Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A Day of Horse-Related Shopping

It is one minute before 8 p.m. and I just put the last boy to bed. Immediately, Cody got up. Sigh. I am home alone here. Well, alone with three boys, that is. And a dog. And two cats. And a rabbit. Thankfully, Jamie went to sleep immediately because he did not nap today. He did very well today and I am beginning to think he may be truly over this terrible sickness. We shall see. He ate some risky things today, though in small quantities, so it should be a good little test. Cody is begging for food, and it is probably my fault because I messed up his meal schedule today. I took him to town.

Yes, Cody and I went to town today. We left here just before lunch and went in to a farm store. We were shopping for horse supplies. It was fun. Well, sort-of. I found it stressful too, because at first no one in the store would help me and I needed help because I have never kept a horse at my own place before, so I have not had to buy feeding supplies. At any rate, I bought a trough for water, a shallow black rubber feeding dish for the pellets, which I also bought, plus a supplement to strengthen her hooves. I got her a salt block and a mineral block, and I also bought myself a riding helmet, finally. I was really excited about all of my purchases. I also found two gates for our round pen, but could not buy them because I had no truck to haul them home in. As it was, it was a tight squeeze to get the trough into the van with Cody in there too, but I made it happen. Now we are even closer to being ready to bring Sasha home. We just need some hay for the first week or so, when she will be in the round pen and have no access to grazing, and then we need to finish the fence. Everything else is ready for her arrival. I can scarcely believe it! It's really fun shopping for horse supplies. I even went and sat in a saddle that was on sale, but I did not like it. That's okay. I have use of a saddle for the summer, so I do not need to buy one immediately.

Oddly enough, I do not remember the rest of what I was going to post in here today. Though I was alone this morning and I am alone again, things went fairly well. I even took the boys out for a walk down the driveway and down the lane. I only did it because it was quite warm and very windy, which seemed to keep the mosquitos at bay. As usual, I was quite frustrated by the time we all got to our property line, which is not very far from the end of our driveway. So, I turned them all around and we went back. Once we got on the driveway, which is completely enclosed in trees, the mosquitos attacked. Cody and Radar had already run all the way home, and although I am not really psyched about running, I was tempted to do the same thing myself. But Jamie chose that moment to exert his will. He stopped walking and refused to go any further. I was mad! There were literally about a hundred mosquitos attacking me and swarming the stroller, trying to get at Micah. Thankfully, he was hidden safely behind a mosquito net, but I was not so lucky. I finally ran to Jamie, picked him up and held him on my right hip, and started running down the driveway pushing the stroller with my left hand. Jamie has lost weight this last month, but he still weighs thirty pounds, and that combined with the fact that he did not want to be carried made our trek down the driveway VERY unpleasant. I got to the place where we could see the house once again and then let Jamie down. Then I ran with the stroller. I'm telling you, it was disgusting. Mosquitos were attacking the net and they were attacking me. I was so grossed out. Less than an hour previous, I had marveled at what a beautiful day it was. Then, they ruined it. That's what mosquitos do.

Anyway, Jamie eventually moseyed on back to the house, and I went inside to brainstorm about what in the world to feed these guys. Cody had eaten fast food at 2 p.m. and Jamie is still on the BRAT diet. (Bananas, Rice, Applesauce & Toast) So, I selected toast, my personal favorite. He ate four pieces of toast with butter and raspberry jam on them. Then he had a bit of yogurt and a couple of Arrowroot cookies. Cody picked at his food. That's why he is up now, eating. More accurately, he is now done eating and is in the bathroom. I hope he is okay in there. I am feeling a little afraid that he is going to get this thing that Jamie has had, though it would be weird if it happened this long after it started for Jamie. He says he's okay, so I should just relax. For some reason, I am having a hard time doing that.

So, I am now in the middle of watching a movie on Mike's iPad, because I have nothing else to do. That's not true. I have homework to finish, but I started the movie when I was feeding Micah because I was stuck in one place and could not do anything else. I don't want to do homework tonight. I'm too tired, and I want some winding down time. Maybe tomorrow Mike will let me have some time to finish it. I hope so, because it's due the day after tomorrow. I have a good start on it already. All I need is some uninterrupted time. That's a laugh!

So, I'm signing off for now. Goodnight.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

A beautiful day for fence building!

It's a beautiful day here in my neck of the woods. The sun is shining, the temperature is warm, yet moderate, and a lovely wind is blowing through the yard and the house, keeping the mosquitos at bay. All this, and yet I am in a terrible mood. My nerves are shot and I can't stand to be around my kids today. Jamie is still not well, and is extremely irrational and snarly. I understand that it is because he has been so sick, but I am still reaching my maximum tolerance level.

Mike is outside building the round pen, which is looking good. In fact, in a rare moment of inspiration, I will post a couple of pictures.

First, a shot of a beautiful cloud over some of our trees. This is my kind of weather. Wish my horse was here already. I'd be riding today for sure!

Here's Mike working on the round pen. It's coming along very nicely. Hopefully it will be done soon!

These rails are just aspen trees stripped of their bark, I think, so they are not perfectly straight like some fence rails. That's why the rails look a little warped in places. They are plenty strong though. We do not have gates yet, but hopefully we will soon.

That is now the view of the back of our house. This entire area was bush a few short weeks ago. I watched from the kitchen doors that are jutting out from the back of the house. More than a few tears sprung to my eyes as I watched tree after tree after tree succumb to the brutality of the bulldozer. Here are a couple of shots of the gate near the other end of the back of our house. 

That's the play structure that Mike built for the boys last fall. Now they will be able to pet the horse without getting shocked by an electric fence. The rest of the fence will be electric except for the part that borders our yard. By the shed (on the right there) we have a gate, and that is also where the water trough will be.

And, seeing I'm on a roll with pictures, here is a shot of the beauty that will be coming to live here soon. 

It's slightly blurry, but I love the look in her eye in this picture. Intelligent and kind, a good combination. This is Sasha. She is a registered Quarter Horse, and she's a fantastic horse. Excellent bloodlines and fantastic temperament, and even an ideal size for me. She's 15.1 hands, though she may grow another inch. She's only three, after all. I'll post more about her once she arrives. Not sure when that will be yet.

I am feeling a tiny bit less grouchy than when I started this post. Not sure why. I am very tired and having a hard time keeping my eyes open. I'm going to sign off here for now. Happy weekend, everyone. 

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Eye of the Storm!

It is nearly 8:30 p.m. and we just put our third boy to bed. He is still crying a bit, but otherwise everyone is settled. It is an eerie feeling creeping over me because a storm is hitting us right now and Mike just left to get ice cream. Yes, those of you who know him would not be surprised to learn that he would dare to venture out in this just for a sundae with soft serve ice cream, but I kind of wish he had stayed. The sky is a wicked greenish-grey color and I find myself fearing a possible tornado. A loud crack of thunder just boomed nearby, and smaller ones sound like a growling animal. The trees are blowing quite heavily. oh no...

Okay, things are getting intense here. The good news is that Mike came home. Even he is not crazy enough to risk his life for ice cream. I have to admit, I am feeling scared, and I was wondering what I'd do if I needed to haul all three boys into the basement without help when they are all sleeping. I hope it won't come to that. This is a really interesting shade of green. It is pouring rain...a real change of pace around here. Oh wait...it's ALWAYS pouring rain these days. There is a ton of lightning and thunder. Apparently there is a good chance of getting large hail and winds up to 90 km/h. This is the first real storm we've had this year. (At our place, anyway.) The cats are acting nutty, running around with their eyes all black and attacking each other. I looked out at our fence and was glad Sasha was not here yet. I would be worried about her if she were. That is, of course, a very irrational thought because she is outside anyway...just not here. So I don't have to look...

Oh my!!! We are in the eye of the storm. The wind just died completely but it's still pouring and I saw a huge bolt of lightning just out the front window followed by the most terrifyingly loud crack ever. Here comes the wind again. Oh Lord, don't let there be a tornado! I think I better sign off.

Oh, just to update, Jamie is much better today. Not completely well, but certainly better than yesterday. Hopefully that trend will continue this time. I have to sign off. I'm too nervous to continue writing in this!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Fevers and Thunderstorms (Now updated about Jamie - 8:25 p.m.)

It is Thursday morning, though I feel like it is Saturday. It is very dark in this house and we are in the middle of a mild thunderstorm. It is pouring, as usual, yet in a way I am finding the thunder soothing. Jamie is in bed, sleeping, by his own request. His fever is still present, though we have not checked with a thermometer to determine his actual temperature. He ate a bit of breakfast this morning, with a frown on his cute little face. He said his juice was "yucky". That's not normal for Jamie. None of this is. We are left wondering; Is this connected to the stomach issues he had for two straight weeks? Is there something more serious wrong with him? Or is this just some unrelated virus that decided to kick him when he was down? No matter the answer, this really stinks. Both of us are reluctant to leave here, in case the other one needs to take him in but we are alone with all three boys. I wanted to go to town for a few errands today, but now...I don't know. Mike was going to go to work, even though he is done for the summer, to finish up a fence that was started as part of a project. No matter. It is too stormy and wet to do that anyway. I just want to go buy my Jamie a bunch of toys and movies to cheer him up. I know that's kind of silly, but that's what I feel like doing. I remember when I was in the hospital when I was 16 and I got a few presents that really lifted my spirits. And I was 16, not two years old. I just want to get him a really cute cuddly stuffed animal, or a fun movie for him to watch...or something. Something to make up for the gross few weeks he has had. Yes, it has been nearly three weeks. If I lived in town, I'd be at the store already. I feel like buying Cody something too. Something creative to do that will help quell the boredom that comes with too many rainy days of being stuck in the house. I know I can't just use material things to make everything better. But I feel like it. I want to. Maybe I will go in later if Jamie is feeling any better. This is just such a downer. He is already so small and now he has no appetite. I need more medicine for him too.

The thunder is getting more intense and we are definitely very close to the center of this storm now. Still, it is not a worrisome storm. Just a nice, summer storm. The only problem is, we have had way too much rain and we are getting close to being in danger of a flooded basement. We are praying that won't happen. We are also having such a bad mosquito year that it could almost be classified as a plague.

I just talked to Mike and he thinks I will have to go to town today for sure, to get medicine at the very least. If my own stomach were feeling good I would not hesitate to go. I have never been much of a shopper, but certain kinds of shopping can be therapeutic. Maybe I could go look at a saddle or something. I don't know. At this rate, we may not even get our horse until fall. The rain doesn't exactly allow for much fence building.

I am in the middle of disinfecting the bathroom...a chore that is long overdue. Now that Jamie's stomach troubles appear to be over, I really want to go over the whole bathroom with a fine-toothed comb. I already cleaned the toilet and washed the floor. I'm just waiting for the floor to dry so I can do the rest. Micah is getting restless and will want to eat soon so he can go have a nap. He is so cute it's not even funny. He has started walking on his hands and feet on occasion. Sort of a gorilla-like crawl. That's when crawling seems to slow for him but he doesn't want to take the time to stand up so he can walk. Hehe. I love my boys so much.

I'm going to sign off for now. I'm very tired. I could use a nap today, though I kind of doubt I'll get one. Hopefully I won't have any updates later today. No news is good news, right? I hope so. Well, I'm off to continue cleaning the bathroom. Bye for now.

1:55 p.m. I disinfected the bathroom too soon. Jamie has bad diarrhea again and has been in bed the entire day so far. He does not want to get up. We are taking him to a clinic in the big town nearby and very likely to the hospital after that. I strongly suspect he will need another IV. We do not know what is going on. I held him about 15 minutes ago and his fever was much improved. He is clearly not feeling any better, however, and refuses to take any medicine.

Oops. I got interrupted. I must post this now. Jamie will be leaving to see a doctor in about 15 minutes. I don't know what is going to happen. I'm off for now.

8:25 p.m: Jamie was admitted to the hospital this afternoon to be assessed. He was not put on an IV, though that was the original plan. I guess he was not dehydrated enough to merit the IV. They did blood work and once again found nothing. They did x-rays and checked to make sure he had not swallowed something. They found nothing. They checked for fluid on his lungs, found nothing. His fever eventually disappeared completely. He got chatty and happy. He is now home and can't sleep, so he's hanging out with Mike on the couch, chatting. Don't get me wrong, he is terribly grumpy if we try to get him to do something he doesn't want to do, such as take medicine. At any rate, he is doing well for the moment. My prayer is that he will sleep all night and have no further incidents. This has been a very tiring day, to say the least, and I'm not even the one who has been gone for five and a half hours. I will sign off now for the final time tonight.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Saga Continues...

I was hoping to do a post in here this week with a positive report on the state of health in this house, but we had a setback today. Jamie has been well, for the most part, but today he came down with a high fever out of the blue. He had no other symptoms, other than the fact that he was just laying in my arms and was very quiet, and his little body was burning hot. It turned out he had a fever of 103.5 F, and after making a few calls, I ended up taking him to the hospital again. I would have gone to a clinic, but it was too late in the day, and the same doctor who treated him last week was on call and said to bring him in, so I did. Mike was MCing the graduation celebration at his school, and I was at my sister-in-law's getting haircuts for the boys (all but Micah), so I had to leave Cody and Micah there and take Jamie myself. My cell phone was nearly dead, so they called Mike for me. I didn't think he'd answer because there was no cell service where he was. I just left and decided I'd call Mike if there was anything to update.

I have not left Micah with anyone other than Mike when I didn't know how long I'd be gone. I felt bad doing it, seeing my sister-in-law has three kids of her own, including a baby four months older than Micah, but I had little choice, and she volunteered to take them because she is awesome! So, off we went, after I gave him some children's Motrin. He perked up on the way there, and in the hospital. He was adorable, actually, and talked more than he normally does to strangers. (Still not a ton, but more than usual.) He was a trooper and let them check his ears, his eyes, his throat, his tummy, his breathing...etc. They found nothing, but confirmed he indeed had a fever. The doctor said to just keep him on ibuprofen and acetaminophen for three days to keep the fever under control. I find this whole thing weird. Why would he have a fever, especially that high, with no other symptoms? Because of the last two weeks, we are feeling uneasy about this new development, but maybe it will just work itself out. Who knows?

So, I am off for now, but just wanted to get that little update in there. Maybe I'll have a better report tomorrow. I am at least thankful that his digestive system does not seem to be bothering him at this point. We are praying that will continue to be the case. Goodnight.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Slowly returning to normal.

I had a busy day today, and I am worn out from the events of the past two weeks, but I am happy to report that Jamie is doing very well. His digestive "functions" were normal by the end of the day, and he is certainly happy and full of mischief and cuteness, like the Jamie we're used to. He is still overtired enough that he needs to nap by 10 a.m. instead of after lunch, but who can complain about that?

I went to town today for my eye appointment, which went relatively well, I suppose. I do indeed have a problem, but it is being treated (yet again) so hopefully that will be the end of it. I have to go for follow-up in October, but I was scheduled to do so regardless, so it's not too big a deal. Once again, my appointment was fairly quick so I was thankful for that.

Now it is 9:13 p.m. and all three boys are settled. Well, Jamie is still awake because we just had to change another diaper...not sure whether that is a bad sign or not. We'll find out in the morning. (Hopefully not in the night.) Mike just mowed the lawn and put the first four rails up on our round pen! It's going to look cool, I think.

Oh for Pete's sake. I have to sign off. Jamie is nowhere near settled and keeps asking to use the toilet. Not sure what is going on, but this is a futile exercise. Perhaps I will have a chance to do a more normal post tomorrow. Goodnight.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Jamie is doing better!

It is 3:10 p.m. on Sunday afternoon and today is the first day that Jamie has shown no signs of illness other than being a bit overtired and needing a nap in the morning instead of the afternoon. He woke up with a very wet diaper, a good sign, and had another really wet one later. He is definitely not dehydrated, and he has been drinking lots today. He has not complained of any tummy aches, though he just said something about poop and I am not sure whether he needs to go or whether perhaps he already did. That will be the determining factor as to whether he is really well or not.

Well, I just changed another pee and still nothing else. He is not eating much, but we have been pretty strict with his diet today. I think we will do so until we are absolutely certain he is okay. He is acting pretty normal today. He was up at 6 a.m. before we were even aware of it and he stole a whole bag of smarties out of a high cupboard (with the assistance of a kitchen chair) and ate the whole thing. Little monkey. That's our Jamie. He seems quite normal today, but like I said, we are being extremely cautious about what we feed him. Mostly toast, and he is not eating a ton of it. He devours freezies though.

So, I'm glad that drama is over for now. We really believe that was the end of it. Now I have to watch Micah, who barfed on me about an hour ago. I think it was my fault though. I tickled him til he laughed so hard he choked and then he kind of spit up. Gross. However, he has a very red eye and I'm a little concerned about that. Sigh. I have to see the eye specialist tomorrow. I hope I will not have to take him to an eye doctor as well.

Though it is father's day, Mike has been outside working for most of the day. He is putting heavy posts in for our round pen, and he is about two thirds of the way done. It is hard work because he has to manually dig each hole and then use the tractor with a chain to haul the heavy posts over and stand them in the holes. He's doing a good job, and it's exciting to see it come together. I can't wait til we can actually put the rails on.

In the background, I can hear Jamie singing "Yes Jesus wuv ee, yes Jesus wuv me, hmmm hm hm hm hm...". So cute. He's eating a freezie. I'm trying to keep him in the house for a while so he does not overheat outside. It is quite a challenge, as he is very much an outdoor boy.

We are invited to the farm for supper tonight. Mike's aunt and uncle are out from B.C. and we rarely see them. I am torn about whether to go or not. Jamie seems okay, but the last time he seemed okay was last weekend and we went out and then he got really sick again the next day. I guess what I'm saying is, I'm nervous about exposing other people to his germs, in case he is not over this yet. However, we are invited even with the knowledge of all this. Not sure whether to send Mike with the other boys without me, or whether we should all go...or whether he should go alone...or just him and Cody... As you can see, I am indecisive about what to do. I would like to have a shower right now, but if I do, Jamie will leave the house for sure. If I don't, Micah will wake up before I can, and then I will not be decent enough to go out later, whether I want to or not!

So, today is something of a normal weekend day for us. We are so thankful and relieved. Tomorrow I go to the ophthalmologist, which I am dreading, but at least Mike will be home with the boys. After that he has only four days of work and then he's off for the summer. I am really looking forward to that. I have to sign off for now. Hopefully I'll have a good report tomorrow too.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Our Sick Little Boy - Update added

It is 7:35 a.m. I am watching the Bugs Bunny show with Jamie. We have been up for an hour now. He has a fever this morning, and has already had two bad episodes of the runs. No barfing yet, but he ate a tiny bowl of dry Rice Krispies this morning and had some water with some pedialyte in it. I am not terribly confident that he'll be able to keep it down, but we'll see. He requested "pancake waffles", and got so mad at me when I offered him water. He said, "No! Only pancake waffles!" I don't think he's doing very well, but it was about half an hour ago when he ate, so he's doing better than he did the other morning when the water only lasted ten minutes in his stomach. I tried to give him a teaspoon of Gravol, but he took one tiny sip and said, "No! Je yucky medicine," and he would not take any more at all. So much for that. I am alone here, as Mike is gone to a golf tournament an hour away, so I am the one who has to decide whether to take him to the hospital or not. I don't really want the decision resting entirely on my head.

Anyway, again I am very tired and don't want to write much more right now. Hopefully Jamie will keep his food and water in him. If he throws up, even once, I think we will be taking him to the hospital. I will have to call Mike to come home, but he is an hour (or just slightly more) away, so it could be a difficult time. If anything major happens today and I actually have a moment, I will post an update. Here's hoping I won't need to. Bye for now.


It is now 10:34 p.m. and I am exhausted. Today was day 14 of Jamie's illness and it has been a rocky road, but I am thankful to report that he has improved. He did not throw up today at all, and is now sleeping. We are hoping he will sleep all night as he did last night and the night before. He kept most of his food in him today, though he did not eat much. Just Rice Krispies and soda crackers and freezies. Oh, and then toast and a bowl of rice. He still has the runs, but it was better this evening than it has been in several days, so we are hopeful that this is the end of this terrible bug, or whatever it is. Last night was so horrible for us. We both were genuinely afraid that he might not pull through, but God is good and after much prayer we really feel this has lifted off of him and he is now just recovering. He even pulled a few stunts today like pouring a large portion of the Rice Krispies all over the table, and a whole sleeve of soda crackers. He also snuck off with different items that he was not supposed to have, so I knew the Jamie that we know was returning to us.

Micah is out of sorts tonight, and seems to be in some kind of pain, but I truly hope we can have a good sleep tonight. These last two weeks have been so draining and I had another migraine this evening. If all goes well and everyone is healthy tomorrow, Mike will do some more work on our fence in preparation for Sasha's arrival, which has not yet been scheduled. I am very tired and must sign off again now. Thank you to those of you who have been praying for Jamie and for us. Goodnight.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Jamie is so sick.

Things are not good here. Jamie has gotten very sick again and we may have to take him back to the hospital. Currently, he is sleeping, but he got really bad diarrhea and vomiting for about two hours this afternoon between 4 - 6 p.m. He is weak and tired now. I am feeling worried and stressed, and to make matters worse, my eyes have flared up and I am now on drops every hour in each eye. I have to see the ophthalmologist on Monday afternoon.

Anyway, it is already almost bed time. I don't feel like writing in here anymore tonight. Hopefully tomorrow I will have a better report tomorrow.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Jamie's Night

Jamie took a turn for the worse last night. We thought he was almost over this bug, or whatever it is, but at about 3:30 or 4:00 a.m. he started barfing, and he did it at least every half hour until around 6 a.m., and by then it was accompanied by diarrhea. We changed his bedding twice I think, or was it three times? I don't know. All I know is, we were up from about 3:30 a.m. until around 6 a.m. when he finally fell asleep again. He was up again by 8:00 a.m. and had a sippy cup of water. Within about ten minutes he puked that all back out, first in Micah's room and then as I ushered him to the bathroom to finish up he shot it all over the floor and then stepped in it, slipped and fell flat on his back. My poor baby. I feel so horrible for him. Just to add insult to injury, I seem to be getting it myself, and I was not in the best condition this morning either, though I did not throw up or feel like throwing up. I called a doctor and we made an appointment to take him to the nearest big town with a hospital and clinic. I was going to take him, but then my body revolted a bit and so I sent Mike. That was before 10 a.m. He is still gone and it is 2 p.m. The doctor was concerned about Jamie (this is day eleven of this) and he is being assessed in the hospital. Right now he is on an IV to get rehydrated and apparently once he pees they will send him home. Not sure how long that will take.

I'm feeling very sad for my sweet little boy, and very stressed about the rest of our crew. I don't want to get this and I sure don't want the other boys getting it, or Mike either! We are so drained here emotionally and physically, and I'd love to go for a nap but I have Micah on the go, and Cody, who is being exceptionally well-behaved today. I can't even go see Jamie because I don't have the car seats for the other two, not that I'd want to take them with me anyway. I talked to Jamie on the phone briefly and he sounded so small and weak. He said something about puking on the floor, though I understand that did not actually happen at the hospital. What a nightmare. What must it be like for parents with seriously ill children, or worse, terminally ill children? I can't imagine.

Meanwhile, I'm so hungry and I'm scared to eat. I am snacking on some plain soda crackers. I'd love to eat, but after my morning I'm just too scared. Even these few crackers are making me nervous. I just don't want to throw up. The rest I can deal with. Hopefully I won't get like Jamie.

Well, this is kind of a downer of a post, but I'm too tired to add any more right now. I will try to post again with an update on Jamie tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Still sick.

Oh wow. It has been a long week. I know it's only Tuesday, but I mean the last seven days. Ten days, actually. That's how long Jamie has been sick. He has only thrown up twice, but the other issues continue, and I have been struggling for what to feed him. (Thanks for your suggestions, Candy, on my previous post!) More than once we have had nothing but a pot of rice for supper. He still wakes up in a bad state, but during the day he seems to do all right. I think we're in for some rice again tonight. Mmmmm. Hehe, good thing I do like rice. All of us do, but it is still kind of pathetic.

Today was rough because Jamie is terribly grumpy and I had homework to finish (due today) and I got a migraine. I seem to get migraines a lot when I am doing my homework, though I'm not sure whether there is any connection or not. Migraines for me involve not being able to see properly. I seem to be okay now, and for that I am thankful.

Then there were the usual type of incidents, like Jamie pouring the liquid honey out inside of Radar's crate. Thank goodness his crate is located outside. Oreo's cage still reeks like parmesan cheese. Ew. Jamie also broke my cell phone charger, and something else that escapes my memory at the moment. I remember nearly screaming in frustration at the time. Oh right. I went downstairs to get some chicken out of the freezer and I had to get past a very large John Deere ride-on tractor/loader to get there. I turned around and looked back at it, because Cody said something about my "Belgians". Huh? I looked, and the bucket of the tractor was full of a tangled mess of Budweiser Clydesdales, all harnessed together. These were from a model that I painstakingly painted and put together when I was about 13. Now it is a pile of rubble in the basement. I suppose this is how things go around here, but all the same, I was very frustrated. Where did he even get them??

Oh well. That's okay. It is kind of a down day today, but hopefully tomorrow will be better. I will have to cancel my play date for the second week in a row due to Jamie's illness. I have lots more to report, but I just don't have the energy right now. I will attempt a better post tomorrow.

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Sick House.

Apparently I did such a fabulous job on my last mission that I have been assigned an extension. Yesterday, Jamie had a total of nine rounds of diarrhea and barely ate a thing. The little guy looks visibly skinnier. When we went to bed last night I asked Mike if he thought we should check on Jamie before we went to sleep. He agreed and went to do that while I was getting ready for bed. He was taking a long time, so I went to see what was going on. Jamie had woken up and puked all over the place. Seriously, when Mike picked up one of Jamie's stuffed animals it was so wet that a mini-waterfall of puke splattered off of it onto his mattress. It was nearly enough to make me hurl. I tried hard not to panic. Mike had Jamie stationed by the toilet in case he wasn't finished and was stripping everything off the crib for immediate laundering. I was panicking, but trying to appear calm. It took a while, but we got everything cleaned up and brought Jamie some water. He was so sweet and calmly went back to bed alongside the ice cream pail I placed in his crib. But I was in turmoil. This may sound ridiculous, but this is pretty much the only part of motherhood that I have always been terrified of. To make matters worse, prior to having children, the stomach flu was VERY rare in my house. I got sick one December in 1992, and I threw up. Then, after that, it did not happen again until January of 2005. I kid you not. That's twelve years and one month between barfs for me. After that, I barfed again this Christmas, so another five years later (minus one month). That's right, even through three pregnancies in four years I never barfed a single time. Now, this is the second round of barfing that this house has seen in just under six months. Mike assures me this is normal, but it's not my kind of normal. Does having kids mean you have to be prepared to throw up multiple times a year?? It better not be that way.

So far, other than feeling gross first thing this morning, I seem to be okay, but I refuse to eat. I'm so hungry, and I have a headache, but I don't even want to take anything for my head because I don't want anything in my stomach. I am determined to stand by this decision until I know for sure that we are in the clear.

The good news (which is totally unrelated) is that I did manage to get Cody to town last night to choose glasses for him. I don't feel like telling the whole story in here, but by the end of our glasses shopping, I felt really good about the whole thing. Unfortunately, I just found out that the manufacturer of the frames we chose has now discontinued those frames. Apparently they are going to call me later about this. I found out from Mike, who just dropped in there to pick up Cody's old glasses. I left them there to be temporarily repaired because Jamie broke the arm off again. I wanted him to at least have something to wear before his new glasses come. He has been without glasses for a week now and I feel bad for him. I don't know what I'm going to do about his frames. It took me a week to be able to get in there, and now I can't have what I chose. I'm kind of upset about this. We'll see what they say when they call me, I guess.

Anyway, I am tired so I think I'll sign off. I have no idea what to feed these kids for lunch. I don't want to feed them anything, but I suppose that is a bit mean. Seriously though, I don't know what to do with these boys. Even Micah has been spitting up lately, which has become a rare thing for him, so I have to wonder whether his tummy is off too...though he is still constipated, so he must not have this bug yet. I'm stressed. I have to go.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Weapons of Mass Destruction (Not for the faint of heart.)

Had there been a note, it would have read something like this:

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to locate and contain biological weapons that have been planted in numerous areas around your base. These weapons are deadly, and in addition to that they are difficult to detect due to the inconsistency of their form. Sometimes liquid, sometimes solid, sometimes varying shades of brown or yellow, and sometimes completely invisible. The only completely reliable means of identification is by smell. You may not use a canine in your mission. You must find a way to neutralize these weapons before they do irreparable damage. This message will self-destruct. 

The carrier of the weapon was a small fry, but he certainly knew what he was doing. Like any terrorist, he did his dirty work in the wee hours, before anyone was awake. Okay, the hour was not that wee, but he got up before anyone else did. Let’s call him, “Thing Number Two”. How about TNT for short? (Yes, that’s fitting. Why have I not thought of that before???) So, TNT developed a bad case of the runs, and this morning…well, it escaped his diaper. The result? He walked through almost every room in the house and left footprints behind. Yes, I know that’s gross. I live here. My whole house smelled like an outhouse.

I was alerted to my mission by Thing Number One, TNO. (Emphasis on the NO part.) He loudly announced the situation, advising that puddles of the radioactive substance were spread throughout the hall and living room, and he also wrongly accused Radar of the crime. In this Agency, we are a team, and when the evil deed was discovered, I was fortunate enough to be needed by Thing Number Three. (Notice I have two TNTs. I’ll call him tnt, because he’s the small version.) Seeing there were two agents available, and tnt needed me, I opted for the tiny mission instead of the one that threatened national security. I didn’t want to take all the glory for myself, you see. So, Agent Double-Oh-No handed tnt to me and I took him to my room to feed him.

Meanwhile, Agent Double-Oh-No arrested the perpetrator and showered him. In a cruel twist,  Agent Double-Oh-No had another mission and had to vacate the premises, so the mission fell on my shoulders. I wondered whether I truly had the necessary training to successfully complete my mission, but I had no choice. I had to try.

Step one was to deposit tnt into a containment unit, also known as an exersaucer. I steeled myself not to be discouraged by the enormity of my task. I saw signs of the weapons, but more than that, I could smell them. Indeed, the entire premises smelled very much like a frequently used outhouse. What to do first? I had to feed the perp and the witness before I could get to the business of containment. I got the feeding underway and began the grunt work of my mission. I had to clear mass amounts of debris from the floor first, carefully inspecting each item first visually, and then with my schnauze. With each inspection I prayed I would not find what I was looking for, and sniffing for. Sometimes my prayers were answered. Sometimes they were not. I spent two hours clearing sector one, also known as the living room. I hauled a pail of hot water and dish soap in and spot cleaned each mark, sprinkling Arm & Hammer pet deodorizer over the spots when I was done. In this way, I could avoid stepping on them until they dried, at which time I would vacuum the powder along with (hopefully) the odor.

I had to repeat the process several times for each sector, as the damage was widespread. At one point I did have to move tnt from his containment unit into a holding cell, due to incessant complaints and squawks. The entire decontamination process took the entire day, and there were three subsequent bombs dropped during the process. There were three loads of laundry, and a significant amount of Lysol that was used to coat the bathtub. What went down in there is top-secret, and I cannot even share it in this report.
All-in-all, my mission was a success, but we are on high alert because tnt has been caught multiple times today trying to drop bombs, but has thus far been painfully unsuccessful. Oh well. There’s always tomorrow.

This is Agent Double-Oh-Double-Oh-No, signing off.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Mosquitos and messes.

I have been out of touch for almost a week here, and there are several reasons for that. Last week was one of the worst I've had and I have been very overwhelmed and exhausted. I am happy to report that I am doing much better this week, though today and for the last couple of days we seem to have contracted some kind of intestinal bug. In fact, I am currently having a hard time feeling like I will ever have clean hands again after what I had to clean up this morning. Everyone seems to be doing all right though, so that's nice. 

Jamie had an allergic reaction yesterday too, so that was interesting. We are not sure whether it was from mosquito bites, or from poison ivy, but he looked like someone punched him in the eye. His right eye had a huge, purplish puffy spot under it that was really hard. His left ear was also swollen and red. Actually, he looked a lot like Will Smith in the movie Hitch, when he has his allergic reaction. Jamie also had a swollen, hard lump on his arm near his elbow and hit was hot to the touch. He is okay today. Wow. This child is sensitive and we're going to have to really watch him with stuff like this. 

And speaking of mosquitos, I may have mentioned that this is our worst year since we have moved here four years ago. We do live in the middle of the bush, and yes, we are in Manitoba. Mosquitos do tend to take over and in some cases even ruin the summers if you're like me, and react badly to the bites. When we bought this land and were building our house, there were days I refused to even get out of our car when we would come to check on the progress here. It was seriously gross, and I was scared at the time that every summer would be that way and I would not be able to handle it. To my surprise and my relief, none of our three previous summers were that way. Now, after days and days and days of endless rain, it looks like we are just about as bad here as back in the summer of 2005, and I'm quite horrified by it. I really want some kind of mosquito trap or system to rid the area of at least some of them. I can't even open the door of my vehicle for a few seconds without letting in at least five mosquitos, and here is the clincher; these suckers are BIG! I mean it. I have not seen so many massive mosquitos in my life. I went out in my van on Saturday night to see a movie with my sister and a friend, and I didn't make it down my driveway before I had to put on the breaks to kill a mosquito. Okay, maybe that sounds a bit extreme, but I can't drive on the highway if I am sharing my vehicle with those blood-suckers, for fear I will have an accident if one of them comes close enough for me to lash out at one. I killed a couple of them and then I moved on, only to be confronted by the mother of all mosquitos just after I turned onto my gravel road. This thing was on steroids, or had perhaps previously fed on someone who was on steroids. Lucky for me, my road is not very busy, so I stopped right in the middle for a face off. No one was coming in either direction, so I grabbed a kleenex and glared at my foe. I may have done a little trash talking too. I often do that when hunting anything with more than four legs. My soft, white, crumpled weapon in hand, I slowly leaned toward the dash and than BAM!!! I struck. Struck out, that is. The evil mosquito was not in the kleenex and not visible on the dash anymore. But then I saw her. I can only assume it was a female, because I am told they are the only ones who bite, and this chick was out for blood. Unfortunately for her, so was I. She emerged slowly from the crevasse between the dash and the bottom of the windshield and squared off at me. She was so big I could actually see her facial expression. It said, "Bring it on!". My eyes narrowed and I struck again. And missed. I waited a moment and she came forward again. Her stance was cocky. She was on top of the world. Anger rose in me and I considered blindly mashing my kleenex repeatedly into the crevasse until it came out with guts on it. That was just what she wanted. I had to regroup. I did do a tentative swipe, which brought her floating out in search of a new fortress. The fool! Ha! She was right where I wanted her. My kleenex was swift and sure. Oh all right. So I ended up doing the spastic and violent mashing and likely hit the windshield at least four times before I made contact with my prey. But the point is, I got her! I opened the kleenex to make sure, and there she was, splayed out with six legs whose length would be the envy of any supermodel, but most assuredly dead. Ah. Victory was mine. I rode the rest of the way in peace. 

As far as my life as a house-mom goes, yesterday was filled with typical moments such as Jamie sitting on the floor with a can of iced tea mix, spooning it out into a cup; Jamie coming out of the bathroom in nothing but a diaper, his belly and legs and arms completely lathered up with hand soap; Jamie stealing the chocolate syrup out of the fridge and pouring it all over his clothes, his table in his room, his legs, his arms, his belly, his carpet... The nice thing was, when I wiped the chocolate off with a wet cloth, he lathered up really nicely from the leftover soap. Maybe I should just coat him with soap every day in preparation for these moments. 

Anyway, I must sign off now. I have not accomplished anything in this house today, and I need to at least make some lunch. I'm off for now.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Very bad day.

This has been a bad day. I mean, it started out well with a nice play date in the morning, but then all hell broke loose and I am feeling more desperate than ever before. I want to run away so badly, but I have nowhere to run. It is pouring rain. I was so upset this afternoon I was shaking, and I just don't know how to make things better. I don't want to report on the details of the day. I have to sign off for now. If my evening is decent I may add to this. If not, no sense in doing a really negative post. I'll try again tomorrow. I hope it will be better.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Appointment and whirlwind day

This will be a busy day. I am stressed, though I am trying not to be. The boys have been fighting pretty badly today. Right now, they are all in the living room with me trying various acrobatics. Cody is practicing hopping on one foot, a skill he learned at T-ball. He enjoys practicing it. Jamie is trying too, but his is more of a violent two-footed hop. Not to say that Cody's hop is not violent. It is. Micah decided he wanted in on the action and he got on all fours and rocked back and forth with just as much violence as his brothers were exhibiting. Jamie accidentally threw a book on Micah's head and Micah actually got mad. It was kind of funny, but a scary glimpse into the future. Yikes.

So I have to see the ophthalmologist today. There are so many reasons I do not want to go to this appointment. Where should I start? How about the fact that I don't like this doctor? He has been extremely rude to me in the past and seems like one of those specialists who kind of has a god-complex.

Okay, so I wrote all that about eight hours ago. It is nearly 10 p.m. and I am listening to the sound of Micah crying inconsolably. He won't go to sleep. He has not even napped today at all. He is ten months old. I held him for a bit and he went to sleep, but as soon as I put him down he went nuts again. I think I'm going to have to let him cry this time because it doesn't seem to help long term for me to hold him. I don't know why he's so needy this evening. I'm feeling very tense and sad listening to him cry, but I feel like I don't have much option now. We already put him to bed once before and I ended up holding him because he would not stop crying. It makes me feel pretty mean.

Anyway, my appointment went very well. I never finished about why I was dreading going, and it's not worth explaining now, but suffice it to say I have been kept waiting for up to three hours before to see this doctor, and often more than two hours, so I was stressed about that. I also left my kids in two different places (Cody and Jamie in one and Micah in another), and I was mostly worried about how Micah would fair. But, a true miracle occurred and my appointment was not only on time, I was in and out of that office in ten minutes. TEN minutes! That is a world record for that place. I was so blessed and I felt this stress just lift off me.

I could say so much more today. It was an interesting day. Many gross things happened, and of course they all paled in comparison to Cody's incident yesterday when he fell into the septic field at the farm. He was so traumatized, and frankly, so was I. I still don't know how to deal with his runners. They have those little blinky lights on them. I'm guessing they will be toast, because I am strongly leaning towards putting them through the wash.

Anyway, it is late and I have not had time to do this properly today, so I shall have to attempt again tomorrow! Goodnight.

Oh, and courtesy of my sister-in-law, here is a quote from Jamie today:

Today Jamie saw an ant crawling across the floor he said, "Oh a
butterfly! it's cute."
He saw a beetle outside and said, "Oh a butterfly! It's cute."
He saw a fly in the window and said, "Oh a butterfly! It's cute.
He saw a mosquito on the wall and said, "Oh a butterfly! It's cute."
He saw a butterfly in a jar and said, "Oh a bird. It's a bird in the jar. It's cute."