Friday, April 30, 2010
I'm amazed at the power of a sticker. We've been having some issues lately with bedtime (and by issues, I mean crying, wailing, tantrums, getting out of bed, general carrying on), so we decided to try a different approach. Ginny's issue is going to bed. Jorja's issue is getting up too many times during the night, and too early in the morning. We got them this big book of stickers and each special book to put their stickers in. All they had to do was stay in bed all night, and not come out till 7:00 am. IT WORKED!! If CeCe hadn't been so snotty and up with that, it would have been my best sleep in years. As it was it was actually pretty good. Jorja got up once in the night to pee, and didn't get out of bed till seven. Then she asked if she could go downstairs by herself and play computer games. I was kind of in shock. She would get up by herself and let me stay in bed?! I was all over that. She cam back up after about half an hour and asked if I would get up. So I went down and dozed on the couch. Ginny came down at 8:00, and I turned on Sesame Street, and dozed on the couch till 9:00 while they watched that. I was in heaven.
It was still raining today - will it ever end? Oh well, at least we didn't get snow. After preschool, Jorja was wanting to do something special again on the rainy day. I knew exactly what she wanted, but I was playing dumb. What would be special I asked. I don't know, she would say. This went on for a while when finally I relented. Would a craft be special? Well, that was apparently the answer. We did a quick internet search, and found some egg carton caterpillars. It went quite well - she is definitely in her element with glitter glue in one hand and sequins in the other. Ginny had fun too, but most of her decorating consisted of stickers. That's just as well too. I didn't take any pictures, so you'll have to use your imaginations, put they are pretty awesome.
Hopefully it's nicer tomorrow - I'm not sure how much more Martha I have in me...
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Some days it seems as though there is nothing but constant bickering and whining. Jorja has been particularly trying, as of late. She's got some serious 4 year old sass and attitude going on. And tantrums!! Oh my!! She stomps her foot, hollers, and carries on like a nasty little diva! If this is what 4 is like, I shudder to see where we're at 10 years from now. And then there's Ginny. She can be just as awful! Always toeing the line, antagonizing Jorja, and such other behaviours. And have I mentioned how crappy night times have been lately? I don't know what the deal is, but she has these major malfunctions after she's been tucked in. She carries on with hysterics and wailing - the scene becomes a major annoyance, and if Jorja's still awake (believe it or not, she can actually sleep through this noise), then she starts to cry because she knows that Ginny's going to catch major trouble.
AND, to top it all off, poor Miss CeCe has caught the dreaded cold that Dave and I have been dealing with. So, she's needing extra love and snuggles in between all of this nonsense.
Highlights of the day include me conquering my fear of yeast. Yes, I made buns for the very first time today, and they actually look okay! Well, that's maybe stretching it a bit - but they taste pretty good. At least, Dave and I thought so. The girls took a few bites and decided that they didn't want anymore. Suits me fine - it just means that I don't have to share them with the girls! Hah!
Anyhow, enough of my whining. Tomorrow's a brand new day, thank goodness. How's the day been in YOUR world?
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
On the upside, I think we set a new record today. We went to Costco this morning, bought four things and only spent $35. I couldn't belive it.
Monday, April 26, 2010
First of all, there are the bathroom breaks. I dread them. You have to take whatever kids have to go to the same bathroom, and just supervise. So I have to take them all to the 'boys'. Well, these kids never lock the doors, so I end up standing there holding one door with my hand, reaching the other with my foot and trying to keep an eye on the ones that still have to go or have already gone. It's very stressful. And yes, when one has to go, usually a whole herd has to go. I had three bathroom breaks today.
Then there's the snack time. It's the parent's job to get set up (clean table after craft time and set out place mats) and clean up when it's over. There was a term that was used at work on days when nothing was going right, and it was a general disaster. That term was s**t storm. And it applied to snack time today. One boy's iced tea had leaked all over the inside of his backpack. One girl's spoon had punctured the top of her pudding, so there was pudding all over the inside of her lunch kit. One girl had a yogurt tube, and it exploded all over her face and shirt while she was attempting to open it. One girl spilled a glass of water. One boy had no straw for his juice box, but insisted on drinking it anyway. Ahh, good times.
Craft time itself today was pretty benign, just some glue sticks, scissors and markers. No paint at least.
Then there's the clean up after - sweep, mop vacuum. All in all, a fun filled 2 hrs 20 mins.
This morning the girls all wanted to get into Jorja's bed together (well, I'm not too sure about CeCe).
Sunday, April 25, 2010
That was all right the first day, because we were going to Edmonton to do some shopping. Let me tell you, trying to shop with a four year old, a two year old and a two month old in the West Edmonton Mall is an exercise in futility. One is touching this, one is running that way, one is waking up and wanting the soother...a general gong show really. I had brought the stroller that seats two (the car seat with CeCe and one more), but trying to get Ginny to sit in it was not happening. So we tried to shop a bit in the morning, then met a friend of Julie's for lunch, and then we were pretty much drained.
The girls had fun playing with Nanny and Pappa. At one point, Jorja and Ginny were both sitting on Dad's lap, and he was drawing them pictures on one of those magnetic boards. "Draw a house Pappa."...pause while he draws..."That's not a very good house Pappa. Draw a cow"...pause while he draws..."That's the weirdest cow I've ever seen"...ahh, the honesty of a four year old. Later on, Ginny and Mom were doing a wooden puzzle. All the shapes were in, except one. "I think it's under your bum," Mom says. Ginny gets up and looks, "No, it was under my 'gina (she kind of loses the first syllable of that word)." Ahh, the honesty of a two year old.
We woke up this morning to snow. What's up with that. Then it snowed off and on the whole way home, and now it is still snowing. Last week, we were wearing shorts and sandals. I'm not impressed. Here's hoping it warms up soon.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Right now, they are discussing what toys they should bring along. Jorja wants to bring along two puzzles, the zebra one and the goose one. Our last trip, I just picked some for her and they were the wrong ones. She just told me that it was okay that I 'messed up' last time. Sheesh.
Anyway, I've got a lot of stuff to get together yet - formula, water, bottles, diapers, wipes, etc., etc., etc. We really should have bought a van.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Jorja took her turn just before lunch when her and Julie went to check the mail. She wiped out and skinned her knee and another spot just above her foot. I think there was more wailing from her when the band aids had to come off in the tub.
I was carrying Ginny this evening and she says to me, "Don't touch my fart." What!? How or why would I want to touch her fart I say. She replies, "It's in my butt."
Monday, April 19, 2010
After the shots, CeCe and I came home, and it wasn't quite time to get Jorja from preschool yet, so Julie, Ginny, CeCe and I went to M&M to pick up some kabobs to BBQ for supper. On the way home, we stopped at the Coop and Julie picked the girls up a can of orange pop to share, and some 5 cent candies. Then we picked Jorja up and went home and they had a 'picnic' with their treats in the back yard. It could have been a five star restaurant the way they thought this was so special. Except for Ginny trying to talk with gummy candy sticking her teeth together - that was pretty funny.
They took their shoes off after their picnic and were playing in the yard. Ginny was colouring with sidewalk chalk when she saw a spider. Jorja came running by with very determined look on her face. "I've just got to get my shoe so I can kill this spider. I've got to smack it in the head." Ahh, the mighty hunter strikes again.
We went for a bike ride after supper, Jorja on her's, and I had Ginny in the seat on the back of mine. As we were biking Jorja asked, "Does God love us all the time? Even when we do bad things?" I assured her He did, and asked if there was something she wanted to tell me. "No, just wondering." Hmmmm...
I got a blister on my finger yesterday working in the yard, and it popped and ripped off before I was done. This evening Jorja grabbed in and I said ouch. Then I showed it to her. She got this really serious, concerned look an her face. "What is that Dad. Will the skin come back." I assured her it would and she wanted to know if it hurt. A little I said. "You shouldn't let anyone touch that Dad, not even you. You shouls use your other hand for stuff." I think it was quite unsettling to her, kind of cute.
Well, here's hoping there's some sleep tonight.
This is Julie. Dave has posted on the side profile that I will be contributing to this blog on occasion. So, I suppose it's time to break my silence, pony up, and "speak". Dave has a real gift when it comes to re-telling the stories and antics of the kids - much better than I. I think that I'll leave that portion up to him.
How did we end up in this situation of both being off during a maternity leave? Well, it goes a little something like this.
When I was 23 1/2 weeks pregnant, I found myself with some bizarre symptoms. I was having numbness and tingling in my hands and feet, and also some numbness on both sides of my tongue. I saw my Doctor and she thought that the hands and feet thing could be attributed to pregnancy, but the tongue thing was weird, so she was going to refer me to an OB/GYN. If I got worse, I was to come back to see her. The next day, I noticed that I was having trouble chewing on my left side, my left eye was blinking slower, and I had a small "dead" spot on my left cheek. Needless to say, I had an appointment the next morning to see a neurologist.
I saw the neurologist at the hospital, and by the time that Dave and I left, I was unable to completely close both of my eyes. It was decided that I had bilateral Bell's Palsy. However, he said that there was a chance of Guillain-Barre Syndrome as the numbness in the hands and feet are not associated with Bell's Palsy. If I got worse, I was to come back to the hospital immediately. He said that with Bell's Palsy, my face would get worse before it got better.
Well, my face most definitely DID get worse. In fact, I would say that the worst day was on my birthday. My face was completely paralyzed. I was unable to smile, raise my eyebrows, show my teeth, pucker my lips...I had nothing. Because my eyes weren't closing all of the way, I had to put thick ointment in them at night and tape them shut, so that they wouldn't dry out or get debris inside of them. My speech was difficult, as I was unable to make certain sounds with my lips and cheek. Thankfully, I could still swallow, but chewing was interesting, as I had to push the food from my cheek to my teeth.
This is a picture of me on my 32nd birthday, and believe it or not, I'm smiling for all that I'm worth!!
I continued on with life and prednisone, which is the standard form of treatment for Bell's Palsy, and continued sending the kids to daycare, as I was unable to care for them at this point. I had no energy and I was moving so slowly, as though I was 40+ weeks pregnant. This made no sense to me, but I attributed it to the Bell's Palsy and fatigue.
At the beginning of November, I finished the prednisone, but still had lots of numbness in my feet and hands, and found that I was getting weaker. I was struggling to get up the stairs, and seeing as how we live in a 4 level split, this made life rather challenging. I knew that I needed to go back to the doctor when I fell twice in one day while attempting to go up the stairs - once while dropping the kids off at daycare, and once while trying to get back into the house. I was seen by the neurologist two days after these falls and my worst fears came true. I was being diagnosed with Guillain-Barre.
My reflexes had completely left me. How many of you have had the doctor tap your knee and your leg kicks out? When the neurologist did this to me, there was no response. I had nothing. I was quickly whisked down the hall for a "tasering" test, also known as Nerve Conduction Studies. After 1 1/2 hours of being shocked and zapped, it was proven that I had Gullain-Barre Syndrome (GBS). I was to be admitted to hospital for monitoring and treatment, as well as a lumbar puncture.
Standard treatment for this is IVIg, which is an immunoglobulin therapy. GBS is an autoimmune disease, where the body starts to attack itself and begins to eat the myelin coating (the insulation) off of the nerve fibers. By giving this therapy, the hope is to turn one's immune system on to attacking something else, rather than itself. I was hospitalized for 5 days, and was discharged on our 8th wedding anniversary.
Life goes on, as did the pregnancy. Thankfully, none of this mess had any ill effects on Cecilia. Recovery has been incredibly slow, with a relapse of GBS in January. I had 5 more rounds of IVIg on an outpatient basis. The IVIg DOES help, but my body is certainly stubborn. As I sit and type this, I fear that I am on the verge of yet another relapse, as I can feel the numbness creeping back into my feet. There are times that I wish I was just imagining it, but I know that it's real. How does this affect me? Well, it would no longer be called GBS, but rather CIDP. Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy. Say WHAT?!?? Essentially, this is a "chronic", or long term form of this cannibal behaviour. I'm not going to put the cart before the horse, and I'll leave the official diagnosis up to the experts, but it won't surprise me.
Needless to say, I am on disability, as this condition makes a lot of walking difficult, and is very fatiguing. Being that I'm on disability and tired all of the time, Dave opted to take parental leave, which means that he gets 37 weeks to be home with all of us! With me staying on disability, I know that if I start to get better sooner rather than later, I go back to work, regardless of whether or not I've had a full year off with the baby. We decided that this was the best option for all of us, as I just don't have the stamina to take care of 3 kids by myself right now.
SO, thank the good Lord for Dave!! He has been the rock through all of this drama, and the superglue that keeps us all stuck together. He's the calm and the soft place to land. He's the super Dad, the super Chef, and, of course, my super Star!
Anyhow, I've broken my silence and filled up this space with a lot of words. Dave is much more succinct and to the point. I'm a blabberer and a talker.
Till next time....
Sunday, April 18, 2010
We were coming home from church this morning, and someone was mowing their lawn. It was nice, so we had some windows down. Ginny says, "What's that noise. It's annoying to me." Diva.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
I fired up the lawn mower this afternoon to pick up all the leaves etc. on the lawn. I was walking outside with my toolbox, when Julie gave me this funny look. What, I said, it may need some work the first time of the year. "And you know how?" she says. "Honey", I say, "How long have you known me, and don't these things always work out?" She had to admit that they usually did, and that she felt proud of me when they did. Pride after the fact is great, I said, but a little faith beforehand might be good. Oh well, for as often as I use tools, she's probably got reason to doubt. I can do a lot of things when I have to, I just don't really enjoy tinkering with things like a lot of guys do.
The girls were playing outside after I was done mowing, and Julie and I went in to get ready for supper. We had the window open and Jorja was yelling, "Bang, bang, rattle-bing-bang gonna make my noise all day." Ginny tells her that that is really noisy. "Good, then I'll get their attention."
I took Jorja to piano lessons this morning, and we were coming home on Broadway and the pubs must have their patios set up. "Look Dad, there's an umbrella of your work." Do a lot of four year olds know beer logos?
Friday, April 16, 2010
We all went to get Jorja today - we loaded Ginny and CeCe up in the wagon, and off we went. When we were getting packed up to come home, I noticed Jorja's backpack was leaking. It turns out her cup that she keeps in her lunch pack was broken. It was a princess cup with a second lining and the middle is filled with some sort of liquid and glitter (kind of like a snow globe around the cup). Well, pretty much all the liquid was gone. I say liquid because I don't know what was in there, all I know is that is was made in China, so let's just hope it wasn't toxic. I think it was leaking on the outside, and not the inside, so we should be all right.
Anyway, back to the drama. I asked Jorja if she was sad about the cup, and she said no. She was trying to put on a brave face, but you could tell she was fighting back the tears. We played outside at home for a while, and then she finally let go. She cried...and cried...and cried. That was her favorite cup. Ginny tried to console her, "It's all right Jorja. Why are you crying. It's all right." In the end, it was decided that we would make a Walmart run after supper to get a new cup. I needed new socks anyway. I've been wearing black ones now for three days in a row, and although Ginny feels they are 'pretty', I prefer white for every day.
I finally fired up the BBQ this evening for supper - the first time this year. Too bad all we had to go on it were hot dogs. Oh well, the girls and I enjoyed them. I made six, and they asked for more. Julie had left over sausage. She finally started eating BBQed hot dogs last year, but then a coworker of mine (who is taking food science) ruined them for her by saying they are mostly organ meat. Sheesh.
We found a suitable replacement cup at Walmart this evening - several princesses on it and some jewels. This one is even dishwasher safe, which the other one wasn't.
When we got home, a Shaw salesman showed up. We're going to switch from Sasktel - TV, internet, and phone. We'll see how it goes. Anyway, we're sitting at the table filling out the paper work and Ginny asks, "Who's that boy?" Julie replied that she didn't know his name, he was the Cable Guy.
That's about it I think. There's nothing on TV Friday nights. Lots of hockey, but the Oil didn't quite make it this year, so it's not that exciting. Later.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Then we played outside in the back yard for a while. I was holding CeCe when Jorja came running over saying there was a beetle in the wagon. "Ginny, stay away from the beetle, they can sting sometimes." I'm not sure where she got that from, but oh well. Anyway, I tell her that she should kill it. No way, she says. I then remind her how she killed an ant a couple of days earlier. This gives her a new sense of courage and she says, "Watch out Ginny, I've got to go kill something." Ahh, the brave hunter.
I'm now watching the late showing of Survivor. Gotta run.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
First, the blow-out. CeCe rarely poops when she's not eating. Depending on how you're holding her, it's kind of a crap shoot as to if it's going to be contained or not. Today, it was not. Half way up her back. Not good.
It was still cold today, but not raining anymore, so that was good. We were able to walk to preschool anyway. I usually walk Jorja there, and then Ginny always needs to come and pick her up. Today was no different. Ginny and I got there to pick her up, and it's like the long lost reunion between the two of them. Jorja comes running to the door. "Ginny came!" Then one of her little friends asked her if that was her new sister. "No", she replied, "she's my old sister." So then we walked home, the two of them holding hands pretty much the whole way. Half way home we discovered we could see our breath today, so there was a lot of puffing to see that for a while. "It's silver air Ginny."
I made tacos for supper tonight. I was almost done when Jorja came up and asked what we were having. "I don't like that. I had that once when I was two." Well, I inform her that IS what we are having. I decided to try letting them build their own - maybe that would make them taste better. Well, it worked. It was a bit of a struggle by the end, but they both ate one. It helped that Julie was making cookies and that always makes for a good bribe.
We were done tubbing a little early tonight, so it was pedicure time. It is amazing how still Ginny can sit when Julie is painting her toes. The two of them are always so proud of their freshly painted toes.
Then, the melt-down. Ginny goes to bed not too bad, but if for some reason, we need to go back up to the kitchen before she's asleep, it's a disaster. By then, she's quite overtired and just gets herself more and more worked up. An hour later, she's finally asleep.
Here's hoping they sleep good tonight...
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
We decided to just go out for supper after the appointment. Jorja eats chicken finger, Ginny eats 'fwies'. It works out all right, so they can just split a meal. Half way through supper Ginny asks, "What day is it today?" Tuesday, I say. "Tuesday, ok. What number is it?" Thirteen, I tell her. "Thirteen, ok." What a two year old needs to know the day and the date for, I'm not sure. I guess she needs to plan her calendar. I guess she gets it from Jorja, who always needs to know the day. Monkey see, monkey do.
The new season of Glee starts tonight. I have to admit, I am excited. Does that make me gay? It probably doesn't help, but I'm all right. I'm secure. I've worn a pink Ariel crown to play the princess board game. I'm good.
Jorja is asleep now, and Ginny keeps coming out of bed. I am amazed at the racket Jorja can sleep through. Some days it's a lot. We weren't really familiar with tantrums till Ginny came along. She is definitely willful. And independent.
Well, time to pour the diet Pepsi and watch TV. Later.
The girls are playing behind me - they have such imaginations. They are talking on their Barbie phone to 'Mumba', some boy apparently. I guess he's coming over today, but he's still getting dressed. Jorja asked Ginny how he was, and Ginny said 'He's bootiful.' Jorja replied, 'No Ginny, boys aren't beautiful, they're handsome.'
Monday, April 12, 2010
My wife, Julie and I have three daughters - Jorja is 4, Virginia (Ginny) is 2, and Cecilia is 2 months. It can be a handful. I feel a bit outnumbered some days, but that's the way it's going to be - I've got the appointment booked to make sure there are no more additions.
I am on leave from arguably the greatest job ever. In addition to doing physical and chemical tests on the beer, I am also a 'sensory expert'. This means that every day at 2:oo I had to taste the beer. Yeah, it's rough. I do love being home most days, but I do miss my friends at work. They are an amazing bunch of people.
Well, I should run now. There is a trip to Superstore planned for this morning, then taking Jorja to preschool this afternoon. I also have a physio appt - it's funny now that a physio appt is looked forward to as an outing (by myself).