Why is Fun Important?

Is laughter really the best medicine?

For most of us, the answer is no, don’t quit taking that life-saving pill! But research does show that laughing has positive effects on many of our bodies systems. This article tells all about it: http://www.webmd.com/balance/features/give-your-body-boost-with-laughter#1

 

Why is it that many of us don’t have fun anymore? Until recently, I had almost completely stopped having fun. I wanted my kids to have fun, I wanted my friends to have fun, I wanted my husband to have fun, but me? I didn’t really think about it.

No, I don’t enjoy being a martyr who lets everyone around them get what they want while I suffer. I just really put everyone else’s happiness so far ahead of my happiness, that I didn’t think about it.  I never wanted to be pushy, or ask, “what’s in it for me?” until the day when I did ask, “WHAT’S IN IT FOR ME?”

 

You CAN have fun again!

 

THE TIME FOR SELF-DENIAL IS OVER

**But first, a disclaimer. You should still take care of your kiddos. You should still be responsible. Please don’t think I’m saying you should go back to acting like a child again and ignoring the adulting that you need to be doing. Just focus on having some FUN!**

 

What do YOU like to do? When was the last time you played with toys with your kids AND ENJOYED IT? If it’s been a long time, start thinking about how to change that. What do YOU like to play with? Seriously. What did you like to play with when you were young? Would you still like that today? What if you went to the store, just to buy a toy that sounds like it would be fun for you to play with, with your children? And why is that idea so crazy?

 

We’re adults, and we can do what we want. We schedule time for work, exercise, cooking, cleaning, all the boring things, but not for daily fun.  Why aren’t we doing the things we used to dream of?  If you want to read a very serious article on play and fun, go here: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/animal-emotions/201405/the-importance-play-having-fun-must-be-taken-seriously Really, it’s a little dark.  They really want you to get out and have some serious fun!

 

Fun and happiness are good!  When we’re having fun we are happier, we feel better, and our relationships are better.  Life is so much brighter when we are enjoying ourselves.

Get out there! Blow some bubbles, pick a game that tickles your fancy, or do whatever you makes you smile and have some FUN! Your face will thank you, and your family will thank you. “TThe family that plays together, stays together.” Be that family!

Want to have hundreds of ideas for having fun, even when you don’t have much energy?  Check out “The Sick Mom’s Guide® to Having Fun Again: If I can do it, you can too!” on Amazon.  It’s got things to do with your friends, the love of your life, “me” time, and 100 things to do with the kiddos, even when you’re exhausted.  It’ll make you all smile!

Children With Special Needs Have a Lot to Teach Us!

 

What if you could wake up each day smiling in the face of the challenges ahead of you?  What if your health challenges were seen as an obstacle course to play through instead of a ten foot tall brick wall blocking your future?  What if happiness through it all was possible?

Having a chronic illness or disability can be difficult.  Having a chronic illness as a Mom can be totally overwhelming!  We need to adapt to; symptoms, medications & their side effects, medical equipment and the way people respond to that equipment, and many other things.  That, along with the energy we use being a Mom can be really tough.  I’ve noticed that some people struggle with it all, while others seem to stroll through their life with a smile on their face.

I’m all about happiness!  So, I’ve been focusing on those around me who deal with health issues in a positive way.   One day recently, I started watching some of the kids at a pediatric therapy center where my kiddos went to play. That’s where I learned the secret.

 

A happy, positive attitude can truly make a difference!

 

Here are some of the things I’ve learned about children with special needs. (I want to wake up every day with their attitude):

  • Young children with special needs aren’t embarrassed to have their diagnosis.
  • Young children with special needs don’t feel guilty for being sick/challenged.
  • Young children with special needs don’t judge anyone.
  • They like everyone and want to be friends.
  • They have reasonable expectations for themselves.
  • They are willing to try do to do things we might not think they can do, and often succeed.
  • They don’t pity themselves
  • They don’t blame others for their problems.
  • They have the biggest, most authentic smiles.
  • They push themselves to be the best they can be without focusing on the difficulty getting there.
  • They believe they are great.
  • They are great.
  • They see their wheelchair/walker/braces as just part of makes them “them.”
  • They hope, and plan for, the future, a future as bright as anyone else’s.
  • Therapy is fun for them…PT, OT, Speech… they can’t wait to go and succeed.

 

We need to view our challenges through the eyes of our children.  If we believe in ourselves and focus on the positive, we will overcome great odds.  We will feel better and live happier.  We can be miracles to!

Do you want to learn how to have fun again?  Has your life become a boring pile of to-do lists?  Check out the new book coming out in June by Jen Hardy, “The Sick Mom’s Guide® to Having Fun Again: If I can do it, you can too!” at www.thesickmomsguide.com

I LOVE Being a Mom!

I LOVE being a Mom! I love holding those tiny, soft hands; gazing into those deep, innocent eyes; and listening as youth forms its own fascinating opinions and hearing its take on the world.

For a long time, it seemed like loving the “Momness” just wasn’t cool, and when that was true, I was definitely going against the grain.

 

 

I was a baby-carrying, breastfeeding, crunchy mama before I even knew what crunchy meant!

Now there is a resurgence of love and acceptance for the love of being a mom, and I am so thankful! Gone are the days of the fantasy super-mom who works 60 hours, tantalizes her husband in the evenings, and bakes 100 cookies for the bake sale on the weekend, then patting her perfect children on the head as they headed up to bed.

Real Mom is back, and she is AWESOME!

 

I still love the idea of being a superhero, but my superhero is more realistic. She might be in bed more often than most, but she rocks those cute jammies until noon. She loves the heck out of the kids, but has balance, and spends some much-needed time on herself too—she has more to give that way, you know. And as for her husband? Well, they’re a team now. She’s not just his helper, but they are working together to create the fabulous family of their dreams.

 

I LOVE this life! And I love that other people love it too. We, as moms, needed to move away from the “me” mindset and into a team model. Sure, me time is important, but when it’s over, then the focus goes back to all of us. And the time for judging other women, because they do or don’t work, what school choice they make, or the myriad of other things we used to judge each over is coming to an end. Thank goodness!

Our children are seeing the difference, and they’re liking what they see. They get that time for themselves is good, and it’s OK to tune out—for a bit, but after that, things are much better when we come back together as a loving family.

 

 

No matter what kind of mom you are, be proud! Parents have the most important job in the world—overseeing our future. Stay-at-home Moms feel guilty sometimes for not earning money. Working Moms feel guilty sometimes for not being home all the time.  Guilty Mommy isn’t as fun as relaxed mommy, and it’s just not doing anybody any good. You are who you are—go with it! Embrace it! Find other Moms who understand you and love you and hang out with them! I love having friends who do all kinds of different things. We learn from each other.

I wanted to share the joy I’m feeling with you today. There’s been a few rough weeks in the posts here. Mourning is hard, and sad, and that carried over into my writing. It’s better now, and I’m back to my peppy self. I can’t wait to see what the future holds here at Chronically Positive Mom. Big things are coming…

YOUR CHALLENGE FOR TODAY: Take a minute to look into your child’s eyes today and ask what’s on their mind. You’ll both be glad you did! They need you. Even when they don’t seem to want you because they’re too old or too cool, they still need you. They’ll be thankful for your persistence, and you’ll hear about it when they’re older, I promise.

The Sick Mom’s Guide™ to Having Fun Again

A new book is coming!

 

Who is it for?

Any Mom who is sick & tired of being sick & tired!

 

I can’t wait for you to read “The Sick Mom’s Guide™ to Having Fun Again!”  Writing it has been an incredible journey for me, and it has helped me discover so many things I didn’t even realize I could do until I began writing.  I can’t wait to share it with other Moms who feel the way I did just a short year ago; sad, lonely, and bored.  They will become happier, more connected, and start having fun again!  It will be published in June, just in time for Summer vacation reading!

 

Imagine having a reference for experiencing fun with:

  • the love of your life
  • your friends
  • your kids
  • yourself!  Guilt-free all-out FUN!
  • going to the doctor’s office (yes, really)

 

 

For all the details, go to: www.thesickmomsguide.com

 

Whether you are a Mom with fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, depression, pending surgery, health issues, or you’re just sick and tired of being sick and tired, “The Sick Mom’s Guide™” has a wealth of ideas about having fun and enjoying yourself.  I’ve had so much fun researching and asking everyone I know (and some people I don’t really know) about how to have fun when we feel miserable.  That’s a really hard thing to do, especially when you feel too yucky to get creative!  So I’ve started the book off with some ways to not feel so miserable anymore.

We need to think back to when we were girls, and we had hopes and dreams and plans for our grown-up years. Although some of those plans won’t work now, others WILL!  And we need to start thinking about what we like and what makes us feel happy again.  Sometimes it’s hard to come up with great ideas when we’re sick or in pain, so I’ve put some fabulous ideas together.

Inside there’s a list of 100 things to do with your kids!  50 of the ideas are for when you don’t feel well enough to get off the couch & 50 of them when you can get out, but don’t have much energy or strength.

 

Want to meet some of the fabulous contributors to the book?  Come check out our support group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/chronicallypositivemoms/

Come back soon to see what’s happening next…we’re sharing the process with you, so you can see what the process of writing and publishing a book is and be part of it with us.  It’s all about our community, and making it better–and more FUN!

 

Can’t wait to share more with you!

Jen

 

YOUR CHALLENGE FOR TODAY:  Find a way to have fun today.  You deserve it!

2 RULES OF LIFE–BUSTED

 

We have been lied to all of our lives.  Yes, really.  And I am going to set you free!

No matter who you are or where you live, you have been indoctrinated with superstition.

Sound far-fetched?  Read on…

Last week I was pondering.  It’s something I spend wayyyy too much time doing, to the detriment of myself and my family.  I overthink nearly everything.  But sometimes it leads to a really good idea, and this time, it led to my best one yet.

 

IT IS OK TO ENJOY GOOD THINGS

 

That’s it.  That’s my epiphany.  It’s OK to enjoy good things.  I was taught from a young age, that if I talked about something good happening, I had to knock on wood, apparently to scare the demons of evil away from my goodness. If I didn’t knock on wood, or at least quit talking about it right away, the good thing would instantly be taken from me.  I honestly lived in fear of talking about the things that made me happy.

I took it even further, if it was bad to talk about the good things in my life, it must be bad to enjoy them. Every time something good happened, a series of irrational events would follow:

  1. I felt happy
  2. I immediately felt guilty for feeling happy
  3. I felt that something bad must be right around the corner
  4. I felt like I didn’t deserve to be happy (look at all of those people who have less than you)

 

That last one leads right into my second epiphany…

It is OK to quit eating when you are full

 

When I was a child, I would eat until I felt full, but I couldn’t quit there.  “Think about all the children starving in China!” Was scornfully whispered at me.  So I would eat up.  Everything on my plate, lest I seemed like a horrible ungrateful food-stealing leech.  Who was I to leave that bite of macaroni and cheese on my plate when other children were dying in the streets?

Why did they always talk about kids in China? What about the kids in other countries all over the world?  What about the kids starving right here in America? What if they sent the excess of food to them? BEFORE it was prepared, so I didn’t have to stuff myself and those poor children didn’t starve anymore?

I was literally 40 years old before I realized that I was making a healthy, rational choice by NOT eating all the food on my plate. 

 

Guess what?  I feel so much happier sharing the good things that happen in my life!  The people around me feel better too, as my happiness surrounds all of us, instead of being hidden away.  You know what else?  That extra weight I struggled with for years is under control now because I don’t eat more than I need to!  It’s wins all around!

 

And now I give you permission:

 

Enjoy good things and quit eating when you are full.  Guilt free.  You are not summoning up the demons to swoop in and steal your good fortune. You are not sentencing children to starvation. Share your good times and happy moments.  Throw away the last few bites of food on your plate you aren’t hungry for.  Have food guilt?  Do a good deed and donate to a food bank.  Then tell everyone else to do it too. Then, good things will keep being shared in the world!

And the next time someone tells you to knock on wood?  Give them permission not to, they deserve it too!

 

YOUR CHALLENGE FOR TODAY: Share something wonderful in your life with someone today.  Tell them all about it.  It will feel so good to think about something positive, and listen to their happy story too.  Smiles all around.

 

Could you use some support and encouragement?  We’d love to have you join our group of Chronically Positive Moms HERE!

 

 

YOUR INVITATION TO: The Chronically Positive Moms Group!

 

 

CLICK LINK TO JOIN:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/chronicallypositivemoms/

 

 

WHO: Moms with chronic illness

WHAT: THE BEST group on Facebook for Moms with chronic illnesses and pain.

WHEN: NOW! 

WHERE: https://www.facebook.com/groups/chronicallypositivemoms/

WHY:

  • Need someone to talk to who’s living the struggle?

  • Need help figuring out how to parent when you can’t even get out of bed?

  • Need to know how to keep your home livable when you can’t get up to do much?

  • Looking for some friends who won’t get upset that you can’t get out today because you’re too sick/have kids/have doctor’s appointments?

  • Want to find out how other women are handling their symptoms?

 

 

Join us and invite your friends! Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, PCOS, MS, there is no end to the list of health issues that women are struggling with. No matter what challenges you face, we want to be a safe place to share and be nurtured.

 

 

 

Can’t wait to see you there!

–Jen

 

 

The Hardy Family Christmas Movie List

A special time during the holidays for many families is sitting down together with that special family snack, like popcorn and Christmas cookies, and watching that one favorite Christmas movie. (Friends of other faiths, please see below.) Many people like “It’s a Wonderful Life”, “Miracle on 34th Street”, and “A Christmas Story.”

Our family is a little different. We don’t get into touchy-feely movies. We have had our share of sad times, and sitting down on purpose to watch something that will make us feel that way isn’t what we’re looking for. We’re looking for something to make us LAUGH! Yes, a bowl of my very unhealthy, extra buttery Chex mix and some silliness is what my kids all think of when they remember family Christmas times.  Oh, and Tommy’s chili (and some presents of course!)  If you’re looking for a way to lighten up this holiday season, here’s a list of movies that are sure to make you smile. Sit back, have a guilt free snack, and enjoy yourself. You deserve it!

HERE IT IS, THE  HARDY FAMILY CHRISTMAS MOVIE LIST (along with my favorite quote from each movie):

1. CHRISTMAS VACATION. What can I say? We all know it by heart, but still laugh at every scene. “Grace! She passed away 30 years ago!”

2. ELF. How can the large Will Ferrell get away with seeming to be such a small, innocent boy? I don’t know but he really pulls it off! “We elves try to stick to the four main food groups: candy, candy canes, candy corn, and syrup!”

3. A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS. Who can resist poor Charlie and his friends? And the music, I love it and hate it at the same time with all those minor notes! “Of all the Charlie Browns I know, you are the Charlie Browniest.” And, I believe that Linus’ telling of the Christmas story is one of the most beautiful things ever!

4. THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL. I just love those Muppets! And I have to say, the music in this one really picks me up. “Light the lamp, not the rat! Light the lamp, not the rat!”

5. HOME ALONE (the original). That kid must have watched a lot of MacGyver! “Keep the change, ya filthy animal!”

 


 

So, there you have it, a window into what Christmas time is like in our home. We’re a pretty goofy bunch, which is good for me. I need all the laughter I can get! The pain in your cheeks when you’ve been laughing too hard is the only good pain there is. I hope that happens to you

For my friends of other faiths, I would LOVE to hear about your family holiday traditions. I will share them with our Chronically Positive Family here. I don’t ever want anyone to feel left out!

Having a bad day? Create a SUPERHERO!

SUPERHEROES ARE SO COOL. I created my own and you can too! You don’t even have to be able to draw. If you have a computer you can create something incredible right now! I know that when I don’t feel well, doing something fun makes me feel better & I’m always looking for fun, easy things to do with the kids that don’t require much energy.  Are you too?  Well look no further…

blog-guy
My husband hadn’t ever tried it before, and in 10 minutes, he’d created this guy.

I found Heromachine because I really wanted my blog to have its own superhero, someone who represents me. But honestly, I can’t draw more than a stick person. So, what’s a girl to do? Find magic on the internet and that’s just what I did. Magic in the form of www.heromachine.com!

Heromachine is so amazing! My creation is a very basic old school superhero, but you can create all kinds of things! They have all kinds of styles, including anime. You can have a sidekick for your creation and even a background! Here are the two my 5 and 7 year old created:

heromachine-kids-
My daughter made a girly ninja. Boy, does my son LOVE blue. It’s amazing how different everyone’s characters will look.

You can design your perfect character for free RIGHT NOW! They also have a one-time fee of $9.99, or a monthly subscription for $.99 for different plans. Yes, that’s only ninety-nine cents per month! You just can’t beat that! That’s the one I use, and it’s got some fantastic choices. (Although the other one downloads into your computer and might be easier to save your creations permanently.)

Also, I am not getting paid for this post at all, it’s important you know that. It’s a great thing for you to do yourself (bring out that inner geek) or with the kids. Mine love superheroes, and think it’s so cool that they can make creations that look just like themselves wearing their favorite color. (and some that don’t look just like them LOL) They have so many different options for you that you could create a new character a day for a year and not exhaust all the options!

Try it out and let me know what you think HERE! I’d love to see your creations too. I know I’ll definitely be creating more!

 

bloggirl-16-11-insignia-ii
I changed the outfit and colors for my girl. It’s so easy to do!