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Deformational plagiocephaly and torticollis: getting measured for a starband helmet

As difficult as it is to say, I would be lying if I didn’t say that cost was a factor in our decision-making process. Children’s Hospital told us on several occasions that the helmet would cost $3500 and we could potentially need two. They also explained that there would be weekly visits for the duration of the helmet therapy.

The first thing I did was get the diagnostic codes for plagiocephaly and the orthotic code for the starband helmet. These codes would give me a definitive yes or no answer from my insurance company regarding coverage. From there, I learned that our insurance required prior authorization. They would cover the helmet if Charlotte met certain criteria. For insurance purposes, she had to have a 6mm abnormality, be over 3 months of age, and have tried physical therapy with no success in terms of improvement. The orthotic company would handle the authorization process for us, and needed copies of our doctor’s notes in order to proceed.

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Then I called the orthotic company to find out actual costs in case our insurance denied authorization for the helmet for some reason. I learned that the total out of pocket expense is a flat rate of $2000 – and that includes all helmets and all office visits. I have no idea where Children’s got “$3500 per helmet plus the cost of weekly visits.” Perhaps they err on the side of caution, but let’s put it this way: they work exclusively with one orthotic company, and at the very least we could have been told “we can’t speak for the costs, so you may want to give them a call to find out.” Children’s spoke of the costs so confidently and matter of factly that we never once questioned it. We took their word for it! After all, this is what they do every day…

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A Review of Legoland California

We just came back from our 2nd trip to Legoland in Carlsbad, CA (near San Diego). Despite being born and bred in Southern California, I had never gone growing up, so I didn’t know what to expect! To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much because I’d heard mixed reviews – mostly about how it might be fun for little kids, but boring for adults. Surprisingly, we all loved it and were really impressed!

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Here are a few things you should know before I jump into the actual review:

Hours: Check their website for opening/closing times because it varies. They usually open their doors at 9-10 am, and close anywhere from 5-7 pm during off season, and stay open later til 8-9 pm during peak seasons.

Ideal age: I would recommend Legoland for ages 2 through 10. Children under 3 years old are free.

Height restrictions: There are height restrictions on a lot of the rides, so I’d say it’s more ideal to go once your child is at least 34 inches tall. There are even more ride options once they hit 36-42 inches tall, but Jaren was exactly 34 inches tall when he went at 2 years old, and there were plenty of rides for him to ride.

Price: I was surprised at how much tickets were, but there are always always deals out there for Legoland… so search around before you decide to pay full retail price! Standard ticket prices are $87 per adult, and $81 per child (ages 3-12). Annual passes are $149 whether you’re an adult or child over the age of 3.

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Zucchini and Corn Side

Adding veggies to my meals has always been an issue for me. I really dislike cooking and making a side dish when I come home from work so late is just too much for me most days. I am really trying to change that and make dishes that incorporate veggies more often now since Drake flat out refuses to eat them, I think partially because he isn’t used to them. Thankfully Juliet eats everything. Since becoming pregnant I’ve become obsessed with hibachi, especially the zucchini in their vegetable sides. This is now a permanent staple to our meals as it’s so easy to whip up as a side to our main dishes. I think we eat it at least twice a week, if not more, and sometimes I make it for lunch since I love it so much.

zucchini corn

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Favorite Beauty Products

I started using Korean skincare products last summer and after seeing what a big impact they had on my skin, I’ve gotten much more into beauty products. At 3 and 5 my kids are also a bit older and more independent, so I’ve had a little more time to myself to actually put some makeup on. That said, I’ve always loved makeup and I’m not afraid to go dramatic. I’ve tried lots of makeup, skin and hair products over the past year, and thought I would share some of my current favorites!

Favorite Beauty Products

1) Lighted Mirror – I don’t know why it took me so long to buy one, but I love using a lighted mirror to apply my makeup! I like to sit so I don’t apply makeup in the bathroom, and in the evenings the lighting isn’t the best in my room. This mirror provides the perfect amount of lighting.

2) Acrylic Makeup Organizer – With a growing makeup collection I needed a better way to organize them instead of inside a plastic box, so I recently purchased this organizer and it’s a great size! I keep the makeup that I use all the time in the open top compartment for easy access.

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12 No Mess Toddler Activities – Spring Edition!

The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, the snow has melted…it’s spring! We are enjoying the great outdoors as much as possible, but we do still have quite a few rainy afternoons this time of year. To keep us sane, I compiled a list of fun spring related activities that are easy to pull together and don’t leave a mess behind!

Plastic Egg Scoop Activity – This activity could be done with or without the water! It would obviously be less messy without, but you could always add some water if you were feeling adventurous.

Materials: plastic eggs, various bowls/containers, large serving spoons

Egg-Scoop

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A Weekend in the Life: Part Two

After a sun and fun-filled Saturday spent sharing the parenting duties, it’s time to capture how it goes when Mr. Milk is at work, and it’s just me with William. Here’s Sunday, where I solo-parented from morning until evening.

Sunday

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4:30 AM: Mr. Milk’s alarm goes off. He wakes, grabs his clothes and steps out of our bedroom to finish getting ready. The oak floors in our older home are super creaky, so he tries to minimize noise early in the morning for me and Will. I’m super grateful, as I keep on sleeping! He leaves around 5 AM, and texts me an hour later to let me know he arrived at work safely.

5:58 AM: Will wakes up. He slept through the night – wahoo! He is cooing and chatting to himself, so I let him have some fun while I wash my face and such. I go to greet him at 6:25 AM and find him in his new usual place – standing and smiling! We head back to my bed with a new diaper as it was, once again, dirty and stinky. He finds his favorite friend, the remote control and we sing and play for about half an hour.

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Copycat Dr. Praeger Spinach Cakes

We’re big fans of Dr. Praeger around here. Jackson loves the fish sticks, he loves the spinach cakes, and just about everything else we’ve tried so far. One of my favorites to keep on hand for him in the house is spinach cakes, because it’s a great way for me to sneak in some extra veggies, and he loves having them for breakfast – win win! The only problem? They’re not cheap! I don’t mind paying a little extra for a healthy option for him, but it adds up quick, and when he likes to have them on the daily it makes it hard to keep up.

So, I decided it was high time I figure it out on my own. I did some looking around and found out that the ingredients are incredibly simple (score!) and that almost no one online has attempted this before (dangit!). I did manage to find one or two recipes, but nothing I felt confident running with. So I decided to make it up on my own!

COPYCAT SPINACH CAKES

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