Memorable Moments (In Times of Malady)

Memorable Moments- Time well Spent

Memorable Moments- Time well Spent

This has been a dauntingly discouraging winter break for our children and I. We have been afflicted with strep throat, influenza a, pneumonia, and respiratory infections concurrently with no break since October. Then, when December arrived, instead of taking turns being ill, we all were consumed by the congregate army of viral and bacterial soldiers, whose plight, it seemed, was to sentence us to isolation from society for the entire holiday break.

In the midst of our combat with infirmity, I attempted to see the silver lining to the situation. Although we would not be able to spend the holiday with our family members as usual, for fear of releasing the ghastly little soldiers in their homes, we would have even more opportunity to spend quality time together in a meaningful way and have memorable moments.

Some of the things we chose to do to pass the time together and make memorable momets were:

  • We broke out all the old board games we hadn’t played in a while, plus some new ones.
  • We made holiday goodies including fudge, coconut candy, and rice krispy treats.
  • We made reindeer food.
  • We (gasp!) had movie watching marathons. My personal favorite was the Indiana Jones complete set. Now my kids are hooked!
  • We wrapped gifts together for others.
  • We went on nature walks on days we were feeling up to it, and gathered items to make holiday garlands and decorations.
  • We made organic gluten-free cookies.
  • We phoned family often.
  • We practiced language arts and math skills-this may not sound fun during vacation, but making it into games makes it fun!
  • We went on a Christmas light hunt.
  • We had meaningful discussions about appreciation, preventing greed during the season and always, taking care of others, and whatever topics I noticed were available by opportunistic events.
  • And of course, we enjoyed plenty of soup, tea, and cuddle time together.

 

Were you also sick over the holidays, too? What types of memorable moments did you have together to pass the time in a meaningful way?

 

 

Bring the Snow In!

Snow

You like my heart shaped snowflake?

Has anyone else had  enough of the snow this year?  I know I have.  I am not a cold-weather gal.  Give me flip flops, tank tops, and the beach and I am one happy girl.  The kids, on the other hand, can’t get enough of it.  Unfortunately, almost every time we get the snow, the babes are sick.  This has been the worst year for illness; we’ve had strep, fifths disease, bronchitis, pneumonia, swine flu, and regular old colds this winter.  I have HAD ENOUGH!  So, what do you do when your babies can’t go out in the snow?  You bring the snow in! Continue reading →

I’m not Wonderwoman?!

http://karmajello.com/

http://karmajello.com/

Have you ever had a moment where something happens so inconceivable nothing else matters in that moment? This feeling can last for a matter of seconds or days. I myself have had these moments numerous times. One of these incidents occurred when my son was first in the  hospital overnight, nothing else mattered. All the tasks that had plagued me for days, did not seem to matter in that moment.

 

With that being said, how important are our “important” daily tasks? Are they really so life altering that they can change our moods, strip our nerves, and drive us crazy? I am learning that part of finding balance is acceptance. Yes, we all have tons of daily priorities that HAVE to get done; work, school, etc.. but we aren’t super heroes. Sometimes we build ourselves up with so much stress, worrying over our daily tasks that we don’t enjoy our lives, let alone give ourselves credit when we do complete our tasks.

 

The key for me, is reliving those moments. Those moments where I am so wrapped up in the chaos that is occurring that all my little worries don’t matter anymore. Those times are the best reminders to not stress over every little thing.

 

So what, you aren’t wonder woman (man)?! You didn’t finish all the tasks you set out to do and that’s okay.  Give yourself credit at what you did accomplish. Even if you haven’t mastered it all, take a break relax, do something for YOU. The biggest part of finding balance is acceptance. Nobody can be “on” all the time, give it you all , do your best,  hold your head up high, and live your life. Most importantly enjoy life, love life, LIVE life.

-Moo

Healthy Popsicles

Homemade PopsiclesOne of my kids’ favorite treats: popsicles.  Most of the store-bought popsicles are full of corn syrup, dyes, and other additives.  They can still have delicious popsicles that are healthy for them.

Just buy popsicle molds from the dollar store.  Many other stores carry these as well.  You can also use the disposable cups that are sold for bathroom dispensers and use popsicle sticks.  Just fill the cups, put press and seal or paper across the top, and insert a popsicle stick in the middle.  Then, freeze them.  To remove them from the mold or cup, just run warm water over it for about 5-10 seconds.

Some things I like to fill ours with:

  1. Organic 100% fruit juices, such as apple, orange, or grape.
  2. Juice with sliced fruit added to the mold, such as strawberries, bananas, or blueberries.
  3. Blended fruit and juice poured into the mold. (You could even sneak in some veggies this way)
  4. Fresh-squeezed lemonaid or limeaid.

These popsicles are good for getting your kids (or yourself) to eat their fruits.

DIY: Start An Organic Garden

Garden TomatoesLast week, we talked about seed storage for an organic garden.  In the spring, get your gears running in about February in Zones 5-8.  For areas north, you will want to start a little later, while areas in the south will be ready sooner.  You will want to decide how big of a space to garden, or if you want a container garden.  There are pros and cons to each, of course.

Type of Garden: Pros: Cons:
Container
  • Less prep work
  • Less maintenance
  • More options for placement
  • No weeding!

 

  • More watering
  • Some plants can’t be grown in containers
  • Higher cost due to purchase of containers

 

Traditional
  • As large of a space as desired to work with
  • Plants have more room to spread
  • Roots can go deeper
  • Less watering
  •  Prep work is considerable
  • Maintenance is frequently needed to weed
  • These gardens most likely will not be close to your door as containers can be

In February, I am starting tomatoes and peppers indoors.  Since we did have a couple 70° days, I got to start the seeds in pots outdoors, so there was less mess.  I am moving them in now that the “polar vortex” is coming. Continue reading →

Taking Small Steps to a Healthier You

 

tips-for-healthy-eatingBecoming healthy overnight is a concept that seems impossible, because it is! No one can instantly break bad habits, such as caffeine and sugar. Trying to tackle all of your unhealthy habits in a short span of time can lead to a quick downward spiral. I have tried many methods, diets, and fads. All of them have the same theme: too much, too soon.

Before I began my path towards becoming vegan I found a helpful way to slowly transition  into a healthy lifestyle.  You can take small steps to a healthier you, too. Continue reading →

Cost-Cutting Wednesday- Clearance!

0274c_Untitled59My absolute favorite thing to do is to stroll through the clearance sections, coupons in hand.  You can really find some steals if you take time each week to check out clearance.  There are some really dedicated couponers out there that follow krazycouponlady and couponmom and get the best deals available; this is the extreme couponing craze that has really taken off in the last couple years.  But, if you are like me and have too much on your plate to try to tackle a 2 hour coupon organizing session and going to multiple stores, you can still get some good deals.

At the very least, you definitely need to get a Sunday paper.  Some couponers get up to 6 subscriptions so they can stock up on featured products.  You can also print them from redplum, P & G, Smartsource, and Target.

Whenever you are at your normal stores, make sure you check out the clearance area.  Some stores always keep this area in one specific place, while others like Target will have different clearance areas for each department.  This is usually on an end cap at the end furthest from the main aisles.  When you see items on clearance, check to see if you have coupons for it. Continue reading →

Balance: 25 Things You Can Do For Yourself

Flower Walk Part of being a busy mom is making sure everyone else’s needs are being taken care of.  Most of the time, that means there is little time left to spend on ourselves.  For me, it feels selfish to do things that only  benefit myself when there is so much on the to-do list for others.  But as I age, I am learning that time to myself is critical, for everyone’s sanity!

Usually I have so much to do, that it feels like there is NO EXTRA TIME to do anything.  Dedicating even a small amount of time each day to do something that is not NECESSARY for yourself will boost your mood, provide some stress relief, and boost self-esteem and self-worth.

Sometimes, you gotta be creative; schedule your time before the kids wake up, after bed time, during nap time, during school, while they are with another adult, etc. Continue reading →