Thursday, February 9, 2017

Millennial is not a bad word

Can you hear me now?  No, Please text it to me.
R U getting this? No? TTYL8R!

So recently and not so recently, I have seen a lot of complaining about “millennials.”  Hell, I have made some comments myself.  However, if you truly pay attention to them you may be surprised.  Sure, they spend all their time on their phones/laptops and sometimes conversations with them are less forthcoming and understandable than a Neanderthal, but they seriously have some fantastic morals and awareness that I know I did not have at their age.  For example, almost every one of my oldest’s millennial friends were extremely aware of the election as the platforms.  Even though most were not old enough to vote.  They had interpersonal debates, discussions and delved deep into public policy, women's rights, consumerism, and foreign policy.  

 They also have a true touch on the future of the planet.  You know the one WE are supposed to be protecting for them?  THEY may end up saving it for us! We call my kids the recycling nazi's because they will honestly chastise me if I put the wrong bottle in the wrong bin.  My son and daughter even compost in the summer!  

Another thing I have noticed about Millennials is that they genuinely love “people.”  By this, I mean they are open minded, forgiving and accepting.  Empathy is valued more than criticism.   I have witnessed open and honest conversations between teens that have deep tones of empathy for each other….yes, they are done via Snaps, Lines, MMS, etc and not face to face, but they are doing it.  And this isn’t just girls, it is the boys too.  The millennial young men I have known are not afraid to express themselves and their feelings.  They stand up for themselves and do not discount their or their friends’ feelings.  They not only accept individual differences, but truly seem to embrace and make efforts to understand the "why" of differences.  

Some may call them "liberals" in a snide or dismissive way.  Or say that they are unrealistic and romanticizing real life.  However, historically speaking, they said the same thing about flight, women's rights, and autonomous cars....
Millennials have a lot to say and a lot of it is awesome.  Maybe we should stop criticizing them and
start listening.  We may need to adapt to the new genres of communication and not expect them to go back to telephones with 5foot cords in the kitchen.  We may just learn something important.


Wednesday, February 1, 2017

That one time my kid yelled Cock in public....

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Don't let this cute face fool you
Today I am going with Minion 1 to a Chinese New Years celebration.  It is going to be great fun and educational and I am really looking forward to the event.  However, I can't help but recall when we went for a family dinner at our local favorite Chinese restaurant about 6 years ago.  

Princepessa was about 5 years old and just mastering the art of reading.  We all sit down and there are Chinese zodiac placemats on the table.  Which, as a parent with 3 small kids, are a good way to distract them from trying to stab each other with chopstick until food arrives.  We are all reading them and discussing the different characteristics associated with each sign.  Well, eventually we get to determining which animal is for each of us.

Audrey and I are both year of the Rooster.  However, this restaurant has a cock as the title.  Which in this day and age RARELY refers to the king of the hen house.  So, Princepessa sees this, and YELLS!  Mom, I have a Cock!  To which all the neighboring tables begin to giggle.  Which (as any parent will attest) only encouraged her.  I mean she is the 3rd child so attention was a bit thin for her....

She continues to read the dates and asks me which year I was born.  When she looks it up she yells, even louder now she has an audience....YOU have a cock too!  But yours must be bigger because you are so much older than me!!!

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I was literally torn between hiding under the table in embarrassment or to hide the laughing to keep from encouraging her more.  The poor waitress saw our distress and amusement and was giggling as well.  I could hear her telling the story back in the kitchen.  The owner of the restaurant came out and gave Princepessa a high five for her reading skills....and a free meal.

Which only encouraged her more....

For the next couple months every flying animal was a "cock."

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Look mom!  A red breasted cock!

And it kept on going....

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Cock Sauce

So, today as I attend this dinner my number one goal is to not laugh during any cock related zodiac stories.


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

I am a moderate, and that is OKAY!

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Hello Momginerdians,  

If you are like me, your Facebook is either filled with a bunch of political posts, or you have unfollowed every person you used to enjoy and are looking at cat videos, memes and recipes (I am the latter).  We all get it, you are upset/happy about the new POTUS.  It is the end of days/beginning of a new era.  And, frankly, I am about done with it all and am about social-mediaed out (shh, it's my blog, I can make up words).  

Am I happy about the current political state of this country?  Nope.  Have I lost all hope?  Nope.  And that's okay.  And what is even BETTER is I have as much RIGHT to this opinion as you do to yours.  I will guarantee you 1 thing:  Ranting, swearing, doing EXACTLY the same thing to men that you are against them doing to women will never ever change my mind.  

Image result for good negotiation skillsI am all for standing up for your beliefs, but I do also believe there is a way to present them that doesn't have to be filled with foul language and abusive context.  Another thing that will never change my mind, is celebrities.  Especially ones who have garnered their career over objectifying others (men, you are included here) or being overtly sexualized to make profits.  Back in the day there was this word for people who sold their bodies for profit.....It is escaping me now. ;-).  

Now before ranting about me being entitled/white/privileged, etc starts, I can assure you I am 1 of 3.  I worked for my education, I work at a job (historically dominated by men), and I have been harassed/abused/discounted.  But, I still do not blame a whole gender for this. I blame our culture which continually finds ways to divide us as humans.  Color, Race, Sexuality, Socioeconomic status, Gender, Body Shape, Address, Education, Career, the list goes on and on.  

A president isn't going to fix those.  Could he/she make it worse? Absolutely. Do you have to accept it?  Absolutely NOT.  But, being an ugly butt about it isn't helping your cause.  Do not present data as facts based on 3 second video clips, or quotes starting with "..."  those little dots mean that something totally different may have prefaced the comment. Remember: All things you see on the internet are not truth.  CHECK your facts before reposting, it saves me the time, lol.  

If we want change we have to be the change.  Be a motivation for my son and daughters, not someone I have to unfollow for fear my kids will see it, or change the channel because I am embarrassed by the rhetoric/vileness/crudeness. 

And if this post pisstified you, good.  Now you know how I feel when I can't even enjoy a good cat video without cringing as I scroll through my feed.  And, y'all know, Momginerd is no stranger to swearing.  But, sometimes a message comes across better if you don't lower yourself to the oppositions standards, especially when you are trying to influence change.  Then it just becomes a pissing match and, ladies, we are missing something that will could ever allow us to can win a pissing match.  

Oh, and if you are going to protest something, here is a friendly tip:  Check your spelling!  I will not judge you for your views, but I will judge your spelling.

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Momginerd the moderate not liking Trump or Hilary but really hating the division and ugliness being broadcast to me without my choice right now person. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

Do these memories make this meal taste better?

Hello Momginerdians (Yeah, I just made that shit up...Let's start our own nerd revolution)!

So, recently I joined a facebook group dedicated to using cast iron skillets.  What is so special about that, you ask?  Well, for me it is because they are the same pans that I received from my grandmother.

 As many of you know who have been following me for a while, my childhood was, well, pretty much sucktastic.  But, the best parts were going in the summer to visit my Mamaw and Auntie down in the mountains of Virginia.  This lonely only child, who many times had oatmeal alone for dinner since my dad was always working, would have 3 square home cooked meals a day and a bunch of cousins to play with.

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 I was FASCINATED by my mamaw and aunt's cooking.  I mean, my mamaw could make perfect biscuits by hand without a rolling pin or round mold.  She would just pinch her hands together and each and every biscuit was perfectly round, brown, flaky and her cast iron skillet.

We would make homemade jams and jellies, fried apple pies, fried chicken (yeah, you get the picture...yummy fried deliciousness), macaroni and cheese, corn bread, chicken and dumplings...the list goes on an on....all in her cast iron pans. The skillets were as much an extension of her arms as they were her cooking vessels.

In later years my beloved Mamaw developed Alzheimers disease and the days of being awakened byt he sound of iron pans banging together were past.  My aunts and dad had the sad task of closing her household when she was no longer able to live alone.  The kindly asked all the grandkids what (if anything) they would like from her home.  I immediately knew I wanted at least one of her skillets.  I was fortunate enough to end up with 5 of them!  Some of them were in perfect condition, and some I had to give some TLC to bring back from oxidation and lack of use.  But, all were much appreciated and wanted by me.

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Made in the antique skillet
My joining the cast iron cooking FB page encouraged me to post a picture of a meal I was preparing for my family.  A pretty simple meal for a busy work/school night.  Sauteed cabbage with bacon and onions.  I served it with smoked sausage, and the minions had rolls too.   It went cast iron viral!  Almost 400 likes/shares/comments.  The popularity of the post got me to talk to my kids about it and tell them about my memories of my mamaw and her cooking and how every single time I cook with these pans I think about her.  Just the smell of the pans heating up bring back memories of my time with her.

The kids seemed impressed and enjoyed the stories.  I felt like mom of the year for not only preparing a home-cooked meal, but instilling a little family history at the same time.

We went about our business of cleaning/homework/gaming/etc.  Until about an hour later I heard my pans being shuffled around in the kitchen.  I went to investigate, only to find my offspring inspecting all my pans and negotiating for who gets which pan......when I die.

Me:  Well I am still using them, you know.
Princepessa: Well, we are just being prepared, you know you are OLD mom!
Me:  You get the ugliest one.

What type of family heirlooms do you have that have surprising meaning to you?


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The road less traveled

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This year marks the last year my oldest will officially be still a "child."  She is now 17 and a senior (WHUCK!) in High School.  She will soon be making her final decisions about college and then will be off for her new adventure in life.  I wanted to make this Christmas about more than gifting.  So I got her (amongst other things) the necklace above.  But, I also had it wrapped in a letter.  I am re-posting the letter here (with her permission).

Dear Daughter,

For me this is a bittersweet Christmas.  It is, in fact, the very last Christmas before you are officially an adult.  This coming year is filled with many firsts for you.  You will be leaving home and in charge of your well being without having me or your dad here to catch or assist you daily.  You will make decisions that have a long term effect on your entire life.  It is stressful.  But don’t let stress guide you.  It is easy to pick the simple path of least resistance.  But what happens when that path is chosen?  You lead a simple life.  A simple life isn’t a negative in and of itself, but it is the life you want to lead?  You are adventurous, righteous, curious, and brave.  These are the characteristics of change makers, not path followers. 

My wish for you (besides figuring out how not to spill on your boobs) is for you to BE HAPPY.  To be happy you need to start figuring out what it is that will make you happy.  And not happy for now, but for the long term.  My task for you is to realistically look at where you imagine yourself say at my age, or even at 30.  Take some time to yourself and meditate on this. 

Think of these things:
1.    Will I be married?
2.    Will I have children?
3.    What do I like to do for fun?
4.    Do I work to live or is work my life?
5.    What makes me get up every single day and move forward even when I don’t want to?

Once you start figuring out these things, or even have some semblance of an idea about what you would answer for them, you will begin to understand what truly makes you motivated. 

For me, if YOU are happy, fulfilled and proud of yourself, then I will be too.  Whether you are an MD, PA, RN, JD, MS or any other myriad of letters you can accumulate after your name. 
I picked this necklace for you because not only is it a symbol for woman power, but because to me, it represents not limiting yourself.  The world is filled with glass ceilings, but you are strong enough to break any of them; even if your ultimate goal is to not be a career woman but a mom and partner.  

No matter your ultimate path, know that you can make your life as meaningful and fulfilling as you want and are willing to break ceilings to achieve.  I hope this necklace will be a reminder to never ever limit yourself based on outside expectations. 
I love you so much it hurts some days.  I feel blessed to be not only your mom, but to see how our relationship is maturing into a friendship. 

With more love than stars in the sky for you now and forever,