Ear Tubes and Zoo Shenanigans

Ear Tubes?

As a mother, the last thing we want to see is our children suffer. E.K. has suffered from repetitive ear infections in both ears ever since his 3rd month of life. After his 8th ear infection in the course of a year and a half, we decided it was time to go forward with having him have surgery to place ear tubes into his ears. Le sigh.

Thursday was his surgery day. We arrived the the Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) surgery center at 6:45am. E.K. had a 7:00am appointment. He arrived in happy spirits because he had no idea what was about to happen. My husband was allowed to accompany E.K. to the Operating Room so that he could be with him as they put him sleep via a mask (they don’t do IV’s in children under 8 yrs old at this center unless absolutely necessary). They then escorted my husband to wait with me in the waiting room until it was time go greet E.K. in the recovery room.

About 20 min later, we were escorted to the recovery room where E.K. was being held and rocked by a awesome nurse. He was still trying to wake up. We were warned when we arrived that the toddlers tend to wake up quite angry from the anesthesia because of their head “feeling so cloudy”. Initially, E.K. seemed to be waking up fairly calm and I attempted to give him some milk (since he hadn’t ate since the previous evening). He took about 4 good sips before the anger started to kick in.

E.K. has that pterodactyl scream down to a science… and let me tell you this child of mine that I love dearly can tear some ear drums apart with that scream. To make a long story semi short, E.K. screamed that awesomely loud and high pitch scream the entire ride home from the surgery center and the next couple of hours after we got home. Nothing we did seemed to soothe him. The nurse gave him a tylenol suppository during surgery, so we were only permitted to administer Motrin to him if it seemed he really needed it. By hour 3 of this screaming session, I gave my baby some Motrin. About 20 min later, he was sleeping on my chest and we both took a much needed 2.5 hr nap! When we woke up from our nap, he was back to being my happy rambunctious toddler again.

I pray that E.K. will never require surgery again.

Zoo Life

On Saturday, I decided to pack my little guy up and we took a road trip to southern VA to visit my sister and nieces. We took the kids to the local zoo and had a great time. The weather was perfect at a whopping 84 degrees! I even got to hand feed a giraffe!!! That was super gross and super exciting all at the same time. I’m pretty sure I sanitized my hands at least 6 times afterwards, lol.

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We opted to not allow our toddler to feed the animals. I’m not sure we were ready for that just yet, and they are super quick to put their hands directly in their own mouths. So I was the only one in our group who chose to take part in that activity.

Have you participated in some sort of petting zoo with your kids? When is a good age to allow your kids to participate in a petting zoo?

Until next time beautiful people…

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Toddler Tantrums | My Sanity Tactic

I used to be cool and do things. Now all I do is argue with a miniature version of myself about eating his vegetables.

-Unknown

E.K. has learned that if he screams loud enough and even falls out on the floor with a arch in his back that his dad will give in to him most of the time. Not his mama! I’m beginning to master the walk the phuck off and act like I have no idea who’s child you are and what psychiatric ward you came from move. This has kept my sanity in many cases [read: SOME cases]. Of course, I can’t just walk away from my child when out in public… as he’s only 1.5 years old. But best believe I will leave this little monster of mine (that I love dearly) in a heartbeat laying on the floor during one of his ultimate meltdowns while I finish washing the dishes.

The tantrum phase is one that mostly all toddlers go through. They are testing boundaries and what we as their parents allow during these fiery moments teaches them  what they can get away with in general if they act the ultimate fool.

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I made the mistake a while back of letting E.K. watch sesame street on the iPad. He now feels he can have the iPad at any time to watch Elmo and other toddler appropriate videos. I’m trying to limit his exposure to television and iPad usage in general to encourage more reading and playing.

I took his iPad away the other day to take him downstairs and let him run around while I started dinner. E.K. decided he didn’t want that and started screaming at the top of his lungs. He laid out face-down on the floor and actually started kicking the floor. In this moment, I learned the gift of pause. It’s when you take a brief moment of mental silence, then count to 10 and decompress before reacting to something. I didn’t acknowledge the tantrum; I just walked away quietly and started singing the ABC song. After 5 minutes of this loud tantrum…extremely loud… did I mention loud? E.K. got up and walked over to me lifting his arms and said “Up”!

I picked him up and he gave me the biggest kiss and hug ever! Although I’m not sure he understood every word, I explained that tantrums are not acceptable and that he will need to start using his words to express himself. The toddler phase won’t last long although it feels like it will since we are going through it now. I’m trying to embrace it all because 5 years from now I’m going to miss all these wild moments that give me more than enough content to blog a life time about.

I encourage all you parents of toddlers to adopt the gift of pause (if you haven’t already). Also, keep a great wine stash on hand for those moments that the gift of pause doesn’t do sh*t for you!

Thank me later!

Mom Guilt

This week has been quite emotional for me to say the least. I’ve been having quite a bit of mom-guilt lately, as well as just experiencing an overload of emotions with everything happening in the news in general.

My thoughts and prayers are with those who lost someone they loved in the senseless act of violence that took place in Florida recently.

E.K. is quickly approaching 19 months of age and I’m still in amazement of how fast time flies by when you are raising a little human. He recently started telling his caregiver when he’s “poo-poo’d” in his diaper {insert excited but extremely sad face that I wasn’t the first one to hear it}. When his caregiver told me via text, I was in the middle of preparing for a meeting and I was super proud to hear that my son was expanding his verbiage and reaching a new milestone. Immediately after I yelled in excitement, I was hit with this weird emotion of feeling guilty for dropping my son off at “childcare” while I worked a 9 hour workday (from home) while missing my baby.

While the hubby was getting dressed for work, I mentioned this overwhelming feeling I was experiencing about this new milestone that I had missed our son do for the first time. His reaction? “Sorry hun that we aren’t millionaires”, while he kissed my forehead before he left for work. That placed me in a much more of a foul mood — I was already in a pissy mood. Who needs to be a millionaire to be a stay at home/full time mom? But I digress; this too shall pass.

Earlier this week…

We went to go see the Black Panther movie on Sunday. It was GREAT! We want to go see it a couple more times (yes, it was THAT good). Plus, you always catch things you didn’t catch the first time when you rewatch a film.

Before the movie, we went to grab a quick bite at Lucky Strike. The bartender made me a Pear Champagne beverage that was on-point! Yum!

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[Monday] I decided to try to take some “me time”. I went to run errands to grab some light groceries and later went to window shop at Homegoods and Target.

 

Until Next Time…

Small WholeFoods Haul

I have been very serious since E.K. was born about only cooking/serving real food (read: organic). WholeFoods is so expensive, but I adore their fresh fruits, veggies, and speciality items you rarely find in other markets.

E.K. had his 18 month wellness visit with his Pediatrician today. Since WholeFoods is located down the street from the doctor’s office, I decided to make a pit stop on our way home from the appt. Needless to say… what was supposed to be a quick in and out for some milk turned into a almost $75 purchase.

So what did I get for just under $75?

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Let’s just say that I didn’t get a lot, lol! But everything I purchased we will eat up over the weekend. It’s almost as if I need a part time job just to support my WholeFoods addiction. I don’t make a habit of shopping there often, but I do try to get in there at least once per month. I typically shop at our local Wegmans market and Trader Joes; however, WholeFoods is my guilty pleasure when I want to feel high class sidity and get great tasting overpriced fruits and organic goodies.

Side Note: It's flu season. WholeFoods sells the absolute BEST fresh squeezed OJ ever!!! Do you and your family a favor and grab some.    You're welcome!

I’m going to attempt to meal plan this weekend and stick to the menu. I am a planning freak, but never really got into the meal planning habit. Since we began our debt free journey, I decided that meal planning could be beneficial in helping us not overspend on eating out and so forth. Let me know if you’d be interested in seeing what I make for the family throughout the work week.

Until next time wonderful people…

Changes.

There have been many changes since the new year. Let’s start with the fact that the husband and I decided to transition E.K. from his crib to a toddler bed.

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E.K. is 17 months old and would be considered “too young” for a toddler bed by many judgmental moms and self proclaimed expert standards, lol. There were some key factors that encouraged us to make this change:

  1. E.K. has NEVER slept well in his crib. We didn’t let E.K. sleep with us as a infant (he slept in a bassinet/co-sleeper next to our bed until he was approx. 2.5 months old, then we transitioned him to his crib in his own room). We even bought him a new mattress assuming the original one wasn’t comfy enough for him.
  2. He does excellent napping on a cot at daycare. So much so that he walks right up to his cot during nap time and puts himself to sleep for 2.5 to 3 hrs. {Who the hell is this child and why doesn’t he do this for us at home}!
  3. He’s wild sleeper and would bang himself against his crib constantly, causing his limbs to get caught between the bars on the crib and on occasion waking himself up.

This was not an easy transition for us (read: me). E.K. loved his new found freedom of being able to crawl out of his bed at his leisure and come to us if he wants too. The first night went “okay”. He fell out of the bed at least 2 times — luckily I padded the floor with stuffed animals and pillows. The second night was a nightmare. I almost had the husband put the crib back together again, lol. E.K. woke up every hour it felt like and kept screaming for us to come rock him back to sleep. Aye yi yi.

We have now gotten into this routine where E.K. will fall asleep via the rocking chair in our lap or when he’s super heavy eyed and we sit next to him as he dozes off in his bed. He will typically wake up about midnight for something to drink (usually milk) and then go back to sleep. Around 3am we have learned to expect to hear little feet running across the floor and into our room. E.K. then climbs into our bed and cuddles up to his dad or myself to go back to sleep. As sweet as it is… I NEED MY REST! I’m hoping it’s just a phase and he will soon sleep through the night. Have I mentioned my child hasn’t slept through the night since he was born??? Pray for me.

In other news, I’ve been a busy mama. When the opportunity presented itself I enjoyed a brunch or two, happy hour, grocery shopping, and just binge watching YouTube vlogs.

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Until next time…

Happy New Year | 2018

Where does the time go? It’s already 2018! I don’t believe in making “resolutions”, but I do attempt to set some goals at the beginning of each year to achieve:

  1. Tithe regularly. I struggle with this… a lot. So this year I plan to do much better tithing the full 10%.
  2. Pay down debt by at least 40%. We are on the Dave Ramsey kick, so we are slowly knocking each debt out.
  3. Travel at least twice this year on affordable and quick getaways.
  4. Start my own business in addition to my full time job.
  5. Live | Laugh | and do whatever makes me happy!

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We spent NYE at home. In the past (pre-child), we would be at church bringing in the new year and then head over to a house party with friends; however, taking E.K. out in single digit weather late in the evening into the next day isn’t my idea of “fun”.

In fact, I was sleep by 11:15pm to be honest. I did manage to get my sip on earlier in the evening after laying E.K. down for bed. The husband sat in the kitchen watching tv and I laid in our bed sipping champagne and watching CNN until I could barely stand to keep my eyes open. At midnight, I vaguely remember the husband coming into the room to give me a forehead kiss and wish my Happy New Year (how sweet) and then back to dreamland I went.

No new year new me crap. Just the same KC making a conscious effort to be a better woman, wife, mother, and friend.

Happy New Year!

How did you bring in the New Year?

And so it begins…

… the need to start setting goals for the upcoming new year.

… the need to rework my budget for January.

… the need to figure out my next career move.

… the need to update this blog more frequently as my outlet.

… the need to stop allowing my anxiety to creep in every chance it gets.

… the need to live in the moment while embracing the new challenges causing me to grow as a woman, wife, and mother.

Christmas was different this year. It wasn’t different in a bad way, just different. This was E.K.’s second Christmas (it’s hard to believe he’s 16 almost 17 months old now) and he seemed to enjoy his actual gifts and not just the wrapping paper, lol. We spent Christmas Eve listening to Holiday music, dancing in our PJs, baking cookies (a lot later than anticipated), and drinking hot cocoa. Actually, E.K. went to bed earlier than expected, so he missed the baking of the cookies and hot cocoa part. The husband and I decided to open our gifts on Christmas Eve and saved E.K.’s gifts for Christmas morning.

On Christmas morning, we went downstairs to help E.K. open his gifts at approximately 7:30am. Afterwards, I made us all breakfast: Grits, Pancakes and Hot Sausage. We hung out as a family watching E.K. play with many of his new toys. The poor kid was in sensory overload the entire day. When he seemed to be over the toy play, we retired to our master bedroom upstairs where the husband and I watched movies as E.K. watched Sesame Street on his iPad. We ended up at my in-laws home for Christmas dinner and gift opening part II later in the day.

Overall, I think I was just homesick and missing some of my side of the family. It’s my goal to always make sure I create new traditions with my own family while creating awesome memories for E.K.

The Day After Christmas.

E.K. and I went to the mall at 9am. WHAT THE HELL WAS I THINKING?! Granted, when we first arrived it wasn’t too bad. I was able to get what I needed exchanged and grab some starbucks before trying to b-line it out of there. As we were making our way out of the mall, the crowds had intensely magnified in size. I don’t know how people do the day after Christmas shopping thing. You have to have a special kind of patience for it that I clearly do not possess, lol. To each his or her own.

Here are some random images captured during our Holiday weekend (12/22-12/26):

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Yummy chicken and waffles breakfast @ Miss Shirley’s

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Nordstroms

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Where Santa resided during mall hours

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Busy Starbuck’s on the day after Christmas

Happy Holidays Folks!

November Vibes

Where has the year gone? I feel like I say this every year around this time. E.K. and I just got home from the mall (our weekend routine) and he’s finally napping peacefully in his crib. I decided to use this time wisely and update my blog.

With Thanksgiving around the corner, the stores have already begun putting out all of their Christmas offerings. I felt a strong urge to spend spend spend…but the way my new budget is set up, that wasn’t a option for me today *insert very sad face here*. We are trying to be better with our finances overall and eliminate our debt. This year I will have to be okay with reusing my previous year’s Christmas decorations and not adding to them. Christmas is my absolute FAVORITE holiday and time of year. I always want to go over and beyond with the decorations and gifts. Le’ sigh.

This adulting mess is overrated.

On the way home from our ‘window shopping’, there was at least 5 fire trucks and multiple other emergency vehicles on the other side of the highway. Instantly my heart sank. I’m hoping whoever was involved in what appeared at a quick glance to be a horrible car accident is okay. Traffic is backed up for miles and miles….

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It was also at that moment I had a overwhelming feeling of gratitude. Not just gratitude about not being stuck in that awful traffic, but also being Blessed to not had been one of the people involved in that car crash. We get so caught up in being none content with how things aren’t going exactly the way that we want them too and forget just how Blessed we are to be where we are at in this moment. Embrace it.

It’s November… a month to be mindful of Thanksgiving and to give back as much as possible. Blessings are in the blessings we do for others.

Until next time…

Terrible 1’s?

I have heard the phrase “Terrible 2’s will have you going crazy”, but what about the terrible 1’s???? It’s almost as if my son has decided to challenge EVERYTHING we say, do, or have tried to teach him. He has recently began the tantrum thing…. smh… and when we are out in public and he decides to lose his baby brain, I try to ignore it to not bring any attention to his behavior. This is what his Pediatrician recommended since he’s testing us to see what he can get away with in general.

Clearly, the ignoring him when he’s screaming at the top of his lungs and arching his back doesn’t work. So now what? He’s still too young at 15 months old to understand what a light smack on the hand means and even though we sternly say “NO”, he laughs at us. This is pretty disrespectful at this point, lol. So forget what you heard about the terrible 2’s…. you newbies better prepare yourself for the terrible 1’s!

In other news…

We are still (yes STILL) trying to sleep train. It has been difficult because every time we get into the groove of it, E.K. gets sick and we do not sleep train when he’s under the weather. Now that he is healthy again, we are back in the routine of trying to sleep train again. It hasn’t been going well — to say the least. I HATE hearing my little guy scream for an extended period of time and part of the issue we are having is that we allowed E.K. to use milk as a soother. Therefore he wakes up 2-3 times throughout the night looking for milk and cuddles. Le’sigh. His pediatrician told us to eliminate giving him milk before bed and throughout the night. While that seems logical, our son turns into a gremlin when he’s pissed and wants what he wants. Needless to say, if the child wants milk at 2am, that’s what he’s getting from his half-sleep parents. I have however eliminated the bedtime milk sippy cup. So E.K. now goes to bed without drinking 8oz of whole milk (small successes will lead to larger ones I hope).

One day the husband and I will get to sleep for 7-8 straight hours again… it just won’t be right now.

Until next time…

 

 

Weekend Recap

I woke up Saturday morning to my smiling son at approx. 4:45AM. It was at that moment that I made a spontaneous decision to drive 3 hrs to my sister’s home in southern VA with E.K. to visit and spend time with my nieces.

E.K. and I left at approx. 7:30AM and traveled the country back roads to southern VA. E.K. doesn’t do very well in a car seat for extended periods of time, so I was truly taking a risk driving as it could have ended up a screaming session the entire way. However, the good Lord smiled on us and E.K. slept the majority of the road trip. There was no screaming on his part.

My sister and I decided to pack up the kids and head over to a children’s museum. It was my first time ever going to one. It was conveniently located at a outdoor shopping mall. The kids had a absolute blast! So much so that we had to try to keep them awake afterwards just so that we could get them to go to bed on time later in the evening (I was selfishly keeping E.K. up as long as possible so that he’d sleep on the drive home).

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After we left the museum, we took the kids for pizza while us tired mamas had champagne with our pizza. E.K. and I got on the road a little after 7:30PM to head back North. Our plan of wearing the children out worked out well because E.K. slept the entire way home.

Sunday

I opted to send E.K. to church with his father this morning while I slept in a bit. I know, I know, I’m a heathen at times. Eventually, I rolled out of bed to shower and make my way to a crowded WholeFoods to get some much needed items for the week.

Now here I sit, sipping on my mommy-happy-juice (as I call it) and typing out this blog entry. I plan to relax as much as possible today in preparation of what will be a quite hectic work week. The hubs is in his zone watching football while E.K. naps. I’d say this has turned into one AWESOME weekend.

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Until next Time!