Christmas Checklist

I thought I’d share this countdown to Christmas checklist with you. My fellow blogger and friend over at You Can Always Start Now sent this to me and gave me her blessing to share with my readers.

This is counting down backwards to Christmas Day!

Day 12

  • Clean out the fridge and freezer to free up space
  • Gather your holiday recipes and cross-reference the ingredients you have with the ones you’ll need to buy
  • Check your inventory of cookware, serving pieces, and food storage containers to see what’s missing. If you’re in need of something, contact a family member or friend to see if you can borrow or share items.

Day 11

  • Shop for groceries and pick up everything you’ll need to complete your holiday recipes. If it CAN be baked or cooked ahead of time, buy the ingredients now.
  • Be sure to purchase plenty of frozen hors d’oeuvres and finger foods, they are a lifesaver when guests drop by unexpectedly.
  • If you have kids at home, hire a babysitter rather than taking them with you to shop. Shopping alone with help you stay focused.

Day 10

  • Cook any dishes ahead of time that you can. Casseroles, appetizers and desserts can be frozen, thus saving you time on the big day.
  • Before starting your cooking and baking, lay out all the ingredients and baking supplies you’ll need.  Try to clean as you go minimizing the mess.

Continue reading Christmas Checklist

Day 8: Vinyl Serving Bowls

WELCOME TO DAY 8 OF MY 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS DECORATING, CRAFT AND GIFT IDEA CHALLENGE.

What do Roseanne Cash, Janie Fricke and Tina Turner (vinyl LP)have in common in my household??

They became serving bowls for some of my christmas goodies!!!

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Remember the vinyl records I picked up at the “Use it or Lose it” event (I’ve mentioned a few times before…) one of them turned into my Vinyl Snowman wall hanging (see below) and three more became serving bowls.

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There are lots of tutorials on-line to melt vinyl LP records into various objects. Here is a link to the one I used and pretty much followed it to the letter. Continue reading Day 8: Vinyl Serving Bowls

Day 7: Merry Christmas Salsa Tradition

WELCOME TO DAY 7 OF MY 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS DECORATING, CRAFT AND GIFT IDEA CHALLENGE.

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I am just cresting the half way  mark through my 12 days of Christmas decorating, craft and gift idea challenge and I hope you have enjoyed it so far.

Today, I share a recipe for my version of Merry Christmas Salsa.

The gift of my Merry Christmas Salsa to my family and very close friends each year has been going on for a long time, so I decided I am officially going to call it a tradition. Continue reading Day 7: Merry Christmas Salsa Tradition

5 Tips for Feeling Healthy

Healthy woman jumping on the beach

lzf/Shutterstock.com

Try these easy changes to boost your mood and your health.

1. Exercise is the best

The best way to feel happy, healthy and fit is to exercise. There is no substitute. Research shows that exercise will boost your mood, help you to sleep better and increase your self-esteem. This is partially due to the release of endorphins in your body as you workout. Endorphins decrease our sense of pain and increase our happiness and sense of pleasure.

If you want your mood to go up, increase your exercise. Working out doesn’t mean 60 minutes or 0; all or nothing. Working out to a ten minute app on your phone is still exercise. Start somewhere.

2. Put good food in your stomach

Ninety percent of serotonin is made in your gut. Serotonin is the chemical that makes you happy. That means, whatever you are putting into your body, could impact your mood. Do your best to stay away from frequenting antibiotics, processed foods and high sugar and carb diets. Healthy habits like taking walks, doing yoga, avoiding “toxic” people and eliminating negative self-talk will all help to minimize stress.

3. Find true peace of mind

How do we find true peace of mind? Try making a list of your values and see if you are actually living them. Are you worrying over little things in your life? Are you over scheduled? Your kids over scheduled? Take a look at your day-to-day worries and see if there are a few things you can easily cut out, that will give you more free time (and more peace of time).

4. Don’t compare yourself to others

A great way to feel healthy is to stay in tune with your body and its needs. When we compare ourselves to others, we focus our time and energy on trying to be something that our body and mind might not actually want us to be. As we compare ourselves to others we are giving ourselves a very unrealistic and skewed perception of reality. This can decrease confidence and even lead to depressive symptoms. Instead, work on becoming more self-aware. Reflect on your values, your goals, your current life situation and begin creating a realistic plan to get you where you are trying to go.

5. Dress your mood up

Of course, there are days when you want to cuddle up in yoga pants or sweats and just relax. Quite frankly, I think you should do that. However, don’t let this dress style be your only style. I know that the day-to-day routine can be boring or nothing exciting might be going on, but dress up anyway.

At least twice a week, wear something that makes you feel pretty or handsome. The way we dress and feel in our own skin makes an impact our confidence and our attitude about our day. There is nothing like a new dress, a great hair day, or a nice suit to lift your spirits.

Dress up your body, dress up your mood.

Continue reading 5 Tips for Feeling Healthy