A Facebook profile pic PSA

September 16, 2014

Dear friends,

If you change your name after you get married…

And then you have a baby…

And then you make the baby’s pic your Facebook profile pic…

I NO LONGER HAVE ANY WAY OF KNOWING WHO YOU ARE ON FACEBOOK.

So then this happens:

You post an update that says that you just bought a house and I’m like, “Who is this baby who was able to get a mortgage?”

You post an interesting article and I think, “Will this toddler think it’s weird if I like her status? Also…that toddler reads The New York Times?!”

You post a status about the funny thing your child just did and I wonder, “Did this baby have a baby? Children having children, what is this world coming to…”

For me, this isn’t about not liking baby pics on Facebook, or about how women’s identities change after marriage and children; this is simply about logistics. Please do everyone a favor and use Facebook the way God intended it to be used: with your own damn face.

Let’s all watch Sha’Condria Sibley deliver an inspiring and badass poem

September 13, 2014

My pal Chanelle shared this Upworthy post last night, and while I generally find Upworthy smarmy as hell, I’m actually glad I clicked through on this one. Here’s the video.

It’s so interesting to me that in recent years, more and more white kids are getting saddled with “big names.” While these names are the subject of plenty of mocking, I doubt the Kaybryns and Teiguns (it’s pronounced TAY-gun) will have the same results as the Sha’Condrias of the world when they send their resumes to potential employers. 

Pit stop: How to make your own deodorant

September 11, 2014

A couple months ago, I saw a bunch of people raving about this this natural deodorant recipe so I decided to give it a try. I mainly decided to try homemade deodorant because I was curious, had most of the ingredients already, love using coconut oil for pretty much everything, and thought it would be a budget-friendly alternative to store-bought deodorant (which is pretty pricey and doesn’t last that long). I don’t think natural products are the end-all, be-all, but I’m not a terribly sweaty person and don’t have sensitive skin, so I figured I was in a good position to experiment.

Pit stop: How to make your own deodorant

First, the recipe I used…

Ingredients

12 tbsp coconut oil

8 tbsp baking soda

8 tbsp cornstarch

Lemon and eucalyptus essential oils (several drops of each)

You’ll also need some sort of container to put it in. I was looking around my kitchen, wishing I had some kind of tube-like vessel to put the mixture in. My eyes landed on some popsicle molds I had never used. Since these particular molds are sort of short and fat with a wider handle instead of a stick, I knew they’d be perfect. It was quite possibly the most genius “life hack” thing I’ve ever come up with on my own.

Instructions

1. Melt the coconut oil over low heat.

2. Add the baking soda, cornstarch, and essential oils and let it cool for a bit.

3. Pour it into your container(s) and stick it in the fridge to cool.

The recipe above filled five popsicle molds and filled 95 percent of a sixth…unfortunately, the not-full popsicle mold led to a bit of a crumbly mess when trying to remove it, so that one is going to need to be applied by hand.

Pit stop: How to make your own deodorant

I wanted to try out the natural deodorant (and only the natural deodorant, to be sure I got the full effect) for a few weeks before I wrote about it; I’ve now been using it since late July. Overall, it’s working well for me. One downside: after about a week of using it, I noticed that my skin was feeling a bit itchy and I realized I had a bunch of ingrown hairs under one arm, which has never happened to me before. It was quite painful so I started swiping under my arms with witch hazel a few nights a week before bed and after shaving, and that seemed to solve the problem. (Showering would also likely solve the problem but I hate showering so…I guess I’ll just spot clean my body?) Now I just use the witch hazel a few nights a week to keep it from happening again. I actually recently read that some people use straight-up witch hazel as deodorant, so that may have increased the deodorant’s effectiveness too.

One clear difference between the natural deodorant and the Secret deodorant I used before this is that the natural stuff is lot harder/drier, texture-wise. I’ve been keeping it in the fridge because I didn’t want it to melt in my bathroom, but that means it goes on a little rough. I actually just pulled one of the sticks out of the fridge this morning to see how it does being stored at room temperature; I’m curious whether it will soften up a bit. On the other hand, if you made the deodorant in a jar, you could probably warm a little up in your hands before applying so it would be a bit more moist (SORRY) when you put it on.

Unlike regular deodorant, which I’d totally swipe on later in the day if I felt like I needed it, I don’t really like to pile on the natural deodorant. (Thanks to both the texture and the ingrown issue.) If I really feel like I need to reapply, I’ll use a little witch hazel first and then reapply the deodorant to clean(er) skin.

Pit stop: How to make your own deodorant

Like I said, it’s working pretty well for me overall. I love the smell of the lemon and eucalyptus and I’m happy with how dry it keeps me but I’m not 100 percent sold on the texture. On the other hand, store-bought deodorant is often kinda slimy, so I’ll continue to play around with softening the DIY deodorant, and I’d even try a different recipe/ingredients going forward.

My biggest takeaway from all of this is that witch hazel is kind of the best thing to keep in your bathroom! It cures all sorts of ailments, is a really good way to freshen up post-workout (especially if you’re shower averse), and the strong/weird smell has sort of grown on me.

Further natural deodorant reading/reviews that I enjoyed:

“Do I Smell Funny?” Natural Deodorant Challenge

The Great No-Deodorant Experiment

Egotistical doctors and badass women from days gone by: My current TV lineup

September 10, 2014

I usually don’t watch much TV, but Eric loves TV and we’ve recently started watching three new/new to us shows…that all happen to be set in the past and center mainly around complicated, liberated (or will-soon-be liberated) women and asshole MDs.

Outlander

Outlander. This show, based on Diana Gabaldon’s book series, is basically a romance novel sprung to life. Except better (at least than the three paperbacks from K-Mart I read when I was 14), because the heroine, Claire, is a really great character. She’s charming, feisty, “strong” (whatever that means), smart, passionate, and she gets shit done. She also happens to be the MD (well, the “healer”) in this show and she’s not an asshole (at least not most of the time). “Outlander” is set in Scotland, which means sometimes Eric and I wish we had the subtitles turned on, and we frequently have to pause to decipher exactly what is being said on screen. But! That setting also means the show’s backdrop is just gorgeous.

Speaking of gorgeous, leading hunk (a far more accurate term than “man” here)Sam Heughan really brings the romance novel feel to life as Jamie. He’s so shirtless, so charming, so lock-of-hair-falling-over-sparkling-blue-eyes that sometimes I’m just like, “…really???” It’s a little much. (Almost as much as Claire’s LITERALLY HEAVING BOSOM on this week’s episode. I cannot wait till he actually rips her bodice!) Anyway, I actually like that the show doesn’t feature the traditional male gaze and is giving ladies some hot Scottish man candy to ogle. (Personally, I’m more into Graham McTavish as Dougal than Jamie. I love his jaunty hat and his beard.) The show moves a little slow overall, but I’m sticking with it for now.

The Knick

The Knick. This show stars Clive Owen as a—you guessed it!—asshole doctor in 1900 New York. There are a lot of things to like about “The Knick,” including the way it’s shot, the creepy vibe, the soundtrack, and the medical problems explored in each episode; on the other hand, Owen’s character, Dr. Thackery, is SUCH an asshole that it’s just frustrating at times. While I like the show, right now I’m kind of stuck on the racism as a main plot point. André Holland plays Dr. Algernon Edwards, a gifted black surgeon who is generally treated like shit by all his white counterparts at the Knickerbocker Hospital. I think if Dr. Edwards were the main character, I’d feel less bummed about this…but it’s just frustrating that every time he’s on screen, someone’s treating him like shit. I know that would have been his reality, so my issue with this is a bit hard to articulate, but the bottom line is that it’s often hard for me to watch, and it makes me wonder who the target audience is. We’ll see how the rest of the season goes.

Masters of Sex

Masters of Sex. So, I DVRd the series premier of this show a year ago and never got around to watching it. Then seeing Lizzy Caplan at the Emmys a couple weeks ago (where she looked STUNNING! See ya later, Janis Ian!) reminded me that I still hadn’t seen it, so I watched the first episode and am now COMPLETELY hooked. Michael Sheen’s Dr. Masters is an asshole and a robot, but gahtdamb, the female characters are all SO GOOD. Aside from Caplan as famed sex researcher Virgina Johnson, there is Allison Janney as Margaret, Caitlin FitzGerald as Libby Masters, and Heléne Yorke as Jane, and they really carry “Masters of Sex.” I really love the way the show explores women’s reproductive health issues and the things we sort of take for granted now (like, say, not having to get your husband’s permission to have a medical procedure), along with women’s needs and desires in relationships in general. I really don’t like Dr. Masters at this point and some of his scenes have me shouting, “Gross! YOU ARE GROSS, DR. MASTERS!” at the TV but…whatever. Every great show about women needs its Porn Stache, right? Anyway, we’ve got three more episodes in Season 1 to watch and then it’ll be on to the second one!

Brick by brick

September 10, 2014

So…this is what happens when you find an AMAZING deal for brand-new bricks for your patio on Craigslist…even though said patio hasn’t been fully designed and certainly has not been approved by your HOA yet…

Bricks

After unloading the bricks from the seller’s trailer into our garage (when I thought Eric was actually going to die), we got sick of parking on the street and transferred them—basically brick by brick—into our downstairs office. Where they have been for approximately one month.

If the bricks have to stay in there much longer, I think I’m going to just start pretending they are the actual patio. Maybe I’ll put some planters on them, and sit on them after work and sip on a drink.

Guernica Magazine: “It Will Look Like a Sunset”

September 10, 2014

This is one of the best—and saddest—pieces of writing I’ve read in a long time. Trigger warning for domestic violence, and cry warning for all humans.

“Two years after we moved, I started graduate school and finally made some friends, but it was hard to spend time with them. I had to lie: I shut my arm in the door. I tripped on a rug and hit my face on the table. I don’t know where that bruise came from. I think I did it in my sleep. I think I’m anemic. I just bruise so easily.

Once, Caleb said to me, ‘You probably wish that someone would figure out where those bruises are coming from. You probably wish someone knew, so that things could change.’ He said it with such sadness.”

Read “It Will Look Like a Sunset” on Guernica.

Foodstuffs: Easy Fried Rice

September 9, 2014

Last night, I made this Pinch of Yum fried rice recipe for dinner…

It was really easy and came together so quickly, as promised! I added baby spinach, shredded perfect chicken, and basil, and am really happy with how it turned out. (Plus there were a lot of leftovers.) I’ll definitely make this one again!

Photo: Pinch of Yum

Reading list: On Ray Rice

September 8, 2014

Today in dude-fuck-all-y’all news, TMZ released new video of football player Ray Rice punching his now-wife in the head in an elevator (for which the NFL gave him a whopping two-game suspension). Here are a few of the articles about the video’s release that I’ve been reading/discussing today…

The Revictimizing of Janay Rice by Dave Zirin

Ray Rice’s elevator video and the denial of black women’s humanity by Luvvie

If You Care About Women and Still Support the NFL, You Are a Hypocrite by Erin Gloria Ryan

It’s good reading about a really shitty situation.

Let’s all watch Kerry Washington read “Ain’t I A Woman?”

September 7, 2014

I saw this on For Harriet last week; even though the video is several years old, it’s still amazing and powerful and inspiring.

And if you need any more convincing that Kerry Washington is the best, this story ought to do the trick.

S’mores stuffed strawberries

September 7, 2014

Great news: the much-anticipated strawberries were SO good!

s'mores stuffed strawberries

Really hard to get a decent, Pinteresting photo of, but really good.

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