Stockholm Syndrome

What do parenting and Stockholm Syndrome have in common? Skip on over to North Phoenix Moms Blog and find out!

 

 

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The Mac Attack

We all know I was not such a big fan of getting a dog. I love dogs, don’t get me wrong. But a 4 year old, a 1 year old AND a puppy?? It was a recipe made for a nice little rehab in Tucson.

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Flash forward almost two years and I’ll give you one guess who this dog loves the best (I mean, besides Auggie). That’s right, yours truly. And secretly…I really love him too. I even kicked a kid out of the jogger for him.

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And I’ve learned a lot about Labs. Like the fact that they have iron stomachs and can eat anything. Literally anything. I’ve picked up more poop with remnants of things that should never go into a dog, let alone come out of a dog. I’ve discovered that he’s eaten liquid ant bait, twice. And not so much as a vet visit. BUT. And there’s a big but…Labs have horrible skin. I realized the first summer we had him, he itched all the time. Like ALL THE DAMN TIME. It was loud. It was annoying and it made for extra dog hair everywhere.

After consulting friends, the Wag ‘N Wash and the internet, I found a great blog that recommended a brand of treat/vitamins called Cloud Star. They have a blend that is great for skin, especially Lab skin. After changing his food to totally grain free, adding coconut oil to his meals and trying to get him to drink water with nothing really working on the problem, I was skeptical to try the treats. But much to my surprise, they really worked! His fur was shiny, the scratching and itching was way down and the shedding seemed better too. Mac seems to be happy about it too.

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You know, just having a lazy Saturday, watching the Masters

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Do you have any good dog skin tricks to try? Let me know – there can always be less hair around here!

Ladybug Ladybug, Welcome Home

This growing season has been a tough one for my lettuce table. Normally by Christmas we are out cutting fresh leaves for salad every day. This year the hot – cold – hot temperatures in the fall made for some rough growing. I finally got the right combination of morning sun, umbrella shade in the afternoon and a weekly hit of a 20-20-20 fertilizer and boom! Lettuce for days. Weeks. Months!

As I was cutting the first good crop, I noticed black bugs on the leaves. Like a lot of black bugs. aphids to be exact. It dawned on me later that we’ve always had a praying mantis in the garden. He (she?) reappeared sometime in the fall and apparently she (he?) was working to keep the aphid population in check. But this year he/she didn’t come back so when the mantis is away, the aphids will play.

And play those little bastards did.

I want the lettuce table to be organic so I didn’t want to spray any pesticides.  I used an insecticidal soap which is safe for humans, but allegedly the aphids don’t like it and they should leave when you spray it. I swear to God, those little assholes laughed when I sprayed it on the leaves. I saw one pretending to take a shower with the soap while he laughed with his friends. All the while eating my plants.

When I gave my mom a big bag of lettuce, I told her to make sure to wash it well to get the bugs off. “Don’t worry.” she said. ” I just serve the salad with poppy seed dressing so in case I missed any bugs, you can’t tell.”

It’s amazing I came out as normal as I did.

Anyway. I decided I couldn’t take it any more and after several phone calls to local nurseries and Google searches, I found a retailer that would ship me some ladybugs asap. Ladybugs are natural predators of aphids and they won’t hurt my lettuce. Not to mention they are adorable. Yesterday when the little ventilated box arrived, it was like Christmas. No one should get this excited about a box of bugs…and yet there I was, sprinkling ladybugs onto the leaves of the lettuce saying go! eat, my pretties! eat them all!!! while laughing manaicly.

The kids were entranced by the hard work the ladybugs were doing – within an hour of being on the leaves, they were eating to their hearts content. Gone were the sounds of those little jerks laughing. Now all we could hear was the nom nom nom sounds of the ladybug lunch.

Muuuahhhaaahhhhaahhaa!!!

So delicious. Until you notice the bugs…

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Workin’ hard!

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Jump On the Bandwagon

Phew. It is rough to be a parent these days. It’s always been a tough job, but given the current climate of social media and an invisible force that urges you to define your parenting style  – helicopter mom, baby wearer, breast feeder, anti vaxer, free range parent – the list is endless and yet well defined.

And if I’m being honest, I think it’s amazing that so many moms are talking, sharing, posting. I constantly question my parenting method, look for new skills and sigh with relief when I read that I’m not alone. It’s all good.

Except when it’s not.

That’s right. I’m jumping on the bandwagon of posts about vaccinating your kids.

My bottom line is this: get educated. Ask questions. See more than one doctor. Read articles, posts, journals. Do whatever you have to do to reach the conclusion that vaccinating your healthy child is the right decision. And I emphasize healthy. Because those not healthy kids are the other reason we need to vaccinate our children. Herd immunity is meant to protect those that aren’t healthy enough for vaccinations, those that can’t be vaccinated for health reasons, and those too young. Choosing not to vaccinate your children out of a fear of the vaccination is not an excuse. Fear is not an excuse.

If you’re still conflicted, then think over this scenario in your head. I was sitting with Auggie in the emergency room a few months ago. He had a horrible case of croup and was in severe distress. His sweet little chest caved inward with each gasp for air because he was sucking in so hard. At some point my brain flipped into survival mode. Gone were the emotions and my only focus was to get this kid some help and fast. I realized after the storm had passed how awful it had been. How horrible it is to have the thought his oxygen levels are ok so if they have to, they could do a tracheotomy and then he could breathe.

It is not a fun when the thought of having a hole cut into your child’s throat is comforting.

The one thought that popped into my head over and over was how I could have prevented him getting so sick. And while the answer for his condition was “nothing”, that would not be the case for whooping cough. I cannot imagine the guilt of watching my beautiful little boy not be able to breathe because of my decision not to vaccinate him.

Which is why we do vaccinate our kids. When Baylor was a baby, I talked extensively about vaccinations, vaccination schedules and risk with our pediatrician. And the bottom line for me was when she said “I totally understand your concern. I do constant research about vaccinations and as a mom and a doctor, I fully vaccinate my child and that’s why I require this schedule for my healthy patients”.

That was all I needed to hear to make the decision to prevent the preventable. There’s enough unknown with our kids. Being able to check life threatening illnesses off that list? I’m in.

 

 

 

Mom Moment

That moment where you accidentally text “hoes” instead of “how’s” to the baby sitter.

As in “Hi hoes!” instead of “Hi how’s it going?”.

Most concerning is that auto correct thinks you use the word hoes so frequently, that’s probably what you meant…

Happy Birthday Auggie!

I can’t believe that this guy is already TWO. The saying goes that the days are long and the years are short and that couldn’t be more true with this guy. It feels like yesterday that I was dropping B at school and heading to the hospital.

We celebrated the birthday boy with a fra-mly party with a construction theme and I have to say, it came out pretty awesome. I think the birthday boy wasn’t the only one who had fun!

Who knew blue prints made such cute and easy table cloths.

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Fun party favors

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Ready to par-tay!

IMG_7866CHEEEESSSEEEEE!

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His home made cake didn’t turn out too shabby

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It’s too bad they don’t look like us….

IMG_7895Happy birthday Auggie boy! You are such a crack up and bring so much happiness to our lives. Please stop growing so fast!

Run Team Olivia!

This past Saturday marked our second run as part of Team Olivia in the Children’s Cancer Network’s Run to Fight Children’s Cancer. I’m always excited to sign up, but the morning of the run Peter and I say to each other at least three times “let’s not do this next year” as we try to wake, feed, dress and load the kids by 6am along with their snacks, waters, joggers, sweatshirt and contingency gear.

But once we get there, we realize why we go. After the run, there is a survivor walk. As we followed our friends, the B family, I realized how amazing it must feel to know that just a few years ago, they were pulling sweet Olivia in a wagon because she was too weak to make the quarter mile walk. And this year, she was the horn blower to start the walk and then ran the entire track.

It’s hard not to get teary as you walk and realize how amazingly lucky and blessed we are to have two healthy kiddos. And for those that aren’t healthy, it’s worth the effort to run for them.

Team Wand ran the 5k in 33 minutes trading off pushing a 100 lbs jogger. Not to shabby. BTW, check out how much this team has grown since last year!

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B got in on the running action

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Post run celebrationphoto 3 (36) photo 2 (47)Auggie was slightly less enthused about the whole thing. We also learned he is terrified of mascots. The Sun’s Gorilla, Howler the Coyote and the Grand Canyon University Antelope all scared the bejesus out of him. Note to self.

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Buddies ready to take on the obstical course

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There was tons of media coverage – I love how easy the Team Olivia shirts are to see! Check out the honoree herself getting caped up for the survivor walk.

http://www.myfoxphoenix.com/story/24923482/2014/03/08/run-to-fight-cancer-child-survivors-given-cancer-fighting-capes

 

Don’t Wake Me Up

I really love the song Don’t Wake Me Up – it’s really resonates with me and where life is at right now. If this is all a dream – don’t wake me up. It’s too good to stop dreaming it now.

I’m not saying that there aren’t some things that aren’t perfect – but those things are minimal compared to the great things. The frustration that comes with trying to secure / entertain two kids and a puppy in order to take a 10 minute shower are totally out weighed by Auggie padding around the corner in footy jammies carrying his sister’s necklace. The smile on his face is one of defiance and victory and it is priceless. Then watching him “run” as fast as his little legs can carry him, defying all the laws of balance, trying to get away from Baylor who is hot on his trail to her her necklace back is hysterical.

I almost always respond when someone asks how it’s going with “crazy! but good crazy” and I mean it. This life is nutty, overwhelming, frustrating, perfect, hilarious, imperfect, fuzzy, soft, smelly, gross, warm, snuggly and I wouldn’t trade any of it.

I read a great article on the Huffington Post about parenting twins. It’s hilarious how the dad describes the madness of caring for two babies – I can’t tell you how much I relate to the insanity. But he goes on to describe the freedom that comes with parenting:

“I can tell you that what people say about “losing your freedom” is bull crap. We’ve got a pathetically shallow notion of freedom in this country, and that’s perfectly reflected by this common claim that you lose it when you have kids. Sure, if “freedom” is merely “the ability to go places and do things with minimal hassle,” then, yeah, you’ve lost that. You haven’t lost it permanently, but for a good long while. This is a flimsy, flat, flaccid view of freedom. I believe there’s more to being “free” than vacations and financial flexibility. I’ve seen both sides of this; I lived completely alone for the first half of my twenties, so I know about this sort of freedom. I know about it, and I can honestly tell you that I feel more free now than I ever have before. If I didn’t have a family, I could go on a cruise, or move to Vegas, or see Paris if I so desired. In fact, I could go pretty much anywhere on the globe. But I’d only be “free” to travel laterally. Now, I can travel deeper. I’m free to go deeper into human existence and experience things that are much more life-changing, enriching, transformative and exciting than a thousand vacations to a thousand exotic locations. The greatest freedom we have as human beings is the freedom to change. I’m not talking about changing the scenery, I’m talking about changing ourselves. Having children is TRULY life changing; having free time is not. This is not meant to be an attack on people without kids and spouses; I’m just clarifying a point. They are not more free than you.”

The bolded section is the best way I could ever describe being a parent. Yes you give up the freedom to run out the door at any time, grab a drink with a friend on the fly, stay out late without an exhausting process of getting a babysitter, getting ready for said sitter and then actually getting out the door. But the freedom to really know what the best parts of life are through the craziness of being a parent is amazing.

So thank you my little banshees. You make me crazy and also crazy happy.

hats

 

Uh Oh…

As of Monday, the Wands have a new member of the family.  Name, details and more ridiculously cute pictures to come.

My sanity is SO overrated.

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