By now you have probably heard that a student athlete from Stanford University was convicted on three counts of sexual assault for raping a  young woman, who was unconscious, behind a dumpster. The judge sentenced him to 6 months in jail stating "a prison sentence would have a severe impact on him. I think he will not be a danger to others.” The news of this story spread quickly and outrage has been heard loud and clear, including a petition for the judge to be recalled.

We should remain outraged at what happened at Stanford but we must also recognize that this story made national news and is being shared because we are more outraged about things that happen in elite spaces. These atrocities are   happening on a daily basis in our communities. Victims who know their perpetrators are not believed because surely they did something to make them believe they had given consent. Most cases of sexual assault are void of DNA evidence and aren't even forwarded for prosecution because of a lack of evidence and when they are , they are dismissed because it's he say/she say. Victims are silenced and told to not speak up and ruin their perpetrator's life. Juries don't believe rape can happen in the context of marriage. Children are found to be incredible witnesses. Judges believe prison time will have a severe impact on the perpetrator. I assure you. This is happening every. single. day.

The fervor about this case will die down. It will move to the back of our consciousness.

We shouldn't be ok with that. We should be angry and furious. We should also start making change. We should start saying "not my son, not my daughter". We should start saying we will no longer uphold rape culture. We should start by believing when a woman, man, boy or girl says someone hurt them. When you're at the bar with the fellas and they make a derogatory comment about a woman, call them out. Tell them that's not cool and you won't accept those kind of beliefs in your presence. Stop supporting artists whose work is misogynistic and portrays women as objects to be conquered and dominated. Then take it a step further and stop supporting those outlets that promote their message. Teach your kids about their bodies, about their natural sexual desires, about consent, that yes means yes and everything else is no, that consent is sexy and an absolute must. When they say they don't want to hug that uncle at the family reunion, respect their wishes. Stop telling girls if they had self worth this wouldn't happen to them and start teaching boys that girls are worthy of respect. Stop telling little boys to man up and to not act like a girl. Let kids be kids. Look out for each other. Don't stand by without acting when you have the feeling that something just isn't right.
By all means, don't rape

Sunday Dinner

Many of you know my grandma is the cook of all cooks.  It's often so very hard to please her at some of the finest restaurants because she knows she could make it better.  In an attempt to have her spend a few more days in Albuquerque with us, my sister and I offered to cook for Sunday dinner.

My sister laid out a pretty extensive menu: roast and beans, grilled hot links, corn on the cob, cornbread, cake, fresh fruit and more.  I decided to make mac n cheese and lemon garlic butter roasted chicken.  I'm so happy to be able to say dinner was great and Granny approved.

The story behind the Mac-n-Cheese

When I first got married, I once had a really yummy mac-n-cheese recipe that I found online. It was so good.  Over 5 years later, I couldn't remember where I got that recipe so I started searching for a new one.  I first found Monique over at A Diva Can Cook's recipe.  Monique is amazing and I reference her blog alot.  I wasn't completely happy the first time around because my peppercorn grinder had broken and I didn't season the cheese mixture well enough.

About a week after I first tried Monique's recipe I caught Tia Mowry's new show on the Cooking Channel and her husband Cory shared his "famous mac and cheese" recipe. I really liked the idea of creating a cheese mixture melt by slowly warming all the cheese and heavy cream in skillet to then mix in with your cooked pasta.

I found that turned out a lot better.

So...here's my trusted Mac and Cheese recipe:

1 box Macaroni noodles
1 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1 cup Medium Cheddar Cheese
1 cup Muenster Cheese
8 oz. Velveeta
1/2 cup Colby and Monterrey Jack Cheese
1/2 cup Heavy Cream
1 tblsp butter
1 Egg
Salt and Pepper

1. Cook the macaroni noodles in boiling water with salt until al dente
2. While noodles are boiling, shred one cup of sharp cheddar, one cup of medium cheddar, and one cup of muenster cheese
3. In a skillet, heat butter on low heat. Add all shredded cheese stirring slowly. Add blocks of velveeta cheese and continue to stir. Add heavy cream slowly stirring. Salt and pepper to taste
4. Once cheese is all melted and ooey gooey, crack the egg and stir it in to the cheese mix
5. Remove pasta from heat and thoroughly drain
6. Add half of the macaroni to a super cute dish, mix the cheese mixture in really good, add more noodles, mix more cheese, top with shredded colby and monterrey jack cheese, sprinkle with little dashes of paprika
7. Bake on 350 for 35 minutes 
8. Enjoy the ooey goodness.

Let me know your favorite mac and cheese recipes and how this one turns out if you choose to try it.  I'll be sharing the lemon garlic butter chicken recipe soon!

The Queen

Microagressions abound

I was once invited to a house party at a friend's house and in the course of her introducing me to the other ladies in attendance she said "Niecy comes from a working class family like me....".  I remember being caught so off guard and smiling oddly. Not only was she completely wrong in her assumption about my family's background, I wondered if she had introduced the other ladies making an assumption about their class in their biography?  What point was being made by talking about my family's background, even if not completely mistaken in doing so?

That was over 5 years ago and while no one at that party probably even caught on to it, it has stuck to me ever since. I remember exactly what I was wearing, where I was sitting, aware of all my senses in that moment.  That's what microagressions are. They fly by the person handing them out while clinging to the person being transgressed on like a little sucky leech trying to remind you "this is what society really thinks about you".

They are sneaky. Seemingly small. Yet they speak volumes about the person speaking them.


They are the little things; subtle statements, interruptions and assumptions, that all add up to make you feel small.

I've certainly been heightened since this incident and I have to admit, it's not the first and last time they have ever slipped in a microagression in speaking with and/or about me.  Even me, in all my social justice fervor, find it hard to call people out on this because they are supposed to be your friends,  right?

So how to we address microagressions with our friends? We can all heal from a tiny thousand cuts but we can't always be responsible to self heal from the wounds, no matter how tiny or subtle they are.  It can be challenging especially when the person who offended with the microagression most likely has no clue what they've done.  So in addressing microagressions be thoughtful of your talk.  When someone says you've offended them, instead of being defensive, be quiet and listen.

My sister and I sell Scentsy at a festival in the mountains twice a year. One time, I was sitting in my chair, minding my business, in my natural hair glory and a woman walked up to me in what I believe she believed was a sympathetic voice and asked "oh darling...where are you from"? Me, highly annoyed as I knocked her uninvited hand that was reaching out to touch my hair blankly replied "Albuquerque".  She persisted, leaning closer to my face and said "no, but where are you originally from"?  I know it was the Blood that saved me in that moment because I was highly annoyed, offended, and pissed off.

Get it. Be more thoughtful. Shutup and listen. Do your work to be confident in yourself so you don't have to tear others down.  If you just can't seem to stop laying out the microagressions, then Crazy Eyes has already told you how I feel.

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