Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A first of many

Andy got in a fight at school last week. Actually, he got in two fights. My seemingly well behaved, good natured kid managed to clock two kids on the same day. It wasn't even with one of the so-called bad kids in his class (and every class even at this age has a kid who seems to always be in trouble for something so I could understand hitting that kid). Nope, these were two separate kids -- a boy and a girl.

The hit on Chelsea wasn't so bad apparently. They were playing and she took something so he bonked her with a plastic shovel. The other, the worse of the two, was his friend Evan. Apparently Evan "wasn't playing right" so Andy hit him. And actually made him bleed. Great.

Bjorn got the news from his teacher that afternoon. He's such a good kid normally she was embarrassed to have to tell him. When we talked to Andy about it, he was so matter of fact and not sorry at all. "He wasn't playing right." or "She hurt my feelings." Later I ran into Evan and his mom at the library and got to apologize for his behavior. She understood -- apparently Evan said he took Andy's toy and wouldn't give it back. But still. I am sure I'm going to be apologizing for my kids for the next 20 years ago. Then it will be time for them to apologize for me.

Friday, July 24, 2009


Meg is in a hero worship stage with her big brother. I imagine this will last off and on the rest of her life. She really wants to do everything he does. Andy is riding his bike? She wants on the bike. He plays with the water table? She wants to stick her hands in. A few days ago I even took out the high chair (perhaps even, gasp, forever!) and put in a booster seat right next to Andy's chair. She is thrilled to be right next to him. Now I just have to make sure to feed them the same stuff because she totally notices if he gets juice and she gets milk.

What is also fun about this stage is that he's old enough to teach her things. Like tonight at dinner he was teaching her the "open, shut them" song that they sing at school before meals. It involves holding up your hands and clapping. He was proudly showing her and she was doing it. I know, beyond adorable.

Also adorable, Andy pretends that Meg tells him things. So she'll say, "Baba baby oweyo." And he'll say, "Mom, she says Daisy is not a fan of President Obama's plans for health reform." Okay, it's really more like, "Mom, she said she's not going to let me play with the blocks ever because her baby wants them." I do find that she is saying some real words and even some two word sentences, but certainly not to the extent he gives her credit for.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sibling rivalry

It was bound to happen. Once the kids could play together, they would naturally learn how to fight, too. Case in point, Andy was building a "road" with his big living room blocks. Meg decided to get in on the action by finding the biggest block and promptly sitting on it. Andy cried/whined and then pushed her off. She then came appealing to me for intervention. I'll admit I'm not sure what to do with all this. My options here are:

a) Try to get Meg interested in something else or out of the room.
b) Get Andy to be okay with her in the midst of his "work."
c) Discipline Andy for pushing her and let her have the blocks.
d) Have another glass of wine.
e) Some combination of the above.


Sunday, July 12, 2009

Out of the mouths of babes

"Andy, why did you say that? It's not nice to say, 'Mommy, get away from me.''
"I don't know. I think it was germs. Some strange germs got in my mouth and made me say that."

Sunday, July 05, 2009


Andy and Marc in the pool on the fourth. It has been remarkably coolish here so they were the only ones brave enough to get in the pool. I love the artistic water shot Bjorn got.
Meg and Lauren eating outside while we prepared fireworks. I posted this picture because this expression she has in the photo reminds me of someone in the family, but I can't quite place it.

I love the fun that can come from something as simple as a diaper box. Here the kids are in Andy's "boat." He is at a stage where his imagination is really taking off. He turns all sorts of every day items into his imaginary playthings. I love it.

Andy was so tired from school last week he went to "rest" on our bed and fell asleep half-way off. I was tickled by the picture and by the way his hair fell.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Follow up appointment or how long does it take for a toddler to pee in a bag?

We had a follow up appointment for Meg this morning. Our doctor's office has Saturday walk-in hours for sick only (i.e. no appointments), but he wanted her to come in to check her urine to see if the infection was gone. Despite improvements since Wednesday, she still hasn't been herself the last few days. Thursday she was still pretty fussy throughout the day and very tired with a fever. Even on Friday she slept until 10:15 (unheard of!) and was only up for about two hours before she needed a nap. I did call the doctor to ask if that was okay. Granted, she was better -- lower fever, no vomiting, eating and normal bowel movements, but she still wasn't herself. He said that sick as she'd been, it was going to take a while to improve and so long as she was making eye contact and walking normally, she was progressing okay. I must say I appreciated Dr. Murphys' calm reassurances. He has not normally been my favorite, what with calling me "mom" all the time (which everyone at the ER did, too -- must be an industry standard), but he's been great through this.

Anyway, we went in today. Meg was perkier and generally happier, especially after a breakfast that included chocolate chip cupcakes that I baked to bring to the doctor's office (I am nothing but a suck-up). She was playing nicely in the waiting room until we went back and Dr. Murphy laid her down to attach the plastic pee bag. Poor thing, her legs were shaking as she clearly remembered how it went the last time a doctor laid her out. She was also shaking when the nurse came to draw blood from her toe (and she cried and was MAD about it). Now I just needed to wait for her to pee in the bag. Which took two hours, despite my plying her with nine ounces of Pedialyte in a baby bottle.

The good news, her white blood cell count is down to 30,000 from 40,000 on Wednesday. That means the antibiotics are working and the infection is working its way out. Now we wait until tomorrow to see if bacteria grows in the urine sample.

The theory is that last week when she had diarrhea, that a little bit of the poop made its way where it shouldn't causing the bladder/urinary tract infection (despite being different pieces of anatomy, the diagnoses are interchangeable). The cold she has is just a secondary infection. We will go back in about two weeks to check her urine when she's allegedly healthy to see if there is an infection. If she's clear, that's all fine, but if she's got an infection, it may be a sign that she's got an anatomical problem that would warrant more testing.

In all of this, Bjorn says, "Hey, have you seen the big cat? I haven't seen her since last night. The little cat came in the morning, but I haven't seen Coltrane." So with all this, we're casing the streets looking for a cat. Andy doesn't care since he's already decided he wants a black kitten. Fortunately, as my hope is waning she comes trotting up the driveway, seemingly healthy and covered in grass like she's been hiding in some one's yard. Phew. I wasn't sure how much more drama I needed this week.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Our first real trip to the ER

Little Miss Margaret got her first trip to the ER tonight. After another hitting the Wednesday mark with no improvement since Monday, we went back to the pediatrician who ran some blood work, another strep test, a urine test and whatever other tests. He couldn't find anything except that her white blood cell count was 40,000. Apparently that's really high. Normal is like 12,000. That was the sign that some bacteria was amiss in her system. He suspected it might be pneumonia and he gently said we'd have to go to the emergency room for better blood work and chest X-rays. Meg was fussy at the news (well, all day for a week, really) and I teared up even.

I headed over to Fairfax hospital next to my office and had the good sense to call an office friend to meet me. Bjorn was in Richmond for the day so I called Jennifer to pick up Andy who coordinated with Mark to babysit.

The whole event was pretty awful and tear-wrenching (for me as well) as they poked and prodded a kid who obviously didn't feel well. The X-rays were uncomfortable, but not so bad. What sucked was the catheter for the urine sample. What sucked worse was them looking for a vein and then getting the IV into her little right hand and covering it up with a strange little collar. They finally came back after probably four hours with a diagnosis of a urinary tract infection. She got some IV antibiotics and a script for omnicef and a follow-up with her doctor.

Fortunately, by the end, she had perked up with some IV fluids, Motrin and cuddles with Daddy. She was really tired, but not as sad and mopey (and dehydrated) as before.

As for me, I'm exhausted and going to bed.