Saturday, July 13, 2013

Blog Closing - please visit my other one

I'm going to be closing down this blog. I'm guessing most of you already visit Motherhood Moment (and if you don't, you should). As you can see, I'm bad about posting here, and all of it would be suitable for the other blog anyway. I just don't have the energy to promote this one like I promoted the other one and built it up. I will be sure to start including more mindful parenting and green living tips again over at Motherhood Moment!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Mindful Parenting: Explaining Tragedy

Traumatic events like the crash of Asiana Flight 214 can be difficult for any child to comprehend, and explaining these tragedies to young children can be a daunting task for parents. 
Dr. Prakash Masand, CEO of Global Medical Education (GME), an online medical education resource that provides timely, unbiased, evidence-based medical education and advice, and a faculty member of the Department of Psychiatry at the Columbia University Medical Center in New York, says while these conversations can be difficult, they are necessary for the mental health and well- being of your children.
His advice to make it easier for parents:
·         Ask questions and be supportive – Never assume your child fully understands tragic events.  Children have wild imaginations and have a hard time sorting their emotions out during a tragedy.  Ask direct questions like, “what are you feeling” and “what’s bothering you” to fully understand what’s going through their mind. Never ridicule or make fun of a child’s feelings and always offer support.
·         Encourage children to express feelings – This can be done through talking, drawing, playing or whatever means makes the child more comfortable.
·         Honesty pays – explain to your children that although a plane crash is rare, unfortunately it does happen from time to time.  Put it into perspective for your child by showing them just how many planes take off and land safely everyday around the world, and explain to them that pilots and flight crews undergo extensive amounts of training.
·         Remain calm – Children love to mimic the behaviors of their parents. The way adults react to events is often the way the child perceives and reacts to the event so try and stay calm.
·         Maintain a child’s routine – After a traumatic event, stick to your child’s normal routine.  Go to sleep and wake up at the same time, eat meals at the same time, and engage in every activity you usually do.  Ignoring a child’s routine after tragedy will make him or her feel more anxious.
·         Reinforce a sense of security - Over the next few days, spend a little extra time with your child to reinforce feelings of safety and security.
·         Recognize a real phobia vs. a simple fear – Most children are afraid of one thing or another and most of them outgrow these simple fears.  When a child has a real phobia, you want to look for signs of obsessive behaviors and thoughts, avoidance behaviors, recurring dreams/nightmares and being unable to become excited about something that should be fun.  This is when parents should consider professional help.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Saving Green: Target Cartwheel

Target Cartwheel is Target's version of e-coupons. You sign up and add coupons to your account. Then the cashier scans your phone and the savings are applied. They have a ton of different coupons right now, including some for natural/organic products:
Archer Farms organic products - maple syrup, fruit snacks, spices/seasonings, soup
Wolfgang Puck organic soup
Method laundry detergent

Mindful Parenting: Traveling, I and My Kids

Juvenile delinquency—one of the biggest problems that the society is facing nowadays and this is primarily because of the lack of guidance and the failure of most families to spend quality time together. With that being said, I have just the solution for you—go out on a family vacation! Surely, this is one of the most fun antidotes to any sickening societal diseases these days. Not only will you relieve your stress from everyday work, but you would also be able to promote familial bonding.
Nevertheless, traveling with children may be difficult and stressful, especially if you don’t apply certain measures that can make your traveling experience happy and productive.
·       The Needs vs. the Wants: Unlike when you were single, you need to consider the needs of your partner and your children whenever you’re packing for a vacation. Also, you must keep baggage restrictions in mind if you are going to ride by plane.
Therefore, you need to travel light. Remember that the lighter your luggage is, the more convenient and bicep-friendly your trip will be. Also, instead of folding, roll your clothes as tightly as you can. This will consume less of the space in your bag and will guarantee you clothes free from those unwanted creases from folding.

·       Facing the What If’s: You’d never know what might happen, so even if you are sure that you are going to supervise your kids the best way you can, there is no way you can watch over them 24/7. It is best that you orient your kids on what they should do in case they become lost. Also, always leave a contact card on the pockets or bag of your children.

·       Be Interactive: The goal of your travel is to spend quality time with your whole family, and not to sleep all day and bore your children in the cabin. Now, the best thing for you to do as a parent is plan activities ahead of time. Aside from booking reservations in hotels, try to look for tourist spots which will enable you and your kids to bond together the most enjoyable way. Often times, there are packages that include multiple activities for both adults and children, especially in areas where tourists usually flock.

·       The Power of Museums: Way back, museums are regarded as the most boring place you could ever be, but thanks to the modern technology and to public funds, of course, both children and adults are given the chance to learn in the most interactive way. Anyway, spending 1 hour or so in a museum would never hurt.

·       Do Chores Together: There is no better way of spending quality time together than doing chores while on a campsite. Setting up a tent and grilling burger patties and marshmallows together in the beachside is truly an exciting prospect for you and your kids.

·       Bring Home Souvenirs: Even though you have promised yourself not to buy any souvenir, the tendency is that your children would always want to buy something in memory of your wonderful trip. Aside from the dozen of pictures you’d bring home, it is always better for you to save space on your baggage for any possible item you might bring home.

About the Author:
Janella Giselle Domingo is a travel ambassador and blogger from Jurnii's Rv Rentals.They offer cruise from sydney and other services. Aside from blogging, she is also currently employed as a Chief Pharmacist at Wesleyan University Hospital and Cardiovascular Center.Despite of her busy schedule as a Chief Pharmacist, she never forgets to indulge in her wanderlust. Connect with her at facebook or drop a line at

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Soul Sustenance: Stress Relief

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of the book 5 Minutes to Stress Relief as a thank-you for this post.

I recently had the chance to interview Lauren E. Miller who wrote a very helpful blog on how we can have a significant impact on our stress levels with just a few minutes at a time. I enjoyed reading the book and loved the variety of tips presented. You can read my full review here. You can also enjoy what she has to say in the interview:

1.     What impact does stress have on our relationships and our health?
When you’re stressed out you are mucking around in the primal brain, which activates the fight, flight, and freeze mode. When this happens you severely compromise your ability to access quick solution based thinking, attention and flexibility located in the mid to back part of the brain. Relationships require flexibility and attention. If you are stressed out and worried about different aspects of your life then the spontaneous expressions of love and playfulness, which create levity and joy in relationships, is severely compromised. In terms of the impact of stress on our health, a 20-year landmark study out of the University of London discovered that unmanaged reactions to stress were more of a contributing factor to heart disease and cancer than cigarette smoking and high cholesterol foods. Let's face it; worry, fear and doubt wreak havoc on our emotional, physical and spiritual wellbeing. I know this first hand as I was diagnosed with advanced cancer one week prior to my final divorce court date.
2.     What are some common sources of stress that we can avoid?
Stress is very unique to each individual. Each of us carries around our own stress triggers: those circumstances and responses from life that create a negative emotional flare-up. Stress has three main fuels: fear, worry and doubt.
·      Fear around what will people think? How is this going to turn out? Will I be able to handle this? Am I enough? Capable? Worthy? Each of these wonderings gives the serpent of fear permission to have it’s way within our thought life and the result is anxiety, trepidation and shrinking back from our God given ability to feel the fear and go for it anyway. 
·      The serpent of worry keeps us up at night fueling us with an unhealthy wondering: “I need to know how this will turn out in order to feel safe and confidant.”
·      Doubt has to do with your belief around your worth and value in this world.  The less self-worth or belief in your God given gifts, talents and abilities the more vulnerable you become to the serpent of doubt, strangling the confidence right out of you.
Awareness and flexibility are key ingredients for more peace in life. Rather than trying to avoid the triggers, become aware of them, look them straight in the eye and say, “I see you for what you are and I choose to resurrect my God given natural state of being: peace and confidence, easily and consistently.” 
3.  How can 5 minutes really help in terms of stress relief? 
It has to if it’s going to work in a high demand life. Let's face it, when you are stressed out the last thing you want to do is sit down and study stress management. When you’re worried, fearful or doubting, you need something quick that works. If you can’t apply a stress relief tip or technique under 5 minutes you will probably lean into familiar reactive behavior. When you implement a technique that instantly addresses the biology and belief behind your stressed out reaction in the midst of a highly emotionally charged situation, you have the ability to shift back to solution based thinking on the spot and back to a place of flexibility and confidence: “oh that’s right, I’ve been stressed like that before and moved through it successfully so I am willing to believe I can do it again.”

4.     Did you already have stress relief tools that helped you deal with your stressful situation: going through advanced cancer and divorce at the same time? 
Yes. I had been studying stress relief, anxiety management along with mind, body, soul inner balance for 18 years prior to the cancer diagnosis and divorce that occurred in 2006. I looked at going through 2 of life’s top stressors at the same time as my PhD training in suffering (emotionally, physically and spiritually) which gave me the opportunity to practice what I had been teaching and learning about the majority of my life. The greatest teachers in this world are those who are consistent students, who teach not from the high palaces of the world but from down in the trenches. I believe God gave me the grace to move through this experience so that I can connect to the hearts of humanity through my own vulnerability thereby opening the doors to an authentic transfer of skills, techniques and tips for inner faith, motivation, confidence, peace and solution based thinking. I am never left empty handed of good material from my own journey to share with the world. I will often say this prayer of gratitude, “Thank you God for never leaving me empty handed when it comes to having valuable material from my own journey that can lighten up, inspire and empower the lives of those people you have entrusted to my care.” No need to shrink back from the experience of vulnerability in life for it creates instant heart to heart connection and respect.

Want More from the Author? Check Out Lauren E Making Life Style Stress Solutions Easy for You.

Lauren E Miller is a world renowned stress relief expert, award winning international bestselling author/speaker and founder of Stress Solutions receiving national recognition in Redbook, Ladies Home Journal, Family Circle, CNBC, MSNBC, Lifetime and Discovery along with the International Journal of Healing and Care. With 18 years of intensive extended education in the areas of anxiety relief and stress reduction, Lauren equips men and women worldwide with the skill-sets to step into personal excellence and inner peace. Lauren is a certified Master NLP Practitioner and holds her Advanced Training Certificate in EFT, two energy psychology modalities that lead to profound inner transformation.  She has conquered two top life stressors at the same time: advanced cancer and divorce. Her 4th best-selling book: 5 Minutes to Stress Relief was released by Career Press/New Page Books Spring 2013.