Okay, it's my turn to join the ranks of the supersisters (ahem, Kristen) who are always taking their kids to the emergency room. Last night Carter had an episode of constant coughing that left him unable to breathe and the rest of us breathless wondering if he was having a dangerous allergic reaction to something.
With Madeleine in tears and Dave and I on the edge of our seats, we drove Carter to our local hospital, hoping nothing serious was the matter. Lucky for us, there's nothing like adrenaline to set your system in perfect order, because the second Carter realized he was going to see a doctor he didn't know *in the hospital* of all places, his sheer terror brought that horrible coughing to a screeching halt.
We were home in under two hours, crisis averted, but our nerves completely shot. What can compare to the fear that your kid will actually stop breathing? In any case, we're all breathing easier this morning and hoping you are safe and sound with no ER visits in your future.
Let me tell you, it was no fun.
Pinching the pennies this summer? Wondering how you are going to make it through the summer with kids at home with no cash for camp or a vacation?
Here are a few ideas to make this summer fun on any budget:
1. Take a pool tour- Can't afford the local pool membership? Ask your friends if you might be able to join them as a guest or use their own pool. The trick is, ask a few friends. I know, it's total mooching but I bet your friends would be happy to relieve you from the heat wave that is summer. If this feels horribly presumptious, suggest a trade. Offer to trade for a meal delivered to their door or babysitting. Exchange pool time while picking up the mail, dog sitting/walking while they travel and wouldn't be using the pool anyway.
2. Invest in popsicles- Go straight to your local price club and buy mass amounts of Flav-or-ice or other kid favorite popsicles. Let your kids eat them for breakfast, lunch and dinner, well, maybe just for snacks. A lot of snacks. A little water, food coloring and sugar never hurt anyone right? These cheap treats will keep everyone happy and kids will say, "Remember the summer mom let us eat all those popsicles? That was awesome!".
3. Take advantage of the free stuff- Most movie theaters offer a free movie once a week before the regular shows. We pack away a tiny ziploc of candy, juice boxes and buy popcorn at the theater. Any bowlers in the family? Check out the cool program where kids can bowl free for the entire summer.
Most local parks and recreation centers have all kinds of great concerts and programming during the summer, look local.
4. Pick something- Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, oh my! Picking fruit and vegetables can be fun and save your grocery bill. There is nothing like being on a farm, grove or patch and picking your food right from the ground, bush or vine. Pick-your-own is a great site to help you find a farm near you.
5. Commune it up- We're all in this together. Gather your friends and gaggle of kids and do the summer together. Create your own at home camp with art activities, slip-n-slide, and afternoon movie showings. Kids will tribe up and parents will delight in the shared company. Prepare a meal together to split and send home for dinner and the day is done. Many hands make light work. It is the village at it's best.
Do you have any ideas for enjoying a thrifty summer? Share them with us in the comments.
Why does a stop sign mean stop?
When I get old, how will I know how to drive?
What happens if I am driving and then I am on the sidewalk?
What's a "driver's manual?"
Why do you need a driver's book if everyone knows that a red light means stop? That's silly.
What are those shiny things on the mailbox?
If the water makes things go away, why do the lights stay?
What makes the lightning?
Why are you in this lane?
What is that restaurant?
Why do you call it a "fern bar?"
Is that a tweet, mom?
Why are there hospitals in the sky?
Why do these mailboxes glow in the dark?
Why doesn't our mailbox glow in the dark?
Why don't we have reflectors on our mailbox?
Why don't we have glowing mailboxes on our street?
Why don't our neighbors run over our mailbox if we don't have reflectors?
Am I doing too many tweets?
Where is that BINKY of Mason's?
Why does it say "no P?"
This is roughly 1/3 of the questions he asked on the 12 minute ride home. I don't think he even breathed between questions. You know what would be an awesome post? If I put the answers that I was thinking IN MY HEAD right in this post. However, this is a PG site and not a rated R site. At one point, we just started to laugh and couldn't stop because he didn't even wait for my answers before he started another question. No wonder I have lost my mind. This four-year-old never stops. This four-year-old is crazy. And it's making me crazy.
What kind of questions are your kids asking you? Do you remember when you used to drive in your car and have silence, because I don't even remember those days.
It's almost the last day of school (or so my kids tell me every morning) and excitement is high about the freedom of summer. They are envisioning endless visits to the park, spontaneous runs for ice cream and hours on end with me jumping and playing in the pool. I'm seeing me frantic, running back and forth from my home office to their part of the house where they happily eat snacks, make messes and watch way too many shows on the computer, while waiting for me to find something for all of us to do.
Anyone else out there cash-poor for camps and worried about how to keep the kids happy while getting your own work done? Let me know I'm not alone in the comments below.
That's what you were thinking when you looked at this picture, right? I'll admit I was sort of thinking it too when it was happening. The only thing is, I couldn't really see how this kind of activity could make you end up in the emergency room. I guess falling short and putting a tooth through your cheek? Maybe? I didn't think about that then.
I suppose I should have a predisposition against this kind of activity since I had that incident when I was about 11 or 12 and the middle table between the beds jumped out at me while I was sleeping and left me with a gash which gives my nose the character it has. However, I was asleep and that was before the big litigation boom in the early '90's. My mother says now that we should have made them fix my nose but I kind of like it. I can say I got in a big fight and that's how it happened if I want to sound tough. But back to the bed jumping.
I wish I had a picture of Nate doing it. The "trainwreck," as I am now referring to him, could do it too. I'll admit I was shocked. That's quite a distance for his fat little two-year-old legs.
Part of me knew I was supposed to give them the speech about respecting furniture (especially furniture that is not ours) but the other part of me thought, "this is a one-night vacation, pared down from a week because that's all we can do these days. Jump away."
And so they did. Sometimes you just ditch the propriety in hopes of one day hearing, "and my mom and dad used to let us JUMP ON THE BEDS WHEN WE STAYED AT A HOTEL. THEY WERE SO COOL." It's a shot.
So I'll admit it, I watched the 57,000 hour marathon leading up to the big Jon and Kate premiere. Well, not the entire marathon but you know how certain shows can become scarily addictive. Everyone wonders what it would be like to be a fly on the wall at your neighbor's house and this gives you a chance from the comfort of your couch. I was drawn to the show occasionally in the past but now, like the rest of the world, I'm totally sucked in.
I have always had a sort of uneasy feeling about Kate. She is strong, and bossy and sometimes ridiculously difficult. She kind of scares me. While watching her I think to myself, "Oh my God, that is me?! Is that what it looks like?". I know, down deep inside, that if a camera crew followed me into my kitchen during the last six months, there is a definite chance of catching quite a few "Jon and Kate" moments at my house.
A sort of compassion fills my heart and I wonder what it must really be like to have that many small children. How every ounce of you must be pushed to limits you didn't
even know were possible. I'm pretty sure the OCD and intense control freakery was part of Kate before she even began this whole journey, but I wonder if this is an extreme version of herself invited by the circumstances of her life. Or maybe not, but you must admit her strength and resolve are pretty incredible. Could you do what they have done? It was the couple's humanity that called to us in the first place, the belief that perfection is not the end all but rather being together the best way we know how is.
So throw in massive amounts of fame and money on top of an already insane and amazing situation and you get another family ruined by reality television. There is nothing to draw you back to where you started, a young family just trying to make it. Instead we watch the dismantling of it all and I find it so incredibly sad. I hope and pray that they can find their way back to the beginning when all they had were each other and so much more.
Okay, weigh in Super people. I know you have been dying to, even if you say you don't. Give it to me, what do you think about Jon and Kate plus 8?