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Grab Bag Gratitude Attitude:

How many times have we voiced our frustration because “my internet is so slow“? So…. your web pages are taking a few extra seconds to load sometimes, and it’s annoying, right?

Well, let’s all take a deep breath and recognize what is actually going on when we click on that link….

A Packet's Tale

Sooooo stop your wanking….

Many thanks to Pat M. for sending this in.

Grab Bag Pillow Talk:

From the super-popular blog, “One Good Thing by Jillee”, this wake up call promises a good night:

washing-pillows

…..the more research I did, and the more I asked around, I realized that pillows that become yellow over time is a pretty common thing!

One of the most common reasons why pillows can turn yellow is sweat. Even when you’re sleeping your body continues to sweat to keep your body at a comfortable temperature. Depending on the type of fabric your pillowcase is made from, sweat can seep through the fabric. As the sweat dries, it can leave a yellow stain on the pillow. Even if you use pillow COVERS underneath your pillow CASES, the yellowing can still occur.

In the past when the yellowing got really bad, I would simply toss the pillow and buy a new one. But I hated doing that because the pillow was still perfectly good.

Recently I came across an old article from Martha Stewart Living that suggested pillows should be WASHED at least twice a year…….

Read her short tutorial on washing your pillows here, and sleep better tonight.

Grab Bag Speaking of Sleep:

hottub_benefits_sleep_therapy

I think many of us have trouble sleeping. I know I resemble that remark. I’ll admit I have read many articles, but probably only followed the advice of the things I was willing to do. Over time I am growing more serious about each suggestion, as I know they have merit.

Check this list below from the blog IQ Matrix and give these a try if your slumber is sub-par. (Learn about further sleep therapies they suggest here).

Your Sleeping Environment

The environment within which we sleep on a nightly basis is absolutely critical in the ongoing promotion of better sleeping habits and patterns. If our sleeping environment is substandard and does not fall inline with our biological needs, than it will simply interfere with our sleeping patterns and as a result we will suffer the consequences by getting inadequate amounts of quality sleep. Here are some suggestions on things you can do to enhance your sleeping environment to promote a better and a more restful night’s sleep:

Remove Clocks from View

On nights when we just can’t seem to get to sleep, what is it that we tend to do? That’s right, we stare at the clock every 10 minutes and stress every second about how tired we’ll feel the next day if we don’t fall asleep right NOW! In instances such as this, your clock is simply a liability on your time.

Firstly, remove your clock from sight.

Secondly commit yourself to the fact that you don’t need to know the time unless it is time to get out of bed. Understand that you are in control of your life, and that no clock is going to take that away from you.

Remove All EMF Fields

EMF stands for Electro-Magnetic Fields. EMFs are released by electronic appliances that are present within your sleeping environment. EMFs are known to disrupt the pineal gland and interfere with the production of melatonin and serotonin, which are essential in promoting good sleeping patterns. Either remove all electronic appliances such as televisions, stereos, and computers from your bedroom or unplug them from their power-supply.

Some sleeping doctors strongly suggest that people should pull their circuit breaker before heading-off to bed in order to kill all power in the house.

Good Ventilation

We all know what it feels like to step outside in the early hours of the morning and just breathe in that fresh crisp air. It feels so invigorating and enlivening. Well, the same principles apply at night as you are sleeping. Our bodies require good amounts of fresh air to promote a greater sense of health and well-being. By closing your windows at night you are doing your body a great deal of injustice by suffocating its oxygen supply.

If opening the window at nights isn’t an option, consider purchasing an air filter or purifier.

Darkness is Essential

If you are not sleeping in complete darkness, than you are interfering with your body’s circadian rhythm. Any small amount of light that reflects or shines into your bedroom will disrupt your pineal gland’s production of melatonin and serotonin.

When getting up at night, you should also avoid turning on the lights whenever possible. If this isn’t an option, than purchase a low volt bulb that emits as little light as possible. The less the better. You will find that by following these simple guidelines that your sleep will be more restful and sound.

As Quiet as a Mouse

Some of us have a tendency to fall asleep while watching television or listening to the radio. Even though in these instances you might have fallen asleep, it however doesn’t promote a restful type of sleep.

In order to achieve a deep and prolonged nights sleep, you must ensure that you remove all sounds and distractions from your sleeping environment. Although there are some exceptions to this rule, which we will explore a little later.

Keep Temperature at Comfortable Levels

The temperature within your sleeping environment should be at no more than 22 °C / 70 °F. Any higher than this and biologically your body will feel discomfort and this may interfere with your sleeping patterns.

Comfortable Pillow and Mattress

Since most of us spend about one third of our lives in bed, it just makes sense to purchase a good quality pillow and mattress that will support us where we need it most.

Everybody is different and requires varying levels of support. Visit a sleep specialist or chiropractor for further information about getting the right sleeping support for your body. Investing wisely here could be one of the best decisions you make.


A Sleeper’s Mindset

Those who tend to sleep soundly each and every night have developed a number of mindset strategies that promote a deeper and faster onset of sleep. Here are some suggestions that will assist you in taking control of your mind:

Control the Voice in Your Head

When we have a lot on our minds, many problems to deal with and uncertain plans for the day ahead, we can easily get lost in a river of thought that just keeps going and going, until it literally overwhelms us and sabotages our sleep. Take control of this voice by making a pact with yourself that as soon as you lie down to bed you will not think about any problems or plans that may be lingering on your mind. If you do lie down to bed and your mind just gets out of control, simply get out of bed and write your thoughts down on paper. Only once you have exhausted your thought process on paper should you venture back into bed.

Focus on Staying Awake

It’s a reverse form of psychology. Instead of tossing and turning and trying to get to sleep, simply keep your eyes open and focus on the fact that you are going to be staying awake for the rest of the night. This strategy really works as long as you don’t start thinking about other things that are on your mind. The key here is to focus only on the process of staying awake.

Visualize Tranquility and Serenity

Deep within the recesses of your mind create a quiet, serene and tranquil place where you can spend time relaxing. Whether this is somewhere on a secluded beach, in the outback or simply by a creek or mountainside; create this place in your mind and return here every night just as you are falling asleep. Absorb yourself within the beauty of this environment, experience all the nature sounds and the seclusion that you are currently experiencing from the rest of humanity. Actually take-in this place through all your senses, and just relax and bathe within the magnificence of this environment you have created.

Through the process of just relaxing within this environment you will discover that your body will find the peace and tranquility necessary to slip into a deep and restful nights sleep.

Get Out of Bed if Unable to Sleep

Yes, literally get out of bed if you are unable to fall asleep within the first 20 to 25 minutes. When you do get out of bed make sure to do something mellow that doesn’t stimulate your brain to a significant degree. Reading a book or simply undertaking a boring task or activity that doesn’t require much movement or thought, will tend to paralyze your brain back into sleeper’s state.

Grab Bag Great Morning:

This will give you something to look forward to.

I rarely include recipes, so trust me, this one is great. Thanks to Michelin-starred chef Daniel Angerer:

Quinoa Porridge

Quinoa Breakfast Porridge

Serves 4:

4 Cups water

2 Cups quinoa

2 pinches sea salt

2 Tbsp. maple syrup (I use less… adjust to your desire)

1/2 Cup almond milk

1 TASTY apples

2 Tbsp. toasted coconut shavings (I am NOT a coconut fan, but it’s great here)

2-3 Tbsp. sliced or chopped toasted almonds

Directions:

In a 1-gallon pot, bring water and salt to boil. Add quinoa, cover the pot with a lid and cook quinoa on a low heat for 20 minutes.

Cut the apple into small wedges, then slice 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick.

Warm the almond milk.

Combine quinoa with apple bits, maple syrup and almond milk and fluff lightly with a fork.

Serve in bowls and sprinkle with toasted coconut and almonds.

Options: Cinnamon is a good addition. Preparing a day before, and serving chilled is apparently very tasty, too.

Grab Bag Wow Moments:

A “Best of”, reportedly from the folks at National Geographic…. amazing shots. Be sure to hit the “full screen” icon in the lower right corner (hit “escape” to return to your normal screen view).

Grab Bag Brain Game:

This is a fun twist on the old game of Concentration:

Welcome to Flip Out! The object of this game is to match the tiles in each level based on the themes provided at the bottom of the screen. Try to complete as many levels as you can, before times runs out, for a high score. Good luck!

Flip Out

Grab Bag Funny Stuff:

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