Finding Calm in a Busy, Modern Life

Finding Calm in A Busy, Modern Life.
When parenthood hits you are in a bubble of bliss. You have your new baby, life is a miracle full of love and all is good in the world.
And then, as it does, life starts to get busy. Babies grow and life becomes a bustle of rushing around.

I don’t know about your family life but my day to day can get pretty hectic!

Kids to get ready for school and kindy, lunch boxes to make, hair to do, uniforms to have ready, sibling fights to negotiate, then there is after school sports and activities, work schedules, housework, dinners to organise, meals to plan, shopping to do, appointments, events and then throw in some life events, accidents, unexpected hiccups and the odd illness or day care bug and of course the blog to look after and write and is it any wonder that life can get a little stressful? 

Stress as we know (and hear in the media) can be very harmful to our bodies.
Stress activates the body’s sympathetic nervous system and our inbuilt fight or flee response.
It is a very powerful design and does of course serve us well in times of emergency however activating this as often as we do in our stressful, busy modern lives can be very detrimental to our health.
In fact many experts now say we can eat as healthy as we like and exercise well but if we are not also making reducing stress an equal priority we can still get serious health issues.  

So as a busy mum when the new year clicked over to 2014 I decided my word for the year was going to be CALM…..
My mind, my body and my health had to start taking some priority if I was going to be healthy and happy and a great role model to my kids. I needed to bring some quiet, some peace, plenty of time outs and self nurturing and as much relaxation as possible into my day to day life. I needed more CALM.

So how do we get more calm into our busy lives?

Here are some of my TOP TIPS for blessing our lives with more beautiful calm.

  • Get organised. Yes, it really does work. Have a calendar (I have two) plan out each day and major events/appointments/sporting activities/school dates/bill due dates/fee due dates/birthdays/banking reminders. Have it somewhere visible that you see all the time and use it as the great tool it is. If you’re a blogger you could even have one just for your blog and what you need to do/post and when.
  • Have an organised space in the home for all the kids activities. I have a rack with containers for school (including bags), kindy, ballet, swimming, gymnastics etc. It makes life so much smoother to know everything for each activity is right in its spot when you need it and always has that organised home to go to. I find it also empowers the kids to look after their own stuff and also know where to put it each day.
  • Bake it Sundays. This cuts out so much stress! Each Sunday I spend quite a few hours baking muffins, biscuits, quiches, sausage rolls or pies type things and then freeze them for the busy school/kindy week ahead. I can then take out what I need as needed for lunchboxes.
    I also try and make a few dinner options for “those night” things like a cannelloni, quiche, and lasagne, bolognaise sauce that I can freeze for any easy meal during the week.
  • Mummy Time. Oh yeah, we soooo need it!! This can be as simple as an Epsom salt bath for 10 minutes, reading a book somewhere quiet, a walk on the beach, a gym session, yoga class, art class, dance class, a run around the block, catching a chai with girlfriends, making jewellery, painting, going to the cinema by yourself (and it’s not Disney), doing laps at the local pool, even cooking to music in an empty house – whatever makes you feel relaxed and full of JOY.
  • De-Clutter – it’s amazing how much better you feel when you declutter! One of my favourite books, “Does this clutter make my but look big” helped changed my life and inspired me to de clutter my life! Yes, I am still not perfect and yes I have ornaments and things and occasionally some clutter creeps in here and there but every so often we have a family culling and it always feel wonderful!
  • Insure what matters in your life.
    This can take a MASSIVE chunk of worry off your shoulders.
    Imagine rushing about your morning routine, kids in the car ready to go to where they need to go and you head down the road and the unimaginable happens someone goes right through that stop sign and hits you. You and your kids are all ok but your car, is a write off. What would you do? Who would you call? How when you still get the kids to where they needed to go, not just today but every day? You never realise how much you rely on your car for everything until you can’t.
    Trust me, I have had this exact thing happen and you guessed it, we were not insured and the other driver at fault’s insurance company only paid out the lowest market value they could find on the internet for our car. Not taking into consideration work or improvements (it was a 4 wd with accessories) and they took forever and a day too.
    We have more than enough on our plates already so take some stress away from the occasion, take out comprehensive car insuranse.
  • Have regular health and dental check ups. Yes, it might seem boring but when they find and treat things early on – it works out so much better (and cheaper) in the long run!
    This year I got both my kids well known to our local dentist, they have had check ups and cleans and talks with him about the importance of brushing, plus he gave them barbie toothbrushes which as you can imagine went down rather well!
  • Get on top of that paperwork. Did I hear you groan? Or maybe you are one of those super ocd organised people that I wish I was!! Yes, it can be heavy going but really a draw, cupboard overflowing with folders or a filing cupboard you just thing eergh about is not aiding to your new zeness! If you can afford to (and need to) hire a bookkeeper! Or make a day once a month to go through it all and keep it organised and filed and shred what you don’t need and if its not glossy – turn into super urber useful garden compost J
  • Be Prepared. Some might laugh that know me well but yes, I like to be prepared! I have an extensive first aid kit in the car, one for the pram and one at home. In my boot I will have an umbrella, torch, mini tool kit, rope, 2 towels, change of clothes for both kids (including undies), spare thongs for everyone, money for a phone call, picnic blanket, bottles of water, non-perishable emergency snacks for the kids, wipes, sanitiser, even a toilet roll! Just In Case. Haha
    Yes, I guess it is a little dorky maybe even OCD of me ( I am a little bit) but you would not believe how many times over the years it has come in handy! And not just for me, sometimes for other people I have helped!
  • Teach Your Kids Your Phone Number & Address. Easy to overlook put this is a really simple thing that could be very important if they ever got lost.
  • Tee up Emergency Parent Pick Up Friends. Ever had that day when something happened and you couldn’t get to the school in time to collect your kids? Or needed to drop them off too early?
    A really great idea is to form a small network with some parents you trust that live near you where you can swap each other’s details and organise to be a drop off/pick up back up option when something important comes up. This really will REALLY reduce stress in your life. There is such relief in knowing if you get stuck, can’t get away from work, your car breaks down, an appointment runs over or is too early that you have someone you can call who can help!

Of course there are many more things you can do to reduce stress in day to day life, these are just a few that I have found really help me. Would love you to leave any tips you too have below as well for everyone!

Live well. Eat Beautiful. Stay Calm. Be Happy.


This post is sponsored by Youi

Christmas Love with Myer Giftorium

Last week I got to do something pretty fun.
Kids Business invited me to a special bloggers event the launch of the Myer #Giftorium!Now I LOVE Christmas, it is one of the happiest times of the year for me, the decorations, the gift wrapping, the gift buying, the shopping, the making, the cooking, the relaxing, THE FOOD, the family and friends getting together, the shared meals and festivities, the events and outings, the Christmas lights, the Santa photo's, the decorations ( I said that already didn't I...?Well they are pretty wonderful, maybe I am just ornament obsessed ;) 
My favourite ornaments for our tree this year, personalised baubles for my girls, what a wonderful idea Myer!
These are available through all Myer stores after November 8th
A beautiful princess carriage - sigh - and an event calender that is timeless, classic and has no sugar filled treats that the kids would want to eat at 6 in the morning #winner

I caught a train, by myself,  from the Sunshine Coast to Brisbane for the event and it felt really odd at first as I always do everything with my kids, like everything. My kids are my world and I love spending time with them so when anything special or fun comes up I find it hard to think of the experience without them.
But, since making looking after me a priority in my life too, doing things just for me and getting to know me time all by myself all over again I am making the effort to take adventures on my own too.
At first I felt a little guilty, then peaceful, then exhilarated and when I saw all the amazing fun for kids at the new Myer Giftorium I felt guilt all over again, ok, maybe only briefly I was enjoying myself too much!
I even got an AWESOME arm workout striding through the city to my train carrying all my goodies! And PS a soda stream PLAY is an awesome idea for a Christmas present for the kiddos!! Watch my BLOG for some very exciting refined sugar FREE recipes coming soon or look up my PINK LEMONADE recipe in the search button.
I was very impressed with the whole event organised by Kidsbusiness it was beautifully set out, the shopping was incredible and there was magicians, face painters, balloon twisters, personal shoppers called gifticians and so much helpful staff to make Christmas shopping relaxed and stress free.
Yes, I am all for anything that helps us bring more CALM and JOY into our lives.
From November 8th all 67 Myer stores will have their own Giftorium, personal shopper experiences, gift wrapping, Santa, Vista print (I am SO excited about that!!) and staff in funky Christmas themed outfits and weekend entertainment for the kids.
Really I think Myer is going all out to bring the magic back to Christmas and as a big fan (or the child inside maybe) I was in awe and cannot wait to take my kids to both the Brisbane Myer and our local Sunshine Coast Myer store this Christmas and do some Christmas shopping in amongst all the fun.
Some of the themed sections of the Giftorium which features over 2.2 million products include:
Miracle Mum
Glamour Gran
Dapper Dad
Trendy Young Things
Kids Cubby
Paws Corner (yes, the pets have a gift section!)
Globe Trotter
Techno Freak
Food Fanatic (Oh I saw all sorts of lovely kitchen things here!!)
Hop, Skip, Juice (for health & Fitness fans - oh yeah, this section rocked)
and all the Christmas ornaments, decorations and pieces - beautiful!

Check out the hashtag #GIFTORIUM across social media to see pictures from right around Australia!Plus in store they will have a huge digital screen showcasing all photos from Instagram with that hashtag!Why not check it out and then join the fun :)

You can see my instagram snaps at @Bekmugridge


Note: Opinions are my own,  I have received goods in payment.
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