Her’s Day Thursday

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Today’s magnificent momma is Elizabeth Blackwell!

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Elizabeth Blackwell was born in Gloucestershire, England in 1821. Her father, a sugar refiner, believed that all of his children—including his daughters—should be educated and have the same opportunities as anyone else. This is why Mr. Blackwell not only hired a governess for his children, but also private tutors to ensure a quality education.

When she was 11, Elizabeth and her family moved to America. When they arrived, they were all deeply moved by the struggles of slaves and worked hard to help abolish slavery. When Elizabeth’s father died in 1838, Elizabeth and her sisters started a school for young women to help bring in money for the family.

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Elizabeth continued to teach and fight against slavery. In 1845, she was visiting a friend who was dying from a horribly painful disease (most likely uterine cancer). Her friend told her she wished she was being treated by a female physician because she would be more understanding and possibly have a more comforting bedside manner. This got Elizabeth thinking about a career in medicine.

With the help of a reverend friend (who was a physician before he entered the clergy) she studied anatomy. She reached out to colleges all over the world but faced rejection at every turn. Most of the rejections cited that she: “was a woman and therefore intellectually inferior”, and she “might actually prove equal to the task, prove to be competition, and that could not expect them to ‘furnish [her] with a stick to break our heads with”.

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In 1847, Elizabeth was accepted to Hobart College in New York. Two years later, she became the first woman to receive a medical degree. She faced adversity and prejudice every where she went. However, she did not let it deter her. She found other young women under her wing who had a dream to practice medicine. When the Civil War broke out, Elizabeth and her sisters trained nurses and opened infirmaries.

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She worked tirelessly the rest of her life for social and political reform, and even opened the London School of Medicine for Women in 1874. For more information about the BAMF Elizabeth Blackwell, click here!

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Writer Wednesday

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Hey fellow writers! Here’s today’s prompt:

We all have junk. What is in your fridge that you never use but can’t throw out?
What item of clothing in your closet do you never wear but cannot bring yourself to throw away?
What’s in your attic that you can’t get rid of?

 

I don’t know why, but this little guy has been in every fridge in every place I’ve ever lived. I don’t use it. I don’t see anyone use it. But, somehow, there’s always a teensy bit missing. Its never full. But I can’t seem to throw it away!

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I typically do a purge of my closet about every 4-6 months. My rule is: if I can’t remember the last time I wore this, I have to give it up. But…there is a shirt that I will NEVER, EVER give up, for three reasons: it was my dad’s, it has Bruce Freaking Springsteen on the front, and the copyright says 1984 (i.e., the year I was born; its as old as me!):

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One of my goals for 2015 was to get rid of a bunch of crap I have stored at my parents’ house. (I mostly made this goal because I didn’t want to bring any junk into our new house–that we have yet to buy.) I threw away three giant plastic storage tubs FULL of old papers, notes, toys, and awards. There was one book though, I couldn’t bring myself to part with:

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What about you? What’s made a permanent home in your fridge? Got a pair of pants you just can’t part with? Is there a box of old newspapers in your attic just asking to be throw away?

Try It Tuesday

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At the Huffman Homestead, our dinners typically involve the same ingredient: chicken. We like it because it’s a great lean protein, but we tend to get in a rut with our dinners. So I’ve been scouring Pinterest to find a yummy new chicken dinner. When I saw a recipe titled, “The World’s Best Chicken” I had to try it!

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Here’s what you need:

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~4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

~1/2 cup Dijon mustard (I used Grey Poupon)

~1/4 cup syrup

~1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

~Salt

~Pepper

~Rosemary

 

(I actually used two chicken breasts because it was just Huff the Hubs and myself, so I ended up halving the recipe, but I’ll pretend like I did it as the recipe shows!)

 

Preheat your oven to 425*. Whisk the mustard, syrup, and vinegar in a small bowl.

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Spray a small casserole dish with cooking spray and drop your chicken in. Generously shake salt and pepper on top of the chicken.

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Pour the mustard/syrup mixture on top of the chicken and sprinkle with some more salt and pepper and pop into the oven for 30-40 minutes.

 

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Then, serve with your favorite sides!

 

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I actually REALLY liked this! So did HtH! The chicken was really juicy and the flavor was delish! Have you ever tried a recipe like this?

Mommy Monday

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When I used to read Cosmo (like, when I had actual time to read and I needed tips on how to look “hot on a budget”—seriously, who has time for THAT?) and other magazines, I loved seeing the “What’s In My Bag” page. Typically, they’d have a celebrity share what they carried around in their hella-expensive designer purses. They almost always had the same thing: expensive perfumes you’d see in department stores, $20 lip balms, hair products that were featured on Oprah’s Favorite Things episodes, and wads of cash.

As I was cleaning out my purse (a weekly ritual I reserve for Sunday afternoons, I started to giggle, thinking about all of the things in my bag and how ridiculous it would look in a glossy magazine, compared to what’s in Beyonce’s Michael Kors tote or Kim Kardashian’s Hermes Birkin Bag.

So here’s what’s in MY bag:

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  1. Star Wars bag from Think Geek
  2. Coupon holder, organized by aisle at my fave grocery store!
  3. A fan for those “I’m-in-my-thirties-why-am-I-having-hot-flashes?!” moments.
  4. Old receipts that I haven’t thrown out yet. Mostly from Target. Because, Dollar Spot.
  5. An old, dirty bib that has been in my purse for who knows how long.
  6. through 22. : My new Harry Potter wallet, multi-use tool, notepad and pens (I HAVE to write things down or make lists because I have horrible Mommy-Brain), an empty cup from a free sample I got last week at Wal-Mart, hair clip and hair tie (because a mommy of a little one can’t wear her hair down unless she wants bald spots), hand sanitizing gel (in “Stress Relief”; because, children), iPhone car charger adapter, headphones, Mace (which I got after the break-in), Aveeno hand lotion (my hands are crazy-dry because I wash them 20 times a day), EOS lip balm (seriously, the BEST ever), a Little People figurine (because, children), my Loretta Lynn pill box my mom got me in Tennessee, a Harley Quinn compact mirror, and sunglasses (from the Dollar Spot at Target; seriously, there’s point in paying #15 for shades when your child pulls them off your face. Plus, I lose sunglasses like ten times a day).

What’s in YOUR bag? Do you even carry a purse or do you shove everything in your pockets? Or maybe you use your kid’s diaper bag as a purse? Share in the comments below!

Her’s Day Thursday

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Today’s HDT gal is actually one of my personal faves: Hattie McDaniel.

The name may not ring a bell, but the face surely will.

Hattie McDaniel

Hattie McDaniel was born in Kansas in 1895 to Henry, a Baptist preacher and Susan, a religious singer. Hattie was a natural performer and sang and danced with her older brother’s minstrel show. In 1925, Hattie got her big break by joinging the Melody Hounds—a touring ensemble—which turned into a career in radio.

In 1931, Hattie made her way to L.A. and got a few acting gigs here and there, but not enough to pay the bills. She made her way as a maid or washroom attendant.

Eventually, Hattie gained more and more roles in movies, acting alongside big names like Ginger Rogers, Henry Fonda, and Jimmy Stewart. She also became good friends with the leading man in the film Saratoga—the dashing Clark Gable.

In 1939, Hattie saw Mr. Gable again on the set of Gone With the Wind. Though some were against Hattie playing the character of “Mammy” in the David O. Selznick classic, she took on the role with fierce determination and, in this blogger’s opinion, lit up the screen.

The Academy of Motion Pictures also took notice, awarding McDaniel the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. Because of unjust laws at the time, Hattie and her escort were sat far in the back of the ballroom, far from her Gone With the Wind costars. When Hattie accepted her award, however, she did so with grace and dignity:

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“Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, fellow members of the motion picture industry and honored guests: This is one of the happiest moments of my life, and I want to thank each one of you who had a part in selecting me for one of their awards, for your kindness. It has made me feel very, very humble; and I shall always hold it as a beacon for anything that I may be able to do in the future. I sincerely hope I shall always be a credit to my race and to the motion picture industry. My heart is too full to tell you just how I feel, and may I say thank you and God bless you.”

Hattie’s victories were not only limited to the Oscars. She also organized a group of African-Americans to fight against a homeowner’s group that were trying to keep blacks out of a prestigious Pasadena neighborhood. Hattie and her organization took their fight to the Supreme Court and won! In 1942, she purchased a beautiful two-story home in the Sugar Hill neighborhood and had yearly parties which her friend, Clark Gable, always attended.

Hattie volunteered for the USO, the American Women’s Voluntary Services, and organized a radio broadcast to raise money for the Red Cross.

Hattie’s acting career and philanthropic activities continued until her death in 1952. She leaves behind an amazing legacy and is a credit to her race and her gender.