Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Well we had a wonderful, relaxing Christmas Day. Nana was here, and her cousin Gail and Gail's son Mike came over for dinner. Tom and Nana made a huge dinner, turkey, roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, two kinds of cranberry sauce, and my favorite: butternut squash bisque. It was heavenly! Gail brought over a beautiful salad, and everyone stuffed themselves so much that we couldn't even get into the apple crisp that Nana made.

Last night Nicky and Nana put out cookies and milk for Santa Claus. Well Santa loved them! He even left Nicky a note under the plate.



Nicky had asked Santa for a kitty that wouldn't make him sneeze, and Santa delivered! Waiting on the sofa this morning was an animatronic kitty that meows and purrs. He also brought a wooden train set, and a stocking full of candy and toys! Nicky must have been a very good boy.

The Kitty that doesn't make him sneeze

The train set that Santa brought. Kitty likes to watch.

Nicky later opened his other presents. Nana got him a tent set that we put up in his room today. It's actually two tents connected by a tunnel. He tried to sleep in there tonight, but eventually decided to move back into his bed. He also got a remote control car that he loves! His big present from Nana was actually opened on Wednesday night. It's a big motorized jeep/tractor to drive around the backyard. They put it together Wednesday night and Nicky rode it around the backyard Thursday. It poured rain Christmas day, so that worked out to open it early. I can't remember everything else Nicky received. He was definitely spoiled though!

Trying to sleep in his tent.

His remote control car

Tonight when I was rocking with him before bed I asked him what his favorite present was and he said his "kitty cat." Santa really scored on that one!
He loves the kitty!

On the weekend before Christmas

Last weekend we went to visit my Mom, Nicky's Grammie, and my sister Liz and her partner Jodi for a long weekend. We stayed at Grammie's and had a great visit. Grammie made a big Christmas dinner on Sunday and we all opened presents. Nicky had so much fun with the Handy Manny nail-gun that comes with an airplane to build. He also got a Handy Manny helicopter building kit, and from Aunt Liz and Aunt Jodi he got a HUGE Black & Decker tool set with safety goggles, a tool belt, vest and hat, and a bunch of tools. None of which require batteries. Score!

It was a nice relaxing visit. And our last big trip until after the babies come. Today I'm 15 weeks and not going anywhere! The babies are growing like crazy in there. I have a week off work now, and I'm so looking forward to taking at least one daily nap for a while. Maybe 2 or 3 even! Today I took a 2.5 hour nap and it was blissful.

We had an OB appointment Wednesday and at first we didn't think we were getting an ultrasound. But after a while we moved to another room with the ultrasound machine and got one. It wasn't as detailed as the ones we get at the hospital (where they did the nuchal translucency and will do the Level 2 ultrasound later) but it was reassuring to see that both babies were doing well. We saw them moving around in there. Either wrestling or doing the mambo, and saw both heartbeats. They're so big that you can't even look at one without seeing parts of the other. He did print a few photos, but really they don't look like anything much, even to us (and we're getting pretty good at reading these things).

I finally did another belly pic. My first was back in November at 8 weeks. This one is at 15 weeks (ok, so it was yesterday, but close enough). The blue and green shirts are exactly the same style and size. Can you see a difference? My pants sure can! I'm down to just a few pairs I can fit into now. I'm definitely going to need to do some maternity shopping soon. Oh, and I cut my hair too.

8 Weeks:
baby2.0,twins,Nicky,bellypics,Angela

15 Weeks:
15 Weeks

Friday, December 18, 2009

Welcome to the Second Trimester

Today we're officially 14 weeks along and in the 2nd trimester. I'm kind of afraid I'm just not going to get that "burst of energy" that is normally supposed to happen in the 2nd trimester with twins in there though. Bummer. Lately I've been having headaches nearly every day, sometimes all day. I've been checking my blood pressure though and it's been really wonderful, was 104/72 yesterday afternoon after an all day headache. I'll see the OB next Wednesday and ask about it though. Sometimes tylenol takes care of it, but sometimes it doesn't. I don't think they're as bad as migraines though, so that's good!

We had our second Nuchal Translucency ultrasound Wednesday. This tech was so much better than last time. She was able to get all the measurements really quickly and without all the crazy pushing. I swear I felt bruised after the last one! We'll have the official results in two weeks, but the tech said everything looked perfect. She said all the measurements were well within the normal range. This screening has only a 5% false positive rate, and the tech strongly suggested we not even get the quad screen at all. I'm going to ask my OB what he thinks about that. it's just a blood test and I have to have blood drawn for the Glucose Tolerance Test anyway, so I don't mind it. But there is a 20% false positive rate on the quad screen, so it could cause unnecessary worry. We'll see.

I will try to get movie snippets up on here soon. We're just about to head out of town again tomorrow though, so time is short. Although this time I might have internet access, so maybe I can still get it done. We're staying at my Mom's for 4 days for an early Christmas.

We just made a four day trip to GA to see my Dad and family last weekend. My Dad is looking good, although very pale and tired still. Tom took him to his doctor appointment Monday and they found he's very anemic. They considered giving him blood but decided to try iron supplements first. I hope those will give him some energy and bring his color back. He should be feeling a lot better if he can kick the anemia.

Nicky and I stayed with my aunt and uncle just down the road from my Dad's house. They have a little wire terrier type dog named Izzy that Nicky LOVED! He had so much fun with Izzy. I'll bet Izzy misses all the action she had during our visit. Nicky played with her constantly. We were hoping Izzy would wear Nicky out, but I think it went the other way round.

Nicky also got to spend one day with his cousin Tyler. Tyler is about 8 and they had so much fun. They played really well together, and Nicky just loves Tyler. We'll have to get those two together more often to play. Cousins are fun!

I told Nicky some stories of playing in the woods up there when I was a kid. My Dad's house used to be my Grandparents' house, and when I was little my aunt and uncle and cousin lived in the same house we stayed in last weekend. Nicky was a little nervous walking in the woods though. But we did walk all the way from my aunt's house to my Dad's house on the last day there. It really wasn't that far, but it was on a dirt road in the middle of the woods. He was pretty scared at first, but once he was almost to Grandpa's house he got excited. He helped pull me up the hill too. I'm not used to that much walking, and with HILLS! (Hey, I live in flat Florida people. Hills are just not done here.)

A few photos to come, and the ultrasound too! Promise!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Getting to the heart of it

I've been meaning to write about this for a while, but wanted to have some time and distance from it first. Since Dad's ok and well on the mend now, I feel like I can write about it in more detail than when I mentioned it before.

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving, my Dad and his wife Gwen were on the way to pick up Tom's deer from the processor. My Dad loaded up the venison into his trunk and noticed he was having heart palpitations. He'd had them before, but had put off doing anything about them. He wasn't feeling quite right though, and since the hospital was nearby he decided to go in and get it checked out.

He called his sister, my Aunt Janice, and let her know what he was doing. She suggested he call 911, so he did and then he stayed on the phone with them as he drove to the hospital, keeping them abreast of where he was at each intersection. I'm also guessing he had asked my Aunt to come to the hospital with my Uncle Frank so that Frank could take his car and get the venison to his house in the freezer (because ew, after a few hours in the ER that was sure to be a gross mess).

Dad and Gwen arrived at the hospital, where he apparently parked in the first space he saw. They went in and he got into the first wheelchair he saw and told Gwen to start pushing. As they passed people he said he was having chest pain and asked where the ER was.

They finally got to the ER, and were seen. He said he was sitting back in the bed talking to a young doctor and there were all these nurses around him. He had the EKG monitor hooked up to him, and was answering the doctor's questions. Then he heard a long beeeeeeepppp come from the monitor. The doctor looked at it and said "that's not good" and then reared back and hit my dad hard in the center of his chest! My Dad said, "what the hell are you doing?" and then promptly faded to black.

He came to with someone asking him if he was "with us" and found that there had been someone sitting on him doing chest compressions and CPR as well as having the electric paddle thingys used on him. His chest was pretty sore after that of course.

Basically he'd been having atrial fibrillations which aren't too harmful, but then, while he was fortunately sitting in the ER with a doctor right there and hooked up to an EKG he'd gone into ventricular fibrillations or V.Fib. That's the thing that causes sudden cardiac death. It's different from a heart attack though, so apparently he hasn't had an actual heart attack. The good thing about that is he didn't have the heart damage associated with a heart attack.

This is when they took him to have a cardiac catheter done too. They thought if he'd had a blockage he could just have a stent put in and go home. Instead they found that his aortic valve was so calcified it had to be replaced. He had two arteries that were partially blocked, enough that it was worth going ahead with a double bypass since they had to do the valve anyway.

So they scheduled him for a double bypass and valve replacement. First it was supposed to happen on Thanksgiving. Then it was pushed to Friday. Then to Saturday. Then finally he had it done on Sunday. I don't know why it couldn't happen Thursday, but on Friday his surgeon was horribly sick (first thought it was food poisoning, but then turned out to be stomach flu) and couldn't operate. They were going to have another surgeon come up from Atlanta to do the surgery Saturday, but then for some reason he couldn't come, so the original surgeon came in and did it Sunday after he'd recuperated from the stomach flu.

My Dad was able to come home from the hospital on the following Friday. He's sore and still trying to get rid of the extra fluid they pumped into him over his time in the hospital, but he's getting better every day.

Right now my step-sister Angela (yeah, that's not confusing at all right?) is watching over Dad and Gwen (Angela's mother) since my Dad got home from the hospital. Tom and I were planning to go up and take over for a few days to give her a break, but now we're not sure if it will be both of us or just one of us. Dad can't be around kids right now (or anyone who is the least bit sick) so one of us might stay behind to watch Nicky and the dogs. Right now I'm trying to convince my sister Liz to come with me. She was just up there at Thanksgiving, but maybe I can convince her to come up with me too. Cross your fingers for me!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The first movies of the twins!

We had the nuchal translucency ultrasound on Monday. Both babies looked great and were measuring great. I was 12 weeks 3 days pregnant, and the babies were measuring at 12.0 weeks for Baby 1 and 11.7 weeks for Baby 2. Baby 1 was easily measured, but Baby 2 was upside down and curved (in a fetal position funnily enough) and they couldn't get the nuchal measurement on Baby 2. So while everything looked good, we have to go back again next week on Wednesday to try again.

But we did get pictures! I put them up on the photobucket account. Here's one for you:




I know it's hard to see what the heck this is a picture of, so I've made a helpful illustration for you:



Yes, I know, my artistry is amazing.

Sometimes it's more fun to see movies right? So I have two snippets from the long DVD we have of the visit. They're short, but they're the best parts promise!

Here are both babies in the same scene moving around. You can see the tech number the babies too. And then last you see Baby 2 upside down.



Here's Baby 1 posing nicely for the tech and getting measured crown to rump.



They're looking like babies now! We'll see them again on Wednesday and get another movie of them.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Someone gently tapping...

Tom and I finished our final project last night and sat down to watch a movie and relax. We were watching Angels & Demons, which was pretty good by the way, and were just at a part where it was quiet and we were focused on the dialogue...

When I felt this taptaptaptap! At first I was ignoring it, but then I realized that the tapping was definitely the babies! I was 12 weeks 1 day yesterday, which makes it really early, well a lot earlier than it was with Nicky. But I guess with twins that's probably normal.

Just makes us even more excited about going to the ultrasound tomorrow. We're supposed to take a "DVD Plus" with us, and then they'll record it for us. We can't wait! I'll have to figure out a way to get some stills from it and get it up on the web for you all to see.

Still planning to go up to my Dad's this weekend as long as we're all well. We'll have to stay away if any of us are sick though. Fingers crossed!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Both babies look great!

Just back from our OB appointment. The doctor was running about an hour behind, so we scooted down to the pediatrician's office and got Nicky's swine flu booster. In 10 days he should be fully immunized. I thought he needed the regular flu shot booster too, but no, he's already had two this year. What a relief to have all three of us vaccinated.

Then back upstairs for the OB appointment. My iron was right at 35 which is okay, but 34 isn't, so to be proactive I've got a script for iron pills. Then we went in for the ultrasound and visit. Both babies look good! They're both there, both have strong heartbeats, and both are measuring within days of each other (about 11 weeks 2 days and 11 weeks 6 days) and right on track. Tomorrow we'll be 12 weeks. One of the babies might have more amniotic fluid than the other, but the doctor thought that might just be the angle he had. We'll see more Monday, and I'm feeling good about it. One of the babies was dancing around in there, moving arms and legs around and the other was sleeping. But both looked very good!

In other news, I still need to give a play by play of my Dad's heart experience. But for now, just know he's recovering from his surgery, doing well and hopefully will be coming home this weekend. What a relief!

Normally this is where you'd see a nice scanned image of the ultrasound, but we were all so excited to see that everything looks good that we forgot to ask for pictures and the doctor forgot to take any. But we have the nuchal translucency ultrasound Monday, so I'm not too upset. Hope you're not either!

Friday, November 27, 2009

2009 Thanksgiving Crisis Parade

Well there has definitely been a lot to blog about since Tuesday night! But little time to update more than Facebook and Twitter. Here's the play by play of the 2009 Thanksgiving Crisis Parade.

Hmm, what follows is a lot of whining, or at least it feels that way after writing it all down, so let me say at the outset: I have so much that I am thankful for this year!

We are thankful every single day to be the parents of Nicholas. The amazement still hasn't worn off, even after 3.5 years.

Tom and I have been so blessed to get the chance to have two more children.

I'm incredibly thankful for Tom, who not only loves me dearly, and has for 15 years of marriage as of this past September, but who can take care of just about anything! (Several examples below.)

I'm so thankful for my sisters and my mother, and that my mom has a wonderful new house this year.

I'm very thankful for my Dad, and you'll see why below.

And I'm thankful to be surrounded by wonderful extended family, in-laws and friends who are so willing to lend support at a moments notice. Thank you guys!

-------------------------------

Let the 2009 Thanksgiving Crisis Parade commence!

First, Tuesday night, while we were taking our shower at about 8pm, I noticed when I got out that the bathroom floor was flooding. I couldn't figure out how so much water could have gotten out since I hadn't let Nicky hold the showerhead or anything. Tom said to see if it was coming from the toilet, so I flushed the toilet and then water started gushing out of the holes where the bolts for the toilet are. Crap!

Tom figured it was the wax ring and he just needed to put in a new one. He took the toilet off and the wax ring was obviously totally disintegrated. BUT so had the flange which is the top of the pipe that you bolt the toilet into. It was cast iron, probably original to the house (1959) and had rusted completely away in parts. Tom went to Lowe's to see if he could get a wax ring at least, and maybe some advice on the flange, but alas! Lowe's closed 10 minutes before he got there. I started calling plumbers, because Hello, pregnant with twins here! I need a freaking toilet! And we only have the one bathroom.

Well we couldn't find a plumber to come out that night. That was a really long night. But we had one scheduled to come out in the morning. I tell you, I got to work early Wednesday. And I told Tom I wasn't coming home till the plumber fixed the toilet. Keep in mind this was the day before Thanksgiving, and we had my Mom and my sister, Liz, coming over to stay for the holiday. Five people and one bathroom is hard enough. Throw a compromised toilet into the mix and that's not a great way to spend Thanksgiving.

So the plumber came, and replaced the flange and the wax ring. Back in business right? Tom and I spent all our money to pay the plumber. Good thing we'd already gotten the turkey and groceries. Crisis averted!

--------------------------

Wednesday evening I get a call from my sister Jessica. My Dad is at the hospital in Gainesville, GA (about an hour from his house) and apparently had a heart attack or something. They've done an EKG and now they're doing a cardiac catheter. She'll call back when they know more. No one really wanted her to tell me, because of my delicate condition, but I'm glad she did. At this point all I knew was he'd had chest pains while going somewhere with someone and then drove himself to the hospital. It sounded like he was in good hands, so I wasn't too worried actually. I posted an update on Facebook, and shortly had all sorts of prayers and well wishes heading my Dad's way.

Later that night Jessica called and said they were going to do a double bypass and valve replacement the next day. Again, everyone was really worried I'd spontaneously explode or something, but really, I'm a pretty calm person. I'd rather know what's going on. I wasn't too worried actually. I figure he's in the hospital, which is the best place to be if your heart is acting wonky, and it seems like so many people have had multi-bypass surgeries these days. Surely his chances are excellent and he's young, he'll be fine. Now I just planned to talk with Liz when she arrived so we could figure out how and when we'd drive up there. I figured we might leave Friday morning early, just the two of us maybe.

So crisis not really averted yet, but at least under control.

--------------------------

So now it's Thursday. Tom gets up at 8:30am to start getting the turkey ready for cooking. It's a huge one, over 26 pounds. We like to do them big :) Tom had taken the turkey out and put it in the fridge to defrost on Monday. Well guess what. It was still frozen. Almost solid. Gah! While Tom ran warm water into the cavity to try to get the neck and stuff out, I searched the Internet for ideas on what to do. I knew that lots of people have had this happen to them before...surely.

I ran into a page that detailed how to cook a frozen turkey, while it was frozen. Sounded like our only real option at this point, so Tom followed the directions and used his meat thermometer. He put the turkey in at 325 at 10am. He added butter and spices later after it had cooked a while. He added aromatics at some point too. He actually didn't even have to tent it. And it was done at 4:30pm. Only 6.5 hours of cooking. He'd estimated 7 hours for that size bird anyway, so that was perfect! I was worried we were going to end up with turkey jerky, but actually it was really great. Probably not quite as moist for the white meat as his usual bird, but not all dried out at all. Plus Tom always makes awesome gravy, so I don't think anyone cared a bit. Another crisis averted!

--------------------------

Thursday morning, while Tom was solving the Turkey Crisis, Nicky and I were getting the house all ready for company. I was going to attempt to put my mom and Liz in our room and have Tom and I stay in the guest room, so I was getting both rooms all spiffed up. I even put on a new dust ruffle in our room. Shh, don't tell anyone. I'm not supposed to lift things like queen mattresses in my condition you know.

Well about 30 minutes before we expected Liz and my Mom to arrive, I jumped in the shower with Nicky. And when we came out...Oh God, the floor is flooded again! I called Tom to come help. I got Nicky and I dressed and then we all sat around in a panicked stupor. Liz and my Mom arrived about 10 minutes later. To make a long story short, Tom was really worried it was the septic tank, but after plunging everything a lot the toilet seemed to be working ok. We figured it must have been a clog, and since Nicky was in the bathroom quite a bit, we suspected he'd flushed something he shouldn't have. We watched the toilet carefully, but it seemed ok. So we went ahead with our cooking and prep. Another crisis averted!

-----------------------------

Liz and I talked again with Jessica. Seems his surgery is actually going to be early Friday morning, not on Thanksgiving. And no one, including my Dad, wants me to come. They're all worried about me traveling and being in a hospital while in my condition. I wanted to go, but at the same time, I wasn't mentally prepared to leave before Friday morning. Things had been coming hard and fast, and now we were also dealing with the current toilet crisis (it was in a state of not working at this time). I didn't feel ok leaving Tom, my Mom and Nicky alone in this situation on a holiday. Add that to everyone stressing about the babies and I, and Liz anxious to leave NOW, and I decided to go ahead and stay home. (Dad, don't make me regret this, you better make it through the surgery fine!) So Liz jumped back in the car after having a sandwich for lunch and unloading my Mom's bags from the car. She arrived at my house around noon and was gone by 2pm. She hit no traffic and was able to go straight to the hospital to see my Dad at about 8:30pm.

So crisis still ongoing, but now we have more people there with my Dad. Things are pretty good.
-----------------------------

Thanksgiving Dinner was fabulous. It included turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, spinach casserole, roasted carrots, carrot souffle, baked sweet potatoes, three kinds of cranberry sauce, and potato rolls with banana pudding and apple cranberry pie for dessert. And with Liz gone, that was all for 5 adults and Nicky. Nicky loves jellied canned cranberry sauce by the way. That's pretty much what he ate. Well, that and banana pudding. So lots of leftovers. (Which we've been eating for every meal since. Yum!)

Well after dinner, the toilet decided it wasn't going to work again. Super! Tom and his Dad went to SuperWalmart (which was open 24/7 even on Thanksgiving) and got a toilet auger and drain snake. They worked on it and seemed got it working again. So we're thinking it was just a major clog. Surely Nicky flushed something down there. Another crisis averted! (What is this, like 5?)

-----------------------------

I was able to call my Dad Thanksgiving evening and talk to him. This is where I got the WHOLE story, which him going into v.fib, having CPR and the paddles done on him to bring him back, all in front of my stepmother, who was understandably really upset. He was so lucky to be sitting with a doctor, hooked up to the EKG, answering questions when this happened. It's a complex story, and one I'll address further in another post. But talking to my Dad actually made me feel a lot better. He was looking forward to just getting the surgery done and over with, although they said he was running a low-grade fever today, so if that didn't go away they would have to postpone the surgery.

Crisis feels nicely under control, and I'm feeling better after talking to Dad.

-----------------------------

All night we were watching the toilet like a hawk every time we flushed it. But all was going fine. Liz called at 7:30 in the morning with an update on my Dad. He had been all prepped and ready for the surgery when the surgeon came in looking horrible. Apparently the surgeon had gotten food poisoning from Thanksgiving and was all shaky, red-eyed and feeling awful. It was up to my Dad if he wanted to wait or continue. Um, yeah, he decided to wait for a surgeon who wasn't shaky or in danger of throwing up or falling asleep during his double bypass/valve replacement/cardiac ablation surgery. I think that was a wise call.

I talked with Dad myself later that day and he said the surgery would be Saturday sometime in the morning. And actually the surgeon, a Dr. James Wolfe, has many more years of experience with valve replacement than the other guy and is considered a specialist in Georgia for valve work. So that sounds really good.

Crisis still under control, surgery put off, but now possibly have an even better doctor. Sounds great!

-----------------------------

It's Friday, I get to take a lovely nap, we're eating Thankgiving Dinner parts 2-5, everything is great! And then bedtime. Tom, Nicky and I go to take a shower. I am nervous. I'm peeking out at the floor making sure everything is fine. Tom notices the drain has slowed... looks out and FLOODING AGAIN? WTF? Turn off the water, at least Nicky and Tom were clean, I have soap in my hair. I get Nicky out and turn him over to my Mom. Tom get's the snake out again and pulls hair out, but things still aren't working quite right. I get to rinse my hair quickly to get out.

Tom finds he just can't get down far enough with the snake he has. The clog is in the main line, and the best way to access it is via the toilet by taking the toilet off again. Super. But at least it's earlier this time. Lowe's is open. Tom goes to Lowe's, taking the cash we scrape up from Nicky's piggy bank, my wallet, and my Mom, to buy a wax ring and another drain snake thingy that can go around curves better.

Tom takes off the toilet and works for a few hours on the drain. Pulls out some stuff, but now he's thinking it really is the septic tank. As long as there is just a little bit of water, a single flush, washing hands, even our washing machine (because it's a front loader and doesn't use much water) then we're ok. But if you have a tub full of water, a lot of flushing or showering, then it backs up into either the shower or if the water is from the shower, under the toilet. Fabulous.

So he re-installs the toilet. I call the plumber back, they don't do septic pumping. They suggest Roto Rooter. I call them, nope. They don't do it either. Really? Cause I thought that was WHY people called them. Great. I do some more Googling and find a few options. Small companies I've never heard of. Super. Of course none of them are 24 hours, or anything. So we'll have to call them tomorrow. Saturday. Great. I hope they're open.

My plan is either for us to limp along till Friday when I get paid, or my Mom offered to put it on her credit card and then I can send her a check. Of course that'll only work if it's not a zillion dollars. About 300 is the max I can commit to right now and that's really screwing us anyway. And they'd have to be able to come this weekend too. My Mom will probably be heading home Sunday.

This crisis: it ain't over yet.

---------------------------

Well, I promised an update. Here it was. Epic length I think, even for me! But I think I covered everything. I'll do another post with more details on my Dad's story later. Now I have a paper due Friday and Tom and I both have a huge project Due Saturday. Then we'll be done with our classes this Fall. That will be a relief.

We also have an ultrasound and OB appointment this Thursday, and then the nuchal translucency ultrasound on the 7th, two ultrasounds! We can't wait to see the babies again. I haven't had much in the way of symptoms lately. Well, really I haven't had nausea. I've had exhaustion, sore boobs, heartburn and my stomach is showing some, so there is all that. But it's always nerve wracking during that time before you can actually feel the babies moving. We'll feel better for a while after the ultrasound if that shows everything is okay in there.

So keep those prayers for my Dad coming. He will be needing them for a while. And if you have a prayer to spare, please say one for our toilet septic tank plumbing. We can use all the divine help we can get there too.

UPDATE Saturday: We were able to get a company out today to pump out the septic tank. And that did it! We've all taken showers, Nicky's had a bath, and no flooding. It was $410 but it's all done. Thank goodness! As for my Dad, for some reason the backup doctor couldn't come up from Atlanta today, so his surgery has been put off AGAIN! But they said it will definitely be tomorrow, Sunday. (We've heard this before, so I think we'll just see.)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

There must be something to blog about

Tom's after me to update the blog. I guess it just feels like my life is in a holding pattern between OB appointments. Just counting the days till the next ultrasound.

But there are other things going on...surely there are.

Let's see, Tom and Nicky went off for a 5 day hunting trip to North Georgia last week. They left on Wednesday. I stayed home, did homework, napped and then started re-reading the twilight series. You know, just to bone up for the New Moon movie coming out this week. It was a very relaxing few days.

The only sucky part was having to drive myself to work. See, I work at a university where you have to park and walk a good 15 minutes or so to my library. Well, normally it would take 15 minutes. But even though I was only 9 weeks along, it took me 42 minutes to walk it on Thursday. I had to walk slowly and stop twice to rest and drink water because I was having so much round ligament pain. It was making me nervous. Friday was a little better at about 30 minutes. I'd made sure to take a lighter purse and didn't take so much stuff to carry. Happily Tom and Nicky came home Sunday, a day before they'd planned to, so I had my limo service back Monday morning. :)

While they were gone, Tom went out hunting Thursday and Friday mornings and evenings. Four total times. FOUR. You know why he only went four times? Because he got a big buck on Friday night. My husband, the hunter.

Now, of course I'm proud of him. But DAMN! I hunted those same woods with my dad for YEARS in the freezing cold as a teenager. Seriously spent nearly every weekend of hunting season up there. And never even SAW a deer.

Yeah, I'm not bitter.

But they had a great time. Nicky had a ball playing with Aunt Jessie and seeing the chickens again. He helped gather the eggs each morning. And Tom said Nicky was really good and polite the whole time.

But I'm happy my boys are home.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

7 weeks 6 days and we still have two healthy babies in there

I'd been a little worried, even though I knew it didn't "mean" anything, because I'd actually not had any morning sickness since Halloween weekend. Which I am completetly grateful for! But still it made me worry a bit.

What a relief it is to see that there are still two little babies in there.

baby2.0,ultrasound,twins

We also got to see and hear both heartbeats. They're both nice and strong!

baby2.0,ultrasound,twins

baby2.0,ultrasound,twins

So lately my only symptoms are utter exhaustion and peeing all the time. Much preferable to nausea! And definitely preferable to puking! I'm hopeful that by continuing to only eat foods that sound and look really appealing will help keep the nausea at bay. And sleeping. I think that the nausea definitely gets worse the more exhausted I am. So I'm trying hard to get at least 8-9 hours a night if at all possible. Especially since I don't really have the opportunity to nap in the middle of the day at work. One afternoon I came home and went straight to bed for a good 2-3 hour nap, that was nice. And this week I actually went to bed at the same time as Nicky, about 8:30 and slept all night for a good 11 hours.

Food cravings haven't really hit, but I have been pretty picky. I'm only eating foods that sound good, and that's mostly been beef, preferably steak or roast beef, spinach, mustard, some cheese, peanut butter and banana sandwiches on whole wheat, milk and whole grain cereals. Really pretty healthy stuff. Well, not the peanut butter probably, but I've not wanted to eat any sweets, candy, ice cream or anything. I think that's really encouraging. Even pasta hasn't really appealed much.

So I'm all on track to have a pretty healthy pregnancy so far. I don't have to see the OB for 4 weeks; I go back December 3rd, and it sounds like he'll do another ultrasound then too. (Yay!) I'll get my Quad Screen and Glucose Tolerance Test around 15 weeks or so.

Oh, I did ask about my belly button. It's just never been the same after my first pregnancy, and particularly after the gall bladder surgery. He said it's a hernia for sure. He said it's no problem for the pregnancy though, and that I can have it repaired after the babies are born. I'm not worried about the cosmetics of it, I just wanted to make sure it wasn't a problem for the pregnancy. So I'll just get that done later on.

And Nicky? He's thrilled about the babies. He talks to them and listens to my tummy to hear them "talking." He's going to be a great big brother! He had a ball Trick or Treating with Colin and another little girl this year. I have photos up under October 2009 in the Photobucket account. Here's my favorite!

Angela,Halloween 2009,Nicky

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Halloween 2009,Nicky

Nicky and I carved his and the babies' jack-o-lanterns this evening. He designed them both, but he had picked out which was his and which was the babies' days ago. Here he's posing with his masterpieces and wishing everyone a Happy Halloween!

Nicky and I are traveling down to see Nana on Saturday. She's making his costume again this year. Last year he was a pirate, and this year he's going to be a lion. He chose lion a while ago, but one day when I asked him what he wanted to be, he said "A lion. No. I don't want to be a lion, I want to be a PRINCESS!" I admit we were happy he forgot about that. I'd have let him be a princess if he really wanted, but back when we thought he'd be at school dressed up, we didn't think the catholic school would be able to handle that.

Speaking of the catholic school though, we actually withdrew Nicky a week ago. His whole nap time fiasco was starting to bleed over to the rest of his day, and finally it just got ridiculous. He was sent to the office one day for kicking the wall during naptime. Then the next day, he told the teacher he was ready to go to the office. Heck if someone tried to make me lie quiet and still for 1.5 hours when I wasn't tired I'd probably rather go hang out in the office too. The teacher wanted Tom's permission to call him to come get Nicky whenever he wanted to leave. I mean, what's the point of keeping him in school at that point?

It just became very apparent that the teacher and school were not interested in making any kind of accommodations for him. No book or toy to play with quietly on his mat, no going to another classroom during naptime, or anything. We got tired of their trying to pound our square peg into their round hole of a school. So we took him out. And you know what? He's happier. We're happier. And now that we also know we're having twins, we're kind of looking forward to getting that tuition money back. We have a lot of preparing to do!

On Monday when they were taking me to work, we passed by the catholic school. Nicky said from the backseat, "That's my old school. I don't go there anymore. I used to cry there." Which just broke my heart. I told him I was so sorry he was unhappy there. I'd thought it would be a really good school for him. But he didn't have to go back any more. We'd find a better school for him later. I think we might keep him home till Spring semester. Tom's interning 18 hours a week in the Spring, so Nicky will have to be in for some days. But we'll probably see about either O2B Kids again or an at home daycare environment. We'll see what comes up. And we'll try preschool again (probably somewhere else) in the fall. He'll be 4, and maybe more ready. Especially if we find a better fit for him.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

And what do YOU see?

So here is today's ultrasound. Tell me, what do YOU see?

baby2.0,twins,ultrasound

Yep, there are TWO babies in there! TWO! TWINS!

Oh my God, we're having twins!

We're so excited! We were able to see the fluttering hearts in both sacs, so that's good. Measurements are at 6wks1day and 6wks2days or something like that. Counting from my first day of the cycle I'm at 6weeks4days, so they're both measuring beautifully. I go to see the OB on November 5th, where I'm guessing he'll do another ultrasound.

We did see the OB in the hallway, and he looked shocked at the news. LOL, but he's happy for us. We really weren't having luck with the clomid/metformin combo this time. We'd tried about 5 cycles over the last few years with no ovulation. So it was awesome that it worked! Ideally he'd prefer I be having one of course, but we feel so blessed!

So I think this explains how tired I've been!

TWINS!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Tuesday is Ultrasound Day

Not much longer will we have to wait to find out if there are one or two babies in there. Last week was rough. The exhaustion was my main symptom, and I had a big paper due Friday, and then another assignment due Saturday. But now those are all finished and all I'm waiting for is the ultrasound Tuesday.

Saturday we went out for brunch with Nana and Nicky's Uncle Mike. He's actually Tom's mom's mother's sister's daughter's son. So I'm not exactly sure what that makes him technically. But Uncle Mike is a great guy and we had fun meeting up with him a bit over the weekend.

Anyway, so we went out for brunch at Perkin's and my stomach actually told me to get the buffalo chicken wrap thing, which was new because I've been totally turned off of chicken or pork or really anything but beef lately. So I got the chicken, and it was great. Right up till we were almost ready to leave and out of nowhere the nausea hit.

We tried going shopping for Nicky's Halloween costume afterward, but I was just so nauseated we had to head home. It took hours for it to finally subside, and then it came back that evening. Then again this morning when I first woke up it was really bad. I thought for sure I was going to lose it. But not yet. Today I've just been pretty drained, but no more nausea after this morning's bout.

So one more symptom is here. Nausea. Much better than puking though. With Nicky I had a lot of nausea, but I don't think I actually threw up until I was around 8 months pregnant. And then it was only 2-3 times I think. This nausea is more like motion sickness than the stomach flu or food poisoning kind. (And it can't hold a candle to the nausea I had with that stomach flu that had us in the hospital last fall.) So I'll be grateful for that.

This past week I did go ahead and take the last pregnancy test. Just for giggles. I did the same thing for Nicky's pregnancy. That time I was at 50 days pregnant. This time I was at 40 days. And this time the line was MUCH darker than last time. That may or may not indicate twins, but it was interesting! And it has us anxious to see how many are in there Tuesday!

We've already been thinking about names. Right now the front runners are:

Lilianna Elizabeth (was originally Lily, but this would give her more options for choosing a nickname. Not 100% sure of the spelling yet though.)
Rhiannon something (as our second girl name if girl twins)

Alexander Thomas
Benjamin (Yes I know it's one of the dog's names, but we REALLY like it. Is that bad?)
We still like Christoper, but I think we've ruled out Zachary.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I'm a little in love with Chris Rock right now, and some other guy.

And I think you'll see why I'm loving Chris Rock when you watch this video on Jezebel.

Here's a quote from the clip by Chris Rock:
I mean, come on...rape. It's rape," Rock said. "Rape's number two. Okay, it's murder, then rape. It's number two. In the United States, we want to capture Osama Bin Laden and murder him. We're not gonna rape him. That would be barbaric!


And one more video that I thought summed up my outrage well. I found this via MamaPop:



I actually don't know who this guy is, but for some reason, this video was the first thing I've seen that made me feel somewhat better.* I've been so angry about this. Everything else just makes me madder. For some reason, this clip made me feel validated in my anger. Not sure why.

*Update: I did a search and found out more about this guy, Jay Smooth at illdoctrine.com. He's worth checking out.

Monday, October 19, 2009

A Reunion, Thanks to the Power of Facebook

Liz and I found several old friends from my senior year(her sophomore/junior years) of high school on Facebook this summer on Facebook. Liz set up a little reunion party at her house this past weekend, and we all met for the first time in 15 years or so. It was so much fun to reminisce and catch up. While we've all been busy living and have changed, in many ways we haven't changed at all.

We're hoping to get together again soon (not in another 15 years!) and this time we'll bring our kids. During this visit, Jackie and Alan left their 18 month old with his grandparents and I left Nicky with his Grammie. Nicky had a blast with Grammie, and I'm sure he wore her slap out, but she loved it.

I wish I'd thought to take photos of us all while we had the chance. I'll do it next time! Now I have to find some of the photos I have of our old group and scan them in. Until I have new photos, here's an image of our group back in 1991. That's Jackie, Alan and Bucky in the back (Bucky wasn't able to make this reunion), and me and Jason in the front. I'm thinking it was Liz behind the camera in this one.

Photobucket

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Patience isn't my strong suit

Well my first appointment won't be until 10/27, two whole weeks! I hope they pass quickly. The bad news is that this is just the history appointment with the nurse, I won't actually see my OB. The good news is that I'll get an ultrasound though! They'll be checking for a few things, but one of them is whether there is one baby or two. I'm a whole lot more interested in that right now than I am in whether it's a boy or a girl.

Tom's already declared that we'll be finding out the sex. He has no patience. Poor guy. Lots of folks have already been speculating that this is a girl. I'm not sure either way. Naming will be easier for a girl since we still love the name we'd picked for a girl last time. But just to be safe we should be thinking of boys names too.

I spoke with the nurse on the phone today and found out that they have no intentions of doing the beta tests. Not sure why. She made it sound like they don't do them anymore, and since I know the first day of this cycle (September 11th- which is a little freaky now that I'm typing it) and have gotten positives on several home pregnancy tests they're content to wait till my first appointment. Seems a little weird, but whatever.

Just for giggles I took another hpt yesterday. I'm saving up the last one to take later. I just love seeing that second line. Plus it might help tide me over till that first ultrasound.

I know I know. The waiting has only just begun! I added a ticker up there in the blog header so that on any given day we can see how many days we have left to go. Right now it seems forever.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

About 3 weeks

Well we were able to get ahold of the OB on call yesterday and get the progesterone I needed. Started taking it yesterday, so we should be in good shape. Tomorrow morning I'll call my OB and set up an appointment. I'm sure he'll want to send me for the beta tests first and then we'll probably have an ultrasound just to check to see if there is one or two in there. (That's a concern because of the high dosage of clomid that I was on this cycle.)

Just for fun I've done another HPT. I still have two more, so I'll keep doing them till they're gone. It's just so darn fun seeing that second line get darker and darker!

baby2.0,bfp,hpt

Yesterday I tried to calculate how far along we are. I think we're at 3 weeks on Friday, but I'll be more certain after seeing the doctor. So exciting!

Friday, October 09, 2009

Yeah, so there's this thing we've been working on

So yesterday I taught a class across campus, and after getting back to my office I was feeling really nauseated. Weird. I was also exhausted, enough so that I wondered if my cpap mask was leaking.

Again today I was just dragging at work, completely exhausted.

I came home and guess what...

hpt,bfp,baby2.0

I took a quick test right as I was about to walk out the door to have dinner with my Dad and stepmother. I could see the control line coming up right away, and so just set it aside as another negative without really waiting. Then I came back to the bathroom to help Nicky wash his hands before we left. And as Nicky was climbing up to wash up, I thought I saw that extra line. I picked it up and was looking at it and Nicky said "is there a baby?" I said "I think so. There might be."

I thought about being sneaky and waiting till I could retest in the morning to verify it and then tell Tom in some really cute way. But I really have no patience. Instead I took it with me to the den where Tom was showing my dad something on the computer and then smacked it down on the desk right in front of Tom. Tom said "Hey! That's a positive!" and promptly gave me a high-five. Poor guy, I guess that's the first thought for an appropriate response when you're right next to your father in law. He gave me a good smooch a few minutes later though.

So now we've told a bunch of people. Because we have no ability to keep a secret. Gayle, I'm calling you tomorrow morning! And then we'll test again in the morning to confirm it. I tried calling my doctor, but alas, Friday evenings aren't really a good time to reach a doc. So we'll just have to wait till Monday and hope that if I need progesterone supplements I can wait till Monday to get them. Keep your fingers crossed for us!

Oh, and you know you have to see the obligatory inverted colors version too right? Hey, I know the TTC protocol. ;)

bfp,baby2.0,hpt

Update 10/10: Even more positive today!

Friday, October 02, 2009

My spluttering outrage of the week

Have you seen the story about Roman Polanski this week?

I've been so upset about this story all week. It just slays me, not even that he did it, because I know these horrible things do happen too often, but it just cuts my heart that people are backing him up!! WTF kind of screwed up world is this?

My first time was when I was raped at 17 by some 28 year old friend of the family next door. And even though it wasn't nearly as traumatic as what this 13 year old girl went through, it seriously screwed me up for a long time.

If what she had done to her wasn't "rape-rape" (which is just the dumbest thing I've ever heard) then what was done to me must have been a walk in the park with a side of rape-lite?

My mind is just blown. Obviously he's a criminal, and in my mind a pedophile. Who gives a shit how brilliant or rich he is? Why is that even mentioned? It doesn't matter! But any respect I may have had for these celebs who are saying it's not "rape-rape" or he's a great guy and this wasn't really that bad... is just gone. Gone. Poof.

Damn it! I'm just too mad to even make sense. Splutteringly outraged.

Thank you to HerBadMother for posting a coherent post on this subject so I can send you all there. If you read nothing else this week, please read this.

And then, if you have time to read one more thing, read this one.

Friday, September 25, 2009

And the merry go round goes round

And another week passes without a post.

Nicky's fish is all but forgotten. Tom almost replaced him, but decided against it. I think we'll wait for a few years before we get another little, vulnerable pet. Nicky does better with pets that can take his heavy-handed affection.

School is back to being a big pain in my butt. I'll be up tonight and tomorrow finishing up another assignment. Along with Tom. This leaves Nicky and his Nana to fend for themselves tomorrow. The plan is for Nana to take him for a haircut. He's getting pretty shaggy and he has school photos on Tuesday.

Monday we're taking him to the pediatrician. We're getting his vision and hearing screened and we're going to talk with the doctor about Nicky's behavior issues at school. Nicky already snores a bit, and with our family histories of sleep apnea (did I mention that Tom is now diagnosed too?) we're on high alert. We'll talk about it with the doctor though. Sleep apnea in kids sometimes displays as ADD/ADHD symptoms, so maybe that could be a contributing factor.

But then again, he is THREE you know? I mean, how much should we really be expecting from him? Right now he's failing "nap time" at school. Which to be honest sounds totally stupid. He gave up naps about a year ago. And the only nap he kept after he turned 2 was his late afternoon nap from about 3-5pm. Right now they expect him to nap for 1.5 hours starting at noon. I just don't see it happening. Tom and I have a meeting scheduled with the teacher next week to discuss it. I think they're going to need to make some accommodations for him. We'll see what the teacher says to that though.

It's awful how quickly all your parenting confidence can go spiraling down into the abyss of doubt. A month ago I was convinced we were awesome parents, putting him in the very best school that money could buy. And now I'm worried that he's in too strict an environment and maybe they are crushing his spirit.

Can we stop this ride? I'd like to get off.

Friday, September 18, 2009

RIP Fishy

This morning Tom woke up when Nicky crept into our room. It was early, probably around 4am. We just pulled him into bed with us and let him fall asleep between us. Around 6:30am Tom asked if I could put him back in his own bed. I went ahead, and then realized I was pretty awake. I knew I could go back to sleep for an hour, but I also knew I'd probably be a LOT more tired if I tried that. So I went ahead and got showered and planned to spend some quiet time reading on the sofa.

Nicky woke up right as I was getting ready to settle in and read. He didn't want to watch TV, he wanted to go pet Abbey. So he went in the kitchen and cuddled on the floor with the dogs for a while. It was funny, Abbey sneezed and Nicky said "Ewww!" and then kindly reminded her "Abbey, you have to cover your sneezes." I guess he hears that a lot at school.

I told him he could let the dogs outside and then when they scratched he could let them inside. He let them all out, and then closed the door. He's getting so big! Then he wanted to feed his fish. I said sure, and reminded him to only give the fish 3 pieces of food. He held out three fingers perfectly and said "three, three foods, three fingers." Something else they must be working on at school. He'd had problems holding up three fingers not too long ago.

When Benjamin scratched at the door, Nicky was on a chair feeding his fish on the kitchen counter. It's a beta fish. The one he got for his 3rd birthday. Exactly 6 months ago actually. He told Benjamin to "be quiet" and then went to let all the dogs in. He closed the door again. Very nice to be able to let him "walk the dogs" in the morning! This might have to be a new chore of his.

He went back to the fish. He loves watching his fish. He was quiet for a while, so I asked him what he was doing. "Nothing" was his response. I should have been suspicious then, but he was quiet. No giggling like he does when torturing the dogs by playing with their feet or chasing them with a broom. I kept reading. A few minutes later I hear him say quietly, like he was talking to himself, "fishy will be okay."

Crap. I knew before I even rounded the corner what I was going to find. The water in the fishbowl was cloudy, I could see the fish wasn't floating yet, but he was lying at an unnatural angle in the water, nose down in the black river rocks. Dead.

The cloudy water, water on the countertop, wet hands, dog hair floating in the fishbowl. It was pretty obvious what had happened. Nicky tried to pet his fish. Maybe even got a hold of him and held him for a while. Out of the water. He always wanted to pet his fish, we'd told him he couldn't, told him fish were not for petting. Told him it would hurt the fish if he touched it, or put anything in the bowl other than food. it's been weeks, maybe months since he's messed with the fish.

But now it was too late for admonishing. I wasn't really prepared to have this conversation with Nicky. He's only 3 and hasn't ever been exposed to death. Not in any way other than maybe seeing it on a Disney video in the abstract way they portray it in animation.

I told him his fish was dead. It wasn't alive anymore. I tried to stay matter of fact and tell him I was sorry and that we better go tell daddy. We went together to wake up Tom. Tom was upset and sleep mazed. He probably spoke harsher than he would have if he'd had fair warning, but he picked Nicky up and held him. I went to get the fishbowl and we all went to the bathroom. I said it was time to say goodbye to fishy, and put him in the toilet. Nicky was very upset by this, and started to cry. Tom held him and cuddled him while I flushed Nicky's first fish.

He cried for a few minutes and I held him on the sofa. After a while he hid under a blanket on the other side of the sofa and then sat up calmly. He looked at me and said, "Fish don't go in the toilet. They go in the water." I agreed and said, "but your fish is dead now. He's not alive any more. Dead fish go down the toilet." At this point I realized I may have very well set us back in the potty training department. I wish I'd thought of that before.

We dressed Nicky quickly and all went to take me to work. Tom was keeping Nicky home from school anyway as it was an early dismissal day and 3 hours hardly seemed worth it. When I got out of the car I again told Nicky I loved him and I was sorry about his fish dying, and that he might feel sad about it, but that was okay.

This parenting thing is hard.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A goal met

I know I promised Nicky photos, and they ARE coming, but I don't have them right now so you get this.

I went to my WW meeting Saturday. And...

I've lost 35 pounds since Mother's Day.

Wow.

I went from there to a spa for a mani/pedi and that was blissful. I also have a hair appointment for tomorrow. Getting my tresses pampered and curled the way I like it. Even if it's not the fashion. Will post photos when I'm all beautified.

Also, tomorrow...

Our 15th wedding anniversary.

BooYA! We rock!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Sometimes my morbidity scares me.

What am I dwelling on today? Death. Big surprise there.

Specifically, being left behind. How much pain does a death cause? If you lose a parent, is that more painful than losing a spouse? Is losing a child worse than losing your soulmate? What about if your child is an adult and married to their own soulmate? Whose pain will be greater, yours or your son/daughter-in-law's?

It doesn't really matter I guess. Just trying to put it all into perspective. Maybe if I think of all this in advance it won't catch me by surprise? No, probably won't help at all. But I can't help thinking about it. Especially when it seems so many people are dealing with these variations of pain.

Back to your regularly scheduled cute Nicky photos and stuff later. Promise!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Onwards and Upwards

We're heading out tomorrow to visit the North GA crew. Nicky has been talking about Georgia and Aunt Jessie nonstop since April, so it's about time.

I have no qualms about telling the internets that we'll be away since we have a house/pet sitter coming to stay, and she has a big, scary husband. Not actually kidding either, his nickname is Mad Max, and lives up to it. Nicky loves him though and not scared of him in the least. I think he thinks Max is a real pirate.

Anyway, the original plan was to hit GA right at peak blueberry time. But apparently there isn't really anything on the blueberry trees this year. (Yes, they are blueberry trees. We don't have bushes. Although from what I hear my dad is busily pruning a few of the 15ft trees into bushes so that you can actually reach the berries.) So I'm a little bummed about that. But I happen to know they have a freezer FULL of berries from years gone by, so I'll be getting my yearly dose of antioxidants in any case.

And I'll have loads of photos when I get back I'm sure.

The chickens have grown up,
Nicky loved feeding Grandpa's chickens

there's a tractor to ride,
Going for a tractor ride!

and cousins to play with! This time there will be even more kids to play with. Nicky's going to have a ball.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Visiting Grammie

Nicky and I went down to visit Grammie, Aunt Liz and Aunt Jodi this past weekend. We had a great time! Liz and Jodi threw a huge surprise birthday party for her and it was truly spectacular! My mom has never had a surprise party before and she was floored! She really had no idea what we had in store. There were over 20 of her dearest friends there, and it was a lot of fun.

Of course I took a few photos, and so I had to put them up on the web. But when went to upload them I found that my second photobucket account is full! Time for a third one. You'll notice another link on the top left menu there. Too bad it's right smack in the middle of a month. Aw well.

Nicky was pretty good in the car. It was just the two of us, as Tom stayed behind to watch the dogs. We didn't have any accidents, and he didn't keep saying he had to go potty when he really didn't. Thank goodness, because that drove me nuts the last trip.

But we all know what you really want out of this post. So feast your eyes on how Nicky spent part of the 5 hour drive down to Grammie's:
Nicky,Grammie's Bday,car

And how he spent a good bit of the 5 hour drive back:
Grammie's Bday,Nicky,car

While we were there he did a little splashing:
Nicky,Grammie's Bday,pool

And ate a lot of marshmallows:
Nicky,Grammie's Bday

All in all a successful, memorable trip. Thanks Grammie!
Nicky,Grammie's Bday,Grammie

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Overheard from the backseat

Nicky has started talking to himself and his toys during imaginative play lately. Holding little conversations with his cars and things. Oh, and sometimes singing softly to himself. Nonsense songs that he makes up on the fly. (Yay, he gets that from me!)


Yesterday on the way to school

From the backseat: "J..J..Jet? No."

Me thinking: Oh wow, this new school IS amazing!

Continuing from the backseat: "J..J..Ice Cream? No. J..J..Big Frog? No."

Me thinking: Aw well, maybe not THAT amazing.


Yesterday on the way home

From the backseat: "I have to sign it. I..E..I..S..E..R. Nicholas."

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ye Auld AMC

Tom and I met at the Gainesville Oaks 6 theater in 1993. I only worked there one year,and Tom two years, but we have fond memories of the experience. It was a fun place to work. I mean, get a bunch of college students together, put them in charge of running two theaters and there were a lot of crazy hijinks going on! (And we're all probably STILL pretty sick of eating movie theater popcorn.)

Well, via Facebook we've gotten in touch with a lot of the old theater crowd. And last night Tom and I met five of the old crew. It was great to catch up, see how everyone turned out and reminisce. We had Nicky along with us, and he was really good, especially considering the only nap he'd had was the last 5 minutes of the car ride to the mall and the first 20 minutes or so as we waited for everyone to arrive and decide on where to go for dinner.

We ended up going to the Macaroni Grill. We'd met in the Oaks mall, right in front of where the old theater used to be. It's been converted into an Ambercrombie & Fitch store now and is completely unrecognizable! Nicky ate two full orders of Macaroni and Cheese and was really good, especially considering we probably stayed in the restaurant for 2 hours or so.

We're looking forward to getting together with an even bigger crew for the UF/FSU game this November. I tell you, it's pretty amazing how Facebook can bring folks back together who otherwise would have just been lost to us.

Nicky,Angela,Tom,Family

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Nicky's first day of catholic school

He had a fabulous first day.

We are going to be waking up insanely early (for us) to get him to school on time, but on the bright side, I'll always be early to work and therefore able to leave earlier!

In order to get him to school by 8am though we will have to be up at 6am, and get him up about 6:30. That's rough when none of us are used to waking up till about 8am. He wasn't too thrilled this morning, but we managed. And he actually ate breakfast too, which was awesome. I had planned ahead and bought a box of Fruit Loops knowing he'd be much more likely to eat if it was a "fun" cereal instead of the normal "healthy" ones we usually have.

I had fun last night packing his lunch. I'd picked up all sorts of stuff to try to get him at least a few things he'll eat in there each day. Today he had a juice box, PBJ sandwich, apple slices, grapes, fruit gummies and a cookie. He ate half the sandwich, the apples and the fruit snack. He skipped the cookie and grapes. What kid doesn't eat his cookie?

Tonight after dinner, Nicky and I took a shower and then made his lunch for tomorrow. I tried to get input from him this time. He said he wanted grapes and that was about as far as I got. So tomorrow he has: a juice box, half a PBJ, pretzel sticks, cheese, grapes, fruit gummies, a cookie (the same one) and a cereal straw. Friends of ours brought him two boxes of these Fruit Loop cereal straws and he loves them. So I put that in there as a treat. (You know, since apparently a cookie isn't treat-y enough. I suppose it is an oatmeal raisin cookie, but he LIKES those, I swear!)

His old preschool/daycare supplied lunches so this whole packing a lunch thing is new. It's fun at this point, but I'm sure it'll get old fast. Packing it the night before seems to work well though. Now if only I could get mine packed the night before too. Nah, too much work.

I had him in his room for "rockabye" tonight by 7pm in an effort to have him be more awake tomorrow. We read one story (twice) and then I rocked him through only ONE song. He cried the whole time about needing Nana, needing Daddy, needing to go to the big potty (he has a little potty in his room, but his favorite stalling tactic is to demand to go to big potty instead). But I hung tough, put him in his bed after that one song and then sat with him for 3 more songs. By the end of the 3rd one (after fussing constantly) he totally passed out. Kid was beat! He had a big first day of school, and now with a good night's sleep he'll be ready for another big day tomorrow.

It's a lot of fun. Even more like "real school" now since it's at the local catholic school that has PreK3-8th graders. It was a hard decision on whether to leave him at O2B for another year or so or move him now, but I think this is going to be really good for him. It seems to be a smaller class, has two full time teachers all day, and the day runs from 8am to 2:45. It's a much shorter day, but it's every day. He was really getting his schedule messed up only going twice a week this last month. I think the structure this will bring will be nice for all of us.

Butterflies

This was a very early morning for Nicky. Normally he wakes about 8am. Today, we went in to wake him up at 6:30am.

Nicky,sleep

But it was a special day today! Today was Nicky's first day of school.

Nicky,backpack,school

He started PreK3 at the catholic school. He might have been a little nervous.

Nicky,backpack,school

But he was mostly excited!

Nicky,backpack,school,Nana

We'd gone to the open house yesterday, so he'd seen his class and met a few kids and the teachers. He was ready to go.

Nicky,backpack,school

But it wasn't easy letting him.

Nicky,backpack,school

Monday, August 10, 2009

Ball at the beach

Nicky brought up the beach Saturday. He brings it up quite a bit, even though we've only taken him twice in his life I think. The last time was last fall, so it's been a while. But Tom and I are done with our summer classes and have no homework hanging over our heads for a change, so we packed up Sunday morning and headed to Crescent Beach near St. Augustine.

We arrived around 2 or so. Nicky didn't fall asleep until about 4 miles from the beach but he woke up pretty quick once we got out of the car. We found public parking and a nice little entrance that wasn't too crowded. We slathered sunscreen on ourselves, spread out our gear and headed for the water.

Nicky had a wonderful time in the surf, and wasn't afraid at all, which actually was a little worrisome as we had to run to catch him waist deep in the water twice. If he'd fallen over he'd have been under in a second. We were right next to the lifeguard station, but still, I'd rather he have a little respect for the power of the undertow.

Most of the time we worked on digging in the sand and collecting shells. We took him out to play in the swells a bit, but the tide was out and it was only about 4 feet deep at the deepest point before the sandbar that was about 30 feet out. It was a really nice beach and Nicky had a ball wrecking Tom's carefully sculpted sand castle faster than he could build it.

Tom ended up with a sunburn on only one leg somehow. He hadn't put any sunscreen on his legs. I ended up with a raging sunburn on my shoulders, right on top of the one I got Saturday taking Nicky to the pool party, even though this time both Tom and I had put sunscreen on me. I think my blouse rubbed the sunscreen off my shoulders though. Nicky was the only one in good shape after 3 hours at the beach. I'd coated him twice and he wore a t-shirt to boot. Apparently though, for someone who really doesn't ever get any sun, me, an SPF of 30 is just not nearly good enough. Usually we use SPF 75, but it was running low and I had a huge bottle of SPF30.

My shoulders say I will not be making this mistake again though. Wearing a bra was murder today.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

New floors!

I can't believe I haven't told you this yet!

We have new floors!

Tom and I took the plunge and ripped out the carpet from the bedrooms, hallway and living room, replacing them with wood laminate. Well, that's an exaggeration, WE didn't do any of that, WE paid a team of guys to deliver the wood and then install it. THEY ripped out the carpets, put in the wood floors in less than a day(!) and took the carpet away!

The day they came, I took Nicky to school and myself to work. I was still gimping around on my bum hip, but I could drive. Luckily we'd gotten the temporary handicapped parking thingy, so I could park close to work. It would have been the end of me if I tried to walk from the normal lot!

I totally expected to come home to chaos as we'd been told it would take two days. But around 3pm Tom IM'd me that they were done and gone. Then I expected to see a huge heap of carpet by the side of the road, killing the grass (er, weeds) and figured we'd be looking at that for a week or two before it was picked up. Nope! I get home and the curb is clear. They hauled it all away. Awesome! I totally recommend paying to have floors installed. If we'd tried to do this ourselves it would have taken us forever!

As it was, it did take us a good few days to move everything that wasn't furniture into the den. They would move furniture, but we had to move all the clothes, toys, books, shoes, crap under the bed, etc. And there was a lot of it! But now you can see our new floors so well that we haven't moved all that stuff back yet. I don't want to cover them up! We did set up Nicky's room right away though. Here's a photo. We still need to finish his walls. We have the chair rail to go up, but need the gizmo to cut the angles.

The new floor!

Doesn't it look great? We have the quarter round to put around the edges of the bedrooms (that already have baseboards) and need to get baseboards for the living room and hall, but it already looks beautiful.

I first tried taking photos of the floors and accidentally took a movie instead. Check it out. Nicky was a little under-dressed for it, but I'm pretty sure you can't see anything. He loved the new floors and was so excited to play on them when he got home that he just had to get naked I guess. He'd stripped down before I even put my stuff down and grabbed the camera. He said he was a puppy, and of course you know puppies don't wear clothes. Funny boy!

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Party Time

Nicky went to his first pool party today. He'd been invited to a birthday party for a little girl at his preschool. We'd waffled about whether to attend or not, but in the end we had the weekend free and when I asked him who the little girl was he said she's "my girl," so of course we had to go!

Tom stayed home to mow the lawn, and Nicky and I left early so I could go to my meeting this morning (not doing so great the last few weeks by the way). After the meeting we went to Toys R Us to shop for a gift (nothing like waiting till the last minute eh?) and Nicky picked out a Dora bubble kit. Since the invitation had Dora on it, and it was a spill proof, non-battery toy, I thought it was a great choice. I already had wrapping paper, scissors and tape in the car, so I was able to skip buying any bags or paper. I thought about a pretty ribbon, but they were expensive at Toys R Us, so I improvised by adding a few origami cranes to the package instead. It looked beautiful.

We still had over an hour before the party, which was at noon. I wasn't 100% sure if there would be lunch there, and if we were going to swim first I thought it prudent to make sure Nicky had something besides the dried fruit he'd eaten at 9am to sustain him. So we went to the food court in the mall for a slice of pizza really quick. Nicky was so excited about the fountain being on (which was on for the first time in recent memory) that we sat next to the fountain while we ate.

When we finished our pizza, he got to throw 6 pennies into the fountain (hey, it was for Habitat for Humanity, so I splurged). He made his wishes on each penny. And the few he said out loud were for a brother and sister. Let's all hope that at least one of those wishes comes true! For the record, the wish for a sister came first.

After pizza we headed to the party. We were the first ones there, so we helped set up. As the other kids arrived, Nicky was a little thrown at first as these were the kids from his school, so maybe it was time to act like school. He told a few kids to use their "inside voices" and "no running feet" before he gave up and just started playing with the rest of them. There was a tumble-mat there that they had fun running, jumping and tumbling on throughout the inside part of the party.

In the end, there were about 18 kids there total, and probably 20+ parents. The kids ate pizza, cheese, crackers and fruit. Nicky ate, even though we'd just had pizza. You should have seen this pizza! There were four choices: cheese (boring), mushroom (he doesn't do mushrooms anymore), black olives (he doesn't do those anymore either) and macaroni! OMG, you should have seen his reaction to that. Pizza AND pasta? At the SAME TIME? Wow!

The kids did some finger painting (which I totally forgot to bring home, oops) and then got to decorate their own chocolate cupcakes. That was an interesting idea. There was a little cake (for the grownups, but I skipped) for the birthday girl to blow out the candles (Nicky and I were in the bathroom, so any drama over who blew out the candles was avoided). But the kids all got a chocolate cupcake, two raspberries, a few M&Ms and gummy bears, and a little medicine cup of icing with a popsicle stick. They had fun decorating, although I don't think they really ate much. (Excellent!)

Then we headed out to the pool. There were some pool noodles and kickboards available, so we grabbed a noodle. Nicky swam around in the shallow end (which was a good 4 feet deep) for about 2 hours with me. I'd re-sunscreened him before we went out, and re-did my face too. But I ended up with a nice sunburn anyway on my shoulders. (I totally blame Tom for not sunscreening me up properly this morning. Although he was really nice and aloe-d me up this evening.) Nicky even went underwater several times and only swallowed a little water once! He did great and had a lot of fun.

We actually stayed till he was the only kid left. We all went back inside and had the birthday girl open the gift from Nicky. He did so well giving it to her.

By the way, what is the deal these days with not opening gifts at the party? Remember when we were kids and you'd have cake and then open presents and play games? Well apparently these days no one opens presents at the party anymore. I understand that it really takes a lot of time to do it, and the kids might get all jealous (especially the little ones), but that's kind of how they learn that sometimes you GIVE presents, and you don't always GET them. You know? I was glad we stayed and let him see her open her gift. I think it's a great lesson in giving. And I think we'll be the gauche family who continue to open presents at birthday parties. Just warning you now. ;)

So next year I think we'll be doing a party for Nicky's birthday. He's starting a new school next week (a whole other post there!) and will have a whole class to invite. I think he'll be ready for that kind of party by then. I don't know if Tom and I will, but we'll do it anyway. Maybe not in our house though. That was a LOT of kids.
Nicky,Grammie,Swimming
(I was looking for a photo to add here of Nicky in his swim trunks, but dang I've been slacking on the photography! Here's one of him this summer at his Grammie's house.)

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The Tooth Pirate

We've been talking about this for a long time now, and I want to make sure I don't forget about this before it's time to act.

When we brush Nicky's teeth, we get him to say "Arrrgh!" Just like a pirate so we can brush his front teeth.

Lately, I've been talking with him about how when he gets a little older, his little teeth are going to start falling out so that he can grow big teeth like Mommy and Daddy have.

But we have to keep his little teeth very white, healthy and shiny clean, because the Tooth Pirate loves shiny, clean, white teeth.

And someday, when Nicky's teeth come out, we'll put them under his pillow.

Then, while he's sleeping, the Tooth Pirate will sneak into his room, probably on his little pirate ship, and take the little tooth away. But, the Tooth Pirate LOVES teeth even more than treasure, so he will leave some treasure behind in exchange for the tooth.

Doesn't that sound so much better than the Tooth Fairy? Arrrgh!


Nicky as pirate last Halloween. Looks like he's the Tooth Pirate, and he's thinking about maybe taking some of Nana's teeth.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Puppies and Kitties and Piggies, Oh My!

While we hung out in the waiting room for a bit as punishment for being late, Nicky had a wonderful time playing. After he'd been playing alone for a while, a pair of sisters, around ages 8 and 2, came in. He was totally enamored and played really well with them. It was so nice to be able to let him play and not feel the need to hover over him the whole time. He really knows how to play with other kids now. School has helped so much with that.

Nicky's been really into imaginary animals lately. Sometimes he pretends to be the animal. Usually he's a puppy or a kitty, but lately he added piggy to it. If you ask him what color he is it's usually green or orange. Although the piggy was pink or "muddy." He also has "BooBoo Chicken" or his pet Kitty that he pretends to hold in his hand.

Well today at the doctor's office, he was playing with this big toy firetruck that he always gravitates to there. It's about 2 feet long and has a long ladder on it that raises up. Well he raised the ladder and then proceed to push and pull it around the entire waiting room. He introduced it to everyone as his puppy that he had on a leash. He was taking it for a walk, and when they asked what the puppy's name was he said his name is "Puppy."

He talked to just about everyone there and also told them all his full name. Tom's been working with him on that and he loves to tell everyone now.

Fun stuff.

Houston we have a problem

Well, so much for this month. Or that's what the doc says anyway.

This morning's ovulation kit was again REALLY close to showing the same color lines (that's how you tell it's positive). This was the 3rd day like that, and I was getting paranoid that we would miss our window. So I called up to see about getting in for a quick ultrasound this morning. I figured that even if ovulation wasn't imminent we would at least see if my ovaries were over-stimulated or getting a good candidate ready. And I'd already had to take the morning off for my follow-up appointment for my hip injury.

While we were on the way to my hip appointment, we got a call from the other doctor, we'll call him Dr. Babymaker, saying he would be in the office for the next 30 minutes, but would be out doing surgeries till tomorrow. So throwing my hip appointment to the wind, we ran over to Dr. Babymaker's instead.

So the result? Nothing seems to be happening in there. Looks like launch has been scrubbed for this mission. We'll up the clomid to 150mg a day next month. Bummer. But on the good hand, my hip will be a lot better next month.

So, after that disappointing news, we headed over to my original appointment, now 27 minutes late. There I told them about my theory that I had trochantric bursitis, since when I saw the xray results myself they said "trochantric bursitis" on them. I Googled that (which doctor's LOVE right?) and the symptoms seemed to fit perfectly.

They agreed with me, and gave me a referral for physical therapy and will recommend an Orthopedic doctor to check my back and pelvic alignment and leg length. A script for naproxen to take as needed rounded out that visit. Hopefully with all this we'll get this hip thing under control (Which it's MUCH MUCH better now. Just limping really, and not really any pain anymore.) and keep it from happening again.

Since the appoinment though I have learned more about hip bursitis. I do think I have trochantric bursitis still, but I also suspect Iliopsoas bursitis now too. Those symptoms are different, but I also had them. They're both hip bursitis, but just inflammation of two different bursa in the hip. I think this explains the kind of chronic ache/pain I've had in my hips for years. So I'll bring that up with the Orthopedist and the Physical Therapist too.

Oh, AND I learned today that bursitis can be infectious (not contagious, but bursa can get infected) and that if you run a fever along with it, it could mean infection. I'll bet that explains that wacky fever I had Thursday. Even the Celebrex didn't reduce it. Good thing my body fought it off on it's own! (And with prayers and positive thoughts from everyone too! Thank you all!)

Enough of the hip saga though. I'd like that to be done with now. Sorry to talk your eyes off about it, but my blog serves as a journal/record for me and so I go into a lot of detail. :)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

It's hard work, and it takes a long time

I've been doing the ovulation testing kit every morning.

On the first morning I was doing it, Nicky came into the bathroom and said he had to go potty. So I moved over to sit on the edge of the tub where I had the cup-o-pee and the ovulation strip ready to dip in it.

Nicky sat on the potty to do his thing, and asked "is that pee-pee?" I said yes. He looked over at the box that was sitting by the sink. It had a photo of a woman with a baby in her arms. Nicky says "oh, baby pee-pee." Then he asked "what you doing?"

I told him I was testing, and that we were trying to make a baby. We'd been talking to him about trying to make a baby brother or sister for a few weeks. Nicky said "Ohhhh, trying to make a baby" in a very understanding tone of voice. Then he finished up with his potty business and left the bathroom to get dressed with Tom.

I finished testing and then was getting ready for work. I was just finishing braiding my hair when Nicky came back in the bathroom.

He looked around, and then said "where's the baby?"

My new wheels

So while Avmed did accept my appeal as an expidited appeal, they still denied it. They said I have to do 4 weeks of non-steroid anti-inflammatory treatment and physical therapy first. Lovely. I'll see about the physical therapy next week, and I'm already taking the anti-inflammatory.

But in the meantime I need to be able to get around! Monday morning I have to take a tour of a library on campus that recently merged into our library system. There is just no way I can do that on crutches. So yesterday I got a wheelchair. It does make getting around a lot easier.

I can't use it in our house really. We have a baby gate between the living room and kitchen, and it wouldn't fit through the hallway into the bedrooms or bathroom. So we are leaving it in the car while we're home and I'm using the crutches in the house. But at work, and on any excursions I'll use the chair.

It worked well last night to go to Grandma and Grandpa's house for dinner. We got to see Aunt Maryellen and Uncle Scot before they take off for home (in Alabama) today. Nicky had a really good time playing with Legos and his kite.

And today Tom and Nicky went with me to my Weightwatchers meeting. I used the wheelchair, and my temporary handicapped parking decal (we picked that up Thursday). It worked out pretty well. Oh, and I lost another 4 pounds! That makes a total of 27.6 pounds lost! Only 1.4 pounds to go and I'll hit my 10%. I'm so happy to be doing so well on this program. I guess I'll have to find some other kind of exercise to do though. I'm kind of afraid to use the treadmill now since I don't know how this injury happened, or what it even is. Hopefully though the physical therapy will give me some good ideas.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Wherein I complain about my hip pain, and my pain in the ass insurance

I'm a little out of the loop this week. Tuesday night I walked on the treadmill for a total of 75 minutes (in two shifts) and Wednesday morning at 5:30 I woke up in pain. My right hip is swollen and more than just sore. It got worse over the day also.

I went to my doctor in the morning and they took x-rays and gave me two anti-inflammatories to try, one is a patch and the other is oral, but I'm not supposed to take them at the same time. Tried the oral one first and it didn't touch the pain at all. There was no comfortable way to stand, sit or lie down. It hurt constantly, to the point where I can confidently say it was hurting just as bad as my 12 hours of unmedicated back labor with Nicky. So we were told to go to the ER by my doc. Nicky's Grandma and Grandpa came over to sit with him while Tom took me to the ER.

While in the waiting room we got the results of the morning's x-rays, no fracture. But the ER doctor could see the swelling in my hip just by looking at it, and it hurt even to the touch. So they ordered a CT scan in case there was a hairline fracture the x-ray missed. 45 minutes later that came back clear too. The ER doc said the next step would be to get my normal doctor to order an MRI. They did give me a script for heavy duty pain meds though. I really didn't want to take anything since we are trying to get pregnant, but I can't stand this pain.

Of course the doctor's office was closed by now, so had to wait till morning. I put on the anti-inflammatory patch to see if that would do better than the oral one,(it hasn't), and then took the first Lortab (heavy pain med) too. I can say that after a while the Lortab is allowing me to at least sit, in a very specific way, not-moving an inch, without pain, so that is definitely worth it. But still, any movement, even just rotating my foot slightly, causes the excruciating pain. Getting to and from the bathroom, which is about 15 steps away from my recliner, is just as painful as without the medicine. It hurts more than getting around after my c-section did!

This is just a crazy amount of pain to be in after a stroll on the treadmill. Yes, it was longer than I was used to, but I had it on the slowest setting and we just spent 3 days at Disney a month ago, where I walked 12-16 hours a day straight, pushing or carrying Nicky and a backpack. The only pain from Disney were blisters.

So today I called to get the MRI scheduled. My doc had to go thru my insurance company, who sent it to "physician approval" so that a doc at Avmed would be looking at it. And they denied it. DENIED it! They said I would need to first go through 4 weeks of physical therapy. WTF?

I figured they must just not get how much pain we're talking about here. So I called them for an expedited appeal and talked the phone answerer person's ear off. Of course you don't get to talk with anyone who can actually make a decision. So she will pass that along and IF this qualifies as an expedited claim, they'll respond within 72 hours. That's freakin MONDAY people! And if it doesn't qualify, then they have 30 days to respond AND I have to send my appeal in writing.

I'm so glad I pay hundreds of dollars a month for insurance. Argh!

So I sit, frozen into a single position in my recliner, jacked up on Lortab and dreading the next time I have to go to the bathroom, or move at all. I have my last huge project due soon, and of course it's a group project, so I am not affecting just my own grade by being out of commission.

Oh, and then today, I started running a fever. Low grade at 99.9, but I rarely run fevers, and this one isn't related to any cold symptoms. Just a fever causing burny eyeballs and general achiness. I don't know if it can be related to the hip pain or not. But this is just crazy to be laid up, totally disabled, out of nowhere. I want answers damn it!