Posted in Parenting

How To Give Your Toddler Biaxin


So after waiting 3h at the walk-in clinic yesterday, we got the confirmation that Charles has yet another ear infection.  Given the unpleasant (to say the least) reaction he had after taking Amoxcillin last time, the doctor prescribed some Biaxin.  She also mentioned, almost offhandedly, that it didn’t taste quite as good as the banana-flavoured penicillin antibiotic that kids love so much.

‘No biggie’, I thought, Charles is quite good with taking medication.

Then I went to the pharmacy where, after explaining the basics on the medication (how to measure and administer & common side-effects), the pharmacist asked if my son liked yogurt.

“He’s allergic to dairy”, I replied.

“Oh…well…you might want to have a glass of juice ready for him after giving him the Biaxin, it has a slightly metallic aftertaste”, he said.

The comment brought in mind a conversation that I’d had with my little brother a couple of months ago when a pharmacist had told him the same thing about the antibiotic he was taking – that it had a slightly metallic taste to it.  My (grown) little brother had grimaced after swallowing his pill and exclaimed that to say that the metallic taste was slight was a BIG understatement.

I hoped that Charles’ experience with the medication wouldn’t be as bad as my brother’s was as it is rather difficult to reason with a 2 year old.

That evening, after supper, he had his first dose.  He kept it in his mouth for a while, wondering whether he should spit it out or swallow it eventually settling on the latter.  I filled up his glass with juice (hey, it’s as good a reward as any!) and he downed it.

This morning, I was ready with a glass of coconut milk for him to give him his second dose.  I measured the prescribed amount and gave it to him.  He again kept it in his mouth for a while and managed to swallow a little bit before spitting the rest out on me…and I’m pretty sure I know why.

You see, though it may taste awful, it also has an equally awful texture WHICH NO ONE WARNED ME ABOUT!.  Fill a bottle with one third sand and two thirds water, give it a shake and that’s the texture of the metallic tasting medication I have to give my son for seven days.


So I managed to mix a little bit more in his glass of coconut milk (which he downed!) and that was the end of the second dose.

This evening was dose three.  I skipped the syringe in the mouth and just put the Biaxin in his milk without him seeing me.  Well, I’m pretty sure he noticed that something was up because it took him fooooooorever to finish his darned milk.  I had to semi-bribe him to get him to drink up (oh, look Charles, why don’t you show your little sister how to drink out of a straw?).

I’m thinking that tomorrow morning, I’m going to try to hide the stuff in his most favouritest (soy) yogurt and see how it goes.

At this pace, though, I’m thinking that he’s going to catch on quickly so I’m going to need to find new and creative ways to feed him his damned antibiotics. We’ve got 11 doses left…


Does anyone have any ideas?  Do any of you have any experience with trying to give Biaxin to a toddler?  Please share your strategies!

Posted in Parenting

What the Heck?

Watching Cars on my computer after I brought him home early from daycare.

Warning: the following post is a rant.

Let’s play a game shall we?

The papa of a sick child with mysterious symptoms that include raised red blotches all over his body that are hot to the touch calls his pediatrician’s office.  What happens?

He gets told to either make an appointment for three days later, go to a walk in clinic or go to the emergency room of a hospital.

What the heck!?

The mama of a sick child with increasingly mysterious symptoms that include raised red blotches all over his body that are hot to the touch and a low fever calls the free health hotline to try to figure out what’s going on and if the child can wait a few days before seeing a doctor.  What happens?

She gets told to monitor said child’s condition and if symptoms get worse, to go to the pediatrician’s office, a walk in clinic or the emergency room of a hospital.

Sound advice

The mama and papa of an increasingly irritable child with increasingly mysterious symptoms that include raised red blotches all over his body that are hot to the touch, a fever of 103F despite the administration of Tempra an hour previously, loss of appetite and the inability to walk because it hurts decide that it’s time to pay a visit to the local walk in clinic.  What happens?

When the dada arrives with said child, he is told that the schedule is full.  He is told to go to the hospital emergency room if he wants his child to be seen

What the heck!?

The dada drives to the nearest hospital with his child.  What happens?

The triage nurse tells him that he shouldn’t be there with his child,but should have driven an extra half hour to the nearest children’s hospital.

What the f*cking heck!?  Can someone please tell me why the heck i have to give 3500$ in income taxes to our province’s healthcare system if no one is willing to see my 22 month old?

Luckily, she decided that since my son was there, he should probably be treated.


The doctor didn’t know what he has.





We’re seeing the kiddos’ pediatrician Monday for Amélie’s 1 month appointment.  We’re planning on bringing the toddler along so that we can maybe get an answer to the “what does he have” question.

After some intense googling, my partner and I are starting to think it’s hives.  Anyone else want to wager a guess?

This morning.
This morning.
Posted in Parenting

You Shall Not Pass, Santa Claus

There will be no Santa Claus at our house.

I know, I know, we are horrible parents.  But it’s OK, I can still live with myself despite the fact that we won’t be pretending that an overweight old dude will be taking 1/1000th of a second to do his thing at each house he stops at.

“But what about the magic of Christmas?”

For me the so called “magic” of Christmas doesn’t need to include telling my child that a fat and seemingly immortal (the modern depiction of Santa with his sled-pulling reindeer has been around for nearly 200 years) grandfatherly-like man will be breaking into our house through the chimney to sneak around our home, consume some milk and cookies and leave some presents under a tree.

It is also not a competition to see who will buy the biggest s***load of presents for a child (or about simply buying an incredibly unreasonable amount of gifts for said child to put under the tree for that matter).  Nor is it about calculating the monetary value of the gift received by person “X” and making sure that the gift you will be giving to person “X” is of the exact same value the next year (yes, I know someone who does this and yes I was past flabbergasted when I heard about it).

For me, the magic of Christmas resides in spending quality-time with family and giving.  Notice I did not say “gifting”, but “giving”.  There is a world of difference between the two in my opinion.  One can give time (as in spend time with someone, help around the house…) and that simple act can be very much more appreciated than the most expensive present.

Our tradition over the past years has been to have some fun in the kitchen and cook up some food that we know our parents and friends will appreciate and will be able to use throughout the year.  I also enjoy crafting my gifts and though I do purchase some gifts, I will do so only if I see something that makes my brain say “WOW, person “X” would really love this!”.  I don’t like following lists and I certainly don’t count to make sure that I spent “enough” money on each person.  I want my son to have fun: to cook and bake with us, to craft with us.  I want him to learn that it’s not the actual present that counts, but the time taken to think about the person who will be receiving the present.  For me, that is the magic of Christmas.

“But, don’t you remember how disappointed you were when you learned that Santa didn’t exist?”

Both my parents and in-laws used this argument to try to convince us to get my son to believe in Santa Claus.  Maybe I’m just dense, but I fail to see how this is an argument in favour of Santa.  I mean, let me put it this way.  Perhaps, for the next 8 years or so, I should tell my son that for one of his upcoming birthdays, we will be going to Disney.  I’ll show him some pictures and videos, I’ll have him learn the names of the characters.  I’ll get him super excited.  SUPER excited.  As the years go by, he may start to doubt.  He may start to ask when exactly we’ll be going.  He may start to ask if we’re really going.  Of course, being awesome parents, we’ll convince him that we will indeed go.  We’ll give him some “proof”, show him some reservation tickets and the like…until one day where we’ll say: “Oh, you’re right Charles, we’re not really going to be going to Disney”.  “Awww, you’re disappointed?  It’s OK sweetie, but weren’t you just SOOOO excited for the past 8 years?”

Oh wait, so you don’t think that is a good idea?

“But what about the kids at school/daycare?  What will you do when they start talking about Santa?”

What do the kids do in multicultural areas?  What happens when Muslim, Jewish and Christian children are all in the same class?  They talk, they argue, they all go home and ask their parents and their parents give the explanation they want to give.  When my son will hear about Santa, he’ll ask us.  We’re not going to shield his eyes from the images and his ears from the name.  For us, Santa is going to be a fictional character that people like to talk about around Christmas time, just like Link, Harry Potter and Caillou are fictional characters (thank God, because Caillou is one annoying little kid!).  When his friends go home to their parents and tell them that Charles said Santa doesn’t exist, their parents will either keep up the story, decide to fess up or call us and complain that their child is now doubting the existence of Santa (oops!).

Of Christmas and Santa

Those who know me, know I hate Christmas.  Actually, I should specify that I hate what Christmas has become.  I hate that as soon as Halloween is done, we are almost immediately surrounded by all things Christmas.  ‘Buy this, buy that, your child will love you for it!’.  ‘Your girlfriend needs a diamond ring and ours are the best so spend your money here!’.  I hate the social pressure (fed by the multitude of ads) that says that you need to buy a whole bunch of presents.  I hate the stress associated with going to the mall at the very last minute to buy those last gifts you need.  I mean, come on people, since when has it become OK to be stressed out to give something.  Giving should make you feel good, not stressed out.

I also have a problem with Christmas music, but that is because I am a musician.  Why does that matter, you wonder?  It matters because when you play music, you inevitably are going to be doing a Christmas concert and since Christmas is in December and you actually need to practice the music you’ll be playing, you typically start playing Christmas music a couple of weeks before Halloween.  *Shudder*

There are also a few things I don’t like about the whole Santa story.

  1. As a parent, I want my son to learn about honesty.  So why would I lie to him for a number of years by pretending Santa exists?
  2. I also want my son to be/feel safe.  So why would I tell him that it’s OK for Santa to break into our house and sneak around while he’s sleeping.  And why would it be OK to accept a gift from him when it’s not OK to accept a gift from a stranger (I mean, he is a stranger after all as you can never meet him).
  3. I want my son to learn about justice and injustice.  So how can I justify that the bully in his class,  got all the presents he asked for even though he ought to have been on the naughty list and that the other child in his class who is always an angel but whose parents are so poor they have trouble putting food on the table got nothing?  I mean, if Santa really did exist, the bully would get a lump of coal and the angel would get everything he asked for, right?

Just to be clear, I’m not judging parents who continue the Santa tradition at home.  I’m only saying that it is something that we have chosen as a couple to veer away from.  Teaching about Santa, much like any other parenting decision should be up to the parents.  Ultimately, you do what works for you, right?

Will Santa be coming to your house this December?