Monday, December 14, 2009


I helped Denis get the treadmill moved back into the house today. It's in the basement and I have to clean it up. It still works! The caveat is that it's currently in the middle of the basement under the lowest part of the ceiling. If I run on it and bounce, my head will hit the ceiling! He didn't want to move it again, so since I'm just starting out on it again, I'll walk. Then I won't bump my noggin. I'll try to relocate it myself if we don't get to it by next weekend, but it's heavy. I can roll it on wheels, however. My point of mentioning this is that I am going to be FULLY COMMITTED to using that treadmill and do some major cardio for at least a solid month or two. Maybe three. I am SICK of the fat on my body and know that a good cardio workout will hopefully help slim down some corners. I'll worry about weight training later. I am also finishing my last row of Ghihardelli brownies, and determined to keep off the totally junky stuff so I can lose some weight. My plan is to walk briskly for a week, to get the kinks out of my joints and get used to using my heart at a fast pace since I haven't formally exercised in three years. THREE YEARS. YIKES!!! But now's the time, the treadmill's back, and I desperately want to shed 20-25 pounds. It won't be overnight. But it will be AT NIGHT. After the kids are in bed, I will walk, then run for 30-60 minutes, then go shower and then clean up the kitchen. Or a combo of that. I will severely reduce my Facebook presence at night so I can accomplish this goal. And I'm not going to mention this to anyone unless they ask. I'm not trying to be held accountable for it, I just want to try to do this on my own. But Chinny knows, and Denis knows of course. I think it may inspire him to want to work out with me, too, although he already works out but sporadically. I think it's giving him an excuse to buy some weights for the basement. So that I can use them, too. Sure, I will, but for right now it will be about a cardio BLAST. Another incentive is that I truly believe that if I can lighten up my body, it may relieve the pressure on my spine and lower back. I am in pain every single day, for over a year. The chiropractor couldn't save me. The cortisone shot couldn't save me. I knew, deep down, that being physically fit might help. And if it doesn't, then surgery might be the road I'd have to take. So to avoid getting cut open in the back, let me try to lose the weight. I'm very excited about this plan, and have been anxious for the past two weeks for that treadmill to get back into the house from the garage. Starting tomorrow night, I'll clean it up and start a slow walk. I'll shoot for 4 times a week, but won't hold back if 5, 6 and 7 feels good. Hope I don't overdo it and hurt myself in the beginning. Gonna load up the mp3 player and get my groove on!!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Pondering Flu Shots

Ronin's OT eval was fine. He's doing great as a kid. Some low muscle tone, needs some upper body work, but we knew that since he became sickly with his asthma, plus his food allergies. Classic case. We're still doing speech therapy because Pete says he needs to work on his cognitive and expressive language. OK, fine. I suppose I could call the coordinator and just tell her we're through with speech, but Denis was in favor of continuing it. FIIIIINE, I'll keep going. It doesn't hurt, but I don't want Pete to put any more useless thoughts into my head.

I'm worried every time I hear Ronin cough, and tonight Audrey's been hacking away. I felt her forehead and she's not warm at all, but it could be something viral. I'll have to see how she is in the morning. Ronin had a flu shot at the new allergist's office. They watched his reaction to it, because the flu shot normally has egg in it. He did fine. On Saturday both Nikko and Audrey will get the flu shot at the pediatrician's office. We are going to have to wait until they get the H1N1 vaccine. My friend Alexa stood in line for 7.5 hours to get herself and her daughter vaccinated. I don't know where. But that is a LONG time. There are so many pros and cons to getting the vax, it would make your head spin. There are overall cons for the kids because they are all at risk, Nikko has developmental delays/neurological delays, Ronin has asthma, and Audrey is just one year old. Nikko's autism could also be aggravated by any mercury or thimerasol or anything funky in the vax. Actually, ALL the kids could be affected by something in the vax down the road. I'm slightly nervous about Audrey's future shots because there's a possibility that any vax, flu shot, H1N1 shot or regular ped shot could make her regress. Nikko was pretty much born with his neurological delays in my book, despite his achieving most of his milestones like sitting up and walking, but he was never pointing or waving or clapping his hands when he was a baby. He waved for a very short period of time, but lost the skill. Therefore, I don't believe that vaccines caused his autism. But could they cause it in the other kids? I think Ronin is in the clear, he's over 2 years old, but after shots and sicknesses you never know if he could regress. I've read that it happened to someone on one of the autism boards, the boy Zavier was 28 months when he regressed after getting sick or shots. That is so scary. Especially since Ronin is talking and is so sharp. Guess I should be nicer to him than I was today. LOL! And Audrey seems to be developing quite normally, she can clap, pick up small objects with a pincer grasp, points in a rudimentary way, tries to say words like Cheese (Chssss), Ball (Bah), Pacy (Pah), Ma, Da, Duck (Dah), Pig (Pa)... that's pretty good for a 1 year old, I think! Ronin didn't even crack any real words, or close to them, until almost 20 months. We're still waiting for more from Nikko.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Walking Audrey

On Thursday, Oct. 8, I was waiting for Peter to arrive for Ronin's speech therapy session when I noticed that Audrey was pulling herself up to stand and taking 3-4 steps at a time before falling back on her butt. I saw her pull up onto her feet, then let go and stand alone for a minute at a time. In the back of my mind I said to myself, "OK, she's walking longer today. That's great!" The next day at the in-law's house she was taking 4-5 steps and standing even longer. Each day after that she has been toddling around more and more, and so this week she has truly learned how to walk. It's amazing. She's still doing some crawling, but the majority of the time she's on her feet, walking like Frankenstein. All this before her 1st birthday. YEA!

Ronin is obsessed with the Disney Cars characters. He also watches Finding Nemo, but he is fixated on playing with the matchbox-sized cars and is lamenting that he couldn't take home Doc Hudson from my friend's kid Boon's house. This evening, Pat and Anna found two Doc Hudsons at Babies R Us and dropped them off for me (I owe them moolah and thanks for that!). I'll bring one to church tomorrow and whip it out when Ronin has a meltdown. I'll save the other for when we lose the one he'll open. Ronin's speech is coming along, but not enough that I was able to get us out of another 6 months of speech therapy. Ronin was a late talker, and he's good at repeating what we say, but his spontaneous speech isn't smooth. It's still early, he'll catch up I'm sure. But Peter is making me paranoid about Ronin's behavioral problems i.e. his fixation on Cars, his inability to transition between activities (stuck on cars), and his "perseveration" on cars, according to Pete. He recommended an OT evaluation. I hope Ronin passes it well, if/when it happens, because although he is a difficult-acting child at times, I don't think he has delay or sensory issues. Peter thinks he has sensory issues. Who knows? Doesn't hurt to get the evaluation.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Bed rearranging, and just busy!

Just a quick note. I think I'm going to have to do more during the day in terms of organizing and cleaning instead of trying to fit it in after the kids go to bed. Yeah, we have a dishwasher now, but after loading it and cleaning up the physical kitchen, I go over papers and blog about Nikko, look at websites and end up staying up too late to start any new project. I've got tons of filing to do, papers to sort and put aways, as well as overall JUNK that needs purging and I can't seem to get to it because I'm doing other things after the kids are asleep. We've just been through a busy weekend, transferring kid furniture and now Audrey is sleeping in the 2nd room by herself and the boys share the nursery. Ronin has a new bed which he doesn't want to sleep in at night. Audrey has the crib, which she seems to LOVE. And Nikko is ambivalent about where his bed got moved, showing no signs that it bothers him in the least that he's not alone anymore. Audrey's not Ferberized yet, still sleeps with a paci. In fact, I've replaced it twice tonight, and am thinking that after tonight I should just not go in and let her cry herself back to sleep. Unfortunately it will be at the expense of the boys if they wake up, but I'm hoping she will complly. I HOPE. Anyway, I've got to hit the hay. I have an earlier schedule now that Nikko's in preschool. I set my alarm for 6:45a so I can get the breakfast stuff ready and rolling for Nikko, then go fetch Nikko hopefully around 7:10ish. I'm still working out the morning schedule kinks.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

R&A update

It's been about 3 months since I've posted about Ronin and Audrey. I've blended in some of our daily activities into Nikko's blog since Nikko's therapies with Early Intervention ended on his 3rd birthday, July 20th. Ronin gets speech therapy once a week with Pete Lyon on Thursday mornings, 9:20a. Quite honestly, in the week or two before his therapy began, Ronin started saying words and repeating words. He started with Pete and didn't really want to interact with him at first, but later warmed up to him. Within the first two weeks, Ronin's speech snowballed and he was naming things as we pointed to them, repeating what we said, and starting to say two-word phrases. Ronin really got into the movie Cars and it proved to be a good and bad thing during therapy because he was so stuck on playing with Lightning McQueen that he didn't care to read books with Pete. However, he was still repeating phrases prompted by Pete. Ronin is also saying three-word phrases now, and has flashes of spontaneous talking. I still have to ask him questions to get answers, and he still whines and cries when he wants something, but with just a little prompting he can focus on saying something. When he accidentally drops his cars behind the tables and he cries out, I ask him if he needs help, please and he says Help Peas! On two occasions when he wanted something, like juice, he'd say, "I want juice!" Other times it's just "Juice! Juice!" Or he'll say, "I LIKE Cars!" As for the Flovent, I took Ronin off the aerochamber for about two months to see if it was the Flovent that made him all whiny and crazed at times. Well, even though he was drug free, Ronin still whined and cried until I wanted to tear my hair out. I've been screaming because of some resistance with him for the past three days, and only today I noticed that he was actually behaving and I wasn't drawn to scream at him for anything. Ronin is so sharp. He's actually quite adorable lately, but I could really do without his high-pitched screaming.

Audrey is 10 months and crawling really fast. She is drinking less formula and wanting to eat more solid foods. She hates jarred food nowadays. Booo! That means I gotta get her some fresh stuff. She tries to tangle with her brothers, but that means she may learn to walk sooner. Audrey is now sporting one tooth on her upper right gum, to go with the bottom two teeth. She's very animated and loves cuddling with a burp cloth and a pacifier. I'd write more, but it's past 2am and I'm tired! Will catch up another time....

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The latest update on R & A

Since my last post, I have been giving Ronin the Flovent via AeroChamber, 2 puffs twice a day. Honestly, he hasn't thrown up and his coughing has disappeared. Is it the Flovent? One day this week I forgot to give it to him at night (and Denis hadn't given it to him when I went to a GNO a few weeks ago) and later that night or the next I swear he had a mini-coughing spell. I don't know if that was the Flovent (or lack of it) or not. I am back on it and don't really want to experiment again by not giving it to him. I think he gets a refill on it when it runs out. I'll have to check the script on that.

Peter Lyon, Nikko's former speech therapist, is going to be Ronin's speech guy. He had an opening for tomorrow at 10:30a so I took it. Ronin's normal speech time will be Mondays at 11:30a, after our playgroup. We are going to have to rush to make it home, but he's easygoing so I shouldn't stress out about it too much. I wonder how Nikko will act in Ronin's therapy. Will he want to be part of the action or will he be aloof and do his own thing? Tomorrow (and the next 2.5 weeks) will be tough because Chinny is in the Philippines and I won't have help taking Ronin away during Nikko's therapies. I fear a lot of distraction, probably frustration on the part of the therapists (mostly Gloria, but Shelly might get annoyed too if Ronin is in the way too much. Bo is very tolerant of Ronin) but they all know we'll have to work with what we've got. I am looking forward to seeing if Peter can give Ronin's language a boost. Ronin is also picking up signs from the Signing Time DVD, but lately he's been jumbling them around a bit. I was so proud of him when we went to Mom's house yesterday because I set him down on the ground, he looked at the neighbor's yard and signed Dog (patting his hip) because he remembers that those two yippity yappity shelties always come running when people are in the front yard. Ronin is such a curious tyke and very smart, but he is also a HUGE WHINER and seems to overact to everything. He is an attention seeker. He is not a bad kid; in fact he is very sweet, but boy does he try to defy me right now. I don't like this stage because I have been screaming my head off at him when he doesn't follow what I say. I have to remind myself daily to calm down and not set a bad example for him. I'm sure he is watching everything I do (so is Nikko) so I have to somehow find a ton of patience and be calm in the eye of the storm.

Audrey is 7 months old and is really blossoming. She's so pretty, she looks like a female Nikko. She's got really chubby legs and her hair is growing in sparsely. Audrey hates tummy time but I force it on her because I don't want her to have low muscle tone in her shoulders and upper back. She sits up really nicely, however, and I can leave her on the living room floor for a long time to play and explore toys from her toy basket. When it's time to nap or she needs a break from sitting, Audrey fusses and lets me know it. She was napping pretty consistently around 11a, 2:30p, and sneaking a 30 min. catnap around 6:30p. But today she started the day with a 2 hour nap that offset everything. I wonder if that was a fluke nap schedule today or if she's decided to nap longer. I wonder if it was a result of yesterday's excitement at my mom's house before they left for the Philippines. She's still not the best solid food eater and I admit that it's easier to plug her with a bottle when she gets fussy during a mealtime since the other boys are pulling at me already. Still, I have to try harder to incorporate solids during at least two of her three mealtimes. Her separation anxiety is in full swing, just like her brothers, and her stranger anxiety is also there, just like her brothers. Today and yesterday she's been moving her mouth as if she is chewing constantly, moving her jaw and her tongue up and down. She's still in our bedroom, sleeping in the pack and play, but I've stressed to Denis that we have to change this really soon because she's not learning how to sleep on her own. I love her dearly, but she needs to get out of our bedroom.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Allergy forums

Looks like I ended up doing my plan as stated in my last blog, with Thursday using plan A. Chinny has been working out, but we had to have a "discussion" because she's been late and it affects me, the kids and the therapists. Yeah, that's pressure.

Ronin is really a curious guy, an explorer and a troublemaker too. He has identified me by saying "Mama" and pointing to me, but he doesn't call me Mama. I don't know when his speech therapy will start, but I hope it helps him hit a boom in his language development. I could really use him being more communicative with words instead of whining. I've joined some online boards on, one on autism, one on asthma and allergies, and the last one on food and environmental allergies. I had posted something last night about which is correct, avoiding an allergen or feeding it in small doses so the person gets used to it. I was surprised that I didn't get an overwhelming response, but the one lady who wrote back said it was a question more suited for the Food allergy group, so I joined that group tonight and reposted my question. I hope I get a few responses. Ronin's been throwing up at will, sometimes triggered by his constant coughing. It's disturbing, but I wonder if I start the Flovent on him will it help lessen his coughing? I gotta clean that AeroChamber and just get started. I'm still chicken to give him the medication.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

My "sitter" plan

Was in Peru most of the day for Ziggy's party. Audrey behaved much better than she has in the past, Ronin and Nikko were both happy to be outside and around so many different people, and I was happy to be in good company. Denis was there too, mostly outside watching the boys. It was such a production, however, for me to pack us up to go there because I had to prepare things for a big chunk of the day:

1. I took 8 of each diaper size just to be safe; Ronin went through 4, Nikko 3, and Audrey 2. But who would know if today would be an extra poopy day, or a filled-to-the-brim day, or a runny diaper day?
2. I took a bigger bag to hold two changes of clothes each, plus extra burb cloths for Audrey.
3. I took a backpack for the Bjorn and extra toys.
4. I had a bag with our shoes (just coz we'd be in the car so long, they could be in socks)
5. And finally, the food bag. I dispersed Audrey's bottles between bags because they were filled with water and would be heavy. Had to pack juice for the boys, plus their nuggets, and animal crackers just in case.

At home I had to do the timeline to make sure we'd leave the house by 11:15. I was 15 minutes late, but arrived to meet up with Denis on time.

On the way, I called Brianna but ended up leaving a message on her cell. I told her we needed to discuss our situation and for her to call me back. She didn't, all day. I'm in a quandry about it because I realize it's the weekend, but is she avoiding my call, should I call her tomorrow? No, I'll call her on Monday morning and leave another message. If she doesn't get back to me by the afternoon I'll text her. I know she works for another family on Monday mornings but I can't fire the sitter if she doesn't call back. Actually I could, but it would be more professional to do it "in person" on the phone vs. text.

I'm so glad that Denis and I discussed our situation this morning because I've been having a hard time trying to see how the pieces could fit. First off, we WILL survive without Brianna. We did it before we hired her, and we can do it again. It was hard before her, and it will continue to be hard. Second, Chinny will help us but I've got to see how to best use her time. This is what it could look like:
Monday - playgroup in the a.m., use the Rolling Meadows Park District daycare services.
Tuesday - 10-11a Speech, use Chinny for Ronin. Errands or appointments after lunch.
Wednesday - Nothing
Thursday - a. Use Chinny for: 12-1p Developmental Therapy, kids eat while Nikko works. 3-4p we all go to Occupational Therapy together @ the clinic. Errands at the end of the day.
b. Don't use Chinny. 12-1p I feed the kids during DT. Then cart everyone to OT myself and we run rampant in the clinic. Not a great plan, but possible.

And that's it. That's the plan as I see it.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Where is the Ricey Milk?

I found it very hard for me to keep my cool with Ronin today. I have some lessons to learn and things to ruminate about. Ronin has a tendency to run around with his sippy cup of juice or "ricey milk" if I let him. I have this rule about eating only in the kitchen, and even Nikko doesn't take his cup to the living room, but maybe I let Ronin do it to placate his temper. Well, I was in the bathroom with Audrey over the sink washing her poopy butt when Ronin came in with his sippy cup. I told him no ricey milk in the bathroom, GO, GET OUT. He just looked at me and continued slurping. I kept telling him to GO, GET OUT, NO DRINKING IN THE BATHROOM. He would just look at me and step even closer to the toilet. I kept getting frustrated with him, and extremely exasperated. Basically I was losing my temper. I finished with Audrey and was trying to sternly tell Ronin not to drink in the bathroom. Later, after lunch, Ronin had again walked off with his ricey milk. I saw him toddling around, but minutes later I saw him empty-handed. I was trying to get all our gear together to go to mom's house and I didn't want to lose that sippy cup by finding it under the couch a month later with icky milk in it. I told Ronin to go get his ricey milk. He looked at me blankly. I told him to go find his ricey milk. He looked around in some bins, but just didn't know what I was asking him to do. I kept badgering him in a loud voice, telling him he'd better help me find it or I'd be really mad, he couldn't have any more ricey milk, etc. etc. and I think I sounded pretty nuts talking to a 1 year old like that. I think I worked myself into a frenzy trying to find that cup and was getting mad at Ronin in the process. WHY couldn't he find his sippy cup? WHY couldn't he remember where he put it? WHY was he always disobeying me and refusing to listen to me? What did I do wrong, what was I doing wrong, and am I being such a bad mother because I can't get my 1 year old to listen to my commands??? I sat on the floor in a sad, pathetic heap, looking at my son that wouldn't listen to me. Nikko came up to me, looking worried, probably thinking I was mad and yelling at him, too. I reassured him that I wasn't mad at him and gave him hugs. Later I was recounting this story to mom and Chinny and I must have sounded really crazy. No, I shouldn't expect a 1 year old to understand what I'm saying, or to follow me, or to even remember where he put his ricey milk. His attention span is very short, and his memory is probably shorter. He probably was just curiously amused while he watched me scream and rant over the lost ricey milk or when I was trying to kick him out of the bathroom.

My worry is that if I let Ronin go along and not reprimand him for things, he will grow up spoiled or selfish. Mom said I could teach him by being stern with a look, and that was good to hear because I know that I already administer withering looks (at least I try to make them withering), or rather, stern looks, and a pointed finger to direct action. She said that I shouldn't feel bad because he already knows that he shouldn't be doing something when I give him The Look. He IS learning, but he's testing me. GREEEAAAAAT. I mentioned that I should probably take some kind of lessons in anger management since it runs in the family. Mom scoffed and said it didn't. Chinny and I looked at each other and agreed that it DID. LOL!

Seriously, I think I should look into anger management for myself. I just bought a book on choosing to be happy, a self-help book recommended by the author of one of the autism books I like (Jonathan Levy), so I'll start reading it and see if it will work. I already try to be happy, but as I mentioned before or in Nikko's blog, there is just an Anxious Bubble that keeps rising when things get dicey, and it makes me hyper, irritable and annoyed. I've got to learn how to control this.

Saturday, March 7, 2009


Audrey was not coolio at the in-laws' house today. She started out fine, but after a short while she was very upset being held by my mother-in-law and then she became inconsolable. I had to take her into the basement and calm her in the darkened room. She is still skittish about being in different environments, obviously, or being around different people, because she was just screaming bloody murder tonight. I could see the look on my in-law's faces and I felt bad that Audrey wasn't behaving around them. I don't get it, though, because Audrey goes with us to the clinic and is fine there, and even sat in the bjorn in the outdoors where there were lots of kids around us and it was so windy yesterday. She didn't raise a fit about that. I don't understand.

Ronin is definitely a little personality of a man toddling around. But the problem nowadays is that he is resisting his afternoon naps. I started instituting it on Monday, and I'd say that he has cried during the first half of the naptime for most of the week. Today was one of the worst because he cried for 45 minutes, took a ten-minute nap, and then proceeded to cry some more until I got him at the end of his scheduled naptime. I aim to put Ronin in the crib between 2-2:15p, and he often shows signs that he is tired and could use a nap. But the minute I start laying him down into his crib, he rolls over and starts to wail. This is unlike the evening bedtime routine when, after rocking him, I lay him down and wind up the mobile and he just lays there OR falls asleep right away. He is resisting these naps because I'm sure he wants to keep on playing and not miss a minute of excitment. But I am being pretty firm on this. I'm not even going back in to check on him like Brianna is, or giving him a supplemental ricey milk to calm him. Forget it. It's cold turkey for us, buddy.

I don't know if Audrey is ready to cry it out to sleep just yet. Part of me doesn't want to do it like that until she is in her own room or in the crib, but today I kind of had to do it because Cyndi was here and she said that Audrey seemed tired so it shouldn't take her long to go to sleep. I could hear Audrey's screaming down the hallway, but I didn't go to her and she eventually did fall asleep. But the nap was only for 30 minutes. Her later afternoon nap was 1.5 hours, which was fine with me. It gave me a chance to put Ronin to his crib. Notice I didn't say put him to sleep, since he didn't sleep anyway.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


A few months ago, Ronin was saying "GA" for ball and "DA" for truck and everything else. But nowadays, he expresses pure delight when he sees a car, outside or on TV or in a pictures, and says, "CAAAAAHHH!" He repeats this with real gusto in his voice. It's so cute! Cars and trucks are somewhat similar things to him. He can distinguish what a train is, but can't call it a train yet. Ronin is also stubborn as hell and is going to be the death of me one day. He keeps banging the TV screen. I have told him NO and even tried putting up that red Stop sign to get him to stop. Instead, he bangs it again, defies me, rips down the sign, or just flat out ignores me. It's driving me crazy.

At 4 months and 1 week, Audrey is growing like a weed and looking a lot like Nikko did as an infant. She's awake a bit longer nowadays, maybe 2-3 hours between naps, drinks 7.5 - 8 oz of formula a meal, and is cooing a alot. She looks around at her surroundings and even crans her neck back to look at me when I hold her on my shoulder. Her eye contact is really good. When she wakes up in the morning and turns over to look at you (I help turn her over; she can't roll yet) Audrey squeals in delight and is full of smiles that go from ear to ear. I spend a lot of time kissing her smooth cheeks and nuzzling her clean-smelling hair. SUCH a cutie.

This Friday is a GNO at Drury Lane to watch Miss Saigon. I can't WAIT to go. I really, really need a night out with the girls. I love my kids so much, but I need some quality time away from them to recharge my batteries. The issue here is can Denis take care of all three of them without losing his mind? The clock will start around 5:30pm on Friday when I leave. I say that he can handle it. The boys will be easy; it will be carrying Audrey around and placating her until it's time to go to bed. Even then, he'll have to rock her to sleep. Once she's down, however, he'll be coasting fine. Ronin is easy to put to bed. And Nikko will be fine. I just have to remind Denis of putting all our safety measures in place i.e. keep the bathroom door closed when he's not in it, keep the basement door closed, put all knives out of reach, don't use the stove burners closest to the edge of the stove. Other than all that, our house is pretty child-proof except for a few doors I have to reinstall some hook closures. I am so looking forward to hanging out with all the girls (except for Wendie who's working, Rhonda who is in Michigan, and probably Rachel who didn't want to go see Miss Saigon at Drury Lane). I'm going for the bonding, man. I've seen Saigon 2 times and wouldn't mind seeing it again as long as it's the Cameron McKintosh version.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Three dozen

Yesterday (Thursday), on our way out the door to Nikko's playgroup, the FedEx lady came up to me w/a big box of flowers. I brought it in and was going to open it but Brianna told me she'd take care of it because I was running so late. When we came back from playgroup, the red roses were in a big vase. So lovely! It wasn't until later that night, before Denis came home from work, that I looked closer at the bouquet. I started counting buds and was confused when it didn't stop at 12 or 15 or 18. It took a few tries, but I counted 36! That was the first time in my life I ever got three dozen roses, and I rearranged them in the vase to look so bountiful. Denis didn't have a really good reason for them, except that it's what they offered at Costco (no fault there, I'm just happy that I got roses for Valentine's Day). But when I was chatting with Ginny on FB later that night, I speculated that maybe they symbolized our three kids. (aahhhh, how sweet) Of course, that wasn't the real reason at all, as I could tell from Denis who said, "Oh, yeah, SURE, that sounds good!" But it's ok, I think it was just awesome to get all those beautiful red roses. Tonight he brought me a box of chocolate covered strawberries from Godiva and a Mario Tricoci massage/pedi/mani. WOW! I guess it's a combined V-Day/B-Day gift, and I am very happy about it. I almost cried in front of him, but I didn't. LOL! Seriously, it's not even VDay yet, but it feels like the best VDay I ever had. Maybe it's coz we have all our kids together with us, we're going to do something together as a family tomorrow (go to that Counterstrike Open House), and he already gave me stuff. That means he actually thought of me in advance, despite the random order of things. That's ok by me for now, I'll take what I get!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The volume on prayer

I listened to WMBI around 1pm for Pastor James' show (the head pastor at Harvest Bible Chapel in Rolling Meadows) and he said something that makes sense to me. He said that when you pray, you should pray aloud because if you sit and pray silently, your mind starts to wander. Then, you're distracted and you may not even be praying truthfully anymore. He challenged people to try that, to pray out loud... you are more focused when you do. He has a good point, and I wonder about all my Christian friends who end up praying aloud. Did they already know this about praying and focus, or do they just pray out loud coz that's what they were taught? And what does that say about praying Catholics? I don't know a single Catholic who seems comfortable praying out loud (except the priest). They all bow their heads silently. Why is that?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Ronin watch

I'm worried. Ronin's nose was extremely runny today. It started yesterday, actually, but today it was a faucet. By the time we went to the in-law's house for dinner, he developed a cough. I gave him multi-symptom cold medicine at 6pm, and then Tylenol at 10p before bed. I'm worried because last time he had a cough, the next morning he was wheezing and had retracting in his breathing. That led to an ER visit. It was the time before last, because the last visit was preceeded by his 104 fever for 4 days. This time around, he's not sporting a temperature yet. Honestly, I fear what the morning will herald. Please, please God don't let him start wheezing.

Audrey had a terrible time at the in-laws. She started out ok, was quiet in the car seat at the beginning of dinner, and seemed to pass along to the others easily. But right before worship she went ballistic and was inconsolable for I don't know, maybe 20 minutes. She cried the hardest I've ever seen from her, and I have no idea what agitated her. Sure, she may be sensitive to her environment, or overstimulated by the lights and different ppl, but someone is going to start telling me that I have to expose her to more ppl outside of the home so she'll get used to being other places. She does get out when we go to the Clinic, or even the store, and she doesn't melt down in these places. She was unhappy at the Penepacker's on Rory's bday gathering, and at the in-laws. I'm kind of at a loss for this. All I can do is try to soothe her, pacify and hold her close and tight. Giving her a bottle is not really that productive in a time of crisis because she's crying too hard to swallow the milk without choking. Poor baby.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Pain in the back

Today was a tough day for some reason. Partly because it seems the day after I get a back adjustment, I seem to be really sore. That totally happened today; I felt like my leg was going to fall off again, and I also experienced some body aches that made me finally pop some ibuprofen. Chinny came over to help with DT, and she graciously came with us to Target and Costco so I could get errands done. We also got the Real Trains for Kids 2 DVD and Train board boook that I ordered on I felt pretty miserable on the way home from everything, and was lucky that Audrey slept just a little longer in her car seat when we came home. I was lying on the floor with a blanket getting some rest; unfortunately I didn't fall alseep. But after Audrey woke up I fed her and she was pretty much awake. Audrey has been a joy to play with lately. Very expressive, but also very sensitive to her surroundings. Ronin is starting to say "Car" and gets very excited to see cars, trucks and trains wherever he goes. So cute! I'm looking forward to watching LOST tonight, just relaxing in front of my fave show right now. I've also got to catch up on the Oprah Winfrey episode on being frugal, as well as last Monday's Jon & Kate Plus 8.

Oh yeah, before I forget, just wanted to dash down what I think is Audrey's daily schedule as of right now:

8-8:30a Wake up, diaper change
8:30-9a Feeding
9:30-10:30/11a Play time
11a Nap
11:45a-12p Feeding
12:30p-2p Play time
2p-4p Nap
5p Feeding
5:30-8p Play time
8:15p Faux bath time
8:30p+ Ni-night time

Behind the name

Chinny came over on Wednesday to help watch Ronin during Nikko's DT session. When lunchtime rolled around, we were having Denis' homemade chilli and I offered some to Chinny along with some oyster crackers. Then Chinny said it:

"Oystas, lil' oystas!"

That obscure movie reference struck me as funny and charming as I imagined the little oysters hopping around the Walrus, unaware of their fate. The cute part was the oysters, which reminded me of my own little kiddies. Hence, a blog page dedicated to my thoughts on everything was born. Actually it was born today, on Day One of as well. This might end up being a very therapeutic way to keep my sanity.