Archive for February, 2011

We started the morning with an echo of Ben’s heart.  According to Dr. Altman, Ben’s aortic valve has increased its leaking.  It is still considered mild to moderate and there is not a reason to intervene surgically yet.  We go back in six months for another echo and visit with Dr. Altman.  She is going to meet with Dr. Feig, Ben’s nephrologist, to discuss weaning Ben off of some medicine.  We should have some of those answers in a month.  Lastly, the doctor told us that Ben has restrictions again this summer.  Her words, “He can be outside as long as he is in water.”  So Chris and I are trying to figure out how to apply that to Ben and yet still let him be a boy.  Baseball? Boy Scout Camp? Recess? PE? Church Camp? All very important things that Ben REALLY wants to do.  So we got to figure this out.  Soon enough.  Luckily it is not too hot right now.  It is downright gorgeous.  So no worries yet.

We followed our visit with another blood drawn with ice cream rewards and then went on home.  It’s been a long day.  So tired. We had good news and bad today.  But overall, very acceptable news that we can deal with.

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Quote of the Day

As retold to me by his Sunday school teacher so I hope I got it right.

Ben and Ainsley were sharing stories in Sunday School.  Ben was sharing his story when Ainsley said, “Ben, are you telling the truth?”

“Ainsley, you know I have to add to my story to make it sound better.”

I don’t think I got the quote verbatim, but the point is still the same.  And if you know Ben . . . it is the absolute truth.  He truly has the gift of storytelling.

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The weather has turned good.  The temps are nice. The winds are calm.  The bugs aren’t out yet.

Must be time to go camping.

So today 24 Girl Scouts (2nd/3rd graders) and their fearless leaders are taking them camping today for the first time.

I must be insane.

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Quote of the Day

“A queen can’t wear a superhero cape,” declares Ben.

“They can too!  I can be a superhero queen if I want to be,” says Ainsley.


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That is a great way to wake up on Saturday morning.  I knew that they kids were cooking up some kind of surprise last night.  I wasn’t sure of all of the details (it’s hard to listen in to a conversation in the back of the car when I’m driving down the interstate). So this morning I woke up early to discover that 2 of the 3 kids had crawled into bed with us last night.  That is certainly a nice feeling on a Saturday morning.  A while later Ainsley got up and told me to stay in bed, that they were going to make a surprise for us.  So we did.  An hour later the kids come upstairs with two trays of food (pb&J toast, milk, yogurt, sausage biscuits).  Ainsley gives me mine and says, “Sorry, mommy.  You only have part of the biscuit left.  Rosie ate the sausage and the other biscuit while we finished getting the other tray ready.”  (Reason 298 to kill the cat.)  But it was enjoyable to have all three crawl into bed with us while we ate breakfast together and watched some morning tv.

The kids have already done their chores for the weekend and are ready to go to the movies this afternoon.  We were going to go last night, but when I told Daddy he asked if we would wait until Saturday so he could come too.  So yesterday, we went to the park for an hour after school and went to Aunt Deb/Uncle . . . oh, forget it, we went to Gordon’s house.  The kids played hard with G, inserted loud chaos into the quiet Lewis house (they only have one kid you know), and then we got to get Gordon ready for bed.  All three kids read Gordon books.  Ainsley even insisted on picking out his clothes for tomorrow. I hope we wore him out!  I think we did.  When we left, Gordon didn’t have enough energy to blow us kisses (he just made noises with his lips).

So we are off to see a movie.  And then Mom and Dad can come home to get more work done.  I hope so anyway.  It has been a good day so far.  I just know it will continue.

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In general, receiving a phone call from school is not good.  Getting a phone call from the school nurse always causes me dread.  I have learned to recognize the phone number from her direct line (yes, she has called that often.  But with three kids in school . . . ).  My first question to her is always, “What’s wrong?”

Today it was Ainsley’s turn.  She threw up in class.  To be honest, my first thought was . . . Poor Mrs. Sellars!  Not very motherly.  But I knew that Ainsley was in good hands and I know what it is like to have a child throw up in your classroom.  Gross.  I don’t mind dealing with my own child’s vomit, but someone else’s kid is not nearly so endearing.

So I immediately grabbed some clothes and headed up to school to pick up Miss A.  She threw up on everything including her Girl Scout uniform.  So we changed clothes in the bathroom and I headed home.  I spent the next part of the hour dealing with the ramifications of a sick kid.  1. Getting sick kid set up on the couch watching cartoons with her bucket close at hand. 2.  It was my turn to run the meeting for Scouts. So I had to call my beloved co-leader and get her to do it for me.  3.  I was suppose to get a set of keys from someone today and had to rearrange it so Chris could get them.  4.  Contact the school and ask them to tell Ben that Ainsley wouldn’t be on the bus. If he got on the bus without her, he would freak.  (I’ve trained them to be watch dogs for each other). 5.  Find a way for Madie to get picked up from choir practice after school and then fax a note to school.  6.  Cancel the babysitter for tonight, since I will be home with Ainsley.  7.  Call Chris and let him know that we have a kid down.

After all of that was accomplished there was this general feeling of ease because I was getting to stay home and not be anywhere for the rest of the day.  There is a positive side to this sick kid thing.  Except that there is a sick child.

By the way, Ainsley is fine.  She never ran a fever and she was rather happy today.  Of course, she did take a two hour nap this afternoon. That helped.  Ainsley is home again tomorrow (I will not be one of those parents who sends their child to school sick.  But then again, I have the luxury of my schedule to keep a kid home for 24 hours fever and/or vomit free).  So Ainsley gets a free pass.  She is hanging with Mom while Mom works.  It will be a good day for her.

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Sunday and the Love Day

Yesterday was a great day.  Good sermon. ( I know I’m biased but I still liked it.  It was on a tough topic, but Chris handled it with love.)  The weather matched our family’s mood.  Wonderful.  Chris even came home and helped make goody bags for 3 classes.  He did a good job.  Ben spent the day cleaning/playing in his room. Ainsley went with Daddy to Camelot and spent the rest of the day being adorable. Madie had a playdate with a friend at our house. And I prepared for three class Valentine’s Day Celebrations and then worked for the rest of the day.  When my eyes starting seeing double last night, I went to bed.  Adrenaline kept me going for the rest of the day.  I spent most of the day at school volunteering.  I enjoy it, but I’m tired.  Exhausted. I took a 20 minute nap in my chair and asked Madie to wake me up.  God bless her . . . she did it.  I thought I had all my ducks in a row last night so that I was prepared for today.  Then my beautiful children brought me handmade cards this morning and then asked . . . “Where is the cards that you made for us?” Yes. That’s right. I didn’t make homemade cards.  So after the kids went to school, I quickly made cards for everyone and slipped them into their lunchboxes at school.  My husband even did good today by bringing me flowers.  My husband dislike Valentine’s, so flowers are extra special in my house!

It was a good day.  I’m tired. I think that I just might drop if I stop for too long. So I’m off to finish dinner and get myself and the kids to bed.  My meter is on empty.  Or at least my energy meter is. My love meter is on full and then some!

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Today was a good day.  Daddy was up early to go help Uncle David prepare the new baby’s room for some paint.  By the time he got home, 2 of the 3 kids had their rooms clean and most of their chores done.  They even were able to get a bit of Wii time in this morning while Mom slept in a little (Thank you children!).  Daddy came home and swept Ben away to work on his first ever Pinewood Derby car.  He was so excited (as evident in the pictures).  Even our neighbor Josh came to work on his car too.  I can’t wait to show you the finished product.  Ben insisted on making a tank (?!).  Not very aerodynamic but he had his reasons! (A tank is heavier so it will go faster and it can shoot all of the competition.)  He and Daddy made a quick trip to Home Depot to get more sandpaper and to pick out paint colors.  (It certainly is vibrant!) The girls worked on their thank you notes for their cookie deliveries. Madie even started marking all of her envelopes (I am trying to let her help more this year.) But soon they even needed a break. The girls came outside to enjoy the weather and play.  Soon they were joined by a ton of other neighborhood kids.  Our backyard was certainly full today of friends (at one point we were at 11).  They all fortunately played nicely together (the weather helped). After everyone went home, the children bathed and worked on their valentine’s cards for their classes.  This was the first year that I didn’t struggle to get them all to finish.  Even Ainsley completed all of her cards by herself.  (By the end of the day, Ainsley wrote her name over 100 times.  And only misspelled it a few times.  There was even a discussion between her and us about whether or not there was really an I after the A in her name.  This was similar to the initial discussion that Chris and I had after she was born.  He thought it was ANsley so he could call her Ann.  I spelled it AINsley on the birth certificate forever causing a rift in our story about a proper nickname for her. I ruined poor Chris’ vision. But I digress.) The day ended with a great dinner that included Daddy for the first time in a great while.  So the conversation was, of course, interesting.  After our stimulating conversation, Daddy tucked them all into bed.

It was a busy but productive day.  We have another playdate tomorrow with another friend of Madie’s.  I hope to finally get Ben to clean his room.  And I have grand visions of how much work I plan on completely in my office.   But I am starting with a freshly cleaned office, so I have high hopes for tomorrow.  I am certainly motivated after today’s great day!

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“Girls can’t be pastors, so I want to do what sissy is going to do,” says Ainsley.

“I want to be like Mommy when she grows up.”

“That’s fine. Mommies stay home, but still have to work from home too,” (Referring to my part time job that I do from home.) declares Ben.

I’m not doing very good.  I’ve got one child thinking that women can’t do something.  And the other child thinking that women have to do everything.  Ugh!  So much more work to do.

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On this beautiful crisp morning, we picked up 128 cases of Girl Scout cookies from a very well-oiled cookie delivery machine (the only time that Girl Scouts is EVER organized!!).  Delivered them. Sorted them. Took mine home.

Now it is time to deliver.  In deference to the Bake Sale at church on Sunday, I will not be delivering any cookies on Sunday.  Of course, this just leaves me with another excuse to delay delivering my daughter’s cookies.  I hate delivering.  Apparently, this has been an ongoing problem since I sold cookies (my mother reminded me of this. Although she did tell Chris first. This led to a discussion about the full disclosure from the Grace family that Chris was denied before he married me. Blah. Blah. Blah.).  But I am determined this time to not repeat last year (I had cookies stolen/borrowed/consumed from church last year. Of course, I mistakenly left several orders just laying on a table bagged with names on it.  I’m sure that they went to a good cause.) We will get them all delivered.

Chris has survived cookie time . . . so far.  I just hope that it will only go up from here.  As long as I keep him supplied in thin mints, he will be patient.  I just have to keep the thin mints rolling in.  I will steal from family members orders to make this happen.  You don’t cross a man and his thin mints addiction.

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