About

K picThank you so much for visiting Beautiful Entropy! I originally started  this blog as a home for my many craft projects and tutorials. I’ve actually been blogging for a few years about science and parenting at a site called SquintMom. Lately, I’ve decided to merge all my blogging ventures onto Beautiful Entropy, so it’s the home to a group of disparate posts: some crafts, some science, some random thoughts and mommy-rambles.

For those who wonder about the name, “entropy” is the scientific word for disorder, and is the state toward which the universe naturally moves (as any mom knows!). In a very real way, everything we make, we build from disorder. Beauty comes out of chaos, and instead of fighting the chaos that is life, I think we can celebrate it and draw inspiration from it, even as we strive to tame it!

I’m really a beginning crafter; until a few years ago, I didn’t consider myself creative in the least. However, during my pregnancy, I found my “creative gene,” I guess you could say, and I learned how to knit. I followed that up by learning to crochet, and then when my daughter (who is now two) was born, I  taught myself how to sew so that I could make her cute little skirts and dresses. These days, I’ve added quilting (mostly funky, wonky, modern styles) and furniture restyling to my repertoire. I’m not much of a traditionalist, and I’m not a big fan of working from patterns (especially when it comes to sewing). On Beautiful Entropy, I’ll post step-by-step tutorials for many of the crafts I do, along with tips and tricks I’ve learned along the way (and mistakes I’ve made, so you can learn from my screw-ups!). Since I’m in NO way a master crafter, pretty much anything I make is an “if I can do it, so can you.” I’ve recently gotten into Pinterest, and if you’re on that site as well, I hope you’ll follow me. I tend to pin crafty things that I find online, tutorials, and lots of DIY and repurposing ideas.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog so that you’re the first to know when I publish something new!

Aside from writing about crafts and science, I sometimes write about parenting W, a feisty toddler whose favorite things in the world are blueberries, the (dwarf) planet Pluto, and her little family of stuffed animals: Sylvie (the mama, a flamingo), Baba Dolphin (the daddy, a dolphin), and Zena Turtle (the baby).

A few things about me, in no particular order:

  • My husband and I are really into the outdoors, and before we had W, we did a lot of backpacking, skiing, hiking, and camping. Since she came along, we’ve dialed it down a bit…but we are planning to do our first extended car trip (complete with lots of car camping) this summer. I’m sure I’ll post on how it goes.
  • I’m a pretty active person. At one time, I was into triathlon, and even did an Ironman, but I haven’t been doing much of that lately. Instead, I’ve mostly been running, though I’ve been on hiatus for about 2 months due to a shoulder surgery. I’m looking forward to getting back into it.
  • We co-sleep, I’m still breastfeeding (at 16 months and counting), I did a lot of babywearing before W was mobile (now she doesn’t have the patience for it most of the time), and I cloth diaper. I buy mostly organic, local food, I recycle, and I reuse whenever I can. I am definitely not a hippie, though; I absolutely believe in vaccination!

If you’re curious about the science articles on this site (which were originally housed at SquintMom), here’s a little info: First, a “squint” is a geek, a researcher, someone who squints at data. I am/was the “squint” behind SquintMom. I’m a health and science writer and faculty at Arizona State University. I’ve written a textbook (Chemistry In The World), been featured on the Scientific American Guest Blog, and was a long-time staff writer for the Highlight Health Network.

I’ve spent many years in academia and have the student loans to show for it (oh, and four degrees — a BS in Zoology, another in Psych, an MS in Chemistry, and a PhD in the same), and these days (when I’m not teaching, writing, or mothering my sweet toddler, “W”) I spend my time reading research that relates to parenting. I’m pretty equal-opportunity about it; I’ve looked at everything from behavioral science to pediatric medicine to developmental theory and beyond. From talking to other parents, I’ve learned that there are many moms and dads who, like me, want to make evidence-based parenting decisions. Most of these moms and dads, though, have neither the time to comb through journal articles nor the patience to separate the strong studies from those with low power and mediocre methodology. The purpose of SquintMom.com is to help parents make evidence-based decisions about parenting issues.

Find me on LinkedIn

Contact me: SquintMom (at) gmail (dot) com

The Fine Print

All articles on SquintMom are written by Kirstin Hendrickson, PhD, unless otherwise indicated.

I (Kirstin Hendrickson) am not a medical professional. My PhD is in research-based science. Any medical information provided at SquintMom/Beautiful Entropy is based upon evidence in peer-reviewed journals and my analysis of that information. None of this information is intended to serve as a substitute for advice from a medical professional.

The SquintMom/Beautiful Entropy website is currently not funded by any private or commercial parties, and I do not accept compensation from any companies for product mentions, reviews, or endorsements. Should the site accept advertising in the future, this statement will be modified. All advertising will be clearly marked as such.

Any claims regarding the performance of specific products, medical tests, or treatments based upon published research are cited as such. Non-research based claims are my personal opinion, and are stated as such. My personal opinion regarding the efficacy, utility, or safety of a product is either based upon scientific principles (explained in context) or personal experience (stated as such).

*The “Science Bottom Line” at the end of each article is not intended as medical advice. It is merely my analysis of one or more papers referenced in a given post.

**”SquintMom’s Decision,” likewise, is not intended as medical advice. It’s merely what I do in my own home, based upon the results of my analysis of the information available.

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