A Spoonful of Sugar

When I think of summer I think being out by the pool, enjoying BBQs and being outside constantly. But what do you do when sickness hits your home during the summer months?

Summer started out with fun in the sun and pool, but then our son wasn’t his normal energetic self. He was exhausted and started getting goopy eyes. Then he picked up a cough, where he coughed so hard that it would make him throw up. I, being the crazy parent that freaks out about anything new to his health, thought he had pink eye or maybe the black lung had come back. I can’t be happy until I know exactly what is going on, so we took him to the doctor.

The doctor checked him out and come to find that he had a double ear infection. I didn’t see that coming. And who knew that when your sinuses are plugged up and it doesn’t have anywhere to go it comes out your eyes? I had no clue that’s for sure. Plus he wasn’t acting miserable or fussy about his ears or head.

Just a Spoonful of Sugar | The Modern Dad

A few days passed and it seemed that the cough was just getting worse, even though we had put him on an antibiotic. He had taken the medicine pretty good the first two times, but then he was over it and would spit it out every time. I felt like he was still getting enough, but wasn’t exactly sure. By the way, the only way we were getting the medicine in was by squeezing his cheeks and letting it out in the back of his throat, torture for everyone involved.

While attending our family’s first of many 4th of July parties that we had scheduled for the weekend he was coughing so hard that he started throwing up anything he was eating. I knew that he had to go to Instacare. We took him in and let the doctor do his magic, which is letting me know what’s going on so I don’t think the worst.

He checked his ears and found that they were still infected. We had been giving him his antibiotic that he was eating really well the first couple times, but then he started spitting it out when we would try to give it to him. You hate being that parent that has to hold their kid down, squeeze their cheeks and shove the syringe in the back of their throat. Our son doesn’t want to have anything to do with that, and as a parent I hate doing it. But this doctor gave us another idea that worked great.

Just a Spoonful of Sugar | The Modern Dad


We all know that Mary Poppins says “a spoon full of sugar helps the medicine go down,” but really this was a game changer for us. Instead of making medicine giving a miserable experience for all of us, he told us that his wife (who is a RN) would mix their children’s medicine with frosting. The sugar would overtake the taste of medicine and they will eat it all up. I had always thought that if there is a bacterial issue to not give sugar because bacteria thrive on sugar, but that is not true. This may have been the best advice we have received so far as parents.

When we got home with the new antibiotic we thought we had some frosting around the house (don’t judge us), but nothing. Of course now it’s July 4th and nothing is open. It was a miracle that I was able to find a pharmacy open to get the medicine. My wife is a genius though and thought, he loves honey, what if we mix the medicine with honey? Boom!

Worked like a charm and we call it ice cream. I don’t know why, but we do and he eats the entire thing. This has made a night and day difference. Now we’ll probably go back to the doctor next week and have them check his ears again just to make sure they are getting better, but finding ways to give your kids medicine where you won’t end up feeling like the worst person in the world is always nice.

Just a Spoonful of Sugar | The Modern Dad

If you have sick kids that won’t take their medicine, try this out. Remember that you can’t give kids honey if they are under the age of one year. Personally, any excuse to eat frosting is great for me.