Christmas Foods from Around the World

Are any of you making or having foods from your culture for the holidays? I think it is fun to try new foods from around the world.

I was thinking of trying to make some simple recipes for my kids to try, by getting recipe ideas from my followers.

I do not have normal cooking facilities so they would need to be able to be achieved with a large toaster oven,  and an electric skillet.

My grandmother on my father’s side was from Poland….or at least her parents were. I think that her older siblings were born in Poland and she and the younger ones were born in the United States.

There is a cookie recipe that was passed down to me and I will share it with you before Christmas. I think I will have to ask my father to send it to me again.

The other thing I remember my grandmother makinig is kilbasa. We always had two platters of kilbasa.

One plate had hot kilbasa, with a bowl of mustard next to it. The other plate had cold kilbasa, with a bowl of white vinegar to dip it in.

I grew up with the cold kilbasa and white vinegar. My father loved it. I did not like it as a little kid but it grew on me over time.

So what special foods or recipes are you planning to have for the holidays ? If you want to share a recipe on your blog you can put a link in the comments.

Blessings,

Annie💕💙💜🌷🌹❤

Reducing Holiday Stress

Much of the stress during the holiday season is due to expectations. If you can question the expectations in your head, then you can help yourself deal with the anxiety. 

The first thing to realize is that all of the expectations that you have for yourself were not originally your own. You can make a list of the things that you expect yourself to be able to do and then question each one. 

Take them one at a time and ask yourself if the expectation is reasonable. Then question the expectation as to whether it was your own picture of how the holidays “should” be or if it was programmed into you by someone else.

Some things were programmed into us by our parents from when we were very young. This does not mean that you have to keep it. For example, if you were taught that you have to make dinner and have all the relatives at your house for dinner …ask yourself if that was your desire or of that was someone else’s desire. 

On the other hand, maybe you were taught that you have to travel out of state to have dinner with your mother in law on Christmas. Maybe you have faithfully done this every year for 15 years now. 

There is not rule that says you have to do the same thing every year just because you are “expected” to do it this way. You should get a turn to do something you actually want to do. 

What is the point of the holidays if you get extreme anxiety preparing for them, no one realizes just how much you sacrificed and then you are relieved when the whole thing is over. 

It can be like a torturous chore that has thankless results. Even the people that have expectations of how you are going to so things, will not really appreciate it. 

Holidays are about peace , happiness, connection and showing others that you care about them. So find the ways that you can show your loved ones that you care….without causing yourself depression and anxiety.

You may come from a family that always buys gifts for each other, but you are a craft lover and would much more enjoy making the gifts yourself. Or maybe your family expects home made gifts but it would be easier with your time constraints, to order them on Amazon. 

Other people are not living your day to day life and they do not know how hard things are for you. The chores of the holiday season can be way too much, on top of your already hectic schedule. 

You can tell people that you are making a few changes this year. Think about what you always do and see what things you do not want to do that way. Think of creative ideas to do things differently this year. 

People may fuss at you. That is true. But you have to weigh dealing with someone else being upset, against all the anxiety you will go through …just for them to complain anyway….

Children Should Have Magical Holidays

zzz

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Share Your Thanksgiving with Gentlekindness Blog

eating

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Take a break

self care

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Welcome to Our Little Get Together

thanksgiving

Good Morning.This is a scheduled post because I wanted something up before I woke up. Many of you are awake in the morning before I am. I have a late night insomniac kind of schedule , but I wanted to get things started. 

I would love it if you want to let me know what you have planned for today, whether it means you are staying home to watch Netflix alone or if you are going to be dealing with lots of people. 

You can leave your plans in the comments section or you can write a post and put the link here. We can all connect in and out throughout the day. If anyone is having a particularly difficult time then you can connect with us here. 

This is where we begin. I will check your comments when I wake up. Good morning  to all. Happy Thanksgiving Day or Happy GentleKindness Blog Meet up Day, whichever makes you feel good. 

Talk to you soon, 

Annie ❤

 

Do You Have Barbara Millicent Roberts Under Your Christmas Tree?

Who is Barbara Millicent Roberts?  You have known her for years but you probably don’t know her by her full name. Nor did you know she had a last name at all. 

Barbara is one of those people who go by one name. You know…like  Cher …or Madonna….or  “Formerly Known as Prince.” 

barbie heads

Barbara Millicent Roberts was born in 1959, but she looks like she is in her 20’s. She used to have feet that always pointed like she was wearing high heals but now she is sometimes seen with her feet flat, which people were beginning to wonder if she could physically do. 

Barbara goes by the nick name Barbie. 

barbie

image from  Pinterest

Barbie has been a household name since the late 1950’s and has not been forgotten. Barbie often takes on the last name of “Doll.”

In 1992, a Barbie doll was sold every two minutes around the globe.

Source The Intentions Behind the Creation of Barbie by Briana Piche

Barbie Doll was born in 1959, as we know, and she has an extensive wardrobe, including the outfits and uniforms for the many jobs she has help. Barbie began as a fashion model and then as rumors have it, went back to school several times to achieve advanced degrees.

barbie stewardess

image from Pinterest

She has been seen with her head in the clouds  as a stewardess and also as a night club singer. She has worked both as a teacher and as an officer of the law, pulling over drunk drivers.

barbie police

image from Pinterest

You can see a variety of Barbie’s outfits at THIS link on Flickr.

The first Barbie doll was thought up by Elliot Handler of the Mattel  Toy Company,  with the initial suggestion by his wife Ruth. Mrs. Handler thought of the idea that children would play with an adult aged doll. Prior to Barbie most girls played with baby dolls and practiced being mommies.

There was a German doll called Bild Lilli that was an adult female doll. Ruth Handler saw this doll during one of the trips her husband and she took to Germany.

The Lilli doll was based on a popular character appearing in a comic strip drawn by Reinhard Beuthin for the newspaper Die Bild-Zeitung. Lilli was a blonde bombshell, a working girl who knew what she wanted and was not above using men to get it. The Lilli doll was first sold in Germany in 1955, and although it was initially sold to adults, it became popular with children who enjoyed dressing her up in outfits that were available separately.

source Wikipedia

They used this doll to help with their idea of how the Barbie doll should look, but came up with their own unique design. 

The Bild Lilli doll had her own comic strip where she was a sexy doll of a woman. Excuse the pun.

In the comics, Lilli was witty, irreverent… and sexually uninhibited. One strip, summarized by Lord, shows Lilli covering her naked body with a newspaper and explaining to a friend…

source Time Magazine

Bild Lilli was a comic strip in a newspaper printed in Hamburg Germany.  The comic was for adults and began in 1952, and appeared in the newspaper called Bild-Zeitung.

One particular comic strip had the following tale of Bild Lilli meeting a police officer and being told she could not wear a two-piece bathing suit in public.

…shows Lilli in a bikini; when a policeman tells her that two-piece swimsuits are illegal, she says, “Oh, and in your opinion, which part should I take off?”

sourceTime Magazine 

The full name “Barbara Millicent Roberts” appears in a series of novels about her fictional life.

Barbie’s full name is Barbara Millicent Roberts. In a series of novels published by Random House in the 1960s, her parents’ names are given as George and Margaret Roberts from the fictional town of Willows, Wisconsin

source Wikipedia

They bought the rights to the Bild Lilli doll in order to stop the production of that doll, which apparently they did not want to  compete with.

You can read more about the history of Barbie at THIS LINK and you will see a picture of the original Barbie.  Take note of the way her eyes are looking. You do not see dolls these days with that kind of a sexy, come-hither look. 

barbie hat

image from Pinterest and Flickr

Barbie dolls became terrifically popular and are sold in 150 countries.

source – Good Housekeeping Magazine 

Barbie’s appearance has been changed many times, most notably in 1971 when the doll’s eyes were adjusted to look forwards rather than having the demure sideways glance of the original model.

source – Wikipedia

Proportions of the doll have been redesigned to alter her unattainable body proportions and to make her look more realistic. The original doll had proportions that you do not see on real women. The waist is too small to go with the breasts and the hips.

barbie zebra

image from Pinterest

Barbie’s vital statistics have been estimated at 36 inches (chest), 18 inches (waist) and 33 inches (hips). According to research by the University Central Hospital in Helsinki, Finland, she would lack the 17 to 22 percent body fat required for a woman to be healthy enough to have children. 

sourceWikipedia

There is also an article that Barbie appears in, which is called “125 Women Who Changed Our World.” You can see a great picture of the original Barbie on page 14 of THIS ARTICLE printed in Good Housekeeping magazine.

I happened to come across a blog called Matisse Fashions and Dolls. She is a talented doll dress designer and you might enjoy taking a peak at her designs HERE.  If you notice my earlier posts today you will see some links to some of my favorite designs of hers. 

Even ZOMBIE killer Barbie has been spotted recently ! This is a character from the Walking Dead Series . She is Michonne.

barbie walking dead

Barbara Millicent Roberts has come a long way since 1959 and she is still getting wrapped and placed under Christmas trees all over the world !

Maybe she is under yours…

Valentines Day Self Kindness Meme Mindfulness

do something kind for yourself

First Insomnia Good Night Blog for the New Year / Carpe Diem / RIP Robin Williams

Well, it is 2015. That is kind of strange to see the new number and that is the first time I have written it.  I am sure I will write 2014 for a couple of weeks anyway, as I usually do.

I know a lot of my readers were home tonight and a lot of you were home alone. I wrote the goofy “Depends” post because I thought you could use something to smile at, even if it was Crazy Annie ranting.

This is the first good night insomniac post of the new year. Rather than make some new year resolution that will fizzle out , I want to talk about looking at things from a new perspective.

What I want to think about tonight, is changing our perspective and looking at things from a new point of view,

Do you remember the movie “Dead Poet’s Society” with Robin Williams? There was a scene at the beginning of the movie where he asked each of his students to stand up on the teacher’s desk. They were encouraged to climb up on the desk and stand there for a few seconds.

The lesson was to look at whatever you were looking at , from a different angle.  The classroom looks one way,when you are in the middle of the room, sitting at your desk. It looks different standing on top of the desk, in the front of the room.

You can see things you could not see from the other angle. You may be unable to see things that were distracting you before. You are now up higher and seeing the room from a perspective that feels powerful as opposed to submissive.

It also was clearly, not a status quo thing to do. Standing on the teacher’s desk would normally result in expulsion from a fancy private school like that. It was forbidden.

So in this simple lesson, the teacher taught the student to consider things from various angles. Look at situations and problems from a new perspective. In doing so, you may discover things you never considered and you may have a different emotional feeling about the situation.

The emotions they must have felt standing on the teacher’s desk must have been very different that what they felt sitting with the other students, while their teachers sternly presided over the class.

As the student each took turns on the desk the teacher said “Just as you think you know something, you have to look at it in a new way”

At the end of the movie the students choose to honor their beloved teacher by a simple act. One by one, they stand up on their individual desks. Of all the scenes I have ever seen in movies, this is the most moving and meanigful scene to me.It is near and dear to my heart.

To truly appreciate it, you should watch the entire movie. But the scene is so powerful that is can stand alone.

Before I continue , I would like to take a moment of silence for the great actor Robin Williams, who was a fellow sufferer in the world. He suffered from mental illness. He committed suicide in 2014 due to not being able to find the right help for his depression. He will be sorely missed.

Let us all find a way to stand on our desks this new year.

I believe it is this that will help us find a way out of the suffering from mental illness. 

As Bill Murray’s character Ray, in Ghost Busters said “All the usual tricks are not working!”

Blessings to all of my readers!

Annie

My favorite Christmas blogs / Belated Insomniac Post from Last Night

OK. This is very silly but I am going to write last night’s good night post now. I was soooo tired from wrapping the gifts for 4 hours and my neck and back were killing me from bending forward to wrap. I do remember starting to think about the good night post just before i fell asleep somewhere around 4:30 am, I think.

I was thinking about all of the posts that people put to say Merry Christmas. They were all unique and it was nice to read all of them. Some people were very cheerful and excited. Some people were very traditional. Some were sentimental and some were funny. Others were sad or bordering on suicidal. (You may not have read those it depends who you follow.)

Some of them were reaching out to others who might be depressed or even suicidal.

And some were talking about the fact that they felt that people are often hypocritical on the holidays because they are concerned about love, family and sentiment then but not the rest of the year. People suddenly talk about charities and helping others, but the rest of the year they don’t bother or don’t care.

What I wanted to do last night was put links to my favorite christmas posts and try to give a variety of the moods and perspectives that I described above. Some of you may not have as eclectic of a range of blogs you follow as I do. I have all different ones and i also read the fresh pressed ones.

1.Cute , cheerful Christmas Haiku…

http://thepersistentplatypus.wordpress.com/2014/12/25/merry-christmas/

2.Very truthful and from the heart. Talks about hypocrisy but also reaches out to those who are suffering from depression this Christmas. Very well written post.

https://ccchanel41.wordpress.com/2014/12/25/peace-to-you/

3.Reaches out to those who are suffering and even provides a link for people suffering with mental illness issues on Christmas. Very nice post

http://florencestone.org/2014/12/24/merry-christmas/

4. Peace and love sentimental and very nice. Looks like a Christmas card

http://silvergirlshine.wordpress.com/2014/12/25/9655/

5. Martin Armstrong economic and historical cycles expert posted this card of a so cute little 2 year old girl which must be his granddaughter

Merry Christmas to All & Happy Hanukkah

I picked five but there were many more great ones. Merry Christmas.

Annie

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