Monthly Archives: March 2009

Gypsy Banana Bread

                                                            

Kokopelli magik
Kokopelli magik

I really am not good at consistency. Not much in my life is consistant. If I had to name them, I could, on a very small list.

  • Breathing
  • Getting older
  • Being a mother
  • Eating and drinking something

That’s it. I never eat at the same time, I never wake up at the same time or walk the dog at the same time. I could go on and on but I would definitely bore you and me, klunk……………………….zzzzzzzzzzz. (The klunk was my head hitting the keyboard).

I was going to cook something everyday last week and post it. That never happened so let’s see if I can do it once a week.

Here’s my world famous Banana Bread. I took top trophy-I believe they call it first place- at the “IN MY HEAD” competition in La La Land.      side note, I really did live in a subdivision named La La Land. It was in the valley in St. John.

Banana Bread

  • 1/2 c butter
  • 1 c sugar(tubano)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 lg banana’s (very ripe)
  • 2T applesauce (optional)
  • 2c whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1/2 c chopped nuts
  • 1/2 c fine chopped dates

 

Cream butter and sugar. Mix eggs and mash banana. Mix dry ingredients and add to wet.  Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees in greased bunt pan

Hope you all enjoy this as much as we are right now, YUM.   It really is nice to eat something fresh made and not made in a factory……..who knows when?

Mothering instinct

Rodent or Dog?

                                                                          

a very cute rodent?
a very cute rodent?

Every human is so different, doesn’t matter who raises them, we can influence them but we do not define them.

 

My daughter loves animals, wants to be a vet. Every night she has her older-older brothers dog sleep with her in her bed until her older-older brother comes home, very late, and calls him out. It doesn’t matter that he hasn’t had a bath for over a month, she still wants him next to her.

Her older brother who grew up mostly outside on an island, says to me as he is shooing the dog away from smelling his backpack,

“I still can’t get use to the fact we have a dog living in our house, they seem like a type of rodent to me. I feel like we have some weird rodent living with us. Ewe!”

Oatmeal Cookies

This must be food week.

This is the second day in a row I felt a need to take a picture of something I made.

I hereby dedicate this week to food.

oatmeal cookie
oatmeal cookie

 

 

Ok, I did it again.

Yes I cooked. Well kinda.

I baked.

 Cooking feeds the body while baking nourishes the soul.

This type of psychology is why I will never loose even one pound.

I do ease my conscious by making it so it doesn’t totally clog the intestines.

Yum, that sounds food-ishly delicious. 

But seriously, there are little things you can tweak on a recipe that won’t do too much damage. I never buy white flour; I only buy whole-wheat pastry flour. Let me stress the pastry part because it is not as dense and heavy as whole wheat. I do not buy white sugar. I only buy crystallized brown sugar, it takes a little longer to dissolve in tea but the wait is worth not ingesting white poison. (Hey, that was harsh) Brown sugar has trace minerals from the cane. I never use margarine, as it is partially hydrogenated oil, Yuk. Smart butter or organic butter is best.

Here’s a healthier version of an oatmeal cookie.

 

  • 1c (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1-1/4c brown sugar-not the white kind with caramel coloring added to it
  • 2 eggs-free range, no antibiotic
  • 1-teaspoon vanilla
  • 1-1/2 c ww pastry flour
  • 1-teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 c old fashion oats-the kind that takes 5 min to cook but don’t cook
  • 1 c organic raisins

 

Heat oven to 350 degrees              bake about 13-16 min (golden brown)

Beat together butter and sugar until creamy.

Add eggs and vanilla; beat well

Add combined flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; mix well

Stir in oats and raisins; mix well.

Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet.

I replaced about ¼ c oatmeal with flax meal to increase the fiber, lignans (antioxidants) and omega-3.

yummy whole grain oatmeal cookie
yummy whole grain oatmeal cookie

Vampire Child

                                                                                

vampire teen
vampire teen

 

I seem to forget this basic parent lesson.

Most teenagers don’t really care about anyone but themselves.

They may listen to you here and there, but really they are just trying to put in the time to make sure when it is there turn that you will listen.

They may say, “How was your day” but they are really saying “ask me about my day”.

My three children and me were sitting around the living room/kitchen this morning while I was working on my computer. Something I wrote seemed fun to share so I said “Hey listen to this”.

My fourteen year old daughter smirks, “‘is it from your gypsychant or gypsychild or reggaechant or whatever blog.”

I said, “It’s from my reggaeyard blog.”

Then that same fourteen yr old vampire from hell child says, “What makes you think we want to hear it, we don’t care about what’s in them, do you see any of us reading your blogs? Nobody cares what you write in them.”

My seventeen year old son say’s “I do”, feeling awkwardly sorry for me.

“Do you look them up and read them?” says the blood-dripping vampire.

“Well no.”

“That’s what I mean!”  Licking her lips in glee.

My twenty four year old is looking on with a shocked smile. Meanwhile he has never opened one of my blogs either.

I get compliments all the time for being so honest with people; others hate me because of it. This is my payback for all those times I have pissed people off by saying what others wouldn’t dare. My daughter followed in my footsteps.

The part of me that wants to run and hide when things don’t work out right away wants to succumb to her.

“NO ONE CARES WHAT I WRITE ABOUT.”

Heroically (finally), the perseverance part of me throws holy water all about the house, then dresses up with my finest garlic necklace and silver cross while writing with a wooden stake.   

Just in case.

Stroller/Veggie Wrap

“I’m so hungry, who’s going to make me lunch, oh yeah…me, who else?”

These are my thoughts as I’m riding my bike for exercise to get rid of the middle age roll.

Did I just say roll?

I meant rollssssssss.

So what did a good mother like me make?

A Stroller.

A what?

You call it a veggie wrap, I call it a Stroller. This is the name I know it as from the days when Luscious Licks was alive and well in St John. The owner, Bonnie Corbeil, turned the whole island into Stroller freaks. 

Here’s my version, today anyway.

 

  • Flour tortilla shell.
  • Humus-spread about ¼” across two-thirds of shell
  • Shredded cheese, any kind you like
  • Shredded carrots, lots then more
  • Sprouts-of course I made my own…no really (I have way too much time on my hands)
  • Optional: anything that fits (suggestions, red peppers, scallions)
  • Fold in thirds and most important……….EAT!!!

                                                                                              

stroller
stroller

Healing the family through touch (massage)

This post was taken from my other blog-gypsychant.com


One afternoon when I was giving my 17 year old son a back massage, he said to me “I bet not many others in my school are being massaged by there mom right now” then he paused and said, “ I am sure no one is being massaged by their parent” then he thought about this for a moment and concluded with, “That’s to bad.”

As a side note: I do have to say this massage thing is not a daily event. He does have to plead and beg a bit. But generally speaking I do massage him about once every two weeks. These are not full body massages. It depends on how generous I am feeling at that moment. Some days it is a foot massage, some days it is a foot massage with lotion, some days it will be a back massage while he is sitting on his chair at his desk and very rarely a full body massage. I have graced all four of my children with this gift; this gift for them and for me. I really feel it brings me closer to them.

Parents don’t touch their children enough; they send them off in the morning and in the evening they are doing dinner and clean up and getting ready for the next day. This disconnect is having a strong effect on the family unit, trust me when I say it is not a positive effect. There are many ways to keep the family unit healthy. Massage is one of them.

I feel the disconnect starts at birth and carries on unintentionally throughout a child’s life. The list is great in the infant category. I could write a whole book on this but don’t need to because many before me have already done just that. I will only speak of one pet peeve. Ever since car seats became mandatory there has been a giant upswing in babies being carried in plastic seat almost everywhere. Have you seen the car seats that turn into seats you can carry with you? I cringe when I see that, I want to pick up the baby and hold it next to my heart. I love car seats, don’t get me wrong, but we have overdone it. The car seat was started to protect the child, the misuse is actually hurting the child. A child needs touch, a lot of touch. Their little bodies are designed to be touched almost constantly until they reach the crawling stage; even then they are meant to be carried often. We use to carry them everywhere we went; now we have strollers and car seats.

There are many books, videos and even classes that teach infant massage. Infant massage is great but I think it should not stop when they reach past the toddler stage. I believe it is important throughout life, especially in the pre-teen and teen years. If you start from a young age, being massaged is natural to them when they are older, but does this mean you cannot start in the teen years because you missed the boat. The answer is a giant no. Start out small, ask your teen if there feet hurt, tell them you would be happy to massage their feet. If they say ‘no, its ok’, then let them know again that you think it would help relax them and you really would like to see how it works for them. You could even say you want a little practice. What you will find is that massage helps the parent bridge the gap to communication. A child will open up when feeling safe in your care.

Parents are tired. I know how tired it can all get. The last thing you think you want to do is put more energy out after a full day. If anything you want someone to put energy into you-someone to massage you. Here’s the thing: once you set up the space (a yoga mat, a few pillows and your set) every one gets a little quieter, a little softer. You talk softer, or not at all. Let the child decide. Parents should start to pay attention to the child’s breath. If you are giving a back massage you should notice the breath moving the back up and down. How tight or loose is the movement? It is an indication of the child letting tension out of their body. So the parent breathes and the child breathes. Everything slows down. Things that are bottled up can gently release. Now hears the catch. You thought you were too tired to massage the child but suddenly you feel calmer yourself and more energized. You are exchanging touch yourself. So not only does it benefit the child but also it benefits you. Loving your child makes you feel better, more satisfied that you did what you set out to do when you first had a child-love them. That’s really all you thought about when you reflected on the child before it was born. You thought about loving them. Not all the other busy things that came along. So go back to that original thought and love your child. Love them in this very moment. See how much better that feels. You had a quiet moment with your child, even if you talked; it had a rhythm to it. It had a release from the breath and a release of emotions for both of you. For your child it was a release of all the muscle strain from having to sit in awkward seats, carrying backpacks, sports, and the list goes on.

So the mother (or father) thought she did not have the energy for this but now she is more energized. You have temporary peace in the home and a happy child, which is our goal for this society. Ahh!! This is the ‘breath releasing’ sort of ahh.

One more thing, your intention is important. Think positive thoughts and if you can’t be positive because your day was just too stressful then think no thoughts. Just think about the breath. This is important. Let the child talk without them being judged. This is not a time to be judgmental, not a time to fix the problem, just a time to listen. Give them that time. Let them know you hear them. Exchange words; just exchange caring words.

Our society needs this. It may not cure everything but it may cure something. That’s just it; it may cure something. A broken heart, a sore body, circulation in the body, loneliness, depression, anxiety, stress. These are big ills in our society. The time to start this is now. We no longer can wait. As harmful as global warming is for the earth, the opposite, body warming, is helpful to our souls.

poem by Dalai Lama, I think

 This poem is good to think about but certainly does not describe everyone.

Dalai Lama
Dalai Lama

The Paradox of Our Age

by The Dalai Lama

 

We have bigger houses but smaller families;

More conveniences, but less time;

We have more degrees, but less sense;

More knowledge, but less judgment;

More experts, but more problems;

More medicines, but less healthiness;

We’ve been all the way to the moon and back,

but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We build more computers to hold more information to

produce more copies than ever but have less communication.

We have become long on quantity,

but short on quality.

These are times of fast foods but slow digestion;

Tall man but short character;

Steep profits but shallow relationships.

It’s a time when there is much in the window,

but nothing in the room.

The big question is did he really write this? When researching it on the web I found this below, so let me know what you know or think or find out.

 

By Dr. Bob Moorehead, former pastor of Seattle’s Overlake Christian Church

These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one- night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer to quiet to kill. It is a time where there is much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom.

We have taller buildings, but shorter tempers; wider freeways but narrower viewpoints; we spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.
We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time; we have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge, but less judgment; more experts, but more problems; more medicine, but less wellness.

Indeed it’s all true.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry too quickly, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too seldom, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and lie too often. We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life; we’ve added years to life, not life to years. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We’ve conquered outer space, but not inner space; we’ve done larger things, but not better things; we’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul; we’ve split the atom, but not our prejudice; we write more, but learn less; plan more, but accomplish less; we’ve learned to rush, but not to wait; we have higher incomes, but lower morals; more food, but less appeasement; more acquaintances, but fewer friends; more effort, but less success.

We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication; we’ve become long on quantity, but short on quality.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; tall men and short character; steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure and less fun; more kinds of food, but less nutrition.

These are the days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes.