Friday, August 31, 2012

Women Comparing Themselves to Other Women

So, I opened this topic up for feedback on my Facebook page and was stunned and humbled by the honest and real words many ladies shared with me.  I've wanted to write this for awhile, but when a women at least 12 years older than me confessed that she felt inferior to me, I knew I had to write it.  "Really?"  I said to her stunned.  I realized then and there, that ALL women struggle with comparing themselves to other women at some time in their lives.  And from the comments I see that for some of us this issue is occasional, but for many it's a daily issue.

I have to agree with Brenda and Megan that as I have aged, this is less of an issue for me.  I love this quote from a "Real Simple" magazine article on women.

"I finally started feeling comfortable in my own skin when I realized that losing those dreaded 10 pounds wouldn't make anyone love me any more.," Laura Zarins, stockbroker.  

In your 40's you get more comfortable with who you are, and what other women do or look like doesnt' matter...MOST of the time.  However, I think this is a struggle to some degree at any age given the right circumstances.  You've gained a bit of weight.  You try to achieve something that doesn't work so well and BAM!  You see another woman that seems to have it all going on.  That's when that voice creeps in and whispers...."You should look like that, but you don't.  You will never accomplish something like that..."  and the list goes on.  A point of weakness leaves entrance into our hearts wide open for those lies.  At least that's the way it is for me.

As I've been pondering this, I think there are two issues that are at the root of this common issue for women.  The first is things that happened to us growing up.  Yes, I believe we can move on from dysfunction and negative things that happened to each and every one of us in childhood.  However, those things ARE a part of us, and the WILL sometimes pop up.

Jen says, "I think many of us compare ourselves too much when it comes to personality, like how we speak, dress and entertain.  Even younger women I take to deal with this because of the attention some get and others don't.  This need for attention seems to have a very early beginning.  Were we ever delighted in?"

Those scars and unmet needs from childhood cause so much of this "comparing".  I think that's something we have to be aware of before we can deal with it and move on from it.

"We don't just have a desire for an outward beauty, but more - a desire to be captivating in the depths of who we are."  (Johna and Stasi Eldredge - Captivating).

  I think we all have to come to a point of confronting those things and forgiving the people that inflicted the wounds in our own hearts.  Then, when the lies pop up, we deal with them head on and refuse to let our minds rest there.

The second issue that I believe to be at the root of this comparing is knowing who we are, and even more specifically who we are in Christ if we are followers.

"You can learn to embrace your beauty and allow it to bring you joy and delight or you can give in to the cultures definition of beauty and allow that to rob you of every shred of confidence and enthusiasm you have about who you are."  (Nicole Johnson - Fresh Brewed Life)

We have to embrace who God made us to be and stop worrying about what he didn't make us to be...or what he made someone else to be.  I think when you have committed your life to Christ, this "Identity" in Him comes with time spent in His presence.  I think this is the number one thing the enemy doesn't want us to understand.  The reality that if we are IN Christ, we are a new creation.  We are fully excepted and fully loved.  Period.

Karen says, "I struggle daily with this (comparing).  The lack of cooking, decorating and domestic talents.  I always have to remind myself that God created me and didn't make a mistake. My identity is in Christ!"

It seems that in this culture of media and Facebook throwing women and their seemingly perfect lives constantly in our faces, it is more of a struggle then ever to keep our focus.  Speaking of this, I think we must remember that when looking at all the "Fabulous" on someone's FB or blog is just one corner of that person's life.  They are not going to show you the dark corners...the areas of struggle.  It's a lie that anyone has got it all together.  I believe it's going to take more of an effort on the part of each woman to combat the lies.  I think starting with honesty is a huge step, and can help us brake down walls and build one another up.

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Week in Review

Well, it's been a little gearing up for Fall, and a little enjoying more Summer.  I'm a Mentor Mom this year at MOPS, and attended the training meetings this month.  I'm looking forward to a fun adventure with some great young Moms and also working with the other seasoned Moms!  It's fun to be in the place of new experience and anything can happen.

I also invented some new recipes....
OK, being real.  I totally winged it and tried to make an "Oatmeal, banana, chocolate chip, breakfast thingy.  It flopped.  To much liquid.  Texture is off, taste is good.  I will post the recipe when I get it right.

OK, so it's not a recipe...I just stuck Pineapple Sage from my herb garden on salmon and baked it.  It worked well.

OK, for you thrifters.  This is my "Free" corner.  The rooster tray was free and a yard sale.  The chair that I painted with leftover paint from ? was free at a yard sale.  The chicken was in my parents house forever and mom gave it to me.  OK, I begged for it.

My family FINALLY got to the local Swap Meet.  Oh, my....we are all hooked.  We all found stuff for great prices.  I taught my daughter to dicker the price and the people were so much fun!  My husband was thrilled with a barely used camp stove for $15.  Here is what I was thrilled with:

This adorable little book published in 1890 was $1

I love vintage books...they are so pretty :)

I love that it says Icy Hot.  I don't know why.  $2

I saw the large tray at an antique store today for about 95% more than I paid!

Oh, this little 401 Spring Blossom leaves me one short to complete the set.  Yes, I'm a Pyrex geek.

Got the white "Snowflake Garland" to go with the little one my hubby found at a thrift store.

Today, the fam went to Duvall.  Just a change of scenery.  It's a cute little town.  We had a picnic, got ice cream...found a vintage Yard Sale (yes on Monday) where everything was 10 cents.  AHHH!  Finds are at the end.

 Such a cute town

 Love the shops
 Love these...price...not so much.  Maybe I'll find one at a yard sale someday.
 Love my boys!

 Silly girl with the beautiful eyes.

I love this. It's a painting on the side of a building.

OK, the 10 cent yard sale with the sweetest people ever.  Fire King mugs and Thermo-Serv set.  What a deal.  I am actually selling these...I sell alot of what I find for extra income :)  Fun job.

But I will not part with these!  Love the old cooler and this light up Santa is what I saw from the road.  I almost jumped out of the car while it was still moving.  My husband has gotten good at abrupt stops!

Well, the summer is winding down.  Soon the lazy days with family and all the yard sales will be gone.  It's always with mixed feelings I approach fall.  I'm excited for routine and to see what God brings in a new school year for all of us.  But, I will miss these lazy days.  Enjoy it all to the all goes so fast.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Thrifted Vintage Finds!

Seems my list of Vintage stuff I'm looking for "Cheap" is getting smaller.  Thanks to the fact that I keep finding things I can sell, I've been able to pick those list items when I see them!  Some major "list" items were found in the past week.
Mint condition picnic bag, complete with sandwich box and thermos.  My guess it this was a wedding gift that ended up in the back of the closet b/c it's unused!  Thrifted at one of my favorite little shops for $6

I have been looking for a milk glass cake plate FOREVER!  They are never at thrift stores and cost a fortune anywhere else.  Thrifted $2!

Oh, how cute is this table cloth.  All the other vintage one's were $12 at the thrift store.  This was unmarked and she gave it to me for $2!  No stains and soooo cute on my kitchen table :)

Monday, August 20, 2012


What says summer more than picking blackberries?  There is something timeless and soothing about slowing down to pick the sweet, juicy fruit.  Eating some...saving some.  The juice trickling down your fingers into the thorn pricks.

Today my family went on a bike ride and had to stop and pick.  The warm sun on our backs just added to the experience.  This is one of those things that will never go out of style.

Then, of course I had to make something with the berries we didn't pop into our mouths.  I always make Blackberry Crisp found in the pages of "It's All Good Without Gluten!"  the recipe is at the end of the post.

Blackberry Crisp

4 cup black berries
1/4 cup GF flour mix (to blend a batch to use:  1 c brown rice flour, 1 cup white rice flour, 2/3 cup potato starch, 1/3 cup tapioca flour)
1/4 cup organic sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tbl grape juice


1 1/2 cup GF flour mix
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup organic butter, cold

1) Preheat over to 375 degrees
2) Toss berries with flour, sugar and juice
3) Transfer to a 9 inch pie plate
4) Mix topping in a bowl and cut in butter with a pastry blender
5) Pour topping over the berries
6) Bake 35 min to brown
7) Serve warm with vanilla ice cream

Fun Vintage Yard Sale Finds

This game from 1967 was to cute to pass up.  I'm using it for a back to school display!

Got these and the cutters below from a cute little old lady.  I love the jello mold!

I can't believe she NEVER took these out of the package...they have to be from the 50s.  I am taking them out of the package and using them and displaying them with my others at Christmas.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Balance in the World of Social Media and Technology

My dearest friend Heather passed on a copy of Newsweek to me with the cover story "iCrazy" on it.  She said, you should read this and write something on your blog.  I decided I would.  I asked my 500 Facebook friends for thoughts and tips on balancing this in family and children.  I received 0 response.  What does that mean?  It could mean everyone is busy or on could mean everyone thinks I'm nuts...or maybe this topic is a sore one that overwhelms?

In any case, I'm still writing the article.  Any of you who know me well know that I am the odd ball minimalist in this area.  Yet I don't want to put my head in the sand...this is the world we live in.  I am seeking balance too.  At this point I have a very lame phone in my purse that often dies there before I use it.  I don't have texting, and my husband has a great phone with texting, but is rarely on it, and turns it off when he is at home or with the family.  It's more of a work phone.  My kids (ages 13 and 10) don't have phones and don't want them.  I think this is because they don't see us with them...and my daughter is like me.  She notices the excessivness that most kids her age have in regards to phones and texting and it bugs her.  Many parents feel it's a way of connecting with their kids, but honestly, for me, if my daugther has needed to call me, there are other phones.  Until she drives, I don't see the point.

So, I read the article.  It's scary.  Our children and their brains are literally changing due to all this texting, Facebooking and Tweeting.  Scientists are learning that the next big "Addiction" is to this social media.  The brains of those sucked in actually look like the brains of those addicted to Cocaine.  Scary.  It's increasing depression and anxiety in kids.  They see all this stuff on FB and feel overwhelmed and comparing themselves.  Then there is the impulses to NOT PUT THE PHONE DOWN.  They are wired to the thing 24/7 and with it FB and Twitter.  There is even something called "Phantom Vibration Syndrome"  It happens when you respond to your phone so much that you begin to feel it vibrate when it didn't.  Anyone else freaked out by this? 

Here's a quote from the article, "Research is now making it clear that the Internet is not "Just" another delivery system.  It is creating a whole new mental environment, a digital state of nature where the human mind becomes a spinning instrument panel, and few people will survive unscathed."

What are the answers?  I don't think we just throw it all out.  Some of moderation is good.  What scares me is that I don't think moderation happens much in this arena.  I may be in the dark ages, but because I am not a major phone person, I am always appalled when I'm with my family somewhere and every single person besides us has out their phone.  I think it's alienating.  I'm afraid for the social structure of the future.  Are our kids going to be able to have conversations?  Scary.

In my mind it all comes back to an age old truth.  Balance in everything.  That's it.  Balance.  Anything that is not done in moderation is unhealthy.  Anything we take to an extreme is dangerous.  I'd love to hear thoughts on this.  I'm not hear to preach...and I certainly don't have all the answers.  Balance is the only thing that comes to mind.


Friday, August 17, 2012

Vintage Kitchen Drawers

Something for you vintage peeps.  A few months ago my hubby found two different rolls of vintage contact paper still in the packaging at the thrift store.  Our house is 14 years old and needed the drawers redone.  What better way to re due then with vintage contact paper in my kitchen colors!

Isn't it cute!

I LOVE vintage Tupperware!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Gluten Free article link!!

Click on the link for Fit Christian Magazine.  Then look for my column, including a recipe for Itallian Pasta Salad.