Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Aimee and I were just talking...

about how we want to stay healthy this cold and flu season.

She started it, actually...

"Mom...I think we need to do three things to stay healthy."

"What's that, baby?"  (I call all my kids "baby."  Except my boy.  He's my bubba...)

"I think we need to eat healthy, go to sleep early, and watch only a little TV."

Smart girl!!  Apparently she's absorbing some of what I am trying to teach them.  I added "drink more water" to her list and "keep the house chemical and dust free."  We're off to a good start!!

I've also purchased several teas.  I have peppermint tea, for upset stomachs, Chamomile tea to boost our immune systems and fight infection (it also helps relieve menstrual cramps), and SleepyTime tea has a "Throat Tamer" which, combined with Buckwheat honey, helps soothe sore throats. 

Aimee and I learned in Sonlight Core 2 Science yesterday all about the nose and sinus cavities, and how to keep them working properly to fight infection.  I'm the type that needs to know the "How" to understand the "Why."  If your nose dries out, like in dry winter air, it can't "trap" germs and dirt from entering your system.  Simple stuff, but it was nice seeing it all laid out and explained in detail.  :) 

So...some simple, and maybe even obvious, things we're doing to stay healthy and illness-free...

( might think I'm a little weird on some things.  :-P )

1.  Vacuum all the rooms every single day, even the bedrooms, which I tend to slack on when it comes to every. single. day.  But I won't vacuum a bedroom within an hour before sleeping, because vacuums kick up more dust than we realize.  Let's NOT breathe that in...

2.  Wash our hands A) every time we enter the house from a trip or playing  B) before we eat  C) after using a tissue  D) obvious times, like after using the potty.  My preschoolers are not very good at this last one!  :)  While you're at it, change your towels frequently.

3.  Sweep at least once a day, to collect dust bunnies before they have dust bunny babies.  It's always after the bunnies collect that my kids decide to play under the furniture...

4.  Go to bed at a regular, reasonable time.  I am the worst offender on this one.  Midnight is usually when I call it a day.  But since the week of the divorce, I've been going to bed between 9:00 and 10:00 and I can't believe how much it's helped me.  I'd like 9:00 to be my bedtime, the kids usually go down 7:30-8:00.

5.  Dress warm!!  I have always been obsessive over this with my kids.  Socks on their feet, sweatshirts if it's below 50 degrees.  And we have quite the collection of hats, scarves, and mittens. You'd better believe my kids get their use out of them.  If your body has to put extra effort into staying warm, how can it put extra effort into fighting germs??  Dress warm.

6.  Eat healthy.  Obvious, I know.  But it's so important.  Especially fruits and veges, which are full of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.  And keep some homemade chicken stock on hand (it freezes really well).  There's no better comfort food when you're sick than homemade chicken noodle soup.  I try to make homemade soup several times a week. Reheated, it's a quick and nutritious lunch.

7.  Bathe.  Haha.  I'm sure you're thinking, "Why does this even need to be mentioned?"  But I'm mostly talking about kids.  We've become very aware of the need for constant handwashing, but are our hands the only part that collect germs?  And did you know that when people started bathing on a regular basis, they started to see a drop in illnesses?  Keep yourself, and your kids, clean.  :)  My kids take baths every other day in the winter (they outdoor-obsessed, so in summer it's almost every day).

8.  Wash your sheets on a regular basis, in hot water.  Especially if you take your shower in the morning (which means you don't go to bed freshly bathed)  Don't forget your kids beds, either!  As a bonus, you'll sleep much better on super clean sheets.  I'm obsessive about washing our every 7 days.  I'm weird.  I already said it.

9.  Wash the less obvious things.  Coats, lunch bags, throw blankets you use on a regular basis.  These things collect bacteria over time, too.  Keep them clean.

10.  Keep surfaces in your home, car, desk, etc. freshly wiped down.  Doorknobs and light switches count, too.  You don't even need sanitizing wipes.  Soap and water kills most germs, along with regular cleaning.  I bought a small spray bottle in the travel section of Target for $1, and I keep water and a squirt of Ivory dishsoap in it.  I can clean almost anything with it.

11.  Drink water.  Apparently, these are not in any particular order.  And I probably don't need to explain this one.  Water is good for so many things.  My personal trainer, father-of-my-children, tells his clients to drink a gallon a day.  That's a lot!!  I say start with at least one glass a day, and work up from there.

12.  I've already given you 11!!  At this point, I think I've said more than enough.  :)  If you have any other suggestions, I'd love to hear them!!


  1. I wash our sheets weekly too...that's more than normal?

  2. ok, I'm so sorry I asked...I googled it and have been reading comments on articles...YUCK (to how often people DON'T change their sheets!)

  3. Don't forget adequate levels of Vitamin D! Even if we're outside all summer, most of us in the northern US end up deficient during the winter and much more susceptible to illnesses of all sorts. In fact, a lot of us are deficient even in the summer!