3 years ago

Pinterest Peer Pressure

I have a friend who is the personification of Pinterest. When I was pregnant, she gave me the door hanger for my daughter’s room. She had handmade it, along with some hairbands that could easily pass as Matilda Jane. Every year I look forward to her son’s birthday party just as much as my son does, so that I can take in all of her craftiness. For someone as domestically challenged as I am, every visit to her home is like taking a college course in wifery.

Just last month, she explained to me how she made her son’s birthday cake, camo icing and all. She piped out various hues of forestry frosting, and each layer was a different flavor. I only know one way to make a cake: call the bakery. While she uses Pinterest for inspiration to gain and hone new skills, I use it to text pictures to my local baker.

I may not be able to make my own photo frames and bake beautiful treats, but thank the good Lord I know people who can. And I’m perfectly fine with paying them to do what I can’t do. It’s liberating to have such self-assurance my life, but I wasn’t always so confident in being myself.

Not long after the birth of my first child, I started reading parenting blogs. Most of them were filled with postings about cutting PB&J sandwiches into cute shapes and creating fun crafts using burlap and bottle caps. None of this would’ve appealed to me before, but I suddenly felt pressured to be the best mom for my son.

That’s when I became obsessed with what I like to call Pinterest Porn. Every beautiful picture made me think “I have to try that.” Then, I sadly realized it was unattainable. This just led me to another beautiful photo of an even more unattainable DIY project. Pinterest itself is not a bad thing, but the the way it can make a woman feel is bad. For someone as competitive as me, every project becomes a challenge to conquer.


I realized I had a problem when I had wasted three bags of powdered sugar trying to make a cake in the shape of Mickey Mouse’s head. That’s perhaps the simplest shape to accomplish—three circles. But instead of a head and two ears, my rendition looked more like two sad little planets orbiting too close to the sun. Meanwhile, my frosting was the same consistency of ice cream . . . well, that is, after it melts and refreezes. With all the money I had spent on sugar, flour, cake pans, food coloring, and a rolling pin, I could’ve almost paid for a “real” cake. As you might have guessed, I had to buy a real cake anyway.

That was an eye-opening experience for me. No matter how hard I tried, I would never be that perfect Pinterest person. And that’s OK. After all, people who bake cakes and sell décor for a living love people like me who keep them in business. Most importantly though, I learned to love me for me.

While all of those DIY projects might look cool, I’ve learned that DIY can have multiple meanings. In some cases, it’s best to interpret this acronym as “Don’t Insult Yourself.” Not everyone is supposed to be a crafting queen. The only reason it looks like all moms can do crafts and cook is because that’s what most moms write about on their blogs.

For every woman who can smock and bake or who owns a vinyl press and an assortment of paint brushes, there are dozens of others who have created nothing besides their children. And what could be better than that? The key to being a great mom isn’t in all the cool things we can make for our home but in being the best versions of ourselves.

I will never cease to be amazed at all the talents my Pinterest Princess friend displays in her home. My kids have so much fun there when we visit their family, and so do I. But what really makes her a good mom is that she loves her kids and that they feel loved.

My son is old enough now to know that the only things his mom makes are articles and jokes. He has even started using phrases like “For my next birthday, I want you to buy a cake like . . .” Smart boy. He knows to say “buy” rather than “bake.” He is learning that although I can’t do things that other moms can, I also can do things that other moms can’t.

So, next time you’re elbow deep in some powdered sugar trying to create a cake castle, give yourself a break. Maybe you can hand-pipe camo icing on a cake. If so, go for it! But if you’re more like me, leave the icing to the experts. The key is to be confident in who you are and focus on your strengths, not try to be and do everything you see online. You will feel better about life and serve as a great example of true success for your children.


About the Author: Kaci Lane Hindman can best be described as an unconventional Southern Belle with a sarcastic sense of humor. She loves Alabama, writing, and writing about Alabama. She is married to the walking definition of a high-tech redneck, and together they have two young children.

12 mins ago

Alabamians can buy emergency preparedness items sales-tax free this weekend

The weekend from Friday, February 21 through Sunday, February 23 is Alabama’s ninth annual Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday.

As such, several items needed to help prepare for a weather-related disaster can be purchased without state sales tax across stores in Alabama.

Items that cost $60 or less like batteries, ice packs, duct tape, plywood and flashlights will all be exempt from state sales tax this weekend.

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The biggest ticket item that can be purchased without tax is a portable electricity generator, although, any generator that costs $1,000 or more will begin incurring regular taxes.

Dozens of cities and counties also exempt their local sales tax on the holiday weekend, including Birmingham, Huntsville, Montgomery, Mobile and Tuscaloosa. A full list of those areas can be found here.

A full list of the tax-exempt items can be found here.

Henry Thornton is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can contact him by email: henry@yellowhammernews.com or on Twitter @HenryThornton95.

14 hours ago

Alabama’s Warrior Met Coal announces historic Blue Creek mine development

Brookwood-based Warrior Met Coal on Wednesday announced that they will begin development on a new “world-class” longwall mine near its existing mines located on the Blue Creek reserves in West Alabama.

Met coal is the type of coal sometimes referred to as coking coal. Unlike the thermal or steam variety, met coal is used as a vital ingredient in the steelmaking process instead of being utilized for power generation.

The new Blue Creek development is expected to have the capacity to produce an average of 4.3 million short tons per annum of premium High-Vol A met coal over the first ten years of production. It is one of the last remaining large-scale untapped premium High Vol A met coal mines in the U.S.

“We are extremely excited about our organic growth project that will transform Warrior and allow us to build upon our proven track record of creating value for stockholders. Blue Creek is truly a world-class asset and our commitment to this new initiative demonstrates our continued highly focused business strategy as a premium pure-play met coal producer,” Walt Scheller, CEO of Warrior Met Coal, said in a statement.

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The company expects to invest approximately $550 to $600 million over the next five years to develop Blue Creek with expected spending this year alone of approximately $25 million to kickstart the project.

Based on the current schedule, Warrior Met Coal expects first development tons from continuous miner units to occur in the third quarter of 2023 with the longwall scheduled to start up in the second quarter of 2025.

The company trades on the New York Stock Exchange and as such must report specific financial details on the project. This included the company projecting a “net present value” of “greater than $1 billion over the life of the mine with a projected after-tax internal rate of return (IRR) of nearly 30% and an expected payback of approximately two years from initial longwall production.”

Warrior Met Coal previewed this project at a Yellowhammer News event in 2019.

RELATED: Study: Alabama coal industry has nearly $3 billion impact; met coal reserves to last centuries

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

14 hours ago

‘Gender is Real Legislative Act’ advanced by Alabama House committee

MONTGOMERY — The Alabama House State Government Committee on Wednesday advanced the “Gender is Real Legislative” (GIRL) Act.

The bill, HB 35, is sponsored by State Rep. Chris Pringle (R-Mobile). Pringle is the chairman of the committee. The vote on Wednesday was 8-4 on party lines in favor of giving the legislation a favorable report. The GIRL Act now heads to the full House for consideration.

HB 35 would require Alabama public schools to make sure every entrant in an athletic competition is sorted by the gender on their birth certificate. The bill also forbids any state, county or municipal government/agency from providing a facility to a single-gender competition that allows a transgender entrant.The GIRL Act exempts any event that is specifically designed to have both boys and girls as competitors.

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“Gender is real. There are biological differences between boys and girls that influence athletic performance. The GIRL Bill seeks to support female student-athletes, so that they may compete against each other and not have to compete against male students with an unfair advantage,” Pringle has stated. “Liberal Democrats are always trying to accuse us of refusing science, but gender is a real biological truth. It truly defies logic that anyone would deny science and want male students to compete in female sports.”

During Wednesday’s meeting, a first-grade girl from the Birmingham area called on the committee to support the bill. The girl said it was only “fair” that student-athletes be sorted by the gender on their birth certificate and that she not have to compete against boys.

A full public hearing was held on the legislation last week, when State Rep. John Rogers (D-Birmingham) made some interesting remarks about Auburn legend Cam Newton while speaking against HB 35. Rogers in a subsequent interview then called for mandatory genetic testing of all public school student-athletes.

Pringle is currently running in the competitive Republican primary race for Alabama’s First Congressional seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope).

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

15 hours ago

Jessica Taylor ‘appalled and disgusted’ at Doug Jones’ abortion comments — ‘He is unfit’

Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) once again finds himself in a negative spotlight back in his homestate.

Jones was caught in a video on Wednesday laughing about abortion and mocking a question about the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

Jessica Taylor, a conservative Republican candidate in Alabama’s Second Congressional District, reacted strongly to Jones’ remarks.

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In a statement to Yellowhammer News, she said, “As a Christian, and as a mother, I am appalled and disgusted that Doug Jones would act this way.”

“Defending the unborn has been a pillar of my campaign since day one,” Taylor continued. “Doug Jones’ blatant disregard for the rights of the unborn further demonstrates that he is unfit to represent us in Washington. Pro-life values are Alabama values. As a conservative, I will always fight for our Alabama conservative values in Congress.”

Taylor has been endorsed by the prominent national pro-life group Susan B. Anthony (SBA) List in her AL-01 primary bid.

SBA List also bashed Jones’ latest comments in a separate statement.

“Senator Doug Jones has proven once again that he is no moderate when it comes to abortion on demand through the moment of birth. Alabama’s Democratic senator may think it is ‘stupid’ to question his abortion extremism, but rest assured, his constituents take respect for human life very seriously,” stated SBA List president Marjorie Dannenfelser.

“With a record of voting in favor of late-term abortion more than halfway through pregnancy and forced taxpayer funding of abortion, Sen. Jones has repeatedly betrayed Alabamians, siding with the radical abortion lobby and fellow extremist Democrats in Congress,” Dannenfelser concluded. “Their agenda is dramatically out of step with the people of Alabama and the strong majority of Americans – including 55 percent of Independents and 43 percent of rank-and-file Democrats – who support compassionate limits on abortion after five months of pregnancy, when science clearly shows unborn babies can feel excruciating pain. If Senator Jones refuses to protect innocent unborn children, he won’t be laughing come Election Day.”

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

15 hours ago

Reading aldotcom in large doses might affect your perspective, cognitive abilities and reasoning skills

How out of touch are al.com’s employees?

Very.

Read John Archibald or Kyle Whitmire any day and you will get that answer. These guys have been railing on Alabama government for years, and even they would tell you that they have done a pretty poor job of convincing anyone that their positions are the way the state should go.

To describe them as failures is an insult to actual failures like Hillary Clinton, who al.com obviously endorsed before she was obliterated by Alabama voters.

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So, it should come as no surprise that the average readers of al.com are equally as out of touch with the average Alabamian because they are consuming a daily digest of anti-Alabama liberal media bile that could best be described as irrelevant and antagonistic to the politics and culture of the state of Alabama.

Former Yellowhammer News editor-in-chief Cliff Sims said it best when he called them a sports blog with a liberal bias.

Because of this, it should come as no surprise that they are attempting to pass off an online poll of their readers as representative of anything close to the opinion of the state of Alabama, but here you go.

Actually, it doesn’t seem like that at all. Even Ramsey Archibald knows that.

Nationally, according to a Pew Research poll in late 2019, 69% of Americans favor some kind of legalization of marijuana. Of those who want to legalize marijuana, 59% want recreational and medical legalization and 32% want just medical legalization.

That’s a national poll — this is Alabama.

Love it or hate it, like the employees at al.com do, you have to acknowledge that there is nowhere near 83% support for recreational marijuana in this state.

Instead of legalizing marijuana, we might want to consider limiting the consumption of al.com for some of their readers whose brains are clearly being damaged by the content.

All polls like this do is show that the readership of al.com is far-left, out-of-touch and completely irrelevant in Alabama politics — just like the authors they read.

Dale Jackson is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts a talk show from 7-11 am weekdays on WVNN.