Thursday, February 26, 2009

Crazy Conner

It's been a while since I have last posted about the kids. So many of you know that Conner aka Stink or Crazy Conner has some issues with not listening or following directions (hence the nick names). So about two weeks ago I was talking to a mom about how he acts and his attitude so on and so fourth, she began to tell me about her daughter and surprising they are very similar in actions - ie, can't sit still, throws tantrums at the drop of a hat...... she started to tell me about how her little one has food allergies and that once she got her tested and removed the foods from her diet she was a different kid almost over night. Well later that day Conner took it to the extreme of throwing a tantrum at the Y (yes Russ works their part time so it was a little embarrassing) for a good 45mins. I finally get him to calm down enough to go back in side just in time to find Russ walking out the front door, Conner's basketball game was over. We get to the car and I just lose it, I was at my breaking point with C that I told Russ if we didn't do something the kids was going to end up on Ritalin (most kids who are add/adhd are on) and then I remembered this mom telling me about her daughter and how they removed certain foods out of her diet and how drastically she changed. So the rest of the weekend I did a ton of research on the Elimination Diet, and come to find out most kids who are diagnosed with ADD/ADHD don't really have it they just have food allergies. Russ and I are the type of people who do not want to put our kids on drugs, so after doing my research and lots of pray I decided to try this diet out.

I'm not kidding you when I tell you I thought Conner was going to have a heart attack when I told him for one week he couldn't have certain foods (milk & cereal), but much to my amazement he did really well. I prepared him for this diet and make it kind of fun for him. We went shopping on the first day just for "Conner's diet food" he thought that was the coolest thing on the planet that he was able to have just his own little pile of food and that he didn't have to share with anyone.

The first week we eliminated a lot of his staple foods, milk, cheese, bread and cereal and introduced a lot of new things in to his diet. With in 24hrs I saw an improvement, he was calmer, listen to me when asked on the first try just in general a totally different child. I had prayed really hard and long the days leading up to this change asking God to show me and help me guide my child thru this new change in his life, and he did. I even noticed a change in my behavior towards Conner, I wasn't frustrated with him all the time and we actually enjoyed hanging out during the day. The first week breezed by with no real issues other than reminding him that he couldn't have certain foods and he was fine with that. The start of the second week was here and on this week you start to reintroduce the old foods back to see how they react to them. The first day was Dairy day, well let's just say we had our old crazy out of control child back with in 10mins of having a glass of milk. Well I let him have a couple more glasses and a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch and by the time his dad got home I was on the verge of losing my mind, right then I knew he couldn't have dairy anymore - he hasn't had any dairy since then. Everything else that we have reintroduced back into his diet is fine and have had no issues other than with the diary, thank you God for giving us the blessing of the dairy allergy and not the gluten allergy - really thank you.

Now I have a normal (in my sense of normal) 4yr old, he is much happier and sleeps so much better. Granted we do have our days when he does act out and wants what he wants when he wants it but other than that he is a changed child.

I am so glad that I talked to that mom that day and went home and did so much research before taking my child to be put on medication. I know for Russ and I medicating one of our children would be the last option for them and I am glad that I did the research instead of just submitting to how society would handle it.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Thrifty Tip Thursday

I'm not sure how many toys your kids have, I'm sure they have a lot. Well with four kids I feel like we have a ton here. In my search on Craigslist in the baby area I have seen other mom's post about a toy trade, I will tell you I was like yeah right I won't get my kids toys back and if I do will they be in the same condition? So I was thinking the other day of starting a toy trade with a couple of mom's that I know their kids would take great care of the toys and I would get them all back. My kids like change and new toys, what kid doesn't. By setting up toy swap your kids get to play with something new for awhile and it doesn't cost you any money, plus you don't have to store the toys they aren't playing with. I do not recommend swapping toys that have an extreme value, ie. cost over $20 to replace if it were broken or a family toy that get's handed down from generation to generation.

This is something that you can also do with clothes, outside toys and anything else that you may think of.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Thirfty Tip of the Week

For many of you mom's out there, have you ever thought how can I save money when my baby comes. You can always save money by breastfeeding, or buying second hand clothes or baby items or even taking hand me downs (which by the way I love) it save so much money. Since becoming a stay at home mom with my last kid I had to think of other ways to save money, and one day I was talking with my husband Russ and we both looked at each other and said "well since money is going to be even tighter how about cloth diapering". Now at first I wasn't too excited about using cloth diapers, I have heard so many horror stories about mom's getting peed on while out with their little one because the diaper didn't hold. So I told my husband that I would give it a try but that I wouldn't guarantee anything. So I started to do some research on the Internet and found that there were so many different kinds of cloth diapers out there and how to care for them. Now some people will just buy new never been used, but not me I'm on a strict budget (real strict) so I looked to Craigslist to get my stash going. For the newborn set up I spent about $35 and it lasted me until he was about 6months old - which is really good I hear. Then it was time to move on the next size and this time I have spent about $80 or so and he is still in this size, and along the way I pick up bigger sizes when they are a good deal. I picked up some covers at a garage sale for $8 for 13 of them, can we say GOOD DEAL, I mean some new covers alone cost $8-20 for just one. I did more research on how to care for them, I would love to have diaper service one day but it's not going to happen. So all you need it a garbage can with lid fill it with some cold water and borax and just put the wet or poopie diaper in there and you are good to go until you are ready to wash, which is twice a week at our house. I will post some links to other sites that offer support on how to care for your diapers.

Speaking of poopie diapers, you can put a disposable liner in the diaper to caught the poop and toss it in the toilet with the mess on it and your done. If you're like me and don't want to wast the money on liners I just rinse the diapers in the toilet and then toss in the bin and wait for wash day.

Preston is 9months old and I have only had to buy 4pkgs of disposable diapers for him and that is usually for traveling or when he is sick. So far I have only spent about $150-200 for everything I need until it's time to potty train. Here are some pics of the diapers we have:

Prefolds- they do require a cover and a snapie to keep them in place
Fitted - they require a cover as well and may or may not need a snapie
AIO - all in ones no cover required, just like a disposable but all you have to do is wash and you get to use it again & again
Pockets - these are my favorites right now, you can stuff them for better absorbency so these and the AIO are great for using at night.
And there are way more types of covers and diapers out there, but this is what I use and it works for me, I do have to say I have enjoyed having him in cloth diapers not only is it cheaper on my wallet but it's way better for the environment.

Here are a couple sites that I have found to be helpful to me.

Don't forget that you can make your own diapers as well and here is a site that can help you with that as well:

Also to save money on wipes you can go and buy a piece of flannel fabric at Joanne Fabrics, Michael's, Ben Franklin or Wal - Mart for like $5 and get about 8 or so out of yard depending on how big you want your wipes to be. I just use water as my solution but you can make your own just Google it.

** I will post pics once I find my camera**