Guest Post: Ear Infections

As promised, my friend Jordyn Redwood, ER nurse and writer extraordinaire is going to be posting common medical Q & A’s on my blog twice every month. I’m superexcited about this and think it will not only be a ton of fun but it will also be really informative. So, a huge thank you to Jordyn! And, if you want to know more about her, Jordyn is not only a novelist with a book coming out from Kregel in a few months, but she’s also a blogger who writes a superfun blog called “Redwood’s Medical Edge” where she discusses now novelists approach medical issues in their books. Check it out here. Last week, Jordyn asked my users for their own medical-related questions.  Here’s one from Jennifer: “Ear infections. It seems like I’m heading to the doctor every other day when my kids complain of ear pain… and half the time, they don’t have infections. But then, the other day, my 3-year-old was complaining and I ignored it (after 2 false alarms) and her ear drum ruptured. So, I guess my question is this: Is there any sure way to tell at home if it’s really an ear infection or just ear pain? And, does it hurt to just give my kids some Motrin and wait it out if I suspect an ear infection?” Thanks so much for leaving a question! The only way to really determine if it is an ear infection is to look at the ear drum. This requires direct visualization by a medical provider. The second part of your question is interesting. Ear infections can be...

Intentional Conversations: My Marriage

Sooo, I’ve been working really hard at having intentional conversations with my kids. I’ve (mostly) made breakfast a time for conversation and not rushing. I’ve used my car time for talk time. But here’s a confession:  When my husband gets home from work, we eat dinner while talking to the kids, put the kids down and then plop down in front of our laptops to work or in front of the TV to watch Parenthood.  Not only do we not have intentional conversations, but often, we don’t have conversations at all. We’re in a slump. We have a bad habit.  And honestly, it’s really hard to break when we’re exhausted and worn out and it feels exhausting to have yet another intentional conversation.  Anyway, since I’m in no way an expert (or even competent) at this, I took to my good friend Google to get some tips.  Here’s what I found out: 1.  Set aside 5-10 minutes to talk right when your husband gets home from work.  Sure, all you want to do is hand him the baby and grab yourself a hot cup of peppermint tea– but before you unwind, give yourselves a few minutes to connect and tell each other about your days. 2.  Schedule 1 TV and laptop-free night per week.  I know it sounds hard, but that’s what Tivo is for.  Instead, grab yourself a glass of wine, light a fire, snuggle on the couch and just talk. 3.  Overshare.  I have a tendency to undershare because I assume my husband has enough on his mind to add my thoughts and feelings on top of...

Ask the Nurse!

As you guys know, my friend and ER Nurse Jordyn Redwood has been guest posting on my blog about common medical questions that young parents have.  I’m so grateful that she has volunteered to continue posting– I’ve learned so much from her posts!  Even better, Jordyn has asked me if any of my readers have specific questions for her to answer… so, if you have a pressing (or not-so-pressing) question about pediatric medicine, leave it in the comments and I’ll make sure Jordyn gets...

Intentional Conversations: The Car

Next up on my intentional conversations agenda:  the car. I tend to think of driving time as my time.  I chat on my phone (I know, I know, that’s bad in and of itself), I listen to the radio, I think, I pray, I watch the road and try to ignore the whining/fighting/chatter in the backset. But not anymore.  I’m not sure why this has never crossed my mind before, but when my kids are in the car, I have a captive audience.  They are strapped in.  And I am strapped in.  And while I’m focused on the road, I also can use the opportunity to engage them in conversation. I admit:  It’s harder than I thought.  I guess I’ve gotten so used to doing my own thing in the car that my kids have gotten in the habit of doing their own things.  So, today, when I engaged my son in a conversation as we drove home from school, he kinda looked at me funny.  Isn’t that terrible?!  Poor little Joey was actually surprised that I was talking to him on our way home from school. *sigh*. Anyway, we actually had a good conversation– about his day and his friends and even about how he prayed that Jesus would help him to stay calm and in his seat during calendar time.  It was good. I’ve decided I’m putting my cell phone in my bag when I’m driving from now on.  Not only is it dangerous, but it’s also distracting me from my ability to have intentional conversations with my kids. Question for you:  What do you do while...

Breakfast at My House: A Look at Intentional Conversations

Here’s how breakfast went at my house this morning: “Joooey,”  I screamed up the stairs and I frantically spread just peanut butter, no jelly onto crustless bread for his lunch.  “Five minutes to get dressed and get down here.” He glugged down the stairs with a sigh, throwing his T-shirt on as he walked into the kitchen and sat down at the counter.  I tossed a banana at him. He ate it.  Slllllllooooooooowwwwwly.  As I said “eat quickly”.  Over and over.  And over.  Toast was tossed on his plate.  And a heap of scrambled eggs.  And our entire conversation was a chorus of “hurry” and “eat faster” and “finish your eggs” and…well, I can imagine the poor boy was stressed by the time he went to school. And, my goal for intentional conversations in January officially failed. So, here’s what I’m doing tomorrow. I’m going to call Joey down for breakfast 10 minutes earlier so I don’t have to rush him.  And, when I call him down, I’m going to be done with making his lunch, cleaning up the kitchen, etc. so I can focus on him and only him. I’m going to sit down with him while he eats. I’m going to have an intentional conversation with him… not just nag at him to eat fast.  Tomorrow I’m going to talk about his feelings at going back to school after three weeks off… and explain to him how I feel because truthfully, I’ve really enjoyed having him home and after one day, I’ve really missed him. I’ll let you know how it goes. What do you talk about...
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