Club Med Sandpiper Bay Review

What Makes It So Special

by: Erica Ehm

Club Med Sandpiper Bay Review

Erica Ehm Club Med Sandpiper Bay Resort

Sun. Sand. So. Much. Food. Just got back from a ten-day stay at Club Med Sandpiper Bay for our family vacation. It's our second time at this resort. We actually discovered Club Med last year and spent the Christmas holidays there playing, swinging (not that kind), and basking in the sunshine.

Now that we've experienced close to one month over the last two years in total as guests of Club Med, I feel qualified to share my thoughts on this family resort. 

Imagine you're feeling the Florida sun beating down on you as a warm breeze tickles your skin while you watch this short video review.

One thing I failed to mention in this video is actually the big reason why we loved our stay so much. It's all about the relationships. Almost everyone on the Club Med staff was friendly, and made it a priority to create an emotional connection with the guests. And then there are the guests. We thought it would be a largely American clientele, but were happily surprised to see a large European contingent staying at the resort. Both our kids and my husband and I made friends with people from the UK, France, Germany, and Switzerland. 

Yes, there's a lot to do to keep you busy at Club Med, and way too much to eat. But at the end of the day a vacation is about making memories. And that's what keeps us coming back.

Erica Ehm and Family Sandpiper Bay

This time, we when decided to make Club Med our all-inclusive winter vacation again, there was a special twist. We had so much fun last year, my husband convinced Club Med to run a music program at the Sandpiper Bay Resort using his League of Rock program. And they agreed! Every day over the holidays, guests had the choice of taking drum or ukelele lessons on the beach for an hour. It really hit the right note!

This was an amazing vacation in more ways than one for us! We hope to be back next year!

Club Med Music Program Sandpiper Bay

Make the most of your vacation to a sunny destination by planning ahead. Don’t miss these other articles that will help you and your family have the holiday you deserve.


How to Know If It's Really an Allergic Reaction

When You Should Use an Epipen

by: Erica Ehm

How to Know If It's Really an Allergic Reaction

How To Know If It's Really An Allergic Reaction

One of the many scary and confusing things about dealing with severe allergies is that it can present differently each time. When you think of an allergic reaction, most of us picture hives and itchy skin, right? At least I did when my daughter was diagnosed eight years ago. But there are other symptoms of a SEVERE allergic reaction that can be way harder to recognize.

It's true that some anaphylactic reactions include hives and itching, but there are so many other serious symptoms that indicate we could be in for big allergy trouble. In order for me to know if my daughter is having an anaphylactic reaction, here are the symptoms I have to look for:

  • Mouth: itching, swelling of the lips and/or tongue
  • Throat*: itching, tightness, closure, hoarseness
  • Skin: itching, hives, redness, swelling
  • Gut: vomiting, diarrhea, cramps
  • Lung*: shortness of breath, cough, wheeze
  • Heart*: weak pulse, dizziness, passing out (due to low blood pressure)

*Any delay in recognizing the symptoms of a severe allergic reaction can result in a fatal outcome.

Here's the problem. On their own, many of these symptoms don't appear to be life-threatening. While a reaction may initially seem to be minor, the severity can suddenly increase and become life-threatening. But you never really know what you're in for. This is what makes it terrifying when trying to react appropriately. Also, no two reactions are necessarily the same. One time my daughter may start vomiting because she has ingested an allergen, another time she gets a few hives on her face. How am I supposed to react properly when you never know exactly what you're dealing with?

The first thought that races through my mind when my daughter tells me she doesn't feel well is, "Oh My God! What does this mean? Is she coming down with the flu or is she having a reaction to something she ate?" 

For the next little while we watch to see if there are any symptoms specific to having an anaphylactic reaction. If we see some symptoms which MAY indicate a reaction, that's when we start panicking and wonder, "WHEN DO WE ADMINISTER AN EPIPEN?" 

I met up with well-known allergist Dr. Susan Waserman, the President of the Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, at a roundtable about allergies, and asked her opinion as to when to administer an EpiPen. 

She recommends that when it doubt, use an EpiPen! In the event of an allergic emergency, every second counts. I need to always have easy access to an EpiPen and be sure to use it at the first signs of an allergic reaction.

A few other interesting pieces of information I've picked at the Allergy Roundtable:

  • Always call 911 and get your child (or the adult) to the hospital immediately after giving them an EpiPen for proper medical care.
  • Most reactions happen within a few minutes, but some can occur a few hours after exposure!!
  • Speaking of exposure, keep your EpiPen at room temperature. Epinephrine can be damaged by heat and cold. Never store your EpiPen in the car or the fridge. Who knew?
  • Always carry more than one EpiPen. And make sure they aren't expired. I just signed up at EpiPen.ca for their Expiration Service to get an email reminder.

I will do whatever I have to in order to keep my daughter safe. If you have kids or know someone with severe allergies, I know you feel the same way too.

Severe allergies are on the rise in Canada.
We teamed up with EpiPen so you can arm yourself with information and be prepared if a life-threatening allergic reaction occurs.
You can find out more about life-threatening allergies and read stories from other parents on our A Parent’s Guide to Dealing with Kids with Severe Allergies page.