Friday, May 25, 2007

Nap time woes

So, it's 2pm and I've finally convinced/coerced/threatened Charlotte into going down for a nap about half an hour ago. I had to actually close her bedroom door for a count of 5. Silly as it sounds, she is terrified of having her bedroom door shut, so that did the trick (plus, a final potty break). This is after reading her a story, snuggling, tucking her in, and then finding her wandering the upstairs sucking on her (non-fluoride) toothpaste container (claimed it was empty...she wanted to brush her teeth and put on jammies). Yikes.

Trystan, on the other hand, is a sleepy kid. I hope it's just normal baby sleepiness, but he really does nap a lot during the day. He's at about hour 3 of the current nap. He slept from 10pm till 6am last night (waking once to eat), then up until 9:15 (always between 9 and 9:30 for the first nap), slept till 10, up and down between 10 and 11:30 as we went to the park to play, then he ate again at 11:30 and was crashed before noon. He'll probably have at least 2 more naps today before bedtime around 10ish again.

Unfortunately for both kids (and me), I'm going to be waking them from their naps early. We're going to go see Shrek at 3 this afternoon, which means I really need to wake the little man to feed and change him (or risk him getting hungry in the car and screaming all the way to the theater seats). Charlotte will have to wake up and potty before we go, too. Seems like a lot of effort for just a movie, but we don't do it often, and there are currently 3 different movies I'd like to see in the theaters--that's more than I've seen in the last 6 (maybe 12) months, so I'm willing to go to the effort so that we can try to go as a family. Speaking of which, I think it's time to start the process...

Happy Memorial Day weekend all!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


I've been rather quiet lately. Things have been busy. Charlotte is now officially 3 days a week at daycare, which makes the other two days quite exhausting. Her potty training is still kind of stalled--she knows how to use the restroom, and can take herself if she's motivated. Unfortunately she's not that motivated lately--to the tune of 1-2 accidents a day at daycare every day. I'm glad the teachers are supportive. At home with me today, she's been accident free so far, though she did insist on a pull-up instead of underwear. I didn't fight her on that one, but told her to keep it dry. I don't know if the extra security of wearing a "diaper" encouraged her today, or if I'm just lucky. I do have to insist on her taking potty breaks (sometimes, I have to pick her up and carry her to the restroom), but she is really happy when she goes. When we're out of the house, she is excellent about asking to go potty when she needs to.

Trystan is still doing well and growing like a weed--he was 11 pounds at his pediatrician appointment last week. Tomorrow he sees the cardiologists and gets another echocardiogram. We still don't have a set date for his next surgery, but I have a date for going back to work: June 29. I will end up having taken off almost 15 weeks, including 1 of "sick" days as my labor tried to start, 8 weeks of "short-term disability" and another 6 of FMLA (my company actually allows 12 weeks of FMLA in addition to the disability leave after childbirth). My original plan was 12 weeks, but we're still expecting a mid-June surgery, so I want to be off until Trystan has come home and recovered a couple of days. There will be another surgery about 6 weeks after that, and I'll probably be off again for maybe a couple of weeks.

My mother-in-law has breast cancer. She was diagnosed maybe a month ago now, and has had a lumpectomy and a week of radiation already. This week she starts chemo. She got to come down for this past weekend for Trystan's baptism and my sister-in-law's (her daughter's) baby shower. My SIL is expecting twins and currently on bedrest--she's around 32 weeks along now. In other words, our family has been a little busy lately.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


I took Trystan to get his picture taken this morning. I am glad that Wednesday mornings in May are not popular times to get your picture taken, because we certainly took our time. The little primadonna had to have two different snack breaks during his photo shoot before he would smile for the camera. Choosing which pictures to order took me forever also. The pictures should look great, and I ordered several different poses and a couple of collage-type ones as well.

With Charlotte, we tried several different photo places--JC Penney's, Walmart, and an in-home one. Of these, the more expensive ones got us better photos, but the ordering process was much easier at Walmart (to get their package deal, you could only choose a single pose). This time, I tried a Sears Portrait Studio. Prices were similar to the JC Penney's, but so far I had a better experience. To be fair, I think I took Charlotte to JCP in a local mall in like October when the whole world was getting Christmas photos taken. The Sears place from this morning was in a strip mall, and Trystan and I had the place to ourselves. Plus, ordering time is much shorter--1.5 weeks vs months. The in-home place we used for Charlotte got us beautiful pictures and a very convenient location, but they were $$$$.

Anyway, here are a couple of the preview photos I pulled off the website. These are the "shared" ones, and not ones that you could actually make prints from, so hopefully they don't mind if I re-publish them...and I may still buy the CD of all the poses (and the copyrights to re-print them).

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Blah Tuesday

I'm not feeling particularly motivated today. I think I used it all up yesterday. Yesterday I worked out (15 minutes of a basic pilates's a start), went for a walk with a friend & her toddler, did laundry, made appointments, made phone calls, and generally exhausted myself checking things off my to-do list.

Today, not so much. I took Charlotte to daycare. I had considered keeping her home as there aren't any doctor (or other) appointments today, but thought that I would instead make arrangements for Charlotte to cut back to part-time. However, the person that I needed to talk to wasn't there. I also need to put in a deposit for Trystan to reserve a place for whenever he actually starts, but again, the person that I needed to talk to wasn't there. Instead, I did actually write a check to pay daycare for Charlotte for this week and next, but I don't know if I got the amount right (no one there to double-check the rate for me). *sigh* I've started one whole load of laundry (it's still in the washer), watched half of a movie, and written a letter to the insurance company that I haven't printed yet. I do have an excuse for that one--the computer that the printer's attached to doesn't think it's on the network--I could probably troubleshoot it, but I stopped after the initial diagnosis. I have a few more baby announcements to address and send, but am waiting on addresses to send them to. We have a baptism to plan, but are waiting to hear back from the priest about scheduling. I have an excuse for the movie as well. It's really long--like probably 3+ hours. I could finish it, but then I won't get anything done all day (hah!).

The letter is the first of 2 that I'll have to send asking the insurance company to review a claim that they've denied. I was warned that one was coming by the "nurse assistant" from the hospital where I had my c-section--I was told that they routinely deny their claim, but that I should just have to appeal and tell them that I wasn't given the option of having the services during the surgery, and that the insurance company will then pay. The other claim is for the medical supplies for Trystan's ostomy--hopefully we won't have to pay for all of the things out of pocket in the end, as the "pouches" that we attach to his tummy to collect the waste cost around $30 for 10, and averate 1x/day (plus the extra adhesive, plus skin protectant wipes). The claim is for much more than that, so who knows what the home health place is actually charging (they didn't send *me* an itemized bill...I had looked online before to see what we were getting).

It's now 1:30 in the afternoon, and I'm trying to decide what to do with the rest of my day. I have things I might like to do, including a little shopping at one or more of the local malls (nothing I *have* to do, just odds and ends I'd like to look at). I have plenty more laundry to do, and spots on the carpet that could use scrubbing. I'm not brave enough to start any gardening with the baby--I don't have a good way to keep bugs off of him if he's out, and he's not reliable enough about his naps for me to get anything done while he sleeps(plus I'd be coming in covered in mud, and that doesn't let me attend to him well). Maybe I'll watch a few more minutes of my movie while Trystan naps.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

What Trystan Has

I realized just now that I've never actually spelled out the "association" (not technically a "syndrome"...don't ask me the difference I'm not a doctor) that Trystan has. It's called VACTERL, though I've also seen something called VATER, or sometimes VACTERLS that are basically the same thing. I found a decent definition here. Basically, each letter stands for a symptom in a group that are frequently found together. Trystan does not have all of them. The extra "S" in VACTERLS stands for single-atery umbilical cord...that Trystan most definitely did have.

After doing a little reading, I think we got an easier set of issues than we could have. He has the anal atresia, or imperforate anus, which is the current worst complication. That is the reason that he's had one surgery, will have a minimum of 2 more in the next couple of months, and currently "poops" into a bag on his tummy. He has heart defects--including the ventricular septal defect, which is a heart murmur and will likely close on his own, and an annurism in the sinus of valslva (my doctor sis-in-law had to look up that one), which will require surgery a couple of years from now. He has kidney defects, but they are not currently causing him trouble. He does have a "vertebrae anomolie", but it is nothing severe (he will walk and run and all that, but may have trouble with scoliosis later in life or possibly a tethered cord, which is something else I'll have to research).

He avoided the trachea-esphpogus problems--that is where there is a connection between your esophagus and trachea, which would make it difficult to impossible to eat normally (you would choke or drown on your food as it entered your lungs). He does not have any limb problems--2 hands, 2 feet, correct number of fingers and toes. The prenatal ultrasounds showed that his femurs might be slightly shorter than average compared to the rest of him, but that seemed to come and go between scans, and I'm tempted to assign it strictly to genetics (seriously--my dad is a couple inches taller than me and wears the same inseam on pants...height does not run in either family).

So that's basically the story. This week has seen a Dr and a Dentist visit for me, but no medical visits for Trystan, so there's not much more to update there.