Not too long ago, I stumbled across this:
Dishing It Up Disney Style : A Cookbook for Families with Type 1 Diabetes by Lilly Diabetes.
While I really wanted one of these books, I was saddened by the fact that the only place I could find it was on the Amazon website where it was being sold for $10.00. Lilly Diabetes does not charge for these books and distributes them freely to most hospitals and endocrinologist offices. Making a profit just seems to be in poor taste.
Last weekend, our local JDRF branch held a 'Diabetes Today and Tomorrow' Conference. The beginning of the conference was set up to include a vendor booth area where anyone interested in distributing diabetes product information could meet with patients and families.
Luckily for me - Lilly reps were in attendance. Even better, they had a small pile of books including; Dishing It Up Disney Style. I took two books, one for our family and one for a Naturally Sweet Sisters reader.
If you would like to try to win a free copy of Dishing It Up Disney Style by Lily Diabetes then all you need to do are these two things:
1.) Leave a comment on this blog page telling why you love Disney.
To comment, type in www.naturallysweetsisters.com (be sure to link in to naturally sweet sisters to post as facebook link-ins will not allow comments.)
2.) Like our facebook page.
To "like" the facebook page, click https://www.facebook.com/pages/Naturally-Sweet-Sisters/205072552896720. If you already "like" the facebook page, than you are all set. Just be sure to leave a comment on this post.
The contest is open until Sunday, May 26th, 2013 at 11:59 p.m. EST. I will announce the lucky winner on Monday, May 27th, 2013. Special thanks to Lily Diabetes for making such a cool book and being so gracious in providing Naturally Sweet Sisters with two copies.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
In my last camp post, I gave you a list of what to pack for diabetes summer camp, or really, what to pack for children going away to any kind of adventure camp.
In this post, I am going to detail one of my favorites ways of how to pack clothes for children while they are away from mom and dad.
Seems sort of simple right?
Like all you need to do is just neatly fold clothes, place gently in suitcase and zip tight?
Well, unless you have detail-oriented kids with a sense of calm and common sense in the early morning hours, most likely after they open the suitcase for the very first time, the clothes will end up looking like this:
Which means that your child will probably stick with approximately one shirt and one pair of shorts for the entire week. Don't even dwell on the underwear because I can guarantee that will not be changed! And to think that much of the camp staff is on a volunteer basis! Ew!
A few years ago, a veteran camp mom on an on-line website told me to start packing my child's camp things in Hefty or Ziploc storage baggies. The veteran camp mom said the 2.5 gallon size was the perfect size to hold exactly one day's worth of clothes.
And she was right! Brilliant!
After a rigorous test (two years' worth of camp mayhem), my daughters and I have arrived at the conclusion that this works perfectly!
My oldest particularly loved this idea because no one had to see her ahem! 'unmentionables' as she traipsed out of her cabin each morning to shower. She simply woke up, found the right bag and headed off. Her friends without the bags often misplaced a sock or worse, found themselves in the shower stall without a clean shirt or pair of shorts. Oh no! The dreaded 'what do I do now when mom is not in the next room'????
Below, is the Naturally Sweet Sister's version of the Ziploc bag packing method. This has been modified to include a little extra sweetness. Not only do we pack clothes, we also pack LOVE.
I can't help myself. I miss those girls while they are gone!
For your viewing pleasure, I snapped a few pictures of what I do to prep the bags.
First, I either use a Sharpie marker to label each bag or I type/print a list of the child's name and corresponding day of the week.
I like the print method for ease of use as I am doing everything x2 and it gets a little tedious. Not to mention, that I have a bad case of sloppy handwriting when doing things in multiples. It makes it hard to read for beginning readers. Or so I have been told by youngest daughter.
If you print a label, the sticky can often be peeled back off which makes the bag reusable. I like to save them for things like collecting shells on the beach or even as garbage bags. The zip top makes it great to keep ants away from picnic areas. You just have to remind your child to bring them back home after camp.
Once you have labeled your bags, here is where the sweet part comes in; create a once-a-day love note for your child.
This will actually help to inspire a daily clothing change each morning. Your child will be eager to see what special letter or joke or funny comment that mom or dad has left for them.
For this step, I use a large-size heart shaped punch. No, I didn't buy it for this project but I do use this a lot. It's a great investment.
Punching out one heart for each bag that I assemble, takes only about 30 seconds. You could fold a piece of paper in half and use scissors to cut a heart shape as well.
My notes are simple and encouraging. Just a few words from mom to start off the day.
Place the heart into the Ziploc bag and then add your day's worth of clothes - like one pair undies, one pair socks, one bra, one t-shirt, one pair of shorts. Your child can take this little Ziploc bag bundle, along with a hanging toiletries bag right into the bathroom each morning. Dirty clothes can be placed back inside to make sure that all items are returned to the cabin or your child's laundry bag to take home.
I think we managed to save a lot of sock lives this way!
More camp preparedness coming soon......
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Over the course of time, our girls have always had what we like to call 'responsibilities'.
The naturally sweet hubby and I realized that at an early age, even the smallest of kiddos could be assigned a task or have responsibility for something within our household. It didn't have to be a big task or a big responsibility either. As long as it was accomplished correctly and with a good attitude (no shrugging or eye-rolls please!), it was successful.
Plus, I secretly had nightmares after hearing of friends who told me that they went to college without knowing how to operate a clothes dryer! Oh my!
We started with having the girls start brushing their teeth, washing faces, combing their hair and writing thank you notes. As the girls grew, their desire to have a family pet helped us to add the next level of responsibilities, cleaning the litter box and adding fresh food and water to our kitten bowls.
Last year we added extra things like making beds, picking up toys from around the house and helping with bigger projects - like cleaning debris up from the tree hitting the house or assisting with the laundry.
We also upped the ante and added $1.00 allowance per day for each completed day's worth of tasks.
If the kids forgot their responsibilities, mom and dad still had to do it, so instead of paying the children, we paid ourselves. Oh yes! That's right! We paid ourselves. Now, that is an eye-opener for children!
A few neat things happened.
* Our kids realized that they could buy things without mom and dad saying no.
* They learned the value of saving up for bigger and better things.
* Things that they purchased had more meaning and were taken better care of.
* We never had the whining in store for something they wanted. All I had to say was, "Did you bring your own money?" They knew if they could afford it or if they felt it was worth the cost.
Interestingly enough, it also taught our children about hard work and the realization that without working, they literally had empty pockets. The remedy? More completed responsibilities the next week. I am seriously hoping that this lesson stays with them through their teens and early 20's. Oh my!
So one more really cool thing happened. By establishing responsibilities, even though our kids had been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, we instilled the expectation that life would continue on, as normal as possible.
We helped our children to clarify their own identity so that they knew they were regular little kids. Type 1 diabetes or not, our kids learned that their identity meant to be good citizens and they had the responsibility to take care of household chores, homework, our family kitten and even themselves. There was no forgiveness on high or low days... either you completed your responsibility or you didn't.
Through doing all of this, we helped our little girls discover their own abilities - and removed the idea that they had any sort of disability. We also gave them a very stable home environment that clearly outlined the expectations and roles of each person in the family. Not to mention that it also left us a lot of time for loving and cuddling and snuggling - mom had less to do on her own!
As we head into another summer and with two slightly older kids, I am modifying the responsibilities list by giving it a new name. I thought I might share it with you for a fun opportunity for everyone to teach their kids a cool way to earn allowance money.
Introducing the Chore Jar.
Inside the jar are about 30 different household chores. Each completed chore is worth $1.00.
Every time a chore is completed and verified by mom and dad, the family worker gets to add the chore to their own bucket.
All chores will be paid on Sunday.
Now here is the catch: mom and dad have a bucket too. Any chore that they (we) complete first, goes into the 'Mom and Dad' bucket for the week and that chance to earn money for doing that chore during the week is done.
Also, the chores are to be drawn out of the jar at random. Whatever you get, you have to do. If you choose not to do it or if you try to re-draw, you lose your chance for the day to do any other chores. You also lose the chance to earn any money that day, which is very disappointing.
However, if you are on a chore roll, after every completed chore, you can redraw to get another chore - for as long as you would like and ultimately, earn as much money as you can. Just make it clear that mom and dad must verify to ensure the chore was properly completed before moving on to the next task.
I placed the Chore Jar near their bedrooms in the hallway with the diabetes refrigerator. I thought it might be a nice daily visual of how many dollars they have coming each week. They can't walk by without seeing it!
With oldest daughter yearning for more make-up and youngest daughter wishing for Bath and Body Works supplies, this will be a nice incentive to help them both, especially over a long summer.
And me too. Less for mama to do by herself is always a good thing!
What's that saying? If mama ain't happy, no one is happy?!
Right now, I am very happy!