Study: No such thing as “safe” plastic

Glass water bottle bpa plastc

I’ve been scared since I first found that Bisphenol-A (BPA) can cause all sorts of problems from feminizing fish, cancer, to undescended testes in boys but a new Mother Jones exposé has me shaking in my boots.

I was pregnant when the public started finding out about the effects of (BPA) and while I was scared, I felt as if I had options.  I could look for plastics with BPA-free on the packaging and switch to glass, which I did. I now only heat up  and store food in glass.

According to the Mother Jones article, however, that may not be enough and the results of their investigation suggest that there may be no such thing as “safe plastic”.

It reported that “almost all” commercially available plastics that were tested leached synthetic estrogens—even when they weren’t exposed to conditions known to unlock potentially harmful chemicals, such as the heat of a microwave, the steam of a dishwasher, or the sun’s ultraviolet rays. According to Bittner’s research, some BPA-free products actually released synthetic estrogens that were more potent than BPA. More here….

What’s even more concerning is that the plastic industry knows that their product may not be safe and  have fought to keep the information away from the public. The article likens what the plastic industry is doing to the tobacco industry cover ups. That’s scary! We all use plastics and what’s worse is that our vulnerable children walk around with sippy cups, pacifiers, and “lovies” that may be leaching dangerous toxins.

Honestly, right now it seems like an uphill battle to keep plastics out of our lives. It would mean no frozen veggies, canned tomatoes, body lotions, or even a refrigerator! It’s alarming so I can only hope that as more information comes out we will find out how to safely use all plastic products.

Check out the article for more information on the investigation and let me know how you minimize the use of plastics in your life.


“Justice pon di road” — A new children’s book for the Jamaicans abroad

Justice pon di roadThere’s a new book that you must add to your kiddo’s bookshelf. It’s called “Justice Pon Di Road” and it tells the story of little Justice’s visit to Jamaica.

Justice’s mommy, who already loves Jamaica, takes him “pon di road” so he can learn about his Jamaican heritage.  Along the way, the pair learn about Jamaica from the locals they meet and are treated to Jamaican fruits, delicacies, and Jamaican parenting advice.

I must admit that I was a somewhat nervous when Aliona L. Gibson asked me to review “Justice Pon Di Road.”  I’ve never done a book review outside a classroom setting and mostly I was nervous because I really, really wanted to like the book.

And I did!

Ms. Gibson does a great job giving us a tour of Jamaica through her son’s eyes.  We can almost taste the juicy Jamaican mango and fresh patty as Justice experiences them.  The book is engaging and easy to understand.  It is easy to imagine cooling your hot feet in the Caribbean Sea or quenching your thirst with water from just picked coconut.

I’m Jamaican as well and although I talk to my son about my country, I’ve been on the look out for a children’s book with appealing pictures that would talk about Jamaica in a fun and engaging way. I had no luck until “Justice pon di road.”

With more Jamaicans living abroad than on the island, I know I’m not the only parent who is trying to paint a picture for our foreign born child of what life is like in Jamaica. I also love that the book includes a glossary of words in Patois (patwa), Jamaica’s local dialect.

So for those Jamaican parents living abroad this book is for you!

You can purchase the book on:

Study: Relationship between teens and parents influences adult children’s romantic relationship

parent marriage affect relationship spouseCredit: cid.edson

It’s time to re-evaluate your relationship with your teenager because according to a new study, the parental relationship can influence adult children’s romantic relationships for up to 15 years! Of course, the study found that a positive relationship with one’s parents leads to adult children making healthier choices in a spouse.

Studies like these are important even if the results seem super obvious because:

    Being aware of that connection may save a lot of heartache down the road, according to Johnson, who reviewed existing data that was gathered in the United States over a span of 15 years.

If you are having a contentious relationship with your teen, it’s important you have a conversation with him or her about how the difficult relationship could affect their love life and marriage:

    “People tend to compartmentalize their relationships; they tend not to see the connection between one kind, such as family relations, and another, like couple unions. But understanding your contribution to the relationship with your parents would be important to recognizing any tendency to replicate behaviour — positive or negative — in an intimate relationship.”

Please check out the Love and Logic technique if you are having a problem with your teenager so that you can either prevent having a rocky relationship with your teen or fix an already troubled one. The effects of the troubled teen years last a bit longer than we thought so I really, really suggest that you check out Love and Logic or other parenting techniques that may be of help.

For more information on the study, “Don’t let rocky past relations with parents spoil your romance”, click here.

#BlerdKids: If you have a high school senior, you may want to read this!

Cuomo money college stem SUNY CUNY

There was a time when we were told to apply to the best colleges (read: the Ivy League) because these colleges or universities “pay for themselves” after graduation. Given today’s job market, I think that advice needs an update. Instead my advice would be “to follow the money”. Our kids need to leverage their good grades to negotiate a financial aid package that would allow them to walk away from college debt-free. Continue reading

#Blerdkids: RISE Summer Internship Program

Blerd Donald Glover

Donald Glover is the definition of a #Blerd (black nerd)

Credit: Aren’tYouAlex-Spencer?

One thing you have to know about me is that I’m a worrier. That’s why I’ve decided not continue Freebie Friday for now because I would like to be able to post free educational opportunities as soon as I hear about them without worrying that I could be posting after a deadline. Therefore, from now on I’ll be posting as soon I find about a scholarship or other free educational opportunity. Continue reading

PETA has once again crossed the line – kids given graphic pamphlet without parental consent


I have to be honest and let you know that I don’t like PETA. I like their message but I don’t like their tactics. At some point they lost their way and have become a parody of themselves with all their antics. Because of this it’s hard to take seriously the organization’s core premise – the ethical treatment of animals – with PETA’s various stunts and rhetoric. Continue reading