Saturday, July 27, 2013

8 Things to Make Life Easier

Ive always appreciated a life that is full of efficiency and effectiveness.  It is in my life mission statement (I'm such a nerd).  So why MS makes life more challenging with the amount of energy it takes to do things, it also challenges me to find new ways to make life easier.  Which I secretly love. 

Finding things that make life easier also leaves time to be doing more of the things you love.  We only have a certain amount of time; being efficient and effective doesnt mean to run through life faster.  It means to be able to have more time to enjoy the life your living and the people in it.  

Here are 8 things that I have found that make my life easier (and in some ways, even more cost efficient!!)

1. Lists

Yes, the ever loving making of lists.  We love lists: grocery lists, guest lists, who's our favorite celebratory lists.  Lists, though simple, hold so much power.

By writing something down, you are more likely to remember it.  It also helps to organize thoughts.  Head running in a 1000 different directions?  Write it down.  The focus ability will return.

Every evening I make a to-do list for the next day.  Some lists remain on the to-do list for a few weeks and that is ok.  When I wake up, my day is already "organized" and I am less likely to forget something or be stressing about something I waited to do last minute.  

This is also a relaxing method.  I write my to-do life list down in the early evenings so then I can relax for the rest of the day/night.  I dont stress about any items; if something pops up, I put it on the list and put it out of my head till tomorrow.  I leave the stress and anxiety of the day ahead on the paper.  

2. Eos Lip Balm

I know what you're can a lip balm make my life easier?  Let me show you the ways...

First, they are adorable, unique and fun!  Using them is very posh.  

Second, they are extremely easy to find.  Chapsticks or lip glosses can so easily get lost in the bottom of a purse, fall out in the car, just disappear in its entirely for no reason.  However these balms are large enough in size (and what else do you put in your purse that is egg shaped?) that they can easily be sought out.  

Third, the balm gives an excellent glossy look without the "hair stuck on lips due to wind" dilemma.  

Fourth, they do an excellent job of moisturizing, meaning you have to use it less.  

3. Vaseline Spray and Go

Lotion has so many benefits in itself: it helps tans last longer, skin looking healthier, have to shave less.  So when Vaseline made a spray and go lotion, I was very excited to try it.  And it does not disappoint!  

 It goes on very easily, rubs in wonderfully and dries quickly so you can be on your way!  I have noticed that I do go through a bottle faster than I would a normal lotion bottle but for me the time saved is worth it.

4. Nail Time

I may go without make-up, I may go without doing my hair but I am never seen without my nails done.  Since before I could write, my Grandma Martin taught me to paint my nails.  And it has stuck these 20 plus years. 

Painting one's nails is very time consuming however.  I have gone all the routes in the salon: gel, acrillics, fancy manicure.  But they add up in $$ after a while.  

After much trail and error, I have found the perfect ingredient list for long lasting nail polish with no chips.  I can paint my nails personally and have the color last for a week or more (a true accomplishment!).

Here are my secrets:

-Nail bonder- the most needed first step.  This is what salons use (hence why salon manicures often last longer).  This is different from a base coat.  A base coat preps the nail by making a flat surface.  A bonder does exactly what it says: it helps to bind the color polish to the nail.  You can find a nail bonder either online or at a make-up store (Sallys, Ulta, etc).  It also dries very quick.

 (This is the best quality nail bonder I have ever used.  Highly suggest.)

-One to two coats of a nail polish.  It can be challenging for me to hold the nail brush at times.  I've found that the smaller, mini-sample bottles are perfect.  Plus, unless you use the same color weekly, a full bottle of nail polish will most likely expire before you use the whole bottle.  The little bottles are  cheaper and much more easier to use. 

-It is important to let the color nail polish completely dry before putting a top coat on; if not, this will lead to smudges.  I've used a personal UV light, fans, quick dry...but the most effective way I've found to help nails dry is after a few minutes to run them under cold water (or put them in a bowl of cold water).  This speeds up the drying process splendidly!

-Top Coat - instead of using an actual top coat, I use a nail strengthener.  It dries faster while still providing the shine and is good for the nail!  

-Every two-three days I do an extra coat of the nail strengthener.  This provides shine the whole manicure length.  Ive had many people ask if the color is gel/shellac; nope, its my nail strengthener.

5. Eyebrow razer

Whoever thought of these was genius!  Eyebrows are the death of me.  No matter how I get them done (wax, plucking, threading, etc), they start growing back immediately.  

These razors are so perfect for a quick re-boost of eyebrow power, allowing you to go longer in between eyebrow shaping days.  They also work great on peach fuzz. 

6. Neosporin

This is my secret weapon.  I have been fortunate enough to not have acne however no matter what my age, a pimple will pop up at the most inconvient time.  

I've tried almost every acne "on the spot" medicine and yet neosporin has the cure.  It makes sense, being that it helps with foreign objects in the skin (essentially what a pimple is).


I dab a little on top of the freshly clean skin and within a few hours, it's looking better.  I also use it as a preventive tool if I feel a pimple coming on or if there is an event approaching. 

This works great because I'm not a fan of the daily task of levels of make-up (primer, concealer, foundations, etc).  Im much more a powder, mascara and go type of girl.  This helps the process.

7. Hair Oil

When I first got sick, I used the time as an opportunity to re-vamp my hair's health; I used less heat, less products and more care.  And I'm very happy with where it has gotten me!

Happy, healthy hair means a lot of things: easier to manage, less time doing your hair, opportunity to let it air dry and go on with life.  Happy hair means happy life!

One of the most valuable things I have found on the road to happy hair is hair oil.  I've tried many different brands but this one is my favorite.  

It can go on wet or dry hair, great for the in-between shampoo days.  It also doesnt leave hair oily or heavy.  It is very light, refreshing and it smells wonderful!  

8. Organization

It can be challenging to go from chaos to organization.  However, I can guarantee that once you are there, it makes life so much easier.

Organization doesnt always mean spotless or spacious.  Organization means that things have a home and you can find that home when needed easily.  

 (it looks hectic but I know exactly where everything is. #prostatus)

Some tricks I've discovered to help with organization:
-Containers.  From shoe boxes to baskets, containers are a great way to organize items according to their "family" while also having them accessible and in many ways "cute".  I have all my medicine for example in one basket.  When I have to go someplace, I just pack the whole basket.  Easy!

-Closets.  It is so easy to just stuff things in the closet and forget about it.  Until you need that item.  Instead, organize your clothes by item (pants, shirts, dresses) - this helps in planning outfits too.  Do the same with shoes.  It may seem like more work to have to put things in their right order but eventually with time it will become second nature.

-Trash it.  Everything to me has value - money value, sentimental value, "Im going to need this someday" value.  My rule of thumb is if I havent used it in 1 year, then I probably wont be needing it in the next year.  This goes for everything: jewelry, make-up, products (granted, some expire shorter than a year), clothes, shoes, purses.  Some items can be donated or sold used; but others just need to be trashed.  

-Stick with it.  Once you have things organized, do your best to make sure it stays that way.  Granted, there will be days that nothing will be organized.  But it helps when you put yourself in the habit of hanging up your purse, putting the mail the mail bin, putting the book away, etc.  Practice makes perfect.

Organization truly is the mother of all tricks to making life easier.  It makes life more efficient, your time more effective and it has its cost advantages (its easier to not have to re-buy things when you can find them instantly).    

So there you have it...8 life tricks according to this MS sparkler.  Do you have an life tricks?  If so, share!  I'm all about the life is easy road!

Have a fabulous day!


PS: My sister is getting married in just a few weeks!! Cant wait to share all the wonderful and beautiful things for the fabulous day, especially those created by my mom.

My job is to make sure the puppies are ready.  Sputnik is very excited about his new tux.  Can you blame him?  He looks so GQ.