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Archive for the ‘night time rituals’ Category

Image courtesy Google Images

Image courtesy Google Images

By now it’s no secret that I suffer from insomnia. I’ve blogged about it before, not too long ago in fact. Yes, I avoid excessive caffeine and alcohol after a certain hour of the day, I don’t overeat, I avoid excitement and video games before bedtime, I drink warm milk and swallow Valerian Root capsules, but none of that seems to work for me. I’ve simply come to accept the fact that sleeping is overrated and I do my best to make the most of those dark quiet hours when the rest of the world slumbers.

Morning conversations at my house usually start with something like, “How did you sleep?” And me responding with, “I didn’t,” or “Not very well.” One day last week, my hubby asked, “What do you think about while you’re laying there awake?” I responded with, “Nothing really. I just keep telling myself to go to sleep.”

But that’s not really how it is. It’s really more like what happened one night last week, Tuesday to be precise. I decided, as I lay there awake listening to the dog snore and the heating unit click on and off, that maybe if I could go to some remote awesome place in my mind, I might drift off into la la land.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

The journey went something like this: I walked barefoot in the warm sand along the beach of my private island. Then I spent several, what felt like hours, mentally visiting every island I could conjure. I settled upon Fantasy Island and decided that from there I would build a raft and sail off to The Big Rock Candy Mountain aboard the Goodship Lollipop I’d created with nothing more than palm fronds and my own superior ingenuity.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Things were going well, but as I attempted to row, row, row my boat gently down the stream, the weather started getting rough and my tiny ship was tossed. I started regretting my decision to sail, wishing instead that we all did live in a yellow submarine, a yellow submarine, a yellow submarine. But then I remembered how I much I really do not like being under the water. Although . . .

I certainly wouldn’t mind being under the sea, as I hear they have a hot crustacean band and rumor has it they’ve got no troubles and life is the bubbles under the sea. Bubbles? Tiny bubbles. They make me happy, make me feel fine, make me warm all over. Tiny bubbles in the red, red wine, stay close to me, just one thing makes me forget – which makes me wonder if perhaps I’d be sleeping right this very minute if I had in fact had a glass of wine.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I never found out because as dawn broke over the horizon I realized, too late, that I should never have planned to leave Fantasy Island in the first place.

And so goes another sleepless night with an explanation to my husband that I don’t think about anything, because that’s just so much easier than telling him about my fantastical journey. I’ll let him read about it in this blog.

Does your mind ever wander into strange territory? Do you make up weird stories in the middle of the night? Please share so I don’t feel so freakish and alone in my midnight musings.

Word of the Day:  Zarf

Fun Fact About me: I have double-jointed toes.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, February 2015. Photos and images courtesy Google Images.

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So, the all-the-rage Christmas gift this past year was apparently the Fitbit or it’s cousin the Jawbone. If you’re unfamiliar with these little devices, they are designed to help you keep track of your healthy habits. Or so they tout. Personally, I don’t get it, but I’ve noticed a lot more people in my zumba class with these little babies strapped to their wrists.

Photo courtesy Google images.

Photo courtesy Google images.

Now, if you are a lover of these technological devices, and they are “working” for you, please don’t be offended by this post. I love that you’re working on getting or staying healthy. For me, they seem like a gimmick.

First of all, the only people I see wearing these things look like this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

If you look like this, you are already are a fit bit of feminie loveliness. You are already doing all of the right things and you don’t need a fancy schmancy device to let you know it. Just carry on you well-toned beautiful women. I love and hate you all.

The number one problem I see right off the bat with a device like this is – you have to remember to put the thing on. That’s going to mess up quite a few people.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Assuming you remember to strap it on, it’s my understanding that these thingeys tell you the amount of steps you’ve taken. I’m not sure why that’s important. I mean, let’s face it, if I’ve had my ass in a chair all day writing, or in the sofa watching TV or reading, I can pretty much guarantee you that I haven’t taken more than about 16 steps, and those were undoubtedly to the refrigerator for a snack. I really don’t need a device to keep track of that or to remind me of my lethargy. Likewise, if I’ve been working out or jogging I can say, with some certainty based on how much my muscles are screaming and the amount of sweat pouring off my weary body, that I have experienced a good work-out. I don’t really care how many steps I’ve taken; I feel good that I’ve worked out.

The next problem is that these devices don’t hold you accountable. I mean if you set a goal to take 5,000 steps every day, nothing happens if you fall short. If I wear the thing all day and then check my stats when I get home and I’ve only taken 1,100 steps and my goal was 5,000, am I going to go run 16 miles to make up the deficit? Hell no! I’m just going to say, “screw it, I’ll walk more tomorrow,” and go to bed.

Photo courtesy Google images

Photo courtesy Google images

Now, what would be really helpful is if those little wristbands thingeys had pre-recorded messages. What would be exceptionally motivating is for a really annoying voice, like Gilbert Godfry or someone equally nasally and whiny, to say something like, “get moving lard ass,” every time I sat in one place for more than about 10 minutes. Or, “you’re slowing down fatso,” when I switch the treadmill from jog to walk. That would be motivating. However, I do see a potential problem with this, especially if you’re working out at a gym or other public place. You would not want that thing going off and have somebody other than yourself thinking it was directed at them. No sirree, I would not want some Rambo over in free weights to come over and konk me on the head with a 200 pound barbell because my Fitbit offended him.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Although . . . if he looked like that guy . . . maybe a visit wouldn’t be so bad. Hmmmm.

But I digress. Maybe instead of a pre-recorded message, a squirt of pepper spray to the face every hour could be used. I mean nothing would get me moving faster than pepper spray in my face. Think of the amount of steps you’d take with that crap on your skin. You couldn’t run to the shower fast enough and you’d be dancing a jig the whole time you were in there. Or, every so often a shock treatment like a taser blast could go off to remind you to get up and drink some water. That would get me hopping out of my chair for sure.

That’s right, these puppies supposedly will keep track of how much water I’ve drank during the day. Hmmm. Is that necessary? If I fill my glass 4 times then I can pretty much rely on the fact that I’ve had 4 glasses of water that day. And, taking this one step farther, if I know that my glass is 20 ounces, and I fill it 4 times, then I’ve had – say it with me – 80 ounces of water that day. No device required. And how does that thing distinguish between water and gatorade, or soda, or . . . oh I don’t know . . . wine? ‘Cuz, if it measured wine in-take I’d pretty much meet my quota every single day.

And, supposedly, they keep track of your sleeping habits (again – if you remember to wear them). At the risk of sounding redundant, what is the point of this? If I wake up at 3:00 in the morning and lay there awake for 2 hours, my clock will give me the same information as that little plastic strap on my wrist. I don’t need a device to let me know that I was awake for 2 hours in the middle of the night. Contrarily, if I wake up refreshed, having slept straight through the night, I don’t need to check my wrist to see how I’ve slept. This “feature,” makes no sense to me.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

Photo courtesy Google Images.

I’m thinking a much better electronic device to invest in to ensure good health is one that requires you to solve a trigonometry problem before you can open the cookie jar.  Or do 20 jumping jacks before the refrigerator door will open. I’m thinking that would successfully solve this problem:

Photo courtesy Google images.

Photo courtesy Google images.

How about your dear readers, do you have a Fitbit, Jawbone or similar device? Do you like it? What gadgets would be helpful in your life to keep you fit and healthy?

Fun fact about me: I am not really into fancy techy gadgets.

Word of the Day: Vugh (alternate spelling)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, January 2015. Photos courtesy Google Images.

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Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

For the most part, I have been blessed with good health. Unlike a lot of people, I suffer from very few maladies and the couple that do plague me are easily managed. As I’ve gotten older; however, I’ve been bothered more and more regularly by a horrible condition known as insomnia.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I read up on this condition and tried to pay attention to the events immediately preceding its onslaught. I try to avoid all of the “bad” things you’re supposed to stay away from before bed: too much caffeine, too much sugar, eating too late, too much alcohol, too much excitement, blah, blah, blah. Nothing seems to make a difference. The only thing I can really blame for this bothersome condition is the dreaded “M” word. No – not marriage, although that does play a role in this condition from time to time. I’m referring to (cue scary music) menopause.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

My doctor prescribed sleeping pills for those nights when dreaming seems to be an ideal rather than a reality, but I hate having to resort to chemical aids just to get a good night’s sleep. No matter how weary I am when I crawl into bed, at least twice a week or more, I wake up after a couple of hours and proceed to lay there – wide awake – thinking of everything under the sun whether it’s relative to my life or not. And it’s like my brain is on speed because I can’t even stay focused on any one topic. I flit from one subject to another faster than Mario Andretti ever crossed a finish line. It’s like the worst case of ADD imaginable.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I try not to complain, especially since there are so many worse afflictions that I could have, but after three sleepless nights in a row, I’m about ready to strangle someone. Seriously, how long does this insomnia phase last? I’m so ready for it to be over.

How do you, my lovely readers, deal with insomnia? Any tricks or suggestions for getting back to sleep? If I wake up after midnight I have to decide – soon – whether to take a pill or not. If I take one of those magic sleeping pills after about one o’clock in the morning, I’m useless until, at the very least, noon the following day. That’s not possible when I’m expected to show up at a professional office at nine o’clock looking fresh as a daisy and ready to put on my happy “let’s solve your problems today,” face. Most mornings I just look like this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Do you ever suffer from insomnia? What’s your cure? I’d love to know. I thought about even trying this:

Until next week, here’s hoping you all have peaceful nights with lots of quality REM sleep. Sweet dreams!

Word of the Day: Obeah

Fun fact about me: I recently discovered that I’m quite proficient at corn hole. Who knew?

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, June 2014. Photos courtesy Google Images. Video courtesy YouTube.

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bird nest

Nesting rituals. We all have them. Some of us take longer than others to complete them, but complete them we will before settling in for the night.

What the H E double hockey sticks am I talking about!?!

western lamp

I’m talking about those little routine things we do every single night, without fail, rain or shine, in sickness or in health, for richer or for poorer, before tucking our tired little bodies into our cozy little beds each night. They include things like circling the house and double-checking that every door is locked, all lamps are extinguished, anything edible (including the trash) has been safely cordoned off so the dog cannot get to it, and so on and so forth. We prepare our nest.lotion bottles

The ritual also includes a rigorous regime of removing make-up, washing our faces, applying anti-acne, anti-reddening, anti-wrinkling, anti-sagging, anti-pigment-inducing and anti-aging solutions. This is followed by applying a series of creams, lotions and serums to plump, moisturize, hydrate, lighten, tighten, brighten, exfoliate, tone, even, smooth, correct and protect our skin.

We then brush our hair vigourously, brush and floss our teeth, apply lip balm, hand cream, foot lotion, cuticle oil, and any other product deemed absolutely necessary to keep our bodies youthful and beautiful.

western bedAnd why do we do this night after night?

We do this just so we can go to bed knowing that we have taken every precaution against the harsh elements battling our youth and good health every day. Many of these processes are repeated upon waking, but using different ointments, potions and elixirs formulated specifically for day time use only.

Are we insane? Are we paranoid? Are we fortunate enough to have countless extra minutes at the end of every day just to indulge in these rituals? You tell me.

What does your nesting ritual include? Inquiring minds want to know.

Word of the day: Postliminy

Fun fact about me: I am Ambidextrous

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