To My Students…

An Educators Perspective, Our Latest Adventures

To my students…

Today we begin another chapter. Unlike how this normally sounds, we are not going to be reading an article or information in a book. Together, you and I, and the rest of your peers, get to begin a new chapter in this history of education. Unlike how we normally begin our exploration of a historical event, we are not going to read this chapter. And, I know that it is one of your favorite activities, so together, we are going to write this chapter. 

I am excited for this new chapter. 

It is going to challenge me to find new ways to engage you and make you think about the world and how you fit into it. It is going to challenge you take ownership for your learning. We are going to explore technology much more deeply, as it is going to be the way in which we communicate and which you communicate with one another. I know that for all of you, you connect regularly through text messages and social media apps, but for me, this is all new in how I will connect with you. This is a new way in which I can begin to relate to each of you, and a challenge I am ready to tackle. 

I am also nervous. 

First, I am not there to help you. I can not see that questionable look on your face when you are unsure about the information or skill we are working with. I can not approach you to ask a question or give you a hint. With this new way of learning, are you going to reach out to me? Are you going to feel comfortable sending me an email? Are you going to even know what you need for help? Please reach out to me, as I am here, waiting, to help in any way I can.

Second, I am afraid I am going to be unsuccessful in helping you learn. We spend time together during lunch and after school reviewing content, answering questions, and expanding our view of how we fit into this world. Are my lessons going to be challenging enough? Are they going to be too challenging? These first two weeks are going to be a lot of trial and error. I hope that you work with me to find the right balance for how to learn this way.

Third, I am concerned about you. Are you ok? Are you sticking to a schedule and routine? Are you eating and sleeping enough? Do you have a space that you can focus? Are you able to connect with others? We all spend a lot of time together in school. In the work week, I spend more time with you than I do with my own family. I care about you, and if there is anything you need, I’m still here. 

We have spent the past six months together. I know that we can do this. You have demonstrated an unlimited potential for learning, and a resilience that I am envious of. I am ready to rise to this challenge and meet you at the end. I know that once this chapter has been written by us and closes, we will both look back together and be proud of the growth we have made and the learning that has taken place. 

Sincerely,

Your Teacher

Where have I been??

Our Latest Adventures

Hi friends! It’s been a minute!! So a few events have occurred since my last blog post and I promise, I have what I thought was a good reason for being MIA…

So I started this blog to raise awareness for both congenital eye disorders as well as for how serious food allergies are. Olivia was diagnosed with both of these conditions early on and my goal was to create a safe space where I could document our challenges, positive outcomes and adventures all around. For the most part, the response from people has been amazing. I feel like we have built a real community both on my blog as well as on Instagram and I am so incredibly thankful for that. Sometimes I write about experiences that may seem controversial like that woman we met at the park or my opinions about the show “Alexa and Katie”. I love getting both the positive and constructive comments about what I write! It keeps me grounded and in tone with how others in our community feel. It makes me take a deep breath and remember that I’m not alone in navigating these obstacles. But a little while ago, those constructive comments turned from just that, to mean spirited attacks on my character and the way I am raising my daughter. Rather than taking back my voice and letting it go, I let a keyboard crusader get under my skin and shake my confidence.

I started to wonder why I am even doing this. Was I wrong to document how we are dealing with these diagnoses? Was I exposing my family to this type of negativity for a good enough reason? Were they right? It took me a few tears, talks with my husband and time spent with our little warrior of a daughter to come up with the right answer and direction moving forward. My next steps? Keep doing what we are doing!! I know we are doing the right thing! I know this because of all of you! All of the incredible messages we receive, the videos of your kids and the comments directed to our community. I looked back through our DMs and comments and was reminded why we started this blog. I was a scared new mom. Dan was a confused new dad. Trying to navigate a world we knew nothing at all about. I wanted to create a space that we so desperately needed and I hope that is exactly what we are doing.

I am leaving those posts up. I now see them like a badge of honor, a proud display that my words mean something. Please don’t respond to those comments. I have realized that they are not worth the time.

Moving forward, in this difficult climate, we will continue to post content about patching (now from isolation – keep us in your thoughts patching a toddler, at home – ah!), food allergies and a new segment I am super excited to kick off later tonight! Stay tuned to see what that’s all about and remember, just keep patching friends.

PracMedic Bag – Sammie Medicine Case

Food Allergies, Our Latest Adventures

When Olivia was first diagnosed with food allergies, I didn’t even know where to start. First thing we did – get our Epi pen! I put the Epi pens in a small zip pouch and moved on with my day. Unfortunately, I would soon find out that this zip pouch was not a great place to store Olivia’s life saving medication. Our first trip to the beach with her Epi pens, the pouch got wet, hot and squished all in one day. Not good!

Little did I know, Epi pens need to stay cool and dry in order to stay viable. This became our #1 priority. So I started to do some research on the best Epi pen holder! I looked into several different brands but landed on the one that checked all my boxes and more.

PracMedic bags.

We ordered the Sammie Medicine Case in pink. Not only did this case have the best reviews but it was by far the cutest of them all! The entire case was pink with a little girl and outside, sunny day scene on the front. The first day we got the case in the mail, Olivia opened the box and ran! She wore the bag as a purse all night and kept saying she looked so “fashion”.

When I opened the bag up, I was even more impressed. Not only are there two pockets that fit two Auvi-Q perfectly, but there are more pockets to fit other medications you might need. In our case, we filled that side with Benadryl, a contact cup and contact solution. This allowed us to have all of Olivia’s medications in one spot, at all times! The bag zipped with ease and just like that, my anxiety went from 60 to 0 in a matter of minutes. All of Olivia’s supplies in one place – I couldn’t have asked for more.

We spent the summer going to sunny beaches and sweaty play gym classes and I never worried about her Epi pens. The case is insulated and padded to help keep the medicine inside at the right temperature. It’s even water resistant with an optional ice pack pocket for those days you know the temperatures are going to be really off the charts. When we would go to the beach for the entire day, I would throw the case in with an ice pack near by. Since the bag is water resistant, the medicine stayed dry and the ice pack helped it stay even cooler when the temperatures were over 90 outside! (I only use the ice pack on days of extreme heat. Most days we throw the case in my diaper bag and forget about it!)

My husband’s favorite feature to this bag? He can take it out of the diaper bag and attach it to his belt! He HATES carrying my giant diaper bag. As a food allergy mom, I am no stranger to a big bag! Of course I need a bag full of snacks and treats, extra clothes in case of emergency, hand wipes and seat covers! Rather than Dan having to take my giant bag when he has Olivia, he can just take the Sammie case out of the diaper bag and go on his way. This way he has her medications no matter where they go, without having to take the giant bag.

I have to mention the quality of these cases as well! Olivia has run around, thrown it everywhere, brought it out fishing, on hikes and even to Disney World. No matter the adventure, the case has stayed clean, in tacked and looking like new. The material is so durable that no matter what she’s thrown at it, it’s held up. We could not be more impressed.

Dealing with medications that could save your child’s life in an emergency require a lot of responsibility and sometimes it can feel very over whelming. Making sure you have all the medications, making sure they stay safe and temperature controlled – can be so stressful!The PracMedic cases and brand know how hard this can be and this is why they created this amazing product – to set our minds at ease. I have felt my anxiety melt away as I’ve watched Olivia carry this case with confidence. She’s proud to have her medication on her and feels so cute with the bag on her arm.

We cannot wait to try even more of PracMedic products – especially as Olivia is growing and getting older! Next we will be trying out the COMPACT Epi pen case! Stayed tuned to hear how we like the new bag!