Sunday, May 1, 2016

Rearranging

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Edda bought herself a new TV with all the internet stuff already in it - about $200.  Crazy cheap, the Roku itself would have been $100.   Jeremy installed it on the wall.  We FINALLY are getting rid of Edda's little portable DVD players that have been sitting on her bedroom dresser.  And we installed ROKU remotes on our phones so we can lose the remote and not freak out about turning on/off the TV.



We did a good amount of rearranging - the house has been too full.  Not of people, we love the people, just of the furniture.   And clothes.  Edda's closest has been stuffed with clothes she's outgrown.

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We haven't done laundry for two weeks.  No reason except for being lazy.

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We wet vac-ed pee stains that have never been touched.

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Vince emptied his room and got rid of his bunk beds and cleaned up all the pee spots.

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The au pair room is quickly getting turned into a guest room/study.

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Saturday, April 30, 2016

End of an era.

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With Keyla off to California yesterday, we've closed the chapter on having au pairs in the house.  It's been about 8 years since the very first one, we started in 2008.  Yvonne, Eliana, Denise, Se Hyun, Nat and Keyla.  There are so many stories and memories of all the girls, mostly good, but like everything in life, there were also little mishaps and arguments and misunderstandings - but I'm happy to report that we are generally in touch with all of them and there is a fondness back and forth.  I like thinking about these young women, out an about all over the world, growing up!  And when they tell other people their life story, they'll have a bit that goes - "...and then I spent a year in the US near Washington DC with this family, taking care of these couple of kids, Vince and Edda..."  Since I will never raise a typical girl, it's nice to think of these girls as my surrogate daughters, teaching me all the things about having a girl -> young adult in the house.

We are busy turning the au pair room into a study and a guest room so we spent a lot of time upstairs today. I like thinking about all the conversations and adventures the girls had from that room.  And our cars!  Our cars!  They went on a million adventures without us (And only one fender bender backing out from our driveway into the parked car behind us, I thought for sure there would be a car accident - most of the au pairs needed to be taught how to drive.) Who knows where they drove to?  As long as they paid for the gas, I didn't ask them and now I have only the car - and the car won't tell me any their secrets.


Friday, April 29, 2016

Flu

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After our Thanksgiving dinner, I was putting Edda to bed and she was shivering and couldn't settle to sleep.  I thought she might be getting sick, but she wasn't running a temp.    I snuggled up to her and fell asleep until 1 am when Jeremy came in and we switched places.  At 2 am, Jeremy thought Edda was shaking too much and thought maybe it was a seizure.  Her temp was still kind of lowish - 38.2, but he wanted to go to the hospital in case it really was a seizure that was lasting a long time.  I was totally not up to making decisions at 2 am, but I just really don't want anything that Edda does to be classified as a seizure because then we go back on seizure meds and then all the schools and camps need to go on seizure precaution protocols where every odd movement from Edda bring phone calls and days at home.  And, I just don't want her to have seizures again - which I thought may be a possibility when she hits puberty because of the fluctuating hormone levels.

Anyways, we did go to the hospital where her temp was 105, so the shaking was from the high fever. She tested positive for the flu, despite the fact that we all got the flu shot.  Poor girl.  While we were waiting for the test results (they also straight cathed her to get a sample for a UTI - neg), I crawled into bed with her and turned off the lights in the room.

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So, I took today off (first day with no child care!  of course.) - between Edda being sick and giving Keyla a ride to the airport to see her off.  Edda is zonkered out on the ride back from National Airport.

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The pharmacy forgot to actually compound the Tamiflu.  I've been on hold for 20 minutes trying to figure out how much water to add.  The bottle says 60 mL, but I'm reading Genentech literature for pharmacists that 55 mL of water should be added to get the require 6 mg/mL.  I guess the Tamiflu particles take up some space.  I have no graduated cylinders in the house.  I'm going to have to weigh the water with the kitchen scale.

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Thanksgiving in April.

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For Keyla's last dinner with us before she leaves, she wanted roast turkey.  Jeremy just happened to have bought an extra (?) turkey for Thanksgiving last year, so we decided to do a Thanksgiving in April.

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Famous green bean casserole with cream of mushroom soup.

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I'm into time lapse video, so I propped up my phone to take time lapse of us making the dinner.  I watched it a bunch of times, entertained - mostly by how little Ruby is moving at the end.  But after closer viewing, I realized that Maxi was caught snitching cheese from the counter when no one was in the kitchen.



I did a freeze frame and caught the thief!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

New chores.

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Various household duties need to be reshuffled - Vince is going to cook dinner a couple nights a week. I think I'm also responsible for one night a week.  Oh, it's been a long time since I planned any meals.  I had one year when I was a stay-at-home mom where I cooked a different meal every night for a year.  That was amazing, but unsustainable.  I used paprika.  I'm going to have to haul out that skill set again.  Vince is going to do more dog duties (doodies too - ha ha).  Jeremy is on morning Edda bus duty, he learned from Keyla this week how to French braid hair.

Nat is back, she's helping with Edda on Monday and Wed. nights.

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Edda's new chores are the same as the old ones, just be fabulous.  She's not extremely excited about it, or maybe she's just fabulous in a fierce, rbf kind-of way.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Breath.

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I'm reading When Breath Becomes Air, a memoir of a neurosurgeon (Paul Kalanithi) who passed away in his late 30s from lung cancer.  I'm drawn to memoirs of suffering (but I guess no one writes a memoir of a purely joyful life, maybe they do and I just don't read those) and this one is suppose to be beautiful - how can you resist a memoir that ends with this paragraph (addressing his 8 month old daughter):
When you come to one of the many moments in life when you must give an account of yourself, provide a ledger of what you have been, and done, and meant to the world, do not, I pray, discount that you filled a dying man’s days with a sated joy, a joy unknown to me in all my prior years, a joy that does not hunger for more and more, but rests, satisfied. In this time, right now, that is an enormous thing.
There are 10,000 reviews of this book from every book critic and they all loved it, not a single slight written about this polymath's final words, but I was heartbroken to read that he tied having a meaningful life so much with language.  I mean, I get it, if you don't have language, you are missing out on a lot - but there's gotta be something else to hold onto and I hold onto it all the time. There is even a scene visiting kids in an institution with traumatic brain injuries who may have or may not have smiled at him and who wailed non-stop.  These kids with broken brains did not have the ability to "form relationships and make life meaningful".   Just slay me now.  When I ask Jeremy - if you had to choose for Edda, would you choose her to have a voice or to be able to use her hands Jeremy always chooses voice, I always choose hands.  I argue you can still have language with your hands. Heck, Vince talks to me a lot over text.

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The grass is high.  I need to cut it before I get cited again.

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Monday, April 25, 2016

Ramen Hack

Edda started after-school camp today.  And Nat picked her up and brought her home.  Day 1 of new childcare arrangement - done.  Edda seemed to like it, no complaints from her.  Although since tomorrow is election day, the kids have off school which means that camp is closed too, so day two of childcare is logistically a dud.  But we still have Keyla!  Tomorrow is technically her last working day for us (sniff!), so she's on Edda duty all day.

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Vince made his own ramen hack dinner tonight with Stubbs BBQ flavored roast beef, green onions and an egg.

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Edda still won't open her mouth wider than about 1 cm, which makes it hard to feed her anything.  We've been grabbing chunks of food with our fingers and then shoving the bits into her mouth.  It's not very efficient.  I think her mouth is still a little sore, but I'm worried that if she gets too used to opening her mouth only a little bit, it'll get stuck there.  Vince suggest the chewy P - a rubbery tool that Edda used to be able to grab with her left hand and bring up to her mouth to chew.  We found a few in our closet and tried to get her to chew on it.  Once it's in her mouth, you can kind of move it around a little to encourage her mouth to open a bit more.  She does wince if you try to open her mouth wider than she wants it to go.  She's lost a bit of weight, which is OK, because she did have weight to spare, but it can't go on forever.  Of course, the scoliosis brace doesn't fit anymore with the weight loss.  Argh...

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Sunday, April 24, 2016

Toilet

Hi loves,

It was a very nice weekend here at the Lee-Martin homestead.  I realized that the downstairs toilet was leaking water onto the floor last night - so I took it apart to replace the wax ring.  This was my taking the toilet apart last night...



This morning, I installed a new wax ring and put the whole toilet together again when I realized that the screws used to hold the toilet to the floor had become dislodged.  I read on the internet how to prevent this from happening - I needed a second set of nuts to hold the bolts to the flange - this wasn't in the package, I needed to find my own extra ones.  I then took it apart again, installed a second new wax ring and then shimmed the toilet so it didn't rock.  Hopefully no more leaks.  I want you to know I didn't spend all weekend working on plumbing, though I do enjoy it.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Who is alpha?

I read somewhere once that a marriage was like forming a partnership to run a very small, mundane nonprofit business.  Recently, Jeremy and I decided to try and hold a weekly meeting where we hash out all the regular crap that comes up. At this weekly meeting we discuss finances, logistics and various small grievances that have popped up over the past week and will continue on into the next week, month or for all eternity because some grievances are never resolved no matter how often they are brought up.   I need to think of a clever name for the meeting, - it used to be the "financial summit" which we would think about holding quarterly, but that didn't work because we'd forget to have it.  "Summit" seems too lofty for a weekly meeting.  We used to have arguments about how to handle a problem and just talk about the problem, but now we just go straight to discussing the power dynamic between us.  It's often helpful to know who exactly is in charge.  Sometimes the right person for the job is not the one in charge.

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Edda hasn't been sleeping well.  Last night, I swear, she was up from 1 - 6 am.  Gotta figure out how she can be awake with no one else awake.  This is a problem that Edda is in complete charge of and it's wiping us out.

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I spent some part of the day loading trucks for a local 10K - a race down the Rockville Pike.  There were a lot of orange cones piled in big trucks.

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Jeremy is fixing Edda's ramp into the garage.   I like this ramp, it's just about to rip through the unsupported door jamb.

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Friday, April 22, 2016

She's back!

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Edda is pretty much back to her regular self.  A little bit hesitant on the eating, but lots of progress on the smiling.

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As she's leaving next week for another host family, Keyla is saying good-bye to Edda's teachers and  to Deb, Edda's OT, today.  We held a tea party and just chatted and had fun during Edda's last Friday session.

Keyla teaches us all about photo filters.

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We had Georgetown Cupcakes to celebrate - milk chocolate birthday, key lime, cherry cheesecake and coconut.  Jeremy accidentally sat on the cupcake box at the Bethesda Metro station on our way home from the movie last night, so we were afraid some of them were squished, but only the coconut one was every so slightly mooshed.

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This is a crazy make-up app.  It automatically puts makeup on your face.  Voila!

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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Hello!




Saw this movie tonight!  I've never heard my name said so many times by strangers.

Good night!  See you on the other side.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Wed -

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Edda went back to school today, but we managed to bust out of there early.  I want to say it was because it we had an adventure planned for this glorious, gorgeous day - but really it was to see the oral surgeon again for a follow up.

Everything looks OK, though the "flaps" are still a bit swollen.  We are cleared for oral hygiene care and encouraged to toothbrush.

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Girl still doesn't really want to eat though.  She didn't eat much at school.  She's reluctant to open her mouth, so I spent some time shoving bits of egg in her mouth.   She'd eat it once it was in there, but it's a bear getting it past her lips and teeth.

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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Tuesday -

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Kiki left this morning after a week of peaceful demonstrations and being peacefully arrested and peacefully released and peacefully paying fines.  She's headed home to the NY primary.

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Vince is trying to teach me how to use Snapchat.  I'm all signed up and can chat with any teenager.

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Rockville cited me for having grass that was too tall.

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Looks OK to me.

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Monday, April 18, 2016

Recovery.

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Sunday night dinner was a little sparsely attended (some last minute cancellations), though it is nice when the non-standard combination of people show up - the conversation changes when different people are at the table.  Jeremy, lucky for him, made only one gigantic lasagna and not his usual two, so there was only an inordinate amount of leftover lasagna and not an obscene amount of leftover lasagna.

We got a few chipmunk smiles from Edda this weekend, (pls disregard the slightly blood drool).

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Though she stayed home today and will stay home tomorrow.  Yes, she's wearing her Totoro outfit.  Vince is suppose to be doing his math homework.

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No pictures!

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Sunday, April 17, 2016

Mom's night out.

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I went out to see the usual suspects.  We booked two reservations because we were rotating attendees because of conflicting schedules - one table at 5pm for three, and another table at 6:45 for three.  They had tables for three, but not for four?!  I dunno.  We did not get seated at a triangular table.  We had a great time, but our waiter was the weirdest server ever.  He was trying to tell us that we couldn't order coffee because no one else in the restaurant was ordering coffee.  Huh?  No one drinks coffee after dinner?

Soojung is the headliner in the following photos and we are her backup singers.

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I came home to find Jeremy and Edda in the closet.  Jeremy thought we should wean her off the narcotic and onto Motrin to get her to be awake enough to eat.  She slept though the night on the lighter pain management protocol and ate yogurt this morning.

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Jeremy moved a TV into the closet.  We should just turn it into another living room.

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Saturday, April 16, 2016

Wisdom teeth - out!

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We showed up bright and early on Friday morning 5:45 at Shady Grove Hospital.  I didn't know they had a whole pediatric wing for day surgeries.  So we (and a bunch of other families) were ushered into the pre-op area.   Edda got settled into a pediatric bed which she is almost too big for.

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Jeremy suited up to go into the OR with her.  It reminded him of the days he suited up to go into clean rooms when he made computer chips.  Edda was already woozy from the benzo she got about 30 min before she was wheeled into the operating room.

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Everything went smoothly - first the oral surgeon took out all her wisdom teeth and an extra tooth growing through the roof of her mouth - he updated us at the hour mark.  Then our dentist took over and did - as she said - the best cleaning ever and sealed everything she could seal.  Hopefully all this will help us prevent dental problems in the future.  Our dentist was a little concerned that the extractions would hinder her ability to do the cleaning/sealants well, but she said that the extractions were done cleaning and weren't bleeding very much.

Edda waking up....  she wasn't happy.

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Now we are home, resting.  All chipmunk swollen.

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I just spent the last 90 minutes slowly syringing about 8 oz of milk into her.  She hasn't eaten properly since Thursday night and we've been having a tough time getting her to eat anything.  We have applesauce, yogurt, ice cream, etc...  I want to keep her hydrated and with some nutrition to keep on going and healing.  Hopefully today is the most swollen day.

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