Where the heck have I been?

It’s been a rough couple of weeks- my computer has been out of commission and I threw my back out, so two evil things combined to make for a not so great time. I am dusting myself (and my creaking back) off and getting back in the swing of things, though! This post is actually from two weekends ago, when my computer went M.I.A. and I really wanted to post it- complete with pictures! Hooray!

I spent my weekend with two of my favorite people in the world- my little cousins, aged 7 and 10. My aunt and uncle went on a weekend getaway for their 12th anniversary (Wow! Congrats, you guys!) and I was in charge. These two are a laugh and a half.

L: This boy at school called me a buttcheek.
Me: That’s awful! What’d you say?!
L: Well, I told him at least I wasn’t a FULL butt.

M: Arrrrrrrrrrrrriba!
Me: What in name of all that is holy was THAT?
M: *SHRUG* I just felt like it.

We had a great weekend- we went to a farm and got pumpkins, one that we carved (this thing was in desperate need of a nose job by the time we were finished) and a miniature one that their silky terrier thought it was cool to chomp on, toasted the pumpkin seeds and ate them while watching the Hannah Montana movie (this wasn’t the highlight of the weekend for me), cooked a delicious dinner together, played games, etc. Below are some pictures I wanted to share of our exploits.

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Our pumpkins!

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Scooping the pumpkin seeds out!

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Tess scoping out the goods about two seconds before she ran off with that pumpkin top!

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Preparing pumpkin seeds for a movetime snack

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Gathering up our dinner salad ingredients- the girls actually helped me cook!

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Dinner time! Big healthy salad with chicken and the best oven fries I have ever made, bar none. I was pretty pleased with myself. 🙂

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In the morning I made the girls french toast- I had a Fiber one english muffin topped with lemon hummus, goat cheese, avocado and two over-easy eggs. Verdict? DELICIOUS!

Those oven fries? Ridiculously easy. We used yukon gold potatoes, put them in a freezer bag, added a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper…and oregano. That’s the ticket- amazing!
There was one part of the weekend, however, that I found so alarming. Both girls are naturally thin. It runs in our family (yeah, I got the shaft in THAT gene department). So, when they said to me that they wanted to be even thinner, I was shaken. One of them piped up that you can see her ribs when she lies down. These are two BEAUTIFUL and HEALTHY little girls and the LAST thing I ever want is for them to end up in a horrible cycle like me. My aunt is awesome- she is so wonderful and has really worked hard to foster self- esteem in them. She teaches them healthy eating and they are incredibly active. But these messages that we have to be thin and perfect are all around them. They are EVERYWHERE. I was on the Dove campaign for Beauty website today and found the following from a study on self-esteem commissioned by Dove:
• Seven in ten girls believe they are not good enough or do not measure up in some way, including their looks, performance in school and relationships with friends and family members
o 62% of all girls feel insecure or not sure of themselves
• Reality vs. Perception: Low self-esteem significantly impacts girls’ overall feelings about their own beauty
o 71% of girls with low self-esteem feel their appearance does not measure up, including not feeling pretty enough, thin enough or stylish or trendy enough (compared to 29% of girls with high self-esteem)
o A girl’s self-esteem is more strongly related to how she views her own body shape and body weight, than how much she actually weighs

It’s an epidemic and it needs to stop, now. And it starts with the messages that we send to ourselves. It affects each one of us, in ways that are both big and small. This is why I feel so strongly about my Baby Steps to Body Love Challenge. It has to start in each one of us. I have 9 female cousins that are at least 12 years younger than I am. That’s at least 9 young minds that I may have some impact on. If I ever have children, I want them to see a strong, powerful woman who is comfortable with herself and her body. Each of us, whether we know/like it or not, has some impact on this picture. I urge everyone, whether it’s through baby steps or your own personal journey, to learn body acceptance and aim for body love.

Mara over at imadedinner.net tagged me in a meme poll, so i’ll close this post by answering. I’m sure everyone’s dying to know my answers. 😉 I am, after all, super interesting. Riiiight. UPDATE: It seems that getting tagged in this poll is actually an award. I’d also like to thank the lovely chickenless chick for nominating me. I so enjoy both blogs and am so utterly flattered!!!

7 Things you don’t already know about me:

1. I am a tall gal- 5’9 in stocking feet and when my back isn’t out, I am usually in stilettos.

2. I am fluent in American Sign Language and can read lips…so watch out! You’d be surprised at the things i’ve accidentally…on purpose…been privy to with this nifty little skill.

3. I am a ridiculously fast reader. This is probably because I grew up reading captions on the TV and to watch TV and read at the same time, you have to be quick! How fast am I? The final Harry Potter book? I read that in three and a half hours. With breaks. And yes, I read every single word.

4. I used to be a figure skater a lifetime ago. I kind of miss it. I really liked the little skirts. LOL! I kid. I really did love it.

5. I have nine toes. Ok, that was a joke. I’m running out of steam here…let’s see…I am the biggest slob in the entire world. I am making a desperate effort to be much less of a slob. That’s how I threw my back out- MAJOR cleaning efforts involving the moving of furniture!

6. I have an irrational fear of going over bridges. I no longer close my eyes, but I am terrified they are going to collapse at the exact moment the car gets to the middle of one…

7. I have a million and one notebooks. I am constantly writing ideas and thoughts in them and then misplacing them, only to find them months later. In a way, it’s a bit exciting, since I sometimes find really cool ideas…

I’m a bit new to this…so I’m not sure if I’m supposed to pass this along or even who to tag…

Well, that’s about it. I’m writing this on my lunch break at work. I’m off to update my Challenge, so please check it out! And remember- stay tuned for lots of exciting new stuff! 🙂

Jenny

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About annenglish

I often think my the right side of my brain dominates- I live to create things. Color is one of the things that brings me great joy and in everything that I do, it is a theme that takes on great aesthetic importance. I am a jewelry designer, metal artist and writer (wanna-be.) During the day I work in an office, and while I like it, I spend my days dreaming about the next thing I want to make. As a result, I am the post-it queen- design ideas are always strewn about my desk, waiting for me to gather them up and take them home at the end of the day. Oh, yeah. I'm also a tremendous slob, which is unfortunate because I love to cook and washing dirty dishes is my least favorite chore to tackle. I'm a healthy food enthusiast and amateur chef. Cooking is a tremendous creative outlet for me- experimentation is my hallmark...whether it's surprising color combinations or flavor combinations.
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