Family · Home · Self

5 Ways To Help The Environment You Can Try Right Now!

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Trying to be environmentally friendly but don’t know where to start?  Here are five quick tips that you can incorporate into your everyday life.  Which ones are you going to try?

  1. Reusable containers. We all know about storing leftovers right?  You can also use these containers to carry you lunch, thus eliminating the need for both plastic and paper bags.  If you are going to a restaurant that loves to give large portions take a reusable container for the leftover.  Styrofoam never biodegrades! You can also use these containers for craft items, office supplies and storage for a variety of things.
  2. Tote Bags.  I can remember a time when no one bought reusable bags to the grocery store. Now it is common place. Just remember to keep the bags close at hand.  It doesn’t help if you forget to bring the bags with you.
  3. Don’t use beauty products with microbeads. Microbeads are micro plastic beads used to exfoliate the skin.  These plastic products like their bag counterparts don’t biodegrade and end up in our water supply. Yum!
  4. Save water.  There are many ways you can save on water usage.  You can install low flow toilets and shower heads. Update your appliances to make them energy efficient.  Turn off the water when you brush your teeth.  Plant a rain garden or use a water tank/barrel outside. Even take a shorter shower!
  5. Use paperclips instead of staples.  Paperclips can be used more than once!

What are some of your favorite ways to help the environment?

Self

5 Quick Self Care Ideas

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Here are five new ways to pamper yourself this month.  Which are you going to try?

  1. Paint your nails. You could also get someone else to.  I prefer to go every other month for a pedicure.  I just sit back and relax for the hour.
  2. Cuddle.  Sort of self explanatory. Cuddle your cat. Cuddle you dog. Cuddle you kid. Cuddle your husband.  You get the idea.
  3. Try a new food.  No need to go extreme.  It could be trying a new fruit, a new flavor of gum or you can take a three month subscription to a food service.  Go online and find a new style of cuisine to try.
  4. Give yourself a facial mask.
  5. Listen to a new podcast.
Self

5 Quick Self Care Ideas

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Self Care is the latest trend in the blog world. There are whole blogs devoted to the concept.  If you are like me you need some serious self-care but don’t always know what to do. Each month I will give you some different ideas for relaxing and recharging.  Sometimes we need some gentle reminders to take care of ourselves.

  1. Read a chapter out of that book on your nightstand. You know the one you have been meaning to read but haven’t gotten around to doing.
  2. Take a quick 10 minutes to declutter a spot in your home. Pick something you see everyday to clear like your coat closet or medicine cabinet.
  3. Turn the phone off. Easy right?  It’s harder than you think. We use our phones for everything today. Even an hour of no phone use can help you unwind.
  4. Talk a quick walk around the block.  You don’t have to break a sweat, just get away from it all for a short time.
  5. Take a bath.  I personally love a long, hot bath. You can pick a favorite bath bomb or bubble bath, light a candle, and put on some relaxing music to enjoy.

What do you like to do for self care?  Let me know!

Self · Uncategorized

Some Things to Know About Migraines

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Migraines are a chronic condition that can last for years or for a lifetime.  Triggers can include: hormones, foods, drinks, stress and exercise. Other causes include environmental factors such as weather and a genetic predisposition.  Symptoms include throbbing in one area that can vary in intensity, nausea and sensitivity to light, sound and smell. Migraines are common in families and women.

Over 15% of the world’s population suffers from migraines.  The earliest mention of migraines in writing is in the Ebers papyrus in 1500 BCE.

There are four phases of migraines. Phase 1, called Prodromephase.  It is marked by mood changes, irritability, depression, fatigue, cravings, stiff muscles, constipation and/or diarrhea, and sensitivity to light and smell.

Phase 2 is called the Aura. It is where you can experience vision disturbance, pins and needles feelings, numbness, speech and language issues, the world spins, and weakness.

Phase 3 is the Pain Phase. It can last as long as 4-72 hours of pain for adults. You can have several migraines in a lifetime or several in a single week. Neck pain is common. Also during this time you can experience nausea (90% of suffers), vomiting (a third of people), sensitivity to a variety of things, irritability, fatigue, sweating, confusion, light head, and the world can spin.

Phase 4 is called Postdrome. The final phase, often in conjunction with menstruation, involves fatigue, muscle soreness, hunger, and stress.

According to the International Headache Society there are seven subcategories.

Category One, Migraine without aura.  It is the most common form of migraine.

Category Two is a migraine with aura.

Category three is Childhood Periodic Syndromes which includes vertigo, abdominal migraine, cyclical vomiting.

Four is Retinal Migraine has a hallmark of visual disturbances.

Category five is complications of migraine, including long or frequent migraines and can be associated with seizure or a brain lesion.

Category 6 is Probable migraine which has the characteristics of migraine but not enough to diagnose, common medication overuse.

Seven is Chronic Migraine.  Chronic Migraine is greater than 15+ days month for more than three months. Chronic migraines effect 1.5-2.2% of the population.

How do you prevent migraines?  It’s hard. A variety of things help to improve migraines such as medication, nutrition, lifestyle alterations, and surgery. It is best to check with your doctor to find out what approach is best for you.

 

Information taken from: Web MD, International Headache Society, and Wikipedia.

 

 

 

Self

Dealing with the Pain, Migraines and Me, Part 2

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This post is the second part to an earlier post dated May 3rd about my struggles with pain and migraines.

The next few days I went home and started my new medicine.  It would take several weeks according to my neurologist for the medicine to take effect.  I may also experience side effects. Unfortunately, they neglected to tell me the most important side effect.  Weight gain.  I went from a size 14 to a size 22. Ugh.  I also noticed that I would get dizzy real fast.  I have to be careful when I get up not to move so fast.

Finally, my body aches stopped. I was able to walk and get out of bed.  Eventually, the migraines eased to.  They went from coming everyday to only occurring about four days a month.  It was so much better.  When I did get them, the two medicines they gave me for migraine attacks would clear them in two to three hours.

It feels so strange to have such freedom now.  To be pain free for the most part has been wonderful.  It even makes the terrible weight gain worth it. I can watch tv.  I can read.  I can eat dinner with my family.  I can go to the grocery store.  So many little things were major things with pain.  I guess I have learned a valuable lesson.

You need to get second opinions all the time and keep looking for things to help you.

The only part that is not that great in terms of migraines is my insurance.  They don’t like the medicine the doctor prescribed for me.  They want me to  take a more common migraine medicine.  I have taken it before.  It didn’t help with the migraines and made me sick to my stomach.

I am only allowed four pills every seven days.  My copay is over $200.00 US for the four pills. A few weeks ago, I had horrible migraines.  I had to take pills each day for 4 days in a row.  I called on the 5th day to get a refill.  Unfortunately, I was denied.  I could only hope the migraine did not return the following day or later in the week.  I tried to call the insurance company to ask them to grant refills on a need basis.  They refused.  They told me to try the old medicine that made me sick to my stomach.  I told them that I could not use it.  They said it comes in a nasal spray and that won’t irritate my stomach. Honestly, what idiots.

No matter what I asked they would not budge. My doctor could not provide me with any help either.  He gave me some coupons etc but according to my pharmacy I cannot use them with my insurance.  Not the frustration I need.  I figure I am getting more migraines due to my son’s  issues.  They are not going to let up any time soon.  Meanwhile, I have decided that if it ever comes up that I have no refills and a migraine I will go to the emergency room.  Let insurance pay for that.

Have you ever had trouble with prescriptions? Insurance?  Let us know below.

 

Self · Uncategorized

A few words…

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I was clicking through Pinterest and came across this quote.  It was by a character on the television show “Grey’s Anatomy.”  To be honest, I’ve never seen the show.  I’ve never even had an interest in seeing the show but this quote really spoke to me.  I hope it speaks to you too.

There is this person

inside my head. She’s brilliant,

capable, she’s me.

Only so much better! And I’m afraid

I’ll never become that person.

-Meredith Gray, character on Grey’s Anatomy

 

Family · Home · Self

What to Bring on a Flight.

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Air travel has become a common occurrence.  There are more of us spending entire days on airplanes as we travel from one state to another.  Even today, going from one country to another is becoming more and more common. As home on the road becomes the norm what is it you need to have in your bag to make the journey better? Check out my list and see what you need.

1. Decent Headphones.  I am partial to Beats myself.  I like the fact that they also block outside noise really well.

2. Small notebook and pen. I know a lot of people say you can keep notes on your I-Phone but there is something about writing things down for me.  I keep a small journal so that is my go to for all things written.

3. Sweater.  A lot of people say bring a scarf.  I like something a bit more substantial and softer.  It helps me to relax more.

4. A neck pillow.  Yes, you really need one.  I think neck pillows are one of the greatest inventions of modern man! Not kidding.  I have injured my neck and back before over long vacations.  Now I always have a neck pillow.  If I forget it, I buy one.  I need it that much.

5. Important numbers and documents. Again, you would think modern technology would replace the written piece of paper but it doesn’t. Devices can be stolen, you can lose your charge and then what do you do?

6. Refillable water container. So many airports and other travel hubs have a drinking fountain that allows you to fill your water bottle right there. Save money and the planet at the same time.

7. Snacks.  Who wants to pay $3.00 for a candy bar? Not this woman!  Enough said.

8. Medication.  Take both prescription and over the counter meds on with you. Take your prescription in case you cannot get a refill where you are. OTC meds should also be taken.  We all have our favorite brands. On vacation is not the time to try new brands that you are unfamiliar with.

9. Reading Materials. Sort of self explanatory right?

10. Hand wipes and lotion.  Who wants to wait in that long line for the bathroom to wash their hands?

11. Tissues. Something you don’t want to be caught without.

12. Chapstick.  Planes can be very dry places.  A little chapstick can make you feel a lot better.

13. Hair brush.  This one could be considered optional.  It depends on your hair.  They make really small compact ones that don’t take up a lot of space.  Look in your travel section of your big box retailer.

14. Emery Board. This to me is one of the most important things besides the neck pillow. I hate it when my nail gets caught on fabric. I drives me nuts! It’s something that can become a preoccupation unless it is dealt with.

What things are on your must have list for travel?