Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Still Sick

Lou spent the better part of Wednesday afternoon like this.

He finished his antibiotics on Tuesday but wasn't any better. By Wednesday night he was refusing to eat, refusing to be put down, and refusing to stop crying. Of course these things always happen after 5:00, so my only choice was the urgent care after hours. After waiting in an exam room for well over an hour (that poor doctor was being run ragged), she was able to tell us that Lou's ears were both still horribly infected. The poor kid had snot pouring from his mouth, his nose, and his eyes. He has a terrible, raspy cough and generally just looks miserable.

One option was to give him an injection of antibiotics, but we would have had to wait at the clinic for an hour to make sure he didn't have a reaction and they closed at 9:00 pm (it was currently 9:37). We could have come back this morning for it, but it apparently can be pretty harsh on a little one's digestive system and given the fact that my kids always have at least a local reaction to shots, I didn't really want to chance it. We went with Plan B, which was to start him on another course of oral antibiotics and get ourselves to an ENT as soon as possible. The first available with the pediatric ENT the urgent care doctor recommended wasn't until May, so she made a call and we are going in for a hearing test and consultation next week.

Despite the fact that he didn't go to bed until well after 10:00 pm last night, he was still up at the regular hour of 7:00. Which pretty much means he was a hot mess all day again today. Usually Lou could pretty much care less what I am doing most of the time. He likes to play with toys, his sister, and the cat way more than he likes to play with me. However, it was a complete disaster all day today if I wasn't holding or touching him in some way. All day. It was super cute for the first few hours.

I sent this picture of my shirt to BVZ at work. At the time it was taken, my shirt had on it: snot from Lou's mouth, snot from his nose, tears, vomit, antibiotic, applesauce, vomit from the antibiotic, and vomit from the applesauce.

As much as sinus and ear infections suck (and man do they suck, I am going on day 15 of mine), I can't even imagine having to suffer through them when you are a baby and can't communicate what you need, blow your nose, and/or take Vicodin. I have high hopes the ENT can give us some answers as to how to better help him.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

In A Week

Lou will be one. Where has the time gone?

Monday, February 20, 2012

GG and Aunt Vanessa

GG and Aunt Vanessa were here for a super quick visit. They were only here for about 48 hours, but we immediately put them to work entertaining the children. I still feel like crap-ola, so their presence was a godsend. They were great sports and were satisfied (or at least didn't admit otherwise), to hang close to home. Aunt Vanessa played 1,230 "games" of princess/fairies/pirate and never complained once. She did admit that she thought once the fairies were put to "bed" the game would be over, and was in fact a bit surprised that the game only took a break (when Norah went to bed) and resumed within about 15 seconds of awakening. Then lasted the rest of the day.

BVZ took them out for Tex-Mex on Saturday night and then on Sunday we hung with the masses at Kerbey Lane Cafe. We had to wait about 40 minutes for a table (of course), but were able to enjoy the warm (not hot) sunshine and sidewalk guitarist.

I wish this was a better picture of GG's face. She and Lou are totally rocking the same hair-do and facial expression.

After a while, Norah was over waiting, so she lay down in Aunt Vanessa's lap. It's what Aunts are there for. At least she wasn't complaining.

I wish I had taken a before and after picture of what Norah ate. She had been the one who requested we take our guests to "that pancake place." Last time we were there she ordered gingerbread pancakes which were "too strong" in her opinion. Lest she make the same mistake twice, she had been telling me for days that this time she was going to order the buttermilk ones. She got a giant buttermilk (with chocolate chips!) pancake and a full plate of scrambled eggs, as well as some fruit. She ate every single bite and only left the fruit behind. It's like I don't even know her sometimes.

Other than out to eat twice, we literally were at the house the rest of the time. GG and Vanessa played while I rested as much as possible and BVZ did things like, oh go to the grocery store for the first time in a week. They came bearing gifts and Norah got her own left-handed junior golf club set. I can't wait to learn how to golf with her. Louis got some great birthday gifts including adorable clothes and a whole set of musical instruments. To keep up with him, Norah also got a harmonica. She was surprisingly awesome at it. Like, she could be in Blue's Traveler or something. It sounded like actual music.

We hope they come back soon.


$145. That's the amount I have spent this past week on co-pays at the doctor and pharmacy for Lou and myself. Norah's cold infected us all and Lou ended up with a double ear infection (shocking), and I ended up with a sinus and ear infection and a delightful case of bronchitis. We're a hot mess over here.

I wonder what that mom at Norah's pre-school would do if I walked up to her and handed her a bill? Better than punching her in the face, I think.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Go, Go, Go

Louis' new trick is to shout GO, GO, GO when he cruises around on his car. It's been tough to get on video and this isn't the best but you'll get the general idea.

I would like...

...to punch another parent in the face right now. I rarely feel this way. Unless you are doing something to endanger your kid I am basically eh, to each their own. This parenting gig is hard enough without other people telling you that you're doing it wrong.

Norah had her school Valentine's Day party on Friday. We made valentines for her friends. Cute, right?

Since she only goes a half-day on Fridays, I picked her up after lunch and then took her back at 3:00. I was one of about eight parents (roughly 50%) that were there for the party. It was cute and the kids seemed to have a good time having snacks and exchanging valentines. There was one little girl, S, who was not having a good time. That would be because she was face down on the table with dripping eyes, a dripping nose, a dripping mouth, and a cough that made her sound as though she should be in a tuberculosis ward. Fantastic, especially given the fact that I can pretty much guarantee Norah played with her all morning. For some reason, her teachers seemed to not notice the hacking or the fact that a lot of the other kids seemed to have picked up a bit of a cough as well. At one point one of the other moms said that she should have brought respiratory masks instead of baby carrots. S's mom picked her up as we were getting our stuff ready to leave and at least appeared to be unconcerned at her daughter's current state of being very, very sick.

I did my best to run interference between Norah and the afflicted, but sure as shit, by Saturday afternoon she had developed some major congestion and a raspy smoker's cough. At dinner she had such a bad coughing fit that her dinner ended up on her dress, the table, the floor, and in my hands (gross, right?) By 1:00 am she was at the side of my bed because she couldn't catch her breath due to the coughing and her sore throat. (BVZ was already in the guest bedroom, having been banished for Nyquil induced snoring). We were up from 1:00 to about 4:00 am, taking steam showers and sipping mugs of warm water with honey. I probably got a full cough to my face at least 73 times.

Look, I get it. Having a sick kid when you have to go to work is the worst. The school guidelines are that you have to keep your kid home for barfing, the runs, or a fever, but everything else is pretty much left to the discretion of the parents. When working full time I had the luxury of a flexible schedule and paid time off. That was essential because BVZ did not have a flexible schedule and it would have been incredibly difficult for him to stay home with a sick kid. Not impossible of course, but very difficult. With no family in the area at the time, our options were pretty limited. I can only speculate as to why this mom sent her kid to school so very sick. Maybe she's a single mom without anyone to help. Maybe she doesn't get paid if she doesn't work and the loss of even a single day makes a huge financial impact. If you keep your kid home you still have to pay the school, so it's a huge double whammy. Maybe she doesn't understand the basic concept of how quickly a virus can travel amongst pre-schoolers.

Regardless of her reasons, her actions now have far reaching consequences. I guarantee at least half of the kids in Norah's class are now as sick as she is. I guarantee that Louis will get sick too and likely get another ear infection, which means weeks of doctor visits, co-pays, forcing antibiotics down his throat, and many more sleepless nights. It also means that Reid will probably get sick as well, and who knows who else (I already have a scratchy throat). I am empathetic to anyone who feels caught between a rock and a hard place. Really, I am. I just hate that in this particular situation her problem has now become my very big, dripping, snotty problem.

(It would seem as though Norah has inherited my uncanny ability to close her eyes in just about every picture she's in).

Saturday, February 11, 2012


Norah is feeling a little under the weather today so she was "taking a tub." Lou was pissed he wasn't allowed in. I had him in his room wrestled to the ground so that I could change his diaper. As I tried frantically to wipe up all the crap, he did a gymnastics move and flipped himself around. Of course he made a beeline for the tub where he proceeded to 1) stand up at the tub and pee, 2) attempt to fling himself in a good six inches of water, and 3) pull down the shower curtain and rod on top of himself. All within about 20 seconds.

Happy hour starts now.

Friday, February 10, 2012

By The Numbers (Take Two)

When Louis was two months old I did this post comparing him to Norah as a newborn. Now that we are staring down the barrel of being a WHOLE YEAR OLD, I thought I would revisit the same topics and see how things have changed.

LinkWeight: At her one year well baby visit Norah was a few ounces shy of 20 lbs. She has continued on that same curve and is about 33 lbs. right now. The last time we were at the doctor for an ear infection Lou weighed in at a few ounces shy of 20 lbs. He wasn't quite 11 months. My bet is that he is closer to 21 lbs. by his birthday. He eat a lot now and just feels heavier. That still puts him in the 10-20% for weight (boys and girls are on a different scale). He and Norah have the exact same body type and it is all attributable to BVZ. They are tall and skinny kids, which I hope means they will be tall and skinny adults. Neither have much body fat and there's not a cute baby pot belly in sight. I think it is interesting that they are virtually identical given that one was breastfed and the other formula fed.

Height: I have no idea how tall Lou is but people are continually surprised by his age (everyone assumes he's much older). It's his height and his massive amount of hair.

Sleep: There's absolutely no comparison. Louis had a few rough months around the time we moved to Texas, but he's back in a groove and is a great sleeper. He sleeps a ton, averaging 12 hours a night and 3 to 4 hours a day, split between 2 naps. He has a hard time with teething at night and still sometimes is woken up by gas, but I would say 90% of the time he is out the entire night. He's a GREAT napper, and literally just has to be given a hug and put in his crib. We didn't do anything radically different with him, rather employed many of the same techniques that failed with Norah. Some kids are just good sleepers no matter what you do. Some kids are just shitty sleepers no matter what you do.

Eating: Louis has found his stride with eating and eats a LOT these days. He is pretty picky though and often will outright reject what I have offered. Norah didn't eat a lot at any one time but wasn't super picky. She would eat a few bites of just about anything, but just a few bites (for those keeping track she's a great eater now and I have zero concerns about her). If Lou loves something (ie, quesadillas) he will eat a ton. If he doesn't love something (ie, any vegetable other than peas) you are out of luck getting him to even take a bite. Little does he know I am very persistent. He is fabulous with a straw cup and seems to like milk just fine (he gets a little with breakfast now). I plan to dump the bottles and formula completely the day after his birthday and I think he will be just fine.

Diapers: It's not even a contest. Louis is disgusting. He regularly pees through his diaper at night (we are working on this one), and his poop smells like the zoo. He's had more blow outs than I can count. The other day we were playing in his room and he started to poop and I could literally SEE IT smush out the back of his pants. It couldn't be any grosser. Norah was a basketful of roses in comparison.

Barf: Lou has grown out of the barfing, I think. Sometimes he will get a little food in the back of his throat and that will lead to coughing-gagging-barfing, but other than that he keeps it down.

Disposition: They are both really easy going. Louis is into EVERYTHING in a way I just don't remember with Norah. He throws stuff in the toilet, tries to pull down book cases, climbs in cabinets, and basically gets into 30 to 40 perilous situations a day. He is always on the move. Norah was very agile and curious, but I don't remember being so exhausted chasing after her. I could take a shower and leave her sitting on the bathroom floor with some books. I would never even consider doing that with Lou. If he didn't nap I would be a wreck. He is developing a quick temper when he doesn't get his way. He is great at independent play (so was Norah for the most part). I want to start getting him around other kids soon. Although he sees Reid most days out of the week, I do think he needs some more interaction with kids his age. Norah had our playgroup of course and I feel bad he doesn't have the same thing.

Motor Skills: Norah crawled at 6 months and walked right before her first birthday. Lou waited until 9 months to crawl. It will be interesting to see when he starts walking. He walks really well with assistance and cruises all over the place but hasn't seemed interested in taking independent steps yet. He will stand in one place on his own for a few seconds, but that's about it. He's pincher grasp is really good, as is his ability to throw a ball, pick up blocks, and manipulate toys. With the exception of ball throwing I remember Norah being very similar.

Misc.: Lou has WAY more hair. Lou is addicted to the pacifier (but only gets it at sleep time), Norah hated it. Lou is sick way more often than Norah ever was. Lou hates to take medicine, Norah couldn't get enough. Lou has 6 teeth. At this age, Norah only had two.

I tried to find pictures taken while they were as close in age as possible. Here I think Norah is 11 months, 1 week old and Lou is 11 months, 2 weeks old. Cute kids, if I do say so myself.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Up To Date

I am not terribly organized about what we've been doing lately, so this is just a random assortment of pictures from my phone. I have quite a few work-related pots on the stove right now and my free time feels even more limited than usual.

Norah and I went to the Inner Space Caverns last weekend with my friend Joe. It was pretty cool, despite the fact that I am a little scared of caves (due entirely to the scariest movie ever made, The Descent). Norah was not scared and instead asked me to take pictures of her making scary faces.

We've been spending a lot of time at the Children's Museum. It's a miracle no one has contracted pink eye.

Lou is all about walking with his car. Norah will often hitch a ride.

Norah has never been a fan of bouncy/jump houses and is actually a little scared of them. We went to a birthday party a few weekends ago at a jump house place and out of nowhere she decided to go down the giant slides, bounce with other kids, and fling herself into this pit filled with foam blocks. I don't know what got into her, but I like it.

Louis loves these mega-blocks and insists on sitting IN the bucket at all times.

Norah got a haircut a few weeks ago. They washed her hair in the sink which she was totally not prepared for.

But then she got to sit in a pink jeep and watch a Barbie movie so it was all good.

Lou discovered how to get into the kitchen cabinets and has enjoyed the timeless art of pot banging. Today the boys made a two-man band.

We are doing a trial class with the kids at Little Gym. Unfortunately it is right at nap time. Despite the bad timing the boys seem to be into it. Lou gets to crawl everywhere and hang on bars. What's not to like.

They spent a good part of the class banging on the window.

A post-workout snack.

These two definitely have a love-hate relationship. They are starting to interact in a meaningful way, which includes a lot of face smacking, hair pulling, and body slamming. But then sometimes I catch them reaching for each other and holding hands. I like that part best.

This morning during breakfast Norah drew a picture of a mermaid. It totally looks like a mermaid! I thought the dark orange wings were arms but they are in fact ears.

I have been moussing Lou's hair for special occasions. I think it makes him look like the mean blonde kid from Harry Potter.

See that mark near his eye? That would be from falling face first into the train table. I suspect he'll have a bit of a shiner tomorrow. It was the first of 54 injuries that he inflicted upon himself today. I imagine it will only get worse before it gets better.

Norah reads to Lou all of the time. Sometimes the dog book, sometimes the dinosaur book, and this evening it was "Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child." Oh, the irony.