10 great ways to calm down

10  great ways to calm down


  1. Put some ear buds in and listen to your favorite playlist

“Listening to music can have a tremendously relaxing effect on our minds and bodies, especially slow, quiet classical music. This type of music can have a beneficial effect on our physiological functions, slowing the pulse and heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and decreasing the levels of stress hormones.” Taken from http://psychcentral.com/


  1. Go outside and breathe

Spend at least ten minutes a day outside regardless of the weather.  Lay out side on the grass, park far away from the entrance of a store. As little as ten minutes spent outdoors, daily, can be a quick mood booster. Pay closer attention to all the little details.


  1. Go for jog around the block

A recent study appears to confirm that exercise can reduce anger. According to Nathaniel Thom, astress physiologist, “exercise, even a single bout of it, can have a robust prophylactic effect” against the buildup of anger. If you are not into exercising, just try walking and taking in the nature around you.


  1. Spend time with your animals

People and animals have shared a strong bond. This bond has been a source of relief for those who suffer physical or emotion pain. My dog Jack has been a great relief for me when I am upset. Our family goes through a lot of different emotions because our specials needs son. Having Jack has helped make a huge difference.


5. Take a bubble bath

The warm water can help relax your muscles since I am sure you have realized your muscles instantly tighten when upset. I know mine do! I love to go into my bathroom, light a couple of candles (I prefer Lavender) and let the warm water overtake my muscles. Don’t forget to lock the door! Not the best time for your kids to barge in bugging you about not finding their box of crayons!!


  1. Take a drive to your favorite store (even just to window shop)

This may not be for everyone, but I find that taking a trip to world market and looking around at all of the neat things they have, and the smell of the store just seems to do the trick every time!


  1. Aromatherapy

Smell is the strongest of the senses and is best able to influence brain activity. Olfactory bulbs are part of the limbic system and directly connect to the areas of the brain that process emotion and learning. Try smelling Lavender, Lemon, Jasmine, and Rosemary.


  1. Watch a feel good movie

Watching something that makes you feel good is great way to escape reality for a little while. I tend to watch my favorite romantic comedy’s when I am upset and I always find that it helps.


  1. Write it out

Taking all of your anger, or stress out on paper is a good way to let it all out! I know I have used this exercise and its helps me a lot. Don’t stare at your paper scared you will hurt its feelings, let it out already!


  1. Immerse yourself in what you love to do

Distraction is a wonderful way to get away from that angry monster behind you, especially if it’s something you love because then your whole mind is focused on doing the activity and NOT what made you upset.


OH WAIT I FORGOT ONE! Here is a freebie…

11. Get your hair done!

If you can afford it, getting your done done can be so calming. I love when my hair dresser washes my hair and then I leave looking great. Join eSalon for free. Get individually blended hair color crafted just for you by professional colorists. Get 50% off your first custom color kit. <a href=”http://www.bigcattracks.com/SHUS?file_id=19892″&gt; Click Here </a> <img src=”http://www.bigcattracks.com/aff_i?offer_id=3988&file_id=19892&aff_id=7364&tiny_url=1&#8243; width=”1″ height=”1″ />





When is a head ache, not normal?

When is a head ache, not normal?

When is it time to see the doctor or take a trip to the emergency room? Read below to find out what’s not normal…

1. A stiff neck and fever could be a sign of meningitis..
2. Severe nausea or vomiting and any neuro-deficit (such as difficulty speaking or walking), which could be signs of a hemorrhagic stroke
3. If you have a headache after hitting your head or being in a car accident.
4. You have tension headaches, migraine headaches, or cluster headaches and you have to take over-the-counter pain medication frequently or in high doses.
5. Your experiencing muscle weakness or numbness in a limb, changes in speech or vision changes.
6. You are feeling disabled by your pain and are having trouble living a normal life.
7. Your headaches are getting progressively worse.
8. Your headache is associated with seizures.
9. Your headache is extremely severe, and you call it “The worst head ache ever!”

Please seek professional help if you are experiencing these symptoms.


Put your baby to bed, the right way…

Baby sleep solutions:

“Babe, can you please get up this time?” I am sure these are famous words by many of you parents out there, enduring through sleepless nights.

Enough is enough…time to put your baby to bed, the Right way…? There really is no RIGHT way…but here are a few ways to help the process.

Are they hungry?
After a baby turns 1, they normally don’t need to be fed during the night. If they are used to you giving them a snack during the night, they will most likely continue waking up expecting their snack. Try to feed them enough before bed. If they don’t have much of an appetite, try giving them a bottle of formula/milk before bed. If they wake up, give them a bottle of water. They will usually get upset. That is okay. They need to learn they will only get water during the night. They will no longer wake up hungry after a few nights of this routine. This is a personal tip. I did this with my daughter. She began sleeping through the night, 2 nights later. (of course this does not apply to children who are under weight, or sick)

Did the Pacifier fall out again?!
Don’t get me wrong, that first year with Paci is wonderful. They start fussing and “Boink!” In goes Paci and out goes fussy! There comes a time when saying bye bye to Paci is brilliant. When they start regularly waking up because they miss their Binkie, this would be a perfect reason to let go. Try the broken routine. Throw the Binkie in the trash. Show them, and say it’s broken. My mom actually did this with me, and it worked great so I did it with my daughter it worked like a charm. This seems to work about 80% of the time. What can you do if it’s broken? Hopefully they don’t question it…

White noise
I have used white noise with both my kids. It works perfect! Studies have found that white noise turned up too loud or too close could impact your child’s hearing. As long as the machine is placed across the room, and set to a moderate volume, I think you should be fine. Use your own judgment on this one. I have found it very helpful for my kids to sleep, and myself!

Have a simple routine
Remember that no mom is perfect. Your child doesn’t have to be bathed EVERY night. Unless you are a clean freak (I know a few!) Call me lazy all you want, but when your life is as chaotic as mine, priorities seem to be different lol. A warm bath can get them pretty tired but if you’re like me and just want to get them to bed here is my advice… Try to set a goal to have at least one regular routine that says it about time for bed. This could be reading a book, singing a soft lullaby, rubbing your kiddo down with lavender lotion, giving them some Benadryl (JUST KIDDING!) Just a signal that pushes them in the right direction.

Separation Anxiety
Every parent is different. If you want your children to sleep with you forever, fine! I, however, have never been able to sleep with my kids in my bed. For me to be a good mom, I need my sleep. If your child is learning to sleep in their crib/bed alone, obviously make sure you invest in a dim night light. Here is how to break this anxiety.

1st night: Put your baby in their crib while they are sleepy but still awake, and then sit in a chair next to them. If they get upset, softly pat her back and give verbal reassurance. Stair at the floor, read your own book, get on Pinterest (lower the brightness). Do not make eye contact. They will try to get your attention which will make the process longer. Do not leave until they are asleep.

2nd night: Move the chair to the middle of the room, again do not
make eye contact. Wait to leave until they are asleep.

3rd night: Move the chair to the door. Remember, no eye contact. Leave once they are asleep.

4th night: Keep the chair at the door but this time leave just before they are falling asleep.



Truly…my Prince Charming

Once upon a time in a land called “Middle school”. There was a boy with beautiful big Chocolate brown eyes and beautiful tan skin, a jaw made of perfection. I spotted my Prince Charming in 8th grade. It was the first day of school.

My friends and I stood around in the lunch area acting stupid as usual, but my attention quickly turned to this gorgeous boy. There was a way he walked and the way he talked, he seemed absolutely perfect. He whisked past me and left my heart pounding harder than I had ever noticed before.

I leaned over to my friend and said quietly “Who is that?” My friend asked around. “I guess people call him Doty”. And that’s where it all began. Being the 13 year old that I was, I would dream about us holding hands, our first kiss…you know…all that cute innocent stuff.

He started getting the reputation of the “Bad Boy“. Of course that made me like him even more! My friends helped me out with gathering information, like what he was in to, and what classes he was in.

I was sitting in art class, when one day he walks in….”oh my gosh….are we really in the same class? Okay…keep it together” I thought. I got nothing done in that class. I remember sitting down at the pottery wheel and my teacher walking by. She leaned down and said, ” You’ve been sitting here for a half hour and that’s all you have accomplished? Quit starring at boys and get to work.” My face turned 50 shades of red, but luckily Doty didn’t hear, because LIKE obviously I would have just DIED!

Doty finally started to notice me. I wrote him a note about how I had a dream that he asked me out and I said yes. Which is obviously a lie. I just felt like I had to give him a little nudge…or a shove! Boy’s at 14 seem to be pretty oblivious!

My best friend and I were sitting in art class when Doty’s friend walks over. He sits down and says ” Doty wants to ask someone out, but he won’t tell me who.” So I start freaking out inside, like any teen girl would!

We begin to walk towards our next class. “Hey!” Doty yells after us. We both look back and he begins to walk towards us. He grabs my friends arm and says “Can I talk to you for a minute?” I’m thinking that he’s probably making sure I will say yes when he asks me out. Then they hug……and they hug……and they hug some more…..and I’m thinking, hm…okay that’s a little weird.

My friend walk’s back over and proceeds to inform me that Doty just asked her out! WHAT?! I was devastated. It was such a silly thing, but at the time, my heart was shattered and I would never love again. (Oh the drama!)

I spent the rest of the school day hiding in the bathroom. My friend comes in to talk to me and says if you don’t want me to go out with him then I won’t. And at that point I thought ” Why did you even say yes in the beginning?” She knew how much I Iiked him.

A dreadful week goes by and finally my friend approaches me. “I broke up with Doty for you”. Well that made me feel like poop! Like I MADE them break up. My friend continues to tell me how she informed him how much I liked him.

” You’re late, so here’s a detention slip” states my math teacher. In my head I say “YESSSS!”…wait. That’s not a normal reaction for a kid receiving a detention slip?! Oh….Doty has detention. I get it now…Did I mention I was desperate? Yeah we held three conversations while in detention and it was pretty epic at the time.

Month’s go by…we start to hang out in the same group of friends. Our art teacher switches our tables around. Maybe she saw my desperation, or was just blind and decided to put me and Doty at THE SAME TABLE! We are sitting across from each other and he looks up at me with his chocolate brown eyes and his hair slightly in his face, ” Hey, I was wondering if you would go out with me?” SHUT THE DOOR, AND THE BACK DOOR! I sat there non responsive for about .2 milliseconds YES!!! I mean….yes…

It was so hard to contain my excitement. The excitement came to a halt when I realized, this was the last day before winter break! So at this time I’m 14 and Doty is 15. Neither of our parents would ever dream of allowing us to date. 2 weeks and 3 days later (yes I remember, the exact days, don’t judge!) I get a phone call from my ” Boyfriend”. We start talking about what we like to do and what’s fun. The conversation is going great until he says ” Well I actually called so I could talk about something with you.” Totally blind to what those words actually mean. He decided that it would be best to be friend’s because we aren’t allowed to date outside of school and because I was trying to gain a relationship with God, (Jehovah, Gods name) that he didn’t want to interfere.

I swallow and act all cool. ” Yeah, I totally agree”. We hang up and I bawl my eyes out. Pretty much the rest of the year I watched him flirt and go out with different girls. I became so furious and jealous. When 8th grade graduation rolled around. Him and this girl were “Going out”. They announce her name for her diploma and he yells “I LOVE YOU” …ugh heart break!

The graduation dance begins and my group of friend make a circle on the foggy gym floor. We begin spinning in a huge circle to the song “Graduation” by Vitamin C. I can’t help but torture myself and watch him dance with her over there by the DJ. I ended up in the bathroom, crying…all over again! So much for a good time…

It’s a pretty ridiculous story. At the time of puberty, there are so many things changing. New feelings are being discovered too. I was so emotional, and dramatic over everything!

In high school we both had separate lives. We dated different people. We saw each other in passing. Sometimes when I would see him I would still get butterflies but I trained myself well and quickly ignored it. I ended up leaving public high school and began to attend a charter school. I had my heart broken pretty bad my senior year.

“1 new message” I got on myspace (when it was still cool). I opened my inbox. I had a message from Doty! It read…” Hey I just wanted to see how you have been doing. I have been doing better. I started studying the Bible again. What’s new with you?” Well at that time I had also started up a Bible study and so this sparked interest because we both were making a goal to study.

After a week of great conversations, we decide to go to Meeting together. We call our place of church the “Kingdom Hall” and the service’s are called “Meeting”. I never thought we would do that! So I went and picked him up. He came out wearing a dark purple shirt and a silky red Tye. He stepped down the step’s of his house and walked over to my car. He looked at me over the top of my 2003 Oldsmobile Alero and said ” Wow you are gorgeous!” And the butterflies finally arrived! I could barely concentrate on driving through town. Meeting went great (although, sort of strange) and then we decided to get hamburgers at “In n Out”. Of course I had one bite, probably due to the lump growing in my throat! He continues to devour his plus mine. What a pig, but back then I just stared at his jaw as he chewed. Yep, I’m a weirdo.

From that point I knew there was something special, haha! We spent every day together. We both had grown so much since 8th grade. The next day he came over and brought the movie, “Across the Universe”. Not one of my favorites but I didn’t care. He turned my face to his and kissed me slowly. I remember giggling because I had waiting for that moment for so long and it finally happened…I think when you wait for something so amazing to happen, you almost are numb to it when it finally comes.

Two weeks into our relationship he tells me he loves me. At the time I was terrified to say it back because I had been hurt so bad by my previous relationship. I said it back only to not hurt his feelings. Of course I couldn’t sleep for the following nights. I just laid awake for hours day dreaming about the two of us. By this time, Doty wants me to call him by his first name “Joel

Two months into our relationship, Doty decides that we need to talk about our future. He explained that he eventually wanted to marry me, but he wanted to finish his Bible study and get baptized first. When you’re in love it completely blindsides you and everything else doesn’t matter! Obviously looking back, we BOTH should have finished studying first.

Three months we have been dating. We decide that we will be getting married sooner rather than later. One day we are at the mall. We are both sick of waiting. We just want to be with each other every second of the day. We get up and we walk into Sears. A ring in the clearance section grabs my attention. It was $120. It wasn’t my first choice but it would do for now.

We began planning our wedding for June. The day of our wedding was awesome. Regardless of anything irritating me or stressing me out, I stayed focused. I stood at the door on my grandma’s porch. It was a beautiful setting for an outside wedding. The 5 acres of pasture was green and luscious, and the time of day was perfect. We were just in time for a sunset. We couldn’t have timed that better. I stared at my grandma’s temperature gage hanging on her porch. My mom walked up to me and whispered, “Ready?”. MORE THAN EVER! I was so sure it was right, there was no questioning it.

I walked down the isle with my mom. The ceremony began and we just gazed at each other. Our vows were a fog. We had practiced them beforehand so we knew what we were agreeing to, but we were just so happy, nervous, and too excited to actually pay attention to our words. “You may now kiss the bride”. FINALLY! The bag pipes began to play by my friend Dillon. We walked back down the isle and came to a sudden halt and hugged each other so tight. I was in shock. I kept thinking in my head…”How often does your long time 8th grade crush become your husband?!” I knew it was rare which made the day even more special than I ever had dreamed of.

We spent our honeymoon on the west coast, exploring nature…and each other....Hahahahaha! Our first 3 months of marriage was pretty rough. Neither of us had lived on our own. We both were discovering what it meant to be responsible adults. I had become pregnant with our first baby while switching birth controls. Sadly we miscarried, and the only way I could heal was to become pregnant again. Until our daughter LaCie was born, there was a lot of fighting and crying. Joel had lost his job and we struggled tremendously.

The day our daughter came into the world, changed our entire marriage. It glued us together and made us strong. We both loved being parents so much that we decided to have another baby two years later. We became pregnant right away. Then we learned that our son had a Rhabdomyoma tumor inside of his heart. He began fighting for his life. The whole experience bonded us even more! I’ll talk more about my pregnancy with Conner in another post.

Since then, we have had to hold each other up in difficult situations time and time again. We go through rough periods like any marriage but the good periods make up for all the hard ones. When things are bad with Conner, I am usually pretty stressed out and tend to not be affectionate, until I break down and need him to hold me. No matter how cold I may be during a difficult situation, he is always there for comfort and support.

Joel Doty….truly my Prince Charming.


How to survive your child’s hospital stay

My husband and I spend a lot of time at the hospital with our son. At this very moment, we have been in the hospital for 6 days. Conner will be having a pacemaker put in tomorrow morning. Whether your child is sick or has special needs like our child, at some point you will be forced to temporarily move on in to the chaos.

It’s best to remember to stay positive. If you are instantly negative, time will pass much slower! The best way to (somewhat) enjoy your stay, is to devote time to making yourself at home. Here are a few tips to help the time pass for you and your child.

First, you will want to make sure you pack the essentials. If your child is still in diapers, don’t worry about packing too many. Usually hospitals provide, diapers, wipes, shampoo, lotion, and brushes. If your kid has sensory issues like Conner, make sure you pack everything they need to stay comfortable.

Second, it is also a good idea to contact the admissions office ahead of time to let the nurses know what they need; to be prepared for. In Conner’s case, he needs a special bed that is mesh (like a playpen) because of his seizures. If your child is G Tube fed, make sure you bring a couple of boxed formulas with you and your pump. Just incase it takes a while to get his/her supplies together.

Third, there is a program called “Child Life”. For those of you newbies, you will find that child life is a huge help when it comes to you and your childs comfort. Usually when children are admitted to the hospital they are required to receive an IV for quick medicine access or for other reasons. There are a few tricks that can help keep your child to stay calm during this process. Usually child life will already be aware of these tricks, but just in case, I’ll tell you them anyway (just because I’m awesome)!


1.Numbing cream (LMX) applied 30 minutes prior to the poke. The cream will be taped down.

2.Sensory confusion with vibration. There is a device called “Buzzy” that is made for this specific purpose. Here is the link to learn more about it. http://buzzy4shots.com/ . At our current hospital, they don’t actually own one. Instead, Child life came to the rescue and found a vibrating back massager, which worked just as well! Usually you will want to hold the vibrating device right over the area that will be poked. Hold it there for about 5 minutes before poking. Remove the device just seconds before the needle is placed.

3.Distraction is a huge key. I have an iPad mini, but usually Child life already has one on hand. We play either cartoons or a calming apps. Here are just a few that Conner likes “Soothing” (by fisher price) “magma” (by sensory). Try to keep the staff that’s assisting, quiet and calm so your child doesn’t sense fear.

Sleep is ALWAYS an issue while staying in the hospital. Make sure you pack a sleeping mask (that’s comfortable to sleep with) and ask the nurse for ear plugs. These are MUST haves!!!

When you are bored, and trust me…you WILL be bored. Here are some ideas to keep you busy.

1.Start a new TV series on Netflix either you will need a tablet or laptop for this.

2.Decorate your child’s crib area with bright crafting paper (ask a nurse to help)

3.Get addicted to Pinterest! (Duh!)

4.Read a new book

5.Ask “Child life” or a nurse to show you where the board games are kept. (obviously you can only play a board game if your child is old enough or you have a partner staying with you)

6. Ask for some BUBBLES! These are really fun for adults…..I mean kids….

7.Check out a movie (Ask “Child life” for help)

8.If your child is still small enough. Ask the nurse if they have little push wagons. This is something we do with Conner every hospital stay and we all really enjoy it. Sometimes, if the sun is out, you can even go outside in a designated area! (Oh yeah, I forgot how much I love fresh air!)

9. Craft a huge card for all of your childs nurses to sign and take home.

Having a notebook is a huge life saver while in the hospital. I have found myself dumbfounded when the doctor is done speaking and they ask the famous question “So, do you have any questions for me?” and I sit there staring at the floor trying to remember the 50 questions I had floating around somewhere in my head. I bought a notebook at the gift shop the first time Conner was in the hospital. I organized my questions like this:


(Q) How long after the procedure can he go home?


Leave a couple of spaces in between so you have enough room to write the answer before you jot down the next question. Doctors are usually impressed by so many questions. It makes them feel like they need to be on the ball more, and it helps them view us more seriously. (or so I have noticed)

I hope I have helped in some way! I hope that none of your children have to stay in the hospital, but obviously you are here for a reason, so I am sending *HUGS* to all you caretakers. STAY POSITIVE for yourself, and your child.

Here are a few pictures of my cutie bug in the hospital. Sometimes he is miserable but about 90% of the time, he is one happy camper!

IMG_2065 208 211


7 tips for us tired mom’s, to go back to sleep…sweet dreams!

You know that point where you are so beyond tired you catch your second wind? I call that rummy. Dont ask me why, but I have always called it that. As I am sure most of you parents can relate, there are times where we are forced out of bed to comfort our kids from their nightmares, or to make sure all the doors are locked after hearing something fall or crash.

Finally you come back to your bed, rest your head on your pillow, and EYES ARE WIDE OPEN….RUMMY!

Rummy is always apart of my life. I feel as if I never really recover from it, hence my blog name….One Rummy Mom.

We have all been there. So in this blog I am going to post 7 tips for us tired mom’s, to go back to sleep…

1. Valerian Root: It’s known to smell like stinky socks, yuck! However, it is a natural herb that can help with anxiety, sleep, and menstruation cramps.  You can pick it up at any drug store for about $10. I usually take 3-5 capsules depending on how anxious I am. (Discuss this with your physician first)

2. Have a mid night snack: Carbohydrate-rich snacks may be best, because these foods likely increase the level of sleep-inducing tryptophan (an amino acid that is a constituent of most proteins. It is an essential nutrient in the diet of vertebrates.) in the blood. Try eating, boiled eggs (prepare ahead of time, who wants to cook in the middle of the night? I don’t!), Citrus fruits, Apples, healthy cereal, or nuts.

3.Go pee already!:  Even if you don’t have to pee, i suggest going anyway. You know the moment you hit the hay, your bladder will suddenly feel like it’s going to burst! So why not just go sit and get it over with?!

4.Melatonin: It’s already naturally produced by your body. People use this usually to adjust the body’s internal clock. My son used to have a hard time falling asleep. I began giving him 1 mg of this stuff, and it really helped! YAY! Any drug store will carry it and it is usually about $10. There are different strengths. Try taking less the first time.(Discuss with physician first)

5.White Noise: When a noise wakes you up in the night, it’s not the noise itself that wakes you up, but the change or inconsistencies in noise that awake you. White noise creates a mask effect, blocking out sudden changes. I downloaded a free app on my iPhone that I use every night. It’s called “Sleep pillow”. If you are a light sleeper like me, you will love this app!

6. Set up a baby video monitor: No matter how hard we try, sometimes every possible worry will keep us awake. “Did I remember to close the baby’s window?” “Did I uncover his face from his blanket?” “Did I just hear him cry?” Why are you driving yourself crazy like this?! You will be up like, 100 times during the night if you don’t change something soon! I invested in a baby video monitor. Not only because my son has seizures but because it put my mind at ease and if i want to quickly check on him I just click a button and I see him there snoozing away. I bought mine at Target (My favorite store!). Here is the link to the exact one I have. http://www.target.com/p/samsung-babyview-video-baby-monitor/-/A-14261096?lnk=sc_qi_detaillink  I have had this one for over two years, I have never had a problem with it and it is awesome!

7. Come to the dark side: Melatonin is actually suppressed by light sources. Either, your laptop, tv, phone, or bright night-light. Sometimes street lights can shine through your shade and blind your eyes from sleep. I bought sun blocking shades that were super easy to put up. I just got a cheap tension rod slipped it through and hung it up! Try to leave your lap top and TV’s out of the bedroom if possible. This can be an easy thing to turn to in a sleepless night, but that sleepless night will continue if you don’t put down that remote!