Family

Your Summer to Do List

juja-han-271340-unsplash

Need a list to check off for Summertime fun?  Well, look no further than this post!  Here is a little help in filling those long summer days.

  1. Go Paddle boarding
  2. Go Kayaking
  3. Lay in a Hammock
  4. Go on a boat trip
  5. Eat outside (a lot)!
  6. Snorkel
  7. Have a picnic
  8. Garden
  9. Watch Fireworks
  10. Hang out on a beach
  11. Go Rock climbing
  12. Visit the Zoo
  13. Ride on a zip line
  14. Go fishing
  15. Make real lemonade
  16. Have a water fight
  17. Go swimming in a natural lake or river
  18. Visit a water park
  19. Have a cookout
  20. Take a hike
  21. Go Geocaching (there is a free app!)
  22. Visit a nature center
  23. Have a new ice cream flavor
  24. Visit a farm or petting zoo
  25. Watch a parade  vicko-mozara-324955-unsplash
  26. Fly kites on a windy day
  27. Go for a bike ride
  28. Visit the farmers market
  29. Visit a flea market
  30. Play Frisbee
  31. Feed ducks
  32. Go mini golfing
  33. Make smores
  34. Join your kids on a run through the sprinklers
  35. Camp out
  36. Have a bonfire
  37. Make root beer floats
  38. Visit a national or a state park
  39. Visit an amusement park
  40. Go on a road trip
  41. Do an Instagram photo challenge
  42. Find a new Food Truck vendor
  43. Go to a festival
  44. Pick fruit
  45. Lay out in the sun
  46. Press wildflowers or do a sun shadow paper
  47. Go to a state fair
  48. Have a water balloon fight
  49. Do a charity walk
  50. Put up bird feeders
  51. Pot flowers for pollinators and butterflies
  52. Visit a waterfall near you for a hike
  53. Take up metal detecting
  54. Visit a local animal shelter
  55. Make a vision board
  56. Build a sandcastle
  57. Play Bocce Ball
  58. Swing
  59. Send some postcards to distant friends and relatives
  60. Find some odd ball landmarks/sights in your state to visit (world’s largest ball of twine anyone?)
  61. Make a different flavored water each day
  62. Have a muffin making party
  63. Find a new podcast and lay out in the sun listening
  64. Try a new author to read outside on your lunch break
  65. Have an Icee
  66. Have a movie nostalgia night.  What old black and white film can you find to watch?
  67. Make a new dessert each week
  68. Take a furry friend on a walk in a new park each week.
  69. Hang a birdhouse or bat house
  70. Try a new magazine
  71. Clean out that garage
  72. Clean out your deck box
  73. Make a new recipe for the grill
  74. Visit a farmers market
  75. Just daydream
  76. Buy some fresh flowers for your porch
  77. Have a neighborhood picnic
  78. Help your kids build a tree fort
  79. Have lunch on a restaurant’s patio
  80. Open all your windows and air out the house
  81. Watch a new TV show that you normally wouldn’t see
  82. Wash your own car
  83. Have your kids do a bike wash
  84. Wash the dog
  85. Start a beach glass collection.
  86. Cull your photos
  87. Watch a sunset
  88. Sit out on the deck and listen to the sounds of nature.
  89. Go to sleep in a rainstorm
  90. Get a pedicure
  91. Do facepainting
  92. Visit an outdoor mall
  93. Go to a food fest
  94. Take an outdoor exercise class
  95. Take a community ed outdoor photography course
  96. Go bird watching
  97. Visit and outdoor flea market
  98. Go on a model home hour
  99. Go on a guided walk put out by your local historical society
  100. Visit a historical outdoor place
Home

Medicine Cabinet Basics

freestocks-org-126848

What do people keep in their medicine cabinets?  It’s an interesting thought.  Have you ever looked inside someone’s cabinet while at a party?  I haven’t, but I always imagine people do that sort of thing. There was a time when medicine cabinets were standard in bathrooms.  While keeping medicine in these cabinets has gone by the wayside, the concept of medicine cabinets have not.  I have more of a medicine closet, well a shelf really.  Okay, two baskets on the shelf. We all keep medicine around in case we need it.  Have you ever wondered what you should have on hand?  Check the list below and see what you need to stock up on.

1. Thermometer- Definitely every medicine cabinet should have a thermometer. Small infants may require a different thermometer.  Consult your physician on which one to use.

2. Tweezers.  Great for picking out splinters, glass, and ticks.  This one small item gets a lot of use!

3. Benadryl- A staple, especially if I think I’ve come into contact with something I’m slightly allergic to.

4. Nail Clipper. Nothing is more annoying or more frustrating than a ragged nail or cuticle.

5. Anti-histamine Cream-  Works great if your skin comes into contact with something itchy.  I’ve used this on my son lots.

6. Bandages- Well, duh?!

7. Gauze- See above.

8. Medical tape- How else will you keep the gauze in place?

9. Antibiotic Ointment- Keep those germs at bay!!

10. Eye drops. For dry or irritated eyes.

11. Heartburn medication. Tums, Rolaids etc.

12. Anti-diarrhea medication.

13. Pain/Fever medicine. Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen.

14. Decongestant.

15. Cough medicine. Nothing is worse than having a coughing fit at 1 a.m..

 

Home

10 Quick things to declutter.

brevite-434280

One thing I like to do on my blog, make lists. I like my lists short and sweet.  Not a lot of words to describe a single action.  Just tell me what needs to be done and list it.  So here it is. My short list of things to declutter.

1. Outdoor Winter Clothing.  Get rid of what didn’t work.  Repair and clean anything that needs it for the next winter.  Make a list of what you need to replace.

2. Reusable bags.  It could be plastic, paper or cloth.

3. Carry-on and Totes.

4. Suitcases and duffle bags.  Sometimes you just need a new one.

5. Keys.  You have 10 keys on your key ring.  Do you know what they go to?

6. Shoes.  What do your flip flops and slippers look like?

7. Beach items and Swim stuff.  Do the water guns work?  Are the beach towels clean? Can you find your 12 year old’s goggles?

8. Holiday Paper and tape.  Is it time to recycle the candy cane paper you’ve used for the last 5 Christmases?

9. Address Book. Clean out your contacts.  It can be on paper or online.

10. Pantry. Really?  Those date bar cookies have been in there long enough.

Happy Cleaning!

Home

Basic Toiletries For Your Emergency Kit.

IMG_3856

1. Feminine Hygiene Products. Include enough for a few months.  These products can be used for so many different things other than what their original purpose is.

2. Teeth Care. Be basic. Toothpaste and floss.

3. Brush. These can be small and compact.

4. Soap. A multipurpose and anti-bacterial bar would be great.

5. Shampoo. In a pinch you really don’t need conditioner. Keep clutter down.

6. Sunscreen. Depending on your clothing and hats, you may need sunscreen. A burn is a horrible thing to have when everything is normal.  During an evacuation? Yikes.

7. Chapstick. I would also say Vaseline.  Both will keep lips soft, and Vaseline can be used on the skin.

8. Bug Spray. There is no where in the world that doesn’t have bugs except for the poles.  I don’t think many of us are going to hang out there.  Bug Spray could be the single most important item besides toilet paper.

9. Toilet Paper. No explanation needed.  Remember to remove the cardboard tube.  That way is packs flat.

10. Nail Clippers.

11. Wipes. I say use baby wipes.  Everyone can use them for personal cleanliness.

12. Medication. How many people forget their meds on a trip? During a natural disaster it can be even worse.  What if you can’t reach your doctor?  How can you get them refilled?  Also, over the counter products like Advil or Imodium may be lifesavers.  When the power is out, you can’t go to the Pharmacy.

13. Glasses.

 

What would you put in as a must have for a basic toiletries kit? Have you had any experiences in travel or evacuation where you wished you had something?  Let us know in the comments!

Family

To Be Continued, Part 2

unsplash42

When we drove our son up to the inpatient hospital he was okay.  I don’t think he could comprehend what was about to happen. Upon arrival, they informed us that they were running behind schedule.  This would turn out to be a huge problem.  Our son would get so overwhelmed that he would have major meltdowns.  We were there for over 5 hours.  During that time, my son cried, dry heaved, screamed, grabbed me and begged me not to leave him. He kept crying saying “Mom, don’t leave me, I can’t do this without you. I need you.”  It killed me.  It was so painful.  I felt absolutely horrible.  I just didn’t know what to do.  I pride myself on always knowing what to do.

I went to visit my son everyday.  My heart went out to the other children on the ward.  I would go days without seeing another visitor name in the sign in logs for the children.  I realize other families have responsibilities and children.  I just thought I would see more visitors.  Every time I went, “E” would beg me to take him home.  He had great difficulty participating in the groups they did.  Each day before I came “E” would call me crying asking me when I was coming up.

Finally after ten days he was released.  From what I understand people are released when their insurance runs out.  We questioned them, (the doctors) about this once they told us that insurance was not going to pay.  They assured us he was fine. I didn’t quite believe them. However, I saw no indication my son was improving, so we decided to take him home.

The doctors advised us that “E” has an eating disorder. I have for years tried to get my son to alter his eating habits.  He doesn’t eat fruits or veggies.  He has sensory processing disorder. Food and dress are his biggest areas of problems.  If you try to force him to eat he will vomit or gag the food.  He will also just not eat at all. If his food has spices he cannot eat them, the spices must be taken off. His food cannot touch, he needs separate plates and utensils.  I had tried for years to get his food issues fixed to no avail.  So when they said he had an eating disorder I thought, ” finally”! They then sprung on us a new inpatient program.

They said that he would have to go to a three week in patient eating disorder clinic.  I resisted a bit saying I thought it would be outpatient.  My son is only 11, how is he going to handle three weeks?  The doctors told me he was very sick.  They said his BMI had him ranked as malnourished.  I guess anything under 15 qualifies for that. So within a few days I drove him to the new facility.

The intake was so long, my son cried and screamed and begged not to stay.  While this was a much nicer place than the lock down facility, it still wasn’t home. In addition, all the kids there were so much older than my son.  He’s 11.  The next youngest was 14.  His roommate was 17.  It was another day of mental, physical, and emotional exhaustion. While leaving him at this facility was slightly better than the lock down facility it is a lot for a young child to deal with.

Unfortunately, the next day I came down with an illness and could not go to visit him.  He would call me daily in tears and crying begging me to come visit him.  I really wanted to.  The illness I had would be detrimental to kids in an eating disorder clinic.  I couldn’t risk passing this along to others. Then six days later I get a phone call…..

 

Family · Self

What’s going on.

bobby-hendry-375350

Hello Everyone,

I am sure you are wondering if I gave up on my blog.  No I haven’t but outside circumstances have put a temporary halt to things.  Let’s see, as many of you know our home remodeling from hell has finally ended.  The last day of construction was in December.

Also in December I had a breast cancer scare.  I had a routine mammogram in early December.  The results came back with some specious lumps.  Since I get breast cancer from both sides of my family I pay attention to my health in this area.  So I went in for an ultrasound right before Christmas.  Once lump came back as a cyst, the other lump was undetermined.  So I would next have to go in for a die contrast MRI. The day before Christmas Eve I went in.  The results would not be back till after Christmas.

It made for a rough holiday season.  Luckily, the second spot was another cyst and I was given the all clear.  Whew!

The biggest source of stress has been my son “E”.  Normally, he is the most kind, gentle, bright, shy and happy child.  During this past summer this started to change a bit. We figured that he was going into junior high school (so getting older, teen angst) and with all the home construction stress, he was just moody.  When school started, he was under a lot of stress. Normal right?  In many ways he was also better.  He seemed to be more responsible and his ADHD was better managed.  His grades were high too.  While a lot of his friends didn’t go to that school, there were a few that did. So he wasn’t completely alone.

As the year progressed we noticed him becoming more and more anxious. He started to get ill and began to miss school.  He was getting difficult to wake up.  He was starting to cry, shake, and have meltdowns.  It was like someone flipped a switch on his personality.  He has his first panic attack in the Fall. I knew right away what it was.

I took my son into his pediatrician to get him started immediately on medication. He also started seeing his therapist more often.  I was able to get him some accommodations at school for his anxiety too. Unfortunately, he started to self harm.  As the desire for self harm began to increase we removed him from school and enrolled him in a PHP.  PHP stands for partial hospitalization program.

“E” would attend the PHP from about 9-4 Monday-Friday.  Then he would come home on nights and weekends.  At PHP he would receive therapy, medical treatment, and schooling to help him overcome his anxiety and depression. He attended for several weeks when we received a phone call from the staff psychologist saying “E” was very suicidal. The decision was made on advice of the staff to place my son in a 24 hour lock down facility for adolescents.  It was the hardest decision I’ve had to make.  I knew it needed to be done. However, now I look back and question it a bit more.

To be continued…