Tag Archives: water

Matcha Matcha Ma’am…

7 Mar

Yes.  I’m still here.

Yes.  Those are green brains!

My get up and go got up and went long ago.  I think it used mapquest for directions to wherever it was heading, and well, hasn’t been seen since.  I’m 99.9% sure it had my last marble in it’s pocket.

More soon.  Really.

Another couple of tests last month, so this month I have to get those bills corrected and argue with the insurance company because apparently they’ll pay for CT scan if you have swollen lymph nodes AND pain.  But if it’s something painless (and we all know that typically it’s the painless stuff that’s more worrisome) then they want to pretend it doesn’t exist.  I swear I know entirely too many people who are like the insurance company in that way…..

I have been drinking Matcha (with Splenda… Don’t bother correcting my usage of splenda in the comments.  People who do that make me bananas.  Not all of us tolerate stevia or sugar alcohols or honey or unbleached/brown sugar.  Thanks for your input, but if I’m going to have one freaking vice it will be mine to choose and I choose the splenda because everything else has been off limits for awhile.  Peace.)…. I think I am addicted to Matcha.

Occasionally, I whip (with a handy little bamboo whisk with a chunky handle that’s almost easy to grip with my RA-stiff hands) up a little too much.  I can’t waste it.  Good matcha tends to be a little pricey (I can rationalize that for you if you want me too) but it is, in my experience, more of a basal rate of caffeine, whereas coffee is an instant and short lived bolus…  So I take the extra matcha, sweeten it (with SPLENDA…. LAAAAA! Actually with EZ Sweetz, a liquid version so I don’t have to attempt opening packets and dumping them in without spilling everywhere and making my kitchen and myself look like Bronson Pinchot in True Romance), and pour it in a silicone ice tray.  This week I only had the brains ready to go.  So I have these fantastically large matcha brain-cubes for my widemouth water bottle… As they melt they release gentle Matcha flavoring into the water and they buoy my energy just a wee bit.

I also make kid a simple frappe with milk, probiotic fruit/veggie powder, matcha, and a wee bit of honey or fairly local (in state) demarara…. (and again, want to protest my use of milk as it does something mean to the whateverkins in the green tea?  I’m just happy I found another way to get protein, carbs, fiber, fat, and probiotics into my kid. Beggars can’t be choosers…. It’s dairy or bust around here thanks to enzyme deficiency and food additives.)

I killed my laptop while trying to be a good, organized do-bee, so that picture will have to wait.

More soon.  Really. *cheers*

B

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A Chip Off the Old SIGG bottle.

8 Sep

Sigg & BPA

Originally uploaded by CleverIndie

SIGG was a company many of us trusted. We were led to believe that we were making healthier choices for our families by choosing SIGG’s water bottles. Many of us recommended their products to friends and family, hoping to spread the healthy message of avoiding BPA.

I don’t feel like we drank the kool-aid. I feel like someone slipped something in our drink, in this case it’s in our water.

They claim the amounts of BPA are not able to leach into the water.

Here is Alex’s bottle. See the chips and the damage to the threads? That’s through regular wear and washing-since June 2008. The bottle is always used with a plastic SIGG “sport” top. Our other bottles don’t look like this, thankfully. Even if the BPA in these bottles really doesn’t leach in water, what about the folks that use their bottles for more acidic beverages? How does their supposed non-leaching liner behave then?

And what about when that lining chips off while the thoughtful Mama, trying to do the best for her kid, screws on the top and that little bit of lining enters his mouth, and travels into his stomach?

Does the BPA leach in the digestive system?

What does that BPA do to growth and development in that kid?

I’m curious.
I’m frustrated. I’m disappointed. I’m angry.

I’m exhausted.

Not over the bottles. Or, not completely over the bottles. I guess we have to assume that if damage was done, it has already been done.  But don’t take that as me being passive because if anyone contributes to the challenges Alex faces in this world I cannot let it just float into the wind as just a hard lesson learned in the trenches.

So what to do? Right now I’m sitting here looking at 5 bottles and wondering what to do.

Will people ever trust SIGG and their new eco-liner? The company is offering a voluntary bottle exchange- send in your old bottles and they will email you a code to cover the cost of a replacement with the new liner, from their webstore, but that is little consolation to those of us who put our health, the health of our families, our cash, and our reputations on the line.

But do we trust the new liner? Will we ever trust Sigg again?

And when will the FDA catch up with Canada regarding banning BPA?

And what will this stuff do to my kid, who probably has ingested a chunk of it. Or what has it done already?

Windows…

5 Aug

No, not Vista… I’m talking about outdoor windows…

The sliding glass door has been my nemesis for quite some time…

When we moved in getting that thing clean was an epic adventure.

So, this time I brought in the big blue genie…

Dawn.

“Basic” Dawn Dishwashing Detergent does a whole load of stuff….

I use it as the burnishing fluid in my tumbler…. I used it to scrub (with a softish but still slightly rigid brush) my big glass door before squeegeeing… And I have to confess, a squirt of blue Dawn down the commode every once in a while really helps to keep things moving (and get things moving…if the um offending stoppage isn’t just paper…Hey, *%it happens. Also, I no longer even bother with stain remover on any greasy spots (even dairy leaves little greasy kisses on clothes)- as most of my clothes are cotton these days (good ol’ casual Florida!)…I put a dab of Dawn on the top and underside of the stain (to really kick it’s greasy arse) and throw it in the wash… Sure I love my “all natural” old school detergents and soaps, but Dawn is a great little weapon (and the small bottle lasts us around 6 months…and oddly enough, I tested some of the things I do with Dr. Bronner’s and some of the more natural/branded/marketed stuff from Ada’s Market and Dawn came out ahead…But for a quick cleaning of a mirror and everyday home maintenance I find that vinegar and water and baking soda work wonders….

I’m glad to see I’m not the only loony using dawn on windows- there was a gentleman on the today show with the dishwashing liquid suggestion as well. He had a nifty giant sponge though…Have to get me one of those…

The Return of The Fanny Pack

2 Jun

Wear It Florida.

Originally uploaded by CleverGirlBek

Wear what?

Fanny packs?

I’m glad to see my mother is up on this. She hasn’t stopped wearing hers since she hit 58 a decade ago. It’s her dog walking gear bag. Handily manages the poo bags, her mile long Virginia Slims, a lighter and the keys to all of the gates in the fortress…er…gated community,she lives in… I’m glad the State of Florida has launched this initiative.

Perhaps the fanny pack campaign will spread far and wide- Click It or Ticket seems to touch many states, perhaps Wear It Florida will do the same. People everywhere will be buckling up their fanny packs and their seat belts. Movie stars will be spotted at shmancy red carpet events and instead of “Who are you wearing?” and a toe to crown pan the lenses will zoom in on those belted bags of glorious hands free convenience.

In all seriousness, I have seen the commercials. Florida has launched a campaign to promote boating safety through the wearing of life jackets.

Anyone who is around boats and boat supplies probably knows that the little “fanny pack” depicted in the logo is actually one of those fancy and convenient self-inflating flotation devices. Basically, they inflate when you hit the water.  The majority of self-inflating pfd’s have the familiar look of more traditional personal flotation devices but without the bulk.  Only a few are “pouches” that look like the ones in the logo. So which graphic would have taught more on glance? Fanny pack or traditional life jacket shape? (maybe a bright orange to depict “safety”?   just an idea…)

I did a little research… Turns out that in 2007 there were 77 boat related fatalities. 70% of the accidents occurred in situations, if I am understanding this correctly, where the operator of the boat did not have formal boating and water safety training.

Here is what I am finding very interesting…

Boat operators under the age of 21, in Florida, are required to have a boating education card (signifying that they have completed boat/water safety courses…courses are even available online).

According to the report available from Florida Fish and Wildlife (http://myfwc.com/law/boating/) 51% of the folks who perished in boating accidents/mishaps drowned. That is (rounding down) 39 people in 2007. The rest died from “trauma” or “other”….

Interestingly, in these fatal incidents, 87% of the operators were over 21 years old. (to balance that 19% of the operators were in the 21-35 age bracket and theoretically would have been under 21 and would have been required to have completed a safety education course as the act to require that of the under 21 crowd was put into play in 1996. Note that this still leaves 68% of operators in fatal boating accidents in Florida in 2007 as not required to have completed a boating safety course. By the way, the under 21 crowd only accounts for 13% of fatal boating incidents in 2007. (Numbers not adding up? 1% did not have ages reported)

So, 39 people drowned in boating incidents in 2007.

I assumed, with the amount of advertising the Wear It campaign has been sucking up, that the number would be much higher.

So why do I care? Well, I found the fanny pack thing funny. I know what it is, but I’m betting that if you showed that logo to anyone who is not already boat and water safety savvy they will probably guess it’s that fashion icon of the 1980’s- the “waist bag”…

Now, if 70% of accidents occurred on boats where the operator had no formal safety education, then couldn’t we assume that those 70% might not know about the inflatable flotation devices and that they might, on a logo, look like a fanny pack? Especially if the folks are not year round water/boat folks, I don’t see how this logo is going to create any recognition for water safety in the audience that needs to be getting this information and getting it now. However, any Florida-based manufacturers of fanny pack souvenirs may want to hop aboard this campaign.

Anyway, the other day I was looking for some Florida agency issued water and pool safety printables- bookmarks, stickers, anything at all to add to the goody bags for the last day of preschool. I found tons of information on child drownings in Florida and safety suggestions for parents and caregivers to implement, but I found nothing geared for kids. I found printables from states that are not even in the “top 10” drowning states… Perhaps this sort of thing is available in person and not online…One thing I have noticed since moving here is not that much information regarding our state, state offices, and procedures is available online, or at least not easily located or interpretable.

In 2001-2005 an average of 73 kids 0-4 years old died, per year, by unintentional drowning (yes, they specify unintentional.)

In all ages groups an average of 465 people died in unintentional drownings every year between 2001-2005 (which was the last year they published the report). 7% of the total drownings were boating related. 61% occurred in pools or natural water (27% are reported as “other”, 5% were bathtub related).

67% of drowning deaths were in people ages 25+

71%of cases (in 0-4 year old drownings)accessed the pool through a door leading from the home to the pool area. And there really has not been much of a drop in swimming pool related, unintentional drownings in the 0-4 age group since the October 2000 application of the Pool Barrier Law. This tells me that not only are people not using enough layers of security around their pools for whatever reason (expense? aesthetic? there can be many reasons, obviously none of them valid when we are talking about the life of a child, but for what reasons are these layers of safety being breached or not created at all? this definitely warrants further investigation, in my opinion… I think if accidents are happening because of minor oversights, then how can all of us work together to fix those oversights…), it also suggests to me that kids are not being taught rules regarding safety early enough. My kid knows that he cannot leave this house or his grandparents house- and I mean the actual four walls of the house- unless he is holding the hand of one of his parents or grandparents. I believe educating him about this from early on has helped stave off many potential tragedies. I do not believe that any of us are invincible, but keeping him as safe as he can-when he is in sight and out of my sight (by educating him) is my top priority. He cannot experience the joys of life, he will not have the chance to reach his potential, if I do not do my job in teaching him safety. I also was unaware of some of the things that happen when someone drowns- I did not realize that drowning is typically silent. That usually nobody hears a splash of a child falling in the pool. Once I learned that I tightened security. Perhaps if more people knew that they would realize that the minute where they run inside to turn off the kettle or grab the phone is one minute too long….

And the literature available regarding child safety and water is geared at parents- it should also be geared at kids. In a parallel, adults may know plenty about keeping our kids safe in regards to strangers, but unless kids are taught the rules regarding strangers and safety, our knowledge is only as good as our eyesight and as far as the nearest wall or door. It needs to be the same with water safety. It isn’t a complete fix, but education of everyone, might help the numbers some.

Another thing that we are terribly aware of in our family is that adults do drown. We have experienced this tragedy in our family, not too long ago, and I have read about it in our city at least twice since the new year. These adults had one major thing in common. They were swimming alone.

Nobody should swim alone. NOBODY. Perhaps many of these drownings and near drownings (which number over 1000 on average, per year, in Florida) could have been prevented and lives saved if people of all ages would learn and follow this rule.

Perhaps if the State of Florida would take the advertising dollars spent on the potential prevention of the loss of 40 lives each year and spent even just a portion of the time and energy on educating adults and children on the dangers of swimming alone, then perhaps a real dent would be made in these numbers. Potentially, hundreds of lives would be saved each year.

Fanny packs* are just not going to save lives.

*and for the record I understand that the self-inflating devices are more comfortable to wear when on a vessel and more likely to be worn. Detailing that as an option for boaters would be smart, but on a logo it’s not reaching the folks who aren’t educated on the types of safety equipment available in the first place)….

Helpful links:

Florida Fish and Wildlife Boater Education information:
http://www.myfwc.com/boating/safety/
(they have links and more information on online courses that are available at no cost)

Florida Boating Accident Statistics:
http://myfwc.com/law/boating/

Epidemiology of Unintentional Drownings in Florida, 2001-2005
http://www.hillscountyhealth.org/healthpromo/pdf/drowning_report-Florida_2001-2005.pdf

Wear It Florida

http://www.wearitflorida.com

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