5 Ways to Cherish Memories of Good Times

Every day presents a fresh opportunity to explore, discover, and most importantly, to experience. Shared experiences, whether they be school days spent with what end up being lifelong friends, holidays with family members or evenings spent at hobby-related clubs or classes with like-minded people, forge a sense of connection with those people we spend time with. They improve our sense of well being, too.

Experiences of the cultural variety also broaden the mind. Seeking out the arts in the form of a theatre, operatic or ballet performance will feed and excite the brain cells and keep you buzzing for far longer than spending the equivalent amount of money on a new item for clothing, for instance. Spending your money on experiences rather than things is more likely to induce a lasting sense of contentment.

So it makes sense that we cling on to precious memories and keep them fresh in our minds for as long as is humanly possible. Thanks to modern technology, there are more options for doing so than ever before. Here are a few of them:

1. Photobooks

Hands up who takes plenty of photos but hardly prints off any of them? This used to frustrate me, because even if we diligently stored all our photos digitally it still created a barrier to physically sitting down and looking at them.

These days, we make a concerted effort to produce at least one photobook per year, to include a selection of pertinent occasions and moments from January through to December. Being able to add captions and wording is a bonus to act as extra prompts of the details of the days.

There are several companies that offer printed photo books, such as Photobox and promotional offers are frequently available.

close up of flowers
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

2. Keeping a Journal or Diary

Yes, for many of us the maintaining of a daily diary invokes recollections of pouring our teenage angst out onto paper.

That doesn’t have to be the theme, though. I try to carve out a few minutes each day to write a diary entry and usually the focus is on gratitude. We’ve all heard before that taking the time to reflect on a few brief positives of our day promotes a sense of contentment, and I can attest that to be true.

Often I do record key events of the day as well- such as details of day trips or particularly humorous moments.

Personally, I like using the ‘Day One’ digital diary app as typing seems easier than scribing. Plus, your online entries are organised and easy to find when you want to read back on them. It is easy to add photos taken on the day, too, for added interest and taking photos of event tickets and other memorabilia turns it into something resembling a scrapbook if so desired.

3. Create an Activity Jar

Children are famed for uttering that dreaded phrase: “I’m bored”, particularly during the school holidays. Most adults would admit to moments of boredom, too. To counteract it, why not set up an activity jar? You simply need an empty jar and some small slips of paper. Ask each member of the household to jot down ideas of a few activities they could do when boredom strikes at weekends or in the school holidays. These could include riding your bikes to the park, make microwave popcorn and watch a movie in the living room with the curtains drawn or play one of the board games in the cupboard. These types of experience, while cheap and simple, foster a sense of togetherness and long-lasting memories. I know I have fond memories of playing board games and other basic family pursuits from my own childhood.

4. Tell Stories

Verbally sharing stories about the ordinary and extraordinary days in our lives, and encouraging those stories to be repeated from time to time helps ensure that they don’t get forgotten. This plays a large part in keeping your family history intact. My late father related some amusing tales of the mischief he got up to as a child and teenager and it helped me to see him in a different light. Recalling those tales still makes me smile when I think of them today and in time I will relate them to my own kids.

activity adult barbecue bbq
Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi on Pexels.com

5. Make Videos

I bet I am not alone in disliking seeing myself on video, but in many years to come we tend to be relieved that they were made. They capture a glimpse of how we and those around us used to be. My parents purchased an early-model camcorder when they were fairly new to the market back in the mid 1980s when I was about six years old. That camcorder trailed us on virtually every family day out, as well as plenty of ordinary days based at home, too. These home movies were originally saved to VHS tape (for those of you old enough to remember them!) and I found someone who successfully converted them to DVD a few years ago. From time to time we gather to watch them and it is my own children who find them the most amusing. They find it fascinating to observe their mummy as a little girl!

My husband and I asked a friend to record our wedding ceremony and snippets of the rest of our wedding day and ten years later we enjoy watching it occasionally, as do- you guessed it- the kids.

How do you tend to preserve your own memories?

Perhaps you use some of my methods, or have a new one to suggest? Please let me know in the comments, I would love to hear it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to Eat to Manage Stress and Maintain A Sense of Calm

Did you know that eating certain foods could reduce your stress levels? I didn’t!

Everyone experiences stress in their lives, to varying degrees. We can help ourselves by developing coping strategies and I read an interesting article in the new In The Moment magazine (which is all about finding ‘mindful ways to live your life well’) recently.

The article gave a comprehensive guide to the types of food you should include in your diet in order to optimise your chances of reducing stress and create calm in your life. I will summarise the suggestions here:

Bring on The B Vitamins

The B vitamins, and B5 in particular, play a vital role in keeping the body energised and are involved in the production or stress hormones. Go for B5 rich foods such as sunflower seeds, avocado, salmon and mushrooms.

Pack in the Protein

Protein is important for helping to stabilise blood sugar levels and release long-lasting energy.

Vital Vitamin C

As your adrenal glands store most of the vitamin C in your body, being depleted of this important vitamin will result in a struggle to keep stress under control. keep your levels topped up by ‘eating a rainbow’ of fruits and vegetables in a range of different colours. Particularly good are citrus fruits, red pepper, kiwi fruits and berries.

More of the Minerals

Certain minerals play a key role in helping the adrenals work efficiently. Magnesium (which helps relax the body and nervous system), can be found in leafy green vegetables, brown rice, quinoa, beans, peanuts and almonds. Furthermore, if you also eat seeds, fish and shellfish you will be benefitted from other important minerals such as calcium, zinc, sodium, potassium and selenium.

Green Tea

The presence of L-theanine, an amino acid, makes green tea a great choice of beverage. This amino acid promotes relaxation and improves concentration and reduce anxiety. Try serving green tea with fresh lemon or look out for flavoured versions such as cherry.

Fantastic Fish

Oily fish – including salmon, sardines, mackerel and anchovies) are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids that can minimise the effects of stress and anxiety. Eating fish can also reduce harmful cortisol levels.

Do you lack any of these suggestions in your diet?

I have never been much of a tea drinker, but discovered flavoured green teas earlier this year. I found the ones flavoured with coconut and cherry surprisingly palatable.

Fish seems to be one of those foods that you either love or loathe- where do you fall?Fortunately I’m in the former camp. Even my kids will happily eat salmon.

So, if you are prone to stress, perhaps it is worth including more of these food types in your diet. What do you have to lose?

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