The questions portion of the DiabetesMine Holiday Survival Sweepstakes has come to an end. Next Tuesday we will announce the Grand Prize drawing winners! Which means I'm writing every winner's name on a piece of paper and literally throwing 'em into a hat for random selection by one of my little girls.
This week, we had some excellent tips on offsetting the stress of the holidays. Overall, I'd say the strategies concentrated on planning ahead, setting aside "me" time and time for exercise (including yoga) and being self-aware enough to recognize and intervene when you — and others around you — might be "losing it."
Providing this wisdom was our FINAL ROUND OF WEEKLY WINNERS, as follows:
• Linda Blice, who has more real reason to suffer stress than the rest of us: she and her husband are both diabetic, and so are her in-laws, whom they take care of. Wow! She to likes to distress by play wrestling on the PS3: "beating the tar out of an imaginary person is a great stress reliever and has also helped to lower our blood pressure."
• Ready, aka Pamela, who offers six great practical tips for offsetting stress, including wearing your ipod/walkmate/personal music assistant when you go shopping and taking "full-belly deep breaths" while you're behind the wheel in holiday traffic.
She wins that weekly book of coupons for 12 free cartons of Blue Bunny low-carb ice cream. Retail value circa $70.
• Suzanne, who talks about how being aware of your own reactions to stress helps you be able to deal with them better. Good thinking.
She wins our last copy of "50 Secrets of the Longest Living People with Diabetes" by Sheri Colberg-Ochs and Steven Edelman, MD, retail value $15.95.
• Angela C, a previous winner who uses walking, yoga, and relaxing music for herself, but who also puts a premium on doing things for others during the holiday season. She donates money and time...and "it helps remind me that, in spite of the difficulties I might have managing my diabetes, others have problems, too.
She wins our final copy of the newly revised "The Diabetic Athlete's Handbook" by Sheri Colberg-Ochs, retail value $19.95.
• Scott Strange, another previous winner who reminds us to keep in mind that other people get stressed, too: "The trick is telling between those that are just a little edgy and those who are determined to get a reaction out of you. I just vow to myself that I'm not going to stress just because someone else is."
Scott wins a "luscious + diabetic friendly" pack from VerÄ“ Goods: including the 5 dark bars in various flavors, PLUS one box each of walnut clusters and chocolate walnut brownies, total retail value $50.00
• Elizabeth, who takes long walks out in the fresh cold air, and who was calmed by letting her neice decorate her OmniPod PDM case with holiday stickers. "Now it makes me happy every time I take it out to test or bolus."
She wins an attractive and practical aDorn Designs handbag, retail value $69.95.
• Meg, who reminds us of the value of planning ahead! Shopping for meals, gym visits, the whole shebang.
Meg seems to be the ideal candidate for our last HealthSimple Starter Kit, a full set of logs, stickers, labels and all you need for comprehensive carb counting and logging, retail value $64 per kit.
• Joan, who has stopped feeling obligated to attend everything I she is invited to (we love this!), and who "takes every opportunity to de-stress with exercise."
Joan wins our final ExtendBar snacks "Holiday Survival Kit" including a sampling of all the company's products, retail value circa $33.
• Pubsgal, who's up against her first holiday season with diabetes, but who's got some great strategies nailed, including getting the holiday cards done before Thanksgiving, and asking for help with your task list, instead of trying to do it all on your own.
She wins this week's "diabetic-friendly" gift pack, including 5 bars of dark chocolate in a variety of flavors (pure dark, mint, vanilla bean, spicy, and citrus), retail value $30.
• Floreska, who's who simply "forces a regular bedtime" to keep herself rested and on track. Very wise!
She wins a DiabetesMine Care Pack: containing one copy of our Know Your Numbers book, a DiabetesMine.com notebook and refrigerator magnets (retail value: in the eye of the beholder :) )
To read all the wonderful advice in full, please see last week's post HERE.
**WINNERS: Please email a valid postal mailing address (snail mail) and telephone number to me here in order for your prizes to be shipped out to you. Keep your eyes peeled for the GRAND PRIZE drawing coming up here next week!
Call For Photos
We're looking for images to illustrate the eBook we hope to compile with all of your wonderful nuggets of wisdom garnered from the contest. Photos can be uploaded to this Flickr group. In terms of guidelines, our chapters will mirror the contest questions:
EXERCISE - examples can include: pictures of you (or your spouse/child) playing a team sport or doing a physical activity like hiking, skiing, swimming, etc; pictures of your exercise equipment like your treadmill or weights; pictures of the place you exercise, like tennis courts, gym, backyard, pool.
COPING WITH PARTIES - examples can include: pictures of you at parties, with friends or family or spouse; pictures of food from your parties; pictures of party decorations;
TRAVEL - examples can include: pictures of you at exotic locations like theme parks, Hawaii, Europe, etc.; pictures of you with your relatives at a place other than your home; pictures of you on a train, plane or automobile or pictures that you've taken from such locations; pictures of you at rest stops, restaurants, or any other fun landmark that you've come across on your travels.
STRESS - examples of ways that you like to destress, such as pictures of your yoga mat or candles; pictures of games or activities that you like to play; pictures of locations, like the outdoors or the beach that help destress you; pictures of your pets...
DIABETES POLICE - pictures of you doing anything that the Diabetes Police says you can't: pictures of you at parties; pictures of you doing an unusual activity, like scuba diving or backpacking around Europe; pictures of you with your insulin pump or insulin pen - which gives you the freedom to do what you want.
As an example, here's our first travel packing pic, submitted by Karin Bowman:
Allison Blass, who'll be editing the eBook, says this: "Be creative and artistic if the mood strikes you on any of these. These are just examples of things you can do. We're open to suggestions!"
See y'all here next week for the GRAND PRIZE WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT.