Museum of Science and Industry-Tampa

30 Sep

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This isn’t quite as word-heavy of a post. Deal with it! MOSI was a blast and I highly recommend going if you are in the Tampa area. Tons to do for every age and if you are a member of your local science center, you get free admission with your card! How cool is that? I love reciprocal memberships.

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Why yes, that is a 3-D printed Tardis. We’re kind of nerdy like that. The kiddo really enjoyed seeing how 3-D printers work. They had a few of them running so the kids could watch it in real time. I’m pretty sure the kiddo and my husband are convinced we need one.

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For me, one of the coolest parts was watching the kiddo build a robot! They had the LEGO Mindstorm kits out for the kids to

IMG_7093assemble. Afterwards they could hook it up to a computer and program it to perform several actions. It was really the coolest thing ever. You can buy them for home use, but they are a little up there in cost. LEGO Mindstorm is definitely on the wish list!

You may be wondering, how on Earth are you managing all of these fantastic things with the tiny one in tow? Because yes, she’s definitely a rambunctious toddler at this point. Well, let me tell you. BABY WEARING. Yes, strap that little bambino to your body and go at it. She’s perfectly content chilling back there and taking in the sights. Don’t believe me? Take a look at that grin. I wouldn’t lie to you :)

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YAY MOSI! Now go! What are you waiting for?

Field Trip to the Florida Solar Energy Center

30 Sep

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We had an a-maz-ing field trip to the Florida Solar Energy Research Center. They are a facility partnered with the University of Central Florida that is dedicated to…wait for it…solar energy research. I know, big surprise! Well, as it turns out, they offer a great program for children in traditional schools and homeschool. During their visit, the kids learned all about solar energy. How it is harvested, how it is used, and all sorts of amazing technology.

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By far, the best part was getting to play around with the tech. They tested out a solar oven and did experiments with itty bitty solar panels.

If you’re interested in learning more about solar energy at home with your littles, check out their website HERE! If you’re local, check out their annual Energy Whiz Olympics.

We’re officially homeschoolers!

30 Sep

Yes, we’re now one of *those* families.

I was once like you. Sitting there on the couch, raising an eyebrow when the word homeschool popped up. That was until I stopped worrying about what everyone else thought and took a good look at our life. Was the Bug’s school really the best place for him? Not really. If not, what were my options? Public school, private school, homeschool, and each came with their own set of pros and cons.

Husband and I are educated people. Why could’t we play to our strengths and school him ourselves? Luckily enough, I have a good number of friends that homeschool and one in particular had some great conversations with me about it. One of the big sticking points was that with public school, a child goes a mile wide in topics, but only an inch deep in all of them. With homeschool, you have the option of going inch wide and a mile deep. No moving on when the child has more questions for the sake of getting through material for the big test. For my kiddo, that is huge. He loves research.

Either way, we made the leap and are pretty happy with it. I’m calling it our one year experiment. We’ll reevaluate at the end of this school year (sooner if need be) and go from there. Don’t worry he’s plenty socialized. Between field trips and play groups, he is definitely taken care of.

Sooooo yep. Now I can share all of our homeschool awesomeness!

Moment of weakness

30 Jan

Food allergies have really got me down.

I restrict my diet to baby E’s allergies because I’m nursing. Even though she hasn’t reacted to everything via breastmilk, it isn’t worth cross contaminating her food or me touching something and then touching or kissing her. I just don’t want to risk it.

There comes a point where you just feel defeated. I have tried to stay so positive. I think I’m doing a pretty good job, but here is my moment of weakness. I’m just so afraid! She reacted to dairy and peanuts from birth via breastmilk. We delayed solids and practiced baby led weaning to possibly help. She didn’t eat food until I was sure she really wanted it. Things went ok. Then she had a reaction. Then another. Then another.

Our current list? Egg, dairy, oat, soy, peanut, legumes (including green beans), watermelon. Possibly rye, corn, and squash.

She wants to eat. She really does. I’m just scared to feed her most things. There is nothing more terrifying then having your infant crying in pain as she scratches her patches of hives. My place setting includes an epi pen.

 

But you know what, its what has to be done. We will get through this. She will be a healthy, vibrant little girl and we will keep her safe. 

Food allergies and more

19 Jan

Life is pretty good. 

My PPD has waned and I’m feeling pretty awesome. The Husband has a “real” job now and man…that is nice. Helloooooooo health insurance. My big kid was diagnosed with sensory processing disorder (SPD) and anxiety, which is a relief. A doctor took note of some quirks and its nothing a little occupational therapy and physical therapy can’t help. We’ve found some really great tricks for managing the times when he becomes too overwhelmed and life has improved exponentially for him.

The baby is fantastic. Somehow she is 7 and a half months. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?! Army crawling just before 6 months, she started crawling 2 days after she hit 7 months. I don’t even know what this kid is doing. She stands up and walks along the edge of the couch. She is exhausting.

She is also an allergy kid. Since birth we have suspected food allergies because of her reactions to milk and peanuts through breastmilk, so I have abstained. Well, since starting solids she has had a few reactions. I took her to an allergist and her skin testing turned up positive for egg white, egg yolk, peanut, milk and casein, dogs. We got a blood draw to confirm the positives and we’ll have an action plan by the end of the week. In addition, she has reacted to watermelon and green beans. Its rough. She wants to eat, but we have to be so careful about ingredients and cross contamination. Since she eats anything I eat (via breastmilk), I have to adjust my diet as if I also had the allergies. It certainly makes things difficult when dining out. Whatever I can do to keep her safe though. Seeing your infant panic through an uncomfortable reaction is no fun and I’m just thankful we haven’t had any anaphylaxis. 

That being said, I am ridiculously excited to plan a little birthday getaway for myself. Disney is phenomenal with food allergies and I’m so looking forward to a giant bathtub, chilled wine, and being served amazing meals that are safe to eat.

Livin’ the life, let me tell you :)

On a more positive note…

30 Oct

Take a look at that smile!

 

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I seriously don’t know how she got to be such a big girl. Seems like just yesterday I was grunting on the edge of my bed and cursing the world :)

She’s pretty much the happiest baby in existence. Right now, she’s snuggled up next to me snoring away…she caught big brother’s cold so she won’t leave my side. Even through the snots and the coughing she is laughing and playing. My little miracle baby.

PSA time

30 Oct

We’re going to have some serious talk before I get to the fun baby stuff.

I abandoned the blog (again), but I had my reasons. I am dealing with post partum depression. I’m saying it. I can do that now. It was a long time to accepting it, but I am. I bottomed out and got help and I’m working so hard. I know no one reads this, but on the off chance that another mom stumbles upon this and is reluctant to get help, let me just say this:

Its not your fault. You are a good mom. There is nothing to be ashamed of.

As mothers, we beat ourselves up over every little thing so its no wonder that when you start to feel not in control or those baby blues sink into something more, we panic and then blame ourselves even more. Please don’t. Every new mom has to deal with a slew of hormones that can go off the wall. I’ll admit it, I was embarrassed. I pride myself on being a totally involved mom and my family is my life…so when I could barely drag myself out of bed, when laundry piled up, when dinner wasn’t made I was just ashamed that I wasn’t taking care of things. That I wasn’t being the mom I should be. It only made the PPD symptoms worse. I was worried that if I went to a doctor, they would give me meds and make me stop breastfeeding and frankly, that was the one thing that I could do that made me feel good. I didn’t want to risk losing that.

There are options. So many options. There are meds you can take that won’t effect your milk supply. There are supplements you can take if you prefer homeopathics and herbs. Don’t underestimate the power of talking with a therapist or counselor. People love you. You’re not alone. You can do this. 

I’m not perfect, but I’m ok with that. I’m not 100% better, but I’m working on it. We’ll get through it :)

 

 

Here are some helpful links if you or someone you know is dealing with postpartum depression or postpartum anxiety:

Postpartum Support International  http://www.postpartum.net

Postpartum Dads                               http://www.postpartumdads.org

Postpartum Progress                        http://www.postpartumprogress.com/the-symptoms-of-postpartum-depression-anxiety-in-plain-mama-english

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