Monday, November 27, 2006

I suck

I feel like I may be losing my mind. I have absolutely no short-term memory. I can remember my best friend’s phone number from kindergarten, but I can’t remember where I felt my keys. Its really frustrating too, because I used to be so on-top of things. Lately I feel like I can’t even keep track of the basics. I constantly forget where I put my keys and glasses. It frustrates Ben beyond belief because it seems every time we’re trying get out the door to go somewhere I’m frantically looking for my glasses, keys, or both. But, it really is way more than just that. Here are some of the other things I’ve forgotten recently:
*I take the time to pack a lunch for work, then forget it.
*I get the baby’s bottles all ready and then forget to take them.
*I actually remember to take my pump bag to work, but all the components are at home.
*I promise to call a friend back on the phone, and then never do
*I put in a load of laundry to wash, and never move it to the dryer. I realize a couple of days later when I can smell it rotting in the laundry room.

It gets worse though – at least those things are really just an annoyance. I pay all of my bills online. I’ve got everything set up for automatic payment. Because its so easy, I’ve gotten lazy and rarely even check to make sure they pay. Its really helpful for people like me who have no short-term memory. Well, its helpful as long as it works.

On Tuesday, Ben got home from work at about 5:05 pm. He went into the kitchen to make dinner, but discovered that we had no water!! He called me frantically to ask if I’d paid the water bill. At first I was very offended. Of course I paid the bill. I pride myself in the fact that my credit score is well over 700 (better than our finance guy’s actually). In fact I’ve never been late on a payment or bill – EVER (well, I never had anyway). I told him to call the City to see what the problem was, but of course it was just after 5pm and they were closed. So, I decided to do some checking. I went into our account on-line, and sure enough I hadn’t paid the water bill. Not last month, the month before, or the month before that either. Strangely, my auto bill pay had just stopped paying the water bill. I was mortified. I’m a responsible person. We work hard to stay out of debt and to pay bills on time. How did MY water get shut off? Of course I have the money to pay it too – that was the worst part.

Honestly, I can’t believe the City wouldn’t call first before coming to shut off the water. Not only would it have saved us a $75 re-hookup fee, it would have saved me the embarrassment of having to call my mom to ask if we could spend the night because our water got shut off. UGH. Talk about the most embarrassing call I’ve ever had to make.

So, we packed things up and headed over to my mom’s house. I was so grateful to have her there to help. I kept thinking about how desperate a person must be who is in a similar situation, but has no family to help. At least I know that if something bad ever really happens, I’ve got my parents there to help out. It was actually fun to spend the night there. My mom and I stayed up way too late chatting. And I woke up in the morning, called the city, and payed the bill over the phone. Our water was back on before Bryn’s morning nap.

I am starting to think though that maybe something is wrong with me, other than being sleep deprived and overly stressed. I’ve been having terrible, almost debilitating migraines. My vision is blurry, and I get migraine auras a lot. Bright lights are too much for me. I keep the blinds closed all the time, and wear sunglasses on cloudy days. I have to – too much bright light makes my migraines worse. Memory loss + headaches must be the symptoms of something bad right? Something more than stress and sleep deprivation?

Monday, November 20, 2006

9 months old

Brynlee is 9 months old today. Just yesterday I was noticing that her face had changed – she looks more like a toddler to me, and less like a baby. She really is growing up and changing. In some ways it is sad to me – I miss my cuddly little baby. But, I’m excited too for the toddler stage (I think - someday I may regret saying that). Here she is at 9 months old:

Bryn is such a strong and physical little girl. She crawls like a champ and pulls up without any effort. The other day, I caught her trying to stand up alone in the middle of the floor, and she almost did it. She cruises along the furniture and even lets go to try and take a step or two. She also loves it if I hold her fingers and let her walk. I still think she’ll be walking by Christmas.

All this physical activity has thinned her down quite a bit. Her latest nickname is Squish or Squishy, so you can tell she’s still nice and cuddly. But, she’s quickly losing the baby fat and replacing it with toddler lean. I’m not sure how much she weighs (her 9 month well baby check isn’t until next week due to Thanksgiving). Her hair is growing in thick and redder every day, and I still can’t tell what color her eyes are going to be – they range from blue to green to grey on any given day. Regardless, her peaches-and-cream complexion, big eyes, and long eyelashes make for a beautiful girl.

Last week was quite an eventful week for Bryn. On Tuesday she got tubes in her ears because of frequent infections. Although she should have been feeling better, she was still really grumpy and sleeping poorly. We figured it out a couple of days later when 4 teeth came in all at once. Poor girl really wasn’t “that” grumpy all things considering. Generally she is a sweet and happy baby. She’ll hold her arms out to anyone that will cuddle her (although mommy is her first choice). She loves to smile and squeal. But, she does have a temper. Luckily, she usually doesn’t get too mad, unless she’s tired or not feeling well. But, she’ll hold her breath until even her tongue is blue, and then wail and scream like she’s dying. A quick hug from mommy does the trick though, and calms her every time.

She’s been sleeping terribly lately. We let her get into some bad habits being sick lately, and she averages 2 night wakings a night. Sometimes its more, sometimes less, but its been weeks since she’s actually slept through the entire night. Usually she just needs to nurse for a few minutes then she’ll go right back to sleep, but its making for a very tired mommy.

She’s become good at communication. I’m pretty sure she understands almost everything we say. For example, in the bath if we tell her to splash, she’ll kick her feet and flail her arms. She also understands “no, no, no”, and although won’t always stop what she’s doing, she’ll give me an evil baby grin to show she knows that she’s been caught. And if I ask her to play “Pat-a-cake” she claps her hands and squeals. She does call her big sister “Deedee” and calls for “Dada” as well. Occasionally when she’s really grumpy, she’ll kind of moan “Mamamama”. I also think that she tries to sing, as she’ll sit and melodically “talk”. My favorite thing that she does is that she’ll sit in my lap and “talk” to me. She will make a sound, and I’ll repeat it, then she’ll repeat it again – and on and on and on the game will go. It makes her so happy when I repeat her. She and I will sit and have conversations like this for hours.

Food wise she’s become quite finicky. Mainly, I think she’s just tired of pureed food, but isn’t quite ready for solids. I tried to give her some peas last night, but they kept gagging her. She loves really soft finger foods. Lately if I put her old favorite (oatmeal with bananas) in her mouth, she’ll promptly blow raspberries until all the food is spattered onto mommy. She thinks its really funny.

Her favorite toys right now are G’s babydolls and the TV remote. The other night her daddy was watching her, and she pitched such a fit when he tried to take away the remote that he put her into bed with it. She curled right up with it and fell asleep. We’ve tried to give her an old remote that no longer works, but she wants the silver Dish remote. She also LOVES any book, and will sit on my lap for the longest time if I read to her. I’m glad that she loves to read.

Bryn is such a joy and a blessing. She is a bright little girl that makes everyone smile.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

I guess I can add dumpster diving to my list of accomplishments

Did I post the other day about losing my keys at church? Well, I did. They seeminly vanished into thin air. Lying in bed that night, I retraced my steps, and remembered that I'd thrown away a 1/2 eaten granola bar and an empty bag of fruit snacks. I convinced myself that they keys had somehow ended up in the trash with the garbage I threw away.

So, driving home from work Monday night I went past the church building. There were people there, so I dropped the girls off with Ben and headed over to check the garbage cans. I went inside, and was met by the man who was cleaning. He had already taken out the trash, but had keys to all of the rooms in the building. He helped me look in all the rooms, but the keys were nowhere to be found. They must be in the trash.

I drove my car to the edge of the parking lot where the dumpster is. I kept my lights on so they would shine inside. Luckily there were only 6 bags of garbage inside. Without even thinking, I climbed inside to begin my search. Amazingly, the third bag I opened contained the 1/2 eaten granola bar and other garbage. I went through the bag piece of garbage by piece of garbage. It was much more disgusting that I'd imagined. There were poopy diapers in there, and smashed up cupcake that got under my fingernails. It was cold and lightly snowing, and I was wearing only my work clothes with no coat. And after all that work, my keys were nowhere to be found.

Disheartened, I then realized that I was stuck inside of the dumpster. The lowest side hit me mid-chest, and the sides were completely smooth. I kind of panicked a bit, sure I was going to freeze to death inside the trash. Ben knew where I'd gone, and would eventually miss me. Right? But of course I do have the car with the carseats, so how would he come to look for me? I think at that point, there sheer will to live got me out - as I clawed my way over the side. Without my keys.

We survived!

First off, I just want to thank everyone for your concern for my girls. I really appreciate all the kind words!

My biggest worry about the surgery was the fact that the girls couldn't eat after midnight. I wasn't too worried about Gracelin, but poor Bryn has been waking a lot in the nights lately - and I always have to nurse her back to sleep. And, wouldn't you know it - she woke up at 12:07. I decided that it was close enough to midnight, so I went in and nursed her a bit so she'd go back to sleep. She woke 2 more times after that (it was an especially bad night) and both times I just let her cry it out. We had to leave for the hospital at 6:45, and when I went in to wake her, I found that she had fallen asleep sitting up and holding her Hello Kitty doll.

So, we got the girls up and left for the hospital in our PJs (even mommy), and got there right on time at 7:30. My mom took the day off of work and met us there thinking we'd need the help. It took them about 30 minutes to call us back, and both girls were distracted enough that they didn't notice how hungry they should have been. When we finally got back to the room, they got the girls in their gowns and took vitals. They were both so sweet. Bryn was laughing at everyone, and she even held her arms out to the nurse to be held. G was just as sweet as ever.

They took Bryn back first. She was so happy and smiley - they said she giggled right up until the time when they put her to sleep. I went to wait in recovery for her while Ben and my mom waited with G. Her surgery only took a few minutes, and when they brought her back to me she was barely crying. She just wanted to nurse, so we sat and quietly cuddled for a few minutes. But, then the nurse came in to put drops in her ear. That really made her mad. She cried and cried and cried. For over an hour, until finally she just cried herself to sleep. Even as she slept, she kept whimpering and crying intermittantly. (As she laid there, I notied that she had 4 teeth coming in.) The doctor came in and told me that the tubes went great, but that afterwards she was still failing the hearing test. Poor girl.

Gracelin went second. Of course I wasn't there when she got taken back, but Ben said they put her into the bed and wheeled her away. She cried out for daddy as they took her away, and it was very sad. Her surgery was a bit more intensive, since she had her adenoids out. She had to be intubated and have an IV, and she was gone almost an hour. When they finally wheeled her out afterwards, she was barely crying. I was holding a finally sleeping Bryn, so she went with daddy. She was doing amazingly well, and just wanted the promised popsicle. She ate it quickly, and then told us that she was all better and ready to go home. Her arm was still in the IV though. It was all wrapped up in pink curlex, which had to be unwrapped and then the IV taken out of her hand. She watched intently the entire time, but never flinched. She did ask to take the curlex home to wrap her dollies in though. And she was very proud of the bandaid she got over the hole.

The doctor came back and told me that G's adenoids were very pussy and infected. She probably felt sick constantly from them. She also had a difficult time with the tubes. One of the ear drums was all scabby (it has ruptured twice in the past couple of months). The other ear drum had ripped, and had to be patched. She told me to expect a couple of miserable days with G.

Apparently G missed that memo. She has done amazingly well. By the time we got home, she was ravenous and ate an entire pancake with lots of hashbrowns. Then she took a 4 hour nap. When she woke up she was ravenous again, and ate a quesadilla dipped in spicy tomatillo and cilantro sauce. And a couple of hours later she asked to have Cincinnati Chili for dinner. Oh, and did I mention she didn't have any pain medication all day! Brynlee was a little bit cranky. She also took a couple of long naps, but seemed fine by bedtime.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Tomorrow is the big day

Yep - that's right. Tomorrow both of my babies will have surgery. Gracelin's been scheduled to have her tubes put back in and her adnoids removed. Actually, only one of the tubes has fallen out - the one in her right ear is still intact. But, the ENT thinks that she'll just put a second tube in that ear, because its likely it won't last too long. She's also removing G's adnoids, because she thinks they may be enlarged and blocking her ear canals. It is a bit of a worry since she'll have to be intubated and have an IV. So, there is a bit of a risk for surgery and recovery will be longer than just for tubes. But, if it means she's feeling better it will be worth it. I'm so tired of sick kids.

Poor Bryn's been sick forever (or so it seems). On Friday, the ENT decided that they could "squeeze her in" to an appointment next to G's and get tubes in her ears as well. She hasn't had as many infections as her older sister has, but we're thinking that with the history of our family's ears its better to just put them in. Bryn's surgery should be much simpler. She'll just be sedated wth gas, and the entire prodecure is only 10 minutes.

I'll be so glad to have my girls sick less often. G at least handles the antibiotic fairly well, but poor Bryn does not. Last week was hell. She was crabby from the ear infection. But, the antibiotic gives her diahrrea, which caused a terrible yeast infection/diaper rash. Oh, and did I mention she was teething on top of that? Um, yah. Tubes should be a piece-o-cake.

We've been trying to prepare Gracelin. I don't think she really understands. Her biggest concern is whether or not she gets a bandaid, sticker, or lollypop after the procedure. I told her she can have one of each.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

From the mouths of babes

Ok - I swear Bryn is starting to talk. Yesterday when I picked her up from daycare, I told her to say "bye" like I always do. Usually she doesn't do anything. But yesterday, she held her hand out, with palm facing in, and waved (only because of the way her hand was positioned she was waving at herself). Then she said "eyeeeeeee". The grandma lady in the baby room was so excited that she did it. Since then, she's "waved" at everyone. I can't tell if she's saying hi or bye, since it comes out as "eyeeeeeee" all the time. Also, for the past week or so, she calls Grace "deedee". What a sweet girl.

Grace is hilarious too. Here is a snippit of our conversation from this morning:

G: Mommy, remember when you were mean to daddy and hurt his feelings?
Me: No Gracie, I don't remember that
G: Yes mom. It was yesterday. You were mean to daddy and hurt his feelings. Then I hugged him and made his feelings feel better.

Its funny, because Ben and I didn't argue at all yesterday (if you can believe it), so I'm not sure what she is remembering. She is so nurturing though. Its completely natural to think that she feels a need to make her daddy's feelings all better.

Here is another conversation G and I had in the car yesterday:
G: Mommy, I like my kitty shoes, but my feet are getting too big for them. Maybe I need some Dora shoes.
Me: You've had those shoes since the beginning of the summer. I think its time to buy some new ones.
G: Its because I am big and little at the same time.

I think its very profound for a 2 year old to understand that she is big and little at the same time. I explained to her that she's right. She's bigger than her baby sister (just barely though) but she's smaller than a grown-up. She giggled sweetly.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Things never go according to plan

I was planning on coming on today to post adorable pictures of my little girls in their Halloween costumes, but things obviously didn’t go as planned. Gracelin wanted to be a princess, and we found her a Snow White dress at Target. We’d planned to put Gracelin’s old frog costume on. I left work early to pick up the girls, figuring that would give us plenty of time.

When I picked up the girls, they were both happy and G was excited to go out trick-or-treating. She had a bag of candy and I let her have one sucker out of it, not realizing she’d been eating of treats all day. We rarely let her eat treats (especially candy) so she was really excited. For the first ½ of the drive (our commute is around 30 minutes) she kept telling me, “I’m eating candy, I’m eating candy, I’m eating candy”. Then, she suddenly stopped and handed me her sucker. She told me that she didn’t want anymore. I turned to look at her. Her skin had turned a sick shade of green and she was drooling out of the corner of her mouth. I knew we were in big trouble. I rolled down the window to let in some fresh air, but to no avail. She puked, and then puked again, and again and again. UGH. Poor girl. I didn’t realize that a 2-year-old tummy could hold that much. And since we were almost home, she just had to sit in it.

Once we were safely home, I stripped her down in the garage and headed straight for the bathroom. Luckily Bryn was content to play on the floor next to us. Finally Ben and my mom showed up. My mom had come over to see the girls in their costumes, and I was so grateful she was there to keep the girls occupied. Ben and I headed out to the garage, and it took us over an hour to clean the car and G’s carseat. Luckily we have leather seats, so the actual car cleaning wasn’t too bad. But her carseat was bad. There were vomit chunks in all the nooks and crannies. We physically had to take the entire thing apart, piece-by-piece. My car still smells today. Good thing I’m not pregnant.

(Gracelin has a propensity to puke at the drop of a hat. I cannot count the number of times she’s gotten sick in the car. Ben and I have decided that since Bryn needs a new carseat anyway, we’re going to give her G’s and then buy G a new one that converts to a booster and is easier to clean. {{KNOCK ON WOOD}} Bryn doesn’t seem to have the weak tummy of her older sister)

By the time we got things cleaned up, my mom had fed the girls dinner. G was starving, and ate an entire quesadilla, lots of black beans, and a glass of milk. The real food tasted so good to her. Then, she was ready to trick-or-treat, but Bryn was ready for bed. We dressed up the girls and attempted a few pictures, but they really didn’t turn out. (Maybe I’ll dress them up on Friday and try a photoshoot. I had the idea of getting some cute pics of a princess kissing a frog.)

We did make it out to trick-or-treat. G had a blast. She totally got it, and knew if she was extra cute she’d get more candy. Bryn was just happy to be included, and laughed and cooed the entire time. Ben and Grandma only took the girls to a few houses of neighbors we knew, but they both scored. They came home very tired. I was expecting G to want more candy, but she had no desire. I bet it’s a long time before she’ll want any sweets. We got them in the bath (G with her 2nd bath in an hour) and put them in bed early. Both girls were asleep by 7:30, which is a good thing! Mommy and Daddy have been battling a nasty virus, and really needed an early night.