Summer list

I want to do so much with the boys this summer! We had a pretty bad winter (too many snow days to count) so I really want to take advantage of the summer months. I put together a short list of things I want to accomplish this summer.

1. Summer Vacation ~ We already have a family vacation planned for next month. Really looking forward to a few days to relax and enjoy the family.  

2. The Beach ~ This is a must, the last time we went to the beach Andrew was around 7 months so we are long overdue.  

3. Swimming Lessons ~  I think its very important that the boys are comfortable in the water.  

4. Day Trips ~ Short trips that require less than 3 hours of driving but give us ample time to explore different areas.  

5. Water park ~  There are a few water parks near our house so hopefully we can hit up a few before the summer ends. 

6. Outdoor Movie ~ I think the boys would love to watch a movie outdoors! I'm going to look into this to see if I can find something a local event.

7. Kings Dominion ~ I love roller coasters!! They are so much fun! Aaron has been to KD a few times and always has a good time. I'm hoping that he's can ride more rides this year now that he's a little taller.

8. DIY Projects ~ I've seen so many DIY arts and crafts that seem relatively easy so hoping to try out a few that I saw on Pinterest.

9. Ice cream ~ There are so  many new ice cream/frozen yogurt shops opening up in our area and I'm anxious to know if they offer any dairy free options. If not, we will test out a variety of Popsicles!

10. Sports ~ Now that Aaron is older I've been trying to get him accumulated with different sports. We tried soccer a few months ago and really enjoyed it. This month he's doing basketball and next up T-ball!

11. Museums/Aquariums ~ The best way to beat the heat and have fun learning new things is to check out the Museums! There are so many and I would love to explore them with the boys. We had a lot of fun at the Aquarium last summer and are look forward to going back.

12. Bike Rides ~ Now that summer is finally here I really want Aaron to ride his bike! The training wheels are off so it's been a challenge but I think he can do it if we are consistent.  Practice makes perfect!

13. Nature Walks/Outdoor Activities ~  I like walking with the boys and getting them outside to be active. There are a few trails by our house so I'm hoping to put Andrew in his stroller and explore the outdoors.

10 things that I care about now

The other night I was thinking man have things changed...not just my priorities, but my interests and my hobbies. As I get older some things just are not that important as they used to be. It's funny to think about how I care so much about things that meant absolutely nothing to me a few years ago.

I wanted to share a few things that I completely treasure now....that I didn't before.

1. Sleep. This is self explanatory, I don't think I can ever catch up on all the sleep I've missed over the past few years. It's not that I miss sleep, it's more so that I realize how important it is to go to bed a a decent time. I can't stay up until midnight anymore, I'm exhausted! It also doesn't help knowing that my two early birds will be waking up in a few hours. So when I can, I sleep!

2. Time. I think we can all agree that there are not enough hours in the day. I'm lucky if I can squeeze in an extra 30 minutes of sleep let alone a 30 minute workout in the evenings. I realize its all about priorities, I have to manage my time well so that I can fit everything I want to in the day that also includes things for the boys as well.

3. Walking. I'm usually always a person on the go and until recently I never just admired how nice it is to view my surroundings and take in the atmosphere. I've found a joy in walking/jogging now because I get to clear my mind and view all the scenery around me.

4. Relaxing. I really take time daily to relax and unwind. After I put the boys to bed each night I take a few minutes just for "me time" to clear my mind and relax. Sometimes my relaxing could be reading a magazine, taking a nice bath, going to a Zumba class or even watching TV.

5. Breakfast. I enjoy breakfast food more than ever before! It's the first meal of the day. I use to skip breakfast all the time but I've noticed that I feel so much better when I actually sit down and eat breakfast. It really helps jump start my day especially when I had a long night with little to no sleep.

6. Comfortable Shoes. I'm not sure if I've been killing my poor feet the past couple of years or what but man, my feet have changed! I can no longer live in flip flops and shoes with no support. I really spend a lot of time now looking for shoes that are not only fashionable but also comfortable and sometimes its a challenge!

7. Quality. I value quality so much more now!  This applies to quality time spent with family and friends as well as the quality of good food and clothing. I don't get to spend countless hours with my family and friends but when I do I really enjoy that time. Now that I'm older I try not to waste money on things that don't add value or are not of good quality, I'm more interested in the durability and how versatile a piece of clothing is.

8. Future. I treasure tomorrow and the day after tomorrow so much more! It's crazy to think how we can live our lives without even thinking about what our future holds. Now that I have children I think about their future every day, I want to make sure they are taken care of and they have the tools they need to be successful in the world.

9. Vacations. As a child my parents would take us on family vacations or we would spend the summer with my grandma. After I graduated college I was on the fast track with my career and hardly took vacations. Now that I'm older and have children I really treasure that time that we spend together. I like looking forward to taking a family vacation. It's always hard to get back in the swing of things after a week long vacation but it's so nice to be able to relax and create memories with the people you love. 

10. Fitness.  Fitness has always been a part of my life or at least I've tried to make it a necessity. In the past I would workout whenever I had time but didn't stick to a plan and/or schedule. Now that I'm older and my metabolism is much slower I have to work twice as hard! I try to sneak fitness in daily so now it has become a part of my life. I feel so much better when I work out and I notice a huge different when I don't. It's all about consistency and making it fun.

We drink a lot of....MILK!

Milk is one hot commodity in our house! It seems like we can never buy enough and we are always running out!!! I'm pretty sure this is a common factor in all households with growing kids but its a little different in our home because well....we don't drink cow's milk! Both Aaron and Andrew drink Hemp milk, vanilla to be exact. 

I found out early on that Aaron was allergic to cow's milk and for a while he was drinking soy milk. He loved soy milk but his pediatrician recommended that I try goat or hemp because it had more fat and vitamin D then soy. So we made the switch and to my surprise he loved it.  

I thought for sure Andrew would have zero issues with cow's milk because he didn't have the same problems that Aaron had as a baby. No vomiting, and no hives but unfortunately when I started introducing milk shortly after his 1st birthday he had issues. It wasn't working well with his stomach and he was extremely cranky which isn't like him. I spoke to his doctor and she said to try hemp!  I'm thankful that both of them like the vanilla flavored hemp milk and that we have zero issues but let me tell you, is it expensive! It's roughly $4.89 for a 12 oz box!  

We go through one box a day. Lucky for us the grocery store across the street sells it but they are always running out. Partially because I'm buying 5 or 6 boxes each time I stop buy. I feel bad when I take the very last box because there maybe another family in dying need of hemp milk. Good thing they sell chocolate and original however, Andrew will only drink vanilla. I don't blame him, vanilla is hands down the best out of the three. 

I've asked several times if we could order a box but still haven't received a call back from the manager so now I've resorted to the Internet!  Not sure why I didn't think of it before but I found a place online that sells it by the case and it's $3.50 a box plus free shipping!  You can't beat that deal! Hopefully all goes well with this shipment so that we can have it automatically shipped each month. It will save us the hassle of having to run to the store only to find out they only have chocolate in stock.

Name change

Now that things are changing around here I think its time to change the name of this little blog. When I first started blogging it was mostly to spread awareness about the struggles of an everyday mom with a child with allergies. Since then we've grown so much, Aaron is now 5 years old and he has a little brother name Andrew. So it only makes sense to change things up a bit.

I had a really hard time coming up with a new name. I wanted something that had meaning but something that wasn't extremely long. After several attempts I settled with Muffin's Little Boys!

About the Name

A little background about the name Muffin. It's a family nickname that I've had since I was born. I think it's very fitting for the blog because I'm branching out of my comfort zone and sharing my life with you. I wanted to incorporate my nickname  to give it a more personal touch especially since my family and close friends still refer to me as Muffin/Muffy on occasions. Be on the look out for some more new changes as I work on updating the blog.

Life in Pictures

Here's an update of our life in pictures.

So much has been going on since November I think we are overdue...


 About a month ago Aaron met with a new Gastroenterologist about his allergies and EE.  Back in 2011 I found out that Aaron was diagnosed with Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EE). For more about EE and Aaron's story read here. After several appointments with specialists I decided to take a break from everything and let Aaron be a kid! He had 3 endoscopes, endless allergy testing, and a variety of medication to try and clear up his EE. Since EE is relatively new it was like Aaron was a guinea pig and they just wanted to run test after test. Well after several good and bad attempts I threw in the towel! The last straw was after they suggested Aaron go on an elimination diet. Which basically means he can't eat anything! Well he's already allergic to cow's milk, eggs, fish, and peanuts what more could they take away from his diet. Well now they wanted to omit soy, wheat, green beans, oranges and tons of other things! I couldn't take it anymore! I didn't want to restrict him of the things he wasn't allergic to. Plus, he was doing so well with the medication. 

Aaron has come such a long way! He use to throw up at the very minimum once a day but that has since changed. He rarely vomits unless something doesn't settle well with his stomach. We've really figured out what works best for him and he knows what he can and cannot eat. We've had a few hiccups along the way but  over the past few years I think we've really mellowed his condition. 

With Kindergarten approaching I new that it would only be right to take Aaron back to the Gastroenterologist and allergist to get an update on his condition. However, this time I decided we were not going back to a place that would be running test after test on my child. I set up an appointment with a new doctor in a different practice and he was great! I only have good things to say about him. I had all the health records from Aaron's previous doctors sent to his new doctor and he was floored at how much Aaron had improved (weight and height) since the last few years. He was very patient with Aaron and assured me that Aaron wouldn't be a test patient. He did state that EE is still early in its research stages but that they are seeing a lot more children with varying symptoms so its helpful to see what has been working for others. 

We were instructed to take an acid reflux medicine for 2 months to eliminate all of the acid in Aaron's stomach so that they could perform an endoscopy.  An endoscopy is the only way to validate whether there are white blood cells present in Aaron's esophagus. After his endoscopy the doctor will have a better idea of how to treat Aaron. I will keep you posted on the results, his endoscopy is scheduled for this summer.

We're back...with a twist!

We're back!!!

I took a long break from blogging because I was trying to finish up my degree program and so much was going on. I felt like I had zero time for anything "extra".  Now that I finished up school I'm ready to dive head first back into blogging! 

Now that so much has changed in my life I would like to incorporate more posts about other things. I initially started this blog to talk about my life with Aaron and how we were balancing life while dealing with Aaron's EE issues.  Now that Aaron is 5 (I can't believe it!) and he has a little brother (insert Andrew) I think it's time to explore more of my life.

The twist

I would like to start blogging about everything I love, first and foremost the boys (you will see plenty of posts on A&A) but then I may add a few other posts on things I love to include beauty, fashion, fitness and food (who wouldn't enjoy a good recipe!). 

I'm really excited about blogging more and inviting you into my life. I consider this to be a lifestyle blog, some topics personal some not so personal. With all the changes going on I think I need a new name for my blog - once I got the name down I will fill you in. Be on the lookout for a new blog design and layout. Things are going to be looking a lot different around here now that we're back!

Start following us for updates on the blog!

Pre-K Graduate!

Preschool is officially over for Aaron! My baby graduated from preschool earlier this week! Words can't express how proud I am! He has grown so much in the past year and I'm certain that he is well prepared for Kindergarten. I just need to prepare myself so that I'm not a hot mess on the first day of school.
He was so excited when he walked on stage to get his certificate of achievement. Check out my preschool graduate! Don't mind his serious face.

Hello 2014!

I just noticed that I haven't posted since November 2013. I can't believe it's been THAT LONG!!! I'm way overdue on filling you in on what's being going.

Since November 2013 there have been a number of things:

- We celebrated 2 birthdays! Andrew turned 1 and Aaron turned 5!!!
- We enjoyed a bunch of holidays from Thanksgiving to Memorial Day.
- I completed my Masters Degree Program!!!
- We welcomed not one but two babies into our family! Two baby girls for the boys to enjoy.
- We had several inches of snow this winter and we even built a snow man!
- Aaron met with a new Gastroenterologist, and is doing very well!
- We attended the 20th Annual Heritage Railway Festival and the boys had a blast.
- Aaron graduated from preschool! My little man is going to Kindergarten!! I hope they're ready!

Those are the highlights, pictures to follow soon. I have plenty more to post to come so please stay tuned! Now that my degree program has come to an end I'm looking to get back to blogging and revamping the site. It's time for a much needed makeover!