redheadva

Making Magic Is Hard Work

Creating Christmas magic for my children is kicking my ass. It’s a LOT of work.

Just doing the tree took almost the whole day. It didn’t help that my oldest son is exactly like me (God help us all!). He is only 3 and he has such definite ideas of how he wants the tree to be and where he wants each ornament. I just gave up trying to convince him to do it my way and got out of the way.

Of course in the process of letting both of my sons help with the tree, we had moments when mommy lost her cool because several of her favorite ornaments fell and shattered. But in the end, the tree turned out pretty well and we all had a hand in making it happen, which was my goal.

Then came the Christmas cookie experiment. I’ve been really trying to show my children the fun and spirit of Christmas so I had do the baking-Christmas-cookies-with-my-son thing (even though I don’t remember the last time I baked anything)!

Oh, it was so much fun making them from scratch with him. We got flour all over ourselves (and the floor) and we both did the mixing and cutting of the cookies. Unfortunately, because this was mommy’s first foray into Christmas cookie making, the cookies didn’t turn out so well.

Getting outside to exercise with a baby

We all know the life of a mom revolves around taking care of our children.  And finding time for yourself takes a backseat to our hectic schedules.  But it is important to take care of ourselves!  And exercise definitely is important, just getting out and about can make you feel better and improve your stress level.

Here are some simple workouts moms can do with the baby in tow to help get back to exercising.

Walking with Baby

Power walking is one of the easiest ways to lose weight, and safe to do right after having a baby just make sure to check with your doctor.  All you need is a stroller.  Most babies like a change of environment and the fresh air.  So take your little one and get outside.  If the weather isn’t cooperating check out your local mall.

Running with Baby

Immunization Guidelines For Children

Below are recommendations on vaccine schedules for children based on CDC guidelines.

Birth:  Hepatitis B

2 Months:  HIB, DTaP, pneumococcal, rotavirus, polio, hepatitis B

4 Months:  HiB, DTaP, pneumococcal, rotavirus, polio, hepatitis B

6 Months:  HiB, DTAP, pneumococcal, rotavirus, polio, hepatitis B

  • Every October Flu vaccine, if the child is over 6 months old

12 Months: MMR, chickenpox, hepatitis A, pneumococcal, HiB booster

Fever in Children

When your child is not feeling well, and you suspect a fever, but are unsure of what to do next. Should you get out the thermometer? Call the doctor? Give medication?

In healthy kids, FEVERS usually don’t indicate anything serious. We all know it is frightening when your child’s temperature rises, but a fever itself does no harm and can actually be a good thing. A fever is a symptom when your child’s body is fighting an illness. We typically treat fevers with medication that are fever reducers to make your child feel better and to prevent dehydration.

What TEMPERATURES can you expect when your child is sick. Guidelines state that you should call your pediatrician if he has a temperature at or above:

100.4 degrees Fahrenheit and he is under three months old
101 degrees Fahrenheit and he is between three and six months old
103 degrees Fahrenheit and he is over six months old

Just as important as the your child’s temperature, please consider this advice from the American Academy of Pediatrics:3

Unusual Summer Reading

Remember when you were a kid, and you set off from the last day of school with a summer reading list?  Pages and pages of wonderful books, asking to be read.  Library card in hand, you happily spend lazy summer afternoons with a book in one hand and an ice cream sandwich in the other.

Maybe that was just me.

So far, I have found that the worst part of being a working adult is summer.  What do you mean I don’t get summer vacation?  What do you mean I have to spend the sunniest, laziest days sitting in a fluorescent chamber of boredom and deadlines?  What do you mean I don’t get a summer reading list and hours of freedom to spend reading?

Well, this summer I have decided to make my own reading list and spend also some time doing these personality quizzes. Sure I am SAHM and I don’t think I will develop my career any time soon but it was really fun to taking the quiz and  read about my career personality and possible jobs.

Then instead of lazing on the couch watching mindless TV after work/dinner/housework, I’ll be lazing on the couch reading one classic after another.  That’s right, I’m focusing on the classics.  No fluffy novels about shopping or engagement rings for me!  Only the truly good stuff.  And I’m off to a great start.

Enjoy Every Minute With Your Child!

Some great advice I received when I was a “new mom,”  was to try and enjoy each moment with my baby.  Below are a few tips to help you enjoy your little one. I am a mom to a 21-month-old, and I can’t believe that he is already almost two. The first year was tough, feeling sleep deprived, and having to care for another person that was completely dependent on me was so exciting and exhausting all in the same breath.

The second year has been filled with challenges of an “almost terrible two-year-old”, and trying to set boundaries, yet still let him explore the world. But every day has been an adventure and I loved every minute of the smiles, giggles, and the first steps, and words.  And I am really enjoying the innocence of childhood, and it amazes me.

It has been so rewarding watching my son develop into a little being with thoughts and a cute personality as he explores his environment.  I love the “wows”, when he sees something new and exciting. I certainly don’t know everything about parenting, and I just try to be a good mom.  But when I am having a “mommy stress moment”, I try to remember why I love my little man, and how much I enjoy being a mom!

Rude behavior seems to be consistent with doctor’s offices

I am soooooo frustrated right now! I am trying to set a doctor’s appointment for my son and can’t even get through to the appointment desk. I have called and called and called only to get a busy signal every time. I looked in the phone book and there was another number listed to call in case there was no answer at the main number.

I called the alternative number and asked to set an appointment. I was tersely informed that I had to call the main number. I explained that I had been trying to call the main number for half an hour and kept getting a busy signal. She smarted off, “Keep trying” and hung up. Perhaps this alternate number was an emergency number, but it was not listed as such in the phone book, and she never informed me of such either.

This kind of rude behavior seems to be consistent with doctor’s offices these days. I have encountered it several times during my own office visits, but this particular clinic seems to have cornered the market. The doctor is great (which is the only reason I have stayed with this clinic), but the office staff is horrible. When you can actually get a call through to them, 9 times out of 10, they are abrupt and impolite.

Little Pieces Of Me

Everyone seems to have a list about themselves, so I thought, “Why not share some of my specializes with the all of you? You deserve to have a little sunshine in your bleak lives.” However, in the interest of keeping your jealousy down to a minimum, I will only share a few morsels of Craziness.

  • You know that cologne of perfume that you or [men, insert appropriate term] – (your wife/your girlfriend/your significant other/your mother/that person you are stalking)- wear(s) that smells so good. Well, that is what I smell like all the time. It is my natural scent. I don’t have body odor, I have body aroma. I just smell that good. In fact, that cologne or perfume you like, it is actually essence of me. That’s right, I bottle my own natural scent and share it with others, because I hate to be stingy.
  • I am the smartest person who has ever lived. Socrates, Aristotle, DaVinci, Einstein; they had nothing on me. Their brilliance is but a dull glimmer compared to the blindly glare of my genius. I am so smart that I wisely hide my exceptional intelligence to throw off the masses of people who may become jealous and seek to destroy what they could never possible be.

Singing A Lullaby Never Felt So Good

Singing would be part of my mommy duties. It wasn’t a duty that I took so very naturally. To be honest, I’m not a very good singer. Everyone said that it wasn’t about how well you sing but just that you connect with your child. So I gave it a try even though it felt really awkward.

I remember the first time I sang to him. He was only a few months old and when I started singing You Are My Sunshine, his eyes lit up and he stared at me with such concentration. Wow, this singing stuff really works, I thought. I was completely shocked. Now I had to come up with a few more songs to add to my repertoire.

You would think it would be easy to sing songs to your child but I found it quite challenging. I couldn’t find songs that I knew the words to that a child would like. I had to actually look up songs on the Internet. How lame is that?

I finally settled on a few classics (Hush Little Baby, the Wheels on the Bus, etc.) and sung those over and over (mostly making up my own words for the second and third verses).

Why did I dye my grey hair

I have grey hair. I never thought that I would care when I got grey hair.  I liked my hair natural and didn’t feel a need to color it.  In fact, I prided myself on my ability to stay natural and intended to never color my hair.  I thought that it was more important to be happy with myself the way I was than to start the endless cycle of covering up the aging process.

I felt the same way about makeup.  I rarely wore makeup and almost reveled in the fact that I didn’t feel the need to wear makeup on a daily basis. I always thought it was healthier (mentally and physically) to not put all that stuff on your face and all those chemicals in your hair.

But as the grey hair multiplied and my skin started to look a little more aged, my faith in the beauty of “natural” started to crumble.  Then one day I saw a picture of myself with my kids and realized that I looked different than I felt.