Thursday, June 28, 2007

Back to Normal

Billy got back home from Greece Tuesday night. After several flight delays, some due to the bad weather here in Dallas, his plane finally made it in around 10:00 p.m. They were stuck on the plane another half-hour while they waited for an available gate to open up. I think all the delayed flights arrived fairly closely and slowed things down a lot. After waiting around to get everything taken care of, we headed home after midnight and arrived home at 1:00 a.m. The boys were exhausted and fell right into bed when we got home.

I was concerned about Caleb having a setback in his recovery since I was having to get him out in the wet weather, but the rain had stopped on the way to the airport and didn't start back up until well after we had left. Inside the airport was really cold, and he and Jacob were in their pajamas. Caleb huddled next to me to stay warm. Every time I felt his head, he felt feverish. I took his temperature when we got home and it was 101.

Jacob slept in until 11:15 a.m.; I woke Caleb up at 11:45. (He had a coughing spell around 7:00 a.m., but after drinking a little water, he went back to sleep.) When I felt his head, it felt cool. He was thrilled when I took his temperature and it read 98.6! I checked it periodically throughout the day and the highest it ever got was 99.4, not really considered a fever. He was more playful than he had been in several days, and his appetite seemed to pick up a little.

Today I'll be taking him to the eye doctor. When his pediatrician checked his vision at his last well-check, he recommended taking him in because his vision was 20/70. I called in early May to get an appointment, and late June was the earliest I could get him in! I'm glad I didn't have to reschedule because that would probably put him getting in there in late July or early August. We'll find out today if he'll need glasses. He's kind of excited about it. Thankfully, kids don't make fun of each other about glasses anymore. At least not like they used to. Plus, he has some friends at church who wear glasses, so it's not like it'll be traumatic. Not like it was for me in second grade... I remember crying because I had to get glasses and I thought I would be ugly... Now I wear glasses all the time, and I like them.

Yes, things are back to normal. I like normal!

Update: Speaking of normal, Caleb's vision is fine and he doesn't need glasses. The doctor said he's bordering on nearsightedness and should be checked again in 6 months, but for now everything's okay. Caleb liked his trip there, with the exception of having his eyes dilated.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

One More Day

Caleb is still running fever today! Day six! All morning, it was hovering around the 101 mark, then after lunch it went up to 102. When I checked at 2:30, it was 103.4, so I had him take a dose of Tylenol. It's down to 101 now.

I thought with his new antibiotic, he might start to pull out of the fever. Of course, he couldn't hold down his dose last night, so that may have something to do with it. Thankfully he kept his morning dose down. I think that usually happens when he takes antibiotics - the first dose rarely stays down, but subsequent ones do. At least I hope that's the case with this one.

He's also been taking Children's Mucinex in the mini-melt form. He actually likes that. I hope it's working. It's time for another dose of that one right now.

I'm supposed to call the doctor tomorrow and give him an update. I hope I'll be able to tell him Caleb is free of fever, but the way things look right now, I'm not sure. At least he had a better night last night. He still coughed a lot, but not to the extent of the night before. Shortly after midnight, I fixed him a sport bottle full of water to keep on the floor beside him. (He slept on the floor for several reasons, but mostly because I can't get to him that well when he's sleeping on the top bunk.) Maybe tonight will be even better. We all need some good sleep.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Monday Memories

This time last year I was blogging about some of my favorite games. What are some of yours?

Day 5 of Fever

Caleb is still running fever today. It was close to 101 when we got up this morning. He woke up shortly before 7:00 from a bad dream, but he can't remember what it was about. He coughed all night, too, keeping up both up until after 2:30. Jacob had a good night's sleep, even though he woke up early.

I think it's going to be a long day. At least my house is clean and all I have to really do today is wash one load of clothes and unpack the things I didn't get to yesterday (almost everything).

I've got 25 minutes before I can start calling the doctor's office to get an appointment, so I'll get the boys ready to go in hopes that we'll get in early.

I'll update more when I find something out. In the meantime, if you think about it, please pray that he'll be better soon.

Update: Caleb has walking pneumonia. We've had to switch antibiotics as well as cough remedies. He's now taking Biaxin and Children's Mucinex. We're homebound until Wednesday, with the exception of picking Billy up from the airport tomorrow night.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Back to Reality

We're back home after 11 days of visiting with family. It was great seeing everyone and getting lots of visiting time in, but it's good to be back home.

I think the cat missed us. She meowed constantly for about 15 minutes after we got back, probably scolding me for leaving her for so long. Also, she hasn't left our presence since we've been back (a little more than 2 hours now). A little while ago I talked to my friend who stopped by frequently to check on the cat and the plants. She said she only saw the cat once when she arrived, and that was Friday. She called to her, but the cat never came to her, and when she walked back through the living room on her way out, the cat had disappeared to the back of the house. Not surprising for my old, antisocial cat. There are precious few people she will tolerate, and even fewer that she actually likes.

It seems like every time we visit, there's drama of some sort at one point. Usually it's minor, but this time we had two biggies, both involving Caleb.

First, we went to my cousin Yvonne's house to visit and to let all the boys play together. (She has two boys between Caleb's and Jacob's ages.) They were having fun playing in the pool while we were visiting and Rusty was grilling burgers. After we ate, the boys went back to playing in the pool. Grayson and Phillip swim like fish; my two only flail in shallow water because I keep forgetting to enroll them in swimming lessons. (I don't ever think about it because they only get in a pool once or twice a year.) I had reminded the boys several times to stay on the shallow end of the pool, to not go past the rope because the water was too deep for them. Jacob mostly sat on the side of the pool and kicked his feet; he got into a floaty-boat a few times, but other than that, he stayed in waist-deep water on the steps. Caleb is tall enough to walk around the shallow end (actually Jacob is, too), so he had fun playing in the water. He ventured close to the rope and started playing around. I think he must have lost his footing on the slope to the deep end. He went under and start flailing around, trying to regain his footing. Mama saw him struggling and yelled for someone to get him. Daddy, Melissa, Rusty, and Yvonne all jumped into the pool; I broke my conversation with Josh and stood stupidly at the side of the pool, my heart in my throat. I considered jumping in, too, but I wouldn't have done any good at that point. Daddy got to Caleb first and brought him spitting and sputtering to the edge. I wrapped him in his towel and hugged him and reassured him that he was okay. He didn't want to get back in the pool, so we gathered up all the leftover burgers and fixings and went inside to continue our visiting and the boys' playing. We walked out to feed the horses, then went back inside to have some cake and ice cream. (Grayson's 7th birthday was the next day.)

At one point during all the excitement at the pool, Jacob burst into tears and no one could understand what he was saying. Finally he stopped crying long enough to say, "Pops lost his glasses in the pool!" Jacob had seen him dive in fully clothed - shoes, cell phone, and all. I don't know if he had taken his glasses off or not, but Jacob was worried that they were gone forever because he wasn't wearing them. He calmed down after we showed him they were on the table. A few days later he told me he didn't have fun in the pool because people jumped in with their clothes on. I'm not sure he caught on to what happened to Caleb, it all happened so fast.

Now for the second dramatic event. Caleb started running fever Thursday afternoon. He had been laying around on the couch all day and we thought it was because he was exhausted from all we had been doing every day. He fell asleep on the couch after eating a little bit of supper. When we checked his temperature before bedtime, it was over 100. I don't remember what it was, but I gave him a dose of ibuprofen to keep it down during the night.

He woke up Friday morning feeling hot again, so I checked around and found an urgent care clinic in our insurance network. I gave him a dose of Tylenol before we left, and by the time we got to see the nurse, his temperature was a measly 99-point-something. The doctor probably thought I was overreacting about the fever because he commented about it being "just low-grade". After examining Caleb, the doctor determined he had some sort of bacterial infection: "cobblestone" blisters on his red, irritated throat; fluid in his ears (not from the swimming incident); and a crusty nose. He wrote a prescription for Augmentin and gave us some samples of Aldex D (antihistamine and decongestant).

Caleb hates Augmentin and remembers the hard time he had taking the "white medicine" a while back, so every time he's had it since, I've had to camouflage it with a little food coloring. When the pharmacist asked if we wanted to add a flavor to it, Caleb said he did and chose bubble gum. As soon as we got back to the house, I poured his first dose. He took one tiny sip and gagged (not uncommon) and refused to take any more. I called the pharmacy, explained the situation, and asked if I could bring it back and get a second bottle with no flavor added. They did, and now I'm coloring his doses yellow. I goofed this morning, though, and left the bottle of "white medicine" on the counter beside his doctored dose. I hurriedly gave some explanation, which I think he bought. We'll see. I just have to remember to keep the bottle hidden out of his sight in the refrigerator. (And I have to keep him from reading my blog over my shoulder, which he does from time to time.)

Fast forward to today. It's the fourth day he's been running fever! And I'm not talking about a low-grade 99 degrees, either. Friday evening, it was just over 103; early Saturday afternoon it was hovering around 102; this morning it was a little over 100, but by the time we got home at 3:30 this afternoon, it was up to 101.7. I checked again at 5:30 and it was 102.9! I'm pretty sure I'll be taking him in to see his pediatrician tomorrow, especially if he's still running fever. Unfortunately Caleb will miss out on music camp tomorrow and possibly Tuesday. I'll have to ask the director if it would be too late for him to join in on Wednesday. The big production of "From Acorns to Oaks" is next Sunday.

I don't want to end on a depressing note, so I've saved the highlights for last:

* One day we went to Sci-Port with Billy's mom. Although there were tons of groups of kids there, we had fun. We went to Bass Pro Shop for lunch (Sonic), then went back to Sci-Port. There were very few kids there in the afternoon and it was much quieter and easier to get to the exhibits. We even caught a last-minute alcohol rocket demonstration.

* Billy's mom and I had a girls' day out Saturday and went shopping. I found a pair of shell earrings at Coldwater Creek that were marked $10.99 - down from $45 - that perfectly match a watch band I made! I thought the earrings had been marked down because they were chipped, but it was actually a piece of glue that I was able to gently scrape off. Now I just need to buy some more shell beads and make a matching necklace. I also bought a second pair of shell earrings (mostly beige with iridescent pink highlights) to wear with my khakis.

* I finally got to eat at Macaroni Grill. The food was excellent - and there were so many delicious entrees on the menu! I can't wait to go back and try something else.

* I spent some time outside blowing bubbles for the boys to pop. I love to blow bubbles. I find it very relaxing, and I like to see how big I can make them. I could do that for hours.

* The boys got to play a lot with their cousin Seth for three days last week. On Monday, Mama and I took them to Kiroli Park, but we got rained out not long after we arrived. On Tuesday, we went to play mini golf, but it was too hot outside. We only lasted 5 holes before escaping to the clubhouse to cool down with some ice cream. On Wednesday, we had planned to go to the zoo, but since it had been so hot, the boys decided they wanted to play indoors at The Jungle Gym. They had a blast there and spent two hours running, jumping, climbing, and sliding. They were exhausted by the time they got into bed every night.

* I got to play Nerts 3 times - and I won every time, too!

* I did 2 Pampered Chef shows in West Monroe.

* Mama and I went garage saling Saturday morning. Along the way, we picked up Melissa and Lindsay, then stopped in for some Southern Maid donuts. Mmmm... (Krispy Kreme's got nothing on Southern Maid!) I bought two books and a frisbee for the boys and a bread basket with a red-and-white-checkered napkin. Melissa bought a set of skewers; Lindsay found a cute, coloful oil dipping set. Mama had the steal of the day: a beautiful opal pendant for only $1!

* I got to spend some time with my grandmother. Daddy took Memaw, Melissa, Lindsay, Jacob, and me out for dinner at Cracker Barrel Friday night. (Mama stayed at the house and tended to Caleb since he was sick.)

* I got to spend some time with my parents and my sisters.

Once I download the 100+ pictures I took, I'll share a few.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Not a Spider?

Billy suggested that our intruder may be a lizard of some sort, which, for some strange reason, seems worse to me than a spider.

After thinking about it, he may be right. The trail it leaves behind isn't sticky and disintegrates when I touched it, like maybe it had been slimy (Ugh!) and dried out.

If it is a lizard, I may need to fire my cat. She's obviously not doing her job! It may be because she's old (nearly 15) and lazy, but I still see her run and jump and play from time to time. I think she's actually scared of it. She's no cat; she's a chicken!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Tinsel Town

I've got some sort of 8-legged creature that runs rampant in the boys' playroom every night. For about 2 weeks now, every morning when I walk in there, I see a rather large silk trail running randomly across the carpet. I've never seen that before, and I'm scared to see how big the spider is that's doing it!

I thought it would stop after Billy sprayed for bugs a few days ago, but it's been there every morning regardless.

I don't think the boys have noticed it. At least they haven't said anything to me about it. I considered mentioning it to them so they would get busy and get their toys picked up, but I thought that would probably have the opposite effect. They would refuse to even set toe in the room. So I've kept it to myself.

Last night after the boys went to bed, I picked up the few stray toys that hadn't made it to their proper places. Then I got out my big can of bug spray and went crazy spraying all over the carpet and rug where I had seen the spider's trail.

I haven't been in there yet this morning. I've been kind of scared of what I might find: either a dead tarantula or another silk trail. Maybe I've seen too many scary movies in my life (I'm not a fan of them by any means!), but I'm having fears of a horrendous spider hunting me down in the middle of the night, seeking revenge for trying to poison it.

I guess I better put on my brave face and peek around the corner. I've glanced that direction from the living room, but all appears well from that vantage point. But that's also not the main range of my uninvited guest.

Note: That is not my uninvited guest in the picture! It's one from the bug building at the zoo.

Update: I ventured in behind the boys and saw no dead spider. I did see its trail again, but it seemed to be confined to the areas I didn't spray well. I'll spray again tonight and maybe it'll be forced to leave!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Monday Memories

Sometimes it's fun to go back and read old posts. Over the course of a year, you forget what you were doing, thinking, writing. I'm hoping to use Mondays for looking back at last year.

I'd like to look back two, three, and four years ago, but those posts are lost. I do know that four years ago I started blogging because we were preparing to move to Texas for Billy to attend seminary. Since we were going to be far from our families, I thought it would be nice to update them on our lives through a blog. My sisters were already blogging and loving it, and I really enjoyed reading their posts. Once I got started, I was hooked!

Last year around this time, the boys and I had just returned from spending time in Louisiana with family - which is what we're getting ready to do this week. How timely! You can read Hello, again. here, on my old LiveJournal blog.

I was also writing about 10 Favorite Childhood Toys, from a Ten on Tuesday meme I like to participate in from time to time.

What memories do you have to share from a year ago or longer?

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Third Time's the Charm

Welcome to my third, and hopefully final, blog site!

My first foray into blogging was on Diary-X, where I had more than two-and-a-half years' worth of posts. A year-and-a-half ago, they crashed and I lost everything I had written.

I needed an outlet so I signed up for a LiveJournal account. It wasn't everything I had hoped it would be. Since I've recently been a target for comment spam, and they have no way to block it short of making my blog private, I was spurred to move on.

I had looked at Blogger before, but I wasn't sure what I was looking for. I liked the tag/label option that LiveJournal had (which Blogger didn't have at the time), so I signed up there. Most of my friends, as well as many other random blogs I read regularly, are on Blogger, and I've really liked what I've seen.

So here I am...

From Something to Nothing

Don't you hate it when you have big plans and everything falls through? That was yesterday.

I was supposed to have a cooking show from noon to 2 p.m., but my host called me Friday night to let me know her air conditioning was out. She switched to a catalog show and booked a cooking show for later.

Saturday evening we were supposed to have dinner with a friend and her two boys. (Her husband is out of town until next week.) We had originally planned for Thursday, but switched to Friday after I found out the VBS program at our church was Thursday night. (We were all really tired and ended up not going.) Thursday she called and asked if we could switch to Saturday. She had just gotten back in town from visiting family and needed some time to straighten up her house and get caught back up on laundry. Plus her 3-year-old had just gotten over some sort of illness. No problem. I thought that would work better anyway since I still thought my show was on and could use that time to prepare. She called back Saturday morning with the news that her 5-year-old was sick and running a fever. We definitely don't want to catch anything, especially since Jacob and I just recovered from a stomach virus last week.

We ended up spending the whole day inside. It was too hot to play outside, and stores are always crowded here on weekends. We didn't do much, but it was enough to wear us out. I think we were still exhausted from a full week of VBS. Shortly after I got the boys to bed, I crashed on the couch to watch some TV and woke up shortly before midnight!

And Back to Something

Today was a full day. This morning at church, the children spent time in both services singing the songs they had learned the previous week at VBS. The video they make every year, a montage of videos and stills of the kids from the week put to music, was great. The man who creates it has his own production company, and he always makes the music camp, VBS, and other special event videos for the church.

I had intended to stop by Wal-Mart on the way home and pick up some ingredients to make a banana pudding for a contest at church tonight, but Caleb hadn't had a snack and was starving. And he was eager to watch NASCAR. He wanted to go straight home and not even stop to pick up lunch. I didn't want to fight over going to the store, so we came on home and ate a few Totino's pizzas. They're cheap and quick.

Throughout the summer, while AWANA is on hiatus, we have special event family nights with different themes. Sometimes it's a praise night with an ice cream social afterward. Once a year they have a talent show. Tonight they had a great ventriloquist named Dennis Lee, cofounder of the group Nana Puddin. Caleb and I loved it. Jacob laughed here and there, but since he hadn't had a nap, he was tired and fidgety. Since I never got around to buying the ingredients for the Chocolate-Covered Banana Pudding recipe I had come up with, I had to make what was on hand: Pineapple Angel Food Cake. I also had a can of mandarin oranges in the pantry, so I drained them well and added them to the cake. It was okay, but I prefer it with just the pineapple.

I think there were 12 banana puddings entered in the contest. They all looked alike to me. Well, all except the one that had been cooked. I didn't know anyone still made it that way. I definitely should have made the one with chocolate! I'll have to try it another time...

I'm just impressed that I've started playing around with creating my own recipes now. I'm Type A and like to follow recipes to the letter, tweaking them only after I've tasted the original. Lately, though, I've felt creative in the kitchen. I came up with a Jerk Chicken with Pineapple Chutney recipe a few weeks ago and it turned out really good. Next time I want to add some fresh jalapeno to it (Billy's idea). Another recipe I'm playing around with is a Tuscan panini. Unfortunately I won't get a chance to try it until July.

I don't know what's got me so inspired. Maybe it's all the Food Network I've been watching lately. Maybe I'm secretly wanting to prepare to be The Next Food Network Star... :o)