Friday, December 29, 2006

Poop Stories

Clinton had the day off today, and I had to work. This morning I was running late and even though we have Ashley coming to baby-sit Landon, we told her she could come a little later, since Clinton would be there. Clinton’s still a little afraid to be left alone with Landon for an extended period – and I honestly don’t want to push him to do something he’s not comfortable doing – for his sake and for Landon’s sake.

For those not familiar with a baby’s intestinal working – it’s like a conveyor belt. A reflex in the sucking makes them poop. Milk in, poop out – almost at the same time, or immediately following a feeding anyway.

So I’m late and he’s asleep right up until I should be leaving – and then he wakes up crying. Since I’m going to get to work and immediately pump anyway – I figure I might as well just feed him. So I fed him, and handed him off for burping and ran out the door. I thought he might poop after I left, but I didn’t think it would be a big one, and I thought if nothing else, he’d survive the 30 or so minutes until Ashley got there to change him.

But the little gremlin pooped up his back and all over Daddy, and caused him to have to change a dirty diaper. I didn’t plan it, but if I had, it wouldn’t have worked so well. Anyway, it turns out that he CAN change a dirty diaper! Clinton called me for sympathy. He said he asked Landon if he and I had conspired against him in planning this – and Landon giggled at him. I probably didn’t give him much of the sympathy he was after – I certainly don’t get sympathy when I change a dirty diaper. But I am proud of him for not sticking him in the bathtub and waiting for Ashley.


Yes Clint lives with us.

Clint said yesterday that people ask him after I post something about where he was in the story. “Don’t you live with them?” they ask. And I have to say that all the “we” and ‘”us” references kind of sound like I mean Landon and me, but I really mostly mean Clinton, Landon, and me. He’s in there. He may be in the background, but he’s in there.

Right now, I hold a disproportionate amount of duties when it comes to Landon. I am his food, I change his diapers, I get up during the night with him, I take him to his appointments, I was the day care dropper offer/ picker upper and I’m the author of the blog – therefore I will be in more stories than Clinton will be.

That being said, when Clinton starts his blog about taking care of the house – I will be pretty absent from that – as he’s the dishwasher, the vaccuumer, the tidier, the duster, the pool boy, the sprinkler guardian, the lights in the landscaping are burnt out noticer/replacer, the decorator, the trash taker outer, and for the most part, the laundry guy – I’m the one running around making messes for him to clean up. I think I have the better end on this deal.

Gratuitous Christmas Picture:

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

You're so Vein

Or in Landon’s case, not vein. He’s been congested for 2 weeks and the doctor said to suction him out with saline, but as long as he didn’t have a fever – or that his fever couldn’t be broken with Tylenol, that we were ok. This past Friday his fever reached 102.9°F, I gave him Tylenol and after 2 hours it had only come down to 101.5°F. We were in Gun Barrel, so we headed to the ER at the hospital where Grandma Wood works. First order of business is to rule out RSV – so they did the swab and it came back negative. Then they ordered a CBC. The kid has ninja veins. They tried twice to start an IV – and when that didn’t work, they collected the blood from a heel stick. The CBC came back with a really high white blood cell count, so he was clearly fighting off something. Then they ordered the X-ray. The X-ray showed pneumonia. So they arranged for an ER to ER transfer to Children’s in Dallas. Where we were treated like we had come in with a kid with the sniffles. They ordered another CBC – which meant another try to get a vein, they got the blood sample, but couldn’t get the IV. Their CBC still came back high – but that doctor thought it was viral. They deep suctioned him, cleaned out his nasal cavity, and sent us packing.

Luckily for us, the doctor who saw him first called to check up on him the next day. He had shown the X-ray to another doctor locally and one in Houston, and all 4 (including the second one from the night before) agreed that it was pneumonia and when he heard we had been released from Children’s and not admitted, and not even been given anything to deal with the infection, he called in a prescription for him.

All in all – over the weekend, he had his first ER visit, his (and my) first ambulance ride, his first X-ray, his first dealing with a Doctor who didn’t seem to know what she was doing, and his first Christmas.

Yesterday we went to check in with his pediatrician, and he said what we did was good and that the antibiotic we had for him should be plenty, he agreed that with that high of a white blood cell count that he would have had the same diagnosis. And as we left, we were checking out, and the mom in front of us turned as said “Does your baby have pneumonia too? We spent Christmas in the ER.” And in a weird way – it was kind of comforting that we were not the only ones.

So the good news is that we caught it early and he’s recovering nicely – we still have a couple days of antibiotics to go though. He’s a trooper and was called the “best looking sick kid ever.”

When I enrolled him in day care I completely expected that he’d have ear infections and get sick – I did not expect pneumonia. We went to get all his stuff from the day care yesterday. While we figure out our plan, his Grandma Logan and his cousin Ashley will be taking care of him during the day for the next month.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Skateboarding Dinosaurs

Today we had our 2 month check-up and first round of vaccines. And just to make things interesting, he peed on the scale.

He's 13 lbs even (75th percentile), 41cm head (75th percentile) and 23 inches tall (50th percentile). So he's slowed his weight gain a little bit to be normal.

The appointment went better than normal, he was actually quiet while I talked to the doctor.

Then he got upset when we got left alone for a while. Cranky, cause he was tired I'm sure. He was nearly asleep when the nurse came in with the shots. He got 4 shots and one oral vaccine. For all the horror stories we heard about this appointment. Landon cried more when he heard some other kid crying down the hall than he did when he got his shots. He did not appreciate the taste of the oral vaccine at all. He didn't spit it out, but he tried and tried to tell that lady that he didn't want to have that thing in his mouth. SHe laid him out on the table and gave him 4 shots in very quick sucession and when it was all over he fussed for about 15-20 seconds and promptly started to fall asleep.

He got some rockin' band-aids.

He slept all the way through a shopping trip to Wal-Mart and probably would have slept for a while at home if I hadn't banged his carrier on everyting on the way in.

He seems to be ok with the whole shot thing.

In fact, he's sitting on my lap now, talking won't be too long before you get a guest blog entry from him.

A rough idea of what a blog entry might look like from him, from what he's saying. (*Cluck* being the tongue popping trick.)

uh-yeeeeeaaah. uh nea avvve. *Cluck* ehh ehh ehh *Cluck*uh oooh ooh ne aaah hey I ewe. *Smack* *Slurp* Aaaaye, Whuuu, Aaaaaye, EEEEEEEEEEEEE.

My court reporting skills could use some help.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

No time

Pictures tomorrow - I promise.

Monthly Newsletter #2

Dear Landon,

You’ve come a long way this month. We’ve reached what’s supposed to be the height of your colic and are headed back down hill. Either you’re getting better, or I’m getting better at dealing with you, but either way – we’re getting better together. And thank goodness, because it got kind of rough there for a while. I read a book that has helped us tremendously, and I can see the improvement since I started implementing the suggestions.

You’ve started cooing for us, and while we don’t necessarily understand what you’re saying, you don’t seem to mind telling us what’s on your mind. You’re vocal throughout the day – mornings you seem to be happy vocal and evenings you get angry vocal. We’d like to see some of that happy vocal in the evening, the hour or so I get in the morning before I drop you off at day care is not quite enough for me, and your father gets so little of it, he seems to think you are ONLY angry.

You’ve been sleeping less and less during the day lately – although you normally gave me one good nap each day so I could accomplish something. Towards the end of my maternity leave you let me complete my PE application and the Ethics test that goes along with it – which is going to be helpful for us in the long run. Now I just have to study for that test.

You had your second Dr. appointment this month, and everything seems to be going well – you’re gaining weight like you’re supposed to. You started out at the top of the chart, and you’re staying up there.

I’m afraid to say this out loud – and I knock on wood every time I do – I’m sure I’ll pay dearly tonight for putting it in here. But you have been consistently sleeping through the night for over a week. Not the textbook “6 hours is considered through the night” crap, but when you go down at about 8, 9 or 10pm, I have to wake you up in the morning. I on the other hand am still not sleeping through the night, but then I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have since we got Scarlett, so that’s no biggie. Also, don’t tell the AAP – but you like to sleep on your tummy. Anyone to whom I have confided this information has assured me that their children slept on their tummies just fine. You’re not in any other risk category for SIDS, so I think I can justify it. If you fall asleep swaddled you go down on your back, but un-swaddled, gets the tummy.

You had your first road trip and first overnight away from home (other than the hospital) this month. We drove up to Lake Limestone for Thanksgiving – and it seems like we are going to have to work on your vehicle skills. Fiona didn’t seem to mind the screaming, but Scarlett stared out the window like she wished she was out there in the fields with the cows instead of in the truck. Fiona tried to show you how looking out the back window was a lot of fun, but you were having none of that. Scarlett checked in on you occasionally and tried giving you a good lick to calm you down, but that didn’t work either. You kept your schedule of happy in the morning angry in the evening. You went to sleep a little early, so your father and I went to sleep then too, we’re no dummies, when you’re down for the night, if we want 7-8 hours of sleep in a row, we go when you go. Maybe it was that it was a new place, maybe it was your father and me yelling at the dogs as they took turns trying to get up on the air mattress with us after we repeatedly told them no, maybe it was that they took turns doing the ear flap clap, maybe it was that I forgot your CD of the heartbeat thumping noise, or maybe it was that when I put the pack-n-play together and set the bassinet part in it I managed to lay it down at a slight angle and you slowly slid to one side throughout the night, but you did stir a few times during the night – however you were able to get back to sleep. Even with that – you still slept from 8:30 pm to 3:30 am

Your first day at day care was an adventure. First you tried that trick where you don’t take a bottle, so I had to take you a different one, and you got to see me and nurse mid morning. Then you tried your old stand by trick where you tell the nursery ladies you’re hungry – only this time they had a bottle to feed you instead of sending you to where I was – so they fed you and fed you and fed you and you ate 2 ounces almost every hour for 4 or 5 hours and when I picked you up you had a “Big Belly Tight Tummy,” which incidentally is Ivan’s Indian name. And then I got you home and you claimed to STILL be hungry. Liar! The little paper they fill out that tells me what you did all day let me know how VERY little you slept – which tells me they fed you when you cried because you were tired and they thought you were hungry. Also it looks like you started on your newest hickey. This first week has been rough on both of us, but you’ve got to get used to it, because it’s going to be the routine for a while.

This morning you started a really neat new trick of clicking your tongue against the roof of your mouth. We can't get you to do it on command, but it's pretty funny when you do it - sometimes you even startle yourself.

Tomorrow is your 2 month check-up. You’ll be getting your first vaccines (aside from that pesky one they gave you in the hospital that I didn’t even have to witness.) I have been forewarned that it’s heart-wrenching. The day care requires them, and so does the school district, so you’re going to have to get them one way or another, I’m sure you’ll forgive us.


Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Someone’s A Big Cry Baby Today

Today was my first day back to work. Today was Landon’s first day at day care. Do you hear that cracking noise? That’s my heart breaking. He’s just starting to be cool. He’s talking to us – and being happy and fun. The thing is that his good hours are in the morning, and now I have to give him to someone else for his good hours, and I only get the crap hours.

I cried all the way to drop him off; he was happy and talking to me and the lady who took him when I left. And I cried all the way to work. And when I got to work I discovered that not only are my benefits still screwy the lady who told us they could be fixed 3 weeks ago…is a big fat liar. They had to wait until my status changed from leave of absence to active – which it did today and so by Thursday I should have my dependent care FSA in order.

My module is for the most part done, the only complaining I heard was that I made my model way more detailed than anyone else (which I find odd, since they are the ones who TOLD me it needed all that stuff.)

I was just about ok, when I got my first call from the Day Care…I know you’d like to think he got in trouble for picking a fight with a bigger kid…but really – they just couldn’t get him to take the bottle I left for him and wanted to know if I had a different bottle I could bring. So on my first day back, while I’m trying to be good and not call and check on him, he managed to get me to go home and get him a different bottle. When they called they told me he was asleep, when I got there, he was awake again. So I decided to go ahead and nurse him then, just in case he wouldn’t take the new bottle and I would have to come back anyway.

He was happy to see me and nursed but when I tried to hand him back to go back to work he broke my heart again, because he certainly didn’t want to let me go.

I didn’t hear back from them for the rest of the day – so I assumed all was going well. The afternoon lady asked why I had left instructions for them to only give him 2 oz at a time, that he was hungry every hour and she gave him 2 oz almost every hour in the afternoon and the milk I had left, which I thought was more than enough, was empty. So he had tried the trick he pulled in the hospital, only instead of being able to be sent down to my room, they had a bottle and fed him.

Monday, November 27, 2006


It was a big weekend for Landon. His first family holiday and his first road trip. He met several cousins and 2nd cousins for the first time. And it was the last of my maternity leave.

On Friday, Grandma and Grandpa Wood came down. He actually was pleasant for them and cooed for them and was nice for a while. And then we went to Lynn and Kimber's to eat, that's when he decided to start up his evening antics. He got bounced around by everyone for a little while, but there was no end to the fussy, at least not until I got him to sleep for the last time that evening.

On Saturday morning we headed up to Lake Limestone. A girl (dog) on either side of his car seat in the back seat, and off we went. He fussed for a while when we first started out, and then he fussed for the last 45 minutes or so of the drive. Clint even got in the back seat and offered him a bottle to no avail. Although Scarlett enjoyed her front seat time!

He had a similar experience as he did at the other Thanksgiving, being bounced around from person to person but still pretty fussy. His cousin Joshua was a little upset about the dent in his head (soft spot), but after a little explaining about his skull not being ready yet and him still growing and that it's normal, he was ok.

He did the same thing on the way back that he did on the way there, crying for the last 45 minutes of the trip.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Growing Like A Weed

At Landon's Dr. appointment last Monday, he measured 21 1/2 inches (50th percentile - average), weighed in at 12 lbs 5 ozs (100th percentile - fatty), and 40 1/2 cm head circumference (90th percentile - big head). He's healthy - and he's gaining weight like he's supposed to.

And he seems to like lounging by the tree that HCAD gave us.

As if there was any doubt that this is Clinton's child - here's solid proof in a facial expression:

Friday, November 17, 2006

Complaints should be filed with....


Any complaints about this blog not being updated can be directed to him personally. He has decided that I should not be allowed to do anything without him in my arms. And are you kidding? Sit down? How dare I think of doing such a thing?

I get one decent length nap a day - and I have to say - I'd rather be in the shower (or napping myself) than sitting at the computer.

We've slowed down considerably in the past 2 weeks, and not many pictures have been taken, but they will be. I promise.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Monthly Newsletter - #1

Dear Landon,

This has been quite the exciting month for you. First there was that whole being ripped from the coziness you’d been in for 9 months. And it’s been kind of weird ever since.

A lot of women on the web write birth stories and include all kinds of details that I’m sorry to say, I’m not going to be able to do for you. I remember Monday waiting and waiting and waiting for them to call us to come in to start the induction. I hadn’t eaten since noon on Monday – and they wouldn’t even let me have water or ice. They finally had us come in at 11pm.

When we got there and got settled in they finally let me have some ice chips. And I spent about 2 hours in pain when I asked the nurse (who I went to high school with) for either the sleeping pill or the pain meds. And I’m sorry to say – that that’s when it all gets fuzzy. I don’t know when a lot of stuff happened. I know both your aunts, and both sets of Grandparents showed up, as well as Shane. I know everyone came in to see me, right up until Clint decided it was too much for me and then banned everyone but your aunt Kathleen. I know that at 5:00 they decided that you weren’t coming and that they would do a C-section. I was really upset about it. I know that when they wheeled me into the OR I heard them counting sponges and instruments, and then they called for your daddy. I heard my Doctor say, “Oh, well, no wonder he wasn’t coming.” You had been head down for the last 3 months or so, but when you decided you couldn’t fit, you backed up and turned sideways. 9lbs and 9ozs. You were very blue when they showed you to me, and apparently they couldn’t get you breathing like they wanted you to. I was very sleepy but I was afraid to go to sleep or I’d miss getting to see you. They wheeled you by me and let me touch your hand. They took you off to the level II NICU. And that’s the last time I saw you until about 1am. Your Dad took each of the Grandparents in to see you.

You gave your Daddy quite a scare by not breathing like you were supposed to right out of the womb. Every time he looks at you he might as well have heart shaped pupils like in the cartoons.

I should have known you’d be a challenge when you started out by tricking the nursery nurses into bringing you to my room, saying you were hungry – but all you really wanted to do was cuddle.

Since being home you have done a lot of growing, although since I am with you 24/7 – I don’t see much of it. You’ve had a lot of visitors in the past month as well.

You had your first Dr. appointment; they examined you and pricked your heel again – which you absolutely did NOT care for. And neither did your father, so we’ll be going to those appointments by ourselves from here on out.

You had your first outing – we took you to pick up Daddy’s new car. You were unimpressed. And you don’t particularly care for the whole riding in cars thing to begin with.

You had your first bath after you FINALLY lost your umbilical cord.

You took your first bottle on Halloween night from your daddy. Up until that point I had been the one who tried to give you a bottle, and you were absolutely not having it. But for your daddy, you took it like a champ. Which is good news for me, because it means I can go back to work in a month and not having visit the Day Care a few times a day to nurse.

You refuse the pacifier. I mean, what’s the point anyway if nothing good is coming out of it? But you’ve decided to use your forearm instead and have successfully given yourself your first hickey.

You have decided that the swing is not as evil as the carrier and have allowed me to take exactly one shower and fix one dinner while you sat in it quietly. You have yet to sit in the carrier while awake quietly.

Your sisters have decided that you must be staying, and they’re tolerating you. Scarlett gets annoyed with the constant crying and leaves the room. Fiona tries to calm you by pressing her nose to your head. They both check on you constantly.

You have some kind of sensor that makes you poop within 5 minutes of a diaper change. I could probably spend my entire day changing your diaper. Everyone says you are very alert for such a young baby; you’re pretty good at holding your own head up.

And for my birthday you gave me 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep, it was probably the very best present you could have given me. So thank you very much for that.


PS - there's some kind of issue with the picture uploading - and I have placed a bunch of pictures on flickr (see sidebar for link) where I couldn't get some to upload. And then Flickr screwed up and I didn't get them all uploaded there either - but I will eventually.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Landon is now 15 days old. And I can't help but notice how much a 15 years old boy and a 15 day old boy are the same.

When he wakes up he thinks about food almost immediately (also boobs).

He likes to sleep all morning and stay up all night.

When he's watching TV, don't dare take him away from it - or there will be consequences.

He will NOT tell you what's wrong, but totally expects you to fix it anyway.

I'm posting some new pictures on Flickr.

Monday, October 09, 2006

He's Here!!

Weighing in at a whopping 9 lbs 9 oz. Landon made his appearance at 5:36 p.m. on 10/03/06. He's already sneaky and tricked the nursery nurses into bringing him into my room saying he was hungry when he really just wanted to cuddle.

Monday, October 02, 2006

My child is part elephant

An elephant's gestation is an average of 22 I have about a year to go.

(We are supposed to start calling at 6pm this evening to see if they have room for me to start the induction process.)

Friday, September 22, 2006

Flying on Standby

Let’s say you’re planning a trip. It’s not a short trip to the grocery store or anything, it’s an extended trip where the first leg is something you have to pack for. Say 3-4 days of stuff you’ll need. You’ve got about 8 months before you really want to take the trip and lots of stuff to do in the meantime. So you call the airline and book a flight and they ask you what day you’d like to go…and you say Sept 23rd sounds great to me. And they say – well – we can put you on standby, and it might be as early as Sept 9 but it might be as late as Oct 2nd, before we have space available – and no matter what we can definitely get you in on October 2nd although it might be a longer flight. Since it’s so far off and you have no idea what you’re doing, as you’ve never taken a trip like this before – you agree to the terms and conditions. They also say – we will call you when we have room on a plane, and you’re not going to have much time, so go ahead and be packed by Sept 9 so when we call, you can come right over.

Right-O. So you go out and buy an extra toothbrush and toothpaste and deodorant, and dig in your closet for your stolen hotel shampoo. And you pack your bag – sans a few items, which you know you’ll need between now and then, but make a list so that you’ll remember to grab them quickly on your way out. You have a few things in there you will need before the trip if you don’t leave by Sept 9 – and they’re not everyday things, so you don’t want to buy new ones, but you guess you can leave it packed and just dig in the bag when you need those things. You have to make some decisions about clothes, because of your current limited wardrobe, you choose things you think you won’t miss, but end up missing anyway. You have to do laundry mid week, because you had to pack underwear and had decided not to buy new ones and you only have so many that fit right now anyway. And everyday you walk into your bedroom and you see your packed bag…sitting there…taunting you.

Meanwhile, your boss wants to know exactly what day you’ll be leaving and keeps asking you at least twice a week – even though you give the same answer about working right up until you board the plane. Your vacation insurance people also would like to know exactly when you’re leaving – despite the fact that they deal with these kinds of trips regularly, and know you don’t have a concrete answer…and quite frankly you would actually like to know the date – for your own peace of mind. As you get closer to your original date of departure people at work start saying “I can’t believe you’re still here!” And you explain that you don’t have enough time off to just take off and sit at home and wait for the plane. People begin calling your house to ask if you’ve left yet – so you quit answering the phone, much to the chagrin of the person who lives with you who then has to field all phone calls. If you call someone the first question they ask is if you’ve left yet. It annoys you partly because you told them they would get a call when you were boarding the plane – or in some cases right after you landed in your destination city, but it also annoys you because it feels little like they’re rubbing it in that you haven’t left yet.

No one would go on a trip planned this way…NO ONE…it’s enough to make a person crazy – and they blame it on hormones – like a sane person could handle this part – much less a Girl Scout who needs an itinerary!

Monday, September 18, 2006

What blogger? Who?

Yeah, ok I know...over 2 week absence. Still no baby. Lot of stuff going on though.

Nursery Progress - Clint purchased a paint gun last weekend and was able to paint most of the maroon parts of the bed. He has khaki to go and some touch ups and we're set for that. Kathleen helped me make a slip cover for the pleather rocking chair. It still needs a tie back or a clip or something in the back, but it looks good - and I have mad estimating skilz - cause we only had about 18 inches leftover from the material I bought.

Green Jello - Scarlett gets jealous when we start doing anything baby related. She had a field day with the washing of all of Landon's clothes...must sit in laps. She's checking that bassinet from time to time to see if there's anything new in there.

Living room furniture - the sofa was delivered as scheduled and apparently they unwrap the chairs at the warehouse and not the sofa, because twice we've sent the chairs back, since they're damaged by the time they get here.

I'm still working. Today I called to set up my short term disability and after establishing that I need it for the birth of a child, the lady first asked me to predict when the baby would be born (date of hospitalization and last day of work) and then asked if my illness/injury was work related and/or accidental. Which I suppose some people could accidentally get knocked up at work.

Dream Dinners update - we tried 2 of the dream dinners that I made and froze and both were pretty tasty. We decided to wait on trying any others until the baby comes though.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Feast and Famine

So, last week I posted 5 posts right in a row. You couldn’t shut me up. This week I can barely get 2 words out.

The hormones have clearly set in. On Thursday a strawberry milkshake made me cry. I ordered chocolate, and to hide strawberry underneath and ruin half my milkshake is just inexcusable. Also – when I say I’m done with doing something, I mean I’m done. Don’t push me for another minute, I’m done, I told you that. And thinking of something else for me to do that requires work or movement or stair climbing, well – that’s not cool either. And I might just have a tantrum if you’re not careful.

I spent a couple hours on Saturday at Dream Dinners with Cindy. While we might not be quite ready for this baby, at least our freezer is. We haven’t tried any of our meals yet, but they all looked and smelled really good while I was preparing them. As soon as we eat them, I’m going to decide on whether to make that a normal thing. I think the best part of the whole thing is that I didn’t have to chop anything, and everything I needed for each recipe was right there.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Barring any strange circumstances

When it’s time to go to the hospital – people will be called. Not before then – I do not need people checking up on me while I’m laboring at home, thank you very much.

We are pre-registered, so we will arrive at the hospital and go directly to the labor and delivery floor (3rd floor). If you come in the very front entrance of the hospital and take a right, follow that hall around (a couple turns) you will “T” into elevators, and go to the 3rd floor. There is a waiting room just outside those elevators on that floor. Clint will check that waiting room from time to time – as you cannot get back into L&D without a visitor pass.

We will settle into the first room, where I am only allowed 3 visitors at a time (including Clint). I can’t imagine wanting to see anyone but Clint at that point, but we’ll see how that goes – and at some point, I KNOW I will not want anyone in there but Clint. I also won’t want him out of my sight for very long, so the waiting room is about as far as he’s going to get to go, I’ll put him on a leash if I have to.

I will be in the first room for labor, delivery, and recovery. After the baby is born, I will stay in that room with him for 1 ½ - 2 hours, and then they will move me to the post partum room and him to the transition nursery – where he will get his tests done, and a bath. He will be under a nurse’s care from birth (including the 1 ½ -2 hours with me) until he’s 4 hours old, and then he can be brought to my room. The transition nursery is on the 4th floor and has gray trimmed windows. You will be able to see him through the windows. Any cheek pinching and commencing of spoiling will have to wait until he is brought to my room.

Things you should know if you’re coming to visit us at the hospital:

  • Parking costs money
  • There is valet parking available
  • The cafeteria only takes cash
  • The waiting room is small (and on Saturday it was crowded)
  • If you make a single peep about when I’m going to have the next one, I will throw you out a window

Childbirth class

This past Saturday we signed up for the fast track childbirth class…what a bummer when we discovered that taking the fast track child birth class does not insure you a fast track child birth, but just that the class is fast track. When I win the lottery, if I ever feel the need to give a donation to a hospital I think I might donate 20 recliners for the child birth classes.

The packet said to take the class by your 36th week – which ours is fast approaching, so I thought we might be the most pregnant couple there, but as it turns out, there were a quite a few women due a week or so before me. And the teacher said she normally has at least one who is due next week. We didn’t have any of those. No one was due at least until September, and one as late as November. Most falling in September and October.

Lots of info was presented – mostly stuff we knew. We got some helpful suggestions, and a justification for my package of popsicles purchased on Sunday. We found out that the hospital breakfast is cheap, if bland. The valet service is 24 hours. I need 2 bags packed. I will change rooms once. Clint had a hard time concentrating on the breathing portion, and dubbed it “dyslexic donkey breathing.” (Hah-hee, hah-hee, hah-hee, hah-hee)

And, at least I know if I say something like “That doesn’t even look like a baby.” My quote will not forever be memorialized in film for all child birth class people to see. There will be NO camera equipment of any kind in that room.

Oh and one more lesson learned…do not attend an 8 hour class after having had a cyst removed from your back on the day prior – it’s just plain uncomfortable.

Canine OCD?

We put the Pack’n’Play/Bassinet together on Sunday. It fits perfectly where we planned to put it in our room (minus the changing table part, which – ehh – I don’t feel like I really need). The color matches our room perfectly. The extra parts fit neatly under the bassinet part inside the play pen part – keeping it in one tidy little spot. It plays music, it plays nature sounds, it vibrates, and it has a timer that you can set for 5, 10 or 15 minutes…all things I didn’t really notice about it when we registered for it, cause we picked it for the colors.

We went ahead and set it up now, because Scarlett has a touch of OCD. She likes things to be in their place. She will nudge stuff with her head repeatedly if it’s not where it belongs, as if to say “Hey, this? This does NOT belong here. Are you going to put this up? Why would you leave this here? It SO does NOT go here.” We want her to get that out of her system for the stuff, before we come in with an actual baby.

She tried to help us put it together, but Clint kept telling her to “back-it-up.” And she obliged, by taking one step back and sitting, for a minute and then got back up to try and help. Lather, rinse, repeat. Nothing like having an audience for putting stuff together. Once in position, she seemed ok with it being there, but needed to see what was in it. She stood very close to the mesh and peered into the side of it. Then she took a position at the foot of the bed to see if she could look in from the top. She spent the next hour or so not leaving Clint’s side, and pouting. We told her she was not being replaced and that we were just adding on. As the day went on, she seemed to be much better.

Setting up the bassinet this early was supposed to be for the dog. But as we wrapped up the process, Clint said “This kind of makes it sink in, we’re having a baby.” I guess we’re all in a little bit of denial.

Belly Shot – Week 35

What? You thought I would remember/have the energy to actually give a weekly belly shot? HAHAHAHAHA.

The latest Belly Shot is on Flickr.

Farewell Cletus

I will post some pictures tomorrow maybe...blogger's picture uploading thing isn't working. In the mean time, I did upload them to Flickr, so beware - they're not pretty.

This time, knowing what we knew from last time, we were on the look-out for a changed appointment time. Clinton’s scheduled appointment for Friday was at 1:30. We got a call on Wednesday – could we come at 2:30? Sure. We got another call at 5:02 on Thursday (on Clint’s work phone), could we come at 1:00? So, apparently when you schedule an appointment with this doctor, you’re really only picking a day, not a time.

We got there at 12:55, there was another person in the waiting room with her mom and then a flood of like 4 more patients came in. They scheduled everyone for 1:00. Doesn’t seem very efficient, but ok. So the girl and her mom get called back, and then Clinton gets called back.

They laid him out in the room and had him take his shirt off. The nurse wiped his back with antiseptic and then took a bar towel-like thing and cut a hole in it to lay over the cyst. She actually cut 2 holes instead of 1 and instead of trying again, wadded it up on the counter and left the room.

Clint fell asleep on the table a few times. We heard out in the hallway, the doctor telling someone to go to the hospital immediately. “Just go straight to the hospital.” “No, you need to go straight there.” That’s a little disconcerting.

The doctor came in at about 1:30 and asked if we had any questions. He knows how to fold a bar towel and successfully cut only 1 hole in the one he was working on. He told Clint he would feel a stick and some burning. He injected some lidocaine in various spots around the cyst. He admired that Clint didn’t even flinch for the stick. He waited a couple minutes for the lidocaine to take effect. The area got all weird and puffy – like cauliflower - and he started cutting. He said “Wow, that’s bigger than I thought it was.” And after hearing about someone else having gone in to have a cyst removed and it was the size of 2 golf balls, that was a little scary. But within about 30 seconds (and one trip to the other side of the table to cut a little further) the cyst was out. It looked like a gumball or a more round peanut M&M - after you suck all the color and flavor off of it and it’s white…about a ½ inch diameter. Kind of shiny.

Clint asked what caused it, and the Doctor tried to blame me “Too much fat in your diet, your wife is feeding you too well.” “Hey, he had that when I got him, so that’s his Mom!” “No, I’m kidding, they don’t really know what causes them, but it’s good to have it removed, because they get bigger and bigger and can get infected.”

The doctor stitched him up. He has 4 or 5 stitches total, one painful stitch off the end of the cut and we were out of there by 1:45. He goes back next week to have the stitches removed.

His incision is still hurting him today, but it looks better and better.

Hasta la vista, Cletus!



Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Enter Miserable, Stage Left.

Where did my weekend go? Oh that’s right – I managed to pile 10,000 things in one weekend, thereby creating the illusion of never actually getting a weekend.

My baby shower was great – I got to see a lot of people I hadn’t seen in quite a while. I brought my camera in and set it down and never touched it again…so I have no pictures. We now have a great store of diapers…I’m told the 1,325,458 diapers we got might last us a week!

And then…I got asked the question…“Are you miserable yet?” WHY HAVE I NOT LEARNED MY LESSON YET! When asked if I am experiencing something horrific, I say “Nope, not yet.” And within 2 days BOOM…there it is. So thanks to my big yapper – I am now miserable.

I am winded by climbing one flight of stairs. Not even the industrial flight at work – the one at home. So much so, that I don’t go upstairs if I can avoid it. I had to physically recover from going upstairs this morning because someone we know took her crate toy up to the guest bed to play with, and I can’t leave her in her crate all day without a toy. It took me twice as long as normal to walk in to my office from my truck today, and then about 20 minutes and a cool paper towel on my forehead to recover from that. It’s like I have the flu or something, but I don’t have a fever or congestion…just the fatigue. Up until this point I did not see the point of those “Expecting Mom” parking spaces – I do now and I will be taking full advantage of them.

At least I intend to take full advantage of them. As I pulled up to Krogers this afternoon, the expectant mom space was occupied, and I pulled around to try and find another close space and I saw the person getting into the car, and I thought I'd just whip around and get it on my next lap. I was beat by a man who parked there. I hope he has a really hard labor!

Friday, August 04, 2006

Writer's Block

I know it's been longer than a week since my last post.

I write a lot of posts that never go up here. I write them, and I sit on them for a day or two. Sometimes I continue working on them, editing them and eventually I get to where I feel they are presentable and I post them. Or I pronounce them to be crap and don’t touch them again.

What it means for you is that you don’t have to read crappy posts about things you don’t care about, or maybe you miss out on the story where I spilled my pee down the sink at my last doctor’s visit. (I should be able to make that story funny, but it just doesn’t seem that funny when I read what I wrote.) What it also means for you is that you have a long time to wait between posts. Hopefully as I do this more I will get better at it.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Showers, Showers, Everywhere.

Events that go smoothly do not good blogging fodder make. Not that I wanted it to go any other way. I had a great family baby shower this past Saturday. The food was great, and the company was great. I have uploaded pictures to Flickr. Unfortunately I only have pictures of Clinton and me opening presents – so if you happen to have attended and have any pictures of other people who were there, I’d like to get those and you can email them to me at the address in the sidebar (I will not publish them publicly unless given permission to do so.)

I have gone from a completely unprepared feeling, because we had nothing baby related to speak of, to feeling a little bit like a baby store puked in our living room. Seriously though, we got lots of good stuff, and I can honestly think of only 2-3 things I would go buy at this point, before he makes his first appearance – and with the gift cards, we did, in a way, get those things too. I am now looking more forward to having the crib painted so that I will have a place to put some of this stuff away. Oh, what’s that? A tropical disturbance in the gulf bringing lots and lots of rain all this week foiling any painting plans that might have been? Thanks, universe! Ahh, well – it will get done one day.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Belly Shot 30

(Blogger's uploading photo thing isn't working, so you'll have to click on the link and it will take you to Flickr)

Week 30.

I have roughly 2 months to go.

I also had to buy new pants this week. I guess the tags were pretty serious when they said they were good through the second trimester. And I don't suppose hiking your pants up every 10 minutes lest they fall off is a sign of a good fit.

We went to JC Penney's and got a pair of denim capris and a couple more work shirts for me, and then headed on to Motherhood Maternity. I'm not a huge fan of Motherhood Maternity - they seem kind of pricey. But since none of the other department stores in our mall carry maternity clothes I didn't have much of a choice.

Motherhood Maternity could use some doors for their fitting rooms, the heavy curtains they have seemed fine until a 3 or 4 year old of someone else's walked in on me...not once, not twice, but 4 times. Each time she came in I said "Excuse me!" Clint told her "You're in the wrong dressing room." And finally, what got her away from me was a stern "Seriously, go find your mother!" (Who was standing around out in the store eating ice cream.) At least I wasn't really exposed.

The good news is that now I have 2 more pair of pants that should last me through the end of this pregnancy, and I'm actually quite happy with the pair that has this on the bottom of one leg.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


I had my 1-hour glucose tolerance test today.

There was a moment of freak out in the office after I peed in the cup. They didn't tell me what was going on, but they asked me what I had for lunch. There was much shuffling around of things and back and forth trips to the bathroom by the nurse and lab tech. I asked what was going on and they said their preliminary test strips said I might have a bladder infection so they were going to do a culture. If it was positive, they would call me, and if it wasn't, then they wouldn't. I said, "Huh, you'd have thought I would have felt that." Then they discovered that the next lady also had a bladder infection - with no symptoms. The strips had gone bad. No bladder infection for me. Yay!

I drank the Glucola - which tasted like Sunkist - with too much sugar in it. It's not something I would like to be able to buy in the grocery store or anything, but it really wasn't as bad as everyone made it out to be. Clint's favorite nurse told me that the lab lady had given me the worst tasting of the two and that she wouldn't have done that to me. This was the first appointment I went to without him and she asked where he was.

The doctor filled out Clinton's paper work so that he can take sick time when the baby comes instead of vacation.

I confirmed our decision to use Dr. Gmoser for a pediatrician (I also have a call into his office to get that paperwork started.) She said she really liked that group, so that makes me feel even more confident in our decision.

I told her we were not going to do the cord blood registry and she said there is a program where we could donate the cord blood to MD Anderson, so we're going to do that. Actually, all along I wanted to donate it more than store it, so that we could help further the science, so that worked out perfectly.

She said she wanted us to take a Lamaze class, and that she didn't care which one or where, or even if we took it at the Woman's Hospital. We're still going to go with the Woman's Hospital one though, because they also give us a hospital tour, and I think that may be pretty beneficial.

She measured my belly...I can't remember that outcome. I heard the heartbeat. She felt around and determined him to be head down. I gave 2 tubes of blood to the lady who gave me the gross drink and I headed out the door.

I go back in 2 weeks.

Tomato Soup from Scratch

Yes, I realize they make tomato soup you can open the can and pour in the pot and warm up, or tear open the envelope and mix with water and boil. But as an experiment, I thought I'd try to make tomato soup from scratch.

Using a recipe from my Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook for Fresh Tomato Soup. I left out the few dashes of hot pepper sauce (because I didn't have any), and I traded basil for parsley.



After: (I didn't take a picture of the whole finished product, because I forgot, but this is what was left over.)

Verdict: It's thicker than we're used to, but has a good flavor, next time I'm going to seed the tomatoes and possibly add a little more water.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Belly Shot 29

One of the things a lot of preggo bloggers seem to do is post a weekly pic of their belly. I took one at 17 weeks, and then promptly vetoed that idea completely. However, I am now 29 weeks along and I can actually say I feel like I look pregnant and not just chubby. I would say I don't mind the picture, but i think you can tell from the look on my face, that I'm not completely thrilled by the whole idea. At any rate, here we go.

Week 29 Belly Shot

Monday, July 10, 2006

Nothing Happens For a Reason

On Friday we went to have Cletus removed. I didn’t really mean to name it Cletus. It was merely a suggestion of the type of name I was looking for. I figured he’d been hanging out for 12 years, so he kind of deserved a name. Clint has been referring to his cyst as Cletus ever since.

Cletus didn’t really bother anyone but Clint’s mother and me. At least he didn’t up until this past year and he started rubbing Clint the wrong way. I can’t really be sure whether he was getting bigger or not, although Clint claims he probably was – because now he got irritated by clothing – which he never did before. Anyway – suffice it to say – it’s a happy good-bye. would have been. His appointment was for 1:45 and we got there early - cause I have pregnancy mush brain and lost the appointment card and couldn't remember if it was 1:15 or 1:45. Anyway, we walk in and the place is empty. Apparently, the doctor had decided to change all his appointments to the morning and the staff, rather than calling the home number, called Clint's work number. At 5:15pm, the day before the appointment...when he had left at 5:00, not to return. And then they called again at 11:02am, saying they wanted to make his appointment for 11:00...So Clint's mad. Cletus got a 6 week reprieve due to other issues with our next 2 off Fridays. And Cletus will now be departing on August 18th. I have the before pictures, but I'll save that for the before and after when I have an after.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Parents of the Grand Variety

I wrote a post about Clint’s grandfather before he passed, but I never posted it. It didn’t feel right. It felt like a goodbye letter to him, and that if I posted it I was giving up on him. I never gave up on him. He was one of the most loving people I have ever met. The very first day he met me and every time he saw me from that day on, he always had a kiss and a hug for me.

During our visits to his house, in the days preceding and just after his passing, there were piles and piles of paper to go through. Stacks of Father’s day cards from past years, Thank You notes, Christmas and Birthday cards, computer printouts of jokes, some one-liners he’d written down so he could remember them. One of the things Jody handed to me was a poem. It’s a poem that I’ve read before, entitle
Dash. I have copied the first 2 stanzas here – and it gives you an idea of what it’s about, for the full text, click here.

The Dash (1998)

(Original copyright 1996)

by Linda Ellis

I read of a reverend who stood to speak

at the funeral of his friend.

He referred to the dates on her tombstone

from the the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth

and spoke of the following date with tears,

but he said what mattered most of all

was the dash between those years.

Jim Alton Wood had a very eventful dash. I don’t know a lot of these stories, and I just found out a few in the days since his passing. I had no idea that he was on the USS Yorktown (CV-5) when it was going down. That’s a giant piece of history right there. He tried to record some of his stories for us, so that we would have some of that history.

I only came to know him in the past 9 years, and I will never forget him. His actions spoke louder than his words. He was active in his church, he never said a mean word about anyone, and in general was a very good man. Clinton and I had hoped that Landon would get to know him, and he’d have same the influence he had over Clinton. Though, I have no doubt in my mind that he is in heaven watching over.

He will be missed.

Jim Alton Wood (January 1, 1923 - June 21, 2006)

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Excuse me, where is the fire extinguisher?

When you get pregnant, everyone tells you about the morning sickness and asks you about the morning sickness, and they keep doing it until you deliver I guess. I mean, I’ve made it this far and people are still asking me. I don’t want to talk about morning sickness…mine wasn’t that bad and apparently that’s not a good enough reason to stop talking about it.

What they fail to tell you about is the heartburn. Because, seriously? This is worse than puking. I’d rather be sick for 9 months than face the next 3 months of this. Originally – like 3 months ago, I was able to control the heartburn by staying away from carbonated drinks…and then God laughed at me and said that chocolate shall also cause me heartburn, I won’t give up chocolate, but I know the consequences, so I was prepared for that. And then God laughed at me again…and now everything gives me heartburn. DON’T TELL ME TO TAKE TUMS!!!!!!!! I take Tums. I take about 20 each day. I have them in a baggie in my purse and every once in a while I pull the baggie out and have a 2 Tums or 3 Tums snack. I got what I consider the best tasting ones (berry flavored). I never noticed this before, probably because I never took more than 3 Tums in any given week before, but they leave an awful dry, metallic taste in your mouth…oh but if you wash that away with water? The taste either gets worse or the Tums are no longer doing their job, and I have to take more – it’s a vicious cycle. It kept me up all night Friday night and hurt so bad Sunday night that I cried. I sat up in bed after Clint gave me conflicting instructions about what he thought I should do about it and I cried.

There’s an old wives tale that says heartburn is the sign that the baby will have lots of hair…I don’t generally subscribe to old wives tales (we have a heart beat that says Landon is a girl, but you’ve seen the pictures…clearly he’s not a girl.) He better have a head full of hair and maybe one of those man back hair sweaters when he comes out, because this is just ridiculous.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

A Series of Unfortunate Mini-posts

There’s not much blog-worthy news in Chez Wood this week. I know most of you are really only reading to hear about the baby – and with my appointments 4 weeks apart, and my promise of one post a week…well, one in 4 baby related posts is about as good as it gets right now. But I do have a bunch of little not necessarily related items and items that will not make a full post on their own and I will try and bring them back to the baby in one way or another, but I’m not making any promises here.



There’s an electrician coming out tomorrow to look at our breaker box (thank you, home warranty). I’m tired of flipping breakers, and now that it’s not just the dryer, and sometimes it’s the A/C or something else, it’s getting really old. He will hopefully tell us that we need the whole thing replaced and then use the one we bought before I thought about the fact that the home warranty is the way to go (or maybe I could be lucky and find the receipt). Once that’s done, we will also have him add a circuit to the garage, so that we can run the air compressor and paint the crib for the BABY. (Whew, that one was easy.)

As an interesting side note, when I called the electrician company today, they put me on hold and the hold music/ad kept asking me if I was crazy and to call a phone number cause they were looking for certified crazy people – I hope that’s not an indication of the kind of people who work there.


Like Father like Daughter

Clinton is going to have a bump removed from his back on Friday. He’s had it for 12 years, and since I wasn’t around 12 years ago, I can only assume he didn’t get it the way Scarlett acquired hers – rolling around on her back in the grass…but I could be wrong. Actually the doctor said it was a sebaceous cyst – which is essentially a clogged hair follicle. But they will now both be back bump free when the BABY comes. (Yeah, I know that’s stretching it.)


Go go gadget arms…

My inspection classes are going well…I have had 4 each of Construction and Inspection, 8 each to go. I have the same instructor all day. He’s pretty laid back and lets us out a little early from each class, which gives us a decent lunch break and gets us home a little earlier. Once complete, I will need another 32 hours of classes to be eligible to take my test. The only 2 classes left during the summer after I finish these that would go towards it only add up to 30 hours, leaving me 2 hours shy of what I need. Hopefully the fall schedule will come out soon and I will be able to make arrangements for what I need and be able to take my last class and the test before the end of the year. I have decided to put my PE exam on hold, until April so that I can focus on the inspector test and the BABY.

As a fair warning – in order to get more field practice, after I pass my test, and before I start going into complete strangers homes, I will probably be asking each of you who own a home (or 2) if you would allow me to inspect them (for free of course).


Ivan has a harem/gang

We haven’t gotten close enough to the cats who have been hanging around in our back yard to determine their genders, cause when they see us they run off. But Ivan either has a harem or is leading a gang of neighborhood cats. Clint caught them having some kind of meeting/discussion the other night in the bed of his truck, while Ivan sat on the cab supervising – you know, cause he’s in charge. Now, if I could just get him to stop letting them eat all his food, we’d be in good shape.

We also noticed a return of the ear scab spots he had last year…luckily I still have some prednisone (see earlier post where I mention not being good at giving them their meds consistently) and I’ve started him on a regimen to get him back to the picture of health. I made a chart – I will check off the date/time each time I give him one. I can only imagine that maybe he’s allergic to mosquitoes that are biting him on his ears, because it’s not ear mites. Last year the vet said she thought it was probably an allergy of some kind and even mentioned mosquitoes, and they showed up when the mosquitoes did, so 2+2=4 in my book.

There’s no baby connection…sorry.



Now look, people – I know you’re reading these posts…would it kill you to give me a shout out in the comments?

Monday, June 12, 2006

Corpse Fairies

My doctor’s office at her Fannin location has 3 small rooms and one big room. The big room has the ultrasound machine in it, and the chair for the Dad. All the other rooms are tiny and have the examining table, a little changing area, and are basically walk in closets – but have the things you expect to see in a room at the doctor’s office….except for the art. I don’t mean to say that there aren’t the required pictures on the wall of various women’s insides and gestational pictures of fetuses to show you how in week 5 you have a lima bean and in week 18 you have a mango. Which, what’s with the food descriptions for sizes when it comes to fetuses?

But these, seem out of place. (The pictures are not the best - because they're camera phone pictures, and I will try and remember to bring our real camera to my next appointment at the Fannin Office)

We can't really tell if they're corpse fairies or angels, I mean, they have halos, but they also have wands.

Some seems to be practicing their martial arts.

Some just look like they're falling.

And hanging beside the corpse fairy mobile...a fat ballerina in a sparkly leotard.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

So you can teach an old dog new tricks

Scott and Cindy came over yesterday afternoon and brought their Doberman, Kane, to play with the girls. He LOVES Scarlett – just ask him about her and he’ll tell you how much he loves her. And surprisingly enough, when they got the Doberman into the pool…Scarlett decided the top step wasn’t such a bad place to be after all. Typical girl will follow her boyfriend anywhere. Now if we could just get her to swim if she falls in instead of sinking, she’ll be ok.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Baby Update

We arrived today for our appointment, and the nurse tried to tell Clinton that they had not fixed the ultrasound machine. He tried to tell her that he would put her in a headlock. I don’t think either one believed the other.

All is well in whoville.

We were also able to confirm boyhood. Actually the technician said, “If it’s a girl, she has some major problems.” And then of course picked on Clint about needing his glasses checked since he couldn’t see what we saw last time, but he did see it this time.

But we got a few pics to share. The numbers on the bottom – for those not “in the know”

HR – heart rate – 153 bpm
BPD – biparietal diameter (skull diameter front to back) – 6.02 cm
HC – head circumference – 22.5 cm
FL – femur length – 4.45 cm
AC – abdominal circumference – 21.3 cm

He measured 24 weeks plus 4 or 5 days for everything except abdominal circumference (he’s a chubby week ahead there). Our estimated date of delivery is now Sept 23.

So – we have a face.

We have a spine.

And we have confirmed boy parts.

We are pre-registering with the hospital on Friday. I have a glucose test in 4 weeks. And at 28 weeks (as of July 4th) I am “grounded.” I am not to leave the area (defined as an hour or so away) until after giving birth.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Flickr and nursery progress

I joined Flickr to post pictures. I just have the base, free, kind of account, so I can only upload so many to that site, but the link is here and will have a few more pictures than what I post on here.

Head on over and check out the nursery progress. Actually they're mostly "before" pictures, since the only real progress we've made is to clean out that room.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

$370 Bald Spot

It started on Mother’s day…she sat down as you petted her across her back. Then it moved on to not jumping on and off the bed like the crazy dog she is. I noticed the petting thing on Sunday…Clint mentioned it to me on Wednesday when I got home from work – we were supposed to be headed to a baseball game. So I called the vet – asking if it were possible that she might have a pulled muscle or should I bring her in. The vet said bring her in now! With urgency…so I freaked out. This is my baby and I had noticed her issues on Sunday and ignored them for 3 whole days and it was bad enough a description that the vet said it couldn’t wait…what kind of crappy dog mom am I?

So I tell Clint to go to the game with Scott when he arrives and I will follow when I get back from the vet. And the vet is the new vet (of a practice of 5, 3 steady, 1 fairly new, and this would be the newest). I’ve never met her, she seems likable enough. She explained her reasoning for asking us to come in immediately is that a lot of people can’t distinguish back pain from abdomen pain in dogs. (WHEW, I knew it was back pain, she’s still pooping and peeing like a champ) Well, she tells me the various things it could be, from mild to worst and we decide to take the route of some non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pills and pain pills for a week and cage rest and we’ll see what happens. I walk out $80 poorer, thinking I once again over reacted to what will be a pulled muscle.

A week later, I am about out of meds, and Scarlett is no better than she was before. So I call the vet and ask if I should continue the pills and if so that I need a refill, or should I bring her in for X-rays or something. The vet says X-rays – and she estimates it will cost around $220-$230 depending on how much it takes to sedate Scarlett.

So the next morning I haul Scarlett in for the X-rays and sit patiently by the phone waiting to hear the news that my dog has irreparable spinal damage and they are going to put her down. I get the call…FINALLY at about 3pm. She shows no issues on her X-rays, although they are going to hold them back for the radiologist to look at when they come in. For now they will increase her dosage on the anti-inflammatory and switch to caplets for the pain pill since Scarlett apparently can tell the difference between a treat and a med even if it’s supposed to be tasty. She is released to me that afternoon for $260 – pills and X-rays.

By now, I’m seriously in tears when I look at her. I can tell she’s in pain, I’m doing my best to do everything I can. For the first time EVER I have given her all the pills at all the right times for recovery.

The next morning, I fight her to get her out of the bed so she can take care of her business before I leave for work. She bites my face – kind of a warning bite, not a chomp down I’m going to kill you bite, but “see how pointy my teeth are?” lunging at me kind of bite – where she happened to ram her teeth into my face. So I sit on the ottoman and start to cry, because I’m at my wit’s end and not only can I not figure out how to fix my dog, I have now actually hurt her. And true to her mother, she feels guilt when she makes me cry and she tried to comfort me, and gave me kisses. I got her off the bed and took her outside. She’s doing her business when I notice a spot. A spot on her back where she’s lost some hair….a spot exactly where when you touch her she sits. I don’t know what the spot is, is it an insect bite? Is it a wound from a tree branch or something? I don’t know. I spray it with Benedryl spray – in case it’s an insect bite – maybe it itches. And I kennel her and head to work. I called Clint on my way and told him about the spot and he said to call the vet again.

I called the vet and made an appointment for that afternoon, I have an eye appointment an hour away that evening, but I figure I need to do this for her and if it runs over, I can always call Clint’s cousin to come take over for me at the vet’s office. We got Dr. Wall, she examines Scarlett and says she thinks there’s something in there, like a splinter or something. She asks if she can shave the area. And I say “Whatever you have to do to fix my dog.” Which I think is the sentence that allowed her not to come back and tell me what was going to happen, as I waited for what felt like an eternity.

She came back with Scarlett looking a little happier, with a little slit cut in her back where the bump was, a little blood and a little bald spot. She had a grass awn. A grass awn had caused all of this discomfort. She was put on antibiotics, in addition to her pain pills and anti-inflammatory pills. $30…the cheapest of all 3 sessions, and she’s fixed! Or she will be, cause she’s still got some healing and recovering to do. They had put some topical anesthetic on her back and cut the thing out.

A grass awn...mostly likely picked up by rolling around on her back in the grass. I looked it up on the internet and can only say I feel a little lucky and a little weirded out, because – she by all accounts shouldn’t have had one. The typically prone groups are long haired outdoor dogs who have access to fields with high grass, and even those dogs, normally get them in their foot webbing or they breathe them into their respiratory system. Although there is one sad story of a dog that seems to have had it so badly that they nearly cut him in half – or at least that what the pictures look like. It could have been worse, the dogs that breathe them in have them get in their lungs and migrate through their body. They cause abscesses along the way…it’s really a very terrifying picture of what could have been.

Anyway – I continued to give her the meds with amazing consistency (which is not like me at all with animal meds, or my own personal meds for that matter). She took her last antibiotic this morning and I’m sure she’ll be relieved to find out I have nothing to shove down her throat this evening. She has seemingly completely recovered, and although I’ll miss that while she was not feeling well, she slept through the night without asking to go out…I have to admit when she woke me up in the middle of the night a few nights ago to go out, I breathed a giant sigh of relief. My baby is feeling better!

In the midst of this, Clint said something about “if” they could fix her (before we knew what it even was). And I responded “Oh, they WILL fix her.” Scarlett is my child and I will not put her down without a fight. People have been telling me that when the baby comes I will love Scarlett less. I remember reading on another website about a woman who said she didn't believe them, when they told her she would love her dog less when her child came. She said they were right, and she was right – she didn’t love her dog less, but she loved her child differently. So I guess we’ll see. But for now – all I can say is how much I love Scarlett and her $370 bald spot.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Standing on the street corner with my bucket

We registered this week for baby stuff. It felt a little reminiscent of when we registered for our wedding. Except – you know – we knew what to expect when we got married – life does not change that drastically when you live together before getting married. We did not know what we needed to register for this baby. Yes we need a car seat, Yes we need a pack-n-play/bassinet combo. Yes, we need a high chair – but really – we don’t need it until he’s older. Yes we need a stroller. Yes we need sheets. Bottles? What kind? How many? We don’t know. I had my friend Stephanie come up on Sunday and she was a tremendous help. She has 2 little ones, one 14 months and the other 3 years old – he’ll be 4 in October.

She graciously told us what she thought were good buys and what she thought wasn’t necessary. Things they will give us in the hospital and therefore we do not need to register for. Things that she found useful and things she found completely useless.

We managed to create quite a registry between the 2 stores, and I’m going to guess that not much of it is bought, because it’s expensive stuff or it’s just plain boring.

The thing is that I feel very much like I’m just begging. Plain old, stand under the overpass and harass the people who drive by for money begging. And the things we put on the registry are just unimaginably expensive - and who in their right mind would buy me a $300 breast pump?

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Playing Cards

I don’t often play the pregnancy card. When I do, it’s because I know something is either beyond my limitations or it could be dangerous for the fetus.

Discussions around our house however have become more frequent regarding my use of the pregnancy card, and I often, jokingly flash it – but I’m not really serious about it. I have never been and don’t want to be a damsel in distress.

Things I have been accused of “playing the pregnancy card” for, but I have good reason not to do them:

  • Lifting heavy objects – and generally – I try to pick something up first – I do know my limitations and when I feel like I would be straining I stop and call for help.

  • Picking up dog poo in the backyard – this is a sore point for Clint – as he believes only cat poo is the enemy, but I seriously don’t think that my handling feces of any kind could possibly be good for the baby – and I’m sure I could back that up by clicking a few links on-line – but it’s my own instinct that I should not be handling feces of any kind.

  • Walking slower – my muscles are not holding like they used to and my abdomen hurts sharply if I walk too fast.

I feel like I might be missing out on an opportunity here, so I have decided that I need to come up with a pregnancy card. It will be similar in size to those joke cards they have at Spencer’s, like a credit card, and it will work miraculously as a get out of jail free card, only you should not surrender your pregnancy card to anyone until you give birth, and at that time you will trade your “Pregnancy” card in for a “Post Partum” card.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

We wouldn't have known

Yesterday was my 3rd OB visit. It was supposed to be in town, but because my Dr. is having surgery next week, they moved all her appointments to her main office. This was an inconvenience, only until at this visit it worked to our advantage.

The appointment was at 4:30 and we arrived a little early and headed in. It was supposed to be a listen and measure appointment. No biggie – not a lot of bells and whistles. I weighed, I have normal calm blood pressure, I peed in a cup. And we waited in a small room – we hadn’t been put in before with a weird mobile of what Clint could only describe as corpse-like angels or fairies and one fat lady ballerina hanging from the ceiling. This is why I’m supposed to be carrying my camera at all times – maybe at my next visit I can snap a photo of it.

So we sit and wait and we talk about how we’re only going to hear the heartbeat and that we need to find the back-up literature that says the whole fast heartbeat = girl is an old wives tale, just in case – cause we don’t want anyone to get all excited about it being a girl or boy and it’s the other and they get all upset and have a big pile of stuff to give us that won’t go with our baby.

And the Dr. comes in and we talk about how we’re not going to do the screening for the 4 chemicals because there’s a very high chance for a false positive and it’s just not worth the worry. And how I forgot the form in the car and she says she has forms, but then that gets dropped altogether when she says today we’re just going to listen to the babies heartbeat with the Doppler. And I unbutton my pants and pull them down a little and she starts working on trying to find the heartbeat. She finds mine but no baby. She tries for about 30 seconds before giving up and sending us to the ultrasound room to have her technician find it. Clint has a worried look on his face, like something is terribly wrong. He does that though – so I don’t pay much mind to it.

We walk out and I go lay down in the ultrasound room. The technician turns the light off and had me pull my pants down slightly. She has Clint play with the chair to get my legs up – which he likes to do. She begins the ultrasound and up pops the baby…it’s moving and lovely and she shows the heart pumping. Clint asks how fast – and she shows a weird screen with a bunch of lines and somehow knows it’s 154 bpm. This is a good healthy heartbeat. And by that Old Wive’s Tale – it’s a girl.

So Clint asks if we can tell if it’s a boy or a girl or if it’s too early. And the technician says it may be a little early – but she will certainly look. So she looks and look s and looks. We see the baby scratch it’s head (it’s a thinker). We see it’s umbilical cord between it’s legs. We see it try to hid it’s parts from us by covering them with it’s hands (and modest too!) And FINALLY – she sees it. It’s a turtle. It’s boy parts. She explains to us what we’re seeing and that’s the picture I come home with. A picture of boy parts. In fact – the baby is not even wholly on the screen. I think about the awkwardness of my sending an email out to everyone with a picture of my son’s boy parts…but seriously – it looks like a turtle. And that did resolve itself by the fact that my stupid scanner at work is not really that great apparently and it got all pixelly and you can’t really even see the turtle. I scanned it in a few more times. You would think at a multimillion dollar company and a super expensive Xerox machine I could have gotten a better scan than on our $50 scanner….but this one’s better:

So the technician is cleaning up and Clint says “So are you the technician that’s always 100% right?” And she says she doesn’t like to brag, but “that’s what they say.” She also adds that it’s because she doesn’t say anything unless she sees it.

Clint is ecstatic. He had a rough day at work, but ever since we found out – he hasn’t been able to stop smiling. He probably smiled from the time we got home until he went to bed. We made a bunch of phone calls. And in a moment of silence one of us would say “Hey……we’re having a boy!” And it never got old.

I think I’ve finally connected. This is the first time I’ve really felt the excitement of this baby. Maybe now I can get off my butt and do something about getting his room ready.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Late to the Party

So, we're late to the party as usual. Seems like everyone has a blog these days. As it turns out this is going to be a really big year for us.

We bought a house: (Technically we bought it in December, but we didn't move in until January)

On the morning of the first night we spent in our new house...we found out this:

It didn't really sink and Clint didn't believe it until we saw the Dr. on Feb 7 - and he saw this:

That 6mm blob is the baby.

And then at the next appointment we saw:

So the blog is about us....but mostly the blog is about the baby.

And we can't forget the obligatory cute shot of the big sisters:

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Don't bug me about it

This is a project - like any other, just as likely to disappear at any time...

I can only promise an update weekly - if I do more than that - you should just be happy for what you get.