Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Tube Feeding 101: NG Tubes

I'm starting a series of posts using knowledge we've personally gained in the last 6 months. Having medical equipment thrust into your life is hard. It's even harder trying to figure out how to make it all work once you're out of the hospital and you don't have an appointment or Dr. to ask every day.

An NG Tube is a naso-gastric tube inserted through the nose down into the stomach. Every facility has it's own standards and practices. Ours, from our local and world renowned Children's Hospital, included teaching competent parents how to replace and reinstall an NG tube before their child is discharged. Babies, toddlers, and children will likely have them come out due to pulling or even vomiting so being able to replace is a key help to avoid repeat ER trips. Otherwise the medial tube was rated for 30 day insertion and the tape was redone as needed. Even if you're not replacing the full tube yourself, you'll need to know how to re-tape and secure.

We prefer DuoDerm tape and Cavillion barrier wipes. To get prepped I precut the DuoDerm into two pieces. The first is a rounded edge square or a circle. The second is a small circle with a mustache line off of it. My awesome artwork below shows what I mean.

Starting with a fresh clean face we wipe the barrier wipe on the spots where tape will be placed, each cheek and under the nose above the lip. Then we choose the cheek closest to the nostril side the tube is inserted into. we measure and hold the NG tube secure across the cheek and back to the base of the ear. The first piece to be place is the small circle with mustache. secure the end of the mustache line over the NG tube itself on the side where NG is waiting. Stretch the line under the nostril and across then secure small circle on check. Piece one is placed.

Piece 2 secure the end of the mustache line and the cheek area where the NG tube is crossing. Place it and you're done! We only changed tape when it was completely necessary and not even time a corner started to turn up or a splash of food got on it. Removing the tape can make the skin more sensitive and injured so we tried to hold off.

NG Tubes can often be quite long so we used a homemade pacifier clip to roll the excess and pin on the back of his shirt when not in use!

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Strictly having fun with StrictlyBriks

*I received these products in order to review with them and share with my family. No compensation was received.

If you're like us, building bricks are the hottest toy in the house. We have specific sets but we also have random free play bins. 

Strictly Briks prides itself on integrating their products with everything you already own and encourages random free play building. These items fit standard Lego bricks and take building to new heights. They have stackable baseplates which mean your kids can build in 3D. They can make ramps wit the cutouts situated in the baseplates, throw in some car fun and build a whole kingdom even. For a fun beginner set of baseplates we LOVE the Trap & Gap.

AlphaBriks are a cool new way to make writing fun. When used as a learning tool spelling lessons, sentence formation and more can be done. When sat outside a bedroom door a fun note can be conveyed and when hung on the wall an ever changing sign board is had. Seriously these are so much fun and integrate literacy into play.

They also make baseplates and fun accessories that fit with the large size bricks (Duplo brand). these are perfect for toddlers just starting to build and make creativity easier for those preschoolers not yet able to manipulate the smaller pieces.

Check out everything they have to offer with Strictly Briks!!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Brain Teasers and more!!

If you've read my past posts you know I have a house full of kiddo (and adults) who enjoy challenging puzzle type games. During the summer specifically, when I create a daily task check list for Nolan, 20 minutes of brainteaser activities or games is a must. Last year his favorite was a group game Blokus but I'm always looking for challenging but interesting games he can play alone that will make him think but also make him forget he's learning.

In steps SmartGames. When we were picked to host a SmartGames party I ran to our game cabinet and immediately found 4 games by them we already owned. I'm sure if I dug around we'd have even more! You really can't go wrong with their products. Even better, most of them are 1 player so I can set them up and encourage the activity yet keep on cooking dinner!!

We trailed three new SmartGames out. The first is a preschool to early elementary aged game. Yes you read that right!! Finally your not yet reading but feels like they're as big as their sibling 5 year old can play!! Carter went to town with Little Red Riding Hood right away. He can also continue to set up the next game once he clears a level. It really is heaven!! Not to be undone even my math crazy 8yr old enjoyed playing!!

Color Code

This tile based game works on visual and spatial recognition. It shows you a picture and using clear outlined pieces you stack different shapes and color to form he exact picture. The age range says 5 and up but the amazing thing is the advanced games are challenging for even adult puzzle lovers while the beginning ones are perfect for a new 5 year old.

IQ Puzzler Pro was our third sponsored game and is a classic with a twist. We've played the 2D version before in other forms and loved it. I jumped to the 3D puzzles and was quickly stumped. They are extremely challenging but fun! Even the seasoned brain teaser fan will be challenged. Hubby does forms of these challenges for a living and still had to think when playing. I recommend this for the extreme puzzle lover in your life down to a novice. It's also a smaller price point and in a travel type case which makes it the perfect stocking stuffer or birthday gift!!

In addition to the featured games here we LOVE Quadrillion, IQ Twist, and IQ Fit also. Our Christmas wish list includes Penguins on Ice!!

For my blog pictures I am featuring my kiddos and even a school friend who all on their day off school mid week played educational games!!! Yes, they chose these over Minecraft even with a friend over. We also partied/played these games with 10 rowdy Cub Scouts and they were begging for more time!! Tomorrow our extra copies of each game are heading in to second grade to challenge 45 8 year olds.


Sunday, October 29, 2017

RoosterFin Fall Time Game Night

We were lucky enough to be chosen to host a RoosterFin Fall Time Game Night through Treason. It gave us the chance to try out their latest line of great family games and share them with our friends!! 

Besides our party, we've found that the games pack and travel easily for on the go fun. My boys tag along to Boy Scout Committee meetings where both mom and dad are active participants. Finding activities that ain't just electronics time can be difficult. These were a great addition to our October BSA Committee meeting!! Yep even in the cramped space behind our meeting table these kiddos found a chance to play!

Personally my wizard, magic, minecraft loving newly 8 year old LOVES Wizard Roll!! He has played it numerous times since our party on request with every friend who has visited! Its a dice rolling pattern building game that's became a favorite here. 

Lumpy Cubes (Hero Edition) is a fast paced, quirky, cube stacking game! It helps improve memory, reaction time, and motor skills. Although listed as slightly older, my 5 yr old could play with slight modifications. It's his favorite!

You can find RoosterFin games on Amazon!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Popcorn Time!! Support Scouts

Nolan is selling popcorn to support his Cub Scout pack. Funding for the year round program relies heavily on this once a year event. He's doing his part by working store front sales and visiting neighbors but has a personal goal to try and sell 10 military donation popcorn items. The military donation popcorn is $25 and delivered directly to our troops!! Watch my sweet boy and his personal plea. Those grimaces he's doing are supposed to be smiles haha!
If you're interested in supporting Nolan through a popcorn purchase or military popcorn donation purchase, you can send me a message. For every $25 donation he receives we will be purchasing one military popcorn donation. You can send an order electronically through paypal as "friends and family" to me at or good old fashioned checks through the mail work too!!

Scouts provides such great structure for boys teaching them about kindness, respect, being trustworthy, and doing their best. It engages them in activities that help them get their energy out in a productive way. Nolan went to day camp this year and while it left me one tired mom (I was a Den leader) it was worth the chaos. Support Boy Scouts!! Both my husband and myself volunteer our time weekly for our Pack and help support scouting every chance we get. 

Monday, September 11, 2017

Djubi Fun at Scout Camp

Thanks to Treason I was able to bring along a great party pack from Djubi Games to our recent Cub Scout camp out. Along with all of our planned activities there is a lot of down time for the boys. They love staying active and playing games and as leaders we often need activities that will capture their attention without requiring ours. Djubi was perfect!

What's Djubi you ask? Djubi makes sling ball games and products. In short, a fun new way to throw and catch. My boys LOVE anything they can sling, shoot, throw, launch or rocket off to play. These fit the bill perfectly.

As you can see in the picture above the net catcher has a small lip on the top. That lip grabs the blue rubber band from the ball and lets you fling it to your buddy. It's safe, soft, but fun too!

At Cub Scout camp we had boys from 2 year old siblings up to teenagers playing with the products and having a blast. Parents got in on the game too.

We used our Dartball which come with an easily storable target to play a little competitive launch.

Blue Orange Games sent along party packs with lots of small easy to pack games. Our boys played with them and LOVED the creative games. They were challenging enough for our 5th graders yet could be modified to allow the kindergarteners and young siblings to enjoy too.

Djubi products can be purchased directly from their website here.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

OgoSport Water Play Day

I was lucky enough to be able to try OgoSport's new water play toy, the OgoDisk H2O thanks to Tryazon.

Headquartered in The Brooklyn Navy Yard in Brooklyn, NY, OgoSport designs award-winning toys to get kids and families to "Move. Think. Play.”

So what is an OgoDisk you ask? It's simple. 

The OgoDisk H2O is designed specifically for bouncing water balloons. I love how the disk, made of nylon-spandex and rubber lets kids use their imagination and be active. In just a few moments mine went from bouncing water balloons to pretending is was a shield. This lightweight disk flies much like a frisbee and even floats. 

Great for target practice

...and maybe even as a chew toy haha. 

The weather has spoiled two of our recent water playdate so my three boys have turned creative. Air balloons in the house with their disks!!