Birthdays (hint: there’s a giveaway!)

Happy Friday lovelies! …and happy giveaway day too!…
Just to prove what a crappy blogger I’ve been these days, I’m going to let you in on a little secret…
…I forgot to post A. that it was recently my 32nd birthday. Big whoop. I still maintain I deserve to be 31 an extra 6 months based on the fact that for the first 6 of being 31 I had actually forgotten I had a birthday go by – telling people “yeah I’m 30! Woo!”… Until John kindly yet sardonically informed me that I was indeed 31. Crap. It seems like just yesterday I was:
And more importantly, B: that it was also my blogs birthday. Her second, to be exact. I’m about a month and a half late on this one. Unforgivable in the real world; haphazard and silly in this one. Luckily, my toddler-age bitch loves me as much as I love her and we’ve made our peace.
In my first post ever, I established what this blog was supposed to be about. At the one year mark, I reflected on how she had evolved over that time. This past year has been no different. Shit changes my friends; nothing stays the same. And if it does, something’s amiss. So this bloggy-birthday I’m doing something different. To steal an idea from a fabulous blogger friend and had I stayed living on the West coast a gorgeous woman whom I believe I would have made real-life-friends with, here are my 32 lessons for 32 years… 
Yes, you have to read through them to get to the good part – the giveaway. Or just scroll on by. But seriously read them – there are some real gems in there!
32.  Tell your own truth. Do it as kindly as you can, but be honest. Respect others for telling theirs. Live and let live.
31. Laugh. Mostly at yourself. And never at people who can’t defend themselves. If you take yourself too seriously you’re bound to smash yourself in the face with life. Or someone else’s face with your fist.

30. Shit happens. Literally. Everybody poos people, everybody poos. Don’t be afraid to take one in a public washroom. You’ll be much more comfortable if you just go.

29. Knowledge is power. Read stuff. Educate yourself. A university degree might look nice on paper and it might get you a high paying job, but taking the time to inform yourself makes you a better person. Libraries are great things.

28. Talk. Give people more credit than you think they deserve and give them the opportunity to support you. If they don’t, find other people to surround yourself with.

27. Drink less. Booze that is. It’s way more fun to get buzzed and remember the night than it is to get super-uber-wasted and wake up with a new-fangled STI, no wallet, and no memory.

26. Don’t get hung up on socially invented & accepted life plans. There is no where to “be” at a certain point in life; No one to “become”. We have choices to set goals, to work toward those goals and achieve them – materially and socially. But then it comes back to the same question, “what do I want to do now?”. Create your own path.

25. Live smaller. Kinder. Fuller. Slow down.

24. Being happy takes a lot less energy than it takes to be angry or hostile. Chill, Winston.

23. Once you put on an outfit, own it. You can’t be pulling and twisting and fidgeting all the time. Own that shit.

22. Onesies are king. Especially if you’re a grown up.21. If someone is shrewd or mean to you when you’ve done nothing wrong, let it roll off your back. Roll baby roll. Chances are there is something amiss in their own life and their frustration has nothing to do with you. That being said, don’t be a doormat. Ask yourself, “does this person really matter?”. If they do, speak up. If not, let it go.

20. If you’re not getting happier, as you get older, then you’re fuckin’ up. (thank YOU Ani D.!)

19. You have a right to space. Metaphorically and literally. Take it.

18. Bright nail polish can really make an outfit. And your life.

17. If you can’t walk in them, you shouldn’t be wearing them. No really, clumsy is not sexy. Toppling over is not sexy. Looking like you’ve got a broomstick shoved up your hoo ha is not sexy. It just isn’t.(totally just swiped that word for word from here).

16. Snail mail is not dead. Write someone a letter. Mail it. Spread the joy.

15. Your waist line does not have to determine your happiness. Do you feel good? Are you active? Eat (mostly) well? Enjoy yourself! Imagine if we didn’t let ourselves insist that we fit into a size 4 dress? Imagine if a size 9 or 10 or 12 or 16 was okay. Make it okay. Say “I don’t have a flat stomach; my hips are curvy; my boobs are an E cup and therefore don’t sit up around my chin; etc…” Embrace your curves. Or lack thereof.

14. Your actions and words and choices do affect others – make choices that cause the least amount of harm.

13. Move more than you watch television.

12. Don’t be a snob – not all television, movies, magazines, music, fashion, etc… need to change your life or the world. Take joy in the superficial pop stuff – I’m talkin’ to you Bon Jovi haters.

11. Sex is okay. Doing it is okay. Talking about it is also okay. In all it’s forms and colors – as long as it’s consensual.

10. Relocate to or visit an area/city/country you’ve never been to before. You’ll learn things about life and yourself and others that you never knew existed.

9. There is no such thing as “sex” or “gender”. The binary logic that establishes “male/man” & “female/woman” and the differences between them, is socially constructed bullshit. And it’s discriminatory against people who don’t identify as either/or. There is no such thing as black and white.

8. Question anything and everything you assume to be “true”. See number 9. Also include sexuality, race, religion, age, language and all the social systems we take for granted. None of this is “natural” – it’s been constructed. Ask, “why?”.

7. Not everyone has “choices”; Not everyone is “equal”. There are social, political and economic life circumstances that take away their power. This is unfair and sick. It’s important to ask how we participate in those circumstances/systems and change our behavior.

6. Wine for breakfast is never a bad idea.

5. Dance as if no one’s watching. Live this way too.

4. Make sure to tell people how much you love and value them. Be specific.

3. Sleep. A lot. In the day time, surrounded by pillows and fluffy blankets and a big fat cup of tea – it’s fabulous.

2. You will always be your own best friend. Better get cozy.

1. You can walk the line with people but ultimately they come and go. And that’s okay. Mourn your losses and embrace you gains. Learn from them; grow; be a better person. A kinder one. See number 2. 

See? Told ‘ya there were some gems!
NOW: onto the good part. Or at least the part that lands you with some serious swag. I’ve given this giveaway a lot of thought. Food blog giveaways can be tricky! While the art and craft world can ship shit all around the world without too much thought, us food bloggers can’t exactly send you a plate of seared duck breast with cherry wine reduction.
So here’s the deal. One lucky winner is going to score a happy food treasure trove of goodies! You’re lookin at a wonderfully decorated 250ml jar of each of the following…just in time for Christmas or perhaps, a little Christmas for yourself:
For dessert…1 500ml Jar of:

preserved food giveaway

A super fabulous cooking apron or Tea Towels (your choice) that I’m having silk-screened to say something very clever about how hot and sexy cooking/preserving your own food can be – something like “I eat local because I ‘can'”. Obviously that’s not done yet – I’m waiting to see who wins to try to adjust for size.


And of course, a copy of my very limited edition first print ever Cookbook! Thank you John for having these printed for me. 

my cookbook

 To Enter:
* Contest open to Canadian & American residents only. 
** If you already like or follow me, you can still enter – just comment here telling me exactly that. 
*** For non-bloggers (or people unfamiliar with commenting), you can comment by clicking the button at the bottom of this post marked “comments”.
1. Click the “follow/join this site” button to the right of my page under the “my friends” heading and simply select login or join, follow publicly and you’re done – now leave me a comment here, telling me you’ve done so. 
Extra (optional) Entries (one for each task):
 2. Like Gastronomical Sovereignty on Facebook, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so.
3. Follow gsonblogger on Twitter, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so.
4. Tweet this giveaway with a link to this page on Twitter and include @gsonblogger in the tweet so I can see it.
5.  Follow Gastronomical Sovereignty on Bloglovin, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so.
6. Follow me on Pinterest, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so. 
and to support my sister blog with friend Haydn…

And to support the new blog…

7. Follow Tastebuds the same way you did with this blog, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so.
8. Like Taste Buds on Facebook, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so.
9. Follow Taste Buds on Twitter, leave a comment here telling me you’ve done so.
Bonus 3 entries:
10. Blog this giveaway on your own blog and leave me a comment here with the link.
This giveaway closes Sunday, October 28, 2012 – so get your entries in whilst you can! The winner will be announced October 29th! Good luck to you!

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