Today I realized I haven't updated the blog in a couple of weeks. It honestly just slipped my mind, with the start of the holiday season. We've all been busy at home, and work is still insane for me. So I just thought I'd do a little 'currently' update.


Enjoying: Time with family and friends. We had a visit from Brad's parents the week prior to Thanksgiving, which was nice. And I hosted Thanksgiving for both of my parents and my relatives. Unfortunately my grandmother wasn't well enough to join us, which makes me sad.

Reading: Four Week Fiance, which is pretty terrible. I did just finish a great series by Maya Banks. The Slow Burn series (starting with Keep Me Safe) was amazing. I could not stop reading them. They were less of the usual smut I like to read and more thriller/suspense. Austin has been starting to read on his own as well. He's learning to sound out words and has been able to help me read some of the starter reading books with me. He's writing words as well, by writing them as they sound. I'm so proud of him.

Learning: To ice skate. (Austin, of course). He started skating lessons at a local rink a couple of weeks ago, and I think he likes it. The first week we just brought him with a bike helmet and sweat pants, not realizing that they don't teach skating with the milk crates anymore. He spent a lot of time on the ice and with other kids blades coming a little too close for our comfort. After that first lesson we ran out to get him a hockey helmet and hockey gloves to go with his new skates. We also sent him in snow pants. He was a much happier kid last week.

Starting: Our holiday season. We've started shopping, put up our tree and our outside decorations, and I've wrapped up a new (used) batch of 25 books for our annual tradition. We open one book each evening through Christmas. We have a local used book store, and they have fantastic prices on used books. I picked up 25 of them this year. With a coupon I got for donating books, and a special 50% back in store credit deal, I paid less than $14 for books this year. I don't stick with just Christmas books. Rather, I get books I know he'll enjoy, along with a few of my own childhood favorites. This year I added in some early readers.

Watching: Well, we've finished it already. Jessica Jones. This is a Marvel Netflix series, like Daredevil, which we absolutely loved. I found Jessica Jones to be even better than Daredevil. I thoroughly enjoyed David Tennant as the villain. It was dark, creepy, and twisted. I think we watched 12 of the 13 episodes in the past three days.

Loving: LuLaRoe clothing. My friend has started selling this clothing line on Facebook and I am obsessed. Especially with their leggings. The clothes are relatively inexpensive, super comfy, and several pieces are versatile in that you can wear them multiple ways.

Playing: This one is also Austin. Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse. I downloaded this (free) on Kindle and Austin has nearly beaten the game. I can barely figure out how to move and jump and he's flying through the bosses, collecting diamonds and gems and finding new places to explore. He absolutely loves this game.

Trying: To get back on track with eating right and exercising. It's been a struggle since returning from vacation, as usual. Brad's weight has stayed the same as when he left, within a couple of pounds. Mine is up a few. Not many, but more than I would like. I just need some darn willpower around all these holiday treats! It worked really well for us when we had a reward/goal. I just need to figure out a reward if we can maintain our weight range and exercise. Working on that.

Understanding: What likely has been causing the hives I've been getting for the past two years. Back in January of 2014, I was running at the gym when I started breaking out in these super itchy, painful hives all over my face and neck. Since then I've seen a dermatologist, an allergist, my own physician and an urgent care doctor. None of which could tell me for certain what was causing them. I had a skin test (I am allergic to the spring trees, cats, which is odd, considering I've lived with cats my whole life, and dust mites), food and drug tests. My own internet research came across a condition called exercise induced anaphylaxis. This sounded so much like what I was experiencing (well, without the shortness of breath and stomach issues) that I asked my doctor for a referral to another allergist who might be able to give me a second opinion. I met with a wonderful doctor in Worcester, MA, who was able to confirm this as my diagnosis. It is likely that eating wheat and then exercising is causing my hives. He reassured me that this should be a temporary condition, lasting 1-5 years (I'm already 2 years in), that I likely won't get to the point of not being able to breathe if I haven't had that type of reaction already, and it just felt darn good to have a definitive answer, finally.

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