Weird Holiday: Everything You Think Is Wrong Day

Today is the day you can avoid making decisions. If you think something, it’s wrong.

Today is the day to acknowledge you are not always right. You are imperfect.

People who accept their mistakes are usually treated with more respect than those who hesitate to take responsibility for their actions. Admitting one’s mistakes then attempting to fix things is the mark of a creative and successful person.

This is your day.


#UpbeatAuthors: Healthy Eating

Like everything else, defining “healthy eating” depends on one’s point of view. What my niece with celiac disease considers healthy is totally different from the foods her sister who is allergic to casein (milk protein) knows are safe. Peanut butter was a staple in my house when the Chromos were growing up. It would be deadly in other cupboards

Too often we forget mental health when it comes to eating. There are days when nothing less than Chinese for lunch will do. Or a carton of Ben & Jerry’s. Or a jar of Nutella. On those days, these food are healthy. No apologies. No judging.

And what about comfort food? Homemade macaroni-and-cheese? Grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup? Comfort is good for the soul. That’s healthy, too.

Now, I’m not saying we shouldn’t be conscious of what goes into our bodies. Most of the time, I do try to eat foods generally considered healthy: Greek yogurt for breakfast, green salads for lunch, whole grain breads and low-fat cheese on my grilled cheese sandwiches. This past summer I swapped out making pasta salads for making quinoa salads, and it wasn’t a sacrifice.  My standard pot-luck contribution is a fresh berry/fruit salad. Naked. Lots of antioxidants and vitamins. Y-chromo called me the other night to find out how to cook butternut squash. X-Chromo preferred vegetables to any kind of sugar, even as a toddler. I stopped drinking coffee nine or ten years ago because the withdrawal symptoms when I was fasting were brutal. If I was that addicted to something, maybe it’s not good for me.

But don’t ever try to take away my Nutella.


International Women’s Day

How many of us knew about the women of Hidden Figures before the movie?

Hedy Lamarr, one of the most “beautiful” movie stars of the 1930s and 40s, also invented a radio system to throw off Nazi torpedoes. Her work is the basis for cellular and Blue Tooth technology. Did you know that?

Rosalind Elsie Franklin discovered DNA…but a couple of guys took the credit and won the prizes. Chien-Shiung Wu disproved something in physics, but a couple of guys took the credit and won the prizes. Jocelyn Bell Burnell did something with pulsars, but a couple of guys took the credit and won the prizes. I mention only three. There are more.

Which is why we need an International Women’s Day.

Hear me roar.





Peaceful Places

This week’s #UpbeatAuthors topic is “a place that gives you peace.”  I really had to think long and hard about what peace means to me. There are many kinds of peace. Different places offer different types of peace.

One such place is my bed, which offers me peace from the crazy scary world in which we live.

I have an extra firm mattress (which my husband hates), and an extra thick box spring, so the bed is higher than a standard bed. Being short, I love the feeling of elevation.

We recently purchased new bedding. The debate over color took several weeks. We settled on this, and we both like it.

Have you ever heard the phrase “bedgasm?” This is exactly how I feel every night when I crawl into bed. And while I am a morning person, that doesn’t make leaving my bed any easier.

So yes: my bed is my place of peace.

Music in Our Schools

A co-worker, speaking of her daughter, once said: “It’s only band.” As in, “it’s not as important as <<insert name of sport. Any sport>>.”

I was livid. It’s that kind of attitude that’s behind funding cuts for arts in the public schools–funding cuts that that aren’t as deep when it comes to athletics.  All students need outlets. Not every outlet is physical. Painting and composing are as important as knocking down another player.

Research indicates that music education:

  • increases  IQ
  • improves spatial-temporal skills
  • improves test scores
  • helps develop language skills and reasoning
  • increases hand-to-eye coordination and other motor skills
  • pattern recognition

Band and chorus are as much a team activity as football or basketball…except no one ever suffered brain damage from playing a tuba or singing soprano.

Why shouldn’t the arts be funded as generously as athletics?