This month I’ve decided to add my star ratings at the end of my reviews – shows more clearly how highly I value a book, and there’s some great ones this month.
Psychological Nutrition by Shoba Sreenivasan & Linda Weinberger*: I loved the concept of psychological nutrition, but the execution was rather lacklustre and became more tired as the book went on. In addition the rather literal comparisons are based on out-dated science, which made it hard to take the suggestions seriously. That’s a real shame, because the suggestions and ideas are actually decent. 3 stars
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein: I picked this up in an Audible sale and I am so happy I did. The narration by Morven Christie and Lucy Gaskell is incredibly well done and truly made the story of two young women thrown together during WWII come to life. This might be consider a Young Adult book, but it was incredibly compelling – tears might’ve been shed, and it is probably one of the best books I’ve read (listened to) this year. 5 stars
Move Your DNA: Restore Your Health Through Natural Movement by Katy Bowman: I listened to this on Audible, narrated by the author herself and while walking the dog as suggested/ordered. Bowman as always is funny, thought-provoking and educational. Move Your DNA covers our evolutionary need for natural movement, different types of movement vitamins, corrective exercises, habit modification, and lifestyle changes. Highly recommended. 5 stars
Cable Left, Cable Right: 94 Knitted Cables by Judith Durant*: An excellent introduction to cables, with something for everyone from beginners to advanced knitters. I learnt so much about how the different types of cables are created, and I feel empowered both to take on more difficult cabled patterns as well as design my own. With great photos and clear instructions cover 94 different kinds of knitted cables, a fantastic resource. 5 stars
The 100 by Kass Morgan (currently $2.15 on Kindle): I’d been watching the TV show so thought I would read the book behind it. Very different to the TV show, and for once not for the better. Very light YA. 2 stars
“His final debate performance this week was a bust, with him snarling that Clinton was “such a nasty woman” and gritting his teeth as he angrily ripped pages off a notepad when it was over. He is under fire from all quarters for refusing to say he will honor the election results if he loses, while 10 women have now come forward accusing him of groping or kissing them without consent. The capper to Trump’s bad stretch came Thursday night, when a ballroom full of New York City’s glitterati booed him as he gave remarks attacking Clinton at a charity roast.” Donald Trump is in a funk: Bitter, hoarse and pondering, ‘If I lose…’ – The Washington Post
“Susan suspects there are other women like her, but that part of the reason conservative female Christian voters won’t openly support Clinton is because of the culture of submission in Evangelical churches. Wives are supposed to follow their husbands’ lead in every matter, including politics. Speaking out against those traditional teachings can come with a risk—a social penalty of alienation from a very tight-knit community, to which spouses, extended family, children, and support systems are all intricately linked. Still, she knows of pockets of women who are defecting from Trump. “I hope all those people who are saying no to Trump are also, secretly, saying yes to Hillary,” she says.
Susan and Jennifer are not as anomalous as we think. There are hundreds of private Facebook groups with names like “Secret Hillary Club,” most of which were formed during the caucus, when Clinton supporters felt alienated by ardent Bernie Sanders fans. But now, these online groups have coalesced into places of support and encouragement for counties that burn predominantly red in the polls. Cynthia Silver, a director and acting teacher living in New York City, started her pro-Hillary private Facebook group after a heated social media argument with a former student. Since Clinton won the nomination, Silver has been surprised to see the group grow to well over 2,000 members from all over the country.” These Donald Trump Supporters Are Going to Vote for Hillary Clinton – Marie Claire
“I’m concerned about both an unwillingness to recognize that causing great harm (say, driving people out of business) is worse than causing less harm (stealing the equivalent of $0.25) and the classification of things that cause no harm as sins (for instance, consensual premarital sex). I’ve long known that there are a variety of different systems for determining whether or not an act is moral, but I hadn’t thought, really thought, about the troubling consequences of classifying actions that cause no harm together with actions that do cause harm, and labelling both immoral.” Donald Trump and the Way Evangelicals Talk About Sin – Love, Joy, Feminism
“A common result of gaslighting is questioning everything. You may feel like you’re going “crazy.” Like you don’t know what’s real and what’s imagined. Like you can’t even make the simplest choices, because you find it impossible to know what’s “right” and what’s “wrong.”
You may feel like you’ve lost your sense of self – like you need someone else to confirm that your perception is correct before you trust that anything you believe is true.
This burden is a terrible one to carry, and you deserve to be free from it so you can trust yourself again. Learning about the nature of abuse is a great place to start with healing, so I’m glad you’re taking the time to read resources like this one.” 6 Unexpected Ways I’ve Healed from Gaslighting Abuse and Learned to Trust Myself Again – Everyday Feminism
“I’ve done months of costly herbal medications; I’ve spent hundreds and hundreds of dollars on practitioner fees and co-pays; I’ve created huge upheaval in my diet, requiring even more time in the kitchen; I’ve worked on my alignment; I’ve spent a lot of time at appointments.
I’ve also just been incredibly frustrated. “What is life without garlic?” I would wonder. “Why won’t my body HEAL?” “How is it other people can eat what they want and not look 6 months pregnant?” “What if I never get better?”” I’ve Had a Hard Year – The Resilient Body
“Anger and hostility were the most overwhelming sentiments at a Trump rally in Cincinnati last week, a deep sense of frustration, an us-versus-them mentality, and a belief that they are part of an unstoppable and underestimated movement. Unlike many in the country, however, these hard-core Trump followers do not believe the real estate mogul’s misfortunes are of his own making.
They believe what Trump has told them over and over, that this election is rigged, and if he loses, it will be because of a massive conspiracy to take him down.” Trump’s supporters talk rebellion, assassination at his rallies – The Boston Globe
“These concerns compel us, for the third time since the magazine’s founding, to endorse a candidate for president. Hillary Rodham Clinton has more than earned, through her service to the country as first lady, as a senator from New York, and as secretary of state, the right to be taken seriously as a White House contender. She has flaws (some legitimately troubling, some exaggerated by her opponents), but she is among the most prepared candidates ever to seek the presidency. We are confident that she understands the role of the United States in the world; we have no doubt that she will apply herself assiduously to the problems confronting this country; and she has demonstrated an aptitude for analysis and hard work.
Donald Trump, on the other hand, has no record of public service and no qualifications for public office. His affect is that of an infomercial huckster; he traffics in conspiracy theories and racist invective; he is appallingly sexist; he is erratic, secretive, and xenophobic; he expresses admiration for authoritarian rulers, and evinces authoritarian tendencies himself. He is easily goaded, a poor quality for someone seeking control of America’s nuclear arsenal. He is an enemy of fact-based discourse; he is ignorant of, and indifferent to, the Constitution; he appears not to read.” ‘The Atlantic’ Editors Endorse Hillary Clinton for President – The Atlantic
“I have to laugh when people accuse me of opposing Trump because it somehow makes me rich, or because I’m currying favors with guests at the “elite” cocktail parties that I never actually attend. I oppose Trump not just because he’s an ignorant demagogue and a naked political opportunist, but also because bigotry and intimidation cling to his campaign. Every campaign attracts its share of fools, cranks, and crazies. But Trump’s candidacy has weaponized them. Every harassing tweet and every violent threat is like a voice whispering in my ear, telling me to do all that I can to oppose a movement that breeds and exploits such reckless hate.” Donald Trump’s Alt-Right Supporters: Internet Abuse Must End – National Review
“Syncope = Fainting = Passing out. This means you have lost consciousness, or have come close and have gotten horizontal in time to prevent the actual faint, otherwise known as “pre-syncope.” This happens because there is not enough blood in your brain. Many perfectly healthy peeople faint during their life time, and it is a one or two time event – and they have no other health issues causing it or as a result. Or – it can be a sign of something serious. There are many types of fainting, the most common being vasovagal, or reflex fainting.” Fainting: The Final Frontier (and Neurally Medicated Syncope) – STOP POTS (and Dysautonomia)
“Trump fever quickly spread: Other extremists new to presidential politics openly endorsed Trump, including Don Black, a former grand dragon of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan and founder of the neo-Nazi site Stormfront; Rocky Suhayda, chair of the American Nazi Party; and Rachel Pendergraft, a national organizer for the Knights Party, the successor to David Duke’s Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. Richard Spencer, an emerging leader among a new generation of white nationalists known as the “alt right,” declared that Trump “loves white people.”” How Trump Took Hate Groups Mainstream – Mother Jones
“Yet within this tale of marriage and redemption, there doesn’t seem to be room for Clinton, who is criticized for doing what Trump supporters tell others to do every day — value the sanctity of marriage. Clinton’s reasoning for reconciling with her husband even seems to follow these traditional teachings. In March of this year,Clinton spoke of her faith and marriage at a church in Michigan. She noted that it was her faith that allowed her to forgive her husband, and the example of God’s redemption that gave her a pathway to reconciliation.
Divorce is bad, argue Christian leaders, because marriage is forever. And yet, somehow when the Clintons stay together, it’s a moral failing.” The Clintons’ Christian Marriage: The staggering Evangelical hypocricy over Hillary’s refusal to divorce Bill – Salon
“It’s a little peculiar, isn’t it, that seeing homophobia as The Worst Thing makes it so much harder to challenge? But it does. Capital-H, by erasing everyday homophobia carried out by decent people, actively perpetuates a status quo where cisgender heterosexuality is normalised and everything else is.. Other.” Homophobia: letting go of the Capital H. – Consider the Tea Cosy
“After finishing their fact-finding mission, the working group was “extremely concerned about the human rights situation of African-Americans,” chair Mireille Fanon Mendes-France of France said in the report. “The colonial history, the legacy of enslavement, racial subordination and segregation, racial terrorism and racial inequality in the U.S. remains a serious challenge as there has been no real commitment to reparations and to truth and reconciliation for people of African descent.”” U.N. panel suggests slavery reparations in U.S. – The Philadelphia Tribune
“She looked at me in surprise: “You’re going to leave the baby alone with your husband?!”
I looked at her like she had two heads: “Uh, yes — at minimum, several evenings a week and all day Sunday. I would never have a baby with someone who couldn’t be left alone with a baby. In fact, nobody should.”
I wouldn’t agree to an unfair parenting arrangement any more than I’d work with a coworker who dumps his work on my desk and cuts out early.” How to Parent Equally When You Both Work Full-Time – Daily Worth
“I suggested that punishment and force will ultimately create more resistance, because force always creates push-back. After all, how would you feel if someone sat on you, pried open your mouth, forced in a toothbrush and scrubbed? Sure, you might begin to acquiesce. But I’m betting you’d be pushing back in other ways. Force creates power struggles.” When you’ve tried everything, but you still end up in the breakdown lane – Aha Parenting
“When we imagine self-trust, it seems like this enormous, all-encompassing thing that we either have or don’t have. We may look longingly at the few people who seem to be able to follow through with their dreams. We may judge ourselves harshly against their brilliant example – using this as further evidence to support our lack of self-worth. Self-trust is built upon small moments of showing up and following through.” Nourishing Acts of Self-Trust – Mara Glatzel
“The items listed above are what are in my “waiting bag”, but you might find that you will add your own special items. I know a woman that brings her crocheting along with her, or mothers who clip grocery store coupons. I recently purchased a few of the travel size tissues and antibacterial lotions, and have added them to my bag. Just add whatever will make you happy, or whatever will keep you busy.
I think my waiting bag is a good idea for anyone who finds themselves in similar situations, waiting in doctors’ offices. But I have heard from friends that they have started their own “waiting bags”, for times when they are waiting at the DMV, on errands, waiting for their kids, or even at their children’s athletic games.” What to Do When You Are Waiting to See the Doctor aka “My Waiting Bag” – But You Don’t Look Sick
“What I wish I had known then, is that researchers have found the mind is way more powerful than we think. Imagining, or visualising doing exercises, can have almost as much positive effect on our bodies as actually doing the exercise. Numerous studies have found that, to varying degrees, visualising a workout increases muscles strength. This is really hopeful news for anyone living with or recovering from a chronic illness. If you are bed bound, recovering in hospital, or just having a bad day, the right visualisation strategy can stop your muscles from deteriorating.” Can Visualising Help Rehabilitation for Chronic Disorders? – Aroga Yoga
“Homegrown and hand-mixed specialty tea makes a lovely gift. Packaged in a cute tin, jar or little muslin bag, this is an economical but heartfelt gift that is sure to be appreciated by any tea lover. Pair it with an infuser, a jar of local honey, or a cute and sunny teapot for an extra special gift!” Lemony Mint Tea – Local Kitchen
“The main advantage of sous vide cooking is control. With a constant temperature water bath, you greatly decrease the danger of overcooking your food, which makes it a perfect method for the egg, a humble food that can be transcendent if cooked properly, but rubbery and sulfuric smelling if overdone.” All the Ways to Sous Vide Eggs, Ranked – LifeHacker
““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
““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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“‘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
“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
“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
“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
““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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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 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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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 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
“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
“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
“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
Awakenings 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.
Written 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 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.
I’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 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.
The 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).
The 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 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.
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.
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“BUT THOSE LIFEHACKS FEEL ACTIONABLE AND PRODUCTIVE! AND THEY’RE SO MUCH EASIER THAN, YOU KNOW, FINDING A THERAPIST OR ADMITTING WE HAVE A PROBLEM OR ENDING THE FINE-BUT-NOT-GREAT RELATIONSHIP.
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
“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
“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
“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
“Now, in “Mast Brothers: What Lies Beneath the Beards,” a new series of posts on DallasFood.org, 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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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