New Traditions

This will be the first Christmas celebrated by 3 of my 4 children. No, I didn’t have triplets. 😉

My husband and I decided to stop celebrating Christmas years ago for several reasons. That’s not what this post is about, so I won’t be going into any detail about our reasons right now.

What I will say, is I have a 13 year old who is looking forward to celebrating again, a 4 year old who is very excited, a 2 year old who LOVES the tree and a newborn who is just along for the ride. 😉

We’ve been trying to have fun, so we’ve been doing different activities. We purchased Advent calendars with chocolates, that the boys get very excited about every day. We decorated a faux gingerbread house.

We used ornament making/decorating kits that had mixed results. 😛

This year we are trying something new, and for the most part it has been great. There have been struggles deciding how much we should do for the kids. Having a teenager who’s items tend to be smaller yet more expensive than those for the little ones leads to concerns about how fair we are being or how the kids will feel Christmas morning. We’ve also had some delivery issues, but thankfully everything we ordered has arrived on time. (This pressure was one thing I never missed while not celebrating)

We are not supporting the lie of Santa, yet we are not completely boycotting him either. We know there is exposure to Santa in this world, so we have acknowledged the story but maintained the truth that we are buying/giving the gifts out of love. I handmade stockings for the kids. They are a symbol that is tied into the story of Santa, but we wanted to give small gifts too. They are a perfect vessel for those items that are small and awkward to wrap. Because this is our first year celebrating in a long time our initial plan was to use gift bags for those small items rather than purchase stockings. Then I found I could easily make stockings with my round loom. I enjoyed making them and I think they came out nice.

I had thoughts of different crafts to make with the kids, but most things have simply stayed in my head. I’ll try to be more prepared next year. We may spend a little time this weekend drawing or crafting but since it’s me and 4 kids it won’t be complicated projects.

I can’t say that everything we tried this year will become new family traditions, but we will surely be finding more joy in this life.

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Ready Or Not

My husband wrote a book!

I haven’t read it yet. I have read his blog posts and he shared much of his book with me as he was writing, so I know it’s good. 😉

Here is a post he wrote about it, which contains a link to the book.

viaReady Or Not

*UPDATE* I’ve read it and enjoyed it. The subject matter may not be of interest to you, but I think he did a great job!

First “Week” Back

I have survived my return to work after maternity leave.

My first day back was Wednesday. I got an hour of sleep before I had to get up and prepare for my day. Surprisingly I worked my full 10 hour shift without feeling tired at all. I did get very sore as the day went on.

When I got home I could barely move. I iced my right arm, and passed out on the couch. I was so sore I didn’t even want to snuggle my babies.

I got a bit more sleep Wednesday, but after waking up to get ready for work I realized I couldn’t do it. My whole body hurt. I still felt like I had shin splints this morning, but my arm was much better. I decided I would go in today. It went well. I’m doing much better today regarding my exhaustion and pain. I have only dozed off for a few moments while watching TV with my family, and I didn’t feel the need to ice my arm. My wrist has been sore, but not terribly so.

My 3 little ones have been quite snuggly since I’ve been home too. I think they missed me a little.

I’m happy I have 4 days to recover before my next shift, but Wednesday morning will come before I will be ready for it.

Here’s an updated picture of the newest addition to our family.

And one more. 🙂

Feeling Like Christmas

My family and I haven’t celebrated Christmas since my 13 year old son was maybe 5-6 years old. Religious beliefs led to our giving up Christmas. Christmas seemed pagan and wrong to us. The way it was being celebrated didn’t fit with our belief system. At first we gave up Santa, and the traditional Christmas “stuff” then we gave even the religious take on Christmas up too. None of it made any sense to us.

Recently we decided to celebrate again. None of it makes sense still, but we are in it for the fun and to see joy in our children’s faces. Maybe even to give ourselves some joy again too. We put up a tree on Thanksgiving.

I have to say that walking by it does put a smile on my face. 🙂

The cold temperatures here have put me in a crafty mood too. I used my knitting loom to make a replacement hat for a family friend. I wasn’t happy with one I made him last year. This one seems better, we’ll see how it holds up to regular use. (If he likes it)

I’m also working on a new hat for my friend’s daughter. I don’t think she liked the slouchy one I made her, but her mom does and wears it all the time. Her favorite color is blue, so I chose to make a blue and white one.

I told her mom that if she doesn’t like it, at least she’ll have a spare.

Looking forward to my return to work

When a two year old announces they have pooped… stop what you are doing and change that diaper.

This could happen to you…..

I had my feet up nursing my 9 week old daughter when my two year old son comes to me and announces he has pooped. (verbally and with odor) I told him to give me a few minutes to feed his sister. She was almost finished, and about to fall asleep. He walks away, and comes back without pants. I told him not to take off his diaper. He walked away again, only to come back smelling much worse. Oh no! My power seat could not possibly be slower… there he was at my feet with his covered in poop!

I had to put the baby in her bouncer, then snatch him up to get him in the tub. I also had to find his diaper. I found that with his pants on my bed. Somehow the diaper was open poop side toward the comforter, but didn’t appear to get anything on it. I am washing it anyway, but at least I don’t have to worry about a stain.

I had planned on bathing the 3 little ones today, but not like this.

So, once the two year old was hosed off by the shower I got the tub ready for bath time. The four year old was happy to hop in and play, and the baby got a wash before her nap. I don’t like bathing a baby right after a nursing session, because in the past that has lead to puking. This time I lucked out. If she had puked in the tub with her brothers I would have had a disaster to take care of.

Hunting for poopy footprints was no fun. Luckily most of the flooring he could have been on was laminate. The unfortunate part is the floor and rugs he may have walked on are all brown!

Yup, I might be looking forward to going back to work. I did warn my hubby to take the two year olds announcements seriously. 😛

Possible Thrush and HFMD

Recently we received information from my son’s school regarding an out break of Hand Foot and Mouth Disease, or HFMD. My son is in 8th grade, so I didn’t expect that he’d catch it and bring it home to share with us. Of course he did!

He had a high fever around 102 for a couple of days, and pretty much felt terrible with a sore throat. Then he started complaining that his hands and feet were sensitive. He tried to show me spots on his hands, but honestly I didn’t see anything abnormal…. until a rash developed. Then it spread like crazy!

I read up on the illness, and there is no treatment for it besides taking fever and pain relievers. It is also contagious long after symptoms are cleared up. It’s so frustrating to know that kids are allowed to be in school once the fever is gone, even though they are still very contagious.

Having a newborn in my house, this isn’t an illness I want to deal with. My baby has already struggled to gain weight since she was born, if she gets painful mouth sores that make it less likely for her to eat that could lead to serious issues. As it is, my now 4 year old (as of Tuesday) had a fever of 104 last night and has been refusing to eat and drink much due to his sore throat.

My feverish four year old

Throw in what I am pretty sure is a case of thrush for the baby…. and the risk of possible eating problems for her increases greatly.

I called her pediatrician as soon as they opened today, only to wait an hour for them to call and tell me to contact my OBGYN since they can treat both of us. So, I do that right away. Here I sit typing this post 5 hours later without hearing back from them! I tried calling back only to be put on hold for more than 5 minutes, so I hung up. I am doubtful I will have answers to whether we need to be seen or if prescriptions can be ordered any time soon. I hate to feel like I am pestering them, but being Friday with a Monday holiday I really want to get this settled soon.

I suppose another call is about to be made.

*Update*

I called my OBGYN, only to be told they can’t treat the baby, and won’t treat me until she is diagnosed and on treatment!

Of course I have to call her doctor back and explain what I’ve been told. The person who answers was surprised they weren’t treating the baby and that it was suggested that my doctor treat her. SERIOUSLY!

Now, the doctor who was given my original request was with a patient and so is the doctor who last saw my daughter. I am now anxiously waiting a call from someone from the pediatrician so I can call my doctor back before closing time to get my own treatment. I just wanted to take care of this first thing this morning…I even set an alarm to do so, but yet here I am wondering if a trip to urgent care is my only hope for treatment.