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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Monkey B

Just one little side effect of being a working out of the home parent is having to leave your child(children) with a day care provider. As for our childcare provider, I've mentioned Nancy before, and we love her. Even better than that, she loves our kids.

The things that we don't love about child care is the occasional parent of a sick child who deems their work day more important than the condition of their sick child. These parents sometimes overlook that when their child has a cough for more than 6 weeks and their appetite and behavior seem slightly altered, maybe it's time to take them to see their doctor rather than day after day, back to the babysitter's house. But instead, wait until said child spikes a drastic fever and acts lethargic and then has no choice but to rush their precious ones to the emergency room upon which urgent test results reveal that the child with the persistent cough and changed behavior patterns does in fact have the RSV virus. And unbeknownst to them, has shared the same virus with the other darling children at the same child care providers home.

Any guesses who currently shares the same diagnoses? Hint, it's prevalent in children under age 2. Four gold stars to anyone who guessed that Lincoln has RSV.

I think that maybe my previous sarcastic remarks may be a little uncalled for, but at the same time, my kid has RSV and the "carrier's" mother was only going to keep her at home for only one day so that she could go back to work. Hello...! This virus is contagious as all heck and since Lincoln's swab test came back positive, we've mapped out our entire week, sharing shifts to stay home with him and Elaina to get him well again.

Again... deep breathes. I'm not angry. I just can't seem to put this story together without acknowledging the ignorant thought process of some other day-care moms. See?!!? There I go again!

Let me take you through chain of events that have brought us to now. On Saturday, Nancy (child care provider) called to let me know that two siblings that she cares for had been diagnosed with bronchitis. Okay. So that would explain why Lincoln, Elaina and I have all had a quick onset of deep, throaty coughing attacks. By Sunday, Lincoln had hardly eaten anything in 2 days and when he did eat, he would soon have a coughing attack which made him throw everything up immediately. (Gross. Sorry.) Other times, he would be coughing so hard that his face would turn beat red and he would have trouble catching his breath. And let's not forget about his fever. Since Saturday night, Lincoln's temperature has been hovering in the 102- 103 range. All courtesy of Monkey B. (Yeah, I do seem kind of hostile don't I?)

When I called Nancy early on Monday morning to let her know that I would be keeping the kids at home, she told me that the bronchitis carrier had since been diagnosed with RSV and that my kids were around them most.

Our pediatrician was able to see Lincoln early Monday morning and deemed it necessary for him to have a nebulizer breathing treatment right there before he went home. We have since had a nebulizer delivered to our home, 2 prescriptions filled, non-stop ibuprofen, worrisome fevers, coughing-into-barfing fits, no appetite and little interest in drinking, wanting only to yell and be held at night, thus not letting the rest of the family sleep and many days of sick time used from our work schedules. Did I mention how cranky that kid is? Apparently, so am I.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

What IS new here.

I think that for now I'm not going to bother lamenting on how lazy I've been about blogging and I'm even going to spare myself from trying to catch up on everything that has been occupying our time too. (You're welcome!)

For now though, I did pull out some fun pictures that I've been meaning to share and what better time than now!

A little while back, Elaina pulled out all of her dress up clothes and made up her own original costumes. This would be her rendition of a ladybug fairy. I think.
Isn't she adorable? Sweet and innocent with her sparkly, fresh, 3 year old face?
Then tell me where did THIS come from? As her mother, I did not authorize THIS! She looks like a suggestive barmaid fresh off her shift at the LadyBug Night Club. Eric told me that he told her to pose like a rock star. (She's been in a Hannah Montana phase lately; against my will of course. She's only 3!) I wonder what was going through her mind. It's back to Dora for this kid!

Moving right along... come with me please...hurry. THIS is NEW! Check out this big guy! There is no action to report and I haven't even been the one to coaxing him onto this seat. I think that he sees his big sis and the other kids at the baby sitter's house strike the same pose that he is wondering what magic comes from sitting bare-bottomed on the big potty seat. Although I don't feel that he is especially ready to go full board potty training, we allow him up on the seat whenever he shows an interest and I plan to pull out his little potty seat for his bathroom very soon. I'm just happy that he's showing an interest in this rather than the LadyBug NightClub.And here is my Valentine boy loving his musical card from G&GH. God, they are growing up so fast!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

"Da Beach!

I guess that I hadn't realized just how close my grandparents lived to Daytona Beach. It was a lovely kind of "close." Since we didn't come with any pre-conceived ideas about how to fill our time there, we just took each day as it came and made things up as we went along. After all, that's what vacation is all about and the most important part was to spend time with my grandparents.

As a day filler on one particular morning, we set out to do some treasure hunting at the flea market at Daytona Beach followed by a stop at the actual beach. Since it's still early in the year and even though Florida's winter means jackets and jeans versus shorts and flip flops, the air was still a slight bit brisk and just in the low to mid-70's that day. We wanted to take the kids to the beach just for the experience of being there. And when our day was said and done, it was totally worth every minute of it! Just see for yourself:

Elaina first went in with excitement, only expecting to get her feet and legs wet. (notice: clothes still on) VERY soon, her clothes were completely soaked and we gave in to letting her put on her brand new princess "babing suit" for her to drench herself however she felt necessary.

When we first arrived, Lincoln was fast asleep in his car seat but woke soon after to develop his sea legs. He was unwilling to unbend his little legs in the beginning until......
...until he discovered how cool the sand was and how much stuff he could get into by exploring on his own.
And then... he LOVED IT!! As he lay on his little tummy, his chin shivered and his teeth chattered but the smile never left his face! And his little giggles were more than contagious!
I'm pretty sure that a summer beach vacation will definitely be in our near future!
Beach Babes? Maybe not. Did we have a great time. Definitely so!

Friday, February 06, 2009

Manatees are not playgrounds!

One of our first day trips on vacation was to a nearby park which is home to a great number of Florida manatees. Knowing that that these gentle sea cows are endangered, it's a neat experience to see them and have the kids gaze out upon them even if the pictures will be their only reminders that they were there. What Elaina did remember about being there once before is the awesome playground that this State Park has to offer. I think that her shirt says it all:

A perfect afternoon for a little ring-around-the-rosey! How many other almost-80 year old, great-grandma's prompt their grandkids to race them through the park? Ours of course!I can't even begin to express how nice it was to feel the sunshine on our bare skin and be free from the weight of our winter coats! Tell me why we're still living in Ohio when we can have this in February! Don't you love it?

Florida: We have arrived!

We have all been so ready for a winter vacation! And I mean SOO READY! And when a vacation means sunny skies and grandparents? Well, it just doesn't get much better than that now does it?

It's been a while since we've visited my grandma and grandpa in Florida, so long in fact, that they hadn't ever met Lincoln. Elaina and I went down when Lincoln was only a few months old and the boys stayed at home and let us enjoy some special time traveling by ourselves.

We couldn't have asked for an easier flight with both of our kids and with my parents shutteling us to and from the airport, we may just as well been royalty. Elaina seemed to remember her great-grandparents with ease and flung her arms around them with joy. Lincoln, meh. He's just Lincoln.

Riding in grandpa's golf cart was easily one of Elaina's favorite memories and this year she was even big enough to steer the wheel all by herself.
Even though Lincoln carried himself with a independent, little cranky attitude much of the time we were there, listening to Grandpa sing and play his guitar was something that caught his attention if even for a moment.

Eric is still Lincoln's top idol and hanging out with him and his blanket while watching Noggin pretty much constitutes a good vacation in the eyes of this one year old.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Black and Gold Forever

Have I ever mentioned that we are a black and gold kind of family?
(Lincoln will get there.)(This was about 2 hours past his bedtime and we all know how important bedtime is to Lincoln)
You know the kind of family who roots for Champion Football teams like the Pittsburgh Steelers? And with all of these fancy cheerleaders, how could the Steelers not have won?

Eric favorite football team in the land and their second Superbowl win in 2 years; I can't even tell you how happy this man was!

(Photo Courtesy of Elaina)

Ice Princess

Even though this happened a dandy long time ago, in my opinion and the valued opinion of Holly:-)) I present to you, Elaina on ICE!

In the months leading up to Christmas, Elaina had been asking for ice skates. Not a fleeting request, but over and over and over. I felt bad that Santa never made good on her request and I told her that I'm sure it's because she never sat on his lap to tell him what she wanted. BUT! Her Daddy brought this little girl's dream to life when he took her out on the ice at an actual ice rink. Since we were only days away from leaving on vacation, I parked my broken down old self on the bleachers. Eric did a great job of leading and balancing her around on the ice and even though she fell more than a few times, she loved it! Towards the end of our time there, she even tried out skating by herself. I probably don't have to tell you how that turned out for her...I loved seeing the kids as young as 6 and 7 whip around the rink and people of every age and every speed giving it a go around the ice with such ease. But I was most impressed with my own little girl and her excited 3 year old self, holding onto her dad for all of the joy and safety he was worth and loving every minute of it!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

If I still have membership here...

Disgraceful is one word I could use to describe my commitment to blogging last month. What a stinky way to kick off 2009. And to think what this blog means to me and how much I rely on it for posterity and marking milestones and cute baby faces. I'm a traitor. I'm a cheater. I disappoint, if only myself.

And the truth of the matter is, I don't foresee much free time coming my way anytime soon. With these being my circumstances, let's recap what has been contributing to my delinquent blogging habits shall we?

Well let's just see now... I can't even begin to account for January as a whole. However, one special day included celebrating Elaina's "Got-Me-Day" by taking her to the mall (exciting, I know) to play in the great play area. What else do you do with a 1 and a 3 year old in 15 degree temperatures to make a day special? That was her request, along with dinner at a restaurant. All in all, the whole point of Got-Me-Day is to spend a special day with our family to recognize the joy of just being together so our purpose was fulfilled.

In January, I also hosted Bunco night with my girlfriends. Each month, a group of friends and myself have been trying to steal away just one night together to eat, drink, gossip and laugh until we cry. Mission accomplished. We're already looking forward to our February date!

Most recently, we spent last weekend on our three city tour visiting our family and friends. Friday night was spent at Eric's parent's house celebrating Eric's mom's birthday. On Saturday, we took Elaina ice skating. She has been talking about ice skating for about the past 4 months and even wanted ice skates for Christmas. (Unfortunately, she forgot to ask Santa for skates and none were left under our tree.) Eric decided that since his parents were able to tend to Lincoln and there was a skating rink nearby, this was our chance to indulge her. Very soon, I will post some pictures of Elaina "skating" and report on how she did.

The same day, we joined our niece in celebrating her sweet 16th birthday before going to my parent's house to stay the night. And everyone knows what Sunday brought... none other than Super Bowl Sunday. Eric and his best friend Derek have been Steelers fans together since the beginning of time. And since their beloved Steelers had made it to the Super Bowl, they had to share in their victory by watching it together. Even though we live 2 1/2 hours from them. We had a great time visiting with their family and cheering the Steelers on to their big win, but that meant driving home afterward and unloading our truck and our children at 1:30 a.m. A long night and an even longer Monday.

And finally, today. This evening we are back at my parent's house with our suitcases loaded with summer clothes and sandals. We are leaving for Florida in the morning to visit my grandparents. They are desperately in love with their only great-granddaughter (Elaina!) but have yet had the opportunity to meet our sweet Lincoln. That will all change tomorrow when we arrive at the airport at 2:00 and they can load up on all of the hugs, kisses, chatter and busy-ness that a 1 and 3 year old bring. We couldn't be more excited!

Finally I have an actual, legitimate excuse for taking the next couple days off from blogging. (Just in case any of you have stuck around, that is!) And when we return home, I plan to bombard you with pictures and get back in a better routine which doesn't involve severe neglect to my old friend, Blog.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Elaina and "25"

Even at 3 1/2, Elaina gets her very own list of "25 Random Things"

1. Up to this point, Elaina hasn't really latched on to any certain type of toy or themed-type of toy. One thing that has been unwavering since she was very young is her love of books and reading stories.

2. Elaina sometimes pretends to be someone else and the pseudo name she has begun using is "Carasell RockStar" or just simply "Carasell." Ever heard of her?

3. She is a pretty scheduled kinda girl. For nearly the past 2 years, her bedtime has been right around 8:00 - 8:30 and she is generally awake by 7:00 a.m.

4. In the world of 3 year-olds, she thinks that her joke telling is superb.

5. She has an incredible vocabulary and imagination.

6. Elaina can't wait to begin school. She will be starting pre-school in the fall but in the meantime, we've been telling her that she needs to begin eating new foods like the kids that go to school do.

7. When her hair is long and straight, it hangs right at her waist. Pretty impressive for a 3 year old. She's usually pretty patient with having me brush and put her hair up except for the occasional moments when she is especially "fragile" and "tender."

8. Her current favorite movie is Cars. It has finally won out over Land Before Time and Lion King.

9. When she was just a year old, her Uncle Tim and Aunt Teri had bought her a warming teddy bear (similar to this one) for Christmas. He came with the name "Buddy Bear," but in time Elaina renamed him to "Teddy." She never plays with Teddy but she always requests him at bedtime.

10. She continues to be a horribly picky eater. Her current menu consist of only about 10 items.

11. Some of Elaina's nicknames include: "LuluBelle, LuLee, Laina, Bootie, Sweetsie, Love, Angel and Baby Girl."

12. Within the past few months, Elaina has become proficient at playing games on the computer. She has mostly figured how to play them on her own. For not knowing how to read, she navigates her way around pretty impressively.

13. She can now spell her own name. She knows her address and phone number too.

14. Elaina has the best sense of humor of any 3 year old I know.

15. She loves her little brother to pieces. In fact, there has never been a time that she was less than accepting of this new little yell-machine that we introduced into our home. It was like she was meant to be a big sister.

16. Though I'm not sure to what extent she knows about angels, she knows that her sisters, Ella and Ava, are angels in heaven. She will sometimes ask to see Ava's plaster hand and foot prints and seems unusually mature about the significance of them.

17. Elaina is tender.

18. Right now, we both share the same shoe size. Size 9.

19. She is just as much a Mommy's Girl as she is a Daddy's Girl. However, sometimes our popularity depends upon the hour.

20. She knows her alphabet, she can count numbers alternately to the number 100. She can identify shapes and colors too.

21. I think that she is working on a singing career. She has recently started making up her own words to songs and tries so hard to learn the words to the songs she hears on Noggin and on our CD's.

22. She is nothing short of a miracle in our lives.

23. God knew exactly what he was doing when he created her life. Her life was meant for us and ours for her.

24. Elaina will probably never know what a strong and fierce love that we have for her. No one could ever love her more.

25. Elaina is all of my love in a sweet, little package.