The Holidays are approaching…We have lots to look forward too!!

Getting Zoo Boo tattoos! We spent today at the Zoo in Houston, looking at all the animals enjoying the nice cool fall weather. We don’t get great weather like this too often and this is the best time of year to head to the zoo because the animals all tend to be out early and they are eating and are active and the kids love it!!

During Zoo Boo they offer candy for the kids and a pumpkin patch where each kid gets to walk out with a little pint size pumpkin they got to draw a face on! Alex loved this part and was proud to show off his pumpkin and his tattoo. They still get to do the fun things of the zoo like the children’s petting area and the play area. But you add in candy stops along the way and all the neat decorations and it just makes for a great time. The kids got to spend time together and my dear friend and I got to chat as well. It was a great day! Next year we’ll do it all again!!

This is the first of the great holidays of the Fall Season!! Enjoy

Starting Pre-K3..great for him…STRESS for mommy!!!

As A single mom I wanted to get a jump on my sons education. The public schools in houston, or in my area anyway, lets just say they haven’t gotten any rave reviews lately. So When I found out that KIPP Academy Charter School was doing their lottery, I jumped on the chance to enter. On November 1st I stood in line and waited my turn to fill out the application. On April 19th I got the great news that Alex had been excepted and would start Pre-K3 on August 12th!!!

school busOk so now this journey begins!! When Alex started daycare it took me awhile to find one that I liked, one that Alex could learn at, have fun playing at and was diverse in ethnic makeup. I found one that fit the bill, outside of the normal daycare blues of him getting sick from all the kids “sharing germs”everything has been going well. Now that he is starting Pre-K3 it’s an exciting time, but Pre-K3 is half day only so now I have a problem to solve. He will go to school between the hours of 12-3:50pm which means that he still needs to be in daycare during the morning hours. This is where my problem begins! His daycare can’t transport him to and from school, I have to work during the day so I can’t play taxi driver. I know that I am not the only mom in this situation but it sure feels like I am. There are services that will pick up and drop off kids at school, but I am not 100% sure I feel comfortable with this. I mean my little guy is only going to be 3 and I am just not sure how I feel about trusting a stranger to pick him up and drop him off!! I get off work in enough time to be able to pick him when school lets out, but that also means no overtime or extra hours. Turning down this great opportunity is just not an option…so I have to find a solution! In addition to the new school year being a half day, I signed a form stating that he will go to summer school next year so this is going to last until he goes to school for the whole day.

FrazzledI have until August to figure something out! Oh and did I say that he HAS to be potty trained by then!! LOL We’re working on that and actually he’s got it down pretty good. At night he still has accidents, but having big boy talks and getting little surprises when he uses the potty has started to pay off. So I wonder how many moms, single or married have been in this situation? What did you do? Would you use a service to transport your child if you had no other choice? This is such a great chance at an excellent education for my son. KIPP is known for its motto “work hard, be nice” they teach ethics and about being a good person, but they prepare children for life and the program runs through high school but also helps them get into college! What a wonderful good start he will have, but what a stressful time for me! I know this is only a short term problem but I wonder what other moms in my situation have done??

SOS…HELP…

Taming this wild hair of my child….HELP!

My child has combination hair.  I’m mixed (black & white) and his father is mixed (Jamaican & white), so he has this naturally curly hair.  But every morning this kid wakes up with bedhead! LOL and not the kind you can just tussel around and go.  I don’t want to cut it.  I trimmed it at 11 months and now he’s 2 1\2 years old, but I was trying to let it grow to see how it was going to go.  But his hair requires work like i’m doing my own long curly hair!  I always thought I don’t want a girl because I was such a tomboy and I couldn’t see myself self doing a little girls hair…but man Alex’s hair requires just as much work and it just makes me laugh!  I have yet to find a product that I like that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg!  I got my hair cut and actually purchase American Crew for curls, it works great but it’s also $17 per tube

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The Day Care Blues….

First Day of School

First Day of School

Alex officially started school on Monday Feb 25th.. It was a great day.  It started off ruff because I have to have him there by 6:30 am in order to make it to work on time.  Well he’s the 1st one there so that makes it very hard on him.  The first day he cried and his teacher held him after our 15 min of talking and getting him ready for me to leave.  As I ran out the door I could here him calling for me which was breaking my heart but I knew if I went back the saga would never end and I would be late to work.  I called to check on him a little while later and his teacher told me she walked him around to show him all the other rooms and then a few more kids showed up and he was excited and said “my friends” are here.  She said he was great after that.  I picked him up early on Monday, he was outside playing and having a great time..he didn’t want to leave! That made me happy!  

By the second day he still cried when I left him but had a good day! But on this day he stayed until 5 pm when his Nana came to get him, because I was at work.  When she arrived he was sitting in the group room with the other kids watching a movie..he started to cry when he saw her and told her he was ready to go. I figure this is because he was doing something he doesn’t like to do…sit still!!!! :-) He was fine once she got him in the car and he told her about his day.  We had a good night and he was so excited about his new friends.  But later on in the middle of the night he woke up and was not feeling well. He had a fever of 102! I gave him some Walgreens Ibuprofen 100 for children, and it broke the fever within 15 min.  When we woke up he had no fever and we were off to school.  I gave them more medicine for fever if it came back.  By 9 am they were calling me to see if I wanted them to give it to him early because the fever had returned.  An hour later I was leaving work and on my way to get him and head to the Doctor!

So 2 days into Day Care my little man had contracted STREP THROAT!! That was really fast.  I was expecting him to get sick, but not this soon.  

Sick with Strep Throat

Sick with Strep Throat

Because he was getting his medicine so early in the day his Doctor said as long as he had no fever he could return to school the next day.  I didn’t want to take that chance so I took off work.  As a single parent I am learning how to deal with these things early.  So now I have two days of lost wages, but Alex is feeling better which is what is important.

I have a long road ahead of me..spring breaks, Holidays, summer vacations!  I use to work for people with kids during these times because I knew it had to be hard, now I can only hope that Karma heads my way and someone works for me when holidays, and spring breaks roll around!! :-) 

As for Day Care…I know he loves it. He gets to interact with kids his own age, and he is learning along the way.  Hopefully in the next week or two he’ll get use to going and won’t cry and make me feel guilty each time I drop him off.

Quick Recipe: Taco Bean Soup!

This recipe is so easy and so yummy, I usually hurt myself after its done because I eat way too much!!  What I love is that you can make it all in one pot!  Just make sure the pot is big enough!!

You’ll need:

1 lb ground turkey (or beef)

1 15oz can diced tomatoes

1 can of diced green chilies

3 or 4 cans of whatever kind of beans you like:  black beans, kidney, navy, pinto, great northern bean, white beans…you name it! (Drain the juice from beans to remove sodium)

onion and diced garlic to taste

salt and pepper to taste

chicken broth

1 taco seasoning packet

In you large pot brown your meat.  If you use a lean turkey meat you won’t need to drain it more than likely, if this is the case when your meat is almost browned  add in your onion and garlic to saute them a bit.  Once the meat is cooked add about 1/2 of the packet of taco seasoning and mix well.  Then its time to start adding in all the other ingredients.  Once you have all your beans added, you can add in your chicken broth to the desired consistency.  If you don’t have chicken broth water will work just fine!

Let the beans heat through and eat!!

We add a dolip of sour cream into the pot and in each bowl when we serve it!  You can do what you want with it.  If you like cilantro and have a Trader Joe’s by you..we even put a little of their Cilantro salad dressing into the beans with a little sour cream and it adds such a great layer of flavor to it!!

Alex tears this dish up..we usually try to serve his with very little juice so he can feed himself…he loves the beans and I love the protein factor of the meal not to mention its ready in no time at all!!  We try to make extra and freeze half for an even quicker meal down the road!

Hope you get the same comfy feeling when you try this dish!

Healthy Eating: Turkey Burgers with a twist!

We don’t eat beef, instead we go with lean turkey meat.  In our house when the weekend comes around we love to be outside and we usually grill every Sunday! One of our favorite things to grill is Turkey Burgers…but with a twist!  We were in our local grocery store and they had turkey burgers with cranberries and feta cheese in them.  For four burgers it was like $12!  We decided we could make our own version of that turkey burger and get way more for our money.

And that’s just what we did!  We got our turkey meat and we added scallion onion, feta cheese, slice grape tomatoes and dried cranberries! We seasoned them up and put them on the grill.  They have so much flavor and we do several on Sunday to last through the week for a quick meal or lunch.  Alex loves them and since we had the grill going we added a few turkey hotdogs!  Now Alex is set and telling me it’s time to eat!  :-)

Why am I cleaning and enjoying it???

So why am I enjoying cleaning…..because I am using a new product that lets me clean without gloves and having to have the vent fan running and windows open in bathroom to do it!!  I am SO excited about this new product by Lysol.  I hate cleaning, but I have found a product that makes it so much easier on me and it works!!   Lysol’s new Power & Free Bathroom cleaning product.  I do love this stuff.  My mom was in the shower and sprayed it on the shower door when she was done before getting out of the shower.  She asked me what other product could you do that with and not be overwhelmed with fumes??? She is so right.

 I cleaned my bathroom and washed my hands and  went into the kitchen to make lunch and didn’t have the bleach smell on my hands which I usually do for days!  That was the awesome, not to mention the fact that it cleaned everything so good!!!  I can’t see myself buying another product at the point.  And I would never say that.  But not having to worry about cleaning when Alex isn’t around so he doesn’t breath in the fumes makes me feel so great about this product!!  I can’t wait to tell people about it and I can’t wait to try the Multi-Purpose Power & Free cleaning spray!