20 Tips for a Healthy Pregnancy

This article contributed by one of this blog's partners. Now that you’re expecting, it’s important to look after yourself. If changes feel difficult, keep in mind that they benefit your little one! Here are 20 quick tips for a healthy pregnancy.  Healthy Pregnancy Tips Be sure to get an ultrasound early on to ensure that your baby’s development is progressing normally. It’s normal to get one around week 9 although anytime between 8 and 12 weeks is considered standard. Not a fan of fruits and vegetables? Now is a great time to start adding them to your diet. Create a healthy exercise habit if you haven’t done so already. Remember to get your doctor’s OK before beginning, and ease your way into your new activity to prevent sore muscles. If you smoke, stop right away. Get support if you need it. Take prenatal vitamins, and ensure that your brand contains at least 400 mcg of folic acid. Avoid exposure to chemicals that could harm you or your baby. Have a cat? … [Read more...]

Please Read: Your Chance to Help Climate Change

We’ve all seen the distressing photos.  Polar ice caps gradually disappearing, and the fallout it means for polar bears.  One of many global problems we’ve seen result from climate change.  It’s the heart breaking image I always picture when this topic comes up. CO₂ and Climate Change:  The Problem Left to its own devices, nature actually has a beautiful system of restoration.  Our lush forests are amazing in their restorative powers! They permanently remove CO2 from the atmosphere.  Plants can split CO2 into carbon and oxygen, releasing Oxygen back into the air for us to breathe. But humans have disturbed this natural ecological balance.  We are seeing more and more negative consequences caused by an increase in CO₂.  At mankind’s current rate of pollution, nature can’t keep up. CO₂ and Climate Change:  A Solution That Can Help In regards to climate change: "Technically, there is a solution.  With our help, nature could do the job." ~Hans-Peter Schmidt, Carbon … [Read more...]

7 Things You Should Know Before Getting Backyard Chickens

We’ve been the proud owners of backyard chickens for 2 ½ years now.  Although we don’t know it all, we have learned a few unexpected things about this venture.  If you are debating about buying some peeps and taking the plunge, here's what to know about backyard chickens.  A few helpful tips that may help you make your decision. There’s definitely many benefits to owning these enjoyable and funny birds, and we are still very happy with ours.  However, there are both good and bad aspects to having them roam your backyard. # 1 - They Will Trash Your Yard First up for what to know about backyard chickens:  Let’s talk about that backyard.  Prepare yourself, cause the girls are gonna trash it. Sure, you could keep your backyard chickens in their coop at all times.  It would certainly be tidier.  But in order to get the full benefit of those extra-nutrient rich, free range eggs - you gotta let the girls out. The upside is that they have so much fun around the yard.  … [Read more...]

10 Tips for Helping Your Child Live a Healthy Life

Growing up in the 70’s and 80’s, we had fewer screens and safer environments to play outside.  Since then, obesity among U.S. children has tripled.  In honor of September being Fruit & Veggies More Matters® month, here are some quick tips to help your kids on the right path to healthy living. In addition to eating fruits and vegetables daily as part of a balanced diet, there are many other ways parents can help their children adopt healthy habits.  I'm sure you know most of these... but it's helpful sometimes for an overview and reminder. The non-profit, grant funded project SOPHE helps communities improve access to healthy food, and decrease their chance of chronic diseases.  They have offered the following 10 tips to help your child live a healthy life. Tip #1: Make eating fruits and vegetables easy Prepare grab-and-go packets of fruits and vegetables to take on busy days. Provide already packaged fruits or veggies like oranges, apples, grapes, or snap peas. Tip #2: … [Read more...]

Home Lighting and its Effects on Your Health

Making choices about home lighting is all about style and function. You choose locations and fixtures based on where you need light, and how the lamps look. Have you ever considering how your lighting may affect your health though? If you are getting concerned that your lights are a health concern, do a little research and arrange to have an electrical inspection to make some changes. Your Sleep Patterns One of the big ways your lights can affect your health is how they alter your sleep patterns. In particular, it's all about the color spectrum in your light bulbs. Modern CFL and LED bulbs, as well as mobile device screens, all produce light that is much heavier towards the blue end of the spectrum. This tends to keep you awake, and will make it harder to sleep when the lights do finally go out. It's recommended that you stay away from device screens before bed, and replacing light bulbs with those designed to produce light that is more yellow. Look for bulbs labeled "soft" or … [Read more...]

Why You Should Have Your House Checked for Pests

I'll apologize in advance for the creepy photos! This post was submitted to me by a partner of this blog, and it's an important topic for any home owner to consider.  Here's why it's a good idea to have your home inspected for pests on a regular basis, and what to expect when a pest control professionals visits your home. Why having your home inspected for pests is a good idea You want to look after your home, and to make sure it's a safe place to live. This is why it's a good idea to make sure it remains a pest free environment. Pests like termites can do a lot of damage to your property before you even realize they are there. Hiring a pest control expert to inspect your property on a regular basis can help prevent unwanted damage and cost. In this article we are going to look at the damage that can be caused by pests such as termites. We are also going to explain the benefits of pest control inspections and consider how often you should have them carried out. Damage … [Read more...]

4 Ways to Nurture & Protect Your Skin This Summer

May being Melanoma Awareness Month is always a timely reminder, as we head into the lovely summer months!  I adore sunny summer days, and lots of playing outside.  But skin cancer is a real threat, and it's a topic that hits close to home for me.  My husband and I both have had run-ins with skin cancer, and it’s not fun.  And as most people know, it’s usually preventable. Add in the fact that sun can dry you out and prematurely age you likka prune... and it's definitely worth taking a look at a few ideas to nurture and protect your skin this time of year! 4 Ways to Nurture & Protect Your Skin At this stage in my life, I have many reasons to take good care of my skin.  Being outdoors in the sunshine is one of my favorite things, so avoiding the sun is not an option.  I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks to nurture your skin, protect yourself against skin cancer, and promote anti-aging as much as possible. Protect it.  Baby it.  It's the only skin you've got! # 1 Use a Sport … [Read more...]

PSA: That Time I Almost Hit a Middle-Schooler With My Car

Stunned.  That's how I still feel.  Last week when driving my middle school aged daughter to school... I almost hit one of her classmates who was crossing the street.  And  I've been stewing over the frightening "rule loophole" this fell into, ever since. Aside from almost hurting a child with my car, the other reason it was so scary was that neither of us technically did anything wrong. I was at the stoplight, needing to turn right.  She was waiting at the same stoplight, waiting for the pedestrian light to turn green so she could cross.  I'm typically a super cautious driver, but my daughter was almost late for school. The light was red.  I decide to go ahead and turn right.  A perfectly legal move, right? Half way through my turn, the light turns green. The pedestrian sign turns green. And that little girl... only a few feet away from my car, but completely fixated on that pedestrian signal... steps right off the curb into my pathway.  I *almost* hit her.  It was … [Read more...]

“Pulses” ~ 11 Foods That are Cheap, Delicious, & Good for You

Aside from checking my heart rate, talk of "Pulses" was completely new to me.  But once I had a quick lesson on this low fat, high-protein, affordable, good for the environment food... I was instantly a [renewed] fan! Pulses are the edible seeds of plants in the legume family, which grow in pods and come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Pulses Food List The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recognizes 11 types, check out this pulses food list: dry beans dry broad beans dry peas chickpeas cow peas pigeon peas lentils Bambara beans vetches lupins pulses nes ("not elsewhere specified") Ok, honestly I've only heard of about 5 of those.  How sad.   They are healthy, nutritious and easy to cook with.   They are a key ingredient in traditional cooking around the world and are used in soup, stew, falafel, hummus, curry, dal, tacos and more. Here are 4 reasons why you (and I) should care about pulses. 4 Reasons … [Read more...]

Papa Murphy’s Law Brings Calm to my Hectic Week

I work a full time job, have two young kids, and adore pursing my blogging hobby.  My schedule does allow me to have Fridays off of work. It’s my blissful catch-up day!  As a mini-celebration of the weekend’s arrival, we eat pizza every Friday night.  Our absolute favorite choice is Papa Murphy’s take and bake pizza. Papa Murphy’s Law:  The exact opposite of Murphy’s Law!  When life serves you chaos, Papa Murphy’s Law of Delicious is your solution.  An easy food option made from fresh, quality ingredients allows peace to reign at dinnertime. Sure, I could cook dinner on Friday night.  But by the end of our hectic week, and my finally having a chance to tidy up the house… I love just custom ordering a fresh pizza for my family. No mess.  No fuss.  Super fresh ingredients.  Everyone gets exactly what they want.  A calm, relaxing Friday night together at home!  Papa Murphy’s Law works like a dream for us. Gourmet Pizza for the Parents, Mini Murph® for the Kids Once we learned … [Read more...]