Thursday, March 31, 2011
DAIRY: First of all, I try to use minimal dairy. I think we have an overabundance of it in our American diets. But we still go through about a gallon of milk a week and about a bag of shredded cheese. On the weeks I shop at Trader Joe's or MyOrganicMarket(MOMs) for $5.50 a gallon, I purchase organic milk. When I'm at Costco on the alternate weeks, I buy their milk, which is just over $3. I figure organic half the time is a step in the right direction, and it winds up costing as much as buying milk at a regular store every week. But as money becomes available, I do intend to buy more organic dairy products. And even when money is tight, I only buy dairy products which state that the cows are not treated with rBGH. It is inhumane to use on the animals, and may have negative effects on humans who consume them. Cows treated with this hormone require lots of antibiotics(for mastitis) which many believe can lead to antibiotic resistance in humans. This is a great little fact sheet, if you'd like to read more: http://www.sustainabletable.org/issues/docs/SayNoToRBGH-fww07.pdf
MEAT: After realizing how badly animals are cared for, and how contaminated our meat is, I have become more determined to eat only organic meat. My ideal would be to buy from small local farms! But that is just not in the budget yet. So for now, I am cooking mostly vegetarian dishes, so that I can afford to buy organic chicken breasts. Again, cooking less expensive meals has allowed for the "splurge" of happier chickens. The taste is SO much better too! We almost never eat red meat or pork, and when we do, I buy "natural" but not organic. The only fish we eat right now is canned tuna, and that is not organic, but I'm not convinced that is as much of a problem.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
On this note, I'd like to post the section of scripture that has most influenced the way I approach parenting:
"The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever. He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us. As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him. For he knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust." Psalm 103:8-14That last part just blows me away. The natural compassion I have towards my children is the way God has chosen to relate to me, someone who was His enemy. wow. But back to my point. He REMEMBERS that we are dust. He knows we are weak and going to fail repeatedly, and though He has the right to punish us immediately, He is instead long suffering. He gently corrects and redirects His children. He allows us to repent and try again. And He even goes as far as to send the Redeemer to die as a blood offering for our sins. I can't tell you how often I forget that my children are dust. I get angry and want to punish them when they sin against me.I'm so grateful for a Father who remembers. So now I seek to remember their humanity and my own. I want to be someone who is a consistent person--a mother they can depend on to love them well. Sometimes this means showing compassion and mercy on their human weaknesses and sometimes the most loving thing is a hard consequence or punishment. But in either case, I have forsaken the idea of consistent discipline. The consistency I aspire to is consistency in who I am and how I relate to my children.
Friday, March 18, 2011
Thursday, March 10, 2011
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
- Lately, I've been singing/clapping with them every morning. My mom sent us a kids CD in a music style that all 3 of us love. The first song is called "So glad I'm here" and when I sing it to my boys it is a great reminder to love my days with them.
- For the most part, I am a stable person, whom they can run to and feel safe.
- I ask what they feel and think, because I really want to know.
- I try not to judge their motives when they do things that seem naughty until I have heard and considered their perspective.
- I sit down and play with them--not for a long time, but for a period every day.
- I pray with them and for them each day.
- I prepare a healthy variety of foods for them, and try to make them taste good. :)
- I started letting Sam bake with me while he was still 2. He loves it now.
- I tell them that I love them and praise them often.
- I show them physical affection.
- I usually admit my failures and ask their forgiveness.
- I accept their limitations.
- I strive to train them with the gentlest methods possible, with consistancy.
- I love and respect their daddy, and make sure they see that. (this is UBER important)
- I say yes to things that make me crazy sometimes...like paint, playdough, puddles, etc.
- I don't baby them, but help them learn to be independent and strong.
- I read to them sometimes (this is one I really want to do more often!)
- I lose sleep when they need me.
- I breastfeed, even in spite of difficulty.
- I take little opportunities to teach them about the world.
- I delight in beauty with them.
- I am patient and kind much of the time.
- I put a high value in family and try to make times together fun.
- I create simple traditions to create memories with and for them.
What are some of your greatest strengths as a parent? I'd love to hear about them. Caring for young children can leave you exhausted and brain dead. Unlike jobs in "the real world", you get little praise, acknowledgement or thanks. Some days you just have no idea what you did, or whether or not it meant anything. And there's nobody to hand you a paper with a grade on it! So I think this kind of reflection is pretty much vital. This post has done me some good. :)