Sunday, June 14, 2020

Moving Beyond Anxiety by David Chadwick Book Review (Flyby Blog Promotions)

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links.



I read Moving Beyond Anxiety by David Chadwick, in exchange for honest review for FlyBy Blog Promotions. I received a pdf and a paperback copy of the book. The book is written from a biblical perspective. Part 1 focuses on identifying anxiety, while Part 2 focuses on overcoming anxiety.

Part 1: Identifying Anxiety

I wanted to read this book because I have tons of fears and anxieties. Will my oldest son's behavior get us evicted from another place? Will my youngest die in his sleep from his seizures or sleep apnea or long QT syndrome? If I walk the kids to the store or laundry room, will they walk off or have a public meltdown? If yes, I rather not take them, at all, than risk it. If I die, what will happen to my kids? Will Kalen accidentally cause an infection to his self because he likes to self-injure by scratching? I had his heart monitor removed because it was broke and Kalen was scratching around the monitor.

I worry about my health. I have headaches, back pain, and joint pain. I barely had any sleep since March because my oldest has been waking up, mostly at 4/5 am to hit walls, doors, and the ceiling. For me, I listen to music, clean, walk outside for a second to breath to try to stay calm and focused on rough days. I also pray but many times, fear my prayers are not listened to or won't be answered. After all, it's been three months since Brad started banging walls and doors at 3 am and it still won't stop.

In the Chadwick provides 12 strategies to help with anxieties. One of the first things, which stood out was Chadwick defined anxiety and fear.

"Anxiety is thinking something bad might happen to you", while "Fear is the belief something bad will happen to you". Chadwick says that if we win the battle over our thoughts, then we will win the battle over anxiety. Bad thoughts lead bad feelings, which lead to bad behaviors. We have to renew our minds daily.

Anxiety and fear also can affect your prayer life and your relationship with God. The devil also has a part in worry, anxiety, and fear by implanting thoughts in your head, which increases anxiety; tempts you to engage in destructive behaviors; and affects your relationship with God. God wants our lives to be filled with peace and joy, which is something I definitely need more of. A quiet, peaceful household, even with two children, with special needs.

The book also focuses on the causes of anxiety. Rapid change, loneliness, failure, rejection, and fear of tomorrow are the ones, which hit home, to me. Just look at the past few months. Kids went from going out of school for Spring Break to being out for the rest of the year. Church was closed and went completely virtual. Their psychiatrist visits also went virtual. Clinic also implemented curbside pharmacy plus temperature checks. 

Both kids behaviors changed quick, which increased fear, anxiety, depression, and loneliness. Both of their medications have been adjusted, a few times to see if it helps. Toss in a outpatient surgery and a few visits for routine doctor visits and lab work.

I lost my breaks, during the day, along with sleep. I had to outsource laundry to my niece because they have elopement and other behavioral issues when going out in public. I had to learn to rely on more and accept help from others. We are all in this together. I am definitely grateful for Ms. Reen, Ms. Kim, Ms. MaryLynn, Hope for Three, Houston's First Baptist, during this time.

Part 2: Overcoming anxiety. 

To overcome anxiety, some of the solutions include focusing on faith; praying; singing; and getting Godly teammates. I have definitely prayed, begged, and pleaded during these last, few months, hoping any of my prayers would get answered. You have to embrace the little victories because God answers prayers in his time and not mine, which also causes anxiety. How long Lord, how long? (recorded a video of me, starting with that line, because I had enough of no sleep; enough of kids, staying at home, doing nothing but eating and running through data on my phone; enough of Brad waking up to hit the walls and doors; enough of broken furniture; enough of Kalen throwing toys and dishes around the home; enough of being hit, pushed, spit on, climbed on and over; enough of waiting on things to go right. not sure if I want to publish it or not).

I created a playlist on Amazon called Survival to help calm me down. It does bring some tears though. You toss enough Casting Crowns, Steven Curtis Chapman, Kirk Franklin, Smokie Norful, and CeCe Winans on a playlist, tears will come, especially when you are going through something.

"There is a hope, there is peace, that makes this life complete. For every man, woman, boy, and girl, looking for Heaven, in the real world" Steven Curtis Chapman. Heaven in the Real World

"I just want to get away from here. I just want fly away from what I see. Every time we fail, it falls on you, Another reason for the world, to not believe. See it don't feel right when we hurt and lie. and we judge inside because love's being erased. You can try and hide. No Sleep Tonight" Kirk Franklin. No Sleep Tonight. Don't get me started on the power of Stained Glass Masquerade by Casting Crowns.

Finally,have a few godly teammates to motivate and encourage you. Teammates, who will pray for you and bring positivity to your life.

The book is available in Kindle, Paperback, and Audio formats. The book is prime-eligible.

Blackout

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links



A few weeks ago, May 27th, we had a blackout because of lightening and thunderstorms. While I do not like lightening and thunderstorms, the parent in me, was happy, because my kids do not like rain. Both kids normally go to bed early, during bad storms. Yay, I can rest. I can breath. I can do some cleaning in peace.

This night, it was different.

Brad did go to bed early. I saw him, winding down, on the couch, so I quickly gave him, his night meds, and let him crash. Kalen, on the other hand, decided to defy expectations, and not go to bed, until late. I gave him, his seizure meds. I gave him, a bath and rubbed him with lavender lotion, but he did not crash. I gave him melatonin too.

He took the blackout, hard, because the lights was off. The wifi was down. Youtube was no more. It didn't help that the kindle and laptop had also died early too. I had no options to entertain him. I do have a usb-powered light, which I cut on, so he wouldn't be completely scared. He kept asking me to turn on the lights and the phone. I had to remind him, that I was not God. Saying let there be light was not going to work. 

I had somewhere to be, the next morning. Kalen had his bi-annual cardiology appointment. I did not want to go to bed before the lights came back on so I can make sure the alarms are still set. What saved me was I remembered I had an battery-powered alarm clock, on a shelf in the closet. I also grabbed the mini sound machine. I don't know when I got it, but I was hoping one of those sounds, would help calm Kalen down. It didn't. I definitely recommend people get a battery-powered alarm clock. Smart devices do crash and nothing like having an alternative. I had not used the clock or sound machine,  in a while because my kids liked to knock it over. I got tired of resetting the clock and the alarm, so I put it up in the closet. The sound machine is now under the bed for emergencies. The clock is still standing (Kids knocked it down once) on my side table.

Kalen tried to entertain his self by looking out the window at other people, walking by. I rocked him. Nothing would calm him down to save my life. I was at a lost, this night.

Eventually, we both crashed. The lights came back on at 1:30 am. I quickly put all devices, back on the charger, before any kid woke up. I was glad Brad slept through the blackout because I could sense a meltdown, once he realized, the television would not come on.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Step 1 Basic Foundation for Lettering Course Review (Tomoson)





I received free access to Letter Create Studio's  Step 1: Basic Foundation for Lettering Course, in exchange for honest review from Tomoson. I thought it would be an interesting course to take during the quarantine. I bought some drawing pads, earlier this month. This would be a great way to utilize them with some gel pens or paints or water color markers. I also have color pencils and mechanical pencils.




I did have issues with navigation with the first block. I thought videos would play but the first few lessons was text-based. I liked how the instructor went over the fundamentals first before diving into the meat of the lesson. She also discussed what materials to use, which included brush pens and mechanical pencils, which I have.

She then discussed the seven neighborhoods--letter groupings, based on shape in the fundamentals section. You have to mark the first lesson as complete (there is no information) to move into the neighborhoods lessons. Some of the neighbor hoods include:


  • U-shaped neighborhood
  • N neighborhood
  • A neighborhood
The instructor discusses working on and mastering each neighborhood versus trying to write all 26 letters at the same time. I liked the lessons. The instructor made the material easy to understand. She showed how to do each stroke for each letter. My drawing pads and markers have found a new activity. 

You can check out step 1 or step 2 of the course, on Letter Create Studio's website. 

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The End

Friday, March 27, 2020

Photo Wall Review


I received a Canvas Print, in exchange from honest review from Photo Wall--wall art by passionate people. Photo Wall offers wall murals, wall paper, canvas prints, and posters.

I love artwork. I chose a nice, beach canvas print, with beautiful water and clouds. Something relaxing, while kids were at home from school. I received the print, five days after ordering. Normally my tapestry is on my wall, but it needs to be washed. I love this print in the tapestry spot more.

The print came disassembled in a tall box.  I received the print, the frame, the screws, and corner brackets. I tried assembling it first, on top of my kids medical supply boxes, but it wasn't enough room, once I started attaching the other sides. I do recommend a wide space for attaching the print to the frame. I used the living room floor to finish assembly.

Take your time, adhering the frame to the print.  It does require stretching the fabric some to reach the frame, as you work around putting things together.

I definitely wish I was on that beach right now :-)

Current offer: Save 15% off an order with code photowall15

Offer #2

25% discount code which will be valid for a month for your readers/viewers: staciewyatt2020








Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Product Reviews I loved, Part 1.

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links.


I been blogging since 2012 and I have reviewing amazing products, whether good or bad. I wanted to honor products, which have stood the test of time. Products, I have continued to use and buy since I entered the blogging world.

Squatty Potty: This was my first successful pitch. I been seeing the commercials and wanted one. The squatty potty is still standing and has changed my bathroom behaviors.

Friday, January 31, 2020

Design Cap Review (Pearl Mountain Technology)

I reviewed Design Cap, in exchange for honest review. I received a premium account for usage.

The app has amazing templates and font designs, but I had serious issues. First, for premade fonts designs, I had issues editing text. You have to double click on the text to change it. I had issues changing layered font designs. I could edit one layer but struggled to edit the other layers. Even when I click on the 2nd or 3rd layer, it would revert back to the first or try to move other images.

2nd, when I downloaded a simple design, it showed a different image than what I had worked on. For example, I created this for a friend of mine.

When I download a png, I received this image. The original words were still on the screen. I tried hitting save after making a few new changes, but received an error saying " Sorry for some reason, we was unable to save the project. Try again".






















I also worked on this image. I had troubles aligning the second layer of text to the first. It took some creative clicking but I was able to fix the misaligned text.

Finally, when I closed out the tab and went back in, none of my design was saved in my designs. I would had to start completely over to redo my work. I would not recommend the app, with the errors, I had. I struggled for hours making two images for an Facebook advice segment. The app is free, if you want to try it and work with it. I will still play with it and update this post if I figure a few things out, first.


Monday, January 27, 2020

Katari Beauty Roseau (Rose) Water and Hoba Oil Review (Socialix)

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links.


I received @KatariBeauty(Katari Beauty's )Roseau (Rose) Water and Hoba Oil, in exchange for honest review from Socialix. Katari makes clean, vegan, artisinal products.

Roseau (Rose Water)

Roseau is made from 100% pure Tunisian rose water. It can be used as an astringent and toner. It can help people, who have rosacea, while also lifting skin, according to the website.

Hoba Oil

Hoba oil is made from 100% pure-cold pressed jojoba wax. It can be used a a primer, cleanser, moisturizer, and make up remover, according the the website.

I used both daily. I cleaned my face with Roseau and then applied Hoba oil afterwards.

Both products were not heavy on my skin.

You can purchase both products on Katari Beauty's website.

You can purchase both products on Katari Beauty's website. Use code 50offcleanbeauty
Check out my youtube video below too. Like, subscribe, and comment, if you want.




Thursday, January 2, 2020

Dr Praegers Review (Socialix)





I received 5 coupons from Dr. Praegers, in exchange for honest review from Socialix. I used the coupons to buy broccoli littles, spinach littles, and black bean quinoa burgers. All the products was gluten free, while the littles was also soy-free.

Broccoli Littles:
Broccoli Littles is gluten-free and soy-free. The littles are made from nine ingredients. Some of which include broccoli, potatoes, onions, and egg. The broccoli littles are 130 calories.

Spinach Littles: 
Spinach littles are gluten-free and soy-free. The spinach littles are made from spinach and potatoes. They also contain eggs. The littles are 140 calories. 

Dr. Pragers also makes kale littles and sweet potato littles. 

Black Bean Quinoa Burgers: 
The black bean quinoa veggie burgers are gluten-free. Ingredients include black beans, chipotles, and tri-color quinoa. They contain 5 grams of protein, 5 vegetables, and 150 calories. The burgers are a bit spicy. They are also non-genetically modified.

I wanted to try them for the taste. I never been big on gluten-free, vegan food, but these meals was good. My kids also enjoyed eating all three meals. I made some rice and avocado mayonaise to eat with the littles and black bean burgers.









































To find Dr. Prager's products, please to go the website and use the store locator. I found all three, in the natural foods aisle at Walmart.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Ajoura Waxing Strips Review (Tomoson).

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links.


I received Ajoura's Waxing Strips, in exchange for honest review from Tomoson. The waxing strips also came with wax wipes to remove extra wax, reduce irritation, and moisturize skin.

To use: you warm a pack of strips up with your hands, then peel the strips apart. You apply to your skin, press firmly for 10 seconds, then rip in the opposite direction. You can keep reusing strips until the wax is no longer sticky.

I normally shave facial and body hair, but shaving causes irritation, even witth shave gel or a shaving bar.

I used the wax on mustache hair and chin hair. I just started waxing, the other week. I did have some pain and skin irritation but the chin hair was removed, while mustache hair required more work.

You can check out my demonstration in the video below.



You can purchase the strips, using the link above. The strips are prime-eligible.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Thankgiving Week in Review



Sunday:

My mother, who is my ride to church, spent Thanksgiving in Belize with my youngest sister, great-niece, and nephew. I knew about her trip, weeks in advance, but it did not prepare me for the drama, which ensued. 

I was undecided on whether or not to go to church. On one hand, I don't want to stay at home, the entire week. I also needed a break from my kids. My church has a great special needs program (kids and adults). My church is less than an hour away by bus. One bus takes me downtown and the other takes me to the transit center, across the street from the church. Normally,  we have to do is walk the sidewalk from the transit center to the bridge, then cross over to the church, except the transit center is undergoing reconstruction. 



The second bus let us off across the street from the transit center. We caught the traffic light and crossed over to the bridge. We had 2 more crosses left. Brad decided he wanted to walk off and started pointing at random objects. I don't know what he wanted. 

It is bad when your goal is in sight and you can't seem to reach it. I can see the church. People parking. He started kicking and screaming. He hit me in the front and back of my head. I got kicked in the knees and spit on.  He almost pushed me into the road. Where the red x is on the above map, is where he refused to cross over and started trying to walk off, 

I thought ok, the church has shuttle busses, which pass through here. Maybe I can wave one down. None of the shuttles would stop. I don't know if they can or not but I definitely could have used a lift. My next idea was to call the director of the special needs ministry to see if he can come outside and help. I got a disconnect notice. (I figured out later, I had his right number stored under another listing. I deleted the disconnected number). I also sent him a message on Facebook. 

I had to drag Brad into the grass to get him out of the sidewalk/road. If you are going to meltdown, let's go somewhere safe. A church member and his wife saw me struggling and offered help. Mr. C called the church directly (why didn't I think of this) and asked for the special needs department. He was able to bring Brad and Kalen to his car to drive,  2 seconds across the street, where the director met us and was able to help walk Brad in. 

I am very grateful for my church. Brad has had multiple incidents, where the special needs department stepped into help, versus putting all of us out of the church for his behavior. Houston's First Baptist is a loving environment. Thru the Roof is amazing. 

My mother allowed me to use her credit card to use a Lyft to head home versus trying to cross back over to the transit center. I didn't want another public meltdown. 

I don't think  I will be going to church, on days, when my mother is out of town or if I don't have Uber/Lyft money (It costs about $30 bucks to get from my house to church and vice versa). I am glad I went though. Life Bible Studies and Thru the Roof are closed on Dec 1. I would hate to show up on Sunday and no one was there. That would be another meltdown, waiting to happen. Another option is Metro Lift, which I will be calling, first thing Monday morning, provided my phone acts right and catches a charge. 



Monday:

Brad had a meeting with an insurance transition coordinator. Brad ages out of the pediatric insurance at 21 and the coordinator wanted to prepare me now. I am not ready to leave Texas Childrens Insurance. The doctors are consistent versus his former insurance company, who was losing psychiatrists to Texas Childrens and other hospitals/clinics. Some clinics also stopped taking Medicaid. Another doctor, I visited in Spring Branch (thought about embedding Google Maps but it showed the location of my house and other landmarks) told me he was not a psychiatrist. He didn't know why I was referred to him for psychiatry services, but he was able to write Brad's script for the month. I was going all over Houston and surrounding cities for his monthly appointments and prescriptions.

While she was talking to me about future insurance programs, Brad decided to start screaming. I followed him into my bedroom to calm him down. He started hitting and pushing again. This week is not going good so far. 


Tuesday:

Kalen went on the attack. I got hit in the head. He got mad at me for something and went semi postal.  Regular kiddie scream fests. Cooked. Attempted to clean. Went to bed too late. Kids had a lab work appointment on Wednesday. My phone also started having issues. Extra slow to charge. I think Kalen did something. Hopefully, it acts right. I can't afford another phone. 

Wednesday:

I had been dreading this day, for months. Brad needed lab work so his psych can better adjust his meds. She also wanted to test Brad for gynaecomastia. His chest looked weird when she examined him during his well check up/psych appointment. Kalen also needed lab work, so I decided to take them both, on the same day. Hospital appointments can be long and it's easier to schedule some of their hospital appointments together. 

The psych, the lab, and I tried to work together to make this appointment easier for the kids. Brad has a history of violence and aggression at the hospital. Kalen used take lab work and vaccinations like a pro, but over time, he cries and screams. Brad's biggest issue is the food court is next door to the lab. He wants food. We can get food after, but not before, provided, I have money. I did not have money on Wednesday. 

Preparation:


The psych told me to call the lab, 24 hours in advance, so they can prepare for the kids' arrival. I als was supposed to call the lab, 30 minutes before we arrived. Since the phone being stupid, I was not able to call 24 hours in advance. I was able to get enough charge to call 30 minutes in advance and left a voice mail. The clinic does not open up until 8. I wanted Brad to be sedated but his psych recommended his regular meds. I was also told that the food court CLOSED (gate down) between 9 and 9:30. I called medical transportation to schedule the appointment for 9. 

We arrived at the hospital around 9. We got to the 3rd floor.First thing, I noticed was the food court was still open. Brad also noticed. 

I filled out the forms for lab work. I asked for Child Life to come to the lab (they bring snacks, toys, electronics, colors to kids, who are struggling). Brad refused to walk into the clinic. He started screaming. He was hitting the windows at the gift shop. (Food court, gift shop, and lab are all right there together. The only thing, I ever bought was a $40 sweater because I was cold when Kalen had pace maker surgery). The director, who I called, also talked with me, in the lobby. 

The lab called Child Life. They also called security to assist. The Child Life person provided a good suggestion. She will go in with Kalen for his lab work, while I assisted security and lab personnel for Brad. Kalen will go first, followed by Brad. Brad started to calm down then boom, Kalen's turn. Brad did not like his brother, walking off without me or him. He started to scream again. 

Kalen went into the room with child life and the nurse to do his lab work. Brad walked into the room, next door, where the nurse was preparing the chair. Brad started kicking the walls and screaming. Nurse ran out. Security helped Brad into the chair and helped restrain him until the nurse was able to complete the tests. 

Security also escorted me down the garage elevators, versus the main elevators, back to the lobby, until medical transportation arrived to take us home. 

I did learn though, the hospital has a minor lab on the 11th floor. Next time, we are heading to the 11th floor, which will bypass the food court. 


Thursday:

Happy Thanksgiving. Today has not been a great day. Both kids woke up around 6. I am completely exhausted. It's been a long week and I need sleep. I gave the kids, their medications. Brad also picked up on a new behavior, which needs to stop ASAP. Brad already hits walls, doors, and ceilings, with his hands, feet, blankets, pillows, and clothes. He picked up my desk chair (which he has taken over) and hit the ceiling with it. I have small pieces of sheet rock on my living room floor. (I found a big rug near the dumpster, the other day. I cleaned it up, as much as I could, with bleach and laundry detergent, and placed it in Brad's area of the living room). My rug has visible chunks of sheetrock on it. The behavior has been constant, despite medications in his system. He took 2 naps. Woke up and was at it again. This is not the best day to be a special needs parent. I wish I was in Belize with my mother.

I did not cook. I was getting low on veggies and staples. I also don't want to spend a lot of money on one day, when my kids need to eat the whole month. I signed up for Operation Turkey to bring me 3 meals, weeks ago, before I started to run low. I am glad I did. My kids were able to eat a holiday meal, including mine. My sister and niece were supposed to cook but that meal has never arrived, as of today (Dec 2nd).



I am also thinking about a Thanksgiving cruise, next year. Let the cruise ship cook the food. I don't know which cruise line, I will be with, since Brad is too old for Camp Carnival.  Royal Caribbean is also an option because  of free priority boarding for past guests. I usually get Faster to the Fun , when the kids are with me, for Carnival Cruises, which comes with priority boarding and debarkation. Autism on the Seas costs too much, but they offer respite for staffed cruises. 

Friday, Saturday, Sunday: 

Church was not in session today, for us. Since it is a holiday weekend, the church doesn't have enough volunteers to staff departments. No life bible studies (Sunday school) and no special needs. I tried to watch online but kept having technical issues, such as delayed timing on my phone. When I logged in on the pc, it was minutes behind the phone. I figured, I watch later when kids went back to school and not too many devices are connected to the internet. 

Poop

Brad had an issue of poop. He went to the bathroom, after taking off his diaper. I figured, he wanted me to wipe him. Instead of waiting on me to wipe him, he plopped down on the toilet and finished handling his business in the toilet. I am still in shock. He went a few more times, throughout the day. I still had to rush in the bathroom to wipe him before he put on his diaper. Yay. 

The great kindle take over

He also tried to take over my kindle on Saturday. I have a kiddie playlist for Kalen, on there, for the rougher moments. When my phone started having issues, I thought I could placate Kalen by showing him Youtube on my kindle (big mistake). Here comes Saturday, Brad said a new word, "song". He wanted me to play him, the kiddie play list. No problem, but then, he wanted to watch youtube and find new music. Im like, uhhhhhhhhhhh, he has a weekend ipad from his teacher. He can play games on there. Only issue: no internet. 

Side note: Brad loves technology but he also likes to break technology. I am on my 4th kindle. 1st one, got stolen off my bed, while I was in the hospital with Kalen, for his pacemaker surgery. 2nd one and 3rd one, stopped charging. 4th one, I got on sale for half off. I had it a few months. The kids also have broken 4 of my phones in the past year or so. Brad also has broken multiple tablets and phones in the past (Samsung, RCA, Nabi 2, and Kalen's Nabi jr).  I can't afford a new phone. So my anxiety went high when Brad started wanting more than just the music. 

He sat and listened to the music for hours, versus the ipad. I thought of a good idea to try to put the internet on the ipad. The first ipad, he brought home, months ago, did not allow me to connect to anything. It had restrictions, placed by the school. The one, he has now, I never touched before, but I can try. I first tried to connect it to Xfinity wifi (my mama's account).  but it was denied due to an unsecure connection. Then, I connected it to my ATT and success, he was able to watch Youtube. I did not connect it to my Google though to be on the safe side, but he was able to watch his kiddie skits, while Kalen took back the Kindle and listened to the music and watched his skits. Both kids was out of my hair lol. (Of course, later on, Brad tried to come back to kindle land and Kalen went into the living room and brought back the ipad and started playing on it. No idea how he figured it out because I struggled just finding the settings). 

Connecting the internet reduced the chair throwing and chair hitting the ceiling, headache inducing behavior. I don't want to be put out because the upstairs neighbor, with a baby, complained about noise from the apartment below. That's another level of anxiety. Moving with two special needs kids within a few weeks, like I did last year. 

Have a blessed day. 

They went off to school great this morning. No issues. Glad to finally get a small break, until my 11 am appt.