Moms shouldn’t get sick, but guys, the kids have a cold and I have one too.
I could do the 24-hour flu, a bacterial strep throat, or other illnesses that strike hard and fast, and then leave. That’s great.
But the common cold… It’s two weeks of congestion, sore throat, coughing and bad sleep. Two weeks of feeling like an actual ZOMBIE. Not to mention those of us prone to sinus infections, bronchitis and pneumonia get an opportunity to progress our common cold into months of illness.
And then there’s school and church.
…aka PETRI DISHES FOR VIRAL AND BACTERIAL DISASTER!
I’m not super OCD about germs… anyone looking at my house can see that. But have you ever walked into VASA at 7:00 pm? If you’re going to do that, you need to bring aerosol Lysol and cleaning wipes with you. It is a RED ZONE for germies.
Honestly, the worst part about having a cold is taking care of myself while I’m also taking care of the kids.
But this time I am prepared! I have my handy-dandy (yes, Blue’s Clues reference) toolbox of help-me-feel-better utensils. And I’m going to share it with you because even the very cleanest moms get sick.
**This post contains affiliate links that provide me with a small amount of moolah at no extra cost to you. If you have any questions, you can read my full disclosure.**
My Toolbox is Filled with:
1. Multiple humidifiers + essential oils
The common cold is caused by viruses and as we know, viruses do not like humid environments. What I don’t know is how well essential oils work, but I put in a few drops of lavender oil to soothe irritated nasal passages and promote good sleep, just in case. This keeps the kids from waking up at night. More sleep to go around!
Check out Amazon’s best seller humidifier for kids.
Tip: make sure that your humidifiers are clean and free from bacteria! Also, do not put oil in humidifiers unless the instructions explicitly say you can.
2. Special bubble bath
Again with the humidity. Fill that tub up with warm goodness and pour in a little Burt’s Bees oil. I’m waiting until Christmas to get my bathtub tray, but when I do you can bet I’ll top that with Kidnapped, a mug of hot chocolate and rain sounds playing in the background.
The kids might also enjoy a dip in the tub. You can fill it with their favorite bubble bath and a drop or two of lavender oil. While they play, enjoy the humidity while keeping an eye on them.
3. Microwaveable to-go soup
Does to-go soup have to be used outside of your home? Most definitely not. In fact, they should change the name to Go-To Soup because that’s what I use whenever I’m sick.
I have discovered two soups that I love: Campbell’s Well Yes! Butternut Squash and Sweet Potato Sipping Soup (yeah, it’s a mouthful) and another Campbell’s favorite, Soup on the Go – Creamy Tomato.
Do kids like soup? Generally no. But a healthier mom is a happier mom.
4. Instacart orders
Yeah, I’m a sucker for delivered groceries. I have tried Winder Farms and Instacart… and Instacart wins hands down. They come within an hour or two, have great deals for first sign-ups and their produce is always FRESH.
There was a time when I was down for the count and ordered a couple NyQuil bottles, cough drops, to-go soup, lemonade… the WORKS. My Instacart associate brought the stuff to me and wished me better health. Maybe they could tell from my order, or the fact that I was all huddled up in my robe with a red nose and the messiest messy bun.
**I’m disclosing that the ad below has an affiliate link and that if you purchase from this, I will receive a little kickback. This in no way should diminish my love of Instacart in your mind. I would never point it out if I didn’t love it.**
5. The medicine + stuff the doc always tells me to use
Last time I was feeling ill, I decided to actually *listen* to my doctor and grab saline nasal spray from the pharmacy aisle at Walmart. Did I think it would work? I was doubtful. She had also suggested gargling salt water to help my throat. Ew. I’ve had enough biffs in the ocean to eliminate my need for salt water throat baths, thanks.
But this time. Ugh. I was soooo sick and my sinus congestion was quickly turning into a sinus infection and so… I did it. I sprayed that junk in my nose every day for one week. And I gargled.
Benefits: my nose didn’t get irritated and red at any point during the week and I could swallow without wincing.
Cons: I tried the spray with the kids and they got really mad.
6. Thai red curry
Brandon and I have a favorite Thai place that serves the best red curry known to mankind. Or at least to Utah county. It’s filled with potatoes, bell pepper slices, bamboo (my fave) and what I think is mint (??).
Anyway, one mouthful of red curry and whether you’re sick or not, your nose will be running like a puma is in pursuit. Nowadays, I like to keep napkins or tissues close by to blow my nose.
This is PERFECT for those of you with congested sinuses. Yes, you will be able to breathe with BOTH nostrils and You. Will. Love. It.
Will the kids eat it? Hopefully, but don’t count on it.
7. A slightly boring new movie
Because you don’t want to be paying so much attention that drifting off to sleep is not an option. What I like to do is buy a cheap $5 movie in the Walmart bin for the kids to indulge in while I watch a Hallmark romance on Netflix. You already know the storyline in like five minutes, but it’s fun to see fake people fall in love. This is a win-win situation for both the kids and you… a little down time to relax and maybe catch the Sand Man for some cold-induced snores.
8. A comfy robe
I already mentioned my robe earlier because it is the HOME you live in when you are sick. Since viruses can live up to 14 days on fabrics, I like to wash my robe daily. And so I have a back-up robe. It’s called: My Husband’s Plaid Robe That’s Actually Comfier Than Mine, But I Won’t Admit It To His Face.
Snuggle up, honeys, and make sure there’s room for a kid or two in there.
9. Lemon and honey tea
Grab a small pot, a real lemon or lemon concentrate, and raw honey. Fill the pot with water; squirt some lemon in it and a couple drops of honey; let it heat to barely taste bud-killing hot and then drink that thing up. This is my go-to for sore throats, especially when I have to stay awake throughout the day.
Not everyone has to deal with sore throats as part of a cold, but in my experience, post-nasal drip is not a laughing matter. It’s the bane of my existence. A bit of lemon to kill whatever the heck is back there, and some honey to bring the inflammation down a notch, it’s like the sore throat is barely there.
10. Vick’s on your feet
Weird, right? But conservative health nuts say it works and so far it has with us. It seems to tame coughs quickly, especially with the kids. I used it as part of my routine during our last cold. It was an experiment with too many variables, but it seemed that the days and nights we kept the kid’s feet slick with Vick’s VapoRub, they seemed to do better.
You can grab your Vick’s VapoRub from Amazon here.