Monday, January 16, 2012

Fighting the Winter Blues (SAD)

*Before I start I am asking that any advice that I give, check with your doctor before starting any herbal remedy or exercise program. 

There are things that I love about winter and things that I hate. When you live in the midwest, you have to deal with lots of dreary days and days without sunlight. There can be literally weeks without seeing the sun and only seeing light behind the clouds. It is especially bad where I live.  Every year since I have remembered, except when I lived in Florida for a few years, I have had to deal with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) and I hate it.  This is what I used to do.. ignore the fact that I was getting more and more depressed and anxious and by the time March comes around I am about ready to jump out of my skin or cry at the drop of a hat. I hate it.  I have tried medicine which really doesn't work that well and I usually have to go tanning for a couple of weeks in the winter. I don't like to tan b/c I know that it is bad, this year I am trying something different.

Please share this link to my post those of you who know someone who suffers from SAD.  Here are some things that I am doing differently to try to get through this winter...

1. First of all, make sure that you are not deficient in any vitamins. I do take a few vitamins (with my multivitamin)  b/c my diet (no dairy, no gluten, no eggs, no red meat, etc) makes it hard for me to get some vitamins without having to eat all veggies. I also take Omega-3 fatty acids which is so important in dealing with any sort of depression or anxiety. Make sure that you are getting enough from your foods or consider taking a supplement.

2. As you may or may know, the sun helps the body make Vitamin D. If you aren't getting enough in your diet during the winter months, this can definitely affect you.Obviously without sun exposure you may not be producing enough Vitamin D.  I know I wasn't getting enough Vitamin D in my diet so I added a supplement. Talk to your doctor if you need a supplement or not.

3.  My doctor advised me to get full spectrum light bulbs.  They are not tanning lights, but they produce light that has certain desirable qualities that make it similar to natural sunlight. Like natural daylight, full spectrum light bulbs produce light that is seen by the human eye in a bluish-white tint. The brightness value of the light is similar to that of daylight, and the bulbs have excellent color rendering capability.  I bought both full spectrum light bulbs and a lamp for my craft room from this site.

4.  I am trying to go for a walk at least once a week on the brightest day of the week.. if it's not freezing. Plan ahead and look at the forecast for your area. If there are any days that might be at all sunny and not freezing, try to take a half hour walk. I find it really nice to get outside for a bit and enjoy the sun on my face!!

5. Try prayer/meditation. It is so important to try not to focus on the depression and anxiety you might be feeling. You can do this with prayer and meditation. I do meditative prayer which is where I listen to relaxing music and pray to God to help me. It helps so much!

6. If none of these things help, do seek medical advice. Trying different medications can help for some people. DON'T wait until it gets really bad.. just go :)

I hope this helps someone fight the winter blues. Please keep me updated if you are fighting this as well.


Monday, January 9, 2012

2012 Ongoing Goals (not resolutions)

Hi there, I know that this post is a week overdue but I thought now was a good time to post it! I don't like doing resolutions.. I know that they are usually temporary for me.  I almost never completely follow through with them. That is why this year I am doing ongoing goals for 2012. Ya know, things that you are doing now and want to keep doing well :) . Do any of you feel this way? Just keep doing the good things and if new opportunities or goals come up take them on as well!!

Here is a list of my ongoing goals in no specific order...
1. Continue to teach my son social skills and help him grow and develop. You may or may not know my son is diagnosed with mild Autism.
2. Keep on reading the Old Testament. I am currently about ready to start 1 Chronicals and sometime this year I will finish my goal of reading the entire Old Testament of the Bible.
3. Play games like we have been the past couple of weeks! We love to play games and it has been amazing to play games so much.
4. Keep my eating very good with mostly all natural, organic foods and all water (or herbal tea and coffee).  Stay off of my allergens: gluten, dairy, eggs, beef, lamb, mustard, pineapple, and a couple of beans.
5. Do something super fun almost every Saturday..I love when we take day trips :)
6. Keep the house as clean as I have been.
7. Continue to spend quality time with just Kevin :)
8.  Keep my relationship growing in God.
9.  Continue taking day walks at least once a week even when it's cold.. and it will get cold soon!!!
10.  Keep on blogging!

So tell me, what are your ongoing goals?


Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 in Review

Hi all since I never updated my blog for the past year :blush: here are some of the highlights and not so highlights from 2011..
1. The beginning of the year Kevin was still recovering from his shattered wrist that he got falling on while playing soccer. He had to have a plate put in his arm. Luckily that healed completely!
2.  The winter was never ending but we tried to take advantage of it sledding a few times.. here is a winter photo to share!

3. Sean turned 9 on March 27. It was a great birthday and he had a bowling party!
4.  The spring came around and Sean enjoyed finishing up 3rd grade.  He was overjoyed when summer came around. He went to a bowling camp for a week and a water camp which he LOVED!!
5. In June we had to put our Great Dane to sleep due to her bad hips. We were all heartbroken :(

6.  We spent the summer going on little trips when I was feeling ok. My last post tells about how I wasn't feeling good for a lot of 2011.  We all went to the children's museum, Ann Arbor, MI, Toledo Zoo, Detroit Zoo, Frankenmuth, MI, the Michigan Renaissance Festival, and the county fair. We also spent a ton of the summer at the pool.
7. In July we headed to Chicago to help my mom out after my dad got a double knee replacement surgery.  While we were there Sean and Kevin went to Legoland. My dad is doing well with his knees now.

8. Sean started school back in 4th grade!! I still can't believe I have a 4th grader!
9. We got a new dog in early September. His name is Olliver (Ollie) and he is our Whippet puppy. He is so sweet, loving, and fast!!!

10.  As fall came around we thoroughly enjoyed all of the fun things to do in fall like apple picking, picking out our pumpkins, and looking at the fall colors change! Sean dressed up as Thor for Halloween.

11. Thanksgiving was fun, my parents and sister and her family came to celebrate the holiday with us! :)
12. We spent a quiet Christmas here in town with my parents. It was nice to go to our church Christmas Eve and celebrate with a candlelight service!

That is about it for 2011..