Posts — Page 5 of 12 — Stella Nadene | Health + Wellness for Working Moms
4 Must Do Ideas for Self Care for Caregivers

4 Must Do Ideas for Self Care for Caregivers

Collaborative post.

 

When you have the responsibility to care for someone else, it is easy to brush aside caring for yourself. This is a mistake though, because if you end up ill who will be caring for your charges then? Self care for caregivers tends to be way overlooked, and is becoming very problematic. If you are a caregiver you need to make sure your needs are dealt with as well as then you will be in a better position to help whoever it is you are looking after.

 

4 ways for caregivers to avoid burnout

 

How Caregiving Can Affect Your Health And Well Being

 

It is often thought that most carers are people in their midlife looking after elderly parents, but this is not the case. There are children that need carers too. They could be disabled, or it could be a temporary need after an accident or illness. There are even youngsters that give care to relatives.

 

So often you will hear that a caregiver becomes ill. That’s because they generally put the needs of the person they are caring for first and tend to not look after themselves. They do not have the time, or they are too tired. But whichever it is, in the long run, it is the biggest mistake they can make. Self care for caregivers is so, so important!

 

It seems that it does not matter on the age, gender, or race, caregivers all report similar problems. They usually suffer from a lack of sleep and don’t eat properly. In addition, they don’t have enough exercise, which lends itself to their tendency to be overweight, and fail to see a physician when they are not well themselves. Which is very problematic since they are more prone to chronic illnesses. They are also at risk of depression and are more likely to turn to drugs or alcohol to help them through.

 

Accepting Your Limitations

 

The first thing you have to do is realize that no one can give care 24 hours a day. If the person you are looking after needs 24-hour care then you must have help.

 

Even in the case of someone that does not need overnight care because they sleep quite well, means you could be still caregiving 18 hours a day, and that is too much for anyone.

 

You do not need to feel guilty because you need some time to yourself. You also have to put faith in others when you want a break. Don’t feel inadequate because you ask another family member to take over your duties while you take a shopping trip, or a quiet walk in the park.

 

The person you’re caring for won’t love you any less because you’ve taken time to prepare yourself a proper meal or take a shower. In fact, looking after yourself will help to keep you in a better frame of mind. This makes things more pleasant for them as well.

Once you have accepted your limitations you will be able to move forward with help from others. It will be a small step at a time until you learn to walk away for a while. But the difference to your health can be very beneficial.

 

Financial Help For Caregivers

 

There are many different factors in the US that determine if you are entitled to any financial help. Each state has its own set of rules and calls the financial assistance by varying names.

 

Some will pay family caregivers as long as it is not a spouse or guardian. Others will only pay caregivers that do not live in the same house as the recipient.

 

Having to give up work to become a carer can create huge financial problems. However, some people qualify for medical assistance through Medicaid, some because they are war veterans and sometimes you can get the financial help you need from your health care insurance, as some policies include this as a benefit.It may also be possible for, say an industrial negligence or birth injury lawyer, to help you successfully due for damages if an injury or illness was caused by negligence. Explore these options because they may help you more than you think.

 

The other option is if the person you are looking after has the resources to pay you, and they are of a sound mind, you could become an employee of theirs. This may seem as though it is unnecessary. But you should definitely have a contract of employment in place just as you would with any other job. As with all contracts of this type, this is to provide protection for employer and employee should a dispute arise.

 

Support For Caregivers

 

One of the biggest problems caregivers sometimes face is they feel there is a lack of support. Studies show that this happens no matter how old the person they are caring for is.

 

Self Care for the Caregiver is vitally important and support is available from several government departments. There are usually local support groups where others are experiencing just the same as you. This can be a huge help because then you realize you are not the only one. There are online forums where you can chat to people and get their opinions as well.

 

Get some help if you need it because your wellbeing is just as important as everyone else’s!

 

Want to learn how to practice TRUE Self Care? Take the free course! (Click the image below to get started!)

 

self care for moms

 

Or you can download the free Self Care Starter Kit by clicking this image:

 

Self care is absolutely essential for Moms! Get started with ideas and tips for true self care, even on a budget or for cheap or free. It doesn't have to be complicated. Find out how to get started plus grab your free self care starter kit! #selfcare #selflove #healthylifestyle #healthyliving #moms #momlife

 

Know someone that needs more info on self care for caregivers? Please SHARE this post!

 

Being a caregiver sometimes gets little appreciation. Here are 4 must do tips to help avoid caregiver burnout and stress. #selfcare #selflove #healthylifestyle

 

3 Scrumptious Pumpkin Seed Snack Recipes for this Fall

3 Scrumptious Pumpkin Seed Snack Recipes for this Fall

Whether we’re in fall or not, the simple fact is that seeds are being called ‘powerhouses of nutrition’. Luckily, pumpkin seeds falls under that. Because I absolutely LURVE the little buggers, and so do my kids! And since we’re trying to get back on the healthy clean eating train after fallin off for summer, I’ve got 3 pumpkin seed snack recipes that will have you falling in love with pumpkin seeds too! (You know, in case you weren’t already for some weird reason.)

 

AND–what’s also awesome about these pumpkin seed snack recipes is that they’re portable! So you can pack them up to take with you while you’re doing things on the weekend, like say….all those fab fall things on your fall bucket list with the family!

 

pumpkin seed snack recipes

 

Pumpkin Seed Protein Balls

 

I love these because they’re no bake, and the kiddos can make these so fast and easy! Of all the pumpkin seed snack recipes, I make these first because they’ve got high protein, a little carbs, and have the perfect balance to keep us feeling full. Plus they’re super yummy!

 

 

Ingredients:

2 cups old fashioned oats

1/4 cup pumpkin puree (fresh or canned)

1/4 cup dried cranberries or raisins (the golden raisins are my kids’ fave!)

3/4 cup pumpkin seeds

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/4 cup raw honey

1/4 cup almond butter (or whatever nut/seed butter you use in your household)

 

Instructions:

1.Mix all ingredients in a large bowl really well.

2. Dampen your hands, then roll out 1″ balls onto parchment paper set on a baking sheet (or some other flat surface that will fit in the fridge)

3. Chill for 15-20 minutes

4. Put energy balls in sealed container, and store in fridge.

 

 

Salted Caramel Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

 

Number two of the pumpkin seed snack recipes is so great, because you can adjust the sweetness and sugar levels by making simple swaps. We try to cut down on sugars, and I like using coconut sugar where we can because they glycemic index on it is lower than regular sugar.

The kiddos can help make this, too, but I don’t recommend letting them place the pan in the oven. Depending on how many seeds you have, any tilt will cause seeds to spill, which can turn into burns if it happens over an open oven door. Yikes.

 

 

Ingredients:

For Part 1:

3 TBSP coconut sugar (or mix 1 1/2 TBSP coco sugar with 1 1/2 TBSP stevia powder)

*note: If you dislike the taste of stevia, play with this ratio. I use it every day so it doesn’t bother me, but my husband doesn’t like it.

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (ceylon)

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

2 cups raw pumpkin seeds

Coconut oil (the unrefined gives a great coconut essence to these!)


For Part 2:

1 TBSP ghee (or butter if you can have it)

2 TBSP coconut sugar (OR 1/2 TBSP powdered stevia + 1/2 TBSP coco sugar)

1/2 tsp finely ground salt

 

Instructions:

Part 1:

1.Preheat oven to 300 degrees F and line a pan with either parchment paper or a silmat.

2. Mix together coconut sugar/stevia, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg in a medium sized bowl until combined.

3. Rinse pumpkin seeds then pat dry with towel. Then pour seeds into bowl with dry ingredients.

4. Melt coconut oil and add on top of pumpkin seeds. Mix everything in the bowl till everything is coated.

5. Spread all the seeds onto the pan and bake 20-25 minutes.

 

Part 2:

1.Melt the ghee (or butter) in a skillet set to medium. Stir the sugar/stevia and salt into the ghee. Cook about 1 minute, then add all the pumpkin seeds to the skillet.

2. Turn heat to low and keep stirring while cooking an additional 1-2 minutes.

*Note: If using stevia, the sugars in part 2 won’t caramlize like if you’re just using straight sugar. It will instead make some clumps, but it’s still tasty in the finished product. 🙂

 

Grain-Free Pumpkin Seed Muffins

So even though these are generally eaten as breakfast around here, I always make them for snacks. Since I work from home I like to have healthy choices hanging around! And this one says fall in muffin-speak like nobody’s business! Plus it’s grain-free with protein!

Ingredients:

1 cup of almond butter (or other seed/nut butter)

1/2 cup pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)

2 eggs

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground cinnamon (ceylon)

1 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp finely ground salt

1/3 cup maple syrup (the real stuff!)

1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds

 

Instructions:

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Fill a regular muffin tin with paper cups (12.)

2. Put all ingredients except pumpkin seeds in a mixing bowl and combine.

3. Pour batter evenly into all 12 muffin paper cups.

4. Sprinkle several pumpkin seeds on top of each muffin batter.

5. Bake for 15-20 minutes.

6. Allow to cool completely before removing.

7. These can be stored in a zipper bag or an air-tight container up to a week!

 

Know someone that could use help with finding easy and yummy pumpkin seed snack recipes? Please SHARE this post!

 

Nothing gets me in fall mood more than making easy and healthy snacks from pumpkin seeds! Check out these ideas for kids to get a healthy mix of that salty and sweet plus cinnamon (of course!) #fall #recipes #snacks #healthy #healthyliving #moms

Fall Inspired Spa Recipes to Transition Your Skin + Hair into Autumn With a Glow

Fall Inspired Spa Recipes to Transition Your Skin + Hair into Autumn With a Glow

One of the best ways for Mama to transition from summer into fall involves one of my most fave smells of all time: pumpkin! Ok, I get it that it’s usually a manufactured smell, but you get the point. If it smells like fall, Mama’s happy! So what’s the big transition? Transforming that dried out summer skin from the sun, sand, and chlorine to smooth, supple, and glowy skin! Here’s how to transform your skin, but also your hair and face, with these 3 fall inspired spa recipes!

 

3 fall inspired spa recipes for hair, body, and face

 

Pumkin Spice Latte Body Scrub

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)

1 TBSP coconut oil (or olive oil)

1/4 tsp cinnamon

2 TBSP cinnamon

Instructions:

1.Mix the pumpkin puree with the oil until all combined

2. In a separate small bowl combine cinnamon, sugar, and coffee. Stir until completely mixed.

3. Pour the dry ingredients into the pumpkin and oil and whisk until completely combined.

4. Apply to body in bath tub or shower and scrub to exfoliate.

5. Rinse!

*Tip: the longer this recipe sits, the more the sugar dissolves. Since it works in addition to the coffee for exfoliation, try to use it asap.

*Of all the fall inspired spa recipes, this is my favorite! Maybe because I’ve just last year jumped on the pumpkin spice flavor wagon, but this pumpkin scrub recipe is seriously sublime!

fall inspired spa recipes body scrub leg

 

Apple Cider Vinegar + Yogurt Conditioning Hair Mask

 

1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar (I use Bragg’s brand–it’s organic and has ‘the mother’)

2 TBSP yogurt (plain, full fat, organic)

2 TBSP honey (raw, unheated)

 

Instructions:

Mix all ingredients together really well. Apply to barely dampened hair and massage into scalp and ends of hair. Wrap hair into a bun. Cover with plastic if you wish. Leave for 20-30 minutes, then rinse with lukewarm water. (Great for weekly conditioning mask!)

 

Glowing Pumpkin Face Mask

 

1/4 cup pumpkin puree (canned or fresh, but try to use organic)

1 egg (raw, organic)

1 tsp honey (raw, unheated)

1/2 TBSP apple cider vinegar (organic, I use Bragg’s brand with ‘the mother’)

 

Instructions:

1.Whisk egg, then add pumpkin puree and honey. Mix till combined.

2. Stir in apple cider vinegar till completely mixed.

3. *This is messy, so wear something you don’t mind getting drips on! Apply to freshly washed face over the sink, tub, or shower in case of drips.

4. Leave for 15-20 minutes, then rinse, and follow with moisturizer.

 

fall inspired spa recipes face scrub jar

 

 

Hopefully you can ‘transition’ into fall with me with these yummy fall inspired spa recipes as well! (Also, I know they smell like you could just eat it, but don’t eat the one with raw egg! ?)

 

Want more fall fun? How about creating a fall bucket list with your kiddos! Check it out + get a free Fall Bucket List Generator Printable!

 

 

Know someone that could use some self care me time via fall inspired spa recipes? Please SHARE this post!

 

Ready to get rid of that dry skin from too much sun, sea, or chlorine? Here are 3 seriously yummy fall inspired diy spa recipes to try this weekend to get smooth, glowy skin + soft hair! Hint: you'll def get a huge dose of pumpkin + pumpkin spice latte! #fall #pumpkin #spa #selfcare #pumpkinrecipes

How to Understand Emotional Eating to Stop It Forever

How to Understand Emotional Eating to Stop It Forever

Not many people know this about me, but I was married before. Like a million years ago, and it was short-lived. 6 months to be exact. The whole story is full of drama, deceit, and lots of tears. But food also became a factor. For me, I mean…to help me cope. At the time I had no clue there was a thing called ’emotional eating’. But now with my 20/20 hindsight, as it always works out, I totally see it all.

It started out as not eating at all, because my stomach was always in knots and it was last thing on my mind. But as I began to try getting my life back together, and moved back in with my Dad, cooked food was available all the time. So I ate to feel better and have some energy to do things again, and get back out there.

And once I gained about 20 lbs back, I never thought twice that it was an unhealthy 20 lbs. After all, everyone was just happy I was eating again. But it taught me something pretty harmful when it comes to health and healthy weight.

And that’s the thing with emotional eating. It can go unnoticed because it’s not widely thought of as dangerous compared to life threatening habits such as illegal drug use. And many of us in the moment say we can simply “exercise more later.”

Once I began my education in Nutrition and became a Certified Health and Wellness Coach, I discovered that’s not the case. When trying to lose weight, 80% of the effort falls onto what you eat, and the other 20% is working out.

 

To gain some perspective on this, it takes 30 minutes of low-impact exercise to work off ONE SINGLE DONUT.

 

how to understand emotional eating to stop it forever

 

So what the heck is emotional eating?

 

Well, emotional eating is the practice of managing one’s emotions by eating food. Here are some things that can help you figure out how to identify emotional eating, its effects, and a handful of tips on what you can do to stop it.

 

Causes of emotional eating:

 

Major changes in circumstances, relationships, work dynamics, daily stress, and general feelings of a loss of control can be major factors. For example, a recent break up could drive a person to emotional eating. (Hence, my issue after my divorce.) A sudden change in the demeanor of a formally cordial coworker could leave you feeling alienated, or the daily ebb and flow of life’s daily activities could put you in the mood where food is thought of as a reward, a way to relieve stress, or way to avoid dealing with emotions surrounding a situation. This tends to be especially true for people who are naturally anxious.

 

If you are an emotional eater–especially if you’re also anxiety prone–and MOST especially if you already KNOW anxiety triggers your eating, download the Cognitive Therapy-Style Anxiety Workbook and work through it to get that anxiety under control STAT! {Click the image below to get it!}

 

Living with anxiety sucks. And having an attack is the worst. If you're ready for tips to understanding and overcoming this social disorder, one of the best remedies is cognitive therapy. Check out this workbook and journal that has prompts and ideas in the pages for writing your feelings in a diy way to get to the bottom of your anxiety. #anxiety #journal

 

It is an Unhealthy Way to Cope with Emotions

 

Emotional eating is often used as a way to avoid dealing with complex emotions. Not every trigger will be the same for each person, but these could include a range of emotions and feelings including anxiety, boredom, loneliness, disgust, sadness, and even joy.

The emotional danger is the continued neglect of the real reasons behind these emotions. A feeling of shame or guilt might follow binges. This is especially true when the behavior is hidden from friends or family.

If a person uses eating as a way to escape or distract herself emotionally, a vicious cycle can develop. For example, someone who seeks food to cope with stress will create a paradox where weight-related health issues arise, and the chosen coping method is food.

 

If you notice a trend where emotional ups or downs are affecting what + how much you eat, start tracking it. And if you have or suspect you have a binge eating problem, seek out help! Mental health professionals + support groups are near you that can give mega support!

 

How to tell if your eating is emotional:

 

There are a few differences between the type of hunger that comes from emotional needs, and that of physical needs. Physical hunger is gradual, and eating fulfills the need for nourishment. When you eat after having been physically hungry, you will most likely feel better or more energized.

When the hunger is emotional hunger, eating may not give you the feeling of being filled, which can lead to overeating. At the end of the meal, you might feel tired, or depressed.

Emotional eating usually also hits very suddenly out of nowhere and seeks out specific cravings to be filled. Often times these powerful cravings are for sugar and fat filled snacks. This is because of the powerful rush that happens right after eating it.

Seeking out comfort food or food that’s connected with positive or nostalgic feelings has been common practice for all of recorded history. I can attest to this–I’m from the South, and that’s how the generations above mine showed love and support.

Many snack foods (especially candy and baked goods) are associated with memories of fun times or loved ones. Some children develop early obesity when they learn this type of self soothing. The methods that are used to produce foods of these types typically contain high levels of salt, sugars, fats and preservatives.

 

For several days, every time you’re hungry, take note of the time and how you feel. Did it hit suddenly? did you just eat recently? Are you bummed about something? Happy? Start documenting so you can find patterns!

 

Your Emotions Drive Your Eating Habits

 

Mood can affect the speed, and way we eat. Do you sometimes notice that a negative situation can send you running to your car to get a comfort food? In times of intense emotional upheaval, it can easily become a habit to turn to food for emotional management. That cookie or ice cream might feel good while you’re stuffing your face, but it isn’t truly fixing the heart of the issue.

Many people are conditioned from a young age to associate food with some sort of reward or good times. That’s a huge reason some restaurants have places for children to play.

 

Kids also learn this reward system in their brains from school. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Ask your kid what their teacher rewards them with during math or for good behavior or grades. 😠 Also think about whether you celebrate or pacify your kids with food–that will give a good indication if you yourself are an emotional eater on some level.

 

You Eat While Stressed

 

Another big sign of emotional eating is that you eat while stressed. Any changes in life large or small can cause a measure of stress. Deteriorating financial health is considered to be a leading cause of stress in somewhere around 64% or more of American households, so it is possible that financial stress could lead to comfort food seeking activity.

Relationships are also a major source of stress due to the tendency for relationships to experience inevitable changes in dynamics. This could be anything from romantic relationships to work relationships. People tend to expect routine. Relationship changes can throw one or both people into a state of uncertainty.

 

Write down at least 3 major stress sessions you’ve had lately. Did it send you to eating–or fasting–to make you feel better?

 

You Keep Eating Past Being Full

 

One of the most serious of the signs of emotional overeating, is eating past being full. This is when the need to fill the emotional void exceeds the body’s natural feeling of fullness. It can manifest itself in joyless eating, which is eating on autopilot.

During this period you might consume empty calories so quickly that you don’t even taste the food. You may also find yourself forcing the second half of a meal you could have saved for later, or buying additional snack foods that you will be tempted to eat prematurely.

Part of the serious nature of this habit, is that it induces weight gain and other health issues a possibility.

 

Answer these questions: Do I eat mindlessly? (watching TV, working, driving, etc) When I eat a meal, do I clean my plate ALWAYS? At the end of the meal do I feel bloated and uncomfortable? If you answered yes to any of these, you’re most likely an emotional eater.

 

How emotional eating affects you:

 

Emotional eating has numerous health risks.  It’s one of the leading causes of failed diets and weight gain. Weight gain puts a heavy strain on organs such as the heart, lungs, and liver.

But not only internal organs are at risk. A person that’s gained a substantial amount of weight also faces an increased risk of joint injuries of all types.

Emotional eating can cause devastating health problems. Beyond the difficulties surrounding obesity, these could include other health issues such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, anxiety, malnutrition, digestive problems, menstrual problems, and depression.

If you are overeating and appear to be experiencing any of these symptoms or health problems, emotional eating is likely to be a significant factor.

 

List any health issues you have and see if you can trace them back to the base problem of overeating.

 

How to quit emotional eating:

 

One of the most commonly used methods of determining the source of hunger is the food test. Ask yourself if you want to eat this food, or if there is something else you can eat instead. If you’re hungry enough to eat an apple, you’re probably hungry.

Exercise, deep breathing, or any stress relieving hobby can go a long way to improving your control.

But the biggest enlightenment of this whole story is the fact that emotional eating is a HABIT.

 

Navigating Bad Habits:

 

People often say that the first step to conquering any habit is recognizing that there is a problem.

 

From all of the previous actions in this post, did you confirm that you yourself that you (or someone you have luvs for) have a problem with emotional eating? If yes–read on for how to reset those habits!

 

How to Find Your Triggers

 

Most people are well acquainted with the knowledge that overeating is unhealthy and can make you vulnerable to various complications. And the start to the habit–which becomes a cycle–is the TRIGGER.

 

Trigger Foods

 

Some foods trigger powerful cravings and memories that send a person into a state where they don’t consider what they are putting in their body.

Strong emotional or cultural identification with specific foods can begin at an early age, so these habits can become very deeply embedded into an individual’s identity.

Marketing research companies spend billions of dollars learning how to connect the emotions of the consumer to their products, so thinking about the kinds of food you consider are very important. (Don’t believe me? Watch the documentary Food Matters.)

One extremely effective tool that you can use to help you find out what is happening with your eating habits, is to begin keeping a journal. Seeing everything you’ve eaten in black and white can be a big wake-up call. Plus it forces you to acknowledge you’re about to ingest it if you have to record it.

 

 

Start a daily food log and make notes about your cravings at particular times of the day and about specific food cravings. List as many details as you can. During the note taking, document details of the events by asking yourself questions. How hungry were you on a scale of 1 – 10? Download the Daily Food Tracker to do this! Click the image below to finally get a handle on your emotional eating habits!

 

If you're ready to get serious about what you eat and how much, or just ready to count macros for the macro or macrobiotic diet, you need this Food Log + Tracker! Setting weight loss goals depends on knowing what you eat every day! Know your numbers!

 

Trigger Emotions

 

As you write what kind of foods you eat, make a note of how you’re feeling at the time of the craving. Strong emotions of any kind can affect how you choose to go about your eating habits during meal time. And it’s important to note that they can be both positive and negative emotions. When a person is emotionally eating, it does 2 things. It frees the mind of the burden of focusing on issues and allows for an escape.

Eating provides a pleasurable experience of being rewarded. Studies have shown that food can light up the same areas of the brain that react in drug addiction. That means that serious thought and planning must go into combating these habits. Sugar actually occupies the opioid receptors in the brain, causing the same type of addiction as illegal drugs.

 

In your food log or journal, make sure to jot down how you’re feeling during every meal and snack–not just unhealthy binges. This will give you a better picture of what your healthy triggers are, too.

 

Trigger Environments

 

Last, and certainly not least is your environment. This can cover a wide variety of variables. Who are you spending time with? Where are at? What kinds of events are taking place?

Where were you when the eating took place. Were you at work, school, home or out in public? Were you with friends, loved ones, coworkers or alone? You might be surprised to find that subtle, yet visible patterns emerge.

Some people find public situations highly stressful. Others may find alone time to be stressful. Overeating often takes place when the subject is alone, but every case is different.

It may just be that you pass the Marble Slab every day–or that happy hour has 1/2 price appetizers. Write it all down!!

 

Bad Habit Replacement

 

Take some time taking notes, compiling information, and asking yourself key questions. With all this information, you’re sure to find what some of the major triggering events might be. If you were less than a level 6 in hunger, and cravings appear during specific situations, you could be stress eating.

One of the easiest ways to quit almost any habit is to simply replace the unhealthy behavior with healthy behavior. For example, you can keep healthy, low calorie snacks like almonds handy. Teas are also available that contain nutrients that help curb hunger, and aid metabolic function. Black tea (among others) is known to lower stress hormones by nearly half during consumption.

Then complete the healthy habit cycle with a reward. So figure out a reward appropriate for your healthy habit substitute, and make sure you give yourself that reward multiple times immediately to reinforce the habit.

 

Make a list of unhealthy habits you can replace, then buy healthy replacements and place in the spot where your unhealthy eating normally happens.

 

habit loop cycle

 

Self Care with Decompression and Prevention

 

Alternatively, exercise and deep breathing can be very effective in managing stress in the moment to prevent the urge to eat in the first place, or even at the end of your day. Shallow + deep breathing has been found to increase stress in the body. So taking a moment to breathe mindfully can be very beneficial. Exercise and breathing go hand in hand. So a healthy regimen can go a long way to putting you on the path to success.

 

Make a point to do deep breathing/mindfulness exercises a few times a day. Set alarms or reminders on your phone and notice how you feel after a few days of doing the exercises.

 

Educate Yourself on the Habits Cycle and How to Rewire Your Brain

 

My last piece of advice is to educate yourself on HOW habits work, and how to rewire your brain. It can totally be done, whether you have a bad habit already, or need to instill good habits. There’s a totally FREE course called What Good Mothers Do that is centered around the idea that as Moms, we have to take care of ourselves FIRST so we can care for our families at our best.

Part of the curriculum involves learning how to reduce stress by MANAGING the things that are chaos in your life. And part of that falls into the HABITS category. There’s an entire unit on habits alone. How to recognize your habits, break them down, and figure out how to rewire your brain to fix bad habits, and instill good ones, step by step.

 

Get started rewiring your brain for GOOD HABITS to finally get your emotional eating under control: sign up for the free course, or get it in Ebook format! Click the image below!

 

 

Know someone that could use help with nixing emotional eating to improve their health? Please SHARE this post!

how to understand emotional eating to stop it forever

4 Steps to Keeping Your Credit Score in Check

4 Steps to Keeping Your Credit Score in Check

Neglecting your credit score is one of the biggest money mistakes that people make. It’s only when you try to borrow some money and realize that your credit score is in the gutter that you start to think about it. Unfortunately, the damage is already done by that point and it’s very hard to come back from. If you need to borrow money for emergencies, to buy a home or car, or even to start your own business in the future, you’re going to need a healthy credit score. That’s why you need to start planning for the future now and getting into good financial habits. 

 

4 steps to keep your credit score rating in check and good standing

 

Not Using Credit

 

Your credit score is a measure of your financial responsibility. Which is why people often think that the best thing to do is refrain from borrowing money. Surely, managing your money well enough so that you don’t need to borrow any extra is the best way to prove that you’re financially responsible, isn’t it? You’d think so, but that’s not quite how it works.

If you haven’t used credit before, you won’t have a credit score at all which is always a bad thing in the eyes of lenders. That’s why you should start using credit, but using it sensibly.

First off, you need to pick a good credit card with interest rates that you can manage. Check out this list of the best credit cards by the Ascent to see what great deals are out there at the moment. Once you’ve picked a good credit card, you should start using it for small purchases like your weekly grocery shopping and then pay off the balance right away. That way, you can start building up a healthy credit score.

 

Using Too Much Credit

 

Using credit is important if you want to build up your score but you’ve got to be careful. If you’re using too much credit, it’ll give lenders the wrong impression. Whenever you take out a credit card, you have to go through a credit check. Each  one will damage your credit score. It also gives lenders the wrong impression because it suggests that you’re borrowing a lot more than you actually are. You need to use credit, but don’t use it too much.

A good rule of thumb is to not use more than 30% of your credit line. And then always pay it off ASAP.

 

Maxing Out Credit Cards

 

When you’re spending money on credit cards to build up your score, you’ve got to be very careful. It’s tempting to just keep spending until you’re at your limit, but that’s going to hurt you in more ways than one. Firstly, it’s going to make it difficult to manage your finances, and secondly, it’s going to damage your credit score. When lenders look at your score, they’ll check your credit utilization ratio (the amount of available credit that you’re using). If that number is too high, it’ll raise red flags and you won’t be able to borrow any money.

 

Repair credit mistakes

 

Many people don’t know this, but there are many mistakes made on credit reports. To prevent your credit from having bad ratings, always check it once a year to make sure nothing is on there that isn’t legit. If you find anything questionable, you should immediately write to each credit bureau and request that the item be appealed.

Once the bureau gets this request, they have a certain amount of time to follow up with the creditor. If the creditor can’t prove that it’s a legitimate credit ding, they’re required to remove it from your credit report. I recommend doing this for every item on your report that’s negative, because you never know what can and cannot be proven. You could improve your credit rating tremendously by making sure your credit looks as good as possible.

 

Trying to manage your credit score is tricky, but if you avoid these mistakes, it’s possible.

 

Need help managing your personal finances? Download the Household Budgeting Binder to create your home budget and get your money in check! (Click the image to get it!)

 

Tired of living paycheck to paycheck? Don't know how to even start budgeting? Add this free household budget printables binder to your tools! Use the worksheet template for monthly money management to track those expenses! #money #budget #finance

 

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Having good credit is one of those things we didn't learn about until well into adulthood. It can be your best friend or your worst enemy. Here are 4 tips and hacks to raise, improve, or repair your credit score. Check out #4 especially, few people know this one to boost their score! Plus free printable household budget! #budget #money #credit #finance

Get In Control of Your Garden with These Easy Techniques

Get In Control of Your Garden with These Easy Techniques

Overgrown, disorganized gardens are not just a sore sight: they can actually damage local ecosystems and decrease the value of your property. For the hobby gardener, it takes some effort to stay in control of your garden and keep it organized so that it looks natural and carefree, but not unkempt. Adding structure gives visitors somewhere to look at so they know to focus their attention on your prized plants without getting disoriented. And, it’s a great way to make your garden a family-friendly space and teach your kids about the central tenants of gardening at a young age.

 

3 easy tips to keep your garden under control


The #1 Way to Stay in Control of Your Garden: Weed, Mulch, Repeat


All gardens need weeding. But gardens that have been recently unattended to probably require an emergency weeding session. Weeding is a fast way to cut down on the over-clutter in your garden so that you have clearer picture of the space you’re working with before planting.

For similar reasons, mulching an unkempt garden will make the color of plants stand out against the ground while fighting off weeds. Mulch also acts as an insect repellent and cools down the soil during summer months, making it a garden staple for healthy plants and organization.

Once you have a clear picture of the empty space in your garden, make a blueprint of how you want to change the space. Include where you want trees, flowerbeds, and plain patches of grass to grow. Even if it takes a few years for your blueprint to take full effect, having the plan will better guide you as you approach staying in control of your garden.

 

Add Structure

 

Strategic additions and removals to your space will help add structure to your garden without looking stilted.

Creating a gravel path for your viewer to navigate through helps divide excess space while giving your viewer some direction.

Edging your garden accomplishes this goal as well: without edging, there is no divider between “grass” and “arrangement of flowers,” which can make gardens look overgrown.

Often, excess trees add bulk to a garden while detracting from the sunlight needed to make plants grow. This is especially important for trees that are rotting or look like they could fall on your house at any given moment!

 


Make a Vegetable Garden Layout

Vegetable gardens are a win-win for inexpensive, homegrown produce and boosting your gardens diversity. But they also provide neat botanic arrangement. Build or purchase a raised vegetable garden box and plant your veggies in rows to increase orderly composition. The neat pathways of a vegetable garden will also make sure you are maximizing the amount of produce you can grow in any given space.
Plus, keeping a vegetable garden is a great way to engage your kids with your garden while teaching them to, quite literally, reap what they sow. Your children will better appreciate produce from the family garden if they understand the process of growing food in the first place!
Once a general layout for your garden is in place, it will be much easier to keep your garden structured and stay in control of your garden. And to the theme of sustainability, you and your family can appreciate the lasting effects of a well-maintained garden for years to come.

 

Know someone that could use help to get control of their garden? Please SHARE this post!

 

Even backyard gardening can be a challenge for beginners! Here are some ideas to keep your garden under control, whether you want to design a flower, container, or herb raised garden! #gardens #gardening #gardenideas #backyard

6 Reasons Why Starting Your Own Business Could Be For You

6 Reasons Why Starting Your Own Business Could Be For You

Busy Mamas have lots of responsibility when it comes to managing household finances. And with it comes figuring things out, like how to pay down debt, or even how to save for vacation when we’re already at capacity. Many Moms have found that its actually doable to make some money on the side to make up for the deficit. But have you thought of starting your own business? You may find that being an entrepreneur is actually the ultimate side hustle turned career.

 

6 reasons why starting your own business may be for you

 

There are some caveats, though. You might be reluctant to start your own business if…

 

  • You are currently very happy with your career choice, so taking your foot off the career ladder may be pointless and irrational.

 

  • Adding the rigors of running a business may be the last thing you need to add to your busy agenda.

 

  • You don’t know the first thing about running a business, perhaps because you lack some of the skills needed in your own life, be that managing your finances, or lacking the subtle skills of self-promotion, as examples.

 

Considering the first two points, you may decide in favor of starting a business later in life, or not at all if you’re happy with where you are. With regards to that last point, you shouldn’t let your lack of skills put you off. You can learn the basics of running a business through research and training. You can outsource the things you are weakest at to others (such as an accountant if finances aren’t your bag), and you can find ways to promote your business without needing a degree in the subject.

Take a look at the inventive way you can promote your brand on this website, for example. So don’t be put off if this is the main reason why starting your own business may not have been high on your bucket list of dreams. Because you see, provided you do have some time in your life to focus on something else, starting your own business could be the best thing you do today.

 

These are some of the reasons why!

 

By starting a business, you can become your own boss.

 

No longer do you have to ‘stick it to the man,’ working for somebody else with all the challenges that can involve. You can do your own thing, setting your own rules, and answering to yourself for a change. There’s no usual 9 to 5, you don’t have to face the battles of the daily commute, and you don’t have to work with people who may/may not do your head in on a daily basis! You have the freedom to do what you want, and provided you manage your time effectively to get the jobs done each day, you can also improve your work-life balance.

 

By starting a business, you can do something more interesting than your everyday job.

 

This is especially true for those of you stuck in a job that has taken you away from the aspirations you had when you were younger. While running a business will still have its boring aspects – paperwork, budgeting, spreadsheets – you may still have more drive to get on with these tedious tasks when you are enjoying the rest of the business that you have created. You can always outsource certain jobs to others. This will give you time to do more of the stuff you love, and less things you hate!

 

By starting a business, you can follow your passions.

 

Following on from the above, if you have something you enjoy doing in your downtime, you might be able to base your business around these pastimes. Having more time to engage with what you enjoy, and by making money from your hobbies, you will have what many people can only dream of. A truly fulfilling job! If your current career isn’t offering you that level of satisfaction, then running a business based around your favorite leisure activities may be the next best of thing.

 

By starting a business, you can have a second income.

 

Not ready to take your foot off the career ladder? Enjoy the job you already have? Fine, you can still start a business, provided you don’t burn yourself out in the process. You see, your own business could be a sideline you do on the weekends. It can be something you dip in and out of, dependant on the time you have to commit to it. It can be something as simple as selling your crafts online or freelancing your services to others whenever you have an open window in your schedule. You may eventually replace your current career with your business, especially when you start to make a profit. Or you might always keep it ticking nicely alongside your regular job. Whatever the case, you will benefit from the money it generates, and that is never a bad thing!

 

By starting a business, you can make a difference to somebody else’s life.

 

Running a business is not just about you, and the benefits you will receive from the endeavour. It can be about helping others, whether it’s employing others to get them off the unemployment line and the negative career paths they are on, or forming a business that is philanthropic in nature, such as beginning a charity. Of course, your business should benefit others anyway. The product and service you provide will also positively impact others in some way. Even if you are money-oriented in your focus. In short, your business can benefit everybody!

 

By starting your own business, you will positively change your life.

 

Putting the onus back on your life again, you may never look back after beginning this endeavor. You’ll make more money and have the opportunity to invest into your future. New people will be met ever day that you can learn from their experiences. And, you will meet challenges head-on and grow as a person as you overcome them. You will learn valuable skills that may help you in other ways. Also, you will do something that few others have the courage to do. And will have a sense of pride from the accomplishment. Running a business can be demanding and scary. But it can also be exhilarating, rewarding, and as we said, life-changing. You may never regret the decision. Especially if your life isn’t where you want it to be at this present moment in time.

 

So, what do you think? Could starting a business be the best thing you do today? Or even tomorrow, next week, or sometime next year? Whether you begin something large or small, there are many reasons why running a business could be best thing you ever do.

 

Know someone that could use help with deciding if starting a business is for them? Please SHARE this post!

 

If you've been questioning whether you should be starting a business online or not, entrepreneurship isn't for everyone. Here's a checklist of questions to ask if you'd like to start a business from home, even with no money.

10 Ways to Stay Motivated to Work Out Every Day

10 Ways to Stay Motivated to Work Out Every Day

If I had a dollar for every time I wanted to bundle up in bed and binge on Game of Thrones instead of working out, I’d be like, SUPER RICH. But also super heavy, and super unfit. I get it, nobody wants to do it unless we have a mega reward, cause that’s just how the brain works. But did you know that you can also get that motivation from other places on the front end? Here’s 10 fantastic ways you can get and stay motivated to work out every day.

 

10 ways to stay motivated to work out every day

 

1.Find something you LOVE doing to stay motivated to work out!

 

Waaaay back in high school I used to do jazz, tap, and ballet dancing. What I discovered is that not only do I love ballet, but I also love what’s known as ‘toe’. This is a special class where you wear the toe shoes that have the wooden block in the end. It’s the kind of shoes professional ballet dancers wear. And even though they’re an evil wench on the toes and toenails, if you can cram enough cotton in there, it’s so dang fun!

Even today, I’d so much rather do a dance class than get on a treadmill. The treadmill bores me to tears. And I’m not alone in that. Tons of people find that when they have something they enjoy when it comes to fitness, it’s never an issue to stay motivated to work out every day.

 What things that involve being active do you LOVE doing? Make a list, search some classes, and figure out how to do one of those things regularly!

 

2. Find a Partner

 

Finding someone who’s also committed to working out like you are is a brilliant way to keep motivated. This is especially true if you’re a very social person, or even just want a little extra hang time with your friends. Or hey, maybe you and the spouse/partner want to spend a little more time together doing something besides the ole dinner and a movie! There are studies showing that when you workout with your spouse, you increase your emotional bond, are more likely to achieve your fitness goals, and are more likely to feel in love with each other!

Whatever the deciding factor of your who the lucky recipient is, this is a really good way to stay motivated to work out. You don’t want to let someone down, and it should work the same in reverse as well. You’re helping each other.

 

Think about your friends, family, and partner. Who is MOST LIKELY to want to work out with you, and actually keep up? Set a reminder to ask them, or send a text, or call them RIGHT NOW!

 

3. Find an accountability person or app

 

This works especially well if this person or app is the gatekeeper to a reward, and is strict. For your own sake, of course. I use the MyFitnessPal app to track a ton of stuff, but also like that once you start using it, it gives you reminders for things like working out, or even tracking your meals.

There are also apps that will either pay you for putting in the work for your fitness goals, AND take money away when you slack on them! Dietbet and Achievement are 2 that do this or something similar.

And if you choose a person to be accountable to, that person doesn’t necessarily have to be working out with you. They can simply be the person who’s agreed to stay on your butt about doing your workouts every day. And again–you can do the same for them!

 

 Think about your personality type. Can you be trusted with the reward? If not, find a gatekeeper person to be accountable to. Start searching for apps in your app store, or even Google it, to find the perfect app to give you reminders and keep you going!

 

4. Use a Tracker

 

Using a tracker can be SO incredibly motivational, because it gives you the satisfaction of a ‘checkoff’ when you’ve completed your workout for the day, but it also lets you see progress. Also, you’d be shocked at how many people have ‘just enough’ OCD to want to see every single box checked off on their tracking graph! 🙋‍♀️

Basically you’re setting yourself up to create a good habit, and to keep at it.

I use the Fitbit system on my phone–the app + the actual tracker. But I also take advantage of a physical planner as well. It’s so incredibly rewarding for me to see my hard work all charted out on paper!

 

If you’re thinking about a tracker, go ahead and research them! Figure out a budget, and compare different models for features and pricing. If you don’t have the money for one, check with your insurance company. Some will actually send you a simple pedometer for free through their ‘extra’ wellness benefits (you’ll have to dig in your account to find it!) Or try using an app that tracks it like the fitbit app. You don’t have to have the device to set up an account! Read about the Fitbit Charge 2 (what I use) and why I love it!

 

*Or, go ahead and sign up for the Newsletter and get your free Fabulously Fit Planner to keep track!

 

free fitness planner when you sign up for the newsletter

 

5. Reward Yourself

 

Creating a reward is a really powerful thing in creating a habit, or generating motivation. When you’re starting out, it’s probably a good thing to find some healthy immediate rewards. This can help instill that motivation based on the brain’s reward response. Over time this can change to a bigger long-term reward. That way, you’re always working towards something. Ya know, besides better health or a slimmer, hot bod.

Whatever system you use, determine how reliable you are to yourself. Do you just give in when things get tough and reward yourself anyway? Then find a gatekeeper. Or do you just give up and forget the reward? Then have smaller rewards for each small step accomplished.

The point is to establish that reward system for your brain to start hard-wiring it. It needs to know that there’s something good coming for the hard work!

 

 Come up with 5 different ‘little’ rewards just for getting the daily stuff done. Then think of a bigger reward for a bigger commitment (like, say… 2 weeks of working out, or even a month.) Then ask yourself if you’re reliable to NOT give yourself the reward if you don’t do your workouts. If not, find someone who’s a reliable gatekeeper for you.

 

6. Inspirational Boards

 

I’ll be honest, nothing motivates me to get my butt up like a pic of some chick with kicking abs or a muscled booty in a bikini. Another thing that does it for me are the commercials from Dancing With The Stars or other cool dance shows. They make me feel like I could shake my thang just like them, and it’s so exciting to me!! So I recognize that’s my motivation.

Many people have an idea in their head of how they want their body to look. If you’re more visual like this, an inspirational board may be perfect for you. And Pinterest is one of the BEST places to look for this type of inspiration! (Obvs.)

 

Determine if you’re more of a ‘digital’ or ‘analogue’ kinda person for a vision board. Then either start a board on Pinterest for fitness inspiration, or start printing or cutting out pics to make a board you can see every day.

 

7. Take a Hard Look at Your Habits

 

This kinda goes along with finding rewards, but you really need to understand the habits cycle. A habit is established when you have a trigger + reward. See if you can figure out the times of day you’re most motivated, and the least motivated, and if there’s a habit involved in that. Especially if you’re short on time for a workout.

I always HIGHLY recommend to any coaching clients that they take a hard look at their habits. Which ones are bad? Which are good? Do you have any that need to be established? Or nixed?

 

 Make a list of your habits (good and bad), and figure out what your reward is for them. WHY do you keep doing them? Once you have that, you’ve figured out which thing to change so you can start rewiring the habit. To learn more about the habit cycle and how to really change it, go through the free course below, or when you sign up you can download the ebook/workbook instead.

 

 

If you’re dealing with issues in habits, check out the free master-course What Good Mothers Do: Learning TRUE Self Care to Be the Best Mom + Partner You Can Be. One of the core foundational lessons walks you through the habits cycle and teacher you how to rewire your brain to nix bad habits and instill good ones.

 

 

8. Journal about it

 

Journaling can solve many of life’s angsts. Just being able to get down on paper how you feel about working out, if you’re lacking that motivation, can help work through the pushback. It can also help you recognize what things make you feel motivated so you can find more of that to keep you on track!

I also especially love health and fitness affirmations. They put me–and keep me–in the right frame of mind to really keep my fitness at the forefront of my priorities.

 

 Put a composition book or pretty journal on your shopping list (or grab one at Amazon!) and start journaling when you don’t feel motivated, AND when you’ve pushed through a workout and have finished. Circle the emotions you’ve listed and start working through what your real issue may be.

 

9. Try something new

 

Many people end up getting bored out of their minds with the same ole same ole. Especially when it comes to doing circuits or sets of things.

If you find yourself in this category, find something new to try. How about a zumba class or soul cycling? You honestly never know if you’ll like it until you try it.

And some wise words I’ve heard about trying new things is to give it 3 good honest chances before you decide against it. It could be an off day for the instructor or condition of what you’re trying. Give it a real shot with an open mind MINIMUM of 3x. Then make your final decision.

 

 Think about things others have been trying to get you to try with them. Think about new things you’ve seen lately and found intriguing. Come up with 3-5 new things and schedule in to give them a try! (Many places will give you a free week/month trial!) And don’t forget to give it at least 3x before you decide on a yes or no!

 

10. Post Inspirational Pics and Quotes everywhere

 

I LOVE these because the quotes are so thought-provoking to really turn my attitude around when I’m not feeling it. The pics do great too since, like I said, I’m very visual when it comes to motivation.

I love to find pics to either print out from online, or that I’ve found in fitness mags, and post them on my bathroom mirror, or in the kitchen, or wherever I may be when it’s time to work out and I may be feeling that lack to stay motivated to work out.

And–again–Pinterest is a great place to find these!

 

 Think about where you’re most likely to see your inspirational pics if you post them up. Where are you RIGHT WHEN you need motivation or are thinking about your workout for the day? THAT spot is where you need to post these! And hey, this may be the perfect place to make your vision board and post it!

 

How do you stay motivated to work out every day? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Know someone that could use help with staying motivated to work out every day for awesome health? Please SHARE this post!

 

Having problems staying motivated to work out? Every day can be a challenge for women, whether you're losing weight or just getting fit. Challenges can help you set goals for yourself, and these other 10 awesome ways have been super helpful for me as well! Especially try out numbers 8 and 9!! #fitness #fitnessmotivation #fitnesstips #fitnessgirl #inspirational

 

 

8 Blissful Ideas You Need to Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine

8 Blissful Ideas You Need to Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine

It’s pretty clear that most moms don’t take enough time for themselves. I’ve found that we typically aren’t prioritizing self-care because we either feel guilty or think we don’t have the time. Taking just a few minutes for a relaxing bedtime routine, however, can be a real game-changer for moms, and help us handle some of the emotional burdens we’re given.

I’ve tried to set a routine for myself every night before bed to maintain some me-time and better prepare myself for the adventures of the next day. Here’s my own relaxing bedtime routine that I share in hopes of inspiring you to do the same for yourself!

 

Ideas and tips how to create a relaxing bedtime routine

 

  1. Cut Out Blue Lights

 

The effects of blue lights are profound on us at nighttime. They disrupt our melatonin levels that help us fall asleep which throws our body’s internal clock out of sync.

To combat this, I always try to dim the lights right after dinner to help our kids (and us!) get ready for sleep. The kids go to bed around 8 pm on school nights, and often need all the help they can get to wind down.

 

  1. Shower

 

I try to take a hot shower every night as part of my relaxing bedtime routine. It helps me feel refreshed and clean when I finally crawl under my sheets. The hot water also helps me de-stress. And I often find myself lingering under the shower head for a few extra minutes just so I can enjoy the steamy warmth for a little longer.

 

  1. Take Vitamins

 

After the shower, I take some supplements including magnesium and valerian root. These help me feel balanced and maintain my health without too much time commitment.

If it’s been a rough day, I’ll also take melatonin because it seems to get me to sleep better than other supplements.

 

  1. Use a Skincare Routine

 

My skincare routine is weekly, not daily, to help meet my needs without requiring too much time. I know how important treating myself every once in a while can be. So one night a week I do a face mask and read while I’m waiting on it to dry.

Some nights, I do a lip treatment (to fend off chapped lips). On other nights, I do a hair mask with the intent of a quick shower in the morning to wash it all out.

 

  1. Journal

 

After a long day, I look forward to sitting down to collect my thoughts. I have a journal that I frequently use to list out all the things I’m grateful for, and the things I’m looking forward to in the coming days.

I keep myself from going into too much detail and overthinking by making a to-do list, right there in the journal.

Ending it on a soothing affirmation about relaxation and rest helps to further quiet my thoughts.

 

  1. Read

 

Afterward, I continue to unwind my mind by reading in bed for a bit. I’ve found, though, that it has to be something funny or light. Otherwise I’ll be up trying to work out the mystery of the book I’m reading!

If it happens to be on my iPad or phone, I’ll wear a pair of blue-light-blocking glasses. This helps keep that melatonin disruption at bay.

 

  1. Set a bedroom environment

 

A relaxing atmosphere is essential in getting restful sleep. I think smells are really important to help us settle down. So I have a cold-diffuser that I put essential oils in. I alternate between lavender, vetiver, frankincense, and sandalwood oils. Eucalyptus, camphor, or tea tree are great options if I’m sick. They’re really great at keeping my sinuses open while I sleep.

I also like to keep the bedroom cozy with soft pillows and lots of blankets to make it feel intimate and comfortable.

 

  1. End your relaxing bedtime routine by reflecting

 

And lastly, the hubby and I try to face each other in bed once the lights are out. We talk about the positives of our days. We like to end on a high note. And taking that time to connect is important because we’re both so busy.

 

These are my own personal steps to a relaxing night. But I encourage you to experiment and find what works best for you. Although it can be hard as a busy mom, the key to a good night’s sleep is the preparation you put in to relax before bedtime. As long as you’re taking a few minutes every night just for yourself with a relaxing bedtime routine, you should see your sleep improve!

Don’t forget to grab your Printable Sleep Log! Click the image below!

 

Tracking your sleep is one of the best ways to see how long you're sleeping + the quality of sleep you're getting, especially after the wonky baby-toddler season of our lives. Track your sleep with the printable free sleep schedule + log. Find your perfect bedtime. Sleep BETTER. #sleep #bedtime #mom #momlife

 

 

Know someone that could use help with creating their own relaxing bedtime routine? Please SHARE this post!

In search of a relaxing night ritual? How about this guide and tips for how to create a relaxing bedtime routine? Every mom should be doing this! #7 even helps the marriage! Plus grab a free printable sleep log printable! #sleep #mom #momlife #momgoals #selfcare #healthylifestyle #healthyliving

 

3 Important Ways to Practice Self Care Every Day

3 Important Ways to Practice Self Care Every Day

Many people, especially people who have children or people to care for, don’t deem self care every day as important. However, self care for moms especially is something that absolutely everybody should be concerned with. Not only does it restore our energy and allow is to give the best version of ourselves to the people we love, it means avoiding illness, injury, and living a better quality of life. But it also allows us to take care of our families better.

 

It’s not selfish to care for yourself. If anything, it’s selfish not to. You can’t pour from an empty cup, and if you’re not looking after yourself, you might not be around in the future when it really counts. Take a moment to consider what self care every day means for you. How have you practiced self care over the last few weeks, or even the last few days? Do you have a self care routine? 

Here are 3 of the most important ways to practice self care every day.

 

3 important ways to practice self care every day plus free printable self care starter kit

 

Take A Break

 

Maybe you’re running around after your kids, an elderly parent, at work, or somewhere else. Maybe you have numerous things going on. Whatever your deal is, know this: the busier you are, the more important it is to take a break. Taking breaks is not counterproductive. You’ll recharge your energy stores and simply feel better, putting you in a better mood and allowing you to give the best of yourself whatever you may be doing. Breaks can help your memory retention, mood, and stress levels. Planning them throughout the day is crucial!

Maybe try some breath-work, or meditation. Believe it or not, these things can actually give you an energy boost as well!

 

Ask For Help If You Need It

 

It’s normal to feel too proud to ask for help, but in reality, struggling alone doesn’t win any awards. If you need help, ask for it, and don’t be afraid or ashamed.

Maybe you need less on your plate at work, or you could do with a helping hand from your partner or a family member with your kids. Perhaps you even need help from personal injury lawyers because you have had an accident and you aren’t sure what to do next. You can’t do everything alone, so don’t try to. Get the helping hand you need.

 

Do Things You Enjoy More Often

 

If you enjoy taking hot baths and putting on face masks, set time aside to do those me time self care things. If you like reading, make sure you plan it into your day. Do the things you enjoy more often, and really savour them. Here are more suggestions for your self care every day that can benefit you in numerous ways:

  • Take time cooking whole, healthy meals from scratch and don’t rush when eating them.
  • Take a nap. Anywhere from 15-45 minutes could help you to get more done than working straight through – science has proven it!
  • Do a little yoga or get moving in another way you enjoy.
  • Just sit and be still. Meditate with an app or a video if you like.
  • Arrange a coffee date with a friend or have lunch.
  • Take a class, or pick a hobby up again that you have let slide.
  • Practice daily self care affirmations. It’s truly shocking how effective these can be on your mind-set.
  • And last but not least, create a morning routine that nourishes you and your mind right from the start every day!

 

You matter, so start acting like it!

 

Grab your Printable Self Care Starter Kit right here! (Click the image below)

 

 

Know someone that could use help with self care every day? Please SHARE this post!

 

Self care for women, and moms particularly, is so incredibly important! Find out the 3 most important ways to love yourself with these ideas and tips for a daily self care routine. #selfcare #selflove #moms #momlife

 

5 Meaningful Investments for Busy Moms to Make in Themselves

5 Meaningful Investments for Busy Moms to Make in Themselves

As a woman with a family and a career, finding the balance between work, caring for your loved ones and maintaining a social life isn’t a walk in the park. Trying to juggle all of these super powers can put a toll on your mental health whether you’d like to believe it or not. It’s important to have meaningful investments for busy moms in health and wellness, and make it a priority. After all, your children deserve to have a great role model in their life!

 

5 meaningful investments for busy moms to make in themselves

 

An easy way to begin investing in items and experiences that will make you feel your best is to begin with the top five areas of your life that are important for busy, multitasking moms – your sleep, your health, your comfort, your home and your future.

 

For your sleep

 

Getting a full night’s rest is an impossible task when you’re a busy mom. And if you have kids under five years old, you’re lucky to get a few consecutive hours of shut-eye in each night. After chasing your toddlers around all day or even driving your kids to sports practices and birthday parties, the thought of your own bed seems like a fantasy.

Investing in a quality mattress will have you yearning for your bed even more than you already are, especially knowing that you’ll be able to quickly slip into a comfortable slumber!

Purchasing mattresses online is certainly becoming the preferred method of mattress shopping. Online mattress companies make the buying process simple and don’t want you to feel the pressure that you’d get from the salesperson at your local furniture store. You’ll be able to truly invest in the mattress that meets your sleeping needs.

 

For your health

 

The older we get, the more important it is to take care of our skin’s health. Including SPF in your daily skincare routine will protect your skin from UV rays and also prevent unwanted wrinkles from forming.

Brands like MDSolarSciences and EltaMD have tinted sunscreens containing mineralized zinc and titanium oxide. Your skin will be fully protected from harmful rays while still giving you a natural glow instead of the opaque white cream you’re used to.

This is perfect for moms on the go who have very little time to get ready in the morning. Raising a family while juggling a career can put a toll on our bodies and the most we can do is protect it from potential damage.

 

For your comfort

 

A mom that’s always on the go won’t feel fully equipped without wearing something comfortable. That’s why meaningful investments for busy moms must always start from what you wear under your clothes, then work your way out.

First you’ll have to identify your lifestyle. Are you a mom that heads to the office after dropping your kids off at school? Or are you a mom who might work from home and have the freedom to dress in something more casual? Whatever your situation may be, the best idea would be to invest in something transitional that can take you from a Mommy And Me gymnastics class to an important meeting in the boardroom.

Quality items of clothing to invest in, to add to your comfortable yet confident wardrobe, include bras that feel like second skin and a blazer used for simple layering. If you’re a mom that’s always on the run, you don’t want to think twice about feeling comfortable in what you’re wearing.

Ultimately, the more comfortable you are, the more you’re able to embrace who you really are.

 

For your home

 

Your home should feel like your sanctuary. After a long day, coming home to a place that eases your mind and lifts your spirits is exactly what busy moms need.

Because most of your time is spent in the kitchen, whether it’s making lunches for the kids to bring to school, or cooking up a big meal for Sunday dinner, you should create a space that makes you want to stay!

Updating your kitchen appliances will eliminate your stress levels when it comes to making dinner for your hungry family each night. High-end appliances can even make the cooking process a breeze, leaving you with more quality time to spend connecting with your loved ones rather than watching the oven because it tends to over cook food or hoping the panini press doesn’t stop working mid-melt! Your hungry family won’t be disappointed either!

 

For your future

 

Getting away every once in while is beneficial for your mental health. Taking a break from your chaotic life to unwind with some loved ones or close friends can do wonders to your mind and body! One of the most fantastic meaningful investments for busy moms is in a savings account for a well deserved vacation!

A tip when opening up a dedicated vacation savings account is to look for a bank where they allow you to open up an interest-bearing account. It may help you accumulate more money by the time your vacation comes!

A change of scenery to your favorite beach or a day hike up a mountain on your bucket list will have you feeling like a brand new mom upon your arrival home to your kiddos!

 

Shuffling between being the best mom, a great wife and a dedicated professional is a tough task. Incorporating these beneficial investments into your daily life will only help you achieve your Super Mom goals!

 

Ready to tackle even MORE True Self Care? Get your time back, create GOOD habits for yourself, and kick that Mom-guilt to the curb with the TRUE Self Care Course or Ebook! It’s FREE! Click the image below to get started!

 

 

Know someone that could use help with creating their own meaningful investments for busy moms? Please SHARE this post!

 

Think self care for moms is only about me time? Self care is also about meaningful investments in yourself! Check out these tips, thoughts, ideas and truths about how mothers can reduce stress in life by making meaningful investments in themselves. #selfcare #budget #sleep #mom #momlife #momsquad

 

4 Online Money Management Tools You Need

4 Online Money Management Tools You Need

As Moms who manage our household budgets, we’re always looking for ways to simplify it. But also to help keep track with little fuss. There are a lot of applications and websites out there which claim to help you with your money. From simple budgeting apps to systems that can provide automated advice when it comes to the decisions you make, the range of options you have in this area is massive. We’ve found four of the lesser-known, but still very powerful, online money management tools to improve your money.

 

4 online money management tools you need plus Free printable household budget binder

 

Advice

 

In a lot of cases, the best help you can get with your money will have to be direct. This doesn’t mean that a human has to give it to you, though. Today’s computers are getting very good answering the sort of questions humans like to ask. Online money management tools like Nerdwallet can help you to pick between the various options you have available at the moment, and it will be worth keeping an eye on this field. As time goes on, these systems are learning, and this means that they will only get more useful.

 

Keeping Records

 

Accounting applications have been getting more and more popular over the last few years, but far too many people still find themselves keeping records using traditional methods. Unfortunately, tools like Freshbooks are still very complicated, and this makes them hard for normal people to sink their teeth into. By making a paycheck stub online, you can solve this issue, while still keep track of your money. These online money management tools make it a great way to handle this side of finance.

 

Affordable Investment

 

Putting money away can be hard when you don’t have an investment tool behind you, and a lot of people find themselves daunted with stock trading apps and other professional tools. To help you to get around this, there are loads of systems which are designed to make this process simple. Instead of having to learn about an entire field, you can get to grips with a game-like app. And this is much more fun for most people.

 

Management

 

Three things can can practically wipe out the chances of overspending. First, being able to see exactly how much money you have in your account all the time. Second, how much is going to be going out on bills. And third, what will be left over at the end of it . You’ll be able to relax knowing that your money is in a good position, all while improving the control you have over it. Online money management tools like Monefy are great for this. Especially if you’d prefer to use your smartphone to do this sort of work.

 

This post should give you everything you need to start the process of improving your money with the power of the internet. This sort of process doesn’t have to be a challenge. Especially with the help of online reviews and blogs. Along with all of the other resources which can be found around the web.

 

Get your free printable Household Budgeting Binder by clicking the image below!

 

Tired of living paycheck to paycheck? Don't know how to even start budgeting? Add this free household budget printables binder to your tools! Use the worksheet template for monthly money management to track those expenses! #money #budget #finance

 

What online money management tools have you used to make your personal finance management easier? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Know someone that could use help with finding awesome online money management tools? Please SHARE this post!

 

Personal finance doesn't have to be a pain to track! From free printable planners to online products, try these tips and ideas to get your life finances in awesome shape! #money #finance #budget #apps #online

 

4 Tough Life Decisions That Affect Our Families

4 Tough Life Decisions That Affect Our Families

Collaborative post.

 

If life were comfortable, you would find a partner, buy a house, have a family, and stay in the same job for life. There would be no tough life decisions. Everything would be perfect. The property would be big enough for five to six people. Your kids would study hard and enjoy their life. Your career would strike a perfect balance between life and work while paying you plenty. And, you would be in love with your hubby forever and always.

 

Unfortunately, life isn’t this simple. To build one of which you can be proud, you need to make tough life decisions at difficult times and hope for the best. Here are four of those decisions, and what to consider during the process.

 

4 tough life decisions and how they affect our families

 

Should I Stay Or Go?

 

The Hollywood romances are never quite the same in real life. Sadly, not everyone gets to live their happily ever after. You may find yourself or have been in a position where the relationship wasn’t working. This is natural in many ways and the first thing to do is stay strong and fight.

Far too many people give in at the earliest sign of trouble. If you do this and nothing changes, then you have to think about your happiness. Are the kids going to be better off in a loveless environment where their parents don’t get along? Or, would they rather they split and be content? In the long-term, it’s the latter.

 

Am I A Sheep Or A Shepherd?

 

In the beginning, everyone starts out on the bottom rung of the career ladder and works their way to the top. Well, that’s the dream. Again, there are obstacles in the way and your work life can stagnate. This is when it’s time to think about staying or leaving.

However, it’s also the moment to consider shooting for the stars and starting your own firm. When you’re not the boss, there will always be someone telling you what to do and ordering you around. Shepherds forget about the wolves (money, fear of failure) and lead by example.

 

Do I Keep On Moving?

 

Https://news.a1firstclass.com/ says that the average person moves up to eleven times in their life. As a youngster, this isn’t difficult because there aren’t as many responsibilities.

When you have kids, it gets trickier. Will they like the idea? Will they make new friends? Will the new location benefit them in the long run? And, don’t forget about your partner who has a career.

Plus, https://www.mybekins.com/location/phoenix-az-movers/ points out the hassle of the process. Regardless, a new home may be what the family needs in terms of money, space and opportunities. These three things trump everything else.

 

Should We Expand?

 

Your family is settled, for now. In the future, you may want more kids. Although there are statistical factors to consider, such as money and space, this is a personal thing. Once you feel the urge to have more children, it’s difficult to turn off the emotion. As long as your husband or partner agrees, then everything else is manageable.

 

How do you make tough decisions on a daily basis?

 

 

Know someone that could use help with making tough life decisions? Please SHARE this post!

 

 

 

The Dangerous Link Between Talcum Powder and Ovarian Cancer

The Dangerous Link Between Talcum Powder and Ovarian Cancer

One huge part of self care for women is making sure all our lady parts are in good health. Good health is paramount to how we feel, and the energy we send out. So it only makes sense that we need to pay attention also to gynecological health and findings, such as the link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer.

One of the lesser known threats to women’s gynecological health is a substance called talc. This substance is mined and used in various products in a finely ground powder form. Talcum powder has some helpful properties in that it absorbs moisture and decreases friction. However, as it gained popularity in hygiene use, research has shown that it may increase the risk of cancer and specifically ovarian cancer.

 

The dangerous link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer

 

Talcum Powder and Asbestos

 

The natural mineral form of talc is not a powder, but rather a solid crystal or fiber. It is readily found in mines and contains oxygen, hydrogen, silicon, and magnesium. Talc also happens to form in the ground alongside asbestos ore.

Asbestos and talc form in similar ways and are often found together. Because of this, talc typically contains some asbestos. Since talcum powder became common in the 1970s, ensuring that it was free of asbestos has been an important aspect. However, increasing evidence may suggest that it’s nearly impossible to make sure that talcum powder is fully free of asbestos, which means that it has a cancer-causing risk.

 

Talcum Powder Uses

 

There’s no doubt that talcum powder has a myriad of uses, and it has gotten popular through use in cosmetics and hygiene products.

Most commonly it is used in baby powder to soothe diaper rash. Medicated and deodorant powders also often contain talcum powder to absorb moisture and reduce friction from sweating.

Cosmetics like eye and face powder may also contain talcum powder to help them go on the skin smoothly. Even sanitary and incontinence pads may contain talcum powder.

The sheer large number of women’s products should give an indication of how serious the link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer is becoming.

 

Talcum Powder and Ovarian Cancer

 

Talcum powder has been used commonly in feminine hygiene products for some time. The powder absorbs moisture and reduces odor.

In the 1970s, doctors began making the connection between ovarian tumors and the use of talcum powder in the genital region. Samples of tumors from women who used talcum powder in this area contained talc particles, thus making the link appear more than tenuous.

In 1982, another study investigated 200 women who had ovarian cancer and 200 women who did not. The group with cancer had a higher usage of talcum powder in their genital area, furthering the link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer. Other contrasting studies have found only a small risk of ovarian cancer for women using talcum powder near their genitals.

 

Other Health Issues with Talcum Powder

 

Genital use of talcum powder isn’t the only problem with the substance. The fine powder can also easily be inhaled and then cause lung irritation and even more serious conditions such as asthma or pneumonia. Because of this risk, the American Academy of Pediatrics does not currently recommend using talcum powder products on babies or young children.

For National Health Center Week happening in August, it’s important to be aware of everyday products that could damage health or raise the risk of serious health problems.

 

Know someone that would be interested in the health risks of talcum powder? Please SHARE this post!

 

Do you use any products that contain talcum powder? If you do or aren't sure, find out the products that contain this harmful additive that has been linked in women's health to ovarian cancer. #health #healthylifestyle #cancer

 

5 Changes To Create A Less Stressful Home Environment

5 Changes To Create A Less Stressful Home Environment

As busy Moms, it becomes very difficult to come home from a stressful day just to deal with a stressful environment. A less stressful home is key to being able to relax in your own personal family space. Believe it or not, there are many more things that go into self care besides just having alone time or me-time. Self care also includes reducing stress overall. And a major place you should start is your home environment. Here are five changes you should make at home to create a less stressful home space.

 

5 changes to create a less stressful home environment

 

Clear And Organize Clutter

 

Whether you realize it or not, when your home is filled to the brim with clutter, it can cause a fair amount of stress and anxiety. This makes it almost impossible to relax, especially in the bedroom.

Because of this, it’s essential that you get things under control by going through your home and getting rid of anything you no longer want or need. Once you’ve had a good clear out, you should go around your house again, organizing all of the belongings you have left.

One major thing I personally did for a less stressful home is a mega purge. I took this course and learned how clutter affects our stress levels, and then DID something about it! Click the image below if you’re interested in learning about this life-changing course as well!

 

If you're tired of cleaning, and tired of being controlled by the clutter, this course is for you!

 

Brighten The Place Up

 

Relaxing in a dark room can feel calming on the odd occasion, but living in a poorly lit house can leave you feeling anxious, on edge, irritable, and moody. With that in mind, it’s essential that you brighten the place up a little. You can do this by adding more lamps and light fittings, like the ones at https://www.sunpan.com/usa/products/accessories/lighting.

You should also enhance the levels of natural light, by opening your curtains or blinds and adding mirrors to your walls.

 

Add Plenty Of Greenery

 

Plants, flowers, and other greenery can have a huge positive impact on your home, leaving you feeling happier, more creative, and less stressed. They also help to improve the air quality inside your house, as they remove carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This will help you to breathe better, immediately boosting your mood.

Just be sure that you don’t clutter up the space with large plants, as this could make you feel claustrophobic.

 

Cut Down On Technology

 

Watching television and scrolling through social media can help you to relax a little. But spending a large portion of your time using technology will start to affect your mental health, making you feel depressed and anxious.

Because of this, you should try to cut down on the length of time you use tech, by choosing to put devices away at certain times of the day. You should also try to keep technology away from your bedroom, to improve your sleep quality.

 

Create A Zen Corner

 

No matter how big or small your home is, it’s crucial that you have somewhere that you can go to relax and be by yourself. This will act as your zen den, station, or corner, and is the perfect place to meditate, practice yoga, or just regroup.

If you need some help creating your zen space, then you can visit http://parallelyoga.ca/5-ways-create-zen-space-home for some tips. This area can be whatever you want it to be, as long as it helps you to relax and destress.

 

Your home is supposed to be the one place in the world where you can relax and feel truly comfortable. If it isn’t serving this purpose and is actually a source of stress, be sure to follow the tips above and create a more calming space. And remember this is actually a HUGE part of self care!

Ready to tackle even MORE True Self Care? Get your time back, create GOOD habits for yourself, and kick that Mom-guilt to the curb with the TRUE Self Care Course or Ebook! It’s FREE! Click the image below to get started!

 

 

Know someone that could use help with learning to create a less stressful home environment? Please SHARE this post!

 

Believe it or not, having a stress free home environment is a HUGE part of self care! Find out how to create a stress free home environment for you and your family! #home #declutter

How To Do Infused Water the Right Way + My Favorite Concoctions

How To Do Infused Water the Right Way + My Favorite Concoctions

As a lifetime ice tea drinker, I can attest to the dislike of feeling like you ‘have’ to drink lots of water for good health. I mean, I like good health. But I’ve just always had a distaste of plain water. Maybe it’s because the tap water was so bad where I grew up. But I still don’t particularly like it. Which is why I’m so thankful that infused water exists!

Infused water is the process of adding fruits, vegetables, and herbs to your water, then letting these ingredients flavor the water. In addition to providing a delicious flavor with a wide range of combination options, you also get some of the nutrients from the produce and herbs, which further improves how healthy your water is.

Infused water is easy to do, but there are a few things you should know first. Here are some things to keep in mind when you are making your infused water.

 

How to make infused water the right way plus recipes.

 

Types of Water to Use

 

The first thing you should know about making infused water is that filtered water is always better. Filtered water is cleaner, so this is really going to improve the overall quality and flavor of your infused water. Since not everyone has access to enough filtered water to fill infused water pitchers every time, tap water is okay when necessary, but do try to get filtered water if at all possible.

 

 

When choosing your water, you should only use room temperature or cold water. Avoid warm or hot water, since it can cause the produce to fall apart at a rapid rate, which reduces how many nutrients are going to end up in your water.

 

Choose Organic When Possible

 

If at all possible, try to select organic fruits and vegetables. These can often be found in the produce of your supermarket, but a better option might be to get them from a weekly CSA, farmer’s market, or contacting local farmers directly. This allows you to get fresh fruits and veggies that you know were grown locally without added fertilizers and other chemicals. Organic produce does tend to provide a better flavor for infused water. However, the most important part is having healthy water with your favorite fruits and veggies, so if you can’t use organic, don’t worry too much about it!

 

dirty dozen clean 15 printable shopping guide

 

How to Prep the Ingredients

 

After you select the ingredients you want to use for your infused water, you will then need to prep them before putting them into the pitcher. You should always rinse the fruits and vegetables to make sure no chemicals are left on them. Even if you bought them organic, it is still a good idea to rinse them and make sure they are clean. If you are using herbs, you want to crush them with a muddler since this will help to release the oils. The exception is when the herb is leafy, such as with mint or basil. If you have a mortar and pestle, that will totally work, or I personally love this muddler:

 

 

Most fruits and vegetables need to be cut at least in half before being put in the pitcher so that they can release their flavors. Hard fruits and vegetables like cucumber and apples need to be cut into thin slices since they can take longer to release flavor to the water. With berries and citrus fruit, they are softer, so just cutting them in half or quarters should be fine.

 

What to Make Your Infused Water In

 

By this point, you are ready to start putting your infused water together. Before you add in the water, make sure you have the right container. While you can technically use anything, a glass pitcher is usually recommended. However, regardless of which way you go, make sure it is BPA-free and food-safe. Many plastic pitchers are not ideal and won’t keep the water fresh, but in the end it is really up to you. There are also pitchers and cups used especially for infusing. They typically have a long and narrow section in the middle where you put your herbs and fruit, with holes or slots so the flavor can be released. Here are some great options on Amazon:

 

 

How Long to Soak the Produce

 

When making infused water, you will add the produce and herbs first, then add your room temperature or cold water on top. You then want to let the water infuse so that you can get good flavors and nutrients from the fruits and vegetables being used. If you are leaving it out on the counter, this is usually done in about 2 hours. Otherwise, wait 4-6 hours if keeping it in the refrigerator for the infusing process. If you leave it overnight, it will be super flavorful.

 

When the Water Should Be Enjoyed

 

The ideal time to drink infused water is within 24-48 hours after the infusing process is complete. It is usually best to drink it the same day, but at least try to drink it within the first couple days. Waiting 3 days is okay, but don’t leave it for longer than that. Make sure you are not leaving the fruits and vegetables in the water for this long though. They should be removed and only the water should remain in the pitcher for this long. Citrus fruits will remain fresher for longer, while melons are going to get soft and mushy quickly.

Also keep in mind that if you drink the infused water the same day, you can usually refill it 2-3 times with the produce in the pitcher or cup and still get good flavor from it.

 

My Healthy Drinks pinterest board-Stella Nadene

 

Fave Infused Water Recipes:

 

Really and truly you can use any combination of fruits and herbs. A great place to start, especially if you don’t have all the ingredients for a specific recipe, is to use combos of berries, melons, cucumber, herbs, or citrus.

But some flavors do taste better together than others. For the perfect combos, I like to turn to The Flavor Bible. My husband loves to cook anyway, so we got the hardback and refer to it all the time!

 


Another thing I’ve learned is that cucumber makes almost any combo taste FRESH. I’m in love with it and put it in nearly all my infused water.

Here are my favorite 10 infused water recipes:

*For all recipes, start out with about 6 cups of cold water. Add your ingredients, then chill as listed above.

1.Lemon Ginger Detox Water

1 lemon, cut in slices

1 small knob fresh ginger, zested

 

2. Pineapple, Coconut, and Lime

1 cup of fresh or frozen pineapple chunks

1 thinly sliced lime

2 cups fresh or frozen coconut chunks

 

3. Grapefruit, Pomegranate, and Mint

1 thinly sliced grapefruit

10 mint leaves, torn

1/2 cup pomegranate seeds, muddled

 

4. Raspberry Lime

2 TBSP fresh or frozen raspberries

1 lime, thinly sliced

 

5. Pear-Berry

Several raspberries + blueberries, slightly muddled

1/2 pear, thinly sliced

1 lime, thinly sliced

 

6. Blueberry, Rosemary, Lemon

1/2 pint blueberries, slightly smushed

4 sprigs fresh rosemary, lightly muddled

1 lemon, thinly sliced

 

7. Strawberry Lime Cucumber Mint

3-4 slices or chunks cucumber

2 strawberries, sliced

4 sprigs mint, muddled

1 lime, thinly sliced

 

8. Strawberry Basil

2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, muddled

 

9. Watermelon, Kiwi, Lime

1 cup watermelon cubes

2 kiwis diced or sliced (no skin)

1 lime, thinly sliced

 

10. Orange Cilantro

2 oranges, cut into chunks

1 bunch cilantro, chopped and muddled

 

 

Start tracking your hydration by downloading the free Hydration Tracker printable! Click the image below!

 

Download the free hydration tracker printable to enhance your fitness, track your water intake, and drink more water, whether in fancy products like bottles, or just mason jars. #water Stay hydrated throught the day, watch your progress for the week and month! #healthydrinks #cleaneating #fitness #weightloss

 

Know someone that could use help with hydrating more and might love infused water? Please SHARE this post!

 

If you want to stay hydrated and love every minute, check out how to make infused water the RIGHT way! The container, whether bottle or pitcher, is important--but these recipes can be used also for detox, weight loss, or an energy boost--and making them for a party benefits everyone there!! #water #healthyrecipes #healthyliving #weightlossrecipes #cleanse #cleaneating #detoxwater #fitness

A Fresh Start for Yourself in Five Ways

A Fresh Start for Yourself in Five Ways

5 Ways to create a fresh start for yourself.

Collaborative post.

 

There’s nothing wrong with recognizing when you’re struggling in life. Whether you’re a business owner who is drowning in the enormity of the new business that you’ve set out for yourself, or you’re a mom who’s finding it hard to bond with people in the area you live, a fresh start is a good way to slough off any of the uncertainty and start again. The good thing about life is that although we only get one of them, we get many chances to start again should the mood take us that way.

It’s important to recognize when life becomes a struggle. There is no need to struggle when, no matter what is going on for you in life, you can ask for help. If you need to lose weight, you can instruct a personal trainer to work with you to get your weight under control. If you find you can’t keep up with the payments on your mortgage, you can try this lawyer and see whether you would be able to qualify for help with your debts. No matter what the issue is, you can work around it with a little bit of help and a lot of willingness for change. Rebooting your life doesn’t come easy, but with the five ideas below, you can get the fresh start you so desperately crave.

 

5 ways to give yourself a fresh start

 

Your Diet

 

 If you have found yourself feeling sluggish and gaining weight, it could be a good time to reboot your diet. You need to feel good within yourself and feel energized to get through the day. It’s vital that you put your health first, because when you do that you’re able to feel better about yourself and have a more positive outlook.

 

Your Style

 

Our tastes change as we age, but that doesn’t mean that you have to dress in any way that makes you feel bad about yourself. Giving your wardrobe a makeover so that you are wearing what fits you and not what doesn’t can make a huge difference to the way that you feel about yourself. Keep what fits and get rid of what doesn’t so that you can go shopping!

 

Your Home

 

 If where you live is getting you down, you have two choices: redecorate or move. If you want to redecorate, determine your budget first. Then think about investing in an interior designer to help you make good decisions. If you want to move, start researching areas to relocate to that will work better for your family. You must also have a budget for this, but the location will be a huge factor too.

Sometimes neither of these things are what the problem is. If you feel weighed down and in need of a good cleanout, I reccomend an actual purge. It’s absolutely amazing how liberating it is to clean out everything you don’t need or use. I took this course, and it change our household and…well, life.

 

uncluttered home course to get your home to clutter free

 

Your Mental Health

 

Mental health is probably the one area you really should be caring for. Self-care is vital and if you want to reboot your life, you have to start with your mind + body getting in sync. Self care is SO important–especially for Moms! Get rid of the guilt, and find that time to start.

Join the Newsletter and grab your free Self Care Starter Kit! (click the image below):

 

self care starter kit free for the exhausted mom

 

Your Finances

 

If you are drowning under debts right now, consult some help to get yourself out from under the weight of it. There’s no need to suffer in silence – ask for help as soon as you can. The first step is to ways figure out the exact place you are right now.

Join the Newsletter and get a free Household Budget Printables to get your budget detailed out and under control in your household. (Click the image below!)

 

free household budgeting binder

 

Rebooting your life with a fresh start is the best thing that you can do for yourself and your family. What do you want to change?

 

Know someone that could use help with a fresh start? Please SHARE this post!

 

Getting a fresh start in life whether from a relationship disaster, moving, a job, or just for new beginnings can be scary. Get some ideas and inspiration and tips for how to make a fresh start in this article! Number 3 had a HUGE impact on our household!

 

12 Secrets to Make This the Best Back to School Year Yet!

12 Secrets to Make This the Best Back to School Year Yet!

So, I don’t pretend to be the most knowledgeable Mom on the planet. (Usually.) But I do have 4 kids–one has completed high school, one is starting kindergarten this year, and the other two are well into their school-age careers. So I am pretty darn well-versed in what’s gonna make the start of school (and many, many parts during the year) easier. For that reason, I thought I’d share with you my 12 secrets for making this the best back to school year ever! (And hopefully the less stressed.)

 

12 secrets to the best back to school year ever from a seasoned mom.

 

1.Put ALL teacher/classroom/school info in you Household Binder.

 

Wait-what? You don’t have one? Seriously–get a binder and some divided tabs, and start a Family Binder with your family’s important and household info. You will refer to this stuff several times a year most likely, and if it’s all right there together where all the other family info is, you never have to keep up with it separately.

This is also helpful in case there’s an emergency. Or you have family come stay with the kids so you can take a trip. Or a babysitter. You get the idea.

 

2. Create contacts for your kids’ teachers + the main school phone # in your phone and include email addresses.

 

Do this immediately. Also, add in ‘[insert kid’s name]’s teacher’ in the ‘company’ section so in case you forget the teacher’s name (I seriously did this the entire year for both middle kids), you can just do a search for that and it’ll pull up the contacts.

THEN–make sure to forward those contacts to your husband/partner and request that they add the contacts immediately.

I honestly can’t tell you the number of times I needed to send a quick email regarding homework, snacks, special candy, holiday parties, grade programs/plays (you get the idea) to a teacher and knew that if I didn’t send the email in the 25 seconds I had before gymnastics started, I’d forget until it was too late. This tip alone has been a lifesaver and instrumental in me creating our best back to school year!

 

3. Find all teachers ‘likes’ for gift-giving time

 

Step 1-We had a good run where the teacher would actually list these things on the ‘getting to know me’ handout that was included at the beginning of the school year. SAVE THESE!!!! Seriously–those are direct quotes from that teacher as to what kind of gifts she would like and will cherish from you and your child.

Step 2-If there is no such thing for your child’s teacher, the next step would be to Facebook stalk. Find out what kinds of things he/she is interested in, and make a list.

Step 3-Go ahead and purchase minimum of 2 of these things and put them away for when it’s gift giving times. Major ones are Christmas, end of year/teacher appreciation, and if you do birthdays for teachers.

If you regularly have too much on your plate to be able to mentally function at the holidays and end of the school year like every other Mom on the planet, you’ll seriously thank me for this advice later.

And if you still can’t get ideas from Step 1 or 2, check out this post on ideas for teacher’s gifts.

 

4. Put all school dates in the calendar ASAP

 

I know a lot of dates aren’t released (like for holiday parties, end of year festivities, etc), but the major dates for in-school and out-of-school should be on the calendar that is given at the start of school, or that you may already have found online.

Go ahead and put these in your main calendar so you don’t forget! Our kids go to 2 different schools, with different start and release dates (and times every day), and have different dates for teacher work days. This will save lots of frantic calls for emergency sitters, or having to call in sick to work. Or, you know, forgetting to take your kid to school at all.

ALSO INCLUDE the first parent-teacher conference date and time when you’re adding dates. Teachers like to schedule a first one pretty close to the start of the year to go over your kid’s work and behavior, and any other issues that may need to be addressed.

 

5. Get to know the teacher

 

I know some of us are blessed with children that always make excellent grades, behave perfectly, and have no food allergies or other health issues. Others of us–me included–have kids that have all of these issues and must be in touch with the teacher frequently.

It’s a lot easier to handle personality quirks if you take a little time to get to know your kids’ teachers at the start of the school year. ‘Meet the teacher’ night is probably not the *ideal* time to do this because there are so many other kids and parents there to meet him/her as well. But a semi-in-depth conversation when you meet him/her can give you a decent idea of personality, as well as time to ask what the best contact methods are.

I bring up contact methods because I’ve had issues getting in touch with teachers before. This was the result of them trying to use one of the school messenger apps, then never responding to it, or not returning phone calls, or not responding to email. Every teacher is different in their response times and preferences, so find that out.

Knowing the teacher a little better will seriously prevent a lot of frustration in trying to communicate throughout this best back to school year!

 

6. Volunteer

 

I know this isn’t an option for every parent, but if you have the time–volunteer for something! Anything! This is for a couple reasons:

1-Your kid knows you’ll be up there every now and again, and this affects behavior

2-The teacher has you on their radar. I know this sounds like teachers give preferential treatment, which isn’t fair to the other parents. But in my experience, teachers are waaaay more communicative and accommodating if you’re doing them a favor by volunteering. This doesn’t have to be anything major. It could be cutting stuff out of construction paper. But if they know you’re willing to help, they usually reciprocate with a helpful and cheery attitude, and respond to questions and other issues that are pressing to you.

 

7. Get your school morning routine down to a science

 

I know it’s a struggle to get kids back on a sleep schedule, and also back on a wake-up schedule. But the other parts of the mornings before school could be way easier. I’m telling you, the best back to school year involves pleasant, smooth-running, and stress-free school morning when getting out the door for school.

I’m talking about things like, pre-making lunches the night before, packing up backpacks the night before, and having a good breakfast.

If you need help creating your perfect morning routine, I invite you to take the Smoother School Mornings Challenge! It walks you through 5 steps in 5 days to eliminate school morning chaos. Plus, it’s delivered straight to your inbox! Click the image below to get started!

 

8. Find out each classroom policy on things like snacks, eating, and water.

 

I say this because at one point last year, my kids were no longer allowed to have disposable water bottles in the classroom. This was because 2 or 3 kids couldn’t manage to NOT punch holes in their water bottles and then shake them around in the classroom to soak other students. Don’t ask me why everybody had to be punished, or why these kids weren’t supervised for a long enough period that they were able to manage this type of obnoxious behavior. The point is that at that point they only allowed reusable water bottles. So if my kid was thirsty during the day, she had to either ask to go use the water fountain, or do without.

Another policy they had was that kids could eat snacks any time they wanted in the class. It was helpful to know this because one of my kids complained of headaches in the afternoon, and since she had a super early lunch, I suspected she was dehydrated and hungry. So I had to make sure she packed a good snack, water in a reusable bottle, and remembered to eat a snack around 2pm.

 

9. Find out the teacher conference times

 

That is, if they’re not listed on the beginning of the year paperwork they send out. This is important because you need to know when you can come in and talk with the teacher if anything is amiss during the year. That way, you’re able to coordinate with your own schedule.

Teachers aren’t typically able to just have a meeting anytime during the day, so that time of day is important.

 

10. Don’t kill yourself trying to find that *one thing* nobody can find on the ‘school supply’ list.

 

Seriously. If it’s something super mandatory, the teacher will send out an announcement when that thing is needed. Otherwise, the usual protocol is to dump each school supply item into a large bin in the classroom. Then everything is doled out later.

On that same note, don’t bother buying the best brand you can find, or the specific color your kid wants. They have very little chance of actually getting and using that thing you bought and spent more money on because of the system most schools have gone to for school supplies. Which I DON’T agree with, but whatever.

 

11. Carpool

 

Find out what other parents live close. Then ask if they’re willing to carpool to/from school. This saved me a ton of time the last few years. The only thing I recommend is setting up a firm schedule and sticking to it the best you can. My neighbor and I have done this the last few years. If either of us was sick or had something going on, the other graciously picked up the slack. It worked perfect.

 

12. Get a sleep schedule ASAP

 

Seriously. Kids quickly get into the habit of staying up late, reading, playing, watching tv, and playing on electronics during the summer. The sooner you can get them back on a sleep schedule the better. This is especially helpful to get a handle on before the time change happens in October.

 

Grab your free Kids Sleep Schedule Log by clicking the image below!

 

Quit wondering how many hours of sleep for kids you need, or how to get them back on a sleep schedule. This sleep schedule log has tips and ideas will walk you through bedtime and night routines for you awesome Moms! #sleep #kids #bed

 

And there you have it–my 12 tips for the best back to school year ever! Hopefully you found a few tips to help you move through the start of this school year seamlessly!

 

Got any more tips? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

Know someone that could use help with having an awesome back to school year? Please SHARE this post!

 

The 12 tips, aside from outfits, supplies, and organization, that have made our back to school year time and activities throughout the year SO much easier! I don't have time for frustrations and waiting around on things, so these have saved my sanity! # 7 has absolutely saved my life the last 2 school years!! #backtoschool #backtoschoolthoughts #school #kids

 

 

3 Ways for Emotional Healing After an Accident

3 Ways for Emotional Healing After an Accident

If you’ve been involved in an accident and have a serious injury as a result, you may be unsure what route to take when it comes to emotional healing after an accident. Your doctor has most probably taken care of the physical side of your healing but what about the emotional side of things? Your mental health and well-being is something that it’s down to you to address and look after.

 

Of course, doing so after an accident can be difficult as often there’s a lot of upset and negative feelings. Particularly if your injuries have the potential to be long-term problems. However, just because you feel negatively about what’s happened to you, that doesn’t mean that you can’t deal with those feelings in a healthy way.

 

It’s not always easy knowing how to process your feelings after this kind of injury has occurred but it’s important that you find a way to do so. Bearing that in mind, below are some tips and ideas for ways that you can make sure that you are taking your mental health and well-being more seriously to ensure emotional healing after an accident.

 

3 ways for emotional healing after an accident

 

Put a plan of action in place

 

One of the most essential aspects of mental healing is having something to look forward to. And having a future to think about. That’s why it’s so important to ensure that if you haven’t already, you put a plan of action in place. Think about what you need to do to get past the negative thoughts that you are having and get your life and mental health back on track.

 

You might find that you are entitled to seek compensation, so this could be a route to go down. Let’s say, for instance, that you were knocked off your motorcycle by a careless driver, you could get motorcycle accident help and take steps to make a claim against the driver for compensation. You could then put this compensation towards planning your future. Which should help you to feel more positively about the situation that you have found yourself in.

 

Make self-care a priority

 

Self-care is something that you should be doing whether you’re injured or not but when something bad has happened to you, self-care becomes even more important. Self-care is all about looking after yourself and your changing mental health needs. You need to make yourself feel happy again, which is where self-care comes in.  You need to do what you need to feel better.

 

For some people self-care is about booking a weekend pampering break. For others, it’s about practicing yoga for 15-minutes each morning and evening. Self-care means different things for different people. But regardless of what your self-care strategies consist of, it’s all about making yourself feel better and less stressed.

 

Get support

 

After you have been through an ordeal, such as suffering a serious accident, sometimes you need to get some support. Whether this is from friends or family members or by going to speak to a therapist, it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that you get the support that you need. This is important to help you keep your mental health in check and get your life back on track.

 

There you have it, everything that you need to know about emotional healing after an accident.

 

Know someone that could use help with emotional healing after an accident? Please SHARE this post!

 

An accident, whether an auto or car accident, or any other where you're physically hurt, is a very traumatic thing. Managing your mental health is a very important thing as well. Read about 3 ways to heal emotionally after something like this happens.

 

How to Protect Your Family’s Long-Term Financial Security

How to Protect Your Family’s Long-Term Financial Security

Alright, if you’re a parent, then it won’t be breaking news if we say that it’s not an easy role to have. However, while it’ll never be a walk in the park, there are certain things you can do to make it easier on yourself. For example, if you develop long-term good financial health, then all those possible stressful moments in life – upsizing, affording college, Christmas presents, and so on – will be much easier to manage. But how do you achieve long-term financial security? We take a look at a few ways below.

 

5 ways to protect your family's long-term financial security

 

Get Saving for Long-term Financial Security

 

The easiest way to ensure long-term financial security is to get saving! Most Americans say they wouldn’t be able to find $400 in an emergency, but guess what? An emergency is definitely going to pop up, be it a household emergency or broken down car, and then what happens? The charge goes on a credit card, which can’t be paid off, and drags the person down into debt. So get saving. If you cut your expenses down (and everyone can cut their expenses down) and transfer the saved money to a savings account, you’ll have something to tide you over when the emergency arrives.

 

Invest In Yourself

 

The best way to ensure you’ll always have long-term financial security is to make yourself employable. Even if you currently have a job, it’s worthwhile investing in yourself. This means in the form of courses, seminars, and so on. You shouldn’t assume that you’re going to have your present job forever, because, in all likelihood, you won’t; it’s predicted that AI will take some 40% of jobs in the next decade. And yours might be on of them. If you’ve invested in yourself, then you won’t find it as difficult as those who assumed they had a job for life to find new work.

 

Get What You’re Entitled To

 

Sometimes when things go wrong, all the costs are on you. You’ll just need to suck up the cost and pay it. At other times, however, the costs aren’t on you at all. If you’ve been in an accident that wasn’t your fault, then your family doesn’t have to bear the costs of your lost wages and expensive medical bills. Instead, you can hire a lawyer to fight for the money that’s rightfully yours. It’s also worth looking to check if you’re entitled to any tax breaks; those breaks exist for a reason, so use them.

 

Diversify Income

 

It’s always good practice to diversify your income, even if you have a stable job. You never know what’s going to happen! If you’re currently just getting paid from your work, look at dabbling in the stock market or investing in property. The more sources of income you have, the less exposed you’ll be should one source of income be compromised.

 

Protect Yourself

 

And finally, it’s obvious, but make sure you have as much insurance as necessary. It can be the difference between financial ruin and barely noticing that something bad has happened, really!

 

Snag your Household Budgeting Binder by clicking the image below! No excuses not to–it’s free!

 

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Know someone that could use help with establishing long-term financial security? Please SHARE this post!

 

Long-term financial security comes in many forms! I was shocked at the statistics of women and families that aren't debt free! There are some great posts, articles, and products out there, but it's only as good as your effort! People like Suze Orman and Dave Ramsey do some great work dealing with debt, retirement, and credit score. Do you do your part to ensure this for your family?