Friday, September 19, 2014

To send or not to send

Every one in a while I have the opportunity to send 1 or more of my kids with grandma.  But this weekend the option was to send my 2 year old on a 700 mile road trip with grandma to see the great grandparents and family.  Yes, we decided to let him go.  After all this is his grandma whom he loves dearly and the road trip is one she has been making since my sister was the same age.  To add, all my kids love thier great grandparent and unfortunate due to this distance we often only see them twice a year. The only reason we could come up with as why not to send him was basically just parental fear. Fear he would get to upset, that he would become homesick and miss it's to much. Fear that we wouldn't be around to comfort him.  So, right now my youngest son is 700 miles away and having fun with his grandma and great grandparents with out me.  While I am at home with the older 2 and a few extra moments each day to get the basic cleaning down around the house.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Dairy protien intolerance

This is mostly in regards to my 2 year old son as i have found little information as to why it would develop so late with no prior signs.

So I think everyone has an idea of what lactose intolerance is. Basically, a person doesn't have/ produce enough lactic enzymes to break down lactose, the natural sugars in dairy. This can cuase upset stomach, gas, cramping, bloating and so on.

Many people may also know it is common for newborns to have issues digesting dairy, though initially this is often just considered a lactose intolerance also. Often first noticed as colic, reflux, and or fussieness after feedings. Some newborns are protein intolerant though.

So what is a milk protien intolerance?  Well, instead of issues processing the sugars in milk it is an issue processing the proteins in milk. Mainly casein and or whey. Most symptoms are the same as a lactose intolerance though they go on to include mucus in the stool and blood in the stool. Since most of the dairy proteins are broken down in the intestines more of the symptoms happen down there and can be harder to notice (especially the cramping). In most cases with formula feed babies this shows up within the first few weeks or so, though I have found comments of it not appearing till 6 months of age. With breastfeed babies it may not appear untill the child is introduced to milk, normally around thier first birthday.

But in our case my son breastfeed till he was 1 and has drank milk even since then with no issues. I will admit he was dairy intolerant while I was nursing (as was my 4 year old) but did well as long as I limited my dairy intake.

So why did my 2 year old suddenly develop a milk protein intolerance? We might never know.  Medically he should have already been having issues, so perhaps, either he got a hold of something he shouldn't have had, or we might have had a few days that he got more dairy then his little body could handle.

So back at the very end of July. My little, who had just recently decided it was time to potty train, had told me he needed to poop. I didn't think much of it, and sat down on the side of the tub like normal to wait for him. I leaned over him to "check his progress" when I noticed an unusual amount of red almost marbled into his bowel movement. I started running through my head all the red things he might had eaten in the past 24-48 hours, but nothing came to mind.  Then I wiped his bum... I couldn't have been more scared. We all should be familiar with that tiny streak of blood that often times happens after a hard stool, well this was more of a smear. Like wiping a bloody nose smear. So I took him off the toilet and immediately turn him over checking he bottom for and cracks tears or abnormalities, but there is nothing. Next I reached into the toilet to exam the poop, yucky, but it was so soft I could grab any it fell apart in my hand. After washing I called the doctor, I want sure if the was an emergency room sort of thing or what but I knew I needed to ask.  We got an appointment that afternoon and after confirming the blood in his lower bowels he was put on a 5 day dairy elimination test and sent for blood work. The elimination test seemed to clear thing up for him and the blood work proved that this was defiantly a new thing and not on going.  We started dairy again slowly, puddings and yogurts for a few days, then milk, then cheese. Within the first few days he started getting a rash that looked somewhat like pre adolescent pimples around his mouth, eventually spreading to his upper torso. I had just started him back on milk when we talked to the doctor and decided to check for allergies and take him off dairy for another week. It seemed it was almost the next day and the blood in his stool was back. I called the dr and hee was taken off dairy for a full month with a follow up at the end.

We have finally made it though the month and no further symptoms have been noticed.  We have started an even slower dairy reintroduction and he is currently up to 3 servings of cheese or cooked milk per-day (puddings and such) next week I hope to start milk again but I'm still very nervous about it and would be just as happy keeping him on the almond milk and limited dairy for the rest of his life.

If anyone has any info thoughs our suggestions I would love to hear from you on this.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

On potty training

So having 3 sons "potty training" has had lots of ups and downs for us. But seeing so many looking for advice on potty training I wanted to share my thoughts.

Please remember it is perfectly ok an normal for a child to not potty train till nearly 3yrs of age. And for those with night time issues, especially boys can be as old as 12 before they grow out of it. But age 8 is a good time to talk with a dr about night time issues, we aren't there yet as my oldest is only 6.

Exposure. Why so many family's wait to introduce the toilet till they want to potty train baffles me. I'm sure in the first 6m you rarely left your baby in the other room while you tinkled. Well, once they start crawling and walking incourage them to come to the bathroom with you. Talk about the potty. Let them flush it so they know what it sounds like. You can even ask them if they want to sit on the potty (diapers on) just do they get the idea. If you want to use a potty chair get one as early as possible. Let it be a normal pay of life.  Place it in your bathroom and incourage them to explore it. Maybe get a doll that they can put in thier potty while you are going.

Incourage. Agian ask them if they want to try... even if your little one is only 12m old. Incourage them to sit, to look, to flush.

Stress. It's perfectly normal for kids to get stressed and have anxiety about the bathroom.  If you notice your little one starting to panic at the words bathroom. Give them space and time.  They are more likely to regress if stressed then if comfortable. If you have already started potty training letting them destress may bring then back to the potty on thier own.

As they start getting older and understanding words, we started at about 18 months, start offering to TRY the potty. When you go potty "would you like to try? Do you want your diaper off?" When you're changing a diaper, "do you want to sit on the potty before I put you diaper on?" All of this will give them a chance to see what the toilet really feels like.

....

It seems around the age of 2 years old many parents are hoping to be done with diapers soon, but are our littleones ready? Your little one knows about the potty, has tried and maybe even pee'd a few random times in the potty. They might even be telling you they are wet or need to go. But though it could be, this doesn't always mean they are ready.

Are they asking to use the potty regularly? This is important.  It really should be thier choice to reduce stress and regression. They don't need to be asking all the time, maybe 3 times a day would be a great start.

Are they mostly dry when asking. This is becuase it shows an ability to listen to thier own bodies. And hold thier pee. And can they make them self go? My second could hold his pee 2-3 hours at a time, but sit him on the toilet and no matter what we tried he couldn't go on command.

At this piont its up to you.  You can go to underwear, continue with diapers or find a middle ground that works for you. Talk to them about keeping underwear dry and asking to use the potty. Let them know if they can do it by themselves they are welcome to go.  If you do use underwear yes you need to check with them once in a while. I don't like the going to the potty every 30 minutes.  I think this is added stress and will detour them from wanting to go. Once an hour is more then enough, if they don't go then yes maybe ask again in 15 to 30 minutes but don't make a big deal about it. Just remind them.  They will forget. Honestly if you have to drag your little one to the toilet every 30 minutes I think there is an issue and you would be better in diapers for a little longer.

Naked. Summer time is a great time for under 3 kids to run naked at home and in your fenced yard. Even for girls. The nice thing is less clothes to change, the bad thing is more pee on the floor.  But think about it.  They will see and fell the pee coming out, they may even try to stop peeing so they can get to the right place.  Let them finish, no piont in extending the mess though the house. Once they are done take them to sit on the toilet. Remind them this is were we go potty and let them clean up the mess with you. If your outside let them pee in the grass it won't hurt anything besides maybe the grass a little. Again at least they get to see and feel it. It's important for then to help clean up thier mess as it will teach them responsibility and also becuase it might help to discourage accidents.

Talk to them. Remind them were it's ok and not ok to pee. Explain that accident do happen but they need to try their best to remember and let you know.

Try... Use the word try with your kids. I try not to tell my kids to go potty, but to try to go potty. Try before we leave the house or even certain times of the day when I know they might need to. Try before going to bed.  Even if you just went let's just try one more time. With asking then to try your still giving them that little bit of control, but its a win win becuase sometimes even though they feel they just went we know even 30min can threaten an accident if we have earns to run. Infact just the other day my 4 year old on the way to preschool told me "mommy I didn't have to go potty but I know I have to try before we get to class." Such a proud mommy moment right there.

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Kids will regress or forget. Give it time. Don't punish them for accidents. Kids tend to get distracted or won't want to leave an activity. Most at this piont having accidents is just that. Just remind them.  You might occastionaly need to stop them and make them go try. It's an accident.

Prizes. Good gosh. I tried the reward charts the candy jar the cheering. Nothing really worked.  But my husband had a ton of hot wheel cars that I had convinced him to give to the kids. This was our potty prize, and it only worked becuase we already had it. If I had needed to go but them I would have never had enough.  In the beginning they got one for trying whether they went or not, then once they were going regularly it was only for each successful potty (but only in the toilet out doors didn't count) after about a week we changed it to once or twice a day especially times they remembered on thier own. Eventally it was only for pooping in the pottty. After about 3 weeks of cars we gave them one last car and that was it. Remember if you do a prize it has to be something that gets them excited, and you might need to try a few different things.  We got super lucky that all 3 hit excited about the cars.

POOP. This is a whole another issue. If you get lucky they will make thier first poop in the potty the first day and you'll never have to worry. But in case they don't.  Make sure they are getting enough fiber that it won't hurt. And if they do poop in thier underwear or a diaper have them help you put it in the toilet and flush it. It's a different mechanisms to poop. For ones having issues, try squatting over the toilet.. I know it sounds odd but really have them stand on the seat and squat, this may be especially helpful for those corner squatter kids. I sorta got lucky in this area.  My oldest went #2 the very first day I'm not even sure he realized that was what his body needed to do. But he had to pee 3 times in a row, like with in 5 minutes each time. I convinced him to try squatting and sure enough he pooped. After that only if we had a very hard poop did we every have to squat again.

Well I'll change tones and tell you how each did thier thing.

The oldest was starting to pee and poop in the potty as early as 18 months and he could tell me when he was wet. He hated the potty seat and prefered to sit on the big seat. I was about 3 months pregnant at this time and it was summer so we had introduced underwear and naked time just to air out. But being a first time mom I was afraid of regression. With #2 on the way hubby and I talked and agreed there would be no pushing the potty till after the new baby was here. Second birthday passed baby was born and a few months old. My oldest still showed positive signs. So we started asking him more often and incouraging him to tell us more.  We had introduced underwear and used them often at home.  It was near summer again and he was about 2 1/2 when one day I laid him down for his nap and when he woke up he asked for his underwear. We had talked about it many times.  And basically had a rule that if he had an accident he would go back to diapers, he was usually asking for underwear 2-3 times a day, but only asked to pee usually to try to get the underwear instead of a diaper. So we talked again, and I really thought we would be back in a diaper in an hour.  I asked him a few times, never pushed though I did remind him about our rule. We never looked back.  That was our last day in diapers and sure he had a few accident but the change was his choice and he was ready. Like I said previously he pooped in the toilet that same day. And though he is now 6 1/2 he had wet the bed at nights until just recently. We had tried everything from limiting water, to trying to get him up to pee, and making him go before bed.  We found gettingb him to try at least 3 times was his lucky trick. 1 to go, 2 to finish (becuase sometimes they don't push it all out) and 3 to be sure.  Now I'm sure some where in there his body finally got the hint too, but it worked. He still wets about once a week and that's usually after hard busy days.

My second son was a little rougher. He wasn't as fond of the toilet as his big brother and hated the idea of the potty seat (I finally got rid of that thing). He was much closer to 2 years old when he started getting ready.  Thing was he could hold his pee nearly 2-3 hours at a time, but sit him on the potty and it wouldn't come out.  Either way we were pregnant with baby 3 so again we didnt push. We did have a lot of trials though.  He wanted underwear so badly but after a few times on the toilet he would suddenly get stressed and angry. He would throw fits if we even mentioned it. He was 2 1/2 when baby brother was born and still showed very little hope of progress.  Because of his fits I often would resort to putting him back in his diapers for a few days and not taking about the potty with him. I gave him time to destress and come back on his own.  The last time I think I gave him almost a full week off, by that time I was beginning to wonder if it would ever not be a fight. Finally when he was ready to come back we sat down, him daddy and I, and had a long talk, thigh it wasn't our first like this with him. He was almost 3 and we wanted him done.  We told him if he wanted underwear I was going to take all the diapers and give then to baby (did I mention we used cloth diapers?) He agreed though very hesitantly. We had 1 or 2 poop accidents over the next few days and had to talk to him about that too. But he was ready to stick it out.  Today he is 4 and still wets at night. We are getting better in this area but it's still at least 5 times a week and I'm ok with that.  I don't change his sheets every morning, it's his job to let me know he needs clean sheets if they aren't clean at bed time he had to wait till morning. Of course if they are wet still I put something down for him, but if they are dry and just stink then he better remind me tomorrow... yes I know I'm mean.

So baby #3, he is just over 2 years old in fact almost 27 months. He was a trip. It's summer time so not even thinking about potty training yet I started letting him run naked, and what did he do?  Well after the second or third day of accidents he started asking me to use the potty. Really.  I never expected a 2 year old to be ready. Sure enough he started trying almost completely on his own and before I knew it we had switched him to underwear. Of course even with the older 2 I still used diapers out of the house.  Till one day we went to dinner and I forgot the diaper bag and I forgot to change him before we left oops. He made it through dinner with no accidents.  So we started taking him to out friends house in underwear, he was doing great, and even at grandma's house.  But we had 1 big issue. He was afraid to poop... yes number 3 was holding his poop for as much as 2 full days basically till it started to come out and he couldn't hold it.  We had many poop on the floor accidents and 2 poop on mommy accidents.  I didn't know what I was going to do. One of the nights hubby and I where going on a date (pre planned with friends) little buddy had only been holding his poop for 1 day abd was showing signs that he couldn't hold it in much longer. We couldn't get him to stay on the toilet long enough to get it out, he would try and make a toot and think he was done.  I didn't want my mom to have to clean up poop, but what was I to do.  Once she came over I told her his signs and everything er had tried so far that day. He really just needed to sit and wait it out. Well about a half bout later grandma texted me  "guess who pooped in the toilet?" I was so excited I had to call and ask.  She said he tried a few times about 4 I think she said, went she finally told him that he needed to stay till he was done.  Something about grandma power there.  Anyways,  she said he fought a little but finally settled in and tried. I'm glad it had only been 1 day, those 2day poops really hurt.  So after that I had to remind him a few times to wait but he finally knew what to do. And I think what helped him the most was the fact that when he went in the potty the poop didn't end up on him ;-). He really didn't like being dirty

Sunday, August 10, 2014

A rough weekend

Friday seemed a fairly decent day. Normal summer routines then took to oldest with my girlfriend and her son to the wizards of oz sing alone show. We got home at almost 9:30 and my mini me's were still not asleep. Saturday started out rough and got worse.  Daddy had to work and bad additude were everywhere. Fighting, arguing, and whining abound, and it only got worse that evening. Fortunately the littlest did not take a nap that day and all were soundly asleep by 8. Today started a bit early as we were going to help clean up at the soccer park.  Daddies asthma kicked in and I had to call grandma for reinforcement. We picked up trash for about an hour then went to the playground for some fun as promised.  Of course the fighting now resumed, and I notice on top of everything else my lady days had decided that today was going to be an extra super heavy day... oh the joy.  The kids seem mellow for now and daddy is feeling a bit better. Tomorrow is a new day, I'm just hoping a dditudes can hold out till then.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Clean up and start over

Hi, I'm Sharon. Wife to an amazing thoughtful and generous husband. Mother to 3 very active young boys. Im also a duaghter a sister and a friend. I have the wonderful pleasure of being a stay at home mom, and even so my house so rarely clean. We have losts of activities and always seem on the go. One day I'll get the hang of it all but for right now each day is a juggling act.

My oldest son is six and starting first grade this year. He enjoys dance, piano, soccer and running club, and has been practicing his swimming. He has lost 2 teeth already and is impatiently waiting for the next to become lose.

My middle son is four, and is a wonderful though sometimes difficult preschooler. Right now it loves the idea of doing activities though I'm not sure he had found his own passion.  We often struggle with melt downs and out bursts from him add we too are trying to help discover his world.

Then the youngest, my third and final and yes another boy. He is 2 and very lovee. He would like nothing more then to cuddle  up and just hang out. In the swimming pool we have to be careful as he has the strength to swim away from us but not enough to keep his own head above water. Though at the moment he doesn't care and would jump in with or without you if we would let him.

I did try to start this blog a year ago or so. But life got busy. I still dont have a plan yet do for now it will just be about life. My wonderful family and all the triumphs and catastrophes that go with it. And yes I may or may not have watched Gasper and Lisa one to many times