Monday, March 31, 2008

It's just not right

February 9th, 2008. It was 9:59am. I was at work. Meghan was at home. At 10am, single tickets for Mariners games went on sale. We agreed that we'd both work together to find outfield baseball seats to go to Opening Day. So, we both did our ticketmaster searches and found 7 seats together in the outfield (3rd base side). Section 183, row 10 to be exact. It'd be me & the kids (since Mark was traveling) & the 4 Andersons. We were elated!!
Forward to today. March 31st. Today was Opening Day for the Seattle Mariners! The kids & I were dressed in our Mariners garb from head to toe...or at least head to ankles. We were actually dressed in many layers (since we woke to about 1 inch of snow yesterday). I picked up Lauren from school early and off we went to the game. It took us well over an hour to get there. Once we arrived at the parking, the sign said it was full. Ugh. So, we started to drive to find another parking lot near the stadium. As we waited to turn into a different lot, the stadium parking opened. We quickly pulled in and found a place - and "only" paid $30.
Once at the game we hiked to our seats. It was about 2:45 and game time was less than one hour away. There were plenty of opening ceremony events to keep us entertained. The Husky band, miscellaneous awards, etc. Then it was time for announcing the 2008 team. Unfortunately for us, we were seated right near where the fireworks went off. There were extremely loud! Enough for small children to burst into tears. Once the team was lined up on the 1st base line, I was sure the "booms" as Mason called them were over. Well they weren't. When the starting line-up was announced, the "booms" started again. Finally, they ended. Luckily, no more "booms".
It was now time for the game. Both kids were fabulous. I brought snacks so we didn't have to buy food. They didn't beg, complain, or anything else. They were great! We enjoyed watching, despite a home run from Texas in the first inning. They cheered, clapped, and danced.
As we started into the 4th inning, it started raining "sideways" into the stadium. You guessed it. Right to our section. It wasn't too bad at first. We bundled up a bit more with a blanket and our many layers of coats and gloves. Next came the snow. Then it subsided. We were then to the bottom of the 5th. Still 0-1 Texas. A few minutes later came hail. Not just tiny hail. Sheets of pea-sized hail. We decided it was time to take cover. See Thornley's hat for a sample of the hail!
We headed down the stairs laughing in disbelief. We went to get pictures with the moose. After the Moose, we drove home. As we exited the freeway, we drove through the neighborhood in slushy roadways. We arrived home to a white snowy house. And just think, tomorrow is April 1st! Hence the title "it's just not right". It's just not right to have snow on March 31st. So, I bid you Happy Spring...and go Mariners (who won 5-2)!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Maggie returns

A similar ball before Maggie:

The ball after Maggie (the contents of her stomach):
Well, 30+ hours, 2 X-rays, 9 staples, 1 I.V., a plastic bag of chewed up blue ball, and $1600+, Maggie is home. Maggie had a good night and day at the vet and was given the OK to return home. We picked her up this evening with the following instructions:

1. Feed her 1/3 can of "special" (easily digested) dog food three times a day for 3-5 days. Then gradually switch to normal diet.
2. Give her the pain medication twice a day.
3. Don't let her jump or run. (Yeah, right, she's a lab!).
4. Watch the incision site.
5. Monitor for any vomiting or other symptoms.
6. Return in 10-14 days to have ALL NINE staples removed. (Good news - that's at no additonal cost!).

Monday, March 24, 2008

For dog lovers

This blog is dedicated to pet lovers. Not the crazy “I’ll do absolutely anything for my pet” owner. Just for the “normal” pet owner. This is the owner who considers his pet part of the family.

Let me take you back a few days. Last Thursday, Maggie (our 5 year old black lab) vomited. I can’t remember the last time she vomited. That afternoon, she vomited two more times. So, I called the vet. They suggested I watch her closely. While I was on the phone with the vet, she also pooped. This was good news, as it meant she did not have any type of obstruction. She probably had a virus. Friday was a good day. No vomiting. Saturday she vomited again – but only once. All the while she was her normal self. Sunday I fed her white rice at around 1:00. Last night at around 11:30pm, Mark woke me up. Despite his CPAP machine, he heard Maggie vomit. She vomited in the bathroom, hallway, and kitchen. So, at 11:30, we were cleaning up the mess.

That brings us to today. This morning I withheld food. Maggie was just as energetic and playful as any other day. I checked the yard and she had a few normal poops I needed to clean up. I decided it was time to go to the vet. I got a 9:30am appointment. So, after dropping off the kids, I took her to our vet. Upon examination, she was “guarding” as he pushed on her abdomen. He suggested an x-ray to rule out an obstruction. I agreed. A few minutes later, the vet asked me to come back to see the x-ray. He explained that there was a foreign body in her stomach. You could see it, but couldn’t tell what it was. He advised surgery. I asked him to talk with our regular vet to confer. Awhile later, the vet explained that our primary vet agreed that surgery was necessary.
The unfortunate thing was that Mark was unavailable – on a plane again this week. I couldn’t even call him for his advice! The vet explained that surgery should be done as soon as possible, or the objects could move to the intestines and cause a blockage. If this occurred, it could kill part of the intestine – which would be even more costly to repair. Unable to reach Mark, I decided to give them the OK for surgery. I couldn’t agree to kill her. She’s a healthy, young dog who is great with the kids. What would I tell the kids if she died from a fixable problem?

Maggie came through the surgery well. We went to visit her this afternoon. When we arrived, she was outside walking on the grass with a vet assistant. She had a “hep-lock” on her left leg; a shaved abdomen; and staples up her belly. The kids were ecstatic to see her. Another vet assistant came outside to talk with us. He brought a ziplock bag full of blue plastic chunks. The bag was FULL! This was the foreign object from Maggie’s stomach. Lauren and I both confirmed it was the blue plastic ball. From what I can recall, the blue plastic ball was played with on March 5th when the Girl Scouts were over. They played in the backyard with Maggie and the ball. Sometime after March 5th, Maggie must have eaten the ball.

Hopefully she will come home tomorrow. The vet said she'll come home on pain medication and a bland diet. Good news, is that they do have a payment plan.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Things you can get done in 3 short hours

I have a list a mile long of things I need to do. It never seems to decrease. So, I thought I might list what I have accomplished so far (by 11:00am) to make myself feel better.
1. 8:05am - Go to doctor's office and pick up two prescriptions for Mason.
2. 8:30am - Go to Starbucks. This is mandatory.
3. 8:47am - Go to Lauren's school. Walk her in. Pick up Jack to babysit him while Meghan is at work. Listen to Jack tell me he's not going to swim. He'll just sit on the stairs. Tell Jack that I'm not going to talk about it and he doesn't have to worry, since he had such a good time last week.
4. 9:15am - Arrive on Mercer Island for swimming. Met at the car by Colt, the swimming teacher. Informed that swimming was cancelled for today as he needed to close the pool and add a bunch of chemicals (probably not an ideal time to toss the kids in the pool, I guess)! He tells Mason and Jack that the pool is "broken" today. Once the car door is closed, Jack beams from ear to ear that he doesn't have to swim.
5. 9:30am - Arrive at Nordstrom. Take the escalator (boy's choice) to the top floor. Have Mason try on a few pairs of shoes, since his feet actually grew. Jack even pretends to model his crocs while Mason models tennis shoes. Buy shoes. Leave via elevator (boy's choice) with only one balloon for Mason. Jack said he didn't want a balloon since his brother popped the last one.
6. 10:05 - Arrive at Whole Foods. Balloon is "flown up to the sky" by Mason (by choice). Watch balloon rise. Grocery shop. Pick up free samples from the bakery to keep the tots happy.
7. 10:30 - Leave Whole Foods.
8. 10:40 - Arrive at Appliance distribution center. Pick up microwave.
9. 11:00 - Arrive back home.
10. 11:05 - After boys start playing, unload microwave. Unpack groceries. Check messages. Check email. Post this blog.

Oh, and the afternoon is looking bright too. Girl scouts. Dinner. Church. Big Brother. Sleep.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Special needs

The conversation tonight went something like this:

Me: How was sibshops? What did you talk about?
Lauren: My brother (with a "duh" look).
Me: What about?
Lauren: His name. Then my name and that I'm seven.
Me: Oh. What did other kids talk about?
Lauren: Their brother or sister's special needs.
Me: Oh. What did you say?
Lauren: That I didn't remember.

Me (to Mason): What's your special need?
Mason: Ice cream!

Today Mason had an appointment at the pulmonologist. I won't go into all the details here. However, tonight I called the pharmacy to see if his refill for one of his medications was ready. The conversation went like this:
Me: Hi, I'm calling to see if my son's prescription was ready.
Pharmacy tech: Is this Mason's mom?
Me: Yes
Pharamacy tech: Yes it's ready.

I am not even joking. I didn't even say my first or last name or even Mason's name!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Nap time

I know I cannot complain.

Kid #1: She pretty much refused naps from the time she was born. The 45+ minutes it would take to get her sleep just wasn't worth the 30 minutes she actually did sleep.

Kid #2: He LOVED his naps. I was ecstatic that he slept! He was on a feeding schedule when he came home at 3 weeks old. We truly had to set an alarm in the middle of the night to wake up and feed him. It was wonderful! Naps were welcome. Naps were routine. From time to time, he would actually tell me it was nap time. I loved nap time. It meant at least 2 hours of "no kid" time.

Well, at age 5 1/2, nap time has come to an end. I am distraught. For the past few weeks, naps have been hit or miss. I have bribed him to sleep with cookies, ice cream, toys, and T.V. These "rewards" (or bribes) have not been so appealing lately. So picture yesterday. I put him down for his nap. He informed me he was not napping. I closed the door. Next thing I knew, I heard him playing with his toys. So, I went into his room. He had opened his curtain and was content to play on the floor. I put him back down again. Not 5 minutes later, I hear him yelling "baseballs. I have baseballs".

Upon opening the door, I realized WHAT baseballs he had. The baseball WALL BORDER from above his room, which he tore off the wall. Needless to say, there was no nap.