Family Fitness in 36 Seconds
One act. Three seconds. Twelve times. Equals 36 seconds a day. What’s the magic moment? A hug.
According to family therapist Virginia Satir, “The recommended daily requirement for hugs is: 4 per day for survival, 8 per day for maintenance, and 12 per day for growth.” A family’s emotional fitness can be aided by a mere 36 seconds a day.
But, the real trick, says neuroeconomist Paul J. Zak, is that the hug has to be associated with a “signal of trust”. Having some sign of confidence in the relationship, or potential connection, accompanied with the hug insures moods more at peace, security increased, and stress released.
Efforts can be made to remind us, and family members, of the 36-second hug habit. To strengthen the attachment process and hug therapy in your home I made 2 versions of the Hugs & Kisses Kit. (I threw in the kisses for good measure.) The idea is that the kit has chocolate candies and every time one is taken out, then a hug has to be given to someone as ‘payment’. The kit really isn’t necessary, just a fun reminder to get your family counting and keeping track of heart healthy hugs.
Here are a few other times to wrap your head (and arms) around.
• hug in morning
• hug at night
• hug to greet
• hug to congratulate
• hug to warm
• hug to protect
• hug to connect
• hug to apologize
• hug to energize
• hug to support
• hug to strengthen
• hug to surprise
Thirty six seconds to increase family fitness of heart and mind. Do you have the time today?
Get the DIY downloadable here @ Idaho Women's Journal for $2.
There's a crafty version and a quick version. I had the quick version of the Hugs & Kisses glass jar out during a party and there were hugs everywhere.
Try it out in your home and let me know how you like it.
At church we have a program for young women (12-18 years) to develop character. They have various activities they can perform. One of the experiences they get to have is a chance to "strengthen your relationship with a family member by showing love through your actions". To help the girls I made up this Hugs & Kisses Kit.
I did this around Father's Day so the girls could have a chance to focus on their relationship with their Dad if they wanted to. Since it's close to Father's Day I thought I'd share it with you.
This activity lasts two weeks so I gave simple suggestions of what they can do to interact each day. Some of the activities are
Day #7 Make a treat for this person,
Day #11 Text a nice comment to this person,
Day #2 Find out their favorites,
Day #8 Talk about your favorite things to do in Summer.
I designed these into 1/4 sheet handouts. They can put it on a ring to help them remember. I call it The Ring Thing™. I've made several for different topics to go on the Ring Thing which I'll share periodically. Here's a photo of my Ring Thing.
Here's a PDF to download if you'd like to use it for some activity you have. It's a black and white PDF that you can print onto colored paper. Then you can cut it into 1/4 sheets.
It was the end of another school year. Except this one was different for me because I've been part-time teaching all year. The woman I worked with has been wonderful in sharing her art room and showing me how things go. I wanted to give her a going away gift and thought about the times that we have had emergency drills. (We live in Tornado Alley) I came up with this bitesized classroom emergency kit. It's not a comprehensive kit, more of a make the kids feel good while they're in emergency positions kit. So I filled it with a few things, designed and printed an insert label, and tied a bow. One box, one label, one shopping trip, one gift. Easy peasy. I've included the steps and downloads for you if you'd like to give this gift a go. (It doesn't have to be just for a classroom, you could use it for an office or some other place.)
Start off with a clear pencil box, the long ones found in WalMarts & Targets. (It's about 13" long)
Then download the label and print on a legal size paper. (I've left the name off and your content area blank on the templates.)
I use a paper cutter to cut the printed label.
Fill the kit. Here are the contents for this classroom emergency kit. (But add whatever you'd like.)
30 light stick bracelets • 1 large black trash bag • 2 small trash bags • 2 packages of tissues • 2 sticky note pads • 2 ink pens • 1 paper tablet • 1 small red sharpie • 1 large black sharpie • 1 lighter • 4 bullnose clips • 4 thick rubber bands • 1 bottle hand sanitizer • 1 spray hand sanitizer • 2 hand warmers • 16 wipes • 13 tie wraps • 10 safety pins - You could fill it with anything really
Here are the downloads below, in several versions for legal size paper (8.5" x 11").
When my daughter Alisha was almost due with her baby, I was invited to the baby shower given by her school co-workers. We had planned a family/friend shower and I already had a gift in mind for baby Caeden to give then. So, for this shower I wanted to give a gift that would be fun for her. But, of course I waited until the day of - nothing like a little self-imposed pressure to get the creativity going.
Trying to think of something, I mentally went back to my baby hospital stays and remembered that after deliveries I was always starving. My friends would then smuggle in a burger or pizza – contraband. Then I thought, “What if you planned for the contraband before going into the hospital?” As a result, I came up with the idea of a Hospital Contraband Kit.
The Hospital Contraband Kit is a clear make-up bag with a printed label inserted inside that is then filled with personally tailored contents. For my daughter, I chose chocolate contraband and she loved it! Shortly after that, another friend’s daughter had her baby. It was Christmas Eve afternoon and I didn’t want to fight any crowds at the stores. I remembered that I had an extra make-up bag and quickly printed the label then headed out the door. On my way, I stopped at a convenience store (more expensive but worth it to miss the Christmas chaos) to pick up the contraband. It was a pretty effortless gift and she thought it was great.
Here are the fast and easy steps for you to put together your own kit. Print. Fold. Fill.
#1 Print the free download #2 Fold on the printed lines #3 Fill with 1 of 3 options
You don't really need to get sick to have or make one. Here are the different things you can put inside.
To Do -
• Print - PDF Download on 8.5 x 11 white cardstock
• Fold - printout on light grey lines
• Buy - clear make-up bag approx $6 (Modella Brand WalMart)
• Buy - contents, your choice
• Fill - and give
So, what would you put in a Hospital Contraband Kit?
I can't believe it's December. DECEMBER. This so snuck up on me this year.
As you know, it's the gift giving season! So I'm thinking about gifts, what fun they are and that I need to get busy getting mine together. One of my favorite types of gifts to get/give are kits. (ok, besides the expensive jewelry, clothes, and art categories.) Kits are so delightful. They're a surprise within a surprise. I love the feeling of being surprised again and again as I look through what was put into the kit.
Friendship Bracelet Kit • A To Do Kit • (click image for link)
Kits can be designed around any conceivable topic or theme. Like a Snowman Kit. Who knew I wanted a Snowman Kit. It's about as creative as you want to be.
Snowman Kit • How totally clever! (click image for link)
And kits don't have to be expensive. Which is such a bonus. Some of the items might not be so great on their own (like embroidery thread) but when combined with other inexpensive items and packaged up in a fun way it says I care. Which is what gift giving is all about.
They can also be done straight from home. Like from your own kitchen. How convenient!
Goodies Kit • Baked Goods in Cello Bags • click image for link
I've already created one kit for one of my kids on a regular shopping trip. You can create a kit too. You don't even have to think up your own kit contents, there are so many great ones out there already. I have a whole pin board of them, so you can go here and just pick an idea out. Remember it's December, the gift giving season.
The Boyfriend surprised me the other day. That can be hard to do after almost 29 years of marriage. And knowing him for 33 years. He told me that his middle school art won the contest and was in the Los Angeles County Fair. I remember this fair as a girl and loved it.) How can you not tell an artist you had your art exhibited as a kid? Yeah, I know, he failed me there.
We also talked about art projects we did as kids. How we remembered distinctly doing them. He went off - talking about the feel of the paints while he finger painted, how he really enjoyed it and how it delighted him. He was kind of giddy. This was just weird to listen to, he sounded like me. Which is so not like him, to be like me. But, I totally knew what he was talking about from my own finger painting experiences.
It's got me thinking about things. Again. But, while I think, do you have any childhood projects that you remember doing?
Here's one of mine. An early elementary school art project I did. I remember very distinctly being disgusted that I went too far in playing with the colors on top and smearing them. I wanted to do a new one, that's how unhappy I was about it.
DIY Wedding Favors • Children's Chalkboard Bags • In our planning the Groom mentioned that he had 35 nieces and nephews. 35! And most of them live locally and would be attending the wedding. So, we made sure we thought of them and did a couple of things. This was one of them and it's a totally easy project.
100 Wilton white favor bags (6" x 3.75") - approx $5
Adhesive backed chalkboard paper, 1 roll (like Contact® paper) - approx $8
Chalk (broken in half) - $.01 box of 12 found online somewhere
1) I cut the chalkboard adhesive back paper with a paper cutter. Peeled and placed it.
2) Stamped bird with white ink. We had to dap with a tissue to dry it out.
3) Hot glued a tiny branch found from the yard.
4) Placed chalk piece inside.
They could also use it to put treats in. Glad we did it.
Put these votives in the birdhouse windows on the wedding favor table. Here's the how-to -
Basic Elements 16 unfilled Votive holders found @ Michael's - approx $10
18 battery operated "candles" @ WalMart - approx $15
A few sheets of velum printed on my ink jet printer - approx $2
Type quotes in a document
Print on velum, one sheet at a time
Cut, trim to size of votives
Help me add to my list - What is another wedding quote or word?
I teach young women (ages 12-18) at church and we give moral messages in the activities we do each week. We've been talking about weddings and marriage this last little while and I came across henna hand tattoos that are traditionally used at weddings. They are beautiful but our church recommends against getting tattoos. So, since I live the artsy life, I decided to tattoo a few other things - a notebook and tote. I also related it to the idea that everyone is a unique and integral part of the group and life as a whole.
The girls really enjoyed the idea and the drawing. Here is a download link of the values lesson that goes along with the drawing. Here's a link to another tote in lime green.
If I were to do it over again, I would do a much smaller project for the girls than a tote lid. This lid took me 3 hours the next day. We had less than an hour of class to do and they were trying to fill up too much space for that much time. A notebook (or notebook size) would have been an easier start. Sometimes you don't know something until you do it.