Puke and Rally

This is a vulgar title, sorry. But Andy and I have been saying this phrase to each other over the past couple of days.

For those who may not know what a Puke-and-Rally is (although you can probably guess), it’s a phrase you’ll hear at a college party that’s pretty out of control. If someone drinks too much, barfs and then goes back to drinking (always a good idea…) it’s called a “Puke and Rally.”

Do you see where I’m going with this?

Yesterday, Reid came down with what must have been a stomach bug. It’s been going around school. He felt warm at lunchtime, so I checked his temp – 101.2F. He poked at his lunch a bit and went to bed. A couple hours later he awoke, hotter than ever.

I went out to do a bit of Christmas shopping and came home after not too long. Reid was snuggling on the couch with Andy and his fever had reached 102F. Not long after I arrived home, Reid started vomiting without warning – as it often goes with these little guys.

Graham, who was sitting on the other side of me totally cracked me up. He goes to daycare, and this time of year, a barfing kid is a total non-event. He just moved closer to the television so Andy’s and my frenetics didn’t interrupt Handy Manny.

Reid was shaken up and cried throughout his following bath. With clean jammies on, we got him settled comfortably in front of the T.V. And he was fine.

No, really, he was fine. A half an hour later, still hot with fever, he started asking for Cheerios. I tried to coax him to just drink water, but he reacted about like you’d imagine anyone would. After those Cheerios were gone – more Cheerios? And then another request. And another. An hour after that, when I was putting supper on the table, he ran over with a smile on his face and said, “DINNER? DINNER!!!!” He ate two pieces of cornbread before I refused to give him any more. He had an early bedtime, and that was it folks.

This morning, no fever, and he’s seemingly 100% fine. Now we see if I’ve Lysoled and bleached enough to keep the rest of us healthy. I hope so, because we’ve got Thanksgiving on the line!!

Busy Fall!

We are in October, arguably my favorite month for inexplicable reasons, and enjoying every second. These past few days have been completely water-logged, but we are making the most of it. Evening cups of coffee… fires in the fireplace… I’ve got a good book going thanks to stumbling across a book sale at the library. (The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton – great read so far!)

We have been B-U-S-Y people the last few weeks!

It all started with my cousin, Betsy’s, wedding. We, of course, had an amazing time. Last time we were in Minneapolis was in July 2012. I was pregnant with Reid and Graham was 2.5 years old.

Here I am with my cousins Courtney and Stewart (a.k.a one of the Minnesota Twins). If you want a tearjerker, have the bride’s twin brother officiate the wedding. Betsy’s momma may have walked her down the aisle, but Stewart made it pretty apparent that there was more than one person giving her away that day. ::sniff::

betsys wedding 1

Always a happy time when we get to meet up with Mom and Dad. Graham was elated to not only go to a wedding (his *most* favorite event) but ALSO see Grandpa and Grandma. Combine this with being able to stay in a hotel and the excitement was pretty much at an 11 all weekend.

mom and dad wedding

I may not be able to select bows, tights and dresses for formalwear, but I like to think I’m pretty good at getting these boys as dapper as possible. Reid got to re-wear his button-down and tie combo but we added a sweater vest to complete the ensemble. Ended up being the perfect weight for Minnesota fall.

Rwedding

Graham – who has decided he loves his sport coat – sported a new bowtie and, under that jacket, a pair of suspenders. What with the tendency to have his pants slip right off those narrow hips of his, he was completely stoked at the mere idea of suspenders. Totally functional. I think he’d wear these every day if I’d let him.

Gwedding

The beautiful bride (a.k.a. the other half of the Minnesota Twins – haha, you thought I was talking about baseball earlier, didn’t you??) and her handsome groom. :) So excited for these two. :)))

betsys wedding 2

We danced well into the night. Yet again, the boys hung in there through the reception so they could get to the dancing. Graham not only danced with his Grandma & the bride, he also asked another little girl to dance 100% without prompting from any adult. She was too shy to take him up on it, and he was pretty disappointed about it. Eventually he recovered though. Clearly.

betsys wedding 3

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

During the day on the day of the wedding, Reid was sneezing a notable amount. I told Andy, “Great, he’s starting a cold.” ‘Tis the season right? Sure enough, a runny nose started the next day and so Reid caught a cold. No big deal.

Until it was a big deal. Reid went to bed on Tuesday night with his temperature running 1 degree above normal. (I know, I wrote it off too.) He woke up the next morning with some difficulty breathing. Off to the doctor.

Trip to doctor

In general, his spirits were good, which was GREAT. But given his elevated temp 5 days into the cold and the fact that his doc heard wheezing all throughout his chest, we were given a breathing treatment in the doc’s office. Thankfully, his lung sounds improved after the treatment, so we didn’t have to march off to get a chest x-ray. We were debriefed on Enterovirus D68 and sent home with explicit instructions to call if anything changed.

Rsick

We spent the rest of the day snuggling and giving inhaler meds, and we got lucky: even though he’d gone to bed with whistling and wheezing lungs, he woke up with NO breathing struggles. Woohoo! Mark that as another virus down on the books.

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

We’ve been thinking a lot about Halloween costumes around here. After much discussing what he and Reid could be for Halloween, Graham settled on Milk and Cookies. One day last week – after picking the kids up early from school – I carted the kids off to the fabric store so I could figure out how to make the boys look like a delicious snack.

I’ll paraphrase by saying: taking two mobile preschoolers to a FABRIC STORE after school is a terrible idea. After the 1000th request not to run/yell/pull things off shelves/beg me to buy something, Graham disappeared into a different aisle and yelled, “MOM!!!! I WANT TO BE CAPTAIN AMERICA!!!!!”

He had found the Marvel superheroes fabric. I don’t even know if Captain America is a Marvel hero (I can never remember Marvel vs. DC), but it had spurred an idea in Graham. I, completely over the idea of making the kids’ costumes this year, pressed Graham to commit that he reeeeeeeally wanted to do that. He was 110% sure. So, I said, “Then we’re going to Target.”

To Target, we went. And after a bit of costume-trying…

hotdog

We landed on a Captain America costume for Graham and a Spider-man costume for Reid. (“Reid, you want to be Spiderman for Halloween?” “YEAHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”)

We tried on the costumes that night, and they are perfect. A little bit, I feel like we’ve wandered into what moms of girls have described to me as “Disney Princess Territory,” only for boys. But they love them. And I don’t have to slave over a sewing machine for hours over the next few weeks. Win-win.

superheroes

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

This weekend, we signed up for a mini-session with a local photographer. It’s been a year-and-a-half since we’ve last had our pictures taken. My biggest goal is getting a capture of us as a family, but updated pics of the boys were needed. We’re still waiting on the proofs, but I snapped a couple while we were waiting on the photographer to finish with another family.

graham 4yrs

reid 1y10mos

We’ll summarize by saying: there’s a reason I hired this out. The boys are not only completely in-motion at every moment but also impatient at being told to do ridiculous things like a) “stand still” or b) “look this way” or c) “smile”. My iPhone pics are cute, but I have a lot of ‘cute’. I wanted more ‘framers.’

Outsourced.

Our photographer Erin Moore – a mom of 4 girls, I might add – was amazing. And based on the sneak peeks from our session, I think we’ve got a couple winners at least. :)

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Those are the big things. A couple of honorable mentions:

1. We think Reid might be a lefty. He’s got some serious fine-motor prowess with that left hand. If you give him that same marker in his right hand, he grips it in his fist and does huge broad strokes. Left hand? Pencil grip and tiny marks. (Also, I know he needs a haircut!)

lefty

2. The boys’ daycare just moved into a brand new building this week. Absolutely phenomenal! The last building was sort of this dumpy old-looking house. Great program, less-than-desirable facility. Now they’re in a beautiful facility too. We are all loving the change!

So “that’s it.” That’s all we’ve been up to. Next up – the holidays and much travel to many places to see much family! Here we go!

4K and Hand, Foot & Mouth

This weekend has been a mixed bag. But let’s start at our high point:

Graham started his 4K program today!

First day of 4K 1

Graham has been looking forward to today since we picked him out a backpack several weeks ago.

First day of 4K 2

Great choice? I think so. Please also note the fact that Graham has on a pair of short that are *not* of the athletic variety. This took moving a small mountain and the fact that 4K has a ‘no soft shorts on the first day’ rule.

::shrug:: Whaddyagonnado. I don’t make the rules.

This 4K program is a great deal for the G-man. It’s actually a program run through our public school district and housed at local daycares throughout the city. Graham’s daycare is a participating location, so that means he just goes to daycare like normal, then, after lunch, he lines up with his backpack at the door with the other kids going to 4K and walks downstairs to the 4K classroom. There, he meets up with other kids from the community. After a couple of hours, he goes back to his regular preschool daycare room.

The only thing we learned about Graham’s first day in 4K is that they sang the “Tootie Tot” song where they stuck out their butts and tongues and sang “a tootie tot, a tootie tot, a tootie tot-tot”. I tried to tell him that I know that song – it’s “Singing in the Rain” and WHOO BOY that was the wrong answer!!

Did I also mention that he no longer has time for a proper nap with the 4K schedule? Ha. Yeeeah.

I was home with Reid today while he convalesced after a rather wretched weekend with Hand Foot & Mouth disease.

Let me start off by saying: Reid is fully in the throes of toddlerhood. The man has plans and rarely do they jibe with ours. When things don’t go Reid’s way he roars and throws things and cries. So it was a solid 24 hours before Andy and I were like, “He seems fussier than normal, no?”

Basically, Reid was walking around crying all day long. When you’d try to give him something you think he wants, he’d yell “NNNNNO!”, take whatever it was that you’d given him, throw it, and about 50% of the time he’d hit you too, just to drive the point home.

The nurse I called today asked if Reid ever ran a fever over the weekend, Welll, yes and no ma’am. If you mean “Was he warm and sweaty?” then yes, he was because a perpetual state of pissed-off screaming will do that to you. If  you mean, “Did a thermometer read over 100.4” then no, because measuring Reid’s temperature would have been like trying to apply mascara to a cat.

But then there were moments like this:

stroller2

stroller1

I read once, “If kids are fussy, apply fresh air.” So true, random Pinterest typographic print-maker, so true. My failsafe key to a screaming tantrum still works: GO OUTSIDE. An onslaught of pleasant stimuli to the 5 senses + a vague feeling of being watched by no one in particular = a calmed down child.

And so the weekend went on. Three days of crying on and off. Some cuddling. Some interrupted sleeping. Poor guy couldn’t eat. That was the worst part. He’d stick food in his mouth, chew it up and then start a piercing cry, shove his entire plate away and sign “All done” with tears streaming down his face and a mouth full of food he couldn’t swallow.

That’s why Reid and I stayed home today. His appetite hasn’t gone back to full capacity yet, but he’s able to eat now and is back to feeling better all around.

cutie 21 mos

cutie 21 mos 2

That’s what I’m talking about. :)

Some Updates

We’ve been busy around here lately.

Andy transitioned to full time employee (from being a contractor) last Monday. This means lots of fun things like quarterly bonus eligibility and a company phone, but we are just excited that he’s now gainfully employed in a non-temporary way.

This job, when he took it, was contract-to-hire, so we had line of sight to this change but Andy still had to impress them well enough to keep the job. Way to go, dear!

In his spare time, Andy holes up in the garage and saws wood into pieces. Every so often he sands. When the stars align, he’s been known to glue a piece or two together. I have no idea what he’s doing out there except for the fact that he is doing and that makes him happy. Good enough for me!

Graham continues to keep us on our toes. He is making friends at his ‘new’ daycare, which we are all thrilled about. He played tee ball for six weeks this summer. He loved being on the team, but after Week 3, he pretty much devoted his time seeking out opportunities to stall the game and get laughs out of the other kids. Maybe next year.

Graham starts 4K in a couple of weeks. He is very excited and even has a new backpack to show for it. The 4K program is funded through our school district and hosted by local daycares – of which Graham’s current daycare is one. This means we will drop him off in the daycare class in the morning, he will play, eat, nap there and in the afternoon he will put on his backpack and walk to the 4K classroom to join other kids from the community. Really, it’s a lot of shuffling. But they make a big deal about the shuffling, and he’s excited to shuffle with other kids in his class. So we roll with it.

Reid is learning new words all the time and figuring out (FINALLY, thank you God!!) how to put some words to what he wants. This makes life better for everyone. He relies a lot on signs still and generally prefers moving around to speaking, but we’ve made progress in the verbal department.

Reid’s favorite show is Sesame Street. He loves Elmo and Big Bird.

There is also a distinct possibility that Reid is the reincarnation of Andre the Giant. His mission in life is to tackle someone. Mainly Graham, but Andy or I will do in a pinch. When the boys are watching a TV show, and Graham isn’t interested in rough-housing, you can tell it takes concerted energy and concentration on Reid’s part not to tackle his brother.

As for me, I continue to become adjusted to my new work environment. I work with some really great people and things are constantly evolving. It keeps me on my toes.

I’m still running. My regular run loop now is 4 miles, and I don’t get lost anymore! A few of the girls I work with signed up for a race in late September, and I signed up too. I was very excited to run a[n organized] 5K again, and I told them so. Immediate mock-shaming commenced because they had all signed up for the 10K loop. Uh.

I caved to peer pressure. I am now training for a 10K. Hold me.

In related news, I am trying to get ahead of some asthma issues. I’ve been having attacks since coming to Wisconsin for the first time in my life, so I’m trying to get to the bottom of it. Predominant theory is allergies. Getting asthma in your 30s is awesome.

That’s an update on us! Debbie, out!

Sick Day

Well, Reid got kicked out of school yesterday afternoon. I got that stomach-dropping call from daycare in the middle of the afternoon. (Daycare and school moms know it: when the school’s phone number pops up on the phone, and you know they’re calling about one of your kids. There’s a moment before you answer when a flash of panic/dread spikes and quickly recedes because you know it could be really bad or it could be nothing.)

Reid’s teacher said he had a temp of 101.5, so I dropped everything to pick him up.

I gave him some Advil when I got home and the fever broke. He lingered around 100 when I put him to bed, but when I went to check on him before *I* went to bed, he was the definition of burning up. I’ve never felt a kid so hot. Took his temp again: 103.5.

Yeah – we stayed home from school today.

IMG_0794

Reidy woke up with a temp around 102, so I’ve been letting him simmer without Advil. He doesn’t seem uncomfortable, just tired. He ate two bowls of cereal then went back to sleep.

IMG_0799

He looks downright happy here, right?

Reid slept from 9 – Noon and woke up for lunch.

IMG_0800

Here he actually didn’t have much of an appetite. Ate half his yogurt, most of his milk and most of a slice of cheese before the cheese became distasteful and he started to try and scrape it out of his mouth.

I sort of wonder if he has a sore throat. (But just try and look down a toddler’s throat. TRY IT. Doctors must spend their entire third year of medical school just perfecting the toddler throat check. Impossible!)

We sat and watched T.V. for a bit, and Reid started asking for his baby[doll]. I went and got it and, for kicks, got a baby bottle out of the cupboard. He loves babies but is even more excited about them after having his cousin Kate here this weekend.

Reid is a natural.

IMG_0815

We took turns feeding the baby.

Then I turned on some Barney, and he loved it. O Lord Almighty, what have I done??

IMG_0807

Then by around 1:15 (mind you, he woke up at Noon) he looked like this:

IMG_0812

So back to bed for Bonzo.

Craig and Susan – having been fully informed of the presence of whatever-this-is in the house – decided we should still keep our weekend plans for a visit. They arrive here midafternoon! Then only time will tell what our weekend plans end up being. Can’t wait! Just hope Reid shakes whatever has him down!