I Never Thought I’d Be Eating That!

As I was making dinner last night (chicken curry), I thought to myself wow… my taste buds have really changed.
Growing up, there were 4 things I wouldn’t eat: mushrooms, onions, mustard and ANYTHING spicy. Now that I’m an adult, I enjoy mushrooms (cooked… I still don’t really enjoy them raw), onions (I can even eat those raw) and some spicy foods. I still don’t like mustard (unless it’s honey mustard) and there are still a lot of foods that are too spicy for me. However, I do enjoy the flavor of spicy foods, I just can’t handle the heat!

This was interesting to me so, I decided to do some research on taste buds. I had heard that your taste buds change as you get older, but that’s about all I knew.

I used to think those tiny little bumps on my tongue were the taste buds, but those are actually called fungiform papillae and EACH bump has an average of SIX taste buds buried within the tissue. And you don’t just have taste buds on your tongue—they’re everywhere, from the roof of your mouth to your throat and stomach!
The average adult has between 2,000 and 10,000 taste buds. People who have more than 10,000 are considered to be “supertasters”. “Research has shown that supertasters don’t like vegetables very much because they taste bitterness so intensely,” says Dr. Bartoshuk. “They also may find very sweet desserts, like crème brûlée, to be over-the-top sugary.”
To find out where you fall on the spectrum, try this fun test:
Apply a couple of drops of blue food coloring to your tongue and swallow a few times. Then examine your tongue’s surface; fungiform papillae won’t pick up the dye, so they’ll look like pink polka dots on a blue background. If your tongue appears to be almost solid pink, then you have tons of fungiform papillae and may be a supertaster!

Did you know your taste buds also help you to survive? “The purpose of our ability to distinguish tastes is survival,” says Trey Wilson, DDS, a New York City–based dentist. “Taste buds tell your brain whether or not to swallow what’s already in your mouth.” According to Dr. Bartoshuk, infants are born loving sweet and hating bitter, because natural sugar—not the sugar in, say, a processed candy bar, as we think of it today—is brain fuel, while bitter is the sensory cue for poison. “The taste system evolved to protect a baby who hasn’t learned anything about what is good and bad for himself yet,” she explains. Additionally, sodium is a mineral that’s essential for making our muscles and nerves work, therefore many people crave salty snacks.

Just like I had thought, your taste buds DO change, but what I didn’t know is that you can actually train them! So, when my parents said, “just keep trying it, you’ll like it eventually”, they were right! But there are certain ways to train them.  “By our watching our parents and friends, our brain learns what foods are ‘good,’” says Dr. Bower. If you want to train your palate, according to Dr. Bartoshuk, bringing out the sweetness of something will make it more palatable, as will adding something fatty, since your stomach has fatty acid receptors (which send a pleasing signal to your brain). So pairing broccoli with cheese, or roasting it to pull out its natural sugars, will likely make it more enjoyable. “Or you could add social cues: Eat it with someone else who really enjoys it, or with someone whom you admire and like. All of these things can make the food seem more appealing.” Similarly, if you eat something you used to love right before getting hit with the stomach flu, chances are you’ll have an aversion to that food for quite some time.

I was also curious about how and why taste buds changed when I was pregnant. I remember only wanting sweets, or only fruits, or only vegetables, etc. at certain times of my pregnancies. The reason is because the taste buds may have been protecting against potential harm. “I suspect that because the taste of bitter is hardwired to be a cue for poison, early in pregnancy your brain becomes sensitized to avoid it in order to guard your baby,” says Dr. Bartoshuk. “Similarly, pregnant women crave foods that tend to be high energy sources—something women need more of during pregnancy––like sugars and carbohydrates in the form of bread, candy or other sweets.” So, eat those cookies, you’re just protecting your baby!! 😉

Last but not least, I learned that taste buds are like cool Marvel superheroes! They can REGENERATE!.. So, we have super powers, people!!! Taste buds are constantly regenerating. Taste buds go through a life cycle where they grow from basal cells into taste cells and then die. According to Dr. Bartoshuk, their normal life cycle is anywhere from 10 days to two weeks. However, “burning your tongue on hot foods can also kill taste buds,” she says. “But they grow right back, which is why the ability to taste doesn’t diminish with age.” Though Dr. Bartoshuk notes that taste remains robust as we get older, the ability to taste bitterness does decline in women with the onset of menopause. Since, on a primal level, the ability to taste bitter may protect a pregnant woman’s baby, those receptors may stop working after a woman’s childbearing years are over because it is no longer a reproductive necessity.

Isn’t that all so cool?? Something so miniscule on your body, yet is capable of so much.


When people see me with my kids (or my husband.. LOL), they always tell me: “you have a lot of patience.” And while that may be true, it’s only true when it comes to human beings. If I see something I want, I WANT IT NOW!
This is something I have dealt with for my entire life. It wasn’t until this last Sunday when my pastor used a verse in his sermon that struck a chord. That verse was Hebrews 13:5 and it reads: “Keep your life free from love of money and be content with what you have, for He has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.””
So simple, but 6 words REALLY stuck out to me: BE CONTENT WITH WHAT YOU HAVE.
I probably stared at those 6 words for a good 10 minutes.
All of my life, I’ve always wanted the best and the newest… and if I couldn’t get the best or the newest, I’d settle for something else just to appease my desire… but then shortly after, realize that it still wasn’t good enough and I wanted something better and newer again. It’s a vicious cycle.
I did this with weight loss too!! Ever since I was young, I’ve been overweight (a lot had to do with the steroids I was always on for my asthma, but A LOT had to do with my poor diet). By the time I was an adult and was able to try to fix my bad eating habits, I’d be good for a week or two, but then since I wasn’t seeing fantastic results in that short time, I’d CAVE at the sight (or smell) of junk food. Then a couple weeks or months later, see a picture of myself and think UGH… I need to lose weight.
Another vicious cycle.

So, what did Hebrews 13:5 help me with?
It helped me realize that I’m ALREADY blessed and ALREADY have awesome things. I have a house, I have a car, I have food, I have clothes and I have a healthy body (short of asthma and bad knees :P). I will continue to better my body, but not for the selfish reasons that I used to want it for. I need to be content with what I have.

I have a beautiful family and amazing friends that love me for who I am, not for what I have. And above all else, I have an everlasting God whom will never leave me.

I will be content.

I Have a Secret…

So, it’s been a while since I’ve blogged… told you I wouldn’t be very good at this. LOL… I figured I’d let you into a little secret of mine that people don’t realize about me… Hell, I didn’t even really realize it until I read this blog post.

Yep, I’m an INTROVERT.

This is a personality trait that is often misread as being shy. Growing up, I was always referred to as “quiet” or “shy” or “well-mannered.”… Even as an adult people tell me I’m quiet. But as that Huffington Post blog states: “A lot of introverts can pass as extroverts.” And that’s what happens with me. Most people, even my closest friends, would think I’m an extrovert because I can get along with just about any crowd and have a seemingly good time. But what they don’t know is that I’m calculating everything in my head. What I’m going to say, how I’m going to act, how I think you’re going to react, etc. #16 says it perfectly in the post: You have a constantly running inner monologue. “Extroverts don’t have the same internal talking as we do,” says Olsen Laney. “Most introverts need to think first and talk later.”

Another one that stuck out a lot was #8: Giving a talk in front of 500 people is less stressful than having to mingle with those people afterwards.
As a CPST, I often have to give lessons and classes in front of many people… and I’m not nervous AT ALL. But afterward? When we just mingle? Total shutdown mode and I feel awkward.

Every.single.one of those points in that post fits me to the T. So, if I ever seem socially awkward or quiet or bored.. or,or,or.. in your presence, don’t take offense to it… because chances are it’s just because I don’t know what to say or do or how to act. In times like that, I usually bury my face in my phone or go to the bathroom (even if I don’t need to..lol) or do weird tasks that are unnecessary, like wipe a table with a napkin while I’m sitting in restaurant (or fold the napkin or a piece of paper.. a lot).

I think I do a pretty good job of putting on a confident front and making myself seem like I’m outgoing.. but sometimes it does get exhausting, so I seem to fall off the face of the earth sometimes… and for that, friends, I’m sorry. Just bear with me. It’s not you, it’s me. I’m secretly an introvert.. but I guess it’s not a secret anymore… ;P 

It is Better to Give Than to Receive

Acts 20:35

As I’ve said, I don’t like to push things on people (my beliefs included)… so if you don’t want to hear about my faith, feel free to click that little X in the corner. This post is more for me to “vent” than it is for anyone to benefit from. But for those of you still reading, I hope you do get something from it.

I grew up in a Southern Baptist Church. I wouldn’t say I was “sheltered”, but I was definitely well-guarded from all the evil in the world. I am thankful for this because it allowed me to see the good and learn how to BE THE GOOD long before enduring the bad.

One thing I learned from a young age was that it’s better to give than to receive. And while I don’t argue that, at all, it has given a lot of people the chance to take advantage of me. Yet, I still continue to give and I always will. I’m sure there will be many more times that I am burned, but you know what? That’s not what matters. Why do I need to be selfish just because the majority of the world is selfish? People are so blind to what REALLY matters.
People get so caught up in materialistic things, unhealthy habits, immoral habits, etc. that they cannot see what they’re missing out on: friendships, love, confidence, self-worth, etc.

Do you know what one of the biggest problems for everyone today is?


Did you know that money is the #1 cause for divorce? Studies show that it doesn’t matter how much people make, it’s ALWAYS a huge contributing factor. This is sad to me because how can someone let MONEY overshadow love?
Matthew 6:21 says: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” My heart will ALWAYS be for 3 things: Jesus, my family and my friends. Money does not and will not ever have my heart. If that means I’ll be a middle-class citizen (or lower) for the rest of my life, then so be it! There’s no money in heaven. I don’t need things.

Don’t get me wrong, I like things… and I like money. And often times, I get caught up in wanting cool things or nice things. But for every one thing that I have for myself, there are hundreds of things that I have given to others. It’s not because I want to seem “better” than others, but because I truly do care and that it’s important for my family and friends to know that I AM HERE FOR THEM. Always.
Money can be replaced. People and the relationships we build with them cannot. Call me crazy, but if that means I have to suffer to help someone, I will. I have faith that my family and I will be taken care of. It doesn’t mean that I’m going to spend ALL of our money to help someone (like my husband often thinks I will), but Luke 6:38 says “Give and you shall receive.”

It’s not about “what have they done for me?” That’s never the question that should be your motivation to help someone. Jesus DIED for us. Where would we be today if that was HIS motivation?

So, for everyone reading this, even if you don’t believe in Jesus:
Please start putting others first. Just think of how much better the world would be if everyone would ask each other “What can I do to help?” without any expectations for something in return.


I Can’t Save them All… but I’ll keep trying.

When I first became a CPST, I had every intention to convince everyone I spoke to about car seat safety to do the best.
With each person that went against my advice, I’d lose sleep over it. I’d go over and over in my head about what I could’ve done differently that would’ve changed the outcome.

It wasn’t until years later that I realized that I can’t convince them all. You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot MAKE them drink.
It was so hard for me to get over.

I have never been the kind to overstep my boundaries or push my beliefs (religious or otherwise) on anyone. I don’t like controversy and I HATE confrontation. So, typically, I avoid it. For a while, I just stopped giving advice completely. The majority weren’t listening to me, so why bother?

It wasn’t until a fellow CPST told me about someone she knew that lost her son in a car accident. She knew she turned him forward-facing too early and she said nothing. She, like me, had been burned by too many people not taking her advice.
Everyday, she still wonders if things would’ve been different if she had spoken with her friend about car seat safety.

That was probably one of the most important lessons I’ve ever learned as a CPST.
Just because someone doesn’t take your advice, at least you’ve said SOMETHING. Because then if something happens, you won’t have to live with the guilt. It’s on THEM, not your conscience.

So, I still offer my advice and my knowledge, but I no longer blame myself for someone else’s stubbornness or ignorance.
If you want to believe “it won’t happen to me” or “I’m just being over-protective”, go ahead and keep living in fantasy land. Keep thinking that you’ll never crash and that your children are invincible; at least I have done my job. I realize that I can’t save them all, but I’ll keep trying.

If you would like to learn about Car Seat Safety and how you can keep your child as safe as possible, CLICK HERE. It could save your child’s life. No parent should know the grief of losing a child.


I’m a Professional Mother

As I said before, from when I was very young, I’ve always wanted to be a mother; a stay-at-home mom to be exact.
And that’s what I am… times FOUR.

I found this list of 52 Job Titles a Mom Holds. It lists things from the typical maid, cook, etc. to No-thumb Sucking Enforcer and Tooth Brush Inspector.
While I do MANY of those things listed, I do not claim to be them. I am “just” a mom.
Do I cook? Yes. But am I good at it? Not really. But my kids are alive and healthy.. so, I think I’m doing alright  😉
Do I clean? Meh. Am I good at it? Meh. I hate cleaning. I am NOT a maid. If I was, my house would be sparkling ALL.THE.TIME. But, alas, I am not a maid.. I am a mom. And please refer to the picture above. 🙂

I could go on and on about why I am not those things on the list, but I’d rather tell you what I AM.

I am a professional mother. I take what I do seriously and my children come FIRST… If that means I cannot clean or cannot cook, I won’t. The mess will still be there tomorrow and there’s nothing wrong with NOT having a “hot” meal. I found this awesome blog post with GREAT meal ideas that are easy to prepare and store. They are great for the boys’ lunches at school (I always pack their lunches) or for when I just DON’T FEEL LIKE COOKING!

Children are only children for a very short time. So, while my children are still young, I want to cherish them as much as I can. As much as it bugs me sometimes when they constantly want my attention, make horrendous messes and want to ask me a bajillion and one questions, I have to remind myself that it won’t ALWAYS be like this. 

I let them explore, I let them build forts with ungodly amounts of unnecessary tape and pencils, I let them help cook even if it means 4 times the dishes because everyone wants their own mixing bowls, we dance around the living room like crazy lunatics, we sing in the car at the top of our lungs, we paint with not only brushes but with our fingers and toes and other body parts that “aren’t for painting with”.

Those are (just some) of the memories I want to cherish. So, if you ever come over and my house is a mess, please don’t think I’m not doing my job… because I am.
I am a professional mother.