Murder, Freaks, and Kimmy Schmidt

Happy Sunday, everybody!

I have to say, this time of year is a boring sad time for tv.  Not that I’m a huge tv watcher, but I do have certain shows that I follow and enjoy.  And this is the time of year when all those shows disappear for that new fangeled thing they call “the mid season finale”.  Why is this a thing?  What happened to watching a show until the season ended?  Maybe I shouldn’t be mad.  Maybe I should be happy that now I can watch my favorite shows in fall and spring and not have to wait an entire year for them to come back.  I don’t know.  All I know is now I have to work at finding something else to occupy my nights.  

And that’s what I’ve been doing.

Enter Netflix, the greatest invention of our time.  In the hallowed halls of progress, people will one day marvel that such a service never existed.  When we tell our grandchildren about having to leave our houses to rent movies, they will gasp in shock and surprise.  All hail Netflix.  

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, I’m sure you’ve at least hear of Making a Murderer, the real crime documentary about Steven Avery and the murder of Teresa Halbach.  If you haven’t watched it, don’t worry.  I won’t give anything away.  

I started watching Making a Murderer because a friend had suggested it.  She and her husband had been watching it and she needed someone to talk about it with.  And since I’m nothing if not a good friend, I obliged.  

Now, even though I saw the hype, I wasn’t sure this was a show I was going to be into.  I like to be able to engross myself in something without having to think too much.  I know how that sounds.  Don’t judge me.  At the end of the day my brain is lucky if it can formate complete sentences.  

From the first episode, I was hooked.  I wanted to know more about why things were happening they way they were and how this would end.  I wouldn’t say there was a lot of thinking involved, seeing as the case has blaring discrepancies that even my children could recongize, but it did require a lot of LISTENING.  This is not the kind of show that you can sneak in an episode while the kids play upstairs.  I’ve tried.  It took 45 mins to get through the first 8 mins of an episode.  Just don’t bother.  

All in all, I enjoyed the documentary, however heavily biased it may have been.  Plus if you watch it, you’ll be able to talk to, oh I don’t know, EVERYONE about it.  Yay pop culture! 

On the other far end of the spectrum, I’ve been rewatching  Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.  I adore all things Tina Fey, and this series has been no exception.  Her humor is my jam.  (I often tell my husband, I feel like I AM Liz Lemon.  I’m ok with it.). You can’t hate this show.  You can’t.  And I know because my cranky hubs tried.  He wanted nothing to do with it and about 10 minutes into the first episode, he was trying to hide his laughter from me.  Becuase I was right.  Can’t.  Hate. It. 

Ellie Kemper is adorable as the main character Kimmy.  She’s the type of person that would probably drive you crazy in real life, but watching her on screen is fantastic.  Infectious.  That the word.  She’s infectious.  Tituss Burgess as Titus Andromedon is LIFE.  That might be slightly dramatic.  But goodness is he a great time.  Just say “Pinot Noir” to anyone who watches this show.  You’ll see.  Gold.  And of course the cooky and lovable Carol Kane as Lillian the landlord is perfection.  

The one “issue” I have with Kimmy Schmidt, is Jane Krakowski’s character, Jacqueline.  I love Jane, but goodness her character is like watching Jenna’s (from 30 Rock) estranged cousin. Or sister.  Or just, Jenna.  It’s the same damn character.  I will say she plays the part so well that it isn’t hard to get over it and still enjoy her for what she is, snarky and convoluted in the most hilarious ways.  The back story to Jacqueline is an interesting one and I appreciate how it ties her to Kimmy in ways that neither of them really knows.  But, I digress.  

Season two comes back this spring, so catch up with Kiimy Schmidt.  It’s a good time.  Even the theme song is fantastic.  Just try and watch the trailer without feeling really happy at the end.  Try.    

http://youtu.be/Hl4bOuGNMwo

I also just recently started watching Freaks and Geeks from the beginning.  And I know right now you’re thinking “Girl!  That’s so late 90’s!”  And you’re right.  But when this show came out, I was too busy watching Girl Interrupted and Guys and Dolls on repeat. It was a weird time for me.  I have to say though, I’m glad I didn’t watch Freaks and Geeks when it originally premiered because I know I wouldn’t have appreciated it nearly as much as I do as adult me.  

Judd Apatow has this amazing ability to make you laugh while simultaneously breaking your heart.  This show is a prime example.  Laced with teenage angst and longing to belong, it has moments that make you cringe while giggling.  Though my high school experience was vastly different than those in the show, adult me can absolutely relate to the main character, Lindsay Weir (played by the gorgeous Linda Cardellini). Her plight to fit in and reinvent herself after the death of her grandmother speaks to my soul.  Teenage me would have been confused.  Adult me knows exactly how it feels to wonder how you fit in and where you belong.  Go figure.  

The cast for this show is awesome.  You get to watch John Franceis Daley (who was just so darn cute!), James Franco, Seth Rogan, Jason Segel, and countless others (Rashida Jones, anyone?) before they were well known and recognized.  And of course a cameo from Judd Apatow’s lovely wife, Leslie Mann.  I can’t stress how much I love her.  Half the fun of watching this show now is yelling “OH!  Is that who I think it is?”  Spoiler alert, it probably is.  

  
So that pretty much covers what I’m currently watching to fill the cold winter months.  I plan on posting about what I’ve been ready recently as well for those fellow book lovers out there but figured I’d wouldn’t bore you too much today.  What are you currently watching?  Anything you’re loving?  Hating?  Let me know below!

The Nitty Gritty

Ok ladies and gents. I’ve already covered a little bit of how I got started with essential oils, so today I’d like to address a pretty big WHY that gets asked about often.  I’ve had more than a few people ask me why I use Young Living specifically.

“Aren’t they expensive?”

“Aren’t they a multi-level marketing company?”

“Can’t I just get some oils at the grocery store?”

Let me explain. Just. Let. Me.

I know a lot of people are immediately turned off by multi-level marketing. You immediately think of pushy sales people, trying to recruit every single person they ever said hello to, making up lies like “Oh my goodness! I finally have an opening on my team and I think you’d be perfect for it!” We all know that’s not true. We all know they could sign up 24 people a day if they wanted. If they could find willing participants.

I had all these thoughts at first as well. Trust me. I had failed once selling a certain cosmetic line that may sound like Hairy Fey. And I won’t lie when I say I felt a little dirty try to pander something that I didn’t really believe in. I liked their product, but did I really feel like it was the best out there? No. Certainly not. And this is why I bowed out gracefully and a little more poor than when I started.

So again, I wasn’t thrilled.

Now, here is where a little research got me over that hump.

I knew pretty instantly that I wanted a distributor account. I knew that if I was going to do this, I wanted it to “be a thing” and I wanted to be dedicated. And I wanted a discount. (Of course). Now this is typically how other companies suck you in. You want a discount, but you have to spend $30348028520 on product a month to keep your account. (Maybe a SLIGHT exaggeration.) And you HAVE to be “working the business”. So. Much. Pressure. And if you don’t have a large social circle willing to spend money, you’re buying a ridiculous amount of product that you just don’t need and can’t use. It’s a waste.

With Young Living, you only need to spend $50 A YEAR to keep your account active after purchasing your starter kit. And there’s no business unless you want to sell. You just have an account, with a discount. No pressure. No one yelling “Sell, sell, sell!”

After learning this, I raised an eyebrow, took a mental note, probably nodded and said “Hmmm”.

But there’s more.

Young Living has been in business for 22 years. They are largely responsible for the introduction of essential oils to the American public. I think it goes without saying that after 22 years, they must be doing a thing or two right. And they are.

Young Living prides themselves in something they call “Seed to Seal”. What the heck is that, right? Well, allow me.

Young Living owns all their own farms and crops. Everything they sell to public has been handled strictly by them through that entire process. From the moment they plant the seed into the ground to the moment they put the oil in the bottle and label it, no one else has their hands in their oils. This ensures they are pure and have not been tampered with. Their crops are grown organically so you can ensure that you aren’t slathering yourself in pesticides along with your lavender. They cold press and steam distill everything themselves to ensure they get the best quality oil out of each plant.

In fact, this is part of the reason the cost is higher than the bottles you might find on Amazon or in your local grocery store. Young Living is so committed to the quality of their oils, that only about 30% of their crops actually get bottled as essential oil. Anything that isn’t up to par is used as fertilizer and natural insect repellant for their crops. Call me crazy, but this is a HUGE selling point for me. I want to know I’m getting quality. I want to know what I’m using. I want to know that everything has been done the best way possible with no harmful chemicals before I start using anything on my family.

The coolest part? As a distributor, you can actually go to the farms yourself and help with the process. Nothing to hide. I like that.

Ok, so we’ve covered why they’re a little pricier than others. And though I’m ok with paying for quality, maybe you aren’t. And hey, that’s cool. I don’t know if I get it, but you do you. The cool thing here is that there are definitely incentives for having an account with Young Living that off set some of the costs. There is a monthly auto ship program called “Essential Rewards”. You voluntarily sign up and can cancel at anytime while still keeping your account open. You get a shipment each month (that you choose and edit as you see fit) and you get a percentage of that order back in points to use on product. There are also monthly promotions for free product if you spend over a certain amount. And need I repeat, this is without having to “do the business”. This is just for having an account. That’s all.

Young Living also has the largest inventory and variety of oils because of their farms located all over the world. They offer more single oils and blends than any other company on the market. And because they’re pure, you’ll never see “fragrance oils”. Fragrance oils are just that. For smelling. No health benefits. In some cases they’re synthetic and manufactured to smell like what you think a plant SHOULD smell like. No thank you.

Now the easiest way to see why I’ve chosen Young Living? Buy a bottle of, say, lemon. Then buy a bottle of lemon from somewhere else. Any where else. I’m that confidant. Not only will they not smell the same, but I can almost guarantee you will not the same benefits from the other company’s bottle as you do from the bottle of Young Living. Prove me wrong.

Also if you’d like more info on the “Seed to Seal” process, check this out.

https://www.youngliving.com/en_US/discover/seed-to-seal

Pretty cool stuff.

I hope I’ve maybe answered some questions. If there’s anything I left out, or you’d like to know more about, please leave a comment below.

Also! Don’t forget about the Thieves Household Cleaner giveaway! Information for that is posted in the “Out With the Old’ post. Let me give you free things!! Enter!

Dream With Me

Today I thought I’d do something I haven’t done in a while:  Be ridiculous.  Well, I mean, I’ve been pretty ridiculous from birth, but you can’t see that.  

Anyway.  You guys.  Can we talk about the Power Ball for a minute?  $1.3 Billion.  BILLION.  That is an insane amount of money.  And though I know I have a better chance of immaculately conceiving dead Michael Jackson’s baby than I do of winning, I thought I would put down my game plan for all to see.  You know, that way if I disappear from this blog forever, you’ll have some idea what I’m doing with my new amazingly weathly life.  

Stop rolling your eyes.  

Ok.  So let’s say I somehow win the Power Ball and manage not to go into cardiac arrest and die (Step one of my plan right there, folks.) the first thing I do with this money is buy a new house.  Now, I don’t need anything crazy.  Just maybe a nice 4 bedroom job so that everyone has their own bedroom and I have a craft room.  Or maybe we make more humans.  I don’t know.  Maybe make it 5 bedrooms.  Just in case.  

Now that purchase is going to be tricky for a number of reasons.  For example:  do I stay in New Jersey?  I love my state and currently can’t afford to live here (snort) but if I won the lottery I’d have my pick of any house I wanted.  BUT.  I could also afford to move pretty much any where and move any one close to me that was willing to go as well.  My circle and I could pretty much claim a town as our own if we wanted to.  Decisions, decisions.  

Next up, I would trade in my mini van for some kind of luxury mom-mobile.  Maybe a Land Rover.  Or something equally large to hog the road with my offspring.  Check. 

OH!  Have to upgrade that house again.  Make it 6 bedrooms.  I need a room for my purses.  Both existing and amazing new ones.  Why own a $20,000 bag?  Why, to carry around the rest of my money of course.  I’ll take 5.  And some for Christmas presents.  

My kids would have awesome wardrobe.  That they would no doubt destroy, because: kids.  

I would hire the personal chefs and trainors that magically transform celebrities back to the pre-baby bodies.  Or call a really good doctor.  But I will lie and say I’ll try diet and exercise first.  

I’d also like to lie and say I wouldn’t take in anymore animals.  But I might.  I probably would.  I need like one miniature donkey.  Just one.  

House cleaner.  Enough said.  

That pretty much covers the basics.  I am poor and have no idea how far $1.3 Billion would carry me.  None.  I’d like to think I’ll have money left over.  And I’ll be smart and invest some.  Put enough away that college is covered for both my kids.  

Nothing big.  Nothing too crazy… 
My husband said he’s going to sit on all the money and not let me have any.  We’ll see about that folks.  We. Shall.  See.

Out With the Old…

Ok. So I have to admit that when I sat down to plan this post, I didn’t think I had much to work with. I wanted to talk about the changes taking place in our home and honestly only thought there were two or three things that I had to cover.   I started by making a list of all the products I had “replaced” over the last couple of months and was shocked with what was in front of me.

Let me start by saying, I’m the type of person who hates anything that involves more than one step. I am lazy. So, so lazy. If you had approached me and said something along the lines of “Do you have any idea what is in X, Y, and Z?!  You need to find alternatives for all of those!” I would have rolled my eyes, made a “pshhht” sound, and told you that’s exhausting. So suffice to say, I’m not here to preach. I’m not her to tell you what you need to do.  But know this, if I can get rid of these things and substitute healthier things without even trying, imagine what I could do if I WASN’T so lazy!

So in all its glory, here is my list.  This isn’t even the ENTIRE list. I had to leave somethings off because I don’t need the FDA handing me my rear end. Anyway. Here it is.

I have replaced:

Shaving cream

Shampoo

Conditioner

Laundry detergent

Fabric softener

Dryer sheets

Most every single cleaning product

Deodorant

Face cleanser

Soap

Moisturizer

Air fresheners

Perfume

And that my friends is the list.

Some of you are probably terrified about how the nasty sponge comes into play. And if you don’t know about the nasty sponge, go like my Facebook fan page, you false friend, you. I mean, please?

Now. Let’s start there since it’s as good as any place.

thieves household cleaner
I have been using the Thieves Household Cleaner for a couple of months. No more bleach. No more windex. No more anything. Just the Thieves cleaner.  Now the novelty here, aside from the fact that I love the smell, is that this bottle is super concentrated. I use one capful in a 16 ounce spray bottle. That’s it. This will last me forever.

I used to believe the only way to clean my shower was to slowly kill myself with bleach.  I would finish scrubbing and my lungs would be on fire from the fumes.  Not anymore. This cleaner is all natural and plant based. I wish I had thought to take a before and after, but I didn’t.

Which leads to the sponge.

I’m ashamed to say, I have never cleaned my oven. Never. It just didn’t cross my mind. So when it did finally cross my mind, it was the stuff of nightmares in there. Just. Terrible. And then another lightbulb went off and I thought “This is an awesome opportunity to show that I’m not crazy and this stuff works!”  So I busted out the Thieves Cleaner and some baking soda and went to town.

image
The before. Ugh.
image
Immediately after wiping down the door.

imageThe after. The little white specks were some cleaner that hadn’t wiped off yet. Deal. All in all, it came out much better than I expected it would! Win.

Looking at the rest of this list, you’d imagine I would be pretty stinky. Not so. I promise. If anything, I might just smell less.

I stopped using store bought shampoo and conditioner because my hair was suffering. Between my ridiculously hard water and the sulfate in the shampoos, my hair was so dry and unhappy it was literally trying to form dreadlocks. Which would be cool if I was even remotely confident enough for that journey, but I’m not. Nope.

So, I switched out my shampoo for some baking soda. I just use it on my scalp to get rid of any built up oils. Then I use apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil, and lavender oil in a spray bottle all over to “condition” my hair. Finish with some argon oil on just the ends and brush through. Done and done. My hair is so much more manageable and has awesome texture that I was losing to frizz previously. And no, it doesn’t smell like vinegar when I’m done.

I’ve started making my own soap, which is pretty much a whole body soap, but it works wonders for my face. Seriously. Baby smooth. Goats milk soap base with some lavender, vetiver, patchouli, frankincense, tea tree, Roman Chammomile, and coconut oil.  I follow up with a moisturizer made with Shea butter, coconut oil, bees wax, frankincense, lavender, geranium, and tea tree. It’s a good time and I’m never looking back.

Now, the deodorant, that was not intentional. And I can’t say that I’ve replaced  it.   I just. Stopped. Using. It. I don’t know why or what happened, but I suddenly realized that it had been quite sometime since I’d used any. And I didn’t smell. Maybe my body naturally detoxed or something. No idea. Sorry I can’t be helpful there.

My laundry in another area that I’m super excited about. I switched from my usual detergent to the Thieves Laundry soap.


Thought it smells great in th bottle, it doesn’t contain any perfumes, so my clothes at left smelling like nothing. Which nothing is still clean. My hubs is a mechanic. If his clothes weren’t clean, you would definitely know. The beautiful thing about this laundry soap is that once again, it’s natural. Our previous detergent was causing my husband to break out in awful rashes anywhere his clothing rubbed. Not. Any. More.

I pair the laundry soap with my homemade fabric softener. I keep this bad boy in a mason jar and use it with my good old downy ball. It’s mostly white vinegar, with a tiny bit of alcohol, topped off with a few drops of Theives oil and Young Living’s Purification oil blend.  No crusty rough clothes here.

It then throw everything in the dryer with some woo dryer balls dabbed in whatever essential oil I feel like usin that day. And everything smells amazing.

Air fresheners have been replaced with oils. Perfume. Oils. Everything. Oils.

There’s a theme here.

If you’ve stuck with me through all this, I want to help you be excited about cleaning as well. What does this mean?  Well, you have options.

If you would like to purchase any of the oils or products mentioned, you can do so here:

https://www.youngliving.com/vo/#/signup/start?sponsorid=2951260&enrollerid=2951260&isocountrycode=US&isolanguagecode=en&type=member

OR

If you use that link to purchase a Premimum Starter Kit (it’s awesome) I will send you a bottle of the Thieves Houseld Cleaner. Free.  I’m leaving this open until the end of January.

OR

GIVEAWAY!

Ok. Here it goes.

For each friend you send over to my Facebook fan page, you will earn one entry to win a bottle of the Thieves Cleaner. They have to like the page and leave a post letting me know you referred them. I’ll even be extra nice and throw an entry in for them as well.   You can also earn an extra entry by signing up for my newsletter using the newletter tab on the fanpage. Entries everywhere! I will leave this open until next Sunday, January 23rd.(Editing to say I’m and idiot. That is not next Sunday. It’s actually the following Saturday. More chances for everyone!) I don’t want you guys to wait forever. Waiting sucks.

So there you have it. If there’s anything in today’s post that you want to know more about, or maybe want the full recipe  for, leave a comment and I’ll make that happen!

Good luck!

The Never Ending Quest For Answers 

So. I know some of you may be wondering about the utterly disgusting sponge. We will get there. I promise. But not today. Today I thought I’d talk about Slugger. 

So as I discussed before, Slugger has been diagnosed with ADHD with ODD.  The Oppositional Definiace Disorder never came as a surprise to me. If anything I was more surprised that there was a disorder to fit what I thought was just a serious personality flaw. I spent countless hours wondering where I went wrong and why the basic concepts of human interaction just didn’t make sense to my child.  I was actually a little more than relieved to know this was something wrong with his “wiring” if you will, and not just him intentionally trying to hurt people with his lack of empathy. That might sound horrible, but trust me when I say knowing he has little control over it makes it a fraction easier to tolerate. Just a fraction. 

Now on the other hand, ADHD was something I didn’t see coming and have struggled with accepting since he was first diagnosed. He doesn’t exhibit the typical signs and behaviors associate with ADHD.  In fact, I didn’t notice any hyper activity or restlessness UNTIL we put him on medication. That being said, maybe I’ve put too much trust into doctors and modern medicine. Even though I was super aware of how often kids are diagnosed with ADHD, and even though I know we live in a society that is quick to throw a label on everyone and everything, I also know that I am not a medical professional. That I need to be open and try to cooperate.  With in reason. 

So at the time Slugger was first labeled “ADHD” I had to consider the signs and symptoms that prompted the diagnosis.  He was struggling with basic tasks and school work. When I would try to help him, I’d be met with resistance in the form of “I just can’t.”  Or “I don’t get it. I’m stupid.”  That last phrase in particular led me to believe that maybe he wasn’t grasping the concepts being presented to him and that there had to be an underlying reason why. So I entertained the notion that it may actually be ADHD and we would treat it as such with hopes of improvement. 

Fast forward. 

Two psychiatrists, two therapists, and several different medications later, I wasn’t seeing any results. If anything, we went through a period where the cocktail of medications he was on starting causing terrible changes to his moods. He was acting legitimately crazy. We got to a point where I was actually considering inpatient treatment just to keep him safe from himself. It was a dark, dark time.  Thankfully, it was as simple as taking him off all the meds and letting him even back out. It was at this point that we changed doctors. (Needless to say I was less than happy with the way things were handled with the first one.) 

This is point where Slugger wanted to get creative with what he told the doctor and decided to blame his behavior on ghosts telling him what to do. Which got us a temporary diagnosis of schizophrenia until he confessed to making it all up. (Heaven help me). Eventually we once again ended up with an ADHD/ODD diagnosis and the doctor prescribed a new medication. Just one. (Lesson learned)

So after months of taking this new medication, I saw little to no change.  It was around this time that we learned his therapist was leaving the practice to have a baby and would not be returning and we now had to hunt down a new one. I may have been just a little more than frustrated.  It seemed like we just could not win and having to find someone new and build a relationship with that person all over again was the LAST thing I wanted to do. But we had no choice. Let me just add here, if this had all been for me, at this point I would have given up. I felt alone and abandoned. At every step, it was like pulling teeth to get someone willing to help us. 

Moving on. 

We found a new therapist. I knew instantly upon meeting her that she was going to be different. Every other therapist had been the sweet, nurturing, safe zone kind of therapist. Which is great for some people. But not my son. Slugger has the ability to find a week spot and work it. He takes advantage of kindness. He avoided speaking to therapists for years and our weekly sessions turned into play time for him. Which would have been fine if he answered questions and cooperated while he played. But he didn’t. 

The very first meeting with the the new therapists, I watched her put him in his place. And that’s when I knew THIS was what we needed. She didn’t allow him to run the show.  She didn’t allow him to argue and fight. And while her blunt manner would certainly be a turn off to some, it was exactly the kind of no nonsense authority we needed to get anywhere with Slugger. No loopholes here, kid.  

Fast forward. 

And our next psychiatrist appointment, I decided to address the fact that I didn’t think Slugger’s medication was working.  I sat there explaining to this man, who had terrible bedside manner, that my son was driving me crazy and I didn’t know what else to do. While having this conversation, my children were destroying his office, which definitely made it that much better.  He expressed zero empathy.  In fact, he almost made it seem like I was bothering him.  He proceeded to explain to me that Slugger’s ADHD wasn’t really the problem. That no amount of medication could make him do something he didn’t want to do.  It was his ODD that I was describing and only behavior modification could fix that. I’m pretty sure it was about this time that I wailed “We’re screwed!” through ugly tears. And I really felt that way. How do you make someone do something they don’t want to do? It was like trying to solve an enigma. With no help. I dragged my kids out to the car and cried.

Shortly after that meeting, I received a letter in the mail letting me know our psychiatrist was also leaving the practice and we would have to find another one. I wanted to throw my hands up and scream. We had enough medication to last us two months and I figured I would run off of that and come up with a new plan as we started to run out.  

In the meantime, we had been working on behavior modification with his therapist. We were starting to see some results in school it was actually getting completed.  Where we had ended the previous grade with Slugger out right refusing to do his work, we were a couple month into the new school year with grades actually on the rise. 

So three weeks ago, I made the decision. No more meds. His therapis agreed as well.  We had a nice long talk about how ADHD may not even be on the table and it just might be anxiety presenting as ADHD. Which would certainly explain more than a few things. At this stage, there has been no change with Slugger. School work is getting done, some days more easily than others. But there is zero change in his ability to do the work.  None. So as of now I stand by my choice and am always open to medication in the future if we decide it’s needed.  

So why share this long, boring story with only a semi-ending?  Well, here’s how I see it. Anytime you hear a story like Slugger’s, you hear a much shorter version a that usually consists of “We had this problem, took this med, and now things are so much better!”  You rarely hear about how hard it is to find someone willing to help. Or how hard it is to find someone who doesn’t just see dollar signs when you walk in the door. I never imagined how hard this would be and just how much I would have to advocate for my son. Granted, this was the super abridge version. But next time you see a kid acting a damn fool, or lashing out at others, maybe you’ll consider there might be an issue there and maybe that family is trying desperately to get the help they need. 

Help lift  each other up.  That’s all. 

A Formal Apology for My Neglect. 

Well. Not exactly formal. But an apology all the same. 

I don’t know what happened here. Life got in the way and I simply haven’t had the chance to update anything here on this poor forgotten blog. BUT FEAR NOT!  There are posts in the plans that I am currently working on as we speak and I hope to have them up shortly. Or by the end of the week. You’ll get one. You know, don’t want to overwhelm you. 
So what has been happening here?  The usual. Trying to maintain my sanity, understand tiny people with complex emotions, keeping humans alive.  And then throw in a holiday or two. No big. 

 I will cover all the good stuff in detail for you later. Like how I’ve been replacing products in my house like a crazy person.  And how I stopped using shampoo. (It’s not as gross as you think. I promise.) And maybe the most exciting/scariest of all, how we decided to take Slugger off his ADHD meds. 

So stay tuned friends. I haven’t forgotten you. I’ll be more diligent going forward. I promise. I hope. I’ll try. You got it, right?

Wish me luck. 

ADHD, ODD, COPD, OCD, EIEIOOOO! Wait, what?

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Ok, I’m not a medically licensed professional.  Everything I’m about to say is based purely on our personal experiences and should not me taken as medical advice, or used to diagnose or treat anyone, like, seriously.

Now that we got that out of the way, I want you to do something for me.  Close your eyes.  (Well, don’t because then you can’t read what I’m about to say.  I guess figure this out on your own.) Imagine you’re a nine year old boy.  You are full of an unfair amount of energy that is totally and completely wasted on the youth, but I digress.

As I was saying, you’re full of energy, but more energy than you know how to deal with.  You have no idea how to harness and focus this energy.  You’re asked to do all kinds of boring things all day long while trying to deal with the building energy inside.

On top of this, you are ANGRY.  You are so angry and full of energy, and people keep asking you to do things, and it’s just making you more ANGRY, and you are not going to give a poop about what they say or do, and this is not your fault.  They need to just leave you ALONE.

This is what Slugger’s day consists of.  To the best of my knowledge, that is.  I honestly don’t know what he must feel like.  I wish that I did.  I wish I could understand and he could explain it and tell me how to make things easier for him.  But that’s not how mental illness works.

info-5

Slugger has ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) with ODD (Oppositional Defiance Disorder).  I didn’t plan on discussing this in a blog one day.  I didn’t plan on discussing this past the people who are in contact with us on a regular basis.  But I realized that in order to have a blog and to be sincere, Slugger’s issue should be addressed and explained.

Most people are familiar to an extent with ADHD.  But contrary to what most think, ADHD does not always mean that you are HYPER.  At least not hyper in the sense that you are bouncing off the walls.  There is a whole spectrum of ADHD and some kids don’t present the same way as others.

I’m not going to break down all the forms of ADHD and what they are; you have google for that.   But I say this because we had no idea that Slugger had any issues until he started school.

I had him very young, so there weren’t a lot of other kids for me to compare him to.  I just thought he was willful in the way all toddlers are willful.  He was smart, funny, and could work a computer by the time he was three.  I was so excited for him to start school because I just KNEW he would shine.

Sadly, that wasn’t what happened.  info-2

He did well academically.  At first.  But he didn’t act like the other kids.  Things bothered him that someone else wouldn’t have noticed.  He couldn’t walk and sit in circle time calmly like the other kids.  His teacher blew our mind at the first (of many) parent teacher conference.  We had no idea he was different.  We had no idea all kids didn’t act and react like Slugger.

Every year has gotten a little harder.  Grades have been progressively going down.  We have bounced between different doctors.  We’ve seen three therapists, three psychiatrists, and a neurologist.  It took a lot of trial and error.  But finally we have a diagnosis.  ADHD with ODD.

Some of you are probably yelling at your screen right now.  You’re screaming “WHAT THE **** IS ODD!”

Allow me to enlighten you.

The Mayo Clinic describes ODD as the following:

DSM-5 criteria for diagnosis of ODD include both emotional and behavioral symptoms.

Angry and irritable mood:

Often loses temper
Is often touchy or easily annoyed by others
Is often angry and resentful
Argumentative and defiant behavior:

Often argues with adults or people in authority
Often actively defies or refuses to comply with adults’ requests or rules
Often deliberately annoys people
Often blames others for his or her mistakes or misbehavior
Vindictiveness:

Is often spiteful or vindictive
Has shown spiteful or vindictive behavior at least twice in the past six months”

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/oppositional-defiant-disorder/basics/symptoms/con-20024559

So, in super laymen’s terms, what we see here is a lot of rule breaking and arguing.  Slugger doesn’t care about consequences, because he just doesn’t understand how they pertain to his actions.  Anything he does that is wrong is not his fault.  It’s someone else’s.

I know some people are rolling their eyes and thinking “This sounds like EVERY kid!”  And you aren’t wrong.  Slugger is just like every kid, except magnified.  The anger is bigger, the disrespect is more biting, the arguments don’t end.  It’s exhausting for him and us.

We are still trying to find a regiment that works for us.  It’s a lot of trial an error.  I can’t say we’ve found a medication yet that produces the results we are looking for, but in the grand scheme of things, we only started medicating a year ago, so that’s all very new still.  I have a roller bottle of Essential Oils that I give to Slugger when he feels like the “cogs just won’t turn”.  It helps.  But we still have a lot of work to do.

For more info on ODD, click the link above to visit the Mayo Center.

The awesome graphics I had above were nabbed from the CDC and their site on ADHD.  You can find that site here:

http://www.cdc.gov/media/dpk/2013/dpk-ADHD-estimates-rise.html

Welcome to my crazy life, friends.

So.  Nice to meet you.  I’m Krystal, and this is my blog.  I mean, obviously.  At this stage in the game, if you’re here, I probably invited you here, and if that’s the case, you probably already know me.  Which makes introducing myself pretty pointless and silly.
11667452_10206989365562852_8979902441834515410_nBut if by some crazy chance you’re here and don’t know me, that’s my mug up there.  No make up and all, wearing a small child on my back.  Because that’s how I roll.  I’m a stay at home mom of two crazy monsters.  For crazy anonymity, we are going to call them Slugger and Pixie.

Slugger is nine.  He’s into baseball (wow, you don’t say!), video games, and junk food.  He bounces between painfully shy and leader of the pack.  Depends on the day and his ever changing mood.  He also has ADHD with ODD.  We will touch on that another time.

Pixie is three, turning four in September.  She’s complex.  One moment, she’s in a tutu pouring tea and the next, she has her brother in a headlock.  Girl has grit.  She’s witty, funny, and sometimes deep.  Never a dull moment with that one.

Then there’s the hubs.  I’d give him a nickname, but I really feel like the hubs (or hubster, hubby, husband, spouse, that guy I married) pretty much covers it.  He’s hardworking, loyal to a fault at times, and quiet, but in that mysterious “I wonder what he’s thinking” kind of way.  And he’s darn good looking.

We also have two cats, two dogs, and two fish.  It’s like a mini Ark up in here.  They’re all adorable in their own goofy ways and I will post pictures of them randomly, because: animals.

I guess that leaves me.  I’m an outgoing introvert (no, really.  I swear.) who loves to read, sing, craft, put way more things in my various planners than most normal people, and covering my family in essential oils.  Which would make me The Oils Monster.

I promise to try and be entertaining and maybe a little insightful.  Maybe I’ll share something you didn’t already know.  Maybe I’ll bore you to tears.  Who knows.  I’m new at this blog thing, but any one who knows me is more than aware that I can talk about nothing for hours.  I’ll try to talk about something though.  No one  wants to read about nothing.  That’s just stupid.

So, join me.  Leave comments.  Let me know if you want to rip your eyes out from the boredom or whatever. It’s cool.  We’re friends now.