10 Little Things that Lead to a Happier, Healthier You

Thursday, April 29, 2010

When trying to improve your personal health and happiness, sometimes big steps, like starting a new diet or exercise plan, can feel overwhelming and daunting. This spring season, we’re celebrating the little things we can do that add up to make a huge difference in bettering ourselves and our health, wellness and happiness!

TwitterMoms and Tropicana Trop50 have teamed up to bring you a "Spring Renewal" blogging program, asking for the "10 Little Things that Lead to a Happier, Healthier You."

This is a topic that I could spend forever on because it's something toward which I've spent working the last couple of years.

These are the 10 things I do for a healthier, happier ME:

  1. Choose Food Wisely:  Sometimes we don't even realize it until we change it, but diet plays a big part in our happiness as well as our health.
  2. Sleep:  This can be a tough one, especially for Moms, but getting a minimum of 8 hours of sleep each night allows the body to "reset."  And resetting is something we all NEED!
  3. Nix Negativity:  Other people and situations can bring you down too.  I found that by eliminating negative people and situations that were causing me stress (where possible) did a lot for improving my mood.  And since we know that stress often presents itself with physical symptoms, 86'ing the negativity factors can also improve overall health.
  4. Sunshine:  Whether it's spending time in direct sunlight or throwing open the curtains to let it in, sunshine is an AWESOME happy stimulator.
  5. Exercise:  I personally prefer Zumba and Wii Fit for exercising, but no matter how you choose, exercise not only burns calories but produces endorphins that are proven to improve our moods.
  6. Get Your Groove On:  Okay, so maybe it goes hand in hand with exercising, but have you ever just listened to a song and began feeling more upbeat?  When I'm feeling a little down, I'm prone to put on Kenny Chesney Live and let go!
  7. Talk it Out:  The more reserved probably won't find this helpful, but I've personally found just spending fifteen minutes "letting it all hang out" goes a long way for destressing.  I talk to my husband, my best friend, or - yes, I admit it - I even talk to myself.  :)
  8. Cleanliness is Next to Godliness:  Clutter and dirt can affect mood as well as health.  While I'm not a cleaning fanatic like my mother - gotta love her, after 20 years her house looks like it's never been lived in...lol - I do try to get clutter to a minimum, dust, sweep, vacuum, mop, and keep the bathrooms clean.  And I feel so much better when those things are done.
  9. Have a Little Faith:  Knowing we're not alone in times of struggle, feeling as though there is something greater than us, has been shown to promote both healthiness and happiness.
  10. All Work and No Play Makes You a Very Dull Person, Indeed:  As Moms, are lives are constant go-go-go, centered around the children.  And that's great, but sometimes we all need a little "Me Time."  I find a little time each day to read, watch a sitcom, or just do nothing.  Just a few minutes in a day to do something I want to do can give me that second wind needed to get through the rest of the day.  Try it!
That's my tips for creating a healthier, happier me.  What's yours?

I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Tropicana Trop50 blogging program to be eligible to win 6 free Juicy Rewards points and a $30 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Sign up the Tropicana Juicy Rewards Program and use coupon code TWMOM-READR (worth one Juicy Rewards point – that’s up to $5 in savings) free prizes and super discounts!

This one-time use code is valid for new accounts ONLY. Must be entered within 6 hours of creating your account. Limit one new account bonus code per new account. All accounts must be created and all codes entered by May 7, 2010 at 11:59 PM EST.



“Not in My Yard” Blog: The Gloves Come Off as Havahart® Launches New Nuisance Animal Control Blog

This is a sponsored guest post written by Theresa Flavin on behalf of Havahart. Post powered by Sponzai.

 Ahh, spring: The season of new life, new beginnings and, for many, utter frustration as a host of furry critters help themselves to our tender springtime blooms. It’s a near-universal problem for home gardeners, so Havahart® (http://www.havahart.com/) has launched the new Not in My Yard blog (http://www.notinmyyard.com/), where you can contribute posts, interact with other gardeners and get expert advice on taking your yard back from hungry wildlife.

Not in My Yard blog focuses on total yard protection through trapping and repelling animals humanely but effectively with Havahart products. Do you have a helpful or interesting experience protecting your yard and garden from the onslaught of hungry raiders? Submit it to Not in My Yard blog and let others know what worked. Top contributors are listed on the blog, so the more guest posts you submit, the better chance you have of seeing your name in lights. Chances are, there will be other Not in My Yard blog regulars with pest control problems similar to yours -- and even other gardeners from your region. You can choose to show only their posts so you don’t miss the tips most relevant to your situation.

If posting on blogs isn’t your thing, Not in My Yard blog is the perfect place to learn about total yard protection. Expert and guest bloggers discuss controlling wild (and not-so-wild) animals of all types, including chipmunks, deer, dogs, feral cats, groundhogs, rabbits, raccoons, rodents, skunks and squirrels. You’ll learn about live trapping and using non-toxic, organic repellents to keep wildlife from viewing your yard as a trendy neighborhood eatery. You’ll enjoy interesting -- and frequently humorous -- stories about wildlife in other gardeners’ yards. And perhaps most importantly, you’ll see you’re not alone in your fight to protect your landscaping or garden.

Not in My Yard blog also features the live Havahart Twitter feed with helpful tips and promotional discounts on total yard protection products. You can subscribe to the RSS feed or submit your e-mail address for live updates whenever a new post is added to the blog.

“We’re excited to launch Not in My Yard blog,” said Havahart marketing associate Theresa Flavin. “This is the blog for everyone who has ever watched their tulips become rabbit food, lost their hostas to deer or wished the neighborhood skunks would find a different path to walk every night. We enjoy hearing the lively, fun and informative stories submitted by home gardeners just as much as the Not in My Yard blog readers do!”

Want to become an active part of Not in My Yard blog? Visit http://www.notinmyyard.com/ and join the conversation. Learn more about Havahart’s humane traps and repellents at http://www.havahart.com/. And this spring, watch what Havahart total yard protection products can do to keep your home and garden beautiful.


Speechless on Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Find more Wordless Wednesday at http://www.5minutesformom.com/


Free iTunes Download from BBC Earth

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Beginning April 12 and running through April 26, 2010, BBC Earth is offering Planet Earth’s first episode for free instant download on iTunes.

This jaw-dropping, 11-part series from the BBC’s Natural History Unit presents the epic story of life on Earth.

Series producer Alastair Fothergill and his team spent four years in production, over 2000 days in the field, using 71 cameramen filming across 204 locations in 62 countries to capture the ultimate portrait of our planet.

It has garnered legions of fans and universal critical acclaim with Oprah Magazine saying “It is the most beautiful, wondrous and truly majestic series - the best thing I’ve ever seen on TV.”


I Know I Am Mean but What Are You?

Have you ever had one of those days where you wake up and say "Screw It!"  Well, that's where I'm at today.

Somebody on Facebook had the audicity to bring up healthcare again today.  Making the mistake of defending Obamacare.  And, since it's my "off" day, I can't even conjure up a good snarky reply.

And speaking of Facebook, ever noticed how that's like a bad trip back to high school?  For the most part, I enjoy it but some people still have a lot of growing up to do.

On the topic of growing up...my oldest is now 18 and somehow he's convinced that this age is the magical age where suddenly you no longer need parental guidance.

I explained to him that while the law says he may be old enough to smoke cigarettes and join the military, he's not old enough to do as he pleases while living IN MY HOME.   When  I invited him to get his own place where he pays his own bills and could set his own rules, he suddenly realized that parental guidance can come in the form of parental (financial) support.

Which then leads me to thoughts of stupid people who think you're also stupid.  Of course, in their minds, they aren't stupid just think you are.

But they get so peeved when you point out their stupidity to them.  And I love it when they follow up with how you're not Christian like because your judgmental and crap. 

Seriously?  You're backed into a corner BY YOUR OWN STUPIDITY and that's when you decided to come out swinging Jesus?

I'm starting to think I'm a little too mean today.  And that would make me one of those Mean Girl Mom Bloggers that's been making the news lately.  

Somehow there is a misconception that Mom equates to Nice.  Now I'm not sure who raised them, but that word could not always be associated with my mother.   Don't get me wrong, she's a wonderful person but, when I was young, her first job was to make sure I grew up to be a decent human being which meant beating the devil out of me when I did something wrong.

It worked, but I sure didn't see it as Nice.

But in this panty-waisted society we're living in now, you gotta be a June Cleaver.  You can't have a bad day or you're a "Mean Girl."

Ugh, I'm going back into my cave where no one expects me to play  nice.


Got Random Tuesday Thoughts?  Share them at The Unmom!


Spring Cleaning 2010: Go Green with Seventh Generation (Review and Giveaway)

Monday, April 12, 2010

I have to admit that Spring is the time that my house gets its best cleaning.  (Hey, I have four kids so cut me some slack!)

This year Seventh Generation got me motivated me with a free sample kit - by way of My Blog Spark's wonderful people - containing their enviromentally friendly Lemongrass and Thyme scented cleaning products; including the Multi-Surface Cleaner, Bathroom Cleaning, and Disinfecting Wipes.   Plus I also received their 100% Recycled Paper Towels.

This is where my second confession comes in....

Only recently have I started making efforts to "Go Green."  While I don't believe in Global Warming, I do believe that we should be kinder to our World and eliminate as much waste as possible.

So what better way to add to my efforts that also going green with my spring cleaning?

Not only did I find products that are naturally safe, but they clean JUST AS WELL AS the harsh chemical-based ones.

The disinfectants contain thymol, a component of the herb thyme, and can be used on hard surfaces including counter tops, plastic cutting boards, highchair trays as well as children´s toys. Best of all, they kill over 99.99 percent of germs naturally and are effective against the Influenza A Virus, including H1N1. Okay, so you're sold on the "green" aspect, right?  But what about the price, you ask. 

That's the best part...Seventh Generation products are competitive in price to other cleaning supplies.   And you can always find a variety of money-saving coupons at the Seventh Generation website!

GIVEAWAY!  Seventh Generation and My Blog Spark is offering one lucky reader of The Mom Trap a sample kit just like I received!  Here's what you need to do to enter:

  • Leave a comment here telling me what "Green" thing your family does (i.e., recycling, clothesline drying)
Want to increase your chances of winning with extra entries?  (Leave a comment for each additional entry; i.e. 2 extra entries = 2 comments)
  • Become a Seventh Generation Facebook Fan at www.facebook.com/SeventhGeneration (1 extra entry. Already follow? That counts too!)
  • Become a Facebook Fan of The Mom Trap at www.facebook.com/themomtrap (1 extra entry. Current followers also receive extra entry.)
  • Follow The Mom Trap with Google Friend Connect. (1 extra entry. Current followers included.)
  • Follow The Mom Trap on Twitter (1 extra entry. Current followers included.)
  • Tweet this giveaway for 5 extra entries. (Include the Tweet status URL in your comment.)
  • Blog about this giveaway for 5 extra entries. (Be sure to include the URL of your post in your comment)
The Fine Print:  Contest ends at 11:59:59 PM Central Time on Monday, April 19, 2010. Winner will be chosen by random number generator. Must be 18 years or older to enter. Open to U.S. and territories residents only. Winner will be announced here and notified via email on Tuesday, April 20, and will have 48 hours to claim their prize or an alternate winner will be chosen.


Earn Cash Back On Online Purchases with Market America Cashback Program

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Readers of The Mom Trap know that I am a money-saving fanatic.  Where there is money to be saved, I. Am. On. It!

Well, now I have found another way to save money on most of my online purchase:  Market America.

Market America costs NOTHING to join and allows you to earn unlimited cash back from your purchases.  With over 3,000 partner stores, offering over 35 million products, it's like you Get Paid To Shop.

Members of Market America can earn 2 percent back on Market America branded products plus those from partner stores where the MA Cashback Logo is displayed.

And, here's the best part, you can earn 1/2 percent on referral purchases!  Market America offers a selection of links, banners, and widgets to help you promote and earn EVEN MORE cash for your pocket!  Being that Market America's program is available in 5 countries, that's A LOT of earning potential!

There's no reason not shop Market America. Not only will you earn cash back, but your purchases are delivered right to your door! 

Save money.  Earn money.  No hassle. 

How much better could it get?

Be sure to stay on top of special deals from MA through their Facebook Fan Page and Twitter.


Nonmowing Neighbors. Curtain Climbers. Spring.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Well, it's time for some random thinking again...and, boy, am I in the mood for that today!

My neighbor is FINALLY getting his yard mowed.  Now that may not seem like a big deal to anyone; but for the last several summers, this guy has let his yard grow so much that it entices the likes of field mice and snakes.
Not cool in a neighborhood full of children.  And really not cool when you're the person living RIGHT. NEXT. DOOR.

And in this neighborhood of obsessive lawn mowers,  not mowing your yard is sinful.

I think we may have cause for celebration today!

Princess A has went straight from walking and running into climbing.  Oh holy crap!  It seems as if I'm constantly pulling her out of something. 

At the end of the day when Daddy gets home, I ready to call it a day.  Do you know how uncool it is to want to turn in at 4 o'clock in the evening?

Well, I think it's cool but my teens have advised me that it's not.  According to them, it officially makes me an OLD FART.

On a more positive note...I'm really loving this warm weather.  SPRING ROCKS!  Of course, this means that I'm spending more time out doors, with the hot sun beating down on me because Princess A just can't get enough.  That, does NOT rock.

Hoping I've been random enough for you today.  Easy to have scattered, random thoughts when there is a 14-month-old getting sleepy and demanding attention. 

And yet here I am still typing away.  I'm such a good mother.

Happy RTT everyone!


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