Monday, December 13, 2010

Still Human!

Lately life has been stressful for me!! Too much to do and not enough time to do it. Work is busy, which is good, but there are no breaks there. Home life is very busy with Christmas preparations, cleaning, making cookies (for others), events, paying bills, laundry etc......So there's no break there!! Then of course I have to add in my health and fitness plan. Still putting that first, even while struggling with injuries (Tennis Elbow and sore knees). So no break for enjoying the season! Just too much to do!!

Yesterday I did something that I don't ever remember doing...

My sister was coming to my house for our annual Christmas cookie baking day. We usually make enough cookies for her friends and co-workers and for my friends, neighbors, co-workers and for the rest of the family. So that's a lot of cookies!

I got up at 6:00am and got started. First of all my house was a mess, I was wrapping presents so there was wrapping paper, ribbon and boxes everywhere. So I hurried and got that cleaned up. This year, we were baking sugar cookies, so my plan was to get the cookies baked before she got there, well most of them anyway. I thought I would get most of them done and then when she got there I would continue baking while she decorated. The next thing I needed to do was make lunch and finally I had to get to 3 stores.....all before 1:00pm.

I was doing pretty well until she called at 11:00 to let me know that she was leaving early and would be at my house at noon. ONE WHOLE HOUR EARLY!!!

Now I'm the kind of hostess that when I invite you to my house, everything is done so that we can just enjoy ourselves. I never want a guest, family or anyone, to come and see me cooking or cleaning while they are there. That just never happens!!

Her phone call sent me into a super ultra fast frenzy mode!!! At the point of her call, I was just finishing up my house stuff and I had most of the cookies baked and was getting ready to go to the store. So I put it in fast mode, got myself ready and was out the door. I was on the road and a couple of blocks away when I remembered I needed something from the house. So back I went. Then I was back on the road again and just got out of our neighborhood and remembered I forgot something really important and I went back again!

Can I tell you that by this time, I was a little stressed!!!

So I prayed and prayed to God to help me.....I prayed that at the first store, my favorite parking spot would be available, it's right next to the front door....Nope!!! It was full and I had to go to the big lot....So I ran to the store...Rushed in and one of their workers greeted me at the door and started to ask me if she could help, but I guess the look on my face said it all, because she just let me fly right on by!!!

I got my business done there and went to the next store, just praying they had everything I needed. I walked the entire store and did not find one thing I was looking for.....Then an answered prayer came and I saw the section I was looking for. It was really like a bright light came on and showed me the way. I was really excited!!! I got my stuff from there and went to my final destination. Again, I prayed for an up front parking spot. So I got closer to where I wanted to park and I see it, I saw MY SPACE...It's all mine....I'm in the clear.....It's MINE...and then...and then... and then.....this big ole SUV rushes in and takes my spot!!

Can I tell you....that made me MAD!!!!

So I get into the store and the next thing I know I'm in the car. You know I was in such a state that I don't really remember anything about my shopping experience...

Some how I got through the store, paid for my stuff and was in my car without me even realizing what was going on. The only thing I became aware of was a cheap bag of generic Cinnamon Bears. Dun Dun DUNNNNN!!!! (That's my dramatic music ~ Get it?)

Here's where the human part comes in and the part where this never happens to me (at least not in the last year)......I tore open that bag of Cinnamon Bears and stuffed them one after another into my mouth. I literally went from an out of my mind high stress, to a place of consciousness, an almost serene state, a place of peace in seconds!!! (Birds would be chirping at this moment) I could feel myself calm down. The Cinnamon Bears were like a crazy red squishy drug!!! Quite wonderful at the time!!!

After about 12 bears, I finally woke up and realized what I had done. I was shocked and embarrassed!! I wondered what others may have thought of this crazy women stuffing bears into her mouth...of course while I was doing this, everything and everybody were invisible. In my manic episode there was no one else around, cept me and my bears.....

Anyway, I recovered from that, raced home and started cooking my soup. My sister arrived while I was in the process of that and the rest of the house was a mess!!! Probably a little shocking to her, but it's not my fault...she was early!!

We ended up frosting 49 fancy cookies for her and did not even get mine done. All that work, all day long for her to take home her fancy little treats....Hummmmm!!!! (The music from Friday the 13th comes to mind)

Needless to say, I cleaned up a little after she left and sat in my hubby's chair, with my blankie and a movie. (Why do guys always have the best chair in the house?!?) Anyway, about 2 nano seconds later I was asleep. Hubby comes home from work a couple of hours later and the house is a disaster!!! Usually I would have had it all buttoned up and shining before he got home. I'm sure HE was a little shocked by what he walked into. Oh well!!!!

All this to say.....Are you taking care of yourself during this busy season? Obviously I did not take care of myself yesterday. Let me tell you that won't be happening again!!! I need to put myself first. Fortunately I did read my Bible, exercised and I ate good food ~Except for them bears ~ Ahem!

I thought I would list some things to think about and areas that might need some attention. Getting these things done may help smooth the rough patches in your day. Help you feel like you've accomplished something for yourself. Help you so things won't pile up and make you crazy. Those bears are always calling your name!!!

Here's some ideas.....

  • Fix your boo boo's ~ Do you have hang nails and paper cuts on your hands? Get the ointment out and bandaids and take care of them today!! Hey how about some lotion? Not a bad idea to slather it on!!!
  • Bills ~ Do they need to be paid? Get them done early, so you don't have to run around and get them paid later!!
  • Laundry ~ Is it over flowing? Do one load at a time. Wash then fold. Don't do what I used to do...Wash a ton and then fold the mound. That is discouraging!!
  • Gas in your car? Are you getting close to empty? Go now and get it filled up!!
  • Injuries - Nurture them!!!
  • Food out of whack ~ Take the time to plan your food. Don't hit the fast food drive thru - EVER!!!
  • Exercise ~ Are you doing it? Keep your focus!! It really helps to relieve your stress!!!
  • House Clean ~ Get everyone in your household to help!! Keep it picked up daily!!
  • Work ~ Work as diligently as your can, don't let things pile up. Keep focused!!
  • Pets in the house ~ If so, pet them, they are great stress relievers! Make sure to give them a bath if needed and a good brushing. They will love you for it!
  • Give and get hugs ~ Makes you feel warm and squishy inside!!
  • Time ~ Allow yourself some "YOU" time to rest, read, get a pedicure, maybe a massage. You need it!!
  • Do old fashion stuff with your kids....string some popcorn, make paper chains, make ornaments, go caroling, bake...cookies...hum..., make candy, put on a Christmas play, visit someone in the hospital, visit your neighbor - get to know your neighbors, make things for people, let the kids send the Christmas cards. Just do it together, have some fun and enjoy this amazing season!

I almost cracked yesterday....Not a good thing! I know I am doing a lot of good things for myself, but obviously need to take a closer look at what I have on my schedule. Definitely over worked with too much to do. Not enough fun stuff!!

For the rest of the season, I'm looking at what's most important, cutting out the rest and I'm going to ENJOY myself!!

How about you? I would love to hear your comments on how you are doing!!!

Keep focused!


  1. I'm the same way- I want the house perfect and everything ready, even if it's just my parents. "Me" time is so important but I still struggle getting it in sometimes. I consider working out a good "me" time thing, and when I get to read and relax!

  2. I also want my house to be "just right" when people come, but this is such a busy, stressful time of the year that we need to cut ourselves some slack. You worked hard, so pat yourself on the back.

    As for me--I'm behind this year, and I need to get moving. It makes me stressed, but since I'm in the Allan's challenge again, I am more motivated not to eat my usual "stress relievers"--sugar and chocolate. Take care of yourself in these busy times.

  3. Wow, that was a great post! I am sure it was therapeutic, too, to get all that happened off your chest. I love your tips, too for taking care of yourself (ourselves). But, the other thing that I want to comment on is how your post is also deeply reflective. Yep, you ate some bears, but you “woke up” and stopped it. Right then. Good for you. Plus, you “allowed” yourself to have a chaotic house and rested at the end. Good for you, here, too! Your processing through the day with this blog posts will help you remain focused (and of course plan), but it is a great reminder to all of us. Give us a break.

    Now for me: I may be the only weight loss blogger who is not stressed by the holidays. Really. Not at all. I think it is an age thing (remember I am in my middle fifties), because I certainly had my share of stress and intense holiday seasons when I was younger and my kids were little. But., I am different now. Making those Christmas cookies (last week) with the grandbabies (I posted about this) is one of the most endearing memories from THIS holiday season that I have. It was fun to be with them and do this together. They were so proud of their decorating, too.

    But there are other reasons that the holidays are not stressful for me: as I downsize in size, I am downsizing (I will write a post about this later). I LOVE Christmas lights (and we have lots), but hubby and I went through all of our Christmas items and gave half away. It was so little stress to put up a tree and our now few decorations. We also do not exchange gifts with our adult children or adult family members anymore, instead we donate all of our allotted funds for gift giving to some kid of deserving organization or individual. This has reduced the stress tremendously.

    So, Joy: I hope you will slow down (because you were a race horse) and enjoy these precious moments of the holidays. Your reflective post helps me to think you will, but I will check in on you to see how you are doing. Your blogger friend, Michele

  4. Oh, my. I think I've had several of those days in the past couple of months. I am doing pretty well except for the traffic in town. I get so much anxiety when there's too much traffic or too many people (mall is out for me this time of year - hello, online shopping!) Sounds like you are getting things in order for the rest of the season. Good to hear!

  5. I think there's a reason your name is joy!!! You have this way of making me laugh so hard that my children come running to see what I'm reading. I always end up reading your posts twice!!!

    I know what you mean...I've had quite a day myself. I'm stressed out and not doing what I need to do for myself...other than eating right and exercising. But honestly, I need some time with the Lord and in the word. I'm cranky and I'm sure everyone around me would greatly benefit if I took some time for myself. I'm on it!!! Thanks joy!!!

  6. Such a great post, Joy. If I had to be totally honest with myself, I would confess that I've been doing horribly. *sigh* I hope once the holidays are behind me that I can focus more on taking care of myself instead of taking care of everyone and every little thing around me. I'm proud of you for turning yourself around and getting back on track. You inspire me. :)