Explore 2019 #240: Menstrual cups

Well, 😂😂😂 I imagine LaShawn Wiltz had beverages in mind with today's photo prompt, but I want to use this opportunity to issue a PSA about menstrual cups. Have you tried one? Years ago, I received a menstrual cup as conference swag and I was like, HELL NO. It felt foreign, messy, and complicated! I now realize that I was totally caught in the stigma cycle. Time to bust through.

Over the summer, a dear friend and I were commiserating about our periods and she RAVED about her menstrual cup. The more we talked, the more fired up I got. I immediately went home and bought a The Diva Cup to close the karmic circle of shunning the one I received years ago and OMG it is a GAME CHANGER. Here are 6 things I wanted to share about them: 1️⃣ Menstrual cups are not difficult or painful to use. I read the (brief) instructions and it's easy...literally insert and twist to create the seal. 2️⃣ I recommend wearing a liner at first in case you experience learning-curve leaking (or if you have a super heavy day in your cycle...day 2 is always a disaster for me!). Otherwise, no need! 3️⃣ It has been absolutely fascinating to see menstrual flow in its pristine form and I now have a totally new understanding about the actual flow of my cycle. 4️⃣ Using a cup will help you get more comfortable in dealing with your body...it's such a good thing! 5️⃣ I am beyond thrilled that I don't need to stockpile tampons anymore or worry about running out. 6️⃣ OMG REDUCTION IN WASTE FTW!

Seriously ladies, give menstrual cups a try. Now I want to start a foundation to distribute menstrual cups for free because I feel like they could move us towards menstrual equity. I wish I had opened my mind to them way earlier! If you have questions, please ask.

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Explore 2019 #230: Saturday gratitude

This past week was tough...Jon and I seemed to be putting out one aggravating fire after the next (seriously, WTH FALL?!) and today seemed like it might continue on that trajectory after opening a letter from Blue Cross that first made me rage and then left me sobbing on our way to the tennis court. (Big ups to Jon for saying, "I WILL HELP YOU.")

Though my healthcare rage is valid, I wonder if my cry down was a much needed pressure valve release after holding everything together for everyone. Because after my cry down, Saturday has been beautiful. I reminded myself that for the first time in weeks I slept this morning until I woke up naturally (bliss?). I played a great game of tennis with Jon. I went grocery shopping by myself (weirdly, I enjoy cruising through the store solo when I'm not pressed for time). I had a delicious salad for lunch comprised of amazing CSA veggies. I watched Violet play soccer with fierce joy. I puttered around the kitchen. And I got to head out with this beautiful human for dinner with dear friends. Thank you for all of these gifts, Saturday. I really, really needed them.

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Explore 2019 #201: Saying yes to play

How do you feel about card and board games? Not gonna lie, I pretty much refuse to play the mindless, boring ones or ones that my kids love but I hate (#selfcare ) so it's a delight whenever we find a game that everyone in the family legit enjoys.

Here’s a list of my family's fave games to which I just added Monopoly Deal to it! Someone gifted this card game to Vi a while back but it never made it out of the wrapper... she asked me to play yesterday and I admittedly groaned internally because I do not enjoy regular Monopoly AT ALL (see earlier comment about not playing games I hate). But I told her I would at least try it and then OMG it is actually super fun and engaging and way more satisfying (IMO) than the regular game. In the last 24 hours we've already played it a dozen times. WHAT?! So anyway, highly recommend -- great game and awesome for travel! And a good reminder to say yes to your kid's invitation even if you are a somewhat curmudgeonly person.

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Explore 2019: Natural shoe deodorizers

OMG you guys this summer and STINKY SHOES! Are you dealing with this? Our shoe storage area was getting seriously ripe.

I am seriously like the Dad in My Big Fat Greek Wedding, except I am obsessed with baking soda instead of Windex as my solution for everything. The other day I tasked Laurel and Violet to make some natural deodorizer sachets. They mixed baking soda with their choice of essential oils then packed the mix into coffee filters and tied it off with twine. So cute and PRAISE JESUS, things smell a whole lot better! Violet came up to me and was like, SMELL MY SNEAKERS, THEY SMELL AMAZING!

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Explore 2019: Summer faves

Whee! Today I’m sharing 20 things that are giving me life this summer (spanning style, personal care, home, kitchen, food, books, and local gems). Check 'em out and let me know what you think, and also what's lighting you up this summer! This cupcake isn't in the roundup because I didn't make it (Laurel did!) but as I was looking through my camera roll for a photo to accompany this post, this picture made me smile hi with happy summer feelings...so, related! It's a delicious black forest chocolate cupcake (there's cherry filling inside!) and it's being enjoyed during a long weekend away at a summer beach house!

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