As winter and the cold/flu seasons hits, I always make sure I have my sick box of tricks ready to go! I started collecting items that I wanted at my finger tips when my son was one year old, developing asthma and my husband still traveling back and forth to the Bay Area. Even though wonderful friends were making late night drug store runs for me, I needed a better solution for managing asthma, colds and flu in my household. Alas, the sick box of tricks was born. I packed a shelf full of everything I might need to combat the flu and subsequent asthma issues–including special toys to distract my sick cherubs.
I wish I had been quick-witted enough to write down the name of the blog, but I had read a post months ago from a food allergy mom who made frequent Emergency Room trips with her children. She also had a sick box on hand that had included things like warm socks and items that helped with the ER visits. She was just brilliant and I hope to find her blog again and share it one day! Anyway, here is a quick list of what I keep my sick box of tricks–please note: I use items that meet the medical and allergy needs of my family-always discuss with your physician which items would be best suited for your family’s sick box.
- Asthma Action Plan
- Nebulizer (including fresh masks and tubing)
- Albuterol for Nebulizer
- Peak Flow Meter
- Kleenex® tissue–the super soft variety
- Children’s Motrin
- Pedialyte or electrolyte drink (we don’t use Gatorade)
- Honey for sore throats and coughs (Savannah Bee Honey is our guilty pleasure)
- Organic Yummy Earth lollipops or Surf Sweets Candy to help bad tasting medicine go down easier
- Play Dough (if you are wheat allergic-choose an appropriate modeling compound)
- Crayons or colored pencils
- Ziploc® bags (sad but true, the vomit clean up is easier when the kids are using a plastic bag that zip shuts)
- Puzzles or games that only come out to play during illness
- Portable DVD player with headset
- Ingredients for chicken soup (boxed broth, fresh veggies, etc.)
- Magazine for Mom to help her relax at bedtime
I also specifically keep a calendar where I can track the illnesses and medications taken. This is important in helping to track trends. For my family, we tend to have trouble late spring with respiratory issues and summer time with certain pollens. There are also some antibiotics that don’t work well on my daughter. You just never know what you will learn from tracking illness, environment and medications. I protect sleep and rest time for the kids while I say no thank you to rushing around like a maniac-which meant no indoor soccer this winter! In addition, I increase nutrient rich foods, such as spinach, kale, smoothies, probiotics, etc.
My sick box of tricks, always includes copies of our Asthma Action Plans and the phone number to the after hours Pediatric Urgent Care facility since I lose this number annually! Sometimes, if the year has been exceptionally challenging, I work it in my favor and treat myself to a manicure or pedicure. One thing I learned from my pediatrician, is that mom MUST take care of herself and not get sick too, so I sleep as much as I can when the kids are sick. If I’m sick and hubby is working, then who is there to take care of the cherubs?
Homemade organic chicken soup is a must in our household while battling a cold! I try to keep these ingredients on hand during flu season-fresh dill and lemon are the crowning pieces of glory in this bowl!