Hey iPhone Families – Want to restrict your kids’ screen time?

Raise your hand…how many of you are tired of fighting with your kids about how long they are spending on their phones?

Well…if you haven’t checked out the screen time feature on your iPhone…you should!

It is so helpful and eye opening. A few minutes here and there really adds up.

In this house, technology is a privilege not a right.

My family all has iPhones so it’s easy to set screen time restrictions on my kids’ phones. Are they happy with me? At first, no they weren’t at all. But now they are used to it and because I have control of when and how long they get to spend on any app, once they are out of time they seem to find something else to do.

The nice thing is you can control what rating of movies they watch, if cuss words are allowed, you could restrict them from using certain apps while in school or shut all apps off when you know your kids will be driving home from school.

Here are more screenshots if you want to see all the options you have. Check it out. If you have kids, you should apply some of these restrictions to their phone. As long as I’m paying for it, it’s on my time.

Many settings you can control on your kids’ phones….

Eye opening to see time spent in apps.

App limits is bonus!

What is the appropriate amount of time is the question? I struggle as a parent having my kids on social media. So much to process and see at a young age. I didn’t have social media as a child/teen growing up and honestly glad I didn’t. So while I can control it…it will be limited. I want my kids present with those present and many things on social media don’t need to be in my kids’ faces at their ages. How do you handle social media with their children? I would love to hear from you.

Do what is right, not what is easy.

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Sharing the load…aka housework

When one partner is unhappy about the housework, the stress level in the home can increase. If you ask a spouse what drives them batty in their home, it’s usually that one isn’t doing there share of the work. Many couples fight over who does what around the house.

The greatest marriages are built on teamwork. – Fawn Weaver

Marriage is teamwork. Part of the teamwork is sharing the work around the house. As a couple, you get to decide what works best for your family. There is no one-size-fits-all. Decide what works best for you as a couple. Set priorities as a couple. Many couples look at what is important or needs to be done daily, weekly, monthly differently. Discuss who is handling which chore on their own and which ones will be handled as a team. If you need more hands, recruit your kids. Rather than running ragged making your children’s lives easy, you can involve the kids in chores. Kids can and should help. The load can be heavy at times so utilize your whole tribe.

My husband and I both work full-time so in my mind everything around the house and raising our kids needs to be shared equally. Now don’t get me wrong here..some weeks he does more and some weeks I do depending on what we have going on. But for the most part, it’s pretty equal. Here is how we split it up and what works for us. My husband does the cooking, I do the laundry and the rest is shared. We both clean, we both grocery shop, we both cut the grass, we both run the kids to practices/school, etc. He handles the garden but I do more with setting up appointments and keeping everything with our kids’ schedules/our schedules organized, I pay the bills, etc. In the end, this setup has worked for us for almost 17 years. Now that our kids are older, they have daily chores. When it comes time for cleaning, the 4 of us work together.

We are a team and when we work together, it gets done faster. – Mama Bear TH

I’ve always been thankful that when I met Cory he already knew how to clean, was a great cook and did his own laundry. It made transitioning into married life easy. Sooo parents, you aren’t helping your kids by not having them help around the house. They need to know how to cook, clean, do their laundry and pick up after themselves. Someday they will move out and their future roommate at college, partner or spouse will most definitely thank you!!!

It’s not your job to make your kids’ lives easier. It’s your job to prepare them for adulthood. – Dr. Laura

 

Celebrate the wins

Last night I had the evening to spend with just my daughter since my hubby and son had a pitching lesson and baseball practice.

The evening wasn’t anything “big”. She helped me organize my office, we did a little shopping and had dinner together.

On the way home we talked then we were listening to some jams when out of nowhere my daughter said, “Mom, I love you.” This girl tells me she loves me every night when she goes to bed but out of the blue, anyone with a teenager knows this is big. I asked where that came from and she said I love that we do things together. She went on to say she loves how we play games together, how we talk, etc. She said some girls at school say they don’t do anything with their parents and she was just thinking she is lucky. Melt my heart!

It doesn’t have to be anything big or expensive you do together. It really is the little things that mean a lot to kids.

Not everyday do I feel like I’m doing this mom gig right but last night I sure felt like a winner. It’s these special moments that make me proud. I hope my daughter keeps wanting to spend time with her momma, keeps playing games with her parents and keeps talking to me through all her teen years. In the meantime, I will keep celebrating these wins – these special moments with my kids!

“In the end, kids won’t remember the fancy things you bought for them, they will remember the time you spent with them.” — Kevin Heath

Listen Up, Ladies – Raising awareness about thyroid disease

A few years ago I was to the point where I was thinking about getting counseling.  (yep, I’m going to be completely honest here) I had absolutely no patience with my kids or hubby really. Any little thing left sitting out in the house, kids didn’t do what I wanted the split second I asked —  I was losing my patience in a flipping second.  I remember telling my husband there is something wrong with me. I could feel the anxiety rise in my chest and I remember thinking my kids are getting older and easier, why is my patience level getting less and less? The anxiety and patience level is what caused me concerns and all I could think was something was wrong with me mentally. My thoughts never went to something wrong with me medically. I was too young for that. What I wasn’t paying attention to is the many other issues I had going on that were all linked together.

It took my mom breaking out with a hives like rash all over her body, losing her hair and seeing multiple doctors before she was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s. Her doctor recommended all her daughters getting checked.

“Health is like money. We never have a true idea of its value until we lose it.” — Josh Billings

Hashimoto’s – What the heck is that?

I googled it and the tears started to flow. OMG! I knew I had it and I wasn’t flipping crazy. Every article I stumbled across would start with something like this.

Are you tired all the time even after getting a full night’s sleep? Do you find yourself forgetting where your keys are or where you parked your car? Or perhaps you’re dealing with cold hands/feet, hair loss, difficulty losing weight, mood swings, depression, or anxiety, constipation, dry skin, heavy menstrual cycles, low sex drive or hormonal imbalances? If any of that sounds familiar, you could have Hashimoto’s, which is an autoimmune condition of your thyroid.

I HAD ALL OF THE SIGNS!  I just had no idea they were all related. I made an appointment, got tested and sure enough I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis disease. (autoimmune disease)  If you have any of the signs above, google the disease to read more about it and get tested. The list above isn’t all the signs. For example, if thyroid hormone levels are too low, they can affect the hormonal mechanisms that regulate the menstrual cycle and trigger ovulation. This can lead to infertility, which can affect up to 50 percent of women with Hashimoto’s, according to research published in the International Journal of Endocrinology.

Me and my hubby

Thankful for this guy and his patience with me through this journey.

It’s a slow progressing disease. I think as mom’s we push off the signs. For example, being tired. I figured that was from a busy job, running to practices and games with my kids, etc. I had some extra pounds on me but figured I wasn’t trying hard enough to lose the extra weight from having the kids. I had dry skin. I went to 3 different doctors that diagnosed me with eczema. I had heavier cycles but thought I just had that change after having my kids. I went through a terrible hair loss in 2002. We had bought a home in January, got married in May, I graduated in August and started losing my hair in September. I went to multiple doctors then and all said stress. That I had multiple life-changing events all at once. I never got my thickness of my hair back since that time so I really think this time in my life is when the onstart occured.  I had a reason for all the signs except the anxiety and lack of patience.

Genetics, autoimmune diseases, and being female increase your risk

Hashimoto’s disease affects more women than men. As a largely “invisible” disease in the early stages, Hashimoto’s is often only discovered during a routine exam when thyroid hormone levels are found to be abnormally low. As Hashimoto’s disease tends to run in families, you may be well served to have yourself tested if someone in your family has the disease or you experience the classic signs of hypothyroidism. If you think you have it, insist on the testing. Hashimoto’s disease places you at increased risk of not only thyroid cancer but colorectal cancer as well. Early diagnosis and treatment lead to better outcomes.

90% of those with thyroid disease have Hashimoto’s 

Why is this stat important? Because if you only have thyroid disease generally just taking medicine helps. If you have Hashimoto’s there are diet changes you need to make as well to feel your best and treat the disease.

Life with Hashimoto’s

I am by no means complaining about this disease. I know life could be much worse. My post is to serve to raise awareness as I wish I had been diagnosed YEARS earlier and it’s a very common disease in women.

I went from just taking a multi-vitamin to taking 7 pills a day. (I’m telling ya needing a pill organizer made me feel a tad old.) It’s been a roller coaster ride with balancing my levels/meds. I FEEL so much better than I did 3 years ago. I have lost those extra pounds, I have patience/less anxiety, I’m not tired like I used to be, etc. I have consistently had to increase my dosage over the past 3 years trying to find the balance of levels in the range and feeling my best. I can certainly tell now when my levels are off. The immediate signs when my levels are off is falling asleep early evening or getting testy. It’s become a joke in my home that if my “cat back” comes out I need to get my levels tested. I am still getting blood work done every 6 weeks to watch my levels.  I am by no means “fixed” but I have improved.

before and after of hair

My current hair condition! With and without extensions.

I recently went to a dermatologist because my hair loss is a struggle. (I want back what hair I had.) You might be thinking from my posts my hair looks great. Ya, thankfully I have a sister that is a talented stylist and disguised my struggle with extensions.

I’m still challenged with my diet. One of the first things the doctor told me and if you research you will find is gluten is an issue. I’ve cut that out but now as I research this disease more I’m finding if you still aren’t feeling your best to try cutting diary. I look for more changes to be made soon as I really want to get to the bottom of my hair loss issues.

Great book – http://thyroidbook.com/

Moving Forward

If you have any of the signs, I recommend asking for the test. If you have been diagnosed, please share what has worked for you!  Email me, message me in the comments, etc. I’d love to hear about your journey with Hashimoto’s.

 

Step out of your comfort zone…

Psychology says: Go with the choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that’s going to help you grow.

Isn’t that the truth?  Six years ago, I was working at a great company. I started there young and had 15 years in towards my retirement. I had the flexibility to take off whenever I wanted with my family, great people, great benefits and extra perks. But I felt stuck. I loved design work but being the only web designer in the office, there wasn’t a lot of opportunity to move up from there. I was sitting in a place where I was about halfway through my career but wasn’t sure I would be happy doing the same thing for 15 more years. I wasn’t exactly looking for another job either.  My father-in-law actually spotted a job in the paper and said I think you should apply. I did and the job was offered to me.

I struggled for a couple weeks on what to do.  Was the grass really greener on the other side?  Or would I leave and wish I would have stayed?  It was scary to think about leaving the only company I had ever worked for. It was scary to think about leaving my retirement when if I stayed I would be eligible to retire at 48 years old. (WOW, right???)  It was scary to think about starting over with my leave balances on annual and sick when after 15 years I had quite the stash and small kids at home that might need me. I had sooo much FEAR. But inside my heart kept telling me to face my fears. Try something new. This new position gave me the opportunity to get back into IT (Information Technology) where my prior had been moved into their Communications section. I seeked the advice from many mentors I have in my life and not one of them said to stay.

One of my biggest fears was switching retirements. One day in this transition period of trying to decide what to do, I dropped my vehicle off for an oil change and took the shuttle to work. I was talking to the older gentlemen about my decision and his response was touching when I voiced my concern about retirement.

Why are you basing a decision today on something that far into the future?  What if you never make it to retirement?  Would you regret not taking this opportunity now?

He had a great point.  And realistically at age 48 I wouldn’t retire solely. I have kids that would still be in college then.

My decision — I went with the choice that scared me the most. I left my job after 15 years. I stepped out of my comfort zone and I have no regrets. I have grown so much in 6 years. I have learned so much. I’ve been extremely busy. I’ve been challenged on many levels. Getting back into IT has given me the capacity to learn so much more technology and also keep my design skills up. 

I was hired as a web developer and quickly grew into a Creative Design Manager/Web Developer position. I’ve always had a goal of managing. As projects needed to be completed and the administration saw my ability to lead, I stepped up and lead. I loved the challenges and learning new things.

Last year in February I became the Deputy Director of IT.  This past week I was promoted to Director of Information Technology.

I believe in working hard for what you want. Nothing should be given, Hardwork is noticed and will pay off.

be humble photo

The harder you work for something the greater you’ll feel about it. Step up. Work harder than your co-workers. Take on more work. It will pay off.

If you have struggled with a decision whether it’s a job change or another life changing decision to make, don’t be scared to be challenged. Don’t be scared to try something new. Don’t be scared to step out of your comfort zone. As I look back now, I can’t believe it took me so long to decide what to do. The unknown was scary. But the challenge and growth has far outweighed what I had to give up to push myself to the next level.

Ask yourself if what you are doing today is getting you closer to where you want to be tomorrow.

2019 is off to a great start. I’m loving the challenges I face each day and can’t wait to see what this year brings for me and my team. I have many goals on my list to achieve…

When have you stepped out of your comfort zone? What was the outcome? I look forward to hearing your story. 

 

#MindsetReset

I recently had a friend ask me what I listen to for inspiration. I am hooked right now on Mel Robbin’s 35 day FREE program called Mindset Reset. You can sign up here. https://melrobbins.com/mindsetreset/ If you are tired of feeling stressed, overwhelmed or have anxiety, you will enjoy her videos. 35 days of videos, emails and motivation to change your mindset. For example, who hits snooze before getting out of bed in the morning…ME! Her challenge for tomorrow is the 5-4-3-2-1 approach. No snooze. Countdown and get up!  Take the 1st 10 minutes of your day without your phone, without social media. 10 minutes for yourself to plan out your day and set your own personal goals. Her 10 ways to change your mindset is worth reading!

“You Are One Decision Away from a Completely Different Life”

I love listening on my drive to work or while on a walk or run. Let’s face it the run isn’t the most enjoyable but goes by much faster if I’m listening to an inspiring podcast.

Other podcasts I LOVE…

  1. Rachel Hollis – If you don’t follow her on FB and IG you need to. She’s down to earth and motivating. She has the Rise podcast for personal growth and the Rise Together podcasts for couples.  Both are worth subscribing to.

    “You, and only you, are ultimately responsible for who you become and how happy you are.”

  2. Jenna Kutcher – Goal Digger podcast. Subscribe. I love following her on Instagram. She is soooo real. You won’t find a woman more real than her on IG.

    “You are enough.”

  3. I also love a good book. Currently I’m reading Brendon Burchard’s “High Performance Habits.” Good read.  He also has inspiring podcasts.

    “You have the chance every single morning to make that change and be the person you want to be.”

If you sign up for the 35 day challenge, let me know what you think or if you listen in to one of the podcasts. It’s worth the time.

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