Monday, May 12, 2014

May For Mental Health Awareness

By Lisa VanWilliams

Talk to your friends, talk to your children. Help starts with a conversation. Depression, anxiety, bipolar, and PTSD are common and treatable.

Mental Help America states that:

  • About 1 in 5 American adults will have a mental health condition in any given year
  • But only 41 percent of them will receive services
  • About 10 percent of the American adult population will have a mood disorder, such as depression or bipolar
  • And 18 percent have an anxiety disorder, including post-traumatic stress disorder

  • Mental Help America states that ‘ Mental health’ is perhaps best explained as how well we cope with daily life and the challenges it brings. When our ‘mental health’ is good, we can deal better with what comes our way -- at home, at work, in life. When our ‘mental health’ is poor, it can be difficult to function in our daily lives. It is a fluid state with disability and untreated illness at one end, and recovery and complete wellness at the other end. Most of us live and move within the middle range of the spectrum.

    If you or someone you love may be affected by this, please take the time to learn more at:

    Help starts with a conversation.

    Monday, May 5, 2014

    Spring Has Sprung

    By Lisa VanWilliams

    It was a long cold winter.  The daffodils and tulips are in full bloom, the Blue Jays and Cardinals are back, perennials are slowly waking and beginning to sprout, and soon the budding New England trees will be green with leaves again.  It's a great time to get outside and do some creative activities with the kids.

    Here are 5 fun Spring ideas that can keep your little ones busy and teach them some skills at the same time:

    1) Go to your local craft store and pick out some unfinished bird houses (usually 50% off coupon avail online or in your Sunday paper). Let your children be creative with their colors. Let them paint and design their own house and then once it's dry they get to pick a tree outside to hang it on. 

    2) Take them to the dollar store to pick out some pots and then let them help you plant herbs and their favorite vegetables, or a special flower they picked themselves. This year my daughter and I are going to attempt another pumpkin patch..the wood chuck that ate them last year is still lurking so we are going to have to relocate our patch :(  We planted them as seedlings and she was excited to watch their daily progress and help water.   Sunflower seeds are also an inexpensive alternative that creates a beautiful end result.

    3) Take the whole family to your local flower farm. My daughter walked with me through all the green houses and she looooveed looking at all the different varieties and picked her own special Gerbera we planted together. 

    4) Outdoor picnic/tea party !  We set up a little table in the play yard and we have been having tea time a few days a week. The kids love to pour their own water into cups. I can get them to eat vegetables and fruit at snack time without them realizing and they ask for more!!

    5) Take them fishing.  We have our Princess pole !! Daddy has to go dig some icky worms and put them on the hook for us.  We are going to hit up the local pond and see what comes up.