Hey y'all

Tuesday, March 1, 2011
It's been quite a week....So, we gave Snickers to our dear family friends.  The first day or two was tough  but we are all adjusting. And if truth be told, I think Snickers hit the jackpot! He has lovely big french doors to look out all day and he gets more daily walks and no one is allergic to him there:)  We do miss him terribly though. We even had a whole family playdate with them this weekend....

{think Harry was happy to see Snickers?}



{Snickers was awfully excited to see his old master, Dave}

{Snick is even sticking right by Dave while they play some volleyball game}

The boys had some intense allergy testing....

{Will~he is allergic to virutally every single thing!}

Poor Will!  He ended up with strong allergic reactions to virtually every tree, grass, pollen, mold, dust mites, and nut.  It was BAD!  Oh and let's not forget ~ he a severe allergy to cats, dogs, mice and cockroaches!


Harry's allergies were not as bad. But he is allergic to a few trees (pecan trees are his worst), grasses and pollens. He was also allergic to dust and dust mites, some molds, cats, dogs and cockroaches.

So, we definitely did the right thing by removing Snickers from our home.  In fact, even though Scout is supposedly "hypoallergenic", our allergist strongly recommended that we not replace her when she does dies someday.  So sad.

PLEASE~Let me know if you have any experience with allergy shots.  The doc is recommending them but they are a HUGE time and financial commitment (our insurance does not cover much of it) so we are trying to decide a route.  I am talking years of shots so it is not a decision to make lightly.

In other news, I FLOODED our house last week.  I was soaking a shirt of Kate's in the sink and got distracted and left the water running.  The whole laundry room flooded and then water was pouring out the chandelier in Dave's study. I felt so bad.  It was totally my fault as I was trying to do 3 things at once. I don't have photos of that because it happened about 6 minutes before I was supposed to be at my client's house for a counseling session! Harry was really quick to help us get things under control. But we do need to replace the ceiling sheetrock etc.  It could have been much worse though.

Yes, I have recently begun seeing couples again in marriage coaching/counseling and I am LOVING every minute of it!!!  I even found some office space to sublet for marriage and parenting coaching.  

So, that is what has been going on here in a nutshell.  It is never a dull moment at our house:)   Tonight I am going out to dinner with a friend for some "Mom" time and I cannot wait.  I need it.


  1. oh my goodness look at their poor backs!!! Allergy testing is the worst!! Cockroaches(I think I am allergice too LOL) Pecan trees.....wow that is tough considering your city:(

    Congrats on getting back to counseling. I am sure it feels so good to feel that feeling of helping and doing something that you know and love. I am going to need some parenting coaching on how to take away the "binka" I am sure it will not be as bad as I think....but it makes me feel terrible that something Hayden only uses to go to sleep and something that is so important to her....well that I am going to take it away:(

    Have fun at dinner, and no worries on the flood, I am pretty sure we have all done it. Mine my the toilet and cleaned up after the dog and walked out the door. Yep 6inches of water covered almost every square inch of our downstairs. New carpet, paint, wood, baseboards. Thankfully insurance covered most of it.

  2. I so know how Will feels...his back and my back when I was tested years ago match perfectly! It is always good to know what one is allergic to as to avoid those things..I tried allergy shots for almost 10 yrs, but never hit the peak dose b/c my body couldn't tolerate it w/o a severe reaction...so just lots of nasacort and allergy pills for life (but makes me happier!) So sorry about the distraction incident...that is what happens to busy mommies like us...trying to juggle 10 things at once! Hope you have a nice evening out...

  3. OH MY WORD>>>>what crazy amounts of allergies.
    i can imagine giving snickers away was so tough, but clearly the best for everyone!
    what a bummer on the water flooding.
    oh kim, that would have totally flustered me too!

  4. Glad you are counseling again! SO exciting! Can't wait to meet ya'll on Sunday! :)

  5. Kim, I have never in my life seen a scratch test. Cockroaches?!!! Your boys are troopers. I am keeping your family on my prayer list for an extended period. God Bless Y'All!

  6. So sad about the boys! Do you have a NAET person near by? It is helping Jeff so much and he is allergic to EVERYTHING! Right down to the way he processes amino acids! We have another friend who has taken allergy shots twice a week for years and she has been going for a few years and hasn't had shots since she started. I know y'all gone this route before. Good luck with whatever you decide! :)

    And congrats on seeing patients again. If we lived closer I would probably use you as a parenting coach. One of our friends is a counselor she jokes that counseling is like indoor plumbing-you could live without it, but why would you?

  7. I had the same back test as the boys (years ago!) I think I was only 2 or 3. My mom said I was so brave I didn't cry until after the back test they had to re-test a few on my arm. My mom said I looked at her and said "No more Mommy" with one tear running down my face.

    Anyway, I was prescribed allergy shots. I got them once a week until I was about 10 years old. I eventually grew out of the majority of my allergies. I suppose if I was in the same spot now I would try an allergy pill to see if it worked before the shots.

  8. So great that you can still visit your sweet dog! I need to get tested for allergies...ugh! So, in your last post, you mentioned j.crew's gingham pants...I was in the store and saw them, so thought I would try them on. They looked horrible and I just started laughing so hard. The sales associate asked me to show her, and when I opened the dressing door, SHE just started laughing! I did walk away with some lovely tops instead! :)

  9. Oh my!! Your sweet boys!! I can't imagine! I have never heard of a cockroach allergy.

  10. Allergy shots worked for me. I know they don't work for everyone, but I had mild doses for only about 2 years as a kid (around 10-11...?) and have never had seasonal allergies since. These days I don't even remember what allergies feel like. My animal allergies are much better now -- I can hold a dog with no problem, and only a few cats cause me the itchy eye thing.

    I'm not 100% positive that the allergies didn't just go away with age, but I think the shots were probably what did it.

  11. I started my 9 year old son on allergy shots because his allergies were seriously affecting his life. He would have flare-ups where he couldn't breathe through his nose and wouldn't want to eat or even drink. He had 5 years of shots with dramatic results. Yes, it was time consuming. Can't speak to the cost as our medical insurance covered it. I put off doing the same for my daughter because I didn't want to go through that long routine again. But her allergies were also severe. (We live in the southwest.) Finally started her in 10th grade and she got in 3 years before she went off to college. Again, a dramatic improvement. So I highly recommend them. But no question it is a time consuming process. Both of them were getting treatment for allergies related to plants, grasses, trees, as well as cats. My daughter had a few fairly serious reactions to the shots but we went to an excellent practice where they were scrupulous about dealing with them.

  12. Poor guys!Now that's some major allergies!!

    Well join my "sheetrock disaster" week! I was up in the attic on Sunday and stepped onto a soft spot and "my leg went straight thru into my daughters room! Yep major sheetrock damage!! It could have been a lot worse! I could have fallen thru, but I caught myself! I wound up w/a awful bruise on my upper thigh and a HUGE hole in her ceiling! We got it patched up today and I will NEVER do that again!!

    Hope all goes well w/ your water damage!

  13. Wow. I vividly remember having allergy testing when I was in fourth grade. I can't believe they still do that barbaric back testing!!! I was allergic to everything as well. I had allergy shots in both arms twice a week for five years. I still have HORRIBLE seasonal allergies and am allergic to cats and birds. We have a dog and he doesn't bother me but I can't say that the shots worked. With all the oral allergy meds out there these days I have to believe they are a better option. I feel like your boys have been through so much medically already this is just one more thing and it probably won't help. Sorry to be such a debbie downer!!!

  14. Hi - not sure if they are the same, but my brother had asthma growing up so they kept giving him allergy shots to build up is immunity and he doesn't have asthma anymore. Please keep us posted!

  15. As a child, my husband was often in and out of the hospital due to allergy related asthma flares to corn and grasses. He had years of allergy shots. Now he just gets occasional nasal and eye symptoms when the cottonwood comes down or when he mows the grass. In 10 years of marriage, I bet I've seen him use an albuterol inhaler (mine!) less than 10 times. He had amazing results, and I'm so thankful that he doesn't have to suffer with all of the problems that he has as a child before allergy shots.

  16. Those back photos were so my childhood too! I did the years of twice weekly allergy shots. I was (am?) allergic to EVERYTHING. I will say that I am not as bad as an adult. But I cannot tell you if that is due to years of shots or just body changes. But the shots did help as a kid. I grew up in south Florida- so a sort of similar climate to Houston I assume. Where things are blooming year round. I doubt I would have struggled a bad up here in NY but I think they did help as a kid.

  17. OH, I just have to comment after seeing those pix of your son's back. How awful for them. My dd was allergic (totally) to ALL dairy related products, as well as, cats and other things. I took her for the NAET treatments at a local chiropractor, who bills insurance, as he will do a chiro treatment at the same time. I highly recommend NAET. IT has been very effective for both of my dds. They both can eat cheese and other dairy realated things, now, and we have two cats that they dearly love and play with daily...no reactions. The NAET treatments are very effective. I've had them, too, and relieved of many allergies (unknown), just went through the basics and tried a few things that I thought I might be allergic to. They do muscle testing, too, to find out if you are allergic, before treating you for 'said' thing. Hope this helps. :)

  18. You deservce a "Mummy night out" after all that Kim! Enjoy!!

  19. I was Will growing up - I literally was allergic to every single thing they tested me for with the exception of nuts. I took injections from the time I was 10 until I finished college (so that was what? 12 years?) and while it certainly wasn't fun I can tell you that they made a HUGE difference in my health. I had soem setbacks, and weeks when I would have a bad reaction to the increased dosage of the serum, but overall they helped me greatly. My asthma subsided, my quality of life improved dramatically, and now I am able to only take antihisthamines in the summer and fall during the worst of the Central Virginia pollen season, and it's rare for me to have a severe allergic reaction to something. There are a few foods I have to avoid completely (bananas, mangoes, pineapple, kiwi, papaya) but my environmental allergies (dust, dust mites, mold, all trees, animals, etc.) improved greatly over the years.

    Obviously, you will do your research and make the decision you think best, but I am thankful that my parents put me on that path.

  20. Oh Kim, their backs break my heart! I have no idea what allergy shots do, but I hope there is a way to help both of them (especially Will!)

  21. I have horrible allergies (food and env) and so does one of my sons (his back looked similar to your pics). We decided to forgo the allergy shots (both of us) and we are fine.

    We do take Zyrtec and just try to live healthy, I have found that exposure can build up a resistance (at least it has for us) but I know allergies can be tricky and change as well.

    We have three dogs- so I know how you feel.

  22. Those pics of Snickers are soooo cute! Harry looks adorable!! And for Will... oh my goodness. Poor boy!
    I took allergy shots, but that was a very long time ago.

    I am so glad you have gone back to work... What a blessing to the marriages you will save!!!!


  23. My daughter works in a doctors surgery and sees a lot of people come in for allergy shots-- may be different in the US but in Australia it is a LONG haul. If the boys are fine with needles and you are happy to pay for each consult, I have a friend who has found it to be very effective (for both herself and her sons)

    But it is a big IF, every person that I have known has forked out a lot of money, the program lasts a long long time, and is expensive. Find out if your doctor bills a standard consult or has a reduced fee for shots only consults. (My daughter says at her work the fee depends on the individual doctor, some fee standard, but some adjust their fees as it is only a shot)

    Good luck!

    Ps I did not know you were a counsellor- funny how many bloggers are in this field- it really is an incredibly fulfilling profession,

  24. I had severe allergies like that as a child and took allergy shots every week. Of course, that was a VERY long time ago:) I have outgrown all allergies except mold, and everything outside:) ha ha Oh and cats...SO allergic to cats. Our little maltese must be hypo-allergenic because I have had not problems with her or the maltese we used to have.

    Praying for a good financial solution, so sad that insurance doesn't cover that.

  25. hi kim,
    just catching up on my blog reading- i swear by allergy shots!! i have been getting them for years and they have made a life changing impact on my allergies. I am severely allergic to cats and dogs, molds, and dust. I also have some seasonal allergies. The shots have made a HUGE difference, especially with my daily life and ability to rebound when sick. congrats on going back to counseling.

  26. Ok, I am going to be another pro shot opinion....I began taking allergy injections at age 7 or 8 and took them until college, stopped taking for a while and returned to them for a couple of years. I am now 45 and recently had the scratch tests (which ARE NOT that horrific...I have had many times in my life!) and blood tests again and had very little reaction!!! My allergist said that I still have symptoms of some allergies but he feels these should continue to be treated with my oral meds that I take year- round. Allergy injections hurt very little; the needle is very small. I was fortunate, however, and never had any kind of reaction.
    Best of luck to your boys!

  27. Allergy shots? Are you serious?

    Ask Dr. Tenpenny about this.

    Good luck!

  28. Dear Anonymous,

    I am still in the research phase but my understanding is that allergy shots are the most natural way to go (except for NAET which we tried for years without success). There are no preservatives in these allergy shots. They are specially made for each individual for their specific allergy and they are derived from organically grown plants etc... The ONLY thing in them is the antigen.

    Theoretically, the small antigen doses stimulate a natural immune response that will eventually make the body less reactive to the allergic substance.

    All of the allergy meds are really bad for kids too. So, I am wondering what you recommend. It is much more helpful to kindly suggest an alternative rather than sarcastically question something I am trying to learn more about. Don't you agree?

    I have not made up my mind yet at all but I consider all things and thus far allergy shots seem low risk compared to inhalers, nasal sprays and steroids.

    PLEASE share with me if you have a better suggestion and I will certainly try to ascertain if Dr. Tenpenny has an opinion/research on allergy shots. I hvae honestly never seen her mention them. Her issue seems to be with immunizations.


  29. My sister had allergy shots as a child growing up and as an adult they really helped her. She was like your boys pretty much allergic to everything. She is now 33 and still suffers from asthma but takes a pill to help with that. She doesnt seem to have a ton of allergies now but I will ask her a little bit more about it. I am thinking the shot really really helped her. :)

  30. My sister had allergy shots as a child growing up and as an adult they really helped her. She was like your boys pretty much allergic to everything. She is now 33 and still suffers from asthma but takes a pill to help with that. She doesnt seem to have a ton of allergies now but I will ask her a little bit more about it. I am thinking the shot really really helped her though. :)

  31. So sorry to hear that you have been going through so much. I too suffer from many allergies and know how expensive it can become with both the testing and the shots. Sorry I can't be of much help with the shots, I have never tried them myself, but I know you will make the best decision for your family.
    Good luck with everything!!!
    My thoughts are with you all!

  32. I have recently become affiliated with a company called United Allergy Labs. If you have a provider (doctor) in your area who offers this service, you might want to check them out. Instead of having to make a daily trip to the doctors office, your antigens are prepared for each individual on a yearly basis and you are given the option (even encouraged) to take them home. As someone has already mentioned, the shots are with a very small needle, and with some guidance on the first few applications, most people become very comfortable with them.
    Most of these physicians who are affiliated with UAL offer options for payment plans etc.
    Just an idea, whatever path you decide I hope you and the family find relief from those annoying allergies! :)

  33. Hi- Just thought I would add my two cents about the shots. My eldest child (19) had severe allergies which were diagnosed at 4. He started shots at 5 and (I think he did them for about 4 years but frankly it was so long ago I could be off on the number of years. I do remember that you go more often in the begining and then it becomes less frequent. Yes the shots are time consuming but my son got used to them rapidly and the bottom line is that he is pretty much allergy free now. I highly recommend them.
    Good luck with your decision. It is so hard to determine what is right for your children.

  34. WOW, what a post! So excited for you being back in the business of helping people, such a blessing, Kim!! YAY you AND YAY them...that is great!

    Allergy shots...I know more than any person should know...my allergy testing looks like Will's. I had shots from the time I was four until about age 23. I have a rare allergy to germs (I know, doctors look at me funny when I share that), so for most of my life I had my dust, pollen, trees, flowers, dog, cat, shots and then I would get a shot of germs...they have since ceased making this serum because it is rare and because so many people have abandoned the allergy shot route. (at least that is what Em's allergist told us). You are so wise about these decisions, Kim. I know you and Dave will prayerfully consider what is best for the boys and make the right choice for your family. I am an advocate of shots, I feel like they helped my brother and I immensely (my brother's allergic reactions were far worse than mine, if you can imagine that). We went every Tuesday and Friday our entire childhood.

    So sorry about the flood...you are not alone, I have done that. I am blessed my laundry room is on the first floor...I buckled the floor

    Thinking of you...so thankful when I get a chance to stop in and visit!!


  35. Love the pics of Snickers!!! We have her identical twin and is the most wonderful dog in the world! We adopted her about 8 years ago and no vet has been able to tell us what breed(s) she is. What is Snickers?

  36. Kate, I am so glad that you are counseling. I know you have always seemed to have a passion for that line of work. Well, since I started following your blog 3 yrs ago :) I want my husband and I to do marriage counseling bc I need someone who is not emtionally involved to give us advice. I dont know the difference between a counseler,therapist, or a Psychologist? Any suggestions? ..and do men seem to do better talking to women, or other men?


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