October, 2012

On Repeat- Lauryn Hill and Youngbloodz

My alma mater’s homecoming is this weekend.  Spelman provided me with an experience I don’t even have the words to express. But it some part, she has been a large part in the woman I am today.

In 1998 Lauryn Hill released her debut solo album “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill”.  It was in heavy rotation on radio stations and in dorms on campus.  That album was the background music of my freshman year in college.  Every time I hear a song, I remember walking to the Maxway and A&P, riding the MARTA to Lenox, having to sign in my beau for visitation and ADW class.

One of my favorite songs, currently on my iPod is the album’s namesake.  Ms. Hill’s lyrics and impeccable voice over uncomplicated music all merge into a timeless song that causes me to reflect on the world around me.

Not to get too deep, I have another song for you.  An A-town classic as T.I. points on in the video.  “85” by Youngbloodz.  I can’t get enough of the chorus.

Well hopefully you have enjoyed my musical stroll down memory lane circa 1998-99.  I hope all my Spelman sisters are enjoying themselves this weekend, I wish I was there kickin’ it with ya’ll!



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Food Day!

Today is Food Day!  When I first heard about it this morning on the news, my initial (greedy) thought was ‘Isn’t that every day?’.  

Food Day is “a nationwide celebration and a movement for healthy, affordable, and sustainable food”. 

In the US, obesity and related conditions (diabetes, hypertension, heart disease) are ever-increasing. We have all heard reports about how terrible the contemporary American diet is.  The key word is contemporary. As we moved from an agricultural to an industrial economy, it seems the link between ourselves and the food we eat was lost.

When I think about the foods my grandparents grew up preparing and eating, they aren’t radically different from some of what we find popular today.  But the source of the food, many times the backyard without pesticides/antibiotics, and the preparation of the food, at home instead of prepackaged and processed, is different.

Food Day aims to change the American diet.  From cheap, salty, processed packaged foods and sugary drinks to foods with healthy, whole ingredients. Food that’s sustainable and provides essential nutrients for human health, accessible to all.

That is why I have joined a CSA (community supported agricultural).  Why I try to buy local.  Why I tend to buy organic items, especially when it comes to the dirty dozen.  And try to encourage others to do the same. This is a cause I plan on becoming more active about because unfortunately is not a day everyone has daily, weekly or even monthly.

Be sure to check out more about Food Day at http://www.foodday.org/.

Also, these are links to and interesting article http://www.ijsaf.org/archive/10/1/fonte.pdf and a statement from the American Public Health Association about a healthy, sustainable food system.  http://www.apha.org/advocacy/policy/policysearch/default.htm?id=1361

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Castor Oil Check In

Alright, so I think this is about week eight.  Here is a picture of my hair.  I had an earlier shot, but thought somehow I deleted ALL pics on my phone.  Turns out, my phone sometimes has all the pictures, others times none at all.  A mess.

To be honest, I am still using the castor oil at least thrice weekly.  But have slacked on posting responses to the questions Kinky Kurly Coily Me! posts.  I don’t know what happened.  I missed on check in and then all of a sudden it was 3 weeks later.  Oh well.

Thus far, I do not see a dramatic length difference (see pic from start of challenge here).  But the castor oil definitely softens my hair.  It feels great.  So for that benefit alone, I will continue to use regularly.


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Pet Peeve- Gluten Free

If you pay attention to sites like foodgawker.com or tastespotting.com  (aka greedy girl porn), you can see when a certain flavor or food is the new hotness among foodies.  Nutella. Salted caramel. Macarons. Pork belly. Kale chips. Cake pops. Gluten free.

I was at my Co-op last week and a couple in front of me was chatting with a super-friendly cashier.  The husband was making macaroni and cheese for the first time, but only for himself.  The wife stated their son doesn’t like mac’n’cheese and she’s gluten free at the moment.

What? Come on.

Why is a dietary restriction due to the what MayoClinic.com describes as “an immune reaction in … small intestines, causing damage to the inner surface of the small intestine” a fad?  Maybe people don’t realize there are approximately 3 million Americans that struggle with daily food options because ingestion of wheat, barley or rye will lead to a variety of problems including GI symptoms such as abdominal cramps, diarrhea, vomiting, steatorrhea (fatty stool).  I have a friend, who just got married 10/12/12 (woot woot!) and the best man described him as Superman who’s Kryptonite is a dinner roll.

According to a study recently published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, authors found an estimated prevalence of Celiac Disease (CD) in the United States of 0.71% (1 in 141), with most cases undiagnosed.  The prevalence for those on a gluten free diet (GFD) is 0.63%.  Most of the NHANES subjects on a GFD had not been given a diagnosis of CD.

About 1% of Americans have Celiac disease.  Today on foodgawker.com there are over 10,000 entries under ‘gluten free’.  The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases estimate that 30 to 50 million Americans are lactose intolerant.  There are 145 entries on foodgawker.com for ‘lactose free’.  I understand that people may be trying to avoid white carbohydrates- flour, sugar, potatoes, etc.- because they have little to no nutritional value (but they can be oh so delicious).  But a gluten free diet seems unnecessary for most.  The authors of the study also state “self-treatment with a GFD is not recommended and should be discouraged.”  So if you think you have a problem, seek medical attention.  But if you are testing out a GFD for kicks, seek a hobby.

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On Repeat- Donny Hathaway ‘A Song For You’

Today I was attempting to flight to Nashville standby and that didn’t work out.  So I wound up going to a Pilates class where the instructor played a number of Donny Hathaway songs.

I am in awe of this man’s talent and am in love with his voice.  So of course I come home and play ‘A Song For You’ ten times.  Well come to find out, Donny Hathaway was born October 1, 1945.  Maybe the Pilates instructor knew that or maybe it’s a coincidence.  Whatever the case, happy birthday to an extraordinary vocalist and musician.

Enjoy the video.  This one has the lyrics with the song.  Take time to read them.

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