Depression 101: Myths and facts

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I have spent a lot of time talking to people about depression since my post in February “Suzy Sunshine🌞“where I openly discussed my own depression.  I have absolutely LOVED the feedback and discussions that my blog generated and am so happy I took that huge leap to open up and talk about something that many people struggle with.

While talking to people though, I have realized, even more, how many misconceptions there are about depression.  I am devoting this blog to a few of those but will be writing more blogs on my experiences and knowledge in the future as I can see that people NEED and WANT to talk about it.

The first misconception I will address is that those people you hear say “I am so depressed” do not struggle with/suffer with depression.  I know they are just using it as an expression, but it really kind of minimalizes the pain and suffering those of us who are actually suffering go through.  Those of us who do, do not just randomly use this expression; we suffer in silence mostly and if we do ask for help it is just that.  We say that we are struggling and need some help only to those very close to us who we trust.  This is EXTREMELY hard for us though.  I am better at it now that I have opened up to more people, but those suffering are generally doing it in silence.

The second misconception is that depression is something that you can just “snap out of” with the right distraction and attention.  Oh how I would love it to be this easy!  No matter what people say to us (“everything will work out”), do to distract us (try to get us to laugh etc), remind us of the good things (“be thankful for all you have”) it, sadly, doesn’t help! I wish these heartfelt gestures by friends did help, but unfortunately I end up feeling far worse as I am made to realize that “yes, everything is perfect, so why am I SOOOOOO sad all the time!!!”  I know that these intentions come from the right place in your heart, but the best thing you can do is give me a hug, not ask me how I am (I’ll just break down) and let me know you are there if I need you.  Most people have learned to read me well and for this I am thankful.

I am in the very fortunate position of having a wonderful support network and for this I am eternally grateful!

The last misconception is about taking medications to help in treating depression.  I, as I have been quite open about, am a believer in medication so want non-believers to understand that taking a medication for a mental health illness does not make you weak.  Many people are uncomfortable with admitting they are are on meds but this is ridiculous. People believe the meds will “change you”. If by change you you mean level things out in your brain so that you can deal with life like the average person can, then YES, they do change you. A positive change that helps you cope with life on an even level.They are not happy pills that make you feel numb and happy. If they do you are on too high a dose! Don’t be embarrassed. Be proud that you are getting the help you need.  If I needed help seeing should I be embarrassed to wear my glasses? It’s the same thing❤

I am going to leave it at that for this blog, but those of you who have opened up to me, please pm me any time, and continue to reach out for support.

Your Simply Susan lesson the day! 😄

 

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‘Twas the night before school…..

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fit2borganized

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Twas the night before school and all through the town,

The children were whining and all feeling down.

Their bags were all packed, and all filled to the top,

With lunches, and snacks, a few books and a pop!

The children were crying and getting ready for bed,

While their parents drank wine, relaxed and some read.

And daddy in his pj’s and I in mine too,

Were sitting downstairs with nothing to do.

Wait what? What’s that? I hear a big shout,

I look up the stairs and see one child running about.

She is up in her room making sure is ready,

For the first day of school has to be just right and steady.

She is one of a kind, loves the first day of school,

But this wears off soon, by day 3 it’s not cool!

The other child yells  “Why????”,  and puts…

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A smile a day……keeps negativity away

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20160214_142317.jpgI have made it a personal goal of mine to approach each day with a smile and a positive attitude.  Some days are certainly harder than others, but as long as I work at it, I generally succeed……I did say generally, I am only human and just like everyone I have days where I keep to myself and avoid seeing and talking to people.

The difference here is that I recognize I am not in a good mood, acknowledge it, and purposely try to keep to myself so as not to affect others.  You know what?  We are all busy, we all have daily life challenges, and we all have some crap going on to deal with!  I just want to stress that just because you may feel like a miserable cow doesn’t mean you need to bring others down with you!!!!

I just HATE being around people that think that everyone needs to know how life has wronged them, how they have “Way too much to do!” , how everything is “so expensive!”, etc., etc., etc.,!   WE ALL DO!!!!!!!  That’s called life and it’s the CHOICES that we make that can make or break us.  I purposely CHOOSE to avoid people, or keep to myself if I am feeling negative because I am quite aware that what is going to come out of my mouth won’t help!

When we are around those “negative, dark, cloudy” people we can’t help but be brought down with them.  What do I do?  I try and say something positive, and I LEAVE!  I refuse to let someone ruin my day just because they think the world is out to get them!  It’s not worth it!  Life is too short to waste time with people who don’t affect you positively.

I want you, my loyal followers, to really think about these things as you surround yourself with people.  Who do you realize is your “dark cloud”?  Who makes you feel good?  How can I help this person to see the good rather than the evil??

2016-05-10-14.35.02.jpg.jpgLife is a series of choices, let’s try to spread  positivity and happiness.  I LOVE to smile, and am thrilled to hear that my smile makes those around me smile to. 🙂 🙂 🙂

Always remember those wise words from your mother…..“If you don’t have anything nice to say to say, don’t say anything at all!”

Love, smiles, and hugs to all my fit2borganized followers.

Please feel free to comment, and add suggestions as to what you would like me to tackle in this year’s blogs!

Your Simply Susan SMILE of the day!!

Spaghetting ready for fall! :)

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I love the fall so much for so many different reasons; the colours here in Southern Ontario, the cooler temperatures, the change in the air, and also the fall vegetables that there are so many fantastic recipes for.  So in today’s blog I will share one of my favourites!

Taco Spaghetti Squash!

Here is the recipe:

Pierce your spaghetti squash in a line all the way around the exterior.

Microwave for 5 minutes/squash

Take the squash out and cut it in half and scrape out the seeds

Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper

Place face down on a baking sheet and bake at 375 for 40 minutes

While this is baking, make your taco mix

Brown your meat of choice (ground chicken, beef, pork) ** if you want to bulk it up without adding more meat add equal amounts of rice and water

To this add:  your packaged taco seasoning or, make your own by adding:

1T chili powder,

1/4 t garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper flakes, and dried oregano

1/2 t paprika,

1 1/2 t cumin,

1 t salt and pepper

Once the squash is done, take out of the oven and let cool slightly20161016_182847.jpg

Once cooled, using a fork, scrape the inside of the squash making “spaghetti”20161016_183327.jpg

Next, add the taco mix onto the spaghetti20161016_182840.jpg

Top with Salsa, tomatoes, and lots of cheese!!

Bake at 375 for 15 more minutes until cheese is bubbling and melted.

Remove from oven, let cool slightly, then add lettuce and sour cream if desired, and ENJOY!!!!!20161016_184820.jpg

There you have it, your Simply Susan recipe of the day! 😆 

 

 

 

Rut’s wrong with me?! 😣

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20160902_102910.jpgThis summer was a tough one for me as I found myself in that dreaded “runners rut“.  It was a tough one I’ll tell ya!

I was having such a hard time with my runs, and, the problem was I wasn’t doing anything different!  I was running the same amount and the same pace as always, but man was I struggling!  It was so frustrating to me as not only was I exhausted after a short run, but my body was aching and I was feeling old!  NOooooooooo!  I had not only plateaued in my running, I had started to regress! This really took a toll on me, so I really needed to figure out what to do and how to get back on track as it was really starting to get me down.

Now, who knows maybe it was the heat of the summer and the fact that most days it was over 25 degrees Celcius when I went out.  Maybe it was the thick, humid air?  Who knows! Whatever it was I needed to take control and get back on track.

So, I analyzed my runs and decided to come up with a plan.  What did I do you ask??? I decided to make a few temporary changes and hoped these would make the difference I needed.

Firstly, I cut back on the number of runs I was doing for a few weeks.  Secondly, I decided I needed to not care at all about my pace and run a comfortable, slow speed.  I also made sure that when I started out I started SLOWLY rather than my normal faster pace.  I had to really focus on being slow and making sure that I was comfortable.  The other thing I did was to change my routes a little and do shorter, flatter routes that wouldn’t challenge or tire me as much on those hot, humid summer days. The last change I made was to  cross-train on those in-between days (see my other blogs about great cross-training ideas!!).  Cross-training, as you all should know by now, is so very important to any exercise program you are doing.

20160902_102537.jpgThe verdict????? After 2 weeks of doing this I feel I AM BACK!!!  I did what I needed to do and I was able to beat the rut I was in and have had 2 1/2 solid weeks (so far) of good running!

What did I learn from this?  I learned that anyone can go through a rut no matter what sport you are in; running,dance, soccer, cycling, even going to the gym!  We all seem to get to a point where we are not progressing in our workouts, or worse yet, we feel as though we can’t keep up to even our regular work-outs!  It’s so frustrating and discourages the best of us!

I hope that what you have learned from this post is that if you are going through that dreaded rut, just take a moment, figure out what steps you can do to taper back for a period of time, and CROSS TRAIN!!!   This will help to not only regenerate you, but help you get back that “runners high” or whatever phrase it is your activity of choice uses!!

There you go, your Simply Susan motivational tip of the day! 😆

Keep happy and keep active!  You’ll be glad you did!

 

Dining in? Now you can!

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It’s funny, when I originally started this blog, my plan was to alternate organizing and fitness tips.  I was going to go through every room in the house and write a blog on how to best organize it! As you see, if you have been following me, I have strayed a little!😄😄  Lots of other ideas and suggestions have been made to me which I’ve loved, and used, but today I’ll flashback to the original plan. 

Your dining room…….This is likely one of the less used rooms in your house (unless of course you are one of those people who do work on your dining room table because every other room in your house is too cluttered, and your dining room table is your only free space!!!)  I truly hope you are not one of those people but if you are…..never fear….I can help!!!

I will writewpid-2015-10-13-08.11.43.jpg.jpg this with the assumption that this is a less frequently used area that just needs to be kept organized after being used as it is meant to be used.  Ideally, this space is just used for dining, so therefore only dining supplies need to be kept in it.  If you have invested in a buffet and hutch (or one or the other) use the cupboards and shelves to group items accordingly.  Keep all dinner ware together in one cupboard or shelf.  Keep serving dishes all grouped together.  Group stemware together:  beer, wine, scotch, brandy, champagne glasses etc. all in rows.If you keep only things that you use, you will now have room to keep table cloths, placemats, trivets, dinner napkins, and serving utensils here as well, that way all your supplies for setting the table are close at hand.  Keep large serving dishes here and the candles you use as well.  Having everything all in one place saves time; that way you’re not desperately searching for those items each time.

Don’t have enough space in your hutch to  put things away? Get rid of or donate anything you don’t actually use, such as those brandy glasses or those novelty wine glasses you keep getting for your birthday. Are you still keeping those ugly cloth napkins someone gave you as a wedding gift?  Donate them!

Keep the dining table free of clutter so dusting etc. is easier, or cover it with a table cloth when not in use.  Then, remove and use placemats when dining.

Last note…..In my personal opinion, if you have fancy China use it every time you dine in the dining room.  I find most people always save it for the most special occasions; feeling almost afraid to use it. I use my Nana’s Royal Doulton China all the time. I even wash it in my dishwasher when I’m done! Don’t save it, use it.😆

Okay, now that your dining room is organized, why not make a plan to have a dinner party or even just a regular family dinner in this beautifully organized space!

But, if you’re having friends over, don’t forget me!

Your Simply Susan organizational tip of the day. 😆

 

 

Quick and dirty cleaning tip😆 (Reader discretion advised)😆

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One of my favourite cleaning tips to give people is to clean the shower right before you take one! You know you’re going to get wet and it’s just too dangerous to reach that far without getting in your tub or shower stall, so why not just do some naked cleaning of your shower!!!!!!😄😄😄

👉👉One important point to mention is that when you spray your mixture on, spray the higher parts and let it drip down your wall. You could spray the tub first, wait, wipe, then rinse away before getting in the tub to clean the walls. This mixture is soap, so once water is added to rinse it will become very slippery until rinsed away, so be careful if you are standing in your tub.!👈👈

The second very important tip I’ll mention here is what I use to clean the shower; soap scum and all.  I use an equal parts mixture of Dawn liquid soap and vinegar.   Just shake gently, spray on, wait 5-15 minutes (depending on how much build up your walls have) then wipe down (easy, NO elbow grease needed) and rinse away!

I prefer to use environmentally friendly cleaners, but have always struggled to find a good one for soap scum removal.  But, this simple half and half mixture really is that easy and works better than anything I’ve tried!

There you have it, your Simply Susan tip of the day!😆

Shake it up and rinse on!