Self-Care

  • Women+Patterns+Plants Is Your New Favorite Self-Care Coloring Book

    self-care coloring book women+patterns+plants mommyrandr

    I was in my local bookstore not too long ago just browsing, as I usually do. No title or author in mind. Just me in the store walking slowly letting my eyes scan around for covers to jump out at me. This is how I shop for books sometimes. Nothing special grabbed me from the stacks so I wandered over to the planner section, the last section I always visit before I exit the store – and I saw it.

    I could only see a small corner of it. It was the color of a beautiful sunset. I knew this was a newly added item cause I know that section like the back of my hand. Let me tell you when I pulled this book out from it’s hiding spot, my gawd. I was standing still but I stumbled. I was holding Women + Patterns + Plants a self-care coloring book by Sarina Mantle (@wildsuga).

     

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    A post shared by Artist Designer Sarina Mantle (@wildsuga) on

    This was the most gorgeous coloring book I’ve ever laid eyes on. I couldn’t believe this beautifully illustrated Black woman was staring back at me. I thought to myself, “this is too good to be true”. Books can be funny, you know. The cover can be one thing and the insides another. This was not one of those times. As I flipped through the pages I could tell this was a self-care coloring book made FOR US by us.

    About Women + Patterns + Plants self-care coloring book

    This book is simple, it’s a self-care coloring book made up of women, patterns, and plants. Sarina wants you to immerse yourself in divine feminine energy and wonderful natural imagery, as a way to rekindle your creativity as you work your way through empowering images. There are also question prompts and statements that allow for self-reflection as you color.

    self-care coloring book women+patterns+plants mommyrandr

    I’m telling y’all right now I didn’t color that. Only in my dreams would I be able to perfectly execute something like this. But I’ma try tho. I first gotta get me some high falutin color pencils cause these Crayola’s my kids got ain’t gonna cut it.

    self-care coloring book women+patterns+plants mommyrandr

    Believe me when I tell you I’ve never purchased anything so quickly. And you should too, cause quantities are limited. So get off social media (after you’ve read this post and bought the book) and take a few moments for yourself to color in some happy little plants.

    BUY $10.13
    Do you enjoy adult coloring? What do you think of Women + Pattterns + Plants? Is this a self-care coloring book you would consider buying for yourself or a friend?
  • 10 Tips For Taking Care of Yourself This Summer as a Stay at Home Mom

    Taking care of yourself this summer as a stay at home mom is just as important for yourself, as it is for your family. When you have a kid, your life may seem like it revolves around your child, and on some level, it does, especially during the summer months. Your schedule might be a little more hectic as you’re taking kids from one outdoor activity to another, or you start to go a little bonkers from staying indoors to beat the heat. And as a result, you may forget to take care of yourself.

    Here are some tips for taking care of yourself this summer as a stay at home parent

    Be sure to give yourself 6-8 hours of sleep

    Real talk, your sleep is important. It’s recommended that you get between six and eight hours of sleep a night, but as a parent, you’ll be faced with times when you’ll get less. Much less. So what’s the key to getting a good night’s rest? The most important thing (and I swear by this) is you must have a solid bedtime routine.

    This routine is more than hopping into bed at the same time every night and pulling up the covers. I’m talking about the steps you take that will send a signal to your body that it’s bedtime. My routine lasts about an hour cause I like to take my time. By the time I”m finished and get into bed I’m asleep in less than ten minutes.

    Another way that I make sure I’m well-rested is naps. Let’s face there are times you can get all the sleep in the world and still be tired during the day. I make no bones about my afternoon nap. It makes me feel refreshed. An hour to an hour and a half of sleep is a good way to make me feel like a new woman. So do yourself a favor and take yourself a nap whenever you can. Your mind and body will thank you for it.

    Make sure to eat and stay hydrated

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    Your health is just as important as your child’s health. Making sure to eat three meals a day to keep your energy up so you can keep up with your kid(s). It’s really easy to skip a meal when times get hectic, trust me I have and there wasn’t a time where it worked out for me. Missing a meal left me with headaches, not feeling like myself, and just plain ole angry.

    I also know during the summer you might not want to cook cause the heat outside and the heat in the kitchen isn’t fun. But Good Housekeeping has 60 quick summer dinner recipes that will have you in and out of the kitchen.

    And while you’re in the kitchen, make sure you’re drinking plenty of water. It’s summertime and you’re gonna be outside a lot more which means you need to prevent dehydration. How do you know you’re dehydrated? You’ll start to feel any number of things from thirst, headache, dizziness, and tiredness. You’ll also notice that your skin will feel super dry and your urine will be darker. To avoid this you should make sure you’re drinking at least eight or more 8-ounce glasses of water a day.

    Do an activity that would be considered good exercise

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    Exercise can help keep you in shape. If you’re stuck at home, you can do simple things like floor exercises or walk around the neighborhood. This can be especially helpful if you cannot afford a gym membership right now.

    But just because you’re exercising at home that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. There are tons of fitness videos you can follow right in your livingroom like yoga, pilates or even kickboxing. You can even involve your children too which might even lead to a nap afterward – although I can’t make any promises.

    As an additional tip, with it being summertime be on the lookout for any local free outdoor classes you can attend. But if you can afford a gym membership check out Classpass. This is my personal favorite as it allows me to attend different fitness classes all over the city. It’s my go-to for everything from candlelight yoga, barre class or a relaxing steam. Oh, and please before you start any workout regiment make sure you have the proper running shoe and don’t forget an SPF moisturizer of 30 or greater while outdoors.

    Take a family staycation

    Everything isn’t about venturing off to faraway lands. You and your family can have blast together at a nearby hotel. Make lasting memories with a little weekend poolside fun and rediscovering your neighborhood. It’s a great way for everyone to have a little escape without the big-ticket travel price.

    Keep your skin clean

    During the summer months, it’s imperative that you keep your skin clean. Sweat and dirt will clog your pores and can cause skin irritations or in worse cases infection. So you have to make sure your skin is cleansed and moisturized daily, or even twice a day.

    Now the thing to remember with your shower is that you don’t want the water too hot. I love hot showers year-round they soothe my body and make me feel rejuvenated. However, while hot water opens your pores to help you clean your skin but if it’s too hot water it will dry out your skin and can aggravate existing skin issues.

    Make it a good mix of hot and cool water. Taking a cool shower also has its benefits like increasing blood circulation and can even promote weight loss as you burn calories as you try to keep warm in the shower.

    Plan and delegate tasks to not overwork yourself

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    Feel frazzled and don’t know what day it is or can’t remember why you have a 9:30a appointment? Then it’s time to get yourself a planner. Mom brain is a serious thing. One minute you can remember your entire shopping list and the next minute you can’t remember where you left your coffee. This is why I suggest getting a planner. You don’t have to go crazy like some planner lovers unless you want to. It’s a fun hobby – but that’s another conversation. But you can get yourself a simple weekly planner to help you keep track of your appointments and other notes.

    Now that your day and week is planned out you can start to delegate other things around your home. It’s okay to want to be the super parent, but sometimes, a little help can reduce your stress, and also allow time for family fun. If you’re married or have a partner, get them involved if they aren’t already. Get them involved by bathing the kids or taking them to the park. If you have a child that is old enough assign them some chores.

    Remember, the key to running a household and raising children is to never overwork yourself.

    Log off the internet

    Social media can be addicting. It’s important for you to take breaks from time to time. Log off for a couple of hours, a day, a week, a month. It’ truly up to you. But the point is to reconnect with yourself, your family, those in your inner circle outside of Facebook. Also, while social media can be a fun place for laughs and memes it can also be very toxic, and that can lead you to feel sadness, frustration or even anger. It’s not healthy to have any of that in your life.

    Now, what happens if you have a hard time logging off social media? Well, there are plenty of apps that will monitor your social media usage and set timeframes when you can and can’t use it. The apps work as long as you don’t go tinkering with the settings or uninstalling altogether. You have to want to take a step back.

    Take up a hobby

    Now that you’re spending less time on social media you now have time to take up a new hobby or revisit a hobby you used to indulge in. I would recommend taking up a hobby that you’ve never done before as a way of trying new experiences. You can either take a local class as a way to meet people in your area with the same interests as you or you can watch how-to’s on Youtube in the privacy of your own home.

    Take some you time once a week without the kids

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    You can’t always be cooped up in your house, and you can’t always have your children attached at the hip. Having your partner spend time alone with the kids or getting a babysitter will allow you to have a little bit of time to yourself. Even if it’s just an hour to yourself. As much as you may not think you need the alone time, trust me you do. The benefits of spending time alone will prevent burnout, stress, headaches, and losing patience just to name a few. You need time that is spent on you doing what you enjoying doing.

    Spend time with your partner

    For those in relationships spending time with your partner is crucial. Yes, I’m all about getting you time in but you also need to consider your partner and make some us time. I know you’ve had a long day of being with the kids and they’ve had a long day at the office. Both of you are tired. But as a couple, making time for one another is important. By fitting in a date night (it doesn’t have to be romantic, although it can be) you’re telling each other that you want to be together and are doing all you can to prevent the relationship from becoming strained over time.

    Do you have any tips for taking care of yourself this summer as a stay at home mom?
  • Social Media Self-Care: Why Unfollowing and Blocking People Is Necessary

    Social Media self-care valerie pierre mommyrandr

    When I first got on social media I didn’t think of myself as someone who would block people. Back then I didn’t find it necessary and honestly, I thought it was a bit excessive. This was probably because I didn’t see any shit on my personal Facebook page that would give me a reason to block anyone.

    But when I started a public Facebook page (long before this blog was born) I quickly became aware of the negativity that can make the internet a not so fun place to be. You’d be surprised what people would say to me in response to parenting memes and other things I shared. Usually, I would ignore them. But if it got too bad I found myself having to block them.

    At first, I would feel a little guilty and told myself I shouldn’t take it personally. Then I thought, fuck that. I created this space for moms to chill and enjoy. I’m not gonna let these Debbie downers and trolls ruin my shit. So it didn’t take long for me to start using the block button more frequently, and guilt-free.

    Today, unfriending and blocking people is my favorite form of social media self-care, and it should be yours too.

    Protecting my space on social media

    While I may not be able to control the world around me I can control what pops up my timeline. And since I’m all about happiness in all areas of my life I make sure my timelines have a positive reaction on my mental and spiritual health.

    I don’t come on social media to argue with ignorant people stuck in their ways. I don’t have the time nor patience for that. Instead, when I log on I want to consume information from accounts that are going to give me educational and spiritual nourishment.

    So, yeah, this might mean you’ll have to unfriend or block relatives and friends or unfollow someone. Will they like it? Will they understand why you’re unfollowing or blocking them? Probably not. Why? Due to the ease of social media access, people often get upset or even angry when the access they once had to someone becomes restricted. But you see, I no longer care about how people feel when I deny them social media access to me. My feelings as a result of their post matter more, it’s as simple as that.

    I know not everyone is cut and dry so if blocking is too severe there’s always the mute option. Muting is great because it allows you to remain friends with someone while keeping their content from appearing on your timeline. They also have no clue they’ve been muted.

    What are some reasons for blocking people on social media?

    You may not want to see posts from certain people on your timeline for any number of reasons like:

    They’re racist, sexist or homophobic

    No decent human being wants to see that shit on their timeline. I don’t care if it’s your favorite Aunt Alma who makes the best apple pie. Fuck that shit cause there’s no excuse for it.

    They’re a negative Nancy 

    There’s always one person who should scroll past things they don’t agree on but instead will leave an antagonizing comment in the hopes of provoking a comment war.

    You’ve broken up

    If you had a nasty breakup there’s no reason to keep seeing their shit on your timeline and there’s no reason for them to see you on theirs. You living your best life without them is not their business.

    They’re creepy as fuck

    If someone is in your comments with weird comments and emoji’s or if they’ve sent you an unsolicited dick pic they should most definitely be blocked and reported.

    You don’t talk to them or don’t remember who they are

    If you’re Facebook “friends” with someone whom you haven’t spoken to since friending them or nothing about them rings a bell. You should totally let these people go if you have no shared friends.

    They spread fake news

    There’s always that one person who’s always sharing something you always feel like you have to correct despite them having all of Al Gore’s internet at their fingertips to fact check.

    I consider all my social media channels my peaceful corner of the internet. I protect that peace at all costs which is something that I hope you’ll do as well.

    What are your thoughts on this form of social media self-care? Is it something that you do or something you’re gonna start doing?
  • Back-to-School Memes: Parents Celebrating The First Day of School

    *This post was originally posted on August 27, 2018, and has been updated to include the 2021 semester.

    back to school memes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    If you follow my Facebook or my personal page you know I love a good meme. I enjoy making and sharing them. A well-created meme or gif can be a hilarious way to convey exactly how we’re feeling at the moment without an additional caption.

    That said, it’s back-to-school time and moms everywhere are gearing up to reclaim their time. With the kids back in school, there’ll be more time for hot coffee savoring, longer naps, uninterrupted poop time, and more of doing nothing all day. Hence the excitement of moms and the following memes express that happiness perfectly.

    This one was mine from the 2017 school semester, yeah it’s a gif but you can see I was excited after that first-day drop-off.

    Here are some actual back-to-school memes and comments from around the web:
    (*FYI: I don’t own these. I’m just sharing them)

    back to school memes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    back to school memes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    back to school memes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    back to school memes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    back to school memes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    How things have changed from semesters past. While the situation is serious you can ensure the internet will make us laugh. These five back-to-school memes pretty much sum up what most parents (and teachers) are thinking this first semester back since the great plague.

    Do you have any favorite back-to-school memes? Tag me in them with me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter @MommyRandR.

    *I wanna give a shout out to my homie Mitch over at GayNYCDad who gave me inspiration for this post.