Is It Possible To Have Too Much Summer?

It it possible to have too much summer? In my opinion NEVERRRRRR!
Especially since I deal with seasonal affective disorder(SAD) every year.

As much as I want to ignore the facts, I have to admit, I think our summer has officially ended. Last week it got immensely cooler, leaves are falling everywhere, and I am feeling the need to make some changes to adjust to the season.

I have started adding soups back into our meal rotation. I love soup all year long but make it rarely if ever during the summer months. Now is when I find we spend more time indoors and my creativity in the kitchen runs wild.

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Another big change I typically make during this time of year is by adding flannel sheets and an extra blanket to our bed. Is there anything worse than crawling into a cold bed at the end of a log day? No there is not! Although, this year we finally decided to make a purchase we have debated for awhile. We bought a down comforter for our bed and let me be the first to say……I LOVE IT so far. It’s so warm, yet light weight, and most importantly, not too hot for my husband to sleep comfortably also. My hope is that maybe we can get by this winter without the need for flannel sheets. Time will tell.

Talking about heat and warmth…..I sort of have this obsession every year to make it to the same date on the calendar that I do every other year before feeling the need to turn our furnace on. I know, odd, but it’s always a goal for some reason. Last year we caved finally on Oct. 21…..we’ll see this year how long we can last without heat. (HINT: Baking in the morning always helps reach this goal)

As the darkness creeps in earlier every night I have been finding myself actually going to bed super earlier than normal. I am not a night owl as it is but 7:30 p.m. is somewhat too early. After dinner we typically get in some sort of exercise and then it’s pretty much bed time for me. I battle this all winter and something I have found that passes time quickly and keeps my mind from dreading the season so much is jigsaw puzzles. There has been talk of digging them out and getting one started, but so far I have held back from taking this step. I just don’t know for how long I can continue to avoid it.

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Last year I was advised by my doctor to try Vitamin D for my SAD symptoms. I finally did and have to admit, I did notice that taking it did lighten the depressed mood I feel for months. I plan to start this in the next week or so, to get a good start on it before we change our clocks and it’s practically dark before I am even done working. This is when my seasonal depression really affects me the most.

And last but not least, I bought my first Christmas gift a few days ago. I am not a last minute shopper simply because I can’t tolerate the crowds. I am a list maker and I stick to it. I write down who we all need gifts for, make a budget, and write an idea for each person on this list. This makes Christmas shopping so easy. There is no wandering around aimlessly with no idea what I am looking for. It’s in,out, and done!

Do you struggle with winter?

What have you found to help you get through it?

How does your lifestyle change during the winter months?

 

 

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Monthly Health Challenge: October 2015

Three more months to go before we again start a new year….can you believe it? As September comes to an end and we being October you sure can feel the cool, crispness in the air. Which for me means walking outside is coming to an end. My husband and I used to walk outside year round, in snow, on ice, and in freezing temperatures. That all ended about three years ago when I had a bad fall and needless to say, it was not my first fall outside during one of our winter walks. (I am not a good ice walker and WI has a lot of ice) After this we now rarely will walk outside after the first few snow falls. It’s just too risky and stressful for me. Which brings this months health challenge to be one of the most important ones of the entire year in my opinion.

October Health Challenge Is: Walk outside 1 mile 5x’s a week.

This is not a lot to ask. Your body will thank you for the exercise and the fresh air. And almost anyone can walk one mile without much effort. So this is the minimum I want you to try and walk….if you feel like you can walk further, by all means go ahead.

Good Luck!

Join Us In Participating In The 52 Hike Challenge

You all know winter is not my favorite time of year…..it’s cold, dreary, snow covered, and just plain miserable here in WI. Now, I know some individuals love winter as it brings skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, ice fishing and so on……however, I am not one of those individuals that enjoys these activities. So recently I was searching for something to keep me motivated through the winter months and came across this very awesome challenge.

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52 Hike Challenge was created by a couple whom, for each their own reasons, felt the need to inspire others to get out and be active. Which just so happens to be my goal of blogging, since I also found happiness after I figured out that good vibes come from being active. So I signed us up after researching the challenge and have already started logging hikes we take in our area. I have no doubt we will accomplish this goal of 52 hikes in one year. I think this is exactly the motivation my body and mind need to get out in the winter months and be active.

Take a look and read over their website. It was easy to sign up, fun to read where others have hiked, and maybe, just maybe we will meet some new people that also enjoy the outdoors as much as we do.

Weekend Snapshots: Getting Away From It All

What I wouldn’t do for a trail or mountain to climb right about now…..just to get away from it all for a little while.

Our weekend actually started Friday morning when both my husband and I took off to accompany my inlaws to a medical procedure. It turned out after a full day of waiting, praying, and hoping for the best that it was not meant to be. The results we received were hard to hear and process and then we were all sent home to wait. That meant a weekend to try and process the feelings, thoughts, and fears that are ahead of us all. And we all know where I do this best…..on a trail, far back in the remote wilderness which was not possible since I needed to be the support my husband needed.

Sadly, I have no pictures this time of any new trails, bluffs or even a flowing river. All I did this weekend is make a list of Fall chores that needs to be done before the first snowfall. I did accomplish cleaning and treating our kayaking gear and storing it all away for winter.

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Together we escaped for a few short hours to do some fishing which is what my husband finds relaxing in stressful times.

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And since we were so close to his favorite blackberry spot we stopped to pick a few to snack on while driving back home.

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All in all I would say we had a good weekend…..considering.

Did you do anything fun this weekend?

Where do you go or what do you do to process bad news?

 

 

Hello Daylight!

Let’s all do the happy dance. You know, it’s like kids who do the potty dance. They jump around, hold their crotch, and dance until you notice. Then they wait for you to tell them to go potty. (I never understood this concept since they already know they have to go)

OK, so maybe not exactly like the potty dance, but hey who cares, just jump around and dance. WE HAVE AN EXTRA HOUR OF DAYLIGHT!!!! HURRRRRRRAY!

Nothing, I mean nothing can take me down from this happy place today. I count the days until daylight saving time which to me means I officially survived another Wisconsin winter.

Get out the tents, find our paddles, put the car rack on the roof, take stock of the freeze dried meals, dust off my sandals, take the flannel sheets off the beds(ok maybe not yet), put the screens back on all the windows, dust off the kayaking helmets, find the bug spray, take stock of the sunscreen, put the snow blower away, dig out the outdoor play toys and strollers, store the fishing ice shack, wash & pack away all the gloves, scarves and hats……OMG I gotta go, I have so much to do:)

 

 

 

A Weeks Worth Of Seen It/Heard It

Heard It: While traveling this week I heard on the radio that Green Bay is the #9 coldest city in the U.S. My first thought was, no way!!! Well, after doing some research I found that they are correct. One more reason to add to my long list of why we need to move south asap!!!!

Seen It: I follow a couple different blogs out there in blog land and was happily surprised when I read this post one morning. This person made of list of the best things she has done in her life so far. The one entry that made me smile was that she deleted her Facebook page. While I agree, Facebook can be a great way to keep in touch, I feel that many, many people use Facebook for some awful ,uncalled for, ridiculous reasons. I was very happy to see that this made her list of one of the best things she has did in her life so far. In my opinion, more people should consider this decision

Heard It: I am sure you have all heard that the Green Bay Packers are headed to Seattle this weekend to try and get a shot at the Super Bowl this year. Who hasn’t??? That is not what took me by surprise. What did is the price that these tickets are being sold for. All I can say is, do you know what fun me and my entire family could do with that kind of money for quite a long time in a very beautiful place? Just think about that for a moment…..you could have this same fun with your family and it would last more than just three hours (typical time of a NFL football game)!!!!

Seen It: I took the garbage out this week and on my way back into the garage I happen to look up and see my paddle board hanging on the wall:-( What I wouldn’t give for a quick paddle on a calm lake with the sun shining right now.

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Heard It: I heard from one of our guide’s this week for our trip. Everything is set and ready to go. I am pretty excited.

Seen It and Heard It: While at the gym Wednesday night I happen to glance up at one of the televisions and saw a story about two guys making a record breaking climb on Yosemite’s Dawn Wall. Apparently, this climb took a awhile and I was not even aware it was happening until it was accomplished. (I am a busy person and social media rates very low on my list of things to do) Anyhow, I was amazed, proud, and simply inspired by these two men. Such a courageous yet rewarding thing to do in one’s lifetime.

 

Keeping Healthy During The Holidays

Keeping healthy during the holidays is really not as hard as you may think. It is far from impossible.

Do you know the average weight gain is 5lbs. from Thanksgiving to New Year’s? That just blows my mind. Yes, we all have parties to attend, stress, work, family issues, and so on to worry about during this time. However, none of these things should effect how you gain or loose weight during the holidays. Or at least not anymore than any other day of the year. I have heard many people say that the holidays is a time to cheat and enjoy themselves. I will agree with “enjoy” not “cheat”. Please enjoy this time of year but why cheat and end up not enjoying the outcome later on.

Whether you are the host, hostess, or the guest at someone’s home here are a few pointers that I think you may find helpful.

  • Show support to family and friends. If you know your family member or friend is watching what they eat please don’t say something like,”Oh just this once won’t hurt, try it.” They are well aware what they want to eat/drink to maintain any success they may have already experienced in their healthy journey. Do not sabotage this by telling them it’s ok. Let them make that decision for themself.
  • Start a new tradition. For instance, after Christmas dinner and before opening gifts go for a family walk in the neighborhood and enjoy the light displays. Or have everyone with kids in the family bring sleds and go sledding, or make snowmen in the yard. Plan an active activity to do as a family. Our family went snowshoeing Christmas Day last year and had the best time.
  • Keep alcoholic beverages to a minimum. The holidays should not be about whom can drink the most to be the merriest.
  • Assign a dish to bring. When someone asks if they can bring a dish to pass, speak up. By having a mental or written list of healthier dishes, you can easily pick one off the list and give them what they asked for. If you leave it up to them, their healthy and your healthy can be completely different.
  • Always bring a dish. This is the only way you can be guaranteed there will be something you can eat that will fit into your healthier eating plan.
  • Substitute healthier alternatives in recipes. Most people will never know that you used low fat cream cheese (among many other things) if you don’t tell them.
  • Exercise throughout the holidays. Don’t laugh….you can find the time. I have already researched the holiday hours of our gym and have a plan. You can too!

These are just a few suggestions. I am not saying have no fun, don’t drink, and stop eating. I am just saying that keeping healthy during the holidays is completely possible if you want it to be.

Do you have any to add to my list? I would love to hear your suggestions.