‘Twas The Night Before Christmas

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It’s unbelievable to me that another year has passed and here I am writing another Christmas post. It feels as if last Christmas was just a blink ago but I guess that’s what it’s like raising little humans.

I’m beyond excited about tomorrow morning in this house that I’ll probably have trouble sleeping like I did when I was a kid. Having two children that understand the concept of Santa and Christmas morning revives all those amazing childhood feelings. It’s not all about the presents but there is just something so magical about the belief in ole’ Saint Nick and watching their eyes light up as they come down the stairs to a tree stuffed with gifts underneath. I just can’t wait.

So on this Night before Christmas I wish everyone the Happiest of Holidays. May your hearts be full and never happier <3

 

Cool Scrubs, Literally. Introducing: Maevn Uniforms + Giveaway

I’m pretty sure that all of my readers are aware of that fact that i’m a Veterinary Technician. That means that I’m wearing scrubs several days out of the week. I’m a slight “scrub snob” which means that I can’t stand wearing ones that are oversized, uncomfortable, and of course unflattering. I’ve worn several different brands over the years but I’m excited to be adding Maevn to my scrub wardrobe!

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The newest line from Maevn is called EON. The products that I’m featuring in this post are all from this line and are quite amazing. So, I live in Georgia where in the summer, the heat is unbearable. I work in air conditioning but when I have to take a pet outside or I’m running around like crazy during an emergency shift, the last thing I want is my thick cotton scrubs sticking to me and making me even warmer than I already was. That’s the first thing I noticed about my Maevn EON scrubs. The fabric is extremely breathable and I felt cool even when I knew I wasn’t.

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The EON line is also extremely flexible. I’m able to get down on the floor and move patients into position without any issues of the fabric becoming too tight. That’s a huge problem for me with other brands.

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In this picture I’m wearing the full elastic cargo pants and the sporty mesh panel jacket. Yes, I wear a jacket to work on the 100 degree days. We have to cover our tattoos and a jacket is the only way around that for me. Luckily, the material is super breathable and it doesn’t bother me at all, even in the heat.

To find a store near you that carries the Maevn brand, check out the store locator here!

Now, Maevn has agreed to give away one top and one pair of pants from the EON line in any color of the winners choice! You can view the items available here.  The giveaway is only open to US residents, sorry! To enter, just follow the Rafflecopter below.

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Good Luck! All entries will be verified. Mom Tails is not responsible for shipment of the prize. The winner will have 24 hours to respond to the email or a new winner will be chosen. 

RIP Harambe & Human Compassion

I’m sure you’ve heard about the boy at the Cincinnati zoo who climbed over some protective barriers and fell into the gorilla exhibit. If you haven’t, then you’re living under a rock and I’m slightly jealous of you. Since this is my own space on the internet, I’m going to use it to voice my opinion on the situation.

People are just assholes and have lost so much compassion for other humans.

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This is the meme that is circulating around that creates a fury inside of me. People are so quick to judge in this situation. 99% of what I’m seeing are comments about the mother, insulting her for not watching her child. Those commenters must have never had a toddler that is on a mission. Kids are quick. Kids sneak away. The second you turn your back to do anything, they can be gone just like that. I’m not sure what the mother was doing in this situation, but I’m sure it wasn’t ignoring her child hoping that he would climb into the gorillas habitat.

The most dangerous thing you can do if you have children is to think “this would never happen to me” or “I’m always watching my kids so it’s impossible for them to do something like this.” Reality check, the mother that this happened too probably thought the same thing. We need to take the situation as a major reality check and be even more cautious. The zoo is a place filled with wild animals. They have safety barriers in place but as you can see, they’re not always going to work.

I love animals. I work with animals for a living. I actually always wanted to work with wild animals when I was younger. I understand how messed up it might seem to have to shoot a gorilla that is “protecting” the child that fell into his habitat. The reality of it is, wild animals are unpredictable. Another minute longer and the gorilla could have easily ended the life of this human. If the zoo keepers had decided to use a tranquilizer on a 400 pound creature, it would have taken 10-15 minutes to take full effect. That’s 10-15 minutes too long in this circumstance. Unfortunately, I felt that they did the right thing to save this little boy.

I like animals more than I like most humans. I just understand that the value of human life is more important in this situation. The entire situation is beyond sad. A gorilla is dead and human compassion is seeming to be long gone.

Identity Theft Makes For Poor Friendships

I had the absolute weirdest encounter the other day on the phone. A number that I didn’t recognize from “McAllen, Texas” was calling and for some reason I decided to answer. Sometimes I’ll pick up the telemarketer calls just for shits and giggles. Well, this one was a pre-recorded message telling me that they were going to lower the interest on my credit card and all I had to do was to press “1” to be transferred to an operator and they would be on the way to lowering my rates. I immediately knew that it was a scam but decided I wanted to mess with whoever was on the other line; so I pressed 1.

After about 10 seconds of some really upbeat hold music a guy with a very thick accent answered the phone.

Man: Hey there! Are you calling to have your credit card interest rate lowered?

Me: What card company do you work for?

Man: Visa.

Me: I don’t have a Visa card.

Man: I mean, Mastercard.

Me: Oh, I have one of those. How do I get my rates lowered?

Man: It’s very easy. All I need is your name and credit card number to get started.

Me: Do people fall for that?

Man: All of the time. I call about 1000 people a day and get at least 10 credit card numbers. It’s how I buy my girlfriend shoes.

The rest of the conversation continued with me telling him off for stealing. He tried to explain to me that it isn’t stealing but rather his job to call people in our country and get the things he needs from us. I’m not kidding, that was his logic. I asked him several times why he thinks it’s okay for some people to go to work to be able to purchase their girlfriend shoes but he can just use my credit card number to buy them. He was 100% convinced that what he was doing was fine.

After I laid into him a bit, he asked me how old I was. He told me that he is a young man who would love to be my friend. He than gave me his email address so I could look him up on Facebook and add him.

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Of course I looked him up on Facebook & of course I didn’t add him as a friend.

I know there is pretty much nothing that can be done to catch this ass wipe but since I have some personal information on him, I am going to be making a police report. There are bigger fish to fry but I would like to see karma get this guy one way or another.

Monday Mom Confession #8: Police

As all parents know, you do what works for you. I have a pretty hard headed toddler that doesn’t like listening to me. When my husband is home, the kid is on his toes. He will still act up because he’s a 3 1/2 year old boy and he can’t control himself; but as soon as my husband tells him to stop, he pretty much alway does. When I’m home by myself with the kids, it’s a completely different story.

I used to threaten him with “I’m going to call dad if you don’t start listening” but when that stopped working, I had to come up with another plan.

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We have talked about police officers before in this house. I’ve told him that if he ever needs help and he can’t find mommy or daddy, it’s okay to talk to a police officer. I have explained to him that they aren’t bad guys [hold your thoughts on that statement] and they only take away the bad people [again, he’s 3, i’m not about to explain police brutality to him] So, I noticed him taking an interest in pretending to be a cop. He’ll say “MOM, I’m taking you to jail!” when we’re playing and things on that nature.

That is when my mom lightbulb went off. I can use that against him. So, recently I’ve been telling him that if he doesn’t listen to his mom that the police can take you to jail for that. It has shaped him right up. He looks terrified of the thought of going to jail that he immediately stops doing whatever it was that he was doing or does exactly what I was asking of him.

It’s probably an awful thing to be teaching him but desperate times call for desperate measures. I don’t want to instill a fear of law enforcement in him but in reality you can go to jail for not listening to the law. In this case, the law is mommy.

I’m Back, Hopefully.

Life just gets crazy sometimes and you need to take a break from one or more aspects of your life. I’ve learned the hard way in the past that there aren’t enough hours in the day or enough days in the week sometimes and things have to be pushed aside. In the case of the past few weeks, my blog was the thing that had to wait for attention.

I put aside my virtual life to live in the now. My parents came into town for 8 days and then once they left, my husbands parents came to visit for a few more days. In April, we had 12 full days of people visiting. They were jam backed with activities, laughter, tons of fun, and of course a couple cocktails. I wasn’t about to interrupt all that to get on the computer.

So, here’s a little taste of what I’ve been up to not on the internet.

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There were zoo animals, and food, and swamps, and boat tours, and hikes, and fishing, and baseball games, and more that I’m not even going to continue to list. It was one of those fun filled few weeks that stinks that they’re ending but it’s time to get back into the swing of normal life again. The kids need their bedtimes and I need my time back to do things like blog.

I am 100% European

I have alway been curious about my genealogy. My parents and grandparents have told me several different counties and nationalities so I wanted to get a more narrowed down idea of what the deal really was. I knew I was a total “mutt” but now I have a greater understanding of why I burn when I look at the sun.

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A little bit after Christmas my husband and I decided to each get a DNA test done through a company called ancestry. They were fairly inexpensive and since I wasn’t looking to drop an insane amount of money on our own curiosity, it worked out perfectly. We ordered the kits, spit in some tubes, and waited. Of course right after Christmas was the busy time since I’m sure tons of people purchased them as gifts so we just recently got the results back.

I’d like to say I’m surprised but it makes perfect sense.

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So totally German, Irish, and a bunch of other little things scattered in. This is explaining my temper, my love for whiskey and wine, and general “impossible” to tan skin tone.

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The service also matches people that you could possibly be related too. It goes from 2nd all the way to 10th cousins based on your DNA. I already had one person message me that was matched at a 7th cousin looking for her father. I couldn’t be of any help because I didn’t recognize any of the names she gave me but still a pretty amazing thing.

I highly recommend this service to anyone who is just plain ole’ curious like I am. Although I didn’t have any crazy revelation about who I am or where I come from, it was a blast.

TRICARE Dental: Did You Know?

“This post was sponsored by the MetLife TRICARE Dental Program as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central.”

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You may have noticed that over the past few months I have been partnering with the MetLife TRICARE dental program to bring you guys some insight and benefits of being enrolled. I choose to participate in this program and promote this awesome insurance plan for quite a few reasons. First of all, when my husband was in the military he got all of his dental covered and I was unaware of what was available for me as a spouse. It took me a while to figure out that TRICARE had a dental portion. We were paying for me to have a private insurance which was just outrageous in it’s premiums. So finding TRICARE was a game changer in my oral health care.

Once I finally made the switch, I couldn’t believe how awesome the benefits were. You’re able to choose your own dentist that accepts the plan. I’m unbelievably picky with my doctors and dentists so this was so important to me. Not too many people particularly enjoy trips to the dentist so anything that makes it more comfortable is a plus in my book. Also, the prices of the plans were so reasonable. Routine cleanings every 6 months are covered at 100% which is awesome because I’m a firm believer in preventive health care. Everything else that I was charged for (I genetically don’t have the greatest teeth, don’t judge) wasn’t a huge amount and was completely affordable.

This will be my last post of this ambassadorship. I had a lot of fun and hopefully answered a lot of questions that were brought my way via the blog and social media (or directed you to the right place to get your questions answered!)  I just want to highlight, once again, all of the amazing benefits that people who are eligible can receive.

  • Enrollees have access to one of the largest civilian dental networks – over 250,000 dental locations! As I mentioned above, this is huge for me. No matter where we traveled, there was someone in network that I was comfortable with.
  • Your family is not automatically enrolled in the dental program even if you’re signed up for the medical insurance. I learned this the hard way but the good news is that it’s really simple to start getting coverage! You can simply visit this website for online enrollment.
  • Premiums are competitively priced, there are no annual deductibles or co-payments, and there are low or no cost-shares on many dental services.  I can’t stress enough how affordable our plan for me was. I think we paid less than $20 a paycheck and throughout the entire coverage period my total cost out of pocket on services needed was less than $300.
  • The TRICARE dental plan will coordinate with another supplemental dental insurance carrier, but it’s always a good idea to compare other plans with the TDP. Honestly, I didn’t need to even think about having any supplemental insurance because my plan was exactly what I needed.

Of course, the website for TRICARE and the Facebook page are loaded with tons of information if you need more assistance.

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My husband is now out of the military and is working as a civilian. We’re fortunate enough to have him employed with a company that offers insurance but I can tell you that I do miss the TRICARE dental program. It really offers some of the best rates and coverage that I’ve ever had. If it’s available to you, I urge you to take advantage of it. I promise you won’t regret it.

Dealing with Euthanasia as a Vet Tech

Death is an all too common part of my job. On almost every single shift an animal either gives in to it’s injuries / illness or is humanely euthanized to end it’s suffering. As you can imagine, it’s never been or is never going to be an easy part of my job but it’s something that I’ve learned to cope with.

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Whenever someone is interested in becoming a veterinary technician and comes to me with questions, “How do you deal with euthanasia” is probably one of the first things that they ask. It really depends on the situation and the person, but for me it’s a state of mind. I have to remember what is best for the animal. Is it fair to keep them alive, in a cage, hooked up to wires and forcing them to take medications? Is it reasonable to do surgery on a senior animal that quite possibly won’t even tolerate the anesthesia? There are so many circumstances that come into play when the owners and the doctors make their decision; I’ve learned to accept it and recognize it really is what’s best.

One option you have as a technician is choosing to work for doctors that have the same values as you do on this topic. Personally, I would never work for a doctor that would preform convenience euthanasia. Basically would that means is that the animal is not sick, injured, or suffering but the owners are choosing to end that animals life to fit their needs. Trust me, it’s requested a lot more than you can imagine. I’ve seen requests for euthanasia for reasons from everything that the owners moving and they can’t take the animal with them to they don’t like all the shedding. Of course, we didn’t do them for these reasons mentioned but that is because I choose to work under doctors who agree that is wrong. My point here is you most likely won’t be put in a situation where you’re feeling you had a part in some wrong doing.

I have a post that is called “Veterinary Medicine is a Business and Owning a Pet is a Luxury” which leads me to my next topic. Sometimes, euthanasia is the best option for that owner even when the pet can potentially be saved. This is hard and sometimes I struggle with it. If a dog is hit by a car and has a ruptured spleen, surgery is required. Surgery is also pretty expensive. Not everyone out there has $2000 + to spend at the drop of a hat and I understand that. So, unfortunately, sometimes in these situations humanely putting the dog to sleep is the best-case scenario for that dog and for that owner. Since a veterinary hospital is a business, we can’t treat everything for free. So in this situation the only other option would be to send that patient home to die in pain, which isn’t right.

In order to really deal with the sadness that comes with euthanasia you have to be pretty emotionally strong. All technicians have our bad days but in the end we’re there to help the animal even if that situation requires us to help them end their pain and suffering. We’re there to help support the owners as well which sometimes is just as hard if not harder than losing that animal. That patient was part of someone’s family so it’s extremely important to be as strong as possible.

So to anyone looking for tips and advice on dealing with euthanasia, here’s what I can say has worked for me.

  1. Focus on the fact that you’re doing right by that animal. You’re helping them relieve their pain and suffering.
  2. Try not to take your day home with you. Some cases are hard to get off your mind but it’s really important to not stress and focus on it [for too long]
  3. Take a break if you need too. Sometimes, after a really hard euthanasia, I’ll take a short walk after just to clear my head and focus on what else in the hospital needs me.
  4. Don’t fear showing emotions. Sometimes when it’s really hard and I have sobbing owners in front of me, I cry with them. I have been known to shed a few tears in our bereavement suite and I’m not ashamed of it. It’s easier on me to cry a little bit then to try to hold it all in.
  5. Don’t be afraid to ask someone else to step in if possible. I had a week recently where I was present for like 8 of them in 2 shifts. I was just exhausted and was lucky enough to have some co-workers who stepped in for me.

For me, euthanasia, both gets easier and harder with time. It gets easier because you know what to expect and you’re more comfortable with the situation. It becomes harder because you’re experiencing more and more loss. If the bottom line is that it’s ending the animals suffering, you’re doing the right thing regardless of how hard it is.

5 Difficult Things About Having An Independent Toddlers

Gaining independence is a normal part of growing up for every kid. It’s supposed to be an amazing time in our lives as parents, watching them grow and learn to do things for themselves. Most of the time it is.  Then again, sometimes it’s awful.

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  1. They suddenly have an opinion on every little thing. This first happened one morning when I was picking out what my son was going to wear that day. He turned and looked at the shirt I had in my hand and said, “No mom, that’s ridiculous.” He wouldn’t for the life of me put on the adorable shirt I had chosen. He had to have one of his over worn and stained dinosaur t-shirts that really shouldn’t even be used as PJ’s.
  2. Snacks become overly complicated. I can’t just grab something from the pantry or fridge and hand it to my toddler anymore. When he has a specific taste for something, and he really wants whatever it is, it’s near impossible to get him to eat something else.
  3. He wants to prep his own food. This is adorable, except when you’re in a rush or it’s something really messy. My son loves clementines and will eat 3-5 a day if I let him. He now has to peel them himself which is fine except for the fact that he whines the entire time about how hard it is.

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  4. Leaving the house now takes at least an hour. I can’t just grab the kids and run out the door anymore. He has to put on his own shoes. He has to pick out his shirt. He has to figure out which toy he wants to bring with him. There is also no rushing this process.
  5. The messes an independent child makes are beyond anything I could have ever imagined. Since he thinks he can do everything himself, he tries, and quite often fails. The most recent event involved me taking a quick shower. I put a children’s show on, gave both kids a snack, and jetted into the bathroom for all of 5 minutes. I come out and Everett says “I cooked eggs!” Well, he got a few eggs from the fridge and cracked them onto the floor. Thanks kid! He can’t operate the stove as it’s child locked but if it wasn’t, he’d sure try!

Watching your child grow up and discover the world is an amazing thing! It’s just sometimes the most annoyingly adorable thing. It’s a game of choosing your battles now with these creatures. Choose wisely!