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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sunday Recap: Are you a Peacemaker or Peacekeeper?

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This week, Justin Davis continued our study of the Beatitudes and talked about Matthew 5:9, Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Here is a little bit of what I learned…

Most people feel that peace is the absence of conflict.  So, to avoid conflict, frequently we will just say sorry when we don’t mean it to keep the peace.  Just saying sorry and keeping your mouth shut is not peacemaking.

It is important that when someone offends us or wrongs us that we tell them how we feel.  Yes, that will be uncomfortable.  Of course.  It could even cause an argument.  However, hopefully, after everything is out in the open, that relationship will be stronger due to your honesty.  The same holds true if you know you have wronged someone or offended them.  You need to apologize.  Let them know that you realize how you made them feel and that you are sorry.

This is peacemaking.

It is definitely easier to be a peacekeeper.

It is easier to avoid conflict.  Easier to just say sorry for whatever you have done, rather than have a discussion about it.  It is easier to ignore the fact that someone has made you feel inadequate and just go on your merry way, rather than tell them how they made you feel.

However, in Matthew 5:9, God says, Blessed are the peacemakers.

He wants us to pursue reconciliation in our relationships.  He knows this is how to have healthy relationships!

Let’s go out of our way to make things right with whoever we have offended or wronged.

This week, confess to someone that you know you have wronged.  Tell them how they wounded you.  Or, at the very least, at least confess it to God with the intentions of confessing it to the person at some point.

I know that is a hard challenge and is one that I will have to think long and hard on, as well.  But it is the path to being a peacemaker, instead of a peacekeeper.

Good luck to you all in your path to being peacemakers.

If you would like to hear the complete message, go here and click on Week 5: Fighting for Peace.

Do you have a post talking about what you learned this week?  Link it up below… I would love to read it and I’m sure others would too!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Five Fabulous Bloggers!


Thanks to Trop50 for sponsoring my writing about fabulous bloggers. This year Trop50 is granting 50 Fabulous Wishes. Click here to enter for a chance to win $1,000 to celebrate a friend with a refreshing attitude about looking and feeling fabulous!

I thought that coming up with 5 bloggers I wanted to write about for this post would be hard… I was right!  Trying to pick only 5 is really a chore…. I have come across so many blogs that I have really enjoyed and not to mention ‘met’ quite a few bloggers that are just super sweet!

Alas, I could only pick 5 so okay, here are my top 5… in no particular order Winking smile

If you want to check them out, just click on the picture above my accolades to them.


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I met Colleen of Dr. Mom Online on Facebook.  She and I found each other because we are both chiropractors.  As it turns out, that’s not all we have in common.  She also homeschool's her kiddos like I do and we have similar ideas on what healthy eating looks like.  I love her blog, not just because we are a lot alike, but because she talks about lots of things in ways that maybe I haven’t thought of.  If you need some help in making your home a healthier one, definitely check out her blog!


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The next one is Katie at Kitchen Stewardship.  Simply put, I look up to Katie.  She tries to eat healthy and posts some yummy recipes.  She has lots of fun ‘how to’ posts.  She makes her own household cleaners.  We all can learn a lot from her!  I have never met her, but I stalk her quite often!

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Next up is Erica at Confessions of a Homeschooler.  Don’t stop reading if you don’t homeschool your kids!  She has created a K4 program you can do with your little one before they enter school (or just to do at home as a supplement).  She also has lots of recipes on her blog (can you tell I like finding new recipes??).




I love Carol and Stacy’s blog, Intentional Conscious Parenting, because it resonates with the way I want to parent and how I hope I am parenting.  It is all about being gentle and using the correct, positive words with your children so they can grow into wonderful adults!  They are sweet women with a wonderful blog!  Through their blog I have found out about some great kids’ books that I hadn’t already heard about!




Alright, the last one is my friend Sasha’s blog, Coming To Harriet’s Table.  I am partly adding her to this list because I love her writing, and partly because she hasn’t posted since March (maybe this will motivate her to write more)!  She is an awesome writer!  Harriet is her grandmother and she posts about how she has shaped her life, as well as about her super funny kids and family life.  The comedy in her writing is great.  You have to check out her blog to know what I’m talking about.

Okay, those are my top 5 Fabulous Bloggers.  Now, run along and go check them all out and tell them I said “Hi!'”.


Don't forget to enter the 50 Fabulous Wishes contest for a chance to win $1,000 to celebrate a friend with a refreshing attitude about looking and feeling fabulous. I was selected for this Tropicana Trop50 sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective, which endorses Blog With Integrity, as I do. I received compensation to use and facilitate my post.

Bin Laden Repented Before He Was Killed! He is in Heaven!

How do those words make you feel inside?

Does it make you want to celebrate, because he realized the errors in his ways and asked for forgiveness?

Or does it make you cringe that you will have to one day spend eternity with him in Heaven?

Hopefully it is not the latter, but I’ll be honest with you… for me, in some ways it is the latter.  Granted, it didn’t actually happen (that we know of).  But I do feel that even if I heard that news, I would not necessarily be happy for him.  Well, I would be... but not quite as happy as I probably should be.  There is this bad person inside me that says he needs to pay. (No lectures, please.  I know this is not the way I should feel and I am sharing my heart.)

I do hope that I am wrong.  I hope that if I had heard that news, that I would have been able to be happy for him.  I would imagine all of his followers would be lead to do the same, too.  How great would that be?

Anyway, this past Sunday in church, our pastor, Pete, brought this up as part of his discussion on mercy. For those who have been reading my Sunday Recap posts, this is the continuation of the series that breaks down the Beatitudes in Matthew.

This week he was discussing Matthew 5:7, Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

Dictionary.com defines mercy as, “compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one's power; compassion, pity, or benevolence”.

Pete also defined it as, sacrificing your own honor or reputation to extend love, compassion and acceptance to someone who doesn’t deserve it and can’t pay you back.

Why are we so guarded when it comes to showing mercy?  A lack of mercy is about control.  In fact, it shows you don’t trust God.  You don’t trust He will ‘convict’ someone enough or that He will change their heart.

There is something important we need to remember here.  It is not our job to convict someone to our liking.  And we cannot change what is in their heart.  We cannot “fix” them, nor should we try.  What is our ‘job’, is to love them and show them mercy.

So, when you heard of Bin Laden’s death, were you filled with relief and maybe even joy?  What if he had repented?  Would your reaction had been the same?

What if my title had a different name in it?  What about Hitler?  Stalin?  Someone who has wronged you personally?  Is there someone in your personal life who you have not shown mercy?

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Don't forget, if you want to hear the entire service from this past weekend, click here, then click on "Week 4 - Receiving What You Give".  My post here, is just a snippet of what was talked about and it was a great sermon!


Do you have a post regarding what you learned this past weekend in your place of worship?  Please link it up below so that others can read it too!

Monday, May 23, 2011

It's Fun to Learn About the Presidents!

At least it is with the Kid's Guide to Drawing the Presidents of the USA series from Timberdoodle!

The series has all the presidents from George Washington to George W. Bush.  My kids learned all about William Henry Harrison with the book that we have.  They were able to learn all about his life and presidency as well as how to draw some of the things that they learned about!

These books are especially great for our family because I am not the most artistic person in the world... okay, fine, my stick figures look bad!  So, I am thankful for anything that helps my kids not follow in my footsteps when it comes to creativity.  And, as they are having fun learning how to draw, they are learning about the presidents!

I cannot tell you how much I love books that teach my children without them knowing it!

Here's a video explaining more about the books:



One of the things that I loved about these books is that on the drawing pages, each new step is drawn in red so the child knows exactly which step is next.  Maybe even I can learn a little something about drawing! :)

Alright, so I've got good news and bad news...

The bad news is that the publisher has decided to discontinue this series.  Sad...

The good news is that Timberdoodle was able to get a great deal on the series and they are passing the savings on to all of you!  The cost is only $195 (normally it is $1060.50)!!  But hurry, because like I said, the publisher is no longer going to be making the series... so once they're gone... they're gone!

If you want to keep up with Timberdoodle and their products and sales, be sure to like them on Facebook.


As a member of Timberdoodle's Blogger Review Team I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a frank and unbiased review.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

The End of the World!




So, apparently the rapture is beginning today at 6pm... then on October 21, 2011, the world will end.

What are you doing today to prepare? ... Yeah... me neither...

This end of the world talk is all pretty silly.

Number 1... No one knows when the end of the world is... and I find it a bit arrogant that certain people are claiming they are in the know.

Number 2... what exactly are we supposed to do to prepare?  All of a sudden act like a decent human human being if you haven't been up til now? 

I have an idea... just act like a decent human being all the time, then you won't have to worry about when the rapture is coming or when the world is ending.  You have already done what you need to do to be a good person.

How do that sound?

What do you all think about the whole thing?

P.S. If they are right about all this, then I guess you won't hear my thoughts on this because most likely we won't have internet access during the rapture... or will we?

Friday, May 20, 2011

Oil in my Lamp



This song is an old song I used to sing around the campfire at church camp as a kid.  It just popped in my head the other day and I couldn’t stop singing it! (If you don't know the tune, look it up on you tube, there were a few posts for it... I just couldn't decide which one to post on here, so I thought I would just tell you about them so you could see them all!)

There are a lot of fun verses that can be added on to this song, so I looked them up to see how many I could find.  Oh my goodness!  I had no idea how many there were!

Here it is, I hope you like the step back in time!

Give me oil in my lamp, keep me burning’, burning’, burning
Give me oil in my lamp, I pray, hallelujah!
Give me oil in my lamp, keep me burning’ burning’ burning,
Keep me burning to the break of day!

(chorus)
And I will sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the King of Kings,
And I will sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to The King!

Give me joy in my heart, keep me praising 
Give me joy in my heart I pray (hallelujah!) 
Give me joy in my heart, keep me praising, praising, praising 
Keep me praising 'til the break of day 


Repeat Chorus 

Make me fishers of men, keep me seeking 
Make me fishers of men I pray (hallelujah!) 
Make me fishers of men, keep me seeking, seeking, seeking 
Keep me seeking 'til the break of day 


Repeat Chorus 

Give me love in my heart, keep me serving 
Give me love in my heart I pray (hallelujah!) 
Give me love in my heart, keep me serving, serving, serving 
Keep me serving 'til the break of day

Repeat Chorus

Hide your word in my heart, keep me learning, learning, learning
Hide your word in my heart, I pray (Hallelujah!)
Hide your word in my heart, keep me learning, learning, learning
Keep me learning ‘til the break of day

Repeat Chorus

Give me peace in my soul, keep me praising, praising, praising
Give me peace in my soul, I pray (Hallelujah!)
Give me peace in my soul, keep me praising, praising, praising
Keep me praising ‘til the break of day

Repeat Chorus


Okay, now here’s where the silly ones begin!

Give me salt for my Fritos
Cause the Lord is really neato
Give me salt for my Fritos, I pray: Hallelujah!
Give me salt for my Fritos
Cause the Lord is really neato
He is neato till the break of day

Repeat Chorus

Give me gas for my Chevy
Keep my testimony heavy
Give me gas for my Chevy I pray: Hallelujah!
Give me gas for my Chevy
Keep my testimony heavy
Keep it heavy till the break of day

Repeat Chorus

Give me gas for my Ford
Keep me truckin' for the Lord
Give me gas for my ford I pray: Hallelujah!
Give me gas for my Ford
Keep me truckin' for the Lord
Keep me truckin' till the break of day

Repeat Chorus

Give me wax for my board
Keep me surfing for the Lord
Give me wax for my board, I pray: Hallelujah!
Give me wax for my board
Keep me surfing for the Lord
Keep me surfing till the break of day

Repeat Chorus 


Give me Nikes for my feet, I’ll be preachin’ on the street
Give me Nikes for my feet, I pray: Hallelujah!
Give me Nikes for my feet I’ll be preachin’ on the street,
I’ll be preachin’ ‘til the break of day

Repeat Chorus

Give me wheels for my skates, then I'll roll to heavens gate.
Give me wheels for my skates I pray, (Hallelujah!)
Give me wheels for my skates Then I'll roll to heavens gate.
Keep me rollin' till the break of day.

Repeat Chorus

Give me umption in my gumption, help me function-function-function
Give me umption in my gumption, I pray (hallelujah!)
Give me umption in my gumption, help me function-function-function
Help me function ’til the break of day!

Repeat Chorus

Give me hot sauce in my taco, let me witness in Morocco,
Give me hot sauce in my taco, I pray (hallelujah!)
Give me hot sauce in my taco, let me witness in Morocco,
Let me witness till the break of day.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Do You Bing?



Thank you to BING for sponsoring my writing today. To learn more about BING Shopping Rewards, click here. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective, which endorses Blog With Integrity, as I do.

 
I have used Bing in the past when I need to search for something on the internet, but I have to admit that I still turn to Google as my first choice when searching.  That's really only because I'm used to it and I have a Google bar under my address bar.

I have recently learned that there is a rewards program if you use Bing as your search engine.  You earn credits when you search using Bing and you can redeem those credits for gift cards, merchandise, and even to donate to a charity.  All you have to do is go to Bing and register.  After you register, you automatically get 250 credits... just as a thank you for signing up!

You can also install a Bing bar toolbar and it will help remind you to use Bing to do your searches instead of whatever you use now.

To do a little 'research' before I wrote this post, I searched something on Bing that I had searched earlier today on Google.  Quite a few of the links were the same ones that Google had found for me, but there were definitely more that were new.  In fact, while I was looking on the new sites that Bing found for me, I lost track of time and almost forgot I was supposed to be trying out Bing!

Speaking of getting lost in the links Bing gave me... I totally found something I want to purchase!  I was searching for a new math curriculum for the kids.  When I was searching earlier on Google, I found the curriculum I wanted, but it wasn't necessarily the price I wanted.  Bing showed me a different website that has it for a better price!  Yay!

It's funny to think about how shopping has changed in the last few years (okay, more than a few) with the addition of internet shopping.  I'm sure parents that homeschooled 30 years ago would think it is crazy to do my curriculum shopping on the internet!

I tell you what, though... I love it!  I love the lack of pressure of shopping online.  I can research different curriculum without the makers trying to convince me why I should buy theirs instead of the other guys!  I can look at tons of clothes and shoes and drool over it all without having to drag my kids out and drive myself crazy at a store.

Anyway, enough of my rambling... go check out Bing and start earning your credits so you can get a Starbucks gift card! (Well, that's what I'm going to be getting anyway... don't judge me!)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wildflowers & Whimsy: Ruthie's Romper Giveaway!!

Check out this cute Romper that Wildflowers and Whimsy is giving away on her blog! So. Stinkin'. Cute!


Click on the picture above to go and enter.



Disclaimer:  You have to have a blog to enter this giveaway.

Some Call It Orthorexia Nervosa

Some call it ‘natural’ the way my family (and  most of my close friends) live our life.  Well, now there are others that call it ‘orthorexia nervosa’.

And by others, I mean Dr. Steven Bratman.  He’s the one who coined this term as a new disease.  The label is to be given to those people who are silly enough to read the labels of the foods they buy.  The people who try to buy whole foods… you know, like actual fruits and vegetables as a main part of their grocery list.  The people who avoid certain ingredients in their foods.


Yes, folks if you do those things I just listed, you might just have orthorexia nervosa.  Don’t worry, though.  With a little psychological help, you will be good as new in no time.  You will be eating all the processed foods you want without a care in the world!  Fruits?  Vegetables?  What are those?!  Who needs ‘em?

Silly, right?  Yes, I think so too!

Orthorexia Nervosa means “nervous about correct eating” in Latin.  I originally read about this absurd new disease on Natural News.  Feel free to check it out.  The writers are quite amusing.  Here’s a little excerpt from the article:

According to reports, orthorexics "may start by eliminating processed foods, anything with artificial colorings or flavorings as well as foods that have come into contact with pesticides, and eventually shun other things like caffeine and alcohol."

Imagine not eating anything that has come in contact with pesticides!?  Or avoiding caffeine and alcohol!?  The horror!

It is important to note, that thankfully, this disease has not been added to the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM).  I would not doubt that one day it will, though.

Also, if you want to go here, you can read a letter from Dr. Bratman explaining himself and how he only meant for this disease to be a label for those that are obsessive over healthy eating.  Ohhhh, okay.  That makes it all better.

I understand that Dr. Bratman is trying to help those that are obsessed about healthy eating, but come on!  Who is the one that gets to decide who is obsessed and who is not?  Where is that line going to be drawn?

Please tell me I’m not the only one that finds this ‘disease’ ridiculous!

If only more people had this fictitious disease, there would be less people with real diseases!

I wish all of my fellow orthorexics out there a healthy day!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Sunday Recap:Take Time To Mourn

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Blake Bergstrom gave the sermon this week.  He continued the study on the Beatitudes from Matthew.

The verse for this week was Matthew 5:4 – Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

This verse is not just talking about death.  It is speaking of any loss or rejection.  You need to acknowledge your loss and mourn it properly.  In today’s fast paced times, we tend to make ourselves ‘busy’ in times of loss.  We don’t take the time to grieve.

It is easy to grieve and leave our hearts wide open when we know that God is on our side.  He is there to comfort us.  And, he has placed people in our life that will comfort us as well!

He also wants us to mourn for others’ pain.  Mourn for the people in the world that are hungry, abused, and those that have suffered loss.  As Blake said, “Mourning elicits action and breeds courageous engagement.”

God not call us to wallow in pain and sadness.  Yes, take the time to mourn.  Then after that, do something!  If you are mourning others’ pain, let it move you to do something about it and help them.  If you are mourning your own loss, let it move you to learn something about yourself.

There will always be hurt in this world.  Let us mourn that pain and then let it move us to do good.

If you would like to hear the entire sermon, go here.

If you have your own Sunday Recap you would like to share, please leave it in the linky below.  I would love to read it!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Are You Eating Glue?

This is an article by Dr. Mercola that I found extremely interesting.  I was going to write a post about it and tell you guys all about it, then I thought I would just copy it all here so you get the whole story instead of just my ramblings about it! :)

Let me just say that after watching this video and reading Dr. Mercola's comments on the subject, it makes me even more happy that we get our meat from a local farmer.  Their meat is grass fed and finished, left to do what animals do with no drugs and human interference!

Speaking of me rambling... I'm going to shut up now and let Dr. Mercola and the following video do the talking.  




The Dangers of Meat Glue and Processed Meat: "If you are still on the fence, wondering if you should make the switch to organic, grass-fed beef from a local farm instead of the mass-produced variety from your local supermarket, perhaps this news brief from the Australian Today Tonight show will help change your mind.

If you haven't yet seen the video, please click through and be ready to be amazed.

By now most people probably realize that ground beef contains the meat from hundreds of animals from different parts of the world, but few would ever suspect that the same can be true for prime cut steaks! Well, that's possible through the use of so-called meat glue, used to 'super-glue' small chunks of meat together that are too small to sell, and passing it off as prime cuts...

What is Meat Glue?

Meat glue is an enzyme called transglutaminase. Some meat glues are produced through the cultivation of bacteria, while others are made from the blood plasma of pigs and cows, specifically the coagulant that makes blood clot.

When sprinkled on a protein, such as beef, it forms cross-linked, insoluble protein polymers that essentially acts like a super-glue, binding the pieces together with near invisible seams. The glue-covered meat is rolled up in plastic film, followed by refrigeration. Some manufacturers have gotten so proficient in the practice that even an expert butcher can't tell the difference between a piece of prime beef and one that's been glued together with bits and pieces of scraps!

Meat glue is also used for:

Pork / ham Lamb Fish products such as fish balls
Chicken Imitation crab meat Processed meats

Interestingly enough, Ajinomoto is one of the leaders in transglutaminase. You may recognize that name as they are also one of the leaders in aspartame. According to their website, transglutaminase is also used to 'improve the general texture' of a variety of foods aside from meat, such as fat-free yoghurt and cheese.

Meat Glue—Both Unethical and Potentially Dangerous

First, there's the obvious issue of misleading consumers. Since food manufacturers are not required to disclose what they've done, you think you're buying a prime cut when in fact you're paying top dollar for glued-together bits and pieces that would otherwise have been discarded or sold for a fraction of the cost.

But aside from the fact that it's a pure scam, there's the increased possibility of contracting food poisoning from these meats.

According to the featured report, the bacterial contamination of meat glued steak is hundreds of times higher than a solid piece of steak! Hence, if you cook your steak rare, which is the healthiest way to cook your meat, you're at a much greater risk of contracting food poisoning.

Additionally, when an outbreak does occur, it's difficult, if not impossible, to discern the source of the contamination, as chunks of meat from multiple cows have now been combined.

Food poisoning is a serious problem in the US. According to US CDC estimates, anywhere between 6 to 81 million Americans contract food borne illnesses each year, and food poisoning claims up to 9,000 lives annually. Considering the fact that our current food system encourages pathogens and contaminations of all kinds, it's not all that surprising that as many as one in four people get sickened each year…

The Dangers of Mass Food Production

Many people are still in the dark about the vast differences between Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) and organically-raised, grass-fed beef, both in terms of contamination and nutrient content.

It's important to understand that when you raise animals in a CAFO -- away from their natural environments and diets – you dramatically increase the risk of pathogenic contamination that can make you ill. Just take a look at the 2011 USDA list of recalls for various meat products. We're not even half-way through the year and the list is already a long one.

Most CAFO cows are fed grains (oftentimes genetically modified grains, which make matters even worse), when their natural diet is plain grass. Grain diets create a much higher level of acidity in the animal's stomach, which E. coli bacteria need to survive.

Meanwhile, E. coli contamination is actually quite rare in organic beef for this reason—the cows just aren't susceptible to those kinds of disease-causing bacteria and viruses when they eat what they were designed to eat.

You'd think that since the meat is being raised in ways that are known to encourage disease-causing organisms, there'd be stringent requirements on testing. Unfortunately, that's not the case. For example, there is no federal requirement for meat grinders to test their ingredients for E.coli prior to selling them. And most retailers do not test either. In August 2008, the USDA issued a guideline urging meat processors to test their ingredients before grinding. But the guideline is only optional and has been met with criticism and resistance from the meat industry.

Other Health-Harming Side Effects of Mass Food Production

Modern mass production of food has created a wide array of safety problems. And the methods employed to make food 'safer' typically deepens rather than solves them. In fact, once you delve into the world of the food industry, it becomes clear that eating much of it is like playing a game of Russian roulette with your health.

While I'm not going to address them all here, one problem in particular, which relates to the issue of meat, is the issue of contamination with hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides. As much as 70 percent of all antibiotics used in the U.S. are for animals, primarily to serve as growth enhancers. The excessive use of antibiotics in agriculture is the primary reason for the rampant increase in antibiotic-resistant disease in humans.

As for pesticides, most people do not realize that conventionally-raised meat is actually one of the primary sources of pesticide exposure—not fruits and vegetables!

How's that?

Again, it goes back to the fact that CAFO animals are raised on a diet consisting primarily of grains, which are of course sprayed with pesticides.

Genetically modified (GM) grains are another growing problem. Not only are they sprayed with MORE pesticides than conventional crops, but we also do not know exactly what the health effects on humans might be when you eat meat raised on GM grains.

However, in an open letter to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, Dr. Don Huber, professor emeritus at Purdue University, warns that a never-before-seen plant pathogen in Roundup Ready GM soybean and corn appears to be responsible for high rates of infertility and miscarriages in cattle.

In the letter, posted on the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance website, Dr. Huber states:

'This previously unknown organism is only visible under an electron microscope (36,000X), with an approximate size range equal to a medium size virus. It is able to reproduce and appears to be a micro-fungal-like organism. If so, it would be the first such micro-fungus ever identified. There is strong evidence that this infectious agent promotes diseases of both plants and mammals, which is very rare.

... Laboratory tests have confirmed the presence of this organism in a wide variety of livestock that have experienced spontaneous abortions and infertility. Preliminary results from ongoing research have also been able to reproduce abortions in a clinical setting.

The pathogen may explain the escalating frequency of infertility and spontaneous abortions over the past few years in US cattle, dairy, swine, and horse operations. These include recent reports of infertility rates in dairy heifers of over 20%, and spontaneous abortions in cattle as high as 45%.'

Whether or not this could affect humans who consume these grains or meats raised on them is yet unknown, but I wouldn't be the least surprised if that's exactly what we'll eventually find...

Meat Glue May Be the Least of Your Problems when it Comes to Processed Meats

As mentioned earlier, meat glue is also commonly used in processed meats, but that may be the least of your problems in this case. Processed meats are so bad for your health that I am firmly convinced they should NEVER be consumed. But that's not just my opinion. It's also the conclusion reached by the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) after reviewing more than 7,000 clinical studies examining the connection between diet and cancer.

Processed meats are those preserved by smoking, curing or salting, or the addition of chemical preservatives. This includes bacon, ham, pastrami, salami, pepperoni, hot dogs, some sausages and hamburgers (if they have been preserved with salt or chemical additives) and more.

Particularly problematic are the nitrates that are added to these meats as a preservative, coloring and flavoring. The nitrates found in processed meats are frequently converted into nitrosamines, which are clearly associated with an increased risk of certain cancers.

The latest research from WCRF is only the most recent of a slew of evidence linking processed meats to cancer.

A 2007 analysis by WCRF found that eating just one sausage a day can significantly raise your risk of bowel cancer. Specifically, 1.8 ounces of processed meat daily -- about one sausage or three pieces of bacon -- raises the likelihood of the cancer by 20 percent.

Other studies have also found that processed meats increase your risk of:

Colon cancer by 50 percent
Bladder cancer by 59 percent
Stomach cancer by 38 percent
Pancreatic cancer by 67 percent

And that's not all. Hot dogs, bacon, salami and other processed meats may also increase your risk of diabetes by 50 percent, and lower your lung function and increase your risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Why is Grass-Fed Beef Your Best Choice?

A safer option, as many consumers are now beginning to appreciate, is to choose locally grown and raised foods over those that have been mass produced, despite label claims of being 'natural' or 'organic.'

When selecting beef, grass-fed beef that has NOT been 'finished off on corn' is definitely your healthiest option as it is:

A natural source of healthy omega-3 fats – Omega-3s in cattle that feed on grass is 7 percent of the total fat content, compared to just 1 percent in grain-only fed beef. It also has the optimal ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats (3:1)
High in CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid); a fat that reduces your risk of cancer, obesity, diabetes, and a number of immune disorders
High in beta carotene
Loaded with over 400 percent more of vitamins A and E
Virtually devoid of risk of Mad Cow Disease

You know, the rationale behind my nutritional guidelines really boil down to plain old common sense. My recommendations stem largely from what scientific research has determined are the types of foods that humans are naturally designed to eat. Health problems invariably surface the further you stray from eating such foods. Another way to say this would be that your body's biochemical make-up is adversely affected if you eat things that aren't right for you.

One result of this is that your body's composition will inevitably change.

Why would things be any different for a cow?

When you think of a cow in its natural environment, doing what it naturally does, you likely will picture it grazing. Is it grazing on stalks of corn? Of course not! It's grazing on green grass. (Animals given a choice will also avoid genetically modified grains, which really should tell us something...)

When cows eat grains, their body composition changes in detrimental ways, just like your body and health changes for the worse when you eat lots of junk- and fast food. Most importantly for you, these changes include an alteration in the balance of fatty acids in their bodies, which leads to an imbalance in YOUR intake of omega-3 and omega-6s as well.

Does the E. Coli Risk Decrease With Grass-Fed Beef?

Yes, it does.

Grass-finished beef has a minimal risk compared to grain-fed beef due to the difference in epigastric pH in the two diets.

Grain diets create a much higher level of acidity in the animal's stomach, which is exactly what the E.coli bacteria need to survive and thrive.

Additionally, grass-finished animals live in clean grass pastures—as opposed to dirty, crowded pens—where higher levels of sanitation greatly reduce the risk of contamination as well.

How to Make Healthier Meat Choices

If you want to eat beeft in a truly healthful way (and yes, meat can be, and is, healthy), while at the same time avoiding getting fooled by glued piece-meats passed off as prime steak, follow these guidelines:

The beef should be organic and grass-fed
It should ideally come from a local farmer (try finding a farmer's market or community-supported agriculture program in your area to do this) who can verify that the products are raised on pasture without antibiotics and pesticides, and who can tell you which cuts you're actually getting
The animals should be allowed to live in their natural habitats, eating their natural diets
The farmer should be aware of the relationships between animals, plants, insects, soil, water and habitat -- and how to use these relationships to create synergistic, self-supporting ecosystems

As you may know, I recommend eating as much food raw as possible, including meat. However, it absolutely MUST be grass-fed!

You're literally risking your life if you eat conventionally-raised CAFO meat raw due to the high rate of pathogenic contamination. That goes for both prime cuts and the glued variety.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Sunday Recap: Blessed Are The Meek

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Last week, Pete began discussing the Beatitudes in Matthew, Chapter 5.  If you missed it, you can read about it here.

This week, he went on and talked about Matthew 5:5 - Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.  What do you think of when you hear the word meek?  What kind of person?  Doormat… geek… weak?

Pete defines meek for us as strength under control.  Someone who is meek will always be angry at the right time and never be angry at the wrong time.  They know who they are.  The meek don’t always have to win or have their way.  They are inconceivable strong!

Okay, now that we understand what Jesus meant by meek, let’s talk about what he means by ‘inherit the earth’.  Basically, that just means who will ‘win in life’.  Who will have all the stuff?  All the nice clothes, the big house, the awesome job… You see, they were worried about that back then, just as we are now.  Sad, isn’t it? 

Another place where the meek were spoken about was in Psalm 37:1-11:
1Do not fret because of those who are evil or be envious of those who do wrong; 2for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away. 3Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this; 6He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. 7Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. 8Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret – it leads only to evil. 9For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land. 10A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found. 11But the meek will inherit the land and enjoy peace and prosperity.

There are a couple of things you can take away from these verses.
  1. Do not fret – He says it 3 times.  I have to assume he says it 3 times because he really wants it to sink in.  He does not want us to worry about anything!  Don’t worry about the people that are doing wrong things and still coming out ahead.  Because…
  2. The meek will inherit the earth.  All the people that are able to keep their anger in check and not concern themselves with the people who are doing wrong.  They will enjoy peace and prosperity!
  3. Also, just as a side note, the people Jesus was speaking to here had just had their land taken from them by the Babylonians, so this was just what they needed to hear at the time.
Again, in Matthew 5:38-42, having control over your emotions, or meek, is talked about:
38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’   39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person.  If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41 If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.  42 Give to the one who asks you, and do turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you."

Why should I give them my coat?  Why should I walk 2 miles instead of one?  Because you would be exhibiting strength under control.  You know that you don’t always have to win.

Some might say, “But wait, what if they do win?”  That’s okay, because Jesus says, ‘Blesses are the meek.’ 

We try to overcompensate when we don’t think we are getting what we deserve in life, because we think the disciplined, organized, put together people will inherit the earth.  The ones with the nice cars, nice house and nice job.  The most important thing to remember is that God orders the world differently than people order the world.  The people we think will win in life aren’t necessarily the one that will win.

The one major thing I got out of this service was to always try to keep my anger in check and not worry about what others are ‘getting’ in life.

Go here if you would like to hear the entire message.

If you have a Sunday Recap post, leave on Mister Linky below!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

10 ways I want to be like my mommy



A list of characteristics I admire in my own mother, that I hope to emulate.

  1. Dedication- When she sets out to do something, she really does it.  She stays dedicated to the end.
  2. Selflessness- On a weekly, if not daily basis, she is doing things for others.
  3. Empathy- My mom really puts herself in other’s shoes, so to speak.  
  4. Giving- She really has down the whole ‘you need to give to receive’ mantra… except she doesn’t expect to receive.
  5. Persistence- No matter what it is, she will persist until she gets the result she desires… whether it be getting the right price for something at a store or getting us to come visit her. Smile
  6. Loyalty- She is a friend to the end.
  7. Prayerful- She knows to turn to God to thank him for wonderful things and ask for help with difficult things.
  8. Faith- She also has the faith that once it’s prayed for she can let go of it, because it is in God’s hands.
  9. Young- No matter her age (I’m not telling), she still can out-walk anyone at Disneyworld, then be ready to get dessert on the way home!
  10. Friend- Okay, so this isn’t really a ‘characteristic’, per say, but I didn’t know how else to put it.  She is a great friend.  To me and all her other friends.  I wish I knew her secret so that I will be as good a friend to my kids, too.  I actually want to talk to her on the phone every day.  I hope my kids will want to do the same.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the mommas out there!

Here's my lovely family.  See my pretty momma? :)

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Where are all the 3D glasses going??

3d glasses

I thought they were cleaned or recycled, like talked about in this post.  But now, I realize I am incorrect.

Yesterday, my husband went to see Thor in 3D.  After the movie, he asked one of the theater employees where he should put the 3D glasses he used and the response was, “Just toss ‘em”.  Seriously?  No separate container to put them in to later be cleaned or recycled??

Even if there is a separate container… What about all the ones that end up in the trash from people who don’t put it in the right bin?  What about the theaters that don’t even have a separate bin?

Now, I know that 3D glasses are small and probably don’t even compare to the amount of plastic drinking containers that are thrown away on a daily basis.  But, with the amount of 3D movies that are being made lately, the piles of 3D glasses being thrown away is most likely getting pretty high!

What can be done about this?  The most obvious solution for me is to not make as many 3D movies or stop altogether!  I mean, what is up with all the 3D movies?  Can we not just watch a regular movie?  I saw Avatar (not in 3D) and it was a great movie!  (Can you tell I’m not a fan of the 3D movies?)

Okay, so for all of you that don’t like my no 3D movie option, how about we ask all theaters to have a separate container for the glasses?  Or…  and this is my favorite solution, but I’m sure the movie companies and theaters won’t like it… have some sort of incentive for people to save their glasses.  For instance, if you bring your own 3D glasses to a movie you don’t have to pay the whole $3 extra or however much the theater charges.

That’s my 2 cents anyway.  Not that anyone asked.  I just had to vent a bit about that.  Thanks for sitting through it (if you made it this far in the post).

I need to know, though.  What do you all think?  What is your solution?  Do you even like 3D movies?  (Please tell me I’m not alone in the anti 3D stance!)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Blogger or Wordpress??

Warning to my readers: This post is pretty much just for my fellow bloggers.  I promise I won’t do this kind of post often, so please don’t be mad at me. Smile

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     Blogger Logo                                                                  Wordpress Logo
So… there is a discussion among some of my blog friends about which is better, blogger or wordpress. 

Some say you get a better google pr, faster, with wordpress.  If you are on my site reading this, you know that I have a blogspot blog.  Do I need to switch?

If I want a higher pr is wordpress the way to go?  Does wordpress have some sort of system that gets you in the search engines better?  How many visits per month does it take to change your google pr?

All of a sudden I feel really uneducated when it comes to all this.

Anyone have any opinions about it?  Do you use wordpress?  Blogger?  Something else"? 

Sell me on the one you love!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

My Sweet Tea Addiction

When I stopped nursing my youngest, I gave myself permission to drink sweet tea whenever the heck I wanted.  Well, it seems that whenever the heck I want, equates to all day every day.  Not good.

I have never drank sweet tea in the quantities that I do now.  I guess after being pregnant with 3 kids and nursing each one a little over 2 years I was/am feeling a little bit like indulging!  I didn’t let myself have so many things when I was pregnant and nursing (don’t get me wrong, I “cheated” with a glass of sweet tea here and there).

Well, now I’m not pregnant.  I’m not providing milk for anyone.  I can put anything in my body I want, right!?  Technically, yes.  Is it the best idea?  Probably not.  Am I ready to quit?  Not yet.

If there are any other sweet tea addicts out there Rooibus is a great substitute for the sweet tea you would get at a restaurant.   It is an herbal tea you can find in most grocery stores (in the ‘healthy’ area).  It does taste really good!  And it’s really good for you too!  You have to actually make it though, and for some reason, lately, I’ve been far too lazy for that.  Sad.

Any other sweet tea addicts out there?
Milo's sweet tea
Milo's Sweet Tea is my poison of choice.  It is the only sweet tea you can buy in stores that just has tea, water and sugar AND tastes like real southern sweet tea!  Mmmmmm!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sunday Recap : The Modern Beatitudes



This week started a new series at Crosspoint called 'Anything But Ordinary' where Pete Wilson started discussing the Beatitudes in Matthew, Chapter 5.

For those that don’t know, the Beatitudes are:
  • Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
  • Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
  • Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
  • Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
  • Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
  • Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.
  • Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.  Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
This week, Pete concentrated on the first Beatitude; Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

First of all, what does it mean to be ‘blessed’?  It means God is on your side.  He is divinely with you.  If you know even a little bit about the Bible, you know that people definitely thought that only certain people were blessed.  God was only on the side of certain people.

Well, what does it mean to be ‘poor in spirit’?  According to Pete, that terminology back then, meant that you were pathetic.  A loser.  Morally empty.  And, of course, by the standards back then, someone who is a pathetic, morally empty, loser, surely would not have God’s graces!

When Jesus stood up and announced to the crowd of people that those who are poor in spirit are blessed… well, I would imagine they were all fairly shocked!  Those type of people should not be blessed!  They don’t deserve God’s love!  Well, Jesus says that they DO deserve and in fact, receive God’s love!

How can we apply the 1st Beatitude in our own life?  Here are Pete’s suggestions:
  1. If you ‘have it all together’… be careful.  You may convince yourself this first Beatitude isn’t for you and become complacent.
  2. If you don’t feel you ‘have it all together’… remember… blessed are the poor in spirit.  God IS with you.  You ARE blessed.  You deserve love.

Pete also shared with us what Joe Abbey-Colborne wrote about how we live by a different set of values in this modern world:
  • Blessed are the well off and those with ready answers for every spiritual question; they have it all.
  • Blessed are the comfortable; they shall avoid grief.
  • Blessed are the self-sufficient; they wait for nothing, they have everything they want, and they have it now.
  • Blessed are those who are not troubled by the injustice experienced by others; they are content with realistic expectations.
  • Blessed are the ones who gain the upper hand; they take full advantage of their advantages.
  • Blessed are those with a solid public image and a well hidden agenda; they are never exposed and see people in a way that suits their purposes.
  • Blessed are those who can point to someone else who is a worse person than they are, they will always look good by comparison.
    Blessed are you when people praise you, give you preferential treatment, and flatter you because they think you’re so great. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, because it doesn’t get any better than this.
Isn’t this how we really see the world?  Let us strive to live our life based on the original Beatitudes and not these new ones.

If you would like to hear this sermon in its entirety, click here and see the link for ABO: Spiritually Bankrupt.  It is week one in the Anything But Ordinary Series.

See you next week when we will continue the discussion on the Beatitudes.

Join in on the Sunday Recap linky below and read others.

Sunday Recap

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The Sunday Recap is a place for us to share what we learned on Sunday in all our churches/places of worship.  Please join me by linking up your Sunday Recap post.
How?  It’s easy!  Here is what you do:
  1. Write a recap post about what you learned Sunday at your place of worship (if your place of worship is your living room, by yourself, that’s okay too!)
  2. Link it up on the current week’s Sunday Recap linky.
  3. At the top of your post, put the Sunday Recap button and link it back to that week’s post on Some Call It Natural so that your readers can see everyone’s Sunday Recap post.
  4. Have fun reading everyone's post!
That’s it!  If you have questions, feel free to leave a comment on this post or send me an email.