Posted in Quote of the Week

Quote Of The Week

Let’s be honest — the only things I’ve been good about updating have been Instagram and my personal Facebook profile. Haha. So, I’m thinking I should bring a bit of that here.

jen hatmakerUntil whenever inspiration hits!
~Katie ☙

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Posted in High Five For Friday

It’s Friday!!!!

We made it through another week, ladies and gents. While it may be the beginning of your 3 day weekend, my husband is just ending his weekend and returning to work today. Boo! Well, let’s get this list out of the way, shall we?

  1. From Twitter:
    My skin actually feels super soft and not dried out from using Pink Zebra “hand soap” as body wash in my shower. This stuff is paraben and sulfate free too!

  2. From Instagram:
    Finally picked up a book again. In the evenings I’ve been watching Heartland instead of reading, so I’m trying to start reading during the day instead. I miss it and Jude is starting to learn to read as well so I’d like to encourage reading as a good habit to have early on.
    Narnia
  3. Speaking of reading more:
    I finally made it to the library and attained a library card. We ended up leaving before getting to use it though since Jude had an emotional breakdown. We ended up going for a long drive so he would sleep since we think these emotional outbursts are stemming from a growth spurt of some sort. More on that next week….
    scan0005
  4. Also from Instagram:
    Legos have hit our household like a maelstrom! Jude really loves these junior sets.
    legos
  5. From Twitter:
    Best Jude line of all week!

  6. Until next week!
    Katie ☙

Posted in Crohn's Disease, Health

Chronic Illness: The Mental Game

For those not “in the know,” I’ve been dealing with the effects of Crohn’s Disease for awhile now and was just diagnosed in January.

After you get over the diagnosis, the fatigue, the malaise, the pain and the scary medications they may put you on, it really becomes a mental game with the worst conclusion to any game you have played:

You will never get better. You will always have to deal with this. You will forever have medical bills. You will always feel like a burden.

There, I said it. Some days I can shut this voice off, but when the house is a mess, the bills are stacking up and I’m constantly fighting with my insurance company, I really can’t help it.

Some days I really just feel like a burden.

I’ve heard this echoed from others that have chronic illnesses such as diabetes, fibromyalgia, etc. It doesn’t help when you’re lying in a hospital bed feeling as if you’re contributing nothing society. Sure they love you, but you really feel like you’re just inconveniencing their entire life by even existing; that they may be happier without you.

This is why it is SO important for anyone to have a support system when dealing with these types of conditions. No matter how large or how small, being there for someone that needs it can make a huge difference in their mental outlook. Even if it’s just an ear without really any advice to contribute, it helps just having someone to vent frustrations to. I believe a more positive outlook makes a huge difference when it comes to managing chronic illness — at least it did for me.

Damn, that was deep! Are you someone managing a chronic illness? Do you ever feel the same way? To use a networking cliche, “I’d love to connect!” Leave a comment below.

Until tomorrow,
~Katie ☙

Posted in Parenting, Travel

Pretend City

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Don’t mess with me, I’m cookin’ here.

So….clear back in March, my lil’ family migrated down to Irvine one Wednesday to check out Pretend City. The journey there was a bit harrowing as I can’t figure out how in the heck to tell my GPS to ignore toll roads. We ended up stopping at a Costco for lunch and ate like kings for cheap before contacting my sister-in-law (who now lives in Orange County) on how in the world to navigate around the area.

Bless her, because we finally figured out how to get to the location!

Tucked in an unassuming industrial park, Pretend City is a haven for children. Kids can take their time card to various locations throughout the building, get it stamped and then go to one of their ATMs and get “money” for their work. The money does nothing else than give an extra element of realism, so if you have real little youngsters, they’re in no way going to miss out on any of the fun to be had.

The buildings included a grocery store, gas station, cafe, post office, farm, health center and emergency services. Jude’s favorite by far was the cafe — in fact, this was the hot spot for most of the children. Where else can you rope your parents into being served a myriad of plastic food in a somewhat realistic setting? By the way, parents, you’re encouraged by Pretend City to leave your cell phone in your pocket and engage with your child(ren). 🙂

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Jude also loved the science aspect of this water exhibit. Children were encouraged to build foam boats and put them through the current. Areas allowed for you to use barriers to redirect the current or use wind to explore the use of sails on water. Jude loved this hole in the center of the water table where you could stand and interact with items as they drifted by. Of course, there was also a fishing area where you could use “fishing rods” and nets.

The other great thing about Pretend City was the library. The bibliophile in me completely nerded out going through the selection of books and I was able to show Jude a book written in braille — which was also the first time I was able to see one myself. (Can you tell we live in a “small” town?)

The only downside to this trip was the drive! We live in the high desert, so it’s a 90 minute drive on a GOOD day and a 3 hour drive on a bad day. Since Pretend City closes at 5 and we didn’t even get there until around 12:30pm or so, we were stuck in the 3 hours of rush hour traffic to get home. My solution to this is Disney or Knott’s Berry Farm passes so we can tour around a park waiting for rush hour to, uh, rush on by, but we haven’t quite accomplished that yet. LOL. One day.

Tips:
*Beware of your GPS’s love of toll roads. It’ll tell you how to get there the fastest, but it won’t quite cooperate to get you around the tolls either. Pretend City is quite literally in the heart of toll road country!
*Get to the doors when they open and leave early if you want to avoid the traffic jam. Memberships are available which also get you in the door an hour earlier the days they are open AND they’re tax deductible because Pretend City is a non profit organization! WOOT!!
*Bring a sack lunch. There’s areas there for you to eat, but only vending machines available for food.

Thanks for reading!
~Katie ☙