22 May, 2009

Tastes like green

My older son, let's call him Big CL and my younger one Little CL, will be starting kindergarten this year (I can't believe it!). So in trying to maintain his sense of excitement while downplaying any associated anxiety, I've been looking for lunchboxes. I thought that: A) These were not still in existence, and B) All kids now buy their lunches.

Wow was I wrong.

A. I definitely had a real lunchbox with matching Thermos, but honestly don't remember what was on it. I DO remember bringing my lunch to school in a brown paper bag with my name in calligraphy letters in the sixth grade, though.

(I realize this post may jump the back-to-school hoopla. I did quite a bit of research that I don't want to get stale, and I know several other moms and dads of pre-kindergartners out there may be in a similar boat. So, onwards and upwards!)

"It's much easier to be for going green than it is to actually be green. Especially if you have kids." This is the argument I often hear, that it boils down to convenience over conscience. But frankly, I think that is a false dichotomy and having children is all the more reason to be green. Besides, my research into lunch boxes proves being eco-friendly is convenient for kids of all ages, too.

First place for creative ideas, inventive menu options and how-to's goes to Lunchinabox - hands down the most inspiring site I found. Other cool kids lunch gear:
Honorable mention goes to Lunch Box Cards (heart-warming idea but save your $$ and DIY) and Hoohobbers (like the design but has more girl-oriented color options). I wasn't all that impressed with Land's End or Pottery Barn Kids - though you don't have to question the quality/durability, not a wide enough selection and the PB options I suspect many boys will rather quickly grow out of.

After asking Big CL what kind of character he wanted on his lunch box (I presented a narrowed down list of three options), he of course picked D) none of the above. He wanted a Sponge Bob lunch box ($12.95 at Lunchboxes.com). I also bought a set of Wrap-n-mats, and he already has his own Sigg bottle. Because he loves Japanese food, I will probably get some boxes and a few extra sets of kid chopsticks (Bed Bath & Beyond) or make them, too.

21 May, 2009

Updated look

Hope you like it, and thanks for being patient as I get my house in order. And here's a little eye candy, just so you don't think I'm neglecting the appeal to your visual sense. 

Check out the sexy bikes (who knew?) over at Inhabitat.com, one of my new favorite sites.

And for those with little chunksters, don't miss the sister site, Inhabitattots. Screw the tots, I want some crayon rings for myself!

Putting the "I" in inane

I love it when obviously childless women criticize other women for *gasp* being a mother and, in the process, prove that it's not the man keeping us down, but other women. 

NYU professor Katie Roiphe has this to say about women who post their kids as their Facebook profile pictures ("Get your kid off your Facebook page," May 13) over at DoubleX:

If Betty Friedan were to review the Facebook habits of the over-30 set, she would turn over in her grave. By this I mean specifically the trend of women using photographs of their children instead of themselves as the main picture on their Facebook profiles...

The choice seems to constitute a retreat to an older form of identity, to a time when women were called Mrs. John Smith, to a time when fresh scrubbed Vassar girls were losing their minds amidst vacuum cleaners and sandboxes... These Facebook photos signal a larger and more ominous self-effacement, a narrowing of our worlds.
I don't know where I should begin to address my ire, the fact that Ms. Roiphe has a PhD and is teaching today's young women, the absurd opinions she expresses, or that she feels the need to disparage other women for exercising the choice Friedan could only write about. Needless to say, there are a lot of colorful comments posted below the drivel.

19 May, 2009

My favorite berry

Ah, the avocado! 

V elvet
O riginal sin (check out its etymology)
C reamy comfort
A mazing
D elicious
O ne a day

Needless to say, avocados don't last long in my house. Good thing that high avocado intake has been shown to decrease total serum cholesterol levels and LDL (the bad cholesterol) while increasing HDL (good cholesterol).

Avocados are a good source of: potassium (more than a banana), vitamins B, E and K, iron and magnesium.

About the only bad thing one can say about avocados is that a majority of the calories comes from fat; however, it's monounsaturated so one shouldn't feel too guilty, in my opinion. :p

07 May, 2009

Don't have a cow, it's just a burger

One of the lessons I learned from my late father's example is to give as good as you get. 

I have always respected Dan Rather as a newsman. His appearance this week on The Daily Show has elevated that respect. After all, it's not important if you can't poke a little fun, especially if you're one of the elders of tv journalism satirizing on the current state of journalism and editorial decisions of what is newsworthy. My take on this issue of journalism is that we're not giving as good as we get - because we are largely getting news for free. And, more importantly, we're not getting much right now, either. 

Case in point is the media hoopla around Obama's burger outing with Biden earlier this week. Sean Hannity derided the President for his "fancy burger" (Obama ordered Dijon mustard instead of plain yellow). With respect to this "Dijongate" all I have to say is, [Jesus Tapdancing Christ] Really? Obama's choice of Dijon over plain yellow mustard is really going to "derail his presidency" or demonstrates he is out of touch with the middle class?!? Surely I am not the only one who sees the irony in the freedom-fries crowd's embracing a product named, of all things, French's. JTC, man, JTC.

A. Attack of the fancy condiments! Proof of elitist European plot?

Bill Maher got it exactly right in his recent LA Times opinion piece:

"Here are the big issues for normal people: the war, the economy, the environment, mending fences with our enemies and allies, and the rule of law...

"And here's the list of Republican obsessions since President Obama took office: that his birth certificate is supposedly fake, he uses a TelePrompTer too much, he bowed to a Saudi guy, Europeans like him, he gives inappropriate gifts, his wife shamelessly flaunts her upper arms, and he shook hands with Hugo Chavez and slipped him the nuclear launch codes."

Grab Bag: Condiments

You may have noticed this over in the side bar. I started with canned tuna in homage to the name of this blog - though it bears repeating that I am not really much a fan of canned fish.

So this week's bag is chock full 'o my favorite condiments, perfect for spicing up almost anything you can think of. About the only thing I don't spritz on the sauce is yogurt, dairy + hot sauce = eww. Besides, that's why they invented tsaziki.

06 May, 2009

Wii the people

According to a New York Times piece in a recent health section:

In the moments after I felt the pop in my left shoulder, the sensation I felt was not pain. It was panic. How exactly does a 40-year-old man explain to his wife that he might have torn his rotator cuff during a midnight game of Wii tennis?

On another note, I'm not sure what it says about our culture or society when the top 3 games for housewives include raving rabbits (spelled Rabbids) and "dance dance hottest party." Because, after all, women rant and nag a lot and right? Right. But feel free check out the site if you want a free Wii, although I am highly skeptical of any claims of "100% guaranteed" and "free" and you should be, too. Any faq that includes "Is this a scam" is self-fulfilling in my book.