a decent read, and I would recommend it for those who like historical chick-lit.

garage-bandGarage Band: A comedy that has Nothing to do with Music. Everything to do with Getting Even. by Adam Rabinowitz: I was contacted by the author who apparently had liked some of my Amazon reviews and thought I would enjoy this book. I have no idea why. Not only is it poorly written, it is one of the most sexist pieces of garbage that I’ve ever read. In the end I only read the first 10% of the book and the last chapter (to see if there might be some redemption towards the end. There wasn’t.). This is a book oozing of white, middle-age, male privilege and entitlement and I’d encourage you to stay far far away from it.

seven-principles-for-making-marriage-workThe Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country’s Foremost Relationship Expert by John Gottman, Ph.D. & Nan Silver: I had heard really good stuff about this book, it had been on my to-read list for a long time and even with my high expectations it didn’t let me down. Too often books on relationships repeat the same-old standard advice about the importance of communication and spout the old stereotypes on the difference between men and women. Instead this book will tell you that it doesn’t really matter how much you argue – as long as you have 5 good moments for every bad one, and as long as you avoid the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse (criticism, defensiveness, contempt and stonewalling), turn toward rather than away from your partner, foster fondness and admiration, build a love map, create shared meaning and learn to cope with conflicts than can’t be resolved. I highly recommend this book to everyone (whether not you’re currently in a romantic relationship).

spark-joySpark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up by Marie Kondo: If you loved  The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, but weren’t sure how to practically go about decluttering and organizing (and folding all your clothes Kondo style), or if you don’t really care about the philosophy behind why she does things the way she does; Spark Joy is for you. Step-by-step illustrated details and chapters covering all parts of the average household. I especially enjoyed her storage tips and guidelines on how to properly fold clothes.

the-white-princessThe White Princess (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels) by Philippa Gregory: While Gregory’s novel are more like “light” historical fiction, I quite like most of her books and this one was better than average. Since switching to listening to them on Audible, I also find that it’s easier to keep my focus (and due to their length, they’re a pretty good deal).

natural-hair-coloringNatural Hair Coloring: How to Use Henna and Other Pure Herbal Pigments for Chemical-Free Beauty by Christine Shahin*: Shahin covers all parts of natural hair care – of course with a huge emphasis on how to colour your hair naturally. I was amazed to learn just how many different colours you can achieve using natural methods, including ways to intensify your natural hair colour. I highly recommend this to anyone who colours their hair and are looking for more natural alternatives.

What have you been reading lately? Check out Modern Mrs Darcy for more quick book reviews.
As always I invite you to find me and connect with me on Goodreads.

*Received an advanced reader’s copy through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

12 Years of Remembering My Dad

0940b-farToday is 12 years since my dad died.

Dealing with such an important loss, well, it gets easier, but it never gets easy. I miss him all the time, especially during this time of the year.

Two years ago I wrote about how my dad died and I have previously written about my dad.

They say time heals all wounds, I don’t believe that’s true. Dealing with, working through and taking action helps heal the wounds – and even then, you’ll always have the scars to remind you what you’ve been through. And that’s okay, it’s part of life and frankly I think there’s beauty in the scars and in the stories that shape who you are.

Link Love (2016-10-08)


Baby Doe – A political history of tragedy – The New Yorker

“There are many reasons why growing numbers—primarily farmers and knitters — are fixated on the Icelandic sheep. The breed, with fine-grained meat and a wooly coat that is both light-as-air and rugged, has retained one of the purest bloodlines in the agricultural world and carries a romantic and wild history.
Without sheep milk, meat and hides, life for her Viking ancestors would have been impossible, says Ragnheiður Eiríksdóttir, a Reykjavik-based knitting instructor and former nurse. “They were essential to surviving here,” she says. Three years ago she started Knitting Iceland, a tour company that primarily caters to American and Canadian knitters.
“In my classes I talk a lot about the sheep, our culture, farmers and our heritage,” she says. “If you just present someone with a ball of yarn it doesn’t have the same impact as that story, the fact that the whole heritage of a nation follows that ball of yarn.”” Why Farmers and Knitters Are Fixated on Icelandic Sheep – Modern Farmer

20 Life Rules For a 20-Something – The Twenties Guide


“I agree that there is more partisanship in this country than is good for it and I agree that there are blog posts and news articles that misunderstand what fundamentalists believe or how they practice their beliefs. But those posts and articles are not generally written by ex-fundamentalists. Should we encourage liberals and progressives to get to know fundamentalists and see them as people? Yes, though I want to be clear that that should not get in the way of opposing beliefs that are in fact harmful—and I don’t think Bevere gets that. Should we encourage all people to be aware of the ways ideologically narrow social circles can contribute to dogmatism? Absolutely, though this applies to everyone, not just ex-fundamentalists.
But we don’t need to tell ex-fundamentalists that they have to spend more time with fundamentalists or they’re just “re-formed” fundamentalists and we don’t need to tell them that the pain or anger they may feel is illegitimate, or that if they don’t see fundamentalist positions as as valid or as just as theirs they’re still fundamentalists. And if not being a relativist makes me a fundamentalist, so be it.” A Fundamental Misunderstanding of Ex-Fundamentalists – Love, Joy, Feminism

These Pranksters Read Bible Passages to People, Telling Them It Was the Qur’an; They Were Shocked – Friendly Atheist

“But I want to note something else. Farris says that refugee status should only be given to those who would face “serious harm” if they were to return to their home country. First of all, their home country is in the middle of a civil war. I’m pretty sure that qualifies as “serious harm.” Secondly though, Farris himself fought to have a German homeschool family given asylum in the U.S. based on the fact that if they returned to Germany they would have to send their children to school. I’m pretty sure that if having to send your kids to school when you want to homeschool is harm enough to be granted asylum, your country being engulfed in civil war ought to be enough for you to be granted refugee status.” Michael Farris Calls for Closing Doors to Syrian Refugees – Love, Joy, Feminism

If the Planned Parenthood Shooter Was Not a “Faithful” Christian, the San Bernadino Shooters Were Not “Faithful” Muslims – Love, Joy, Feminism

“It may be true that today you will find people who have essentially left historic Christianity and are reimagining newer, more progressive ways to reframe their understanding of their religion. More power to them. They may very well find more sex-positive ways to embrace the rich diversity of natural, healthy human sexuality we discover when we aren’t so compelled to shoehorn everyone into this preconceived mold. But they will have to do so in spite of the rest of their Christian brothers and sisters, who will cry foul and label them heretics. These folks will probably feel more at home talking about sex with non-believers than they will with “their own kind.”
In the space that remains, I want to enumerate five different ways that a healthy view and experience of human sexuality creates cognitive dissonance within the mind of a devout Christian. I trust that as I work my way through the list you will see that these are the very reasons why an open and honest discussion about sex feels threatening to the defenders of this religion.” Why Sex May Be the Greatest Threat to Christianity – Removing the Fig Leaf


“Supporting choice means more than keeping abortion legal—though it absolutely does mean that. Supporting choice means ensuring that women have unrestricted access to a range of options. After all, having choice but only one viable option is no choice at all. Supporting reproductive freedom, in turn, means promoting women’s ability to choose not only whether they want to stay pregnant once they are but also when they become pregnant.” All-Options PRC: The New Pro-Choice Center on the Block – Love, Joy, Feminism

And I’ll be taking all of Shriver’s books of my to-be-read list. Lionel Shriver’s Address on Cultural Appropriation Roils a Writer’s Festival – The New York Times

“I’m all for the uplifting and supporting of other humans, I am. But I feel like I need to build a straight up army against the kind of dangerous and convenient spirituality of the blindly privileged who seem to think that IF ONLY WE WOULD BE THINKING MORE POSITIVE THOUGHTS OUR LIVES WOULDN’T SUCK SO MUCH.” No One Gets to be a Messiah: On Quiet Acts of Kindness + The Human Reality (Sometimes Life Does Actually Suck) – Meg Worden

“Watch yourself next time you walk down the street. If you are a woman, ask yourself why your route snakes all over the pavement as you duck and weave to avoid the men charging towards you, refusing to give you quarter. If you are a man, think about how straight your path has been. Think about how you never once had to mutter “excuse me” or “sorry” or “sorryexcusemeI’msosorry” as a man stared at you, clearly shocked by your obvious idiocy.
If you are a woman, dare to straighten your path. Dare to walk as you wish. Dare to dare the men walking towards you.” A Year of Living Comfortably – The Lighthouse

On Saturday the world woke up to tragedy. Carnage in Beirut and Paris. In what seems to have been the work of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in both cities, hundreds were killed, hundreds of others wounded, maimed and scarred. The world has condemned the attacks. But in typical fashion – the condemnation and outrage towards the attacks have been asymmetrical, unequal. JOEY AYOUB writes from Beirut on how, like life, some deaths matter more than others. ” My people’s deaths in Beirut do not matter as much as my other people’s deaths in Paris – The Daily Vox

Beauty & Body Image

Reader Request: Reclaiming Your Style – Already Pretty

DH: The idea from the very beginning was to be narrow in our offering. We see our job as the one of an editor. The best editors find you the best. And leave out the rest. So our job is to search for and find great denims from great mills and use them to make jeans of the highest quality. Our job is to make the best jeans we can; not the most jeans that we can.
Right now, we offer two types of raw denim: One, a selvedge from Kuroki Mill in Japan. It uses real indigo and is hand dipped ten times; it is a beautiful, beautiful denim. And two, we use an organic denim from Isko in Turkey. For us, organic isn’t a fashion trend to follow for one season. It is how we always will do business.” David Hieatt, Founder of Hiut Denim – Heddels

How to Stay Stylish When You’re Running On Empty – Styling by Sisters


Ask Dr. NerdLove: When Is It Time to Leave? – Dr NerdLove

Right from the start, so much of how we parent can teach our children about consent.
Are we abrupt with our toddlers when we switch to the next task or do we provide signals that a transition is going to happen? Do you offer choices, or do you just direct your child around? Do you allow your children to talk back or do you insist on uninterrupted compliance?
Do negotiations take place in your home or is it “my way or the highway”? Do your children understand self-agency and power differential, are you teaching them to trust their instincts?
Allowing our children to speak for themselves is the first step in teaching consent. Children need both voice and feel empathy to understand consent, because of course, consent is not a one-way street.
Our children must learn how to give as well as how to receive consent.” 12 Ways to Parents Can Teach Their Children Consent – Everyday Feminism

6 scientifically proven ways to strengthen your marriage – FamilyShare


31 Perfect Things – Zen Habits

It’s easier to obsess over The Perfect Pre-work Morning Routine than acknowledge that we hate our job and we’ve been burnt out for years. It’s easier to rearrange our cupboards and closets than address a shopping issue. It’s easier to fine tune minutia than deal with big, scary, deep-seated issues.
I know you know this, but personal fulfillment won’t come from a listicle. It probably doesn’t come from a perfectly organized schedule, a freezer full of pre-portioned soups, or a capsule wardrobe.Personal fulfillment comes from making peace with who we are, surrounding ourselves with people who lift us up, and doing hard, important things.” Real talk: you can’t ‘lifehack’ your way to happiness – Yes and Yes

6 Ways to Make Your New Habit Stick – Tiny Buddha

Chronic Illness & Pain

A few notes on using a HR monitor for pacing – Just ME

“When you are considering giving health advice to your chronically ill friend, just don’t.  We love you and deep down we know that you you the best intentions at heart. But, really it’s our body and don’t you think we’ve likely tried it all?  If you want to share something you saw, great just shoot us a quick note “hey, saw this and thought of you”. Leave it at that. We’ll likely take a look and we’ll know you were well-intentioned, and if by some chance it’s new information to us, we might dig deeper and thank you later. If you never hear a word from us on it, just take that to mean it was something we were already well aware of. It’s not that we don’t appreciate your desire to help, but sometimes your help just doesn’t feel that way.” Advice Overload Adds Stress to Chronic Illness – Counting My Spoons

Find Your POTS Cause – Stop POTS (and Dysautonomia!)


Fitness Isn’t Just for the Wealthy: How to Stay Healthy on a Budget – LifeHacker

“Why live like this? It started when Katy was a personal trainer in college. “Many of my clients had knee, back, and hip pain, and I wondered why. So when I went to grad school to become a biomechanist, I started researching why people had these problems and how they could be prevented rather than corrected. That’s when I realized that you can’t offset a diet of candy bars with kale salad, and you can’t counter being sedentary all day with exercise.”
Physical alignment is also extremely important to Katy. Case in point: Their foyer floor is covered in river rocks — because, she says, “good alignment starts with your feet, which need texture to move their many joints.” All four family members go barefoot as much as possible, even outdoors, and when they do wear shoes, their footwear is minimal.” This Family Traded Mattresses for Monkey Bars – Katy Bowman – Good Housekeeping

The Myers Way Approach to Preventing the Cold & Flu – Amy Myers MD


The Secrets Behind Making Incredible Matcha – Serious Eats

“Although I’ve learned lots about food and health over the last several years, the tasty part of salt, more than the health part of salt, is what inspired this recipe. On the AIP many of the spices and flavorings we normally rely on to make yummy dishes are eliminated. That’s where a new found love for finishing salts entered my world. Pre-AIP I would have never bothered to discover all ways that infusing a little flavor into a high-quality sea salt could bring a dish to life, but now I’m all about finishing salts. There are endless combinations, but I’ve come to especially like citrus-herb flavorings with my salts. You can enjoy these salts sprinkled on so many dishes. Plus, they make beautiful handmade gifts!” Citrus-Herb Finishing Salts – Autoimmune Paleo

Benefits of Rooibos Tea – Wellness Mama

“Now, in “Mast Brothers: What Lies Beneath the Beards,” a new series of posts on, Scott, the first-name-only blogger who in 2006 presented detailed allegations that the now-defunct Noka Chocolatewas selling another company’s chocolate at significantly higher prices, has targeted the Mast Brothers’ story. He alleges that the company—whose business is staked on its authenticity and commitment to transparency—did not originally make its own chocolate from scratch, as it claims it always has. As artisanal food surges in popularity, whether it’s chocolate, liquor or jam, the Mast Brothers’ story highlights how a company can have great success selling a product of dubious quality as something “artisanal” or “handcrafted” with beautiful packaging and handsome, bearded founders.” How the Mast Brothers fooled the world into paying $10 a bar for crappy hipster chocolate – Quartz

8 Kitchen Hacks Every Primal Cook Should Know – Mark’s Daily Apple


Sunday Brunch: Tea Cured Gravlax Recipe – Serious Eats

Pumpkin Spice Latte – Against All Grain

Pressure Cooker Crispy Potatoes – Nom Nom Paleo

D.I.Y. Candied Lemon Peel – The Kitchn

Pineapple Avocado Plantain Burger (AIP/Paleo) – Sweet Potatoes and Social Change

AIP Pumpkin Mug Cake – A Girl Worth Saving

Link Love (2016-10-01)


Musicked Down the Mountain: How Oliver Sacks Saved His Own Life by Literature and Song – Brain Pickings

“For example, if a single cartridge is ingested by a 50-pound dog, clinical signs of poisoning are likely to occur. But if a dog that weighs 10 pounds ingests the same amount, death is possible. Dogs of any weight that ingest multiple e-cigarette cartridges are at risk for severe poisoning and even death. In addition to the toxicity of nicotine, the actual e-cigarette casing can result in oral injury when chewed, and can cause gastrointestinal upset with the risk of a foreign body obstruction. In other words, this stuff is really dangerous.” What You Need to Know About E-Cigarettes and Your Pets – Positively

The Upgrade and Save Strategy – Wallet Hacks

“When Trump first announced he was running for president, I found it weird and awful in a “fuck this shit” kind of way but also vaguely amusing in a sad, bad reality-TV show kind of way.Another idiot on the screen. I didn’t take it seriously though.
How could I?
You see, I thought outright racism, xenophobia, and misogyny disqualified someone from presidency. I thought over-simplified, ignorant (if not downright moronic) proposals such as “let’s send all the illegals home” disqualified somebody from a position, say, as PRESIDENT OF OUR FUCKING NATION.
I thought emptiness behind the eyes and acting like an overall buffoon would repel people on a superficial level alone. Simply, I don’t want that asshat representing my nation.
But I was wrong.” We built this house. We can tear it down. – Renegade Mothering

Coliving: A Solution for Lonely Millennials? – The Atlantic


“The Danish Girl” Stretches Frilly Forced Femme Fantasy Over Actual Trans History – Medium

“So to the generally well-intentioned men in my life, please consider this:
No matter what I accomplish or how self assured I am feeling, the aforementioned dickhead bouncers of the world will still believe they have a right to demand my time and attention, even when I want to be alone.
They will still insist I be polite and cheerful, even while they make me uncomfortable and afraid. They will still comment about my body and allude to sexual violence, and then berate me for being “stuck up” if I don’t receive it with a sense of humor. They will still choose to reinforce their dominance with a reminder that they could hurt me if they wanted to, and that I should somehow be grateful if they don’t.
This has made me defensive. It has put me more on my guard than I would like to be.” To Men I Love, About Men Who Scare Me – Huffington Post

The Seduction of Safety on Campus and Beyond – The New York Times

“When safety regulations were originally imposed on automakers in the 1960s regulators wanted to require the use of two crash test dummies, a 95 percentile male and a 5 percentile female meaning that only 5% of men were larger than and 5% of women were smaller than the crash test dummies. Automakers pushed back on regulators until the requirement was reduced to a single crash test dummy, a 50 percentile male (the average man).
Female drivers are 47% more likely to be seriously injured in a car crash.” The World is Designed for Men – HH Design

How to Annoy Your Brother During a Sleepover – Raising My Rainbow

Beauty and Body Image

Bra Theory – Let’s Talk Boobs, Bras, and Math

“It is a truth universally acknowledged that hair is sexy. So, naturally, it was seen as sinful by the Medieval Church, and decent women hid theirs with veils, nets, hoods and hats. In warmer European countries, women might get away with braiding since hot weather rendered head-covering a bit of a nightmare. Elsewhere, the only women who left their hair unconcealed were peasants, prostitutes and very young unmarried girls.
Hand in hand with the desire to hide hair was the belief that the higher the hairline the better. Many women resorted to potions of vinegar or quicklime to erode their natural hairline (often taking skin with it), whilst to keep foreheads as unsullied as possible, eyebrows were tweezed within an inch of their lives.” Beauty Tips from the Middle Ages, Including How to Get a Huge, Freckle-Free Forehead – xoVain

Slow Fashion Guide: Basics – Elise Epp Design

“I showed her this post and asked her, When was the last time you ate intuitively? With joy? Without guilt? Without shoulds? Without anxiety? How old were you?
How old were you when you were made wrong for wanting what you wanted?
It feels like you’re going to lose control and not be perfect, because that young girl is probably the one who’s going to show up first.” When Did You Stop  Eating Intuitively – K. Foley Wellness

Personal Style with a Health Condition – Wardrobe Oxygen


#801: Why can’t other people care about school as much as I do? – Captain Awkward

“Life at the moment feels as if is going at a pace, racing ahead and away from me. Smoothing over the up and downs in friendships, keeping up with the demands which school and work bring, wanting to pull everyone just that little bit closer.
It has got me thinking about just stepping back and reflecting on how I can make this parenting journey that I am on a peaceful one. I made a conscious decision many moons ago to parent without confrontation, without argument and without being authoritarian. Sometimes, when life gets fraught and we lose our way with it all, it is good to remind ourselves why we choose to parent peacefully.
Recognising that our role as parents is to hold that place of safety round our children.
Understanding that little things are big things, huge things even, to little people.
Developing positive attachment and affectionate bonds.” Parenting Peacefully In Tough Times – The Mother Magazine

Hacking Sexuality (Part 2) – petra8paleo

Chronic Illness & Pain

5 Tips for Travelling with a Chronic Illness – Conquering Fear Spiritually

“If we aim too high physically we crash – maybe permanently lower.
If we aim too low physically we loose condition, muscles and bone.
So where is the happy medium?” The Exercise Catch 22! – Just ME

5 Survival Tips for When Caregiving is Overwhelming – Adios Barbie


Beyond English Breakfast: An Introduction to the World’s Great Teas – Serious Eats

“As the culture surrounding tea has changed through the centuries, so, too, have the tools we use to drink it. From the first dainty tea bowls to the mugs people use to warm themselves with a cup of tea today, tea sets have changed to meet cultural and utilitarian needs” Tea Tuesdays: The Evolution of Tea Sets From Ancient Legend to Modern Biometrics – The Salt

Help Me, Kenji – How to get roasted potatoes extra crispy – Cooking Light


The Modern’s Long Rum Punch Recipe – Serious Eats

Autumn in a Bowl: Spiced Pumpkin Granola – Against All Grain

Easy Guacamole Recipe – Wellness Mama

Instant Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken – Predominantly Paleo

3-Ingredient Elderberry Soda – Live Simply

Pumpkin Roll with Cinnamon Molasses Spread [AIP/Vegan] – Grazed and Enthused

About Pain: For Those Who Suffer and Their Caregivers by Rachel B. Aarons

about-painPain, especially chronic pain, is a difficult topic for us to talk about. If you’ve never experienced chronic pain it is very hard to understand what it’s like to deal with pain on a continuous basis. Even if you have experienced chronic pain, it can be hard to fully comprehend how devastating another type of chronic pain can be.

About Pain: For Those Who Suffer and Their Caregivers by Rachel B. Aarons gives an excellent insight into the world of chronic pain, both from the perspective of the person dealing with chronic pain in the first part of the book, and from the caregivers in the second part of the book. In the third part of the book Dr. Aarons gives advice on how to best live with, manage and relieve chronic pain.

This perfectly describes how I myself feel a lot of the time:

Along with the limits and walls, go the losses. It is not so easy letting go of those hopes and dreams you have cherished. At the same time as the world becomes weighted down with negativity, it shrinks in options. Many of the enticing possibilities disappear. Either physically or emotionally, they simply are not possibilities anymore.
At bottom, pain constitutes an assault on your freedom of choice in the world. Others get to do so many exciting things while you are walled in by can’ts. Even if your mind is willing, your body may not be. Imagine the frustration of being trapped in a body that is limping, creaky and hurting. You may feel old long before your time. As the world shrinks and sours, it will inevitably affect the person you are.

Whether you are coming to terms with your own chronic pain, or trying to understand a loved one’s condition, I highly recommend About Pain.

Content Notice:

Each of the personal stories have been written by the patients themselves, and have not been edited by Dr. Aarons. The story by Otis covering his experience with prostate cancer and his poor treatment in a hospital, included a completely irrelevant and offensive comment, questioning whether a “Obama death panel” was in his future. I personally find this comment incredibly offensive, as well as completely nonsensical. I asked Dr. Aarons about it, and she said that she’d chosen not to edit any of the personal stories, and didn’t know what the patient had meant by it. While I personally wouldn’t allow people to share such views on my platform (they are free to do so in their own space), I respect Dr. Aarons choice to do so, while also wanting to give any prospective readers a heads up, that you might want to skip that particular section.

I was contacted by Dr. Aarons and received a free copy. The review is my own honest opinion. 


Link Love (2016-09-17)


“The disconnect between internet fame and financial security is hard to comprehend for both creators and fans. But it’s the crux of many mid-level web personalities’ lives. Take moderately successful YouTubers, for example. Connor Manning, an LGBT vlogger with 70,000 subscribers, was recognized six times selling memberships at the Baltimore Aquarium. Rosianna Halse Rojas, who has her own books and lifestyle channel and is also YouTube king John Green’s producing partner, has had people freak out at her TopMan register. Rachel Whitehurst, whose beauty and sexuality vlog has 160,000 subscribers, was forced to quit her job at Starbucks because fans memorized her schedule.
In other words: Many famous social media stars are too visible to have “real” jobs, but too broke not to.” The sad economics of being famous on the internet – Fusion

Jessica Stones Star Krysten Ritter on Why the Superhero Will Never Wear Heels – TIME

“He polled a large sample of likely voters, looking for correlations between support for Trump and views that align with authoritarianism. What he found was astonishing: Not only did authoritarianism correlate, but it seemed to predict support for Trump more reliably than virtually any other indicator.” The rise of American Authoritarianism – Vox

A New, Minimalist Economy – Becoming Minimalist

“In the dog training ‘industry’ there are several different ideas as to how best to train a dog, which methods should be used and which are outdated or even cruel. However, any behaviour can be taught using force-free methods without the need to invoke pain, fear or force onto our dogs. Tools such as shock collars, prong collars, choke chains, spray and rattle bottles, to name just a few, can be replaced with kinder methods. Using clicker training and reinforcements such as food, toys, praise and life rewards can get the same results. If we love our animals, why do people find it acceptable to cause them pain or fear just for the sake of ‘training’?” Why I Train Without Force – Positively


“But less attention was paid to what Cenac had to say about being the only black writer in the room, torn between speaking up or saying nothing and keeping the peace. (Full disclosure: Cenac is a personal friend.) “I gotta be honest if something seems questionable,” he told Maron, “because if not, then I don’t want to be in a position where I am being untrue not just to myself but to my culture, because that’s exploitative. I’m just allowing something to continue if I’m just going to go along with it. And sadly, I think that’s the burden a lot of people have to have when you are ‘the one.’ You represent something bigger than yourself whether you want to or not.”” On Wyatt Cenac, ‘Key & Peele,’ And Being the Only One in the Room – Code Switch

The Bogeyman of the 38-Week Abortion – Consider the Tea Cosy

“If gender neutral clothes are only made for and marketed to the parents of little girls, it is less a sign of gender equality and more an indication of the misogyny that is so ambient in our culture. There is such a devaluing of anything traditionally feminine that we’d rather chuck it out triumphantly than ever demean our boys with it.” Everybody in dresses: Why does gender neutral clothing always mean ‘boy’ clothes for girls? – National Post

LGBT Leaders Warn of Looming Gay Rights Backlash – TIME

“They asked us: Does it make sense that they, as LGBTQ+ youth, face approximately 14 times the risk of suicide and substance abuse than their heterosexual and cisgender peers, when mental health problems, substance use and suicide are not side-effects of having a minority sexual identity or gender orientation?
They are side-effects of prejudice and discrimination.” The Health Impacts of Prejudice and Discrimination – petra8paleo

Beauty & Body Image

Loving + Dressing Your Body at Any Size – Styling By Sisters

“Sometimes, our beliefs shift and we try on new behaviors. Sometimes we try on new behaviors and our beliefs change. Perhaps you do not give yourself everything on your list because you are waiting to believe that you deserve it.
I wonder what would happen if you imagined the person you would be if you gave yourself these things, imagined how your life and the lives of others would be enriched as a result. And then you just gave yourself these things, whether or not you yet believed you deserved them. I wonder how that might open you up just a bit more to what’s possible for your health and then create this beautiful positive feedback loop that starts to let you know that, yes, in fact, you not only need these things, but you deserve them.
Not because of anything you’ve done. Not because you’re better than anyone else.
But because you have a body. And that body needs you.” Your Body is Deserving – The Resilient Body

Forget H&M, Primark, and Forever 21: The Case for Expensive Clothes – The Atlantic

“During a large portion of the medieval period, the beautiful woman emphasised her high, round forehead. If a woman was unfortunate to have been naturally cursed with a low hairline, the correct and fashionable look was artificially enhanced by the plucking of the hairline back up towards the crown of the head. This look was accentuated by reducing the eyebrows to a barely-there line.” Hairstyles – Rosalie’s Medieval Woman

Close the (Thigh) Gap – Thrive with Jen Sinkler


“When it was over, I wasn’t permitted to mourn him. No one could understand how love, hate, fear and comfort could coexist simultaneously. They could not understand that in addition to my abuser, I also lost my confidant, the person to make dinner with, the person to watch movies with on a rainy Sunday, the person to laugh with, the person who knew me. I lost my companion. How can you explain to someone that the abuse was only a part of who he was? How do you explain that to yourself?
There are still days when I remember tender moments and wonder if it really was that bad. I still struggle with reconciling how he could love me to the point of tears and yet hurt me as if I was an enemy. Like a child, I’m learning to redefine the borders of normal behavior and to realign my expectations. I remind myself that acts of violence can never be acts of love.” He Never Hit Me – Huffington Post

Step 389: Remember Your Friends’ Sad Anniversaries Too – Adulting

“In this relationship culture, expectations and trust are in constant question. The state of stable ambiguity inevitably creates an atmosphere in which at least one person feels lingering uncertainty, and neither person feels truly appreciated or nurtured. We do this at the expense of our emotional health, and the emotional health of others.” This Is What’s Wrong With Modern Relationships – Esther Perel Explains – Mind Body Green

Chronic Illness & Pain

Exercise for POTSies – POTSgrrl

“The “PLAY UP” moment is controlled as tightly as possible.  I stop the activity while I still feel able to do more and start the Post Activity LAY UP no matter how well I feel.   It is not easy.  If I’ve got it right then I should have almost no symptoms.  Ironically, it also might seem to others that my condition is not so severe – because I tend not to enter the BUST ZONE!” “Play-Up & Lay-Up” not “Boom & Bust” – Just ME

Compression stockings: From beige to brilliant – Living with Bob (Dysautonomia)


Evolutionary Medicine and Back Pain – Pain Science

“Vitamin D is most well known for regulating the amount of minerals like calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous in the body. In recent years, there has been much research into additional functions, like its effect on the immune system, cardiovascular system, and cancer. Here is a list of what vitamin D does in the body:

  • Regulates bone mineralization and metabolism
  • Controls the expression of over 200 genes
  • Modulates the immune system
  • Controls cell growth
  • Has anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic properties
  • Supports the immune system fighting infection
  • Assists in neuromuscular function”
    Don’t Fear the Sun! Vitamin D and Healing – Autoimmune Paleo

Not really the paleo diet – Nutritious Movement


Sweet Potato Turkey Chili (AIP/Paleo) – Sweet Potatoes and Social Change

Golden Turmeric Sauce – Autoimmune Paleo

DIY Swedish Punch Recipe – Serious Eats

Sweet Potato Lasagna Recipe – Wellness Mama

Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Vanilla Cinnamon Icing

,– Against All Grain

Link Love (2016-08-27)


“I don’t remember the rest of what she said. It is hard to look into the face of love and not be shaken, no matter how tough you are. A few years have passed, and I’m still moved by that teeny white sweater; that anonymous knitting done by a sensible woman to warm a baby too small to survive. For her, there would be none of the usual satisfaction a knitter feels – seeing a sweater worn, outgrown and passed on to the next lucky child. Why did she bother with one that would only be worn once?
I think she did it for the same reason knitters have always made things for homeless people, poor people, babies, kids, elders, soldiers, women with breast cancer, family and friends.
Could this be true, that every little thing actually does matter? Every stitch, every kiss, every kindness – they all count, they all add up? Maybe love is just a seemingly endless series of very small gestures repeated until you die.
Knit, purl, knit, purl, knit, purl. Keep doing it. It adds up to a life.” In a knitting club, I found a cure for selfishness and cynicism – The Globe and Mail

I made some more Facebook reactions – The Oatmeal

“We don’t just loathe inconsistencies in others; we hate them in ourselves, too. But why? What makes contradictions so revolting — and should they be?” The Virtue of Contradicting Ourselves  – NY Times


“They said “You are a woman, emotional, incapable of leading, easily deceived. You must stay in your place, submit, and only then God will bless you.”
So we felt loathing for our womanhood, wondering why God would make us inferior, and feeling guilty that we dare question the Almighty’s plan, that we are not happy with his decree.
And now… we are told “Why are you depressed? Why do you have anxiety? Why the addictions, the anger, the rage, the self-loathing? Why can’t you just be happy and normal?”
As if no one can connect the dots. As if their actions did not have consequences. As if a child can be raised to hate themselves in the Name of God and suddenly grow into an adult that is healthy. As if a lifetime of emotional trauma and spiritual abuse suddenly vanishes because a person changes their mind about who they are and their place in the world.
That’s not how it works. That is only the beginning of a journey that could take the rest of our lives. A journey we are told not to speak of because it makes people uncomfortable, because they’d rather call us names like “bitter” and “unforgiving” than to look deep into the darkness of our hearts and hear tales of pain and see the rawness of souls taught to hate themselves. Because those stories aren’t nice ones.But we will not change them in order to make others comfortable.” Guest Post: Not a Nice Story – Love, Joy, Feminism


“Every time I publish a blog post or post to social media and use masculine pronouns for my son (whether I’m talking about his desire to be called Mrs. Clooney, get his ears pierced, etc.), people — no matter how accepting and progressive they think they are — tell me I’m using the wrong pronouns. They insist that my son is transgender and that I’m not honoring that.
Good for them. Seriously. Good for more people pushing others to honor people who are transgender.
But, gender policing me sometimes seems like it isn’t an act of understanding, but rather an act prompted by a lack of understanding.
I couldn’t be honoring my son’s gender identity any more when he is expressing himself as female and I use the masculine pronouns that he prefers.” The New Gender Binary – Raising My Rainbow

“Word choice is hard here. Should we say “raped” automatically if a grown man has sex with a teenager? Does it matter at all if the 15-year-old, now much older, describes their encounter as one of the best nights of her life? What is our word for a “yes” given on a plane that’s almost vertically unequal? Does contemporary morality dictate that we trust a young woman when she says she consented freely, or believe that she couldn’t have, no matter what she says?” What Should We Say About David Bowie and Lori Maddox? – Jezebel

“People in schools and churches across the country will pay homage to Martin Luther King Jr. today, and many will read “Letter From The Birmingham Jail,” which is right and good.
But few will read “A Call for Unity” or any of the thousands of editorials, letters, articles, and sermons composed by American whites—most of them Christians—in opposition to King’s work. We forget that just as our most heated discussions on social media emerge from the context of a cultural conversation, so too did the treatises of theologians and activists past. When we familiarize ourselves with only one side of the debate (typically the side ultimately found to be just) we miss the full depth of the argument and, worse yet, slip into a sort of historical amnesia that allows us to believe we too would have chosen the side of good on account of its seemingly obvious virtue.” Christians, MLK Day, and Historical Amnesia – Rachel Held Evans

“They don’t know about de-escalation. Minimizing. Quietly acquiescing.
Hell, even though women live it, we are not always aware of it. But we have all done it.
We have all learned, either by instinct or by trial and error, how to minimize a situation that makes us uncomfortable. How to avoid angering a man or endangering ourselves. We have all, on many occasions, ignored an offensive comment. We’ve all laughed off an inappropriate come-on. We’ve all swallowed our anger when being belittled or condescended to.
It doesn’t feel good. It feels icky. Dirty. But we do it because to not do it could put us in danger or get us fired or labeled a bitch. So we usually take the path of least precariousness.
It’s not something we talk about every day. We don’t tell our boyfriends and husbands and friends every time it happens. Because it is so frequent, so pervasive, that it has become something we just deal with.” The Thing All Women Do That You Don’t Know About – Drifting Through My Open Mind


Questions I Wish I’d Asked My Mother – Huffington Post

“Let’s start with one of the most obvious: when your identity is based on the things you consume rather than what you do. Now I’ll be the first to acknowledge the irony of this coming from someone who calls himself Dr. NerdLove but stick with me a second.
Ultimately, being a geek is about how you relate to the things you love. It’s not just that you watch sci-fi movies but how they inspire you to express how you love them. Maybe you’ll cosplay as the characters. Maybe it inspires you to write your own sci fi epic. Regardless, it’s about the interaction and pursuits of your passions, not just the act of consuming it. One of the biggest mistakes geeks and nerds make is in the way they have a tendency to make their consumption part of their identity. It becomes a major touchstone of who they are; they don’t just play games, they are a gamer. Sometimes it goes even further – they’re not just a gamer, they’re one of the Glorious PC Gaming Master Race, rather than one of those dirty console peasants.” Geek Behaviors That Drive Women Away – Dr NerdLove

What’s underneath ALL the layers? – KIMCHI Cuddles

“I am teaching my children how to communicate, helping them understand their feelings, affirming that their needs matter, and showing them how to weigh and consider others’ needs. I don’t think any of that will serve them badly, whether as teens or as adults. And you know what? Because my parenting doesn’t rely on a brittle obedience-focused mindset, I am more than willing to adjust my parenting over time as the need arises. Still, there are some underlying ideas—treating children with respect, teaching them that they matter, establishing open lines of communication, and focusing on skill acquisitions rather than results—that that will inform my parenting even as it may shift over time to accommodate changing needs.” How I’ve Learned (and Unlearned) Parenting – Love, Joy, Feminism


“I vow to extend love to myself, even at my most nerdy, un-showered, and imperfect.
I vow to extend respect to myself, even when I’m unproductive or struggling.
Part of my self-care is a vow to love myself, no matter what, in whatever condition I find myself.” Loving Myself Extra (or: I don’t care if you like it) – Christy Tending

How to Balance Giving and Receiving Every Day – Who’s That Lady

“After a season of treating my work as my most important investment, I’ve learned that caring for my soul is actually tops on that list. If I can set some boundaries around my work, family, and personal time, I’ll gradually cultivate health in my soul and my family.” I’m not dominating the world and you can, too – The Art of Simple

Chronic Illness & Pain

The N=1 Healing Protocol – Petra8Paleo

I really think this would be a great idea – even for people who don’t have POTS or a chronic illness. Creating a POTS binder – STOP POTS (and Dysautonomia)

Massage Therapy for for Tension Headaches – Pain Science

“Rule #1 of any relationship should be honesty, but this goes double for intimate situations involving people with chronic pain. If your partner has a chronic pain condition you’ve heard of, remember that everyone’s experience of pain is unique. You need to ask about your specific partner’s experience of pain and what specific triggers you can avoid when you’re between the sheets. Similarly, if you have chronic pain, your chances of enjoying some pain-free nookie increase dramatically when you can articulate what you know about your condition.” Chronic Pain: Stop it from Sucking the Fun Out of Your Sex Life – Sex is Social

15 Shades of Fibromyalgia – February Stars


Mental health treatment: How float clinics treat anxiety – Time

“What discussions about ergonomics usually miss is that long work days in a chair are just a fundamentally bad idea — no matter how good your chair is. Ergonomics should not be focussed on ways of making people more comfortable with a bad situation — almost a conspiracy against workers — but rather on improving the situation. Conventional ergonomics, when “arranging things for efficient use” — tends to exclude the most important thing in your workstation: you!” Ergonomics: Unusual Tips – Pain Science

3 Ways Thinking Outside the Box  Will Improve Your Family’s Health -Guest Post by Sarah Kolman – The Paleo Mom

“One of the best things you can do for breast health is letting your arms swing while walking. So what does swinging the arms have to do with breast health? Zoom in on the picture below and you will notice that many of the lymph nodes are concentrated around the armpits. The lymphatic system is our major line of defense against invaders such as bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens. Lymph can be obstructed by compression of organs, tight muscles, and tight clothing (bras). Restriction of lymph flow allows debris to accumulate, and tissues become acidic and burdened with toxic wastes. The breasts have a high concentration of lymph nodes. For the health of the breasts and the rest of the body, it is important to keep the lymphatic system flowing.  Muscle movement plays a huge role in optimal lymph flow as it “milks” the lymph through the system.” Breast Health and Walktober – Alignment Monkey

How to Choose the Best Natural Lube for Better Sex – Paleo Hacks


Blanch Spinach by Boiling Your Kettle Not a Pot of Water – LifeHacker

“Most of us get that high quality, boutique things generally cost more than their lower grade commodity alternatives. But for Westerners, tea often occupies a blind spot, and people who wouldn’t blink at spending $25 for a bottle of wine can’t fathom spending $10 for an ounce of tea that may last them weeks.” Why Great Tea Doesn’t Come Cheap: Digging Into the High Mountain Economy – Serious Eats

Crispy Smashed Roasted Potatoes – Fine Cooking

“And it’s worth it to buy the good stuff, because like beef, not all salmon is created equal. A lot of salmon’s flavor, fattiness, and nutrient profile depends on where and how it spent its life. Let’s take a deeper dive (no pun intended) into the world of salmon. You’ll learn about all the powerful compounds in this delicious fish, how to choose the best salmon, and how to cook it perfectly with a Bulletproof recipe.” Why You Should Eat More Wild-Caught Salmon – Bulletproof Exec

Tea Tuesdays: The Chemis-Tea of Pouring the Perfect English-Style Cuppa – The Salt


Garlic Herb Pot Roast – Wellness Mama

Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes – Mark’s Daily Apple

Broccoli Cheese Soup – Mommypotamus

Matcha Green Tea Latte – Annmarie Gianni

Thai-Inspired Pork Salad – Autoimmune Paleo

Pumpkin Carrot Cakies – Field Notes on Healing

August 2016 Quick Reviews

Apologies for the lack of posts on the blog. We had to move unexpectedly, when our landlord decided to sell the place. The stress from the move caused the worst flare up I have had so far, and we are still settling into the new place. At this stage I am massively behind on my book reviews though! I will have to try and catch up before the end of the year.


szen zoneSzen Zone: Reaching a State of Positive Change by Gary Szenderski*: An excellent and thought-provoking collection of essays and stories. I enjoyed this one in bite-sized portions, taking time to mull over each little gem. These positive stories are focused on change, on what is possible, when we open our mind to possibly doing or seeing things a little differently.

Bad_PharmaBad Pharma: How Drug Companies Mislead Doctors and Harm Patients by Ben Goldacre: Probably the most important book I’ve read this year. While I’ve been sceptical of Big Pharma for a long time, I was shocked and horrified to know just how bad things are. There are massive issues around funding, loopholes for approvals, and not publishing unfavourable results skewing the safety and efficiency perceptions of drugs. Bad Pharma isn’t anti science – rather the opposite – Ben Goldacre is a doctor and science journalist, and advocates for sticking to the scientific method, full disclosure and advocating for the interest of the patients – not the drug companies. I can’t recommend this enough.

simple mattersSimple Matters: Living with Less and Ending Up with More by Erin Boyle*: A fairly basic introduction to minimalism and simple living. Unfortunately the ARC I received didn’t have any pictures, which is what Erin Boyle is famous for on her blog Reading My Tea Leaves, and I think, I would’ve rated it higher with the pictures. Simple Matters is written in the memoir-style with lots of advice and ideas sprinkled in.

home cookedHome Cooked: Essential Recipes for a New Way to Cook by Anya Fernald*: I really enjoyed diving into Fernald’s experiences with Italian cooking, and how it affects her cooking today. With a wonderful focus on local food, and traditional cooking and preparation styles to let the flavour of great quality food shine through. My favourite thing about Home Cooked is the way it empowers you by teaching fundamentals and how to expand on them. Highly recommended.

Fitted Knits: 25 Projects for the Fashionable Knitter by Stefanie Japel: I loved the technical expertise and the author’s approach to knitting. Many of the designs were a bit dated and featured very chunky knits, which I personally don’t find that appealing. With that being said there were several gorgeous pieces – especially towards the end.


What have you been reading lately? Check out Modern Mrs Darcy for more quick book reviews.
As always I invite you to find me and connect with me on Goodreads.

*Received an advanced reader’s copy through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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