Friday, January 28, 2011

Thank you Krystal's for inspiring me..

Around six years ago, I began an interesting infatuation with food--why we have it, where it comes from, what each food does for our bodies, and what toxins are contained in the wonderful foods that we Americans consume on an hourly basis.  Now I could easily turn this into a one hundred page essay on the destruction of our food content by the westernized culture's love of producing food products in the fastest, least efficient, money-making, and overall rancid ways possible, but I won't.  Instead, I will keep it somewhat light hearted and less enticing.  So I stated earlier that my research began just around six years ago.  Before this time, I was--well, not so good to my body, putting it modestly, with the things that I put into it.  I went with the notion, "as long as it tastes good, who cares what's in it?"  Such a naive and blatantly stupid mindset!  I was brought back to this feeling the other day while out-and-about all alone, running errands and shopping.  It was around one o'clock that I began to get shaky and my stomach began letting me know that I failed to eat lunch at my very scheduled time of 11:30.  Looking around for a fast option, there it was---Krystal's.  I should probably throw in that it has been around six years (for the most part) that my body has had to experience overly processed, grease-dowsed fast foods---exempting two such places---1.  Mc Donald's--who I hope to one day eliminate from my list, but as for now, it still remains for two simple yet logical reasons.  One being that they(Mc Donald's) put out the ingredient lists for all of their products, and though not completely satisfied, I find it to be pretty clean, and allowing my children to enjoy two Mc Nuggets, half a yogurt parfait, and an apple juice on occasion shouldn't cause permanent damage.  And reason two, every now-and-then we all need a little convenience in our lives and because our town has no vegan inspired fast food joints, I go where I can. 2.  Chick-fil-a--I am totally satisfied with everything about this place.  It is clean, the food is relatively clean(meaning very little chemical by products, preservatives, etc) and the whole mission statement is just excellent.  Also, instead of giving your children lead-based, China-made junk toys, they offer educational books, games, or any other completely acceptable child-meal "goody." Any other so called "fast food" place has been eliminated from my list many, many years ago.  Let's see, where was I, oh yes--in my car, spotted Krystal's, and immediately I am taken back six years ago, three o'clock in the morning after a night full of beer and tequila shots we find ourselves in the drive-thru line at Kyrstal's and how that wonderful, greasy aroma filled our cars days after we consumed the three mini burgers, a large fry, and medium soft drink of choice.  So my stomach must have convinced my brain to turn into this place, order two Krystal chicks--because though I have momentarily lost all sense, I still know enough not to consume beef from a fast food restaurant---a small fry and a medium Dr. Pepper--yes I consumed a soft drink, which is completely on my "never under any circumstance do" list.  On a slight tangent---soft drinks were recently called by Dr. Sears "liquid cigarettes" because of the potential dangers and harm to the human body, and let's not even address diet sodas, which are by far, much, much more detrimental!  Have you ever been on tour in a cave and asked the tour guides what causes all of the caverns, tunnels, and erosion present in the cave?  Well, I have.  Guess what the answer was---years and years of dripping carbonated water.  A single drip of carbonated water can produce mile-deep holes in caves...think of what it is doing to your arteries, bones, internal organs, etc.!! Back in my car, I finished one Krystal chick, three sips of soda, and a hand full of fries, when my body began to let me know I was poisoning myself.  The over all feeling of disgust and fullness and tiredness seriously made me think, "why would people willingly do this to themselves?"  Food is supposed to energize us, get us feeling great, not drag us down.  So thank you Krystal's for sending me inspiration.  I am now inspired to schedule my next colonic, remind myself to always keep my honey-glazed almonds and dried fruit in my purse for moments of pure hunger, and to never again consume your chemically enhanced, over processed, grease "glop" that you pass off as food!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

"Hello Target, it's me, Monicah"

Runny noses, watery eyes, sore throats, and a whole lot of coughing has plagued my home these past few weeks, which means today, no one went to school, but instead we visited the doctor's office.  After the doctor's office, we did what we always do, and head to that wonderland of fun, Target.  Now, I don't suppose that many people find Target to be that intriguing of a store, but me on the other hand, I am just so thankful that our small town finally wised-up a few years ago and allowed such a happening, otherwise my one-stop option would just be Wal-mart and that is just not good for anyone!  Any how, prescriptions in hand, I head into Target where my first stop is a slight right into Starbucks for two organic apple juice boxes and my 'sixteen ounce medium roast.'  Next, we trickle on down to the pharmacy where a very hospitable staff member takes our prescriptions.  Then the kids and head over to the baby section to look for some vaporizing bath wash.  Now the FNP that we had just seen recommended Johnson&Johnson vapor bath, and I don't blame her for doing so, I have never heard of any other either, but I knew that I wasn't going to be purchasing J&J because even their so called "natural" brand contains harsh chemicals that I don't ever plan on putting on my children's delicate skin.  I knew that Target carried a few natural baby bath products, so I thought I would see if they had anything with aromatherapy in it, but wasn't counting on finding such an item.  We turned the aisle, went past the bath toys, and there, in the California Baby products--completely natural and slightly organic aromatic baby wash specifically for "cold and flu."  And not only this, but a vast array of California Baby lotions, salves, shampoo, and any other kind of wonderfully natural potion you need!!  I never realized before just how simple of a woman I am to become so blatantly thrilled over freakin' baby products--which by the way, just last year I would have had to order online and several business days and shipping charges later I would have received them.  So, you can see why I would become so overly excited at this simple little find!  When my excitement over baby bath ended, I rounded the corner, and "what's this?!"  That's right, a newly stocked shelf of three different organic baby food/snack brands!  Now Shepard is a bit too old for some baby foods; however, he still loves those squishy fruit-and-veggie purees and freeze dried yogurt bites, which again I can only find occasionally at Toys-R-Us but mostly buy online!  I was just so very thrilled again that in order to simplify my chaotic and frazzled little life, Target has added more and more organic options to their Hattiesburg store.  Now, if I could only get them to carry Seventh Generation chlorine free diapers!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Those dreaded little words...

There are certain heart-stopping moments of hysteria, whether rightly deserved or not, that every mother experiences on occasion, and it is our ability to hold it together and work through these moments without showing any signs of vulnerability that truly make us great moms.  I experienced one of these moments just today.  As the kids were in the back of the house playing and I in the front doing something that I am sure was productive such as sorting laundry or unloading the dishwasher, though I can't be 100 percent positive, Chrimson loudly proclaims those dreaded little words, "Mommy, come look at Shepard!"  Now, knowing that Chrimson would not call me back had it not been extremely important, I did what any mother would do and immediately began making my way back.  It's funny how in instances such as these, time seems to move in very slow motion.  Already, in the two seconds it takes for me to leave the kitchen, enter the hall, and round into Chrimson's room, I had dreamed up at least 100 terrible things that could be going on back there.  Had he begun to slosh and play in the toilet that was recently used by Chrimson, had he unloaded the dirty clothes hamper into the bathtub and turned it on, had he climbed up onto my vanity, gotten out my bright red lipstick and applied to my mirror and himself--all things he has done before, I might add--or is it something really terrible, like had he become trapped behind a piece of furniture, has he made his way out the back door, is he standing on the cat---at this point you can only imagine that as my heart was beginning to  beat faster as I was beginning to walk faster, and finally---there---Chrimson is in her chair holding her baby brother and says ever so sweetly, "See, look at Shepard.  He was sleepy and I got him to sleep 'cause I'm the big sister."  Yes, she's the big sister, my sweet little big sister, who now knows to distinguish between, "Come look at Shepard, he's in trouble!" and "Come look at Shepard, he's being cute!"

Caffeinated with a double shot

Being a mother, there is no shock that I need a little "pick-me-up" on occasion...oh, well, who am I kidding, I need a big "pick-me-up" on an hourly occasion.  Here and now, I will confess to you all that I, Monicah Brumfield, am addicted to that aromatic wonder drink known to most by the name of coffee.  On any given day, I can consume anywhere from six to eight cups(huge cups) of coffee.  Yes, I said it, I love to partake in that wonderfully caffeinated, zero-calorie, God-given substance that every college student and over worked mom is no stranger to.  But I should go a bit farther to say that I don't so much love that power boost of energy that you feel shortly after enjoying a fresh brew, but I am strangely, yet completely in love with that ever so powerful and ever so strong taste of freshly ground, black coffee--I should have also added the words organic and expensive to that description as well, seeing as how I find it more and more impossible to enjoy regular coffee anymore, I guess I am simply becoming spoiled!  I find myself becoming somewhat infatuated with the drink.  I research it, explore it, and am a self-proclaimed coffee connoisseur. I have to say that I am even finding myself becomming somewhat angry and even offended in the line at Starbucks when I hear the little eighteen-year-old's order their "non-fat grande carmel macchiatos."  I mean really, why take a perfectly great cup of coffee and ruin it with milk and chemically produced syrups.  And let's not even talk about DECAF.  Have you ever thought of how exactly they turn a naturally caffeinated substance into "decaf?"  I will assume that you haven't so I will give you my brief explanation--they take caffeinated coffee beans-the only kind--and dowse them with extremely potent and dangerous chemicals and subsequently the caffeine is extracted from the beans.  Now, why anyone would want to intake dangerous and harsh chemicals that are in the decaffeinated coffee beans is beyond me.  Not to mention, I have no desire to stain my teeth and potentially cause harm to my intestines for the "fake stuff" anyways!  I have to say that I still get a little charge out of my coffee, even if I should be a little immune to the caffeine at this point.  I don't have caffeine head aches or go into withdrawals without it, I simply miss that oh so wonderful smell that my Starbucks coffee grinder gives off when starting my coffee pot, which BTW, you can almost guarantee will contain throughout the day fresh coffee--and when I say fresh, it cannot be longer than a few hours old because that is just "yuck-o!"

A little animal print and hot pink and you've got yourself a glamor party!

So, Chrim's party was huge hit as well.  This is the first year I didn't do a Christmas type theme for her party.  She chose "Minnie Mouse," and I just jazzed it up a bit.  I love hot pink and zebra stripes together, and they went wonderful with Minnie.  I chose to just offer dessert foods at this party, anything pink and black and white--chocolate dipped strawberries with a white chocolate drizzle, pink cake balls, pink candies, etc.  At this "Glamor Dress-up Party," guests enjoyed a little dress-up with princess wands, jewelry, gloves, Minnie ears-all made by me, glitter sunglasses, and anything else they wanted.  We also enjoyed a little color time with Minnie mouse color sheets, and the girls got to decorate their own hot pink mini cupcakes-which was a nice mess, but still lots of fun.  We had a huge crowd at this party, which made me a little nervous, but I handled it well. The take-home prize was a zebra print hair bow, chocolate dipped pretzel sticks, and as much dress-up loot as they could get their little hands on.                                                                  

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Parties--It's what I am good at

It should be no surprise to my friends that one of the first things that I would want to blog about is parties.  I love hosting and showing off my creative side. I have somewhat of a "stollen" creative sense about me.  When I say "stollen," I mean that when I see something creative, I can duplicate it 100 percent and make it even better by adding my own spin on it.  Anything decorative and stylish in my house can be found in a Pottery Barn magazine somewhere, that's not to say that I ordered it straight from the magazine, but that I copy what I see from the perfectly decorated rooms in the magazine. It really surpirses me that it has taken me this long to write my own blog because I have been reading them for party ideas for years.  I put a lot of time, money, and effort into my kids' birthday parties.  I mean, why's a celebration of another amazing year that I have had with them.  Matt often states that these parties are for me and not the kids, and I can say that he is about five percent true, but for the most part, the parties are to make my babies feel special.  I try my best to make the day as memorable as possible for them.  If I do just one thing that they love and will remember forever, then I have done my job as a mom, and pulled a little self-satisfaction into the mix as well. So here are the latest two parties that I have pulled off for my loves.  Shep's first birthday was an argyle golf theme. I called it his "PAR-TEE!" We had themed foods such as "the green" salad, a veggie "slice," and fruit "flagsticks." We had our own mini-baby golf action in the back yard---the water hazard and sand trap were huge hits.  Also, guests enjoyed a quick spin on the golf cart.  I loved his two tiered argyle cake and matching cupcakes. I used a lot of marshmellow and powdered donut holes--because, well, they look like golf balls.  The thank-you gifts were blue, green, and yellow bubbles and golf balls in argyle boxes that were finished with little "Shepard" stickers lined with blue and green argyle.  Also, I made little red wind mills to hand out and decorate with!


Blogging 101

Well, here it first official blog post! How exciting for me to finally join the 21st century and start "blogging."  It should be noted that I seriously despise the term, "blogging."  I mean really, I think that when referring to this little endeavor in a verb form, I will use the term writing-- how very 1998 of me, but seriously, much more appropriate and much less annoying!  When I decided that I would start doing this, I realized that I had no idea how or where to start.  So, I did what I always do when I do not know something, I googled!  I found all the necessary, and unnecessary, information for forming your own official blog/journal.  I am still learning, and it will probably take me a few days/weeks to really get everything the way I like it.  I have no idea how to add photos or a little description of what this blog is about, but I plan to do so once I know how.  So until then, I hope anyone reading this will enjoy watching me learn how to navigate through something that has been out there for ten years or so that I just now found interesting enough to take part in!