Monday, April 24, 2017

Crowdsourcing

Normally when I need advice of this nature, I'll just make a Facebook post and gather info that way. But, I kept thinking of other things I wanted advice on, and, a lot of my blog peeps are not also my Facebook peeps so I thought that posting this and then sharing on Facebook would give me more answers all at once! So, your advice, please!

First, Disney. We are headed to Disney World pretty soon and I actually am using the Touring Plan thing this time. Which, is pretty awesome I must say. I'll report back how accurate it was and if it was worth the $15. Anyway, we don't really do reserved dining while in the Disney parks and opt for the quicker counter service types of places. (Except for Animal Kingdom - I did snag the coveted 8:00 a.m. reservation at Tusker House) Anyway, my question is mainly regarding lunch and dinners...

What counter service place is your favorite at Magic Kingdom? Epcot? Hollywood Studios? Animal Kingdom?
We normally just eat whatever is near when the hunger bug strikes. But, with this touring plan we could plan our day and pick a place that is particularly better than others if we wanted. I know the internet is LOADED with reviews and advice about anything and everything Disney. But, I like YOUR advice better. There's almost TOO much on the interwebs about Disney so it gets overwhelming.

Laney in Pecos Bills last year
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Speaking of Laney, she turns TWO on Saturday. I am really struggling in the gift department for her. I guess that's pretty typical when you have multiple children, especially those of the same sex so I know I'm not alone. But, I just don't know what to get her! I've got a few things that I think she'll like, but I haven't used up my typical birthday budget on her and there's nothing I'm particularly excited about giving her. Nothing that I think she will be crazy about either, though judging what that baby toddler thinks isn't that easy either...ha.

Anyway, anyone have a great gift idea for a two year old? 

She does tend to love Charley's toys, so I'm willing to buy something for her even if she doesn't quite meet the suggested age limits.

Ideas!? I'm typically a pretty good gift giver I think, but, I get my best ideas at the last second. But, her birthday is 5 days away and I'm still drawing a blank. Don't make me stroll through Target late Saturday night in desperation! (Although, that doesn't really sound all that miserable, right?!)

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Finally, remember when I mentioned how I get so many calls for Lillian and it drove me crazy? Lacey of 2016 - you knew nothing about being annoyed. Lately, I've gotten SO MANY MORE CALLS and TEXTS for Lillian. Every day I'm getting at least 2 calls and a few texts for Lillian. Mostly student loan telemarketer type things, occasionally something about blood clots, and other miscellaneous things. Y'all - I REALLY don't want to change my number. I've had the same one for almost 20 years.


I've blocked numbers - doesn't work well because they typically use something that gives a new scrambled number each time they call.

When texted, I've put the sender on the Do Not Disturb function on my phone - doesn't work well for the same reason.

I've answered and told them I'm not Lillian.

I've double checked that I'm on the worthless Do Not Call list. It said I had been since 2005 or something and I didn't need to re-do it.

What else can I do?!
On top of all that, a couple texts lately have given me Lillian's last name, and using some light Facebook stalking techniques I've found a Lillian in my same city with that exact name. (Her last name isn't very common so I feel confident this is her.) I briefly considered messaging her, but, what would I say? For all I know she mistakenly gave my number one time and it's been sold all over the world 1,000 times since then.

Ironically, they haven't called once today. So, maybe I've stopped it after all. But, doubtful. I'm sure I'll get double the texts and calls tomorrow to make up for it.



Thanks for any and all advice! I'll keep you posted.

Love,

Lillian

Monday, April 10, 2017

Lately

So, the bar stool situation. We were unsuccessful in finding anything with the suggestions given. Womp womp. But, I did get a couple of creative suggestions that I'm still considering. One friend suggested I find some stools of another height on Craigslist or local swap pages and change out the legs for the height we need. I have no idea why I hadn't ever thought of that! So I did peruse Craigslist a couple times with that in mind, but ultimately didn't pull the trigger on anything.

And then, Wayfair never requested their stools back! It has now been over three weeks which was how long they told us to hang onto them in case they wanted to retrieve them, and nada! So, Merry Christmas to me, three bar stools for free! I did consider using the tops of these in conjunction with the suggestion of my friend and just adding longer legs. That option is still on the table.

But John's suggestion was even crazier. He suggested we cut the bar down in height and then have bar stools at counter height. I thought it was a crazy idea at first. But the more and more I think about it, the more I like the idea. If we did a counter height bar - so basically just extend the counter top out at the same height, we'd have a much bigger area for food prep. Which, makes me not want to spend any time or money on extra tall bar stools but instead save our pennies for that project instead. Because, we wouldn't just cut the bar down and use the same ugly counter top, we'd go ahead and go forward with getting new counter tops too. And then maybe update the cabinets as well. So, maybe this isn't such a problem after all if I'm going to get all of that out of the bar stool situation. Problem (not yet) solved!

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Charley is now 13. Time flew, right? This was on our way to a Parents Night Out thing at her gymnastics studio.

Seriously though. She may still be 5, but every time I put her hair back especially, she looks so much older than 5. I would just solve this little issue by keeping her hair down from now on, but....

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...about 2 months ago we dealt with one of the yuckier of the childhood ickies - LICE. EW. So, hair has been going up almost every day. We were warned that there was a case at her school so as soon as she said her head was itchy I knew what it was.

I had zero experience with lice, even as a kid myself, so I solicited advice from my sisters, a few friends and even on Instagram. From there, I made a game plan and got to work.

I chose to try a kit even though many suggested against them. Another thing I kept hearing was that the shampoo or whatever wasn't really the most important part. The most important thing was the meticulous combing. I struggled with how to start and didn't know what I was looking for, but I eventually figured it out about a third of the way through Charley's thick hair.



It took 1.5 hours to go through her head, bit by bit, very slowly and meticulously until we got all the way through and I knew what it was I was looking for. But, since I didn't figure it out until 1/3 of the way through, I knew I needed to go back through another time. I did the entire head again and when we were done she and I had been sitting in those chairs for 3 straight hours.

Anyone else's head itch?

Then, that night I did it all again one more time. So, 4 full hours of combing in that one day.

That was almost 2 months ago now, so I feel like I can finally say we are out of the woods. No one else ever got it (in our family or in her class at least) and we haven't had any re-infestations. I kept the comb out and spot checked her head every night for weeks after that.

So, all that being said, I agree with the thing people said - it's not which kit or what treatment plan, it is more about the combing for sure. I say this like I'm an expert with my one time experience. I don't want to be an expert, though. I'm fine with checking that box and moving on from this childhood yuckiness.
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Another first, but this one is a mostly happy first. Charley lost her first tooth! I say mostly happy because the drama surrounding it wasn't all happy.

And, by the time I'm actually posting this, she's lost her second one too! Both times she left a sweet note for the tooth fairy.


Our tooth fairy is rich apparently because she leaves FIVE DOLLARS each time. That's a 500% increase from when I was losing teeth. I tried to negotiate with the tooth fairy because I thought that was a little too much money per tooth but I didn't win this negotiation, so $5 it is, I guess.

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Remember back on my NYE Day in the Life when I quickly completed a management training course for work? Well, my completion of that by the end of the year (barely!) got me entered into a drawing to go along on a trip that the company takes top performing salesmen on each year. And, I won! Destination was Aruba!

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We went for 5 days a couple weeks ago and it was awesome. We stayed at the Riu Palace which is an all inclusive resort. Loved it so much! On a UTV tour we took, we learned that Aruba has the highest return rate of any of the Caribbean islands - it was something like 78% I think. Anyway, I do believe I want to contribute to that return percentage one day. The resort was really nice, the beach was perfect, the island was very safe and walkable. Recommend! Also recommend getting someone else to pay for it! ;)
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The last two weeks we've dealt with quite a bit of sickness. It started out 2 Tuesdays ago with a trip to the Minute Clinic for a flu test. Charley was complaining of several things all which sounded flu like in conjunction with her fever. I wasn't able to get into her doctor that day and since flu meds need to be started pretty early on in the virus I opted for the Minute Clinic to do a quick flu test. 

It was negative. Whew! But, as she checked Charley's ears Charely reacted with an OUCH! Yep, ear infection. The one thing she didn't complain about hurting.

So, amoxicillin it was for the next week. Monday evening of the next week we noticed her eye started gunking up. By bedtime, we were sure it was pink eye. UGH. But, we still had the drops from another case of pink eye before. (Plus, our pediatrician office doesn't want to see you for pink eye - they just call in the drops so I feel safe hanging on to those meds and making the call to use them myself.) We started the drops that night. Charley was NOT COOPERATIVE. I had to sit on her to keep her arms and legs under control, then I'd use my hands to pull down her lower lid while John handled pulling up the upper lid and put the drops in.

She obviously missed school that Tuesday, and gymnastics that evening.

The next morning I notice a rash on her upper thighs when helping to get her dressed. I did some Dr. Googling and determined that a rash is pretty common after finishing antibiotics, so I hoped that was what it was and sent her to my sisters. But, we kept her out of school just in case it was something contagious. 

That rash spread, and the next morning it was all over her body and parts were VERY RED and angry. A call to the doctor was placed and they did want us to bring her in. Ultimately, they think she could be allergic to penicillin, or she may have just had that common reaction many people have to antibiotics. But, our doctor appointment that day wasn't until after school was over, so we weren't able to get those answers in time to send Charley to school. She missed her Easter Egg Hunt and class party that day.

All throughout this she also had a cold, and occasionally said her throat hurt. But, her tonsils looked fine so I assumed it was just a normal symptom of a cold. By Saturday, all symptoms seemed to be gone. Whew! Because I had decided to host an Easter Egg Hunt at our house this day. It went great and she went to bed with a smile on her face.

The next morning though, a slight fever returned and she complained of her throat again. Our pediatrician has weekend walk-in hours and in an effort to avoid missing more work for another doctor visit, I decided to take her in to get her throat checked out. 

On the way there she was pretty pitiful and I was HOPING we didn't pass any germs to our many guests the day before. At about 5 minutes from home, Charley tells me she thinks she may throw up. I'm driving so I only can do so much, but thank goodness I hadn't cleaned my car out in the last few days months. There, right within reach was a quart sized ziploc bag in the floor. I grabbed it, handed it to Charley and she filled the bag and didn't get a drop on her anywhere. By the time she was done I had pulled off into a parking lot. I helped her wipe her mouth and sealed the nasty bag and we continued on. She felt MUCH better after that and I felt more secure in my decision to bring her to the walk-in hours office.

We get there and a strep test is done. It was negative. Whew! He is also pleased with the amount the rash had faded. The only other thing "wrong" with her was she still had some fluid in her ear, but it was clear and would likely drain on its own. She didn't even have the low grade fever any longer. Nothing contagious and nothing to prescribe. Which was good news.

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On the way home, she threw up again. This time I was prepared though and gave her one of those giant blue IKEA bags before we left for home. R.I.P IKEA bag. And I was so proud of her vomit accuracy! Whew! 

She was PERFECTLY FINE the rest of the day (we stayed in all of Sunday just in case) and finally woke up with no ailments this morning. It's a miracle! I am guessing the pukes were probably car sickness because she already didn't feel well? Who knows. I'm just hoping the sickies stay away for a while!

And dang, this update could have been a blog post all its own.

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Ok, let me post this darn thing before it gets any longer. Anything I forgot to update on? Let me know and I'll get right on it. It only took me two full months to type this post up.