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A '70s depiction of the goddess Isis. I like it.
A '70s depiction of the goddess Isis. I like it.

My new blog kicks off next week

Starting next week, I will run a weekly blog called "Midlife Isis." My life has changed a lot in the past six months, and this personal blog will focus on nearing what could be "midlife" as well as motherhood and challenging, unexpected life happenings.

I will continue to write articles and briefs, so if hearing about my personal life might is not your bag -- and I don't blame you in the least if it's not -- skip anything with "Midlife Isis" in the title. Other readers will, hopefully, relate to my new blog that's guaranteed to be honest and upbeat.

"Midlife Isis" is, of course, a play on the words "Midlife Crisis." Isis was an Ancient Greek goddess who was often worshiped as the ideal mother and wife. Although I strive to be these things, I have sometimes failed, and so I use her name as something to strive for and ironically.

Hope to see you next week in Blogland.

Are we in a "pink phase?"
Are we in a "pink phase?"

An abundance of baby girls

Six years ago, I had my son, Levi, and it seemed like almost every pregnant woman I knew had a boy. This worked out well for us because it provided my son with plenty of playmates.

And even at OnMilwaukee.com, staff members welcomed only males into their families for a few years until publisher Andy Tarnoff finally broke the cycle with an adorable daughter in 2008.

And now, it seems like everyone is having a girl. (Including OnMilwaukee.com's Julie Lawrence!)

Is this just me or is there truth to it? Does it seem to you like batches of baby boys or baby girls are born in cycles? And if so, is this cosmic or coincidence?

"Nothing but time and a face that you lose." -- From the Stars' song, "Your Ex-Lover Is Dead."
"Nothing but time and a face that you lose." -- From the Stars' song, "Your Ex-Lover Is Dead."

10 break-up songs

Without going into the sordid details of my life, I will admit to compiling a list of classic break-up songs. So far, I have the following list, and would welcome your suggestions via the Talkback feature. (Just don't suggest "Breaking Up Is Hard To Do." That one, kids, has been done to death.)

In the meantime, I'll be eating a gallon of chocolate ice cream and getting drunk with lady friends. That's what ya do in these situations, right?

Stars -- Your Ex-Lover Is Dead
DeVotchka -- How It Ends
Moby -- Mistake
Cake -- I Will Survive (cover)
U2 -- With or Without You
J. Geils Band -- Love Stinks
Antony & the Johnsons -- I Hope There's Someone
Belle & Sebastian -- Get Me Away From Here I'm Dying
Tegan & Sara -- I Was Married
Pink  -- So What 

To nuke or not to nuke.
To nuke or not to nuke.

Can I live without a microwave?

Earlier this week, I posted this question as my Facebook status update, and 47 comments later, I am still waffling as to whether or not I plan to buy a new one. Even my mother weighed in, saying I didn’t need one if I bought a toaster oven.

There are a couple of food items, however, that make me wonder if I really want to live without one. In the winter, the sweet or baked potato is a staple food for me, and the difference between eight minutes in the nukebox and an hour or more in the oven is daunting.

I’m a big fan of microwave popcorn, particularly the SmartPop Kettle Korn. Also, my boys eat a lot of turkey dogs and 30 seconds in the microwave makes lunch a snap. A friend pointed out, however, that hot dogs taste better when they are boiled in water on the stovetop, and I agree that most foods are more appealing when slow cooked.

I decided to learn about the health risks of using a microwave, because so many friends have ditched theirs. Hence, the Facebook post.

A few people said they got rid of their microwave to save precious counter space. This made sense. Others voiced health and nutrition concerns.

Through research, I have learned a few things. Microwaves heat food rapidly by causing water molecules to resonate at a high frequency. This process changes the chemical structure of food, which could decrease nutrients. Plus, carcinogens can leach out of plastic containers into food during the cooking process, but this is less of a concern for me because I only use glass in the microwave.

Some folks said that microwaves escape during the cooking process, but I found that even the most ardent nukebox naysayers agree that the chances of this are slim with newer models.

My final thoughts are that microwaves are not extremely harmful to one’s health, but they do take up a fair share of space. And, as stated earlier, most food tastes better when baked in a toaster oven. So after a little research and informal polling, I thi…

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