Fall is here! I can’t believe how fast the Summer flew by! But now that it’s September, we can begin to break out those sweaters, leather jackets, and lunch boxes!
This issue of The Jubilee, you’ll be:
- Inspiredby Becca as she recounts her story of moving forward this Season
- Learnabout our new Weekly Motivational Playlist on Spotify
- Hearfrom our Weekly Woman Alexandra about growing up in a Women’s World
- Discoverthe best easy recipes for the Lunch Box or meal prep
- Uncoverthe best ideas for Fall Fun!
- Understandthe Texan Expression, “Fall Y’all”
“Music Monday! A New Weekly Motivational Playlist”
We’re hard at work at Jubilance for the Fall. We’ve started a weekly playlist brought to you EVERY MONDAY so you can feel great all week! It’s curated by music aficionado Gretchen, who brings classics and alternative jams to your Spotify account.
“Weekly Woman—We want to get to know you!”
We’re also introducing our new Facebook Live and Podcast to you, Weekly Woman! We’ve started a new Podcast and Facebook Live event where we interview women making strides in their community each week! We’ve recently had on an amazing entrepreneur and podcast maker, an actress/activist, and a mom and bar manager!
Do you know someone to nominate? Just shoot me an email at email@example.com with their contact information.
Last week, I sat down with Alexandra Merritt Mathews to talk about her life as an actress in New York City, growing up in an all female household in Buffalo, and her passion for female equality! Here’s a selected excerpt from our full interview.
Alice: If we can get to get to know who you are. Where are you’re from and what made you move here to New York City?
Alexandra: Okay. Well, I am originally from Buffalo, New York. I grew up there and then I went to college for undergrad at the University of Chicago. So I moved to Chicago for college. Then my senior year, I ended up applying to Graduate School and I got into a couple of schools in New York, so I moved here for graduate school.
Alice: What did you love most about Buffalo growing up there?
Alexandra: The people. The people in Buffalo are incredibly special. It’s called the City of Good Neighbors. That’s our slogan. It couldn’t be more true. It’s a very large city; I think a lot of people don’t realize it’s actually the second-largest city in New York other than New York City.
Alexandra: Yes. So yes, it’s the people and the food. [laughs]
Alice: Yes. Speaking of food, can you tell me about those buffalo chicken wings? Are they really better in Buffalo?
Alexandra: A 100 %. First of all, it’s so funny to me because nobody, we don’t call them buffalo. People in Buffalo, don’t call them that. So whenever I’m somewhere that isn’t buffalo, people say, “Oh, do you want buffalo wings?” I’m thinking that you need chicken, chicken wings. Like we just call them chicken wings. So it’s funny to me. But there is a war about who has the best chicken.
Alice: Oh, like different restaurants?
Alexandra: Yes, it’s really true there!
Alice: Who invented them?
Alexandra: Well, the Anchor Bar, the Anchor Bar invented them.
Alexandra: Maria who is the wife of the people who own that bar. The restaurant invented them because they were running out of snacks at the bar and she just made something to sort of keep the people at the bar happy and drinking and she made these breaded chicken wings and the rest is history.
Alice: Can you talk about growing up in a household that was all females?
Alice: What was that experience like?
Alexandra: Right, so–
Alice: It’s a pretty unusual.
Alexandra: It is unusual, although, you know, I think by the time I was in middle school or high school, the statistics were, I want to say, something like 50 or 55% of people were being raised by single parents and mostly single moms. So while it felt unusual at times to be raised by a single mom, it actually wasn’t in the grand scheme of the statistics in the US and in the world. But my mom was a single mom, she was– and still is a lawyer and had a very tough schedule. I was very, very lucky that my grandparents served as basically extra parents. I had a team of people picking me up from school, taking me to dance class, getting me to my trombone lessons and back kind of thing. So it was a team effort, but definitely the two most influential people in my life were my mother and my grandmother and they were pretty amazing, strong women who always put education first and who taught me to compete in a man’s world.
Alice: That’s so awesome.
Alexandra: Yes, yes.
Alice: That’s amazing to grow up with that.
Alexandra: It is. It’s funny, I think about people who grow up in a traditional family. You know, it’s strange for me to even think about it just because I have no frame of reference.
Alice: A nuclear family.
Alexandra: I have no frame of reference for what that’s like. But I think that it’s important to have role models in your life, whether they’re men or women who show you that working hard for what you want is the goal, right. That you should treat everyone with kindness and that you should work hard to achieve your goals. I think no matter if that person is a woman or a man, I think that’s the important message that you need.
Photo provided by Alexandra Merritt Mathews
Alexandra loves Buffalo Wings and they’re the perfect option to take to a tail gate. Here’s a recipe from the OG Wings at the Anchor Bar! Try it this month!
- 36 chicken wing segments
- 4 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp salt
- ¾ cup flour
- 8 Tbsp (1 stick) butter
- 4 tsp cider vinegar
- ¼ to 1 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste
- ⅛ tsp garlic powder
- 4 to 8 Tbsp hot sauce, or to taste (Frank’s is the brand used in Buffalo)
- Celery sticks
- Blue cheese dressing
- Preheat your oven to 425°F.
- Toss the wings with vegetable oil and salt in a large mixing bowl.
- Next, toss in the flour and mix it all together until everything is coated.
- Spread out the wings on baking pans lined with aluminum foil.
- Bake the wings for 20 minutes. Turn wings and bake 20 minutes more or until golden brown.
- While your wings are in the oven, make the wings sauce. Do this in a saucepan by combining the butter, vinegar, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and hot sauce. Bring to simmer over medium. Remove from heat.
- Pour the sauce on the done wings and coat them.
- Serve with celery sticks and blue cheese dressing for a more authentic experience!
“Best ideas for celebrating the Fall”
What are some of your favorite Fall traditions? As we head into the Fall, the air feels crisper, it’s time to break out those sweaters that have been sitting in a dusty box, and to celebrate your cherished parts of the season! Here are some fun ways to jubilate!
- Tail Gates. It’s the end of Baseball Season and the beginning of Football! Even if sports aren’t your thing, it’s fun to celebrate with a tail gate. Grab your favorite drink, cook up some bbq, and listen to your favorite music while cheering on your beloved team. Try our amazing chicken wing recipe to impress your friends.
- Drink your favorite hot beverage. Mine is definitely hot chocolate, because chocolate… but there’s also chai tea lattes, spiced cider, and don’t forget those pumpkin spiced lattes! Gone is the watermelon everything flavor of last season, it’s time for the pumpkin!
- Go on a Fall Leaf Tour! Visit your local park and take in the beautiful trees. I live in New York City, so I either head to Central Park or I take the Metro North up to Westchester to see the leaves. Make a day out of it and go for a hike and don’t forget to pack your picnic.
- Go apple picking. Enjoy getting outside and eat as many apples as you can!
“Heading back into the Fall with Becca”
With fall quickly approaching, some new things might be popping up. Most of us have been there– Lying in bed the night before either the first day of school, first day of a new job, or the night before something major is about to happen. You’re lying there, thoughts racing, thinking to yourself, “how did I even get myself into this mess? I am definitely not qualified for this! This is just too hard”. You strategize what would happen if you just decided to back out and not commit to this new change, but end up somehow falling asleep and you make the decision the next morning to go through with it. Change can be scary. Change can be hard, like really hard. Why is that? I am constantly asking myself that question while actively making decisions to change.
Change mostly ends up working for me, but the journey getting there has ALWAYS been difficult. I have adapted, molded, and shifted too many times to tell. I’d like to shift gears from previous articles and share about my life a bit, because in the mental health field, sometimes hearing from a person who knows about some mental health stuff and is also going through something similar to you, can be helpful.
As my bio says, I’m currently pursuing my degree in marriage and family therapy. I’m in my final year before I earn my degree and I also hold another master’s degree in education and counseling. I had not always intended on going back to school and becoming a therapist. I was a literature and theater major in college and tried out a few different fields before deciding to apply. Although I hadn’t planned for it, I know now based on all of the adaptations of my life that I am meant to do this work.
How come? Because of how I have accepted the outcomes of change. I have countlessly wondered about whether or not I was worthy for certain opportunities—jobs, relationships, or even challenging graduate programs. I can prepare as much for whatever I can control, but when something new happens, I definitely need to adjust.
The biggest life event that has ever happened to me happened just before winter break this past year—my daughter Sadie passed away at one day old. I was and am still devastated, but within the first month after losing Sadie, I needed to make a huge decision as to whether or not I wanted to return to school. Nothing was as it was supposed to be. Nothing was as my husband and I planned. However, when faced with the decision, I decided to shift and return to school because I thought that this event must mean something. I wanted to at least see if I could be of use to someone going through something similar.
The night before I returned, I was lying in bed thinking ALL of those thoughts. I eventually woke up the next morning and lo and behold—I was assigned a client going through something similar. I was of use. Although a bit bruised, I decided to use this change to add value to someone else’s life that needed it.
I am definitely not advocating for pushing through things at all cost. If you feel lost and like you cannot adapt to changes coming your way, please talk to someone. However, I know now that I am worthy. I know now that those thoughts telling me I was not good enough for the next steps in my life were ill informed (and should probably be taking some Jubilance to calm down J).
So, if you are facing something new and big this fall—you got this. Remind yourself why you’re great and remember that there is always going to be someone else that might need you for that same reason.
Becca Lantry is currently pursuing her MS in Marriage and Family Therapy from San Diego State University. She currently holds her MA in Counseling and Education and works with youth, young adults, and families around confidence, love, relationships, and empowerment. Becca has been taking Jubilance for the last few months and she is able to love herself more during those times of emotional PMS because of it.
“Best Easy Recipes to Throw in the Lunch Box, or your Meal Prep for Work”
I don’t know about you, but I have the toughest time getting everything together for Sunday night meal prep. I’ve found that if I think of it as “the other meals I have to make” for the week, I CAN’T do it and end up snacking on unhealthy things. BUT, if I’m ALREADY cooking Sunday’s breakfast/lunch/dinner, I just ADD in that meal prep like a garnish. So I’m only cooking once! Here are some FUN and EASY recipes for the lunch box or for your meal prep!
SO EASY and perfect for all of your left overs! I look at what’s in the fridge and throw it in! Just cut a piece for taking to the office and voila, a delicious meal! I’m also gluten free, so instead of a crust I cut up sweet potatoes and layer them on the bottom and sides of the pan.
- Sweet Potatoes (2)
- ANYTHING IN YOUR FRIDGE! My favorites are onions, cheeses, bacon/ham, sometimes I’ll use chicken, and any vege that’s about to go bad!
- Preheat your oven to 350.
- Cut the Sweet potatoes into slices and layer them all over the sides and bottom of your pan.
- Use as many eggs as you like and whisk them together with 1/2 cup of milk. Add a dash of salt.
- Add anything else you would like!
- Bake until the eggs are done!
NO COOKING Required Salad Prep!
One of my favorite meal prep hacks is to put salad, my favorite is argula in different containers. Then, with the salad, I’ll add maybe chicken breast from a rotisserie chicken that I’ll eat all week from the supermarket (Whole Foods has a surprisingly cheap one, and if you buy it on Saturdays it’s $2 off!). I then add all the extras I have in my fridge that week or left overs from other meals!
- Some kind of lettuce, my favorite is arugula
- Rotisserie Chicken for your protein
- Anything left in your fridge
- My favorite dressing is olive oil and balsamic!
- Make it however you see fit! Just make sure to have them on hand so they’re easily accessible!
Enliven your PB&J
If you want a fun new way to create the same old kids lunch, why not try using a cookie cutter to turn those drab square sandwiches into something fun! You can use any kind of cookie cutter!
- Slices of bread
- Peanut Butter
- Cookie Cutters
- Make your typical peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
- Cut the sandwich out using cookie cutters for a fun way to get your kids smiling!
- My personal favorite is a dinosaur cookie cutter!
“Feminism in a Nutshell: Margaret Sanger”
In the 1950’s the role of the woman in America was the housewife. We recognize her from I Love Lucy or Donna Reed; it wasn’t until May, 1960 that the FDA approved the new drug that people all over the world refer to as “The Pill.” For women across the country, it did more for them than any other effort of liberation, they started pursuing jobs, fueling the pro-choice movement, and encouraging more open attitudes towards sex; in fact, a writer in the late 1960’s described it’s important contribution to society only behind fire and tool making.
The pill made it possible for women to take control of their bodies! No longer was there the need to worry about becoming pregnant and a need to take care of the offspring, a woman could decide when she wanted to start a family, or not at all. Popular culture had glorified the image of the Happy Homemaker in the 1950’s, but with 100% fertility control, women were able to delay having children until after they’d secured a job or a degree.
Of course there were ways to implement birth control in America before this break through, but they were a lot less effective and illegal, because they could be dangerous. Margaret Sanger opened up the first birth control clinic in the country in Brooklyn in 1916, but she was arrested as a “Public Nuisance” and charged with 30 days of prison time. When she got out, she opened her clinic back up amid more arrests and prosecutions. The Comstock Act of 1873 prohibited any information or distribution of birth control as it was considered “obscene” and “immoral.” Violators could be imprisoned for up to 5 years and given a fine of $2000, a steep fee at the time. Sanger believed that the only way to end the law was to break it. In 1938, in a case with Margaret Sanger a judge finally lifted the ban on birth control ending the Comstock era and at this time, diaphragms became the most widely used birth control method.
Sanger made it her life’s mission to find an oral contraceptive. She grew up in an Irish-Catholic household amid 11 siblings and watched her mother die from tuberculosis from deteriorated health from eleven births and seven miscarriages. Supposedly she turned to her father at the funeral and said that he killed her mother from trying to have too many children.
She started writing a sex education column in 1912 called “What Every Girl Should Know.” It was one of the first sex ed pieces written and talked about the physical and emotional changes a woman goes through. She dedicated the subsequent book to the “working girls of the world.” She was constantly fighting for females voices to be heard and liberated from their bodies.
Sanger decided to go into Nursing, educated in the Catskills and then moved to Manhattan where she worked as a nurse in the Lower East Side, at the time, a community for poorer immigrants in tenement housing. These women couldn’t afford to care for all their children in the small living arrangements with so many mouths to feed and ultimately resorted to illegal, back alley abortions that resulted in huge health related problems. As Sanger cared for these women, she realized that she needed to do something about the problem. In 1914 she coined the word “birth control” and started sending women diaphragms and information through the mail before opening up her birth control clinic. The diaphragm was the most effective form of birth control in the 1950’s, but it was also the least used. Women were embarrassed to use it, it was bigger than the condom, and expensive. She dreamed about creating a pill that would be safe, cheap, and effective and she raised $150,000 to research the pill when she was in her 70’s. When she was 77, her dream was finally realized, the pill was finally on the market.
To look the whole world in the face with a
go-to-hell look in the eyes; to have an ideal;
to speak and act in defiance of convention
— Margaret Sanger
In 1962 one and a half million women were on the pill, by 1965, 10 million. It’s the most used drug in the world and now there are many different options on the market.
“Fall Y’all with Kellidawn”
It’s FALL YA”LL! That’s the fun phrase you see all over Texas this time of year.
Unfortunately, Fall does not mean cool weather and leaves changing colors. I’ve always thought that September is the hottest month in Austin, Texas and with school up and running strong I’m still in a summer state of mind….relaxing by the pool every chance I get.
Now calendars are full and everyone is busy. Busy with school, homework, sports, and activities. As a teacher and a mom I enjoy this new beginning to a new school year. This is the wonderful time of year that teachers, students, and parents are ready to start fresh and new. Fall school activities create so much fun, excitement, and togetherness. Friday night lights have become the middle and elementary schools social time, with kids watching the game or playing their own behind the bleachers. It also brings teachers and parents together cheering and laughing. This shared moment reminds us that we are all on the same team.
It’s important to continue to work together and show support for all our students. The social aspect of fall events allow everyone to come together and make connections that will continue through the school year. However, the one thing I’m missing this fall is the cool crisp breeze and hot chocolate to warm me up. Oh well, that will come in February!
Kellidawn is a true southern girl at heart. When she’s not wrangling her three boys, she can be found broadening the minds of high school seniors in her English class. This former college twirler is also an avid Star Wars fan and movie buff who loves spending time with family and friends.
“Update. I started taking this month. Holy Moly what a difference. And I know it’s not a placebo because I expected it not to work.”
Hey Fall! We’ve got you covered for this sweater weather. Only fret the small stuff, we’ll take care of the rest.
As Always, Live your Life with Jubilance!
Alice is a Media Manager for Jubilance by day, theatre director by night. You can find her on a rock wall or frolicking outdoors most of the time.
Live Your Life with Jubilance!