Thursday, November 17, 2011

What is Lyme's Disease?

Wikipedia defines Lyme's Disease as "Lyme disease, or Lyme borreliosis,[1] is an emerging infectious disease caused by at least three species of bacteria belonging to the genus Borrelia.[2][3] Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto[4] is the main cause of Lyme disease in the United States, whereas Borrelia afzelii and Borrelia garinii cause most European cases. The disease is named after the town of Lyme, Connecticut, USA, where a number of cases were identified in 1975. Although Allen Steere realized that Lyme disease was a tick-borne disease in 1978, the cause of the disease remained a mystery until 1981, when B. burgdorferi was identified by Willy Burgdorfer.
Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease in the Northern Hemisphere. Borrelia is transmitted to humans by the bite of infected ticks belonging to a few species of the genus Ixodes ("hard ticks").[5] Early symptoms may include fever, headache, fatigue, depression, and a characteristic circular skin rash called erythema migrans. Left untreated, later symptoms may involve the joints, heart, and central nervous system. In most cases, the infection and its symptoms are eliminated by antibiotics, especially if the illness is treated early.[6] Delayed or inadequate treatment can lead to the more serious symptoms, which can be disabling and difficult to treat.[7] Lyme disease is a biosafety level 2 disease."

Before yesterday, I knew it was a disease you can get from the deer ticks in our area, but that was about all I knew. But yesterday my wife, Melissa, was diagnosed with Lyme's Disease and after the initial shock, I started researching to see what we are up against.

Thankfully it can be treated with antibiotics if caught early enough. Well, of course, my wife is in the later stages of the disease and she had to get her knee drained of fluid yesterday since the disease effects the joints. She is now on an antibiotic that we picked up last night and she must take that for a month and hopefully she will recover from it.

So if that wasn't bad enough, we got caught in a transitional period of work where my wife and I are not covered under any insurance. Thankfully the staff and doctors at Pottstown Memorial Hospital have helped us out a little bit but we are still facing a huge stack of medical bills that will be coming in. Please keep us in your prayers and I will keep everyone posted as we progress.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Leap Pad giveaway

Here is a great giveaway for the new LeapPad.


* A magnetic stylus, which is fairly easy to get in and out and less likely to get lost (I hope!). My youngest son cut the stylus off of every single Leapster we had in the past, which has been very frustrating.

* An EXTRA stylus, in case you do lose the original. =) (Fantastic idea, LeapFrog!)

* The Learning Path, which allows parents to keep track of their children’s learning progress online.

* Kid-friendly touch screen with nice, clear resolution.

* The camera and video recorder, which may be my kids’ favorite features. Combine those with the included Art Studio and you’ve got hours of fun for kids that like to play with their pictures. The camera is pretty low-resolution, but it serves its function and my boys don’t know any better yet.

* Art Studio! Lots of fun for kids and it gets their creativity and imagination going.

* The “All About Me” game, which allows kids to make books about themselves and share them via Facebook or email. I started my own book and had a lot of fun being creative with it.

* Ultra e-books, which are so cool! They’re interactive and give kids a new reading experience.

* It allows several player profiles and each profile keeps track of that specific child’s skill level. This is particularly nice because I remember in the small amount of time when my girls were still playing with their Leapsters (the original ones, I’m talking about here), their brothers would get on them and wreck their progress because there was no such thing as a different profile or log-in. I also love that the LeapPad, as well as the Leapster Explorer, does keep track of each kid’s progress.

* You can get new games and apps to continually challenge kids (more than 100 in the LeapFrog library!).

* Much better alternative to an iPad for younger kids. Of course it’s much more limited than an iPad, but it’s also a fraction of the cost.

* It’s educational, which is my very favorite thing about LeapFrog products. They know how to combine learning and fun in such a way that kids don’t even realize they’re actually learning something and not just playing a fun game. You can feel good about your kid using this as part of her allowed screen time because she’s not just playing mind-numbing games, but actually actively participating and stretching her learning skills.

To enter for a chance to win visit

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Baby Bump Contest

For all of those expecting mothers or family's with little ones this is a great giveaway for you to enter.

My Four Monkeys

Just visit this site to enter using the rafflecopter form.

Good luck to all.