Feed Your Soul

5 free ways to give back...

- Sunday, January 29, 2017

Short on cash but still want to give back to your community? There are all sorts of ways to give back that don’t cost you a dime out of pocket. Here are 5 free ways to give back to your community.

·         Volunteer. Whether you volunteer at your local soup kitchen or for Habitat for Humanity, the only thing it will cost you is time.

·         Charitable Closet-Cleaning. Pick through your closet and find clothing you know you won’t be wearing again. That cardigan you haven’t worn in two years could be donated to a charity so someone else can get some use out it.

·         Browse for a Cause. When you download and install the Browse for a Cause app on your computer you can donate a percentage of your purchases to the charity of your choice. Websites like Amazon kick back a small percentage to referring sites (usually 3% to 5%).

·         Join Social Vibe. To help support your favorite causes and organizations, like the World Wildlife Fund, suicide prevention organization To Write Love On Her Arms, Charity: Water, and more, join SocialVibe. Raise money for your cause by completing certain brand activities (like posting a message about a certain brand on your Facebook page) and sponsors will donate money to one of over 40 nonprofits.

·         Like Shabby Apple. For every new person who “likes” them on Facebook, Shabby Apple will donate 5 cents to help women develop their own businesses through Kiva, a micro-lending resource.

The best way to experience love and true openness...

- Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Is there something you’ve been meaning to get off your chest? Then today might just be the day to cleanse your heart of your troubles and move on with a clear conscience. Little wonder why confession is a big part of many religions. Year round, honesty is the best policy. It’s the best way to experience love and true openness in your relationship.

Everyone can make a difference no matter how small...

- Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Everyone can make a difference no matter how small. Today is a great day to get creative and find a way to make someone smile. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

·         Buy the person ahead of you in line their coffee at Starbuck’s

·         Offer your seat on the bus or train to an expecting mother or senior citizen

·         Leave your copy of the newspaper on the table for someone else

·         Give your old magazines to a friend

·         Mow an elderly neighbor’s lawn or shovel snow from their sidewalk and driveway

The benefits of giving your time...

- Sunday, January 22, 2017

Busy schedules have lots of us feeling more time-constrained than ever but a recent study published in Psychological Science shows that helping others can actually increase our feeling of “time affluence” and alleviate our perception of “time famine.” Participants in the study carried out tasks in which they either gave their time or wasted it. The participants who spent time helping others by either writing to a sick child, helping an at-risk student from a local public high school, or doing something that was not part of their normal responsibilities— either for someone else or for themselves, reported that spending time on others seemed to “expand the future” in contrast to spending time on oneself. If you’re feeling time-constrained, consider giving your time to others. You’ll be happier in the long run and you’ll help others in the process.

Create a homeless care package...

- Saturday, January 21, 2017

We’ve all driven past folks on the corner holding up a sign asking for help. You might have handed them a ten dollar bill, maybe more, and still thought there must be more you could do. Actually there is. This simple care package for the homeless is something you can make yourself and keep in your car when such occasions arise.

Take a watertight gallon-size zipper lock plastic bag and fill with items like these:

  • Water bottle
  • Note of encouragement or uplifting Bible verse
  • Crackers with peanut butter or cheese
  • Fruit snack or applesauce cup
  • Granola Bar or cereal bar
  • Tuna and crackers
  • Gift certificate to fast food
  • Band Aids
  • Chapstick
  • Comb or small brush
  • Socks
  • Hand wipes
  • Pack of Kleenex
  • Maxi pads
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Nail clippers
  • Mints, cough drops or gum
  • Rescue Mission meal voucher

The best advice when it comes to helping others...

- Wednesday, January 18, 2017

You don’t need a reason to help people.

Why houseplants?

- Tuesday, January 17, 2017

One very good reason for appreciating houseplants is the fact that they improve your quality of life and indoor air quality by clearing airborne toxins in your home. Champion air-scrubbers like Boston fern, Sweet Chico and dwarf date palm make great housewarming presents and are ideal for elderly residents in assisted living facilities.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s most urgent question...

- Monday, January 16, 2017

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Traditions to bring your family together...

- Thursday, January 12, 2017

Traditions strengthen your family’s bonds, enrich the life you share together, contribute to your children’s well-being and create lasting memories. There are lots of family traditions practiced during the holidays and there are plenty of others observed throughout the rest of the year. Here are some traditions families living in the Information Age are observing so technology doesn’t take over!

Daily connections include:

Family Meals that begin with grace or sharing something they’re grateful for that day. No TV, no cellphones, and no tablets. Everyone takes a turn sharing something positive and negative that has happened to them during the day. Families also share stories and interesting information they’ve read or heard that day.

School Lunch Inspiration. Put inspiring notes or drawings in your children’s school lunches. It’s a great way to connect and make your kids feel extra loved.

Bedtime Story. Children whose parents read to them regularly typically do better in school and have larger vocabularies than children who don’t.

Weekly Connections include:

Family Game Night – From Pie in the Face to Monopoly, family game night is great fun, a fantastic way to keep connected and ramp up the laughter.

Movie Night – Borrow your favorite 80s movies from the library, hit the dollar store and let the kids pick out their favorite candy, pop some butter flavored popcorn at home and you have the perfect opportunity to wax poetic with your kids about why movies from the 80s were so much better than the ones produced today.

Pizza Night – Almost everyone loves pizza and having a pizza night gives you and your family a favorite meal to look forward to each week. Skip delivery and making your own is another way to connect and pass on some cooking skills to your kids too.

Saturday/Sunday Morning Breakfast together – Pancakes and waffles are “easy like Sunday morning.” So are biscuits and gravy. Indulge your inner chef.

Monthly Connections:

Box of Goals. Setting and working toward a goal is an important life skill. On the first day of every month, have family members write down one goal they wish to accomplish that month. Then place the piece of paper in a cigar box or a tin from the dollar store. At the end of the month you can take out the pieces of paper and see how everyone did. Then write new goals for next month. You’ll be amazed at all you and your family can achieve.

Family Service Day. If your family’s mission is to serve the community, consider designating one Saturday or Sunday each month to helping others. This could be in the form of spending a morning at a homeless shelter, helping a neighbor with yard work or sorting clothes at Goodwill.

What are some of your family’s traditions?

Relax and give back to yourself...

- Tuesday, January 10, 2017

With the holidays over, you deserve to take some time to relax and give back to yourself. Here are five tricks for giving back to you.

1.    Aromatherapy. Scents have a powerful effect on us because they’re the best and fastest way to reach the mood center of our brains is through our nose! Inhaling essential oils can transform our mood. Essential oils with grounding properties help calm your mind so you can refocus. To calm occasional stress and anxiety try Cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica), Frankincense (Boswellia carterii), Idaho Balsam Fir (Abies balsamea), Idaho Blue Spruce (Picea pungens), Royal Hawaiian Sandalwood (Santalum paniculatum), or Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanoides).

2.    Listen to Relaxing Music. You can find relaxing music on YouTube, or music apps like Pandora or Spotify.

3.    Take a walk outdoors in the fresh air. When you experience a change of scenery it gives your mind lots of stimuli to focus on rather than what you’ve been stressing about. Give yourself a chance to slow down and admire the flowers or listen to the birds.

4.    Massage therapy works wonders but if you don’t have the funds for this on a regular basis, consider simple tools like a foam roller, massage therapy balls, or tennis balls and use the ground or a wall to work on yourself.

5.    Allow yourself to be creative. Whether you choose to express your creativity through cooking, painting, knitting, jewelry making or coloring, doing crafts is a great way to relieve stress.


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