New Year’s Resolutions

  • Spend less time on social media, especially when I’m already feeling like shit.
  • Practice more self care.
  • Be more physically active.
  • Be more diligent about flossing.
  • Take my vitamins every day.
  • Journal/blog more.
  • Read more books.
  • Make a better effort at eliminating my use of ableist language.
  • Take more selfies.
  • Eat out less. Cook more.
  • Delete people who still send me Candy Crush invites.
  • Worry less about what people think of me.
  • Travel.
  • Save money and improve my finances.
  • Stop taking on design projects that I hate or am not compensated for.
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I am grateful for…

  1. My job. Despite being stressful at times, I really do love what I do. I never thought I would find a career in print design, let alone one I would enjoy.
  2. My best friend Amber and her family. Being so far from my family in Southern California has been a struggle for me at times, especially during the holidays. It’s nice to know I have people here who care about me too. It makes me feel less alone.
  3. My cat Bijou for keeping my lap warm, cuddles, and making me laugh.
  4. My friends who continue to support and encourage me to be the best me I can be.
  5. The new friends I’ve made through PNW Fattitude.
  6. YouTube tutorials. Makes living on my own a little easier.
  7. My new apartment and not being homeless.
  8. Having a washer/dryer unit in my apartment!!!
  9. Finally having health insurance.
  10. Strawberry milkshakes from Shake Shake Shake.

I just got fatlogic’d…

Someone came across my blog post about my fat mermaids coloring book and decided to share it with the subreddit /r/fatlogic. I suppose it was only a matter of time before I ended up on that shitstain of a website. Now I am being harassed simply for existing in my fat body and for being an advocate for fat acceptance. Apparently, I am a “hamplanet” and I’m asking to be ridiculed. Oh, okay.

It never ceases to amaze me how absolutely horrible people can be. I don’t understand how people get off on spewing so much negativity to strangers on the internet.

My Christmas Wishlist

  • A raise
  • A lower health insurance premium
  • The Washington Healthplanfinder website to fucking work
  • A good night’s sleep
  • Being able to pay my bills this month
  • A 4-pack of Babysham
  • The LogoTV website to stop being a piece of shit
  • A pint of cinnamon snickerdoodle ice cream from Salt & Straw
  • A subscription to the Salt & Straw Seasonal Pints Club
  • A Rilakkuma kigurumi
  • The Epsilon Clear Quartz Necklace from Shop Dixi

Year in Review

2014 has been a very interesting year. Here are a shit ton of photos and a list of things that happened in my life:

January

  • My Macbook died, that was fun
  • Had lunch at a Seinfeld-themed diner and it was everything I hoped it would be

February

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  • Tried Soda Shaq for the first time
  • Binge-watched My Cat From Hell

March

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  • Deanna helped me ombre my hair

march_cosplay

  • Cosplayed as Puppycat from Bee & Puppycat
  • Resigned from GeekGirlCon
  • Got a sidecut

April

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  • Dyed my hair green

May

  • Bought a Chromecast and it was life-changing. That’s it. The entirety of May was spent on the sofa watching tv

June

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  • Got the linework done on my fat mermaid tattoo

July

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  • Stayed up till 3am to watch the first episode of Sailor Moon Crystal
  • Left my partner of 3 years
  • Hosted the PNW Fattitude “Fat of July” BBQ

August

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aug_tat

  • Finally got my moon stick tattoo
  • Launched AstroNails with Amber
  • Found out Helly Kitty is not a cat. I still refuse to accept this.

September

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  • Got my fat mermaid tattoo colored
  • Livetweeted The Unauthorized Saved by the Bell Story
  • Turned 30
  • Andrew W.K. followed me on Twitter

October

oct_bombvisit

  • Visited the Bombshelter with Amber

oct_brunch

  • Organized a PNW Fattitude brunch

oct_amethyst

  • Cosplayed as Amethyst from Steven Universe
  • Cosplayed as Punk!Pluto

oct_panel

oct_bitch

oct_bombsheller

oct_ppatch

  • Went to the pumpkin patch on the rainiest day of the year

November

  • Moved into my new apartment

December

  • Visited Portland with Amber (my the first time!)

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dec_5guys

  • Ate at Five Guys for the first time and it was amazing

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Eat What You Want, When You Want

I recently wrote a piece for the second issue of my Self Care Zine about how I practice intuitive eating as a part of my own self care. I’m not a writer by any means, but intuitive eating really played a huge part in my own fat acceptance and helped me make peace with my body, so I wanted to share my experience. Here is my piece in its entirety:

In our a diet-centric culture, it’s easy to internalize toxic ideas about weight and assign moral value to food. We’re taught what we should and shouldn’t eat, and when to eat it. Our media is plagued with headlines like, “24 Foods You Should Avoid at All Costs,” “10 Diet Foods that Actually Make You Fat,” and my personal favorite “The Baby Diet: How Eating Like a Toddler Could Help You Lose Weight.” We associate the feeling of guilt with food.We label salads as a “clean” food and pizza as “dirty” or off limits. We set designated free days or cheat meals. We describe good foods as real food and bad foods as sinful. You get the idea.

The truth is, food is neither good or bad. It is merely energy your body needs to function and survive. When we assign moral value to food, we also end up assigning moral value to ourselves for eating it. This is a dangerous way of thinking that can lead to disordered eating habits, extreme dieting, and physiological changes that can negatively affect both your physical and mental health.

I am fat. I’ve always had a complicated relationship with food. Five years ago, I made the decision to start making peace with my body and mending my relationship with food. When I first started getting into fat acceptance, I came across the Health at Every Size (HAES) movement and it was life-changing. According to the HAES website, the movement is “based on the simple premise that the best way to improve health is to honor your body. It supports people in adopting health habits for the sake of health and well-being (rather than weight control).” It was through HAES that I discovered the concept of intuitive eating.

When we subscribe to strict diets, we are basically saying we don’t trust ourselves to make good decisions. Honoring your body includes trusting your body to make nourishing food choices. Intuitive eating is a hunger-based approach to eating: Listen to your body and eat when you’re hungry. Stop when you’re full. It takes the focus away from the dietary aspects of nutrition so we are not limited to eating good foods and avoiding bad foods. In the book On Eating, author Susie Orbach lists the five keys to intuitive eating:

  1. Eat when you are hungry
  2. Eat the food your body is hungry for
  3. Find out why you eat when you aren’t hungry
  4. Taste every mouthful
  5. Stop eating the moment you are full

The concept may sound like it should be common sense, but when you have a history of dieting or following socially imposed rules about eating, it can be quite difficult. I have spent so much of my life dieting and consumed with restricting calories that I struggled with recognizing my body’s internal hunger/satiety cues. To remedy this, I’ve dedicated a huge part of my own self care to the practice of intuitive eating.

Over time, I was eventually able to stop viewing food as the enemy and start viewing it as something enjoyable, nourishing, and satisfying (on so many levels). I no longer feel consumed by counting calories or obsessing about gaining weight. I am able to enjoy eating without guilt. I’ve noticed that a lot of times when I think I really want something, I actually don’t want it at all. And I feel healthier, happier, more present, and more energetic.

This is merely an account of my experience with intuitive eating. Please note that I am not a medical doctor. I encourage you to do some research (there is so much information out there!) and/or consult a qualified health care professional before making major changes to your diet. Good luck!

Merbabes for Extra Credit

il_570xN.524745429_r6aoLast year, I put together a body-positive coloring book called “Big-Bellied Merbabes.” It was a project inspired my obsession with mermaids and “Fat Ladies in Spaaaaace” by Theo Nicole Lorenz. It was mostly a low-stress project for fun, as most of the design and illustration work I’d done that year did not allow for much creativity. I rounded up a bunch of my friends to model for me, printed out a bunch of copies, and spent some quality time with a long reach stapler.

I figured I’d just sell a few copies at my artist alley table at GeekGirlCon ’13 and gift the rest to friends. I ended up selling out of my first run of copies by the end of October! I was not expecting the coloring books to receive such a tremendous response. Just goes to show how thirsty we are for body-positive media!

Fast forward a year later when I received a message from a friend (who had previously told me he was using the coloring books to teach body diversity in his class) saying he was offering extra credit to students in exchange for a colored page from the book! I wanted to share a few of my favorites:

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How awesome are these?! I’m so stoked that this coloring book is being used as a tool to teach kids about body positivity! Hope you enjoy these as much as I did!