Monday, April 30, 2007

Mommy! Mommy! Guess What I Found!

Okay...Logan didn't say that....'cause he doesn't talk yet. But I know he was thinking it as he gave me his sheepish little grin.

Logan and Zander were having their bath, and playing the way they usually do.....Zander splashing until every wall in the bathroom was shiny from water as it cascaded to the floor, Logan laughing like a madman at the wet mess his big brother is making. Once the waterworks died down, the boys turned their focus to the bath toys floating around them. That is when Logan found a new toy.....his penis.

Yes, ladies and gents, my youngest son has found his penis....and I must say he was quite pleased with his discovery. There he sat in his bath seat....twisting it and turning it, pulling it and tugging it.....examining it like I had never seen him examine anything before. Little does he know, his new-found game will be a life-long obsession.

This brought back memories of Zander discovering this very same appendage. As a new mom, it made me a little first. I quickly saw the humour in it....and it's all so perfectly natural, so what's there to be uncomfortable about? But this has brought up a bit of a conundrum for Carlos and I...what should we call it?

Zander will be turning 2 years old in a couple of days. He's getting close to the potty-training stage. And his vocabulary increases daily. Now is the time to decide how we will address the boys' penises.

There seem to be two schools of thought on this topic. 1) just call it a penis, 2) make up some cutesy name for it. But which way should we go? That's what we're trying to decide.

I have no problem calling it a penis...this doesn't bother me one bit. But I know it bothers others....for instance, my mother. I have witnessed her subtly cringe when I say "penis" in reference to her grandsons. So should we make up a name for it???

On the other hand, will having a nickname for my sons' penises make it feel awkward for them to start calling it a penis later on?

I'm not really sure what we are going to do, but we need to decide soon. Zander is picking up new words faster now than ever before. Say it once or twice, and he's added it to his ever-expanding list of words.

I know there are moms of boys reading my blog. Any thoughts on the subject??? I would love to hear your experiences!

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Sunday, April 29, 2007

The Deposit Is Down

We went back to look at the model homes yesterday....and we put a deposit down on a lot. This means that we have a week to go back with another cheque and sign some more papers. And then the fun starts. Picking the colours, flooring, counter tops, etc. We don't have money for upgrades, so we will have to stick with the standard stuff that is included in the base price....but I'm more worried about the space. We can fancy it up in a few years when I'm back to work.

As I said before, we went for another town home, so as not to stretch our single-income budget. I don't to be forced to go back to work before the boys are in school. I am sad to say that we couldn't afford an end-unit. This means that our backyard will be miniscule. But that is my only regret.

The model we chose is an open-concept floor plan, which is exactly what we wanted. It will allow me to keep an eye on the boys while I can actually get some work done in the kitchen....unloading and loading the dishwasher, making dinner, etc. That will be nice!

It has an L-shaped kitchen with an island on a diagonal looking out into the living space. The dining room is right off the kitchen, and the living room (with gas-burning fire place!) is right beside that. It's a nice, open space...and I love it.

It also has the laundry on the second floor where the bedrooms are....a definate bonus for a family with two young troublemakers boys!

The boys bedrooms are not huge, but a good size for sure. One is 10' X 12', and the other is 10' X 12'8". Bigger than the secondary bedrooms in all of the other models we looked at.

The master is not huge either....but I'm not one who needs more room than what my bed and night tables require. But I do like walk-in closets....and this has got one....a big one.....nice! And the ensuite has a large corner soaker tub. This was one of our requirements. Do you know what kind of strategizing is require for a large 5'10" woman to have a bath in a standard sized tub?????? I just isn't relaxing, I'll tell you that! And there tend to be a lot of "Calgon, take me away" moments with the boys, so that will be sooooo nice to have!

There is also a large finished rec room, so we can have some place other than our living room for the boys to have all of their toys. And plenty of storage room in the basement....something our current house doesn't have.

So if all goes well, we will be in our new home for Christmas. So I have a few months to figure out where the Christmas tree will go!

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Friday, April 27, 2007

Fun Family Facts

I thought, with all stress we've been going through the past couple of weeks, I would do something fun. The boys are so much alike, and at the same time so completely different. I thought I would do a little comparison thingy by way of a list of facts about the two of them. I've also thrown in some "fun facts" about mommy and daddy too. Enjoy!

Zander will be 2 years old in May.
Logan will be 1 year old in June.

Zander was born 15 days early.
Logan was born 5 weeks early.

Zander weighed 6 pounds 10 ounces when he was born.
Logan weighed 5 pounds 6 ounces when he was born.

Zander is 23.5 months old.
Logan is 10.5 months old. His corrected age is 9 months.

Zander weighs approximately 25 pounds.
Logan weighs approximately 26 pounds (nope...not a typo).

Zander & Logan are both CRAZY ticklish.

Most of the solid food that Zander eats is still pureed due to his many food aversions and ridiculously strong gag reflex.
All of the solid food that Logan eats is pureed due to the fact that he's only 10 months old.

Zander & Logan's daddy is Portuguese. He was born in the Azores, and came to Canada when he was 6 years old.

Zander & Logan's mommy is Danish-Canadian. She was born in Canada, but both her parents are Danish, and moved to Canada before she was born.

Zander likes to stack wooden blocks.
Logan likes to eat wooden blocks.

Zander & Logan both wear cloth diapers as often as is convenient.

Zander wears size 5 Huggies diapers.
Logan wears size 5 Huggies diapers, but he wears a bigger size of cloth diaper than his big brother.

Logan has long, black eyelashes.
Zander has longer, black eyelashes. They are longer than the fake ones I wore for my wedding.

Zander & Logan take their baths together.

Mommy gained 70 pounds when she was expecting Zander.
Mommy gained 6 pounds when she was expecting Logan.

Zander & Logan have the same God Parents. Tia (aunt in Portuguese) Sonia (Carlos' sister) and uncle Vince (Sonia's husband).

Zander loves to dance.
Logan loves to watch Zander dance.

Zander adores his Carl daddy.
So does Logan.

Zander's current fave foods are squash, carrots, breaded fish, french fries, toast, bananas and yogurt.
Logan's fave food is food.

Zander loves to splash in the bathtub.
Logan laughs uncontrollably when Zander splashes in the bathtub.

Zander & Logan both have big gorgeous blue eyes.

Zander has a little eczema on his arms and legs...occasionally on his chest and belly.
Logan has eczema on his arms, legs, chest, belly, back, face, hands, feet,......basically everywhere he has skin.

Zander calls Logan "Gun".
Logan calls Zander "babadadamamalalatatafafapapa....." just goes on and on.

Zander's fave TV show is "Mighty Machines".
Logan's fave TV show is "The Mole Sisters". (Tia Sonia thinks they're creepy.)

Zander LOVES reading books.
Logan LOVES eating books.

Zander fits some 24 month / 2 year size clothes, but mostly 18-month clothes (he's a skinny little man).
Logan fits some 12-month size clothes, but mostly 18-month clothes.

Zander & Logan share most of their clothes!

Zander sleeps crosswise at the top of his crib (he really likes to wedge himself in there!).
Due to his GERD, Logan's crib mattress is at a 35 degree angle, and he sleeps strapped to the mattress with a harness so he doesn't slide down.

Zander gets Tempra or Motrin when he is in pain from teething.
Logan gets Prevacid once a day and Zantac twice a day to control his GERD, Gaviscon for break-through reflux episodes, and Tempra or Motrin when he is in pain from teething.

Zander loves to draw with crayons.
Logan loves to eat crayons.

Zander wears size 5 shoe.
Logan wears size 3 shoe.

Zander has 16 teeth.
Logan has 2 teeth.

Zander has his own bedroom.
Logan sleeps in mommy and daddy's bedroom since his GERD can make him wake up multiple times a night, and he cannot soothe himself back to sleep on his own since he cannot get his own pacifier...remember, he's strapped to the mattress. (Mommy and daddy are hoping to get their bedroom to themselves soon!)

Zander's middle name is Xavier.
Logan's middle name is Zakary.

Zander and Logan's daddy loves names that start with letters at the end of the alphabet.

Zander walks and runs like a pro (with the occasional speed wobble).
Logan just started to crawl (finally!).

Zander is obsessed with trains, tractors, and trucks, of all kinds, planes, helicopters, any mode of transportation or construction / demolition. (his "machines")
Logan is obsessed with pounding things into the floor.

Zander & Logan's daddy is a computer programmer. His hobby is computer programming.
Zander & Logan's mommy is a stay at home mom. Her hobby is cardmaking...papercrafting in general.

Zander & Logan have a Mormor (Danish for grandmother on mother's side - direct translation is "mother's mother") and Morfar (Danish for grandfather on mother's side -direct translation is "mother's father"), and an Avó (Portuguese for grandmother - pronounced "av-ah") and Avô (Portuguese for grandfather - pronounced "av-oh").

Zander & Logan are the sunshine in mommy and daddy's lives!

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I Clean!

Dinner tonight was just one of those nights when neither son was willing to eat. There was screaming. There was crying. There was much grief. Until Zander did something that made mommy and daddy smile.

He took the face cloth we had to wipe Logan's face....and started to wipe up the mess that he'd made on the table. As he did this, he proudly proclaimed "I clean!" dear, sweet, obsessively clean (this kid doesn't even like to have crumbs from toast on his hands for more than 2 seconds) boy!

Let's just hope that he will continue to be a self-cleaning boy (I know...I know....doubtful....just let me keep the dream alive!)

Little Mr. Clean

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Monday, April 23, 2007

We Have Lift Off

Logan FINALLY started to crawl yesterday!

Due to his GERD, he didn't get a lot of floor time (tummy time or otherwise). It was pretty much impossible for him to lie flat for the first 5 months of his life. He would start to reflux within a couple of minutes...even with all the medication he was on.

So he was late rolling over (he was 6 months old before he could roll over both ways), he was late sitting up on his own (he was almost 9 months old), and he was late crawling (he is 10.5 months old).

Don't get me wrong...I'm not one of those mothers who is obsessed with milestones. I realize that we still have to go by his corrected age due to him being premature. I realize that GERD causes developmental delays. I'm not really worried about all that jazz.

What I am worried about is Logan being bored and cranky, and needing constant entertainment....from me. Until now, he hasn't been able to go where he wanted to go, or get to the toy he wanted to play with. I can never be more than a few feet away at any given moment, so that I may hand him a toy or move him to where he wants to be. Hopefully this new ability will allow him to have more fun without needing my help all the time....and to stop the incessant whining!

I can't believe how much he's grown in the last couple of months! My big little boy!

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Looking For Home

With all the trials and tribulations of the past 10 months dealing with Logan and his GERD, it has become painfully obvious how isolated we are here in the West end of Ottawa.

All of our support system, friends and family alike, live in the East end. It's been tough for them to find the time to be here to help us when we needed it. It's been tough for us to be so far away from everyone, and feeling like we had no right to call on them knowing how far they would have to travel. It's been tough for me, being here alone with 2 kids while Carlos is at work.

So, we've decided to pick up and move to the East end to be near everyone important to us. This has filled us with joy and excitement, as well as fear and anxiety.

We went looking at model homes yesterday, for the first time. (We were supposed to go last Saturday, but two little snotty boys put the kibosh on that plan!) We decided a few weeks ago that new construction might be our best option. We could get the floor plan that we want, and a planned move-in date for less than the same house built by someone else two years ago. We can save money going this route, and have a plan and time line to go by. This will be useful for selling our own house...having a date to work toward rather than looking for a previously-enjoyed home at the same time as selling our current house. Moving with two young children is hard enough...we're trying to make it as easy on ourselves as possible. We really liked what we saw model in particular. So now the number crunching begins. Hopefully we can manage it on one salary. It's all so exciting!

On the other hand, the thought of selling this house is stressful to say the least. Getting the house ready for sale isn't going to be easy. Some things need to be updated (kitchen, bathrooms) before we put it up for sale. Some yard work needs to be done as well. And then there's the clutter....all the clutter that comes with having two kids in a tiny townhome. We are going to have to purge purge purge! And somethings will need to be packed up and put in storage. Luckily my SIL has offered her garage, so we won't have to pay for a storage unit.

And then there's the memories. All the memories of first words, first steps...I've never like this house, and was always looking forward to leaving. But having children has made me attached to this place. It's probably good that we're moving now...not sure if I could leave a place that my kids had lived in for years and years. Ya...I'm a sentimental fool.

But I realize that these memories have been recorded in the form of TONS of digital pictures and videos. The memories will still be in my head and in my heart. And there are many more memories to be made in our new home.

So I'm trying to keep the sadness at leaving the only home the boys have known at bay by focusing on the positive. If all goes well, we will be moving into a brand new home before Christmas. A home with the exact layout that we want, with the colours, flooring and finishes of our choosing. We will be closer to friends and family (which means I will probably be getting out more...woohoo!). A fresh start for our family! are we going to find the time and energy to do this?

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Friday, April 20, 2007

I Think & I Blog, Therefore I Get An Award!

Sara from Suburban Oblivion recently bestowed a Thinking Blogger Award on me. Is it well deserved? I'm not sure. But I will accept it, and all the accolades that come with receiving such a prestigious award (yes, I'm currently standing in the middle of my living room, bowing before a myriad of tripping hazards stuffed animals and assorted electronic educational noisemakers toys), if only to lift my spirits after two weeks of crappy happenings! I'm giddy with pride (teehee!), and still blushing from reading all the lovely things she wrote about me in her post (cheque's in the mail, Sara!).

When I read that Sara, herself, had been given this award by a fellow-blogger, I thought "good for her". She definitely deserves it! Her blog sucked me in the first time I read it. She has an extremely honest style of writing that I just L-O-V-E. She makes me laugh on a regular basis, which is good for the soul. And I can identify with her in her posts about mommyhood.

As I humbly accept this award, I take on the task that comes with it. I must now bestow this most prestigious of awards on 5 other deserving bloggers.

I, like Sara, have instead decided to pass this award on to one über-deserving woman. Karla from Untangling Knots. I have written about her in the past. She inspired me to start my own blog, and continues to be an inspiration to me and so many others. She writes honestly and freely, holding nothing back. And man, is she witty! I have the utmost respect for her. I do hope she accepts this award...she truly deserves it! Check out her blog...she's an absolutely amazing woman!

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Searching For Answers

We recently received news that has left me shaken and heart-broken.

Friends of ours just lost their baby. After an emergency C-Section, Emily Grace was born brain dead as a result of her umbilical cord being wrapped tightly around her neck. I am so sad for their loss.

And this horrific news brings up so many questions.

Why do bad things like this happen to good people like our friends, and Karla from Untangling Knots? And why are people like Carlos and I the lucky ones? Who gets to decide this?

When Zander was born, it was a similar story to that of Emily Grace, but with a much happier ending. After arriving at the hospital in the midst of blinding contractions, I was hooked up to the usual monitoring gizmos for the baby's heart rate and such. It was soon obvious that the baby was in trouble, as with each contraction his heart rate would drop from the 160's down below 50.

Within seconds there were nurses and doctors swarming around the room like flies, efficiently going about what it is they are trained to do in this situation. We were told the baby had to come out NOW. Fortunately, he was already so far down the birth canal that emergency surgery would not be needed. The vacuum was in the doctor's hand, but the thought of my baby being in mortal danger sent me into some sort of supermom-like trance, and with two herculean pushes, he was born.

It took a few minutes, but we did start breathing...and then came the cry we had so longed to hear. All of this took minutes, but it felt like forever.

I am so grateful and truly blessed that Zander and Logan were both born healthy....but why was Emily Grace denied a chance at life? I don't understand.

When I started to lose my hair, I was beside myself. I thought I had that I was being punished for something horrible I had done...perhaps in a past life. The only way I could come to grips with what had happened, and get on with my life was to force myself to believe that things happen for a reason. Maybe I was being taught an important lesson. Maybe this is what I needed to start to truly like myself, which I had never really done before. What I needed to see my life, past present and future, from a whole new perspective.

This belief has gotten me through some truly tough times. But now it makes me wonder...what could possibly be the reason for the death of a child. I can think of none.

It does, however, make me realize what a true miracle it is that Anvilcloud's granddaughter was born in perfect health, and is safe and sound in her parents' arms.

I wish I could say the same for Emily Grace. Their are far too many angels like her in heaven...why?

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

There's Only So Much A Cate Can Take

Seriously....I think our house is punishing us for wanting to leave.

Last night the humidifier on our furnace sprang a leak. Carlos went downstairs to see the now familiar scene of an indoor flood. Again, he was up late trying to rid our basement of water.

On another note, Zander has been showing signs of dehydration since he caught this awful cold. At one point he had almost completely stopped peeing, which we all know is not good. We took him to the doctor, and he has to have some tests done on his urine....which means we have to collect it. Good luck!

And to top it all off, the cold, which Logan has handled better than his older brother up until now, has descended into his chest. He was up all night coughing, and once again ended up in bed with us.

What's next? Here's hoping it's a big win in the lottery!

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Man, These Guys Are Good!

Last night we discovered that the shut-off valve on the top of our newly installed water heater is leaking. Inspires confidence, doesn't it?

The Company sent the nice man back this morning to fix it. Free of charge, no less....what a deal!

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Great Flood of 2007...In My Basement

Content Advisory: The following post contains profane language, and may not be suitable for all readers. I've had a very bad day!

Last night, after both boys were asleep (Zander in his bed, Logan in my arms digesting his last bottle), Carlos heard a strange noise coming from the basement. He went downstairs to investigate. That's when I heard him yell "Holy SHIT!" at the top of his lungs. This was followed by the sound of slamming doors, and objects of varying sizes being thrown in all directions. I thought "maybe the cats have done something....again". Since Logan had just finished eating a few minutes earlier, and was now sound asleep in my arms, I figured I would wait for Carlos to come back upstairs to find out what had happened.

A few minutes later, there was still no sign of Carlos. So I decided I should probably find out what type of mess he was attempting to clean up down there. I buckled Logan into the chair of death, made sure I had wedged enough under the legs to prevent him from injuring himself....again....and made my way downstairs.

At the top of the stairs I could already make out the sound of rushing heart started beating harder. When I got to the bottom of the stairs I saw the pool of water..."What the fuck????". I turned the corner to see the root of this river that was threatening the life of my laminate wood flooring. The water heater was spewing forth steaming hot water, and flooding our rec room. Shit!

In the time it had taken me to come and see what the commotion was, Carlos had turned the water off to house and started to drain the water remaining in the tank into a bucket. He had just plugged in the shop vac, and started to madly suck up as much water as he could. In the meantime, I ran back upstairs to retrieve anything I could lay my hands on that might help sop up the water that was surely starting to soak into the flooring....old sheets, receiving blankets (of which we have thousands), etc. I did what I could with the blankets, and helped keep an eye on the bucket the tank was emptying into.

Carlos kept emptying the shop vac and bucket into basin in the laundry room. That is, until it was plugged with cat hair that was being sucked up along with the water. The tub was now full of nasty-ass, dirty, cat-hairy water, and it wasn't draining. I could feel my last thread of sanity that remained after the events of the last few days starting to fray.

On our side was the fact that we have a walk-out basement. I opened the patio door leading to the backyard, and we started dumping water, and throwing non-salvageable items outside. (I'm sad to say that the cats' scratching-post-condo-thingy was saturated beyond redemption, and we had to say goodbye.)

It took just over an hour to drain the water heater, and contain and cleanup the ensuing flood. We then took stock of the situation.

First of all, the mentally disabilitated (yes, I know that's not a real word) builders of this fucking house didn't put a fucking drain in the floor of the fucking furnace room where the fucking water heater is! I still can't believe that passed inspection, even 20 years ago when this house was built. I mean, COME ON!

Secondly, Carlos called the company that we have been renting the water heater in question from....lets just call them "The Company". He told The Company we needed a replacement water heater installed. The customer service rep told him we could not request a new water heater...they would have to send someone to inspect our current water heater to see if it needed replacing, or could just be fixed. Carlos promptly told The Company that our current water heater was currently "inspecting" all over our rec room floor! And come on....did ya think we're calling you at midnight asking for a new water heater just for shits and giggles?????

We are already acquainted with The Company's inspection process. When we bought the house a few years ago, our inspection revealed that we should have the water heater looked at, as it was advanced in years and had some rust along the bottom. At our request, The Company sent someone to come and "inspect" the water heater. He took a 90 second cursory glance, said it looked fine, and left. Thank you so much for your time....jackass!

So this morning a very nice man from The Company came to our house, looked at the water heater and told us it would need to be replaced. REALLY? Are you sure? He said that we wouldn't have to pay an installation charge (you're fucking right, we're not paying an installation charge!), and that we could upgrade from a 40 gallon to a 50 gallon tank for only an additional $1.25 a month. Great! Then he said something that almost sent me over the edge....he said " we've had a lot of leaking water heaters lately, so we won't be able to have someone come out until tomorrow and install that for you." Are you fucking kidding me? We've got two small children and two adults living in this house, and since you won't replace your water heaters until they explode, I would think you could at least install the replacement the same day!

I'm not sure whether the nice man put in a good word for us, or if the powers that be decided to give us a break, but The Company called shortly after the nice man left. "We happen to have a team available to install your replacement tank today. Would you like them to head over?" Do you even have to ask? Seriously!

Anyway, as of around 1:30pm today, we had a brand spankin' new water heater, and hot water aplenty.

I'm not sure if you can tell by the tone and/or language of this post, but I'm a little bitter. And the bitterness remains. I realize that it could have been worse. I am grateful that the Company was very prompt in the delivery and installation of our new water heater. But I'm still pissed off.

I'm pissed off at the fact that The Company won't replace a water heater unless 1)The Company is willing to replace it, or 2)the water heater in question explodes. I'm pissed off that The Company doesn't take responsibility for damages incurred after one of these aforementioned water heater explosions. I'm pissed off that The Company doesn't have some type of inspection program for water heaters over a certain age in order to prevent this type of explosion for occurring in the first place. And I'm pissed off that The Company has received more than $2500 over the 20 year life of a water heater that probably cost them no more than $400 when it was new, and they still can't see fit to treat their customers with a modicum of respect.

At least...and I've had to search REALLY hard for the silver lining here...when we sell this house, which we are planning to do sometime in the next 6 months, we use the brand spankin' new water heater as a selling point.

Behold, our glorious new heater of water!

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Monday, April 16, 2007

A Bit Of Sunshine At The End Of A Bad Day

I was hoping that the day couldn't get worse after what happened with Zander earlier. Well, it didn't. It got better!

Logan just said his first word! I can't believe it!

We were watching Zander's fave Mighty Machines (the one with the planes, helicopters, etc.). Every time one of the plane takes off on the show, Zander says "Bye" to them. It actually sounds more like "Bah" he's southern. Well, he was sitting on the couch doing just that, while Logan was sitting on the floor facing the couch.

All of a sudden Logan responded to one of Zander's "Bye"s with one of his own!!! I looked at Carlos...."did he just say bye?". He said "I think so!". I repeatedly prompted him to say it, and every time he did as I asked. Then he turned toward the TV, and proudly said "Buh" to one of the planes taking flight. It was absolutely adorable.

Just the ray of sunshine I needed after a day like today!

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And The Worst Mom Award Goes To...

....uh....that would be ME!

My poor little Zander was up coughing all night, and didn't get much sleep. So I wanted to make sure he got a good long nap.

Around 3:30pm he started talking to himself, which he normally does when he wakes up. He sometimes makes me wonder if there's someone, unseen to me, in the room with him. Anyway, he was coughing quite hard and saying "I wanna go", but he didn't sound upset.

At the same time, I was trying to get Logan to drink a bottle without suffocating him...his nose is still completely clogged. So I figured I would get Logan fed before I went to get Zander. By the time Logan was done eating, Zander wasn't talking anymore, so I thought that he had gone back to sleep.

He started talking again around 4pm. So I put Logan down to play, made a sippy cup of milk for Zander, and went upstairs to get him. When I first entered the room, I smelled something....was it poop? It doesn't really smell like poop. I turned on the light. There was Zander, standing with arms in the air signalling for me to pick him up. He had something brown all over one side of his face, and in his hair. I could also spy through the crib slats a large brown spot on his sheet. I thought "Oh gawd...he's had a diaper blow-out!". But was vomit. He had thrown up in his crib and all over himself. I believe it was brought on....or one of his coughing attacks.

What made it worse was the fact that it was starting to dry on his shirt, and was completely stiff on his face and in his hair. I have no idea how long he was sitting in it.

I told him to hold on, and ran to get some wet cloths and receiving blankets. I had to take his shirt off before I lifted him out of the crib, otherwise we both would have been covered in it. I got him onto the change table, and stripped him off his pants and socks. I then proceeded to try to scrape the caked-on puke off of his face, out of his ear and nostrils, and comb it out of his hair. It took a while.

I was crying while I was trying to clean him up, I felt so guilty. And do you know what my sweet sweet boy did? He started making cute, goofy faces and flashing smiles at me to try to cheer me up. Of course, it made me cry harder!

Carlos will be home any minute, and both boys will then go into the bath. We normally give them their bath after supper, before bed. But this calls for a change of routine!

I've been a mother for just shy of 2 years now, but I will never get used to the amazing level of guilt a mother can feel. I mean, he wasn't screaming or anything that would signify an emergency. And I had my hands full trying to feed a screaming Logan. But he never says "I wanna go" when he's just woken up in his crib...I should have checked on him.

So, I guess I will spend the night wallowing in self-pity, self-doubt, and guilt. At least Zander has recovered better than I have!

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

The End Might Be Near

The end of this awful cold, that is.

We just put Logan to sleep. In his crib. And he's actually sleeping. In his crib. Without screaming. I'm speechless. A nice quiet end to a day of ups and downs.

Today was better than yesterday. Yesterday was exhausting. Both of the boys were screaming most of the day. Zander was so far from his normal self that we were really worried. He was awake at around 6am, but didn't fall asleep until 4:30pm (he normally has a nap around 1pm). And he wouldn't sleep in his bed. He only fell asleep when Carlos cradled him and walked around rocking him. As soon as Carlos would stop moving or sit down for a break, Zander would wake up screaming. It was crazy. That, and the fever and juicy coughs almost sent us to the hospital.

Last night (or this morning, I should say!) we couldn't get Logan to bed until 2am....and it HAD to be in bed with us. He wouldn't sleep anywhere else but my arms, and they were getting tired! He was restless the entire night. I'm embarrassed to say that I actually started to cry this morning when he had a meltdown around was completely fatigue-induced, but I'm still not proud of myself.

I started a sore throat yesterday, and it just got worse overnight. I woke up this morning at 11:30am all alone in our big king size bed. No Logan. But I could hear little-boy laughter downstairs. Carlos had let me sleep in. What a great hubby!

I made my way downstairs, walking like 95 year old woman. My back and shoulders are so messed up from the last couple of days. My throat was burning. Even though I got to sleep in longer than I have since Zander was born 2 years ago, I was still woozy-dizzy with exhaustion.

Apparently, the boys were little playful angels this morning. Lunch wasn't fun, though. Zander was so tired that he didn't want to eat anything. I'm sure the skinny-minny has lost at least a pound since last week! Logan struggled to drink his bottle, blowing snot bubbles from his nose the whole time. Poor little guy.

Zander fell asleep around 1pm, and didn't wake up until just after 5pm! Logan fell asleep with his bottle around 12:30pm, and slept on and off until 2:30pm. Logan was hard to keep entertained all day. Zander was crazy cranky when he woke up. We were really worried, because he reverted back to his screaming state of yesterday. But I think he was just wasn't feeling well because he slept much longer than usual. He got back to normal within an hour. And then he was all smiles.

So, while the boys seem to be recovering from this bitch of a cold, I have now fallen victim to it. My cough has gotten worse throughout the day, my throat feels like it is filled with hot shrapnel, and I'm now walking like I'm 120 years old. I actually groan when I'm getting off the couch! I'm so tired that I can't walk a straight line.

Why am I still up, you ask? I want to make sure Logan is deeply asleep before I attempt to go to bed. I fear waking the dragon. I can't take another night like the past couple. I will go to bed only when I am confident that the rustling of my down duvet from my bid to get comfortable will not throw him into a screaming frenzy. Hopefully that will be eyes are starting to cross.

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Saturday, April 14, 2007

One Monsterous Cold vs Two Little Boys

Okay....I was hoping that it had peaked the other night....and now I'm hoping that it peaked last night, 'cause BOY was I wrong!

Logan slept in his crib most of the night, but kept waking up and needing to be soothed back to sleep. He ended up in bed with us around 5:30am.

Zander was whimpering all night, and got us out of bed with an ear-piercing, blood-curdling shreak at 7:30am. The cold has now installed itself deep down in his chest.

It's not going to be a good day.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

The Snot Saga Continues

Carlos and I are currently sitting on the couch with a snotty, hoarse, phlegmy Zander. He started screaming about 45 minutes soon as we went in to check on him, we could hear how much worse he had gotten in the 3 hours since he was put to bed. His cries were making him cough so bad that he was gagging, so we gave in and brought him back downstairs to watch some of his "machines" on TV.

You can see the pain on his face every time he coughs. It breaks my heart. But through all of this crap, he can still smile when I play Peek (the -a-boo got dropped many moons ago) with him. Way to take it like a little man! I know some people that would be moaning and groaning at less.

"Mighty Machines" just ended, and he still had the energy to yell "dad....DAD!" ...his way of demanding more entertainment.

The good news is little GERD boy (aka Logan) has been sleeping peacefully in his slanty crib, all tucked nice and cozy into his harness for the past couple of hours. Are we out of the woods with him? Well...that's like saying "shutout" before the hockey game's over....yes, I'm Canadian.

Judging by the current progression of Zander's cold, let's hope Logan has evaded this phlegmy hell! 'Cause if he's going down, he's gonna bring us all down with him!

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Snot? No thanks, but please pass the sleep.

Yesterday it became apparent that Zander and Logan seem to have received a cold as an Easter present in Brighton. Both of them are drowning in snot, with the occasional cough and sneezing attack.

This would be a pain for most families, but for ours it's a nightmarish ordeal. You see, colds seem to cause Logan's GERD to flare up....and that causes no sleep for the rest of us.

We fed Logan his last bottle of the night around 9pm. And, as usual, we waited 45 minutes after he was done eating to put him to bed. To say he was restless is putting it lightly. He thrashed and screamed until we picked him up. And he was wide awake. This was just after 10pm.

We decided to bring him back downstairs to tucker himself out, since he refluxes if he screams too much. He played and played and played, with a little flirt here and there. Definately good for a laugh.

When he was displaying the telltale signs of sleepiness (around 11pm), we brought him up to bed. This time, he stayed there....for about an hour. Then the screaming commenced once again. At this point it was clear that he couldn't breathe through his little mucous-clogged nose. So we gave him some Dimetapp as a decongestant. Unfortunately he had been screaming so much up until this point that his reflux had kicked in. So he got some Gaviscon to combat the acid burning his esophagus. That did the trick....for a few minutes. He was wide awake. And he had realized that he was hungry.

Reluctantly, we brought him downstairs again to give him a bottle. Remember, every time he eats, he needs to be upright for 45 minutes before we can put him back to bed. It was now 12:30am. This did not bode well for the rest of the night.

Around 1:30am, he was ready to be put in his crib for the night....but started to scream as soon as he was laid down. This was reminiscent of Christmas. When we got home from Brighton after our Christmas visit, both boys had gotten an awful cold. For four days, Logan had to sleep upright the whole night because of his congestion and his reflux being aggravated by the cold. This meant that I had to sit in a chair propped up by pillows holding him all night. Fun? Hardly!

Since he is now 25 pounds, there was no way I could hold him all night. So we opted to strap him into the chair of death, wedging assorted findings underneath it to make sure he couldn't flip it over again. We placed the chair right next to my side of the bed. This worked well, except for the fact that he would start screaming if I stop rocking the chair gently, which required positioning myself right at the edge of the mattress and hanging an arm down to reach the chair. And their I was, precariously perched, rocking my one sick son to stifle his screams as I listened to my other sick son cry and whimper all night through the monitor. Joy.

Logan woke up a couple of times screaming because his chair had stopped moving. God forbid I fall asleep for a moment! Jeez! At 3:30am his screams were bad enough that I couldn't console him without removing him from the chair. So I sat with him for about 30 minutes to make sure he was asleep enough that I could put him back down in the chair.

At around 6:30am, my arms and shoulders were so cramped up from rocking him that I had to give up on the chair idea. I figured that it had been enough time for Logan to digest his midnight bottle, so his stomach should be empty. I brought him into bed with me, making sure to prop him up a little with my arm so he wasn't lying completely flat. So I got to sleep from 6:45am to 8am straight. Bonus. The things we do for our kids!

So here I sit....with about 2 hours of unrestful, disjointed sleep under my belt....letting the TV babysit the boys so I can have a break from the screams of discomfort and irritability coming from their puffy, snot-encrusted faces. And I refuse to feel guilty about it.

And I'm praying that lunch will be a breeze compared to breakfast. It was a long, drawn-out affair filled with high-pitched whining since the boys' plugged noses suffocated them with eat bite/sip.

What are the chances that it peaked last night, and tonight will be easier? I'm gonna say not good.

And no, there will be no cute little boy pictures today.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

My Cockles Have Been Warmed

Nothing warms the cockles of a mother's heart more than seeing her two young sons wrestling with each other for the first time!

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A Hometown Easter

We were in my hometown of Brighton for Easter. It's a lot of work to pack up the two little monsters, and monster paraphenalia, but it was well worth the trip.

On Saturday we had the family Easter festivities, which included my parents, my brother, sister-in-law and niece, and my aunt, uncle, cousins, cousins' significant others and cousins' children. In all, there were 14 adults and 6 kids under the age of 5. Cozy? Yes. Hectic? Understatement!

My cousin Karen organized craft time for the kids, which was fun. Zander had his first experience with markers, which left him with blue hands. He also decorated foam Easter eggs with foam shape stickers. He had a blast!

Zander creating.

Zander's creations.

Everyone marvelled at how big Logan is. I'm telling you, the kid is HUGE! He was nothing less than entertaining for the whole family. He flashed his big smile with his two tiny front teeth, and batted his eyelashes and his big, blue eyes for all the ladies. What a flirt.

What a big, round, rug-burned face!

Much food was eaten, much drink was consumed, much laughter was heard, much fun was had, much cleanup was required.....much rest was needed!

Sunday was just immediate was so nice to spend quiet time with my parents, as well as my brother Andrew, his wife Chris-Anne and our niece. We don't get to see them as much as we would like. Our niece, Georgina, is 16 months old, and changes so much between visits. She is absolutely adorable...and a handful! But I love her so much. I really wish we could see them more. Andrew and Chris-Anne are expecting their second child in July. I can't wait to see Georgi as a big sister!

Zander & Georgi

Zander getting a hug from Georgi

In the afternoon, after all the kidlets were well rested, we headed down to the barn where are the "machines" (as Zander calls them) were parked. He got to sit on a tractor, see a dump truck, and get up in a big loader. He looked so proud sitting on the seat with both hands on the steering wheel. That was the highlight of Zander's weekend!

Zander walking with my mom, with my brother & Georgi following.

Zander & my dad on the tractor.

Farmer Zander
Zander's first ride in the loader.

Yup...that's Zander up there with dad.

Zander takes the wheel.

"Daddy, that tire is taller than you!"

"The only ride I got was bundled up in this crappy stroller!"
Maybe next time, Logan.

Everytime I go back to Brighton, I realize how much I miss living in the country, and small town life. Don't get me wrong...there are many advantages to living in the city, and I love my life here in Ottawa. But I was a small town girl until I was 20, so it's still a big part of who I am. It's just so peaceful there. And everything moves at a much slower pace. It's such a nice break to go back there.

All in Easter ever.

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Thursday, April 5, 2007

Cookie Monster

After this morning's trauma, we figured that Logan deserved a treat....his first cookie!

It was a grand success, and was enjoyed with much fervour.

By the way....why is it that the manufacturers of teething biscuits see fit to formulate them so that, when in contact with liquids such as baby drool or formula, they turn into a sticky glue-like substance that is near impossible to remove from between pudgy baby fingers, tiny nostrils, hair (baby, toddler and adult alike) and booster seat harnesses? Like I have nothing better to do with my time than to scrape and chisel dried cookie gunk off my son's chubby cheeks!

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A Tale of Rocking Chairs and Rug Burn

It's a cautionary tale, really.

When we were expecting Zander, we received a Fisher-Price rocking chair from two of my cousins. Zander loved it until he could sit on his own full-time...about 8 months old.

2 months old in the, now, infamous Chair of Danger

Now he has passed it on to his little brother, who has also had hours of enjoyment in it. Even though he is 10 months old and can sit on his own, Logan is still in it quite a bit. Because of his GERD, we can't just sit him on the floor after he's finished a meal. He needs to be upright for at least 30 minutes after he is done eating. But when he is sitting on the floor he often decides he would rather be rolling around, and tips himself over. So we strap him into the rocking chair until he's ready to play as he wishes.

When he was about 7 months old he realized that he could have tons of fun by rocking himself madly in his fave chair. The momentum this 24 pounds of cute boy can get going is really quite astonishing. And it was nearly his undoing this morning.

As usual, I had strapped him in his chair after his morning bottle in order to make his cereal and fruit. Carlos was in the kitchen with me, getting ready to go to work. That is when we heard a loud thud and ear-piercing shriek from the living room.

We ran to see what had happened. And there was Logan...hanging upside down, suspended from the harness of the up-ended rocking chair that was on top of him. It took a minute for Carlos to get him right-side-up again, since he was half-in and half-out of the harness...and he's quite heavy and unwieldy. It was awkward, to say the least!

I pick him up out of the chair and held him tight, trying to cease the high-pitched wail he was emitting. This took a few minutes. When he finally recovered from his panic, he looked up at us to reveal his face. His poor face!

My baby boy's beautiful round face is now a scratched-up, scraped-up mess. Just in time for a large family Easter gathering in my hometown this weekend. Joy!

I recently noticed that this chair has been redesigned. It now has small kickstands in the front and back to allow the child to remain sitting upright, but stop them from rocking the chair. It makes me wonder if this type of accident has happened before.

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