summer fun with kids

action beach boy child

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As many of you know I have written a book call Frugal Seeds  Summer Edition:  101 Ways to Enjoy Summer with Your Kids for Little Money.

This is can be read FREE at Amazon with KindleUnlimited or you can purchase the e-book for 99 cents.

From my family to yours……….wishing you a summer filled with blessed memories.

“Summer time is the best of what might be.” ~ Charles Bowden

 

frugal seeds

 

 

person holding a green plant

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The title of my blog gives away the fact that I live with at least one chronic illness.  Now, I don’t want to brag, but I actually live with several, and as interesting as it sounds, it is not a whole lot of fun.  Unfortunately I am not the only one in my family who lives with such a burden.  Every person in my immediate family lives with at least one chronic illness.

As a result of all of our medical bills, we have learned to live on a tight budget.  Over the years I have had to learn to be frugal and about 6 months ago I decided to put some of  my frugal ways into a book,  Frugal Seeds: 501 Ways to Make, Save or Stretch a Dollar.  It is now available in both paperback and e-book on Amazon.  The entire book can be read for FREE with an Amazon Kindle Unlimited membership.

You will notice it is written under a pen name.  This has been done as I working on additional books and I am determined to keep the lives of my children private.  Thank you for understanding.

 

 

Pampering yourself on a budget.

bank banking black and white budget

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Hey superheros!  How long has it been since you have done something nice for yourself?  Living with a constant sickness is super duper hard and it is a must for our mental, physical and spiritual health to take extra special care ourselves every now and then.  Since most of us are on budgets, it is helpful to find things that can be done for little to no money and doesn’t require a lot of energy!

I have listed some activities below……….you will notice that watching movies or taking a nap are NOT included!

 

A cup of hot herbal tea or a tall glass of iced tea and a fun book (no books on medical stuff allowed!)

A facial at home……….it could be as simple as washing your face and putting cucumbers or tea bags on your eyes

A manicure and/or pedicure at home

An epsom salt bath w/a few drops of essential oil such as lavendar

A foot soak in dead sea salts

Deep condition your hair – if you don’t have deep conditioner just use regular conditioner and leave it your hair for a half hour.  Wrap your head in a towel to keep the moisture in.

Call, FaceTime, or SKYPE a supportive friend you haven’t spoken to in a long time

Create a vision board with uplifting and encouraging sayings and pictures and hang it where you will see it often

Take a walk outdoors

If you have the energy, drive to a local park and take a walk in the woods – research has shown the forest to have a healing affect on the body

Bake or cook a special healthy treat for yourself (it’s OK to share).

Grab your journal and write 25 positive things about you and your life.  I know you can do it!

Make a healthful smoothie.  My favorite combination is:  blueberries, apple, avocado, hemp seeds, celery, cucumber, greens and homemade almond milk.

Weather permitting go sit outside and meditate.

Sit outside in the sun for 15 minutes, soak up the rays to get an extra boost of vitamin D.

If you have a significant other, set-up a date night at home…….exchange massages, play a board game, enjoy a good meal at a table or in bed with candles.  If you don’t have the energy to cook, get take-out.  Don’t forget to use a coupon!

Go to the library and look for new media to bring home to enjoy.

Bring some nature inside……….buy a cheap boutique of flowers or better yet pick some wild flowers or cut some flowers from your yard.  A little beauty goes a long way for someone who spends a lot of time inside.

 

Until next time…………..YOU are a superhero and even superheros need to pamper themselves!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

bedside table

bed bedroom blanket clean

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You are probably thinking, why on Earth would you write about a bedside table?  Well, it came to me yesterday as I was tidying up my side of the bedroom and trying to fit all my “necessities” on the little table next to my side of the bed.  It was at that moment I realized that a functional bedside table is a necessity for everyone with CI.  How could I not have thought about this before?  My goodness, I have always had trouble trying to fit everything onto that tiny surface.

I know everyone with CI will have a different list of what is important for him/her to have next to the bed, but I have always had a pretty consistent list of must haves:  journals, a devotional, a lamp, lotion, lip balm, tissues, bottle of water, a supplement or three, my current read and note cards and pens for making lists/taking notes/writing a card to a friend/family member.  And all of that stuff takes up a lot of space.

There is little that is more frustrating than feeling terrible and needing something from the table, and as you reach for it, it and maybe several other things fall to the floor because the table is so crowded with guests.  As for me, it usually stays there with the hopes that it really wasn’t that important.

At the moment my table is just that, a small plant stand.  It is a nice one, solid wood, Amish-made, sturdy, but oh my goodness, it is small and only has the one surface.  So, I have made it my mission to find something else within the house to use as a gathering place for my goodies.  My dream is to purchase something out of the IKEA catalog but that isn’t going to happen anytime soon, but hey, those of us with CI are all very good at making due.  We live a make due life day-in and day-out.

So, here are to things that make our lives just a bit easier, no matter how insignificant it may seem to others.

 

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Out with the old, so you can let in the new.

brown and grey leather sofa with throw pillows

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I believe, with my whole heart, that the most important thing a person with CI can do (besides taking great care of yourself) is to reduce clutter in your life.  I know this is a wildly popular topic – one that is covered everywhere from blogs, YouTube channels, books and magazines dedicated specifically for the purpose to teaching people how or the reasons to declutter.

Early on in my diagnoses I realized I needed to jump on this simplifying/decluttering bandwagon if I was going to be able to navigate the CI life with any success.  But getting to a more simple life (or as simple as it can be in this world) has been an ongoing process and one that put me on a quest to accomplish this goal.

I searched on-line and in bookstores for reading material spurred on with the hope that I would read THE  passage that would enable me to create my new living space.  Numerous books and many reading hours later, I attempted different cleaning and decluttering approaches and was ultimately frustrated with the end results.  I quickly learned no book I had read (I realized there could be some out there and I just haven’t found them yet) touches on how difficult it is to declutter when you are chronically ill.  Decluttering is a monumental and exhausting task, even if your home wouldn’t make it on an episode of Hoarders or Buried Alive – because let’s be honest…….that is a whole other issue.

The most important point is that you have to want to declutter your home.  Despite all the benefits to having less stuff around:  more visually pleasing living space which creates less stress and less stress is important for all of us with CI; cleaner air because of the reduction of  dust;  you will know what you have which can save you money and we all need more of that to pay for our ridiculous endless medical bills; easier to get to what you need therefore using less energy finding/retrieving items; less guilt looking at unorganized and cluttered spaces……….really the list could go on and on.  But first you must really want to take on this task because it is an enormous undertaking requiring patience, persistence, dedication, introspection and – the big one – the ability to let go of the past.

Letting go of the past is a hard one for most of us.  We never imagined our life would turn out this way……….we were so energetic, full of life, bursting with goals and dreams and our living space reflected that – filled with things that we use to be able to enjoy but now they have become a constant reminder of what is not to be.  Letting go of these things can be very difficult as we tend to see this purging as giving up and giving in to the stark reality we don’t want to accept.  Instead of focusing on my past, I had to force myself to instead view my decluttering episodes as events to make room for my future.  Was this easy, hell no,  and it still isn’t.  But living in the past only holds you back from what could be.

Until next time………………

p.s.  Don’t forget YOU are a superhero!

 

Is chronic illness simple?

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Oh my goodness NO!  Actually not just no, but hell NO!  So why in the world would I give this blog such a title?

Before I started this blog, I struggled to give it a name because once you name something it becomes real and reality can be harsh.

It has taken me years and years to accept the fact that I am chronically ill.  Just typing out that sentence makes me sick to my stomach, I don’t want this to be real, not for me and not for you.  I am tired of feeling the need to explain myself regarding why I can’t do certain things, for having to cancel outings at the last minute, for not being able to live my life the way I planned it all out in my head many years ago.  Chronic illness has taken so much away from me and I hate it, I hate the whole stupid thing and I want it to all go away and leave me alone.  Alas, that wan’t to be and I had to suck down a whole bunch of reality and accept the fact that I am simply put, chronically ill.

After I accepted the fact that I am chronically ill, I realized that I  needed to structure my life as simply as possible in the not-so-fun areas of cooking, cleaning, laundry, errands,  finances and the ability to say no, so I just may have enough energy to add some fun things into my life.  Along the way I have learned, many times the hard way, some tips that have helped me save some of that precious energy and I wanted to share it with anyone who is also struggling.  Maybe I can help just one person get a little more out of life and I know all of you have amazing tips to share too.

I know we all feel alone, but in reality there are so many of us who struggle daily with these dreaded chronic illnesses. Just remind yourself that we are not our illnesses, we are warriors and warriors simply change the world.

Until next time……………..YOU are a superhero!