New Year's Round-Up: Self-Care & Sleep

By Jenny Steadman February 12, 2016

Products were provided for me to review. All opinions are my own.


We often forget that healthy parents make a healthy family. When you don’t take care of yourself, the whole family suffers. Taking care of yourself isn’t all about exercise and nutrition, though. A lot of self-care is simply taking care of your soul.


BetterBox intrigued me. I was told it is “like a living self-improvement book, with each box taking you on a wondrous treasure hunt to shape your very best life.” This was definitely something I wanted to check out. When my BetterBox arrived in the mail, I eagerly opened it looking for instant inspiration. I found some thank you cards, a tea bag, bath salts, a cookie and a few other things. There were also instructions. The heart of each BetterBox is in the daily activities that are received via email. These emails instruct you on how to use the box contents to bring happiness, wellness and productivity to your life. I found these daily tasks brought gratitude and kindness to my day which makes hectic and stressful days feel better. Each activity takes but a few minutes and is manageable for any schedule.  

BetterBox is available individually or by subscription. For more information on how to get a BetterBox for you, visit

Synthesis Effect

When I was in high school, an English teacher told us, “make what should be is.” I had no idea what it meant but it stuck with me. As I am quite a bit older now, it has significant meaning for me. I truly believe in the power of the subconscious and, when we are able to reprogram it, that is where change not only happens but is sustainable.  

John McGrail, PhD, is a clinical hypnotherapist, self-improvement expert, relationship/ performance coach and spiritual teacher. He provided me with a sampling of his pre-recorded programs including weight loss and smoking cessation. The programs are well laid out and his voice is a pleasure to listen to.  

If you are looking to make some big habitual changes in life, I recommend seeing what Dr. McGrail has to offer. He is the author of The Synthesis Effect: Your Direct Path to Personal Power and Transformation (available on and B& and you can read more about his one-on-one programs and pre-recorded programs or


We talk a lot about sleep here at Macaroni Kid Family Fitness and Wellness. It’s not always as easy as it sounds to get good sleep. Here are few tools I have found to help.


DreamScience has created a device that combines two technologies that soothe your mind for a more satisfying sleep and then wakes you naturally. How does that work, you ask? There are a number of white noise sounds to choose from to help send you off into dreamland and to keep you there. The sounds gradually reduce volume and the rhythms slow down to help keep your mind and body calm. (I like the ocean sound.) When setting the alarm, you also get to choose a calming noise to wake you up (I prefer “garden"). The sound gradually gets louder to wake you up in a slower natural way than the sudden beeping or radio noise of a standard alarm. DreamScience also has mood lights you can choose to use. The soft glow helps to relax the body and mind as you fall asleep. While I have found I fall asleep easier using DreamScience, my favorite benefit is the alarm. It makes such a big difference to start your day on a gentle note than the clanking sound of the alarm. For more information, visit

Savvy Sleepers

It took me a while to realize you get what you pay for and this is especially true with sleep products like mattresses, pillows and sheets. I wasn’t sure how a pillowcase could help me sleep better, but Savvy Sleepers showed me how! Savvy Sleepers is a line of lush and super comfortable satin pillowcases. Not only are they luxurious to lay your head on but they are anti-aging as well. They are made with the highest grade satin so it’s like a spa treatment for your skin and hair at night. They won’t burn a hole in your pocket either since they start at $28. See the entire line  here. I seriously love this pillowcase. My husband has one,too, and I’m thinking about getting some for our kids!