Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The best of 2008

I was thinking back on 2008 and the most noteworthy, OMG shoot me now, story of the year had to be the time both my boys had surgery. This happened before I started the blog so this will be a compilation of emails and posts from a mommy message board. So if you missed it the first time around. Enjoy! This could only happen to me...

Both boys having surgery in one day seemed like a good idea. Colin needed tubes, Raph needed his tonsils out. Same day, same doctor, same hospital. Brilliant right?

I have no actual pictures of this event (who has time for pictures at a time like this??) so this was what they looked like at this age.


Colin USED to sttn, but with this last ear infection, not so much. He can't have anything to eat after 12 and only clear liquids till 530.

130 - first waking, fussed back to sleep

330 - second waking, fussed back to sleep

400 - third waking, gave him a bottle of water...he was confused but drank some

415 - fourth waking...maybe a continuation of 3rd?

430 - attempted water again...he became enraged

445 - brought him to bed with us. He started yelling "Dada!" and tackling Mike and using our heads as stepping stones to get to our blinds.

500 - we gave up and got up attempted to keep Colin happy. He repeatedly signed milk. Sorry buddy, not today. He went from playing to crying to sleeping to crying to playing and back again about 87 x before I left at 645. Off to a good start no?

I go to the hospital and check in. Get asked repeatedly about birthdates...3/8 or 3/28. Problems that come up when you have brothers on the same day with similar bdays. Colin was distracted by stuff at the hospital so he was mostly happy. We opted for versed (?), a sedative prior to surgery. I put him on his little gurney and he just sat up and was silent the whole way to the OR. The ENT came out to tell me about his tubes and it went well, he didn’t fuss at all. Phew! I told her about Raph's recent ear infections so she said she'd come up with a plan by the time his surgery came up and see you later! She's awesome.

I went to recovery and Colin woke up like he'd just taken a nap. No crying, until I took the cup of juice away he was chugging. We couldn't let him drink too much too fast lest he throw up everywhere. Then he was playing and happy. AWESOME! I took him over to Grandma's house and when I left he was yelling at the dog and chasing him with a spoon. Totally fine and happy. Rushed back to the hospital to meet Mike with Raph.

My ENT was working fast that morning so they were on it as soon as Raph came back. I got to see all my new friends and it was a joke how busy I was and nurses were teasing Raph b/c he looked like Colin etc. Got his history and prepped him. ENT came in and said if there was fluid she'd give him tubes, no fluid, no tubes. She just didn't want it to be that he ended up needing surgery again in 6 mo or something. She gave him the same set you give first timers instead of the longer lasting second round tubes.

They gave Raph the same sedative and wheeled him out. The other ENT told me over his shoulder that I had very brave sons. Awwww. I DO have brave sons! Isn't that what every mom of boys wants to hear?

Raph's surgery was an hour 15 so we ate lunch and waited.

ENT came back and she said she gave him tubes, some of his adenoids grew back so she got those, took the tonsils. Um, adenoids can grow back? She said his tonsils had scarring on them like he'd had a lot of throat infections. He's never had ANY that I know of and has never complained about his throat hurting...weird. He generally never complained about his ears either. I think he's lacking pain sensors or something.

We went to Raph in recovery and he was so small and balled up and pitiful. He whimpered and sounded croupy (intabated so it roughs up vocal cords) and cried some while his sedative wore off. Mike held him and he started feeling better. He had an ice pack for his neck and took some narcotic pain meds and felt better. His oxygen saturation was low so he was kept on oxygen for a while. They brought him upstairs to his overnight room. It was a double. BOOO!!!!

While they were getting his history upstairs they were asking about his allergies. Specifically peanut and if it was airborn sensitivity etc. I could see where they were going...he's in a double. Mike was spending the night and he was going to have to sleep in a fold out chair with a bunch of other annoying people. I simply told her I don't know. He goes to a peanut free school and we don't have any at home so he really doesn't have that kind of exposure. I notice the people in the next bed have a can of PEANUTS on the AC unit. Mind you there is only a curtain between us and the room is quiet except for me saying how my son is anaphalctic to peanuts...not a word. Then another nurse says something b/c they posted a giant sign on the door SEVERE PEANUT ALLERGY. The other freakin kid has a PEANUT butter sandwich on his tray. Did that other family say a freakin word?? Uh NOOOO! The nurse says, hold on a minute. She comes back with a new room assignment. A private room. Woohoo! Mike actually gets a bed, no hoosiers throwing peanuts at my kid and we get privacy. For once his allergies have come in handy. Yeah for peanut allergies!

Raph is doing really well. His oxygen saturation came back to an acceptable level. He's tolerating his IV this time. He freaked out last year b/c he had an IV. This year he just holds that hand up lol. When I left he was eating...yes EATING. He had been drinking pretty well and eating Popsicles. The nurse said he was a dream patient b/c he was drinking so much after having his tonsils out. Assuming his oxygen does well overnight and he keeps up the drinking he can come home in the morning. The doctor is coming to check on him first thing with rounds and will let him go home. He really hasn't complained too much at all and is happily watching his movies.

I went to the gift shop and got a balloon for him and saw the mom of one of his classmates. Mike just told me that he got a balloon and coloring book from his friend. That's sooo sweet!

Oh yeah...remember my other kid had surgery too? Sheesh. I feel horrible that I had to ship him off but he'd done so well in the morning I didn't worry. I go to pick him up and my MIL says he threw up once and had a fever. Not sure how high b/c she didn't have a thermometer. She gave him Tylenol but it took a while to break and then he passed out on Poppy's shoulder. He was drenched in sweat when I picked him up. CRAP! I changed his wet clothes and fed him then he proceeded to crawl circles around the house, torment the dog and attack Grandma, Poppy, Uncle Steve and a rotation. He was WILD and fever free. wtf? I'm not sure what's going on with him but I came home at 830-845 and fed him, gave him his ear drops and he went to bed. I hope the fever was a freak thing and he's ok next time he wakes. Just what I need...


As soon as Mike brought Raph home from the hospital I turned around and took Colin to the doctor.

I’m in hell, he’s got the pox.

When the doctor told me I just started laughing like a crazy person. It was either that or start sobbing.
The doctor laughed, "Well you are already taking this week off right?" lol that's sort of funny.


Also, he got the pox vaccine on the 28th. So he either picked it up before it kicked in OR he got it from the vaccine. Yes he’s that .0001% of kids who actually gets chicken pox from the vaccine. OF COURSE he is.

While I was talking to the ped he said, "This confirms my decision that I'm 'one and done'"


I had infectious disease control from the hospital call me.

::guilt guilt guilt::

Now they have to go around calling EVERYONE that had surgery yesterday. I know its not my fault nor did I intentionally take a sick baby with a highly contagious disease into a HOSPITAL but damn. I still feel like chit about this.

I think I'm developing a facial tick lol.

Raph is on just plain Tylenol today. No more mule kicks trying to get the codeine laced Tylenol in him. He's still wimpy and I have to be on him to drink, but he's ok. It goes against my very being as a mom to say its ok to drink juice, eat muffins and watch tv all day. Its hard to get over that.

Colin is pocking out nicely. He's pretty covered and more keep coming. Doesn't seem to bother him any though. That is merciful...for me. He's wimpy and whiny and clingy but not horrible itchy.

So far its mostly on his torso but he has a stray pox on his face/eye lid, his hand, under his diaper etc. They are all still pretty flat and don't see to bother him. Yet. I looked online and saw that the 1-2% of kids that get it from the vaccine end up with pretty mild, short lived cases. I'm hoping this is true.

I'm just hoping that he actually naps today. Yesterday he napped once for 20 min then on the way to/from the dr's in the car. That's it. Normally he takes 2 2hr naps a day without a fuss. He was up a bunch last night but I'd rather it be Colin up than Raph. Raph woke up once at 9 pm and got more meds then back to sleep until 630. He's feeling much better today and only on regular Tylenol. That's a good thing b/c the kind with codeine tastes bad and he fought hard at each dose.


Pox party at my house!

Bring your own baby and booze!

I won't even charge a cover...just bring in your babe and I'll let them touch Colin's belly.

I'm going to develop a facial tick soon...I should drink more.

My friend called earlier to check on me. He had a mental image of me rocking in the corner, muttering to the wall and sipping on a bottle of whiskey...not a bad idea.


When I took the boys to the ENT for their post surgical follow up I was chatting with her nurse. I told her about Colin's pox. Her eyes got huge and said, "THAT was you!?" Oh yes, that was us. She told me about how she had to go around calling all the parents of my ENT's patients that day. She said about half of them FREAKED OUT and some where even hysterical. Lovely. So it wasn't bad enough that I had the Spanish Inquisition with the Infectious Disease Control Lady about where we'd been, whom we'd talked too and what we'd touched...but I also caused this sweet nurse to get verbally abused by other parents. ::hangs head in shame::

This was probably the best My-Life-As-A-Mom story of the year. Top that! I dare you...

A Christmas in Pictures

Because that's how I roll. I take pictures. Lots of pictures.

We begin with finding that perfect tree at Ted Drewes.

Then patiently wait in the car while Daddy straps that tree to the top of the car.

This is our "Dottie Tree" and Raph showing off his mad ninja skills.

Surprisingly, Colin did not mess with the tree, climb the tree, destroy the tree or knock the tree down! We are so proud of him!

A few of our other decorations this year.

I found the perfect spot for some of my Grandma's antique ornaments. I wanted to use them and have them on display. Again, surprisingly, Colin left them alone!
My annual attempt at a nice picture with my boys.
We had a Christmas Eve cocktail party. Colin mixes strong drinks with a healthy pour. He earned some pretty good tips that night.
Raph left Santa some Candy Cane Joe-Joe's.
And decided that Santa drinks cow milk...sure enough. Santa drank the whole glass!
The loot before it was destroyed.
My OCD Santa presents. They all had to have green paper and santa ribbon. I will have you know that Raph did, infact, notice.

Colin enjoying his new kitchen. Raph proclaimed that Santa left it for himself and Colin. They have both been cooking and grilling all kinds of treats for me.
Raph got a new digital camera and not unlike his mother he says, "COWIN! Look at me! Awww, that's a good one!"

Raph's other favorite was the Rody. I love that little green donkey!
Later on Christmas we went to Mike's parent's house and Colin played poker with the big boys. Here's he's counting his money, "Gee, geee, gee, gee."

The next day after Christmas we went bowling with some cousins and uncles. You like his proud stance? I will have you know on my first throw I got a strike. And on my second throw...a gutter ball. Oh well.

And the next day after Christmas we went to the Family Christmas Party. Raph was very excited to drink his lemonade out of a fancy glass.
Raph is probably the only kid in the universe that hates the Happy Birthday song. As usual, he covers his ears whenever people sing. He was out of luck b/c they sang Happy Birthday twice, once of Baby Jesus and once for his cousin Will.

Colin preferred the dance floor. He was in awe of the disk ball and was break dancing to Bette Midler at one point. He so crazy.
All in all it was a great Christmas filled with lots of family functions and was quite exhausting.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Making things complicated

Why do I do these things to myself? WHY!? I just can't stop myself. I see what I do, but I continue and do it anyway.
I celebrate Christmas with food. Holidays must have lots and lots of good food. Its hard for me when things are not at my house because I can't control the food. Sounds like an eating disorder right? So its Christmas time and I have an unhealthy obsession with Buche de Noel. I know I could probably make one and have it end up looking like a festive turd, so I want to buy one. I don't know any French bakeries here so I'm at a loss. I'm disappointed b/c I really really want one. I set aside that little glitch and move on to what I can and will make.

Mike's family doesn't really do anything for Christmas Eve. In my family that's the bigger celebration, so it wears on me. This year I'm taking matters into my own hands and creating a celebration. I can't really do a full sit down dinner since we have small kids and Midnight Mass is out of the question. We have to endure the "children's chaos mass" at 4 pm. When you know you won't get home until 5:30 or so that leaves little time for a proper dinner. My solution was to have a Christmas Eve cocktail party of sorts. I'll serve soup and appetizers and have drinks for those who can come.

Christmas Day is at my IL's house and they have a dinner and I will contribute some side dishes. Its hard to do that b/c you never know what the oven situation will be so its best to have things already prepared to bring over. Cold or room temperature side dishes aren't the easiest thing to come by, but I quest. I will not make an uninteresting dish. I just can't do it. So I think I've found the solution. A leek and potato tart that can be served room temp and is oh so tasty. Then a salad. But not just any salad. It has to have stuff like field greens, craisins, walnuts and goat cheese. So even the easy things I make more difficult. ::shrug::

That brings me back to Christmas Eve...what do I make? I can't really do the real Italian 7 fishes thing, plus I'd be the only one eating oysters. I decide I want some wild mushroom and pecan soup. Again, I will probably be the only one eating the soup, so Mike suggests I just (GASP) buy the soup. Reluctantly I agree to buy the soup and then of course make another soup for good measure. I make a mean baked potato soup so I'll make that and serve it along side my (shhh) store bought soup. Then for the appetizers I think I'll make some phyllo dough wrapped asparagus and some shrimp and jalepeno something and some other stuff. I can't just make 1 thing. Mike thinks I should make 1 soup and 1 he new? He should know better than that by now. I'm thinking about having a signature drink. Some sort of cocktail for the night....What liquor says "Christmas" but isn't egg nog. There will be no drinking NOG in my house.

I go to the Whole Foods website and order my soup. Low and behold! They have Buche de Noel!!!! I add that to my order too. If it comes from Whole Foods you know it will be good. Speaking of dessert, I think I'll make a coconut and lemon bread to bring over to my IL's.

Oh and Christmas breakfast, I should make something special for that too...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Packing Peanuts

'Tis the seasons for packages arriving at your doorstep. Or hurled from 10 ft away and banging against your door letting you know its arrived. Today Raph shouted that the mail was here. I see the truck by the mailbox and get my jacket to go get the day's mail. As I'm walking towards the front door I see a large brown object go flying infront of the door and bang against it. wtf? The mailman literally THREW our package at the door.

Um, Merry Christmas?

I get the mail and the package. Much to my dismay I open the package to find packing peanuts. not just a few to stuff around the edges, but LOTS of peanuts. I carefully extract the inner box from the outer box and only spilled a few peanuts. VICTORY!!!

I take the inner box to the counter and open it to find yet MORE peanuts. Inside the inner box are four smaller boxes. I open those (no peanuts) and find some adorable personalized mugs. Marcella, Mike, Colin and RALPH. Sigh.

I hear a loud and laughing, "OH NO!" and go to the living room to find this.

It took me no less than 20 minutes to clean up the damn peanuts. The more I swept and scooped the more static electricity built up. Each time I'd get a full dust pan 70% of them would literally jump out of the pan and flee the box I was attempting to get them back into. They kept getting broken into smaller and smaller bits. Colin kept laughing and pulling more out. Raph was *helping* me clean up and asked what they were called. I told him they were packing peanuts.


Nice try. Back to work.

I did find an old spray can of static guard and that helped tame the jumpers and I got the majority of the peanuts back in the box. I'm still finding little broken peanut bits stuck to myself and my children.


Monday, December 15, 2008

Banishing the Sippy Cup

Colin, being so old and wise, has banished the sippy cup. He will have nothing to do with those *baby* cups and insists on open cups. He's perfectly adept at drinking from an open cup, its just the part that follows that's the problem. He inevitably dumps a cup of whatever he's drinking on the floor/table/blanket/brother when he's finished.

In the grand scheme of things there are bigger worries than some spilled milk but damn! He's a baby! He can't be drinking from open cups all willy nilly. Plus there are no open cups allowed in my car. In a vain attempt to preserve my upholstery and floors I bought some straw sippy cups. Nope. None doin'. He likes to rip the straw guard part off but not a fan of drinking from them.

I can only give him small amounts of liquid in each open cup, but this leads to another problem. Dolling out an ounce at a time is far from the preferred method of distribution. If you give him a full sippy cup he cries and throws himself on the floor...but not before throwing a full cup across the room. Often times this launching of cups causes the lid to pop off and then I have a bigger mess of a full cup of milk on the floor. So as it stands right now, open cup or no cup. He won't drink much these days and you have to worry about dehydration because he's just so independent and stubborn...wonder where he gets it?

Friday, December 12, 2008

Blogger's Block

Yeah, so I've had a hard time coming up with stuff. That and I've been sick. Adults aren't supposed to get a 105 fever I don't think. I'm still recovering from that and don't feel the creative urge. So for now. How about a little kid torture...'tis the season after all!

Friday, December 5, 2008

How did we get to this point?

There is a story to this picture. Today I cut his hair because I was waiting on the dryer...wait, let me start from the beginning.

This morning as we were getting ready to leave Raph announces an emergency and I hear water running. I go to the boys' bathroom and Colin is IN the sink with the water running. He's washing his toothbrush...and his legs. His blanket is on the ground soaking wet. So at some point the blanket had been in the sink with him and under the water.

I scoop him up, change his clothes and deposit wet blanket and clothes in the washer that was already running. Colin then starts screaming because he wants his blanket. Well, he should have thought about that before he turned the water on the blanket.

Raph was already to go and I put a still screaming Colin in the car. They both needed hair cuts in a bad way. Colin screams most of the way to the hair place. We stop by the dollar store next to the salon to get a treat of some sort in hopes that Colin will sit for a hair cut. For a kid who's had countless hair cuts already, I had a bad feeling about this one. That and he was still mad about the blanket.
For reference. This is what his hair looked like 2 nights ago. He was in DIRE need of a new hair cut.

We go into the hair place and after the lady cleans up the chair I plop Colin down. He then immediately starts screaming and reaching and pleading, "MMAAAAMMMAAAAA!" I bribe him with candy. He takes the candy and continues screaming. I can already tell this is not happening today. The lady was no where near him and he was jumping out of the seat.

Raph sits nicely for a hair cut which ended up not looking very good. Note to self: A hair cut that costs $5.95 looks like a hair cut that costs $5.95.

We stop by the grocery and then head home with only one hair cut, even though Colin needs it the most. After lunch, and when I say lunch I mean Colin throwing food and taking 3 bites, I'm left waiting on the dryer. I am so ready to put Colin down for a nap but I can't because his blankie is in the dryer.

I look over at Colin as he's making a mess and fighting with Raph. I look at his ridiculously shaggy hair and think about the dryer. I then go to the bathroom, pull out the clippers and strap Colin into his high chair.

He screamed and cried and acted like he was Samson losing his beloved hair. I clip away a mountain of hair. I step back and look at his tear streaked face and think, "WHAT have I done!?"

I quickly put the boys in the bath hoping that all cleaned up it won't be so bad. It can't be right? I dress him and comb what's left of his locks and I hear the dryer buzz. YES! The blanket is ready...remember that's the whole reason we got to this point after all.

I go down to the basement and get the blanket. When I come back upstairs with the basket of laundry I find Colin scooping bath water from the draining tub and putting it in the toilet. See, he's just NAUGHTY!

I take him from the bathroom and put him in the kitchen and take this picture. He's so angry with me because of his new hair cut and I made him stop playing with toilet water and I held his blanket hostage for a couple hours. But we got to this picture, was simply that I was waiting on the dryer. Oh and Colin is naughty. He's Colin. He's naughty. That's just what he does.