Thursday, June 28, 2007

Boys will be boys

Much to my chagrin, my dear hubby has been letting the boys watch the show "Man Vs. Wild" with him when Im putting J to bed at night. Basically they drop this crazy guy off in the middle of places like the Everglades or Iceland and he has to find his way to civilization, a road, etc. His survival skills are really amazing (and gross sometimes) but I keep trying to convince dh its a little much for a 3 and 4.5yr old. Here is some proof from the last two days:

N told hubby yesterday that he was hungry at quiet time so he ATE AN ANT .... he quickly added, in a resassuring tone, " but I didnt eat his head!" ....... Gross!!!! He told me this whole story at bedtime so I said "ummm, so you ate his butt?" which he thought was really funny but he corrected me to say he ate his tummy AND his bum. Great.

Today he came in from outside for dinner, HUGE grin, and proudly said "I ate two worms!" (I said "What?!?!?!") He proudly goes on, reassuring us once again, "I washed them in the pool, so I didnt get sick from the dirt". Good thinking son LOL.

Times like this remind me that I am outnumbered by this odd species called "male" and it also makes me so, so thankful for my sweet little princess. Please tell me she will never eat a worm. Grrrroooossss!

Hanna Anderson Sale!

It would be impossible to be raised by my mother and not appreciate a good sale. So Im posting to share the love! Hanna Anderson is having a huge sale online and the prices are amazing! My mom got Jayna 3 new dresses for her birthday and they are SO cute. They arrived today and Im in love! The normal prices were $38-42 and each one was $14-18!

anyways, here is the link to the dresses section if anyone with a little girl is interested (there arent many sizes left!)
Hanna Anderson


Tuesday, June 26, 2007


This is in response to Kelli In the Mirror's question in response to my Fast Food post.

ChickFilA advertises that they use 100% peanut oil. That is true - thats what they FRY in and its non-hydrogenanted, so not trans fat.

Their Waffle Fries do have trans fat though. The most likely buy frozen potatoes that have already been cut and fried once in trans fat. See ingredidents here

Here they say that and that they hand-bread their chicken nuggests and chicken strips in the store. Great. Sounds good right? Well here is the nutritional info for their nuggets and they actually do have soybean oil in them (and milk). Not good for those with allergies. They dont have trans fat though so that is good. Most dipping sauces besides ketchup are made with a base of soybean oil too.

Here are the ingredients for the Grilled Chicken Club (my favorite thing there). It says "100% natural chicken breast" but this: butter flavored vegetable oil (soybean oil, palm kernel oil, soy lecithin, natural and artificial flavor, TBHQ and citric acid added as preservatives, and artificial color) is listed underneath that. How is butter-flavored soybean oil, perservatives and artificial color "100% natural"?!?!?!?! There is also artificial color in the cheese (why?!), nitrates in the bacon (more on that coming soon) and TRANS FAT from shortening in the "golden wheat bun from a local bakery".

Also note that the Peanut Oil they use has TBHQ - just for reference, ingredients with numbers or capital letters usually arent good for you. Think "MSG". You'd have to eat a lot of chicken nuggest to get 1 gram of TBHQ but just a little of a bad thing doesnt make it safe.

Look at the ingredients list for the Southwest Chargrilled Chicken Salad. Its longer than the list for the one with fried/breaded chicken! The longer the ingredients list of anything, the less healthy it usually is - especially when you have no idea what they are and/or cant pronounce them! The coating on the chicken has trans fat. Not very healthy at all!

Other items from ChikFilA with TRANS FAT:
Biscuits, Brownies, Tortillas, Gravy, Hashbrowns, Cinnamon Cluster, Croutons that come with the salads, Chicken Soup, Lemon pie, Cheesecake, etc.

And check out the ingredients in the milkshakes (which I admit, I L-O-V-E but Im currently off of soy and sugar) - they are like a mile long. They are full of corn syrup, artificial colors and flavors, preservatives, and also have soy and Splenda in them.

Like I said, I love their food but I hate that I do. I dont even care if someone wants to eat there but people should KNOW that all this junk is in their food. We are so naive about what goes into all food, including the food we buy at the store and make ourselves.

Hope this helps someone :)

(my 50th post - woohoo!!!!)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Healthy Fats

Americans have been brainwashed on two levels concerning fats and nutrition. They have taught us that its best to eat low-fat diets and they have tried to convince us that natural products like butter should be replaced by "healthier" products like yellow plastic, um, uh, I mean, margarine ;).

Canola oil is another fat that we've been told his healthy. I always thought it was. Here is an intersting article from the Weston A. Price foundation website (a favorite place of mine to read): The Great Con-ola I am trying to phase canola out of our diet. I do still use Canola mayonaise because regular mayonaise is made with soybean oil but now I cook with coconut or olive oil.

You can read more on that site about why the healthiest choices are butter, olive oil, coconut oil and even lard (I know, I know, its hard for us to imagine!). I just bought some coconut oil from which is a good source for the right type of coconut oil - you dont want the refined stuff you can buy at the store, it doesnt have the lauric acid in it that brings so many health benefits . I did buy their expeller-pressed type because I dont like the taste of coconut but next time I plan to get the real stuff! Its really great on bread and I even cook JJ's egg yolk in it every night.

Im not a huge Dr. Mercola fan because he is so extreme (although secretly I agree with everything he says!) but here an another article about coconut oil that he wrote: Coconut Oil: The Smarter Fat that Promotes Weight Loss

These are easy steps to take to improve our family's overall health. Check out that site, there is a lot to learn there!

Fast Food - hidden ingredients

Need help eating out less? Read this.

Because of my sons' soy allergy I have read a lot of nutritional info on the websites of sit-down and fast food restaurants. My hope was that I could at least go somewhere like ChickFilA and get a grilled chicken breast plain and some fruit.

I learned something really gross - at most fast food restaurants, their ground beef and chicken breasts are cooked or reheated with "vegetable shortening" or even "butter flavored vegetable shortening" - AKA Trans Fat. Yuck! Would you pull out some meat and cook it in shortening?!?! I hope not! That is just unacceptable. That means when you think you are ordering a healthy grilled chicken sandwhich, its really not healthy at all. Its loaded with fat and not the good kind!

If its fried, like a chicken nugget, its probably made with trans fat in the bread coating (soy for sure) then deep fried then frozen and re-fried at the restaurant. They do the same for fries (including the ones you buy at the store - read the back). Double yuck. Dont be fooled by the clever marketing campaigns of places like McDonalds - white meat or not, those chicken nuggest are NOT good for your kids. The only thing my kids eat there are the apples - minus the sugary, yucky carmel dipping sauce.

So just because they say they cook with vegetable oil - which usually means soybean oil since its the cheapest - that doesnt meant it doesnt have trans fat. And you need to ask - is it really oil they are cooking with (which doesnt have trans fat and is liquid) or shortening (which is solid in cooler temps and does have trans fat)? Remember "0 Trans Fat per serving" means that there is trans fat in the product but just less than the FDA's rule allowed trans fat per serving.

Its ideal to eat at home of course and cook everything on your own with fresh, non-processed ingredients. We go out with friends or to church several times a week and I always pack things for the kids, usually a sandwhich on whole wheat with almond butter and all-fruit jelly (peanut allergy too here) and some grapes or something. I myself am now off of soy since Im nursing and I was feeling badly about having it. Even though nothing in our house has soy, you cant eat out without eating out unless you are very, very careful. Unfortunately at a lot of sit-down restaurants its the same story.

Im happy to say that one restaurant is trying to help those of us with allergys. Wendy's cooks their hamburgers fresh (not frozen) and with no shortening or oils. Their new artisan bread is baked fresh daily and has no trans fat or soy - its actually made with olive oil (a good fat). No its not grass-fed organic beef ;), but we cant always afford that anyways and certainly not all the meat I cook is organic. So if we are out and about and need an occasionaly meal-rescue for mommy that is now the one and only choice we have - but Im so happy to have it. Thank you Wendy's! :)

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Safe Toys for Baby

Many teethers sold in the US are not safe for baby to put in their mouth at all, much less to suck and chew on. Most are made of plastics that leach chemicals and other toys that seem "chewable" may contain lead or PVC.

A European toy company called Haba offers many safer options. Their wooden toys are painted with a safe, lead-free paint and they are ADORABLE.

These are the ones that Jayna has:

How cute are they?!?!And they are only about $10 each!!!

She does chew on a lot of other things now that she is older and mobile and explores all over the house - including plastic that Im sure is horrible for her. But when she is playing with and chewing on these at least I know she is safe. She chewed some of the red paint off of the bell on the top one so I took it away but Ive searched and the paint they use is definitely lead-free. No other wear is visible and she's had them both since she was born.

These were the only toys I gave her when she was really little and just learning to hold onto and mouth things. They also make teething clips and carseat toys that are adorable and Ill get for the next baby!

Here is a site that has several "cluthing toys" as Haba calls them: Baby Oliver Boutique I got mine new on ebay.

Haba also makes great blocks, soft toys and lots of games and toys for older children as well!


Friday, June 15, 2007

Plastics - update

I think I mentioned in my last post on plastics that I would no longer be buying Gerber Organic baby food because it is in #7 plastic tubs. As we know, that is not a safe type of plastic. So it defreats the purpose of organic food to put it in there! So Ive been buying other brands that come in glass jars.

So today I finally called Gerber to ask if the containers have BPAs. Obviously it wasnt the first call they got about it because she had a prepared statement that she read it to me. The good news is that they do NOT contain BPA's. Even when tested after microwaving (which you shoud never do with a plastic container of any kind!) it did not leach BPA.

I did express to her that I was still disappointed that they havent chosen to use a different, safer type of plastic. Even without BPAs other chemicals can be leached, especially if they are filled when the baby food is hot. She took my info and passed along my "comments" ;)

Ill let you know if I hear anything else! For now, Im still going to buy it in the glass jars. She is much more into real food now anyways :) And that is a subject for another post!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Thomas the Train RECALL

This is SO infuriating.

They are recalling several Thomas the Train peices sold between 2004-2007 because the paint contains LEAD. Thats right, the CEO makes half a Million dollars and year and they are being cheap and using paint with lead at the expense of our children!!!!!!!

While its unacceptable, its not unbelievable. If you've read my blog before you know that the products our government allows to be sold in our country are not as safe as we think they are.

Here is the link with PICTURES of what is being recalled. Supposedly they will replace it for you if you send it in but who really wants another toy from this company? I sure dont. I want my $20 back (actually my $100s of dollars back!).

And I want them to pay to have my children lead tested. My sweet baby girl has had those trains in her mouth before! And Im sure thousands of other babies have too (Before we can get to them to take it away of course!). I was already mad that a $20 train's paint would chip so easily .... and now it may have contaminated all their other toys.

I dont know that much about lead accept that NO amount is a safe amount, especially not for the brain of a developing child.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Things to Remember

Im so bad at writing down all the cute things my kids say. So Im going to write it here this time. This is a conversation I just had with Noah before I tucked him in for bed. Im really working on taking time each day to "snuggle" with Noah - which really means he talks my ear off and I listen. One way to make it more meaningful is to ask questions.

Noah - whats your favorite thing about Nana?
'cuz she brings me surprises

Whats your favorite thing about Grandma?
'cuz she brings me surprises (said with a huge grin!)

Whats your favorite thing about Papa?
'cuz I like riding in his Jeep! (which he has never done but Papa has promised to bring it for his birthday)

What about Papa Chris?
ummm 'cuz I want to be an engineer just like him (awwwwwh!!!)

Favorite thing about Mommy?
'cuz you make me food (figures)

Noah whats your favorite thing about Daddy?
'cuz how hard he works for us (awwwwh again!)

Favorite thing about Caleb?
'cuz I just love him so much and he loves me so much

Favorite thing about Jayna?
'cuz she plays with me

"And mommy my favorite thing about Luke (best friend) is feeing ducks together at the park"


those warmed my heart.


Wednesday, June 6, 2007


I knew that Talc was bad and should be avoided but I didnt know why. So I started to research so I could share with y'all and its even worse than I thought.....

This is from (article)

Q. Why is talc harmful?
A. Talc is closely related to the potent carcinogen asbestos. Talc particles have been shown to cause tumors in the ovaries and lungs of cancer victims. For the last 30 years, scientists have closely scrutinized talc particles and found dangerous similarities to asbestos. Responding to this evidence in 1973, the FDA drafted a resolution that would limit the amount of asbestos-like fibers in cosmetic grade talc. However, no
ruling has ever been made and today, cosmetic grade talc remains non-regulated by the federal government. This inaction ignores a 1993 National Toxicology Program report which found that cosmetic grade talc, without any asbestos-like fibers, caused tumors in animal subjects. Clearly with or without asbestos-like fibers, cosmetic grade talcum powder is a

Here is a more calm article from This article says that since 1973 talc is required to be asbestos-free. But it also says that the most recent study found a 37% higher risk of ovarian cancer in talc users who have not had their tubes tied.

And from

Talc is a mineral compound that is similar to asbestos; the two minerals are
often found together in geological formations. In the past, some talc powders
have been found to contain asbestos, but quality assurance programs have now
minimized this contamination. The modest association between ovarian cancer and
talc exposure found in some studies has been attributed to asbestos
contamination, Whysner says.
Cornstarch, in comparison, is a food substance
found in the corn kernel. Because of cornstarch's chemical nature, it is
biologically implausible for it to cause cancer

I cant be the only one disturbed by that information and how many thousands of women use body powder every day in their vulnerable issues. You just cant trust thats because its on the shelf its safe - you HAVE to find out for yourself!

Its best to find a powder that is cornstarch-based. I use Burts Bees talc-free body powder, even though it does have artificial fragrance. Its an easy change to make! Just do it ;)

DEFINITELY dont use regular baby powder on your babies/children!

Monday, June 4, 2007

Bug repellent

Ive posted before about a site to check the ingredients and safety of your skin/beauty products. They've redone their site. I think there are still some kinks to work out because the font is a little weird for me but check out the EWG's NEW COSMETIC DATABASE

I just went there to find a safe bug repellent. The mosquitos are vicious this year! California Babies wins again - Im going to get some of their spray this week. You have to apply it more often than regular bug repellent but its safer. It has a score of 2 (green, for safe) and Skin-so-soft has a score of 8 (red, for avoid!).

There has been so much debate about the safety of DEET. Now the AAP says not to use a DEET product on children that is over 30%. But I personally prefer not to rub my children down with pesticide if I can help it - go figure. Better safe than sorry in my oh-so-humble opinion. ;)

THIS is a site for a non-deet product, so they are a little biased. But I had to laugh a little that they mentioned that Deet can dissolve the epoxies and gel coats off of boats - what?!?!?! Their whole marketing slant is that its not wise for hunters, fisherman, etc. to use Deet since it can damage so many of the products a fisherman touches. Nice eh? So yeah, pretty much not going to rub that stuff all over my sweet little blessings from God!

p.s. one site I came across said that taking garlic capsules can help as a natural bug repellent! Ive taken them before and no, you dont smell like garlic.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

No more Tampons!

There have been rumors circulating on the internet for awhile regarding tampons containing abestos and cancer-causing dioxins. From what Ive been able to find, the FDA, and others, claim this is a hoax.

Either way, there is a better option! The Diva Cup!

I know - the name is hilarious. And the idea is radical to some. Its a silicon cup, very slender, that you insert during your time of menstruation. It lasts up to 12 hours, even on your heaviest days and since its made of silicon its 100% safe. Just rinse and reuse. You can even wear it overnight. I have friend that use it and love it!

Good for your health and it SAVES MONEY. Woohoo! If I ever have another cycle (just one of the blessings of children and breastfeeding!) Im definitely getting one. They are about $33-34 and your local health store may carry them!

There is also another brand called The Keeper (made from gum rubber/latex) and the Moon Cup which is silicone like the Diva Cup. Both are about $35.