God gave me MORE than I could handle…..

Seven weeks ago today, I felt my heart sink.  I sat on the ultrasound table and watched the nice flat screen monitor….there I saw a sweet baby in my womb with no heartbeat.  Words cannot express what I felt at that exact moment.  It took a few minutes to really hit me that I would never hold that sweet baby that was inside of me at that moment.  That I would never get to nurse this child of mine.  That I would never get to rock her to sleep.  That I would never get to sing to this baby.  But when it all sank in….it came at once.

For the next two days, I cried constantly.  I cried when the heartburn hit.  I cried when moments of morning sickness was setting in.  I cried while I simply rested on the couch from extreme exhaustion.  I was without any doubt pregnant still; however, the life inside of me was no longer living.

I blamed myself first.  Why did I not probe more about that “second sac?”  Why did I not ask what an implantation bleed was if that was what it was?  Why did I not research implantation bleed?  Did I lift too much and play too hard on the floor with my little ones to cause this?  Did I eat the wrong foods?  Should I have quit breastfeeding sooner?  What did I DO to cause this baby to stop developing?

Then….I did it.  I blamed God.  Why did He let this happen?  Why did He not take care of my baby?  Why did He let me get pregnant if it was not the right time?  Why did He not give the doctor wisdom to see pick up on the clot and do something then?  Why ME?  There was NO WAY I could handle this.  Why would God make me go through it?

A week prior to that day, a friend on Facebook posted this, “God put this on my heart first thing when I woke up this morning and he has smothered me with it all day.  I have heard Him loud and clear today and somebody out there needs this right now or will need it in the future, including myself.  My favorite verse is John 16:33 which says, “I have told you these things, so that you may have peace.  In this world you WILL have trouble.  But take heart!  I …have overcome the world.”  You see, God never promised that He would protect us from all bad things.  He says, “you WILL have trouble”.  One of the common sayings in the Church world is that “God will never give you more than you can handle”.  This is untrue, because if He never gave YOU more than YOU can handle, then we wouldn’t need HIM.  God WILL give us more than we can handle so that we understand that we cannot do life without Him!  The true statement is this: God will never give you more than you can handle with His help. This means we have to ask Him for His help and fully believe and trust that He will provide it.  It may not be in our timing, but in His.  His plan for our lives is always so much greater than our plan for ourselves. I know it is hard to believe when you are a going through a storm, but that is why it is called FAITH.  If we fully understood God and how he works, then he wouldn’t be God.”

On top of recalling what he posted, Cheryl Derbyshire, a missionary for over twenty years in Thailand, said it simple to me “Don’t focus on understanding right now, just focus on dwelling in the Lord’s presence and finding His rest.”  Her words hit home to me.  I read them a few times for the next couple of days.  She was right….understanding was not necessary.  I needed God.  While I knew what Cheryl meant by “dwell in the Lord’s presence.”  I immediately looked to the scripture after about my 5th time of reading her simple words to me.  In Psalm 27:4(a), David writes “One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life”  David did not just want to encounter God some days.  He wanted to soak up every moment with the Lord.  God spoke to me then….I needed Him daily, not just at this moment while I was miscarrying my baby, but every moment of every day.  And I COULD NOT do it alone.

At that moment, Matt Maher’s song, I Need You came to mind.  The lyrics go

Lord, I come, I confess
Bowing here I find my rest
Without You I fall apart
You’re the One that guides my heart

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Where sin runs deep Your grace is more
Where grace is found is where You are
And where You are, Lord, I am free
Holiness is Christ in me

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Teach my song to rise to You
When temptation comes my way
And when I cannot stand I’ll fall on You
Jesus, You’re my hope and stay

Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

You’re my one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You

Throughout the following two weeks, while I waited to miscarry naturally, I focused my attention on Christ.  It was hard.  And I will admit that I had my days where I still wanted to know why and blame Him.  However, I would always remember Psalm 27:4 and quote in my head.  It was go-to scripture for those two weeks as I waited to miscarry.  Cheryl’s words and Grayson’s post made me realize that 1) God did give me more than I could handle, but 2) I needed to dwell in His presence to make it through my storm.

While it is still tough at times to recall miscarrying a child, I am extremely grateful that God brought me closer to Him.  I’m thankful that in the midst of this storm, God held my hand and took care of me physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

I was simply going through the “Christian routine” and finding time to fit God’s Word into my life And making excuses. Having four children does take up a lot of your time and I wished there was more time in my days. But God made 24 hours in a day and knew that was enough. And I’m not suppose to work Him into my schedule, but make it a priority to dwell in His presence daily and seek Him first!

Baby #4….A Not so happy ending

I think I am ready to share with the world now!  On May 29, I typed this blog but did not publish it.  Today…I’m sharing with you what happened to our sweet baby.

May 29, 2013—I was hoping today would be the day that happily announce our 4th pregnancy to all our friends and family.  However, the news is rather shocking.  Miscarriages are far more frequent than we realize; however, we hide it from everyone.

On April 19, I took a wonderful pregnancy test.  It was a faint positive about 10 minutes later.  So, I was not 100% sure, so I took another one two days later.  Of course, it was positive.  I was sure I was pregnant because I already had the wonderful heartburn I always get.  I called the OB to make an appointment.  Since I was still breastfeeding, they wanted to do an early ultrasound to check the accuracy of the due date.

On May 15, I had my first ultrasound.  I measured about 6.5-7 weeks pregnant.  I thought I was 7.5 weeks, so it went well.

During the ultrasound, the doctor found a second sac.  She was not sure if it was a gestational sac with a second baby or a uterine blood clot.  Being as early as she thought I was, she wanted to do an ultrasound two weeks later to see if a second baby developed.  For the next two weeks, I was unsure if I was having one baby or two.  However, we were excited to see the precious heartbeat of at least one baby.

Today, I had my second ultrasound.  I was nervous.  I am not sure why.  For the past three days, I felt uneasy, as if something was wrong.  As soon as the tech showed me my sweet baby  on the screen, I knew something was wrong.  I am not a tech, but I knew I should see the heartbeating.  I didn’t.  Then she said it.  “I’m sorry sweetie but there is no cardio activity in this baby.”  She continued on to measure the baby and the gestational sac.  The sac measured to show I was about 9.5 weeks pregnant like I originally suspected.  However, the baby stopped growing at 7.5 weeks.  I felt like my heart just stopped for a second.  I did not process what happened.

What about the second sac?  The ultrasound tech clearly saw the second sac and it had grown larger than the baby’s gestational sac.  It was taking up about 50% of my uterus.  It was then obvious it was a blood clot, also known as  Subchorionic Hemorrahage.

How does a blood clot form in the uterus?  The doctor gave me a couple of explanations and most of my research online confirmed what she told me.  During implantation when the one tried to implant, it attached to the uterine wall but caused a tear in it.  This caused a bleed to occur and it continued to grow.

What happens with a blood clot in the uterus?  Several things can happen.  1)  It can slowly come out and cause some slight bleeding during the pregnancy. This does not cause a threat to the baby.   2)  The body simply absorbs the clot and the pregnancy continues as normal.  Or 3) The bleed continues and the blood clot grows bigger.  If it becomes bigger than the gestational sac that the baby is in, it causes problems.  In my case, the blood clot pushed the gestational sac and caused it to detach from my uterine wall.  This caused my sweeet baby to quit developing.

Can anything be done to cause this?  From what I read and the doctor told me., no.  I was breastfeeding when I conceived; however, it played no role in the miscarriage.  Some patients are put on bed rest if a blood clot is discovered in early pregnancies to help give the body time to heal and hopefully allow the clot to shrink.  Unfortunately, many women are not aware they have a clot.

What now?  I am waiting for my sweet baby to miscarry naturally.  I opted against a D&C or any medications to cause the miscarriage.  I feel God will let nature take its course.  For now, I continue to have pregnancy symptoms because my body still thinks there is a baby growing.  While there is a baby still in there, she has no heartbeat.

For those going through this, please know it is not your fault.  I know it feels that way.  All I have done all day is wonder what I did or did not do to cause this.  But I also know God has a plan.  This was a part of it whether it makes sense to me yet or not.

What made it easier—-looking at the three sweet faces that were waiting for me in the car with their amazing daddy who just held me tight while I cried some more.

I am also thankful for an wonderful doctor.  What amazed me was that many doctors use any word but “baby;” however, she only refered to this sweet life as my baby.  I am thankful for a doctor who realized life began immediately and recognized the pain I was feeling.

***On June, 12, at 11 weeks and 5 days, I naturally miscarried our sweet angel at home.  My story will be shared with another website that shares testimonies of those who naturally miscarried (and delivered) their babies.  If you would like a link, email me at ja.robinson29@gmail.com.  It is a detailed sight so I will send to those interested.***

Childhood Asthma: Medications vs. Supplements

What is Asthma? According to the CDC, “Asthma is a chronic disease that affets the airways in the lungs.  During an asthma attack, airways become inflamed, making it hard to breathe.  Asthma attackes an be mild, moderate, or serious–and even life threatening.”

FACTS:

  • 1 in 11 children have asthma
  • 1 in 12 adults have asthma
  • The average cost for a child with asthma (2009) is $1,039
  • Roughly 9 people die daily from asthma
  • 1.9 million ER visits occur annually due to asthma-related issues
  • 1 in 5 children with asthma are seen in the ER
  • 3 out of 5 people with asthma limit their physical activity

How was Lenna-Grace diagnosed with asthma?
I have to admit that in the summer of 2011, I was shocked to learn that my 2-year old daughter was being diagnosed with asthma.  No one in my family or my husband’s had this disease.  However, I was also relieved to find out what has been wrong with her for the past 12-15 months.  She was constantly sick with pneumonia, broncitis, ear infections (prior to having tubes put in), and always coughing.  Once the doctor diagnosed her with asthma, it was a challenge to find the right medications to manage her asthma (remember she was only 2.5-years old).  After four months, here was the final prescriptions that we used that controlled her coughing.  This did not keep her from getting sick still, but it did control the horrible, painful sounding cough.  She would hack all night long!

asthmainhalerpic

What Medications were prescribed for Lenna-Grace?
Flonase – nasal steriod (1 spray in each nosil twice a day)
Flovent – Inhaled corticosteroids (2 puffs twice a day)
Zyrtec – allergy medication (1 tsp twice day)
Singulair – Leukotriene modifiers (1 tablet once a day)
Albuterol – Short-acting beta agonists (2 puffs immediately before bed and if needed for attack)

WOW….2.5-year old with all these medications

Did you know the following?

  • Organic pollutants, found in many common cleaners and even air fresheners, are present at levels 2 to 5 times higher inside your home than out.
  • Common cleaners give off fumes that potentially can increase the risk of kids developing asthma, the most common chronic childhood disease.
  • If your home is anything like the average U.S. home, you generate more than 20 pounds of hazardous household waste each year (the EPA designates toilet cleaners, tub and tile cleaners, oven cleaners, and bleach as hazardous waste).

What are the alternatives?
In May 2012, I began exploring “Green” cleaning products.  What I learned was that many allergy-related issues are caused by the horrible toxins I am putting in my home–my cleaners (laundry detergent, Lysol, toilet bowl cleaner, clorox, etc.).  After about three months of using Shaklee’s natural Fresh Laundry and Basic H2 All-Purpose cleaner, I noticed Lenna-Grace’s nose was not so runny.  I took her off her Zyrtec medication at this time.  Nothing got worse, so I tried to remove another medication–her flonase.  A couple weeks passed and she was doing great with no nasal related issues anymore.  After a few weeks of playing with her medications, I was able to take her off her Flonase, Zyrtec, and Singulair.  We continued the Flovent and Albuterol.

Later, I read a testimony of a mother who was able to take her son of asthma medications by using supplements and an immune system builder.  So, I thought….”why not?”

In February, I ordered a child’s multivitamin, vitamin C, and Nutriferon (immune system builder).  And I quit asthma medications, cold turkey!

Did it work?
I am happy to report that for two months now my 4-year old, who was diagnosed with asthma, has been medication free!  We went on vacation one week and I forgot the supplements.  You know what….she was back to coughing and I had to break out the albuterol.  As soon as we got home, we went right back to the supplements.  No more meds!  AND…..my daughter who USE to get sick constantly, has not been in two months!

What Exactly Does She Take?
Children’s Multivitamin (Incredivites)
Chewable Vita C
Nutriferon (1/2 tablet daily)

asthmavit

Didn’t you just trade one drug for another?  She’s STILL taking something for it!
Yes, she still has to manage the asthma by taking supplements.  BUT….it is not the same as the medications.  Let’s take a look at what she was taking.

  1. Flovent is an Inhaled corticosteroids. “Long-term use of these medications has been associated with slightly slowed growth in children”  The most common side effects are cold or upper respiratory tract infection, throat irritation, headache, fever, diarrhea, ear infection.  Those are common and listed on the Flovent website.  Maybe that is why my daughter was always sick–her meds made her sick!
  2. Flonase is a corticosteroid inhaled through the nose.  “Should be used with caution with children….may stunt growth.”  Rarely, it will get in the bloodstream and cause an overdose, but “these side effects are more likely in children.”  Common side effects are runny nose, diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.
  3. Singulair  is a Leukotriene modifier.  “In rare cases, these medications have been linked to psychological reactions, such as agitation, aggression, hallucinations, depression and suicidal thinking.”  WOW!!  Actually, we used this only when Lenna-Grace was sick or asthma was really acting up.  She would wake up screaming in the middle of the night and saying someone was there.  She was VIVID.  And it only happened when taking it!

Is there really any need to continue??

Can everyone come off Asthma medications?
I cannot answer that!  I am not a doctor.  However, our doctor did not think I would be able to get Lenna-Grace off medications with the use of supplements!  I did monitor Lenna-Grace and still do.  Her rescue inhaler is always around just in case.  By for now….I am very happy!

In January and February, we spent $876 on doctor visits and medications for Lenna-Grace alone.  She had strep throat twice, the flu, and her asthma medications.  Yes, you read that number right….$876 and I have insurance!  Now, we spend very little on Get Clean Products to keep toxins out of our home.  And the cost of her supplements are here:

Incredivites are $29.70 (member price) for a 2 month’s supply
Chewable Vita C is $23.30 (member price) for 300 tablets
Nutriferon is $39 (member price) for 60 tablets

Daily cost for her dosage: $0.91 (x 30 days) is $31/month.  Plus…we’ve not been to the doctor for illnesses!!  (Her monthly prescription medication, with insurance was $197)

If you would like to know more or want to see the testimonies from parents that influenced us, just email me at ja.robinson29@gmail.com

Be sure to check out the previous post on Children’s Vitamins and Why Shaklee’s are different!

 

 

Homeschooling….let the journey begin

I am SOOO excited!  Why?  Because after researching the past year (maybe more), I have decided on my first really purchase of homeschool curriculum.  AND…it just shipped today!

Why Start Now?

I hear so many people say, “just let them play” until they are 6 or 7 years old.  While I do believe playing is a very vital part of young children’s education, I also believe structure needs to be taught early.  Children need to learn to sit and learn a little.  For Lenna-Grace, I will probably do “school” for 1.5 hours a day, but that may be broken up into three different 30 minute sessions.  PLUS…Lenna-Grace wants to “go to school” and has a passion for learning already!  So, why not now?

What Subjects and Why?

Lenna-Grace will be 4.5-years old in the fall and Zachary will be 3-years old.  I wanted to incorporate a lot of literature based learning.  My children love books and I want them to learn as much as possible by us reading together as a family  I want to be able to discuss what they are reading and dig deeper into it.  We will be doing Science, History/Geography, and Literature altogether through books.  By using books about history and science, we will explore more and do our own projects that tie in with the books.  Lenna-Grace is already great at basic math.  She can add and substract on her own.  So we will be doing math for sure!  She also knows all the sounds the letters make and can “sound out” a lot.  She writes all the letters and numbers.  So–phonics/reading/spelling and handwriting will also be covered.  And of course, we will do Bible time!

What Curriculum Did We Decide On?

I researched a lot and was torn about many things!  I loved the idea of doing my own curriculum and jusetting what was needed here and there, but this being our first “true homeschooling” year, I wanted a set  I am not a big fan of whole box sets with every subject in one company.  There’s just no way every company can get every curriculum for every subject right:)  I’m not a fan of online based schools–at least not for my children and their age.  Plus, I want to be very hands on at desk learning.  That’s not saying it is not right for some.  So–here’s our 2013-2014 Curriculum:

Sonlight Core 4/5  with K-readers- Literature, Language Arts, Science, and History/Geography
I searched a lot and debated between Sonlight and My Father’s World for a literature-based curriculum for Science and History.  I decided with Sonlight because it comse with everything—every book you need!  I liked the books in the program and that it was so heavy in literature.   I opted to do the K-readers to this Core because Lenna-Grace is beginning to learn to read already.  I thought this would simple be a great reinforcement.   Included in this core set are the following:

(6) books on World Cultures
(5) books for Science
(5) books for Language Arts
(11) books for Read-Alouds
(1) 101 Favorite Stories of The Bible
(4) Readiness Workbooks – Volume 1-4 of Developing the Early Learner
(1) Instructors Guide
(1) Language and thinking for Young Children (Basically early lang. arts workbook)
(1) My First Picture Dictionary
(1) Bingo game/cards/markers
(1) Go A to Z (Go Fish style game)
(1) Instructor Language Arts Guide
(27) Early Reader Books
(1) Explode the Code Kit (3 phonic workbooks and 1 teacher’s guide)

WOW…that’s a lot in one kit!  I can’t wait to dig into all this!

All About Reading/All About Spelling – Phonics Program
I have read amazing reviews about this program.  I debated between this and Sing, Spell, Read, Write.  I opted with this because I truly just liked the setup.  It was laid out well for the parent.  It seemed well-organized.  We purchased this about two months ago when I saw a coupon for it.  Here’s what we will be using:

  • All About Reading Level 1 – Lenna-Grace
  • All About Reading Pre-Reading – Zachary (this basic letter introduction and I just purchased the workbook, not the whole kit)
  • All About Spelling Level 1 – Lenna-Grace for Spring 2014

Handwriting Without Tears and A Reason for Handwriting
Yes, I did get both!  Why?  Well, HWOT is highly recommended for those not writing well and lefties!  We purchased this in January and have been using a lot of the resources in it.  I enjoy it a lot.  But Lenna-Grace may not need such structure as it has; therefore, I wanted to try the other because it is more traditional.  What do we have:

  • Handwriting Without Tears K – Lenna-Grace
    We have the matman, wooden letter pieces, K workbook, Wooden piece cards, mini chalkboards, little hands chalk, little hands crayons, little hands pencils, and the instructor guide.
  • Handwriting Without Tears My Frist School book – Zachary
  • A Reason for Handwriting Book K – Lenna-Grace

Here’s a great picture to see the different handwriting styles.  The one of the left is HWOT style (they teach with two lines instead of three to begin).  The one on the right is A Reason for Handwriting

withouttears  areason

handwriting3-line-handwriting-sample

Singapore Mathematics 1a/1b
Singapore has always been my choice for math!  Students in Asia rank we above American students and they must be doing something right!  I like the way Singapore teaches and it’s structure.  Of course, I amy find later on that it is not a good fit for Lenna-Grace.  We will see.  I picked the US Edition vs. the Standard Ed.  In the Standard Ed., the curriculum is aligned with California state standards and the infamous new Common Core Standards that many (and I am one) oppose.  This is more in line with how typical US students now learn.  The US edition is basically the Singapore edition because with our needs such as measurements and such.  And example would be this.  In the Standard Ed. (and in US school), students learn multiplication facts and all there is to it at one time.  Later, usually the next great, but sometimes a different chapter or semester, they learn division.  In the US Edition, the two are taught together.  After all, they go hand-in-hand.  If you learn what multiplication is, you are also learning division!

Why 1a/1b and not Kindergarten-Premath KA/KB?
Simple–it was not offered in the US Edition!  Basically, that is it.  I’m that against the Common Core Standards that I skip it!  And, I looked over the standards for both KA and 1A and I felt Lenna-Grace knew 75% that was taught in KA and KB.  So…why do it!

  • Singapore 1A
  • Singapore 1B (if she does well, we will do B.  If we go slow, she may just do 1A the first year and 1B for Kindergarten)
  • Addition, Substraction and Multiplication Memorization Music

Bible Time

I opted for a few things here.

  1. Truth and Grace – I have always known we would do the Catechism with our kids.  With True and Grace books, the kids will learn to memorize the Catechism, scripture, and hymns.
  2. Grapevine Studies – I am purchasing some of the Traceables to use for Art and Bible, which the kids will love!
  3. Family Time Bible – This has 128 stories from Scripture!
  4. Music CDs-Seeds of Courage and Seeds of Faith–these teach scripture through songs!  I love it!  Thanks, Jenny for recommended this!
  5. Poems and Prayers for Very Young
  6. ABC Bible

Physical Education-Family Time Fitness

What?  You are teaching PE?  Well, not exactly, but yes! Family Time Fitness has a great program to teach your children the important of moving!  It has a great set up and MANY activities to get your kids moving in structured activities.  I thought this was great.  Again, I had TWO coupons when I got this!  This will give us a lot of ideas of fun play time outside or inside.  Instead of just–go run around, we can do games and activities to get us moving!

What About Zachary?

While most the main learning will be for Lenna-Grace, Zachary will participate in school  Lenna-Grace did a lot of Letter of the Week curriculum that I will do with him.  He will work with shapes, colors, and numbers to get a better understanding.  I will be working with him on writing and basic motor skills (cutting, tracing, glueing, lasing, beading, etc.).  He will also learn with us with the literature books, calendar activities, etc.

Overall, I’m super excited and can’t wait!!

Schedule…It’s Never Too Late!

We have four children, you would think we have a good schedule in place or something to help manage our home well!  However, it’s been crazy the last few years.  Let’s do a quick recap:

April 2009 – Lenna-Grace was born
January 2010 – Move to NC
September 2010 – Zachary was born
September 2011 – Move to SC (not far from our home in NC, but it was a move)
March 2012 – Move to Florida
March 2012 – Dalton was born
September 2012 – Move houses in Florida

SO….it’s been crazy with changes and having babies!  Plus, John was on second shift until this past November.

As you know, I have been changing our family’s health little by little…beginning with cleaning products, trying to make more homemade foods, and then with adding good, healthy supplements to everyone’s diets.  Now….it was time to bring more structure to our home!

It’s funny because everyone would say “You must be so organized and structured with three little ones…”  Far from it!  This past week I made it a priority (and I am still working on it) to bring structure to our home.

Jamie has always had structure–he does not function well without it.  His routine does not change or you really throw him off balance.  We try to give him 3-4 weeks of doing something new in a routine to get it set in.  He is doing amazing this year with school and church.  We are very excited that he has grown so much since moving here!

Now…the three little ones.  This is where structure and a good schedule has been needed for some time.  I have either been alone in the evenings before or nursing or just exhausted that I did not want to fight any battles–kids slept where they wanted and fell asleep in anyway!  TV on, in my bed, on the couch, you name it!  So….here’s what I started doing last week and I am making it my personal commitment to stick to it!

1)  I moved the crib into Lenna-Grace and Zachary’s bedroom.  Now there’s a bunkbed (Lenna-Grace on top, Zachary on the bottom) and crib in there  All three in the same room….I am hoping this makes life easier!

2)  Bedtime routine.  I’ve tried several, but I never stick with them.  Now….no matter what…7:30, all the little ones and I head to their bedroom with milk, a small snack, and books…then close the door

3)  Read books–We read about 5-10 books–Yes that many!  I want them settled and calm.  This is a great way for us to read together and let them settle down on the floor while I read or they help me read.

4)  Lights Out….After reading and our snack (about 20-30 minutes), I turn out the lights.  Lenna-Grace and Zachary get in their beds.  I hold Dalton while I sing a few songs.  We sing “Jesus Loves Me” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands.”  (And they make me say EVERYONE…”Grammie and Papa in his hands..TT and DoDo in his hands…Blade and Ty….Wind and Rain….etc.).

5)  Lay Dalton down in the crib.

6) Snuggle with Zachary and say prayers with him.

7)  Snuggle with Lenna and say prayers with her.

8) Mommy leaves…

So far….So good!  Dalton is sleeping great.  Lenna-Grace is doing pretty good (waking up maybe 1-2 times).  Zachary gets up middle of the nihgt and comes to my bed.  Right now, I let him.  I’m not fighting too many battles at once.  After a couple of weeks of this routine, I will walk him back to his room.

Morning routine–I am also trying to start structuring our morning better.  However, Lenna-Grace is very hard to get up!  Right now, I try to have everyone up by 8  This is easy for the boys, but not Lenna-Grace.  I want to get her in the habit of getting up, having some relaxing time, and then eating breakfast.  This way, when we start officially homeschooling in the Fall, she will start “school” by 9.  I want that to be structured/scheduled time.

I’ll keep everyone updated.  But so far, I’m very happy with this routine.  It was tough a few nights ago–everyone kept waking up at different times and waking the other up!  However, so far 4 out of the 5 nights have been great.  That does not mean all three have slept through the night.  It means it is going well and I can hope it will continue to go well!

What type of structure do you have in your family?

And the Winners Are….

Congratulations to the following winners!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The first place winner will receive the Shaklee Mini Home Cleaning Kit, PLUS Free Membership to Shaklee for life!  Congrats, Alyssa!

The other five winners will receive a sample of Basic H2 Concentrate.  This is enough Basic H2 to make 1 bottle of All-Purpose Cleaner and 1 Bottle of Window Cleaner!

Check your emails for details on how to claim your prizes!

ADDED BONUS…..Anyone who is interested in joining Shaklee can join for free*!  From now until April 30th, if you make a purchase of 50 PV** or more and join, you will receive free membership for life!

*The one-time membership fee of $19.95 will be issued in the form of a rebate check following your successful order of 50 PV or more.

**When looking at the products on the website, you will see a PV number.  As well, when you check out, it will confirm your total PV. 

Raising Healthy Children: What You Need to Know About Vitamins

I am super excited to share a post with you today by a friend who introduced me to Shaklee.  Kylie Hinkle is a wife, mommy to two boys and a girl on the way, and blogger at The Imperfect Home.

Kylie’s recent blog is on Children’s Vitamins and what can be found in them!  I am grateful that she is letting me share her knowledge with you.  Please read!

I have so much information here that I am going to dive right in.

In 2007 the FDA became aware of reports of elevated levels of lead found in certain vitamins. In response, they conducted a survey to determin the content of lead in women’s and children’s vitamins.
Here are some of the common brands that were listed containing lead.
Nature Plus
Spider-Man
Kiddievite
Disney
Emergen-C Jr.
Kirkland
Flinstones
One A Day
Life Solutions
Veglife
Mother Nature
The Vitamin Shoppe
Lil Critters
GNC

There are so many more. This is just a short list of some of the children’s vitamins containing lead, I did not even list any in the women’s prenatals, or the adult women category. Check out the site yourself for more information.

According to the mayoclinic.com:
Lead poisoning occurs when lead builds up in the body, often over a period of months or years. Even small amounts of lead can cause serious health problems. Children under the age of 6 are especially vulnerable to lead poisoning, which can severely affect mental and physical development. At very high levels, lead poisoning can be fatal.

So after seeing the “small” amounts of lead found in the vitamins listed above, you may have thought, “oh it is only a little”. Yes, you are right, but we just heard from the Mayo Clinic that lead can build up in your body. Not only that, children are more vulnerable to lead poisoning.

But this study was done 5 years ago, surely they wouldn’t still have lead in them.

I would hope you are right. The problem with thinking this way is the fact that we are trusting the FDA to tell us what is bad. (That is a whole other blog post all together). The FDA cannot possibly test every ingredient in every product on the market. There is just not enough time or resources for that. And we also have the problem of the FDA approving things that are actually harmful for us.

Chicago Tribune article, “U.S. allows chemicals in food that are illegal elsewhere“

Shape article, 13 Banned Foods Still Allowed in the U.S.”

If I can’t trust the FDA to protect my heath, what do I do now?

You become the health advocate for your family.

Are there trusted brands out there?

Yes!
I don’t know about all that may be trusted, but I do know about one that follows pharmaceutical standards. A company that conducts over 350 tests on every single new botanical ingredient for heavy metals, pesticides, or any of hundreds of other harmful contaminants. And they continue to conduct over 100,000 quality tests annually to guarantee the purity and safety of each and every product.

So what brand is this?

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Why is Shaklee better?

1. Shaklee has been committed to purity for over 50 years!
2.They have 90 articles published in peer review publications, not the magazines you see on the self of your doctors office, peer reviewed publications!
3. They have a 100% guarantee on ALL of their products. You don’t like it, you send it back for a refund.
4. Shaklee products do what they promise to do. Meaning, they actually get absorbed into your body, you are not just paying for expensive pee!
5. They have the first-of-its-kind study called their Landmark Study, showing that people who took Shaklee supplements for over 20 years had markedly better health than those who just took a multivitamin or no supplementation at all.
Read more about the Landmark Study.

Here are just SOME of the ingredients on Shaklee’s NO list.
NO Parabens
NO Triclosan
NO Phthalates
NO Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)
NO Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulfate (SLES)
NO 1,4-Dioxane
NO Propylene Glycol
NO Volatile Organic Cleaning Compounds (VOCs)
NO Hydrochloric Acid
NO Ammonia
NO Sodium Hydroxide
NO Butyl Cellosolve
NO Formaldehyde
NO Bisphenol-A
NO Petroleum Distillates
NO Toluene
NO Chlorine Bleach
NO MSG
NO Dyes
NO Trans Fats
NO Artificial Sweeteners
NO Toxic Inks
NO Banned Substances

Here are some of the Children’s products.

kidsshaklee

Can I find Shaklee in any stores?

No

How do I get Shaklee products?

You can find a local Shaklee distributor or simply visit this website and start shopping.

The supplements are just some of the naturally safe products Shaklee offers.
They offer products for:

Healthy Nutrition
Healthy Home
Healthy Beauty
Healthy Weight

Kylie also shared in her blog how to help teach your kids to swallow pills.  Her 3-year old son can swallow his vitamins!  Check out her tips:

  1. Do not teach children to look up at the sky to swallow a pill. This actually restricts the amount of space in your esophagus when trying to swallow. You actually need them to look down slightly, not much, just slightly. This will open up the esophagus making it easier to swallow.
  2. For my son, it helps to have him take a drink, hold the water in his mouth, slide the supplement in, and then swallow.
  3. Don’t show any discouragement if they can’t get it. Just say something like, “Thank you for trying, maybe we can try again tomorrow.”
  4. If they can’t get it at this time, don’t push it. Just keep crushing your supplements with your mortar and pestle.

I am very grateful for Kylie introducing me to Shaklee.  Since using their Get Clean products, our 14-year old no longer takes Zyrtec for his allergies (he use to throw up almost daily for congestion).  And since placing the whole family on Shaklee supplements, Lenna-Grace  no longer takes her 5 allergy and asthma medications!  As well, all of our children have a lot better immune system!!  Thanks, Kylie!!

If you have any questions or would like more information, feel free to email me at ja.robinson29@gmail.com

My baby is FOUR!!

Happy Birthday, Lenna-Grace Caroline Robinson!!

Today, our sweet baby girl celebrates her 4th birthday.   She has grown so much into such a beautiful little girl.  She is very caring and takes great care of others.  She received her birthday card in the mail from Nanny (her great grandmother) and it had $5 in it.  I asked what she wanted to buy and her reply, “I want to find Bubba a music box with a car on it.”  How sweet and thoughtful!  Being the only girl in the family, she holds a very special place with everyone!

She is a bright girl who loves to play outside, dance, sing, learn, and teach her little brothers anything!  She enjoys our “school time” and loves going to church.  She has learned a lot over the past year, but what brings the most joy is hearing her “childlike faith!”  Zachary was upset yesterday because he could not find a toy.  Lenna-Grace replies, “Don’t worry Bubba, just ask God for help.  He can help with anything.”  Or when I was sick and she laid beside me, rubbing my head and said “Mommy, I will pray God makes you better!”

Look at how she’s grown! lennahospitalApril 8, 2009 (8 lbs, 9 oz)

lenna`Happy 1st Birthday!

lenna18

Being Silly!  18-months old

 lennapotty

Learning to potty with Minnie Mouse (20-months old)

lenna2Happy 2nd Birthday!

lenna3

Happy 3rd Birthday!

   lenna4Happy 4th Birthday!  Look at how much she’s changed!!

And to make her day even more special, she shares this day with her favorite Uncle Dodo!!

dodolennaHappy 35th Birthday DODO!! (that’s pronounced Dough-dough)

 

Shaklee Giveaway for Earth Day!

I am so excited to announce this giveaway for Earth Day because it contains a few GREAT products!

The winner will be announced on Earth Day, April 22!

Winner will receive a FREE Get Clean Household Mini Kit!

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What is Shaklee?

Shaklee is the number one natural nutrition company in the U.S.  The company has been around for over 55 years.  In 1960, Shaklee made one of the first biodegradable household cleaners ever!  They were the first comapny in the world to obtain Climate Neutral certification and tottal offset their CO2 emissions, thus resulting in a net zero impact on the environment.  They have four main product lines:  Healthy Nutrition, Healthy Home, Healthy Weight, and Healthy Beauty.

Many of your common household cleaners are very dangerous to children who ingest them, spill them or simply smell them!  Did you realize that there are numerous products that have “green” or “natural” in their labels, but in fact contain many toxins!  Check out this research from the Environmental Work Group.  Some of the products in your cabinet may have fine print that reads “Fatal if inhaled.”  “Fatal if swallowed.”  “Will burn skin and eyes.”  “Suspected of damaging the unborn child.”  WOW!!!

Shaklee Get Clean products are all SAFE, POWERFUL, GREEN, and SMART! 

So, what comes with the Get Clean Household Mini Kit?

Basic H2® Organic Super Cleaning Concentrate, 16 oz. (1)

basichcomparison_002This one 16 oz. bottle will make 48 gallons of product that is safe and effective!  You can use this product to make an All-purpose Cleaner, Window Cleaner, and a Degreaser.

Products ComparisonI use Basic H2 in our home to clean everything! (Kitchen counters, appliances, tile floors, wooden dining table, high chair, hardwood floors, dusty tables, bathrooms, windows, mirrors, inside and outside of cars, and even my eye glasses!)  But what I love the most is that I can clean while my kids are awake and even let them help me!  Shaklee products are completely SAFE for my little ones.  I do not have to worry about them inhaling harmful chemicals, spaying each other, or possibly getting ahold of it without myknowledge.  It is SAFE!!

shakleebabiesAll three of my wonderful helpers!  Each one has a Shaklee Spray bottle:)

Basic H2® Wipes (35 count)

Just like Basic H2 Concentrate, but in a handy wipe!  I love to use this on the kids’ placemats, school desks, and Dalton’s highchair tray.

Germ Off Wipes (35 count)

According to Shaklee, Germ Off kills odor-causing bacteria found on hard,non-porous household, kitchen, and bathroom surfaces. Great for cleaning around the toilet. Leaves your bathroom and kitchen fresh and clean. The smart way to clean and disinfect!

Scour Off

Amazing product!  I use it on my crockpot, pots and pans, grout, and in my shower/tubs.  You can see my post here about Scour Off.  According to Shaklee, Scour Off is a:

  • Natural ingredients remove the toughest dried-on splatters and spills, burned-on grease, baked-on food, and sticky messes without hazardous chemicals or toxic fumes.
  • Scour Off is made from natural mineral abrasives and biodegradable cleaning agents. It does not contain chlorine, bleach, or dye.
  • Scour Off gently removes stains other cleansers can’t and is great for cleaning tubs, ovens, sinks, and tiles.
  • It will even remove rust, and is great for cleaning these surfaces: copper, grout, cement, ceramic, and imitation marble.
  • Wide-mouth jar makes it easy to use.

The kit also includes the following to make your new kit easier to use: Measuring Spoon, Dropper Pipette, Spray Bottles (3-pack).

To sum it up, The Get Clean Household Mini Kit contains:

  • Basic H2® Organic Super Cleaning Concentrate, 16 oz. (1)
  • Basic H2® Wipes (35 count)
  • Germ Off Wipes (35 count)
  • Scour Off
  • Measuring Spoon
  • Dropper Pipette
  • Spray Bottles (3-pack)

If you would like to see a great cost comparison of Shaklee products with others, look here!

PLUS, the winner will receive FREE membership to Shaklee!  This is a lifetime membership that allows you to receive 15% off products always!

In addition to the above giveaway, I will also award FIVE (5) winners a sample of Basic H2 Concentrate.  This is enough to make one All-purpose cleaner and one Window Cleaner.

You can enter the following ways:

1)  Leave a Comment below telling how you would use one of these products in your home.

2)  Check out my website and let me know what other Shaklee products interest you by leaving a second comment.

3)  Share this giveaway on Facebook and leave a separate comment for each day letting me know you did! (this can be done daily for extra entries)

www.online-sweepstakes.com
This Giveaway is open to all US residents that are 18 years and older.  NO PURCHASE IS NECESSARY!  The giveaway will end on April 21 at 11:59 PM (EST).  The winner will be selected using Rafflecopter.

Scour Off

Scour Off has now become one of my favorite products!!

“Here’s an exclusive scouring cleanser that sets a new standard. It’s a paste, so it doesn’t form dust clouds. It cleans stuck-on messes. It even cleans burnt-on food in your oven. And it doesn’t burn off your nose hairs in the process.”
All that, PLUS it is
  •  NONTOXIC,
  • Natural Abrasives
  • No Harsh chemicals
  • Biodegradable surfactants
  • No phosphates

You simply use a sponge and water!  You can wipe it off or rinse it off.  This is a great products to remove the toughest dried on splatters and spills, burned-on grease, baked-on food, and sticky misses WITHOUT hazardous chemicals!

This product is great for grout

IMG_0414Before

IMG_0416

After

It cleans ovens.

scouroffovenbefore

Before

scouroffovenafter

After

It cleans tiles.

scourofftiles

It is great for cleaning copper, cement, ceramic, and even imitation marble surfaces.  And….it can even remove rust!

This is an amazing product that can do a lot!!  I have used it to clean my crockpot, oven, grout, tiles in the shower, sinks, the bottom of my pans, and much more!

To view Shaklee products, simply click the tab “Shop Shaklee.”
REMEMBER: 
All Shaklee products are 100% satisfaction guarantee (if you don’t like them- return them- its that easy!)
You have nothing to lose!!!
**I work with a wonderful team of stay-at-home moms!  If you are looking for ways to use great products and make a little extra income while sharing with others about them, feel free to email me!**