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Hobby Your Way To Happiness

Hobby Your Way to Happiness

Hobbies are a great way to lose oneself in something that they enjoy while relaxing their stresses and mind.

Starting in high school, people and jobs would ask me if I had any hobbies but I had no idea if I had any hobbies or really what a hobby was. My idea of a hobby was collecting things like baseball cards (which as a kid I had binders full of baseball cards) or making model cars. As a kid, hobbies seemed like something boys did not girls.

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Little did I know, I had a hobby since I could read…. reading books. As soon as I could walk to the library, I spent so many hours reading books at the library and then taking books home and reading until the wee hours of the morning. My mom loves to tell the story that I loved to read so much that while walking down the street, I was reading and walked into a pole….

stress management concept circle on blackboard

Yes I found my hobby but I didn’t know it. In my 20s, my hobby evolved to crocheting which has turned into my handmade business. In the past few years, my hobby is gardening because I love to see what I can grow and my family can eat. I still love to read but I don’t have the time to always read so I listen to a lot of audio books. My stress release that I found in crocheting was lost for a while because the business aspect replaced the fun aspect. Now that I have Evie to crochet fun things for, crocheting has become fun again.

Without my hobbies, I wouldn’t have been able to make it through some of the most stressful situations in my life. My hobbies are what brought me happiness and released the stress that my mind and body were feeling at the time.

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Reasons to have a hobby: 

  1. Helps to relieve the stress your mind and body feels on a daily basis
  2. Helps to encourage you to challenge your mind with different tasks
  3. Helps you take a break from your daily tasks
  4. Helps you to explore new hobbies and evolve as a person
  5. Helps with anxiety and depression

Helps to relieve the stress your mind and body feels on a daily basis: 

The body and mind need time to destress everyday. Without this destressing time, the body fills with negative feelings and thoughts which is not healthy. A hobby naturally boosts your positivity about yourself and life which releases the stress brought on by the negative.

Helps to encourage you to challenge your mind with different tasks:

A hobby challenges a person to find new ways to accomplish their hobby. For example, a knitter will finish one project and will search for a new, more difficult pattern to accomplish next. The brain wants to be challenged and learn new things which a hobby aids in accomplishing.

Helps you take a break from your daily tasks:

Everyone needs a break from their daily routine or life becomes mundane and dull. When life becomes dull, a person becomes bored and can become depressed. Even a 5 minute break enjoying your hobby can aid in changing things up and keep your day fresh.

Helps you to explore new hobbies and evolve as a person:

Over the years, your hobbies can stay the same or they can evolve into a new hobby. Someone that loves to paint, may learn a new painting technique or a new type of art. Learning new hobbies or techniques helps a person evolve mentally and physically (depending on the type of hobby).

Helps with anxiety and depression:

As someone who has suffered from both anxiety and depression since I was a teen, having a hobby that I enjoyed has helped relieve both of these. Keeping yourself busy with a hobby helps to calm your nerves and anxiety by having your mind distracted with the current task you are enjoying. When you are involved mentally and physically, there leaves little room for your depression to creep in at that moment. Over time, your mind will learn to release the anxiety and depression while you are involved with your hobby.

There are so many different hobbies that people can have that have so many healthy and happiness benefits. You can practice yoga or meditation. You can work out at a gym or walk around your neighborhood. You can read books or draw/paint pictures. You can build model cars or rebuild classic cars. You can crochet, knit or sew special things for people in your life. The possibilities are endless and here is a list of 40 hobbies you can try today! Here is a PDF printable of the list: 50 Hobbies To Try

50 Hobbies To Try

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Time Out Tuesday

Time Out Tuesday

With the start of the school year for both Danyella and I, life has become so overwhelming that I feel like my brain is just spinning out of control. For the remainder of September, I am taking Tuesdays off from blogging so that I can get myself on a schedule with school, pregnancy and life. Starting Tuesday, October 3rd, I will be starting Teach Me Tuesday with DIY projects for the upcoming holidays for adults and kids to make the holiday season fun.

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My Secret to Motivation

My Secret To Motivation

As someone who struggles with anxiety and depression, finding the joy in everyday living has been a struggle or better wording has taken A LOT of work from me mentally, physically and spiritually. There have been days that I don’t work on my self-care and those days have been the ones that make me realize that I need to work twice as hard the next day.

About 8 years ago, I found myself in the biggest depression of my life. I was a single mom struggling to make ends meet. We had to have a funeral for my brother who had just lost this battle to drugs. I was in a toxic relationship with an alcoholic that I felt I needed to save from himself.  I had to hold it together because that is what I do.

I don’t know how I came across the books by Louise Hay but they changed my life. Reading her books, made me realize that I held my own power over my life not my circumstances or other people. I was the one who had to take a stand with myself, for myself.

After reading 2 of her books, I was focused and working on myself everyday for about a year. Slowly, I got away from the positive habits I had worked so hard to achieve and the old, bad habits started creeping up.

About 2 years ago, I was flipping through suggestions on Netflix and The Secret came across on my list. I had no idea what the movie was about but it looked intriguing so I watched it. Wow!! The things that the people in the video said spoke to me in ways that I didn’t even know I could be reached mentally and spiritually. I looked into the book and found it on Audible.com which is my latest way to “read” books when I don’t have the time to sit and read.

I began to listen to the words over and over again. Some of the chapters I have repeated after listening to them once then over again because there is a message in there that I need to stick in my mind and soul. I was so grateful for these words.

Nearly everyday, I start my day by listening to the audio version of The Secret because I am at a point in my life that when I am stressed out I need the reminder to be set back on track. Listening to the wonderful things they have to say, the affirmations that adapt for my life and the success stories keep me motivated to keep working on myself. If I don’t work on myself then no one else will work on me and I will end up back in the deep slump I was in before and I don’t want that at all.

The great thing about having The Secret on audio book is that I can listen while I am making breakfast, taking a walk, doing laundry… just about anything and anywhere (as long as I remember my earbuds and new adapter)! Listening to other people acheive their sucesses through self care keeps me motivated to keep on going. To take the time everyday to work on myself and love myself.

My motivation for all of you on this Solar Eclipse Monday is to watch, listen or read The Secret and take the time to work on yourself even if its 5 minutes everyday…. You are worth it!

the secret

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Do Coupons Really Matter?

Is Couponing Worth It_

For more years than I want to admit, I have been couponing on and off…. though more off then on because I would either forget it was Sunday to buy the papers, I was too lazy to cut the coupons before I went shopping or I would just forget the coupons at home when I was already in the grocery store. Also, I was doubtful that I was really saving any money because I would have to purchase 2 or 3 of a product just to get the $1 off. Well this past week taught me the lesson that I need to learn to be frugal and that there are good coupons and deals if I just pay attention!

 

So we all know of the extreme couponers that have a format to how they coupon and purchase like $200 worth of groceries for $20 (maybe a little extreme but not really if you watch the shows and documentaries). In my mind, those extreme couponers were a little crazy and had too much time on their hands which I didn’t have. Now, I do have the time on my hands and the financial need to cut down on our spending costs so I better start paying attention to what they are doing and copying their money-saving ways.

My lesson from last week is this…. Shoprite (our local go to grocery store for good deals) had Arm & Hammer laundry detergent on sale for $1.99 plus there was a coupon out in the world for a $1 off the detergent which means you can buy the detergent for just $.99! Well that $1 savings could go towards the fresh fruit and veggies that my family devours in a day or less.

Lately, at my go to couponing place, I could have easily purchased 10 bottles for $1 each BUT I only had 1 coupon for regular detergent and 1 coupon for the sensitive skin (Danyella and the new baby). So I ordered (yes I order my groceries which will be a future post) 1 bottle of regular scented detergent and 1 bottle of the sensitive skin detergent and used my coupons. After putting the groceries away, I was kicking myself in the ass about the detergent situation so I waddled my ass around Shoprite to get more of the detergent without the coupons. (insert crying face emoji here haha) I mean with how much our dog sheds, I needed as much detergent as I could get at that price!

 

Lesson learned because we go through detergent so often with a furry puppy. The next place I  have been looking for coupons has been coupons.com because I can easily print of the coupons and why would I need to go over their limit of only printing the coupon 1 time when I don’t usually stock up on things. (BIG MISTAKE AND LESSON LEARNED FOR A FUTURE POST COMING SOON!)

 

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Next lesson on coupons I learned…. I may never become one of those extreme couponers but this morning I got out of bed early (a rarity just ask my boyfriend husband) and went to Wawa to purchase 2 Sunday papers to get those coupons. (“Christina” has found us a hook up to get a set of 10 papers to split and save us the trip and money!)

As I am cutting the coupons from 2 different papers (don’t know why I decided to try 2 different papers but something told me to do it), I find out that not all papers have the same damn coupons! The one paper had more coupons than the other but the other paper had a rebate coupon that doesn’t expire until March of next year. Shit now do I buy 2 of each of those papers? Yes, I do buy the one paper for “Christina” and I and she gets us the hook up for the other paper so we can use all the savings we can get!

This is a bit overwhelming and a little exciting at the same time. I am trying to find other ways to save money before this baby gets here and we have to add baby stuff to the grocery list. Since this is going to be an ongoing challenge for me, I am starting a series on couponing and saving on Sundays. If you have any tips or stories of your own please feel free to comment below.

*Check out how to make your own coupon binder: Create your own Coupon Binder

* Need help learning couponing terms: Couponing Terms with Printable List

**Since, writing this post last year, I have been finding better ways to save with coupons and I can’t wait to share my post this weekend on using these coupons to stockpile so be on the look out!

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New Day Different Stress

stressAs if this pregnancy hasn’t been hard enough to deal with, but each day has brought something new to stress about which living in good ole America means…. money or lack there of. A woman going through a pregnancy is told to keep her stress level to a minimum for the health of herself and the baby but add a high risk, possible pre-term labor pregnancy and you are told do not be stressed out at all! Oh how I wish life was that easy!

Since June, the stressors have been hitting me left and right with each one having a bigger impact than the last. In June, while I was on my one and only girls trip to Las Vegas (planned nearly a year in advance and the thought of a baby was not even in existence), I receive a frantic phone call from my boyfriend that someone is trying to change the locks on our house! WTF!! After calming him down, making several pissed off phone calls to my landlord and trying not to ruin my trip, I find out that the house we have been renting was foreclosed on and my landlord never told the bank he was renting it so the bank was coming to seize the property! So my landlord had to email me a letter stating we were renting the property because he had not updated my lease which was asked multiple times since November. One crisis diverted…. onto the next one!

Jump to a couple of weeks ago when I get notice in the mail that my insurance did not cover a single one of my baby appointments because they cancelled my insurance. WTF!! Now I am hormonal and dealing with a crisis so I automatically start crying and freaking out at the same time. I call the insurance company, who first tells me that they cancelled the insurance and reactivated it to May because they didn’t receive my premium for May. Mind you they accepted my payment for June and July and never said a single word in 2 months about May until they cancelled the policy. I am frantic on the phone with them who connects me with the company that I bought my policy from and tells me just pay them and then we can reinstate it. Well this company tells me NO! When the policy is cancelled it is cancelled sorry and hangs up. So I call the insurance company back…. now I am told that I cannot receive insurance in the good ole USA until open enrollment in November or have a life changing event. The girl goes on to tell me that if I have the baby early then I can get coverage….. I am 14 weeks (at that point) I cannot have my baby for months you crazy bitch! So now I am really flipping the hell out and all my boyfriend can say is “we will figure it out”. Well now the doctor’s office is calling me about why everything is getting kicked back from my insurance including the progesterone shots that I desperately need to start next week. Thankfully the nurse called the manufacture and was able to get me a charity set of shots until I can “sort out my insurance”. Though I do need to pay for the visits which means $250 every 2 weeks for the ultrasound that the doctor needs and I am not sure what the nurse visits will cost. Well to sort out my insurance I would need to either quit my job, claim self employed under my business and pay $500 a month which I do not have OR marry my boyfriend which will never happen as he made very clear to me (another blog post for the future). So for right now I am stuck in a rut with this stressor.

Yesterday, I find out that the house we are still living in is now being auctioned by Auction.com on August 1st…. WT double F!!!! So after some research, I find out that once the house is sold through this site we will have 1 of 2 options, receive a 90 day eviction notice or have our lease changed which means an increase in rent! FML!! I can barely afford the bills that we have because I am down to working only 4 days a week and should be on bed rest. Now I am trying to figure out how we are coming up with the money to move into a new place plus find a new place and keep current on the bills that we do have.

A new Day…. A new Stessor! Now to look at the upside of things… 1.I do still have a place to live in, even if it is for 90 days 2. My baby is receiving care because of a very caring nurse. 3. I have a business that I can restart to make money while I make my game plan 4. I have a house full of stuff to sell on the Facebook yard sale groups to help raise money for my moving and medical expense. 5. I am 16 weeks today and Baby Evelynne is the size of an Avocado!!