Friday Flotsam


Road Trippin' through Arkansas

Do you think those ear wax candle thingies are a myth? A legend? A hoax? A ripoff?

Because, you guys. I cannot hear anymore. My hearing is gone. All gone. Wiped away forever.

Between my kids constantly screaming down my eardrums, my dog barking at the mailman and any other speck of dust floating down the street, the remnants of my rock ‘n roll days (and I even wore earplugs!) and the creepy crawlies that I’m absolutely positive are sluggin’ their way into my ears at night while I sleep – I CANNOT HEAR.

Did you say something? Because I can’t hear you. And I seriously want to try those ear candles. I’m not sure if it’s just a massive Pee Wee Herman rubberband-style ball of wax all camped out in my ear holes, or if it’s real, actual, factual, permanent damage, but I need those dang candles. Mostly so I can say the words “ear wax candles”.

Do you use them? Have you used them? Are they like a neti pot for your ear tunnels?! How does it work? Is it all a lie? Will I be able to play the harp?

Also, if you decide to google image “ear wax candles,” don’t eat beforehand. Just helping you out there.

Cheese and Rosé Party in Eureka Springs

You know how in the mouthwash commercials, they challenge you to swish and gargle for 60 entire seconds?


No way. None.

I can’t even make it past 10 seconds before my face starts to fizz away from all the acid burning. I look like dude in Poltergeist where he rips his face off in the bathroom mirror. Then I spit out the mouthwash and my face comes back, same as dude’s.

This was way too much for a Friday morning, wasn’t it?

Also, we should start a band called Swish and Gargle. We’d be just awful.

The Woods in Eureka Springs, AR

Okay, so I need some MAJOR help.

Yes, more. And no, not that kind. And yes, that kind.

So, moms of littles – advice time.

I’ve got ooooone last beachy vacay on the calendar. But this time, I’m taking my whole brood with me. To the Dominican Republic. (!!) (I’m scared.) We’re going to be checking out the new all-inclusive Nickelodeon Resort next week in Punta Cana. (!!) They’re doing this big homage to all the classics that we grew up watching as kids, like You Can’t Do That on Television (hello, Alasdair! Swoon.), DOUBLE DARE (obsessed), Clarissa Explains It All (my life), Ren and Stimpy (super gross and amazing) – etc.

We’re even getting slimed, you guys. How will they slime us? I don’t know. (<–if you even understood that joke, you are definitely a product of ’90s T.V. And we are soulmates.)

But my anxiety in all of this? THE TRAVEL PART. What do I do with two tiny, curious, restless humans on a long flight? I’ve heard of “busy bags.” And of course screen time, toys, books, etc. But do you have any specific tips or advice you can give me (first-time-taker-of-small-gremlins-on-an-airplane-r.) so that I don’t end up drinking 14 bottles of wine on the plane and flirting with the captains?

Although that sounds kind of fun.

But not for Aaron.

(What are these “busy bags” and what do I put in them!?)

(I wonder if the captains will be cute.)

(I’m done.)

ZO Skin Health Products

Okay I have more news.

And before I go any further, I just want to say that this place is a judgement-free zone. We’re all pals! All buds! All FRANZ.

I’m going on a skin journey, and I’m taking you with me. Pack your bags! (you don’t really have to pack the bags that I just mentioned.)

For the new few months, I’m going to be partnering up with a local skin doctor at the Kansas City Wellness Center, and we’re going to rejuvenate this 40-year old face of mine! Because Snapchat filters will only take you so far in life.

Let me just say, I’m not cutting my face. This isn’t a whole Nicolas Cage-style Face/Off situation.


Only because Gisele Bundchen wasn’t available.

But I AM going to undergo a few rounds of Forever Young BBL, which means BroadBand Light. Aka: laser. Aka: removes skin spots, blotchy boos, etc. Aka: HOLLA BACK, Y’ALL.

Okay, you know your friends are already doing this, or you’ve been a bit curious about it all, or you’re nervous to talk about it. And we shouldn’t be! We should totally feel free to talk about putting needles on our face. (I put 17 needles in my belly for months at a time back in my infertile days, so this ain’t no thaaang.)

And it’s not about what other people think you need or don’t need. It’s aaaaall about what makes you feel good in your own skin. (<–haha! don’t punch me.)

I’m also testing out these ZO skin products that you see up there. So far, it’s intense! But I’m diggin’ it. It’s a total process. One for morning, and one for night. I even have instructions. An instruction card! I get giddy about anything involving instructions or cards.

I’ll be documenting most of this on Snapchat and Insta-stories (like, THE DOCTOR VISITS, you guys.) So come with meh! (And hold my hand.)

I miiiight even play around with something that rhymes with smlobox.


J. Crew sandals with fall mums

Weekend plans? Besides begging me to paint my toenails?

We’ve got a baby shower to attend. Busy Bags to put together. A lawn to mow. And ear wax candles to hunt down.

Wait, did you just say something? Because seriously, I can’t hear you.






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21 Responses to Friday Flotsam

  1. Michelle September 9, 2016 at 8:18 am #
    I'm excited to hear about your laser journey! I've done some laser facial treatments and LOVED my skin afterwards for sure! But girl ear candles are complete hooey. There's no science behind that biznass at all. One of me fave podcasts tackled this very topic pretty recently. It's a medical history cast by funny guy Justin McElroy (from My Brother, My Brother and Me) and wife, Dr. Sydney McElroy. Check it:
  2. Caitlin September 9, 2016 at 9:02 am #
    I'm afraid to try ear wax candles, because I know my own shortcomings, but I use homeopathic ear wax drops and love them! My ears always feel so refreshed after I use them. And now I know what I'm doing after work today! #teamcleanears
  3. Lynn September 9, 2016 at 10:10 am #
    REN AND STIMPY? I loved them. I had the soundtrack to the show. The Log song! BRB gonna see if it's on spotify lol.
  4. Jo September 9, 2016 at 10:14 am #
    I was having the same problem - couldn't hear out of one ear at all! My doc had me heat some olive oil to just lukewarm and pour some of THAT into my ear. I would let it sit for a bit while I laid on my side ... after a few days of that - voila I could hear!! Good luck!
  5. Karen B. September 9, 2016 at 10:34 am #
    Back in the day when when my little men were still little, I always took a box of animal crackers for each child when we traveled by air and broke them out right before takeoff. It kept them chewing and swallowing so that their ears "popped" when they needed to, and kept them pretty happy for at least part of the trip to boot. And if a box of animal crackers doesn't make you happy, you're in a bad spot people.
  6. ginger m. September 9, 2016 at 10:52 am #
    The Busy Bag MUST be things they've never seen before (okay to add a few faves tho too). I took blank index cards, crayons and stickers, stickers, stickers. Animal stickers, food stickers, flowers, hearts, stars etc. We would each take an index card and make a 'picture'. I also took Model Magic in a few colors and we would all 'make things' like pumpkins, animals etc. depending on their ages and motor skills. And food, food, food. Goldfish, animal crackers, get the idea. Also, bring them a new small stuffed animal to love...a puppy, a bunny, kitty. You get extra credit if you bring a small blanket to put the little one 'to sleep' on the plane. Blanket can be a napkin, piece of fleece...whatever. The point is make it varied, interactive and new. Good luck with that!!! :) P.S. We actually used little lunch boxes or backpacks that they could carry themselves.
    • Bethany September 9, 2016 at 4:45 pm #
      And wrap each new item in tissue paper! Like getting a million little presents and tissue is fun! (Just don't let them open everything right away, you gotta space it out!)
  7. Jessica September 9, 2016 at 10:58 am #
    I'd recommend buying kid-sized headphones so they can hear the electronic device, and some new videos/apps that don't require wifi (we love Daniel Tiger). Also Melissa and Doug have little "paint with water" art pads that aren't messy and are good for entertaining in the busy bags.
  8. Jacquie Becher September 9, 2016 at 11:45 am #
    Lots of quiet toys, books and don't let them sleep the night before (kidding). Take gum for take off and landing....
  9. Julie September 9, 2016 at 12:24 pm #
    I'd recommend going to the doc & having him/her look in your ears (they can also easily remove wax) before trying something hinky at home.
  10. Emily September 9, 2016 at 12:25 pm #
    I love ear candles!! I helped my dad with them since I was like, 8, and now use them on myself and anyone else I can talk into it. My trick - cover a paper plate with foil and cut a hole in the middle. Lay on your side and have someone help you...lay the plate on your ear and put the candle through, position to get comfy and light that ish on FIYA! The plate helps catch anything that might fall off as the wax burns down. Sometimes you have to cut it also, because it will fold over and then the oxygen can't get in and #science. But they reeeeeally do work, it's worth it!
  11. Jenny September 9, 2016 at 12:27 pm #
    I traveled overseas with an 18 month old. I hit up US toy for some toys that were inexpensive (so that I didn't care if they got lost or broke) but also new to my son. The best advice I got was to take a bag of Dum Dums. Suckers help with take off/landing on the planes. Plus bribes.
  12. Caitlynne September 9, 2016 at 1:04 pm #
    YooooOOO do not used ear wax candles, homeslice. Firstly, they don't actually work. Secondly, if you do it wrong you can get BOILING HOT WAX in your ears or on your face. Since you are trying to go on a skin journey (yay!), maybe don't do this thing. Thirdly, ear wax is not a bad thing in itself (only when a big blob is blocking the ear canal) because its there to help keep bugs out. No bugs. Real talk. I'm a student doctor of audiology, in my third year of my doctoral program, so I've seen lots and lots of ears and some if it is not pretty. If you're not hearing the way you used to, the hearing organ may have been damaged from noise exposure. Think about going into an audiologist in your area and get your hearing checked out. They can give some tips on how to help protect your ears going forward. Look me in the eye. No ear candles. Nothing in your ear bigger than your elbow. Don't make me come over there.
  13. Laurie September 9, 2016 at 2:03 pm #
    You should probably get your hearing tested so any physical problems can be ruled out. Otoschlerosis is very common in women around your age (I have it). It is when the Stapes (stirrup) bone in your ear develops an abnormal bone growth and causes it to freeze and the vibrations for hearing do not continue further into the ear. Surgery can be performed or hearing aids will help. They of course will be able to see how much wax is there and remove it. Good luck with the kiddies on the plane!
  14. Lauren September 9, 2016 at 5:48 pm #
    I lost hearing in one ear last year. I fought it and finally caved and went to the doctor. Had earwax buildup that they got out. Have to warn ya, you will hear so well it's actually frightening until it becomes normal. As for traveling with kids, you are brave. I am not. We haven't been on vacation since I got pregnant with my oldest 5 years ago. Too much for us!
  15. Marysue September 9, 2016 at 7:32 pm #
    Hi! About the ear wax candling...I've HAD it done a few times, and thought it very beneficial. I went to a reputable health foods store that offered the service, and let a technician do it. I laid on my side and they put the very tightly ...wound...twisted? candle gently in my ear, easing it down only as far as it would go without pressure. He lit it, and we just waited until it had burned down to their "ok, that's far enough" zone. Turn, repeat on other ear. The candle burning somehow creates a mild vacuum and wicks out (pulls out) whatever stuff is in there. Mostly excess, old wax; but in some cases, rocks, bugs, and other life-stuff. It's painless and doesn't take too long. I'd absolutely recommend you HAVING it done, but absolutely advise against doing it yourself (yes, there are those people) or even against having a friend/relative (who is unfamiliar with the appropriate method) do it. Seek a professional so your experience will be a good one, and you'll be eager to go back.
  16. Caelin September 9, 2016 at 8:48 pm #
    Bring the littles car seats and strap 'em in! I took my 1.5 yr old to Hawaii last year - sans car seat and it was terrible - he wanted to get up all the time (plus he was in my lap). We went this year with the seat and boom - he thought he was in a car and didn't try to get up once. Pain in the butt to lug around the airport, but worth it for the long flight!
  17. Lindsay September 11, 2016 at 3:27 pm #
    Busy bags can be whatever you want, but anything you think might excite them. Snacks, toys, stickers. The twins might be developmentally beyond this but I once took a bunch of gauzy fabric swatches for my daughter to play with on a plane. They can be bunched up tiny to fit in a coin purse or little box or bag. She enjoyed pulling them out and stuffing them back in and they're super light to carry! Also don't be afraid to let them watch cartoons the entire time if that gets them to sit still because it can be a life saver!
  18. Jennifer September 12, 2016 at 9:37 am #
    Do not board early...that is a myth. Let the little gremlins run around in the terminal as long as possible. Let Aaron get on and get everything situated and then you breeze on right before take off! Snacks, stickers, books, make sure they have their loveys...maybe they will take a nap for you. Good Luck!
  19. Susan September 12, 2016 at 4:42 pm #
    I myself never traveled with little ones on a plane, but I have heard of parents actually taking one of those little snack-size zip-lock bags for each fellow passenger and putting in a few snacks like Hershey Kisses and gummy bears, etc, with a little note saying that you're traveling with young twins & even though you are going to try your best to keep them occupied and quiet, you hope everyone will be patient and understanding. This is one of them: ."We're twin baby boys on our first flight and we're only 14 weeks old. We'll try to be on our best behavior, but we'd like to apologize in advance just in case we lose our cool, get scared or our ears hurt. Our Mom and Dad (AKA our portable milk machine and our diaper changer) have ear plugs available if you need them. We're in row 21 if you'd like to come by to get a pair." Good luck!!
    • Jelena September 15, 2016 at 3:15 pm #
      A couple of weeks ago were on a three hour flight with my 2,5 year old daughter and when we went there we weren't actually was a mess...we only took the ipad with cartoons and some snacks - this usually does the trick in the car but the last half hour were a disaster! Everyone hated us! Plus she is really big for her age and everyone thought we had a really spoiled 4 year old! :( When we went home we had a bag with some new small things ( a book, a bracelet...), crayons, bought a new toy and had a small sticker book! The stickers were the greatest thing of all - next time I'm taking a ton of them! Basically you need a lot of new things - some cheap little toys, crayons, a tablet with a lot of cartoons - some favorites and some new ones, and a lot of snacks! Take the things out one at a time, and leave one in case of emergency! It is exhausting to fly with the little ones, but you'll be fine! Oh, and one more thing we discovered: at the airport - always take the baggage trolley - you can put the baggage on it and we put our daughter on top, she was so happy, she didn't budge!

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