7.11.2014

Early Morning Conversation

The other night Little Man decided to abandon pull ups. Before I headed off to bed, I checked on him. He was totally out, but also totally wet. So last night we went back to the safe embrace of Mr. Pull Up. Of course this means he leaked through the pull up at 6 am this morning, and I was NOT ready to wake up. I stripped him out of his jammies, and shooed him into my bed, hoping for an extra hour of snoozling.

Nope. The squirmy wormies got the best of his four year old body. So we whispered to each other in the morning.

Him: "I'm going to stay in Daddy's space forever."

Me: "Oh yeah? Is Daddy going to sleep in your bed then?"

Him: "Not necessarily..."

7.10.2014

Technical Difficulties

I'm having design difficulties on the blog. Something happened with the designer I worked with, and I've just reverted back to simple because I'm tired. It may stay this way for a while, sorry. The lack of having it all look JUST SO is really bumming me out. This is probably the kick in the pants I need to get on with things and get a real platform and whatnot. If only there was TIME! We'll consider this like camping! For the blog! It's minimalism and those cups that collapse flat for easy storage. Okay. Sad rant over.

It is still quite overcast and it may just rain, so I'll be opening all the shutters- letting that lovely tempered light IN! Have a great weekend, guys!

7.08.2014

The Things I'm Getting Used To

- Nightly injections for Squirt. The nurse came out to show me how it all works. And let me tell you, this is way more complicated than I even feared. It's a powder that has to be mixed, and the pen is all digital and fancy, but doesn't let me see what's really happening like any normal injection I'm accustomed to. (I want to SEE the plunger & meds go down so I know they're in my kid for heaven sakes!) The first time with the nurse there went swimmingly. (even though I had been so nervous before she arrived that I was deep cleaning the couch cushions, and as I was being instructed in all this fine motor skill work, my hands were totally shaking)

- We required a third fridge. Yep, a third fridge just for medicine. A really small one for upstairs to hold the meds that cannot be bumped and jiggled around. Their previous home in the butter dish compartment was not going to cut it. At least I got to put all of my nervous anxiety into organizing! Now we have a neat little shot battle station in the hallway:



- The shots have been spotty at best lately. After the nurse left it was all up to me, and while Squirt was sure brave it all came crumbling down once the needles came out. I had all the fine print instructions laid out and was trying to get it all right, she was upset, it was the 4th of July and everyone was anxious for fireworks.... it was nothing short of a disaster. The last few times have been better, however. I may be getting the hang of it. Squirt is still not super excited about it, but really, who can blame her. It's still a "little pinch" and that's not jazz hands fantastic.

- Helping Ava Grow arrived yesterday, and it is a sweet book. Very helpful to have, and I am so lucky it exists for our very specific situation. I always change the name to Squirt's name, and she beams.
My favorite part is the last page:



- I am a bit worried about jealously between Squirt and Bunny. Bunny is really acting crabby with all the attention being given to her sister, and is acting out quite a bit. That sucks, but I'm trying to keep in mind that soon enough we're having a follow up appt to check on her growth too, and she might need some sort of treatment later on as well. So BLARGH.

- Little Man will most definitely need tubes in his ears in the near future. After his second antibiotics round, the doctor cleared him. Only to have him start up with the coughing and junkiness the very next day. Now almost a week later, he's complaining of ear pain. Sounds like we'll be seeing that ENT very soon.

- In a fit of spontaneity I went looking at some model homes being built in our area. An all single story development. I'd almost lost hope at the prospect of our next house being one level, I got all riled up at the prospect again. My husband is shaking his head because the timing is not right. AND I HATE TIMING. Shoot perfect timing in the face, is what I say. I WANT IT NOW! I'm a real treat to be married to.

Would you like some random pictures that I probably already posted to Twitter & Instagram? Oh! I am on Instagram again. We made up. It's craftyashleygram if you are interested in that sort of thing.










6.26.2014

Identity Crisis Slash I'm Really Tired

Ugh. Where does one even start with all this? I've obviously been avoiding the blog like I've been avoiding people, sunlight, health food, and anything without spandex. Mostly because I'm just no fun to be around. I've formulated a million posts in my mind and then washed them all off the map because some of them weren't coherent enough to read, had too much rage, or simply would be more interesting once I had more information. Because really, a post about I HATE WAITING FOR STUFF TO HAPPEN! Is really only a one liner.

Today I feel like enough stuff has happened on one front that at least I can talk about it. Maybe it's rambling and boring? Maybe it seems a bit too much of a pity party? If so, I apologize. Clearly I suck today. I assure you, I am aware.

Many moons ago we looked into the twins' growth, along with a lot of other issues that concerned us. That was the Fall from Hell. (it was October ish) We had pediatric Cardiologists, Neurologists, and Endocrinologists. It was a long string of tests (including some extensive genetic testing) and doctor's offices, and it was awful. In the end I think we came out with what I was looking for- they are small, but fine. The Endocrinologist actually said monitor her growth and bring her back if anything changes, but back then Me was so traumatized, I took it as an all-clear and went on my merry way to go deal with the eventual mess of the sale of our house and a couple really difficult deaths in my family. So things happened, and I was not as stringent or vigilant as perhaps I should have been about the monitoring. Looking back, I will beat myself up plenty over the things I let slide, the warning signs I missed or ignored, it will probably forever haunt me.

Close to four- maybe five?- years later I started to get more and more concerned about the growth issue. Other things had settled down a bit, and I was able to step back and see some things that made me take pause. We were buying the girls shoes for the new seasons, but we were buying them in often the same size as the previous season's. Parents around me were jealous and I was just fine being happy with this. But when I would wash their hair in the shower I would inwardly wince. I'd seen frail bodies like this, but those images had been of children who had survived horrific disasters. I tried to put it aside. I love my children, I was doing my best. I was feeding them as much as they would eat, I was buying quality food, and went out of my way to make sure everything they ate was packed with the max amount of fat/calories/protein as possible. I was trying, but I also had a life going on. I have a child struggling with eczema, and learning his allergies. (can you hear the overwhelming panic stifled in my voice? Of course not, because I'm typing, but I can assure you it is there)

I decided to take the girls back to the Endocrinologist. I was slightly nervous because it had been so long since we'd seen him, and honestly I fully expected him to glance at (it was Squirt's appt first) her stats and ask why we'd brought her back.

That is... not how that appointment played out. He was concerned, quite concerned. While he didn't exactly come out and ask me what had taken so long for me to bring her in, I'm kind of reading between the lines that this was exactly what he was thinking. It was time to take some serious action. He did lots of calculations, asked lots of questions, and made the determination: "She is SGA." That little acronym, it turns out, stands for Small for Gestational Age. I was quite confused, she was born SEVEN years ago! Isn't it a bit late to make this call, doc? And yes, maybe. But most SGA kids do, indeed catch up, somewhere around age 2, I think. We are the small percentile that isn't "catching up." So we get to do something about it. He wrote out a couple of scripts, handed me a four page informative guide on "feeding your child to grow" and sent us on our way. I was absolutely dumbfounded.

Oh, and backup a second, I had asked if we should be concerned about her identical twin sister, he looked over at her and said we could measure her with the nurse on our way out. I summarily forgot about that as I squinted in the sunlight of the morning sun with this new knowledge that things were accelerating really fast.

I cried in the car on the way to get the hand x-ray to determine Squirt's bone age. I wasn't sure if I was buying into this. If I thought we needed to push this red button of growth injections. Everything in me was opposed to the whole thing. Perhaps I just didn't want to hear that anything was wrong with my perfect little duo. Especially something so all-encompassing & daunting as this. I was told someone would call me to set up a nurse to come over and show us how to administer the injections soon. I panicked and headed to the internet where I found nothing of value. Everything was about wee babies, and I gave up. Little did I know that I wouldn't even have a ship date for the stuff one month later, almost exactly to the day. It has been a long and not-so-easy process working with all the players in this parade. (that's putting things so extremely lightly I'm laughing maniacally to myself)

During the long wait and anxiety over meds and protocols and approvals, I brought Bunny back to the Endocrinologist so she could have the full work up. I was thinking if Bunny needs the same treatment, because HI I'M RAISING TWINS, and I'm used to absolute symmetry, we should get that paperwork going asap to keep the lag time as minimal as possible. This doctor must just love to take me for hard left turns, because just when I expect one thing, he gives me another. I envisioned the appointment going one of two ways (1) No, Bunny is significantly taller than Squirt, don't worry. Quit being so paranoid, focus on the one twin. or (2) Yep, she's SGA as well, let me get out my pen.

Instead he showed me a graph with a line he'd drawn on it. "Above this line, we're not worried. Below the line, we are." BAITED BREATHS! "She's spot ON THE LINE." (because of course, I said to myself) I asked what it meant, and he seemed to know exactly where I was going, "Well, we're going to give her some time and see where she lands, but if it's below, she isn't SGA, her treatment will be entirely different from her sister."

That is when my heart took residence right near my bladder. They're roomies.

I don't know how things will fare with Bunny. I am following the super complex and trying manual on Beefing Up Your Children. Supermilk! Eggs in mashed potatoes! Feeding every two hours! Tons of DAIRY! (Remember the kid with eczema? The one we took OFF dairy? YEAH that's happening as well)

Last night I think I squared everything away with the meds and the nurse should be scheduling things with us any day now, so things are getting real, very quickly, and I am realizing that with all this uncertainty I have shielded Squirt from the whole "we're going to stick you with a needle every day" thing. And that... might be an ISSUE. That I should think about.

So. Panic attack 9:30 last night was sure a good time.

Luckily I was able to find this wonderful resource before the sleepy meds kicked in, Helping Ava Grow, and I was able to relax a bit. A mother wrote a book to her daughter about the experience with the injections and you bet your sweet bippy I bought that in a millisecond, I just hope it arrives in time. There was also a ton of resource links on the side that I've been pouring over. Most of them make me weep uncontrollably because I feel deeply guilty for not catching this sooner, for the consequences she may have to face because of what I did/did not do. That's a heavy burden, and I have a feeling every mother carries some form of this around, so group hug, guys.

Anyway, I'm sitting here waiting for another important signature-only shipment and thinking of all the ways I could be the Eczema Mom Blogger, or the SGA Mom Blogger, how I should wrap myself up in one or the other, how I feel the need to put all my strength into one of these, but everyone has too many things going on! I get a great recipe using cream cheese & buttermilk to beef up the girls, but then I can't give it to Little Man! Not to mention the Bounce House.

Which, if I can side track you for a moment, I have NEVER once regretted that purchase. Not once have I sat by and wished I had not brought that baby home. Even when I am on my hands and knees on wood floors rolling the sucker up (so Scotty won't pee on it) at the end of the night. If you're even close to on the fence of owning one yourself, I say JUMP DOWN THAT RABBIT HOLE. It's totally worth it.

That said. I went looking for a mat/pad to put under the house that would be grippy and keep it from bouncing around the darned room. I found some rubber interlocking mats, (if you follow me on Twitter, you'll also know the amusing story of how math failed me on that venture)  and after walking around on the rubber mat for, what? 10 minutes? A few hours later, Little Man developed a flare up that I struggled to contain for a WEEK. It was one of the worst we had in recent memory. Duly noted: Allergic to grass, dairy, most detergents & stain removers, chlorine, sunscreen, AND RUBBER. Oh, and he's on round two of antibiotics for an especially stubborn ear infection, that makes the eczema worse too. Oh! And he probably needs tubes in his ears for the constant ear infections. BUT LATER- BECAUSE I SAID SO.

Now you see my dilemma; There is a lot going on here. No worries, I suppose about me becoming a niche blogger! Or even a regular blogger. I'd appreciate any good thoughts, prayers, etc you can send my way. We need it. On the plus side, I have gone down to eating nothing but licorice bites & Diet Coke, and boy, can I tell you what a diet that is! Lost 2 lbs just this week.

6.12.2014

The Best Purchase This Century

This morning I took the girls to get x rays to assess their bone age. It's all part of the Big Stressy Stuff that makes me want to do all the daytime sleeping and nighttime binge eating. ANYWHO. 
I was not in a great mindset when we finished at the x ray place and wandered into the Sam's Club to get a couple necessities. (Like more licorice) 
After gathering our requisite $100 worth of hodge podgery we may or may not need, (in bulk even) I was kind of glassy eyed, and glancing toward the Diet Coke fountain. The kids caught sight of a bouncy house and started to point & shout. We were in the check out line at this point, yet something clicked in my mind. Something about how blasted hot it is, how swimming is really the only acceptable form of physical activity and GEEZ am I tired of THAT nonsense. So we left the safety of the check out and just went over "to look." It looked pretty small-ish, as I imagined its size in comparison to our playroom. (It's a brilliant idea to get cavalier about measurements & dimensions when making major purchases) Yesssss. And really, how much is my sanity worth? ALL THE DOLLARS, I SAY. I texted The Husband to see what he thought, since he took longer than five seconds to respond I took it as compliance & dragged that sucker into the cart.

It is surprisingly easy to buy a bouncy house. Nobody seemed to bat an eye. Which I guess, OBVIOUSLY. Also? Surprisingly exhilarating. Because (a) The Husband could be giving me a real side eye with this large-ish purchase, (b) I could be having a total mental breakdown without realizing it WOOOOO, and (c) the kids suddenly loved me a trillion percent more. For reals, there were so many hugs and proclamations of "I just love it... I mean YOU!" (They can be bought, people!)

Basically this is how one can easily lose an entire playroom plus most of the dining room.


That baby is quite large. Which, duh. In a huge warehouse, of course scale can be deceiving. I was confident that we had a ton of extra floor space, (which I still maintain we do!) It's just all taken up by bounce house now, and the dining table is backed up against the wall. BUT NO MATTER! It made the perfect babysitter, and I intend on working her hard, maybe even daily.


I will say I was a twee bit disappointed to open it up and see in the instructions specific wording about how not to put it on hard surfaces such as concrete and tarmac. (Laminate flooring is softer, right?!) I'll most likely be seeking out a cushy foam mat just to be safe, and prevent the, ahem, movement around the room. (Cannot be staked down inside!) We use all the space, and after the pictures were taken, we had to reposition so that the blower spout ran straight, thus flipping the thing around and having the blower live in the hallway by the front door. Is this solution for anyone? No. If you have a pretty open floorplan and significantly raised ceilings without hanging fixtures? THEN YES, YOU NEED THIS. Or if you live in a climate that IS NOT the surface of the sun, it'd be fun outside, I'm sure. This wasn't even meant to be a product review since we've had it assembled all of four hours. (I took the opportunity to give the playroom/dining room a vicious cleaning upon returning home)

I'm just so DARNED EXCITED. YAY ENDORPHINS! BUY ALL THE THINGS!

Then I tried to put it back in the itty bitty "bag" that it came with and HAH, to you, sirs at SportsPowerLtd. HAH. 


Still, I'm thrilled. I may have texted my mom a slightly vague "just bought a bouncy house for the kids!" And she CALLED ME, within a minute, probably worried about a case of the body snatchers. I also believe she may have said something like "I can't wait to tell your FATHER about this." Which made me both laugh until I nearly wet myself and then question the sanity of my recent purchase. 

Nothing like setting up a giant inflatable in your front room to get your blood pumping in the afternoon! Hopefully the children will be slow to catch on that when Mommy is stressed out, they can pretty much ask for, and receive nearly anything.