Friday, August 31, 2007

Rockin' Good Morning

Last night, I tried to teach Devin a new word. I thought it would be nice if he could tell people in advance that sometimes, he can be a little exasperating. Instead, he thinks he can be a little exacerbating sometimes. I'm afraid that will only, in fact, exacerbate his situation.

What precipitated my attempt to teach him a big word was his insistence that it was not bed time. He asked, "is it bed time?" and I said, "Yes, it is bedtime." He said, "No, it's not." I said, "Yes, it is bedtime. See how it's dark outside." Again, he insisted that it was in fact and indeed NOT bedtime. That's about the time that I tried to teach him to say exasperating. It was a nice little tiny brief diversion, and then the conversation returned to how it wasn't bedtime.

Then, he melted down, poor little tyke. He hadn't expected bedtime to come right after bathtime. He just wanted to go downstairs and sit with me! He wouldn't just sit with me upstairs. He couldn't. His body was as stiff as a board!

The Computer Guy (I've decided on this nickname for Daddy) took him from me and worked some magic on him, and in no time (and by no time, I mean about 45 minutes and three separate trips by a parent upstairs to put him back in bed) my little exasperated child was asleep.

After his really good night's sleep, only like 10% of which was spent in our bed, he woke up rested and annoyed. I gave him a waffle, which he didn't eat, and grapes, which he played with, because they are all rolly, and ate. The grapes perked him up. I tried to give Trevor grapes. He only wanted two because he was afraid they would give him diarrhea. Too many grapes will give Devin diarrhea, and I guess that Trevor has been paying attention. I convinced him a handful wouldn't hurt, and he ate everything I gave him. He also offered me part of what I gave him, and that was really nice, and I do adore Trevor.

After the grapes perked up Devin, he started to sing me a song. It's a new twist on an old favorite. The new words go a little like this:
Don't let my mommy let me down!

I don't know. Maybe trying to teach him "exasperating" wasn't the best idea...

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Picture Story

"OK, Boys. Sit by each other so that I can take your picture."

"Trevor, put your arm around your brother, OK?"

"Ok, Mom, but if I put my arm around him, I'll probably squeeze too tight."

"Just don't squeeze too tight."

"Mom, Trevor squeezed too tight."

"AHHH, Got you! I was just kidding. I love this guy!"

"If there's a better big brother in the world, I sure haven't met him!"

"Aw, shucks, Devin. That's a nice thing to say. You're all right, too."

"Are you done taking pictures, yet, Mom? I'm really bored of this."

"Yeah, I'm done. Did you see that the flower I bought didn't die, after all?"

"Great, Mom! Hey is the neighbor's dog outside? Is it the grandma dog or the other one?"

"It's the other one, Trevor. I'm pretty sure he won't bite. Did you see that the mums are starting to bloom?"

"That's great, mom! Did you pinch them like Grandma told you to?"

"I think so, see how nicely rounded it is?"

"Oh, yeah! Great Job, Mom! Are those perennials or annuals, do you know?"

"I'm pretty sure they're perennials."

"Cool, so they'll come back next year?"

"Yeah, I think so."

"Hey, can we go watch Scooby-Doo now?"

"How about the Simpsons? I'm really bored of Scooby-Doo. Those shows are older than me."

"Yeah, the Simpsons!"

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A new character

I want to give Daddy a name. Other blogs refer to the Daddies as things like The Dad or Marlboro Man. I've been calling the Daddy in this blog just Daddy. But, I've never really liked that. It's not like he's your daddy, right? I mean, I know that you know who I'm talking about, but what if some random person stops by and is like, Daddy? He's not my daddy! I want those random persons to be happy too and maybe come back. Someone in Idaho keeps stopping by despite the fact that I don't have a clever moniker for Daddy. And, I appreciate that reader in Idaho (Do I know you? Long lost cousin, maybe? Chad? Random reader? Let me know!) But, I think a clever name for Daddy would just make me feel better about things.

I would like to leave it to my readers. Or, at least, I'd like your input. The three I've thought of are:
1. The Computer Guy
2. The Handy Man
3. Mr. Clever (but, I don't even like this one, so don't waste your vote on it.)

Leave a comment, cast your vote. Much Obliged.

--Tricia (I've never been able to think of a clever moniker for myself, either.)

In other news, Trevor is clever.

He took a book to his school yesterday because he wanted to read it to his class. It's a book about Scooby Doo and a Creepy Chef, and it's about 20 pages long. It was his bedtime story for about a week, and he memorized nearly the whole thing.

I know memorization isn't reading, but I think it's a great first step.

He read the book to his class yesterday, and it took the teacher a couple of minutes to catch on he was reciting it from memory, that's how well he did.

We are very proud of our Clever Trevor.

In more news, Devin. Devin, Devin, Devin, Devin, Devin. I love you, but you are one ornery kid.

Monday, August 27, 2007

June 12, 2004 vs. August 2007.

Mom found this:

Same outfit, three years later:

Side by Side:

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Volcanoes by Trevor

Afterbirth, a Cautionary Tale

I've told Devin's birth story before. I won't repeat it here. Suffice it to say, it was progressing much like Trevor's birth, so I felt sure I was going to be at the hospital long enough for him to be born on October 13th. Just *Knowing* that a long night lay ahead of me, I asked for an epidural before I really needed one. My advice to myself was "Sleep" since I just knew this was going to take awhile. That's what the birth of Trevor had taught me. So, around 10 or 11 PM, an awfully handsome Indian doctor came in to administer the epidural. I'd like to give you his name, but I don't know how to spell it. Let me just write it phonetically. GOO-CHEE-POO-DEE. He was handsome and tall. And, Indian, too.

Since this is a cautionary tale, let me tell you about an epidural. First, you have to sit still while the handsome doctor puts a needle into your spine. His goal is to get a tube inserted into the spine so that an anesthetic can be administered to the lower half of the body. I think it took the handsome doctor several tries. Pregnant, about-to-give-birth women are instructed to sit perfectly still with a rounded back so the doctor can get the tube inserted perfectly between two vertebrae. I know that sitting perfectly still through contractions with a rounded back is not easy. I'm sure the handsome doctor's job was also a little tough.

During the needle insertion portion of my epidural, I went into what is known as transitional labor. It hurt. It was, ugh. Yeah, ugh. Before the epidural, I don't think my contractions even hurt. I wouldn't have known I was having them if it weren't for the monitor. During the epidural, I thought something was going wrong because, all of a sudden, I hurt and breathing was difficult. It was just labor, though.

Lo and behold, the epidural provided no relief during the next 20 minutes, and then Devin was born.

To prove the epidural had no effect, as soon as I was alone, I went to the bathroom all by myself.

Now, listen. I'm not mad at the tall, handsome Indian doctor. I'm mad at me for thinking I knew what was going to happen and asking for that epidural in the first place.

Fast forward to the next day. Holding my new little baby in my arms, my head hurt so bad, I could barely keep my eyes open. I mentioned it to the doctor doing rounds. He said that Dr. GOO-CHEE-POO-DEE was so good, that it certainly couldn't be a spinal headache. I have never had a spinal headache before, so I made the silly assumption that if the doctor on rounds said it wasn't a spinal headache, it must not really be a spinal headache. I'm not mad at this doctor, either. I shouldn't have listened to him. My bad.

The other reason Dr. Rounds (who certainly wasn't handsome or I would have remembered it) thought it wasn't a spinal headaches was because I was too lucid and not in enough pain. The thing is, I think I have a high tolerance for pain. But, it wasn't pretty.This is the face of a woman with a Spinal Headache. Don't let it happen to you.

So, for the time remaining in the hospital, I suffered through this headache. On the advice of the doctors, I drank a lot of water and took a lot of caffeine. Then, we went home, and I continued to suffer through this headache all the while drinking lots of water and taking a lot of caffeine. I could control the pain this way unless we were in the car. A spinal headache occurs when there is a hole in the dura. As I understand it, the dura is the sheath that covers the spine. This hole allowed spinal fluid to leak out of my spinal column. This caused the fluid level around my brain to drop ever so slightly. Since my brain wasn't as cushioned as it normally was, any jostling hurt really, really badly.

And, we were taking Devin to the hospital every day for a blood draw since he was jaundiced. So, my poor brain got at least 40 minutes of jostling a day. And, Devin kept getting poked.

By Saturday, I was done with the pain. Why I had to wait until Saturday to have enough of the pain was beyond me. Why I waited at all, though, that's what I want to advise against.

Since I had waited until Saturday, I had to go to the ER. We all went, this brand new family of 4. My head hurt, and my access to water and caffeine was limited as I waited for 6 hours to be seen. Plus, we were waiting on the delivery of a bili-blanket for Devin. My timing for seeking treatment was really horrid. On a weekday, I could have made an appointment. If I had asked for treatment while I was at the hospital right after giving birth, that would have been even better!

Finally, exhausted from waiting, and feeling like suffering at home was better than suffering at the hospital, we decided to leave. I got my stuff, my kids and my husband, left the room where I had spent most of that Saturday, and I told the ER Doc I was going home. He was belligerent. Not with me. He was upset with the Anesthesiologist who had been paged hours ago. He got them on the phone, told them this was unacceptable, and finally I was seen.

It wasn't the handsome doctor. It was a nice little woman who had given me the epidural I got with Trevor. She's the best. I didn't get a spinal headache with her epidural, and she came in during my transitional labor with him and offered to push more meds. She rocked.

The treatment for a spinal headache is called a blood patch. Blood is taken from your arm and then inserted into the spine (repeat of sitting still with rounded back). The blood coagulates over the hole in the dura, spinal fluid stops leaking, brain gets its cushion back, quality of life improves.

And, my quality of life did improve. Devin was gassy and cried a lot and wanted to be held a lot and I took lots of pictures during my 3 months off and one of my co-workers died in a car wreck and haunted me when I returned to work and our house was warm and bright and Trevor strung together words in his first brilliant sentences (imagine a musical montage, please).

Yes, life improved, and I learned a lesson I already knew. I'm in charge of my health and well-being. And, even the really handsome and highly skilled doctors can nick your dura every now and then.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Let's take a break

Back in December of 2004, I was a brand new mother of two. Devin had been with us for almost 3 months, and Trevor was 1 day away from turning two. We'd gone to visit Daddy's parents for Christmas and were on our back to the Midwest when I called a hospital room in Arkansas to talk to my mom. Aunt Vikki was there, too, but she was in the middle of birthing her baby number 2, and to the best of my recollection, she had nothing to say to me.

I could be making this up, but I don't think I'm making this up. I was on the phone with mom or Aunt Sindy or someone who was in the room with Aunt Vikki when Jena arrived. I'm pretty sure I asked, "Was that Vikki?" when I heard the ear-splitting screech 7 states away. Of course, it wasn't. It was that tiny little Jena (pronounced Jenna, not Gina.)

It was this tiny little Jena:

More likely, it was this little Jena:

And, this one:

This one. Certainly this one:

This one, too:

No doubt, it was this little Jena, too.

She still screams the same way she did the moment she was born. All by herself, she's proven that when it comes to nature vs. nurture, it's nature all the way. I'm no longer on the fence when it comes to this argument, not at all.

If you see Jena, please give her a hug for me and let her know that I'm on my way to see her next month. Please prepare her because I want to be able to hug her at least 9 times whenever I want to, and I very much want her to hug me back, screech-free.

Aunt Tricia

Morning song

"There's two pillows and one blanket and my daddy is sleeping." (sounded like: There's two piwwows and one bwanket and my daddy is sweeping.)

This is what Devin sang to us this morning after he climbed in bed and snuggled in between us.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Cake and Ice Cream, Cats and Mice, etc.

Enjoy your ice cream!

Like Daddy!

Or, like Devin...

Yeah, that's better...

Did you know that I am officially closer to 40 than 30 now? I guess this was also true immediately following my 35th birthday, but it didn't really hit home until my Dad exposed that particular truth to me several weeks before my 36th birthday...
Really, 40? Hardly seems right...

Happy Birthday to Mommy! Yes! A Captain Jack Sprinkler!

Yes! Organization!!

YES! An Oprah Book Club Book!

Double Chin and almost 40! Let's make cake!!

Trevor does the candles.

Devin decorates his cake...

The intensity of the artist at work is amazing...

He's cute, don't ya think? I think...

See that outfit? He got it when he was about 18 months old from his cousin Stephanie. I think she had gotten if for a friend's 6 month old, and it was too small. He's 4 now. He still wears it. It's his favorite thing to wear, ever!

In a more serious moment...

The march of the freckles continue.

Aunt Vikki, the funeral director to be, made this when she was Aunt Vikki, the budding young artist. It's on my work desk right now. It said to me the other day, "Hey Tricia, take my picture and post it on your blog!"

I think I will call him Eugene.

Speaking of working from home, here's my office mate, hard at work...

Here's my other office mate:

I think I've reached a conclusion. Having my cat sit on my computer is NOT an advantage of working from home. Not at all. Sometimes, she sits by my mouse and then bites me when I try to use it! Other times, she blocks my screen. Silly cat.

Guess What?! You're now all caught up on our lives, mostly!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


"School is kind of like a reticulated club for learning only."

Mommy digests this information for a few moments before saying, "Did you say that school is a reticulated club for learning only?"

Trevor responds, "No, I said it's LIKE a reticulated club. It's also for playing."

Mommy to Devin:
Singing, "Lay your head on my shoulder, I'll hold you in my arms, baby."
Devin, yawning, "I'm not a baby. I'm a toddyer."

Friday, August 10, 2007

Let's take a trip down Memory Lane, redux

I've looked at this post about 12 times, amazed at just how much my babies looked like each other. My big boy and my toddler don't look so much alike. Well, I've put some of the pictures side by side for your improved viewing enjoyment. When I was little, I remember looking at the photo album with all its baby pictures of Sindy and 2 of me and asking "Is that me? Is that me? Is that me?" It was one of *those things* I wouldn't repeat as a parent. Thank goodness for digital cameras! But, I'm not getting around it. Now, instead of one asking, "is that me?" I have two asking, "is that me?" And, half the time, I don't even know!

Devin 2/15/05

Trevor in May 2003

Trevor, Summer 2003

Devin, March 2005

Devin, Early 2006

Trevor, Early 2005

Devin, January 2007

Trevor, Winter 2007

Favorite pasttime

New haircut

Monster Trucks!