• Just For Fun,  Kid Friendly,  Product Reviews,  Toddlers

    Too Busy Sleeping: A Book Review

    Have you heard of the delightful new book, ‘Too Busy Sleeping’?  Recently, I had an opportunity to put my hand up to review this lovely, lovely little children’s book, through the Parent Talk Australia collective.  I was very excited when the author, Zanni Louise, contacted me to say she would be happy for me to review her first book.  

    Too Busy Sleeping:  A Book Review

    It’s just gorgeous!  It is a little story about a new baby coming home – how will Eleanor, now a big sister, react?  It is delightfully illustrated by Anna Pignataro, with a kind of vintage, crafty feel to the drawings.  Ms 4 tells me every time we read it, that she thinks the first and last page looks like stickers and buttons, and she tries to take them off.

    Too Busy Sleeping by Zanni Louise

    Both my kids love this book.  Little Mr 2 just loves babies at the moment, and on every page points to Reuben and exclaims “bebe!”  It’s a positive story, that looks at the arrival of a new sibling through the eyes of a little one eager to play and eager to love.  

    Too Busy Sleeping: A Book Review

    It’s a lovely book whether you are preparing your kids for the arrival of new baby or not.  A little story about excitement, learning patience and love.

    Too Busy Sleeping.  Gorgeous books for kids.

    I love Too Busy Sleeping because it is positive and joyful, and shows that older kids, even preschoolers, can look forward to the homecoming of a new baby.  Even if they’re not quite happy with the sleeping needs of said newborn!  

    If you would like to get your hands on a copy of the gorgeous Too Busy Sleeping, you can here*.

    What books do your kids love to read?  Is it the same one, over and over, or a new one every night?  Let me know in the comments, I love to hear from you!

    Linking up with Mamma Raj Says for #ReviewRoundUp!

    *This is an affiliate link.  If you click here and purchase, I will receive a percentage of the sale.  This won’t affect the price you pay.  

  • My Child's Asthma Story || www.tullyandmishka.com.au
    Family,  Health,  Parenting,  Toddlers

    My Child Has Asthma

    And it’s pretty scary, actually.  We had been taking Mr 2 back to the doctor on a seemingly weekly basis.  It wasn’t actually weekly, but that’s what it felt like.  Constant coughing that turned into wheezing, that sometimes turned into heavy, laboured breathing where his poor little ribs sucked in and out.  

    It started about September last year.  Initially it was croup – meaning a steroid dose was taken.  The next month, we were away on the Great Ocean Road for a weekend, and his breathing became wheezy and his ribs were working hard.  So we called the Lorne hospital and they recommended we come in.  It was a Saturday evening of a long weekend, and we had never needed to take the kids to an emergency department before.  And we weren’t in Lorne, we were probably 25 minutes further on the winding ocean road.  That had Mr 2 vomiting with car sickness the day before.  Awesome. 

    The very winding Great Ocean Road.
    The very winding Great Ocean Road.

    So we headed in, with Ms 3 happily bunked in with friends in their cabin.  I was, of course, completely anxious the whole way there – was he going to spew on the way, was his breathing going to get worse, was Ms 3 ok with us leaving her when it was night and we were in a strange place.  Naturally, he didn’t spew, slept the whole way there and Ms 3 had an awesome time with the big girls!  When we got to the ED, the staff was great.  Saw us straight away and were lovely.  They monitored him for a bit, gave him a dose of steroids and diagnosed bronchiolitis.  Rest and fluids, and get another course of steroids for him. 

    Over the months since, we’ve been back to the GP at least five times with similar symptoms – particularly the wheezing and coughing.  Each time leaving with redipred and ventolin, and sometimes antibiotics, but no diagnosis.  When kids are under two, there is a reluctance to diagnose asthma, mainly because they can ‘grow’ out of it.  Their airways are small and more sensitive to inflammation.  So they wait a bit and see if the symptoms will ease off.  That’s my understanding. 

    We had started considering going to a different GP, to push for a bit more assessment.  He had turned 2 at the start of the year and it was still happening.  Around March, he was wheezy AGAIN.  Of course it came on later in the day and I only managed to get an appointment at about ten to five and with a different GP.  I got in to the clinic, with Ms 3 and Mr 2 managing to climb all over every inch of the waiting room and the GP’s room.  They cannot sit still when we are in a GP’s office! 

    Well, this one was awesome.  She read the file, listened to what I was saying and assessed Mr 2’s presentation.  “It is asthma” she pronounced and proceeded to instruct me to take him to the local emergency department for assessment.  Wait, what?  She was concerned that he needed a thorough assessement that she couldn’t do at this stage of the day.  He needed to be monitored over a three hour period, to assess his breathing and his response to medication. 

    So off we went to the local emergency department.  The Mister had just got home from work, so he met us there.  Luckily, it went fairly well.  We didn’t have to wait hours and hours.  Saying that, whislt we were waiting, his breathing worsened and we heard that real rattling, whistle type breath for the first time.  That wasn’t great. 

    My Child Has Asthma - Tully & Mishka

    He was assessed and monitored and sent home with ventolin and spacers and instructions to see the GP, having responded well to the ventolin.  And that was how we found out our child has asthma.  Since then, we have had an appointment with the nurse at the GP’s to develop an Asthma Management Plan and to learn a little more about asthma.  That appointment really bought home to me how serious asthma is.  We don’t have it in our family and neither does The Mister.  So I’ve never really been exposed to it.  The nurse made it clear that it can and does kill children when not managed properly.  Scared the bejeesus out of me.  So now he is on preventer medication, morning and night, with the plan to reassess once we are through winter.  For Mr 2, coughs and colds appear to be a trigger, so winter can be a difficult period.  And we carry ventolin, spacer and mask with us all the time, in case an attack flares up.

    My child's asthma story.  Tully & Mishka
    More stuff for my bag!

    Luckily, the younger kids are when they’re first diagnosed, the more likely they seem to grow out of it.  Fingers crossed that happens for us too.  He’s been travelling well so far through winter, with only a few episodes of needing ventolin, usually when he has had a particularly severe cold/cough.  

    Did you know there is an Asthma First Aid Plan?  I didn’t, I had no idea.  Click through if you are interested in knowing more about it.  It’s simple and straight forward, and good to know if you’re with someone who appears to be having an attack.  

    How about you?  Do you or your child have asthma?  Was it a surprise, or does it run in your family?  Let me know, I’d be keen to hear (read!) your experience.  

     Here are some more links you may find useful:

    • The Asthma Buddy App – great for slightly older kids learning to manage their asthma.  
    • The National Asthma Council Australia – lots of information for those with asthma, or caring for someone with asthma, for professionals and for media.  
    • Asthma Australia – again, has lots of information and links to state/territory specific sites.  

    #MyAsthmaStory || Tully & Mishka

     

     

  • Crayola Color Wonder Review || www.tullyandmishka.com.au
    Kid Friendly,  Product Reviews,  Toddlers

    Product Talk: Crayola Color Wonder Review

    This product talk is bought to you by Nuffnang and Crayola.

    Crayola Color Wonder Review || www.tullyandmishka.com.au

    In this house, when the kids choose colouring as their activity of  the moment, I think two things.  What are they using to colour and what are they colouring on??  Because, you know, we are inundated with colouring books, and pencils, but somehow drawing on other things and with pens, textas or even crayon is a much more permanent way to display their artistic endeavor.  I present you exhibit A:

    Crayola Color Wonder Review || Tully & Mishka

    Yes, the other day, Mr 2 was having a great time colouring the chalk board.  He was very enthusiastic and when he called me over to see “look, Mum!  Look!” I realised he was colouring with crayons.  Not chalk.  Sigh.  So when Nuffnang offered me the opportunity to try the Crayola Color Wonder range, I was all for it.  After all, it was offered as a “mess free” activity.  Mess free?  Hells yeah.  Because frankly, this house doesn’t need more mess, for reasons best described by the forthright and awesome Janelle at Renegade Mothering.  

    Crayola Color Wonder || Tully & Mishka

    And joyously, the review included TWO packs!  Frozen and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (high school flash back anyone?).  Both kids sorted.  Basically, each pack comes with five textas and once colouring book.  The textas are clear, and it’s not until you (or your child, whoever gets the texta first) draws on the Color Wonder paper that the colour starts to appear.  When you’re a 2 year old kid, that’s hands down amazing.  I give you exhibit B: 

    Yes, that’s one excited little man!  And really, this stuff is cool.  It’s non toxic, there are hidden patterns in the pictures, and I have not found texta colour anywhere else, not their clothes, their hands or the walls.  Well, not from these textas anyway!  Seriously, I just got interrupted by Ms 4 telling me Mr 2 was drawing on the wall.  Gah! At least that was with chalk……
    Crayola Color Wonder || Tully & MishkaCrayola Color Wonder || Tully & Mishka

     

     

     

     

    What activities do your kids love doing indoors?  Is it mess free, or full of fun and educative messiness??? Let me know!  And let me know if your kids love the Color Wonder range too 🙂 

    I’m linking up with Mama Raj Says’ Review Round Up!  

    And here’s a bonus video of Mr 2 and his speed colouring. 

     

     

  • Toddler sleep
    Parenting,  Toddlers

    Sleeping on the edge

    Toddler sleep

    Monday night, Mr 2 decided that he was going to wake up at 3am and come into our bed.  Now, to be fair to him, the whole previous week The Mister had been away and I was not going to do the ‘sleeping in your own bed’ battle by myself.  So Mr 2 was used to just coming on in and sleeping on top of me.  Because why sleep on the other 3/4‘s of the bed when you can make sure mum is sleeping on the edge? 

    Suffice to say, he got a rude shock when he was gently guided back to his own bed at 3:00 am on Tuesday morning.  He did not handle it well.  And for the next two and half hours, did his best to ensure no one else in the house slept either.  He cried, he got out of bed continually, he kept heading up the hall to his sister’s room.  Often, he would be put back into bed, appear to settle for 10 minutes, and somehow sensing that I was just about to return to sleep – bam!  The pitter patter of little footsteps could be heard as he made his way to our door.  To say that he was less gently guided back to bed at this point would probably be an understatement.  I was not coping well with three hours sleep! 

    To add to the fun, Ms 4 had woken at roughly the same time due to a coughing fit that continued to annoy her for an hour or so.  She wasn’t asleep either.  In fact at one point, when Mr 2 was still in his room, yelling loudly, she suddenly appeared in our doorway, hands on hips and demanding “what’s all this racket about??”  If I wasn’t so exhausted and irritated it would have been adorable.  In fact I think it did manage to raise a small smile.  She was promptly sent back to bed, and exhausted, we gave in and bought Mr 2 to our bed.  Where he quickly fell into a deep and angelic slumber.  Faaaaaark!!!

    How do they always manage to have these terrible nights when you really need them to sleep early and well?!  We have kinder at 8.30 for Ms 4 on Tuesday’s.  We need to be up and at them in order for me to be only slightly late and disorganised.  So of course, the two cherubs would have slept until about 9 if I’d let them on Tuesday.  Any other day that would have been great! 

    Sleep and Mr 2 has been an ongoing battle for us.  Recently, it had seemed to be a lot smoother.  We put in some hard work (using the camping out method) and he was sleeping well in his cot, not crying for us to bring him to our bed.  Then after a little while we decided to take the side off his cot, whilst he seemed settled with his sleep, so that he didn’t think he needed to come out.  It was a theory.  A theory that seemed ok until routine changed and it all went out the window.  He had been going to bed and staying there, and only every now and again coming to our room.  Now, he fights bedtime and, well, please see above!  I know for some, kids in the bed are no big deal.  And I didn’t mind when he was smaller, but now, it just doesn’t work.  The Mister doesn’t sleep at all well and finds himself exhausted when doing the long drive to work.  So for us, it’s not something that suits us. 

    Now I could ask for your tips on sleeping, but really, I just want to know that I’m not the only one battling this!!  Do you have a toddler fighting to get in your bed?  I saw that Tegan over at Musings of the Misguided has some good tips for coming to terms with a kid who won’t go to sleep.

    *Update* For this week, the cot has been turned so that he can’t get out.  And we’ll be revisiting the camping out method 🙂