More

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We have an obsession with “more” in this country.

More tests for kids equals higher achievement scores.

 More money means happier people.

 More technology means more time and connections with people.

More access to guns means safer communities.

Really?

How about more parenting and discipline classes for people expecting babies?

How about more time to play and socialize in schools?

How about more healthy food choices at fast food restaurants? And books for the ‘prize’ in those happy meals, instead of more of those chintzy toys.

How about more books and music and arts in the lives of our children?

How about more affordable college educations for our young adults?

How about more affordable loans for those wanting to start a second career, buy a home, or start a business?

How about more financial programs for students so they learn how to budget and save for the future?

How about more programs and laws that support equality for everyone—black, white, gay, straight, rich, or poor?

How about more social programs for families experiencing difficulties with mental illness, drugs, or addictions?

How about more programs to help the elderly stay in their homes and get the medical care they need when living on a fixed income?

How about jobs that people can depend on?

How about insurance programs that work for all incomes?

 

How about more for people and families in this country instead of less?

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Ice On The Window

https://rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com/2012/11/07/9-november-2012/ice-on-the-window/

 

Ice on the window.

Snow blocks the door.

Peering out into the yard is impossible.

The Blizzard of ‘78 dropped

Never ending white mounds of snow all over the yard

Too high to climb

Too arduous to make tunnels through

Too heavy for my Father to move

In his jacket and winter gloves.

It’s easier to look at the ice on the window

And remember Spring.

Cross Post! Please Read!

Lyme disease is a serious infection that can be transmitted by the bite of Ixodes scapularis – more commonly known as the black-legged deer tick. Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacteria that causes Lyme disease, was discovered in the early 1980’s in Old Lyme, Connecticut. Borrellia is a sprial shaped bacteria known as a spirochete. It can cause […]

via Lyme, Tickborne Diseases And Pesticides — Non-Toxic Dover, New Hampshire

Kale Fail

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I have a sweet tooth. A big, bad one. No cavities, but a sweet tooth nonetheless.

And I enjoy baking because of it. Although I will readily admit that I am more like a “Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade” baker instead of “Martha Stewart It’s All Good From Scratch” baker.

On my quest for eating better, I am really missing my desserts. I’ve been eating a lot of kale lately (See my post Adventures in Kale), so I decided to research kale brownies.

I came across a few recipes, one that had too many ingredients, including butternut squash and other foods. The one I settled on didn’t have 25 ingredients, and although it listed brown rice flour and arrowroot for the ‘flour’ and no eggs, I figured I could substitute coconut flour and just increase the liquid.20160526_104221_resized

And so began a new kale adventure.

I gathered all my ingredients after making a special trip to the store to purchase the zucchini and coconut milk, more coconut flour, and coconut sugar. Going over the recipe and my ingredients back at home, I discovered I did not have baking powder, only baking soda. Ok, no biggie. I’ll just use the baking soda. It can’t possibly make THAT much of a difference, right?

The recipe also called for kale finely chopped. I had already chopped mine in my Ninja food processor, so I was all set there. I grated the zucchini as directed, and mixed the dry ingredients, which included cocoa, to give it the chocolatey goodness I was after.

When I went to add the coconut milk, I used the metal can opener that pokes holes in the can, only to discover nothing came out when I tipped the can upside down! So, I opened it with the rotary one, and realized I hadn’t shaken it as instructed on the side of the can. I solved that problem with a frustrated “REALLY??!!”, and mixed it in the can with a wooden spoon.20160526_105209_resized

Next came the coconut flour and other dry ingredients to the milk. As is its nature, it sucked up all the coconut milk, so the mixture ended up more like a thick, brown, play dough instead of a creamy brownie mixture. I added half the can of the coconut milk, but now I realize I should have probably added the whole can.

After putting in the kale, the mixture looked more like a pile of dirt and grass from my backyard. I hadn’t ‘finely’ chopped the kale, so pieces of it stuck out from the blobs of brownie mixture. It didn’t “pour into the pan” as the recipe explained the next step. I had to literally plop the mix into the pan and spread it with a spatula. It was pretty bad.

At this point, I just figured, I’m the only one whose going to eat this stuff (you can supply your own expletive here), so I might as well bake it and see what happens.

Well, baking it for a half hour, it smelled pretty good. But it didn’t change in its appearance. It still looked like dirt and grass from my backyard when it was done.

I took it out of the oven, only to be met with a pile of coconut flour, zucchini and kale that didn’t bind together. I couldn’t even lift one whole brownie out of the pan. It just disintegrated.20160526_120401_resized_1

Sadly and happily, that batch went into the pail.

I’m going to try it again next week, but this time add eggs to the mixture and a whole can of the coconut milk to see if that will help bind everything together.

And I’m definitely going to ‘finely’ chop the kale.

No one likes to get a kale leaf stuck in his or her teeth when eating a brownie.

Yours in Lyme Adventures,

TWL

Phase

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My days phase in and out. I’m much stronger now than I was back in the winter, thankfully, but I still have my weaker moments. I remember looking out at my perennial garden back in the winter, sadly thinking I wouldn’t be able to work in it this spring. Happily, I am able to move around and get out there, set up the sprinkler to water, and observe the daily changes of my plants as they come back to life. Some of my purple irises that I transplanted last year have started to open. They are tall and regal, their dark petals dainty and full. It’s a beautiful sight to see, and yet they remind me of those not so far away thoughts from a few months ago.

The worst time of day for me is at night, when the cravings for something crunchy and sweet hit me. Advertisers know their consumers, and I am their best target! Their ads spring up on my television screen, teasing me with foods that I crave but simply should not eat.  My stomach gurgles longingly at the sight of Dairy Queen ice cream or Lays potato chips. I pine away for the day when I can actually eat something so good, but yet, so bad for me, again.

Instead of working for my students, I am working for Lyme. I read books and food labels, go to doctor and holistic practice appointments, try to eat healthier than I’ve ever done before, take multiple supplements over the course of the day, and write about my experiences. I make batches of kale, romaine, and spinach for my salads that I eat at lunch and dinner. I eat eggs and other meats for all of my meals. And I drink water. Lots of water–like 100 ounces a day of water. I’m surprised I haven’t floated away yet.

My latest phase in my ‘get healthy’ regime is to slowly change out many of the toxin-filled products in our home that I use to “greener” ones: toothpaste, hand and body soap, shampoo, facial cleansers and house cleansers, make up, and laundry detergent. It’s another way to try to get healthy and lessen the toxic load on my system, but who really knows if it will help. And yet, nothing beats a failure but a try, right?

Every night, I go to sleep and each morning I wake up, thinking that this may be my way of life for me forever. Even with my latest trip to a new holistic practitioner, my body may be beyond repair, and I will have to live with the joint and muscle pain when I eat anything with carbohydrates.

I can only take each day one at a time, and anticipate that this too shall pass. Much like the irises in my garden, I hope my future will yield a different phase, one which will include my new healthy habits, as well as some of my old yummy ones, too.

Yours in Lyme Adventures,

TWL