Tragedy in Colorado

*This post also appears today on The Huffington Post.

The news this morning is almost too heartbreaking to take in. A midnight audience full of excited moviegoers, all set to watch the summer’s most anticipated blockbuster, tear gassed and massacred by 24-year-old James Holmes. At least 12 killed, at least 38 injured, one of whom is a 3-month-old infant.

As families pray for their loved ones and a nation mourns another senseless spree– my thoughts immediately went to wondering who this boy’s mother is. ABC News found her already, and she told reporters:

“You have the right person,” she said, apparently speaking on gut instinct. “I need to call the police… I need to fly out to Colorado.”

This mother– and our country– will most likely get at least some answers. It’s rare that the person responsible walks away at the end, as has happened here.  But as the president just said, “we may never understand what leads anybody to terrorize their fellow human beings like this.”

I’m reminded of another Colorado tragedy, and of one of the mothers left behind who will never understand.  Columbine shooter Dylan Klebold’s mother, Susan Klebold, resisted interviews for years.  Finally, in November of 2009, she broke her silence in an essay called “I Will Never Know Why” in O Magazine:

“Dylan was a product of my life’s work, but his final actions implied that he had never been taught the fundamentals of right and wrong. There was no way to atone for my son’s behavior.” 

She candidly opened up about what it’s like to mistrust your own judgement, be viewed by society as a woman who raised a “monster,” and constantly be consumed by “What Ifs?”  I’m re-reading it this morning, sad for every single person affected by what happened last night in Aurora.  Every “monster”, every angel, every victim, every misunderstood, damaged, broken human being was– or is—  somebody’s baby.

I’m grateful for my family, my friends, and every single blessing I can’t even count fast enough.

Korean Barbecue Burgers

I love Korean barbecue, but I hate smelling like roasted, smoky beef after I leave the restaurant. Thanks to Cooking Light, now I don’t have to worry about airing out my coat for the next six months! These burgers taste just like bulgogi and are easy to make at home. Don’t skip the radishes– they were so good!

Korean Barbecue Burgers (Courtesy of Cooking Light)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger (I used the prepared, jarred kind)
  • 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced (I used 1 tsp. jarred)
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground sirloin
  • Cooking spray
  • 6 (1 1/2-ounce) whole wheat hamburger buns, split (I skipped the buns)
  • 6 red leaf lettuce leaves
  • 6 thinly sliced radishes

Preparation:

  1. Prepare grill.
  2. Combine first 8 ingredients. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty.
  3. Place patties on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 6 minutes on each side or until a thermometer registers 160°. Remove from grill; let patties stand 5 minutes.
  4. Place buns, cut sides down, on grill rack; grill 1 minute or until toasted. Place 1 patty on bottom half of each bun; top each serving with 1 lettuce leaf, 1 tablespoon radishes, and top half of bun.

She must be really, really thirsty.

TMZ posted this photo of Uma Thurman out getting juice ONE DAY after giving birth:

How is she even out of the hospital already? The day after I gave birth, Beef picked us up a pizza from Gino’s East, and we ate it IN THE HOSPITAL.  Like normal people.

Posey’s first outing was a walk to Starbuck’s when she was over three weeks old.

When was the first time you took your new bundle out and about? Do you think one day old is too young?

Just the Facts, Ma’am.

It’s a fact.  All women are caught off guard and deeply offended the first time they are called “ma’am” by a stranger.  I don’t remember WHO said it to me first, but I do remember scolding them and strongly suggesting they slow their roll to “Miss.”  After all, the title Ma’am suggests bags under your eyes, flaps under your arms, and, more than likely, capri cargo pants and a pair of Naturalizers.

So it struck me today when, after paying at Whole Foods, the cashier said, “Have a good day, ma’am,” I balked– and then sighed.

Today is the first time I deserved the Ma’am.

My mother-in-law recently broke down the key factors of any episode of Judge Judy for me, and she explained that Judy doesn’t tolerate any “I thoughts” or editorializing.  She just wants to hear the facts. So let’s examine them:

FACT: I was a good ten to twelve years older than the cashier.

FACT: I had a baby with me.

FACT: I was buying radishes.

FACT: My wallet was brimming with old lady things, like Costco, Petco and any other place that ends in “-co” membership cards.

FACT: Every single item of clothing I was wearing was purchased a place called “Insert Mall Store Name Here”  Outlet.

Did he draw the right conclusion? Yes, ma’am.

My Name Is Posey, and I’m a Baby

For a few weeks now, Beef’s been singing I just met you/ And this is crazy/ My name is Posey/ And I’m a baby….

Seems we weren’t the only ones changing the words to Carly Rae Jepsen‘s “Call Me Maybe.”  Pose and I can’t get enough of Cookie Monster this morning!

5 Snacks To Help Lose the Baby Weight

Poor Jessica Simpson.  She never had a chance.  Baby Maxwell is 10 weeks old, which means the world has continued to call her fat for 70 days.  Despite her reported $4 million-deal with Weight Watchers, it appears the baby weight isn’t melting off the way she… or I…or probably YOU… thought it would.

I’ve been told that women should aim to eat 30 grams of protein for breakfast every day. That’s a lot. Like, five eggs.  Gross.  Who could do that?  So here are five quick and easy snacks that helped get me back on track*.

*But I’m no Jessica Alba. Sigh.

1.  Nature Valley Protein  Bars

Since Posey naps around 10 and around 3, I find that a lot of days we’re out and about during lunchtime.  These bars– which Costco sells in a giant 24 pack– are the perfect snack to keep in your diaper bag. Self-contained, you can eat while driving (just the peanut butter dark chocolate ones– the almond ones are way messier for some reason) and 10 grams of protein.

2.  Light String Cheese

Again, easy to take on the road, portion-controlled and only 50 calories with 6 grams of protein. I’m a Sargento girl.

3.  Stretch Island Fruit Leather

These were an impulse buy at Costco a few months ago, and I’ve never looked back.  45 calories, all-natural ingredients, no added sugar.  I keep them in the diaper bag with the protein bars.  You can’t get enough fiber, you know what I’m saying? Which reminds me, the gummy fiber supplement inventor deserves an award.

4.  Kashi 7 Grain Waffles

I usually have one of these for breakfast, along with two slices of turkey sausage or nitrate-free turkey bacon from Trader Joe’s, but they make a great snack, too.  Remember: no white flour!

5. Protein Smoothie (approx. 220 calories, 16 grams protein)

I started replacing cow milk with almond milk a few months ago.  Some people argue that dairy causes an excess of mucus in the gut– causing belly fat, but science has proven that’s pretty much bunk.  However, I do sort of subscribe to the thinking that lady-cow milk is for hungry baby cows who need to gain 2000 pounds, so I try to limit my intake to the bare necessities: cheese and Skinny Cow ice creams cones.  Therefore, I use almond milk in coffee and smoothies, like this one:

  • 3/4 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 scoops vanilla Aria protein powder (I get it at Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 banana (or peach, or whatever fruit you have on hand)
  • 3 ice cubes
  • a pinch of cinnamon

Blend all ingredients in a blender and enjoy for breakfast or as an afternoon pick-me-up!

Jess, we’re rooting for you.