...the tough get scrapbooking!
At least, that's my motto. There are only a few guaranteed de-stressors for me, and scrapbookig is one of them. If I had my way, I'd scrap at least once a week like I did prior to having kids. But those days just don't happen like they used to. So I make a point of scrapbooking once a month with my mother-in-law and sister-in-law at my MIL's church. She has a friend who is a Creative Memories consultant, and for $10, I get to crop-all-I-want for 6 hours straight, plus I get a dinner and dessert. And no kids. I find it really, really relaxing, and it's nice to have something that I can focus on and feel really productive because I'm able to accomplish something.
Did I mention no kids?
Scrapbook.com has a great forum with lots of helpful hints, from getting started to photography to chipboard albums. Lots & lots of useful information! And if you're not a scrapper and you're having trouble falling asleep, then this just may help you get some zzzzz's. :) I've always tried to scrap on my own talents and with my own inspiration, but I do find that I'll start recreating the same page and layout over and over, and that gets old. So it's always nice to hunt around the Internet and check out forums like the one at Scrapbook.com so I can get some great ideas and useful information.
And did I mention that there are no kids when I scrapbook?
Some other great stress relievers that I rely on:
- painting my toenails. I used to ALWAYS have my toenails painted, but I stopped doing it after my daughter was born in 2006. I'm trying to slowly get back into the habit and paint my t-nails about once a quarter. Not anywhere near as frequently as I used to do, but I gotta prioritize. It may occur only once a quarter, but at least it's a little opportunity to relieve some stress.
- cleaning house. Yeah, go figure. But putting all my energy and frustrations into kicking out the dust bunnies really helps me relieve a LOT of stress. I clean a little here and a little there all throughout the week. But at least once a month, I'll do a really big cleaning job and spend an entire afternoon on the weekend cleaning the house top to bottom. Hasn't happened in the past couple of months since we've had an awful lot of stuff going on. Probably explains why I'm a little on edge (the messy house doesn't help either!). Definitely overdue for some mid-Summer cleaning!
- taking a bubble bath. Aaahhhhh, nothing like soaking in a hot tub of suds! I do this about once every month or two and it's a guaranteed stress-reliever. I'll take a book or magazine with me and get some reading done while soaking in the tub. Usually, I only get to do this after the kids have gone to bed. So, so, relaxing and enjoyable.
- reading. A luxury that I just don't get to do very often. Unless you count the blogs and forums I keep up with, or at least try to, when Surf Control isn't on the rampage during my lunch hour at work. I mean real books, not the cute kiddie books that I read to the kids before bedtime. But when I do finally manage to pick up an honest-to-goodness real book, it's hard to put it down! I get truly engrossed in the story. And I absolutely love happy endings. They just seem to put me in the right spirits.
What about you? Do you have some fail-proof stress relievers? Please share them here by posting a comment! If you've already posted this on your blog, please share the link. :)