Photo Credit The Bub Hub, the bub hub crew. (2013).
Does your kid have the sniffles? Does your kid need stitches? Does your kid have a high fever that won’t come down with medications? Does your kid have a possible broken bone? Does your kid have a nagging cough that won’t go away? What about if they have a sore throat? What if your child is coughing and can’t catch their breath?
Can you guess which scenarios belong in the pediatrician’s office, the urgent care/immediate care office, and the emergency room?
Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate when and where to take your child when they are sick or injured.
One of the most common things I see working in the medical field is parents feeling the need to take their child in to the urgent care/immediate care office for the sniffles. Did you know it’s always cheaper to take your child to see their PCP (primary care physician), or pediatrician. Your insurance is less likely to pay for something that could have waited for you to go to the Doctor’s office. Also, when you call the office it has built in empty time slots for sick visits. I am guessing there is a lot of people who did not know that.
When to Take Your Child to the Primary Care Physician/Pediatrician Office
Things that merit a visit to your primary care physician/pediatrician include the sniffles, colds, coughs, rashes, sore throats, and anything else that can wait until the morning or when the weekend is over to call and make an appointment. These are non-urgent medical complaints. If there is nothing else going on in a generally healthy child these things can wait until the morning, or merit an appointment to the doctor’s office.
Please do not take your child to the emergency room for a sore throat. I understand if it’s after hours or the weekend and you are desperate (like if it’s gotten worse over the weekend), then that is okay to merit a trip to the Urgent Care/Immediate Care Clinic. I am not talking a young babies. Young babies use your best judgement. Babies are more apt to die of something simple due to their lack of immune system.
When to Take Your Child to the Urgent Care/Immediate Care Clinic
Speaking of the Urgent Care/Immediate Care Clinic, what kind of things merit an urgent care/immediate care clinic visit? These include stitches, x-rays, broken bones, and anything else that needs immediate attention.
When to Take Your Child to the Emergency Room
Remember when you were a little kid and adults taught you about emergencies? Remember they told you to never call 9-1-1 unless there was an emergency? Take those lessons and apply them to what merits trips to the emergency room. When would you call 9-1-1? These are things like breathing problems, heart pain, severe injuries, etc. These are emergency situations. These are situations when you should take your child to the emergency room.
I hope this information helped you today. Please note that you should use your best judgement when deciding when and where to take your child.
Choosing the right daycare can be tedious, scary, exhausting, nerve racking, sticker shock, a reality check, and terrifying all at the same time. I am going to tell you how to make searching for a daycare easy and rewarding.
Okay, so no one wants to go to work and leave their child with someone. Daycare facilities get a bad wrap. Home daycares get an even worse wrap. Let’s talk about some things to look for when it comes to picking out the right daycare for your sole reason for existence, your child.
1) First and Foremost
MAKE SURE THEY ARE A LICENSED FACILITY!
Okay, I know a lot of you are going to disagree with me about this one. YOU ARE WRONG! Let me just start that off right now. You are wrong….plain and simple. A place that is a licensed facility will be forced to follow safety laws. They will be forced to follow certain guidelines with food and nutrition. They will be forced to have certain academic standards. It makes it a much safer environment when the facility is licensed. If you knew what unlicensed places were doing when you aren’t there to check in on them you would freak out and never take your child back again. I promise! I don’t care that you know someone who isn’t licensed and you take your child there. The place may look spotless and you might think they are taking every safety precaution. I promise you they are NEVER following state guidelines because they don’t know how because they are NOT LICENSED.
NEVER TAKE YOUR CHILD TO AN UNLICENSED DAYCARE!
2) Check Inspection Records
The very next thing you will want to do is check inspection records. If they are a licensed facility you will be able to see any and all inspection records and visits. You will be able to see if they have any write ups, or have done major things that are total deal breakers. Keep in mind what they are getting written up for. The laws are very strict (as they should be) so look and see how severe the offense actually is.
3) Check Credibility
You will want to make sure your provider (center or home daycare) has proper credentials. Do they have a degree? What is their degree in? Do they have any other qualifications? What certifications have they gotten to expand their understanding of care? What extra steps have they taken to keep up on education. YOU WILL WANT TO ASK ALL OF THESE QUESTIONS!
You will want to make sure your provider has a degree in early childhood education. You will want to make sure they have taken the classes to get extra certifications and taken extra classes to keep up on their knowledge. This will also help them keep up on the latest research findings with growth and development. This will in turn make them better suited to caring for your child.
4) Drive Around the Neighborhood
I promise you aren’t a stalker for checking out the neighborhood. Is the neighborhood safe? What is the activity going on around the home during the day? Is the provider outside with the kids? What are they doing with the kids? Are the kids in a gated play area that is safe? Are there random people showing up during the day that aren’t clients? There is so much you can learn about the environment if you just drive around the neighborhood a bit.
Make sure the facility (center or home) is CLEAN. They should have a special bleach mix they are using that ensures killing germs and prevention of spreading infectious diseases. ASK THEM ABOUT IT! It’s a law. Is the place cluttered, or clean? There is a difference. Is the facility’s floors stained? Are they shampooed/mopped regularly? Are the walls clean? Go to the bathroom. Is the bathroom clean?
Like I mentioned earlier you will need to ask about academics/curriculum. What program does the facility use? What are the statistics and success rates on using that program? How do the children fare when they leave the daycare and enter in to an elementary school?
Do they use several pieces from several different accredited programs for their curriculum? That is what you would ultimately want by the way.
What kind of things will they be learning about? What kind of social skills will they be working on? What kind of large and small motor skills will they be working on throughout the school year as well? These are all very important questions to ask.
What ages does the facility accommodate? If it is a center they should be separated based on age. There should be an appropriate amount of teachers in the rooms as well. There should be individual rooms for the individual ages.
An at home daycare is different. They are only licensed to have a certain number of children, and not only that. They are only licensed to have a certain number of certain ages in the daycare as well.
MAKE SURE YOU ASK THEM WHAT AGES AND NUMBERS OF CHILDREN THEY CURRENTLY HAVE!
8) Center-Based Learning
When you walk in there should be a noticeable classroom. There should be centers, a table for school work, and chairs that are age appropriate. The centers should be child level with age appropriate activities for the children. It’s pretty simple. Just make sure you see an academic setting, and not a clutter of toys all over the room. There should be structure. This is what you are looking for.
9) Price Check!
If you think it might be a good fit so far you will want to find out how much they charge. Do you need full time daycare? Does your child only need preschool/pre-k? Do you just need to drop them off every now and again. Every licensed and legitimate daycare facility (center and home) will have 3 different rates. They are: 1) full time price/week, 2) part-time price/week, and 3) drop in rate/week. Figure out what you need. Figure out if you can afford it as well.
I want to also point out that you are NOT limited if you need government funding. You will be required to send your child to a licensed daycare, but they will also need to be CCDF certified. This means the daycare provider has had even more training to take on these clients. Do not think you are limited to standards just because you need extra help with funding.
10) Look Over the ENTIRE Contract
We are on the last step. You will be required to sign a contract. If you are not required to sign a contract with the facility (center and home) then RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN OUT THE DOOR!
Anyway, look over the entire contract. What are you responsible for paying per/week? What are you responsible for if you leave for vacation. Most facilities require you still pay for the weeks your child is not there (if they’re full time spots). The provider also may put in the contract that you are required to pay them while they are on vacation too for so many weeks. How many weeks is the provider allowed to take per their contract? Be sure to know this kind of information.
There should also be a list of holidays/special days that they are closed, or closed early.
There should be a discipline policy in place as well. Find out how they discipline the children. Do they do time outs? Do they want to spank your child. P.S. NO ONE SHOULD EVER SPANK YOUR CHILD EXCEPT YOU.
We’ve all had bad days and good days as a parent. More so true for at home moms I think. We are the sole providers for our children and as an at home mom it is our job to raise the children until our husbands come home from work. We cook, clean, pick up after everyone, raise the babies, and make sure the house runs smoothly.
I have days where I’m ready to rip the hair right out of my head, or put the kids on a tether and tie them out back (not that I would actually do that). I also have days where I relish in the play and joy of being a mom and being there for my children.
My very best day as a mom were the days when my children were born. I think every mom would choose that answer though.
If I’m being completely honest the best days as a mom for me are the days when I feel like the day has been a complete success. The days where my daughter does something nice out of the kindness of her heart for another human being are the best days. The days when my daughter shows me how smart she really is by doing a 100 piece puzzle (she’s 5 years old by the way) by herself, or she spells out a really hard word while she’s writing are the best days. The days when we sit around and play games and she understands the concept of the game are the best days. The days when we can just “chill” and snuggle in front of the t.v. are the best days. The days when we get out of the house and do something one on one are the best days.
What are your best days as a mom?
Every parent is going to have a bad day too. We all have bad days. Days when I just can’t seem to get anything done because the baby is crying and my daughter needs my attention preventing me from putting food on the table is a bad day. The days when everyone is sick and has a fever with vomiting are bad days. I sit there feeling helpless as I watch my children sit there feeling helpless. I can’t help them except with medication and snuggles. The days when my house is a disaster from all the play time and “living” going on from being a family, and I can’t get it clean because of my children needing me every second are bad days. The days when I can’t get myself out the door on time because I feel the need to take care of everyone else first are bad days. The days when my daughter brings home a “negative square color” from school because of her making poor choices at school are bad days. I sit there and wonder what I am doing wrong as a parent and how can I help my child be a better person.
We all have good days and bad days.
What are your good days as a parent? What are you bad days as a parent?
We all love Valentine’s Day (or at least the thought behind it). It’s even more fun when you have children to share it with. Valentine’s Day is not solely about romantic love. It’s also about other types of love (no….not the “new” equal right that this country is so obsessed with right now). I am talking about love that a mother has for her kids, and vise versa.
1) Surprise them with a Valentine’s Day themed breakfast.
Find your favorite silicone shaped heart and make some heart pancakes. Use lots of red colors, like strawberries, strawberry syrup, red food coloring for things, etc. Find some grapefruit juice to go with breakfast as well.
2) Put together a special gift box for them.
If you don’t have time in the morning for breakfast, don’t worry. I’ve got you covered too. Put together a box for them to open when everyone gets home in the afternoon or evening. Put together a box full of new jammies, a movie, and a bag of popcorn. Then everyone can
3) Make a special dessert to go with dinner.
I love this one! I am at home, so I am able to bake throughout the day. Baking special heart shaped cookies, or baking a heart shaped cake is a great idea. If you are not that is okay too. You can always buy a yummy treat to go with dinner on your way home from work.
4) Pick wild flowers and put them in a vase.
We used to live in the country, and one of our favorite things to do was to go wild flower pickin’. Okay, I know in February where I live there are probably NOT any flowers. However, if you live in a part of the world where it’s warm in February and there are flowers growing you should go wild flower pickin’ with your little one. It’s a lot of fun.
5) Write a bunch of “Why I love you” notes and leave them all around the house for them to find.
This one is a fun one too. Write as many little sticky notes as you can for your children and on each one write one thing about them that you love. Then leave them lying around the house for them to find. It’s a great self-esteem booster, and it takes little to NO effort on your part as a parent.
I just had my second baby (March 5th), and just had my second c-section. What’s it like having a toddler after having a c-section you ask? I’ll tell you.
Knowing What to Expect During Deliver and After
First, let’s talk about knowing what to expect during your second c-section. I think this is a big one for me. I already had a c-section with my first born. I knew what to expect walking in to the delivery room (well the operating room), and I knew how I was going to feel afterwards. This gave me an ease of mind (for the most part). C-sections are so routine and as long there wasn’t any complications prenatal everything will go smoothly during surgery. If this isn’t your first rodeo you can expect the same thing. Same “drill.” That’s helpful with my anxiety.
Going in to surgery was crazy for me. It is so intense. I had to walk to the OR (operating room) and mentally prepare myself with every step. I had to get on the table and not freak myself out. I have major anxiety issues.
How are you feeling about your second c-section?
Dealing With New Pain
Any new moms out there who just had a c-section but are step-moms to other little ones? I can’t relate to this, but I just wanted to give a shout out to you for being awesome! If you’ve never had a c-section until now you are experiencing grueling pain. It hurts to go to the bathroom, cough, sneeze, and even lay to one side. Every movement hurts like knives stabbing at your incision.
Don’t worry, it gets better. Rest and make sure you walk around the house for small increments at a time. Don’t over do it. I can’t imagine being a first time c-section mommy and then having to come home and take care of a whole household on top of that. Rely on other people for help for sure. You got this!
Support and Anticipation
My daughter is 5 years old. She has been anticipating her baby sister’s arrival for 9 whole months, and I’ll tell you I’ve never seen a child more thrilled about not being an only child anymore. She has done nothing but be supportive. I would like to think that has everything to do with how my husband and I handled the situation. We introduced her to the idea right away and kept her involved (I have an article about this coming out on March 16, 2018. You can find it here).
With that being said the transition from having a second c-section to coming home and taking care of a whole household isn’t without it’s appreciative atmosphere. When I got home my 5 year old did nothing but help me around the house. Every morning when I get up she holds her baby sister for me while I get a minute to take care of myself. My husband and daughter both were so appreciative of all the things I did before I had the baby, and everything I do while the baby is here.
Extra Hands Equals Extra Help
Since my daughter is 5 years old she is a fantastic helper. She is at the perfect age where all they want to do is help whoever and with whatever they can. I’ve been so lucky because she helps with all the chores around the house…willingly. She helps me with the baby. She brings me things from upstairs and around the house so I don’t have to put extra exertion on my incision.
She does a fantastic job being calm and quiet around the baby. She reminds others to do the same as well. She is so aware of what’s going on around her baby sister that she puts her needs first. It amazes me the “little mommy” helper I have. We are so blessed.
If this is your first or second or even third c-section I would love to hear from you in the comments section.
I am over 30 years old. I have learned so much out of life already. I know I am not 50 or 60 where those people have learned SO MUCH more than myself. P.S. Listen to those people. They could teach you a thing or two.
On my 30th birthday I remember being very upset that I past my “prime” as it were in my eyes. I felt like I was really getting old. I was pregnant, moved to a new city, and facing financial crisis slowly. We still owed on our home that was in another city, and we were making payments on our new home. We had to keep utilities on at both houses. Life just did not seem to be going well for me or my family. My daughter was having issues at her old school to the point that I had to pull her out of school too. There was just so much going on in my life, and it was overwhelming (to say the least).
I remember thinking “If I knew what I know now what would I have done differently in my life? Why did we allow ourselves to put ourselves in this mess?!” I am not a big fan of “Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda”.
However, here are 5 things I wish I would have known before I turned 30 years old.
1) Go through Financial Peace University and make the changes you dummy!
I promise you I am not making this stuff up. I wish I would have started Financial Peace University a long time ago when my husband tried to get me on board. We would be sitting in a debt free home, with retirement already starting to build up, and being a millionaire would only be a few years away. We would have been able to say confidently that we can send our children to college debt free. We would have been able to say we are making more money in investments than we do yearly working our regular jobs.
I am telling you THIS IS NOT A SCAM. IT WORKS!
2) Choose the career path I wanted…not the one that fell in to my lap.
I went to school for nursing. I graduated, and I was so proud of myself for doing this with a child at home. I couldn’t wait to start working. I was immediately offered a position in a pediatric clinic because that is where I did my clinicals. I knew going in to it that the department had issues. I never thought they would be as bad as they were. It was truly a hostile work environment that I had a little PTSD from working in it. I went to a different company and a different department all together after that. I worked Internal Medicine after that, and I loved it.
But my point really is was it really worth going to school for? I am an at home mom now. I work online teaching. Yes, I needed ANY degree to get hired to do this. I also only PRN for that company I switched to. I have only gotten called in about 5 times in the last 2 years, and I haven’t even been able to go in because of my children. It’s been a constant conflict in my life that I am sure I will soon give up.
Was it worth it for me to go to school and spend that much in student loans only to be an at home mom now?
3) Having kids when I am older is so much easier than when I was younger.
When we had our oldest child I was 25 years old. I thought for sure I was ready to take on those parenting responsibilities. I had seen other people be parents and screw up one way or another. I swore I would never be like those parents. I can honestly say I am still NOT like those parents. But I struggled with my daughter in other ways. I had postpartum depression and I was struggling every day. She was colic and not sleeping at night. I was also going to school and working part-time. I really struggled emotionally with being a new mother.
When I had my youngest I was 31 years old. I just had her, and being a parent to a newborn again has not been as bad as it was the first time around. I did not develop postpartum depression. The only time I found myself crying for no reason and feeling down was when I was in the hospital after I had her and my oldest daughter was at home with my husband. I was so sad to leave her for that week. It was a healthy sadness though. It was not depression.
I think the older I get the more calm and aware of things I am. I find that the things that upset me when my oldest was a baby doesn’t bother me as much with my youngest. I feel like I have a more calming mindset now. I wish we would have waited a couple years before conceiving our first baby.
P.S. I LOVE BOTH MY DAUGHTERS, AND I WOULDN’T CHANGE ANYTHING!
4) Be thankful to God every day for everything we have, and everything we don’t have.
A long while ago I was having serious doubts about a lot of things in my life. It was starting to affect my relationships around me. One day my husband and I decided enough was enough with our issues. It was time to let the good Lord guide our life again. We needed Jesus in our life again. We started going back to church. One day there was a sermon about being thankful. They discussed all the miracles that Jesus had performed and how thankful those people must have been. Some were not allowed to tell. Some were told to tell everyone.
It got me thinking about my life and all that God has done for me and my family. I stopped and thought hard for several days. I opened up my Bible, and I studied. I prayed A LOT! It made me realize I needed to be thankful for everything that God has blessed us with. It made me more appreciative of our life and everything we have in it. It made me more secure in my relationships with my peers and my husband. It also helped our marriage become stronger. It felt as though there was a weight that was lifted off of me because I knew God was with me.
Go to church!
5) Do my personal best in everything I do, and don’t worry what others think or say to me.
This one is a loaded one. This has several meanings for me. My husband and I don’t have a fantastic support system. We have had to brave everything out on our own. We figure stuff out like adults. We have been told several times not to do something, or that we can’t do something because of various reasons. We like to prove people wrong. We like to work extra hard to make way for our life to get better.
I have been told several times HOW to parent my child and that I am not a good mother. That hurts. I have been told I am a terrible nurse by my peers before. I have been told I am immature or ridiculous.
This is the reason I do everything with my personal best. I know people say these things to hurt me. I have learned that these statements are false and do not define me.
If I took everything too personal then the things people say about me would, in fact, define me. I wish I would have figured this out sooner. I wish I would have not let the hurtful things my family and friends have said to us get to me like they used to. We have learned to remove ourselves from other people’s lives. We have children now. It is important for them to see that we, as a team, do not allow people to say and treat us a certain way.
TO MY READERS: WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU KNEW BEFORE YOU TURNED 30? 40? 50? 60? MAYBE EVEN 70?
If you are a mom of any child that is in daycare, school, or some sort of regular social setting then you are totally aware of what I am talking about. GERMS! I see it constantly. Some kids are more prone to getting sick than other kids. I will explain why later. It seems like every time I turn around one of my two kids is ill with some nasty cough or cold. It then quickly plagues the house if we don’t take precautionary measures.
So how do we take these precautionary measures?
1) WASH YOUR HANDS!
I feel like this should be a “no brainer”, but you would not believe how many children (adults included) that do not wash their hands regularly, if at all.
If you touch your face you should wash your hands.
If you cough in your hands you should wash your hands.
If you sneeze in your hands you should wash your hands.
If you get your hands icky you should wash your hands.
If you go to the bathroom you should wash your hands (yes even when you only urinate).
If you touch something that someone else who is sick touches it you should wash your hands.
There….I made a list of when you should, without a doubt, wash your hands to help prevent the spread of germs. It helps everyone around you. Even if you are not sick you should always wash your hands under these circumstances to help prevent you from getting sick. If you are sick you should still wash your hands because you don’t want to be sick longer than you have to be. You also want to minimize your ability to spread your germs to other people.
WASH YOUR HANDS!
2) Teach Your Child/ren to Cover Their Mouth
This one kind of goes with the first one. Everyone should always cover their mouth when they sneeze or cough. The best way to prevent the spread of germs is to cover your mouth with your shirt. Put the inside of the collar of the shirt up over your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. This puts the germs on the inside of your shirt where it is not going to creep out anywhere and spread. This also eliminates the germs being sprayed in to your hands. Gross. Just cover your mouth with your shirt.
3) Up the Kiddie’s Vitamins Dose
If the dose on the back of the vitamin bottle says to take 1 tablet/gummy/chewable a day then give them 2 a day for about 3 days. I find this helps with immune system boosting. I promise you it’s safe, and it works.
4) Push Fluids
Make sure to drink plenty of water and electrolyte enhanced fluids regularly. This helps bump the immune system to help fight off those germs.
5) Stay Stocked up on Facial Tissues
I’ve noticed we can never have too much Puff’s facial tissue around the house. My household prefers Puff’s Plus Lotion. It helps soothe their noses. The worst thing when you’re ill is running out of tissues.
REST, REST REST! You can never rest too much when you are not feeling well.
In order to keep your immune system healthy if you are not already sick you should make sure you are getting an adequate amount of sleep at night. Make sure you and your children are going to bed on time. Make sure everyone is getting the right amount of sleep at night.
7) Push Cold Medication WHEN NECESSARY
The last thing I want to encourage is an overdosing of cold medication. I do believe in not giving your children medication. I also do believe we should be giving our children medication when it is necessary. If your child is in pain from a headache, fall, or something like that why would you not give them Tylenol to help them? That is neglectful not to give them a pain reliever.
The same holds true with cold medication. If your child can have cold medication and they are miserable please give them medicine. If they can not sleep at night because of the cough or stuffy nose it is okay to give them medication. If the medication is not touching the symptoms, or barely alleviating them then it is time to see the pediatrician (notice I didn’t say family doctor).
I can also tell you from a nurse’s point of view to please give your child medication if they have a fever. Don’t bring them in the office knowing they have a fever and then when we ask “Have they had any fever reducing medication?” you say “No. I wanted you to see the fever.” I promise we believe you if you give them medication before they come in, and when they come in the fever is gone and we still ask you that question. Give your child the fever reducer BEFORE you bring them to the doctor’s office. We believe you.
8) Use Lysol
According to the Lysol website they pride themselves on being a 99.9% fungi, viruses, and bacteria killer. They also say it kills cold and flu germs. There you go. What more could you want? I use Lysol, and I love it. It really does disinfect all surfaces, kills germs, and prevents the spread of germs with just one spray. I use it on the toilet handles, furniture, and anywhere someone has coughed or sneeze in the air.
9) Don’t Share Food or Dishes (or Germs)
Teach your children not to share their food at school. Siblings should not be sharing food at home either. I am guilty of this in our home. However, if anyone in our family is sick we do not share food or dishes. We do not eat off each other’s plates or drink our of each other’s cups. We do not try to feed each other food (example: “Try this. It’s yummy.”). Be sure to teach your children to keep their germs to themselves, and do not allow anyone else to share their germs to them either.
10) Eat Healthy
Be sure to eat healthy meals regularly. Make sure your children are getting plenty of fruits and vegetables. That vitamin C will go a long way with immune system support just by eating healthier.
So what makes my child more susceptible to getting sick than someone else’s child?
For my children it is their asthma and allergies that make them more susceptible to getting the cold and flu viruses.
Other medical conditions where the immune system or other organs are not up to par can make a child more susceptible to getting sick.
Being in a daycare environment can also make your child more susceptible to getting sick because there are more people (mostly children) who share germs at home from their siblings (who go to school and share germs with those kids), and those germs can come in to the daycare as well and spread. Children also are known for poor hygiene. This is also another reason children can leave themselves open to receiving germs.
Be sure you are taking proper prevention to help stop the spread of germs in your home. This will make you and your family healthier as a whole.