Night Nurse Kit Saves the Day

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Find more about time savers, bedtime, safety

"I can't find the thermometer in either bathroom. When did we use it last?" my husband, Rob, asked in a hushed voice.

"Try the kitchen cabinet next to the sink, by the medicine," I answered, as I settled into the rocking chair with Adelaide. It was 3 a.m. and we were both bleary-eyed. It was the second time our daughter had woken us up, although she'd been sleeping through the night for months. She was warm and fussy and I suspected she had a fever.

My husband returned a couple minutes later with the thermometer, but no covers, and headed back to the bathroom to continue his search. While he rifled through the medicine cabinet, I rocked and tried to remember where I put the paper scribbled with the latest dosages for Tylenol and Motrin. I had a feeling we were in for a long night.

As it turned out, Adelaide had a cold, which all three of us shared, and we were in for quite a few long nights. Luckily, it only took two before we realized we needed to be better prepared.

First, we moved everything to a central location, so everything we needed in the middle of the night would be easily accessible. We started with a basket that held the thermometer and medicine, but our list of essentials has grown with our family. This is what our Night Nurse Kit looks like today:

  • Plastic caddy with dividers and handle (convenient for going room to room)
  • Thermometer (along with covers and extra batteries)
  • Small flashlight
  • Notepad and pen (for recording temperatures, time medicine is given, symptoms, doctor's instructions)
  • Notecard with correct dosages of common medications for both children (in a small zip-top bag to protect it)
  • Our doctor's phone number (on the back of the notecard)
  • Medicine (fever reducer / rotate others in and out as needed)
  • Measuring spoons
  • Bottle of water
  • Small cups
  • Antibacterial hand gel
  • Kleenex
  • Stored on top shelf of linen closet (childproof and close to our kids' rooms)

Now, when our kids are feeling bad, my husband and I can focus on developing our nursing skills, rather than our detective skills. Being more organized has made it a lot easier to care for everyone in our house, day or night.

Looking for more creative solutions? Click here to see our best Dream Team stories.

What do you do to keep your restless night with a sick child from turning into a nightmare? Click the comments link below to find and share ideas.

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Night Nurse Kit Saves the Day

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