Home for the holidays

Written by: on November 16th, 2017

The holiday season is almost here. That wonderful time of year where families gather around the dinner table and enjoy each other’s company without a single argument.

Yeah, that made me chuckle too.

We all have that one relative, whether it’s a cousin, uncle, parent or grandparent that knows just what buttons to push. While the motive might be intentional or accidental, we all leave a little stressed out, angry and strongly considering getting “sick” around Christmas to avoid a repeat of what just happened.

Not every family is like the Cleavers and that’s OK! Families come in a variety of shapes and sizes. We’ve found some helpful tips to help you avoid the annual drama. If they don’t work, take the pie and run!

Focus on the positives. Let’s be realistic. The holidays tend to make everyone a little crazy.  There will never be a perfect holiday or a perfect family. Try to create moments that are special to you. The less you stress about everyone else’s wants or expectations, the more you’re able to focus on the people that matter.

Plan your exit strategy in advance. There are a variety of reasons that some families stay apart the majority of the year. Even if you adore your parents, staying at their house after years on your own can try a relationship. There is nothing wrong with making sure you have a way out to help you keep your sanity. Whether it’s volunteering to go run an errand, take out the trash or needing to leave to “go let the dog out,” don’t forget to take care of yourself. Go take that breather and then explain to grandma one more time why you don’t have any kids yet.

Find some down time for yourself. Even though the holidays will most likely be hectic, find some quiet time for yourself so you can re-energize. Or, if you are having the in-laws at your house and cannot use an exit strategy, finding the quiet time for yourself can be a lifesaver. This “catch your breath” time can come at any point during the day. Let yourself clean up by yourself, do those few dishes that can’t go in the dishwasher, go watch a movie with your kids or grandkids, or do anything else that will allow you the time to regroup and get your energy back.

Whatever your traditions may be, we hope you have a happy and safe holiday!

 

Winter Weather Ahead

Written by: on October 27th, 2017


Winter storm warnings and advisories are already being issued for many parts of the country. While snow and ice might be pretty to look at, driving in it is a whole different story. Wintry weather conditions can be tricky for even the most experienced driver and can change in an instant. Driving in these conditions should be taken seriously and approached as safely as possible. If you have new drivers in your household make sure they know the basics of winter driving before heading out on the road. Below are some tips that we all can benefit from.

Prepare for the worst
Everyone should have some basic items in their vehicle in case they find themselves stranded. Try to have at least a few of the following items: flashlight, extra batteries, blanket, water and/or Gatorade, food items such as granola bars, peanut butter, or raisins, extra jacket/coat, tire chains, jumper cables, gloves and/or shovel. An external charger for your phone would also be handy to have as well in case your vehicle will not start.

Stay up to date with conditions around you
In today’s world, there is no shortage of information. News and weather updates are just one click away. Take advantage of that by utilizing online resources to help you stay informed. Sites like wunderground.com, weather.gov or weather.com are informative and reliable. Users can download the app and make the notifications more specific to a location. They also allow you view current weather conditions easily and quickly. You can also purchase a NOAA weather radio for around $20-$40.

Check your equipment
Pre-trip inspections are a great way to make sure your equipment/car is good condition. In unfavorable weather conditions we encourage you to complete a pre, mid and post trip inspection. This will help you catch any potential issues and address them before they become a problem. Professional drivers should have a full set of tire chains in good condition. Diesel fuel will start gelling at around 32 degrees. At 10-15 degrees, it will start to gel and clog the tank and fuel filters. Make sure you are using appropriate fuel additives to prevent this from happening. For the general motoring public, you should make sure your windshield wipers are in good condition, check your lights and scrape any ice/snow off before traveling and check your tires.

Remember, ice and snow decrease the traction of your tires which makes sudden stops and even turns more difficult. Never speed on ice and increase your following distance. Black ice is transparent and often looks like the road is just wet. When temperatures are near freezing, be extra cautious and on the lookout for black ice.

 

The holidays are right around the corner and you know what that means.

Food, food and more food!

Yoga is a great, low impact exercise that will not only help you keep those extra pounds off, but help you stay calm and relaxed during all of that extra time around your in-laws. One of the great things about practicing yoga is that you don’t need a ton of space or experience to get started. There are numerous apps and sites like Kalimukti that provide virtual yoga classes making it possible to practice anywhere and anytime.

According to WebMD, practicing yoga can lower blood pressure, reduce insomnia and lessen chronic pain, such as lower back pain, arthritis, headaches and carpal tunnel syndrome.

Below are some beginning poses to get you started!

 

What: Cobblers Pose
Benefits: Opens the hips, releasing tension and promoting digestion.
Precautions: If you have a kneed or groin injury make sure to support the legs with a cushion or blanket under the knee.

 

What: Cat Pose
Benefits: Lengthens and releases tension from the spine, improving alignment and flexibility.
Precautions: If you have a neck injury make sure you are only moving the head only as far as feel comfortable.

 

 

 

What: Cow Face Pose
Benefits: Improves flexibility of the ankles, hips, thighs, shoulders, triceps and chest. This pose also promotes good posture.
Precautions: Take caution practicing this pose if you have a shoulder, neck, knee or hip injury.


 

What: Standing Forward Bend Pose
Benefits: Strengthens the legs, lengthens the hamstrings and calf muscles and stimulates the abdominal organs. This pose can help to alleviate fatigue, stress, insomnia and headaches.
Precautions: Take caution practicing this pose if you have a back injury.

 

As with anything, consistency is key for any exercise plan to be successful.

 

For more poses you can visit Kalimukti!