Life Lessons and Help from the Interwebs

In the last two weeks, our oldest two have learned to ride a bike.  Yes, Jack did not know how to ride a bike.  Back when he should have learned, I had a new baby, a two-year-old and Matt was transitioning from a contract position (with a huge commute) back to his previous job.  Jack totally fell through the cracks.  He also never really rode his bike.  EJ has put in miles and miles on those training wheels, but Jack never did.  And then he got older and stuck in his head, and we thought it might never happen. When Matt told him that this summer was it and he was going to learn to ride, he was not on board! That being said, since he started riding, he has ridden every day and I've honestly forgotten that he just learned.

As with our shoe-tying experience, we knew we needed some outside help on this one and who ebtter to ask than the Internet?  We found this method and it was so helpful!  Jack took about 3 times out (about 30-45 minutes each) to get it completely on his own and then another mini-session on braking and coasting (remember, he never rode on training wheels, so it was like starting from scratch).  EJ took two 30 minute sessions and she took off on her own without even knowing it.  The challenge with her on this (and most things) is getting her to continue to feel confident.  She is doing awesome, she just doesn't believe it herself.

Olivia has been learning to read this summer and again, I went to the Internet for help.  This time from a blog friend's recommendation of this book (clearly, I'm using the older edition from the library as this is my last child).  Why didn't I know about this book with the other two????  It is so much easier this way!  It's about 20 minutes a day and incorporates sounds and words and then short passages that all build on each other.  By lesson 30, I would say that Livie was officially a reader.  We're about halfway through and I could easily stop and just work with books from this point on, but I'm planning to stick with it.  The format is quick and predictable (so Liv knows what to expect each day) but if we finish the book, her progress will be kind of crazy.  Best part of this book was that it helped us make the jump from a girl who knew all her letter sounds but could not blend them into words, into a girl who could read. I'm sure I'll recommend this book in the future as I know I would use it again (if I had more kids, that is).

And finally, this weekend I had my own personal life lesson and it has to do with mosquito bites.  Seriously, those bugs love me...always have!  Matt & I went to a party in a friend's backyard on Friday.  As it started getting dark, we were standing on the deck (fire going not too far away) and all of the sudden I felt mosquitos biting my feet.  We were only outside for about 10 more minutes before everyone bailed for inside the house, but I walked away with about 25 bites on my feet alone.  I woke up Sunday itching like a crazy person (why the 24 delay, I have no idea).  I have tried a lot of things in my years of bug bites & the only thing I have ever found that works is Rhuli Gel (but I can't find that anymore).  Well, it was 4am, I was hurting, and I needed to find something already in the house...Internet, here I come.  So, I am now a firm believer in making a paste of baking soda & a little water and coating your bug bites with it.  I have noticed the swelling going down and my feet look semi-ridiculous (coated in a weird white powder) but it buys me about 4-5 hours of itch-free/pain-free time.  I am sold!

So, thank you Interweb!  I don't know how I'd make it without you!
Mom said...

Here's another tip for you. Have to go to a party and don't want to douse yourself in bug repellent? Use Avon's Skin so Soft. Bugs seem to hate it. Grandma used it all the time and was never bitten while the rest of us seemed to have the 'come and get it' sign on us.

AEK said...

Never heard of that book either! Going to go to the library and check it out today! Thanks!

cyndi said...

Mosquitoes love me too (ugh!) This year I learned that if you put a coat of clear finger nail polish over the bite it helps it stop itching! I had some chigger bites and it worked wonders!

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