Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Sickly child

I swear, sometimes I feel like my poor children get the short end of the stick every time. Emma woke up this morning with a huge lump on her throat. It's between her chin & throat, actually. It's swollen & she says it's painful but she may just be acting on that one. But there's no fever, no redness, no other sign of infection. So we made an appointment for this afternoon. After driving halfway to Stockton & realizing that obviously the wonderful, if not always reliable, internet had given me bogus directions, I had to call the doctor's office to push back our appointment by 30 minutes, so I could drive practically back to where I had originally started (the office was 5 minutes from my in-law's house, grrr). The Physician's Assistant we see tells me it's probably a thyroglossal cyst. Huh? Long story short, it's a congenital defect (I hate that word) where something didn't quite finish developing in utero and is now rearing it's ugly head on my daughter's throat. Nice. But, fortunately, it's quite common & can be remedied, either through antibiotics or surgery. The surgery thing scares me, because it's NOT an outpatient thing. Emma would have to be put out with a breathing tube down her throat. She was put under general anesthesia last year for her CT scan when she had Bell's palsy, so I know she probably won't have any adverse reaction to that. It's the breathing tube & the actually cutting of skin that I wouldn't be looking forward to. I definitely could NOT do this while I was here visiting CA. I would need Jeff to be there with me. And I know he would want me to wait until we got home to do it.
So, I get home from the appointment & immediately try to get in contact with an ENT doc to confirm the diagnosis & prescribe treatment. Of course, no ENT doc has ANY appointments for at least a week. Apparently there's always a run on ENT docs, and they never have to beg for patients. So I take the earliest appointment I can, but I'm going to call the places that were closed by the time I called today in the morning & try to get something sooner. The PA said to look for signs of infection, like redness & fever. I thought it was starting to get a little pink this evening, but it could just be that Emma was poking at it.
But, we DID go the zoo this evening. Dave's job was having a special preview of the Touring Termite exhibit & we all got in free. Emma was bummed because they apparently sent their only elephant to the Detroit zoo, and that's the only animal was actually looking forward to seeing. But we still had a blast. She loved the giraffes and the monkeys. The only big cats that were still out in the open were the snow leopards. I think this one might have been hungry because it was sitting about 4 feet from the front of the enclosure and it seemed to be watching Emma like a hawk. Emma would walk back & forth in front of it & it would follow her with it's eyes. Emma walked out of it's field of vision & it actually got up & walked down a few steps to try & find her again. It seemed to be saying, hey that one's little, I could take that one down no problem. But then more people started crowding around & it backed up into it's original spot, like it was saying, oh they're gathering, I think I lost my chance. Too many of them now. It was funny, and kinda scary at the same time. I didn't like the fact that some animal was sizing up my daughter for a meal.

Monday, June 28, 2004

From somewhere in Ca...

Actually, I'm in Sacramento now, after visiting Santa Barbara for 2 weeks.
So far, this trip has been great. I was able to spend a lot of time with my dad's family and had a really fun time. My sister Tracey graduated from high school on the 15th. Emma, Sarah & I went to the beach, and Emma had a blast running around in the water & playing with anyone who was around. We went shopping, always fun. It was nice to just relax & be with family. I think I really realize now how much I miss CA. I don't miss the outrageous prices on everything from gas to houses, but I miss being able to just take a short (or long) drive and see anyone in our family. I think this has really solidified our resolve to make it back here as soon as we can.
Emma was so funny with my two brothers. She seemed to have problems remember their names individually so she kinda merged their 2 names together. Their names are Kyle & Evan, so she called them both "Kevin". She also periodiclaly called them "the big boy" & "the little boy". She had a little difficulty with the concept of great-grandparents, so she just called them Grandpa & Grandma. But then when my dad came into the picture, she kept calling him "Daddy's mommy". In our attempt to help her understand, we had told her that he was "mommy's daddy" but she kinda mixed that up.
Sarah started smiling a little while we were there. She's not doing it very often, but it's still a big milestone. They both have done really well on the trip. Our flight to CA was fun, in the least likable meaning of the word. We missed our 1st flight in the morning (to be truly accurate, the people at the aiport were Nazis about security & took WAY too long to check everyone's bag, thus making me miss my plane). So we had to catch the next flight, which didn't leave for 6 hours. I felt like Tom Hanks' character in "The Terminal". We were stuck there. We had checked Emma's carseat, so we couldn't just leave, but we couldn't stand staying in an airport for 6 hours. So I drove to Targe, bought a cheap booster seat, and then picked up Jeff & the girls and we went back to the mall for a couple hours. Our original flight had us going to Minneapolis with a 3 hour layover. This flight we ended up taking took us to Detroit (which is only a 30 minute flight from where we took off), with an hour layover, but we ended up sitting on the tarmack, in the plane, for 1 hour 45 minutes. Apparently there was a storm going over & we couldn't take off. It could have turned out a lot uglier than it did, with two kids in a plane that isn't making any progress. But Sarah nursed most of the time, and surprisingly, Emma kept herself occupied the whole time. Mostly bugging the guy next to us who was trying to sleep. That was a long day. By the time we got to Santa Barbara, after landing in LAX, it was 2:30am, Michigan time. I was exhausted. But the kids were troopers.
We extended our trip 2 weeks so be able to come up here to Sac & visit. In order to get up here, we made a pitstop in Pismo Beach to see Jeff's grandparents. We met up with his mom & step-dad there and they drove us up here. We got here yesterday. So, now it's 2 weeks in Sac to visit anybody I can.

Monday, June 07, 2004


Well, no word yet on whether we are in first place with our bid for the house. Our realtor went out of town & we were told that she was going to be checking her voicemail & getting back to us. No such luck. I left a message on Friday evening and haven't heard anything back. Someone was supposed to be taking over for her while she was gone, but he hasn't called us either. I called & left him a message this morning, so hopefully someone will get back to this. I'm beginning to think I should have just gone with the person who helped set us up with the house we're renting, but that's a whole other bag that I don't even want to get into. If we don't end up getting this house, it's going to create a messy situation with me going out of town next week. I'll end up having to look for another house to buy, or possibly rent, because the whole escrow thing takes forever, and we won't have enough time to get through it before we have to be out of this house. We'll have to start the whole process all over again, and that takes a lot of time. Plus, this is the only house I've looked at that I like that doesn't need a ton of work.
I'm leaving for CA next Monday. I can't wait to see my family. It's been over a year since I've seen them. I wish Jeff could go with us, but he has summer school & that's important.
Grrr, just got off the phone with the replacement realtor. He said the other deal is still in the works, so we're still in second place. This is ridiculous. People move at such a slow pace around here. I wish they'd just get on with it and tell me yes or no, if we're going to get this house. I don't have time to sit around & wait. I asked the guy if we could see some more houses, because last week we didn't see ANY new ones. My realtor didn't follow up on any of the other houses I gave her, and then she got really sick and was out for 2 days. That's not her fault. But I still don't think she gets the concept that we're on a short time schedule here. Unless she wants us to be out on the street come the end of July when we have no place to live, I think she better get on the ball. I couldn't imagine if our landlord hadn't been generous and given us 60 days notice. We would have been seriously up a creek.
Anyways, Emma had her IEP appointment this morning. It's for her speech therapy that's going to start up again in the fall. The speech therapist is starting a new program where 5-6 kids are put into a group session together that lasts for about 2 1/2 hours, once a week. It'll basically be preschool, but where the only thing they focus on is speech related things. They'll have a snack & everything. They're not 100% sure that's how it's going to happen, but it's looking like it will. That would be fun for Emma, she'd be able to interact with kids her own age in a setting that's helping her speech. Plus, she'll still have regular Kindergarten readiness preschool 4 times a week.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Summer blues

Last week was Emma's last day of preschool before they break for the summer. It was the last time she'll be going to that school because next year she's going to the CMU Kindergarten Readiness preschool. It's 4 days a week, 2 1/2 hours a day. And best of all, it's free. I know she's sad that she won't see her friends for awhile, but I'm trying to set something up so she can see a few of them during the summer. She's already gotten upset at the fact that we keep driving by the school & not going.
We have our tickets comfirmed for our trip to CA. We're leaving the 14th of June and returning on the 29th. It's going to be fun flying cross country with 2 kids, but Emma's been on planes before & Sarah should be relatively easy to care for, since if she starts crying, I can breastfeed her. The only thing that might be hard is the layover in between flights in Minneapolis. It's 3 hours long. We're definitely going to have to bring some toys & other distractions for Emma, otherwise she's liable to drive the other people in the airport batty. I'm hoping she'll want to take a nap, but I know that's a pipe dream.
Last night was Jeff's last day of his Human Growth & Development class. It was a rough 3 weeks but we got through it & hopefully Jeff will get an A in the class and it'll be all worth it. He did really well & worked really hard. I'm very proud of him. Now all he has is his math class for the next 3 weeks. I'll be gone for the last 2 weeks of it, so hopefully he'll be able to handle everything without me.
We put a bid on the house we want, and it's been accepted. Well they countered for $1,000 more than what we offered, but that's fine.But, we're in 2nd place right now, since they had already accepted another offer before ours. But that one might fall through, so we're the second option. That's fine, but we're also still looking at houses, just in case it doesn't fall through. Plus, I just found out that our real estate agent is going out of town for a week, so that might cause some problems, especially if the deal falls through & we have to look elsewhere for a house.
The kids are doing great. Sarah is continuing to grow & she's rolling over more. She did it three times in a row the other night. I kept putting her onto her tunny after she'd roll & she'd immediately roll back over, like she was saying,"I want to be on my back, mom, not my tummy, quit putting me there!" It was funny. Her vision is starting to seem better. She stares at the mobile above her swing now more intently, and she's starting to take more interest in the rattles we hover in front of her eyes. I thought I got a tiny smile the other day, but it hasn't been a full blown one yet. I'm still waiting. It could take up to 12 weeks, and she's only 6 weeks, so I'm not panicking yet. She smiles in her sleep though, so I know it's coming. Emma is still really great with her. She loves her little sister to death, even though she's having a bit of confusion about Sarah's gender. She keeps saying Sarah's a boy, not a girl, like her. I keep trying to explain it to her, but I don't think she's ready to listen. She's getting better at not throwing huge temper tantrums whenever we tell her something she doesn't like (this is a bahavior that started after Sarah was born) but I think this is the way she's voicing her inner displeasure. Which is better than her taking out her aggressions on the baby, which is what I was expecting.