Sunday, February 21, 2010

It isn't goodbye! It is see me somewhere else!!

Just in case you were wondering, I didn't leave, just reinvented myself and decided I needed a blog that was a little more honest!! Come see me at
I am now the Frazzled Dazzler - trying to dazzle but coming up short because I am frazzled!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Make Birthdays and Events Even EASIER!!!

Okay, so I thought my card idea was super cool and helpful, and then I read this story about Holy Bananas! I love them. They are a website that lets you put in every event for which you need a card, the contact information for the person who is getting the card (if you want - you don't have to) and then you can buy cards!! Not only can you have cards sent to you whenever you think it will be best for you, but also they will address and stamp the envelopes for you if that makes it easier! AND the cards are wicked cool. They have really fun ones for new Moms and quite a cool assortment including most major holidays so you can buy those Mother's Day cards ahead of time and have them ready!!
Now, this website is super great, but I have to give them extra credit. I sent them a couple comments on some cards I thought would be great to have, and a couple suggestions, and when I checked my email today - they wrote back!!! And very detailed and sweet! They didn't send a form email that said "thank you we will take that into consideration." It was really personal and you could tell that they really read my email and thought I had valid ideas. So go to the website and check them out. At the very least you will get to read some cool cards!!
I know it is going to make my life easier - as I sit here with my 5 month old on my lap who has conjunctivitis in both eyes, listening to one dog bark at her shadow, trying to ignore the other dog who wants one of my ginger snaps (yes, ginger snaps can pass for dinner every now and then), waiting for the husband to get home from his second job, worrying about what my stepson is doing in London and hoping he hasn't been pick-pocketed, and worrying about what I need to pack for work and day care tomorrow. Oh wait! This is the stress less home!! No worries!! Hee Hee Hee - I promise to find more cool helpful sites like Jackcards to make your home stress less!!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Stress Less about Birthdays and Anniversaries in the New Year!!

So here is something I do every January that is kind of fun, and makes life a lot easier throughout the year!! I have a plastic recipe-like box that is large enough to fit greeting cards.
I have tabs for each month (I made them out of cardstock paper) and for each month I write down all the birthdays, anniversaries or other events for which I might send a card. Then, I go to a stationary store or a store like Target and go card shopping for the whole year!! The good thing about stationary stores is that you can usually get a frequent buyer card so that you can buy 5 cards and then get one free.
I buy all my cards and then put them in the box by month. That way, at the beginning of each month - when I do my bills - I reach into the card box and fill out all my cards for the month. I send them out that week and don't have to worry about cards until next month!!
One quick tip - If you have an event in the first few days of a month, you might think about putting that card in the month before to make sure you get it out on time!!
I hope this makes your home a little less stressed! Until next time, I wish you a happy healthy new year with a lot less stress or at least a blog that helps you giggle at some of your stress and gives you a few helpful tips!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Frazzled - Let's Be Honest

Okay, so it is time to come clean. I have been very stressed out!!! Frazzled to no end actually. I read one of my posts and felt like it didn't truly represent what I am going through and what many of my friends go through. So, the zen cloak I have worn while writing is off!!! Here I am, frazzled like the rest of the world. After dealing with my newborn's croup, fighting off a nasty cold (for three weeks and it still isn't getting better), begging my husband to fix our dental insurance so I can fix the crown that fell off, oh maybe 2 months ago (back tooth - not visible to anyone!), cleaning up after the two hairiest dogs in the planet, working full time, writing and writing away so I can publish another book, baking for the holidays, and then trying to do day to day stuff, I have been a wee bit stressed.
So what did I do to relieve my own stress? I didn't sleep more like I should because the little man has decided that nursing every 90 minutes all night is what he likes best. I didn't take a walk because I can't really breath with this nasty cold. I didn't take time for myself because I really can't find any. So, Miss stress less, what did you do? I burst into tears while trying to empty the dishwasher.
How did that work out for you?
Amazingly well! My husband came to my aid, emptied the dishwasher and then even ordered take-out for dinner. After that he looked at me and said, "You are trying to do too much. You need to relax. Why don't I take the little man to day care tomorrow and you can sleep for a bit before heading off to work?"
Oh my Knight in Shining Armor!!! And so, here I am, tear free, better rested, accepting of the dog hair in my house, and all set for my dentist appointment next week. I guess I could have avoided the meltdown if I had just asked for some help, but in all honesty sometimes it takes a few tears for others to understand just how stressed one may feel.
So, cry away if you are at that point. The release of tears was also helpful. And ask someone for help. Really. It works!
Until next time, take care of yourself for five minutes each day. Hide in the bathroom and power nap. Take the long way home and listen to your favorite tunes on the radio. Take some time for you!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Keeping the Stress Less During the Holidays

Yeah right. Okay, holiday stress will probably get to you a little bit if it hasn't already. I don't know about you, but it definitely snuck up on me. With two dogs who are pretty stinky, a newborn who is pretty cranky, a stepson in college, and getting readjusted to going back to work, I kind of put the holidays on the back burner. Which seemed like a good idea, only now they are here! Actually, one just passed and I don't even know how that happened. Thankfully someone else cooked me Thanksgiving dinner. So really, how can you keep the stress at a minimum during the holidays?
1. Say No, No Thank You, Thank you, but I can't, Sorry, my schedule is too crazy. Any one of those suggestions will help you get out of overcommitting yourself. Say No!!!!
2. Bake in huge batches. Do you have a bizillion parties to bake for? Then bake a boatload of the same goodie, chop it up (extra small if you have to) and bring it to every party. You don't have to bake different treats for every party so don't.
3. Regift. Yes. That is what I said, regift. Don't give someone something you just want to get rid of, but look at things you have that you haven't used. Do you have 100 candles that you will never burn? Give them away to people who really like candles. You can clean house, make someone's day, and save money all at once.
4. Be honest with your friends. Don't have the cash this season? Tell your friends - Hey, money is tight right now, instead of exchanging gifts why don't we rent a movie and hang out some time in January when the craziness dies down. Your friends will probably thank you - I know I would.
5. Save a day. Block off one day in your calendar before the holidays. Don't plan anything for that day, take it off work if you can, and leave it totally open. This is your In Case of Emergency Day. This way you have one day to do last minute baking, shopping, or cleaning. And if everything is all done, make yourself some coffee or tea, curl up on your couch and watch cheesy movies.
6. Ignore your In-Laws. Okay, not completely, but ignore those in your family and in your circle of friends who have a knack for pointing out everything you DIDN'T do this holiday season. When someone mentions, "Gee, you make five different kinds of cookies last year, I guess that baby of yours must really be more than you can handle." Bite your tongue, take a deep breath, and remind yourself that they must be feeling the stress of the holidays too. You can curse them out in your head, just be sure you use your internal voice. Not the out-loud one.
7. Remind yourself the end is near. As fast as the holidays can creep up on us, the faster they will be over with. Then it is time for a new year!!!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Multitasking? Help or Hindrance?

Well, it can actually be a little of both. Sometimes multitasking is simple and very successful. Other times it can cause too much distraction, leading to tasks half done, not done at all, or so poorly done you have to do them over again! With so much to do, it is hard to get everything done without multitasking. But some of the things we try to get done are not really necessary. Do you have to reply instantly to a text? Does your bathroom really need to be cleaned while you are cooking dinner? So how can you figure out when to multitask and when to focus on one task?

1. Safety: Are any of the tasks you need to do potentially dangerous if left alone, or half done? For example, cooking something on the stove top while cleaning in another room - not a good idea. If there is something that is potentially dangerous if left unattended it is best not to multitask.

2. Importance Of Finished Product. Is your finished product going to be graded, determine your bonus at work, or be seen by many? If so, focus on this task. Distraction will only make your efforts appear as if you were distracted. If the finished product is your sink getting clean, no big deal to multi-task.

3. Is It A One Shot Deal? Are you writing addresses on envelopes and you only have the exact number of envelopes? FOCUS. If you are addressing envelopes and you have 20 extra - go ahead and multitask.

4. Can You Kill Two Birds With One Stone? Some things are actually better when done with other things. For example, watching your tivo-ed television shows while doing squats. Not only are you enjoying your shows, but also you are saving time in your day but squeezing in your workout! And there is no guilt for watching television if you are exercising at the same time!

5. Is This Your De-Stressing Time? Do you exercise to de-stress? Then keep exercise stress free. Don't try to read up on your work during your time on the stationary bike. Keep your time to de-stress simply that. If you don't you will only be bitter that you aren’t getting the time to yourself that you deserve.

6. Will It Affect Someone Who Needs You? Don't multitask while listening to your kids, partner, or a friend or family member in need. Sometimes multitasking is tempting while you are listening to someone tell you their latest woes, but if it is someone who really needs a shoulder, be present for that person.

Slow down. Life doesn't have to be a multitasking mess. Do one thing at a time and pay attention. Eating while driving, talking on your cell phone while walking the dogs - it takes away from thing we should enjoy. Eating should be done in a calm setting without too much distraction. Enjoy and taste your food. Going for a walk with the dogs can be fun if you view the world through their eyes. One task at a time may make you more appreciative and more relaxed!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Interview on Stepparenting

Check this out!
Pretty cool!! Irene Levine, PhD, did the technical review of my first book, "The Everything Guide to Stepparenting." I have adopted her as my mentor and really hope someday I can be as savvy as she is!
Check her cool blog out at

I have a fun post on multi-tasking coming up on Sunday, so stay tuned!!