Her mom prayed for dead insects and ambulance sirens: a mom with an artist's soul tortured by a white-collar job under artificial light with ringing phones and closed windows in the summertime. She stood 5' 2" tall with blue eyes, silver hair, and a sharp tongue.
She found the lump in her breast twice. Gone went the right breast. Gone went the left breast two years later. After the surgeries she wore pocketed shirts and vests filled with traveling sketch pads and pencils, bird-watching guides, and a steady supply of pain killers she couldn't stop taking.
I love reading memoirs about rural and urban family farming and eating locally-grown food since moving to a small town (which used to be the chicken capital of the world), population 70,000. We are surrounded by three-bedroom, two-bath, ranch-style homes and working-class families where Afros, peace signs, and tie dye were never in, unlike my neighborhood growing up in San Francisco in the 1970s. The outskirts of our town are filled with country side, small family farms, and cottage industries that make home-grown honey, olive oil, cheese, and bread. My kitchen is full, thankfully, of almost all local-grown produce and grass fed, free range meat and poultry. Did I mention I have not been sick in two and half years?
It took me a while to discover them all. I was too busy shopping at chain stores for our food, proud to find the best deals and save that all-elusive dollar.
My how a little something called the Great Recession can change your outlook on life. OK, that's getting a little too deep. So let me sum it up by saying we now 'shop' at several local farms. The term is locavore: eating what grows within 100 miles of where you live. (We want to spend our elusive dollars wisely and help our local economy and maybe save the planet!)
One of my favorite books that addresses eating locally, creating urban farms, and becoming sustainable is Food and the City. I stumbled upon it in my local library in the new book section. After reading it, I actually felt inspired and hopeful, instead of my usually "we're all going to hell in a handbasket". This book illustrates the way forward for towns and cities and their inhabitants: creating a 'post-industrial urban edible landscape' where people grow their own food in backyards, rooftops, community gardens, city-owned lands, CSA farms, and empty factories left to rot because it cost too much to tear them down.
Do moms really need social media? What would your life be like without it? All you have to do is go back five or ten years: what were you doing then? Reading books at night, jogging every morning, and going out on the weekends?
Maybe we are drawn to social media because it is free and we are by nature (and nurture) social creatures. But is it truly cost free? If you put a value on your free time, the value of an hour on Facebook versus an hour planting a garden and tending to it each day, what's more valuable?
As for the amount of time spent on social media, there are still only 24 hours in a day so something has to give! A nap on the couch? Or another mug of coffee and an hour on Pinterest?
Then again, we had the death of soap operas. I admit it, I watched soap operas from time to time. What replaced them? Google Plus? Facebook? Twitter? If that's the case, then what's more valuable? All My Children or a g+ community?
To help answer these questions, I of course turned to social media and asked my fellow mom bloggers to chime in! Here are their responses:
Labels: Do Moms Need Social Media?
A few years ago, I read a hilarious on-going post at the parent humor blog June Cleaver Nirvana about her kitchen-counter fruit bowl (turned junk drawer) and what was sitting inside of it that week. I can't remember the items she listed but it made me laugh until I almost peed my stretchy mom pants. If only I had such a fruit bowl I said to myself.
Fast forward to now. The other day I was lifting up the back of my station wagon and a light bulb (a green, energy-saving light bulb) went on in my mom brain: It's like the fruit bowl in June Cleaver Nirvana's kitchen! Hallelujah! So, my fellow mom-car owners, here's what's sitting snugly in the back of my momma vehicle: A table top apple peeler that my hubby gave me for Christmas. But I'm embarrassed to say I tried it and I failed BIG TIME. Who knew getting peels off a bag of apples (that you want to turn into applesauce in the crock pot) could be so complicated! Not only that, I couldn't get the table-top suction thingy to work. Then I did what any mom would do in that situation: I plopped it into the back of my car to show my son's daycare provider. She is the queen of apples (she has apple trees in her yard and knows how to multi use the gazillions of apples they produce).
Okay, that was last winter. It's summer as I write this. So why is the peeler still sitting in my car? (We even have our own apple tree now! And it's sprouting little apples just waiting to be turned into applesauce!) I wish I had a witty answer for you!
What else is sitting in my car's nether regions you ask?