Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Coen's burn

Well, I suppose I ought to update on Coen. We are not used to him crawling, as he has just started. So he crawled over to my ironing board while I had stepped away to go to the bathroom. He pulled on the cord and down it came, onto his left hand. He has 1st & 2nd degree burns on three of his fingers. He stopped crying almost immediately when we got his hand under cool water. He started playing with the stream of water. He didn't cry in the emergency room, even when they dressed it. He doesn't cry when I clean it or re-dress it, either. We took him to his regular doctor because we were worried about that, but he said the burns look like they are healing well and that he doesn't have much pain is a blessing, not something to worry about. The burns are not deep enough to have damaged the nerves.

At first, Coen would leave the bandage alone, but I think he got tired of it and has started working it off. I used to wrap it around his fingers and wrist, leaving his thumb free, but he figured out how to get his fingers out of the top part. So I took his thumb away, wrapping a few times around his wrist and he hasn't gotten that off. In a few more days, we won't need to wrap it anymore. The doctor said it probably won't even leave a permanent scar, but it will take a long time to look "normal" again.

He is a lucky little boy, the iron fell just off from his knuckles and he is able to bend all his fingers. There's a picture of him on Facebook with his cute little blue bandage, but Blogger won't let me upload right now.

In other news, he still only has one tooth and is pulling himself up to stand on things, even things that aren't very stable.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Watching a baby learn is amazing.

This morning, Coen and I sat on the floor in the toy room playing. Co had his pacifier in his hand and was picking up other stuff that was laying on the floor. He picked up a piece of wooden train track and examined it. Then he brought his hands together quickly (he has started hitting his fists together but he hasn't yet figured out how to clap). This, of course, made a sound as the pacifier hit the track. Coen stopped and looked a little surprised. He looked at the paci, then he looked at the track. Then he started banging them together over and over. He got so excited that he could make the noise happen from two things that don't make noise! It was so neat to watch his little gears turning.

In other news, I set up an appointment for WIC today. Not sure how I feel about that. My biggest problem is that they can treat you like you're uneducated just because you need a little help. I was "referred" because we get the medical card. I got a letter that said they were "required" to meet with me. It didn't say that I was required to meet with them, though. I put it off for a long time because I felt like it wasn't their business, just because we don't have health insurance doesn't mean we (I) need education or to be taught how to be a good mom. But Paul's unemployment won't last forever, and nobody will hire someone who is in school for the hours he needs and the pay he needs for us to survive, so any way to stretch the budget is good, and we could use the food coupons to cut down on grocery money. So I sucked it up and called. The girl I talked to on the phone, though, seemed really nice and understanding. She was excited that I am breastfeeding because it'll boost their numbers. I guess the breastfeeding rate around here is pretty low.
I'm a little nervous because they said to bring the kids' vaccination records. And there aren't any. I'm afraid they're going to try to bully me into vaxing them when I'm not ready. The thing is, I've probably read more on the subject than any of them. No, I'm not convinced my kids are going to develop Autism, but I'm also not convinced the shots are safer than the possibility of the (treatable) diseases in healthy kids. I'm not trying to convince anyone, I'm just doing what I believe is best for my family, and I don't want to be treated like I'm neglecting my kids for it. I've heard some horror stories about WIC people being bullies and even calling CPS (it's not CPS material, since it's NOT neglect and parents have the right to refuse). I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Indiana trip and ER

Well, we had a busy week last week in Indiana. We went to the zoo, the children's museum, and a waterpark. We had a lot of fun. You can find pictures of our trip on Facebook. If you can't see them, add me as a friend. There are also videos up on Vimeo.
Kalten started acting a little sick while we were there, and Saturday night after we got home, he was wheezing and short of breath. He told me he wanted to go to bed way before he usually does and as I laid him down to put a diaper on for sleeping, he just, boom, went to sleep. He was still breathing heavily and shallow, and I could feel his heart pounding. We decided to take him to the ER around 9:30 and we didn't get out until almost 2:00 a.m. He got four albuterol breathing treatments and a chest X-ray, along with two prescriptions. I was holding Coen, so I had to leave the X-ray room. When I was able to go back in, Kalten told me all about it. He pointed to the X-ray guy who was back behind the partition and said, "he's goin' back in his big house. He's doin' his computer. He's BUSY." He did so well despite waking up in a strange place with strange people. He is doing better now but still wheezes occasionally.
Coen is sitting up pretty well now and rolls constantly. His newest thing is sticking his tongue out when he smiles. It's so cute! He is the happiest baby I've ever met. He smiles a lot and at everyone. Of course he has his "moments," but overall he's really content and easygoing.

Friday, July 17, 2009


Whew! So what's been going on since I posted last? Well, Coen finally rolled over and I missed it. Kalten can write a few letters in chalk on the sidewalk and copy marks that I make. My parents had an anniversary and we sent my dad on a biplane ride. He had a blast, and it was so cool to see him so happy, like a little kid!
What else? Kalten went to the fair with my parents, without us. They were out late and I missed him! When he came home he was talking about the ride he went on. I took him up to bed and was asking him questions. He was trying to be a stinker and kept saying "no!" after every question, but he couldn't stop himself from telling me all about it. He was so funny.
I finally got all the 0-3 month clothes out of Coen's dresser, and all the size 2 clothes out of Kalten's. Co's almost done with his 3-6 month stuff too. He fits nicely in the 6-9.
I'm tired and I will try to keep up more here. I'll post another if I can remember anything else important.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Naughty but cute.

Coen is very stuffy and drooly. I wonder if he is gearing up to pop a tooth out or what. There's no bump on his gums or anything but I know it can take a long time from the start of "teething" until one actually shows. I hope it's just that and not him getting sick. He sleeps a lot but that is because he doesn't sleep well at night with his nose so stuffy, even after I've done saline drops and the sucker bulb.

He always takes a nap right after we get up in the morning, and this time I set him in the car seat so he's more upright. He sounds a lot clearer. I am trying to keep the kids from waking him up, but Kalten went right up to him and said, "hi Coen!" Then, "Mommy, he opened his eyes!"

I tried to explain that Coen wanted to sleep right now, but Kalten kept telling me, "no, he opened his eyes!" I said that was only because he (Kalten) was bothering him. He paused for a second, then looked at me and said sweetly, "I love him!"

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Thanks for the help

Okay, so I know it's been a while since the last entry. I just haven't been on the computer all that much lately.

Today I had Coen laying on the floor. He's been doing crunches trying to sit himself up. I wondered if he would roll over for me. Kalten came over to see what we were doing, and I was being goofy and rolled around on the floor. I asked Kalten, "can you show Coen how to roll over?" I meant for him to lay down and roll, too, but he had another idea. He said "yeah!" and before I could stop him, he reached under Coen and flipped him over onto his belly! Co didn't mind, surprisingly, and just laid there looking at the carpet.

Coen is unofficially 14.8 pounds and 25" long (according to Wii Fit and his surfboard tummy time mat).

Paul's parents were here last week and that was a lot of fun. It's always nice to see them. We also got to get out and do adult things a couple times without chasing Kalten around. We're looking forward to the time when we can bring the boys to Colorado.

Paul's birthday was Sunday. He's 27 now, which is funny because he's been thinking he was 27 for the past year.

Kalten is doing amazing with the potty now. Most days he stays dry and is rewarded by a new car at bedtime. He will tell you, "diapers are for sleeping, underwear is for getting up!"

Coen loves to grab things and pull them to his mouth. He laughs when I sneeze or pull a blanket he's holding onto. He doesn't like to lay down anymore. He wants to be sitting up where he can watch what's going on, but he doesn't have the muscles for sitting yet.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Fun with poop

We were getting ready to go out for ice cream and Kalten was on the porch. He came in and said, "I'm eating ice!" Well, there's no ice on the porch, obviously. I asked him to show me where he got it, and he pointed to a spot where I found a piece of frosted decorative glass from a centerpiece we got at a friend's wedding. So I think he swallowed a piece of glass. I called the on-call doctor and we get to sift through K's poop for a while. Since it wasn't sharp, it'll probably pass right through, but if it doesn't by tomorrow we get to test out our new insurance. I don't even know for sure that he swallowed it. The piece I found on the porch might have been the piece he had in his mouth. I'm not looking forward to mushing through the kid's poop, but it really scares me. He'll probably end up with X-rays. The doctor said that if he starts having a stomach ache or any symptoms of bowel obstruction, we have to get him in right away. It's crazy. He never puts stuff in his mouth, and then... glass!

Here's what K has to say about the incident (he's bugging me to do letters):

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Done with diapers?

Kalten has been doing better and better staying dry. We hadn't really been consistent in what we put him in - some days we'd try underwear and switch to diapers, other days we didn't even try. I think that was confusing to him. Finally we started saying, "diapers are for sleeping," and putting him in underwear with no pants, for convenience. He had accidents, but slowly got better understanding of what his body was telling him and made it to the potty almost every time.

Now we put pants on him and even take him out without a diaper. We just have him go before and after. He's been to the library, Wal-Mart, and up to the hospital to see the helicopter. We were at the park on Friday and he said he needed to go, but he would NOT use the park's bathroom, nor would he go outside behind the fence. So I reluctantly put a diaper on him. By the time I got him home, he was asleep. When he woke up from his nap, though, he was still dry! He will not use public restrooms, but will use the big potty at other people's houses.

#2 is a different story. He consistently pooped in his underwear because for some reason he does not want to use the potty. Even for "big big candy," he wouldn't go. One day he hadn't gotten his underwear back on after potty, and he pooped on his toy fire truck! I never thought I would have to tell my child that we don't poop on our toys!

The other day I had him help me rinse out his underwear. I figured that with any other mess he makes, he is expected to help us clean it up. Why not poo too? It's not to be mean or punish him, and I wasn't mad, just tired of rinsing poopy underwear. He didn't like it, but he did it. The next day, he didn't poop at all, and the day after that he snuck one into the diaper right after naptime, clever kid.

Then last night, he kept saying, "I'm pooping!" He went upstairs "to play trains," but I think really he wanted to get away from us so he could poop. I followed, and suggested that he use the big potty upstairs, and he said "need do potty downdairs!" He came downstairs and sat on the potty chair. I ignored him and let him do his thing, and then he stood up and yelled, "yaaay Dalkit!" I looked and sure enough, he had gone!

Yesterday was the second day in a row that he stayed dry all day. We got three 10-packs of Hot Wheels cars pretty cheap and every day that he stays dry he gets to pick a new car at bedtime.

So how does it work potty training for night time? We did a ton of potty training at the daycare, but just during the day. Any advice?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Coen's new nickname

Kalten started calling him Gogen. He gets all up in his face and says, "HIIIII Gogen! How are you doing, Gogen?" So now we've got Dalkit and Gogen. What a nutty kid. I think it's because Paul calls Robby Bobbins sometimes.

I have a headache and I'm waiting for Paul to get Kalten to sleep so I can go to bed too.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

My own medicine rant, and school

I weighed Coen on the Wii Fit again when he turned two months old. This is all the "two-month checkup" he got, as we were uninsured. This time, however, I weighed him only in a diaper, whereas two weeks prior, he was dressed and probably even layered. So I don't know if he has lost weight or stayed the same. Last time was something like 11 pounds, and this time was 10.6. Not a big difference. He's growing out of the newborn sleepers, and eating, peeing, and pooping regularly, so I'm not concerned.

The kids are covered temporarily now while our application is considered, but I'm not a fan of checkups anyway. My kids are pretty healthy,* until we go to the well-check and pick up whatever bug is floating around the doctor's office. It seemed like Kalten got sick every time we went in for a checkup. We don't do the shots, either, so there's really no reason to go. I know my kids, I know they are healthy, normal, and developing on track, and I usually take the "helpful" advice on starting solids, turning the carseat around, and where I should put them to sleep with a grain of salt. You can probably tell, we are far from mainstream and tend toward the more gentle, natural route. We've got one amazing, smart, independent, healthy young man and are working on the other. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to raising a family, and we've found what works for us.

I did not intend this entry to become a diatribe on natural vs. The Great and Mighty Western Medicine, I just wanted to tell you Coen's weight. But since I'm on the subject, I'll tell you a story.

We used to take Kalten in about every two weeks for an ear infection. Round after round of antibiotics, which never worked and on which he'd often get a new infection in the other, previously healthy, ear. Copay after copay, prescription after prescription. Trip after trip to the doctor 45 minutes away. Not fun. I could tell the ear tube discussion was on the horizon. I quit giving him the medicine, took him to the chiropractor, and started him on probiotics to help restore the good bacteria in his gut. Within a month, all infections cleared up and have never returned. I have since learned that recovery time is about the same with or without antibiotics, and that doctors often prescribe them because of pressure from parents or just to make parents feel like they're doing something to help. In fact, they may just be creating resistant strains that are even worse, not to mention, not all ear infections are caused by bacteria, and there is no way to tell whether it is bacterial or viral. The chiropractic adjustments, on the other hand, have helped his ears to drain better so that there is not the backup of fluid sitting there to get infected in the first place.

I'm not saying doctors are evil or wrong or that well-checks are necessarily a bad idea, please don't get me wrong. I'm not against modern medicine or even antibiotics, I just think that overuse is a dangerous thing, and there are more natural ways to treat many problems with fewer side effects. Also, treating symptoms (such as recurring ear infections) only Band-aids the problem and we should look for the underlying cause and find out how to fix that.

Whew! anyway,

I have started doing "school" with Kalten. He was interested when Paul had to leave for school, and I asked if he wanted to do school like Daddy. Of course he said yes, so this last weekend I bought two little workbooks for him. One is simple mazes and the other is ABC dot-to-dot. They start out really easy and get progressively harder. We'll probably spend a couple of days on each page (rather than a page or two a day like the book suggests - he's only two!). I gave him his very own pencil and showed him how it writes and how we can erase the marks. We only "do school" when he asks, and we put it away when he wants to. Yesterday we looked at the first maze. We found the start, the end, and the path (there is only one way to go on the easiest ones). We followed the path with our fingers, and then he wanted to be done. He's got his own school bag like Daddy's, and we put everything away. I think we'll wait on the dot-to-dot book, because he knows all the letters but not necessarily the right order, and the puzzles are kind of small and require a little more pencil skill. I'm not expecting great things and not trying to turn him into a genius. It's fun for him, it's a special time when he feels important and gets to be like Daddy, and if it helps him learn to use a pencil, sit and concentrate, and maybe get a little head start, even better.

* (from paragraph 2) Both boys are kind of stuffy, and Kalten sounds hoarse and is cranky when sleepy, but is not feverish or in pain and is frankly having fun playing with his new voice. Real, honest-to-goodness sickness is pretty rare in this house, thankfully. I'm keeping an eye on K, and if he gets worse, I guess we're going to have to find a doctor in town that we like.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Good Coen pictures

Here is a link to my Facebook album with today's "photo shoot" with Coen. He was in such a good mood, I even got a few smiles. I also uploaded several new videos of Kalten to Vimeo, so check those out too.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Hard to be mad at this kid

I got Kalten a graham cracker earlier today and I guess I forgot to put the box away. I just heard the crackle of the packaging and went out to investigate. I was met by innocent-faced Kalten, who held one out to me and said, "want cracker, Mom?" I looked on the floor behind him and saw a pile of graham crackers, each one carefully bitten into a bus shape.

Of course, it was easier to be mad at him earlier today when he was screaming about naptime and putting his fingers in his throat and throwing up all over. I don't know what the drama is about, he used to be such a good napper! Now it's so hard to get him to sleep at naptime and at bedtime. He's got to sleep sometime, right?

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Being busy

I have gone from being at home all day every day to having an opportunity to go out almost every day of the week!

I started by taking Kalten to the library every Wednesday. They have a program for ages 2-5, but he's so not ready to do the sit-and-listen thing, so we just go play with the toys and read, and take home a few books and maybe a movie. Since books are due three weeks from the day you borrow them and movies give you one week, we just always make it on Wednesdays. In the summer, we spend less time at the library and then go to a park. Sometimes I pack a lunch for us, too. I am looking forward to doing that again.

Now there is a playgroup at church on the first and third Mondays of each month. There is also a Tuesday/Thursday playgroup somewhere else, but I just don't have the desire to pack both the kids up for two or three days of group in a week, especially since we'd have to work around Paul's school schedule. Twice a month is good for me.

I was also told I should go to the moms' Bible study on Tuesdays (they have free child care!) so I started that today. Kalten is always up for any reason to go hang out in the nursery, so I don't get "mommy-guilt" for leaving him, and Coen came with me. A lot of the moms are the same ones who do the playgroups, and others I already know from church.

I used to complain that I don't have any friends around here, but I never tried to go out and make new friends or anything. I just figured that everyone already has their groups of friends and I wouldn't "fit in" but I'm finding that's not really the case. I'm thankful for these opportunities to get out and meet people.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Growth spurt

Coen is eating SO much lately. I really think that he has to be growing a lot, but I don't have any way to accurately weigh him. I see him all day every day so he always looks the same to me.

Paul's at our friend's bachelor party. I helped him pick out a bright pink pair of track pants that they're making him wear all evening. I hope they're all having fun - I heard mention of Buffalo Wild Wings and I'm very jealous.

Kalten took a late nap, so he woke up late and I don't know when he'll go to sleep tonight. I usually have Paul take Coen while I get Kalten to sleep, and then he brings Coen up and puts K in his own bed. I don't know how we're going to handle bedtime tonight!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

It's official

We are a family of four with both parents unemployed. Another victim of the "economic crisis."

Monday, February 23, 2009

Gas, ugh!

I forgot how frustrating gas is in babies. Coen fussed and farted half the night, and I couldn't do anything for him. I couldn't believe how much air was in that kid; he should have been flying around the room like a balloon with that output.

So just as Kalten wakes up, Co settles into a nice peaceful sleep and I realize that he's wet through so I have to wake him up again and change him. Ah, the impeccable timing skills of children.

Paul's work is laying off 50 more people. He could be unemployed by the end of the week. I am checking into state insurance for the kids just in case. They have a policy of denying just about everyone no matter what, so if you really want it, you have to fight for it. But of course, I can't apply until he's actually laid off so we'll be crossing our fingers for good health until we get an answer. I guess we'll cross that bridge when we get to it. There's not even a guarantee he'll get cut.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Kalten's 2nd birthday is today!

Happy birthday to my special little man!

More Coen Pics

Kalten never did this!
Remote hog
Sleeping like Daddy
Sweet baby

Saturday, February 14, 2009

2-week and 2-year checkup

Coen is up to 7 pounds, 11 ounces now and 19½ inches tall. Yesterday was his due date, and also his 2-week checkup. He's doing great, and really being more alert now. I don't know if he was so sleepy because he was a little early or what, but at his appointment he was so nice and awake! He's the same size now that Kalten was at birth.

Kalten is 34 inches and 31 pounds. We did his 2-year checkup at the same time as Coen's appointment. He'll be two big years old on Thursday! I can hardly believe it.

I wasn't expecting anything for Valentine's Day, but I got roses, candy, and MEXICAN FOOD! Way to go, Pud! I made chocolate mint cupcakes and more cherry crumble bread for him/us. Kalten picked out a box of chocolates for all of us to share. He didn't even know what was in it, he just liked the Garfield and Odie on the front. He thought there was a movie inside. He was just as happy to find out what was really in there!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

One of those moments

A few weeks ago, I woke up with a hymn stuck in my head. I hadn't heard it in a long time, but it has always been one of my favorites.

'Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
and to take him at his word;
just to rest upon his promise,
and to know, "Thus saith the Lord."

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust him!
How I've proved him o'er and o'er!
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
O for grace to trust him more!

It spoke to me then as I was worried about having the baby at a time when Paul couldn't be there or couldn't take any time off work. I worried about what we would do with Kalten, I worried about the baby's safety, and I worried about giving birth. I was not at peace, not happy, and the first line stuck with me, about being so sweet to trust in Jesus. I wanted to rest on his promise. I was exhausted in every way possible. When I looked up the hymn and listened to it, it was so refreshing to remember that I'm not doing this alone. God has his plan and he knows what he's doing. I wasn't going to make anything change by worrying about it. Releasing that stress was like getting an extra night's sleep.

When Coen was born and we came home from the hospital and everything seemed to go wrong, I lost sight of the lesson I'd just learned. I took everything on myself, refused to ask for help, and because of that I killed my dear pet, I missed out on a lot of chances for joy and thankfulness, and I robbed others of the opportunity to be a blessing and be used by God. What a disaster!

Yesterday I got both boys to sleep, ran a bath, and decided I felt like listening to some music. I chose a cd that I haven't listened to in forever by a band called By the Tree. As I sat in the tub, I started to feel blah again, feeling sorry for myself and the way everything had happened, disappointed in the way I handled it, guilty for forgetting about Pip. All of a sudden, the song that was on switched, and the band started singing that familiar hymn. I didn't even know it was a part of that cd. The track title is called "Wait" and the hymn is in the middle of the song. What a neat reminder of God's faithfulness.

Go here to hear a simple version of the hymn.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Coen's Webnursery page


We told Coen all about you

and he wants to meet you! Now that the weather's warmer and we're all feeling pretty good, we're having a sort-of open house thing tomorrow (Saturday Feb 7) starting at 7pm. If you're in the area, stop by! I'll make some of that cheddar & onion bread I was drooling about a few posts back and we'll have some other snacks and drinks. Call if you have any questions.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Why I haven't updated

Here's a quick rundown of how our lives have been since we came home on Sunday.

We were so thankful that Coen came when he did because of all the time Paul has off work. Well, shortly after we walked in the door, Paul started feeling really sick and throwing up and all that. So he was upstairs being completely miserable, and I was downstairs with Kalten and Coen, being completely miserable in a different way.

He went to the doctor the next day and found out it was the gastro flu plus a sinus infection. He was told to stay away from me and the baby. The house was so messy, Kalten wasn't feeling well and was needing way more attention than he was getting, and I was hurting where my "skidmark" was. I couldn't stop crying, even after I went to my parents' house to be taken care of. While we were there, K got diarrhea and a really sore bottom, and I was so afraid that he had the flu too. I haven't seen any other symptoms, but he still has the diarrhea and I don't know what's up with that.

The next day I realized I hadn't fed my pet sparrow lately, and when I went in her room, she was lying on the newspaper, dead. I feel so guilty about that. She fell out of a tree with nothing but pinfeathers when she was a week old, in a neighborhood with tons of cats. I saw her hobbling around on the sidewalk and knelt by her. She wobbled over to me and leaned against my knee. She trusted me completely. I picked her up and took her to my parents' house, and we put her in a nest outside, hoping some mama would come take care of her. My dad fed her a few times throughout the day and she even spent a night out there alone! The next morning she was ice cold and barely breathing. I brought her in under a warm lamp to see if I could at least make her comfortable. I went out to the garage to check on her later and she was chirping at me for food! We got her a nice cage and fed her a special diet. Her feathers came in and she was so beautiful. I used to shut the cats away and let her fly around the house. She loved to sit on Paul's shoulder and poop. She pooped on me, too, but not as much. She also playfully pecked at our necks and ears. She would sit on Kalten's shoulder and be the most perfect little lady. She never pooped on him or pecked him at all, and he was so gentle with her. He stood so still, and he would pet her with one gentle finger. She overcame so much that should have killed her, only to die because we were so wrapped up in our own problems to notice her starving to death. I cry every time I think about her.

I drove up to see the midwife (my beloved doctor is no longer with the clinic) about my soreness, sobbing the whole way, of course. I guess what the doctor had called a skidmark, she called "a small, shallow tear that probably should have been repaired." It was good to know that there was a reason it hurt so bad and it would heal, but meanwhile it really really hurts.

I got home and couldn't get Coen's carseat out of the car. My dad was at our house watching Kalten and came out to try to help. I guess he unbuckled the base, thinking we would just bring the whole thing inside and figure it out later since it was so cold out, but then Paul came out and showed him the trick to getting the seat out.

The next day was our re-evaluation, and we decided it would be best if Paul stayed out of the L&D ward with all those tiny babies there. He was feeling better but not completely, and now he has tons of cold sores. He stayed home with Kalten, and I took Coen. We woke up late and had hardly any time to get ready. I got Coen in the car and saw that I'd have to scrape the windshield and that I'd forgotten my gloves in the house. I though, well, if I'm going to be late and miserable, I'm going to buy myself breakfast. I really hoped it wouldn't overdraw our checking account. In between the McDonald's ordering box and the paying window, the low fuel light came on, as I was spending our last ounce of cash on junk. I felt lower than low. The cheerful McD employee who took my card said, "how are you today?" and disappeared back inside. "Not good," I said as the window closed over his smiling face. He reopened it, handed my card back, and told me to have a nice day. I felt like strangling him and telling him where to put his nice day.

I bought gas with the credit card, which we've been doing so well on not using, and called the hospital to tell them I'd be late. I followed some slow truck all the way there, going between 45 and 50. I didn't care. I used the time to try to compose myself. I didn't want to melt down again.

When we finally got there, I got in the elevator for the 4th floor. When the doors opened, there was the wonderful nurse who encouraged me throughout my labor and told me how great I was doing. She was escorting some happy couple out to their car with their new baby. I wanted to hold on to her, to send the couple down alone, to hear her say again that I can do this. Instead, I said hi to her and smiled at the baby. It seemed everyone was going home today, their carts loaded with flowers and balloons. I couldn't help but feel a stab of jealousy.

We got in the little re-eval room and the nurse asked how I was doing, and I immediately started crying again. I told her everything as though she was an old friend, when really I'd never met her before that day. I felt so pitiful and stupid. I calmed down enough eventually to talk and answer questions, even crack a few jokes (is he peeing clear? Yeah, clear up into the air). I didn't ever want the visit to end. I slowly packed up all our stuff and went out to the car. I put Coen's seat in the base and got the car started warming up. When I felt it was warm enough, I turned around to open the flap on his cover and saw that the base never got buckled back in after the night before! I had just driven over half an hour at 50-ish with my precious newborn son not even buckled up. I felt like the worst mom in the world.

On the drive home, however, it was so beautiful, and I couldn't help but start to think of all the things that are going right. By the time I got home I felt a little better. I took yet another bath and tried to think positively. I know I'm not out of the woods yet, and nothing will ever bring Pip back or change how guilty I will always feel, but things will get better if I just hold on. God is faithful. Please keep us in your prayers.

Here's a video of Kalten and Coen, sorry it's so dark.

Kalten and Coen from Hey, Dooney! on Vimeo.

Monday, February 2, 2009

A few pictures

There are a few more on our Flickr page, more coming soon!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Introducing Coen Silas

Coen Silas B-
7lb 1oz, 19"
11:03 am Jan 31st

After 2 solid days of painful contractions, they finally got close enough to do something. I showed up at the hospital at 4 am and 4 cm. At the appointment the day before, I was 2-3. I couldn't believe how much pain I was in, but I wanted so badly to birth naturally. At first I visualized my contractions as the tide coming in to the beach. When the tide was in, my son would be here, but I knew it would take each wave to build up. I was a bird, flying above the pain, fully conscious of it but far above.

It was taking so long to get things moving despite the increasing pain. I labored in the bed, on a chair, walking in the hallway, every position I could think of. The jacuzzi helped for a while, and then the doctor showed up and asked if I wanted him to break my water. I said not yet, and labored in the tub for a while. Soon I was not in control anymore.

I got out of the jacuzzi in constant contractions, and I said "go ahead and break my water, and I'll take an IV, whatever." The nurse said the doctor had just left, and when she checked me she said it was almost time anyway. She was so awesome, and she believed in me even though I was ready to quit and go for the interventions. She kept saying how wonderful I was doing (I was not, hehe). My throat is sore from screaming, but it felt better to scream! So when the doctor came to catch and I was pushing, my water still hadn't broken. He said it was bulging, and with the next push, POP! SPLASH! Doctor is covered. Silence. Doctor starts laughing, and that really makes it easier. Just a few pushes and Coen was born. They laid him on me and he nursed for like an hour before I gave him back to get cleaned up and weighed and everything. I didn't even tear, just got a "skidmark" that is really really sore. We're both doing great.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Laundry with Kalten

Paul told me he needed work laundry done, so I headed downstairs after he went to school to throw his clothes in. I brought K with me because he likes to help, and if I didn't bring him, he'd be into everything up here.

Eight months pregnant and carrying a hamper, I try to explain to him that he is going to have to go down the steps by himself just holding my hand. He wants to be held because he doesn't like to step on the cat food he just found so amusing to throw down the stairs.

When I finally get him downstairs, I open the dryer door and put a laundry basket in front, and watch as he pulls everything out of the dryer and flings it behind him across the room.

I help him get everything in the basket, and then start to put stuff from the washer into the dryer. He can't really help with this one because it's a top-loader. I have only thrown a couple of things in when the dryer starts to giggle and thank me after every handful. I reply, "you're welcome," finish emptying the washer, then unbury K from the damp clothes and pull him out of the dryer. I hand him a dryer sheet to put in, and then wince as he slams the door shut. I set him on top of the dryer so he can push the button to turn it on.

I start the washer filling, and then pour the detergent into the lid of the bottle and hand it over. This is where the kid really shines. You should see him standing on the rim, deftly pouring (nearly) all the liquid into the washer from three feet above it, expertly pouring in a circle around the central hub just like he's seen Mommy do hundreds of times. I have to remind him to move his toes before he slams the lid down. He can't always remember which way to turn the cap to get it back on the bottle, so I have to help, or we'd be there forever as he turned it first one way, then the other.

Back upstairs, we settle down to fold. He picks up a shirt and holds it sideways. He's great at shaking out the wrinkles, but that's all. His "folded" clothes end up as rumpled piles strewn about the room. Some of mine get thrown at me and have to be re-folded. I dig furiously in the basket for the used dryer sheet and hand it over for him to throw away. I use his absence to quickly finish folding.

Anything not put away right away becomes unfolded and worn as a hat as he returns from his mission, clapping for himself.

I cherish the time with my son because he won't always want to "help mommy." He won't always be this cute, either. And hopefully, he's learning something about how, um, not to do laundry, how to be a helper, how to work with a smile. I love my kid. I can't imagine how boring the laundry -and life!- would be without him.

I'm in a baking mood

I wanted to warm up the house by baking, and I'm not in the mood for cake or cookies, so I found a savory cheddar bread recipe on allrecipes.com and tried that. I'm so not a baker or cook, so I didn't have a bunch of the stuff in the recipe. I modified it and used what I did have. It is soooooooo good! Here's my recipe if you want to try it.

2 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp minced dried onions
½ tsp table salt
1½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
½ cup parmesan cheese
1 egg, well beaten
1 cup milk
1 Tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350° F, grease an 8½"x4½" loaf pan.

Mix flour, baking powder, sugar, onions, salt, and cheeses in a large bowl, set aside.

In a small bowl, combine egg, milk, and butter. Add all at once to dry ingredients and stir just until moistened.

Spread into loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes.

Monday, January 26, 2009

  • Hospital bag packed.

  • Clothes sorted, put away.

  • Bed ready.

  • Car seat coming.

  • Post-partum supplies ready.

I think all that's left is to go into labor!

No change as of last appointment (Friday). Sort of a letdown, but we still have high hopes for a First-Week-in-Feb baby so Paul will have time off. I'm feeling lots of movement and pressure low down that I never felt with K, maybe because it's my second time around and I'm more sensitive to it. Definitely doing the pregnant waddle! Lots of contractions all over the place, but nothing regular or serious. A couple are a little painful but not very, and they're so scattered I know it's not the real thing.

*Sigh* Part of me is so impatient for this baby to be born, and the rest of me is freaking out knowing he's coming so soon!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Kalten's renamed himself

First he was Kalkedalken, now Kalket.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The bread is delicious

Very fall-apart crumbly, but sooo gooooood!

One more

I really really want chips and salsa and a nacho cheese burrito from Fiesta Cancun soooo bad!

Oh yeah...

Oh, yeah, check this purse out. I made it for a custom order, but the orderer canceled, so it's up for grabs now.Click the picture to go to the listing!

Baking experiments

I am so cold, so I decided to bake to warm the house up a little. I figured I could use the last of our baking mix, but all the recipes needed milk except for the banana bread, and we only have a tiny bit of milk until Friday. We have one banana, not the three that I needed, and it isn't ripe enough to smash. So I dug around and added a small package of cherry pie filling that we had forgotten to use on cheesecake instead of the bananas, then I topped it with crumble topping you're supposed to use on cherry cobbler. It smells really good right now, but we'll see.

If Baby's head is so low, why do I still feel out of breath? Bleh.

Friday, January 16, 2009

OB check today

We were joking about how we'd like him to be born on Feb 2nd about noonish because of Paul being laid off that week, and how nice it would be if we could place orders. So Dr.T. asked if I'd like him to check, and since I've been having contractions pretty much every evening, I said yes. He said Baby's head is "right there" and I'm 2 cm already. With K, I don't think I dilated until we checked in to L&D! Who knows? We might get our wish!

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Look how close the baby is to the end of the ticker! The oval is even cut partway off!

When's it my turn to sleep?

Kalten woke me up at 2:30 this morning crying hysterically. I finally got him calmed down, and realized I was wide awake. Even if I was tired, I couldn't get comfortable, no matter what I did. Around 3:30 I was finally drifting off, and I thought I heard a loud bang. I wasn't sure, because I was in that half-asleep place, but then a few minutes later I heard it again. I called my mom (haha) and she said because it's so cold, the house is settling, and their house does it too. So I got brave and went downstairs to just make sure. Everything was locked up tight and all the pets were fine (Robby likes to sneak into Pip's room and throw her cage on the floor - it's happened twice now). Then as I was turning to go back upstairs, I saw the shape of Paul's wind program polo shirt on its hanger by the hallway and almost screamed. I thought it was a person standing there! After that rush of adrenaline, I had to calm my nerves by reading, which helped me fall asleep. I woke up around 5 with the light still on and my hand in the book. I put that away, turned the light off, and Kalten woke up at 7. He's napping right now, lucky kid.

Paul had school this morning, and as soon as he wakes up he has to go back to school for his night class. The night class is every day except Friday, so I'm looking forward to making a nice dinner tomorrow that we can eat together.

It is SO COLD here! K and I are each wearing two pairs of pants, long sleeves, and a sweatshirt. He's got a hat and slippers, when he'll leave them on. We needed to go out and get milk, so I threw on his huge puffy coat and my double-layer coat, and we spent an hour and a half at Wal-Mart just walking around because I didn't want to go back out to the car. It's -13° with an almost -30° windchill. I felt bad because we had to park so far away, and he cried because of the cold before I could get him in the car. He fell asleep on the way home, and hasn't moved since I brought him in and laid him on the couch. I knew he would do that, so I bought him a banana and had him eat that before we left the store. I'll give him a real lunch when he wakes up.

I have been craving ruby red grapefruit juice, so I splurged on that too. Cravings used to be fun. "Paul, I want some egg drop soup." "Paul, will you go get me a vanilla shake?" I was spoiled when I was pregnant with Kalten! Now, if we don't already have the ingredients or if we need them for something else, forget it. I will be savoring this stuff in tiny cups to make it last as long as possible.

Monday, January 12, 2009

One more month!

Tomorrow is January 13, one month before our due date! I am having a lot of pain suddenly: my ribs, my hips, my lower back, and that blessed round ligament pain, like a guitar string twanging all down my hip and leg. I'm trying to keep positive by thinking that all this means the end is near, and soon we'll meet the little guy!

We're having a little name trouble, and I think we're going to wait until we meet him to give him a name. Kalten was Kalten from the first "it's a boy" ultrasound so it's a little weird not knowing for sure. We have a list, but no clear favorites. I'm hoping that once we meet him it'll be obvious. Kalten has provided a list for us (it's on the right), but I think we'll pass on those.

I bought a cloth diaper pattern because I want to at least partially cloth diaper to save on buying disposables. Cloth diapers have come a long way from the white Gerbers and the plastic pants! I've seen some really really cute ones! But I haven't felt like sewing at all. It's a little overwhelming, plus we can't really afford the special fabric right now. I have a bunch of prefolds that we used for burp cloths when K used to spit up all the time, and ONE cover, but no pins or other way to close the diapers. I might just modify the prefolds with Velcro. I found a tutorial for that online. Then I'd use fleece for the covers, and when we can afford the special fabric, I'll use the pattern. It's for one size fits all so I'm not in a huge hurry.

Soooo tired!

Friday, January 9, 2009


Everything looks great - no low fluid problem, measuring right on track.

Tried to get some good pictures, but his face was half covered by the placenta, half covered by one hand (the other hand was down by his parts - Paul said "geez, he's already playing with himself").

35 weeks today, 35 days to go!

Ultrasound today

We're going in for the (hopefully) last ultrasound in about an hour. I remember being excited for this with Kalten, and being like "that blob is my baby?" This kid is out of room in there, and I know he's going to be just as squashed and hard to figure out as K was. Really, though, it's not for us but for growth and positioning, blah blah. They still print off the little pictures though. I only laminate the 20-week ones because you can tell it's a baby.

With K, I had a different doctor for this ultrasound because ours was busy with surgery. I'm actually kind of glad I got to meet him because he ended up being the one on call when K was born, and I don't generally like strangers reaching in my lady parts, doctor or not.

After this, appointments switch to every week. Good and bad because while it means we're almost to the end, it also means a lot of driving, shuffling K around, and a lot of time.

Paul's work is shutting down unpaid for the first week of February, so probably he'll use up all his vacation time right before the baby is born and I'll be on my own right from the start. Hopefully, though, I'll end up having him during that week and having Paul there with me for a while. I've been getting a "slightly early" vibe, but that could just be wishful thinking.

Friday, January 2, 2009


As if me breaking Kalten's first Christmas ornament wasn't enough, we got a virus that installed things on our computer like bestfetishsex.exe and completely messed everything up. Paul had to reformat and we lost all of our photos and videos. Yesterday morning the virus scan said we were all clear, so between then and evening, something got in. All I did was look up a recipe for beef gravy.

Thankfully, being the total mom that I am, I have TONS of pics and videos saved on my parents' computer, on flickr, on Walmart.com, on shutterfly, on Vimeo, and on my blog. Now I just have to go and collect them. When Paul told me everything was gone, I thought of all those sites and realized that the only ones we really lost are the ones I didn't think were good enough to upload.


There was this one video I never put on Vimeo because I didn't want to share it. It was so special to me. Just mine.

And it's gone.

Kalten and I were goofing around, making silly movies with the camera. I flipped the display out so he could see himself and hit record. He started saying "Wii" over and over, and pointing at the Wii. I said "is that all you talk about?" and he turned to me and pointed to himself. "Kalten!" I said, "yes, that's Kalten!" Then he pointed to me and said "Mommy!" I said, "yes, that's Mommy!" Then he got up out of my lap, turned around and hugged me, knocking me off balance and saying "happy!" The last thing on the camera is my face, smiling hugely as I turned the camera off to hug my son.

It's gone.

No, it's not that big of deal. It's so clear in my memory anyway, and there are billions of those precious moments in a lifetime and only a tiny fraction are ever recorded. Most people don't even have a way to record them, and I've got a whole website full with only two years' worth!

But that one was special. It was the spontaneous affection that comes so rarely. It was the one that I was going to pull up on one of those rocky teenage days and play over and over. It was the one that I watched when he was napping and I needed a hug. It was a special gift, and now it's gone.