Friday, September 30, 2016

Don't shield your kids from true emotion

When I became a mother I wanted to forever shield my daughter's from the bad things in life. What I learned recently is the hardest times in life can hit you when you lease expect it and  your shield will be down. Wanting to shield my daughter's was not realistic and I was glad that I didn't get a chance to hide from them when we lost two very dear people. By shielding I wouldn't have witnessed the emotional growth of my daughter's. 

In April, I had a friend who lost her infant daughter and who's husband 12 days later joined his daughter in Heaven and from this grief I could not hide. 

It started the day my friend called me to tell me her sweet daughter had passed away. My girls were a few feet from me when they saw me fall to me knees and call for my husband. They saw me in anguish and sorrow so deep that it still takes my breath away to think about that moment inside that day.  

Then again when I returned from comforting my friend the day her husband took his life, I walked into my house and both my husband and I were consumed with sadness. From this there was no hiding. Our hearts were broken, our grief palpable and our sadness intense. My daughter's gave hugs and kisses without words or prompting.

When my husband and I came home from the funerals and cried together we had to  explain to them again about where we were and what had happened. And this time they knew to be sad for my friend and her two children. When they ask questions about heaven or were constantly worried that one of us was going to heaven, we stopped and listened to them. We heard them thru their little grief.  We explained in our best way. 

When this experience started all I could think of was how to "shield" them from all of these hard truths, the sadness and the crippling grief that was our current situation but in my attempt to shield I had underestimated my brilliant daughters. 

From letting them see us in these sad moments, they have learned empathy, patience and kindness for someone who is suffering. From their inquisitive questions regarding heaven and how heaven works they have learned that there is a place that people go and that is okay to miss someone and ask hard questions.

My friend has two remaining children only one that is at the age to verbally understand as my girls do that heaven exists. The only difference is their sweet friend has lost her daddy and sister to this place called "heaven". I have witnessed my older daughter tell her that she is sorry about heaven. I know that in the true sense they don't understand but I have watched them try and comfort their friend. it is hard to watch but honest in the way only kids can be.

My littlest in her observant way crawled into the lap of my friend who lost so much and snuggled up close. She knew that she needed to be held and could sense in that moment what she needed. In these small times I see them and know they recognize different emotions. 

A few days ago, they were with me and I was selling something for my friend that she could not sell for herself and once it was gone a wave of sadness hit me so hard that I couldn't move. I sobbed and sobbed and tried to stop and without me saying anything my oldest said. "Mommy, its okay we miss her too" and my smallest said "Mommy, you don't have to be sad. I will make you happy".

They heal me in ways no one else can.
It lessened my sadness and eased my grief. I told them both that I loved them more than anything and that I am always happy with them. And we moved on from the moment.

It is not the end of this journey from sadness, it still hits me every couple of days and it is crippling but I am glad that I didn't hide it from my daughter's because without intentionally teaching them something, they learned something important. Something besides themselves or the moment they were having. Life is not perfect or easy or always happy.

They understand now about sadness and grief in their own way. They know when to comfort a friend , show empathy during sadness and love when its needed. I continue to learn myself every day but they taught me my own lessen. Show them real life, help them understand and they will surprise you.

This is the first post I have been able to write about this experience and I want to write more. I will keep going and sharing because there are so many things I need to share. For the next person, the next mother or the next friend who has no idea how to walk thru grief with someone.

I do not hide my bad moments from my daughter's any longer and either does my husband. We let them see us in the moments we can not breathe and the moments when are thoughts are in heaven with our friend and his daughter. It is not something we would every have thought could teach us so much. 

We are still waking thru our grief and doing our best to help them learn that after a storm, even if it takes a long time..the sun will come out again.  

Monday, September 26, 2016

Few Tips to Maintain Aluminum Shutters to last them longer

Mary is here today on Happily Ever Rushed to share some tips on how to maintain shutters.
These are great tips for any family that chose the elegant look of shutters. Thank you Mary for being a guest! 


Few Tips to Maintain Aluminum Shutters to last them longer

Opting for shutters is an essential for every home due to various reasons, the main being security. With security in focus, aluminum shutters can be considered as an ideal option due to its sturdiness. By keeping the exteriors and the interiors in focus you can choose from the different styles and colors in accordance to the décor of your home.  Aluminum is the chosen material these days for shutters as these tend to be more durable as compared to other materials available. Moreover, these are resistant to the weather and any sort of breakage or damage.

Once you have made the choice of these shutters it is wise to know some tips for their maintenance so that they can last for a long period of time without any problems. They are:

  • The surface, if powder coated, can be cleaned by using the cleaner which is paraffin based or even a non-abrasive cream. It is advisable to avoid using cleaners which are strong and contain hydrocarbons or any type of abrasive polish.

  • The cleaning of the aluminum shutters would be on a routine basis as a prolonged mark can be the cause of damage to the metal. A routing cleaning means, at least, once in three months.

  • You need to make sure that the mildews are removed as soon as these are spotted.

  • Make sure you maintain the tracks by brushing off the gravel or dirt accumulated with a brush with stiff bristles. The cleaning of the tracks ensures that they run smoothly. You can think of using a vacuum cleaner which has a nozzle.

  • Lubricate the specific channels with silicone based lubricants.

  • The locks along with the keys need to be lubricated and cleaned regularly. You need to put some oil of the lubricating kind to the key and then put it in and out of the lock multiple times so that the oil can be passed on to the lock.

  • It is best to make sure that heating equipment is kept away from these aluminum shutters during winters to avoid deformation.

  • Do not handle the shutters with any solution to avoid discoloration.

  • Make sure to tighten the locks and handles as soon as you find them getting loose.

  • Regular washing can help you maintain the shutters for a long span of time.

  • In case you have paint splashes around the shutters make sure to clean them immediately so that the marks do not remain for long.

  • Regular cleaning of powder coated aluminum shutters can avoid the deposits of grime and acid which are accumulated most often in coastal areas.

  • The shutter surface can be cleaned with ample water so that this can reach the places which are difficult to access. You can follow this up with a little of silicone spray. It is important to make sure that the blades are operational.

  • Using a mild detergent can remove the contaminants but you need to follow this up cleaning with fresh water.

  • For ongoing protection, you can use lanolin as a coating to avoid deterioration due to the atmosphere. Mopping is required so that it does not have any weep holes.

We hope that above mentioned tips will help you for maintaining aluminum shutters or else you can search for companies who can get these shutters maintained regularly in case you feel the lack of time. Choosing these companies can ensure the aluminum shutters are well maintained and lasts long as intended. Before thinking of the maintenance you need to make sure of the right choice of the shutters.

Friday, September 23, 2016

5 Top Meal Planning Tips for a Healthy Family

I am so excited to work with Zoe Clark again, she is here to share her tips on meal planning for a family. Check out her ideas, I know I could use all 5 of these in our daily life. Thanks Zoe! 

5 Top Meal Planning Tips for a Healthy Family

Many families have extremely busy schedules and eating together sometimes just seems impossible. However, gathering around a meal even once a week is important as it benefits both emotional and psychical health of all the family members. These are the times for having memorable talks, as well as for creating healthy eating habits. Preparing a nutritious menu is not so easy, but there are many useful tips and tricks you can use in order to nourish your youngsters with ease. Here are some.

Tip 1. Brainstorm, Plan, Organize

Making plans for the following week is the most practical piece of advice you'll ever get. The only thing you need to get used to is making lists of meals your family likes, together with the list of ingredients. Shop smart and watch for sales so as to help your budget. A good idea is to stock the freezer with different options, as recommended by Janet Helm, MS, RD of Nutrition Unplugged. Various dishes, like pasta, taco, casserole, large roasts can be kept in the freezer and easily used when you don't have much time for cooking.

Tip 2. Schedule All the Meals

  • Breakfast is considered to be the most important meal of the day. Ideally, it should include lots of whole grains, fiber, a good deal of protein and perhaps little carbohydrates. The only thing a family needs is setting some time aside to actually eat the healthy breakfast. Waking up a bit earlier might help. Try it out.
  • Preparing lunch can become a fun activity you'll do with your kids, especially on Sundays, when there's plenty of time. Letting them help you gives them a sense of responsibility and control. They become interested in what they eat and can start making more healthy choices if they have a chance to experiment with the ingredients. And that's exactly the moment you longed for.
  • Dinner is perhaps the only meal during the day you can eat as a family. So do it, as often as you can. Families tend to eat more vegetables and fruit as they have control over the quality and quantity of the food.

Tip 3. Organize a Stash with Healthy Snacks

Busy life makes you reach and take whatever comes at your hand when you're hungry. But, you definitely need to have a healthy alternative for all those bags of greasy chips. Making bags of healthy snacks for you and your family is much better option as you can include various nuts, dry fruit, as well as fruit and veggies, like baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, grapes, banana, etc.

Tip 4. Include Interesting New Foods

Changing routines and experimenting with new recipes can be extremely useful and fun. If you have younger kids who don't want to try something new firsthand, you can mix a bite or two of something new with their familiar favorites. When you have more time, prepare at least one familiar and "safe" dish together with the new one. You can use many different kitchen appliances to prepare various kinds of interesting meals, like slow cookers, food processors or blenders. You might also opt for a bigger dishwasher, if your family dinners become more regular.

Tip 5. Motivate Your Family

There are many benefits of eating together. Firstly, you have an opportunity to reconnect with your loved ones. It's an excellent time for making strong family bonds. Children develop sense of responsibility, eating manners and healthier eating habits. What's more, family dinners can be followed by some fun activities, like playing board games, watching films or having a reading club, when you can enjoy time spent together even more.
Regular family meals are ideal moments for carrying on your family values and traditions. A family gathered together develops a sense of identity which is extremely important, as you’ll be able to bring up your children in a healthy and positive atmosphere. So, enjoy preparing, serving and eating your meals as much as you can. It's all for a reason.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

RAAYA Garden Hose Nozzle Review

                 A garden hose nozzle may not seem like the kind of exciting thing one would like to review. But in this case, you would be wrong. My husband LOVED it. The color and the design of the nozzle were really nice and it had multiple spray levels. 

My husband enjoyed the fact that you can attache the nozzle to the hose as normal and then the attached nozzle allows an easy on/easy off method for the actual spray part. LOVE it. 

I absolutely despise having to remove the actual hand sprayer to attache the sprinkler. I never get it on right, I end up with wet clothes and generally it takes me a few minutes. The Raaya Sprayer is not this way. The easy on easy off allows for a quick change and there is an option for level of spray that nearly mimickes a power wash. 

We would purchase this again and have enjoyed keeping our garden watered with the Rayaa sprayer. They even sent spare parts and that was the best part. We popped on the extra part on our backyard hose and we were set up for easy watering. 

Purchase this at Amazon and use Prime and you will be on your way to new nozzle!  

***I was given this product an no charge in exchange for my honest review, all opinions are my own**

Friday, September 16, 2016

How Can You Decorate Your Baby's Room?

It's interesting how often style comes into play for couples welcoming new babies into their lives. Science (and parental observation, for that matter) suggests that infant children actually absorb an incredible amount of what they see and hear. But for all we know they're relatively oblivious when it comes to style. That is to say, your baby probably isn't sitting in his or her crib stewing over the fact that you chose polka dots instead of stripes for the walls, or worrying over which onesie will be in play the next morning.

But for parents, it's a different story! We wrote last month about baby stroller style, but while most of that piece was focused on comfort and convenience, the idea of caring deeply about the "style" of baby-related accessories is one that most parents can relate to. You want your child to be comfortable, look cute, and, of course, absorb your own good taste. And you also want the baby's room to be a beautiful, peaceful environment.

So how can you go about creating such an environment? Here are a few ideas on how you can manage it through your own decorative touch.

Paint The Walls

There are all kinds of adorable wallpapers you can sort through when planning a baby's room, and if you find one that suits you, go for it. But sometimes a nice, soothing shade of paint looks a little bit more fitting for a baby. There's less going on than in a cluttered wallpaper design and you can always add wallpaper (or even wall decals) as your child gets older, and in so doing reflect a particular interest of the child. In the meantime, it's actually a fairly easy and enjoyable activity for a couple to paint their baby's room in a single day on the weekend. You'll just need a few rollers and brushes, some protective tape and tarps, and of course, the right color paint. And don't limit yourself to pink or baby blue! pointed to a number of other colors that look just right for a nursery, and whether or not you go with one of those shades specifically, they might i nspire you to shop around a little bit for that perfect color.

Bring In Stuffed Animals

I confess, this one might be more about buying things than employing your own decorative DIY efforts — but it's still a very cute step to take. Children almost universally love stuffed animals and when you're dealing with a new baby these soft, cushioned toys can effectively function as furniture! A few cuddly choices to keep in the crib or sitting on a mantle or shelving unit are always nice, and if it were my baby I'd also opt for one big, carnival prize-sized animal to occupy a corner of the room by itself. A giant stuffed panda, for instance, makes for an adorable guardian to watch over your baby.

Build A Crib On Your Own

Speaking of the crib, a lot of parents will take real satisfaction in building, or at least assembling one on their own. That's not to suggest you should simply take a shot at it, because above all else it's important that the structure be sturdy and reliable. But if you employ a DIY approach you'll have more flexibility in choosing a style or blueprint to put together (as opposed to shopping through what's available at the store). The important thing is having the right tools and materials on hand. At a minimum, that probably means a power drill, sanding equipment, and perhaps a hammer and nails. It could also be a good idea to have an impact driver or wrench on hand, given that Screwfix describes these types of tools as being perfect for loosening or tightening large screws, nuts, and bolts. These are the little pieces that hold the crib together, so you'll want to be able to drive them in reliably. Wit h these kinds of accessories handy, you'll just need the right kit or woodworking blueprint to put together a perfect homemade crib.

Customize A Mobile

Mobiles hanging over a baby's crib are usually adorned with everything from little stars, birds, or other similar ornaments. But if you take a moment to browse on Pinterest you'll find a number of inspiring customized takes on the mobile, which could just get your wheels turning on a perfect idea for your baby's room. You might find a tiny stuffed cat or dog that resembles the family pet. You may design ornaments related to you or your spouse's college mascot or you could find a symbol like a snowflake or blooming rose that might be emblematic of the season in which your baby was born. The options are endless, but it's fun to customize this sort of thing to suit your family and your baby.

These are just a few ideas that can help to get you started. You'll probably also want to take steps like making sure there's natural light in the room, installing a soft carpet or rug, and even adding a few pieces of furniture for displaying photos, toys and the like. But with the above steps you can really begin to put a personal touch on your baby's room. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Vive Health Giveaway

I am happy to participate in a giveaway with Vive Health. Enter to win, good luck and as always, thank you for stopping at Happily Ever Rushed! 

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$50 Vive Health Gift Card

Check out Amy & Aron's Real Life Reviews review of this  awesome Vive Health Wrist Support and Toe Separator >>> Click Here

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Sunday, September 11, 2016

Decluttering and Organizing Your Home will benefit your kids

Decluttering and Organizing Your Home Will Benefit Your Kids
Decluttering and organizing go hand in hand, but there are significant differences between them. Decluttering includes admitting that we have too many things which we need to get rid of. How we’re going to do it doesn’t matter, as long as we free ourselves from them. Garage sales, giving things to charity or friends or throwing away broken items that can’t be repurposed – these are all good ways to get rid of things that are just cluttering your precious space. Organizing is a step that comes after – once you declutter and clean the space, it’s time to create a functional system and find a perfect place for all things that you have.
One thing that decluttering and organizing have in common is that they both have numerous benefits for your whole family. This might come as a surprise, but “simple” things such as getting rid of the junk and organizing your living space can teach your kids lots of lessons they’ll be thankful for.

Cleaning and family ties are allies
Most of us are in a constant hurry – to get to and from work, to make dinner, wash the dishes, rest and prepare ourselves for the following day. What about spending quality time with your family? One of the main benefits of having fewer things laying around the house is that you’ll have less to clean. Decluttered and well-organized space means less dust and quicker maintenance - and less house chores mean more time spent with your children. Quality time spent with your family builds strong bonds and your kids will thank you for this – now, as well as in the future.
Cleaning will help greening
Decluttering, cleaning and organizing bring some material benefits too. If you’re thinking about selling your place and moving to a bigger house, you can easily add value to your home without any investments. A makeover of your home can be done in several ways and most of them require spending money. Without spending a dime, you can show your buyers a perfectly organized and spotless home and make sure that you get the highest possible price for it. This way you’ll be able to afford more than you were hoping for – and your kids will grow up in even bigger and more beautiful house.  

Junk needs to be sunk
Why is decluttering so important? It proves that we don’t need an abundance of stuff to make us happy. Some people just can’t let go of their clutter and they let things they don’t need control their lives. By letting go of all the junk and the excess stuff, you teach your kids that things are not meant to be bought for fun only. Also, they’ll learn the difference between things that they need and don’t need and they’ll be thankful for the toys and clothes that they own. It’s not a secret that giving too much (unnecessary and expensive things) may spoil them and becoming minimalist might be a good prevention.
Organization is elation
Staying organized is an ongoing practice and at the beginning, it requires some discipline. Only later, it becomes a habit. This is the key benefit to your children. By including them in organizing your house, you’re creating a good base for the future. It’s more likely that they will grow up to be organized and stick to their healthy routine. Clutter makes us distracted and decluttering and organizing reduces stress and leads to a more productive life in all fields. They’ll know where their things are, how to set their goals and take care of the work that needs to be done.

More space just in case
If your home is dirty and cluttered, inviting guests can be an unpleasant experience. If you keep your home clean and organized, you’ll surely receive your kids’ friends without fear that it will be too messy and unsafe for them. Having a decluttered home brings one huge benefit for the whole family – more space. This means that your kids will have a larger and much safer playground. After their playmates go home, you can continue with your family routine and pick up the toys together. Always have in mind that your kids are looking up to you and you’re the one who is supposed to teach them these good practices. By being raised in a clutter-free home, they’ll become happier, healthier and more organized adults.