Saturday, September 29, 2007

The party getting awesomer by the minute...

Here's the monster truck moon bounce in my was too big to get the whole thing in the picture!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Moose Cake!

I picked up the Moose's birthday cake today.
I had to post a photo because it came out so great!


I've been half dreading and half looking forward to today.

Last night, as I parented Jackson to sleep, I held him close and whispered to him that one year ago today, we were in the hospital. One year ago today, he was still a secret pearl inside of me. One year ago today, we were so excited to meet him. One year ago today, I told him, we waited and waited and waited for him to come. I also told him he had to stop growing up and getting bigger, as he was to stay my tiny Peanut forever.

We fell asleep together like we do every night. As the hours passed in the middle of the night, angels came and kissed away his infancy while ushering in toddlerhood. Then the sun came up, and Jackson, as he does nearly every morning, rolled over me, gave me a hug and with an exuberant "Mwah!" administered a sloppy kiss to my cheek.

"Happy Birthday, My Moose!" I exclaim. "Mama Baba Naa!" he replies. I grabbed a bottle for him, and we snuggled together as he enjoyed his morning milkies. I guess some things never change, no matter what the calendar says.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Ileus Odyssey

So Monday night was not a fun night for the Powers family.

Monday night was prefaced by Monday afternoon, where I broke my toe. I thought I broke my foot. It was a freak accident. I was getting out of the car to pump gas, and my legs were out of the car when Jack screeched from the backseat. I whipped around to see what was the matter and my toe caught on the concrete base of the gas pump. I heard/felt a "snap" like a little twig breaking underfoot. But it wasn't a twig, it was bone and it wasn't underfoot, it was in my foot. By the time I had completed pumping gas, putting weight on my foot was unbearable. It was 4:00. Hubby's train doesn't get in until nearly 6:00...that was a long time to wait to seek medical attention.

I crafted a makeshift ice pack splint out of socks from my gym bag. I had one of those instant ice packs in the Jeep. I bought them after Jack was born, thinking that now that I have a kid I should have ice packs because kids get hurt. Guess what? Mommies get hurt too! I wrapped a sock around the ice pack then laid it on my foot then wrapped the other sock around my entire foot, using my flip flop as a splint to keep the whole rig steady. It worked.

I picked up some dinner, then waited for Tim's train. And waited. And waited. When you are in pain, waiting two hours for a train to arrive feels like forever.

We went to hospital 1, where we were told it would be a minimum 2 hour wait. Wait 2 hours again? I think not. They recommended I head down the road to a doc in the box. Fine. I hobbled out and we went to the walk in clinic. Rather, for me it was a "wheel in clinic" because by the time I got there, I could put no weight on my foot at all and a very nice EMT rolled me into the building in a wheelchair.

After intake, x-rays, and an exam I was told I had a spiral fracture of the biggest bone in the pinkie toe. Who would have thought a pinkie toe could hurt this much? They did a maneuver that I think has the most adorable medical name ever, "buddy tape" where they taped the bad toe to its next door neighbor. Then they fitted me with a very fashionable immobilization shoe and gave me a copy of my films with the instructions to call an orthopedic surgeon in the morning, as my fracture may require a pin be set in it.


Oh, and no fun pills. They said to just take Advil. What a rip-off.

We finally arrived back home around 9:45. We were all exhausted, our puppies were hungry and doing the pee-pee dance. As I let the dogs out, Tim readied Jackson for bed. And then...

Jackson started vomiting. Not just any vomit, projectile GREEN vomit. Bile vomit. Just like he did before he needed his surgery. It was all I could do to keep myself from crying as I called our family doctor and had him paged. He called me back and said that he's seen a lot of this horrible stomach bug lately, but given Jack's history he would rather err on the side of caution. So we packed up the car again and jetted off the hospital #2. On the way there, Jackson vomited and choked on it. We pulled over and when Tim got to the car seat, he found the baby not breathing. SCARY! I do not recommend this.

Our welcoming at hospital #2 was way different than hospital #1. I hobbled in with the baby and someone quickly whisked us away in a wheelchair. I was asked, "Who's the patient?" and told them the baby, then we were rushed to Pediatric ER. We saw a nurse, explained Jack's history and symptoms and were then wheeled into an exam room. A doctor came in, I explained again Jackson's symptoms and past GI problems and the doctor agreed to order a CT scan and blood work immediately. While we waited for the nurse to come back to put in an IV and draw some blood, the billing girl came in. Yeah. That's right. They actually treated us first before asking if we had insurance. I was dumbfounded. I kept trying to give every new person who walked into the room my ID and insurance card, and they were like "Later, we'll get to that. The baby is more important." Of course, I agree and I was duly impressed.

Holding your baby down to have an IV put in his arm while he is vomiting is no fun. We all ended up covered in bile, it looked like we spilled a bottle of French's mustard all over us.

Blood tests were drawn and we did the CT scan. Tim ran home and got me some comfy clothes. I was certain it was Jack's GI problem again. Right before discharging us from the hospital after his surgery in December, the surgeon told us that it was rare but it could happen that Jackson's malrotation could reoccur and we would have to watch out for that. As I paced, Jackson passed out from exhaustion. It was now 2 am, and we were all tired.

The doctor returned to the room to tell us that Jack had slightly elevated white blood cells but the CT scan came back clean. No malrotation. I didn't believe it, but I was happy to be wrong. We were instructed to follow up with our family doctor the next day.

We left the ER and picked up some anti-nausea medicine at the 24 hour pharmacy. By the time we arrived home, it was 4 am and we all collapsed, exhausted, into bed. And then Jackson puked all over me, his new comforter, the sheets, his teddy name it. Lord have mercy.

In the morning, I called family doc and made an appointment for Jackson. We went in and he reviewed the ER's records and examined Jack and called it good. We loaded up the car to head home, and just as we exited the doctor's office parking lot my cell phone rang.

It was a doctor from the Pediatric ER. Seems another radiologist had reviewed the CT scan and he disagreed with the first radiologist's reading. Jackson didn't have a malrotation or an obstruction, but he does have an ileus which is basically a narrowing of the intestines and was most likely caused by scar tissue from his surgical repair. So basically, his bowel is not obstructed yet but it's an obstruction waiting to happen. A-ha! Somebody's Mommy Instincts were spot on again!

I have an appointment with our original Pediatric Surgeon, whom we love, next week to review the CT scan and give us his input.

Until then, Mooseapalooza, Jackson's first birthday party, will go on unabated. I have ordered a giant, fantastic cake from my favorite bakery. It is half banana cake with chocolate whipped cream filling and half carrot cake with cream cheese filling. Decorated with moose. I'm having a moon bounce brought in tomorrow after my poo guy and hot lawn boys service the yard, and my fridge is barely able to shut with all the party goodies. Tomorrow I have to pick up the balloons, the beer and margarita stuff (yum!) and then Saturday morning the rented tables and chairs come. As long as I don't forget the ice for the coolers, we'll be good...I'll post pictures of our extravaganza! I'm taking the party down a notch and not doing as many homemade goodies as I had originally planned, because I have to stay off my feet. But it is still going to be a great time!

I'm bummed I won't be able to play in the moon bounce though. It is a giant inflatable monster truck - how fun!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Pickin' and a'grinnin'

Sunday - it was my wonderful, amazing, cute, sweet hubby's 36th birthday! To celebrate, we began a daily aspirin regimen (ha ha) and took a family trip out to Kuiper's Family Farm for apple pickin'.

Moose's First Apple

Hayride on Mommy's Lap

Mommy Picking Apples

Friday, September 21, 2007

I didn't think it would effect me this way

I have just pulled the very last 3 oz. bag of frozen donor milk out of the deep freeze for Jackson. Our goal was to give him mother's milk until he was 1, and his birthday is next Friday (can you believe that ish? where did the time go?).

I really didn't think I would feel such a flood of emotions like I do right now. My heart is heavy with the knowledge that my baby boy will soon no longer be viewed as an "infant" but as a "toddler". I feel like I have to grieve for the passing of his babyhood. I feel like I have to let go of it, and it's sad and painful.

He has already had his 1 year checkup, at our new pediatrician. We switched to Homefirst (the pro-breastfeeding, anti-vax, pro-homebirth wacky zany ultra natural family living practice) and as I told the doctor all of Jackson's health challenges he just looked at The Moose in disbelief and said repeatedly, "This baby?" Like he couldn't imagine my healthy, hearty little Moose ever being small or frail or ill.

Oh, but I remember it. I remember it well. I remember every freaking heartbreaking moment of the first three months of his life that were stolen from us. I feel the anger rising in me afresh. I feel like I got ripped off. I want three happy, cuddly months of newborn bliss back! Instead I got three months of hospital stays and a baby who couldn't stop crying because he was in such severe pain, and doctors telling me how my baby wasn't sick until a test finally showed he was ill with a life threatening condition which required immediate surgical intervention.

I got such the bum deal on the babymoon.

My last bag of milk sits defrosting on my counter, and as it slowly transforms from ice back to liquid I feel Jackson's babyhood melting away... heart hurts.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Love Thursday

This week, on Love Thursday I love....WEDNESDAY!

Yesterday was a rock star day. Let me tell you about it.

I arose around 7 to get my day started. I decided that while it was not a work out day, I still needed a shower so after dropping Hubby off at the train, I would start my day with perhaps a little swim and then a soak in the hot tub at the gym, and then take a nice hot shower. I guess a big love for me this week is GYM DAYCARE. I get 2 hours of complimentary day care service every day with my membership. This is making it much easier to work out every other day (and Jackson is in baby swimmy classes on Saturday mornings, so fun!).

So after delivering Hubby to the train station, I stopped and got a latte and my favorite breakfast (McD's Egg McMuffin, no canadian bacon, scrambled eggs instead of poached, extra cheese with a pinch of salt and pepper) and then headed to the gym. I dropped off Jackson with his now favorite day care teacher and proceeded to take a leisurely soak in the hot tub (all the lanes were full in the pool) then a nice, long hot shower. I shaved my legs, deep conditioned my hair, dried off, lotioned, then dressed, applied makeup, blow dried and perfumed. Then I picked the baby up out of daycare, where he was having a fabulous time playing.

After the gym, Jackson had a playdate with his friend John so on our way up there I stopped at Baker's Square for a pie to bring with us. Then we spent the day with John and his mom Christina who is awesome and sweet and fun. I taught her how to sew while the boys played. Super fun! We had pie and tea for a snack and then when lunchtime came we ordered a pizza and I had beer and pizza for lunch. Woo hoo!

As I was readying to leave our playdate, my brother called me. I hadn't heard from him in nearly a week and was unable to reach him otherwise, so I was so happy and relieved to talk to him briefly.

Then I got on my way to pick up Hubby at the train station after work, and my best friend from high school called me to let me know she was on her way over to share dinner with us and sleep over!

So we got home, my friend arrived, we ordered in a delicious dinner and watched Blades of Glory. Then after tucking Jackson in, dearest beloved friend and I sat up late and snacked on my stash of Just Tomatoes freeze dried fruits & veggies (which is WAY yummier than it sounds, trust me) and gabbed and gabbed in the guest room until way too late. Then I snuck across the hall, silently climbed into bed with Jackson and he rolled over to snuggle me. He's a sleep cuddler. I buried my nose into his precious curly head, which was still laced with the aroma of his lavender and chamomile scented bedtime bubble bath, and drifted off to sleep.

It was a nearly perfect day. I loved Wednesday!

Monday, September 17, 2007


For all my emotional sensitivity, it has somehow fallen upon me to be "clutch" in my family. Whenever something bad goes down, I somehow end up policing everybody else. I mediate disagreements, I tell people to breathe when they're hysterical, I keep the cool levelheadedness necessary while everybody else freaks. I organize things, I collate, I make events happen. I am clutch.

Here's the problem with being clutch. When you're clutch, you don't get to have your own babbling hysteria moments.

A bad thing that I knew was going to happen happened last week to my baby brother. It is awful, horrible and totally deserved. We all knew it was going to happen someday, and it happened. We are all now desperately worried about him. My mother has been reduced to a blathering idiot, and it has fallen upon me to keep her shit together. She calls me crying hysterically and I spend 5 minutes telling her to breathe in and breathe out. She called out of work last week to spend a day with me and Jackson, and I made her soup and grilled cheese (is there any more comforting comfort lunch food?) and took her shopping. I've been distracting and encouraging and showing strength.

The problem is, deep down, I am a blathering idiot too. I just can't fall into hysterics when anyone is looking. I wait until the sun goes down, and in the privacy of my bedroom with my husband holding me, I pray and sob and beg for God's comfort and my brother's safety.

Then the morning comes, and my mother rings me at 8 am crying on her way to work. I am clutch again, and I have to be strong for her when inside I feel so small and helpless. I'm starting to resent being the keep it togetherer of the family, and I'm starting to wonder how much longer I can fake strength and grace under pressure.

In completely unrelated news, I changed my hair again and it's a darker blonde now, nearly light brown. It came out a little too ashy and I don't like it. I may dump a warm glaze on it later in the week.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Fix You

It's not every day you find yourself rocking out to Coldplay at church, yet that's just what we did.

The music directer changed a handful of words, and it was beautiful. If you hear it and imagine it's God speaking to you, it's lovely. He's the only one who can fix you anyways...

When you try your best, but you don't succeed
When you get what you want, but not what you need
When you feel so tired, but you can't sleep
Stuck in reverse

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you lose something you can't replace
When you love someone, but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I have died to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you're too in love to let it go
But if you never try you'll never know
Just what you're worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I have died to fix you

Tears stream down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face
And I...

Tears stream down on your face
I promise you I will not remember your mistakes
Tears stream down your face
And I...

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I have died to fix you.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Baby Boy Blues

The time has come to upsize Jackson's cloth diaper wardrobe. When he was wee, I invested a pretty penny in size medium FuzziBunz, which are a pocket diaper. They have performed very well for us and I have never had a single blow out with them. They've been workhorses. It's time to say goodbye to them now since my little man's thighs are so chunky (12" around each, compared to his 18" waist!). I'm going into some size large BumGenius 2.0 all in one's. I'm very excited to be terminating my diaper-stuffing career. The pocket diaper idea is great for its flexibility but the extra step of stuffing the diaper drives me absolutely bonkers.

When I got Jack his Fuzzi's, I ordered all boy-friendly colors. Blues and greens were at the top of my list. Now I'm ordering the Bums and I'm wondering if I should get him a couple in "Blossom", more commonly referred to as "pink".



Yeah, why not? Jackson is secure in his gender identity. He LOOOOOOOVES the ladies. His favorite little girl is Lora from our playgroup. Lora is gorgeous like her mommy, with a long, lean physique and huge green eyes and long dark curls. Before leaving for playgroup, I ask Jack if he wants to go see Lora and his eyes light up like he just hit the jackpot.

Pink looks good with a baby blue shirt, too. (He frequently wears just a t-shirt and diaper at home).

Besides, I think there are some very important character traits and personal qualities associated with "pink" that wouldn't be so bad for my boy to learn: kindness and gentleness. It's great when a boy knows his way around a kitchen and laundry room. It's sexy when a boy knows art and music and how to sew on his own button. Most of these things are predominately "pink" or "girl" things, but I would be proud to teach my son how to be sweet, gentle, kind and self-sufficient as well as strong.

Yeah, he's going to rock the pink.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Baby's First Sushi

We felt like celebrating last night, after dancing with glee over Debbie's new heart.

So we took Jackson out for his first sushi meal, he loved it!

Here's the Moose scarfing down some akami.

La Passion Du Coton

We're just back from running errands, one of which was picking up my insulin refill. While waiting at the pharmacy, I remembered that I was out of little cotton pads that I use for applying my homemade witch hazel and tea tree oil toner. So I went in search of cotton pads, and found some on sale.

I pulled them off the shelf, and read the label to Tim: "Facial Cleansing Pads. For the Adventurous, Exotic, Sensuous, Free Spirited Woman."

Tim says, "Well, that's you to a T!"

So I got them.

I kid you not, that's what the bag says. Here's their website.