Thursday, October 30, 2014

TBT -- A Halloween Party Pooper

The following post first appeared in October 2010.


 
As we were singing our closing song at church on Sunday, a certain line jumped out at me and has been haunting me ever since. The song was "Now Thank We All Our God" and then particular line I am referring to is "...and guide us when perplexed..."
You see, I am perplexed. I just do not get this whole Halloween thing. For me, celebrating this so-called "holiday" involves a total lack of common sense.

Okay, I know I have just lost a whole lot of fans right now, but please bear with me and at least hear me out. Let me explain the reasons why we never celebrated Halloween as my kids were growing up.

  • Putting the origins of the day aside, what is modern-day Halloween centered on? Death. Evil. Monsters. Blood. Gore. Slasher movies. Okay, sure, it is very cute to see a toddler dressed up like a bunny, or a kindergartener prancing around in her princess garb. There is nothing wrong with dressing up and make-believe. May I suggest reserving it for another time, such as a birthday party, when the atmosphere is not surrounded by evil? I personally hate driving around seeing coffins, bodies hanging from trees, skeletons, tombstones, bloody corpses, etc. To think that people actually spend money to make their homes look so darned ugly is beyond me. Let me tell you something. Anyone who has experienced the traumatic death of a loved one most likely finds these images disturbing at the very least. I should know. October is such a magnificently beautiful time of year, but it is marred by the images of death (not to mention the political litter everywhere!).
  • Trick or treat is such a bizarre practice. Again, where is the common sense here? All year long, your kids hear the message, "Don't take candy from strangers!" Then on October 31st, that message is thrown out the window when parents send their little ones door-to-door collecting treats...treats that then have to be x-rayed at the local fire station to make sure there are no razors or pins inserted in them. What?!? Are you kidding me?!? And the explanation that the kids are only going trick-or-treating in their neighborhood holds no water with me. How many of you really know all of your neighbors? I know I don't. My parents trusted all of our neighbors...and let me tell you -- they shouldn't have.
  • Mischief is encouraged on Halloween. Toilet papering someone's yard seems harmless enough, but it creates a lot of clean up work for the victim. What other time of year is this even remotely okay? Then there is the egging of cars and homes. But aren't kids given the message somehow that mischievous activity is acceptable on Halloween? After all, the phrase they're taught from the time they first knock on a door is "Trick or treat." The implication here is, "Give me a treat or I am going to do something nasty." Nice. This was illustrated so perfectly last night on the show, GLEE, when one of the characters said to a teacher, "Give me chocolate or I'm going to cut you." Enough said.
  • Candy. Lots and lots of candy. Who lets their kids eat that much crap?! Seriously?
  • Occult activity. If you think it doesn't happen, get your head out of the sand! There is no other time of the year when occult activity is so prevalent. None. Every year, police stations across the country receive calls about discoveries of the remains of animals that have been sacrificed. Most times these burnt remains are that of beloved family pets.
Will the occult activity cease if you don't let your kids dress up and go door-to-door collecting candy? Of course not. But in the case of my family, I could never see the sense of participating in an activity that goes against so much of what I stand for.

Let me give you a scenario to think about.

On Halloween, you take your little girl around the neighborhood trick-or-treating. The neighbor man at the corner asks her what her name is. She looks up at you, questioning whether or not it is proper to answer him. You nod and say it is okay. She tells him her name and he throws some candy in her bucket.

The next day, your daughter is walking home from the bus stop. The kind neighbor sees her walking by and calls out to her.

"Suzy, I have some candy left from last night," he tells her. "Why don't you come in and I'll give you some."

"I can't," she says, hesitantly. "I'm not allowed to take candy from strangers."

"Strangers?!" the neighbor feigns hurt. "I'm not a stranger. Your mom let you take candy from me last night, remember?" He coaxes her further. "I saved some candy just for you! You're my favorite little neighbor."

"Well, okay," Suzy says. "I guess it's okay."

Bam. The neighborhood pedophile just lured in his prey. And you gave him the bait he needed.

Think it doesn't happen that way? Let me tell you that it does. Please, please, be very careful.



I didn't share this story in the original post, but in 2011, decided it was time to go public with it. In reference to the above scenario -- while parents want to think they are safe in their cozy little neighborhoods and trick or treating with neighbors is a safe thing to do, that wasn't the case for me as a child.

When I was 9-years-old, I was raped by a "friendly old neighbor man who just loved kids but didn't have any of his own." The lure of candy and someone who would spend time with me after school while my mother was working, was too much for me to resist. Keep in mind, back in the 60s in small-town America, it was not at all uncommon for kids my age to be out running around the neighborhood until suppertime. I don't have a lot of memories about what happened to me, but I do remember burying my bloody underwear (white with yellow stitching) underneath all the food scraps in the olive green garbage can in the corner of the garage. It's odd which memories stick and which ones are just too brutal to recall. The sexual abuse was not a one-time occurrence, and it didn't just happen to me.

Why didn't I tell my parents? Quite simply because the perpetrator told me that if I ever told anyone, I wouldn't go to heaven. Thus, my struggle with conditional grace began. As a 9-year-old, that thought terrified me. So I kept my mouth shut and endured the abuse until the man died. I remember my parents being concerned about how upset I would be about his death. Little did they know that all I felt was relief.

The memories were buried deep inside of me, under my own personal garbage, until I was 31. Gradually they started to surface, but to my horror and liberation. Liberation? Yes, I felt liberated from baggage I carried for years, yet could never identify. The revelation changed my life and freed me from the burden, although I still get a sick feeling in my stomach when I see a wrapped Mary Jane candy, or I drive by the house on my visits to my mother. The wounds have healed, but the scars will always be there.

Do not assume that your child will tell you if they are being abused. Sometimes secrets are carefully guarded ... even by young children.

And now, I'll return you to my previous post:


So, looks like my kids missed out on all of the fun 'cause Momma's a Halloween party pooper, huh? I wish you could ask them yourselves how they felt about it. They would answer and tell you that some of their favorite childhood memories were from our time together on October 31st each year, because it was a really special day.

I often took them out of school early on Halloween, so they didn't have to be exposed to the evil costumes some parents think it are okay for their children to don. I also did not want them participating in the seemingly innocent occult activities that were often planned for the day.

Late in the day, we would head out to Chuck E. Cheese's where other like-minded parents would gather to have a fun time with their kids while the neighborhood streets filled up with the little ghosts, goblins, and a Freddy Kreugger or two. We had a ball. Occasionally, one of their friends would tag along, asking their parents if they could skip trick-or-treating and join us instead. As the years passed, my daughters wanted to continue our tradition, so we did...all the way until the youngest was 19, I believe. Eventually, we added a movie to the night.

[this paragraph has been updated from the original post] There was a lull in years between our last trip to Chuck E. Cheese on Halloween and the dawning of a new era. Five years ago, our tradition resumed with one-year-old Laura's first visit. Tomorrow, she will spend her fifth Halloween with Chuck E. and her four-year-old cousin, Lincoln. The tradition continues. I love Halloween. 

Sticking to common sense,


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Review It Wednesday -- Wall Art from Pear Tree Greetings

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I received product and/or compensation in exchange for my honest opinion about the products mentioned.






My daughters schedule yearly photo shoots for my grandchildren. This year's photos were shot in Pittsburgh by Jen Meyercheck of  big {happy} wall. When the folks at Pear Tree Greetings contacted me and asked me if I'd like to review their wall art, of course, I said yes.

I had the option of wall decals or customized wall art suitable for framing. I had fun searching through their site, although I had a really tough time deciding what I wanted. When I settled on the wall art and chose a four picture collage, I then had to decide which pictures to use. Then it was time to add some color. I played around with my many, many choices, but ended up with black. I liked how it looked with the black & white photos I'd chosen.

 

I placed my order and was pleased with how quickly I received the print. I was a bit surprised it wasn't on heavier canvas, as I'd expected it to be. This is just a standard print, but the quality was excellent. My photo of it does not do it justice, as it is picking up a glare from the table lamp below it.



I then had to choose a frame for the print. After I brought the frame home, I discovered I needed to do some trimming of the print to make it fit the standard 11" x 14" frame. I was quite pleased with the end result.

When ordering your wall art, you can choose matte card stock, or go greener with recycled paper.

While the wall art fit my needs better, I think you could have a lot of fun with the wall decals! They'd be perfect for a nursery or kid's room. Many people buy prepackaged wall decals to use in these rooms, but with the Pear Tree Greetings decals, you can custom design them with photos or artwork of your choosing. You can even select wall decal frames for a unique look.



Aside from the wall art and decals, Pear Tree Greetings offers a wide selection of customizable greeting cards, birth announcements, save-the-date cards, and more.




Click here for coupon codes for discounts at Pear Tree Greetings. And if you use the code DECOR50 through 10/31, you get a whopping 50% OFF all wall decor and decals with a minimum purchase of $25.





Reviewing it for you,









Monday, October 27, 2014

Pregnancy loss -- Carmen's story

As we wrap up Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, I thought it would be a good time to share this story from Carmen, one of the GG community's moms. Her story is similar to my own daughter's, who is also due in February. For anyone who has suffered this kind of loss, your heart knows her pain. 



Carmen's Story

This past February, I found out I was pregnant after trying for 7 months prior. The waiting and trying was not new to me, since it took 27 months of trying to conceive my son who was born July 2012. So I waited a week and told my husband the good news on Valentine's Day. It was so perfect and we were ecstatic. The weeks went along and my first OB appointment came up. I was given an ultrasound, but there was nothing to be seen and no heartbeat to be heard. I was supposed to be 6 weeks along. So they scheduled another ultrasound a week later. No good results. I was then sent to the Radiology Department of the hospital for a confirmation. Sure enough, there was no healthy growing baby. No heartbeat. I was diagnosed with a blighted ovum and given the option to either schedule a D&E or miscarry naturally. I chose to wait since I was scared to be admitted for it. I was also in denial.

A few weeks went by and I couldn't take the wait anymore so I scheduled the procedure. To my dismay, two days before my procedure, I had a natural miscarriage. Honestly, it was the most frightening thing I've ever gone through. I was checked out at the ER and sent home later that night as it was deemed "complete." I cried for days.

After awhile, I started to feel as if everything would be okay. My husband and I went on to keep trying and, soon enough, I was pregnant again! This time I found out and told him on Father's Day weekend. We were excited but cautious. Given the lost pregnancy in April, I was doubtful if I could even say I had suffered a loss since there was never a heartbeat or a physical body. But after receiving some support from some mommy friends I have online, I know that my body did house an angel that was too precious to stay.

I am proud to say that everything is going very well with my third pregnancy and our rainbow Baby J will make his/her appearance in February next year. :)

* * *

If you would like to share your own story of pregnancy or infant loss, please email me at greengrandma@comcast.net

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Exergen Temporal Scanner Giveaway!

Exergen Temporal Scanner Giveaway


Hosted by: Queen of Savings,  

Sponsor: Exergen 

Your baby's hot. Does he have a fever? You need an answer and you need it fast. When my kiddos were little, that meant a glass thermometer stuck you-know-where. Not only was it uncomfortable, but it was a bit scary as well. The little munchkin would wiggle around and I was always concerned the thermometer would break off in her butt! Parents today have it so much easier and Exergen makes it even better. And YOU could win one of their Temporal Scanners!

Prize: Exergen Temporal Scanner Thermometer RV $49.99
See Queen of Savings' full review here.

Dates: 10/25-11/8
Open to: US Residents 18+

Enter to win using the widget below. 
Good luck!
   


Disclosure: Green Grandma did not receive compensation for this post and is not responsible for prize fulfillment.

Lugz Women's Boots Giveaway!

Lugz Women's Sophia Boots Giveaway


Hosted by: Queen of Savings,  

Sponsor: Lugz

I love fall. I love the colors, the cooler weather, the scents, and the wardrobe! For me, nothing beats turtlenecks, sweaters, jeans, leggings, scarves, and BOOTS! What about you? Are you a sandals or barefoot type of gal, or are you like me and love slipping into a comfy pair of boots? If you're the latter, you'll love this giveaway. I mean, seriously... how comfy do these boots look? Maybe you'll win a pair!


Winner's Choice of Color RV $69.99

See Queen of Savings' full review here.

Dates: 10/25-11/8
Open to: US Residents 18+

Enter to win using the widget below. 
Good luck!
 


Disclosure: Green Grandma did not receive compensation for this post and is not responsible for prize fulfillment.

ThermoWorks ChefAlarm Giveaway!

Thermoworks ChefAlarm Giveaway

Hosted by: Queen of Savings,  

Sponsor: Thermoworks

I don't know about you, but I've guessed about food temps way too many times. I would love to have something this accurate, chic, and easy to use.

ThermoWorks ChefAlarm
  • Features a splash-proof design suitable for commercial kitchens  
  • Uses Pro-Series® temperature probes  
  • Includes Pro-Series High Temp Cooking Probe with cable to 700°F max temp  
  • Adjustable high and low alarms  
  • Always-on Min & Max temperatures  
  • Adjustable volume to 92dB (4 settings)  
  • Includes count-down and count-up timer  
  • Really big digits and a backlight 
  • Available in 9 colors

Prize: Thermoworks ChefAlarm RV $59

See Queen of Savings' full review here

Dates: 10/25-11/8

Open to: US Residents 18+

Enter to win using the widget below. 

Good luck!


Disclosure: Green Grandma did not receive compensation for this post and is not responsible for prize fulfillment.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

TBT -- GMOs, RoundUp and Monsanto -- when will it end??

Here's an oldie but goody for Throwback Thursday. Here's what I had to say about GMOs, RoundUp, and Monsanto in February 2012. Nothing's changed since then.

There's poison in those soybeans! Look out!

I don't know about you, but I'm frustrated. And angry. And scared. The more I learn, the more upset I become.

When will we wise up? GMOs are NOT the way to go. Healthy-looking, weed-free lawns are not a sign of a responsible homeowner. Cleaners smelling like pine or lemon or fresh meadows are not an indication of a safely cleaned surface. The list could go on and on. And does.

Yesterday, I stopped by a friend's store and while speaking with her, an employee was cleaning ... with a mighty strong cleanser. The result for me? A night of severe fibromyalgia pain brought on by the toxins I breathed in while at the store. And that, quite honestly, makes me angry. It affected my night and my day so far. While I am better today, I'm still sluggish and treading carefully, so as not to aggravate the condition.

I didn't turn on my computer this morning. When I did, I went on Facebook and read the following, which added to my misery. Not that it shouldn't have been there, but the truths it contains makes me angrier and angrier. Monsanto is an evil corporation, despite what Bill Gates says. After all, Gates knows money. But does he understand poison?!

Here is what my friend, Allin Faragalli, of Leaf and Bud Naturals, wrote:

Ever hear of Roundup resistant Soybean? I assume you know what Roundup is, the toxic spray that has been banned because it is SOOO horribly toxic. It is used to kill weeds. You spray it on the leaves and it enters the plant and goes right to the roots. Kills the plant from the inside out so it can't come back. Most of Canada has banned it and there is a whole black market for it because conformed lawn lovers who think their lawn = life have decided this terrible poison that is poisoning waters, environment, humans (mostly our children and grandchildren) and animals is more important than having a weedy lawn or having to do some good ol' fashioned hard work ... That's not what this note is about ...

When you buy a soy product, (unless it is "certified" organic), whether all soy or just soy ingredients, there is a very very good chance (almost guaranteed) the plant that produced the soybeans was genetically modified. Specifically modified to not die when sprayed with Roundup. This enables farmers to spray weeds in hard to reach areas or simply to avoid having to do the hard work in tending to the weeds in the fields.

Farmers are under great pressures and not treated all that good these days. The extra hard work isn't wanted. Understandably! And they are being pushed to use these crops! ... Back on topic --> When a plant is sprayed with Roundup the poison enters the plant. The poison is now IN the soybean, which instead of dying, grows to harvest, is processed and ends up in our stomachs! The worst part is soy is pushed to be put in all our food. Try to find an item without soy something in it. It's hard! Kraft Peanut Butter for example is LOADED with soy oil. I just realized this a few days ago. I wanted a sandwich, but tried to skip the natural peanut butter 'cause I didn't want to make it sweet myself and because I grew up on the Kraft so Im addicted to the fake texture and taste ... Before creating this sandwich is when I saw the word soy ... I won't eat it now! Natural peanut butter for me! No hydrogenated, modified ingredients AND no Roundup! (It feels very odd to think there is Roundup in Peanut Butter ...) What I'm getting at is watch the soy intake. Don't eat unnecessary soy. It's tough to avoid, but take time and read ingredients on things before you buy. Then you'll see how much of this you are actually taking in. And you can get a different kind of cracker, cookie, cereal, salad dressing ... whatever it is.

Here's a scary fact ... it doesn't stop at soy. That's just one of the most commonly used GMO crops at the moment. Corn is another huge one that has a Roundup modification. Monsanto is one of the leading companies pushing and causing the world to harness the dangerous power of GM crops. Monsanto is poisoning the world's food supply with heavy pesticide use and untested GM crops

What Allin has presented here is a small overview of a HUGE problem. We have to stand against this. We have to get involved.

Please, please take action. Read this from Natural News:

The one man who may be responsible for more food related illnesses and deaths than anyone in history, Michael R. Taylor, has just been promoted from US Food Safety Czar to Senior Advisor to the Commissioner of the FDA, a position which would enable the giant biotech company Monsanto to silently and legally feed cancer causing vegetables to every living person who is not 100% strictly organic.

President Obama has appointed the former Monsanto Vice President and lobbyist Michael R. Taylor to the throne. This is the same man who was Food Safety Czar for the FDA when Genetically Modified Organisms were allowed into the US food supply without undergoing a single test to determine their safety or risks. This is like putting a terrorist in charge of the world's food supply. What will the cancer numbers look like in 2016? Read more

Do something. If you are a U.S. citizen, please sign this petition to President Obama. There are no political sides here. There is just one side -- the side of common sense safety and health for ourselves, our children and our children's children. The time to act is NOW.

Caring for the future for our kids and grandkids,










Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Remedies for the remedy -- Help when cancer strikes


Cancer's dragged our family through the ringer this year, taking the lives of my husband's brother and his first wife (the mother of my stepdaughters). Prostate cancer claimed the first and breast cancer the second. 

One of the saddest things about the death of my husband's first wife (who I loved dearly), was that she feared this for most of her life. Her grandmother died of breast cancer. Her aunt died of breast cancer. Then, when she was only 16, her own mother died of breast cancer. It was in her genes and she lived in the shadow of it. And then it happened. She fought a courageous battle, but on April 5, 2014, it won. And now, her two daughters, my stepdaughters, also live in the shadow of it. It's frightening. It's disconcerting. And it's real.

I'm not sure what I would do if I was faced with this diagnosis. My recent mammogram showed that I'm clear, for now. My own sister's mammogram revealed a small tumor several years ago. It was not detectable to the touch, so in her case, the mammogram saved her life. It was a normally aggressive cancer, but with immediate surgery and treatment, she beat it. 


If I had to seek treatment for cancer of any kind, I know that I would seek out homeopathic remedies, at least to help me weather the effects of chemo and/or radiation, if that was the path I chose. I've come to rely on and believe in homeopathy. That's why I chose to be an ambassador for Hyland's Homeopathic. I only promote what I'm personally behind. But this post isn't about a company I believe in. As a matter of fact, Hyland's has nothing to do with this post. I just wanted to put this out there for those of you who are or who know someone suffering from the effects of cancer treatments. Since this is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I'll do my part -- not by participating in pinkwashing -- but by offering real help

Ir you or a loved one is going through cancer treatment, I wish I could take away the pain -- both emotional and physical. While there's not much I can do for you, I do believe homeopathy can help alleviate the symptoms of traditional cancer treatments and improve a cancer patient's quality of life. 

Here's the thing -- homeopathic remedies are FDA regulated and are often prescribed by forward-thinking, common sense doctors to use in conjunction with traditional cancer treatments. Consider using homeopathy because:

    • Medicines (known as remedies) are completely chemical free, meaning they are non-toxic and safe for the gentlest of systems, including newborns. 
    • Homeopathy is often used to complement traditional pain medicines, or on their own to treat severe pain, and has a history of assisting chronic pain patients.
    • Remedies are inexpensive. 
    • Remedies are FDA regulated and available over-the-counter. You can find them in natural food stores, many national chain pharmacies, or homeopathic pharmacies. 
    • Homeopathy should not be confused with herbal, Chinese, or other types of natural medicines.
Are you suffering or have you suffered from breast cancer or any other type of cancer? What are you doing or did you do to help ease the often-nasty symptoms of treatments?

Click here to find a remedy to ease the symptoms of breast cancer treatment.


Monday, October 20, 2014

Bought... the hidden story about vaccines, drugs, and food

Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links.




The hidden story about vaccines, drugs, and food… Three huge topics in one film. Why put all this in one movie? Because these issues are directly related, and we have an opportunity to harness the millions of us engaged in each of them to overcome the noise put out by the medical-industrial conglomerate. You peel back the layers and see what’s really driving our industrialized food, our vaccine expansion, and our dependence on pharmaceuticals – it’s the same culprit. Huge corporations funded by individual misery, one broken life at a time. These three story lines converge on Wall Street, but this story takes us beyond the problem to the inspiring and empowering role mothers are now taking in uniting to protect their families.

Written and directed by Bobby Sheehan, the film was produced by Sheehan, along with Sara Feldmann Sheehan, and Jeff Hays and features a notable cast, including:
  • Dr. Toni Bark, MD
  • Dr. Patrick Gentempo
  • Tara Cook-Litman
  • Kelly Brogan, MD
  • Barbara Loe Fisher, Prof.
  • Mary Holland, PhD
  • Suzanne Humphries, MD
  • Allen Jones, Prof.
  • Gayle DeLong, PhD
  • Dr. Chensheng (Alex) Lu, PhD
  • Prof. Stephanie Seneff, PhD
  • Dr. Sherri Tenpenny
Buy it or rent it. It doesn't matter. Just make sure you view it. This is stuff corporate America does not want you to know. But I do.



 




Friday, October 17, 2014

The one who started it all



Laura with her homegrown carrots


Happy birthday to my amazing and sweet granddaughter, the lovely little Lady Laura. Your birth opened up a whole new world for our family and brought about the birth of Green Grandma. We've all been living greener and healthier lives because of you.

Love you more than words can say.


California Pizza Kitchen $50 GC Giveaway!

CPK Gift Card

Hosted by: Queen of Savings
Sponsor: California Pizza Kitchen

The first CPK opened in Beverly Hills in 1985. Former federal prosecutors Rick Rosenfield and Larry Flax combined their passion for food with fresh high-quality ingredients to create innovative, hearth-baked pizzas such as The Original BBQ Chicken, Thai Chicken, and Jamaican Jerk Chicken, cooked in an open kitchen. The restaurant gave California a place in the pizza pantheon alongside Chicago and New York. Their California twist on global flavors resonated with guests, and almost immediately, CPK became a bustling spot for business and family gatherings.

Personally, I love CPK. I recently went there with my 4-year-old grandson and we had a delicious meal. I've been craving some CPK ever since!
 
Prize: $50 CPK eGift Card

Dates: 10/16-10/30
Open to: US Residents 18+

Enter to win using the widget below. 
Good luck!
 
 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Non-GMO Month -- Why it matters


Welcome to the October 2014 
Natural Living Blog Carnival: 
Advocating for Our Food Supply.  



This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Natural Living Blog Carnival hosted by Happy Mothering and the Green Moms Network. Since October is Non-GMO Month, National Farm to School Month and Fair Trade Month, we are naturally talking about our food supply. Be sure to read all of the other posts listed at the bottom of mine! You may find stories about why it's important to eat organic, support non-GMO awareness (and labeling), grow your own food and eat a real food diet. You may also find some new recipes or learn what real foods or gadgets are staples in our members' kitchens. This month it's all about food! 

We recognize quite a few causes in October. Yesterday, for instance, was Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. And, of course, the world is awash in pink as people buy products full of carcinogens to show their support of Breast Cancer Awareness. Like there's really no one out there who isn't aware. Yeah, things like pink fracking drill bits do a lot to make people informed. Sorry, but all this pinkwashing gets me a bit riled up. And going braless for a day does absolutely nothing to help those suffering from this insidious disease. As a matter of fact, from what I've read, it actually upsets some of those who have lost a breast or two. Seeing yours flapping by does not encourage them one bit.

One cause I can really stand behind (braless or not) is Non-GMO Month. I mean, seriously. If there is something we need to raise awareness of, it's GMOs, don't you think? There are far too many people out there who are simply not informed as to the damaging effects GMOs are having on the environment, the animals, and the human population. It's devastating, and unless people get involved and make their voice, and their wallets, heard, it's just going to get worse. With corporate giants like Monsanto, Syngenta, Dow, and Bayer pushing their genetically-modified agenda at us, we're doomed to succumb to the monster they've created. Or are we? They may be tromping around as a corporate Goliath, but we've been practicing with our slingshots and we're shooting a bunch of stones their way. Remember, David was just a young shepherd boy when he slew Goliath. Let's follow his lead, folks. Let's load up our slingshots and get involved!

One way to stay on top of things as the battle wages on is to follow the Non-GMO Verified Project on Facebook and Twitter. And, for the rest of October, check out their Non-GMO Month website for info, daily giveaways, calendar of events, and more!

While you're on the website, check out the 2066 retailers across the country which are participating in Non-GMO Month. You can search by state. I was happy to see Pittsburgh's East End Food Bank and Marty's Market among those participating.

Why does it matter? Here's an explanation from the Non-GMO Project's website:

"In 30 other countries around the world, including Australia, Japan, and all of the countries in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production of GMOs, because they are not considered proven safe. In the U.S. on the other hand, the FDA approved commercial production of GMOs based on studies conducted by the companies who created them and profit from their sale. Many health-conscious shoppers find the lack of rigorous, independent, scientific examination on the impact of consuming GM foods to be cause for concern."

Cause for concern? You better believe it. Remember that those who are claiming the safety of genetically modified organisms are also the ones benefiting financially from all of this. The Non-GMO Project is a non-profit organization. In other words, they have nothing to gain in terms of riches. But let me tell you, they're paid beyond anything they could have imagined each time they save a life that could have been destroyed by consuming genetically engineered foods. 

Do I avoid GMOs at all costs? Unfortunately, I do not. I like to eat out and not all my groceries are non-GMO or organic. But I try to avoid as many genetically modified foods as I can. I've made some strides, but it never seems to be enough as Monsanto's spawns keep creeping into more and more of the food we used to consider safe and healthy.

Why does it matter? Because we're raising children in this world. And those children should have the right and the opportunity to go out into a field, like I did when I was a child, pick a strawberry, and bite into it, letting its juicy sweetness run down their chins without worrying about the poison they are ingesting. That's why it matters to me. It's all about the children.

Do your part. Make your voice be heard. Spend your money wisely. Pick up your slingshot and few smooth stones. It's time for David to march.






Visit Happy Mothering and to learn more about participating in next month’s Natural Living Blog Carnival! Please take some time to enjoy the posts our other carnival participants have contributed:
 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

TBT -- A day early -- Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

I'm participating in the Natural Living Blog Carnival tomorrow, so I thought I'd throw in a Throwback Thursday post a day early. Besides, today is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day and I don't want the day to pass without acknowledging it and honoring those of you who have suffered the devastating loss of a child.

But I also want to send my love out to those of you who longed to be a parent but, for whatever reason, it never happened for you.

Empty arms are empty arms, and surely they embrace a world of pain.

The following is my post from October 2011.


This ecard and others like it can be found at Healing Hearts

"When a baby is lost through a miscarriage, most mothers -- and fathers -- need to be given 'permission to grieve.' Too often, well-meaning individuals minimize the loss -- as if, somehow, the fact that the child was never carried to term makes him or her unimportant (or, at least, far less important). Yet the grief and sense of loss can be just as strong and prolonged as with the death of an older child or other relative." -- Permission to Grieve  Focus on the Family

Sending love and prayers to all of you who have been touched by the pain of losing a child through miscarriage or stillbirth.

Please feel free to share your own story in the comments below or simply post the name of the child you lost.





Comfort can be found at Healing Hearts.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

It'll knock your panties off!






What our friends at Women’s Voices for the Earth just discovered hiding in Always pads will knock your panties off.

Test results show that Always pads release styrene, a known cancer-causing chemical, along with chloroform, acetone, chloromethane, and other toxins listed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Toxicology Program, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, and the State of California Environmental Protection Agency as carcinogens, and reproductive and developmental toxins.

None of these chemicals—and no ingredients whatsoever—are listed on the Always label.

The worst part? These secret toxic chemicals are coming into contact with some of the most sensitive and absorptive skin on our bodies!

Always shareholders are meeting in Cincinnati TODAY to talk about what's important to the company, and they need to hear from you!

Please take a moment to call Always and tell them to list ingredients so that we have the information we need to protect our health. (Inside tip: calls to companies are incredibly effective in getting a company to pay attention to your concerns—it’s absolutely worth 15 seconds of your time!)

Always Customer Service number: 1 (800) 888-3115

Sample script:

Hello. I just saw test results from Women’s Voices for the Earth that show chemicals linked to cancer, reproductive harm, and allergies in Always pads – and no ingredients are listed on the label. We have a right to know what we’re using on our bodies. Please list all ingredients and remove harmful chemicals.

Thank you for raising your voice on this serious issue! We know it can be uncomfortable to talk about what’s in pads, which is how Always has gotten away with using secret toxic chemicals. Until now.

You’ll be joining with thousands of other women in raising your voice—WVE is teaming up with Andrea Donsky at Naturally Savvy this morning to deliver 21,000+ signatures to the makers of Always from women demanding to know what’s in pads. Join us!

Testing Results Specifics

Products Tested:
Always Ultra Thin unscented
Always Ultra Thin Clean Scent
Always Infinity unscented
Always Radiant Infinity Light Clean Scent

Results:
The Always menstrual pads were found to contain several chemicals of concern, including the following:

·        Styrene: carcinogen
·        Chloromethane: reproductive toxicant
·        Chloroethane: carcinogen
·        Chloroform: carcinogen, reproductive toxicant, neurotoxin
·        Acetone: irritant. 

Alternatives

Tips for Avoiding Toxic Chemicals in Feminine Care: http://www.womensvoices.org/avoid-toxic-chemicals/feminine-care-products/

No Secrets Companies: companies listing all ingredients and making safer products: http://www.womensvoices.org/avoid-toxic-chemicals/no-secrets-safer-products/

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