Oils Saved Me Last Night

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First off, I’m not a huge oil person. My supply consists of less than 10 bottles of a few different brands of essential oils. We use them mostly as aromatherapy in a diffuser but occasionally for headaches, sinus problems and soothing, I am a firm believer in scents being tied to memory so I tend to use a few special ones on my kids blankets and slings.

I’m sharing this because last night I witnessed something miraculous.

Harper has had a wet cough these last few nights, Willem developed it last night as well. I had already been up once to tuck Harper back in after a bathroom trip when I heard him crying and coughing in pain. He cried “my ear, my ear hurts” in between coughs and I sprung into action. First was the cough, grabbed the vicks vapor rub, next was the earache, I measured out some Motrin because western medicine… then I grabbed oils.

Olive oil is my go-to, years ago in my avoidance of a doctor appointment for my own severe earache I called the nurse and she told me to add a few drops of EVOO in my ear. The oil conditions the ear drum bringing the right kind of moisture to it while it gets any water away from the drum. Having gone swimming yesterday I wasn’t sure if Harper’s earache was from his cold, pressure or swimmers ear but in any case the EVOO would only help.

Lavender is an oil that we have never used in our house besides in a diffuser or bath was my miracle in a bottle last night. I had read somewhere on the internet that you could use it to help treat an ear infection and in the middle of the night with a kid in pain you are willing to try many things. While the EVOO soaked into Harper’s ear I did some quick google research. I dropped about 10 drops of lavender EO onto a cotton ball and placed the cotton ball on Harpers ear (not in it, just on top). He immediately stopped crying and was asleep within the next minute! Not kidding. I almost wish for my own earache just so I can feel it for myself. From now on I promise my family we will never run out of lavender.

Lemon was the follow up. Not sure how exactly this one works but after witnessing the lavender working I was fully on board the oil train. Following my google research directions I mixed a few drops of lemon into my hand with a bit of carrier oil, in my case the EVOO because it was next to me and fully acceptable (who needs to go back downstairs looking for coconut?) then starting from where the ear meets the jaw, massaged the oil down the neck.

One of the first things I asked him this morning was how his ear felt. Harper looked at me, touched each ear as if to figure out which one had bothered him to start with, then shrugged me off saying his ears feel fine.

I’m no oil expert nor am I a fanatic but that cotton ball of lavender did something incredible for me and for Harper last night.

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Harper is Turning 5!

Today starts Harper’s last week as a 4 year old! Four has been the most challenging age so far mostly because he has truly started testing limits with blatant defiance, luckily it’s all a normal part of growing up and his big heart is always underneath the layers of naughtiness.
Without getting sappy and remembering the last year, the last 5 years and how much my boy has grown I’ll get to the point. I asked Harper some his annual birthday questions, the answers where as to be expected.

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Did God Make Poop?

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Harper is just about to turn 5 and his brain is working full speed. He’s picking up social cues, learning the alphabet and digging into theology.

Harper has been asking a lot of questions about God. This is good, we want him to question, to learn and to put things together. This is also insanely annoying at times:

Mom did God make that bathtub? Why?

Mom did God make me? Why?

Mom did God make dirt? Why?

Mom did God glass? Why?

I try to treat each question with respect both to Harper wanting to learn and to God, not wanting to dismiss the importance nor the message that yes, God made everything or at least gave man the knowledge to make it.

Last night I asked Harper if he wanted to pray at bedtime. He said yes and continued on:

Dear Jesus. Mom did God make the sky?

Yes

Why?

To put something above us

Where does God live?

He is everywhere

No, like what city does God live in

Oh, He lives in heaven

Where is heaven?

It’s a special city that we go to live in when we die. Now Harper lets say prayers.

Okay. Does God make poop?

God gives us food and we eat the food and our bodies turn it to poop so kind of.

Does God make pee?

God gives us drinks and our bodies turn them into pee.

But, does God make potties?

Yes God makes potties.

This is the point where I’m not annoyed and pray for Harper over his questions because we just need to go to bed. I was able to stop the questions but only temporarily because the next morning he started asking more:

Mom why do we have to die?

Because we aren’t made to live on Earth forever in our bodies, that’s why we grow and get older.

But everyone has to die?

Yes eventually

Why?

Because God wants us to come live with Him in heaven.

Like your old grandpa? He’s in heaven with God?

(We stopped at my grandparents grave sight around Christmas and I had explained to Harper that they had died and what that meant)

Yes like my grandpa.

So when is that boy going to heaven?

What boy Harper?

That boy, my older cousin?

I don’t know. (and I don’t know what or who he was talking about, it’s slightly creepy but to be fair he’s had a lot of confusion about what exactly cousins are- he asked if a girl we walked by at target was his cousin… so who knows who or what he was referring to).

This has continued. I stopped writing this yesterday and of course at bed time there were more “did God make…” questions that I tried to have grace in answering but again told him it was time to be quiet. Even in playing he asks me if God or Santa made each toy. I’m hoping this “phase” (oh how I’ve loved that word as a parent) is almost over but if you have and quips to deal with 5 year old theology, please, please share it with me.

 

 

 

Through Harpers Lens

Last weekend was the wedding of one of my closest friends. Harper and I both had a part in the wedding but this may have been over stimulation for Harper as well as very distracted parenting from me and thus- Harper was a freaking mess of a kid. So, in order to make an attempt at controlling and appeasing him I allowed him to use my camera- with the strap on constantly.

He captured these gems, the watermelon shot is my favorite of them all.

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Easter in Spearfish

  

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

We had a wonderful easter filled with sugar and family. Unfortunately I didn’t get many photos because I spent most of the day holding my little Willem and if you can’t tell I’m not in a writing mood either, just want to post these before it takes me weeks. I’m exhausted, holidays for moms are amazingly fun, just not relaxing. Also I can’t brush my teeth after all of that sugar because Willem stole my brush outside to try brushing his teeth with dirt, lucky for him he’s as cute as he is curious so I can’t be too mad. 

Oh What a World We Live In: Summer Goals

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How gorgeous is this canyon? If we didn’t have small kiddos we would have hiked to the bottom.

For Chad’s birthday I bought him the northern plains map for his GPS because he had been talking about geocaching a lot lately. So on a whim this afternoon we went to find a few. Unfortunately the one we really wanted to find was on the bottom of this beautiful canyon and we could not figure out how to get down there. We still had a nice time getting out but now we have the goal of getting down to the water, finding the geocache and most importantly playing in those beautiful water pools!

We found other geocaches, hiked small mountains (while Willem slept in the car), took our Subaru on it’s first off road adventures and most importantly we all were out together.

Free Range Parenting

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Harper came bounding through the backdoor from the dark backyard. His cheeks where rosy, his breath was heavy and his eyes where wild. “Mom! We play outside!” I had been upstairs going through the night routine with Willem while Chad was downstairs doing dishes while our 4-year-old ran around outside playing with no adult supervision. “We played hide and seek, and bad guys and bad cars (?)” he exclaimed with a frenzied excitement. As he told me about his adventures outside I became just as alive as he was. My little boy is growing up and experiencing the world in his own way through his own eyes.

We are graduating as parents with Harper. I still carry Willem close and cuddle him to sleep (even as I type this they are both asleep in my bed on either side of me), yet Harper has gained an intense independence in the last year.

I just recently came across this op-ed in the New York Times about Free Range Parenting. I had only heard of this term once before on a Facebook thread but it didn’t stick long enough for me to google it. Once I came across the article I felt a strong gratitude that we are able to give our kids an imaginative and beautiful childhood free from fences and limitations.

Free range parenting to me is what we lived as children but it now has a name. It’s about trusting your child in the world and letting them play without the constant watchful eye. This does not work for every child and in every environment but it does stand to be talked about because as the parenting pendulum swings we can over-act when it comes to our children. This comes only for love of them and out of their safety but there is a point when we have to trust that they will make wise decisions and be ok. Think of it as little test runs to their adulthood (oh the thought of that hurts just a little).

“If you love someone let them free” is an  in my mama-bear opinion but I do love Harper in a way that I want him to be who he truly is and not a mold that I put him in and trusting him at 4 to play with the neighborhood kids in a safe environment without his mom constantly overseeing him allows him to be his sincerest, sweet little self.