Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Rainy Day

Whew, it is quite a bit more work to stay home when it's raining out. No park, no backyard, no sand table, no walk, no throwing the ball for the dogs. Lots of energy, though. And impatience. Charlie's got no time for bad weather. It means long stretches of not running anywhere and that's just not going to cut it. So FIX IT Mommy.

When we finally got going for the day, we headed over to the University of Richmond to find some more potential babysitters in their babysitter book. Student Activities keeps a couple of binders: One of students who want to babysit and one of parents looking for sitters. I must write some kind of crappy babysitting ad because I didn't get any phone calls or emails in response to my sheet in the parent book.

I managed to find 5 sitters with open daytime hours in the student book before Charlie grew tired of waving at people walking by and saying BUH BYE as loudly as he could. I emailed all 5 and heard back from one. She is coming by tomorrow. Fingers crossed people. Mama's sanity is hinging a bit on this one.

I thought about hitting up the kid's coffee shop in Carytown again after we got back in the car, but it was clear when Charlie fought going into his car seat that it would be a painful experience for all. So we came back home and I found a couple of 10 minute kid's yoga things on On Demand. Charlie seemed to like them. Perhaps his next new word will be "Namaste".

By the time he was up from his nap, it was obvious we needed to get out of the house. Too grouchy (both of us) for errands, so we went up to the mall to play on the playground and eat Chick fil A for dinner. That's right. Rain now equals fried chicken for dinner.
Rain also means Mom is willing to shell out 75 cents to make a pretend car shake while Charlie sits in the driver's seat and gets scared and upset.
After dinner we walked around and Charlie went into each store we passed to tell everyone HIIIIIIIIIII. Some found this more amusing then others. I think the lady in Bath & Body Works was Charlie's favorite, though pulling the shoes down off the display at Foot Locker was appealing as well.
Charlie also went and grabbed this older woman's walker from her as she was sitting down for a rest. I think he thought he could push it around like he does his stroller. She was polite. I was mortified.

After that I was done. Say BUH BYE Charlie.
We woke up to sunshine today - yay! I know we need the rain. I just don't want the rain. Maybe if I find Charlie some rain boots and a rain coat we can play in the rain next time instead of trying to avoid it. Oh goody! Something new to shop for!

Friday, September 24, 2010

A Week in the Life

Charlie and I have been such social butterflies this week. It felt like a 2 day week, which is a heck of a lot more then I can say about my weeks when I was working full time. All of the sudden it was Friday and Brad was back home.

I thought the days would feel kind of long sometimes when I stayed home, mostly because it's just the two of us. But surprisingly, they go by pretty quickly and all of the sudden it's bed time.
We go to the park, to gym class, to music hours or story hours, we play in the backyard or run errands. We got Charlie's hair cut, too. Went a lot better this time, though he still doesn't like the scissors touching his ears.

It's a decent cut, though we had to wait about 20 minutes when we got there. Charlie loves hair dryers and brooms, so a hair salon was full of temptation. I'm sure I was quite the sight, running interference between a toddler and a bunch of brooms and hair dryers.

I found a mom's group and met up with them this week at the Children's Museum of Richmond. They have a new location that targeted to the younger kids and Charlie absolutely loved it. There was a train to ride and plenty of slides.

Charlie's been watching Brad dig up our yard as we get ready to reseed, so as soon as he found the sand box and shovels, he was doing the same thing! Just like daddy! Kind of like how he still tries to pull weeds out of the driveway when we go outside because he watched us do that for about 3 weekends.
A couple of the other moms had brand new babies with them - 4 and 5 weeks old. They brought their older kids to play and the newborns were just along for the ride.

I held one of them, a baby girl, when her mom needed to take her older brother to the bathroom. Charlie was busy playing in an exhibit, but when he spotted me was back over in a split second, whining for me to pick him up. Jealous! Charlie does NOT like to share his mommy! I kind of don't mind. :)

Charlie's gotten a little more acclimated to the gym daycare, so I've made it to work out a few times. And by acclimated, I mean he starts getting upset in the parking lot and cries like I'm abandoning him when I drop him off, but is fine 5 minutes later. I start feeling bad sometimes but try to remember this child is not suffering for individualized attention and an hour playing with a bunch of different toys won't kill him.

It feels really good to work out regularly again, especially lifting weights. And by good I mean my whole body hurts in the most miserable way for 3 days afterwards. But soon I'll get a little more used to it and it won't be so awful. I miss playing tennis the most, but that's probably not in the cards for a while longer.

Whenever we get home from somewhere and get out of the car, Charlie wants to crawl into the driver's seat in the car and pretend he's driving. He usually starts yelling for Bobo. If we ever can't find the two of them, a safe assumption will be that they're off joyriding together.
It's been so painfully hot here. Feels like July in the most annoying way. Today I actually put Charlie in his swimsuit and too him up to the fountains at Stony Point to run around. He loves it there because people bring their dogs and Charlie never met a dog he didn't want to chase yelling AH DOGGHHHH??? Yes Charlie, that's a dog.

Charlie was so excited when Brad came home today. I put him down late for his nap so he could see him first. He was just giddy and gave him all these hugs and running around all excited. It was cute. He misses Brad so much during the week. I've been sending Brad lots of pictures and videos so he's up to speed on all the Charlie happenings.

This weekend Brad and Charlie have Romp n' Roll again tomorrow morning and I'm going to go to spin class. Arkansas is playing Alabama and then we're going to a block party. That's about the extent of our plans. Just overall enjoying the complete lack of fall weather as October is almost here. Yay.

Happy weekend!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

8 Years

I love this picture. We look so happy and excited. And young. Which makes me really like it! The thing is, I still feel 26. I'm pretty sure Brad does too. Where do these years keep going?

Today I'm remembering dinner at Sambuca, St. Michael's church, the Melrose Hotel, Fly Me to the Moon and 10 days in Lanai and Kauai.

I'm choosing not to remember our psycho limo driver, the DJ that played bootie rap in front of our grandmothers and the ancient plumbing going out at our ancient little house.

Happy Anniversary Brad! Love you!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Weekend

Another beautiful summer weekend. Yeah, except it's September! It's been so hot, the only way I can tell it's fall is that Brad is parked on the sofa for a large portion of the weekend watching football! The hogs won against Georgia and I think Brad won his fantasy football match up yesterday. The key elements of a successful weekend.

Brad and Charlie had their first Romp n' Roll class on Saturday, with pancakes at McDonald's first. I went to a spin class and just enjoyed a quiet house afterwards. Sounds like Romp n' Roll for Charlie consists of slides and throwing balls - that's all he wants to do! But they seemed to have a good time.

Brad and I also celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary this weekend. It's actually on Tuesday, but he will obviously be out of town. He came home from running errands on Saturday afternoon with *three dozen* roses. I have them all over the house - they are absolutely beautiful. We went out to dinner at Julep's New Southern in Shockoe Bottom and it was soooo good.

I had shrimp and grits, Brad had scallops. We got ordered a bottle of Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, also sooooo good. I, of course, required dessert and ordered a white chocolate bread pudding with currents and pine nuts. yum yum yum. Brad didn't want any, so my gorgefest continued into Sunday with my leftovers.

At dinner, Brad asked what perfume I had on. He doesn't typically pick up on that kind of thing so I told him my usual stuff and asked why. He reminded me that I usually wear a special perfume for our anniversaries. He was absolutely right and I can't believe I forgot - or that he remembered!

I was shopping with my mom a couple of days before my wedding and she had the idea to buy some special perfume to wear. I wore it on our wedding day and every day of our honeymoon in Hawaii. I wear it each year on our anniversary. Well, not this year. Oops! I did come home and smell it and it smells like Hawaii. :) We've always said we wanted to go back for our 10th anniversary - I hope we can.

Sunday we just worked in the yard some and had a nice dinner with some neighbors. We came home afterwards, put Charlie down and watched Nursery University, which is a documentary about getting into preschool in New York City.

The film follows a few families going through the application/interview process, which requires consultants, seminars, special books and a lot of speed dialing. It was fascinating to watch. And it made me so glad we don't live there - I don't think I could handle all that pressure! All to pay $15-20K a year for preschool. When Brad heard how much tuition was he was ready to move my mom up to NYC to start a preschool!

One of the families obviously agreed with me and they were filmed moving out of the city at the end. They were disappointed with the preschool their child got in. The other families seemed happy with how everything turned out, but it seemed like a lot of stress for an extended period of time - the application process lasts from Labor Day into the following March. Crazy. Anyways, it was interesting to watch.

So that's what's up with us. This week I'm taking Charlie to check out some fun new things and have some house projects lined up. My friend Karen is coming over for lunch on Wednesday. I'm also still looking for a babysitter that can help out periodically during the day. No luck there yet, though I've contacted several. Kind of a bummer.

I've had a request from the baby daddy for more pictures and videos while he's out of town, so there's probably going to be a lot of that on the blog this week! Hopefully I'll be more diligent with updates. Been feeling uninspired lately. And busy.

I still never know how to end these. The End.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Things I've Been Reading

I finally dug into Mockingjay today. And now I must finish. Sleep is not looking promising tonight. Why am I blogging?? So far I think it is better then Catching Fire, but I'll be surprised if it's as awesome as Hunger Games.

I also picked up the The Shipping News today at the library. I've seen bits of the movie, which stars one of my favorite actors, Kevin Spacey, on cable and it's intriguing. I hope the book is too. I'm going to need a good rebound book after Mockingjay is over.

I saw an article in the Washington Post about a new type of travel that might just be the perfect compromise for Brad and me. It's called Glamping! Glamorous camping. This is the first time I've heard of it, but apparently the concept has quite a following and there are many web sites dedicated to places you can GLAMP! Rhymes with tramp. And Cramp.

Brad liked to go camping when we first started dating but he really married the wrong girl for that kind of thing. He took me camping once with his friends and brought fish to grill for dinner because he thought I'd like it. His friends grilled hot dogs and gave him a lot of grief. The thing is, I love hot dogs! But it was so sweet of him to try and make it all so palatable for me. I had to shower twice when I got home to feel clean, though.

Here we are, almost 8 years of marriage later, and I'm not so sure Brad is much of a camper anymore. I guess I've beaten it out of him.... in fact, he may be even snootier about his accommodations then I am now.

We saw this eco-resort in St. John that was like a big tree house - it was really neat, incredible views. I told him I thought we should try something like that out some time and he looked at me like I was crazy. Though maybe he's just trying to save himself from a vacation of listening to me whine.

But who knows, now that we have Charlie, maybe we'd like to GLAMP! What d'ya think honey?? I just need my own bathroom, some place to chill the wine and I'd really rather not cook. Let's rough it!

I stumbled upon this new blog about creative lunches today. I'm all for new recipes and menu ideas, but this site actually kind of stresses me out. Not only do you need to make delicious, healthy food that your child will actually eat, but it needs to be cut into interesting shapes by a large variety of cookie cutters and then decorated to resemble artwork. If your child's sandwich doesn't look like a bird, complete with a beak made out of cheese, just chalk the entire day up to failure.

Ok, that's all I got. I have to get back to Mockingjay now. And another completely pathetic dinner of crackers, laughing cow cheese and smoked salmon. This is what I'm reduced to eating with Brad out of town so much.

K Bye.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Say Cheese!

Ohhhh lawdy does the worst of the teething happen at the end. At least, in the teething mouths with which I'm familiar. Charlie's final incoming teeth are so painful to look at and he's been acting like he's in so much pain.

The last ones left are the sharp ones and the large ones. The brutal, unforgiving ones. And kids, as of tonight, we are out of ibuprofen. If these teeth give us a 2am wake up call, I've got nothing but Tylenol. That could get ugly.

Even though I'm kinda complaining, don't get me wrong - any day at home, even one with horrendous teething, is better then what I was juggling before. So my whining is all relative. But what a long day today.

On a positive note, there has been an insane amount of sleep going on lately. 14 hours for Charlie last night, plus a solid 2+ hour nap today and back to bed on time tonight. If it wasn't for the screaming and irritability, it would have been just ideal!

Unfortunately, there was a lot of screaming and irritability. Which pairs well with chardonnay. Take note.

We hit up our Rolly Polly class this morning, which is comprised of singing and gymnastics. They pull out a big parachute at the end for some games. I remember doing that kind of thing in elementary school at Anderson Mill. I loved it.

We barely made it on time since Charlie slept until 9 (poor me) and when we got there he was kind of clingy and nervous, but caught his groove when he came across a tambourine. He carried that thing all over class the rest of the time. I feel fortunate he left it there. Lately when he gets attached to something, the end result is either ear piercing screams or we now own it.

The rest of the day was either too mundane to discuss or dealing with teething. Tomorrow we are meeting a couple of my friends for lunch.

Did you pick up on that? Friends! For Lunch! Not lunch in front of my laptop, trying to ensure I can leave work on time to pick up Charlie! I am far from taking that kind of thing for granted yet. I have gone from zero to social life in 2 weeks.

I have also been on a home project rampage lately. We cleaned out the garage last weekend and every time Brad threatened to throw out some old furniture or home decor item he came across, I told him to put it in our sun room - which now looks rather furnished as a result.

Not the beachy oasis I was hoping for, but there are places to sit and A LAMP! It's downright homey in here. Really not cute enough to post pictures, but after I get some plants in here, who knows, I may go ahead and do it. It's one of those where the 'after' photo looks pretty appealing only with accompanied with a very sad 'before' shot.

In other project news, I've got my poodle-marked sisal runner out in the garage right now, just waiting to be painted. There's no smell to it, it's been Nature's Miracled to high heaven, but even water stains sisal, so the round marks are there for good.

I think I'm going to do a gold and black checkerboard pattern. Does that sound obnoxious? I think it kind of does, so my hope is that when I post pictures of it all finished people will say ohhhh, yeah, I get it now.

I'm also going to miraculously find time to recover my dining room chairs, re-seed the front lawn, paint our brick fireplace and do touch up paint throughout the house. Oh and figure out a cute homemade puppy dog costume for Charlie for Halloween. I am obviously on a mission dispatched from Martha Stewart's alien mother ship. Here's Charlie signaling the mother ship:
For tonight, though, I'm going to curl up and read Mockingjay. Because my name is Kara and I like books about love triangles. They distract me from challenging things like teething.

Monday, September 13, 2010

18 Month Checkup

We had Charlie's doctor appointment this morning - the last one until he's 2. After that I think they're annual. Crazy. Seems like just yesterday we were taking him weekly and then monthly! Not that we ever go too much time around here without visiting the pediatrician's office. But he's definitely our big boy now. Sniff.

The most important news of the day: Charlie's lungs sound great. Mostly clear of fluid and his cough is minimal. Hopefully (knock on wood) we are done with antibiotics for a while. Four rounds since mid-July. I really hate that.

Charlie is right on track for everything else. Eating, sleeping, vocabulary, etc. His ears looked good *hallelujah* and none of the other poking, prodding or examining seemed to result in anything alarming.

I asked about separation anxiety and the doctor said it will be cyclical until about 2 1/2. That some months will be better then others, but each child seems to have a baseline amount of anxiety you can pinpoint.

Charlie was actually never that bad about separation anxiety until about a month ago and then he was very upset when I left him at daycare. It's been awful ever since. I'd love to go back to the old way where he finds something interesting to play with and it's like See Ya Mom.

I guess time will tell. It was pretty ugly when we left him with a sitter he is very familiar with on Saturday night to go out. I hope we're not in for a year of that kind of thing. Perhaps it's just a matter of acclimating to our new schedule.

I also asked if there was anything at all we needed to do about potty training before the next visit and he said no. The potty is out, Charlie can see it, and now I will forget about it for 6 months.

He got 2 shots, tetenus and flu. The H1N1 strain is accounted for in the seasonal flu vaccine so no need to hunt down a separate shot this year. What a relief. That was such a pain last year.

Here are Charlie's stats:

Height: 33 1/2 inchs (75th percentile) - 2 inches of growth in the past 3 months

Weight: 24 lbs, 4 ounces (25th percentile)

Even though the same thing happened 3 months ago, I was surprised his weight percentile dropped again given how much he eats. I guess one of these days I need to quit being surprised about it. He is thus far blessed with a magical metabolism.

So yeah. That's all. Short visit, nothing too exciting. And nothing more for 6 months. Sniff.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Staying at Home

Let me just say, staying home with Charlie when he doesn't have pneumonia is so much more fun. Last week I think I was wondering what I had gotten myself into. Alone + sick baby + sleep deprivation = insanity. The kind of insanity that reminded me of having a newborn and it kind of hits you 4 weeks in that you're not right in the head.

This week has been a 180. Charlie's been well and we've gotten to do a lot of fun stuff. As an added bonus, Brad's been here this week. It also doesn't hurt that the weather has been beautiful with almost no humidity. Fall is in the air. Summer, I never knew ya.

I already feel a lot more relaxed. I don't panic about having things just so before I go to bed so the dominoes will fall in a certain way in order for us to get out the door in the morning. I'm not stressed about getting a certain number of things done over the weekend so that we're prepared for the week.

These are the types of things I have worried about since Brad started traveling. When he would be home for a week and I got a brief reprieve from them, it felt like such a treat. Overall, though, there was no margin for error and we spent his weeks home catching up on things that required weekday attention. To have that weight off my back is huge. Big sigh of relief huge.

Newly Relaxed, Chill Pill Ingested Mommy and Charlie have gotten to do all sorts of fun things this week, like go to the park, play at Romp n' Roll, go to the farmer's market, attend a baby shower and have a play date with BFF Freddie. We've been to the grocery store, Target and the car wash. Check, check and check.

I've decided not to schedule any classes, with the exception of maybe the Roly Poly class at the gym. I like being able to just go do whatever while the weather is beautiful. In October I found a class at Maymont where the kids get to see the animals. I think 1 scheduled thing per month is going to be plenty. There are actually a lot of free things to fill up the other spaces, like reading hour at the library or music hour at this cute kid friendly coffee shop I just learned about.

Our days have already fallen into a kind of routine. We get up (Charlie is getting up later and later I might add), have breakfast, get dressed and then get out of the house to do something fun, maybe run an errand. Come back for lunch and then he's down for a nap. I work during his nap and when he's up we go do something else. Then it's dinner and the night time routine. It flows so much more seamlessly then I thought it would.

This weekend we're going to do some fun things with Brad and I'm not going to feel guilty leaving him with a babysitter tomorrow night because I've spent a lot of time with him this week. I even left this evening to go to the gym and let Brad do the night time routine - unheard of even a month ago. It was so freeing. I never let myself do that kind of things before because any moment Charlie was awake and I wasn't at work I wanted to be with him. It felt like I got so little time with him. Another huge weight off my back.

Charlie is entering his first big time daddy phase. Like searching for Daddy, reaching for him, wanting Daddy to hold him instead of Mommy. Brad is eating it up. It's a big eye opener for me because I really need to back off and give them their alone time.

Unfortunately, I think this is making it even harder for Brad to leave town for work. I've been resistant to Skype because it was Just Another Thing to Figure Out, but I think it needs to happen so these two can talk during the week.

Starting next weekend, they are also signed up for Saturday morning gym class at Romp n' Roll, located conveniently next to both a McDonald's and IHOP, which serve Charlie's most favorite of foods - the pancake. A little gym class/breakfast combo each Saturday morning for them to enjoy together.

What am I going to do with this chunk of alone time? Find a tennis partner perhaps. Or Mockingjay is still staring me down. I can't seem to start it until I know I have time to finish it. I read a review that said to clear your calendar because to put it down is impossible. Sounds like it's time for another stomach flu to strike. Then it can officially be The Book Series I Read While Puking.

So that's what's going on here. I'm sure we have some surprises in store, but two thumbs up for the change so far.

Monday, September 6, 2010

18 Months of Charlie


This is a tad overdue. And I know you all have been waiting so patiently. Charlie turned 18 months old last weekend when we were in New York.

Can you believe Charlie is 18 months old? Doesn't it seem like yesterday I was whining about my pregnancy on this blog?

18 months is a really fun age. Lots of personality, lots of figuring things out, lots of imitation and LOTS of letting you know what is and is not acceptable.

For example: Getting his way is acceptable. Not getting his way is not acceptable.
Sometimes, when you turn around for just a split second, not getting his way isn't even an option anymore. Things just happen. He is into everything and wants to see how it works or opens or closes - or maybe what happens when you stick a bunch of CD's into the printer.

We're also starting to get into some vocabulary that is useful in getting your way. His cute little 'no' has turned into an adamant "NO!" and recently he picked up MINE. He says "Mama" a lot now to get my attention. He recently started saying tree and juice. His favorite words are Da-da, dog, ball and Bobo.

Poor Bobo. He gets bossed around by Charlie all day long. Charlie will scream for him from the back door and chase him from his napping spot in the den. I'm not sure why Zoe doesn't get more attention from him. Charlie occasionally will give her a kiss, but because her name is harder to master, she doesn't get ordered around too much.

Food is of high priority around here. My mom was marveling at Charlie downing his cheese pizza and hot fudge sundae at Champps last night, remembering how much coaxing she had to do to get my sisters and me to eat. Obviously, I grew out of needing to be coaxed.

Charlie's favorite foods are mostly Italian: pizza, spaghetti, ravioli, meatballs. He also loves pancakes, yogurt, applesauce, grilled cheese sandwiches, chicken and popsicles. There are special places in his heart for ice cream and juice boxes.

We don't do a lot of juice around here, but I've been giving him some while he's sick to keep him hydrated and he loves them. I think it's partially the delivery mechanism: straws are fun.
Charlie also still insists on eating with a full size, grown up fork. Spoons are only acceptable when offered with ice cream. Knives are now very appealing, and very scary for those around him. He actually tries to cut his food. He wants so badly to be like the grown ups around him.

Which brings us to all the imitating that is going on around here. Charlie seems particularly taken with watching me blow dry my hair and trying to copy it. He takes the blow dryer and my round brush and holds them both to his head and walk around. He imitated my mom combing out her wet hair in New York last weekend by bending over and combing out his hair. It's so cute.

He imitates us talking on the phone, changing the channel on the TV, typing on our laptops and working in the yard. He's pretty convinced when Brad is gone during the week at work that he's actually just down the driveway weeding or about to mow the lawn. He'll get his lawnmower and mow the den floor. So helpful. I do hate when things get overgrown in the den.

Walking has turned to running, though his feet still have that little kid duck walk. Running usually results in falling. When he runs he's typically very excited and swings one of his little arms back and forth trying to get to the object of his affection - whether it's one of us or Bobo or whichever ball he is kicking - as fast as possible.

His favorite toys are the ones that make music - keyboards, his guitar, even this little book that plays songs as you turn the pages. He likes to beat things with sticks, like a drum. Nothing like wooden spoons on stainless steel mixing bowls to get you going in the morning!

He's wearing mostly 18-24 month clothing, except for the Carters stuff. The 24 month stuff in Carters is starting to get too small. I think it shrinks more! His shoes are a 5 1/2 now and hopefully stay that size long enough to wear out this current pair.

Side note: I just love picking him out clothes and shoes - it is so much fun. I also love folding his laundry. 18 months in and I like to smell it all (when it's clean!) and think to myself how cute he is in all of it with each piece I put away.

On the recommendation of the Babycenter newsletter, I went ahead and pulled out the training potty for him to see and start getting used to. Our former neighbors lent it to us (Yes Fosters, lent, so you can move back from London and use it for little Charlie Foster, OK??) and it has a talking Elmo on it. Such great incentive to check out the potty - commentary when you punch Elmo in the face! I can't even picture Charlie actually using it, but he's changing so quickly I'm sure I'll feel differently in the not to distant future.

Overall I would say my favorite part of this age is seeing Charlie's personality blossom. He has a big personality - he takes over a room when he comes in. My mom was laughing that was exactly what her dad (his namesake) was like. Laughing, joking, big personality - but also a temper. Charlie also loves two of Daddy Chuck's favorite foods - ice cream and pancakes.

We are going through some separation anxiety right now, a little behind schedule. I thought it would happen a few months ago, but it's really been bad the past few weeks. He's pretty attached to me. I'm pretty lovable, though, what can I say? And I looooove my baby:

Oh and we finally got a family picture. Not really one for the Christmas card though, is it? Ahh well, must keep trying.

Our 18 month check up is a week from today, but I did see his weight when he was playing around on the scale at one of our many pneumonia-related doctor visits last week. He is 26 pounds. No idea on height, but it's increased a lot I think. We'll know more in a week. Details to come!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Pneumonia-gate 2010

We survived it.

Barely.

Charlie's still doing a few breathing treatments today and hacking up phlegm like a 90 year old lifetime 2 pack a day smoker. But his energy level is back up, the fever is a distant memory and his appetite has returned.

I was very lucky to have my MIL Sue come in from Williamsburg on Friday to help me out and take the overnight breathing treatments Friday night. She arrived just as I was at the end of my rapidly fraying rope. Even just going out to dinner Friday was a huge mental boost after several days tied to the house.

On Saturday, in another wave of good fortune, my mom flew in from Dallas and that was another mental boost. She took Charlie for a long walk and to play at the park so I could get in a much needed nap. I was still groggy when I got up but we hung out for a while and then I went to Massage Envy for a massage.

Which was actual very painful because in the middle of all of this pneumonia going on, I hurt my back lifting some heavy bags of dog food. I think my back was already tired from all the holding and carrying around of the very heavy Charlie I'd been doing all week. He's definitely a baby who wants to be walked and held to be soothed. It was easier about 10 pounds ago. Him, not me.

Anyways, despite the painful moments, the massage helped and even woke me up some. Against my better judgement on Friday night I had taken a muscle relaxer prescribed by this quack at Patient First. I hate muscle relaxers - they make me feel horrible. But the pain was throbbing as I was trying to sleep so I caved. And then felt horrible for the next 24 hours. Never. Again.

I picked up some rotisserie chicken and salads at Fresh Market and we had a glass of wine and watched "The Business of Being Born". It was produced by Ricki Lake and is about the birthing 'industry' in hospitals and home births. Spent quite a bit of time comparing the U.S. to other countries in the world with respect to how babies are born and the medical care mothers receive.

I have a hard time calling this film a documentary, since it was far from objective. There was definitely an agenda present and it went beyond disseminating facts and raising awareness. I had a problem with how they presented their statistics since no source for them was provided. But the film was interesting and provided some food for thought. It was interesting watching the home births they showed, including Ricki Lake's. You've got to really believe in something to let it all hang out on camera like that.

But anyways.

Sunday we took Charlie and the poodles for a long walk and then Charlie took a very long nap. By evening he was beyond fussy. Screaming, arching his back, acting like he was in a lot of pain. I called the pediatrician to see if it was from the antibiotic he was on. I was told if 3/4 a teaspoon of Maalox didn't calm him down to go to the ER immediately.

So yeah. After a week of emotional roller coaster, not the advice I was looking for. For the 100th time this week, I was scared. At least I wasn't alone this time. What a difference having someone else there makes.

We had already given him ibuprofen and decided to let that kick in and see if anything changed and then try the Maalox. Luckily he calmed down and I finally got a chance to peek into his mouth and I see at least one molar cutting through. Because of course. So that should just be buckets of awesome for the next few days. I looked at my mom and said "Don't Leave!!!".

After that we were determined to get out of the house. Unfortunately, so many restaurants here are closed on Sundays and even more close as a result of the holiday. We eventually settled on Champps, since it was the first place we found open, and ate outside in the beautiful weather. Charlie inhaled almost an entire pizza and an ice cream sundae - and then licked the sundae dish clean. What he lacks in table manners he makes up for in cute determination.

My mom left early this morning and I was sad to see her go. It was so fun to hang out with her and read magazines and relax. We were so busy in NYC last weekend that we didn't have much of an opportunity to catch up, so that was nice too. She gets such a kick out of Charlie. He's imitating everyone he's around now and started saying "I know" just like she says. His first sentence!

Not sure what the plan is today. It's another beautiful day here so I hope we can get out and about. I need to get caught up on work at some point, probably after Charlie's bed time. And I'm just going to consider this to be the first real week of staying home with him. We're going to find some fun things to do and have a play date one day with BFF Freddie!

Happy Labor Day everyone!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Charlie Has Things to Say

Charlie may be sick, but he still has quite a bit to talk about when he gets up from his naps....

video

Update

We just got back from another visit to the doctor. Charlie's cough and breathing hadn't improved after several breathing treatments and he woke up this morning with a fever.

When the doctor suggested I have a seat so we could have a talk, I knew good news was not going to follow. Charlie has pneumonia. There is fluid in his lungs.

We go back in to the pediatrician tomorrow morning to have him reassessed. There was mention of him going to the hospital if things don't improve, but I'm choosing not to think about that very much right now.

Starting some antibiotics tonight, trying to push fluids as much as possible and continuing breathing treatments every 4 hours.

He's napping now, but we are going to have to leave the house in a little while and go out for his antibiotic - and I am low on coffee. Essential at this point, no? I also want to bake something. That always makes me feel like I'm taking care of him for some reason. A quick store run will be good to get us out of the house briefly.

I have to say, on my first day as a stay at home mom, it doesn't really feel like anything has changed. I still have work to do and I'm home with sick Charlie like I have been in the past.

There is only one other time I've been this worried about him being sick, though. Last October when he was so tiny and had a bad asthma attack and we ended up in the ER... during the swine flu epidemic. But he was OK then and he will be OK this time. It will be nice to have confirmation about that tomorrow morning.

That's all for now...

Signed,
Your not-sure-she's-really-a-SAHM-yet