The Kusi Life

Uplift Families 2015

 

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I had a fantastic time at the Uplift Families Conference! I met some amazing people and learned lots of new things to help my own little family in our pursuit for more happiness. The winds were super crazy and kept knocking over everything, but that did not stop me from enjoying myself and telling everyone a bit about my booth.

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My sister Meg from Sew Beyond Beautiful made this tassel garland. Isn’t it adorable?

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I happened to see this card holder at Hobby Lobby and I just fell in love with it! Lots of fun to hand out our business cards 🙂

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My sisters came over the day of the conference to help me figure out how to set it up. I had just a 4 ft space so I was SO grateful they helped me figure it out. Because the winds were so crazy it kept knocking over my frames and even broke one – yep, glass shattered all over. Met the nicest gal – Rachel,  from Price Match With Rachel helped me find the broom and dustpan and she swept it up for me (in her heels 😉 ) just in time before the guests arrived! Her site is awesome! Teaching us all how to save money on groceries!  I was paired up to share a table with the sweet Michelle from Trust Me, I’m a Mom. This lady is amazing! Her site is focused on different fun and easy ways you can serve with your children. She is such a force for good!

In my booth I shared 4 things that families can focus on that teach, strengthen, and are scientifically proven to help families be happier and face the obstacles that come our way.

The first thing I focused on was Gratitude. Don’t underestimate the power that gratitude can have in your life!  In Positive Psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships. Writing just 3 things down a day can boost happiness significantly. Here is a tutorial I shared this last Spring about how to make your very own Thankful Board.

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Having meals together as a family, and being present is something that is hard to do. Everyone running different directions with school, work, extracurricular activities – not to mention the cell phones, i-pads, tablets,  and televisions that are ever present. Research has confirmed that sharing a family meal is good for the spirit, the brain, and the health of all family members. Recent studies link regular family dinners with lower rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy, and depression. It is also linked with higher self-esteem and grade point average. Studies show that the stories told around the table help our children build resilience. Regular family meals also lower the rates of obesity and eating disorders in children and adolescents. With all these benefits, eating family dinner should be made a priority. Leaving the electronic devices in another room will help to have more interaction, as will this Dinnertime Conversation Jar. It has fun questions to help your family learn a bit more about each other some are more serious, and some more silly,  but its sure to create some fun memories! (Link coming soon!)

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The capacity to feel joy from helping others is deeply woven into human nature. Studies show that people are inherently happier when they give something of their own (whether it be physical or emotional), rather than receiving. Getting involved in simple things like Tui’s Treasures or Word Rocks help our children learn to think of others rather than themselves, look for opportunities to share, do small acts of kindness, and feel the joy that comes from giving.

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I read about a family that works together each Sunday to make a treat, and then they take it to people in their family and neighborhood to uplift them. I loved this idea! Teaching children how good it feels to show kindness to others and how working together great things happen! Here is a FREE PRINTABLE to uplift a mom, and THIS ONE is for just about anyone, to give them chocolate chip cookies and make them smile ;).

There is something powerful about knowing family stories. It helps us all cope with life. Research has revealed that the more children kow about their family’s history, the higher their self-concept and the stronger their sense of ability to make good decisions and achieve desired goals. Knowing stories from family history instills a strong sense of identity, grounding children in the recognition that they belong to something bigger than themselves – something from which they draw meaning, strength, and wisdom. HERE is a link that has more information about why learning about our ancestors can help all of us.

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Our grandmother is from Denmark, came to the U.S in her early 2o’s. There are a few recipes we love to make from her homeland. I loved this “detectives” idea. Learning more about where she lived, what the typical meals were, what was worn in the time period she was born and grew up sounds like a lot of fun!

I made these super cute “The Kusi Life” magnets and “See the Happy” 4×6 cards for people to put on their refrigerators. It was lots of fun giving them out and reminding people that there are lots of reasons to be happy, we just have to look for them!

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All in all I had a wonderful time and I am grateful for the people I met. I will for sure do the Uplift Families Conference next year if they will have me!

Stay tuned! I will post what I learned from the conference speakers in a few days!

See the Happy!

-Kirsten

 

 

 

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