When life gives you lemons…

My most recent Sunday Funday was spent in the kitchen. I love cooking and I did enjoy spending Sunday this way but man my feet were killing me at the end of the day.  And that’s after standing on my special kitchen mats.

What do you do when you get an entire box of Meyer lemons?  You make lemon everything.  If you’re not familiar with Meyer lemons you’re missing out. 20150125_120141 (1)

The two lemons on the right are Meyer Lemons. See how they compare to the one on the left?  They’re brighter in color and feel plump in your hands.  And they taste amazing.

As much as I love lemon bars I couldn’t imagine making enough lemon bars to use all of the lemons in the box.   I hit the internet to come up with some ideas about how I could get as much as possible out of the lemons.   I was ready to do some preserving.

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First up was Lemon Curd.   If you love lemons you’ll love Lemon Curd.  Egg yolks, lemon, butter, and sugar.  So yummy!  You can use lemon curd in all kinds of things but I’m planning to use it as a filling for crepes.   I used this recipe and I highly recommend it.  It was really hard to not eat all the lemon curd but I persevered.

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Up next was preserving the lemons for future use.  Last weekend I  made Greek Chicken and all I could think about was how even more amazing it would have tasted if I had used Meyer lemons.   The most common way of preserving lemons is to salt them and use them in Mediterranean recipes.   I looked at a lot of different sites that offered instructions and suggestions.  I ended up using the directions on this site.

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Next up was a little concoction that my friend Oakmonster suggested as a treatment for colds and when you’re generally feeling crappy.  She suggested taking cut up lemons, putting them in a jar with some honey and letting it just all meld together in the fridge.  When you’re feeling all crappy with cold and flu just grab a mug of hot water and spoon some of this magical goodness into it.    I’ve always had some on hand since she suggested it to me and now I have a LOT on hand :)  So far we haven’t had any cold or flu bugs go around the house so I hope I didn’t jinx myself.

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After all of this, making some of these amazing lemon bars and saving a few lemons for use during the week I tried my hand at making Lemon jelly.

And I failed.  I followed all of the instructions to a T but it just never thickened the way it should have.   I ended up with a runny lemon honey mixture which I saved to use in tea.  Luckily we drink a lot of tea in our house.  :)

I’d like to try my hand at more canning and preserving.   Once we’re in Oregon I plan to grow as many vegetables and fruits as possible.  Canning and preserving is a great way to have access to what I’ve grown all year along.   Although the next time I spend a day doing this I’ll wear orthopedic shoes :)

 

 

 

Sugar Free is not for me

I lasted seven days on our 21 day sugar detox.

There were a few different reasons why I chose not to continue.  I was having a health related issue that popped up during the week.   I couldn’t figure out what exactly was causing it.   It wasn’t life threatening but enough of a problem to impact my daily life.

One of the reasons why I wanted to do the detox was because of my issues with food and my history with an eating disorder.   I was hoping that this detox would help me deal with some of these issues.  Unfortunately it did just the opposite.  It triggered every issue I had with food.   It was all I thought about.   My entire day was ruled by what I was going to eat.   I was controlled by my diet.

Most of my friends couldn’t wrap their heads around why I was doing it.  Some of my friends were very encouraging even going as far as messaging me their support (you know who you are, thank you :)

I spent a large part of Friday evening feeling as if I was a big failure.  I’ve gotten past that.   I think it was important to try the detox.  Even if it was only a week it helped me to kick processed foods out of my life (again).  I haven’t chewed gum. I haven’t had soda.   I haven’t even had a mocha.

I haven’t had alcohol in over a week.

K and I are still on the path to a healthier way of life.   We’re using My Fitness Pal religiously to keep us on track.  I am once again trying to enjoy running.   I have found it convenient to head down to the beach after work and use the path there.   It’s a great way to get my run in before it gets dark and you can’t beat the view.

 

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Next up is getting back to kickboxing.  I’ve been going sporadically over the past several months and recently I realized how much I dislike training at the UFC gym.  I haven’t enjoyed it in a while but I was hesitant to admit it.  I’ve paid in advance for my membership and I hate the thought of wasting money.  But it’s time to look at other options.  There are certain ways to train that I enjoy and currently I’m not experiencing any of those.

I think I’m still on the right path. I want to be HEALTHY and HAPPY.

Everything looks like a chocolate chip cookie

We are on Day 5 of the sugar detox.

I’m not going to lie.  This is hard.   Very hard.   Fatigue, headaches, and some irritability.  Yesterday I was planning on going to the store to buy coconut.  I called K on my way and I meant to say “I’m going to go buy coconut” and instead I said “I’m going to buy sugar.”  Freudian slip a little?

Today I just wanted to quit.   I felt miserable.  I had a tough day at work.  My head hurt and I had to cancel dinner plans.  And I had to sit down and remind myself about why I am doing this.  I know that at the end of 21 days I’m going to feel amazing.   And I know that even though I’ll have sugar back in my life, it won’t control me.  And I like knowing that.  I’m a little excited about that possibility.

So I’m going to persevere.  I’ve invested a lot of my time into this and I’m worth it.

But damn, I want a Pepsi.

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Day 3:

Breakfast:

Vanilla Bean N’oatmeal

Morning Snack:

5 cubes grass fed cheese/2 pieces pepperoni

Lunch:

Mixed green salad with whole milk mozz, artichoke hearts and creamy ranch dressing

Afternoon Snack:

1 Deviled Egg

Dinner:

Eggplant Lasagna

Dessert:

Nutty Cinnamon Crumb Cake

Day 4:

Breakfast:

Pumpkin Spice Smoothie – this will definitely not be a repeat recipe.  I didn’t care for this at all

Am Snack:

Pizza Flax Snacks

Lunch:

Butternut Squash Soup with toasted almonds

Dinner:

Leftover Cilantro Shrimp Stir Fry

Leftover Italian Sausage and Peppers

Day 5:

Breakfast:

Two eggs and three pieces of bacon

AM Snack:

Cheese curds and two slices prosciutto

Lunch:

Eggplant Lasagna

PM Snack:

1/2 cup whole milk cottage cheese

Dinner:

Two 10-minute sliders with romaine and tomato

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 2 (Make the voices in my head stop yelling)

Today is Day 2 of our Sugar Detox.  Whew.   We are definitely feeling fatigued and a little foggy headed.  I slept over eight hours last night which is rare for me.   I’m noticing that the fogginess is going away but I’m starting to feel irritable.  K was walking around the house singing and whistling as he is apt to do and I just wanted to yell at him and tell him to shut up.   Because of my hysterectomy K has never had to deal with PMS.  I figure that he is getting his fair share now, ha ha ha.

I was planning on making a breakfast and veggie egg thing in the crockpot but since I woke up late neither one of us wanted to wait two hours for breakfast.  I cooked some Applegate bacon, fried some eggs in ghee and added avocado just because it’s so yummy.

Sunday is my big meal prep day.   For several years I’ve been a meal planner.   I have found that it just helps simplify life and it keeps my grocery costs down.   I normally do my planning every two weeks but for the purpose of the Sugar Detox I am doing one week at a time.   About a month ago I started making the majority of our weekday meals (and lunches) on Sundays.   It takes a big chunk out of my day but really helps free up my time on weeknights.  Plus I had noticed that since becoming an empty nester it was harder to make meals for just the two of us during the week and we had started to eat out a lot.    It is easier to do meal prep in the winter because a lot of meals can be casseroles and soups that will also freeze if we’re unable to eat all of it.

Doing the 21 Day Sugar Detox I decided to keep up with our meal prep.   I’m not going to lie it’s a lot of work but it’s so worth it.  I try to make enough different things so that we have variety during the week.

I started with a couple of breakfasts and lunches.  For breakfasts I made the  banana vanilla bean n’oatmeal.  It smelled so good I wanted to eat it right then and there.    I also made salads for lunch.   Each salad is spring mix, Applegate pepperoni, and whole milk mozzarella.  After I put the salads together I had a flash of brilliance and added some artichoke hearts.

salad

 

The jars for the oatmeal were a little bigger than I needed so it doesn’t look like much of a breakfast but each jar is a serving.

I had an eggplant that needed to be cooked so I decided to make an eggplant lasagna.   I sliced the eggplant and roasted it in the oven with some olive oil and herbs.   I browned sausage and added marinara sauce then layered it with the eggplant and whole milk mozzarella in a casserole dish.  Baked at 350 degrees for 30 minutes and voila –

lasagna

 

I also had a butternut squash calling my name so I found this recipe online and made soup.  I did add about a tablespoon of creme fraiche to make it creamier.   I also made the Weeknight Chicken Soup.   Nom, Nom, Nom.

soup

 

For dinner I ventured out of my comfort zone and turned to cauliflower.  I don’t like cauliflower but K loves it and I was determined to give it another try.   I made the Cilantro Shrimp Stir Fry and served it with the garlic & green cauli-rice. And it was sooooo good.   I haven’t turned into a cauliflower lover but I’m definitely more open to trying other recipes.  I loved all of the vegetables in the stir fry.

 

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I’m so exhausted from all the prep but it’s so worth it.   I’m not finding that I’m craving sugar too much although I would seriously kill for a soda.

What I ate today;

Breakfast – two eggs fried in ghee, two pieces of Applegate bacon, 1/2 avocado.

Snack – 1.5 deviled eggs with bacon

Lunch – 2 leftover sliders with romaine and creamy ranch dressing.

Dinner -cilantro shrimp stir fry with garlic and green onion cauli-rice

Dessert -Nutty Cinnamon Crumb Cake

Unless otherwise specified all recipes are out of The 21 Day Sugar Detox Cookbook.

Day 1

Today is Day 1 of our sugar detox.  We’ve spent the better part of the week making sure we had all the groceries and pantry items we needed.   It wasn’t an inexpensive endeavor however we’ll get a lot of meals out of the stuff we’ve purchased so we’re not sweating it too much.

Recently a Wholesome Choice opened up in our neighborhood.  I had shopped at the one in Irvine a few times and fell in love with it.   They had a great choice of ethnic and international foods.   The one by us not only has the same kind of choices but also offers a plethora of organic items. I was easily able to find a lot of the things that I needed for our sugar detox and at reasonable prices.

For breakfast we had fried eggs (two for me and three for K) with flank steak cooked in coconut oil.  I added a leaf of romaine for color plus I like the different textures in my meals.

breakfast

 

Between breakfast and lunch we started to get a little hungry so I fixed a quick snack with grass-fed sharp cheddar cubes and a couple of slices of Applegate turkey.   (I am doing full diary for the 21DSD-cheese and yogurt).

I had planned to do sliders from the 21DSD cookbook for lunch.  I doubled the recipe so that we could have them during the week for lunches.   The recipe in the book recommended pairing the sliders with a creamy ranch dressing (recipe in book).   At Wholesome Choice I was able to find a completely organic mayo that meets the 21DSD guidelines.  I used this to make the ranch dressing and I liked the way it came out.  It was a little thin but still delicious.

We used romaine lettuce as our “buns” and I served the sliders with red onions and tomatoes.   So delicious!!

Sliders

 

For dinner I made the Italian Sausage and Peppers from the 21DSD book.   The book recommends serving it with parsnip mash but I had found this coconut butter at the grocery store and I’ve been eager to use it so I opted to serve it over zoodles (zucchini noodles).

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Dinner was just as amazing as everything else.   The recipes call for a lot of spices which is my preferred way of cooking.  The flavors are what really make the difference.

sausage

 

Last, but not least, I had been craving a “treat” all day so once again I turned the 21DSD cookbook for help. The Nutty Cinnamon Crumb Cake was my first choice.   My house smelled so good while it was baking.

dessert

 

I enjoyed a piece while I drank my vanilla chamomile tea and caught up on Agent Carter.

Overall I feel okay.  There were some periods of light-headedness which I assume is a result of the detoxing from sugar.   I am definitely more tired than normal but it’s not to the point that I can’t function.   We did notice that we really needed to pay attention to portion control.  It was easy to eat more than the recommended servings so that is something we really need to watch.

Bring on Day 2!

Diet is not a bad word

I’ve been following Diane Sanfilippo on Instagram for awhile now.   You may or may not know her as the author of Practical Paleo.   In the past several weeks she’s been posting a lot about the 21 Day Sugar Detox (21DSD).   At first I dismissed it, the thought of giving up sugar for 30 days didn’t appeal to me at all.  Besides, sugar wasn’t an issue for me.  Right?

Sure, I’ve gained some weight in the past two years but that’s just because I haven’t been working out as much.  Okay, maybe I eat a little too much.  I just need to rein it in.

Then the holidays hit.  Cookies.  Cakes.  Breads.  Mashed Potatoes.  Stuffing.  So much good stuff and then I felt miserable.  Bloating and constipation to the point that it hurt to move.   I knew my diet was the culprit.   In the summer of 2014 we tried Paleo for two months and giving up gluten had helped end a lot of the stomach issues I had been dealing with for months.  And now they were back with a vengeance.   So I thought I would give the 21DSD a second glance.

I discussed it with K, who takes no shame in admitting he has a huge weakness for sugar, and he was game to give it a shot.  I figured that it would do my body good to detox from all the crap I had been ingesting.

But the more I started reading about it, the more it made sense to take it more seriously.   What we put in our bodies matters.   The way I feel after eating sugary sweets and carbs just plain sucks.  It’s painful enough to impact my daily life.  And the way it makes me feel emotionally isn’t a picnic either.   I realized that I also have a huge weakness for sugar.   I find myself during the course of a regular work day looking around the office for candy or other sweets that I could snack in.  Often when I get up in the morning my first thought is about what sweet thing I could have for breakfast.

This made me really start thinking about my relationship with food.   It’s been a love/hate relationship for many years.  I love food.  I love cooking.  I consider myself a foodie.  I don’t see food as just nourishment but as something to really enjoy and savor.  Ironically this is what helps me to pass on fast food a lot.  To me fast food just isn’t tasteful enough to really enjoy and I don’t see the point in eating something that I don’t enjoy.

Many people don’t know that I have struggled in the past with an eating disorder.  In the early 90s I was diagnosed as a compulsive eater and I received treatment for the disorder.   Like bulimia a compulsive eater binges, but there’s no purging.   Food, for me, was an addiction.   I was ashamed and hid my eating.  I’d binge on an entire package of Oreos while in the bath.   Like an alcoholic I had food hidden everywhere throughout the house.

Recently I’ve found myself repeating some of those behaviors.   Finding shame in my eating.   Not wanting others to see what I buy or order.   At the risk of stating the obvious, this is not healthy behavior.

The final epiphany came while watching the documentary “Fed Up.”  I was already familiar with how our bodies treats and handles the food we eat but this really opened my eyes to a lot of things I didn’t know.   Especially how “low fat” and “fat free” foods are often just as bad as their regular counterparts.

The following statistic is provided by UCSF

 

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Knowing this I really started looking at the 21DSD as a start to creating a better relationship with food and creating a better me.   I know many people roll their eyes and shake their heads when they hear the words “gluten-free lifestyle” or “Paleo Diet.”  I’ve had people mock me for wanting to try a fad diet.

 

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I truly don’t understand why others have such an issue with it.  It doesn’t impact them.  I don’t expect others to modify what they do to accommodate me.  And if it helps me to feel better and it doesn’t hurt anyone, then why does it matter?  And most importantly can we stop making the word “diet” a bad word?

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary the first definition of diet is “food and drink regularly provided or consumed” followed by “habitual nourishment.”   Everyone has a diet.   Your diet is what you eat and drink.

The official kick off for 21DSD was Monday, January 5th.  There are additional kick offs that occur during the year and you can find more info about it here or just Google 21DSD.   I had a birthday happy hour scheduled this week and a concert with K Friday night so starting on Monday just didn’t seem realistic to me so our official start date is 1/10.

I’m a little concerned about dealing with the effects of withdrawal but I am an already a habitual water drinker so I’m hoping that gets me through a lot of it.   If nothing else I’m hoping it helps heal of the damage that my relationship with food has sustained over the past few years.   Hands down the hardest part will be giving up alcohol.  Craft beer and wine is a huge love for K and me.   We’re not divorcing these things, just taking a short break.

I’ll be blogging about it a lot and posting pictures and links (whenever possible) to recipes I try.

I’m not sure what I’ll do after the 21 days is over.  As of right now I don’t think that I will live 24/7 with a sugar-free lifestyle.  At the least I’d like to go back to an 80/20 type of thing (80 being paleo).   After doing the Paleo diet we were able to stay off of processed foods for quite a while and pretty much only ate non-Paleo if we were dining out.   I do plan on getting rid of all the processed food we have in the house and I’d like to avoid going back to that as much as possible.   My take is to be bit of a blank slate with all of this and see how I feel after 21 days.

Wish me luck!

New Year, New Me?

In the past I’ve refrained from making resolutions.   I suppose I always felt that if I did I was setting myself up to fail. Or probably more likely I didn’t want to be like everyone else.

But people change :)   This year I was feeling inclined to make some resolutions and after reading my friend Oakmonster’s post I was inspired to put pen to paper.  No, really, I wrote this all on paper before I typed it.

Last year I blogged about choices.  My goal for 2014 was to make better choices.   Let’s review how I did:

1.   Spend my time and energy on things that bring positive energy.  I’ll give myself a C on this.  I did quit watching Reality TV and I spent less energy on people who are toxic or don’t value me.  But there’s always room for improvement.

2.  To be more financially responsible.   I’m giving myself a B.   I improved a lot but I’m still struggling in some areas.   I see a light at the end of the tunnel and that’s a huge thing.

3.   To spend more time on things I enjoy.  I’m giving myself an A.  I let a job that required long days and a horrible commute.   I took a job at a place I love and have a schedule and commute that doesn’t stress me out.  I make a lot less money and I’m okay with that.

4.  Invest more time in my relationship.  Another A.  We did not make it to Disneyland once a month but Sunday Fundays became a regular routine.

5.  To spend more time here (blogging). I pretty much failed at this.

 

So here goes 2015, in no particular order.

1.  MOVE TO OREGON.  In case you’ve been hiding under a rock I have been planning on leaving my home state of California for a few years now.   2015 is the year.   July is the plan.

2.  Check of the items on my So Cal bucket list.  I made a list of things I want to do before we leave the state.

3.  Continue to clean up my finances.  I’d like to have as minimal debt as possible before moving and I’d like to have a nice big savings account in place.

4.   Lose Weight.  Well of course, isn’t this on everyone’s list?   Seriously I’ve let myself go.   Besides the health issues losing some weight will work wonders for my sciatica and lately it’s been pretty bad.   Not to mention we’re trying for another go at climbing Half Dome.  I didn’t make it all the way last time because of my sciatica and I’m determined to not let that happen again.

5.  Spend quality time with quality friends.  Damn I’m going to miss my friends when we leave.

6. Get rid of stuff.   We got rid of a lot of stuff before moving into K’s house.  I’m determined to continue that trend before the move.   I’m open to having to buy all new furniture in Oregon if necessary.

7.   Participate in the 21 day sugar free detox.  The actual kick off day is 1/5 however K and I are planning to start ours on 1/10/2015.  Three weeks.  No sugar.

8.  Take more weekend trips.

9.  Finish my sleeve (tattoo).

10. Spend more time at my crafting table.   I’ve been really wanting a chance to sit down at this table and finish some projects.

I don’t think ten items is too overwhelming or impossible to achieve.   I’m excited about 2015 and all of the awesome possibilities ahead!

I never liked reading the same book twice anyway

Some of my good friends are aware of the following fact:

I am still married to my husband.

We haven’t lived together in almost two years and we live completely separate lives.  A lot of people have different opinions about this and trust me I’ve heard them all.  The reality is that the only people that require and deserve an explanation are myself, my husband, and my boyfriend.   Other than that I could care less about what people think.

The inability to end my marriage stems from a lot of things but mostly it stems from my needing to know that my marriage was really over.   I am sure that to many people on the outside it would appear as if I’ve answered that question if I am in another relationship.  Feelings, however, are not as cut and dried like that.

Last month I went to visit my husband.  It was the first time we’ve seen each other since November 2012.   I had no idea what to expect and I was so nervous which seems funny to me now.  My husband was my best friend before and during our marriage and we were able to slip into those roles quite easily once we saw each other.   The rest of the weekend was nice.  We watched television, laughed, talked, and caught up on each other’s lives.  He showed me around his island home and it was quite obvious that we was happy there.  And it was more than obvious that I didn’t belong there at all.

And if you think that didn’t break my heart completely, you would be wrong.   I had never properly mourned the end of my marriage and I only started to do so last month.  I wish I could say that I came back home feeling peace about our decision, but I didn’t.  I came home feeling completely broken.   And even though my head could see all the reasons why we had made the right decision, my heart just could not come to terms with it.

It’s been a month since my visit and the hurt is slowly abating.   I suppose a lot of people when dealing with this kind of heartache would quit sharing their heart at all. But what I’ve learned is that by letting go I am learning to open my heart even more.  I didn’t realize how much of my heart I was holding back from K until I started letting go.

I read this today and then I read it again, and again, and again.

“You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.” ~Unknown

I assumed that at the end of the weekend I would magically feel that door close.  But closure isn’t going to happen like that for me.   I’m not sure when or if it will completely happen and I’m strangely okay with that.   It would have been so much easier if my marriage ended because we don’t love each other any longer.  But we do.  And for that I’m thankful.

The papers are drawn up, minus a few finishing touches and I’ll be filing for divorce.   It’s time.   And even though so many people had different opinions and thought on how I was handling things, I needed to do what was right for me.  On my timetable.

As a final thought I need to acknowledge my boyfriend’s willingness to let me work this out the way I needed to.   He loves me enough to be willing to let me go and that’s a pretty rare kind of love.

I don’t know what the next chapter of my life is going to bring, but it’s time to turn the page.

 

 

Ten months and counting……

If you’re a friend of mine on Facebook then you know that I am planning on moving out of state.  My goal is be gone by July 2015.   I’m a native Californian and if you had told me a few years ago I’d seriously contemplate moving to Oregon I would have said you were crazy.  But here I am with an Oregon move in my future.

As my time in California ticks down I’ve been working on a bucket list of sorts of things I want to do and see; restaurants I want to eat at; hikes I want to take, etc.

It’s a growing list and I hope I don’t run out of time before the move.  Some things might seem silly or weird but it’s my list and makes sense to me.

Eats

Cream Pan Bakery

Inn of the Seventh Ray

Grand Central Market

Day Trip

Little Tokyo

Exhibit of Hollywood Exhibits

La Brea Tar Pits

The Arboretum

LACMA

Franklin Canyon Park 

Universal Studios

Murphy Ranch Trail 

Greystone Mansion

Free Museum Days

Huntington Library and Tea Room

Weekend Away

San Diego (with bikes)

Big Bear

Grand Californian – Yes, I know it’s a few miles away but I’ve always wanted to stay there.

San Francisco

Vegas

Catalina

 

Entertainment

USC Thornton School of Music Concert

Looking back I guess I should call this a Southern California Bucket List, ha ha.

That’s all I’ve got so far but I’m constantly coming up with new things.    So tell me fellow Californians what are your suggestions?

 

It’s not just about feminism…..

This is a post that has been brewing in my head awhile now.  It’s pretty much come to a head today when this made the headlines.

I can see you now. You’re rolling your eyes and thinking ‘great, another one of those posts.’  I know.  I often feel the same way.   I try hard to avoid political or hot topic posts on social media.   My ex (who is in reality not legally yet my ex but it’s just easier to refer to him that way) spends an extraordinary amount of time posting about political and hot button issues.  I grew to resent it, a lot, and I think as a result I shy away from it.  But indulge me for a little bit because what I need to say isn’t just about the news today.  It’s about some things I’ve been thinking about for a long time.

Ironically it was a situation with my ex that stirred the pot.  In an acknowledgment of our friendship and the spirit of moving forward we once again friended each other on FB.   We comment on each other’s posts.  It’s all very mature and forward thinking and then I noticed some of the other comments.  Comments by women that I knew weren’t his friends before.   One, two, three, no FOUR women on his friend’s list we’re all women that I knew.  These were women that a)had been guests in our home, b)had only met my ex because of their association with me, c)did not have a relationship with my ex outside of our association, and d)had at one time been good or close friends of mine.

And just in case you weren’t aware, divorce and/or the ending of a relationship is a very painful experience.   And during this painful time these women didn’t contact me.  They didn’t reach out to see how I was doing.   They friended my ex.

What does this have to do with nude photos of celebrities?  Bear with me people, I’m getting there.

Women, sisters, daughters, nieces – WE ARE IN TROUBLE.

We live in a world where everyone expects us to have personal responsibility for the actions of others.   And I worry that so many people don’t see what’s wrong with this.

As a female I learned early about this general attitude towards women.  I learned at the age of 16 that if I was going to go in the walk in freezer by myself at work I should expect the manager to follow me  and grope me.  I learned at the age of 17 that if I go to an adult that hold a position of authority and respect and I tell that adult that I’ve been abused for the better half of a year by my boyfriend that I will be told I just need to learn to not say and do things that make my boyfriend upset.   In my early 30s I complained about a man who wouldn’t leave me alone at a bar and I was told that apparently I say something different with my eyes.  I don’t even know what that means.

Today I’m learning that even though someone stole these pictures of Jennifer Lawrence apparently a vast majority of the population think’s it is her fault for having them.  God forbid we hold the criminals responsible.  She shouldn’t have had them in the first place.

You know what’s wrong with that?

If she hadn’t been dressed like that, she wouldn’t have been raped.  If she didn’t act that way, men would leave her alone.

That’s a dangerous road to take.

At the age of 46 I’m still learning.  And one of the things I’m learning the hard way is that until we, as women, quit trying to destroy each other, then these things will never change.   We’re so quick to tear each other down, body shame, humiliate, etc, etc.  Am I the only person that sees what’s wrong with this picture?

How can we expect men to respect us when we can’t even respect each other?   But, wait, you ask?  She can’t be talking about me.  I’m not part of the problem.

I call bullshit.  We’re all part of the problem.

I’m as guilty as anyone else.  The other day I called someone I didn’t like a whore.  Not to her face, but that doesn’t make it okay.   I don’t like this woman.  And she does a lot to set women back, but that’s not the point.   I could just as easily say I don’t like her because she does x, y, z.  Calling her a whore isn’t necessary.

There is a website that shall remain nameless and up until recently I followed their page on FB.  And then I spent some time really looking at their posts and I realized that it was a website set up solely for the purpose of publicly shaming mothers for what they post on social media.  And while I don’t agree that a woman needs to be live tweet her birthing experience, none of us benefit from shaming each other this way.  But I watch women on this site post horrible mean things about other women.   And the site is ran by a woman.   I’ve given up trying to wrap my head around this.

As women we need to support each other.  That doesn’t always mean we agree with each other.   But hell, stand up for each other.   We can see when something is wrong.   We’re so damn quick to turn on each other.

Even during the #yesallwomen movement I saw it.   It was subtle but I saw women blaming other women.   I saw women telling mothers of boys that it was their responsiblity to teach their boys to respect women.    So as the mother of boys now it’s my fault women are disrespected?

And by the way I do believe that women should raise their sons to be respectful.  I also believe that men should raise their sons to be respectful.  And I believe that my sons should be able to live their lives without constantly being surrounded by pictures, advertisements, movies, music, etc that show women as a sexual objects.  We’re all responsible.

This week I read countless posts about this amazing nail polish designed by college students.  If a woman wears this nail polish when she goes out it can help her identify a drink spiked with a date rape drug.

DOES ANYONE NOT SEE WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS????   This is what we’ve come to.   Now we not only have to make sure we don’t wear anything provocative, we need to wear special nail polish.

But again I’ve strayed from what I really want to say.

We want equality.  We want respect.  We can’t even extend that courtesy to each other.   If we link arms, sister to sister, we have the power to create an impenetrable force.

Instead we’re too busy shaming each other so that we can feel better about ourselves.

It’s not about being feminists.

It’s about being good to each other first.

And if you have a few moments, read this post.   Because it says a lot of stuff that I want to say but lack the attention span or talent to do so.