Monthly Archives: August 2017

Spring Things To Do

It’s about to become Spring here in the southern hemisphere and where I am in Sydney Australia it’s sunny and breezy today. The dawning of Spring  is often associated with new things and cleaning. Here are a few ideas I’ve gathered from various sources (thank you sources, though I don’t know who you are now 😊) to start spring off with some fresh, new beginnings.

Some Spring Things. 

And if it’s not Spring where you are, the first of the month, the first day of the week or the next minute after you ready this are all good times to begin a fresh start.

Natural cleaning- Start phasing out chemical cleaning products and try using natural products like vinegar, bi-carb and essential oils. Look at my post here for natural ways to clean the fridge and microwave.

Decluttering- A great way to begin decluttering if you want to start slow or have trouble getting rid of things is the compound method. On day one declutter one thing, on day two declutter two things and so on. Work your way through the month.

Vision board- Make a vision board of one of your goals or the way you want your life to be. Use an app or Pinterest or go old school with pictures and words cut out from magazines pasted onto cardboard or into a scrapbook. Visualising your goals and desires helps manifest them.

Exercise- Start doing the type of exercise that you like and keep it relaxed yet consistent. Start slow if you have to or need to, something is better than nothing. Walk, dance, exercise to dvd’s and YouTube, bushwalk, Qi gong, play with the kids, climb the stairs. Keep experimenting, keep moving daily-even gently.

Diet- Cleaning up your diet can be hard to sustain- I can’t do it and probably won’t, in fact I don’t even want to because when I’ve been on a restrictive allergy or weight loss diet I’ve been miserable and  felt very excluded from life.  The easier approach is to begin making some changes and substitutions- one thing or one meal at a time. Change biscuits for morning tea to fruit, do it most days. Or substitute meat for fish or chips for popcorn, do it most days. Enjoy your treats and splurges. Be grateful for fresh and healthy and abundant food.

Saving- Save money now for Christmas, a holiday, a rainy day or any other goal. Try saving all your coins instead of spending them , transfer money into your savings account the day you get paid or finding a saving system that works for you. I will have a future post on this.

Giving- Give some money, give some time, donate your clutter, give a complement, give a smile, make small talk with a stranger or an aquantance – you never know who needed a connection with a caring human to save them that day,pray for someone or the world.
Thanking- be grateful, say it ,think it, write it- in a journal or in a thank you card or text to someone. Thank people in person or write it or write to their companies head office or their boss. Give thanks for clean water, electricity, your kids, your car, your strong legs, your friends, your safety.

Affirming- Start the practice of  aiming for positive thoughts, words and self talk . This can turn your day and your life around. Take as much time as you need to keep counteracting the negative with positive. Preempt the negative by saying affirmations throughout the day. Post them on your mirror, fridge and social media. Read and listen to and watch affirmations – check out Louise Hay, the affirmation queen.

Reading/learning- Read every day, you can read more than one book at time, you can mix fiction and non fiction. Watch things that teach you something. Learn a skill. Take a course. Listen to people. If someone asks you something you don’t know-find out about it. If a child asks you or is interested in something find out about it together.

Being present- Take your eyes off the screen, look at people, watch your kids, let them see that you see them and hear them, turn off the background noise, look at the scenery, watch the road, try mindfulness.

Simplifying- Simplify your life for a more relaxed life with more time for what you want to do. Check out some of my posts on simplifying things such as  Life when you’re sick or tired or Mornings  or  Breakfast or Lunch boxes. Read this blog, other blogs and books and watch YouTube videos on simplifying. Find out what works for you. Figure out what you can let go. 

Slowing down- Use your simplified life to have more down time, alone or with your family and friends. Enjoy the seasons-the weather, the seasonal or festive food, the changes in nature. Be a homebody, try Hygge for a comfortable life, drive slower, walk slower, eat and drink and talk slower, amble and wander.
Let me know about your Spring things in the comments below or on Facebook  πŸ˜ŠπŸŒŸπŸ’›


Simple (and natural) Housecleaning- The Microwave and the Fridge

Image :Pexals
If you’re interested in natural yet simple housecleaning check out the hints below.
The microwave:
To deodorise and clean stubborn food splatters from the interior of the microwave fill a microwave safe bowl or jug with water. Add a few slices of lemon or even lemon halves that have already being juiced. If you have them you can also add a couple of whole cloves. Heat this mixture on high for five minutes then allow to stand for a few minutes. The baked on splatters should then wipe of easily with a soft cloth and the microwave will also smell fresh.
Wipe down the exterior of the microwave with a soft cloth dampened with a vinegar/water solution ( 1 cup of warm water and a couple of capfuls of cheap white vinegar) . Dry and polish any streaks away with a soft dry cloth.
Keep a plate cover in the microwave to encourage people to cover their plates or containers before heating food. If they use it, it will save a lot of work.
The Refrigerator.
Clean the refrigerator the day of or the day before you do your grocery shopping. Do this each week and it will be faster and easier to clean. You will also be able to write your grocery list as you go and save money and cut down on wastage by buying only what you need and not buying what you already have and by seeing what you can use up before it spoils.
Try using plastic baskets or a similar type of container to keep like items together. Find containers that are easy the see items through and that are easy to wash. Plastic baskets are found in discount stores and also in the supermarket- often the aisle where the laundry products are kept. If you are watching your budget buy one a week until you have the supply you need. Otherwise you might already have suitable containers such as food storage containers that have lost their lid, or the plastic punnets apples and other fruit are sold in. This is a great way to recycle.
Consider lining the vegetable crisper drawers with old but clean tea towels or placemats. This saves on cleaning and absorbs moisture. When they become soiled or damp, wash and dry them, wash out the drawers and then re-line them.You can also use paper towels but they’re not as durable or eco friendly.
When cleaning start at the top of the fridge, working down to the vegetable crisper then back up to the top of the door and work down from there. Do the same with freezer. 

Have an ready;

an empty bin

a compost bucket

a bowl or ice cream container filled with warm water with a couple of capfuls of vinegar and a capful of vanilla added

a sponge with a soft scourer on one side

a dry cloth or tea towel

and a notebook and pen for the grocery list.
Take all items off the first shelf. Check for freshness and check use by and throw out or compost any spoiled food. Write anything you need to replace or are low on, on you grocery list. Wipe down containers of items you are keeping and sort them into baskets if you are doing so. If the baskets also need washing do this too. Wipe the shelf over and under with the damp sponge and dry it before replacing the food. Continue on with this until the shelves and inside door are finished.
Wipe down the sides of the door and door seals with the same vinegar/vanilla solution and dry well.
Add an opened container of bi-carb to the back of the top shelf- it will absorb odours.
Wipe and polish the refrigerator door handles and the door. A spray bottle filled with 1 part white vinegar and 4 parts water with work for most surfaces. Add a capful of eucalyptus, tea tree or lavender oil (or all three) to make a sweet smelling cleaning spray the naturally disinfects as well.
Never use abrasive cleaners or cloths on the outside of appliances like the fridge, microwave or dishwasher. They will cause scratches. A vinegar solution or methylated spirits on a dry cloth will make stainless steel doors shine.

When your fridge is clean and tidy look at what you have left and try to incorporate that into your next weeks meal plan.

Clean your freezer in the same way if it is frost free. If it is not you will need to find your owners manual- it should be online if you don’t have a physical copy- because there are safety precautions you MUST follow.

Do you have any tips? Share in the comments below and subscribe for more aSimple Life 🌟

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Simplifying Your Life with Chronic Illness- The Bedroom

Target Australia Linens and accessories.
The bed and the bedroom is probably one of the most important places for the chronic illness sufferer. Good, restful sleep is high on the list of healthcare protocols for wellbeing and for coping with day to day life, whether you are ill or not and it is of major value in treating illness.

 The condition of your bed and bedroom will help add to the quality of your sleep, and even if you are not sleeping well, a comfy bed and a clutter free space is more calming.
If your bedroom needs some attention go into it right now and sit with paper and pen and make a list of what could be done.

The list might include:

Decluttering and moving out things that don’t belong.

Packing away clothes.

Creating space on your nightstand.

Organising the things you need at night or when unwell so they are at hand or easy to get to.

Sorting out books etc 

Hanging pictures.

Creating atmosphere.

Buying new pillows, adding a mattress topper to the bed.

Making any adjustments you can to reduce noise or light or other irritations.
The bed-

If you are able, outfitting the bed in comfortable linens will make a difference. This can be done as you can afford it and as items go on sale. Have a running shopping list of your needs and wants in your purse or on your phone.
Make the bed every day if you can. Even if you think you are getting back in it before too long. It just feels better to look at and to get into and it saves embarrassment if someone comes by. It doesn’t have to be perfect either.You can even start pulling up the sheets and various layers while you are still laying down, then straighten them up when you get up and plump up the pillows. Or you can make one side first and then the other and skip tucking when you can’t do it.And for the ultimate in ease in bedmaking you can forgo a sheet and blankets, if it doesn’t bother you, and just have a fitted sheet on the mattress and a quilt with a washable cover, that is easily pulled up in the morning. Children can do this too, they often prefer it to the tangle sheets can make.
You may need more pillows that the average person for comfortable sleeping and as props. A cot pillow or another small pillow placed under the knee or any tender spot may help. Use as many as you need. Regular pillows can be used to support the neck and arms. Make sure the pillow slips are gentle on your skin. Large pillows can support your back and prop you up while reading etc. pillows can prop up books or a iPad etc to give arms a rest. Do some research online and try some different types of pillows out instore or at home. Possibilities such as down or memory foam might work for you. I find comfortable pillows are an individual preference.
If you need an electric blanket to relieve pain and wish to leave it on the bed during the summer months-do it. Why not use the type of bedding that makes you as comfortable as possible? Do whatever you can to make the bed as comfortable as possible.
It is not going to help your spirits to lay in bed and look at clutter, laundry that needs to be packed away and a treadmill that gathers dust. If you have piles of paperwork, books, craft projects that you can see that need attention it is going to stress you out.

Bit by bit, if you need to,  take away what doesn’t bring you peace or add to your immediate wellbeing. Wherever possible move the clutter completely out of the home. Be careful what you bring back in. Use pictures of rooms you like as inspiration for creating your own serene space.  Make space to add some flowers, a candle, a frame etc. Make space for your mind to be clear. 

Maintain your space by keeping up with the tidying. If  you are doing your own housework, keep it simple, but follow through on each job. If putting away laundry is your problem area do smaller loads and remind yourself that the two minutes it takes to put the clothes away is worth it for your serenity, and won’t really make a difference to your energy levels in a negative way. 

If lights, noise, drafts, smells bother you do something if you can to rectify the issue. Block out curtains, covering lights on the tv with tape, sealing gaps in windows and around the door, and keeping ear plugs handy can all help your quality of sleep.

Sweet dreams πŸ’€

Let me know your ideas and what’s worked for you. Share in the comments 😊🌟

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