Tag Archives: chronic illness

Energy!

11 Mar

Chronic illness cat

 

Chronic illness cat, you speak the truth.

Gentle hugs,

Chels

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Productivity is relative.

4 Feb

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Gentle hugs,

Chels

Here’s to rest.

28 Dec

Naps.

Wishing you all a restful weekend.

Gentle hugs,

Chels

Yoga and meditation for chronic illness.

17 Dec

Now, first let me say that I’m trying very hard to practice what I’m preaching, here.  I started doing yoga when I was about 12, as I was starting to recover from years of illness, and started doing it regularly as a Junior in high school. I took yoga in college, and have continued to do it on a semi-regular basis since. Needless to say, there are days that I can’t even imagine doing Savasana (Corpse Pose, or the resting period at the end of your practice,) whether it be from lack of energy, pain, or weakness.

A few days ago, though, I was reminded of the possibilities of yoga poses by this article from SparkPeople:

 

Nearly every pose out there can be modified for just about any limitation. Seated poses are great, especially if you work in an office environment, or another environment where you don’t get to stand up and move around much. (Be sure to go to the next pages in the article for specific instruction on seated poses.)

Another thing about yoga is that it regulates your breathing, and causes you to have to focus on your body alone. There’s plenty of quiet time as you’re trying to keep your balance in Tree Pose, or as you’re trying to be aware of your core while pulling your sacrum upward as you pull your heels down to the floor in Downward Facing Dog.

I also came across this link to Yoga Nidra, or Yogic Sleep, which is what many people experience at the end of each practice with Corpse Pose. This goes a step further, adding guided meditation to the experience. It’s said that one hour of yogic sleep is equivalent to three hours of “regular” sleep.

Yogic Sleep - 1 hour is as restorative as 3 hours of sleep.  The perfect thing for over-worked moms!

 

Click on the photo for free recordings to use during your meditative practice. I surprised myself by staying in a meditative state for the majority of the 45 minute recording I chose to listen to. I’ve meditated before, but often no more than 15 minutes or so. It helps with the fibro fog and anxiety by calming my brain and helping me focus. I also sleep much better afterward.

Do you practice yoga or meditation for your health? What’s your favorite pose or mantra?

Gentle hugs,

Chels

Enough.

16 Dec

My friend Susan says: Anyone with Chronic Illness has guilt over things not done, meals not cooked, laundry waiting downstairs....Write down everything you do during a day. Even getting out of bed. It is all accomplishments.

Gentle hugs,

Chelsea

An awesome giveaway with a twist!

15 Jun

My style has always been a little off-kilter, and I love dramatic and humorous touches to an outfit. That’s one of the reasons I love Peach Plum Pear. My new friend, Leslie, is the mastermind behind pieces like the Oregon Trail necklace:

SALE - You Have Died of Dysentery - Gold Wagon and Tombstone Oregon Trail Charm Necklace

 

I can’t count how many times I died of dysentery on that game …

She also makes some really beautiful jewelry, like this Art Nouveau statement necklace:

Frenchy Lux-  Art Nouveau French Ornate Floral Statement Necklace with Vintage Medallion, Aqua Blue Rhinestone Jewel, and Bird Charm

Isn’t it lovely?

What’s that you say?

You must see more?

Well, you were probably lured in by the title of this post, so I’ll get right to it.

Head on over to Coco and Cocoa’s blog for her $40 gift card giveaway to Peach Plum Pear!

If you don’t win the giveaway, or if you just can’t wait for someone else to snag your favorite piece, do not passgo:

 

Now, for the twist. By entering and sharing the giveaway, you not only get a chance to wear one of Leslie’s unique creations, but you’ll also be contributing to a great cause. Leslie is a member of the chronic health issue club, who’s been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and other illnesses, as well as adhesions. Adhesions are really painful sheets of scar tissue that can bind nerves and other tissue, in her case, part of her digestive tract, together. Adhesions act like a glue that can cause severe pain, obstruction, and other debilitating symptoms. To learn more about them, go here. Unfortunately, the type of surgery Leslie needs to relieve her of those terrible symptoms is only available in Germany, so she’s raising money for the trip and procedure by selling her awesome jewelry. So, please pass the giveaway and shop info along, and help Leslie reach her goal – she has $19,399.00 left to go! (To donate directly to Leslie, visit her Go Fund Me page.)

Gentle hugs,

Chels

How to move like a boss (with chronic illness.)

15 May

The apartment is a little crazy right now, with some things in boxes, and some things being sorted out for donations. While I’m in moving mode, I thought I’d share some tips to make moving cheaper and easier for you, especially if you have chronic health issues.

Start packing in advance. Rather than waiting until the day of, or even a couple of days before, your move, start packing things as far in advance as possible. Pack a little bit at a time, beginning with decorative things, or things you rarely use. Pack up your kitchen with the exception of a couple of plates, cups, and necessary utensils, that you can use for the next few weeks. (You may even realize that you don’t need all of those plates and cups, anyway.) Starting several weeks before you move means that there will be nothing to do but move boxes on the big day, and it means that if you have a flare or an especially bad pain day close to the move, you won’t have the stress of trying to get everything done while you feel awful.

Donate, donate, donate. You will find, as you start packing early, that there are some things you forgot you even had. As you pack, designate a few trash bags or boxes for donations to your local Goodwill, church, or mission. This year, our donations are going to a friend who’s organizing a yard sale fundraiser for her friend’s son who was recently diagnosed with leukemia. If you’re unable to take your donations to the charity of your choice, see if they’ll pick them up at your home, or if a friend or family member can take them for you. By donating, you’ll save yourself time and energy moving things you no longer need or want.

Our donations (so far!) Notice I only used a couple of boxes; the rest is in trash bags.

Our donations (so far!) Notice I only used a couple of boxes; the rest is in trash bags.

Sell, sell, sell. Moving can be expensive, even if you’re frugal. There are application fees, deposits, possible repair costs, and you may have to pay to set up internet or utilities. So, if you have some “big ticket” items you’ve decided you no longer need, sell them! Furniture, new clothing and shoes, electronics, and gently used tools are good examples of items that are sale-worthy. All it takes is a couple of good photos, a price, and Facebook or Craigslist. (Be sure to let people know if they’ll need to pick up whatever it is you’re selling.) I posted pictures and information about our chest of drawers on Facebook, and within an hour, it was sold! If you aren’t sure what to price something, take a look on Craigslist or Ebay for similar items. Put that money aside to be used specifically for moving expenses, and your wallet won’t suffer.

Organize as you go.  This is a life saver. While you’re sorting out your donation and sale items, you may as well organizing what you’re keeping, right? Making sure like items are together, putting them in organizational containers, and labeling them as you pack will save you a ton of time and frustration.

*If you find an item in your bedroom that should go with your bath items, resist the urge to go ahead and throw it in with your bedroom things! Make a pile to the side of items that don’t belong, and when you’re done in one room, take them with you to their rightful place. It may seem like you’re saving time by just tossing unlike items in the same box or bag, but you’ll be so glad that you didn’t when it comes time to unpack.

*Utilize space-saving containers, like plastic bins that can be slid under the bed, or rolling plastic drawers that can be easily moved, as you pack. It’s wonderful when your office, bath, kitchen, and/or garage items are already packed in their respective clear or color-coded storage containers. You can also use vacuum seal bags or Ziploc bags in various sizes to store out of season clothing, or small craft supplies to save room. The money you may spend on new, more durable storage containers will be offset by the money you won’t have to spend when you move again, or when you decide your space needs to be more organized. There’s less to pack and unpack, the containers are easy to identify, and quick to store. Hint: Dollar General, Dollar Tree, and Family Dollar are gold mines when it comes to small and large storage containers. Think outside the box for small containers, too, like ones for organizing drawers, and check out the kitchen area, where plastic trays, bowls, and cups are just waiting to be used.

More Dollar Tree containers hold all of my craft supplies on wire shelving. Labeled, of course!

More Dollar Tree containers hold all of my craft supplies on wire shelving. Labeled, of course!

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These are my embroidery supplies, in a container from Dollar Tree, and the floss is separated by color in Ziploc bags.

*Label everything. If it’s going in a box or bag, label with box with what’s inside, and which room it belongs to with a Sharpie. If you’ve organized your belongings in the aforementioned awesome storage containers, invest in a label maker to identify what’s inside. Use sticky notes or plain old paper and tape to mark to which rooms the containers go, and you can remove them easily as you go.

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My handy label maker put to good use!

My handy label maker put to good use!

FREE is good. Use what you have. After you begin organizing your things in plastic containers and drawers, you may find that there’s not a whole lot left that needs to be packed in boxes. To avoid making an extra trip and spending more money, use things you have around your home to pack the rest. Use trash bags, plastic and reusable shopping bags to contain pillows and bedding. Use spare, clean blankets and towels to protect fragile items, like collectibles, plates and glasses, or even furniture. (You can also put an old blanket under a piece of furniture to easily slide it across the floor when moving.) If you need boxes, check Craigslist.com’s “free” section, or utilize your Facebook page to see if anyone has spare boxes you can use. While you’re at the grocery store or dollar store, check to see if they have any boxes they’re throwing away. They’re usually more than happy to let you have them.

Plastic and reusable shopping bags to pack up the craft room, and an old bedding package to hold all of my fabric scraps in one place.

Plastic and reusable shopping bags to pack up the craft room, and an old bedding package to hold all of my fabric scraps in one place.

Make a list. If you easily get distracted or forget things, like I do, create a list. Need to turn in keys? Need to have the old place cleaned by a certain time? List things in order of importance, and you’ll be less likely to get stuck scrubbing the bathroom by yourself at 11:45 p.m.

Ask for help! Now is the time to decide if you want to hire movers, or enlist your family and friends. Sometimes it’s more than worth it to hire movers; look for a company that only charges you to move, so that you can do the packing yourself. That way, you don’t have to do any heavy lifting, but you’ll know where all of your things are once you’re settled into your new place. If your friends are helping, see if you can incorporate a truck or two in the mix. Larger vehicles = fewer trips, and that makes everyone happy. If no one you know drives a large vehicle, rental trucks are available through moving companies, but sometimes you’ll find a better deal at a hardware store, so don’t forget to check yours. Remember that more volunteers to move your stuff isn’t always better. Depending on the amount you’re moving, 4-6 people will make the time fly by, and there’ll be less confusion about where your furniture and boxes should go.

I know some of this may seem like common sense, or maybe even a little anal retentive, but it’s all helped us keep our sanity in the past, so I hope these tips help ease the pain of your next move!

Gentle hugs,

Chels