Tuesday, July 10, 2007

A new day

Clay is doing much, much better:
He took his last dose of steroids today, so we'll watch closely for the next few days, but it's looking good!

The Hive Saga

If you read GNMParents then you may remember from a couple of weeks ago that I have a son with severe allergies. On the afternoon of July 4th our family was enjoying a quiet day at home. I was sitting next to my son on the couch when he started saying he was itchy. He took off his shirt and I watched as first dozens then hundreds of welts spread across his torso. Hives.

Oh, I've forgotten an integral part of the story. This was my other son. The one with no known food allergies. The one who eats peanut butter. The one who (wouldn't but) could eat haddock.

I dosed him with Benadryl and put a call into the doctor. We went through a long list of "could it be"'s and decided it was:

a. Progresso chicken soup
b. Something other than Progresso chicken soup
c. A complete fluke.

The antihistamine kicked in and Clay appeared to be fine. The hives cleared completely and he had no other symptoms. We actually headed to the neighbors for a swim.

That night Clay woke up at 11 pm completely covered in hives. They weren't extremely red, but they were raised and plentiful. He was itching like mad. I gave him another dose of the big B and put him in a baking soda bath. We were up for an hour or 2 and then he slept again. When he awoke we gave him some more B and he proceeded to upchuck it into the toilet. We put in another call to the doctor and after a bit gave him some more medicine. The hives were growing in size and in number. My boy was scratching away. He spent a good portion of the day in an oatmeal bath as sat and I watched. The Benadryl was providing minimal relief and it was only lasting an hour or 2. The doc called in a script. This proved to be even less effective that the B.

By 5 pm the hives had gotten even worse and we headed to the urgent care clinic. It's about a 20 minute drive and I did my best to distract my boy who was writhing and screaming intermittently. The folks at the clinic were wonderful. They pushed us in immediately. The doctor decided an oral dose of steroids were called for. But first Clay needed to eat something. A tiny bite of graham crackers and a couple sips of juice went down and came back up immediately.

When the doctor mentioned epinephrine... as in Epi-Pen... I swallowed my panic. They administered a shot of steroids and the epinephrine. Within 10 minutes Clay's skin was clearing and he was acting himself. He scarfed down a Popsicle and talked my ear off as we waited for him to be discharged. A few minutes later we were on our way home, prescriptions for an antihistamine and oral steroids in hand. I was sure we were over the hump. We got home and Clay ate a big dinner and headed to bed. I breathed a sigh of relief and went to bed myself.

Then Friday came. From the time he woke up until he went to bed that night Clay sat curled on my lap. Except when he got up to vomit... which was about every 20 minutes. The hives were back, although less prominent and certainly less itchy. He couldn't keep anything down. We resorted to teaspoons of Gatorade given in 5 minute intervals. He tolerated about 4/5 doses before heaving it up again. 24 hours passed without food or liquid. Hello... can you spell dehydration? The evening came and I spoke to the doctor yet again. Together we decided to let him go to sleep but that we would bring him into the office in the morning. I checked on him 100 times during the night and he was resting well. When he awoke he was completely clear of hives and hungry! Hungry! Hungry! No hives + hungry= relief.

It turned out to be premature relief-ulation. Within an hour or so, the hives came back. We headed to the doctor's office (about 45 minutes away) and by the time we arrived he was almost as bad as it had been on Thursday. Still swallowing my panic, I talked to the doctor again about causes (no one knows) and treatments. We gave him the antihistamine and 1/2 dose of the steroids in the office, under the observation of the doctor. He immediately felt crappy and curled up into a ball on my lap. He slept.

We headed home with instructions to continue the steroids and the antihistamine for 3 days. If the vomiting returned or if the hives became worse we were to call. We stopped for a slushie on the way home. I'd've bought him anything he wanted. I was so bloody sick of being helpless. I was so bloody tired of wondering if I was doing the right thing. I would've bought him anything.

For the next day the hives came back sporadically as did the nausea. But he was himself for long periods of time. And though his tummy seemed upset, he was able to keep the little food he ate down.

He's still taking the steroids. This is day 1 without the antihistamine. He is back to pestering his siblings and running all over the place. It's beautiful.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Second Post of the Day

Please take a moment to read Rob's post about the adventures of our son.

It's called The Sock Bone and you will laugh.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

It's April 4th

This is the email that I woke up to this morning:

Good morning! The snow that is currently falling may accumulate up to two inches this morning before tapering off after 9:00am. Please drive carefully as roadways will become slippery.

In the meantime, the Weather Service has posted a Winter Storm Warning from 6:00pm tonight until 10:00am Thursday morning. Expected accumulations are between 6 and 10 inches of heavy, wet snow. This combined with winds of up to 30 mph could cause power outages.

Public Works has called for a Parking Ban from 7:00pm tonight until 1:00pm on Thursday.

It is April 4th and I am d.o.n.e. with snow.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Aidan's Tunes

My boy responded to my tag and shared his favorite 7 songs of the moment.

I love the contrast between Centerfold and Hi-Ho.

Good stuff.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Music of the Moment

Chantal tagged me for a music meme. Before I start, I suggest you all go over and read her "real Mom" post. It is so on the money. This post isn't nearly as fascinating as hers. You actually don't even have to bother coming back.

Oh... you're back? Okay then-

Instructions: List seven songs you are into right now. No matter what they are. They must be songs you are presently enjoying. Then tag seven other people to see what they’re listening to.

So here are the tunes I've been enjoying lately:

  1. Buzz Buzz- Laurie Berkner (They said their names were Kay and Ray and Fay and they went buzz buzz buzz.)
  2. Not Ready to make Nice- Dixie Chicks
  3. The Future Soon- Jonathan Coulton
  4. I Will- the Beatles
  5. I Walk the Line- Johnny Cash
  6. Gallileo- the Indigo Girls
  7. Flowers on the Wall- the Statler Brothers
I can't tag 7 people... do 7 people read this neglected blog? ok- Stu, Erica, Wes, Ma ma ma Mia, Whit, Wanna Be, and my boy, Aidan.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Kid Blogging

My son, Aidan (7), has been researching dragons. He has a new post on his neglected blog, Information about Stuff. Leave him a comment, he goes nutty for them.

Kid blogging is fun. Aidan struggled with some of his spelling, but whenever he saw an underlined word, he knew to try again. He needed some help, but he figured out a lot of it himself.

Researching "stuff" is fun. It must be done together, to be sure he's finding appropriate sites. He's learning about not only the "stuff" he decides upon, but also about spelling, and creative commons licenses, and punctuation, and navigating the web, and using the computer. It inspires him to ask questions and to find answers. I love the deductive reasoning he closed this post with... if King Arthur battled Dragamont, and Dragamont was real, than dragons are real.

Does your kid blog? Do you know any kids that blog?

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Donations Encouraged!

I just wrote a post at GNM Parents about how little I enjoy asking people for money. Truth is, I am currently raising money for 2 very worthy organizations. Please read about why I support these programs, and make a donation here. These are worthy causes and I fully appreciate your support.

Big Brothers Big Sisters:


The Arthritis Walk

Thank you, sincerely.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Overheard at our Dinner Table

Aidan (7): Where on the chicken is the wishbone?

Papa: Somewhere near the breast.

Clay (5): Oh, so it's a girl chicken.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

National Sex Offender Registry

I can't sleep.

The people in our neighborhood have been getting phone calls to notify them of a registered sex offender who lives about 1/4 mile from my house.

I knew there was an issue with his teenage step daughter, and I knew he went to jail and now I know that he's back... living with the poor kid's "biological mother." What I don't know is what to do with this information.

Being a parent is scary.

Family Watch Dog tells you where the sex offenders live and work in relation to your address.

GNMParents has a post up about keeping kids safe. Sometimes it seems impossible.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Dreaming of Vacation

Our family is not a vacation family. Every February for the past 5 years I have said the same thing: maybe next February we'll go someplace warm. I now say it again. February is a long short month.

Our family's making a choice right now- you know, investing in the family and all of that. It's good and it's where we want to be. Really. Money's tight but we are doing what we need to to make this work. It usually works for us.

Except sometimes I want to go on vacation. Our last vacation as a family was 4 and a half years ago. We went to the White Mountains in New Hampshire for a week and spent a couple of days playing in the most amazing rocky river ever. It was so lovely. Relaxing and full of each other.

When I was a kid we spent 2 weeks a summer on a little pond in Eastham, MA (on Cape Cod). We'd have long days at the ocean and even longer days never leaving the water of the pond. Those 2 weeks were like 2 months. My mom might say otherwise. She and my Dad were the ones dealing with the operational side of the vacation. But as kids, it was pure heaven.

Over the past few summers we have had a good number of days playing in the surf on the coast of Maine and lounging on the shores of some really breathtaking lakes. Those are like mini vacations.

Today I am longing for days spent together in vacation mode. I wonder what we can do on a dime to get that feeling now. All of my vacation memories have to do with water and time. We are going to make some more of that happen in 2007. We are.

We are... and next February, we're headed someplace warm- even for a few days.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

For You

A Wish List For You:

That you never ruin a batch of brownies by greasing the pan with rancid Crisco.

That you never stumble to answer the question "What is a booby?"

That an (all but) virtual stranger a friend will send you beautiful baubles.

That you never realize at 11:15 pm that you forgot to shower (again).

That your choice to walk to the bus stop when it's -7 (with the wind chill) instead of taking the car doesn't backfire and you don't end up with 3 wicked sad kids before 8 am.

That when you go to bed dreaming of a snow day, you'll awaken to a day of blankets, snow forts, and hot cocoa.

How ARE you?

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Revealing Inadequacies

Yesterday I went to church alone. This doesn't happen very often. When I go, it's usually with the whole family. I spend a good portion of the time juggling books and silent toys in effort to ensure that the Punks aren't disturbing out neighbors, or wisking a noisy kid off to the cry room when it just isn't working. Although I am not able to focus on every word, I leave still feeling as though it was an hour well spent. I am comforted by the predictable rhythm of the mass. Oh, and I love me a good hymn.

On occasion I go to an evening mass alone. I sink into the rhythm and immerse myself in the rituals. It's quiet and my mind responds as you may or may not expect. As a stay at home mom there is very little quiet in my life. During mass I spend a good deal of time assessing where I am and how I am doing- my mind races.

Lately it seems during this time that all of my inadequacies are revealed.

By communion I am more often than not a bit weepy. In fact, my priest has commented on several different occasions that it must be a terrible cold I have.

We have only been a part of this community for a little over 2 years. It is strange to attend mass when I cherish being a part of the community yet when I am there I sink into the solitude. Today I feel a bit torn between wanting to go alone and work through this stuff and at the same time wanting to go with the family and relish the familiar and comforting rituals.

Just what I am thinking about.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Memory Lane

I hope you'll indulge me for just a few moments. I've been scrolling through old photos and I came across pictures from a day trip we took to an island off the coast of Maine. Aidan was 4 months shy of his 5th birthday, Clay was a month shy of 3, and Lucy was 2 months old. The kid's grandmother and aunt and uncle and 5 month old cousin came as well.

We spent the day walking around the island. It was warm but not hot, a beautiful September day. We had a lovely picnic lunch in a secluded back yard. After poking around the streets and neighborhoods we spent a couple of hours exploring the tidal pools and rocks and shells on the beach. Lucy was still ultra portable and was digging her sling. I love to remember the days that we carved out specifically for each other.

These memories help me to shift my focus away from the daily stress and crap. They help me to look ahead to the next opportunity we have to relax and just be together.

Ok, and can you believe the chunkamonka that was is my lovely daughter? Have you seen such beautiful skin?

Have a great weekend, folks.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Thing: purely a journal entry

Here's the thing: I uh, stopped blogging here when things picked up at GNMParents. It's been a great outlet for parenting related stuff and for connecting with other parents.

Kind of like this site was a good outlet for exercise related stuff and connecting with other exercisers. Except I seem to have abandoned exercise.

So I am presented with a bit of a dilemma. It's my own thing but since I'm processing it I figure I might as well do it here.

I have made no significant progress towards completing my weightloss goals for the past 6 months (maybe longer). This is amazing considering I am pretty close to the finish line. It's like quiting a 5k with 15 yards to go. I have 5 lbs to meet my official goal and 5 beyond that as a cushion. So 10 lbs total.

Last time I ran was at the Jingle Bell run at the beginning of December. Before that it had been months. I was sore for 2 days after the 5k. I ran 3 days a week all summer long. Ok, so I hated it mostly, but I did it. Is it really just the weather? That's a pretty lame excuse seeing as up until this week we've had no snow to speak of and lots of warm days. (On a side note it is currently 2 degrees outside my house!)

The dilemma is this: do I scrap this place and say goodbye or do I use it purely to keep me accountable for my daily activities in effort to motivate myself to hit my goals?

I am not sure.