self care Saturday: Resting when you are injured

Happy Saturday! This is not what I intended to talk about today, but because I have reinjured an old shoulder injury even typing is incredibly painful. So, short and sweet today. I am admittedly not good at slowing down, or taking it easy, especially when it is absolutely gorgeous outside and I have tons of things I would like to be doing, like gardening and such. I did manage to mow one tiny spot in the backyard, but my husband had to start the mower for me and I mowed with with one hand. I can still enjoy the weather just sitting still, lol. I can’t use the weed whacker or dig at all, or rake. I did get on the treadmill but I had to keep my right arm immobile because even walking it was pulling on my shoulder.

So, that is it. I am sitting still, resting my arm and relaxing. A nice change for me. If you have CKD like me, then you know how challenging it can be when you are in pain. There are not a lot of options for pain relief that are either effective or safe for the kidneys. I will do a self Reiki session before I go to sleep and that usually will help a lot to relax and sleep. Right now, rest, immobilization, Tylenol and heat are my choices. I don’t find ice comfortable.

Have a wonderful Saturday, and I hope your weather is as lovely as mine!


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relax it’s the weekend!

Whether it is on a Saturday, or a Sunday, don’t forget to take some me time and just relax. For me it will be tomorrow, Easter Sunday. I tend to do my relaxing on Sunday anyway, except when I work and then my Monday is my Sunday. I think it is hard to just relax and not stress about backed up laundry, dishes, meal planning, school, work, family, friends, etc, etc, etc. Some alone time to relax and thing does a body good. So make sure you squeeze some in. Monday, or Tuesday I am sharing my coaching giveaway for April. I am giving my mailing list members a chance to sign up first. Are you doing my April Health challenge, toning up the triceps? Be sure and let me know in the comments how you are doing, or join my mailing list to see how I am doing.

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10 ways to be happy for an hour!

Happy Self Care Saturday! Today is also International Earth Day. There is an old Chinese Proverb about being happy. I have adapted parts of it to suit my self care needs. Below are 10 ways you can be happy for an hour. Happiness is key to Self Care though everyone may have their own definition of what it means to be happy and whether it is achievable. To me happiness is a state of feeling free of stress, burdens, worry, strife, work, demands, etc.

  1. I think lots of people will agree with this. If you want to be happy for an hour, take a nap. I am not a good napper, especially for only an hour, but just lying quietly with my eyes closed and resting is wonderful. I don’t have to actually fall asleep. That generally just makes me feel icky.
  2. Take a walk in nature for an hour. Not a sweaty, heavy breathing exercise kind of walk. A peaceful, slow, gentle walk someplace you find beautiful and quiet. This could be anywhere. You also don’t have to walk the whole time. You can sit and appreciate your 5 senses, sight, hearing, smells, touch, and taste. Be sure you are not on your phone, and it is silenced, and that you are either walking with someone who is quiet and not talkative, or take your dog.
  3. Volunteer for an hour. We volunteer once a week at a dog rescue. Helping dogs rescued from shelters that may be kill shelters, or have been abandoned and unloved is so rewarding. If we lived closer I am sure we would do it more often.
  4. If you are more of a sociable person make sure to set aside an hour at least weekly to be with family or friends. If it can’t be in person then do a video chat, or talk on the phone. If you are more of an introvert this may not be your best option.
  5. Get a massage or mani pedi.
  6. Do gardening. If you have not learned the art of gardening and how wonderfully happy it can make you, then you are missing out. Getting your hands dirty and learning to grow your own food or beautiful flowers makes me very happy. Plus today is Earth Day.
  7. Treat yourself to a meal out, order in, or have someone else cook for a meal. You may not do this daily, but at least weekly. Check out Meals With Melissa.
  8. If you can afford this hire a maid for an hour a day, or even an hour a week. I know that would make me happy.
  9. I know this one is weird but I am really quite happy cleaning my pool. Maybe it is because I get the warm sun on my skin, no one is bothering me, no phone, no kids, no husband, just me and the pool. During the Summer months I clean my pool everyday.
  10. Try being crafty. I know people say they are not crafty or artistic, but you may surprise yourself. An hour a week, or daily if you can, may make your very happy. Some things you may not have considered as crafty are: learn to play an instrument, paint, draw, crochet, knit, pottery, photography, writing, learn a new language, learn sign language, computer graphics such as create an app, glass etching, and so many more I may not have thought of.

I am sure there are others that I didn’t include, exercise or going for a motorcycle ride comes to mind. What is your favorite way to be happy for an hour? Share in the comments.

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Free Coaching Sessions in March.

Social saturday: Share something interesting!

Happy Saturday! It is raining here so I can’t do any of my outside stuff. But, that means I have plenty of time to work on inside stuff. Watch for my new and updated, It’s A New Day 30 day coaching plan. It should be posted later today. I hope to get some Valentine’s Day crafts done too. Next week’s menu plan is completed and you can get it by signing up for Meals With Melissa.

Today, if you want to share something interesting from a blog, or something you sell, you can do so in the comments. I will share all appropriate links to one of my social media sites. Appropriate means an item, or article that is not being sent to a spam site, or other malicious sites. I check and verify all links before sharing them. It would be nice if others shared my post too, but it is not required.

Today, I am sharing about the bird the White Ibis. Every year, towards springtime, and when we are going to get a lot of rain, flocks of these birds visit my yard, and the neighborhood. They roost in the trees and eat aquatic invertebrates. They make cute noises, too. Check out this page to learn more about this interesting bird. When I walk at one of my nature parks I will see the White Ibis roosting in the trees and searching for food in very large flocks. The all white ones are adults and the brown and white are juveniles. I love birds and nature. Taking pictures of them brings me lots of joy. See my pictures below.

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social saturday and sunday: tweet with me!

Welcome to the weekend! I got my first dose of the new Pfizer Covid vaccine today! I will let you know how I feel tomorrow. I did take a Bendryl, and I expect my arm will be sore.

This is week 2 of my new social media sharing weekend. This week I will be using Twitter. This is easy and a great, free way to get your Tweets retweeted. Just follow the simple directions below to join in.

  1. You must have a Twitter account with at least 100 followers.
  2. You must retweet my link first to your Twitter account. Share the link to your Twitter profile page so I can verify you retweeted my tweet. If you use a scheduler you need to state that so I know to check back.
  3. Then share a link to a Tweet you want me to retweet. All links will be retweeted by Sunday at midnight. I don’t use a scheduler, but I will scatter them so not all at once.
  4. You may share only one link, please.
  5. Leave your profile links and tweet links in the comments. All of my comments are moderated so spam will be ignored and not show in the post.
  6. Others may also retweet others but is not required. It is appreciated, though. Please do not delete my link after the event is over. I won’t do that, so please also don’t do that.
  7. Here is my Twitter profile where your links will be retweeted,
  8. Here is the Tweet of mine that I would like retweeted,
  9. Any links posted after 11 PM Eastern time on Sunday 1/24/21 will not count. You can begin as soon as you read this post. Please share the post to get more people involved which means more people seeing your link. You can follow each other on Twitter too, if you wish.
  10. Have fun! I will not retweet violent or offensive tweets.


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10 Interesting things about me

Happy Saturday! As promised here are 10 interesting facts about me. At least I think they are interesting, lol! Do you find yourself to be interesting? Everyone has a story/

1- I am 51 years old, married with two wonderful children. I had children later in life, so I still have one at home.

2- I grew up in upstate NY, and started LPN school at age 16. I graduated when I was 17, but could not take the boards until I was 18. I love being a nurse. It is truly what I was meant to do. I have worked in most areas of health care. I now work with elderly Dementia residents, and I love it.

3- On Christmas Day 2016 I became very ill and in February 2017 I was officially diagnosed with CKD. It has been a long and hard road to recovery after that illness. It took so much out of me. But, I am healthier now than I have been in many years.

4- In reference to #3 I had early warning signs of kidney issues as a child that were overlooked. The more research I do the more I realize this. My early symptoms were dry mouth, dry eyes with vision issues, dental issues and foamy bubbly urine. It irks me that maybe my kidney could have been saved, That is why I started this blog to help others learn about Kidney Disease.

5- I homeschool my children. Well only one now. My son is graduated, married, and in college. I won’t go into the why, but it has been wonderful for us.

6- I am a certified Health Coach. I am a certified level 2 Reiki Practitioner. I am certified in Guided Imagery, Herbalism, and am finishing up my Mindfulness Certification.

7- I have two dogs and a cat.

8- I am an introvert. While I love people, people can be exhausting. I refuel my energy by being alone and reflecting. I find human behavior fascinating. The mind and why humans do what they do.

9- I love nature and animals. I love to walk in nature, take pictures of nature and just sit and be with nature.

10- I am stubborn, strong willed, independent, and a life long learner.

What are some interesting facts about you? Share in the comments.


Goodbye 2020!

It’s almost over! The year of the face mask will be in the history books. This whole week, right up until New Years I will be posting based on review and reflection. Some personal, and some related to this blog. 2020 was not the year I expected, but I assume everyone can say that. So much pain and stress, and time for a fresh start.

Most people will probably choose to be safe and not have New Year’s Eve party. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t decorate and celebrate in your own home with those who live with you. Below you will find some awesome, easy crafts to decorate your home and celebrate the new year. There are some fun games, too. My family loves games, but I don’t think we are getting together, other than those that live here. My husband my let off the rest of the fireworks from the 4th of July, which will be nice for the community to watch right from their yard, and not risk being in large gatherings. Watch for some food and drink options in the next few days.

In the coming weeks I am rolling out some new subscription options for readers that are interested. This will be special content that only subscribers have access to. It is not content shared on the blog. Readers will be able to sign up right from this blog, pay with Paypal and then receive content via email. Watch for details. I recently added paid ads to this blog, not a lot because it annoys me when I visit websites and there are popups everywhere.

Check out these awesome New Years crafts, decorations and games:

This first one is right from the Dollar Tree website, It is a beautiful wreath.

This next set is geared towards toddlers, but I think any age would enjoy them, and you could always modify them,

Does your family love Minute to Win It? I do, I think it is a great way to spend with family, or friends,

These wishing wands are adorable. If you are a homeschooler these would make great essay or story topics,

This one has 50 clever Dollar Tree New Year’s crafting and decor ideas. Check it out,

Finally you can watch the video below for even more easy craft ideas for New Year’s.

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simple saturday menu planning

Happy Saturday! Can you believe there is only 6 days until Christmas? I hope everyone is staying safe by wearing your masks, social distancing and good hand hygiene. Here in FL cases are really on a steady increase. This is my weekend to work, and my new hip and thigh compression wrap came yesterday. I will try to wear it the whole shift. The hip pain is not too bad this morning. I was able to sleep really well. Yesterday, I said I would share my Fitbit stats and then I forgot. So, below there are 3 days of stats, Wed, Thurs, and Fri.

I watch a lot of 5 dollar dinner ideas on Youtube. About a month ago I shared with my readers a whole list of 5 dollar meal ideas. So, each week when I do my menu plan I will be making at least one 5 dollar meal. It annoys me that these meals on Youtube are generally made from beans. I am not saying there is anything wrong with beans but there are so many other meals you can make. Eggs is another item used a lot. I am going to try and make the meals as healthy as possible. They may or may not have meat. Some will assume you already have some pantry items. I hardly ever see potatoes used, and potatoes are a nutrition powerhouse.

Yesterday I went shopping. As I stated before we are trying to stick to a budget, and I increased it to 75 dollars a week, because 50 was just too tight. I also went back to biweekly shopping, as that is what I have done for years, and found I was spending more weekly. Impulse buying is a real thing, lol. I spent 157 dollars, so a little bit more than 75 each week. But, it is a process learning to live on a strict budget. Below you will see my menu for the week. Our Christmas dinner is quite expensive, but we only eat that once a year on Christmas. The five dollar dinner will be marked, and I will share the meal plan that day. Plus it makes leftovers so it is even more cost efficient. I will also share how I make each of them more fitting for me as I have CKD and am following lower carbs for weight loss.

Saturday 12/19: Pizza rolls. This is for my husband and daughter. I will not eat this. I am taking leftovers to work. This technically cost 4 dollars, so could be a 5 dollar dinner,

Sunday: Ravioli, bread and salad. Again, this could technically be 5 dollars. Raviolis are very affordable.

Monday: Chicken Teryaki, brown rice, broccoli carrot cabbage onion stir fry. Buy the whole chickens they are cheaper and you will get several meals out of one chicken.

Tuesday: This is our 5 dollar meal day. We volunteer this day, plus we are going to have Christmas with my mom. I hope it is warm because we need to stay outdoors. Dinner will be Spaghetti with meat sauce, and salad.

Wednesday: Leftovers from Monday and Tuesday. That whole chicken I mentioned has a ton of chicken on it. It may even do 3 meals or some lunches. Spaghetti also makes a lot of leftovers.

Thursday: Christmas Eve. Because of my son’s work schedule and I have to work Christmas, we are doing Christmas on Christmas Eve. Prime Rib, mashed potatoes, rolls, green beans, and brownies.

Friday: Leftovers Merry Christmas!

My menu plans are only for dinners. Breakfast and lunch is whatever is available.


get your art flow on!

Happy Saturday! I hope everyone is having a splendid, relaxing day. Below please see my walking stats for Thursday and Friday. Let me know what you think of my Fitbit background images. Photography is another favorite hobby of mine. Also check out my next favorite Christmas song. Some years ago my son and I were in a singing Christmas tree. We had so much fun, and while I can not really sing, he can, and the experience was amazing. That was in 2016, the year I got very sick right after the singing Christmas tree finale. I was later diagnosed with CKD. Mary Did You Know was the solo that he sung, and below you can hear Carrie Underwood sing it. It is a beautiful song!

I think this is gift idea #11. If you have CKD, or you have a loved one who does, especially if they are on dialysis or have to spend large amounts of times at the doctors office, having something to occupy that time is a great gift. Maybe they are more homebound due to Covid and not wanting to catch it. Adult coloring books, with fine tip gel pens, or colored pencils are a great gift item. You will find all kinds of cool ones to choose from here. I love the window clings, the 3D puzzles and some of the other great options. These are easily portable and not super heavy. Maybe they would like to crochet, knit or read. There are so many art options for people to do. Give the gift of art to your loved one this year and see what they will create. Not only is Art a great way to cure boredom it is also great for self esteem, and reduction of stress. I love the adult coloring books and you can even make some beautiful gifts when they are completed.

Tomorrow, I will be putting together next week’s menu plan. I am making homemade lasagna today, and that will easily make several lunches, if not dinners in the next few days. Lasagna is obviously not low carb unless you don’t eat the noodles. But, a small piece paired with a large salad will make my meal a nutritious low carb meal. Remember, I am not Keto which is extremely low carbs, and very high fats. My diet of choice is low carb, about 100 grams per day, about 20% protein, and 30-40% fat which for now is a little higher than I like, but it is simply too hard to get enough calories if I don’t eat a little more fat. So far this has not had deleterious effects on my health, and honestly I was probably consuming more fat than I realized anyways.

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Gift Idea #5 For People With CKD

Updated 12/2/2021: I did get an air fryer for Christmas, and if you have a larger family the smaller one shown in the post is really not going to be great. I do use it a lot for reheating food though, and it is awesome for that.

Happy, Happy Saturday! I hope everyone is well and staying away from the Covid.

Today, I chose an air fryer as gift idea #5 for people with CKD. Why? People with CKD are more prone to Heart Disease and decreasing fat intake is part of prevention of Heart Disease. Air fryers are a great replacement if you love deep fried foods, but don’t want all of the fat. I actually asked for one of these for Christmas. Not that I really love deep fried foods, but I do love the crispiness of deep fried foods. With the air fryer I don’t have to heat up the house with the oven, or the stove, to get crispy fried chicken or french fries. I can not wait to get mine and play around with it. My husband ordered mine at Belk because they had an awesome Black Friday deal. It is similar to the one shown below and it can be bought at Amazon. All of the major department stores are selling these. But with Covid it might be safer to order online. The air fryer may benefit everyone in your home by decreasing fat intake.

Read about air fryers here, and how much they reduce fat intake, here.

Be sure and research what breading, or batter is best used for CKD when frying. As always this is confusing as different websites say different things. I like to use a mixture of baking soda and all purpose white flour, with herbs and spices added in. Bread crumbs and batters can be very high in sodium and phosphorus, and sometimes potassium. I use the bare minimum of breading needed and depending on what else I ate that day instead of an egg dip, I may just use water.

A note about my daily meals. My daughter is having pizza today, but I decided to make bbq pulled pork, with the leftover pork, and have it with fried cabbage and onions. The pork needed to not be wasted and I am still working my way through that large head of cabbage. If I had my air fryer I could try putting the cabbage in there, Yum. For my work dinner I will just take a large salad. You are probably thinking that is way too low of carbs. Well you would be correct, except I had homemade sunflower bread for breakfast, two slices with over 50 grams of carbs.


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