Sickness Survival Kit

How To Survive Any Illness: The Sickness Survival Kit

Y’all, I recently went through hell.

Of course I don’t mean that literally. But I felt like my entire body had betrayed me. It started, innocently enough, as a slight fever and a headache. I thought it would be one of those “here today, gone tomorrow” types of illnesses.

Oh boy was I wrong! 

I had a non-stop fever for days.

Days, y’all! 

I don’t have time to be sick. I’m a single mom and when I’m sick, my entire life stops.

This recent illness kicked my butt! I was too sick to even go to the doctor. Luckily, I have some family in town and they made sure I didn’t need anything and that the kids had plenty of food. They mostly survived off of Pop-Tarts and cereal amongst other forms of junk food. That’s when I started thinking about the things we should keep on hand when sick. I’m going to call it the Sickness Survival Kit. Here is what I would put in mine:

Pop-Tarts, Cereal, and other “Feed Yourself!” foods

If it weren’t for Pop-Tarts, Lucky Charms, and Doritos, my kids may have starved while I was sick. That’s only a slight exaggeration. They may not be the healthiest foods, but they worked.

Don’t Forget Chicken Nuggets

Kids cannot live off of breakfast/cold foods alone. Even kids get tired of their favorite foods. If they are old enough to cook, then have something hot they can make themselves. Chicken nuggets is a huge step up from cereal for the 7th time today.

Cash

Seriously, you will need this to pay the delivery person who comes to bring your kids dinner for the 5th night in a row.

Extra Tylenol / Ibuprofen

During one of the first days I realized I was allergic to the tylenol I had on hand and ended up running out of Ibuprofen. Here I am, days into the sickness, finally feeling well enough for a shower.

Sidenote: This is the thermometer I use to track my fertility and menstrual cycles

Netflix / Streaming Video

When I wasn’t sleeping, I was watching Netflix. I have never binged watched so much TV in my entire life. I watched so much that I ran out of things to watch. It’s good to keep your options open.

Rok, our husky, enjoyed breaking the rules and getting on the bed with me. He watched the chickens while I watched Netflix.

Amazing Family

Between my mom and the kids’ grandpa, we didn’t lack anything. They came over, made my kids clean up the mess that was masquerading as my house, and even brought the kids food.

I’m glad to say that I am finally feeling better, though still have a headache. I’m waiting to hear from my doctor to see if the labs they ran showed anything. They said it could be a couple weeks. In the meantime, my kids are enjoying some proper home cooked meals, but would probably rather not be cleaning.

Update July 15th, 2017: Turns out that sickness was pretty bad! I had Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, one of the most severe tick borne illnesses there is with approximately a 20% mortality rate which drops to 5% if treatment is started within the first few days of illness. Luckily I was put on the exact medication needed and didn’t need to be hospitalized.

Boy Scout Camp & Disabilities

Last week the boys and I got to experience Boy Scout Camp at Camp Rockefeller for the first time together. It was enjoyable, yet hard.

VERY HARD.

But also very fun.

Boy Scout Camp - Camp Rockefeller - 2017

We started out at a camp site half a mile away from the activities which meant hauling Losh in his chair down a bumpy, slightly hilly, gravel road (basically around this lake pictured above). The gravel wasn’t packed tight and it felt like pushing him through sand. If you guys have ever pushed a stroller through rough terrain like sand then you can only imagine what it felt like.

Repeat a couple times a day and by day two my body was physically exhausted. Not only that, but they decided to do a hike on day two!

Camp Rockefeller - Camp Site
Our first camp site at Camp Rockefeller – Typical camp site found on the reservation

The camp director and a few other people ended up feeling sorry for us and invited us to move to a handicap accessible site. Not only was it closer to the activities and we didn’t have to hike half a mile to get there, it was also paved and even had an electrical outlet.

Hello, phone charger!

Reminder: Tell them ahead of time next year we need to be placed in this site!

Camp Rockefeller - Handicap Accessible Site
Camp Rockefeller – Handicap Accessible Site

While there, the boys participated in different activities to help them earn rank and merit badges. Kaia worked on the First Aid Merit Badge and also worked on Second Class and First Class rank requirements. He was supposed to do the Swimming Merit Badge, but had to work on passing the swim test first. He didn’t pass it until the final day.

Kaia - learning about First Aid
Kaia – learning about First Aid

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get many pictures of Kaia because I stayed with Losh nearly the entire time as his helper. Kaia had a blast and is looking forward to camp next year. Since it was our first time at Boy Scout camp, we learned a lot and know how to make it more enjoyable for him next year – like bringing a bicycle to make travel across the reservation easier.

Kaia - learning how to use tools
Kaia – learning how to use tools and make lashings

Losh worked on Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class requirements which included first aid. He tried swimming once, but didn’t enjoy it, and was really able to participate anyway. The night before we left for camp, he was in the ER and diagnosed with a UTI. Despite running fever those first couple of days and feeling miserable, he worked hard and didn’t want to sit out any other activities.

He ended up spending a lot of time going to the medic’s office because his Mickey button (feeding tube) started getting a yeast rash that spread down toward his waist band. The combination of heat, humidity, and antibiotics was not good for him.

Losh - learning how to tie knots
Losh.. not feeling well but learning how to tie knots

Losh had a great camp counsellor who didn’t let on to how nervous he actually was. He had never worked with a child like Losh before and was a little panicky and doubting his own abilities to teach Losh. He was also concerned about offending Losh or myself. He did an excellent job and Losh loved having him as a teacher.

Losh - learning about orienteering
Losh and his amazing camp counsellor learning about orienteering.

This is the third time I have accompanied one of my children to an event like this. Sometimes I feel a little awkward in these situations. I was there solely to help Losh, and didn’t want his counselor to think I was doubting his abilities to teach or anything like that. I just know that Losh requires extra help with certain things like fine motor skills and help pushing himself across rough terrain or long distances.

The other children tried to help push him a couple of times, but ended up getting the wheelchair stuck after only a few feet each time. There really is a trick to doing it right and since I’ve had lots of practice it is just easier for me to do it.

Fairy forest - Camp Rockefeller
One of the easy trails at camp. Many others are steep and rocky.

Losh also had a blast at Boy Scout camp and is already planning which activities and merit badges he wants to earn next year. As with Kaia, we learned a lot and know what to bring to camp next time to make it easier.

Overall, the scouting program does a great job of including people with disabilities and both of my boys enjoy being scouts. They are working their way to being Eagle Scouts. I highly recommend getting your boys involved in scouting, even if they have no desire to reach Eagle rank. The life skills and lessons they learn are worth it!

If you are interested in watching our vlog from that week, check it out on our YouTube Channel: Aduke Schulist

Do you know any Eagle Scouts?

Are your kids attending summer camp?

5 Reasons I Have Body Hair

5 Reasons I Have Body Hair

Due to the overwhelming popularity and positive messages I received regarding a video I posted on YouTube about my body hair, I wanted to share 5 Reasons I Have Body Hair.

Ewww! That’s gross! 

If you are like most people, then those were probably your first thoughts when reading that I – a girl – have body hair.

5 Reasons Why I Have Body Hair

Yes. That’s right.. I have hair on my body.. Hair that most girls shave off. And I am okay with it! Here are some reasons why:

5 Reasons I Have Body Hair - Girls with Natural Hair

Shaving is Uncomfortable

I am allergic to the lubricants in most razors and get a terrible rash when using them. The re-growth of hair is itchy and uncomfortable. And have you ever had an ingrown hair? They are no fun!

Why should I have to subject myself to something that is uncomfortable just because society has objectified women’s body hair?

Not Shaving Saves Time & Money

On top of all of the uncomfortable things associated with shaving, it’s time consuming. I don’t have time to shave every single day nor do I want to. I’d rather save my time (and money) and spend it elsewhere.

Woman with Armpit Hair - Natural Body Hair

I Am Not Trying To Please People With My Body

It truly sickens me that we live in a world where women are told to keep their body a certain way or they won’t be attractive. What happened to being attractive because of your character? What are we teaching our daughters?

I remember when I started going through puberty and growing hair and being shamed because of it. I don’t want my daughter to feel like her body, in its natural state, is anything to be ashamed of.

I Am Okay With My Body Hair

I totally get that it isn’t for everybody, and just because I am okay with having body hair doesn’t mean that you have to be okay with it, or even want it for yourself.

I, like most females, shave certain areas of my body, but not as often as most girls. I tend to grow my arm pit hair out for 1-1.5 months before shaving it. I let my leg hair grow for 1-2 weeks before shaving it. My hair is thick, dark, and coarse over my entire body, so while 1-2 weeks of leg hair growth may not seem like much to some, it’s actually quite noticeable on me.

Girl with Leg Hair - Natural Body Hair

Not Shaving Is Empowering

I don’t view myself as a feminist and I’m not obsessed with all things natural, but leaving my body in its natural state is empowering. I think it takes a very confident person to wear clothes that reveal their body hair in public, but at the same time, it builds confidence in those who may be lacking it.

Being comfortable in your body – whether with or without hair is all that matters. And I am comfortable with mine.

Have you ever grown your body hair out? Or shaved something you don’t normally shave?

March & April 2017 Blog Goals & Report

March & April Blog Report

About 2 months ago, I shared my first ever blog report. In it, I told you guys how I was coming along with this “new” blog and some of the goals I had for the upcoming months. I’m here today to update again and set some more goals.

March started off strong. I had my plan all laid out and must say I stuck to it pretty well.. and then came April and everything went downhill. I had a plan to update with a new post every 4th day. Between writing and promoting the posts that I updated, I was busy! I definitely saw progress though.

Then in April, I didn’t follow the “post every 4th day” schedule I had intended. I missed posting 5 times that month, but still saw a good amount of engagement considering I had half the amount of posts.

March & April Blog Goals and Report

BY THE NUMBERS:

March’s Numbers:
# of Posts: 8 (+5)
# of comments: 127
# of sponsored posts: 1
# of views: 430 (+128)

April’s Numbers:
# of Posts: 4 (-4)
# of comments: 93
# of sponsored posts: 0
# of views: 306 (-124)

Blog Posts Worth Mentioning

In March, my daughter started attending a weight loss clinic. It has helped our entire family take a look at our choices and make healthier ones.

I attended a sponsored event at the Outlets of Little Rock with some fellow bloggers. Who wouldn’t love to get paid to drink Starbucks and shop?!

Then, in April I posted an informative article about the Fertility Awareness Method and how I use it as birth control.

And finally, I revealed my DIY Laundry Room Reveal using items from the Dollar Tree and Big Lots.

Social Media Followers:

I’m going to be honest here.. I’m a little bummed at the lack of progress across my social media platforms. In fact, I went backwards on some of these! I am mostly bummed about Instagram. I put a lot of effort into my Instagram, sharing some of the best images at the most ideal times, and LOST followers. Ugh!

Regarding Twitter: I used to follow everybody who followed me, but then realized I didn’t want to be spammed with blog links / sponsored content every time I went on there. It ultimately led me to using Twitter less and less because I just wasn’t interested in those who I was following and was no longer enjoying it. I cleaned up my list and “unfollowed” a lot of people which led to them unfollowing me also. I really have no problem with that as I’d rather have those who are truly interested in my content as followers and not those that are just there for a follow.

So, here is what my numbers looked like from the end of February until now.

YouTube: 1,024 / 1069 (+45)
Facebook: 1,141 / 1145 (+4)
Twitter: 759 / 741 (-18)
Instagram: 1,945 / 1935 (-10)
Pinterest: 793 / 794 (+1)

Total gain: 50

March & April Goal Check-Up

My goals were:

  • Post at least 6 times (each month)
    • FAIL. I was *this.close* to making this one.
  • Double my page views (from February)
    • FAIL. I was on track in March, but slacked off in April.
  • Get at least 60 comments (each month)
    • SUCCESS! I went beyond this goal.
  • Increase my social media following
    • SUCCESS! Even though I lost followers, my total amount increased, so I am considering this one a win.
  • Use Pinterest more
    • SUCCESS! I’m not sure if this will show on my next report, but I have been using pinterest more and more.

Additionally, I had a goal to create a media kit, and update my privacy policy and disclosure policy which I completed. All in all, I would say not too bad.

May & June Goals

I know we are already nearing the end of May, but humor me here.. These are the goals I have set for May and June.

  • Make my blog a priority! Life has been super busy in other areas and I haven’t set aside enough time to really do what I’ve wanted to with my blog. Now that some things are taken care of (I’m looking at you chicken coop!) I have more time to give to my blog.
  • Continue working on increasing social media following
  • Reach out to a few brands about collaborating
  • Network with other bloggers
  • Guest post on another blog

That about wraps it up. I can’t say I’m disappointed with my progress, especially given the effort I put into it, but I am hoping that May and June look a little better.

Curious what my blog report from January & February looked like? You can see it here.  

Mommy Med Spa Day – A Day Of Pampering and Pedicures

This post has been sponsored by Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa. All opinions are my own.
Mommy Med Spa Day

You guys want to know a little secret?

I love to be pampered.

Hello?! What girl doesn’t?

When Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa invited me and a few other bloggers to enjoy a day of pampering, I couldn’t say “Yes!” quick enough.

Single mom. Three kids. Need I say more? 

SingleMommyWarrior and AdukeSchulist
Fellow blogger and single mom, SingleMommyWarrior and I on our way to the clinic.

The Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa was the first day spa to open in Little Rock and just so happens to be owned and operated by the first aesthetician licensed in Little Rock, Arkansas, Mrs. Mahvash Kamran and her husband Jim. This clinic has been around since the beginning, so they legit know what they are doing.

Not only is it a day spa, they have a complete med spa side too. The med spa includes treatment performed by board certified doctor Bob Young, MD with the help of registered nurse, Sara Molsbee. Combined, they have over 30 years experience working in the med spa industry, making treatments safe and effective.

Med Spa Treatments

Long gone are the days when only those in their late 30s and beyond got med spa treatments. Med spas these days are geared towards men and women of all ages. Some of the treatments include Botox, Hydrafacials, Chemical Peels, Microneedling, and more.

These treatments erase signs of aging, skin damage, acne scars, and make your skin look and feel as fresh as it should.

Pampering Pedicures and a Med Spa Day

I’m counting down the days until I can schedule my Hydrafacial. The process involves shooting a blast of hydration and moisture into your skin all while simultaneously removing impurities within the skin.

Whether hyper-pigmentation, signs of aging, wrinkles, acne scars, or fine lines are your worry, the Rejuvenation Clinic med spa has a treatment that is just right for your needs.

Exclusive Product Lines

On top of the amazing treatments, they have some incredible product lines to choose from. Some of their product lines are exclusive to the Rejuvenation clinic like Ultraluxe. Ultraluxe is a vegan, non-toxic, natural line of skincare products. They have this amazing Eucalyptus Mud Wash that I highly recommend you try. They also have nourishing complexes like this Omega-3 Repair Complex.

Ultraluxe Omega-3 Repair Complex At Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa in Little Rock

Along with the Ultraluxe line, Rejuvenation Clinic carries other brands like Natura Bisse (only two spas in Little Rock carry this line), Eminence, and more. If you schedule a massage or facial, you even get a piece of chocolate from Eminence in your own, personal locker.

Chocolate - Yes Please
Chocolate? Yes, please!
Pedicure to Pamper my Feet

The day I went, I took advantage of the day spa side and got treated to a fabulous pedicure. Norma, my nail technician made me feel so comfortable and relaxed through the entire process. It was pure bliss.

Getting My Pedicure On At Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa in Little Rock

I picked out a deep pink color and am happy to say it is still going strong, even two weeks later! I have the cutest feet in town.

Pedicure Courtesy of Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa in Little Rock
Freshly painted nails and wearing my reusable pedicure sandals available for purchase at the clinic.
Gifts to Share

Now for the fun part… Mother’s Day is coming up and I wanted to invite all of you to give the gift of health and pampering. Rejuvenation Clinic and I have teamed up to share their goodness, in the form of a gift card, with one of you. It could be to your own mother, or just a friend in need. To enter in the drawing for a gift card to Rejuvenation Clinic, comment below with your answer to one of the following questions. Be sure to follow me on social media, because there are other opportunities to enter there:

Aduke Schulist on Facebook
@AdukeSchulist on Twitter
@AdukeSchulist on Instagram

How are you pampering your mother this year? 

Have you ever been to a day spa or med spa? If so, what service did you get?

Visit Rejuvenation Clinic Day Spa’s newly updated website and tell me which treatment you would like to get.