Monthly Archives: June 2014

Ground Turkey & Cheese Burritos and Cinnamon Banana Chips

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Another recipe blog!
🙂
Because when you announce that you are goingto begin doing weekly themed blogs you DO that…..
Once a month.
Apparently.
Sigh.
So, here we go. Another child-pleasing healthy meal idea with an easy-peasy dessert or snack recipe included! This is a lunch time hit at our house. 🙂
Ground Turkey & Cheese Burritos:(enough to make 8)
Ingredients:
2 pounds ground turkey
1 package large soft tortillas
1 bag shredded cheddar cheese or taco cheese (or shred your own, 2 cups worth)
2 packets taco seasoning.
1)Buy two of these.
turkey
Cook in a skillet until browned on med high heat.
2)Lower heat. Add 1 1/2 cups water and two of these.(any brand. These were on sale. I usually make my own seasoning but I ran out and this was faster.)
tacopackets
Use your spatula to blend water with meat and seasoning until coated well.
Let it simmer a bit until water is cooked away and meat is scrum-diddly-ishis looking.
Like this:
tacoseason
3) Plop some of the yumminess on your tortilla in a line in the middle of your tortilla leaving a small space at one end for folding. Sprinkle cheese over meat mixture. Lots. Because cheese is the greatest thing ever.
insideburrito
4) Roll up your burrito like you are supposed to. Side,bottom, side. If you don’t know how, it’s just like swaddling a baby. If you don’t know how to swaddle a baby either well then, I just can’t help you. Go google it or something.
You can add extras like jalpenos or hot sauce or whatever. We keep these pretty basic at our house so the kids will eat them. 🙂
burrito
Cinnamon Banana Chips:
Ingredients:
A bag of banana chips
unsalted butter or coconut oil
cinnamon

1) Get these.
banana chips
Lick one and stick it to your baby daughters face because you have the sense of humor of a 11 year old boy. Snort. Peel it off and feed it to the dog. Then pour the rest of the banana chips onto a couple of cookie sheet pans while your oven pre heats to 350 degrees.
2) In a small sauce pan, combine 3 TBSP unsalted butter or coconut oil with a dash of vanilla extract and 1 1/2 TBSP of ground cinnamon. Simmer and stir til melted and blended. Attempt to take picture. Realize how shitty your kitchen lighting is. Attempt ten more pictures. Finally give up and post blurry one on your blog.
melt in pan
3) Drizzle over banana chips. Use a spoon to blend a bit so all are coated. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes until they are dry and golden.
chipsdone

chips withbay
Voila! A kid-friendly healthy snack! Yum!
chips withbay

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Predators and Prey

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I have noticed something that makes me both indignant and sad since becoming the mother of a daughter. I always knew on some level that it was an issue, but never did I realize how deep it truly goes nor how early on in life it begins to occur.
I have come to realize that we are raising our daughters to see themselves as prey. We are grooming them for destruction, for self destruction of sorts. And we don’t even mean to do it. We do it out of love. In it’s own twisted way. From day one we hear the jokes. Jokes about fathers sitting on the front porch with a shot gun, jokes about dear old dad killing the boys who hurt her, jokes about how she won’t be allowed to date until she is 30……
Why? Because she is fragile and delicate and weak and vulnerable. As all prey is. Because the world out there is filled with boys who will rape and harm and pillage and beat and drag her face first through the mud. So, she better be ware, avoid boys at all costs, look over her shoulder at night time, carry her keys like Wolverine claws clenched in between her knuckles, accept that her body is her reason for shame or ownership or defiance or sexual crime. It is how she carries it, how she clothes it, how she presents it, like an offering to those bloodthirsty, one-minded boys. The curves she will have, the shape, the rise and fall of her flesh and bone and muscle and sinew can ultimately result in her being harassed, accepted, rejected, hit, hurt, shamed, undone, broken……The world is a hard hard place and thank God for fathers who protect daughters.
THIS is what we teach our girls from a young age. Keep your legs crossed. Don’t say vagina. Be discreet. Be a lady. Keep your shirts cut high and your dresses cut low. There are consequences for how you present yourself to the world and if you don’t follow the rules you WILL be raped. You WILL be molested.
Ladies…..raise your hand if you have ever had a man touch you in an unwanted way. If you have ever been forced into a sex act. If you have ever been molested or raped. Statistics show us about 1 out of 5 women are raped. That’s 1.3 MILLION women raped in America each year. So, it DOES happen. But what I am wondering is…how much of it is the direct result of how we are raising our sons to be predators and our daughters to be prey?
I have 6 sons. And not once have I ever thought to tell them not to dress a certain way to avoid being a sexual object. Not once have I worried about protecting them, besides the typical “No one touches your privates and if they do you tell me or a trusted grown up” talk. That was it. Cut and dry. Simple. Why? Why is it we do not have to protect our sons from potential assault?
Because it is a cycle. We were taught it ourselves as children. That boys are stronger, faster, tougher. Boys don’t cry. Don’t show emotion too much. Boys are bricks and mortar, dirt and stone.
Girls though….girls are slower, weaker, dainty, submissive. They are rose petals to boys thorns. And they are targets. Potential victims. Prey.
And we grew up with that thought process in our minds. I know I did. Don’t drink too much at the party. Keep your drink covered. Don’t wear that skirt. Those shoes. That shirt. Your makeup like that. Don’t live there. Don’t work there. Don’t walk there. Don’t be in the parking lot after dark. Carry mace. This mini alarm.Pepper spray. Your cell phone. A knife. A gun. Keep your head down. Walk fast. Don’t flirt. Don’t send those signals. If rape happens, let it. Don’t fight back. It could be worse. Let it happen so you can at least get away with your life when it is over. Take that self defense class. Learn how to throw a punch. Aim for his crotch. His eyes. His throat. Be prepared.
Boys. What do we teach our boys on the subject?
Wear a condom.
Maybe we throw something in there about being a gentleman. Maybe we don’t. Basically, for a lot of guys the only message they got on their expected role is “protect your junk.” Beyond that, what do we have for them A million movies, shows, songs and true stories about men just like them raping women. We set them up. Not that it is an excuse or makes it okay. But I for one think that if I was raised my whole life seeing a stereotype that men were compassionate and kind and women were hard bitter bitches…if I saw women portrayed as bitches all over the place all of my life….I might just become a bitch. Because of the example set before me.
So, how about this for a radical idea? How about we start with our children to end this problem? How about instead of jokes about shooting potential mates, we talk to our daughters about what sort of traits are valueable in a mate? We tell her about men with integrity and honor and respect.(How about instead of fathers going out to buy a gun they instead show their daughters what kind of men to allow into their lives by their OWN example. Show the girls what a real man is, Dads. Show her by how you act, how you work hard, how you respect women, how you treat her mother.) We teach her that her body is a marvel, a thing of epic wonder and beauty. That she is a mother fucking warrior princess. That her body is not a target , but is instead a tool to use for anything she wants. To go running, to dance, to paint, to fight, to bear children, to climb mountains. It is not an object to be potentially defiled. It is HERS. To claim. Tell her to dress in what makes her comfortable. The length of a skirt or how much cleavage genetics has predisposed to her in no way ought to make her a target for a crime. She is not a statistic. She is a spirit, a soul, a heart, a woman-in-the-making. If I dress my baby daughter in a 2 piece swimsuit just because it is so frickin adorable with it’s ruffles on the bum and the sweet pink color that makes her eye color pop, I should not have to concern myself with the fact that I may possibly be showing too much of her innocent skin to some pervert.
I’m not saying let your daughters dress like tiny prostitutes in training. I’m saying, don’t emulate THAT image any more than you should emulate the fact she is going to be hurt/used/shamed/raped at some point in her life. Break both cycles. Teach your daughters to be strong and independent and classy and have self respect and self pride and integrity. A woman who holds her head high and knows she is beautiful not only because her hair is shiny that day or the shirt is brand new and accentuates her curves in a sexy way without being slutty, but also because she has brains and brilliance and creativity and passions.
And our sons…..stop telling our son that they are predators. Teach them instead about holding open doors, about asking permission before kissing a girl. Tell them about no means no. About waiting. About respect and honor. Teach them that every girl is someones daughter/sister/niece. Teach them that women are not objects. Teach them that porn sets ridiculous expectations and standards up and that real sex, the healthy kind, is sometimes a bit awkward and sloppy and silly and fun and wonderful. Teach them that strength is not just a physical thing. Strength is in accepting the word no even when you really really wanted to hear a yes. Strength is in looking for a girl with morals and grace class when all his friends are just going for the kill, so to speak. Strength is covering that passed-out drunk girl with a blanket and leaving her to sleep it off. Strength is being a man. A true man.
Too many times we as parents allow thoughtless words to pour from our mouths not realizing the standards we are setting into place for our children and their futures. Maybe we simply need to be a little more mindful of our words. Little ears are listening.

The Meaning Of Life Is Love

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brandonteena
This is a photo of Brandon Teena. Brandon Teena was a 21 year old transsexual who was murdered by his two rapists so that he could not testify against them. He was raped by two young men who were “friends” of his until the day they discovered Brandon Teena had actually been born a female. His murder was violent. In 1993, when I was only 13 years old, he breathed his last breath. I cannot personally wrap my head around the kind of evil and hatred it takes within a person to commit such an atrocious act as to end the life of a person who has done nothing to harm you, when your only defense is “I don’t like what kind of genitals they have in their pants nor what they use them for.” What makes me cringe even more is the fact so many folks who commit these crimes do so in the name of God.MY God. The same God who calls Himself LOVE. There is no room for hate in the midst of love. You cannot harbor both simultaneously. And yet, so many folks take the bible and twist it’s context. They rally out with “sanctity of marriage” and “God created marriage between a man and a woman.” All ignorant statements considering The oldest historical record dictates marriage laws dating back to the Mesopotamians. These laws are to be found in the tablet called Codex Hammurabi (code of Hammurabi). Long before Christianity ever even came in to existence. Sanctity of marriage? Really? In an age where divorce is so easy and commonplace? Where porn and prostitutes and strip clubs and affairs are all so “normal” we aren’t even shocked any more to hear the stories? We call THIS sanctity? What is sacred about that?
I am a christian. I love my God. He is my heavenly Daddy. I love him with my whole heart. Many of you know at least portions of the old testament. Those in opposition to the GLBT (gay-lesbian-bisexual-transsexual) community sure seem to know the handy parts that seem to condemn homosexuals. I won’t get in to the entire issue of it here. That would make this blog a LOT longer than I want it to be. If you are interested in delving deeper into the specifics of the biblical standpoint of it all, check out THIS link. http://www.gaychristian.net/justins_view.php
I can simply tell you I have questioned, prayed, studied my bible and come to peace with my own personal stance on the subject. Mainly because in the bible, I keep coming back to Corinthians 13. Verses 1-13. You all know it. You’ve read it or heard it read. The love verses. It gives a pretty clear example of what love is defined as being.(patient, kind, holds no grudges, etc) And then in Luke 10:27 you see how Jesus basically wipes away all of the laws and rules and stipulations and breaks it down into pretty basic terms. “Look,” he says “Love your neighbor (ie: all of humanity) the same way you love yourself. And love God with all of yourself.”
Easy peasy. We can get that pretty easily, right? Especially because in Corinthians 13 it spells it out for us, gives us a real clear definition of what love truly is.
Then there are those helpful little verses about not judging other people.
So, you learn to study your bible better and discover that those verses that seem to specifically condemn gay folks really do not apply to modern day homosexuals at ALL and have more to do with the evilness that came with idol worshippers, etc… You learn that the MOST IMPORTANT command is to love all people and love God. You learn what love is. And you learn not to judge.
That….THAT is what being a christian is truly all about.
I am a christian. But most days I am ashamed to admit it. Not because of the GOD that I believe in. No no no, Him…..HIM I LOVE . So much. I could shout my love for Him from the roof tops.
No, what I am ashamed of is my fellow man. Those folks who slap on that name tag that boldly proclaims: “Hello! My name is CHRISTIAN” and then they go around spouting hatred, ignorance, racism, bigotry, sexism…….They hold those signs at funerals so lofty, shouting out words that leave a nasty taste in the mouth of my God. He does not approve, does not support nor condone such atrocities. Because He CAN’T. He is simply LOVE.
In Andrea Gibson’s poem “Ashes” which speaks of the crime of burning gays to death 9which happens more often than you will ever realize) she says:
They can come a thousand times
with their burning match
and their gasoline
with their hungry laws
and their empty mouths
full of prayers
to that God that greeted me at his gates
with his throat full of trumpets
and his tears full of shame
as his trembling palms
collected the cinder of his children’s crime.

God loves. Every one. There is no room for intolerance in his love. No room for hate. If you believe otherwise, you don’t know my heavenly Daddy very well.
I am very outspoken about my beliefs. Anyone who knows me knows two things for certain. One, I love God. And two, I think that all people…..ALL PEOPLE should have the right to love anyone that they want to. I will not keep silent in the face of hatred spewed at the GLBT community. Because somewhere tonight is a teenager sliding that razor down their wrist because they are tired, so very weary of being tormented, mocked and ridiculed for simply being who they were born to be. Somewhere today a couple decides to eat at home again instead of going out for fear of being spit on or sneered at if they choose to hold hands. Somewhere a mother buries her child too soon, her child a victim of a hate crime. The bones of those who knew fear and pain and intolerance and condemnation as their final moments on this earth….all because of who they loved…..those bones cry out in my ears……DO NOT BE SILENT. To stand idly by would make me just as guilty as if I had thrown the first stone myself. I cannot.

This is my youngest son. He will be 2 in August. His name is Blaze.
dress2
Blaze saw a stack of dresses in my bedroom a few days ago that were set aside to be packed away until his little sister Lucy was old enough to wear them. He was VERY excited to try one on. My boy who normally wants to run around naked fell in love with a pretty pink dress. He wore it for a couple of hours, went outside to bounce on the trampoline while wearing it, had a grand old time twirling in it. He didn’t give a crap that that dress was “for girls”. All he knew was the damn thing was so comfy and fun to bounce and twirl in. When he slipped in a puddle and drenched the dress he sobbed when I had to remove the dress. We were on our way to the park so I laid him out a few outfits to pick from. He chose a polka-dotted dress instead of his spiderman shorts or baseball outfit. It was very colorful. He pointed at it excitedly and his face lit up once it was on him. I threw on his sneakers and off we went to the park. And he played that day in that dress and had a grand old time. Between his curls and the dress a few folks were not sure what gender he was. One mother asked me “How old is your little one?” I wasn’t sure if she was trying to find out by my response what gender he was or if she simply had enough class and tact to ask it that way because she knew it was rude to presume. I simply smiled and said “Almost two”, leaving out the “he’s” part. Because it really didn’t matter. I wasn’t focusing on his sexual organs. It was simply the child Blaze having fun and being silly and sweet at the park in the sunshine. I watched him playing that day and my heart prayed that he would always feel that content and comfortable in his own skin. That gloriously free and happy. Not ashamed. Not afraid. That no mater who he loves, he will know the wonderful beautiful awesome acceptance and grace of God.
I get to thinking sometimes about this world that I have brought my seven children into. How some days there seems to be so much rage and fury and hatred and blame and guilt and shame and shadows…..that it pulls a blanket of uncertainty over me and I silently pray that they just fit comfortably into the pegs of what society calls “normal” and “acceptable”. Because I don’t want them sneered at or mocked or spit on or punched or burned or buried all because of who their heart longs to love, who they long to be. I don’t wish the path of struggle when it comes to love on them for anything. I want them to only know the good stuff.
But if,….if they come to me one day, any one of them, and they tell me the person they want to grow old with happens to not fit that traditional mold of expectation from society….well, I’ll be right there, standing tall and proud by their side, pouring very ounce of my God-created, God-given love into them. I will stand firm there because at the end of the day what truly matters is love. It is what we each were designed and created for. You cannot condemn how or whom another person chooses to love simply because it isn’t exactly the same as how or whom YOU choose to love. That is not your place. Ever.
I am a christian. And I support love. And I support the right of ALL people….ALL PEOPLE to be who they were meant to be. Whatever their muscle and sinew, heart and flesh crave to be….whatever their soul already recognizes as true self……I support that. Because my children, my precious, precious children, deserve a world where it is safe to be who they are without fear of condemnation or death. They deserve a world of acceptance and wonder and passion and beauty and light and love…..and love…..and love……
And I will never keep silent in my defending every persons right for that world.

dress1