Tuesday, March 31, 2009

And So it Continues

Sunday night Brandis was great and was over whatever was in his system. Sunday night I was awoken to Dougan's diarrhea. We woke up a couple of times to take care of that and continued on with it yesterday until last night when he seemed to be back to normal. I was so glad that it never got to the puking stage. I had him in pull-ups yesterday to help out and today he's back in underwear so I was pretty happy. Then the school called. Koen has chicken pox. What? Chicken pox? Do kids actually still get that? He already had all of his immunizations and I know chicken pox was included. I brought him home and they look like chicken pox, not like and allergic reaction as I had hoped. Apparently a kid in his class had them and some other kids in the school. I'm waiting for Tony to come home with some Benedryl and other supplies, since my house is not equipped for chicken pox. I hope he doesn't have a late day today. I'm wondering if the other kids will get it now. I mean they've all had the shots but Koen still managed to somehow get it. I also hate keeping him home from school. He has already missed so much school already this year. Mostly because of when Dougan was in the hospital but also because of the high acid content in his stomach and his being prone to puking, along with the flu all the kids got back in December. Luckily he isn't behind in his school work, but I'm sure they have a limit to how many days a kid can miss. Do they have summer school for first graders?

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Back to Normal

Brandis is pretty much back to normal. We're still not letting him eat everything, but he is eating the three meals and snacks and drinking and all. Tony stayed home with him today because he was still a little cranky this morning and we wanted to make sure he really was done puking. Tonight I had to go to BYC/SED and I always have to take the boys with me because Tony sleeps evenings. So I took all the boys and I figured Brandis would probably be a little clingy or something. I was wrong. I think he was finally feeling well enough and he was finally out of the house again that he wanted to play with his brothers instead of sitting in meetings with me. They were the only little kids there like usual and the YM pres. asked how I kept them from disrupting us. He thought maybe I threatened their lives or something. I just chuckled. The boys later revealed to the group during refreshments that they were only being good because they wanted to play a video game tomorrow. Well, my secret was blown. They really were trying hard, I could tell, and they even helped pick up the living room today. I told them I still haven't decided if they deserve it quite yet, but I think that I will let them play tomorrow. Yay for them!

Friday, March 27, 2009

A Turn For the Worse

I thought Brandis was feeling a little better. At least he was starting to eat and drink a bit more by Thursday. So yesterday afternoon he began to puke again. The poor guy already looked like a bag of bones. I decided I would take him in to the walk-in clinic. It turns out he has an ear infection. I've never dealt with an ear infection with the boys yet, so this is new. We picked up some antibiotics on the way home and had to get some 7-up to help with the vomiting.
Last night was horrible though. He threw up and up and up. When he was asleep I could hear his belly growling from hunger and churning from sickness. Whenever he'd wake up he'd sip some pop and then he'd have a nice little diaper and then throw up a bit. When Tony got home this morning at six he found me sitting on the couch in a comatose like state. He asked what I was doing awake. I muttered, "Brandis just fell back asleep". Soon after that Brandis woke up again and went for the pop and then continued the routine. Tony said, "This is hard to watch". Uhh, yeah, I've been witnessing it for the last few days. We got Brandis to fall back to sleep and Tony asked why I just don't go up to bed. My reply, "What's the point?"
I am however grateful that it is just one kid going through this. I couldn't imagine all of them being sick this way. I mean a person can only handle being puked on a few times a day. Seriously.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


I have been super busy the last couple of weeks. I've had appointments, people coming over, errands to run, and events that I had to go to. I was seriously running around crazy. I knew that my calendar was practically booked. So Monday night Brandis got sick. He was throwing up all that night. So yesterday I look at my calendar and it was empty for Tues. and Wed. Well, actually an appointment was cancelled, and something else could easily be pushed. It was great. I got to pamper the poor kid and push fluids as often as he would wake up. I didn't have to go anywhere and nobody came by. I could not believe it. Today I got to continue with the fluids and try to get him to eat. Tomorrow I have commitments again but hopefully Brandis will be feeling better. I just have a couple people stopping by so I won't have to take him out. I was also really grateful that Tony came home in enough time to run errands that were my responsibility before he had to go to bed both yesterday and today. That is not something I can count on so I was really happy.
I was also able to easily change the yw activity tonight to something where I wouldn't need to be running the show. My counselors are great. I contacted one yesterday and she contacted the other one, who called me and we figured things out. Then today I talked to the one about what exactly the new plan was and what I needed to run out and get before tonight. She said she just happened to have a treasure box and the Hershey's Treasure candy which is what we needed, at her house and it wasn't a problem. Holy Moly! This week which should have been just as hectic as all the others has turned into a really easy one. What a blessing to Brandis and me both.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Night Away

Friday night I got to drive down to Lafayette for an Institute Conference for the 16-18 year olds. We were supposed to have a big group go so one of my counselors and I made arrangements to go. We were so excited about it. We kept calling each other to see what treats each would bring and what route we would take and what hotel we should stay at. We pretty much were looking for any excuse to call each other to talk about the event. Wednesday night we had one yw and one ym back out. By the time we were meeting at the church to leave all the others had decided not to go except one yw. So we took her down and we would not let her back out because WE were so excited to go. We went and she didn't seem to mind the 2 1/2 hour drive with us even though I'm sure she would have rather had someone "not old" to talk to. We got there and watched our little trooper have a good time dancing with friends and we just couldn't help but smile every time she danced a slow song. She purposely avoided eye contact with us during those songs. She probably expected us to do something embarrassing like take a picture, give a thumbs up, or rate the guy on a scale of 1-10.
One of my favorite parts of the whole trip was having a nice comfortable bed all to myself all night long, without somebody waking up, crying and finding me and crawling into bed, or waiting for everybody to fall asleep first so I could. I just got to crawl under the covers and have a few hours of uninterrupted sleep. It was great and I think much needed. We went to the conference Saturday morning and then came home after lunch. We grilled the yw about the boys she danced with and which ones she thought were cool. Again she was polite and didn't act bored with us or disappointed that we were such dorks. When I got home and walked through the door it was great to have the kids run up and be glad that I was home again. I dare say even Tony missed me. It was a great trip and I was really glad I got to go and that we all seemed to have a good time, but I'm also glad that I am back home with my wonderful family.

Monday, March 16, 2009


All my boys were in desperate need of haircuts. I have some photos so you can see. Eades is really good at taking before shots. You know you're supposed to look horrible in those right?

So now you see what I mean. I knew I could not hold it off any longer. Even though it is anything but fun to take them all to the salon and try to get them to sit still one at a time, it had to be done. We all loaded up in the van and went to a new place. A friend of mine had said how good they were with kids there and they are priced really fair. We went and I am very well pleased with the results.

The boys all seemed to be happy to not look so shaggy and Eades thinks he looks 'GOOD'. I just noticed Dougan's before and after picture don't look much different but you really can tell it's cut in person and it looks much better.
So we went, we got the cuts, and nobody got hurt. Not even my wallet. YAY!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Plan

Today I had somebody ask me what my plan was for when the baby comes. I realized I hadn't even thought about it. Now this is very important. I mean I have four kids who need a place to stay while I'm in the hospital, and I need to be able to drop them off at a moments notice. This reminded me of when Dougan was in the hospital and the overwhelming feeling of, 'what are we gonna do?'. I really don't know. Before I had the Barclays and then I had Rachel, now I don't have a clue. So while I was beginning to panic after being asked this, they asked who was coming the week or two after the baby was born. They were like, "you know, to cook and care for the others". I then remembered that I did have Christy Barclay help out after Dougan was born and Rachel helped out after Brandis, plus Rachel was always just a phone call away and could be there in minutes. Again, this was something I hadn't thought about. I just shrugged my shoulders and said, "I don't know."
So this morning this is what I've been thinking about. I know my friends will bring me meals for the first few days after being home, because that's what we usually do, but could I actually ask them to do more than that? Could I ask my friends to help cook and help me keep up with the house and laundry and grocery shopping? I mean Tony can do a little of that, but he works 14 hours a day and sleeps 8 and has only a couple of hours to do anything.
I know it's part of my personality to underestimate people and I usually expect them to say no. But maybe my friends would be willing to help. Maybe they would want to help. I just need to talk myself into asking somebody and I need to do it quick so I can make a plan. What did you guys do when you brought home new ones? What is too much to ask friends with their own families to do?

Monday, March 2, 2009


Our family usually likes to go on a mini vacation every year with some tax return money. Normally we go to Chicago but this time we decided to go more local still. We ended up going to Shipshewana. There is a nice hotel there with a water park. The nice thing is they had a room big enough for our whole family. So we took off Friday afternoon and spent the evening splishin and a splashin. Oh and we had to stop by Terry's Pizza and Sub on the way there for some wet burritos. Those are my favorite and the last one I had was years ago. Of course we had a flat tire on the way there and we had to make a police report because it happened on the railroad tracks where a spike was sticking up. Even though we were delayed a bit we still had time to play a lot that night. Koen and Eades went down the two big slides over and over again and they got soaked in the water fort. Dougan played in the kiddie pool and we also liked going with me in the family pool and the lazy river. Brandis hung out with Tony in the kiddie pool and eventually warmed up to the whole idea of getting wet. We even got him to go down the little slide a couple of times.
After we were wet enough we decided it was time to get ready for bed. The boys were excited because they each had their own bunk and there was a t.v. in the bunk bed area so they could watch their shows while we watched our shows. They also liked that we let them fall asleep watching t.v. That doesn't happen very often. Eades decided that we should live there, but I explained it was very expensive and we couldn't survive on Capri Suns and microwave popcorn. So after a good nights rest we absolutely had to go to the Essenhaus breakfast buffet. I'm talking fried mush, biscuits and gravy, and mini donuts. Yummy! Then we went back to the hotel and spent the morning playing in the water again. We were so stuffed from breakfast that we didn't eat lunch we just snacked on some stuff. On the way out we had to go to the Cheese house and buy the necessary cheeses; Colby Jack, Farmer's cheese, and Aged regular Swiss. The kids got some taffy and candy sticks, oh and two whoopie cushions. Tony humored them as he seemed to be their only target.
We also stopped by Leo Lorene's. They were making syrup. Of course Lorene sent us home with some. I wanted to open the jar the whole way home but I knew that would only result in a mess. Maybe I'll have German pancakes tomorrow for dinner. Anyway, it was nice to visit with them and hear some family news. I didn't know this but Uncle Leo volunteered down in New Orleans after the hurricane. He also got to go fishing while he was down there and he has some cool stories. He caught a lot of fish he never dreamed of. He even caught some sting ray and he saw jellyfish. There house looks almost exactly the same as before the fire. Lorene told us of some of the things that she lost that made her really sad, things from her mom and grandma mostly. She also had a ton of Tupperware that smelled like smoke. She doesn't want to throw it all out so someone told her to bury it. She did that right after the fire but it didn't work. Someone else told her to freeze it outside. So she had a frozen pile of Tupperware out and she's keeping her fingers crossed that it works. I hope so too.
After that we went back home and relaxed from vacation. It was very fun and we did everything I wanted to do, so it was a great little trip. It might be something we do every other year with Chicago. I think it would be a good tradition to start.