There’s a lot of unhappy going on out there. Buzz words that conjure the worst viral stories and make our hearts drop into the pits of our stomachs. Words that lose all authentic meaning in the moment and become emblems of pure emotion, driving parents to despair. A once normal word like ‘gorilla’ triggers conflicting feelings of anger and hopelessness. Add ‘anti-vax’, ‘forward-facing’, and ‘breastfed‘ to the list and you’re sunk; it’s evolving and eternal. And it’s also true—these things do happen and they’re awful, but reading about them on Facebook every day doesn’t empower us, it drowns us. Sure we’re drawn to the heavy, but shouldn’t we also celebrate the light? 100 happy days was my shift in focus, my commitment to happy—and it can be yours too.
Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of attending an event hosted by Sanofi Pasteur for National Seniors Day at the Richmond-Adelaide Centre in Toronto. As I entered, all I saw were the beaming faces of seniors being celebrated – and not just those personally present. A giant photo exhibit was erected, depicting images that had been sent in by the public specifically to show us all how seniors are incredible pillars of strength in our society. Inspiring quotes describing the positive impacts our senior loved ones have on society were interspersed throughout.
I wish it were 2018. If this were last fall and I had known more about the flu vaccine for seniors, I would have done things differently. When my mom died unexpectedly on Christmas morning, the reasons why were unclear. What was 100% evident is that I thought of her as living for years to come. She was the master of her home. Vibrant. Feisty. Perhaps it was child-like denial, but I didn’t know how unwell she was. Sadly, I hadn’t yet researched the myriad of special solutions for seniors that can help maintain good health.
We all have our parenting strengths, and families often go through challenges that test us. There are the small but normal developmental hurdles like the first time your child sees what will happen when they hit mommy in the face or try and cut off their own hair. There are the slightly cringe-worthy times they fall off a swing or fail a test in school. But then there are those heart-lurching, life-shifting moments when a threshold is crossed, and everyone involved has to adjust.
Communication is key for us all. It enables growth, self-confidence and drives our ability to live an enriched life. As teens transition from childhood to adulthood it can sometimes be difficult to maintain open lines of communication. But when a teen is living with a chronic disease, such as type 1 diabetes, it becomes critical to keeping them healthy.
Many teens with type 1 diabetes are often in denial. They don’t always manage their condition optimally because they just want to be normal teenagers. I interviewed Deirdre Brough, National Director, Corporate Partnerships at JDRF. Brough is a parent of a young adult who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes as a teen. In speaking to Brough about what life is like for parents of teens with diabetes, it became abundantly clear that friend-to-friend and parent-to-teen communication and respect can be very helpful for all involved.
Is life overwhelming sometimes? Ever feel the need for a refuge? Want one small space to call your own? If that sounds like you, sister, you might need a ‘she-shed’, a detached one-room bungalow with the sole purpose of providing comfort, privacy and serenity. Start planning, and before you know it, you’ll be gently closing your door on the rest of the world.
The school year is drawing to a close and summer will be here in a minute, with it the buzz of schoolkids ready to burst from the confines of their routine and be free. Never fear: a successful summer transition is within your reach. The change from classroom to summer setting need not be jarring—for you or your child (or your teen). Doing a bit of prep before summer’s arrival will ease you all into this change and set you up for a summer of grand memories and structured good times.
There was a time when Ella sang, “Summertime and the livin’ is easy,” and I believed her. Growing up in the 80’s summer was always about watching movies at the outdoor movie theatre, playing outside late into the night, and of course popsicles, lots and lots of them. And then I became a mom and my priorities shifted. To be honest summer didn’t change for me in the first few years of motherhood. I was working full-time, and if there was vacation, Yay! Otherwise there was always day care! And then I had my second little pumpkin, we moved to Toronto and I decided to work from home. That’s when reality hit me like a ton of bricks: moms hate summer.
Diala’s Kitchen is one of my favourite new food blog obsessions and after getting gluttonous on the (terrible, curse on whoever invented this) “Eat What You Want Day” with a bowl of popcorn to carry me through from breakfast to lunch, an inhaled curry pad thai for dinner, and half a huge bag of dark choc almonds to follow—let’s just say that I woke up this morning hungover, overcome with guilt, and looking to redeem myself.
Diala to the rescue with a dish that’s fresh, healthy, totally yummy, and makes me feel like I might not have to wear a T-shirt over my swimsuit during baby swimming lessons this summer.
I love a morning that runs smoothly, without having to apologize to the school administrator for being late or absent! Some days, organizing breakfast, lunches and ensuring homework gets put properly in the backpack can be stressful. This is even more the case if there are sniffles, coughs, and the constant requests to stay home from school due to illness. Colds and flu put a monkey wrench into the lives of every family. The good news is that there is an easy way to reduce the disruption! In a new clinical study, children age 4 – 12 years old who took Echinaforce Junior reported 33% fewer cold and flus. Sign me up!