Friday, July 19, 2013

P!nk, Jillian Michaels, & Amanda Palmer

Hello to all my readers!

I know I haven't written anything in awhile and truth be told, it is because I have been depressed. It's hard to sit here and admit that my life is in a down word spiral and that I have no idea when it will end. I have been through a lot of shit over the last three years and it has started to take its toll on me emotionally, physically, and mentally. I've lost a lot in the last three years, mostly do to a work injury that was misdiagnosed as simply having a sprained wrist. It took me losing the function of my pinky and ring finger to get the doctors and my former employer to see that this wasn't just some bullshit scheme to get money. 

I hate not working, I hate not being able to engage with people everyday. I hate that when people ask me what I did today I respond with the same response everyday 'I sat at home on my computer.' I also hate the looks that I get because I am not working and contributing to society. Many people think that I am living off of food stamps and disability but I'm not. I don't even qualify for them, so I am stuck making ends meet with the little money that I get from my LNI claim while I continue to recover from surgery. Once those checks stop I have no idea how I will pay for anything and that truly scares the crap out of me.

I am no longer in college because I got dropped for having to take to much medical leave. I was in my Master's program trying to become a therapist. 

I had the job of my dreams, only to get fired for reasons unknown to me. 

I've become so depressed that going out into the world and seeing people happy pisses me off for no good reason. 

I had to have my hand broken to fix my pinky, and they had to put in a steel plate to insure that it wouldn't go back to sitting on my ring finger. That just happened a week ago and I'm already being asked why I'm not looking for work. I would love to but my doctor says I can't even be cleared to work until he sees that my hand is not going to require a third surgery. 

My life feel like I am at a dead stop, but I have started to find a new strength to help guide me from the darkness so to speak. 

I know that I have talked about how P!nk is my hero. I will never forget the day that I saw her first music video on TV and it saved me from killing myself. I have been a huge fan of her's ever since I even have a half sleeve of tattoos to remind me that I have made it this far, that I just have to remember to 'Try.'

I've also talked about Jillian Michaels and how her books and podcasts have helped me get myself physically healthy and have started to get me to really think about my life. I am still amazed that when I saw her in Seattle and thanked her for my tweet that she knew who I was. That made me realize that if she could take the time to care about me, that it was due time that I care about me as well.

The one person I haven't mentioned that has been a driving inspiration for me, especially these last few months, is Amanda Palmer. I loved her music from the first time I heard Coin Operated Boy. She's blunt, honest, and doesn't give a fuck what people say about her and goes out and does what she loves with no censors attached on any level. She's the type of person I wish I could be, but like many others in the world I fear that following my passion will lead to me being unemployed with no hopes of paying off my debt. 

Everyday I watch as my twitter feed fills up with tweets from Amanda Palmer and I have to give the woman a lot of credit, she works her ass off but still takes time to talk to her fans. I wish I could have been in Dublin when she did her Ninja show, because really how many artists do you see do that? Just rock it out for the fans without the need to purchase a ticket, because they know that not all their fans can afford to spend the money. 

I tip my hat off to this woman on so many  levels because when someone tries to knock her down she doesn't hesitate to give them a big 'Fuck you' like she did when a news paper wrote about her wardrobe malfunction instead of her actual performance. She is fucking amazing on so many levels that she has created this eye opening experience for so many people because when you see her live, read her blog, or follow her on twitter, you get an idea of just how fucked up this world is. She isn't afraid to call people out and speak her mind about a cause even if it is controversial. She is a  force to be reckoned with and she carries herself in a way that screams 'no regrets!'

That isn't the only thing about her that make me want to one day meet her. She is open and honest about the fact that she suffers from depression. She doesn't let the stigma of people knowing, get in the way of doing a show. There aren't many celebrities out there that will stand up and say that they have a mental health issues, or an addiction, often until its to late and they end up on the front page of a every magazine known to man for dying because they let the stigma keep them from speaking up. 

Amanda I am not sure if you will actually read this blog but if you do, I want to thank you. I want to thank you for letting the youth today know that it's okay to be depressed and that it doesn't mean your life is over. I want to thank you for all the 'fuck you's that you have given to people because they deserve it. I want to thank you for being who you are and not letting society or promoters force you to change your ways in order to make money. I want to thank you for all the lives you have saved and will save with your music, your brutal honesty, and the time you take to let your fans know they are loved and that someone out there does care about them even if you can't tell them all individually. I also want to thank you for helping me realize that my life isn't over, that once I recover from however many more surgeries and month of physical therapy that there is something out there waiting for me, I just have to find it. 

One day I hope that I can meet you and sit down and just talk with you, Jillian Michaels, and P!nk. Not because of you being famous, but because I would love to hear your stories. As a fan we often want so much from the celebrities that we admire, but we rarely ever truly give back. Yes, we come to shows, yes, we buy albums, posters, movies, and swag, but most of the time we do it because we expect attention for it. I know that I have been guilty of feeling upset when I wait outside a concert only to have the celebrity rush by without signing an autograph or taking photos. 

What we as fans neglect to realize and should realize is that just like everyone else you and other celebrities are people. That is why I want to meet you all one day, so that I can give back some of the strength and inspiration that you have given me.

Maybe I am living in a pipe dream to ever think that something like this could happen. That some ordinary girl, just another face in the crowd, would ever stand out enough for one of you to say, yes, I would love to sit down one day and talk to you. If I am, it is one that I am happy to live in and whether or not it ever happens, I am here, waiting to share my life story with you but most importantly I am ready to hear your story too. I am ready to hear all the frustrations and expectations that come with being who you are. If anything I would just like to support you the way you have unknowingly supported me. I would even be willing to sign legal documents that I will not go off and sell what I've learned nor would I write anything that could benefit me financially. If anything, is really just like to be a friend, a shoulder to lean on when the world is bringing you down. This is my dream and whether or not it comes true, to all those out there, not just celebrities, please know that there is someone out there willing to listen. All you have to do is contact me and I will gladly be a shoulder for anyone to cry on because we all need that at one point in our lives right?

Take care readers! I hope I didn't bore you to much with my rambling.


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Being Useful

Hello Readers,

I know it has been like 11 days since I last wrote an entry, I have just been feeling rather blah lately because of some of the stuff going on in my life. I recently had to drop out of college because of my hand issue, but I am determined to get back in class by September. As I sit here writing this I realize how rather uneventful my last few weeks have been because I have mainly just been getting my stuff ready for surgery. I did however go and see a couple of movies. I went and saw Now You See Me and Fast and Furious Six, and Star Trek: Into The Darkness.

Personal Review: Does Not Contain Spoilers!

Fast and Furious 6: I have to say that out of all the F&F movies, this one had to be one of my favorite movies. I am especially looking forward to the next one. If you haven't seen it yet, sit around a bit after the credits, there is an awesome extra scene. I thought this one had way more action than the other movies, and I was blown away by what they were able to visually accomplish. It had a good story line and didn't take away from any of the previous films like sequels often do. In all I give it 4.5/5 stars, just because there was a few things I didn't like, but to remain spoiler free I won't say anything here.

Star Trek Into The Darkness: This was a visually outstanding movie, there was some bloopers here and there that was hard to miss but at the end of the day it was still an amazing movie. I used to watch the series on TV so I especially like that they have made it to where the movies had no impact on the television show. I also like that they are bringing in younger versions of characters from the show to mix things up a bit. I have to say this is one of those movies you just have to see in theatres to really get a good impact from the visual aspect of what is going on. That and I am a nerd and movies like this are always a must see in theatres. 4/5 stars, because of all the noticeable bloopers.

Now You See Me: WOW, this movie is by far the most original concept for a movie that I have seen in a long time. Now, this is a must see movie!! I knew the ending from the beginning but that didn't take anything away from the movie at all. I liked that they unravelled a lot of the old magic tricks (which they tell you in the previews) and the concept is simply amazing. It just goes to show that a little magic can go a long way. For me this movie was more entertaining because I was able to pick up on how they did certain magical tricks. Sure, some of them were done via script, others via movie magic, but there were other tricks in there as well. This is my must see movie of the summer. It is a good movie for kids, there is some violence and cussing, but it visually appealing. The story line isn't the same story that has been told for the last 10 years, and more importantly! it's not another reboot! I was so getting tired of those. For this movie 5/5 for sure!

Over the last few weeks I fell off of what I call my fitness wagon, I just wasn't hungry and didn't have motivation. I thought that I had packed the weight back on, but come to find out I am holding steady at my weight loss. That made me feel good to know that after 30+ days hard to get healthy, it wasn't blown in a week like it could have been. I still can't believe that it only takes 2 bad days to undo a weeks worth of work or more.

Today was a pretty exciting day for me and for a lot of people in the United States. It is a historical day with Prop 8 being overturned by the supreme court and DOMA being filibustered. It is a great day to be a woman, because we have our right to choose back, and a great day for the gay community because we are one step closer to equality that we all deserve. Equality for all is no longer a thing of the past, who would have thought?

I also did something today that I normally wouldn't do. I was at Barnes and Nobles picking up a couple of the Jillian Michaels books I didn't have when I saw a lady looking over all these different diet books. She seemed vaguely confused with everything and I asked her if she needed any help. Being on the fitness journey myself, I know that seeing all those books just makes you want to scratch your head and wonder who's guideline to follow. After talking to her for a bit I asked her if she had ever read anything by Jillian Michaels, because she kept talking about all these fad diets that she had tried. She said no, so I took a moment to explain how some of her books work. Just incase people are curious, I will break down her books for you incase you are interested in giving her a read.

Winning By Losing: To sum up this book in quick detail, it is about getting you psychologically ready to lose weight. Lets face it, if our minds aren't into what we are doing then our motivation drops and we stop something all together. This book also helps you with the nutritional aspect of losing weight. For people who are wanting to get in shape but lack the focus this is a good place to start.

Unlimited: Believe it or not, this book isn't about getting physically fit! This book helps to guide you into discovering your dreams and setting up a game plan to reach them. Those goals and dreams could include getting physically fit, finding your dream job, or something else completely different. If you need some guidance to help you figure out what your life goals are, this is a good book to start with.

Master Your Metabolism: This is all about the science behind losing weight. JM teaches you how to boost your metabolism and make the most out of every meal. If you are tired of having fallen victim to diet fads, this is a good book to read because it tells you everything you need to know about calories in and calories out. This book is truly a godsend to those who don't understand why fad diets are bad and why programs like Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig, may not be your best option. Don't get me wrong, those programs are proven methods that do work to help you lose the weight, but they are programs that are a lifetime commitment so if you get off the track you have to go back and start all over. With learning the science behind weight loss you control your diet without having to count points, or depend on meals to be sent to you, because you already know how to make any meal work for you.

Slim for Life: This was my first JM book that I started to read, when I realized that dieting wasn't as easy as they show on TV. The nice thing about this book, is that she explains various eating habits and lets you decided what you will and won't give up to lead a healthier life. She also debunks weight loss myths and helps instill confidence that you aren't giving anything up by trying to get healthy. If anything it teaches you that for every unhealthy option out there, there is a healthier option available.

Making the Cut: This book is all about losing those vanity pounds. What are vanity pounds? Those are the last 10-20 lbs that people want to take off to look as good as they feel. This is that little bit of flab that just won't seem to go away. It is important to know that this is not a book to target problem areas. There isn't a way to target one area to lose weight in that area, you have to work the whole body to get results, because everyone's body stores fat in different areas. This book is all about how to lose those last few pounds, it even comes with a meal guide to help ensure you will succeed.

Now, some of you may be thinking that Jillian Michaels is just a name, and she is making money off of things that people already know. Just so you are aware, this is something that JM has said herself, that she has made her living off of four simple words 'Calories In, Calories Out.' She isn't reinventing the wheel with her books, she is giving you the tools that you need to succeed. With that being said she also doesn't consider herself a trainer or a guru, she likes to see herself as more of a life coach. She is just one of many people in the world that are trying to help the world get healthy. She may be just a name to some people, but she is also a name that knows what she is talking about and all of her books help to make sure that you get the most out of life.

With that being said, I was really proud of myself because just randomly talking to people isn't something that I can typically do without freaking out with anxiety. I should let you all know that having a sleeve of tattoos and purple hair doesn't really make people want to talk to you. If anything it intimidates people because they think that I am some weird person when really all I am doing is just expressing who I am without having to fit myself into the box that society has been trying to put me in. I have let go of that responsibility sandwich and I am doing things that make me happy, because despite what others may think, I do deserve to be happy.

After talking to the woman in the store, she gave me a really good compliment. She said she was grateful for having met someone with the knowledge that I have, Thank you Jillian Michaels, and that she was glad that I had been there because it made it easier for her to decide where to start. Needless to say, she picked up every one of Jillian's books... minus the cookbook because I had taken the last copy, and she bought them. She also told me that I needed to pursue a career in dieting and health care because of what I have learned. Really, I didn't tell her anything that people don't already know, it is just that the little voice inside of our heads that tell us not to eat that has been silenced by commercials and ads that we see on TV. Her stuff is all about getting back to reality and it works.

Before leaving the store, I told the woman that I was going to become a therapist and she told me that she would happily pay money to come see someone as insightful as I am. That is a huge compliment for someone who has been riding a wave of negativity for the last few years. It encouraged me to keep doing what I am doing, and that encouraged me to want to continue to help people. So here is my questions for all my readers out there.... Do you have a question that you have done to help a stranger? I am not talking about a good deed, I am talking about taking time from your day where you actively engage with someone you don't know as a way of helping them accomplish something. Leave a comment below and let me know how you help to make the world a bit of a better place.

That is all I have for now, I will try to write more often until I go in for surgery. Have a great day!


Saturday, June 15, 2013

My Week Off

Hello Readers,

I took a last minute week off from blogging because my partner took a vacation for work and I wanted to spend some time with her. I also had to spend the week prepping for my next surgery, which was a lot harder than I expected it to be. I had to go to the bank and make sure I could deposit checks, I won't be able to sign them but I got that sorted out. I had to finish up the process for dropping out of college, I wasn't exactly happy about that, but I am out of medical leave so it was either that or end up failing out which wasn't an option for me. After that I had to get all my mileage information for my LNI claim so that I can get paid back, I can't believe I have traveled 4033.2 miles since this all started.

The week wasn't all bad news though, as a matter of fact I finally got my partner to understand why I went organic, and now she is trying to go organic too! I was so proud of her when I saw her come home with a bunch of organic foods, where she used to come home with nothing but junk. It will be nice to not have the temptation anymore.

This week has also been one where I didn't follow my diet so well, I still ate healthy but I ate more than I should have because my partner was on vacation. Today is a new day, I am going to get back on my program and try and actually watch my calories intake.

Let's see what else did I do this week.

Oh! I went and saw two movies that I have been dying to see, and I have to say they were worth the money for sure. I went and saw Fast and Furious 6 and Star Trek: Into The Darkness I highly recommend both of them. Next week I am supposed to go see Now You See Me. I won't talk about the movies cause I don't want to spoil the endings but they were great!

I also came up with a list of blogs entries that I would like to write about, here is a list of the few that I know I will be writing about in the future:

1) Protein Powders
2) Zumba
3) People Who Inspire Me
4) A Letter To Myself
5) A Letter To My Loved Ones
6) Anti-Bullying
7) Homemade Shakes Without A Blender
8) Video Games
9) RPGing
10) Struggles Of Writing My Book
11) Surgery Update
12) Weekly Music Playlists
13) Shopping On A Budget
14) Movie Of The Week
15) Bucket List
16) Recipes
17) Psychology

I am sure I will think of more in the future but these are what are on my mind right now. I am also going to try and participate in other bloggers weekly topics. Naturally from July 11th till probably August 1st I may not be able to update my blog, so I may write a few entries in advance and schedule them to post while I am down.

Also.... am I the only one who cries every time Betty gets the letter from the war department. I can't stop watching this movie and I always cry when it gets to that part. I've even tried muting it and skipping over it, but nope I still cry.

Anyways, I hope you all have a good weekend and Happy Father's Day to all the Dad's out there :)


Saturday, June 8, 2013

My Dominate Hand

Hello Readers,

As some of you may or may not know, for the last three years I have had issues with my right hand. I have had to fight LNI for three years trying to get my hand back to normal and finally be without pain. For three years I lived at a six on the pain scale, no doctors wanted to give me pain meds because they thought I was a junkie. The truth of the matter is I hurt that bad and all I could take was over the counter pills that did nothing for pain. 

After fighting two years to get my claim reopened, the LNI company that protects my employer has fought me every step of the way. I've been to a number of doctors over the years and been to several appointments just trying to figure out what I did.

4000+ miles of driving to and from appoints led to finally getting answers. They noticed that the tendons on my pinky and ring finger were not staying on the knuckles which was why my fingers drooped down and I couldn't bring them up unless I taped them to my middle finger. 

This whole process has been a nightmare, but once we actually knew what was happening (or so we thought) I was told I needed surgery. I didn't need a  doctor to tell me that, because my fingers didn't function. They said the two years of no treatment broke down the muscle in my hand, because my hand wasn't functioning correctly. Needless to say this led the LNI company to sending me to not one but four independent medical doctors who all said that this was all in my head. It took me going off on my rep from the private LNI insurance company to finally get them to take action. Simply threatening to get an attorney was all it took to get them to start signing off on things.

In November of 2012 my doctor was all set and ready to reattach the tendons but the LNI company kept rejecting for one reason or another but finally in mid December they agreed to pay for the surgery. 

January 17th came pretty quickly after that, and my tendons were reattached to my fingers and I started physical therapy rather quickly. Then came the second problem of me not being able to close my hand, which granted was better then not being able to open it. 

From January until June of this year I went the PT twice a week and was always doing my therapy at home as well, but I was still in pain. I kept wanting to cry every time someone touches my pinky cause to put it lightly it hurt like hell. Actually, my pinky hurt worse then the recovery from surgery. 

This left the physical therapist and my doctor a bit baffled and they didn't know what to really do other then continue PT and see if it improved. Well it didn't improve, the pain not only got worse, but the more we worked my pinky, it started to curve. They referred to it as my finger scissoring, and let me tell you it hurts. On a good day my pinky will sit on top on my ring finger and stay there which causes the least amount of pain. On a bad day it will rest under my ring finger giving me the most pain.

Well finally on June 4th I got to see the Dr again and he was still baffled by this curve in my pinky. So much so that it didn't even matter to him that after months of having hardly any movement of my hand, I could make a fist. To me that was exciting but being a doctor he was more worried about the pinky. 

After he took some X-rays he came back and showed them to me and the bones in my pinky were clearly not sitting right which explain all the pain. He believes that when I injured my wrist I either, broke, fractured, or dislocated the bones in my pinky, but he can't tell which happened because there is not previous X-rays of my pinky because no one listened when I said the pain shot up into my fingers.

So now that we know what was causing me so much pain, which is the fact that my pinky has to use the muscles in my arm to function, causing pain and tension in my wrist, we have to fix it. Now, you are probably thinking this is going to be an easy fix.... nope!

Not only will he have to find a way to recenter my bones after three years of healing and scar tissue, he also has to rotate the bones so my pinky will be straight again. He also told me that I have likely been dislocating my finger throughout the years, doing average everyday things and hurting it more because we didn't know about that particular injury to begone with.

So here we are, passed the three year mark of my injury and I find out I am having another surgery. Now, some of you may be thinking this is a good thing, that my hand will be fixed and life will be normal again. This could potentially lock my pinky up completely, leaving me with what I like to call... A British pinky. I would rather have my pinky always sticking out them scissoring my ring finger. 

Here is the kicker though, in order to fix the bones in my pinky, they have to break my hand, not the finger but they are literally going to cut open my hand and break the bone to rotate and recenter my finger. Then they are going to undo three years worth of scar tissue. Thing that gets me the most... I will get no cast!

I will be walking around with my hand broken and no cast for me because I will have to keep using my hand to avoid the scar tissue from forming again. Oh, and depending on what time I have surgery I could go right from the recovery room into physical therapy... Aren't I just the lucky one. 

With that being said, it took this LNI company over a month to approve my last surgery so I thought I had some time... Boy was I wrong. I got the phone call yesterday saying my surgery was approved. I was floored because I figured it would be August before we got any answers but nope, one phone call to my claims manager was all it took to get my second surgery approved. 

This caused a mad scramble in the home front because now we have a month to get things ready for me. My partner has to take time off of work because I won't be allowed to be alone for the first five-seven days. She has to give a months notice so she was on the phone right away with her work.

Then came telling everyone the surgery is just around the corner. Naturally people have a lot of questions about it and all I can do is shrug and say I don't know because a lot of the questions being asked, I honestly don't have the answers too. I won't know how long I will be in surgery. I don't know how they are going to secure the bone in my hand after they break it. I don't know how often I will need physical therapy. What I do know is they are breaking the bone, rotating my pinky till it sits right, breaking up scar tissue and releasing the capsule in my pinky because scar tissue formed over it and now it's stuck. Everything else will be a mystery until I wake up. 

I am not really looking forward to this surgery because of how much I don't know but the doctor said he won't even know until he gets into my hand and sees what three years of scar tissue looks like. 

I won't know how long I will be down, but what I do know is that I am so ready for this to be over. Thanks to my hand I lost my job, I have to drop my master's program, and I very well may lose my car because I'm not sure how much longer LNI will be sending me money. I do however know they want me off the books ASAP because I've already cost them over $100,000.00 in medical costs.

I am hoping when all of this is said and done I will be given some form of a settlement because the LNI place was such a pain and it took them so long to do anything I am not having a second surgery. To add insult to injury, I am right handed so for the last three years I have had to learned to adapt and accept there are things I simply couldn't do. There is also a bit of irony in this as well, because the Friday before my follow up with my doctor, I was releases by my PT to start doing normal house hold chores like washing dishes. I now have a 1lbs weight limit on my hand so I am back to not being able to do much of anything at all. 

I am so ready to be done with all of this, to have my hand back and be able to function on my own. To not have to worry about what I do with my hand. I'm ready to have a job again and finish up school. I'm just ready to be a fully functioning person again. Hopefully that will happen in the next three to six months, but only time will tell. 

So there you have it, the seemingly never ending tale of my battle to get my dominate hand back. 


Friday, June 7, 2013

Organic, All Natural, Non-Organic, and GMO information

Hello Readers,

Today I am going to talk about something that has been a major topic of conversation in my life. I have switched to a mainly organic diet, with the exceptions for all natural foods and eating out. It seems that people have a misperception of what organic really means and how it benefits you, so I figured I would write a post to help clear somethings up. I want you all to know this is not my way of getting anyone to change their diet, I am merely giving people the information to make up their own minds.

First I am going to start by explaining what organic foods are, what all natural foods are, what GMO foods are and talk a little about cheap processed foods. I am going to include several links with more information so that you as a reader can learn more about the different types of food, so you can make an educated decision on what you would prefer to eat. I say educated decision because once you know more about the food you eat, the better and it will be your choice on if you will continue the way you eat or if you will make a few changes in your diet. At the end of the day what you put in your body is nobodies business but your own.

What Organic Means:
Simply stated, organic produce and other ingredients are grown without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionizing radiation. Animals that produce meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products do not take antibiotics or growth hormones.

The USDA National Organic Program (NOP) defines organic as follows:

Organic food is produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water to enhance environmental quality for future generations. Organic meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormones. Organic food is produced without using most conventional pesticides; fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge; bioengineering; or ionizing radiation. Before a product can be labeled "organic," a Government-approved certifier inspects the farm where the food is grown to make sure the farmer is following all the rules necessary to meet USDA organic standards. Companies that handle or process organic food before it gets to your local supermarket or restaurant must be certified, too.

Here is a list of resources that you can look at to learn more about why organic is better for you. 
Myths about Organics
Certified Organic Labelling
10 Reasons to go Organic
Organic Facts
Organic Glossary

Natural Food:
The term. "natural" applies broadly to foods that are minimally processed and free of synthetic
preservatives; artificial sweeteners, colors, flavors and other artificial additives ; grow hormones; antibiotics; -hydrogenated oils; stabilizers; and emulsifiers. Most foods labeled natural are not suhjeet to government controls beyond the regulations and health codes that apply to all foods. Exceptions include meat and poultry. The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSTS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) requires these to be free of artificial colors., flavors, sweeteners, preservatives and ingredients that do not occur naturally in the food. Natural meat and poultry must be minimally processed in a method that does not fundamentally alter the raw product. In addition, the label should explain the use of the term natural, e.g., no artificial ingredients.

Here is some more information on Natural foods.
High Fructose Corn Syrup 
Natural Foods
The Difference between All Natural and Organic
FDA's Definition on Natural foods

What is Non-Organic Food
In human history, agriculture can be described as organic. During the 20th century large supply of new synthetic chemicals were introduced to food industry to boost the industrialization of agriculture. The process of industrialization needed large yield, attractive crop in terms of its size, shape, enhanced shelf life. All this was possible in large yield of cultivation through taking utmost care of crop using synthetic chemicals such as; pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, radiation therapy, genetically engineered seeds etc. al. These synthetic chemicals although did not show immediate effects on human health but over a period of time human body started weakening due to various slow killing side effects of these chemicals. Thus the type of food produced using these methods is called Non-organic farming/food.

Apart from usage of synthetic chemicals in farming in various different forms at different crop stages there are numerous processes involved further to convert crop in edible food. All these processes create Non-organic food which is consumed daily by common man.

Let us look at few types of food that can be classified as non-organic;
- Crop level processes
- Processed foods
- Pre cooked/ready to cook
- Frozen foods
- Additives
- Bakery
- Commercial food

Here are some things about Non-Organic foods you may want to know.
Pesticides in Non-Organic Food
Other Chemicals in Non-Organic food
How Non-Organic Foods Will Kill You

What are GMOs?
GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms,” are plants or animals that have been genetically engineered with DNA from bacteria, viruses or other plants and animals. These experimental combinations of genes from different species cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.

Virtually all commercial GMOs are engineered to withstand direct application of herbicide and/or to produce an insecticide. Despite biotech industry promises, none of the GMO traits currently on the market offer increased yield, drought tolerance, enhanced nutrition, or any other consumer benefit.

Meanwhile, a growing body of evidence connects GMOs with health problems, environmental damage and violation of farmers’ and consumers’ rights.

Here is some more information on GMOs
GMO Facts
GMOs Effects on Health
More GMO Information

Now, I know what you must be thinking, this is a log of information to take in at once, but worry not I have a great guide from Jillian Michaels that you can take with you to the store to help make healthier decisions.

If you are ready to give up your eating some of your favorite foods in a box, I just want to point out that for every unhealthy food that is made, there is a healthier alternative. 

Companies like:

Have a great variety of options for food, and yes they may cost a little bit more but they also offer coupons. Also keep in mind that the more processed foods that you consume with all those pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics you are putting yourself at risk to get sick. That is not to say people who eat organic don't get sick, but it has been said they don't get as sick and tend to get over illnesses faster, especially if a doctor prescribes you antibiotics, because you already have them in your system from the non organic foods you are eating. If you can manage to buy your dairy, meat, and the vegetables from the dirty dozen from the organic section you will start to feel better. 

If you still think that organic foods cost too much, look up how much it costs for being hospitalized for heart attacks, stroke, cancer, diabetes. Also add up all the times that you eat out and I bet you that you can find the money to get some organic products into your life. Keep in mind, that there are organic products like, chips, cookies, popcorn, cereal, granola bars, ice cream, yogurt, milk, pizza, cheese, and many more things that come organic and are better for your body. 

Now, before you get all huffy and say that it is too expensive to healthy, I want you all to know that I am currently an unemployed. I have a limited amount of money that I bring in from an LNI claim that I have. I am going to break this down for you so that you can see eating organic is possible on a budget. 

I get  $711.48 a month to live off of.
I pay out:
$297.53 for my car payment
$174.43 for insurance
$50 for prescriptions
$50 for gas sometimes more depending on appts
$80 for therapy every month which leaves me with a whopping 
$59.52 a month for food. 

I don't qualify for food stamps because I live with someone who makes too much money, but I am able to buy enough organic food to live off for the month with that money. So if I can live off of that a month (and no I don't get any other help) you can find it in your budget to start eating healthier too. 

I hope that some of you found this information useful, thank you for reading!


Monday, June 3, 2013

Summertime Swap, Hand News, & Duct Tape Graffiti!!

Host Links:

This past Friday, I had the pleasure of meeting up with fellow Blogger Danielle,  from My Life According To Me. We had been paired up for a Summertime swap hosted by three amazing bloggers, and they are all linked above. If you aren't following these girl's blogs then you should, because all of them offer words of wisdom and support for people around them. 

After exchanging a couple of emails with Danielle we decided to meet up instead of shipping the packages, because it would save us some money on shipping, and because we had a meeting point that worked for both of us. I go up to Seattle twice a week so that provided us an idea of when and where we could meet up. Unfortunately, things didn't go exactly according to plan, because my physical therapist was running further behind then she normally does. This left us both scrambling to find parking and a place to meet before Danielle had to get to work. 

It was super fun meeting her and her daughter and it was nice to get to know someone in the area. I am hoping that we will be able to meet up again soon so we can talk more. 

Like a dork, I forgot to take pictures of what I got her, because I left it in my trunk because I have a tendency to leave things behind. So if you would like to see what I got her here is her summertime swap entry and also what she got me. I do have to say the S'mores candy that she got me came at the perfect time cause I was about to break down and buy stuff to make them. I haven't had one yet, but I am going to put it into my calorie allowance here soon. 

Normally I don't participate in things like this, because I am usually that one person who doesn't get anything, but when I saw that the hosts needed one last person, I decided it was worth the risk. I am glad that I did do the swap, it helped me step out of my comfort zone, mainly walking around in an area I didn't know, to meet up with someone I had only exchanged a few emails. It was awesome though, and I am looking forward to being able to do a swap of this nature again. 

Not only was it an awesome day because I got to meet up with a fellow blogger, but it was also the first time in nearly six months that I was able to make a fist with my hand. 

Pretty sweet huh? Ya, that is a huge accomplishment because we were about to give up and have me go on disability which I did not want. So I am hoping that this means that I may not need the second surgery, but if you notice in the photo my pinky is ever so kindly trying to tuck itself under my ring finger... it's not supposed to do that. Oh, and that black stuff on my hand is kinesio tape which is pretty awesome stuff. It is forcing my hand to use the muscles properly instead of my fingers using the muscles in my arm to move. It's spiffy and it is what helped unlock my fingers and make a fist. It's not perfect but it is a fist and that is all that matters. 

These last couple of days have also been something that has rather excited me, because I realized that I am becoming more physically capable of doing things. Like yesterday I did a 20 minute workout on my Wii fit, which was sort of disappointing because I only burned 55 calories. Then I did Zumba for 30 minutes and burn 130 calories, so I think I will be sticking with Zumba for now. Though today was pretty awesome as well because I walked 2 miles in 30 mins without stopping. It usually took me that long to walk a mile and I would have to stop several times, but today I did the whole walk without stopping once to sit down. It was a pretty awesome feeling. 
As I was walking I came across something rather amusing and fun duct tape graffiti! 
I thought it was pretty cool, but the people who had to take it off the barriers seemed less than impressed. Hey, at least it wasn't spray paint they had to scrub off. 

That is all I have for today. I hope everyone is having a good day!


Saturday, June 1, 2013

Being The Problem Solver

Hello Readers,

Today has been a bad day for me emotionally, and for a better part of the day I just sort of shut down, checked out, and basically didn't do anything that was productive. I get this way from time to time, because I have a bunch of people come to me at once trying to get my help. A few of my friends and family come to me to solve problems, because I am a psychology major and that means I have all the answers. Thing is, I don't but I end up having to come up with a solution to the problems or I am just not left alone. So lately I have been in this 'problem solution' mode, and stopped taking care of myself and started worrying more about others.

All of this started when I lost 15lbs and decided to share that with some friends and family and then everyone wanted me to tell them how to do the same. First off, I want to start by saying that weight loss is not that complicated, and there are like 100 apps in the app store that can help you if you want to lose the weight. Secondly, I have told everyone that I am following my Jillian Michaels app and she tells me what to eat what my fitness routine for the day is and helps me track my calories. I am not doing anything all that special, but even when I tell them that in order for them to know how they can go about losing weight I get weighed down by a bunch of other questions.

I am just going to lay this out there for all my readers now so that way I can just get this off my chest. I am not a fitness or nutrition expert! I can't help you figure out your diet, or tell you what you can do to help improve your lifestyle, these are all choices that you as a person need to make. If you want to know how I am doing it, I started looking into different programs and found the one that suited me.

I was listening to a podcast by Jillian Michaels earlier today and she was talking about an eagle, rabbit, and a turtle. She said that the species were so concerned about what they couldn't do that it became their focus. The turtle wanted to run as fast as the rabbit, and the rabbit wanted to fly like the eagle, and the eagle wanted to swim like the turtle. Thing is, no matter how hard they try they can't become the rabbit, the eagle, or the turtle, they have to be themselves and that is really what fitness is all about. The only thing I can tell you is what I did as my base plan to dropping weight. I found someone who inspired a change in me, someone who got me to think in ways I couldn't and I listened.

It just so happens that person is Jillian Michaels, but here is the thing, just because her program works for me, doesn't mean it is going to work for you. You may do better on a program by Bob Harper or J.J. Virgin,  but what it all boils down to is what suits you and your lifestyle.

I started by getting Jillian's book Unlimited, which was difficult for me to keep up with because of my dyslexia so I was thankful when someone kindly got me the audio version. I also listen to her podcast and listen to her book Slim for Life. This brought me in the direction of her app which I used at first to just count my calories. Then I learned that there was more to losing weight then just counting calories, that everyone's body needs different foods to function to be able to lose weight, AKA your metabolic system or oxidizer. These are things I can't tell you, so if you want to know how to start losing weight then that is a good place to start.

After months of research, and calculating gym memberships and whether or not I would actually go, I finally decided on paying the $4 a week for an upgraded version of Jillian's app. She gives me a meal plan and workout routines that fit my age, height, weight, and what i want my end result to be. So if you want to know all that information go to and get started, I believe she gives you one week of free access to all the tools. I mainly use the subscription for support because I'm the only one in my life right now going down this venture.

So, there you go, now you know my secret, its that I don't have one.

Also, I have become this personal emotional bank for other people, because of my major. I don't mind talking to people and hearing about how crummy their life is going. I don't mind give some advice here and there, but what I do mind is people giving me their problems to solve. I don't have all the answers, and yes, I can eventually come up with them for people, but the thing is that all I do is get on google and search how best to help them. I am not a free therapist for people to come to, I am not even licensed as one. I seriously have enough of my own problems right now, that I don't really have the time or emotional capability to handle anyone elses.

The worst part about all of this, is the people who are coming to me for help, they know what is going on. I am looking at a second surgery for my hand, where they are going to have to break it in two places to get my  mobility back. I am out of a job, I have car payments to make, and insurance. I have to make it to physical therapy twice a week that is a 45min drive away. I have to put gas in my car, and buy myself food, not to mention that I have to worry about when my LNI benefits will stop and if I will be able to get a job quick enough to keep my car. I have a lot of shit going on right now, and I love my friends and family dearly but it is like they don't see that I have enough on my plate because I don't have a job, and I just 'sit around all day'.

I don't know if anyone out there is unemployed right now, but let me tell you, looking for a job is the hardest job you will ever have. Not to mention, I just lost the job of my dreams, the job I thought I was going to retire from and you know what... I wasn't given a reason. They fired me without just cause, because I was within my probation period, shitty part about it, they sent me a letter in the mail to tell me I lost it. So, I truly have a lot on my plate.

With that being said, I don't mind helping out with advice, but there is a big difference between me giving advice and me solving another person's problem. I get that life has dealt some people a shitty hand, but guess what, it happens to all of us. Having to do all of this has actually taken away some of the things that I enjoy, because I can't enjoy them because of how stressed I am. I am pretty sure that 15lbs I lost isn't lost anymore cause I probably gained some of it back.

What all of this has taught me, after sitting on my couch and crying for a better part of my day, is that I need to just worry about me. I need to get my life together and figure out what I am going to do because if I can't answer those questions for myself, then I am doomed to work dead end jobs that I hate. I want to make something of myself, which means that it is time for me to get selfish and that is exactly what I am going to do. It's time for me to take care of me, get my affairs in order and then, if I feel like I am stable enough, I can try and give advice to people, but for now I am done trying to solve everyone else's problems.

I feel like this blog as slowly turned into a place where I rant a lot, but that's okay. this blog is for me, and being able to get all this off my chest makes me feel better than I did a few hours ago. Thank you to those who stuck it through this entry, I do appreciate all my readers and hopefully here soon I will be able to get on to happier, more upbeat entries.

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