Sunday, November 30, 2014

The Wise Men

They got a little hungry on their way to seeing the Baby Jesus......


It is a new liturgical year!! A time of hopeful waiting before Christmas and the birth of Christ. This is our favorite time of year. So many fun traditions. So many small celebrations on the way to Christmas day.

Despite still having lots of sickies and therefore sleepless nights here we managed to get the house all ready for Advent.

That is, except the Jesse Tree.  No one wanted to venture out to find the perfect branch considering we are still pretty well covered in snow.  So we may be a few days late on starting that this year.

The wreath is ready for lighting.

The mantle is mostly cleared except the Advent calendar and treats that my stepmother sets up for the kids each year.

Our Fontinini nativity set.  Nothing too exciting this year.

The Christmas books taken out

The Holztiger nativity for the littler ones (baby Jesus DOES have a little manger, but I forgot to put it away last year after Christmas.  So I put it someplace for safe keeping until Advent came again, but now I can't remember where that is *sigh*

Playmobil for the bigger ones to play with...and they were quite busy with it as you can see it has been hit by a nerf rocket and looks pretty decimated...perhaps more like modern day Bethlehem?

There is everyone....and then some...I see a few St. Nicholas's in there

And what is a blog post without a baby shot??  She just had a VERY happy first Thanksgivig!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Great Snowy Day Project. It's Not Too Late!

As soon as you clear on area of the driveway the first area is covered in snow again...

The trees looked beautiful heavily laden with wet snow

We are having our first major snow even of the season.  I love living in a world that has major snow before Thanksgiving!!  Love snow!!!  So after a quick run about outside to play and shovel this morning we have hunkered down inside with the woodstove roaring.  It is 3:30 now and the snow is still coming down steady.

It turned out to be a perfect day to participate in the Pondered In My Heart ATC All Saints Swap.  If you follow that link you can get all of the information needed to join in as well.  ATC stands for Artist Trading Card.  So the swap involves each child drawing five ATC saint pictures.  Then you mail them to Pondered In My Heart and in return you will get 5 new cards colored by other children. 

A great pre-holiday, snowy day project, a great way to learn about some new saints, to practice our drawing skills, and to get mail for kids is always very exciting!!  The ATC cards need to be postmarked by Saturday the 29th so there is still time to whip up some artwork and get them into the mail!
Busy at work

Our finished cards....they have been wrapped off and sent off.  Or at least they are in the mailbox in the hopes that we have mail today!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Compare and Contrast

That is Lucy on the top today.......She is 10M old today.  That is little Annabella at 15M on the bottom just before her surgery and this post.

And a spare Lucy just for good measure.

The Most Distracted Poetry Recitation EVER

So, the kids have colds, we are trying to finish up the work we missed last week due to sickness so we can have the rest of Thanksgiving week off as promised. The baby is up from her nap early, Beatrice is in rare form, the camera sound seems to be broken and so after 5 trials and errors we finally figured out the best way to record direct to the computer/youtube.....all of this lead to what is the most ridiculous and distracted poetry recitations ever. After Beatrice was so annoying during Ben's recording you can actually hear her screaming in the background from where she was banished in the basement. Fun times!!!

Monday, November 24, 2014

The Outakes of Life

We have been quite busy with illness around here.  First Buggy had a mild chest cold.  A bit of a cough, but otherwise fine.   About a week and a half ago the cough started to sound different and then she woke from her nap with bright rosy cheeks and acting quite droopy.  She had a fever.  By dinner time she was wheezing and her respiration picked up.  We took her to the doctor the next morning first thing and sure enough she had pneumonia.  It was remarkable how fast it happened because she had pneumonia on both sides when the morning before she was fine!

The pediatrician prescribed some meds and told me that I would be her ICU nurse for the next 72 hours so we can keep her out of the hospital.  He gave me detailed directions on what to do and we got to work.  When we returned in 72hrs she was well on her way to recovery.  Lungs clear and breathing much improved. Deo Gratias. 

Then by midweek Ben started coughing.....that hacking, non stop, asthma cough which is the first sign that he is getting a cold.  So this week was full of treating Ben's reactive airway disorder/cough variant asthma and of course by the end of the week everyone had his cold!

Hopefully everyone wil be well by Thanksgiving.  And really hope this is the only illness excitement we have for the winter!  Get it over with early.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

A Snowy Night....In OUR Woods

Whose woods these are I think I know.   
His house is in the village though;   
He will not see me stopping here   
To watch his woods fill up with snow.   

My little horse must think it queer   
To stop without a farmhouse near   
Between the woods and frozen lake   
The darkest evening of the year.   

He gives his harness bells a shake   
To ask if there is some mistake.   
The only other sound’s the sweep   
Of easy wind and downy flake.   

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,   
But I have promises to keep,   
And miles to go before I sleep,   
And miles to go before I sleep.


A Trip To New York City

waiting on the platform in Dover, NJ all bundled up.

I had Lucy in the Boba carrier and then my jacket zippered over her.  We were quite cozy that way.

And we are off!!

Lucy getting in touch with her Jewish roots with a half sour pickle!

And little Miss Bug

She was offered a seat but preferred to stand on the subway

Kind of totally random shots from our trip to NY last weekend.  We were meeting our friend, Miss Dober, in Manhatten to take the kids to the Museum of Natural History.  It would have been quite a trek no matter what, but it was made even trekkier by the fact that we took the train in....and the fact that we don't really live anywhere near the train...

Benjamin has been a hardcore train lover since he was a year old.  He plays with his trains daily and yet the boy had never been ON a train in his life.  So, we decided to drive an hour to the train in NJ and take that to Penn Station.  From there we took the subway uptown and had lunch at a really great Kosher style deli called Artie's.  Soooo good!!!

After lunch we headed to the museum and by then we were already sort of raggamuffiny and tired!  Add to that the museum was absolutely PACKED....and it was about 85 degrees in the museum and we dressed in the morning in the Poconos where it was hovering just around freezing.  So then we were tired, ragamuffiny, and REALLLLY hot!

So, we were a bit disappointed in the museum.  I had been there several times and always really enjoyed it, but it was hard to enjoy was hard to walk around even with the crowds.  And it was just so blasted HOT!!  We will have to try again on a weekday. 

We had a really nice day even with the disappointment with the museum..I should say the kids liked it, but I just didn't feel like we got much out of it.  Next time we will just drive into NY and that will cut down on a lot of the hassle, but it was definitely worth it this time for Ben.

At the end of the day Anna said she wants to live in the city and loved all the people and Ben said he likes being a country boy.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The Mind Of A Boy...Or At Least MY Boy!

Should you ever come face to face with a are some instructions on how to fight him.

1. Fight with T-REx
2. Do not be afraid.
3. Fight hard
4. Save little girl
5. While your fighting punch and roar at T-Rex
6. Stand up while fighting.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Annabella Is a Regular Ole Healthy Little Girl.

Ben might act like his sisters are a nuisance, but when Anna asked if she could take his stuffed doggie with her to her MRI he said, "You can have whatever you want."

Who-da thunk it?!  We just past the 4yr anniversary of her surgery for her Annular Pancreas.  And two years since we removed her Gtube.  She has been doing great and just recently hit 30lbs....we thought she'd never get there!

She had one last medical hurdle to get over before she was without a doubt 100% healthy and all of this stuff could be put behind her.

She was born with a deep sacral dimple and because she was born with another birth defect, had chronic constipation, and birth marks along her spinal column and other places on her body her doctor felt it was best that we make sure there was nothing going on.  This was years ago....but he said since she had no neurological symptoms we could wait until all of her other medical things had calmed down a bit.

Finally, last summer we made the appointment with neurosurgery.  The doctor recommended that we have an MRI done to be sure there was no spinal tethering or anything like that, but because she had no neurological symptoms that we should wait a year so that the MRI could be done without sedation.

So at the beginning of October I took her for the MRI.  She did incredibly well.  She was as still as could be the whole time.  The MRI results showed no tethering but showed what looked like a fatty mass a few centimeters in diameter at the bottom of her spine.  So, we had to have a repeat MRI with contrast done....and this time sedation so there was no chance any movement was causing anomolies on the film that didn't really exist.

Last Wednesday she had this done.  She was nervous about the IV, but she did wonderfully and was so brave!!  WE got a call from the neurosurgeon the next day saying that the MRI was completely clear.  No tethering, no mass, no nothing.  Just a perfectly healthy spine and a benign sacral dimple.

So that is that.  Likely the last medical update on my daughter that I will ever post.  Deo Gratias!