Life, Motherhood

Don’t Forget to Take Care of You, Too!

It’s been over a week since my last post; its been too long, I know. However it has been much needed I was reading a post over on Quirky Workin’ Mom’s about putting yourself in timeout from the world of social media and other toxic areas in your life. Taking a timeout and giving yourself a time to relax, reboot, & get things done! I wanted to just take a few days off to begin with but then another day got added then another, it was quite nice to take that time off!
I was able to have family time with my husband who was off work for the last couple of weeks due to switching to a new job, which he started on Monday. I spent more time with my boys even though they were never in one place for more than a couple of minutes, enjoyed me giving a little extra time to them anyways. And finally I found time for myself! After weeks of rolling through this season of sickness, stress, anxiety, & all the rest of 2020 I needed some sort of me time.
It should have been a no brainer to start taking care of me but when you are a mom who takes care of kids, the house, most of the bills, the car, the cooking, the cleaning, remembering trash day, taking kids to school or doctors appointments (most online), making sure the animals get fed/watered, and so much more it can be so easy to forget to take care of well YOU!
To combat the sort of funk I have fallen into I have started a new diet that really is more of a healthier eating style controlling portion sizes and replacing a lot of unhealthy choices with better ones. When the days are nicer I opt to walk to the bus stop to pick up my oldest rather than take the car & even get in some extra walking before sometimes if its a really nice day. I usually will have my almost 9 month old with me so weather needs to be baby friendly to go for a walk outside. If a walk outside isn’t possible that day I will do my best to get inside chores done; cleaning the house mostly. Getting up and moving around helps out a lot with moods and how you are feeling.
I think that a lot of people have been in a funk lately with COVID and just 2020 in general. Giving myself time to get more things done and also take a break has been a nice change to my normal day of chaos. I will admit I have been so used to not posting it would have been easier to continue that but I enjoy writing too much to give it up so soon! I will also admit I have been battling against the faceless enemy of anxiety & depression that come to visit me from time to time. Taking time for myself has also been a great way to help with those feelings as well.
I guess the moral of the story I am writing to you about is that every person at some point needs to give themselves time that is reserved just for them and them ONLY! If you are always taking time for everyone else in your life giving your self and time to person after person you are going to get worn out physically & mentally. You need to STOP and smell the roses or rather take that deep breath and evaluate what it is that you need instead of what everyone else is needing. You may not be able to take a whole lot of time but a little bit of time for yourself goes a long way! It gives you a chance to relax and unwind. You just need to figure out what YOU time looks like for you & your needs!
There’s still going to be time for all of the others in your life who need you but only if you give yourself a break once in a while! Don’t be afraid to pamper yourself a little more and find that special time for you and YOU only!

Thanks for reading, don’t forget to drop a like below and follow my blog to stay up to date on future blog posts. While you are here check out some of my other POSTS.

Life, Meal Time

Add a Twist to Your Holiday Feast with Raddish Kids

Every year as the holiday arrive so do the guests and those guests usually want food and holiday treats of all sorts. Depending on your traditions that could be a lot of food and that takes a lot of time to prepare and then get it all done. The whole ordeal is very overwhelming speaking from my own personal experience. This years festivities may be a bit different but you still have to eat! Why not give your self a bit of a break this year; let someone else cook for you or with you perhaps. Invite Raddish Kids in for the holiday season as a great way to hand down a family tradition of cooking fun meals for the holidays while giving you a bit of a break from some of the cooking. If your kids are like mine who actually want to help mom or dad out in the kitchen then give Raddish Kids a chance to help make memories this holiday season.
Their monthly box full of fun unique recipes and kitchen activities is a great way to celebrate the holidays and pass down fun traditions along the way to future generations! Not every meal has to be cooked by just you the head chef in the household whoever I may be talking to, you know who you are! Tis the season to give around my area; giving my kids more lessons in the kitchen on how to cook during the holidays is a great way to prepare them for a day when they can do it all themselves. I mean a mom can dream can’t she? Maybe it’s just wishful thinking to not have to be the main cook in our household and that someday the time and effort I as a parent invested in my kids to learn new skills including how to cook food properly will not have been for nothing.

In case you missed my previous posts about Raddish Kids and who they are check out this link right HERE (Raddish Kids Review) to learn more about them. For now I will quickly brush up on them as I introduce one of Raddish Kids upcoming boxes for this holiday season that you should definitely see for yourself!

Raddish Kids

Raddish Kids is a monthly subscription cooking kit box for kids. It ships out every month with a different theme for each box. Each kit comes with: 3 Recipe Cards, A Quality Kitchen Tool, A Creative Kitchen Project, Monthly Collectibles, 3 Culinary Skill Lessons, & A Complete Grocery List. Also check out their website for a Fun Bonus each month with Bonus Bites! There are tons of options to add on at checkout especially if you have multiple children who want to participate. The per month rate starts at $24 per kit plus taxes & if you opted to add on for siblings. You can check out all of the different rates on there site which tend to end up saving you money depending on what frequency you choose from ( monthly, every 6 months, or every 12 months).

November 2020 Theme Sneak Peek

A sneak peek at November 2020’s kit has a fun theme based around a traditional holiday celebrated mainly in the US “Thanksgiving“. Let “Gourmet Gobble” take over for your Thanksgiving Feast or maybe as a special meal that will be sure to make fun memories to remember. Perhaps a new tradition all together! Put a twist on a traditional holiday meal with:

  • Thanksgiving Vegetable Trio; taking traditional veggie sides and transforming them into something new, fun, & best of all delicious!
  • Baked Mac & Cheese; giving an upgrade to a classic holiday side.
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars; up the competition on the desert game with a fun new desert that is sure to be a keeper for years to come.

Sound like a fun family tradition?
Be sure to purchase your kit by November 20th 2020 to receive this fun cooking kit that will be sure to make a lasting impression on your guests stomachs that will have them begging for the recipes! Raddish Kids; whisking together memories one recipe at a time!

Thanks for reading and checking out Raddish Kids! Drop a like below and follow my blog to stay up to date on new posts!

Life, Motherhood

Anxiety Has Many Faces

Anxiety is nothing new by far. It just lingers around waiting for its moment to shine. It hangs over my head for its chance to jump in and take hold of my life. It has many faces, none of which are the same as the other. Ironically it wears different masks hiding its true identity. Lately I like many others have experienced anxiety. Where does anxiety lurk and hide? Well it is practically invisible and attacks when least expected. For me my anxiety it sneaks up when I am trying to get to sleep and feel nothing but worry about my infant child at night especially or worry about things that are not likely to happen but what if always hangs stalling. I used to be able to just go to sleep so easily and never really had this much of an issue with insomnia until now. My anxiety is an old friend who I thought I had left behind in this race of life of what ending is unknown.

Anxiety is not discriminatory it doesn’t care who you are or where you come from it happens to everyone even if you don’t meet face to face. Anxiety has many friends that often tag along to join in on the fun that it has with all of the emotions that a person gives out into the world. Some days I feel like I am on display for all of these different types of anxiety to pick on and have at. A free for all and it tries on all of its different masks on me. Trying to find the best fit. I feel helpless and stuck.

Who are anxiety’s friends, have I met them?

I am no stranger to those groupies who follow anxiety wherever it may go. They revel in the spot light and will make sure to fill in the gaps of a person’s emotions to better fit there agendas. Anxiety often travels with depression, stress, suicidal thoughts, the feelings of feeling less than, worry, panic, anger, and sadness. Most of which I have experienced first hand and don’t wish those feeling upon anyone. If you do find yourself masked with anxiety or one of its many other masks know that you are not alone. Alone is what they intend to make you feel like they want to self isolate you so that you feel like nothing can make things better and that you will just be stuck forever. When a person is alone it makes the process of cutting that person down and making them feel less than until they actually believe it in their own minds a reality. Anxiety and it’s other masked friends brainwash you they set in worry little by little creating a fear that paralyzes a person it beats that person down to a new level where they feel a variety of feelings all meant to cause a person to feel like they are not themselves and are losing their minds little by little until they do.

What does anxiety look like?

Anxiety and it’s cloaked friends live in the shadows of our minds and only come out to play with our emotions when they see fit. We all have a different way to show that we are going through anxiety or it’s other cloaked friends the infection isn’t always going to look the same for all the different types of people in the world. My anxiety, depression, worry, fear, less than feelings, & stress are different than yours. My anxiety makes it hard for me to sleep but other times I may have a hard time enjoying the stuff I want to enjoy like time for myself. Depression for me is silent usually I don’t cause a ruckus and there is no kicking and screaming it just eats away at me in silent lunges. I get beaten down in my mind and as the sadness takes over the tears pool into a puddle inside and out I feel worthless but no one would know it as I always put on that smile. A half cranked smile forced and at the ready to put on a show for the world because they don’t need to feel what I feel. I am too stubborn I don’t need any help out of this place I’m trapped in it’s not so bad once you get used to it. My feelings aren’t worth being cared about by anyone else but me they are after all my burdens to bare. They weigh me down and as I feel chained down to the ground hunching me over breaking my strength little by little I somehow must still stand tall as if nothing has changed because my pain is invisible. To the outside world it doesn’t exist. To me it exists they all exist they all wear their different masks. Stress lately has had me stretched out to the limit I can feel it’s toll that it has taken on my body. Reminds me of the medieval times the torture devices that stretch the body to its literal breaking point is how I feel sometimes with my stress. The feeling of less than will set in next as if the anxious worry and fear wasn’t enough nor was the depression induced sadness. Then put some stress on the woman… surely that’s enough right? Wrong because anxiety has many faces and so does the rest!

How can you make it better? Is it even possible to feel normal again?

Even though most days feel never ending and that the mask i am wearing the mask that has auctioned itself to me is never coming off it somehow does. Anxiety and all that follows it have that end goal of isolation to make their victims feel alone; I aim to make sure I am not alone even if most of the time I am not physically alone. I have to make sure that I talk to someone anyone who will listen. Talking helps so much more than your mind will let you think that it does. You have to push yourself to escape that box you are in even if it doesn’t seem possible. All that the cloaked box holds is sadness and loneliness. It is a lie. If you let it control you with out fighting you might end up in a real life or death type of situation that can be fatal for you or even others who try to intervene at that point. I’m not saying it is easy because it is far from easy you are literally fighting yourself. Your mind, to be more specific . You are fighting a brain that thinks and plots and twists everything in order to win then on top of that you are attempting to win using can you take a guess what you are using? Your brain! The same one you are fighting against to win what seems to be an unbeatable enemy. It’s okay to ask for help because it is hard but doable. Ask for help, talk to someone! People may not talk to you because they cannot see what is happening to you the feeling you are feeling is invisible on the outside sometimes. When I feel like I am sliding down into a place where I don’t think it is possible to get back out of I know I need to talk to someone I need to get it all out and expel those emotions. I have gotten down to my breaking point to the actual point where I break, what happened? I sank and just kept sinking down further from the surface and that’s exactly what it felt like. It felt like drowning in my mind; eating wasn’t important at that point, talking wasn’t necessary, doing anything was pointless, because why was it worth it. How did I escape my waterless prison in the depths of my mind? I made a choice that I could either die at some point what would have been a horrible way to go, I could be sent to some sort of mental institution and live what was left of my life I gave up on, or I could fight back little by little and piece myself back together. I chose to try again because I believed that there was more to my life that I needed to experience still. Now I’m here sharing it with you. I make it a point not to get to that point ever again; I push myself and reach out to someone anyone who will listen.

Don’t let those masks those cloaked downers get ahold of you forever. They will come and eventually go if you continue to fight back!

Adventure, Life

Talk About It Tuesday: Are You Prepared For Winter?

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Winter is coming! No really, in my little Iowa town we received our first snow of the season Sunday night early Monday morning. It’s time to have put all of your summer gear to rest for the season if you haven’t already done so. If you live in the Midwest winter is on its way if it hasn’t already started in your area like it has in mine. Some key things you need to do here in Iowa to prepare for winter are your basic winter preps like: putting the hose away; storing the lawn mower/winterizing it or any other summer time equipment you use; picking up the yard to make sure there are no toys sitting out in the yard to get buried under a blanket of icy snow; get your snow shovels/snow removal tools at the ready making sure they are in working condition; bring out the winter coats & snow gear; get your vehicles ready for winter; & lastly make sure you have your sidewalk salt or whatever you use ready to go! I am sure there is a lot more I am skipping over but those are the top ones on my mind at the moment.

Seeing to how this year has not been kind nor gentle on anyone person in the entire world somehow I don’t feel like this will be a gentle winter like last years was here in Iowa. Winter has opened the door and is still coming; it has only just begun and I fear it will not get much better. Last winter in my area compared to the year prior was a very light winter the winter before left quite a lot of areas around mine devastated when spring came as the thaw was just horrible and flooded a huge majority of the Midwest ruining crops, land, & livestock not to mention peoples lives in general. Then when you’d think it couldn’t get worse it did because 2020 came out of no where in the crap department. Last year was a party compared to how this one is currently going and may continue to go if this winter is heavy, cold, & frigid.

In my mind there’s not a lot that can be done besides preparing the best that we can for what may be headed this way ahead. I will ask the question again; Are you prepared for winter?

If you are great; but if your not no problem I figured I could at least run through some of the above winterizing in detail and perhaps a few more things that could/should be done just in case during the winter months.

5 Ways to Prepare For Winter

#1 Prepare Your Yard/Outside Area

Photo by Anon on

Let’s start from the outside looking inside with your yard/property. For my house which may or may not be similar to yours but will talk about some main things to think about when preparing for winter out there. By now your gardens should have been tucked in for the winter or at least everything that would have needed to have been planted before it snowed should have been done quite a while ago. Now is not the ideal time to plant anything out doors at least where I live; if it happens to still be planting time for fall & winter lasting plants like some garlic varieties you should get right on that because time is almost up if you are in a wintery area that often see’s a cold snow or worse. On the topic of gardening; any tools that you had used for gardening or raking leaves may not do you any good buried under a blanket of snow at least it doesn’t do me any good. It is best to put them all away for the winter out of the way until springs arrives. Instead of gardening tools, rakes, or shovels used for moving dirt around you will need a snow shovel and other winter equipment so best to make the swap for those tools most used in the winter months now rather than later! Most people don’t mow the snow instead use a snow blower to push snow away from driveways and sidewalks. It is time to tuck the mower in for the winter perhaps in a nice warm garage or shed; if for some reason you are like me and do not have either I encourage you to improvise a little bit. I usually wrap a big tarp around my mower to keep the weather off of it. You can even add in a bungie cable to make for a better wrap that stays in place. I then will find a spot close to the house that can be both out of the way and under the porch area for security. If you own a pool or other things with water in them like hot tubs or small garden water features you should drain the water out of those to prepare them for freezing temperatures. Hoses should be disconnected from spigots, wound up to put into storage after draining, & spray nozzles should be put away as well. If you have lawn furniture/outdoor furniture or even outdoor toys make sure you get the furniture put away if possible or covered up to protect them. Toys & bikes should be put away as well or even covered with tarps to keep them in good shape as snow may cause them to rust or fall apart due to moisture. If you are a griller it would be best to have a safe place for grilling closer to the house if you plan on grilling during the winter or just in a good level place where the elements won’t be a problem for you or your house while cooking this winter. Once the yard is in tip top shape I would evaluate it one more time just to make sure you don’t need to do something else to prepare for the winter months; then finally don’t forget to stock up on some outdoor ice melt/salt for keeping walk ways safe.

#2 Prepare Your House

Photo by Ksenia Chernaya on

The outside yard should all be in order but what about the inside? If there is any kind of doubt in your head that something inside your house is not working correctly or even working the best that it can work you might want to consider having it checked out especially before those winter months come knocking on your door! Last year our heater stopped working mid winter and luckily for us it was something that was fixable then not to mention cheap otherwise things could have turned out a lot worse than they did. It was our first winter in our new house that we had just bought in April and buying a brand new heating system for our house was not on the list. It happens though and that is why it is important to keep things up meaning making sure regular maintenance is done on those items. When things like your air filter needs changed change it when something stops working get it checked right away by someone who knows what they are doing rather than taking a guess or trying to do things on the cheap. You might end up paying big money later on by not taking care of them the right way the first time around. If you have an entirely different heater rather than one that runs on electricity/gas you will need to run through your own checklist to make sure all things are running correctly and it has been cleaned up. Wood burning heaters need to be cleaned because of ash build up in the chimney or in the furnace itself. On top of checking up on your heat source for your home to make sure everything is in order no matter what kind of heater you are dealing with it is also a good idea to check windows and doors to make sure that there are no drafts coming in through cracks to keep the heat in and the cold out. If you run into a problem you can always find a solution with the help of the internet that may lead you to fix it your self if it is simple enough or get help from a professional.

#3 Prepare Your Pantry

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A well stocked pantry is a necessity all the time not just in the winter time however with the possibility of being snowed inside in my area of good ole Iowa I tend to make sure it is well stocked for sure during colder months. I would also like to add that since it is the year 2020 I wouldn’t want to take a chance on another unprepared catastrophe as we all learned that lesson months ago. I have been in the process of expanding my pantry for my family because of recent events little by little. A good stocked pantry should give you enough food to last your family of whatever number for at least 3 months or longer depending on the level of readiness you have prepared for. You should start to aim for 3 months at first then head for that 6 month goal and so on. My families pantry is mainly a rotating pantry but I am also storing food for the long term use as well. While most items I am stocking up on are food & drinks I am also pushing to stock up on other household essentials such as toiletries, soaps, & medical items. A good food to think about stocking up on is canned food as they have a longer shelf life than other boxed foods or maybe even can your own foods that is if you can find canning equipment as they are harder to find this year more than ever. I will link my past posts that touch up on stocking up a pantry that I have written on my blog with in the past months. Look for those links below this paragraph shortly. Having a well stocked food pantry for your family is important no matter the season but especially winter time and especially now! Long Term Storage: Food and Everything Else. Get Prepared!

#4 Prepare Your Family

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Winter here in Iowa can get really cold with freezing temperatures & icy snowy conditions. If there was ever an emergency due to an accident, the power ever goes off due to a snow storm, or what if something else happens that needs to be talked over; your family should have a talk about what to do in different scenarios. You need a plan! My husband & I have three little boys to watch over so we need to be able to give them instructions on what they should do incase of different emergencies/winter events occurring. Make sure you practice what to do incase your kids would need to call “911” if something happened that required it. And also make sure they know when it would be necessary and when it’s not. Of course they need to know how to call on a phone or get to a neighbors house if they cannot get it to work for some reason. In the event of your car sliding off the road due to ice or snow a talk with kids should be set a side just for what should they do in the event that such a thing should happen, especially if mom or dad were injured. It is important to make sure your family is prepared for anything & everything including sickness.

While I am on the topic of preparing your family I think that making sure that you and your family is prepared for those sicky days that come with the cold and the icky weather. It is important to prepare for everything. When you go out to get food for your house or pantry be sure to take a little extra if possible to stock up on basic necessities for those icky sick days as well. I mean how will you get through winter if everyone gets sick and with nothing to help relieve some of those icky symptoms or make them better?!

A big thing that is needed to prepare for winter for anyone in my area or any place that it is cold is to have nice warm winter coats , hats, gloves, snowsuits, scarves, & boots! Making sure my family and I are prepared for winter with all of the necessities for keeping warm in the snow and cold is another top priority!

#5 Prepare Your Vehicle

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As I mentioned above about preparing your family for winter and all types of scenarios if such a scenario involving a vehicle occurred how well would you be prepared in your vehicle? Is it stocked up for such an event? Ever since I was little growing up in this state I have been taught over & over to make sure I am prepared in the event that my car goes off into a ditch or even having car trouble on the side of the roadway in the cold. I always make sure to have some very important items in my vehicle just incase such as:

  • Warm Blankets– to help you keep warm. If your car were to ever get stuck in a snow drift you should turn your vehicle off due to gas fumes that can back up into the car causing carbon monoxide poisoning if your not aware of it happening. If your in that situation it would be tempting to leave the vehicle on but what if the tail pipe is blocked. Until you know that it isn’t blocked you should be safe than sorry. Snuggle up with some warm blankets & who ever is in your car.
  • Snacks– just in case your ever in a situation where you are stranded it is a good idea to keep some snacks in the car just in case. I would keep sodas in your car due to them exploding but instead bottled water might be better.
  • Matches/Lighter-just in case because you never know when a fire source away from your vehicle of course may come in handy for warmth or alerting someone for help.
  • Scissors/Sharp Knife– safely kept in a lock box would be the best spot somewhere within reach incase your seatbelt ever becomes a trap and you or someone else becomes stuck in one. Also you never know what other uses you can use it for.
  • Extra Coats/Gloves/Boots/Socks– pack extra clothes for you and any kids you may have in the car with you. Any extra layer will help keep you warm in an event you are in a cold car in an emergency or something.
  • Hand Warmers– fairly cheap hand or food warming packs that heat up when activated will help warm you up in an emergency.
  • First Aid Kit– One big necessity is a first aid kit with a variety of items for medical emergencies that can’t simply be fixed or can’t wait until emergency vehicles to arrive.
  • Cat Litter/Ice Melt– something to give your vehicle some traction in the event you become stuck on an icy patch. You can pour some litter or ice melt by your tires for much needed traction and you might just avoid having to call for help.
  • Ice Scraper– to clear your windshields from ice or snow.
  • Anti-Freeze/Wiper Fluid– it’s pretty hard to clear your windshield to see out of if you don’t have some sort of wiper fluid for your vehicle.
  • Flashlight/Reflective Item– in case you need to flag another vehicle down in the dark. Also Something reflective will keep you visible to other vehicles.

Are you prepared for winter 2020?
Do you live in an area where it gets cold or snows?
What are your winters like?
How do you prepare for winters?
Have any other tips?

Let me know below in the comments and maybe I wasn’t clear on some feel free to ask in the comments as well I have done my best to write this while juggling three boys one who is sick. Thanks for reading along! Drop a like below and follow my blog too to stay in the loop when a future post is posted. Follow me on social media. Stay tuned for more posts coming soon!