Meal Pinning Monday

August 28, 2016

The official September Whole30 starts Labor Day, thank goodness because we are going to my parents for Labor Day weekend... and my people don't do Whole30. 

So here's to Jeremy's last week of non Whole30 meals for the next 4 weeks. Then 31 Days starts (October) so who knows what that will bring. Anyone have a topic suggestion they'd like me to ramble on about for a month?

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Sloppy Joe Stuffed Sweet Potatoes that I have yet to get to, just go back to last week for the recipe link. 

Tuesday - Grilled Chicken with Green Bean Salad

Wednesday - Peanut Chicken with Salad

Thursday - leftovers

Friday - Sunday - No Cooking For Me! 

Breakfast & Lunch are actually the same as last week, it was too good to not make again. 
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Stuffed Pistollette Rolls

August 24, 2016

Really I'd love to set a goal to finally finish going through my grandmother's recipes, but goal setting doesn't seem to work. 

So let's just not bother. 

I did finally tackle one that has been sitting in the stack of recipes, and just mocking me. I've held off on it simply because I was so stick Paleo for so much of this year, but I finally made Nanny's Stuffed Rolls for the boys... and the only complaint I got was that they should have been crawfish. 

I'm not a huge seafood person though, so that wasn't happening, so I stuck to the recipe. 

A few notes before we get to that recipe; I know it says pistollette rolls, but they didn't exist two weeks in a row at our grocery store. Which is odd because it's common at Cajun restaurants around here. I also sliced them differently and changed ingredient amounts... but I'll get to that in the actual recipe. 

Stuffed Pistollette Rolls

serves 24
24 pistollette rolls, or 12 of a larger roll
1 lb ground meat (I used beef)
1 10 oz package of chopped frozen broccoli
1 lb Velveeta cheese 
1 medium onion, chopped (I skipped chopping and used Picsweet Seasoning Blend)
1/2 tsp creole seasoning (I used way more than 1/2 tsp of it)
dash of garlic powder

Cut at an angle the end of each roll (I sliced the top of mine). Cut out the inside of the roll, cut out bread int he top you cut off and save the top. (if you happen to be using a rounder roll follow the actual directions and don't do what I did) Saute ground meat and onion, seasoning with garlic powder and creole seasoning. Cook until meat is done. Drain off all the liquid. Add broccoli to the pan and cook until tender, drain if needed. Add cheese and stir until melted. With a small spoon, fill each roll with the mixture. Replace the bread cap on the end. Brush with melted butter and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. 

*I'm sure this would work with real cheese, I'd just use about 4 cups shredded. You have to remember the time these recipes were made was when prepackaged foods were new and everyone wanted to use them. If I were to remake this I'd probably use shredded sharp cheddar. 

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Meal Pinning Monday

August 21, 2016

If you follow Whole30, then you probably have noticed the big September Whole30 that's about to go down before the Food Freedom Forever book hits the shelves. I plan on doing another reset and participating in Whole30 in September.

Post pregnancy and nursing Emily has had some serious issues with food, as in... cake is my bestie. I had an awesome Whole30 in January and then slowly morphed into the bad food eating pregnancy (but not prego) lady again. So this week, to prep for Whole30, I'm going my usual Paleo route for breakfast and lunch, cutting out dessert, and making a combo of Paleo and fun dinners so no one wants me dead before October.

Let'a face it, I'm the only person who enjoys non dairy milk and kale in this house. 

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Half the links didn't work with the widget this week, so if the Pinterest link isn't there just click the recipe title to get to Pinterest. 

Tuesday - Chick-Fil-A Nuggets & Fries (Paleo)

Wednesday - Pumpkin Waffles with Bacon & Eggs (not Paleo at all) 

Thursday - leftovers

Friday - Chicken Fromage with Sauteed Spinach & Roasted Potatoes (one of Nanny's recipes that will be up soon)

Saturday - Eating Out

Sunday - Chicken & Avocado Burrito with Pioneer Woman Salsa & Chips

Breakfast - Protein Shake with Double Chocolate Paleo Protein, 1/2 banana, cashew milk, and 1 tbsp Maranatha Almond Butter

Lunch - Buffalo Ranch Chicken Salad (with a Larabar)
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Lemon Cheese Layer Cake

August 17, 2016

I finally got to make the next cake for The Southern Cake Series, thanks to sickness for keeping me out of the kitchen for ages. 

Luckily I waited until I had a few days at home to start making this one, because it's a doozy of a cake in my opinion. Not that you shouldn't make it, just give yourself time to make it. 

Here's my deal with the Southern Living Lemon Cheese Layer Cake, it tastes amazing, but it isn't an armature cake baker kind of cake. I'm not a huge layer cake maker, they tend to topple over, and this particular cake reminded me of the Southern Living Christmas Cookbook circa 2008 recipe for Bananas Foster layer cake debacle.

That cake tasted amazing, but a cake over 2 layers is just not for me. Plus who on earth needs to eat 3-4 layers of cake?

Other than my issue with 4 layers, the cake wasn't the easiest to frost. Even after freezing to help with what I suspected to be a difficult to frost cake it still had some crumb issues, and the frosting recipe doesn't make enough to do multiple layers to cover the crumb.

Other than that... it tastes amazing. I don't even really like lemon cakes or cookies and I LOVE this cake. I was eating scrapes covered in the curd at midnight last night.

So take that into consideration, this recipe tastes better than anything on earth but is a pain in the but to assemble. I think that partly comes from the type of cake since it has the egg whites folded in. Use the same flavors, the recipe for the curd and frosting and just plop it onto another yellow cake recipe and you'd be in business.

In case you've forgotten... I'm almost reviewing 12 popular Southern cake recipes this year... so expect my opinion on how each came together.

But lemon curd, I could bathe in it.

Lemon Cheese Layer Cake

Lemon Curd::
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
4 large eggs
3 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon lemon zest
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice (I ran out of lemon and added in orange juice for what I was missing)

Cake Layers::
1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
1 cup butter, softened
4 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
1 tablespoon orange zest
3 cups cake flour (be sure to sift before measuring)
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1 cup fresh orange juice

Lemon-Orange Buttercream Frosting::
3 cups powdered sugar, sifted and divided
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup lemon curd

1. Prepare Lemon Curd: Beat first 2 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended. Add 4 eggs and 3 egg yolks, 1 at a time, to butter mixture, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in lemon zest. Gradually add lemon/orange juice to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until blended after each addition. Transfer to a large heavy saucepan.

2. Cook mixture over medium-low heat, whisking constantly, 14 to 16 minutes or until mixture thickens, coats the back of a spoon, and starts to mound slightly when stirred. Transfer mixture to a bowl. (This took about 20-25 for my stove)

3. Place heavy-duty plastic wrap directly on surface of warm curd (to prevent a film from forming), and cool at room temperature 1 hour. Chill 8 hours.

4. Prepare Cake Layers: Preheat oven to 350°. Beat 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar and 1 cup softened butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add 4 egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in orange zest.

5. Sift together cake flour and next 2 ingredients; gradually add to butter mixture alternately with 1 cup orange juice, beginning and ending with flour mixture, beating just until blended after each addition.

6. Beat 4 egg whites at medium-high speed with mixer until stiff peaks form. Fold one-third of egg whites into batter; fold remaining egg whites into batter. Pour batter into 4 greased (with shortening) and floured 8-inch round shiny cake pans (about 1 3/4 cups batter in each pan). Note: This is where I really changed things, I used two cake pans and put a slight bit more and backed for about 8 extra minutes. What didn't fit in my cake pans was placed in a separate pan for scrape to munch on. 

7. Bake at 350° for 17 to 20 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely (about 30 minutes). If you use my two layer method add a few more minutes and check with a toothpick to see when it's done.  Cool cake layers and then wrap in cling wrap and freeze for a few hours to make assembly easier. 

8. Reserve and refrigerate 1 cup Lemon Curd. Spread remaining Lemon Curd between cake layers and on top of cake (about 1/2 cup per layer - remember I only used 2 layers so we had extra). 

9. Prepare Frosting: Beat 1 cup powdered sugar, 1/2 cup softened butter at low speed with electric mixer until blended. Add 1/2 cup reserved Lemon Curd alternately with remaining 2 cups powdered sugar, beating until blended after each addition. Increase speed to high, and beat 1 to 2 minutes or until fluffy.

10. Remove cling warp from cake and level the layer with a good knife. Pipe a small border of frosting around the bottom cake layer to keep the curd in place, next spoon the curd onto the bottom layer. Top with upper layer. Spread frosting on sides of cake. Spread remaining 1/2 cup reserved Lemon Curd over top of cake. 

Whoo, there's a lot to this cake. 

Will I make it again, probably not. If someone else mad it I would totally eat it though. 

That curd though, I'll be making that again and again. 

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Meal Pinning Monday

August 16, 2016

Yes, I know it's now Tuesday. Yesterday I wasn't entirely sure it was Monday. It's a case of several days of house arrest due to the flooding down here and not knowing what day it is.

We are currently on the 3rd day of school being cancelled due to flooding, our neighborhood didn't flood, but there were several that were evacuated. We have 3 different friends in Denham Springs who have evacuated and last we heard one had a few feet of water in the attic. The devastation there is just unreal.

I can't imagine losing absolutely everything and having to rebuild my life from the ground up. Especially with small children, two of the families I know personally have small kids. I thought I was going to go nuts without being about to get Harrison some breakfast food when it really hit here, but being taken away from a home by army tank is another story.

So on a lighter note, here's out meals for the week. We were actually able to get out to grocery shop, and luckily there was still food at WalMart, one of the local places was nearly cleared out of essentials the other day. On the down side, shopping due to epic flooding means dodging snakes in the dairy isle.

True story.

I passed a snake, by inches, and didn't see it until some guys started messing with it after I walked by. Later on I saw a scuff mark in the floor and nearly ran screaming ha!

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Meatloaf & Mash - didn't make last week

Tuesday - Beef Stroganoff

Wednesday - Sloppy Joe Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Thursday - leftovers

Friday - Chick-fil-a Nuggets with Fries

Saturday - eating out

Sunday - Stuffed Pistollette Rolls (One of Nanny's recipes I'll be sharing)
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Life Lately

August 10, 2016

Where do I even begin? 

Blogger rut much?

I think this is all in part to my lovely sickness and the fact that my cake did not get baked. All the sad faces people, every single one of them. 

I've gotta figure out what to do with my basil plant, especially since Jeremy is digging up the lack of garden I've got going on. I was thinking pesto, but in my more strict paleo times I don't exactly want to cheese in it. 

My next thought was to puree it with a bit of water and freeze it into cubes. Anyone have any luck with this?

Have I talked about the car situation here? 

I know I ranted on Snapchat like I was getting paid to do it. 

Anyway, some junkie thugs carrying guns stole our truck and it was recovered when they were driving through Main St. and somehow (unknown to me) got themselves into a police chase with it. Dear friends this is only after the lovely thugs stole our car seat, a pair of RayBan's, the garage door opener, some other crap I'm sure... and left other peoples belongings in there. 

I'm just dying to know how in the course of 4 hours, max, they managed to burn an half of tank of gas. 

Am I being nit picky here? 

Three of the dear, dear band of thugs are in jail...  the 3rd is foot lose and fancy free. And while my husband, to quote him, "would like them to be so saved it hurts." I on the other hand would like to personally go to the jail and do other things that would hurt. Not exactly a good response, but I'm working on it. 

Once I'm done driving my Dad's truck while Jeremy's is in the... well it was finally released from police custody and is now being appraised (damage for days)... the man has my Focus. I'm basically dangerous driving a large vehicle and will happily take back my little car once this whole circus is behind us. 

Lord help everyone if I figure out what these people look like. 

That baby, or toddler, right there. He's a mess. 

Harrison is on the verge of 18 months, finally quit nursing against his will (I'll post on that later), and he thinks he is the funniest kid on earth. The only thing that will cause him to sit still is the crib and Sesame Street. Play a SS song on your phone and he will love you forever. 

Or feed him dessert, he basically will pledge his love to anyone with ice cream. 

Overall this is just a fun age, and I still stand by my comments that I'd prefer to birth a one year old and skip the newborn stage. 

In the land of "obsessed with Glam Life Guru" and YouTube videos, I've discovered the holy grail of primers... Milk of Magnesia. 

If you aren't using it you're clearly having to reapply your makeup. 

Now for the sick lady recap to end this whole deal, the above photo was taken when I had a fever of 104.3 and was certain I was on the brink of death. 

The below photo was 3 days later when the blisters and pain set in and I was ready to jump out of a window and asked the doctor to "put me down." 

They don't look that bad in the photo, but my hands were very swollen and I couldn't even grasp the steering wheel and basically cried all the way to the doctor. I stayed up that night soaking my hands in rubbing alcohol out of desperation and in an attempt to shrink the blisters. 

Before you freak out, you will do crazy things after not sleeping for 3 nights and it being 1 in the morning and all people, desperate things. 

What's even worse now is that all those spots that are red are now shedding the skin and exposing brand new "hurts like the dickens" skin. Thankfully Jeremy got a new garage door opener (after the truck fiasco) so now I can easily get back into the house. It took me quite some time to get the front door open the last two days. My hands are essentially useless. 

So that's it, the good, the bad, the ugly (my hands), the truck. 
Hopefully the next life update doesn't include a stolen truck and the plague aftermath. 
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Meal Pinning Monday

August 7, 2016

I'm going to go ahead and say I might be able to cook this week, not that I can feel my fingers all that well.

Thanks Hand Foot & Mouth Disease.

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Enchiladas with Guac Rice

Tuesday - leftovers

Wednesday - Pork Chops with Sweet Potato Wedges

Thursday - Chicken with Thyme & Garlic with Roasted Carrots

Friday - Grilled Chicken with Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Saturday - Eating Out

Sunday - Meatloaf with Roasted Potatoes
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Surviving Adult Hand Food & Mouth

August 3, 2016

There seems to be this tale out there that adults can't get Hand Foot & Mouth Disease, well that's just a lie. I for one have a tendency to pick up "childhood diseases" in adulthood. Well let me share my cautionary tale of HFMD and how I survived the worst pain of my life, it was worse than being in labor, and because there is very little online about adult HFMD and my doctor didn't believe me at first.

Rewind to two Saturday's ago when little ole Harrison saw my Camelback bottle on the counter and took it. He has a thing for stealing my cups. That evening he had a very low fever, 100, and the next day he looked like he had a ant bite on his foot.

I thought nothing of it because we had been playing outside, and little boys are always covered in bumps and bruises. The sitter kept saying that he was in a foul mood all week at her house though, and that's completely unlike him. By Wednesday I noticed the "any bites" were covering the bottom of his feet, so ding ding ding... I realized it was HFMD. The next it started clearing up an all was right in the world again.

Or so I thought.

Thursday I had a sore throat, nothing big though because my allergies are always bothering me. I cleaned the mess out of the house and thought we were done with HFMD, little did I know that incubation period is nearly a week.

Friday (Day 1 HFMD) - I woke up not feeling well but wanted to have a last day of fun before school started so I loaded up the baby for a trip to Whole Foods. I didn't feel great but by the time I got home I was very dizzy and my appetite was gone. About 5pm I hit the freezing cold stage of developing a fever and couldn't warm up, still didn't have a fever though when I took it. I had Jeremy put the baby down and I soaked in a hot tub to try to stop shaking.

Bad idea.

That combined with laying on a heating pad to warm up shot my temperature up to 104.3 (at the highest) and it took several hours to get it back down.

Saturday (Day 2 HFMD) - I woke up with a low fever and throughout the day a painful spot started to develop on my thumb.

Sunday (Day 3 HFMD) - I woke up around 2am and in incredible pain with my hands covered in blisters and red spots, and didn't go back to sleep. Nothing helped and hot water made it hurt worse. I took a lot of Benadryl and ibuprofen to decrease the pain and irritation but it did nothing to help. Sunday night I literally slept 30 minutes but would wake up in pain again quickly. The only thing that would slow the pain was to cover my hands in ice packs.

Monday (Day 4 HFMD) - After not sleeping and staying covered in ice packs continuously, my feet started to show a few spots. Literally 2 on each foot. I couldn't take it anymore and went to the doctor, he didn't believe me at first but after hearing me out and looking at everything he agreed I contracted the lovely adult version of HFMD. Joy. I was given a prescription for Lortab and Prednisone.

Now I've read the one blog out there that discusses this virus in adults and a few commenter's said that Prednisone made there's worse, it has actually helped mine. My doctor gave it to me because he said that in adults HFMD can get worse rapidly and cause inflammation in the heart or brain. If I got any worse than I was in the office that day he said I had to come back in, he basically said a nice hospital stay would be in my future. Honestly though my ice pack had warmed up at his office and I was dying from the pain, had he suggest an IV I would have gladly have taken it. Sedation would have been amazing.

But I digress, pain med...

They helped, but don't think it's a cure. Lortabs only made it bearable. I could endlessly watch TV in a medicated haze, but I was still hurting more than I was in labor without an epidural when I removed an ice pack. When I asked what we could do for pain, even though the doctor had given me a hard core pain prescription... he said really only numbing it with ice would help.

So I "slept" with ice packs tied to my feet and held one in my hands. I got up about every hour to get a new ice pack, but I still didn't sleep.

Also, the blisters moved from just my hands and feet to my nose, one on my ear, and a few on my scalp. The sores on my feet had multiplied and hurt to walk on them at this point. There were also a few random blisters on other areas of my body.

Tuesday (Day 5 HFMD) - I was still wanting to die, but was managing the pain much better by taking a Lortab and a Benadryl every 4 hours on the clock. If I missed it by 5 minutes from napping I would wake up writhing in pain. For the most part I slept a lot during the day because of the meds, but anything to make up for not sleeping since Saturday was welcome. I also finally figured out a lotion combo I was happy with  for keeping my skin moist enough that it wasn't contributing to the insane itching and pain. (I'll post those below)

Wednesday (Day 6 HFMD) - I slept all night, better than I've slept in a long time and the last Lortab I took was at 10pm on Tuesday. I was absolutely shocked that I woke up pain free and that I had even slept, especially after sitting in the bathroom soaking my feet in cold water for several nights. I'm still pretty itchy, but it's manageable with lotion and creams. The swelling has started going down and I can touch things again, for instance I can type but I can't hold a pen. Opening jars or any real pressure on my hands is unbearable. The swelling in my feet has started to go down as well. I'm coming this as far as how it feel today as going from being consumed by fire ants to just having them walk all over you. It a very irritation, very constant itching sensation that you can't scratch because that will just make this even worse.

A few of my finger nails have a lot of pressure in the nail bed and I'm afraid I'll be losing those nails. For about 3 months down the road you continue to recover from what the blister did to you, that being that skin comes off in chunks and you stand the risk of entire nails falling off.

I just can't wait.

I'll keep updating this post as time goes by and I get to experience the rest of the symptoms healing, however nasty they happen to be. Snapchat seems to be where I post the most nonsense on the matter if your curious.

To wrap this up for today, here are my survival products for HFMD:::

Now were all these suggested by my doctor, no. But in the interest of not sleep for 24 hours straight and soaking your feet in freezing water at 2 am --- you'll really try anything. This worked for me, or at least made me feel like something was working. Also, there are a few products not listed...

To start with the items in the photo, here's what they are and how I used them.

1. Eucerin Skin Calming - I slathered this all over anything that itched, I also combined it with items 10, 8, and 6 before applying gloves to my hands and socks to my feet. The more moist your skin si the better.

2. I used Q-tips to apply petroleum jelly to my lips and nose in an attempt to keep from contaminating all of my products. I also won't be wearing makeup for a few days in the interest of not contaminating my makeup.

3. Benadry is your best friend, it will either knock you out for a minute so you don't think you're dying or it will just ease the itching. Either way, I took this every four hours on the dot for a few days.

4. My beloved classroom "please don't get me sick" room spray got an upgrade. I used 1/3 water, 1/3 white vinegar, and 1/3 rubbing alcohol with 5 drops of Thieves Essential Oil and 5 Purify (from Eden's Garden) as a spray that I could put on things I didn't want to use bleach on.

5. Surgical gloves are your best friend. Not only does it hurt to touch things, it hurts when things touch you. Plus I found that the barrier made holding ice packs a little less uncomfortable. This will also keep your lotion and cream mixture in place longer. Plus the gloves keep from spread the virus further, but let it be know (as per the doctor) that the virus spread more though feces and spit more than it does the blisters. As long as your blisters are oozing they are contagious, but you are more likely to get this from drinking after someone than by touching what they touched. Hence, the baby gave it to me because I am the main diaper changer and he takes my cup (which he never will again).

6. Curacaine, I mixed this into my skin slave creation from #1 but according to my doctor creams like this won't really work. His reasoning is that the pain isn't caused in the nerves but is just a skin issue so it can't be treated like shingles. Now that I'm to the itching phase I see this helping more. But really the only thing that will numb the pain is a prescription pain killer, sorry.

7. Cotton balls were my friend when it came to applying #9 & 11 to my skin. Hear me out on these but I don't think you'll like the idea. I started getting spots on my nose that oozed some weird yellow liquid and read that someone used peroxide to help that... so I cleaned the area with peroxide. Now here's where I'm sure you'll turn your nose up, I stared having a few blisters come to a head and wanted to speed up the process at 1AM one night. I sterilized a needle and used it to gently pop the spots that were about to bust, then I used my zit popper tool to get the liquid out (also sterilized) and then doused the area in rubbing alcohol. You might think that would hurt but I'm here to say that the amount of pain I was in at the time meant that I couldn't even feel it. Promise. I swear to you by getting whatever was in that blister out of it, it felt better because the pressure what taken off of my skin.

8. Cortizone 10, again like #6 it helps with itching but you won't notice it's helping until the pain goes away.

9, 10, & 11. I think I already discussed them with what they were used for... so moving on.

Like I said in the post my doctor prescribed me Prednisone and Lortabs, I suggest you go to the doctor as soon as your sure it's HFMD. Since adults don't really get this you might have some push back, I read several comment from moms who got this from their child and had a hard time getting diagnosed. But the sooner you get meds the happier you'll be.

Also, ice packs, with constant use and not wanting to waste ice I used all the ice packs I keep in my lunch box for work (I know eww) and made a few of my own. The homemade version actually lasted much longer than several of the store bought ice packs. To make your own get fill a zip top freezer bag with a few cup of ice and add in about 1/4 cup of rubbing alcohol. Seal and put the bag inside another freezer bag to ensure it won't bust on you. When I initially made this one it lasted from 8pm to 2am.

Cold Epsom Salt baths are perfect to relieving the pain and itching, just soak your hands and feet though. I can't stand cold water. I did this several times a day and it really helped when I was out of my mind with pain and couldn't figure out how to make it stop.

Oh and how am I forgetting the mother of all HFMD cures - Magic Mouthwash - this will come in handy when your throat is in the same state your hands are in. I used this Sunday morning and was able to eat again that afternoon. It numbs your mouth like nothing I've ever seen before.

Magic Mouthwash - 
1 tsp benadryl
1 tsp milk of magnesia

Combine, gargle really good, & spit. You can swallow just a tad, but don't drink the stuff. I preferred spitting and then swallowing what was lingering around my mouth. 

I hate to say this, but what didn't work for me was all the essential oil cures people use on their kids according to Pinterest. I even think it made it a bit worse. I was actually in so much pain after using the essential oil mixed with coconut oil idea Sunday that I finally decided that washing my hands wasn't enough and I stood in the shower rubbing Dove soap all over me to get it off. That actually made the burning go away. So please, for the love, don't use essential oils on your kids for this virus. Kids can't articulate enough that they are on their death bed to tolerate the pain this is going to cause. And don't tell me to use lavender, all of it sucked. Harsh? Yes. But it sucked. 

If you think I'm just bashing oils, think again, I own a bunch and have used them for years... but a virus with open sores is not the place to get all hippie holistic. 

Like my doctor said, the only thing that really works is ice and time. Cover the sores in ice packs and pray a lot that it will pass quickly.

If you want to chat about this or have questions, bring them on, I'd love to chat in the comments below! Also, if you want to see progress pics let me know, I didn't initially put them up because it's so bad. I'm only on day 6 and healing time is typically 10 days, so I'll continue to update this. I'm just finally pain free enough to type again and go back to work tomorrow.

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