parenting, Vaccine

The Flu Shot Fiasco

Admittedly, I don’t remember a tremendous amount from my childhood. Not for any reason other than that I think I have a horrible memory. If I look at photos I will sort of remember things – like a trip to Disney, swimming in our pool or our weeks at a beach house down the shore.

But I definitely do not remember getting vaccines. I know I got them, and I’m sure I was not happy, but that’s about it. And I’m hoping it’s the same for Little Mister, who is apparently traumatized by vaccines.

Case in point: this year’s flu shot.

This was our 7th year getting the flu shot, FYI. This was not our first flu shot rodeo.

Our pediatrician happened to hold a flu clinic on Columbus Day Weekend, and Mr. KK and I were away overnight visiting family. Little Mister’s Grandmother was gracious enough to agree to bring him to his appointment.

We are not big “we’ll just surprise him!” parents, so we talked with Grandma about sharing what they were doing on Sunday, and have a plan of attack for the day. Something like, “We’re going to go, you’re going to be brave, we’ll hold hands, you’ll get your shot, and then we’ll go for donuts!”

About 20 minutes after Little Mister’s scheduled appointment – just as we were packing up the car to drive home from New York – we get a FaceTime call from Grandma.

And Grandma was all business when we answered: “It is NOT going well.”

Apparently, Little Mister had worked himself up so much, that he was very nervous and scared it was going to hurt. He was past the point of reasoning. They were in the room with the nurse for about 15 minutes. No shot. 

Knowing it was a lost cause, we told them to just go home. Do not pass go, do not get any donuts.

From the backseat, our Little Mister pipes up in a perfectly voice to tells m: “Mom, I didn’t the shot.”

Two weeks later, we’re back at the clinic. This time, it’s just me and Little Mister.

We stand in line. 

We’re brought back into an exam room.

The nice nurse looks at our chart, then looks at Little Mister and says: “I remember you! You were here with your Grandma!” 

“That’s right!” I told her. “But this time, we’re not leaving without the vaccine.”

During the next 35 minutes the Little Mister:

  • refused to take his arm out of his fleece
  • cried
  • tried to reason with me
  • tried to negotiate with me
  • cried some more
  • wailed like I was shoving toothpicks under his fingernails
  • told me I was being unfair
  • told me he wasn’t happy with me
  • explained that he was scared
  • cried
  • shared that he wouldn’t go near the flu so he didn’t need the shot
  • asked if they gave donuts to kids who cried
  • and cried some more (at this point it could have been tears about the donuts)

When we finally got his arm out of his fleece, the nurse acted quickly. She rubbed the alcohol pad on his arm, I hugged him from behind and she stuck the needle in. We were like two CDC superheroes working together to keep kids healthy.

Little Mister was crying through all of our heroics, and after the needle went in and the nurse said, “We’re done!”, he looked at her and screamed, “THAT DIDN’T HURT AT ALL!”

Which only made him cry harder.

COVID-19 vaccine…here we come.

Life, Pandemic

What I Did in 2021: A Recap

Hello, November – otherwise known as the month I blog for 30 straight days and share mundane details of my life and bore you all to death!

I always start the month with a recap of what the year leading up to this momentous occasion looked like. I think we all were trying to find any semblance of normal again. And while we did start living again, I can’t help but feel I’m mentally and emotionally scarred from 2020.

Here is the 2021 recap…


We were still in cocoon mode, enjoying nights by the fireplace and pretending that a 30 degree day was warm enough to sit on a patio at a brewery. Pandemic Puppy Bruno was slowly finding his place in our home (and in our hearts) and turns out, he is an amazing snuggler (which is the way to Mr. KK’s heart).

We were still a few months away from our first COVID shot, so we stayed close to home. We avoided restaurants and any place inside and crowded. We played board games and made cocktails. We did crafts. We camped in the living room. We tried new recipes. We did remote kindergarten. We lit the fire pit and had friends over on a snow-covered patio when the temperatures in January reached a balmy 40 degrees. We freaked out with every sniffle and cough. We tried to make the best of it.


Spring brought optimism that maybe – just maybe – there was a light at the end of the tunnel. Mr. KK and I got vaccinated in March, which brought a small sliver of peace of mind, however with an unvaccinated child at home, not much in our lives changed. I ventured out for my marathon Target trips once again. (Whatever money we saved not going anywhere in 2020 was quickly spent at my 2021 Target visits. Sorry, not sorry).

I celebrated a birthday, though I’m still not convinced that if you don’t do out and celebrate for a full week and have the universe revolve around you, does your birthday even count? This year’s birthday saw Rocco – our older and smaller dog – literally almost die from what they think might have been a tick borne illness. Week of uncertainty and the cone of shame until finally they put him on doxycycline and he was like a NEW dog. He had his appetite back, and it hasn’t left since.

I feel I should mention that there were a few periods of tine this spring that BOTH dogs were wearing cones. It was ridiculous.

We had a flood in our living room when a pipe broke from our living room bar. Our beautiful hardwood floors buckled, even after having fans and humidifiers set up for a week straight.

The weather turned warmer and we could eat outside again! Patio living, here we come!


Whatever kindness the world – and Mother Nature – bestowed upon us during the pandemic last summer in the shape of the most glorious summer weather we’ve had in the last century, she violently and rudely took back. I can only speak for the Northeast, but the weather this summer SUCKED. It was either raining (all of Memorial Day weekend, literally almost every day for weeks on end) or it was muggy and humid, so much so that you couldn’t even bear to be outside or you’d be covered in a sheen of wetness. And don’t even get me started on my hair! No amount of hair serum existed to keep things under control this year.

A bright side to summer was our week away with friends to a little beach house we rented on the shore. Gorgeous beach days and beautiful sunsets, daily happy hours and morning walks. It was heaven.

Strawberry mojitos! What else were we going to do with all those strawberries we picked??

Mr. KK and I made it for our annual pilgrimage to Mystic, Connecticut. Where we sip adult beverages on a sailboat, then eat our weight in oysters.

And the best part? We were able to have some summer fun all while staying outside. Because I still refused to be unmasked for long periods of time inside (like eating a meal at a restaurant). If I could eat outside every day for the rest of my life, I totally would.


As we watched the world on its rollercoaster of COVID – lower deaths, Delta!, fewer hospitalizations, mask mandates back in place, vaccination requirements in cities and at companies – we prepared for the biggest unknown: in-person first grade for the Little Mister.

This year, when we were living with a highly-contagious variant of COVID, remote learning was not an option. It was all day in person school. Masked all day, but still. And you know what? Little Mister handled it like a champ. On Day 1 of morning school drop off, he literally slipped on his backpack, hopped out of the car with a “Bye, Mom!” and ran in the building, never looking back.

Me, at Little Mister’s desk, during Open House.

And here we are. It’s November, and we are on the cusp of my favorite holiday season. Last year, I skipped everything fall and went right to Christmas in early November because, well, COVID. This year, Little Mister and I decorated with “Fall Land”, though I’m counting the days until I can pack up the turkeys and take out the trees.

While it’s been great “getting back to normal”, it’s been…exhausting. I find myself missing the easy days of 2020…when I felt like I had all the time in the world. Now, I can’t seem to be able to squeeze in a workout most days, and – if I’m being honest – sometimes a shower. Everyone is busy again, so we are seeing friends less, and trying to do too much in a weekend. The laundry piles up. Dishes decorate the sink. We find ourselves giving into the convenience of take out more often.

But these next 30 days, I’m committed to finding a routine again for writing, and sharing the absurdities that are my crazy life.