Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Living Organically, Part 6: Corrections & Miscellaneous Chatter

In my continuing effort to spread misinformation across the blogisphere, I'm here to announce that I posted the wrong name of the sunscreen we use. I wrote that we use Aubrey Organics. We don't. It's not because I don't like Aubrey Organics--I do. They have a fine line of skincare products. It's just that what's sitting here in front of me is Alba Botanica brand. Alba. Aubrey. I'm easily confused.

So, my bottle says, really and truly, Alba Botanica Kids Sunscreen. SPF 30+. Water resistant. No one has been burned yet using this one so it gets a thumbs up from me.

I thought I'd also update you on the Crystal Stick. The weather is getting warmer and the Crystal Stick is getting tested in new ways. It definitely doesn't protect against wetness, but I knew that it wouldn't because it isn't an antipersperant. So I'm experiencing wet underarms--not my favorite thing. But the odor factor seems to still be good. Eamonn said he is smelly after one of his rides, but then again, he said he used to be stinky after his rides when he used commercial deoderant/antipersperant, too. My guess is that nothing can stand up to that sort of exercise factor--we're talking hours out on the bike, not just 60 minutes of bouncing around in the basement to Turbo Jam like I do. I asked Eamonn if we should revert back to our old deoderant/antipersperant during the summer. He said no. We're holding fast in our commitment to chemical free living, baby! People may talk about our underarm rings, but we're chemical free! If the kids comment, I'll know we do actually stink. Last summer when we were in Leadville waiting for Eamonn to finish the mountain bike race, some really stinky guy with a sleeveless shirt came and stood right next to us. Then he raised his arm right over our heads to shake hands with someone. I nearly fainted, but of course, I didn't say anything. Finn, however, has no such filter. "UGH! What's that SMELL???" He shrieked it. So my guess is if we do ever get smelly, we'll hear about it.

I was also thinking about other things that we've read about and that we do to try to steer clear of chemicals, toxins, etc. Here's a bizarre random sampling:

Teflon/Non-stick. We got rid of all of that. There was a scandal awhile back about how Dupont knew Teflon gave off toxins, but never made the public aware. It has to do with the surface being heated over a certain temperature. It actually made birds keel over dead. It might be too little too late for me, and all of the Garvins, though. Does anyone remember the Christmas Tara mashed the potatoes right in the Teflon pan and there were bits of Teflon in the mash? I know she tried to tell people it was pepper, but it wasn't. We're probably all radioactive now. At any rate, good things to cook in are stainless steel and cast iron. People shy away from cast iron because they think they have to do all sorts of stuff to it. You really don't. You just don't use soap. After you finish cooking, wait for it to cool, then take a stiff brush and scrub it out with straight water. You might need to wipe a little oil around in it when you first get it, but when you've made as much bacon as I have in your pan, you'll find it stays well-seasoned. There are other non-stick surfaces out there, but they're pretty much just Teflon under another name.

Lawn chemicals. I can't remember if I talked about this already or not. I think I did a little. There are tons of organic lawn options out there now. Chicken poop for nitrogen, vinegar for weed killer, etc. I'm not overly knowledgable about lawn care, but I do know that I don't want to spray something on the lawn and then have the kids roll around on it. Declan actually got a rash from something they sprayed at the school. And, as the school district said to me when I called about it, "It washes away after the rain," it's still getting down in the dirt. It's still there. It doesn't just go away. It evaporates or is absorbed by something. I don't want that something to be the boys. The school district said to me, "But it's just a little bit." Yeah, so if we're getting a few chemicals here, there and everywhere, what is the cumulative effect? I don't think there's anyone anywhere that is tracking these things all together. Anyway, we don't spray our backyard and we got an exemption from our homeowners association so they won't spray our frontyard. It was interesting because the only reason they gave us the exemption was because of Finn. If we didn't have a kid who'd had cancer in our house, we would have been forced to have the lawn treatments. Not sure what I think of that.

Man, I'm just like Andie McDowell and her obsesion with the garbage barge in Sex, Lies and Videotape, only slightly less famous and beautiful.

I can't conjure any other random thoughts right now.

The bottom line is that while our armpits may be wet and we have dandelions growing in our yard, in the end, does it really matter? Will that make someone not want to be my friend? I hope not, but if so, then it is what it is.

As a different sort of update, Finn had his first post-port-removal clinic visit last Thursday. His counts were stellar--ANC = 5900 or so. In fact, I recently had bloodwork done and Finn's blood counts are higher in literally every area than mine. The competitive side of me thinks: darn it. But the mother side of me says: yay! My kid has healthy blood! He did have to get a finger stick, which he was not at all happy about, but we'll try numbing it next time to see if that helps.

Finally, Finn is going to lead the Survivors' Lap at the local Relay for Life on Friday, June 13th. What a sweet thing it is to be able to say "Survivor" and "Finn" in the same breath.


Kristie said...

Hey, just wanted you to know that we have to numb Kendrie's finger for her finger-sticks as well. She gets almost as upset about them, even now, over two years off treatment, as she did the port accesses. So I slather the end of her finger with emla and try to find a way to put a bandaid over the whole end, while she holds her finger out in front of her. Makes for an un-coordinated drive to the clinic, but it does seem to help. Hopefully it can help Finn as well!

utahsweeney said...

What a champ. Good info, but I have to tell you that I'm tearing up at the end. How far your family has come. I remember crying over your Caringbridge blog when he was diagnosed. SOOOO glad he's healthy!

1dreamr said...

Yay Finn!! That is just totally awesome!!

Mountain Mama said...

We are celebrating with you and the miraculous recovery of Finn. Wow! Thanks for thinking of us during this time. It has been and still is tough. God is my total strength!