Medication Safety Tips For Families

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #LICDrugDisposal

America has a massive opioid crisis so, with National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day taking place tomorrow, I thought it was important to take some time away from my typical light-hearted posts to talk about this serious issue. Since both my youngest son and I take daily prescription medications we always have medicines in our home. I wanted to share ways that you can keep your loved ones safe, whether you take medications on a regular basis, keep your medicine cabinet stocked with over-the-counter medicines, or only have prescription medications in your home a few times a year.

Keep medications in a lock box and hide medications when you have guests in your home

A medication safe is an inexpensive way to keep medications away from little hands and those that weren’t prescribed the medications. I also hide all medications when I have guests in my home. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, approximately fifty-four million Americans over the age of 12 have used prescription medications for non-medical reasons at least once in their lifetime. 77% of opioid prescription medications taken by new users are obtained from a friend or relative (source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) and 62% of teens who admit to taking medication for non-medical reasons say they get drugs from medicine cabinets in their homes (source: National Survey on Drug Use and Health, SAMHSA). With stats like that, even though the medications are in the lock box, I feel more comfortable knowing the medications are not accessible because you never know what struggles those around you are going through.

Talk to kids about the dangers of misusing medications 

Age-appropriate conversations should be happening on a regular basis whether you have medications in your home or not. I have heard stories in the news about grade school drug scares and prescription misuse so I made sure to talk about this issue with my two tweens. They know that they aren’t to take medicines unless mom or dad okays it, they should never accept any type of medications from others or share their medications with others, and they should always tell me if someone offers them something. We’ve talked to them about the dangers of misusing medications- not to scare them- but to make sure they know how serious the situation can be.

Discard unused or expired medications properly

I think it’s safe to say that most of us have had to figure out what to do with unused or expired medications (whether over-the-counter or prescription). Personally, I had a few bottles of medication that I’d been hanging on to because I didn’t know what to do with them! I didn’t want to flush them down the toilet because it wasn’t good for the environment and I didn’t want to throw them away because I didn’t want the drug being abused by others who may discover them.

I recently learned about a safe option for discarding unused or expired medications that was created in an effort to assist in reducing these issues. LifeInCheck (an amazing program I’ve previously shared about on the blog) created a Drug Disposal program that provides consumers with a safe option to discard their unused or outdated prescription medications in secure receptacles located across the US. You can use the LifeInCheck Drug Disposal Search tool to find a LifeInCheck Drug Disposal location near you by going here and entering your city/state or zip code and search radius.

The receptacles are a discreet and responsible way to dispose of unused or expired prescription medication (including Schedule II-V controlled substances), unused or expired over-the-counter medication, and even pet medications. They are simple to use as well- just pull to open the drawer, place medications inside, and close the drawer to safely discard the medication. It should be noted that the receptacles should not be used to discard of Schedule I controlled substances, Illegal drugs, inhalers, or non-medicine items like thermometers, lotions/liquids, aerosol cans, needles, and hydrogen peroxide.

National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day is tomorrow, October 27th, 2018, but these LifeInCheck Drug Disposal receptacles are available year-round. Learn more and find a receptacle location here. I’d love your help in getting the word out about this issue so please feel free to share this post with your friends and family. You can also chat with me on social (Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook) or I’m always available via email as well if you prefer to chat off social.

Keeping Little Ones Safe In Vehicles

Thanks to Chicco for sponsoring this post during Child Passenger Safety Week.

Do you know when it’s time to turn your child’s car seat from rear to forward-facing? According to a recent study by baby gear brand Chicco, 1 in 4 parents around the country are still unaware of the appropriate time to turn their child’s car seat forward-facing. Being pregnant again, 9 years after my last child was born, means that I need a refresher on all the rules of car seat safety myself!

Some states, like my home state of Illinois, have passed laws requiring children to remain rear-facing until at least the age of two but the AAP recently released an updated recommendation around rear-facing guidelines, removing age two as the benchmark and emphasizing that children should remain rear-facing until they’ve maxed out the height and weight limits for rear-facing use as determined by the car seat manufacturer. According to the AAP, this “will include virtually all children under 2 years of age and most children up to age 4.” It is so important to keep little ones rear-facing for as long as possible because it’s the safest option for growing children whose skeletal systems are still developing.

There are many more car seat options on the market now than when my boys were younger that allow for extended rear-facing placement and Chicco makes some great convertible car seats for this purpose. I was particularly drawn to the NextFit iX Zip Convertible Car Seat that was designed to be used from birth through the preschool years. Not only was it designed to comfortably accommodate growing children from 5 to 65 pounds but it also features a zip-off seat pad for machine washing (which every parent of young kids knows will come in handy for everything from milk spills to potty training accidents!)

I also liked how easy installation was thanks to the 9-position ReclineSure® leveling system and dual RideRight® bubble level-indicators that help achieve and verify proper angle in the vehicle seat, the SuperCinch® tightener that helps achieve a secure fit with a fraction of the effort, and a LockSure™ belt-tightening system that makes it easy to position, tighten and lock the belt into place. Parents can also feel comfortable knowing that the car seat features a steel-reinforced frame with EPS energy-absorbing foam that is side-impact tested for superior protection.

Overall, Chicco’s line of convertible car seats makes it easier to keep children rear-facing for longer!


Still have questions about rear-facing car seats? You can learn more about car seat safety here. National Seat Check Saturday is this coming Saturday, September 29, 2018, so make sure to find a car seat checkup event in your area this weekend! (Get a list of car seat check locations here.) I encourage you to share this post with any parents of young children you know!




Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery {Giveaway}

(Disclosure: This is a sponsored post but all thoughts are my own.)

Did you know that home fires take the lives of more than 2,500 people each year in the United States? Most of these deadly fires happen while the people in the home are sleeping. I used to think that this was because they didn’t have smoke detectors but this is not the case. 71 percent of smoke alarms that failed to operate had missing, disconnected or dead batteries, and according to the National Fire Protection Association, three out of five fatal fire injuries take place in homes without working smoke alarms.

Those are alarming statistics. Today, an issue at the forefront of fire safety is not installing smoke alarms, but keeping smoke alarms working because households with non‐working smoke alarms now outnumber those with no smoke alarms. One company doing their part to bring this issue to the public’s attention is Energizer. They, along with local fire departments, have been holding events all throughout the country this month.

The easiest way to remember to change the batteries in your smoke detectors is to get in the habit of doing it when you change your clocks for Daylight Savings Time. A few extra seconds can make all the difference when trying to escape safely during a fire so it’s important to have a working smoke detector. This is also a good time to talk to your children about fire safety! You can find some coloring pages here.

Learn more about Energizer’s initiatives by following Energizer on Twitter or liking their Facebook page.


2 winners will each receive the Energizer prize package featured above that includes a smoke detector, 2 pack 9V Energizer® batteries, 12-inch Energizer® Bunny, Energizer® foam bunny ears, coloring book, journal and pen.


Leave a comment telling me something you learned by reading this post

For an extra entry, share this giveaway on social media and leave a comment below

 Giveaway ends November 22, 2014 at 11:49pm CST. Must be 21 or older and a US resident to enter.

Fabulous {And Safe!} Fall Fun With Our Springfree Trampoline

(Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Springfree Trampoline but all thoughts are my own.)

Ever since I was a kid I wished I had a trampoline in my backyard. It always looked like so much fun but we never had one because traditional trampolines aren’t very safe. I never understood the dangers when I was a kid but now, as a mom, I’m very nervous every time my kids go to someone’s house with a trampoline. Every time they’d bounce near the edge I would take a deep breath in anticipation and then let it back out once they landed on the trampoline and bounced back towards the middle.

I thought we’d never have a trampoline until I learned about Springfree Trampoline. Finally the fun of a trampoline was combined with the safety that mom needed to see. Boy were my kids excited the day the trampoline was installed!

The boys have enjoyed jumping on it and I have enjoyed being able to watch them jump without worrying that they were going to fall off and get hurt. If you have never heard of Springfree trampolines check out this video to learn more:

Why is Springfree safer than a traditional trampoline? Let’s compare the two!

Safety and fun! What could be better?



Change Your Clocks And Your Batteries {Giveaway}

(Disclosure: I received a home safety kit but all thoughts are my own.)

Don’t forget that tonight you have to change your clocks back! While you are doing that you should also make sure to change the batteries in your smoke detectors.

Did you know, thirty-eight percent of fatal fire injuries occur in homes with no smoke alarms, while 24 percent occur in homes in which at least one smoke alarm is present but fails to operate, frequently due to dead or missing batteries? It is so important to change the batteries because a working smoke alarm can make the difference in whether you and your family have the critical extra seconds to safely escape or not.

With the extra hour “gained” from the end of daylight saving time it might be a good time to review your home fire safety plans also. Energizer’s Facebook page has coloring pages, escape plan grids, and fire safety tips you can go over with your family.


One reader will win a Family Safety Kit complete with a reusable grocery tote containing: one 16-pack Energizer® MAX® AA Batteries years, one 1-pack of Energizer® MAX® 9 volt batteries, one Energizer® Weatheready® LED Safety Light flashlight, and one Kidde Battery-Operated Combination Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Alarm. {$70 value}


{Do any or all of the following, leave a separate comment for each you do}

1) Tell me how often you change the batteries in your smoke detectors

2) Share this giveaway on a social network

3) Follow @aliciamarie112 on Twitter

4) Follow @Energizer on Twitter

5) Comment on another one of my posts

 Giveaway ends November 23, 2013 at 11:59pm Central time. Must be a US resident, 18 or older to enter.


Read These Safety Tips Before Leaving Kids Home Alone

According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 40 percent of all school children spend at least part of their day home alone. Many kids find themselves on their own between the time they get off from school and their parents come home from work. Because children can face so many dangers during this time, it’s important for parents to educate them on how to behave and what to watch out for. Here are four tips to help keep your kids safe:

Establish a Code Word

Children are taught to avoid strangers, but sometimes emergencies require parents to take unusual actions. For this reason, Dr. Phil suggests that parents set up a code word with their children in the event of an emergency. If your child is approached by a stranger or even a friend of the family and told that he was sent by your parents, children should know to ask for the code word.

If you’ve given that person the code word, he can repeat it to your child, and your child will know it’s okay to go with him. Let your child pick out the code word so he or she has an easier time remembering it.

Handling Bullies

Bullies may not seem like a safety threat, but your child probably views them as a scary part of every day. Talk to your children about the negative effects of bullying and offer guidance on how to handle these situations. According, kids should avoid giving a reaction to the bully, especially if they are being pushed to give in to demands.

If ignoring a bully doesn’t work, your child should confront the bully and threaten to report him or her if it doesn’t stop. And encourage your child to keep his friends close, if possible—crowds discourage bullies from harassing.

Create a Check-in Routine

Parents aren’t always able to be waiting at home when their children return from school. When kids are supervising themselves for a period of time, parents should establish a check-in routine for kids to go through after school. The Florida Department of Children and Families recommends parents make a clearly structured task list and divide the duties, if you have multiple children. For example, one can call you to check in while the other prepares the after-school snack.

Other important tasks can include locking the front door, re-arming the security system and starting homework at the kitchen table. If your home doesn’t have a home security system, consider getting one to provide greater peace of mind when your kids are home alone. These systems and their providers can be found at If anything is amiss at the house, you will be notified right away.

Practice Home Safety While You’re There

When you’ve addressed the safety measures children should take, make a few practice runs while you’re at home. Have children come into the house and start their after-school routine while you are unavailable in a closed-off room. You can come out and check periodically to see how they are doing, offer feedback and answer questions. This will provide a greater sense of security for both parties once you’re actually out of the home.

Author: Kyle Lexington. Kyle is a business consultant and freelance writer with three dogs and three kids. They all live in upstate New York.

National Childhood Injury Prevention Week {Energizer Giveaway}

This week is National Childhood Injury Prevention Week and I’m working with Energizer to share news about this important safety week. There are many ways that children can get injured and I want to talk about one type of injury that can be avoided if the right precautions are taken. We all know little kids shouldn’t have small pieces around them because they are choking hazards but did you know there is one common household item in particular that could actually burn your child if swallowed? That item is coin lithium batteries.

Image from

Read this startling information below taken from

In 2010 alone, more than 3,400 button battery swallowing cases were reported in the U.S., resulting in 19 serious injuries and in some cases, deaths. The number of cases resulting in serious injury or death has more than quadrupled in the past five years. When a coin lithium button battery gets stuck in a child’s throat, the saliva triggers an electrical current. This causes a chemical reaction that can severely burn the esophagus in as little as two hours. Symptoms of coin-sized button battery ingestion may be similar to other childhood illnesses, such as coughing, drooling, and discomfort. Once burning begins, damage can continue even after the battery is removed. 

Isn’t that scary?! These little batteries are dangerous and so easily accessible in many homes. The National Safety Council and Energizer have teamed up to share some important tips every parent should know to help prevent injuries from the ingestion of Coin Lithium batteries to help keep kids safe.

The 4 S’s of Coin Lithium Battery Safety

·         STORE devices that use coin lithium batteries out of reach of children

·         SECURE the battery compartments of devices

·         SELECT battery packaging that meets federal guidelines for child resistance, such as Energizer’s coin lithium battery packaging

·         SHARE this information with your friends and family

Energizer led the industry by being the first to voluntarily develop packaging for its 20 millimeter coin lithium batteries that meets the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) strict guidelines for child-resistant packaging. I had the chance to test the Energizer packaging against a competitor’s packaging and there really is a difference. The Energizer package I could not open with my hands. It required scissors. The competitor’s packaging I was able to open in one try and with two rips was able to get to the battery.


One reader will win an Energizer prize package that includes:

  Two (2) packages of Energizer Coin Lithium batteries

One (1) Energizer LED Nightlight (winner’s choice between Sleeping Beauty or Cars)

One (1) Energizer Weatheready 2-in-1 LED Light


{Do any or all of the following, leave a separate comment for each you do}

1) Tell me one way you keep your child/grandchild safe from injury

2) Share this giveaway on a social network

3) Follow @aliciamarie112 on Twitter

4) Follow @Energizer on Twitter

5) Comment on another one of my posts

Giveaway ends September 24, 2013 at 11:59pm Central time. Must be a US resident, 21 or over to enter.

(Disclosure: I received a gift pack in exchange for posting about National Childhood Injury Prevention week but all thoughts are my own.)

2013 Buick Encore Review

(Disclosure: Buick dropped off a vehicle for me to test-drive for a week. All thoughts are my own.)

I had a chance to drive the beauty above last month. Let me tell you, this 2013 Buick Encore is NICE! When our week was over, Sinisa joked that we should try to give them our old SUV and see if they noticed.

The look and feel of the leather is luxurious and normally I wouldn’t like leather seating living here in Chicago but the heated seats come standard. The vehicle also has rain sensing window wipers which I thought was a nice bonus. My favorite features were the front & rear parking assist, the forward collision alert, and the outside mirrors that showed the car’s “blind spot”. All of these, along with the numerous airbags, made me feel safer driving this car than my current vehicle.

The 2013 Buick Encore looks compact on the outside but it’s pretty spacious on the inside. There is plenty of leg room in the back seats. Also, the trunk looks tiny but fits a lot. We packed everything we needed for a day at the beach (including a cooler, beach chairs, umbrellas, etc) in the back with room to spare.

What’s your “must have” feature in a vehicle?

Products To Help Keep Kids With Autism Safe

Now that Lucas is getting a little older and more independent I am looking into safety products for children with Autism because he has no fear, often acts without thinking, and will run off if given the chance. Since we will be out and about this summer I want to do everything possible to make sure he is safe.

For today’s Autism related post I wanted to share some products that I’m looking at getting for Lucas who is preschool age. Obviously these products are not substitutes for the watchful eye of a caregiver but instead should be used in addition to correct adult supervision. I am not recommending or endorsing any of these products and am not affiliated with any of them. Check with your child’s doctor first before using any of these.

Tattoos With A Purpose {sold here}


Angel Guard for Seatbelts {sold here}


Kid Safety Bands {sold here}


Window/Door Alarms {sold here}


Lucas is a little young but I’d get this shirt if he was older…

Alert: I Have Autism Shirt {sold here}

What safety products do you use? I’d love to hear your recommendations in the post comments!

Internet Safety Tips For Kids & Teens {Infographic}

The internet is an amazing resource but also one that is full of danger. I love this infographic below because it gives little known facts about what our children face while online and then gives great examples of how we, as parents, can reduce the risks associated with being online.

Illustration source: Lexero Business Litigation Lawyer
Want to add this illustration to your site too? Get the code here.

(Disclosure: I was compensated for posting this infographic.)

Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery {Prize Pack Giveaway}

It’s hard to believe that in just a few weeks, we will be changing our clocks back from Daylight Saving Time.  This year the time change is on November 4 and it also marks the 25th anniversary of the annual Change Your Clock Change Your Battery® program.  Working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are so important in helping to keep families safe in their homes so make sure that you change the batteries in your smoke alarms when you change your clock.

Thirty-eight percent of fatal fire injuries occur in homes with no smoke alarms, while 24 percent occur in homes in which at least one smoke alarm is present but fails to operate, frequently due to dead or missing batteries.


From October 11 through November 4, visit the Energizer Bunny® Facebook page and click on the Fire Safety Info Tab.  Here you will have the chance to enter a sweepstakes to win an additional Family Safety Kit.  Energizer will be giving away one Family Safety Kit {each valued at over $150} per day for 25 days.


One reader will win a Family Safety Kit complete with a reusable grocery tote containing:

·         One 2-pack of Energizer® MAX® Batteries (9v) with Power Seal Technology – Dependable, powerful performance for the devices that help keep your family safe; now hold their charge when stored for up to 5 years

·         One Energizer® Flameless Wax Candle – Enjoy the realistic flicker of a scented wax candle without the worry of open flame or hassle of soot and dripping wax

·         One Energizer® Weatheready® Safety Light – Waterproof flashlight powered by AA, AAA or C cell batteries; includes safety whistle and imprinted preparedness checklist

·         One Kidde Battery-Operated Combination Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Alarm

The total value of the Family Safety Kit is approximately $78 per kit.


{Do any or all of the following, leave a separate comment for each you do}

1) Tell me when you changed your smoke detectors last

2) Share this giveaway on a social network

3) Like Making Time For Mommy on Facebook

4) Like Energizer on Facebook

5) Enter another one of my giveaways or comment on another post

Giveaway ends November 6, 2012 at 11:59pm Central time. US only.

(Disclosure: I received a prize pack for posting this giveaway. This giveaway is not associated with Facebook in any way.)