1 Month (20 Meals) of Yumbox Daycare Meals!

IMG_9683 yumbox blog cover photoYup, this Saturday’s a fun one!

No research articles, no checking statistical integrity or inclusion criteria for control and intervention groups to formulate a conclusion, today! And I know it’s been a while since I actually published a *new* Saturday post, but with a sick toddler, I’ve had my fair share of distractions.

After getting slightly burned out by the time- and brain capacity- intensive Saturday Sproutings posts, it’s time to take a break and post about something I have been learning to adjust to, as Jia’s new routine is full time daycare for 8-9 hours a day:


Nope, I’m not a gym rat referring to some uber healthy meal prep that involves a ton of brown rice, lean meats, veggies, and plastic ziploc containers, I’m talking about daycare meals. Continue reading

What’s She Doing Wednesday: At it Again (Sick, that is)

IMG_9716October 16th and November 12th: The onset of symptoms including a fever, twice in a month. This last Thursday, I picked her up from daycare to find her inside (other kids were playing outdoors) with one of her teachers. Jia was “helping” her gather her classmates’  coats, and she let out a dry cough. Her teacher reported that Jia has been off and on fussy in the afternoon and coughing occasionally. She said that she was afraid that maybe she had a fever, but she hadn’t felt warm to her. Took her home, she was definitely a little fuss ball on the ride home, but once we were inside she was happy as usual. Right before her bath, I took her temperature since she felt a little warm to the touch and her temp was around 101F. Rut-Roh. Our ibuprofen was expired by 2 weeks, so I made a quick call to Jeff and had him stop by the pharmacy on his drive home, and I gave her a dose of the expired stuff (meh, 2 weeks isn’t a big deal) and started her bath. The next day I kept her home from daycare as a precaution despite not having a fever in the morning and she’d developed congested sinuses. Then that progressed to congested coughing, which is still around. We are day 5 of her congestion, with no real great improvement – only a slight improvement from when she started to lose her voice over the weekend and she’s gotten it back about 95%. 

I was at my per diem job on Tuesday (kept her home Monday, for a total of 4 days of rest at home) when her teachers told me that Jia had a slight fever of 100F, and though they don’t typically send home kids at 100F (their policy is 101F), they expected Jia’s to spike after her nap if she even had one. I left work early (the per diem job is really flexible and everyone’s really understanding about this type of thing, how nice!) and picked her up about 5 minutes later. She was smiling and trotting over to me in the classroom as I gathered her things, knowing that her pleasant demeanor wasn’t an indication of how well she was feeling during playtime. Got her home, let her acclimate back to her surroundings and play with some toys, drink some fluids and take a dose of motrin (I’m glad she loves the stuff) and she slept hard, for a 4 hour and 6 minute nap. Poor thing. So here we are on Wednesday. No fever, just a max of 99F (temporal) before bed and she’s pretty happy. We’re going to try it again – me going to work. They’re really needing my help tomorrow, so I feel I should be able to work and help out as much as I can unless I hear from Jia’s school that she’s not up for it. All she wants to do is go “outside” and to “playground please” so meh. I’m hopeful. (Monday afternoon all she wanted to do was go to the playground too, but I think it wasn’t the best decision to go)

Other things she’s done (other than catching bugs):

  • Mealtime Hugs: Sicky little Jia was eating dinner and asking me for help scooping food onto her spoon and so I put my left arm around the back of her chair and used my right hand to help her with her spoon. Little nugget leans backwards to gaze at me and puckers up those sick little lips. I try to put my cheek to her lip level but her little bobble head searches to find my lips. Ha! Guess this is where she gets her bugs, handing out kisses. 
  • “Excuse me Mommy” If she wants to squeeze by, sit next to you in a chair, etc. she’ll say “ess-cuse me mommy” or “ess-cuse me”
  • Washing Hands: It amazes me every day when I can ask her to hand me something or go somewhere and she’ll go. I think she’s just as happy that she knows what I’m saying and she wants to show me that she knows. So, when I tell her “go to your bathroom and climb up your stool to wash hands” she’ll trot over to her little stool and start working her way up those two steps to her sink. 
  • Peed (twice) on command on the potty chair. Right before bath, since she’s infamous for sitting on the potty chair then waiting til her feet are submerged in the tub water to start peeing, if she had a semi-dry diaper, I have been encouraging her to try peeing on the potty. Twice so far has been successful, out of about 4 days trying. I’ve learned to make her bath water extra hot, because she likes sitting on the potty for about 10 minutes while we read a book. 
  • Hot Dog Dance: If you have seen an episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, you’ll know the Clubhouse Dance – the Hot Dog Dance. I used to find the song annoying because it was one of those tunes you’d get stuck in your head, but after seeing that she’s learned the dance herself, I really get excited when it comes on to see her face light up and her arms start shimmying to the beat! 
  • Circle Time: She asks me to do “circle time” with her at home, as she grabs a book. She’ll sit down on my lap (the kids rotate in their teacher’s laps during circle time) for us to read or sit in front of me with a book. 
  • Baby: I bought her a Melissa & Doug Mine to Love Mariana doll baby after seeing how “maternal” she has become, with her Lamilly “barbie” doll. I know she loves roll playing with the doll babies at school, so I wanted her to have one at home so my heart could melt as my baby takes care of a baby! So, on her sick day home on November 13th, she got to play with “Baby” (as she’s calling her). She sometimes walks around with her cradled in her arms as she pats Baby’s back and says “shhhh, shhhh” 
  • Dog Eat Dog World: She says “NOOOO!” and points at the doggies disapprovingly whenever they approach her while she’s eating a snack at the living room table. She knows those pugs are after her scraps! 
  • 1, 2, 3, 4: She can now count to four correctly. I don’t think she knows what they really mean. 
  • Favorite # is 2. 
    • What do you want for breakfast? Pancakes! How many pancakes? Two!
    • What floor are we going to? Two!
    • How many blue squares are there right here? (Three) Two!
    • She can pick out 1 of an item, and obviously 2, but who knows what she’s thinking!
  • Wheels on the Bus: She starts humming and singing rhymes around the apartment and Wheels on the Bus is one she loves. She wants us to sing it so she can start doing the hand gestures of the wheels moving, wipers wiping, baby crying and wiping its eyes, shushing, people on the bus going up and down, etc. I mentioned something similar in other WSDW posts, but this one is a regular. That and Twinkle Twinkle and the ABC song. 
  • Indian “Asker”? She’s in the oh-so-great phase of asking for something with gusto and then refusing it immediately when presented to her. This is fun. 
    • Oranges?
      • here’s oranges. 
      • No. 
    • Mac and Cheese!
      • OK I have to heat it up!
      • Mac and Cheese coming? Hot?
      • Yup. (cools down) here you go!
      • No!
    • PineAPPLE!
      • You want apple or pineapple?
      • Pineapple!
      • Here’s some pineapple!
      • No!
    • Milk
      • Here you go.
      • Noooooooo! (as if to say, I did not ask for poison!!!!)
  • Bikes: The day before I sent her back to daycare, we needed to go to the ATM to get cash and then take it to the bank to get quarters for laundry. I put her in the jogging stroller and we stopped by the garage to pump air into the tires. She was all happy and eager to go on this excursion. Til she saw the bikes. Then she wanted to bike. She was unhappy to stroller. She wanted to “go bikes!!!!!” and started to throw her things one by one out of the stroller, showing me she was not approving this decision of mine. I explained to her that we were already on our way to the store and we are going to stroller. To that, she got very upset and started sobbing. I caved. I know, I know. My justification was, “oh but she’s sick I don’t want her upset if she’s sick. If she weren’t sick it would be tough luck kid” ….I think. Oh well. So we went biking and she was clapping her hands saying “yaaaaaaay” and smiling as we rode. 
  • Lil Baby Bobble Head: When we go on our bike rides, she bops her head back and forth as I sing nursery rhymes like “If you’re happy and you know it” or “twinkle twinkle” etc. Though it throws off my balance ever-so-slightly, I really enjoy knowing she’s having so much fun. 
  • She’s getting great at blowing that little nose! Real effective good nose-blowing now, that Snot Sucker is getting some good use and those Princess A-Yeh (Anna) Frozen kleenexes are helping soothe that little chaffed nose!

Some Sick Day Pictures:


Happy sick girl


Mei Mei needs to learn to stop snapping at her little sister for hugging and loving on her


Yup Gran, this caterpillar is still a hit!


Mouth-breathing while watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse


Doing the Hot Dog dance from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse

My Saturday post is already scheduled to publish, so it WILL go live and on time this weekend.

What’s She Doing Wednesday: Happy and You Know It


This week’s post is going to be a lot of pictures. I caught a cold this last weekend so I really want to drink a hot cup of tea and watch Fargo with Jeff and then hit the hay as I’m recuperating, plus I have to have some energy for our outing to the Los Angeles Zoo tomorrow. We’re meeting up with my friend (and one of our bridesmaids) Berry and her 2 year old Maddie.  Continue reading

What’s She Doing Wednesday: Jia’s First (Real) Halloween and Other Stuff

wsdw halloween 3Yup, I’m ’bout to blast a bunch of Halloween-ness on this post because 1) last week’s post didn’t fall on the day of Halloween parades and outings; and 2) my main audience for these Wednesday posts are close friends and family members who look forward to seeing these pics more than the average person. Besides, with all the stores rushing for us all to get to Christmas, I don’t mind a little Halloween recap to slow things down a bit. I mean, why are we completely skipping over the joys and excitement of Thanksgiving? It’s actually one of my favorite holidays, competing with Christmas. 

So anyway, Jia experienced her first Halloween. Last year was technically her first Halloween since she was born, but at only 8 months I didn’t really feel like making a huge deal out of it since she wasn’t going to remember it. Sure, we bought her a Halloween onesie (see last year’s post) and cute little jack-o-lantern knitted sock/booties, but we didn’t try to figure out an official costume or organize a stroll around the neighborhood. This year; however, was a whole different game. She didn’t like the orange glittery butterfly wings I’d bought her from the 99 cent store (it really freaked her out having the wings strapped to her shoulders) and she is really very into Mickey and Minnie. So, we got her a Minnie Mouse costume dress from Target and I ordered a little matching bow barrette from Etsy to go with it.  Continue reading

What’s She Doing Wednesday: Not a Real Halloween Post


This week, Jia’s personality is shining through even more than it has in the past. It’s really remarkable how these little people develop and change in the course of just a couple weeks, with really huge leaps and bounds every few months. I think back to what she was doing and how she was behaving and communicating when we first moved to California and she’s grown up so much over the past 2.5 months we’ve been here. Continue reading

Otitis Media & Pacifier Use: Is there a Link? The Findings & Verdict (Part 2)

IMG_9542Welcome to Part 2 of my post investigating the link between pacifier use and otitis media (OM), a middle ear infection that most commonly affects children and babies. If you want to read Part 1, which explains more of what OM is, and the pros and cons pertaining to pacifier use, click here.

If you’re a regular Little Sproutings reader and/or know myself and/or Jia personally, you’ll know that Jia’s pacifiers have been practically attached to those little pink lips since we introduced them at 3 months old. So, for 19 months to have gone by with only one illness that lasted just two and a half days, I have my doubts about pacifiers pre-disposing infants/toddlers to ear infections. Particularly without pre-existing conditions, such as having an upper respiratory infection (URI), to begin with.

As I said, I have my suspicions.

As a parent that doesn’t believe everything right off the bat without digging deeper (one of my first LS posts was dispelling this irresponsibly titled bizarre headline that said “Tooth Decay Associated with Long-Term Breastfeeding”), I initially suspect that the association between pacifiers and ear infections would be due to the colonization of bacteria that just sits on the pacifier without being disinfected, then the bacteria or virus re-cycles, mutates, and then reinfects throughout the sinuses. (I’m serious, I wrote this theory prior to conducting any real research that follows!)

So my guess was that as long as Jia didn’t have an ear infection (and wasn’t susceptible to them), as long as we kept her pacifier relatively clean, she should be fine. 

Continue to keep in mind my mantra from previous research posts:   

Association DOES NOT equal causation! 

Again, if you’d like to read an overview of OM and it’s causes, read Part 1.  And if you want to jump to the LittleSproutings.com Verdict post-research explanation,  either scroll to the bottom of the post or click hereContinue reading

What’s She Doing Wednesday: Sicky Sprout


It finally happened. At exactly 20 months old Jia got her first bout of illness. Last Friday morning started off with a low grade fever of 100.4 F (and it has never been higher than this in the past), but with a normal demeanor, still smiling and playful. Props to Daddy for noticing she felt extra warm when he got her up in the morning to change her diaper and dress her and for taking her temperature.  Continue reading

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