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Just Say No…

July 27th, 2009

… to WebMD.

Seriously.   Kenny woke up this morning with a stiff neck.   It was the first thing he said when he got out of bed.   An hour later he had a respectable fever, and two hours after that was sound asleep in his bed, covers under his chin.   The kid hasn’t napped since I was pregnant with Cooper.

He woke up two hours later crying hysterically about his neck hurting.   I started thinking about meningitis (I am so hooked on TV hospital dramas), and Googled his symptoms.   Hm.   He had all of them but photo-sensitivity.   I made him come outside and stand in the sun with me.   He started wailing that the light hurt his eyes.   Panic set in.

I called his doctor’s office and they told me to give him some motrin and bring him in for the last appointment of the day.   He was so pathetic, lying there on the couch.   “Carry me, Mama…” he whimpered.   When it was time to go, I took Cooper to the car and came back for Kenny, then started calling friends on the 20 minute ride to the pediatricians’ office to find someone who could watch Cooper, just in case I suddenly found myself going to the hospital.   One of Kenny’s old babysitters was home, and I dropped off The Coop, who looked at me like I was insane as I plopped him into a veritable stranger’s arms.   Kenny spent most of the car ride barfing into an Orioles hat (it was a freebie) and it was so full and soaked through that I tossed it into a dumpster in the parking lot.

By the time we got into the exam room, though, he was on all four cylinders: Motrin-jazzed to the hilt.   The doctor walked in and said, “He doesn’t have meningitis.   He doesn’t even look sick!”   She examined him and said, “Garden variety virus.   He’ll get a little worse when the sun goes down.   Keep up the Motrin.”

Whew.   I hate you, WebMD!

I picked up Cooper, and our babysitter, along with her three siblings, both parents and a  cousin met us at the door.   (It was dinner time, did I mention that?)   They are one of the most loving families I know and apparently all wanted to play with “the baby” but Cooper wouldn’t let anyone but our babysitter hold him.   I guess he figured that since I handed him to her, she must be safe, right?

We got home and Kenny, who hadn’t eaten all day, downed three plates of spaghetti, then stayed up through the fifth inning of the O’s game on TV before deciding that it was time for a little shut-eye.     I had to phone into a meeting I was supposed to attend, and laid in the bed with Kenny and my cell phone on mute, stroking his hair while he asked me 101 questions about baseball, barfing and boogymen.

Now I stare, spent, at a really messy house.   I pretty much let Cooper get into anything he wanted all day while I doted on Kenny, and now I face the consequences.     At least all’s well that ends well…

Mysteries, Solved

July 25th, 2009

1.   Never did find the source of the smell, but it’s gone.   I think it probably was spilled milk on the carpet, and repeated vacuuming has gotten rid of it.   But I have enjoyed reading about all the funny smells you all have discovered in your own houses.   The dead opossum wins for freak-out factor.

2. Haven’t seen the fox.   Apparently he got out the same way he came in.   Whew.

3. Guess this wasn’t really a mystery, was it?

4. Cooper’s relentless odd-ball tantrums turned out to be the effects of a double ear infection.   Poor little bugger.   The antibiotics are not wiping it out, though, so it must be one of the viral kinds.   He’s been a pill, but at least we know why!

5. Nope.

The only other exciting news I have from the week is that Kenny has learned to hula-hoop.   It is the funniest thing ever.   He just wiggles and wiggles and grins and then shouts, “Watch me again!”   He has also learned that a hula hoop is good for trapping a now-walking baby brother.   He sneaks up behind Cooper and slips it over his head, then gently tugs him the way he wants him to go.   It’s a little mean, but Cooper thinks that the world revolves around Kenny, so he hasn’t protested much.   Yet.


July 20th, 2009

1. We still haven’t found the origin of the smell.   Starting to panic.   I mopped and disinfected every non-porous (and some not-so-non-porous) surface today, and yet a phantom scent lingers…

2. There is a fox caught in our fully fenced yard.   He spent part of the day sunning on our deck and the larger part wedged beneath it, just beyond where Dudley could get him.     I called the DNR and County Animal Control and they told me that they couldn’t remove him from our property unless I trapped him first.   Thanks.   Oh, and their best advice was, “Just leave the gate open until he decides to leave.”   Yeah.   Or until his girlfriend decides to move in, too.

3. Kenny has started quoting random passages from the Veggie Tales movie Jonah.   He watched it in the car both ways to New York and back and spent the better part of his waking hours today working the words “Nineveh,” “fish slap” and “Mr. Twisty” into his conversation.  

4. Cooper threw not his first temper tantrum today because I wouldnt’ let him play with a tomato.

5. If a fox found his way into our yard through the fence, could he then find a way to get into our house through the  dog door?

Something Rotten in the State of Denmark…

July 19th, 2009

We rolled in about an hour ago from a trip to New York to visit Casey’s family.   His dad threw a surprise party for his mom’s 70th birthday, and it was a hit, to say the least.   Though Ruby knew that all three of her sons and their families were coming,  we don’t think she caught  wind of the party until right before.     The 25 or so guests consisted of friends that Ruby and George have known forever – some even since elementary school, and most since at least high school.   It was such a unique gathering; so many of them staying so close for so long.   I could write for another hour about the stories I heard (or overheard, I should say), but I think I may divulge too much in the recount.   So Happy Birthday, Ruby!

Another Happy Birthday (today!) to my dear Dad!   I won’t divulge his age, but he’s timeless anyway, so it doesn’t make a difference.   I love you, Dad!   Sorry I missed being with you today, but we look forward to a belated celebration later this week!

Walking into our house after the long, traffic-laden drive, however, we were greeted by a distinctly foul smell.   It was close to spoilt milk, but after thorough examinations by first me, then Casey, then Kenny, then Dudley (Cooper declined, perhaps because the poop in his diaper was masking the curdled smell), we found nothing.   I ran the disposal for a while, cleaned out the fridge and I guess we’ll just leave it at that.   I can’t smell it anymore, anyway.

So now the kids are asleep and Casey is trying to catch up on some missed work before the new work week starts and I am contemplating starting laundry, or just going to bed.   Sleep was not a big part of the long weekend, and I feel almost hungover from the lack of it.   Sleep, perchance to dream… Ah;   There’s the rub.   I’ll probably dream about the laundry.


July 14th, 2009

1. How much do you clean house when a babysitter is coming over?   Nothing?   A quick vacuum?   A full-on scrub-a-dub??

2. How many days per week do you stay home (or go only where you can walk to) all day, because it’s just too much to get everyone in the car to go somewhere?

3. Have you ever given your child a cleaning with wet wipes, instead of putting them in the bathtub?

4. Have you ever asked your preschooler to watch your baby, “just for a second?”

5. Have you ever locked yourself in the bathroom to find even a moment of peace and quiet?

5(b). Have you ever locked yourself in the bathroom and eaten a chocolate bar in secret?

Just curious.   Not that I’m speaking from experience, or anything… just wondering…


Tie Me Up, Tie Me Down

July 13th, 2009

Cooper hates to get his diaper changed.   Really, though, I don’t know many one-year-olds who do like to lie calmly strapped to a changing table while a Large Adult cuffs their ankles and lifts with one hand  and efficiently swipes the arse with cold clammy wipes with the other.  

I need to get Casey to take a video of me trying to change a Cooper poop, though.   Because it would get so many hits on Youtube, I might find my fifteen minutes of fame after all.   The kid poops five times a day, I kid you not.   I could feed him nothing but dry crackers and bananas for days at a time and he  would still manage  to squeeze out five  big ones  a day.     But I do understand that what goes in must come out, and often not looking much different from how it went in in the first place.   Can I help it that he begs for  food every time we pass the kitchen??   “Daw-bee!” he yells, as I open the fridge door and he spies the little case of strawberries; “BAW!” he demands, pointing at the bowl with nectarines, peaches and plums inside.   And hello, corn and raisins??   Do those things ever even digest?

But back to the changing table drama.   I lie him down, he rolls over.   I strap him in, he slides out and does a bomb dive towards the floor.   I start to take off the diaper, he bucks his body, lands his feet right in the slime, then kicks me in the face, all the while howling like it’s him that’s suffering.   It takes me five minutes of wrestling just to get him clean – forget actually getting another diaper on.   I have resorted to literally crawling behind him on the floor, stretching the velcro tabs around his belly while trying to hold the front in place with the other hand.   Kenny has resorted to running and hiding under the bed in my room because, “I don’t like it when you make Cooper cry!”

Cry?  It’s usually me that ends up crying by the end of it.   Poop.

Good Morning, America!

July 12th, 2009

This morning, Good Morning America Weekend did a segment on “mommy bloggers.”   I missed it, but received several emails today that people had seen my blog on the segment.   I just watched it online, and sure enough, the MommyBlog banner scrolled across the screen twice in the six-minute feature!   So if you are here to check us out after seeing the fleeting view on GMA, welcome!   And come back again soon!

The segment itself was on mommy bloggers making money and getting freebies from reviewing products.   The report said that 85% of mommy bloggersreap some kind of monetary or gift reward for mentioning or reviewing products online.   Just to clarify for this blog, I have never gotten paid anything.   (Don’t I wish I had a paycheck to show for all my work here!)   I have received a few free books and cds (and once some maternity clothes), reviews of which can be found on the sidebar under “The Web-Surfing Mommy.”   At one time I did quite a few, but these have recently fallen to the wayside.   But to be clear, I have never been sent on a glitzy trip, or gotten anything very expensive in exchange for writing about it here.   But hey, if anyone out there needs me to review an all-expenses-paid trip to a Four Seasons resort spa, by all means, email me!

Now, back to business.

This weekend was all about The Orioles.   All set for another game day, we were ready after breakfast…


That left us with about 12 hours to get psyched up for the game, so you can imagine that we were ready to see some action when we got there.   We have great seats – even Cooper can see what’s going on…


…kind of, anyway…   But he and Kenny do get into the game…


“Don’t drop the ball, Luke!”


“ooh…  I think he could have made it a triple…”


“Hm… is that the hot dog guy I see before me??”


“Dude.. easy on the mustard next time!”


Family shot taken by the mom of the little boy behind us who knocked over my beer in the 2nd inning…

It was a great game – we made it until the end of the 8th inning, and we made it home in time to see the O’s win in the 11th inning on TV.   What a night!   Now if only we could get the Orioles to win a few more games…

I really do still blog here…

July 8th, 2009

… but who knew that summer would be so busy??   Gone are the evening marathons on the computer after the kids go to bed – say hello instead  to a glass of wine on the dock as the sun sets.   Seriously, though, every time I sit down to write something, it seems as if something else beckons.  

Last night, the beckoning came from a little voice that shouted, “Mama!   Cooper just pooped on the floor and now he’s playing with it!”   And yes, that was what was happening.   You see, Cooper has a diaper rash from here to Mississippi, and one of the doctor’s remedies was to let him run around with no diaper as much as possible.   Yeah, great advice for a kid who poops like, 8 times a day.   We’d only been out of the bathtub for 98 seconds, and I was in the boys room getting their pjs out.   Kenny and Cooper raced into my room, naked as jay birds, to play hide and seek, and just as I was about to walk in to dress them, I heard the cackling shout from Kenny.

There was poop all over the white carpet, all over the white couch by my window (slipcovered, thank goodness!), all over Cooper (all over, folks) and there  he was, coming down the hall to meet me, leaving poppy knee prints as he crawled, dragging his “blankie” through the mess as it trailed behind.   Kenny was dancing between the piles and prints, alternately laughing and looked shocked.

And that’s why you should never leave a bare-bottomed-boy unattended.

Speaking of that boy, he is upstairs not napping.   Kenny has a once-a-week “camp” that he’s been going to; it lasts a whooping two hours, which is not quite long enough to go home to put Cooper down for a nap, and too long to kill time running errands with a sleepy baby.   I have a feeling that The Coop is going to fall asleep just about the time we have to load into the car to pick Kenny up.     Ah, timing is everything.



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