Author Archives: nadinelebean

The Mother’s Meditation

I’ve been testing out some parenting “methods” that entail the loss of psychopathic rage thoughts towards child. They harbour a wisdom and a complete absolving yourself of irritation. Funny though, it doesn’t feel like a method at all. I’ve tried methods and it seems that the children always sensed my desire to manipulate through these methods. I would try A to get one of them to do B and then move on to C when A failed.
Well, it seems I’ve managed to happily let that go. More and more of the time at least. Practice makes parenting.
How did I come to this place? I’m thinking it’s through the persistent work of aiming to embody peaceful parentingness? Holding the space for that and knowing it’s possibility even when I have failed? Setting the intention for it after a major parenting struggle? Seeking, searching, letting it through.
Yes. All of that.
I’ve led myself to some unexpected places lately and it’s been exhilarating and enlightening to the point that I dare call it easy.
Maybe you can relate to this child/parent scenario?
Child is extremely tired with some sort of ailment that is preventing sleep. This time it was a stuffy nose. The familiar and nasally “My nose is plugged!!!” Set in.
I took a deep breath because I knew what this meant, or could mean.
I began to play the game as usual offering essential oils, saline and thoughts of smothering to sleep. Then I stopped. I remembered that I’m no longer doing that anymore. I have a bigger, deeper purpose.
I rubbed the child’s back and took deep cleansing breaths which aided in the clearing of my mind. What happened next is what I have been intending for: The Mother’s Meditation. I had been knowing for myself that a walking, screaming, pooping meditation was possible while with children. I knew it could be more than needing a quiet rare space to be spiritual and peaceful. I could find this place among the “unpleasant” chaos. I continued to breathe and take note of what the irritation felt like in my chest and my toes. I breathed it in deeply wrapping it up in love and accepting it completely. “This is me right now. What wants to happen?”
And then I led us to a beach. I love beaches. I began to tell the child what the beach felt like. The warm sand, the salty wet air. It led us up to the waves where we saw crabs. We waded forward through the water and we grew fins where we had legs. Our fingers became webbed and we swam to great depths. Sleep came easily during this and I’ve been using I since with this child.
Now I’m not suggesting You use this method. This mediation spurred out of a genuine desire to help and be at peace with what is. It’s about letting yourself go to those places and explore. What depths do you contain? That’s what to strive for. It’s exciting to think of what wants to come through you. Yours may look differently or maybe you’d take a walk through a forest? Who knows?!?? Life is exciting.

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Dealing With The Overwhelming Messes of Parenthood.

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Those familiar feelings of being hopeless and overwhelmed set in after a call from my mechanic this morning when he told me that I needed to clean my van. I knew that.
I can laugh about it now but at the time I looked around and scaled the enormity of everything to be done if I wanted to live a respectable life.
And I do, most of the time.
I want to know where stuff is and not have everything destroyed because it’s piled together with food and sand.
I want to be able to walk across the floor without a serious toy impalement to the foot. I’d like to limit the clumsy trips across the room over slippery craft materials with baby on back.
Are other people dealing with this too?
Do you ever feel the enormity of it and think “what’s the point?”.
After Michael left for work, I sat on the couch and let it sink in. I wanted to stare at the wall, sob and rip my heart out for all my failings and stinky messes.
I let myself feel it without bringing in more thoughts of examples on for reasons I should be totally depressed. There’s always proof if you look. but…I’m not going there.
I reminded myself that I have important work to do here if I’m open to it. It matters. But it sure didn’t feel like it at the time. I felt like I could go into blame and lashing out. Probably at the kids since they are small and here.
And then it hit me…
What can I do of great importance? What can I do that would have the largest impact?
I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately.
Where is my time most valuable and what is the most efficient thing to be doing right now. I’ve discovered that with exhaustion of a sleepless baby, efficiency can look like the food network in a dark room.
At this time though, I realized that it would be easy to tackle Michaels laundry and it would be a big deal for him. I could focus on it and get to it quickly before the repulsive front loading machine mildew sets in. I could fold them and have them all put away and ready for him. I could put his favourite essential oils on them. I can clean socks and have them all paired with fresh underwear. These things are truly an amazing thing to live.
Have you ever gone without?
So that’s what I’ve done and it feels so good to have this ready for him while he’s away and on someone’s roof in the cold so we can have money to buy boning knives and 200 lbs of honey and pig fat.
I sometimes forget the huge impact that I can have. I think myself down to nothing as I forget that we are all worthy and capable of something grand.
I don’t need to do it all. I just need to access my situation and do something. As a bonus, while doing that, I get better at everything. I gain more skills, many for organization and efficiency. I’m happy to be alive and not ranting over spilled everythings.

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How to cut up your own organic free ranged dead chicken.

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I’ve decided that I would like to do more videos and less writing.
Sure I would I want to share my random opinions but I’ve realized that I have some mad skills that I could be teaching.
I’m spending my life collecting skills that improve quality of life.
Many of them are very easy and anyone can do it. And Many of them also do not involve pig heads or chicken feet. I will warn you when those ones come up but I would like to invite you to set an intention for yourself to be cool with uncommon animal parts because they are so commonly thrown away.

So, here it is!

My first skill share, just for you, my beloved followers.
It’s only three and a half minutes long and will teach you how to cut up your own free range organic chicken.
Doing this makes ethical meat so affordable. And we all love meat that wasn’t raised in its own poop without a beak of its own to peck bugs with.
I’ll figure out how to put the video right on the page, but until then you’ll have to click the link…

How to cut up your own free ranged organic dead chicken.

I can’t afford organic food!

You know where this is going. It’s a post that is the opposite of the title. Sorry, but it got your attention so that we can do our important work now. Here I am, affording good food:

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I bought two organic free ranged chickens. They were $50 for the two six pound chickens. That’s four dollars a pound.
FIFTY DOLLARS?!?

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I’m going to stretch this chicken. They are stuffed with kidneys and hearts which I got for free from my farmer friend. I’ll use the hearts in a soup. They have a great chewy texture. The kidneys I’ll eat a few then I’ll ignore them for weeks in the fridge and then give to the cats.
1. The kids and I had two drumsticks and a bit of breast for lunch.
Now I’ve taken all the meat off the bones.

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2. I put the bones on with some sautéed onions, carrot ends, herbs and celery that my friend brought from her garden while I was napping. Some of the meat and hearts I’ll put with the broth for soup enough for two meals and some to give to a pregnant friend.

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3. I saved the drippings to make gravy. We will eat that tonight over mashed potatoes, cooked veggies and chicken. I’m boiling down the drippings to concentrate the flavour of the gravy.

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4. Some of the meat will go with my husband to work to make sandwiches for the week.
Did you keep track of all the meals those $50 chickens made and are making?
-small lunch for kids and I.
-supper tonight
-2 to 3 meals of soup
-sandwiches for husband for the week.

The veggies from the farmers market to go with all this is about $20.
That is nine organic, nutrient dense meals for $70.
Can you afford that? Remember that we are a family of seven.

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Oh, and the hearts! These make another meal smothered in gravy.
There you have it: 10 organic meals for $70.

*update* this post is reaching a lot of people. How exciting it is that people are concerned about eating organic buzz words. It’s worth it. Every little
Bit helps as does forgiving yourself when you are not eating healthy. Worry is bad for your health. Keep adding in good. Add in good and the good expands. In your belly and in your life.

An Open Letter To Michelle Duggar

Dear Michelle Duggar, the lady with 19 kids and counting…

Just kidding.
How easy is it to get sucked in to other peoples drama? Before I know it, I could be on my way to find celebrity’s private naked photos, and this can happen easily at the end of a long day with kids and poop and kids if I am
not careful. I find I have to consciously tell myself “no. I’m not doing that. That’s not my life. I don’t care what strangers are doing and they’re probably fake anyways.”
If I’m going to do my important work here on this planet, I have to focus and ask myself what do I really want to spend my time on? What is going to be of most value to me and those around me? It’s so easy to get distracted. It doesn’t mean that I don’t do seemingly mindless things like watch Dr.Who or stare off into space. It’s about using the time I have to the best of my ability. It’s about asking “what is mine to do?” And then doing it.
I’ll be dead soon one day.
Did you really want to know what I thought of Michelle Duggar?
What is your purpose right now?You are seeing right now what mine is…

Your faithful life humbler,
Nadine LeBean

*update* this has been one of my most viewed posts :/ Why is that?

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Fermented Tomato Hot Sauce

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I’m so excited to bring you this non-recipe. It’s an easy and absolutely delicious way to preserve tomatoes. It took me ten minutes to make this and will last for over a year Unrefrigerated. I only made a few small batches of this last year as I wasn’t sure how it would turn out. I took it camping and it was such a treat. The other big unschooling family we were camping with said it was there favourite food of the whole trip. I’m completely humbled by the work of the millions that it took to bring us these amazing flavours. This year, I’m making gallons.

Fermented Tomato Hot Sauce

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I cut up tomatoes, garlic, onion, hot peppers and sweet peppers and blended it together.

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It reduced to about half so I added more tomatoes and blended again.

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I then added 60 grams or about 3 heaping TBSP of Himalayan salt for this 3 litre FIDO jar. If you can’t do the math, that is about a tablespoon of salt for a quart but you can adjust it to your taste as well as the spicyness. I really recommend doing this in a high quality clamp down. You can experiment with this too! Please let me know what creations you have discovered so I can theft your ideas. .

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Don’t overfill it, it will bubble up. Clamp it down. Write the date on it with a permanent marker and leave it until it it stops bubbling. The taste will only get better as it ages.

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Here’s the tomato hot sauce after 2 weeks. It’s separated but will stir back together once it’s done. Or you can scoop off the top and use the thick stuff separately.

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Life told through stories.

I’ve felt a lot of inspired inspiration lately to write. The great opinionated ideas have been flowing freely mixed in with the thoughts of “well, I really don’t know anything.”
I ask myself why I even write when I am just one person? what inspires a bird to swim or a fish to fly? What makes me or you or Oprah or Jesus an authority to share anyways?
We are all born entitled to share our stories, each one sacred and unique. We grow up bubbling to tell ourselves to the world and so many times that desire gets lost. I love the way children do this as if they are thinking out loud. “I have a wedgie and I’m going to pick it and have a cookie or two or three and my favourite show is strawberry shortcake. I like purple.”
What would it sound like if adults spoke out loud?
For me often it would sound like “Fuck I’m irritated. Be peaceful. Breathe. It’s ok. Man that’s irritating. Get away from it. NOW!” My thoughts are a lot less fun. I’ll try harder to suppress them. Seriously though I don’t want to cloud my stories with the ranting of thoughts that come from lack and limitation. I want to see clearly the brilliant unfolding of what is my life. Will I be able to put down the distractions and be completely immersed in life? Maybe the thoughts are our life stories?
We can learn a lot from each others stories. I think about all the stories that have been lost. How did my grandparents meet? What were their most treasured possessions during hard times? In the future, what hard times would my kids find nostalgic? Would it be huddling in a tent under thunder so loud you cover your ears and lightening so loud it temporarily blinds you? Will I remember how we left the comfort of our home to have the experience of the wind pushing the tent right onto my face while I’m lying down?
Will we fondly remember when we first moved here and ate cases of no-name kraft dinner with hemp in it? That’s hilarious considering how we eat now. You can see that we were trying with the added hemp. And it tasted horrible.
It’s lightens my heart to think of these stories and I wonder what I am doing now that may be ridiculous and funny to me later. I am sitting on the couch drinking a coffee with an egg blended into it while flies swarm and land on my face as I type furiously on my phone to get you my non-message before the children wake. The message is that there is no message. There’s flowers and flies and an abundance of world to explore. As I gain more years, I feel a calmness in this skin and a kinship with this life. I heard last night that the fifties are the best years and I can totally see why. I look forward to it. Can’t wait to be even smarter and have great stories to tell.