Y’all. It has been a week so far.
After a rollercoaster of a weekend, the week has started off with a bang! First let’s rewind to Saturday.
We initially were trying to plan a day trip to the mountains with friends to let the girls see and play in snow, but Brad last minute needed to go check on a job site at a hospital in the opposite direction to ensure things were on track for an upcoming DHEC inspection. We decided to just turn this into a quick family trip so that we could still get away and have a change of scenery. As we were about to walk out the door, my Dad called me with the news that my grandmother, ‘Mana’ hadn’t woken up that morning. She has not yet passed but was unconscious and according to hospice, there was nothing that could be done. They described her as being “in transition”. My dad insisted that we not change our plans, so once I pulled myself back together we finished getting loaded up and hit the road. Our first stop was to Starbucks to get a cup of coffee to cheers Mana as she was an avid coffee drinker. Back when she could get out, she drank Starbucks all the time — mostly the ones inside of Barnes & Noble because she was always reading a new book.
Once Brad saw what he needed to on the job site, we drove to the coast to Folly Beach for a quick walk to put our toes in the sand. The weather has been so crazy lately and it was SO windy on the beach! Our hair was whipping all over the place. We walked the pier for the first time and then took a short walk on the beach, collected some shells and made our way back to the car.
It was lunch time by the time we left the beach, so we grabbed some local fare … Chick-fil-A. 🙂
I’ve always wanted to check out the South
Carolina Aquarium in Charleston but the ticket prices give a little sticker shock; however, they were doing a BOGO free adult ticket deal for Valentine’s Day weekend so this was our opportunity to go and save some money! On the way from Chick-fil-A to the aquarium, Laney fell asleep, so Brad, Morgan and I had a picnic lunch in the car to let her sleep. Once she was awake and ate her Mac & cheese, we made our way into the aquarium. It’s not super big, but is so clean and well done! It took us about an hour and a half to see everything and the girls loved it!
From there, we went to check into our hotel and grabbed dinner at Jim ‘N Nicks. We love their BBQ and eat there any time we can find one. Morgan actually tried BBQ for the first time and loved it! I think we were all in bed by 8:30pm and got a great night’s sleep.
We were up first thing the next morning and went next door from our hotel to Cracker Barrel for breakfast. It was there that my Dad called me again to let me know we had lost Mana around 3:00am. It couldn’t have been more fitting that we were at Cracker Barrel — one of her favorite places ever! As sad as it is when someone we love passes, it’s comforting to know she is in the arms of Jesus no longer in pain dealing with the health issues she’s battled these last few years. I spent the ride home reminiscing and looking at pictures of Mana with my girls during our last few visits.
A New Week
Monday was our typical day of errands and grocery shopping while Laney was at school and then an afternoon of getting the house in order before cooking dinner. It was also the day we had to start giving Morgan one of the foods to which she is intolerant. My homework from Morgan’s allergist appointment a little over 6 months ago was to start introducing these foods (containing wheat and oats) around 16 months. Well, she turned 16 months back on February 9th and I have been avoiding it since then. I knew time was ticking until her follow up appointment on March 10th and if I didn’t get started, I wouldn’t have much to share with the doctor so Brad made us start that night. It just hurts my heart a little bit to make her not feel well if she is still intolerant. If you missed my initial post about Morgan’s food intolerance episodes and allergy appointment, you can find it here.
We have decided to start with the wheat/gluten intolerance by giving Morgan increasing amounts of goldfish. On Monday, we gave her 3 goldfish. From past experiences, Morgan would react and get sick right at the 2 hour mark. Within minutes of getting it out of her system, she was back to normal. Luckily we surpassed that window of time with no issue.
Tuesday was just all around crazy. We decided last minute to join Channing at the Hands on Art event at our local library. We usually go to a different library for this event because they limit the number of kids to keep it more manageable but this one is a free for all. I quickly remembered why we stopped going to that one. Phew. It’s like survival of the fittest to get a seat for the story time portion and then to find a seat for the craft which is almost always paint at this location. Rain was also in the forecast, which I was hoping would hold off for us to get some errands out of the way. That was wishful thinking. It was raining before we even left for the library. But that’s ok, we managed and the girls had fun seeing each other even for just a short time.
Afterwards, we went to Target for an order pick up and to grab a storage bin for my growing collection of Valentine’s Day decor. I needed coffee and Laney wanted a chocolate milk so we made a Starbucks stop to kick off our Target trip. Well, we have now reached the age that Morgan needs one too. I didn’t get her a chocolate milk at first but she made it clear I was going to have to get her one when she started screaming and pulling Laney’s hair, since I was using our side by side double stroller. Over in the dollar section, Morgan started tilting the milk up, thus pouring some on herself and down her shirt. At the time, we were the only ones in this section. Morgan then proceeded to pull the straw out and start shaking everything around. At this moment, another mom with a shopping cart walked up behind us as I’m dealing with the chocolate milk mess meltdown. She proceeds to stare at me and say excuse me when she had 2 other routes she could take to get around me. So, struggling to organize myself with no free hands I had to use my knee to nudge the stroller into one of the ways she could have gone around me just for her to take a few steps past me and abandon her cart to go to the bathroom. Ugh. Thanks for the grace, lady. From there Morgan proceeded to scream through the entire store and Laney had to go to the bathroom twice (each time while on the opposite side of the store from the bathroom). But I’m happy to report, we successfully got the storage container, picked up my order and made it out in one piece. And Laney successfully made it through this entire outing in big girl underwear! (I’ve still been cheating by putting her in a pull up every time we leave the house but she obviously doesn’t need to do that anymore.)
At dinner, it was time to give Morgan her next “dose” of gluten, so we gave her 5 goldfish plus the extra one Laney gave her. Two hours later and she was still fine! Yay!
Today I plan to give her 8 goldfish when she gets up from her nap. Fingers crossed we stay on the right track! I think for now we will continue to up the amount for about a week and then we will need to start testing the oats.
Food allergies and intolerances alike can be very intimidating. I’ve never read so many ingredient labels in my life and going out to eat comes with it’s own new challenges, and anxiety if I’m being honest. Through this process, I’ve calmed down about it the more time has passed and have found a great resource in @allergyfriendlymama. Her daughter has some pretty serious allergies and she shares some wonderful products that are free of the Top 8 allergens. If you or someone you know has food allergies, I highly recommend giving her a follow!
I will do another post soon with an update on the oats testing and Morgan’s follow up appointment with her allergist. I also will share some of @allergyfriendlymama’s food finds for you to have here in one spot.