Blueberry Sour Cream Cake

My sweet's a thing to be reckoned with these days. I have been taming the beast rather well, I will say, and not over indulging too much. One way that I have been satisfying my sweet tooth monster is by offering to bring desserts to social gatherings. This way, I get to make the desserts, and I get to share them and I don't run the risk of taking an entire cake to the face!

At my baby shower a few weeks back, we had a taco bar which was amazingly delicious. IT also left me with what seemed like a lifetime supply of sour cream. Normally, I would make beef stroganoff or something, but instead, I was finding myself searching "sour cream cakes" on Pinterest instead. Go figure.

So when my mother-in-law hosted a dinner for my sister-in-law (who has just moved hoo, I miss her already), I offered to bring dessert. I found this amazing sour cream and blueberry "cake." I say "cake" because it really isn't a cake. My mom says it tastes very much like cheesecake, and she's right, but it is really more of a custard, I think.

The best part about this dessert is that it's simple, and it works well to make ahead a couple of days. I was also happy because it helped me use up two cups of that leftover sour cream as well as some of the blueberries I had frozen last year. I am on a mission to eat up all the great food in my freezers in prep for another great summer of preserving and canning!

If you don't have frozen blueberries on hand, you can use fresh. Or you can dog ear this recipe for blueberry season, which certainly is closer than it is farther away! (YAY!) A note on those blueberries: I used half of what was recommended and didn't put any on top and the recipe didn't suffer at all for it.

Bossy Italian Book Review: Birthing From Within

It's hard for me to admit that I haven't really been reading many books lately. People have been asking me, "Are you reading a ton of baby books?" and the simple truth is, NO I have not. It's not that I'm not's just that there are so many bad books out there. I know this because I picked up a copy of "What To Expect When You're Expecting." Holy hell...what a terrible read! I put that sucker down and practically renounced baby books. Practically.

But this book came to me from a friend who did natural labor, and I want to take my best shot at going naturally, so I figured I would give it a whirl. Boy am I glad I did. This book was extremely helpful, very informative, and well-written. This is one of those that women should definitiely reach for if they plan on going the natural route.

One of the biggest take aways I got from the book was confronting my fears about childbirth. When I picked it up, I asked myself, "do I have any fears?" I was feeling uncomfortably devoid of them, which, incidentally, made me nervous. There must be something, I kept thinking to myself...and it turns out there was: not being listened to during childbirth because of the hospital setting. By confronting this fear, I am more able to work through it.

There are lots of great stories and tips in this book and it's very readable. I was surprised by how quickly I breezed through the book. In fact, I was sort of sorry when it was over because I really enjoyed it so much. Birthing From Within is really about empowering women in their childbirth experience, and I enjoyed that aspect of it very much. I feel it's a great read prior to going to lamaze class because lamaze happens, like, a month before your due date and there is so much I was itching to know before then!!!

I feel much more confident about natural birth now, and I'm feeling great about going through this awfully profound labor experience. Every woman should feel empowered as she goes into the birthing process (no matter what they are choosing, be it natural, with epidural, or a c-section). Let's face it: it's a big deal for everyone involved! Not to mention, it should be joyous. There are lots of great ways to make it just that in this book, so if you are expecting and you are looking for a good birthing book, this one is a great read and I highly recommend it! 

Banning Bossy? Puh-lease!

No one was more surprised than me when I started seeing these headlines about banning the word bossy. Obviously, banning the word bossy for me would put my blog clear out of commission, so I'm not so sure I'm down for supporting this cause. Sure, I see where they are coming from...they want young women to feel that their leadership skills are valuable. But banning bossy? I just don't see it happening.

There are a lot of words that hold women back in leadership let's start there. You wanna ban a b word? How about we start with BITCHY! This word is much more volatile in holding women back. And how about SLUTTY. Can we ban that one too? These two words are much more often used to categorize women in power because either you bitched your way to the top or you sucked someone's dick to get there.

While I believe that we need to instill confidence in young women (I mean, I am becoming a mother to a baby girl in just months), I also think we need to stop being such a nation of sissies. If you can't let bossy roll off your ever-loving back then maybe you just lack leadership skills. I've been called bossy my entire life and I could care less.

I have not spent a single second thinking about the people who called me bossy, and in fact when my husband suggested this blog name, I thought it was brilliant. People only wield the amount of power you give them, and by refusing to allow the word bossy to be used against me, I have turned it into a positive.

I will NEVER renounce my bossy title. So I'm not joining the campaign. Sure, I think it's noble, I see where they are going...but it's a little misguided if you ask me. Because in a world where there are much more horrible things that women are called, it seems a little knit-picky. I think we've got to be a tad more creative than all that. Don't let other define you.

We have enough campaigns to "ban this" or "abstain from that" or causes to support. I can't wrap my head around one that seems, well, petty. So ban bitchy from your vocabulary if you really want to make a difference. Stop referring to pretty women as sluts or whores and suggesting that they handed out sexual favors to get where they are. Stop being jealous of other women and embrace our diversity as a sex. And for the love of god, cultivate some confidence so that when some asshole calls you "bossy" you can flip around and say, "Hell yes I am, and I'm damn proud of it...who the fuck are you?!"

That is all. 

A Fiesta Baby Shower!

Last weekend was our baby shower! We aren't exactly the traditional type, so we did a couples' shower fiesta style. In my wildest baby shower dreams, I wanted a taco bar from Moe's. I am in love with Moe's tacos (and their queso) so that was one of my requests. I totally did not think it was going to happen, but I am here to tell you all that dreams do come true!!! I not only got my Moe's taco bar, but it was one of the best parties I have ever been to.

Some-odd 50 or so people came out to celebrate with my husband and I shower our new baby with a TON of beautiful gifts. She has a healthy library going and we're almost fully prepared for her arrival. Don't worry, I am going to post nursery pictures, but we just aren't quite ready yet.

In the "I gotta give some props" department, I have to give a shout out to some people for this amazing shower. Don't be jealous, but my husband and I have a grandma dream team. Between my mom and his mom, they really blew this out of the water with their creativity and making it all come together! My husband's mother made over 60 hand-folded cranes for our little Ruby Bird's shower. And our godmother, Jenn, did some amazing fiesta themed decorations (that may or may not still be up in my house.) These ladies rocked it out!

And my husband, god love him, only complained a little bit over the last three weeks while I ran around like a mad woman demanding that everything be done "in time for the shower!" Everything did get done in time, if you can believe it, and since I can't do any heavy lifting these days, a lot of credit has to go to him.

Okay, now to the fun stuff: the pictures!!!!

I started my day with a pregnancy massage/manicure and pedicure. I had to share this awesome nail design because it just made me so happy. OLE! 

These little cranes were a great little touch. Little birdies everywhere in all types of colors. 

And Jenn made these pom pom decorations. When I asked my husband if we could leave them up forever, he said, "at least a couple of days." Compromise. It's a beautiful thing. 

This was the gift room. Our Ruby is one lucky little lady--she is so loved!!! And so are we. I felt so honored to have so many people so excited for our bundle of joy. My husband and I are so flattered by everyone's love. 

Gift opening with my husband is so much fun because he gets sooooo excited! 

His happiness is contagious. And isn't his Mexican wedding shirt awesome? (It's from our wedding, and I love it so much. Just like him.) 

My friend Shaye knitted this blanket!! Isn't it amazing?! 
We got five hand knitted blankets for Ruby. We are obsessed with blankets as it is, and I feel like this is something we will easily be passing down to her. Haha. 

And what is a fiesta without a piñata!? Here's my mom spinning Daren around for his turn. On a side note, Jenn stuffed the piñata with these chili gummy candies on a stick. I am now obsessed. I wanted to take them from the children, but I refrained. It was hard though, I'm not going to lie. 

We Need To Talk: Placenta Encapsulation

A couple of years ago before I was ever pregnant (or even thinking of becoming pregnant) I heard about placenta encapsulation and I was hooked. I knew that if I ever had a child, I would be doing it. In fact, I started questioning my friends who had children asking them if there was anyone who did it locally. Thank god, there is. (Find out about placenta encapsulation in Southern Delaware by CLICKING HERE.)

For those of you who may be unfamiliar with placenta encapsulation, allow me to explain. The placenta is in the uterus with the baby and helps channel all those good nutrients and stuff to baby. It's their little life force in the womb. After the baby is born, so too is the placenta. Every mammal in nature eats the placenta after they birth their babies because it replaces essential nutrients and hormones lost in the birthing process....except, for some reason, we humans. 

We humans. We always think we are exempt from nature's laws. Well, thank goodness there is a movement (call it recent, but it's more ancient turned recent) for women to ingest their placentas just as nature intended. There are a ton of benefits--both physical and emotional--that come with placenta ingestion. 

Now, of course I'm not suggesting I'm going to make a steak dinner of my placenta, but the woman who encapsulates it for me will take it, freeze dry it and pack it into pills that I can take orally. This will not only help with milk production and also helps with mood regulation, energy level and a whole host of good things that new mommies need. Overall, I think it's a completely healthy process that I am really looking forward to trying (and keeping you all informed about, too!) 

Which is why I was fully horrified last week when I was watching Teen Mom 2 and watched poor Kailyn's male OB/GYN talk her out of placenta encapsulation! (And yes, I watch Teen Mom 2, and no I don't feel guilty about it. I love reality TV, it's my thing.) I have had my fair share of issues with male doctors (both over the years and during this pregnancy), so I didn't want to go directly to the "what a male doctor douche bag move," but it turned out, I didn't have to. 

My husband, who was also watching with me, started shaking his head, muttering about why male doctors do this to women. So it wasn't just me. Here this woman was, stating the clear benefits of placenta encapsulation--trying desperately to advocate for her choice--and all her doctor had for her was "I'm more concerned with you having a healthy baby, not having a healthy placenta." What the fuck does that even mean? Then he went on to say, "I deliver over a hundred babies a year and no one else does that and they are just fine." Oh well, since no one else is doing it....

That was when Kailyn finally caves and simply says, "Okay." She nods her head and seems to drop the issue entirely. *Sigh* Total fail for us women in that moment at the hands of a male doctor who, I am sure, can't fathom what it must be like to be bombarded by hormones for nine solid months and then have them whisked away in an instant. Ugh. 

I get it, maybe holistic meds aren't everyone's cup of tea. Maybe they think it's a lot of snake oil. But that doesn't diminish our rights as women and mothers to choose the path(s) that we think are best for us. Placenta encapsulation isn't this far flung idea that has no basis in science. And if it's not going to hurt, and could possibly help, why not? Can I also just add, it's a woman's legal and religious right to take her placenta with her and do whatever the heck she wants with it. Some women plant them at the base of trees when their children are born. 

While I am sure that some people might find the fact that I am planning on placenta encapsulation off the wall, I could care less. I find things people do off the wall all the time, but they go on doing it anyway. I wish that placenta encapsulation was something more women considered. I know it is gaining ground, but I wondered as I watched this small scene unfold on TV how many women have been discouraged from the practice by their healthcare providers who may not know a whole lot about it to begin with. 

I urge all women thinking of encapsulation to explore if it is right for them and make the decision for themselves. There are lots of women who suffer from postpartum depression, and encapsulation may be the perfect solution. Others, like me, who are concerned with lactation, anxiety, and energy can also benefit. For that matter, anyone in perfect health can also find it gives them a boost. Don't be discouraged because someone doesn't see eye to eye with you on the issue. Only you know what is right for your body! 

So tell me, are you planning on doing placenta encapsulation? Have you tried it already and loved it or hated it? Does it freak you out? Leave it for me in the comments section below! 

Corned Beef Recipe [It's St. Paddy's Day!!!!]

I have never celebrated St. Patrick's Day in my life... I'm not Irish, obviously, so it seems a little funny to dress up in green and drink beer in the name of something I have no idea about. Plus, I'm not a big drinker, so my festivities would probably wrap pretty quickly. All that being said, I will cook just about anything in the name of a holiday.

Now, there is a bit of a story about me and corned beef. Up until last year, I had never had corned beef. Never. I know. But this is not the sort of thing my family cooked because we're Italian-American and "corned beef" never crossed our door.

Then, last year I was in a writer's group that happened to meet in the conference room of our local grocery store. Seriously, best writer's group ever because my favorite place is the grocery! Haha. And one of the guys mentioned that corned beef was on sale because of Saint Patrick's Day. He was buying them up, so I had to ask what the deal was.

When he told me how simple it was and delicious it was, I just had to give it a try....after all, it was on sale (two words I just can't resist.) Ermagerd, I was hooked! I went back and bought up a bunch of corned beef on sale and made it several times last spring. So this year, I figured I would do the same!

I am firmly a fan of corned beef now. In some ways, I guess you could say that corned beef has made me a fan of St. Paddy's Day! This is sooooo easy. Anyone can do it. Anyone. You, me--even my husband could do this!

This could not be easier. Five carrots, three potatoes, one onion and yummy corned beef! This one weighs just over two pounds. You will find cabbage absent in this recipe. I love cabbage, but my husband isn't so much a fan. So I leave it out. (You can add it in the last hour of cooking, if you want.)

Put your meat and the seasoning packet in your crock pot.

Add your veggies, then four cups of water. 

Cover with a lid and let this sucker simmer away on low all day. But a word here on the "low" setting of your crock pot. I reccomend 8 hours of simmering on low. And god love me, I try so hard to follow this...and yet, I cannot. I have a deep-seated distrust of the low setting on the crock pot. So I like to put it on high first and then once it's really hot and bubbling, I cut it back to low. If I don't, I'll inevitably crank it up to high at some point. 

You could save yourself the trouble (rather, I could save myself the trouble) by just cooking it for four hours on high. Whatever you like to do. 

And in the end, besides your house smelling like a corned beef heaven, you will have this dinner! 
You don't even need a knife to cut the meat. MMMM. 

Corned Beef in The Slow Cooker 

Time: 8 hours on low/4 on high | Serves 4 | Difficulty: So Easy! 

You Will Need:

3 potatoes
5 carrots
1 onion
1 corned beef roast


In your slow cooker add the corned beef and the spice packet that comes with it.

Wash your potatoes well (I like to leave the skin on) and slice into hunks. Size it totally up to you, I like nice big bites. Peel carrots and chop into nice big pieces. Peel and slice onions. Add all your veggies on top of the meat.

Add four cups of water.

Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours.

If you want, add cabbage during the last 40 minutes of cooking. We skip the cabbage.

Serve with a smile, and maybe a salad, but really we just made a meal this all by itself!!! 

Quick Fix: Peanut Butter & Banana "Ice Cream"

I have a hearty sweet tooth now, which is something I am learning to deal with. First, I tried a gluten free (almost vegan) cupcake recipe, which was really awesome. Now, I'm on to ice cream. I saw a picture on Pinterest that peaked my interest and I thought I would try it....this recipe basically uses frozen bananas to make a very ice cream-like frosty treat. 

This sucker is dairy free. And it's gluten free. And there's no added sugar, unless you count the peanut butter, which I guess you could. I added a hint of cocoa powder for a little chocolately kick in the pants and POW, awesome dessert. Okay, well, I had this as an afternoon snack, but whatever. You can eat this any time of the day you want to. There are no rules here. 

What I can tell you is that it's so easy you will be astonished. And it solves that problem of "what do I do with these extra frozen bananas in my freezer?" Does anyone else have this problem or am I just strange? Don't answer that--it's probably a little of both. 

I have just been looking for a reason to use these bananas. 

I cut them up into pieces and threw them in my food processor. 

Oh, and I added 1/4 cup almond milk. 

And then I whipped it good until it was smooth! 

Then I added a healthy dose of peanut measuring necessary on the peanut butter, just add what you feel. I think it was about 1/4 cup, but really it was just the bottom of the jar and I used it up. And 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder. 

YUM! All blended together and looking fine! 

Seriously...that was too easy, wasn't it? 

I threw two scoops into my bowl and topped it with some chocolate chips because no one was looking and I was feeling sassy! This was the perfect treat!!! 
I saved the rest in the freezer and used it to impress my husband with my awesome skilllllllllz. Skillz with a "z!" 

Peanut Butter & Banana "Ice Cream" 

Time: 5 minutes | Makes: 4 (ish) Servings | Difficulty: Super Easy! 

You Will Need: 

3 frozen bananas 
1/4 cup almond milk 
Peanut butter, how much is up to you, I used about 1/4 cup 
1 teaspoon cocoa powder 

Special equipment- food processor 


Slice your frozen bananas into pieces. 

Add your sliced bananas and almond milk to your food processor. Process until smooth. 

Add your peanut butter and cocoa and process until blended. 

Serve all by itself or with a topping of shredded coconut and/or chocolate chips! 

Store leftovers in the freezer! 

Pizza Pockets Recipe

I love to make homemade pizza. To me, it's an easy go-to meal that is just so comforting. And I think (I hope) that I am only getting better and better at making my pizza. About a month ago, I started making these little pockets of pizza goodness. It's like a calzone, I guess, but more pockety.

Whatever the case, they are a big hit in my house. My husband loves them, and so do I. And it's great because you can stuff them any old way you want to. Always a plus in my book. So grab some dough and let us pocket some pizzas together!

I start with one pound of fresh dough. I make it in my bread maker, which I love, but it seems to kind of be dying a slooooow death. But it still turns out great breads, so I haven't given up on her yet. 

Anyway, I roll it out into a big rectangle. You don't have to make your own dough, as most grocery stores now sell fresh dough you can roll yourself, which will also work. But it's gotta be fresh. That's key. 

Then I cut it into four sections. 

I make one at a time. Two tablespoons of pizza sauce, and then a nice handful of mozzarella. 

Now it's time to top! This is my favorite part!! 

Here I made my husband's with pepperoni and onions. 

And on mine? Artichokes! YUM! 

Now we're gonna pocket it up. You can kick it freeform on this one, which I like to dub "rustic. However it folds up will work. I just kind of pull it all to the center and pinch it together. It totally works. 

See? Rustic. Now, by this point, I have my oven all preheated and ready to go at 450 degrees. I like to preheat my oven for at least a half hour when I am cooking fresh pizza dough. I feel like we should also pause here to talk about the fact that I am using parchment paper. I am in love with parchment paper--it's the best stuff ever. EVER. And it makes cleaning up so much easier. So just use it. Use it with abandon. You will thank yourself. Or you can thank me. Which feels right to you. 

So I'm throwing these suckers in the oven for about 12-15 minutes or until they are all goldeny and gooey looking. 

Now I know that I should have taken a picture of these cut open, but what can I say? My appetite got the better of me and well, this is all that I got. So you'll have to trust me when I say that these are really delicious and that you should totally make them. 

Pizza Pockets 

Time: 20 minutes | Makes 4 Pockets | Difficulty: Relatively Easy 

You Will Need

1 pound of fresh pizza dough 
1 pint of pizza sauce (cold)
Mozzarella cheese, shredded (about four a cup, ish) 
Toppings of your choice- I used pepperoni, onion and artichoke 


Preheat oven to 450 degrees. I like to let my oven preheat about a half hour when I'm making any kind of pizza. Line a baking pan with parchment paper because it'll make your life so much easier. 

Roll out your pizza dough, and yes, I use a rolling pin. I like to make mine into a nice squarish, rectangular like shape. But you can make whatever shape turns you on. Cut into four relatively equal pieces. 

I make my pockets one at a time. So, lay out a piece of your cut dough and in the center place two tablespoons of pizza sauce. A moment of explanation here--I've found that using the cold sauce works better than heated sauce because the heated sauce warps the dough and filling. Top the sauce with a healthy handful of mozzarella and then your toppings of choice. I enjoyed the pepperoni, onion and artichoke mixture. 

Fold up your ends around the fillings. There are no rules here--whatever gets the job done. Remember, they will look "rustic" which is my fancy pants word for "however they turn out." Pinch the ends to help them stick. The dough should easily stick to itself when pinched together. 

Repeat this process with the three other pieces of dough and toppings. 

Place all four of your pockets on your prepared baking pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until they are goldeny and puffed up and yummy. 

Warm your remaining sauce for dipping!! Serve with a nice salad and a smile!!! 

I Used To Hate Cake....

One of the only cakes I have made--Red Velvet. 
When people used to say to me how much they loathed their sweet tooth, I just couldn't relate...because I never had said sweet tooth. I never craved sugar, or looked forward to dessert. I was more the, "give me two pickles and I'm a happy camper" kind of gal. And then, I got pregnant. 

Now I have not only eaten my words when it comes to that mythical sweet tooth, but I've also eaten cake. And brownies. And pie. And donuts. And chocolate. And a lot of gummy candy. When I read in the birthing book that you should have an activity planned for when you go into labor, what do you think I picked? Baking a birthday cake. This, from the woman who declared cake "too dry" to consume just months ago. 

Not that I can necessarily complain. My cravings during this pregnancy have been relatively mild. I haven't sent my husband running to the store, except once, when I needed flaky, buttery biscuits. I waited an astounding six weeks to give in to my donut craving, and when I did, I only bought one donut and I ate it with a big old glass of almond milk. It was worth the wait. 

But still, this baby girl is giving me a dose of sweet tooth that sometimes has me worried....will I always be like this now? Will I always want to end the night with a sweet little something? Will I always crave cupcakes?! And the biggest question of all: will I have the willpower to just say no to all these awesome sweet treats when I am not pregnant anymore?! 

Being pregnant has its perks. For one, you have a constant reminder of why you want to eat healthy, why you need to work out, and who you are doing all of this for. Sure, I still give in every now and again, but I'm very conscious of the fact that my baby is depending on me for her nutrition. Having that in the back of my head helps a ton. 

Now that I have joined the cake consuming masses, I'm incredibly turned on by cake mixes. I swoon after pretty pins of desserts on Pinterest as I wonder, for the first time in my life, "could I make that?!" Oh my sweetness. I can't handle it. Once you are in love with sugar, it shows up practically everywhere. One thing I can tell you, though, is that I will be, from here on out, much more sympathetic to my friends who lament that they love sweets. I feel your pain now. I understand. 

And I want to eat cake with you. 


The woman who used to hate cake 

What To Do When Anxiety Attacks

A while back I posted about my personal experience with birth control and anxiety and how they were linked for me. It turns out that not a ton of people are talking about the subject. After getting off of birth control, my anxiety all but cleared up. It's something that I believe will always linger somewhere in the background and sometimes surface, but for the most part it's nearly completely under control.

Lately, I have been getting several emails from women who have read my post on birth control and anxiety who were asking for advice about managing their anxiety. For many women, and I'm guessing people in general, anxiety management in a bear. So I figured that I would share with my readers how to manage their anxiety in the hope that those looking for answer can find a little relief.

What I am going to share is my own personal list that I use. Keep in mind that this is not a replacement for a physician's advice. When I developed my system for dealing with anxiety I was having debilitating attacks that would sometimes find me dry-heaving and shaking uncontrollably. I would say that my anxiety was severe enough that it interfered with my ability to function normally. Because the birth control hormones were causing the panic attacks, when I became pregnant recently, I had a small resurgence in my symptoms during the first trimester (which luckily went away around week 11). These tips have been helpful for me then as well as anytime anxiety symptoms have cropped up again.

Clear Your Schedule 
When I get anxiety, one of the best things for me to do (especially if it's really bad) is nothing at all. If you can get out of social engagements, or anything else that you are obligated to do, this helps alleviate the feeling of pressure....there is literally nothing worse than knowing you have, say, a dinner date with someone in an hour and your knees are knocking with anxiety and you are thinking, "Shit, I only have 30 minutes to get myself together here!" In my experience, it heightens the anxiety. So clearing my schedule always brought my anxiety down at least a notch.

Understandably, this isn't always possible.

Acknowledging your panic 
If this seems overly simple, think about it a moment...if you suffer from anxiety, you are probably familiar with trying to hide it or act like it isn't happening. It's not as though a lot of people can tell when it does unless you have physical symptoms. But in trying to put it off, often it gets worse, and then you are wrapped in a battle that you are going to lose.

I found that giving in was one of the best ways to beat anxiety. I would say, "I am feeling anxious. I feel it in my ______." (You fill in the blank.) And then you sit with it. Generally it would pass much more quickly and/or move into a place where it was only physical and my mind was able to rationalize the experience, which I can tell you is much better than feeling mentally out of control. Get to your safe place in life, and do what feels best to you: curl up and watch a movie, take a bath, or just sit there quietly.

Deep breathing and meditation
This you have to use daily, and not as much in the moment, but I have found it to be incredibly helpful. You would be surprised what five minutes of meditation each day does for your level of anxiety. What I also found was that through sustained meditative practice, when I did get panic attacks, I could use my  meditation breathing techniques (in through the nose and out through the mouth) to help bring me back down to more normal levels.

A good place to start is HERE with these meditations. I swear by them and have used them over and over. But, of course, there is lots to choose from out there and you don't have to use just one.

This is straight up and quite simple. You have to move your body. It was the number one best thing I did for myself when I was having trouble with anxiety. For me, a high cardio routine kicked anxiety's ass time and time again. For me, it felt like I could literally sweat out the anxiety...because so often when I got anxiety I would be covered in sweat! But if you think you can skip this step, I would really think again. Exercise is incredibly balancing for the mind and body and helps us connect the two.

So go find a type of exercise that turns you on and get into it at least 3 times a week. And trust me, if you find you are not desperate enough to give and exercise, then you must not be that anxious...because a person with anxiety who wants to be rid of it will literally do ANYTHING not have it.

Therapy/ Medication 
I am not the type who thinks that medication is a solution, but sometimes you have to function, and medication can help. But a word to the wise on this one: if you are to the point where you need medication for ANY mental illness (which I know that I did at one point), you should also seriously consider a therapy regimen as well. The goal is to help fix the underlying problems, not just treat them with medication, so I am firm believer in therapy for this reason.

There is ZERO shame in needing to be on medication. And there is ZERO shame in seeking therapeutic services. Both can be infinitely helpful in getting you back to homeostasis.

So tell me, are there things that you would add to this list? Have you suffered from anxiety and had a great way of coping? Leave it for me and my readers in the comments section below.

What Exactly Makes a "Young Mother?"

So, I was published on last week, abotu the mommy war thing. It was great and people's comments were much, how should I say....nicer and thoughtful than my last experience. All of which was great. But I got a comment or two that talked about doctor's giving that sort of treatment to "young mothers." Of course, I chuckled a little bit because looking at the picture, I do, in fact, look like a "young mother." 

But it also got me thinking...what exactly IS a young mother these days?? Maybe I truly do qualify, although I really don't think I do. My brother and his wife have a child, and she was 20 when she gave birth. To me, that's a young mother. A friend of mine, who is also pregnant and is 21 asked me if this was going to be my only child (because I'm 28.) To me, she is a young mother. Teen moms, they are young mothers...but me? 

It's hard for me because I do, in fact, FEEL young. I don't feel a day over 22! But as far as feeling young to be a mom, it's just not something I feel at all...and it makes sense. After being with my husband for 10+ years, and having planned a pregnancy and being almost 30 (not that 30 is "old" but it's experienced if nothing else) I feel I am more a parent in my prime than anything else. 

Not that the world treats me that way. Because of the way I look, which isn't really a day over 22 (and I'm being generous, I'm more often mistaken for a teenager in public), people often assume that I am much younger than my years. Most of the time, this has been a welcomed thing for me. Being pregnant, though, sometimes it makes me just a tad self conscious; especially when I am out with my mom and she hears people whispering, "Oh my god, did you see that young girl--she's pregnant!" Yikes! 

And then there is the fact that some of my friends who are over 35 were thrown into "older mother" category when they were pregnant. I think medically they consider it higher risk. I was equally perplexed by this because 35 isn't too far from where I am from....What can't be overlooked here, though, is the fact that women are having children later and later in life. Women well into their 40s are having their first children and to them, I am quite sure that I look like a young parent. 

Not that we have to label it. We really don't, but I'm genuinely curious. Where do I fall on this spectrum or am I in a proverbial no-man's land? Am I not really young and not really old? Does neither category really fit the stage of life for which I have chosen to procreate? Because truly, I do seem to be smack dab in the middle of all my friends who either had babies a couple of years ago or are older than me and doing it now. 

So, I give it to you guys, my awesome readers. What do you think is a "young mom?" What qualifies and what's the cut off? How do you feel as a mom (or even a dad!) at the age you are--young or getting older? Share it with me in the comments sections below! 

ERMAGERD....There's Yoga Mats In Everything!

So, if you haven't been living under a yoga mat, you may have heard about the Subway yoga mat material bread thing. If you haven't, I'll recap for you. So, Subway announced that it was taking ADA (a chemical foaming agent) out of it's bread recently which grossed people out because then they realized that Subway had been using this stuff all along. Turns out ADA is the same chemical agent they use in yoga mats. Tasty.

How many fluffy Subway yoga mat sandwiches did you enjoy? I can tell you how many I had: zero! Seriously, who eats Subway? That meat looks chewed up to me, not healthy.

So now that Subway is doing the "right thing" a lot of groups are up in arms about all the OTHER things that include ADA, and the list is long. Like, 500 items long. Access the list by CLICKING HERE. Which, incidentally, is terrifying. Being pregnant, I have had an extra emphasis on eating healthy and even when I tell myself, "don't click on it, don't click on it!" I inevitably click on it.

The other day, I read about the yoga mats in bread (and did you know it's in a lot of other stuff too), and then growth hormones (which are banned in China) in pigs, turkey, and cows. I don't want to have a melt down or anything, but sometimes it feels like nothing in our food supply is healthy. I try to off set this with my own canning, preserving, freezing and raising chickens. And we eat venison instead of other meats (most of the time.) But there is only so much a person can do...I'm at my max.

At some point, I feel as though we're going to have to stop, I don't know, serving such shitty food to the masses. It gets me angry thinking about those who don't have the time or resources to do the things that I am doing and how they fall victim to a bad food supply. The poorest people in our country suffer the worst and that is an outrage. And I'm not even getting into GMOs right now, which I really see as one of the most dangerous propositions to hit the food supply ever. 

Some begin to think that organizations like the FDA have it out for us, and I can totally see why. I take the approach that they are more lazy than anything else. I feel like these things sneak their way in and they go unchecked until they are big problems. But really, how it all happens or why it happens is really irrelevant. It's happening people and this is the food we eat.

Is anyone else mildly to moderately outraged about this?! How do you avoid eating the crappy food supply in America? Or do you not see it as a problem at all? Share with me comments section below!