Thursday, June 21, 2012

Where'd May go?

It took all evening last night, and about 30 minutes tonight, but all May's photos and videos from my phone are loaded up on photobucket.

Love you Mom! I know I always have you for a reader. You keep me blogging :)

Speaking of blogging. I'm actually going to BlogHer this year. It's a conference geared towards women who blog although it includes men who blog too, so I'm not perfectly clear on the target audience. But I'm hoping to gain some ideas and inspiration for my own blog. I was thinking about it earlier today. I've been blogging now for nearly seven years. That's a long time! It's been hard to find time for blogging, and as Nicky's getting older he's more sensitive about what I put on the blog about him. I feel like I need to figure out a direction/focus for my blog, and I could benefit from some tips on keeping up with blogging when I have so much else going on.

And speaking of trips (BlogHer is in New York City! It'll be my first time there!) I am leaving in the morning for ALA in California. It's going to be my first time at ALA and my first time in California. Looking forward to it! But super nervous too. No particular reason. I'm always nervous about traveling. I always have a great time and meet really cool people though.

Hey, maybe with all my traveling for work I'll finally be open to an actual trip with Tom outside of the country some day. :) Probably should go get a passport at some point.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

The Room of Loving

Nicky has a really hard time going to sleep lately. He's spent a lot of evenings falling asleep in my lap on the recliner or lying in my bed with me upstairs. (This is what I get to do in the evenings and why I've been reading on my phone instead of blogging or playing on the computer or anything else.)

On the one hand, it would be awfully nice if he'd just go to his own bed and sleep at bedtime instead of cuddling with me and trying to talk till 10pm every night. Heck, I would like to go to bed before 10 some nights!

But on the other hand, he is awfully cute and snuggly. Last night I didn't feel well, felt super-nauseated which was scary since a few folks at work have had a stomach bug over the last week or so. So I went straight up to bed after putting the girls down.

Nicky ended up joining me up there and was so sweet (cause he knew he was getting away with it, the little stinker) and told me he loved me and hoped I felt better in the morning.

After "reading" through the big book of shells (a huge shell reference book with color illustrations of all the shells in the world) and pointing out all the awesome shells he was going to find for me, he finally laid down to cuddle and sleep (at about 10 of course), and he said that Tom's and my room was "the room of loving" and that was why he liked to come sleep in our room. Not sure where he came up with that phrase, but I like it.

Now we need a sign for our room's door "Welcome to the Room of Loving" :)

Update on Nicky's stuff

Nick's sleep study went well. We watched a little tv and read a few stories before they came to hook him up. He was so tired when they finally came in to hook him up, around 9:30 probably. By 10pm he's usually going to sleep at home, but they were still working on putting all the little sensors on him at 10:30 and he was getting to the end of his rope. But he was very good the entire time.

He had his own bed, which he insisted have all the sides up (typical hospital bed setup). And I was on the other side of the room in a tiny slab of a bed. Seriously my arms would have fallen off the sides when I was on my back it was so tiny. Probably about the width of a crib mattress, although almost as long as a twin. I managed to sleep though until they woke us up at 6am.

We stopped off at IHOP on the way home so we could have a nice breakfast together. Of all the things on the menu, Nick had macaroni and cheese. *sigh*

They wouldn't tell me anything about how his sleep went though. So we'll have to wait till the end of the month to find out whether he has apnea and what kind of severity we're talking about.

As for the dermatologist, yeah, that would be me freaking out about a blackhead. They suggested using some oil free face wash for him, like Nutrogena. They were actually more concerned with the rash on his back from the adhesives they'd had on him from the sleep study. I told the doctors (at one point there were 5-6 of them in the exam room, I think they're a teaching hospital or something) that Nicky and the girls are all sensitive to the adhesives just like Tom and I. We're not really allergic but they welt up nicely on us all. And they noticed his mosquito bites, which he welts up like I do with those too (the girls also). So they gave us a script and a sample of a hydrocortisone cream to try for that. I've been using it on the girls' bites too. Especially Lily. Sunday we'd had everyone outside playing and Lily was eaten UP by mosquitoes. I have insect repellant, but we didn't get it on her fast enough obviously. Poor girl. So anyway, no worries about Nick's nose.

I haven't done my nails yet. I'm just dreading having to do the upkeep. I'm too damn cheap to commit to spending money on myself like that. I did do a pink and white manicure on my own nails Sunday though that looks nice. But they're still super sharp! I need something else to keep my hands busy while I read I guess. I think that's when I start scratching and not noticing it.

Coming up later this month I have a big trip coming up for work. It'll be the longest plane ride I've ever been on, and the farthest I've ever been from home. Heading to California! I've never been there before. No earthquakes allowed during my visit ok?

Saturday, June 02, 2012

On Birthdays, Sleep Studies, and Dermatologists

So since the last post, the girls turned two. Basically we had a cake that I picked up on the way home (carrot cake) and ice cream, which the girls love although Nicky still is really not interested in ice cream at all. Funny. We didn't actually do presents or guests or anything. I feel a little guilty about it I admit. But we have plans for some outdoor play equipment that we couldn't afford yet and that wouldn't wrap anyway.

We did do presents from Grammie that she'd given us at the wedding, but I had forgotten about them so they got those the next day. Then the other day gifts came from Grandma in the mail which they loved! So big party planned for next year and we'll call it good. I guess this is the manifestation of 2nd child syndrome. They have plenty of photos and videos, but a crappy birthday. Must do better next year as they'll be old enough to really get it.

Moving on!

Nicky's IEP meeting last week went well. I found out he did qualify for OT services, but the OT lady went to great pains to stress that Nick's behaviors are in no way aggressive, mean or defiant. He's just super-curious and impulsive and has a hard time tuning anything out. He won't be actually getting Occupational Therapy exactly, instead she'll be consulting on a monthly basis with the teacher and doing observations to pinpoint needs and possible accommodations. Sounds good to me! AND I found out that he passed the PALS testing! Not only passed, but did really well! He had to earn 81 out of 102 possible points. He earned 94. That's my smart boy! So the teacher confirmed that he will be promoted to first grade. I didn't realize how stressed I was about that until I was driving home and realized how much more relaxed I felt.

I also signed him up for summer school. It's limited, so he might not be selected for it, but I'm hoping he can get in. It's only 5 weeks and only about 3-4 hours a day, but it would be so great for him to get out of the house and hopefully get to do some academic work in a less stressed environment. I know when I taught summer school I used it as a way to do some more science and fun stuff that didn't get to fit into the regular school year. I'm hoping it will be the same here.

 Staying focused on the Nick, he recently had a double ear infection and did a course of antibiotics, which resulted in a second doctor visit this week for a follow up. I asked the pediatrician to look at a spot he's had on his nose now for over 2 months. I thought it was a blackhead, and Tom has been able to get some stuff out of it, but now it's looking more like a freckle, yet it's raised, which is weird. The doctor agreed it was worth checking out and so we have a dermatology appointment now for Monday morning. She suspects it might be a benign cyst. We'll see.

The dermatologist is at the children's hospital here, and lucky us, we know just where it is! Because we just went there yesterday for Nicky's ENT visit to talk about sleep apnea.

I was prepared for him to go have a sleep study and possibly a titration and then maybe come away with a cpap machine and deal with getting him to sleep with that. After all Tom and I have both been through this ourselves. What I was not prepared for was that they said the first course of treatment for kids, unless they present with small tonsils, is a tonsilectomy and adneoidectomy. I knew that some kids have extremely large tonsils and do end up with surgery, but I really hadn't at all expected that. They said his tonsils were large, but not the biggest by any stretch, but that usually they first do surgery because often that will totally cure the sleep apnea in kids.

We asked about the surgery, were told it has a very low rate of complications in children and results in about a week of recovery (at home) with just pain relievers. They said that surgery is usually tried first because it is a very likely cure, and they have trouble getting kids to comply with cpap therapy.

We asked what kind of effect that had on adult onset sleep apnea, but they didn't have those numbers at hand. Although they did say that they would not expect him to re-develop apnea as an adult unless there was a lot of weight gain later.

I just wasn't comfortable making a decision for surgery until I at least know for sure what kind of severity of apnea we're talking about at least. They were comfortable making the diagnosis based on his tonsil size, anecdotal evidence from us, and his extremely strong family history. But I want to have some proof first.

And then I will have to think about the surgery vs a lifetime of cpap therapy. Granted, I think Nicky would have little trouble doing cpap since both his parents use theirs religiously and he has so many other role models in his family that use their cpap machines. But I can also see that doing cpap is sometimes a big pain in the butt, especially for times when you're away from home and need to sleep or nap. I literally can NOT make a spontaneous decision to spend the night somewhere away from home without having my machine and mask. Nor can I just lie down and take a nap on a long trip or something either. With all the sleepovers and camps and things coming up in Nicky's future, it would be awfully nice if he didn't have to worry about apnea and a cpap machine.

But surgery is a big deal to me and I want more information first. So we decided to do a sleep study first. At first they actually had a cancellation for last night and we scheduled that. But as we were driving away from the parking garage we got a call that he'd been bumped by someone who needed a sleep study more urgently and while they were trying to increase the staff to open the lab on the weekend to help catch up but until they could do that he was scheduled for July 18th. Since it takes 2-4 weeks to get the results that would really push surgery (if we decided on that) far in the future and possibly we'd miss the window do this during the summer. But after only like 10 minutes we got another call saying that they'd gotten things arranged so that we now have an appointment for Saturday night.

So now Nicky and I will be spending tonight in a room at the children's hospital. They said there will be a bed for both of us there. It's specifically a pediatric sleep lab, so they know how to make the kids feel as comfortable as possible. We should have the results by the end of the month and by then I'll have done more research and be more ready to make an informed decision about surgery/cpap.

 Let's see, the only other things we have going on:

The sleeping plans of putting all three in the same room? Not happening. Nick was fine, but the girls would NOT stop talking and yelling at him for his attention. The girls really do need to get into the toddler beds though. They can totally climb out of their cribs if they have anything in there they can step on to gain a few inches. I caught Gabi on video doing it.

The stairs are still blocked with the gate, but Lily knows how to squeeze between the bars of the railing to get up there anyway. Gabi just went over the gate. So now we put the gate up higher and that at least discourages Gabi. Lily got her head stuck last weekend and scared herself, so it's been actually a quiet week on the stairs for a change.

I've gotten back to shredding myself with my nails, and so I'm prescribing acrylic nails for myself again. It's the only thing that keeps me from scratching myself bloody, even though I hate the expense. I was going to go today but the one place that I've had recommended to me so far has their nail techs on vacation till Tuesday. So maybe I'll wait till then. I've been looking for reviews but haven't found a place yet.

That's all I can think of for now.

Sorry Mom! I know it's been forever since the last post! I really need to figure out how to carve out more time for blogging.