Category Archives: Blog Babble

Treat Yourself: The Importance of Self-Care for Women

By: Jillian James

 Self-Care. It’s a very simple concept, and yet many women need to be reminded to take a step back and care for themselves. During the day we may find ourselves constantly investing energy into our jobs, schoolwork, partners, friends, pets, and a variety of other places. We may not remember to take time in our day to focus on our own health and our own needs. Self-care is incredibly important for our emotional and physical well-being.

Taking the time to care for ourselves can help us feel more confident and can give us more energy and a more positive outlook on life. We can’t properly take care of others or fulfill our jobs and responsibilities without first taking care of ourselves.

READ YOUR INTERNAL SIGNALS

When you are very busy throughout the day, you sometimes can get out of tune with your body and its rhythms. If you have a very hectic schedule take a few minutes to stop, slow down, and listen to what your body is saying. Are you hungry? Eat a granola bar or almonds, and try to never skip a meal or go long stretches of time without eating or drinking. Are you tired? Consider what things can be put off until tomorrow so that you can get a full night’s worth of sleep.

CONSIDER MASLOW’S HIERARCHY OF NEEDS

According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, we must fulfill our most basic physiological needs before we can fulfill our needs for love, security and friendship. Being healthy and feeling safe are key to our state of health. If these needs are not met then we will feel anxious and unsettled, which can lead to problems forming friendships and creating relationships.

BLOCK OUT NEGATIVITY

 

In a world where we are constantly exposed to information on a 24/7 news cycle, sometimes you need to unplug in order to maintain your mental health. If the negative news gets overwhelming, turn of the TV and focus on a positive, healthy activity. Or better yet, research ways that you can take action and get involved in groups that promote ideals that you believe in. Block negative people from social media and don’t expose yourself to websites that give you anxiety or feelings of dread.

 

 

TREAT YOURSELF

Taking a day to take care of yourself and relax can revive and reenergize you. Take a bubble bath, get a pedicure, have a casual day with friends or stay in bed and watch your favorite show. Our brains and bodies need time to recharge in order to stay healthy and to function at their best. There is nothing wrong with taking time to care for you.

If you feel like you aren’t taking enough time for yourself, then challenge yourself to set aside time this week and focus on yourself. Your mind and body will thank you for it!

Dad Blogs Worth Following

Bloggers are now an integral part of our collective conscious. Anyone can blog, about anything, anytime, anywhere. Bloggers range from experts in their fields to “Joe Schmo” types. The wildly popular bloggers are great at capturing simple human moments that instantly connect readers. Blog posts often “go viral,” and can change lives for the better, do harm, or disappear into the great “interwebs” abyss. In recent years, dads have carved a space out of the blogosphere to share their heartfelt, funny, and uniquely dad stories. Here’s a few dad blogs we like:

Mr. Dad – What a wealth of information! This blog takes a Q&A approach to fatherhood. Within seconds of cruising around this blog, I found posts like Good Touch Bad Touch, which addresses a dad’s concern about answering tough sexuality questions from his 5 year old daughter. Read all about Armin Brott, the expert dad behind it all.

Daddy Doin’ Work – I first discovered this daddy doin’ work on Instagram. Doyin Richards, the man behind the blog, is a stay-at-home father of two girls. His social media channels are filled with the day-to-day grit that you typically hear about from moms. Check out #daddydoinwork on Instagram and you’ll see how he, and dads everywhere, are celebrating the adventure that is fatherhood.

Mommy Man: Adventures of a Gay Superdad – Jerry Mahoney is a gay stay-at-home dad of two. His kids were born via surrogate so as you can imagine, he has some different perspectives that need to read and shared. I especially love his writings about surrogates. Take a peek at his blog, we guarantee you a laugh and you’ll learn something too. Here’s his book:

mommymancover

We hope you like these suggestions. Who are your favorite dad bloggers?

P.S. Thank goodness dad blogging didn’t exist when my stay-at-home dad was raising me and my siblings in the 80’s and 90’s! That permanent record of my outfits alone would be enough embarrassment to last a lifetime! Although, it would be cool to have that record of the man who taught me what feminism is.

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Fun Friday: Sex Sells

After Monday’s post about using sex to sell, I thought this was fitting. And funny. Beatrice is always funny. Check out Beatrice the Biologist!

sexsellscells

*from www.beatricebiologist.com

 

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Does Side Boob = Power?

Ever heard of Golf Digest magazine? If not, here’s a little history… it is a monthly magazine that began in 1950 and you can count the number of times they’ve featured a professional female golfer on their cover on one hand (a few fingers, actually). It also bears mentioning that the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) was also founded in 1950. Considering these facts, take a look at the upcoming (May 2015) cover of Golf Digest’s Fitness & Power issue.

Lexi Thompson, Golf Digest, May 2015

Lexi Thompson, Golf Digest, May 2015

Lexi Thompson, the professional golfer featured on this issue, tweeted that she was “so pumped to represent fitness & power” on the cover. My question is this: why does she (and Golf Digest) feel that side boob = power? Why a (nearly) topless cover? Wouldn’t it make more sense for her to express her physical prowess in different way? Last time I checked, women don’t golf or exercise topless. She used the hashtag #GirlPower, but isn’t this the exact opposite? What lesson does this teach young female athletes? Some might say that if a woman chooses to use her body in this way, that it is empowering or sexually liberating, but I don’t buy it. Not even a little. In my opinion, she gives up her power by using sex to sell magazines.

The thing about feminism is that it lives on a spectrum. The “feminist sex wars” reflect these differences. On my end of the spectrum, I believe that she squandered her opportunity to showcase the REAL power of women (hint: it is NOT side boob).

So, I ask you, Feronians, what do you think? Where do you stand on the spectrum? Do you think Lexi Thompson represents #GirlPower on the cover of Golf Digest?

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Happy Labor Day!

We’re taking the day off to enjoy Labor Day, but here’s a little history lesson to tide you over until Wednesday.

labor day

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When Feminists Don’t Agree

Last week, this video was all over my Facebook newsfeed. I thought it was a creative and modern, yet self-serving way to say, “hey moms, we know you work hard and love hard and often don’t get appreciated for all you do.” That was my interpretation, anyway. I am a feminist mother of two.

Then along comes another feminist mother with a completely different take on the video. In this article, she suggests that the video “is an insult to both men and women.” Um, excuse me, did I miss something? I had to watch to video again to see if maybe I missed an opportunity to be offended. Nope. Still wasn’t.

The longer I thought about her rant, the increasingly irritated I became. The sentiment expressed in her article is a piece of feminism that I have increasing distaste for, and that is, attacking well-intentioned gestures and accusing them of being anti-woman, anti-father, anti-whatever. How is appreciating the role that women play when they choose to become mothers offensive? At no point during this video clip did I feel like my worth as a woman and mother was reduced down to the baby-making capacity of my uterus. 

motherhood_manifestoI feel like the author got hung up on the semantics of “world’s toughest job.” Mothering, for me, has been the toughest thing I’ve ever done, and at times, it actually feels like a job. I don’t think that most moms think they belong on a pedestal for the work they are doing to put well-adjusted, hard-working, compassionate, critical-thinking people on Earth. Most moms know what they signed up for (or learn very quickly). There is nothing wrong with calling parenting a “job” – it doesn’t weaken or strengthen the value of either. There is nothing wrong with celebrating motherhood. Celebrating motherhood does not devalue what non-mothers are doing or the things they are contributing to society. I do not think less of women who are not mothers, either by choice or by chance. I do not think that choosing to be a mother puts me on some sort of higher moral ground. To me, being a feminist means celebrating everyone’s successes.

I can only speak for myself, but mothering to my best ability IS my single greatest contribution to the future. Call it a job, call it work, call it love. No matter what you call it, it’s still the same victories, failures, emotions, and challenges that all good parents have. I can not single handedly close the wage gap, but I CAN tap all of my skills and abilities into shaping two people who can help make Earth a better place to live.

I could pick apart nearly her entire article and provide a hearty rebuttal on each point, but it looks like hundreds of people already did that in the comments section of the Salon.com article. The beautiful thing about feminism is that I can feel strongly about my point and she can feel strongly about hers and we can still respect each other’s space to do so.

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Fun Friday: A Rant We Love . . . Boobs!

Kendra, owner of the lovely blog, Southern Disposition, wrote a rant we love. It’s called Boobs. Maybe you saw a portion of her post on Buzzfeed, but just in case you didn’t, here’s one of the historical images she uses to drive her point home. Now go read Boobs – it’ll brighten your day.

boobs

 

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Fun Friday: Beatrice the Biologist

Hey, Feronians – it’s Friday! Woo hoo! If you like Mental Floss, you’ll love Beatrice the Biologist. You’ll definitely want to “like” the page on Facebook.

uterus

 

sleep

 

snake

 

…and the Ant Comics.

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Sprezzatura: The Endless Work of Effortless Perfection

HolidayChampagneToast_ToniBlay-Flickr-300x211I really, really enjoy this time of year. I’m a sucker for sparkly lights, I love seeing how sublimely gorgeous and/or ridiculous ornaments can get, and I think that champagne tastes best when you’re wearing a funny hat at New Year’s.

But as our world gets filled with more and more pinterest-laden expectations, I see a number of friends start to wobble. They’re feeling a lot of pressure to make things live up to the standards that they’ve set for themselves.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with getting invested in holidays, parties or the like, and in wanting to make things come off well. But I’ve heard more people start to talk about feeling overwhelmed, and also about a push to not only make things fabulous, but to do that while making it all look easy.

This kind of ideal isn’t new. One of the best words I’ve found for it is sprezzatura – presenting your accomplishments with studied carelessness. The term comes from Baldassare Castiglione’s 16th century book on how to be a perfect courtier, but the sentiment has held up well, even after five centuries.

But if it’s been around for so long, why haven’t we found a way to deal with it? I think that one key is that this term was created to describe the life or a courtier – someone whose work was very focused on serving a monarch. When the idea of effortless perfection is taken out of that context and expanded to apply to our lives today (lives with notably fewer servants), you get a rather large disconnect.

waffle-iron-cookies-nailed-itIn working to escape this type of stress, I think it’s important to note that even though these expectations are a part of our culture, we can often choose the extent to which they apply to us. There are a number of places in life and online where we can go to acknowledge and even celebrate the absurdity that comes with failure, like the ever-wonderful CraftFail. And when you make something that turns out to be amazing, acknowledging your effort can be part of that success. Think of it as an act of generosity to yourself, and to everyone who feels the urge to hide the work that they put into things.

So here’s to the fun side of the hustle and bustle that comes in December. I’m raising a glass to toast the beautiful things around us, and will be sure to invite my friends and family to join me and put their feet up for a while.

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Fun Friday: Eat More Bacon, Have More Sex

Happy Friday! Did you know about Etsy? If not, I apologize for the money your bank account is about to be missing. Here’s 5 “Feronia-esque” products that we’ll think you’ll love . . .

1) No pillow said truer things:

baconsex

(shop them here)

 

2) These cool cake toppers:

gaymarriage

(shop them here)

 

3) Pads so pretty you’ll be sad to bleed on them:

pads

(shop them here)

 

4) Like you needed encouragement:

masturbation

(shop them here)

 

5) When a Hallmark card just won’t do:

zombie

(shop them here)

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