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The Importance of Sleep – And How to Make It Count!

WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T GET ENOUGH SLEEP?

In today’s culture, we are conditioned to pride ourselves in going to bed in the wee hours of the morning and getting up at the crack of dawn. This classifies you as a go-getter! One of those who make it count. “We’ll sleep when we’re dead.”  Well, the lack of sleep might just get you there sooner.

I’m a big advocate of the fact that God created humans just like machines. Take away one of the vitals like oil or maintenance, then the entire machine will begin to wear out and finally break down.

Sleep deprivation almost always affects mental health first; some people become moody and others are just more prone to whatever their weaknesses are. Surprisingly many health conditions such as heart problems, diabetes, weight gain and depression, can be traced back to lack of sleep.

HOW TO MAKE IT COUNT…

How Light Affects Sleep 

Exposure to bright light or daylight decreases the production of Melatonin – the sleeping hormone. This hormone is naturally higher in our bloodstreams during night time and much lower during the day.  This hormone can be taken as a supplement but be warned that it has it’s own set of side effects if not naturally produced.

Planning a Sleeping Routine 

Plan a bed time ritual to wind down. At the end of the day, we are just like our children! If we follow the same routine every evening before bed, your body will start preparing to fall asleep on a subconscious level.

Manage Your Exposure

Switch off electronics and external stressors at least 40 minutes before you plan to fall asleep. Blue light from cell phones and tablets also decreases the level of Melatonin in your body. Probably the worst thing that could happen is receiving an upsetting email from work or an exciting new project that you just can’t stop thinking about.

Bedroom Surroundings

Make your bedroom your haven. Do not use your bedroom for an office. Do not put a television set in your bedroom. This is where you rest. Your subconscious mind will immediately pick up the surroundings and start preparing your body for sleep.

Ideal Sleeping Positions 

I have learned the hard way that sleeping in the wrong position, can horribly impact both your sleep and your quality of life during the day.  When sleeping on your stomach, your head is forced to be pointed to either side of the body, you can easily strain the muscles in your neck and cause migraines during the day. They recommend rather sleeping on your side but the first prize being on your back.

What to Wear to Bed

I have read in a medical magazine at my doctor’s office that you should keep your room cool and wear light long sleeved clothes. This allows your body’s natural thermoregulation to keep your body cool. I’ve gone ahead and tested this theory and was pleasantly surprised!! I slept longer and deeper with my snuggly nighties!

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The Simplest Fried Chicken Recipe EVER!

I literally blew my own mind last night with this recipe!

I don’t know who to give the credit, the brand of wine I was drinking or the fact that my husband was out so I had the chance to cook dinner?!

After the third kind of meat I defrosted, I saw the Corn Flakes in our pantry…. And it just came to me!! “Deep fry the chicken in Corn Flakes!!!!”

So I took out the chicken fillets, defrosted them and cut them into 1.5cm slices, beat them with a hammer, dipped them into beaten eggs, then into the smashed corn flakes and voila!!!! Success!!!

Here are the golden nuggets of wisdom I learned last night :

  • Make sure not to cut the chicken too thick otherwise it won’t cook through.
  • This might not be the healthiest food for your toddler, but if he refers to it as cookies and finishes everything, then I would say it was a success!! Serve with their favorite veggies, then you will be able to live with yourself.
  • Spice it.
  • Don’t turn around for one second.
  • The bottom of a big glass works best to smash the corn flakes!

What you’ll need :

  • About 6 eggs
  • Half a pack of Kellogs Corn Flakes. Maybe a little more…
  • 6 deboned chicken fillets
  • Salt, pepper (or whichever spice you prefer)
  • A litre of cooking oil.

 

 

 

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How Your Values are Sabotaging your Goals!

“Values are the little suckers who control your life and outcomes subconsciously, without you even realizing it!! It is best to find out what they are and make sure they are in line with what you actually want for your life. These can be listed as Family, Purpose or Money. We all have reasons behind the reasons that drive us. We don’t always think of them but they are ever present and ever influencing.”

The Adventure of Self Discovery 

Eliciting your values is a lengthy process and part of the comprehensive coaching program which is a costly exercise.

This article will guide you to what your real values are. The wonderful news is that you can ‘edit’ your values on a subconscious level, to guide you to the outcomes you really desire for your life.

Values are not ideals. They are not the presentable paragons that fill your mind when you tell someone what is important to you. Values are embedded in your subconscious mind and can only be identified by looking at your day to day life.

  • How do you spend your time?
  • Looking around your room or office, what do you see?
  • Listening to your day to day thoughts, which subject features most often?
  • What is the subject of most of your dreams? (Literally, the stories you dream at night)

Dreams always tell the tale of what is important to you, what you worry about and what the most prominent thoughts are in your subconscious mind.

When you drive, or ride a bike, you don’t consciously think of each action before you take it. These actions are governed by your subconscious mind. You know they say you never forget to ride a bike!? The unfortunate thing is that you cannot control your subconscious mind. It controls you…

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Munich in November

 

Every two years Jurgen travels to Munich, Germany for Electronica. In 2014,  I got to tag along and travel to Europe for the very first time!!!

I was 32 weeks pregnant with Jurgen at the time – so this was quite the adventure!!

 

We traveled with Pat and Frank, Jurgen’s shareholders and dear family friends. Thankfully Frank is German, so he was able to show us around!

Eibsee - Zugspitze
Eibsee – Zugspitze

The duck Eibsee GermanyEibseeEibseeZugspitzeZugspitze Overlooking Austria

Zugspitze Overlooking Austria
Zugspitze Overlooking Austria

This is the highest peak of Germany on the border of Austria, overlooking the Alps. When you turn around, you have this view of the Eibsee back in Germany.

 

Eibsee from Zugspitze Glacier
Eibsee from Zugspitze Glacier

Next, we visited the Neuschwanstein Castle.

Neuschwanstein Castle

Church Garden

Neuschwanstein Castle

Exploring

Neuschwanstein Castle Neuschwanstein Castle Neuschwanstein Castle

 

Marienplatz in München

Marienplatz, Munich Marienplatz, Munich

Marienplatz, Munich

Johannisbeere is a berry indigenous to Germany which they make a local soft drink from. This was rather popular with me being pregnant and not being able to have my red wine!!!

JohannisbeereJohannisbeere

Marienplatz

Town Hall - Marienplatz
Town Hall – Marienplatz

 

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My Deichmann boots!
My Deichmann boots!
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Surviving as a Mother, Wife and Career Woman

Growing up, I remember my mom being home with us all day, with no care of keeping an employer happy.  She only had to concern herself with her family life and to keep us healthy and educated. She spent the mornings on Bible study and when we returned from school, we studied for tests and did homework together. These are fond memories…
But times have definitely changed and most mothers are now working outside of their homes, helping to provide financially. One is tempted to procrastinate against being taken out of your house, having to work and be a mutual breadwinner for the household. Suddenly, the roles between husband and wife are foggy and conflict arises. One even dares to think this is outside of God’s plan for mothers.
 
When we go back to what the Word has to say about the example of the perfect mother or housewife, a picture is painted of A Wife of Noble Character. Of a business woman; farming, buying, selling, working outside her house and keeping busy until the wee hours of the night to ensure that her family is comfortable and provided for.
This means that God has built us for this task. We should be able to keep it all together. To be the seductive wife, patient mother and an ambitious career woman. This almost sounds unattainable. Well, rather, unattainable with your sanity intact!
Why is it such a struggle for us then? Why do we feel that we are on breaking point every other day? I was overwhelmed by a sense of failure and discouragement. As soon as I was able to remember everything my son needed for school and gave him his medicine on time, then things started falling apart at work, or my husband notifies me that I have been…well… less than attentive! Out of frustration, I usually snap at someone I care about. I think it is just a mommy trait to want to do everything perfectly for everyone.
We need to be sure that we are focusing our energy and resources on the things that are really important to us, God and our families. Otherwise, we will inevitably burn out. Take time alone to get to know your values. Write them down and evaluate what portion of your day is spent on these things.
Set clear boundaries and teach yourself to say no. De-clutter your house. Chuck everything out that you don’t use or need. You will be surprised how much clearer you are able to think and go about your routine if everything has a place and your house is tidy.
I am learning not to strive for sheer perfection. I always end up disappointed. Our faith is founded on Grace, not our own achievements or perfection. My aim is to be better than yesterday. If I mess up and feel like I just want to hide away and cry, I remind myself that God’s Grace is new each day. Tomorrow you will have a chance to do better, having learned lessons from what went wrong today.
Make a list of each hour of the day – you will be surprised at how much time we actually have at our disposal. Next to each hour, write down what you usually do during that time slot. This will open your eyes to the power you have to take control of each day by making each hour count.
Plan ahead. Every night before I go to bed, I pack my son’s bag for school the next day. I select our outfits to wear to school and work. You never know what unforeseen moments the next morning might bring. Being prepared brings me a sense of calmness and clarity.
Discuss your challenges with your partner, we decided that while I do my makeup in the mornings, he gets our son ready for school. This really takes the edge off mornings!
Motherhood is just one of the many examples showing that God wants to journey with us, He wants to hold our hands and make us strong when we feel we can’t do this anymore. He reminds us that we are doing His work on earth, preparing His little children for the tasks He has planned for them. God will not let you do this on your own.
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Jurgen’s Morphine Experience!

So this is what our little family was up to Saturday night…

This one having a ball on Morphine after yet another ear infection.

Rushing to Wilgers Trauma (I’m sure the other cars on Lynnwood Road must have thought I was in labor), we were worried sick; he didn’t stop screaming- and then this happened.

Apparently there will always be a bright side with toddlers! 🙂

#icantfeelmyface!

 

All Good again!!