Tuesday, February 28, 2006

It is only Tuesday.

When the developmental pediatrician, neurologist and the geneticist all agreed that Edda was significantly delayed in all areas, physically and mentally, I figured, OK, well she'll probably never learn graduate level fluid dynamics (I never did learn it either - but at least there was a cute guy drinking coffee who always sat in the row behind me), but we'll start today and slowly teach her how to do everything, first how to walk, next how to walk on grass, next how to climb stairs, next how to run and then, finally, how to dance like Michael Flatley. It was going to be forward - going ahead - making inroads - being the last person in the race (you know, the incredibly stubborn who person spends 24 hours running a marathon because she has no legs, but is dragging herself on a skateboard with her hands...) but at least going forward one step
at a time.

When the geneticist told us which genetic abnormalities they were going to test for, I sat in the doctor's office and I promised myself that I wouldn't look up any of the diseases on the internet until the test came back positive for a particular syndrome. Because what's the use of suffering in advance? But I'm very good at suffering in advance. I love to think about what might happen and then get all stressed about it - on a small scale, it might be worrying about hosting a dinner party for friends and on a large scale, well, it could be the various hideous ways we could all suffer and die, one of which might be in a graduate level fluid dynamics class (low Reynold's number! scaling arguments, people! Argh, falling over!) Well, I think that promise to myself might have lasted a week? Maybe a week and a half? So now I've spent some time looking at some of the various syndromes and basically freaking myself out about what the future might hold for Edda. It turns out that some of these syndromes are degenerative, which means as she gets older, it could get worse. Which, of course, is a bummer for everyone involved.

I don't want to imply that I'm sad or stressed these days, I'm actually pretty happy. Edda's walking and becoming steadier on her feet, we are trying to keep her hand out of her mouth because we've been noticing that she's been using it less and less to pick things up and we want to keep the functionality in the hand and I think she's learning (not to speak, but to understand) a couple words (although I'm always the skeptic). She's not suffering in any way and so I'm also trying hard not to suffer too much as well.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Yarn & Needles

Mom received yarn and needles. Doris, thanks. She will knit a short sleeve sweater for me :)

Sunday, February 26, 2006

The agony of defeat.


I'm not done. I'm going to bed.

West Coast Park


We rented a car today and drove to the West Coast Park near Edda's school. It has an awsome dog run which Ruby will like and also a great playground for Vince and Edda.

Depressive tendencies.

Whenever things get rough, my favorite thing to do is to find a walk-in closet and camp out there with my down comforter for a few hours. In high school when I was stressed out about a boy or about a test or getting into college, I use to do this late at night with a book while the rest of the house was asleep. When I lived in Austin, there was a wonderful walk-in closet that was exactly the length of my body and I could hang out there and ignore the rest of the world. In Singapore, there are no walk-in closets in my house which I think is a good thing because it makes me resist my depressive tendencies. These days, I'm trying very hard not to spiral out of control emotionally (I don't want to end up on medication and I don't think I'll need to, at least not today) and I'm pretty proud of myself, I've been in a good mood all weekend and we've been having a lot of fun. I don't like going to sleep very much at night because I know as soon as I'm asleep, tomorrow will be here and I'm not really sure if I can deal with whatever tomorrow might bring. And when I wake up every morning, I have to give myself a pretty firm pep talk (Doris, it's going to be a great day, try not to ruin it for everybody else - I usually have to say this to myself a few times - I'm never fully conviced, but I usually try to trick myself into believing it) and usually, it's a pretty good day. Hooray for Doris!


Saturday, February 25, 2006

Suck Out City....

Wow.

Poker night was tonight. We all started out with 3k of chips. I lost a a pretty large hand on a pair of Jacks to someone with a pair of Kings and was feeling pretty nervous. My preformance recently hasn't been exactly stellar. I won a small pot and had around 1800. I get an A-10 and the flop comes down A-x-x. Great! I bet about half my stack at the moment which is around 700 and a nothing card comes down on the river. I'm up only against Ky, so I decide to go all-in on my pair of A's. Ky calls me and turns over A-7. Now I'm feeling pretty good at this point with 1 card to come. He needs a 7 to win the pot and a 3:44 odds of it happening. Of course, he lands the 7 and busts me from the table. I'm the first one out.

After we're done with the first round. Everyone stuck around and decided to play another round. just a little faster and for 5 bucks this time. I got burned early again with an AK suited vs a pair of Kings. I'm down to about 1k in chips. The blinds whittle me away and I've got about 600 left, and the blinds are marching up fast to 50-100. So basically I've got to pick my cards and move all-in at some point. I get a K-J and figure it's my time, so I go all-in. Everyone folds, except Ky, who's got a huge stack, and calls me on a pair of sevens. Great. I make a comment about how they've been bad luck for me tonight. I get my King on the turn, which puts me at 44:2 odds to win the pot, and I'm feeling pretty good at the moment. Of course, the river deals me a 7 and I get busted once again, by Ky, all-in, leading by a good amount, and actually busted by the exact same card - the Seven of Diamonds - twice in one night.
Wow.

a 1:322 percent chance of happening. I was leading in both hands. omg. I feel so robbed.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Pick-up time.


Vince's school is so funny, so Singapore-ian. I'm not really allowed inside so I've never seen Vince in class. This picture is from outside in the hallway where all the parents wait for their kids to put on their shoes and come outside. Vince likes his school now, although every morning, he still says he doesn't like the Chinese class, he goes to school cheerfully and happily, which is a relief for me.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Self Service IT Support.

Sometimes I just have to laugh. Stanford is obviously not an organization that has a lot of highly paid worker bees like most engineering firms.

My motherboard on my Dell desktop has bulging capacitors. Basically my computer will randomly shutdown every 2-3 hours. Apparently this is a known issue with the GX270's that we all have.

The quaint thing is that I'm the one that has to call Dell Customer Support to get it serviced. Nobody thinks that wasting my time with this stuff is pretty inefficient. sigh. Tho I have to say that Dell's Customer Service isn't bad. They are mailing me the part tomorrow.

Last week I also had to go down to the campus bookstore and return a malfunctioning Apple Wireless Keyboard.

It's just funny.

Halfway to my Olympic dreams!


One mitten down, one mitten to go. Well, I thought I'd never be able to say this, but I think I may be able to have my very own Olympic glory, hmmm, maybe I'll have to sing the Star-Spangled-Banner on Sunday to myself. I was pretty much thinking that I wouldn't be able to make this silly goal that I've set for myself, but I might be able to do it! I have 3 days to finish the 2nd mitten, including 2 weekend days and now that I've finished the first one, the second should be a breeze. (I think).

We took Edda to school today and she did OK. There was a bit of screaming, but we did enjoy a bit of speech therapy, a bit of music lesson, snack time and then also occupational therapy time with Faye. They are very welcoming and say we can come and go whenever we'd like to.

Vince had a nice day too, I have to admit that since I've been so stressed, that we've used the computer as a Bob the Builder and Wiggles platform and we've all been well entertained and I've had a few small breaks to knit a mitten.

95 Miles for a Loaf of Bread

Here's my post delayed a bit. Monday I biked from my house in San Jose, all the way out to Pescadero to this small bakery called the Archangeli Bakery. They always have some yummy artichoke bread like this one. This was the pesto artichoke bread that was partially cooked. I bought it and stuffed it into my jersey and rode all the way back home with a hump on my back.

I was pretty damn beat, but I popped it into the oven and it was nice, warm, crispy. Heavenly! I ate the whole thing.

I haven't biked since. ha

Randomly, Doris, did I ever leave a 50mm F1.4 lens with you guys? I find I'm missing it from my collection! doh!

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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

A school for Edda.

Today we visited the Genesis School. There are about 100 students there with varying degrees of disablilties, some have autism, some Down's syndrome, some cerebal palsy, most of the kids have a mish-mash of diagnoses and some kids are probably undiagnosed and have unnamed developmental delays. Before I had Edda, I know walking into a special eduacation school would have made me quite uncomfortable, but today as I looked at all these kids struggling with their own challenges, I felt a wave of relief come over me and a feeling of belonging. Finally! A place where Edda can hang out! A place where it seems happy, cheerful and sunny even though the kids are flapping their arms or not looking at you when you talk or signing words or whatever. The school is not too fancy or too plain and there is a sense of community there. There are support groups and they know all the places that cater to special-needs kids, dentists, doctors, hair-cuts, etc, etc.

We almost didn't go check this school out because their website says that they won't take Edda until she's 2.5, but the principal was very accomodating and is willing to work with us and basically we can hang out at the school as much as we'd like. We didn't take Edda with us today, but we are bringing her back tomorrow and the principal said that she'd be willing to work with us to slowly bring Edda into the school's program. Yah!

Also, speaking about schools, Vince is speaking in full sentences in Chinese now. He can say "I have eyes" and "I love my body" in Chinese (they are doing a unit on "myself" this term). I'm amazed at how quickly he can pick these things up, it's only been 7 weeks of school, only 1 hour a day of Chinese and he's got full sentences coming out of his mouth with good pronounciation. I know that all this focus on Edda is stressing him out, I hope that this period of intense emotion will pass soon and that we'll be "just regular folks" again soon...

My daughter doesn't sleep anymore.

Ever since Edda started therapy, her total sleep time has dropped like a rock. Yesterday - no naps, went to bed at 8:30pm, got up at 1am for 2 hours, then got up for good at 6am. Today, I coaxed out of her 2 measly 10-minute naps and now it's 8 pm, no bedtime in sight. As a contrast, Vince now sleeps soundly from 8pm to 7am and at Edda's age, he slept from 10 pm to 8 am and had a 2 hour nap in the afternoon. I'm not sure if it is just a coincience, if it is a good sign (maybe she's keen on staying awake because she's noticing more around her) or if it is a bad sign (maybe it's just part of the progression her development and that she will soon be sleeping zero hours). I guess if she can make it through the day without sleeping at all, we could distill her essence and try to sell it as No-Doze. Anyways, I spend a good deal of my day trying to make Edda take a nap by nursing her every half-hour for 10 minutes or so because she seems so exhausted, but I think if my payback for nursing is a 10 minute nap, we may be ready for a weaning (which will be a relief for me, but will stress every one else more, because who knows how we'll put Edda to bed now.)

So she's zonkered which makes me a bit zonkered.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Edda at therapy.


Here's Edda swinging in a chair at her therapy session. Her therapist Yao-chi is next to her. Edda is really, really pissed off in this picture, she wants to be asleep and not doing therapy exercises. Edda's more pissed off these days in general, which all the therapists say is a good, positive reaction to therapy and hightened stimulation, but boy, it's pretty draining for the household.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Walking outside...


Walking in the local park.

Augusta & Atlanta

Yesterday, we went to our friend's place at Augusta to look around the housing and land in the northern part of Augusta. They told us that during the Masters tournament, a lot of houses with extra rooms are rented out for the golf fans. It can fetch $1,000.00 per night per small family. The duration is about 3-5 days. The landlords can also provide meals with additional charges. But, the landlords should pay the golf organizers 7% of their income plus three pre-game inspections. Not bad.

After that, we drove to Atlanta to buy a lot of oriental groceries from a huge Korean store on Buford Road, just north of Atlanta beltway. Then we went to see our colleague's Mom, Joyce, who was my landlord while I was in Atlanta. She lives in a small retirement apartment complex. It is pretty good but expensive. Well, Mom and Dad need to be prepared. We invited her whole immediately family members to have dinner with us, just like the one 2 years ago. She picked a nearby local restaurant where she frequently visited. It wasn't fancy but the food was good. After dinner, a guy hold the door for us asking me whether there was food left. I joked there were some left over food on our table and he was welcome to have. Afterward, Joyce and her family told us he is a famous TV reporter in Atlanta. We did not know. But, he was nice, at least.

Around 9:30 PM, we left and drove back to Aiken. We arrived around 1:00 AM and Mom is still sleeping.

Well, I believe I got my webcam setup and ready for the show :)

Saturday, February 18, 2006

At the zoo.


Sally and Darcy Krasne were in town for a conference (they are good friends of Bob and Katherine from LA). We met them for breakfast at the zoo and hung out with them for the morning. We didn't see a huge number of animals, but we did enjoy a bit of ice cream.




A snake! Vince doesn't seem too excited.




Edda doesn't seem enthralled by the orangatangs.

I have a thumb!


Friday, February 17, 2006

Life in Aiken, SC

This town is booming too. The only problem, it grows without careful city planning. Almost all shops, restaurants, fast food places, etc. are concentrated along the main street (Whiskey), like Rockville Pike in Rockville, MD. Traffic is pretty bad considering this is a small town.

Well, Mom and I are gradudally settling down and will explore the nearby towns and cities. After buying some furnitures the other day, we bought another TV. All these items, household stuff, may be destined to be disposal with deductions on our tax returns when we move to other town in the future. Believe me or not, just after 2 weeks at work, I heard Mom was bargaining with other head hunter for a higher pay job in another town just recently. People asked her about of just getting one job, instead of two with husband. She said she might accept because it is just a couple of hundred miles away. A couple of hundred miles away seems no big deal to us - laugh!. We are definitely acting like Gypsies. But, Gypsie life with pay isn't that bad. We are kind of falling into the groves by doing that over and over again. With experience, there is less anxiety, stress, etc. by hopping from one job to other in different towns. Sometimes, it can be a preferred life style :) Who knows.

I still wash the dishes and try to help Mom on household work as much as I can. I went to the apartment gym regulary to exercise. Mom does her exercise in the apartment. Sometime, I follow her moves as pair. She said I look like an "APE". She even made a lot of paper apes and hang a big one on our car mirror. Of course, with big "N"s +on it.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

I'm looking up a dog's ass.


So after many pictures of Edda walking, I thought that Vince deserved a picture of his own. Here he is after school, still in his school uniform -- we walk through a mall every day to get home and the center of the mall has a revolving display of random stuff, sometimes there is kids clothes, sometimes, make-overs, sometimes shoes. Today there were ballons with animals. Vince was running around like a maniac playing with the balloons, it was only a little while later I noticed a small sign that indicated a 20 dollar fine for a destroyed balloon. Luckily no ballon animals were injured.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

High Speed Cable for Internet

We just got the high speed cable for internet. We will buy a webcam to look at you guys and girls.

More walking pictures..


Well, we are at Rukia's house (our housekeeper) - her daughter is on the couch behind her taking a nap. Edda had a therapy session today where she spent most of the time on her 2 feet. Very nice therapy session, we're working pretty hard with her. Some days I'm blue and other days I'm happy. Some days I want to go back to the US, other times, I think it's OK to stay here. I miss my family and my friends. Vince stayed with Rukia while Edda was at therapy - he loves the Mr. Bean cartoon. I had no idea.

Knitting Olympics progress.


Well here it is, the beginning of my mitten. I'm learning a lot of new things, like combined knitting, my first itty-bitty cable, reading a chart. It's fun. There is no way I'm going to be done when the Turin 2006 Olympics are done, so maybe I'll aim for 1 mitten? I've decided I'm prone to RSIs, so my hands are achy and I'm trying not to do too much at once.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Don't You Hate It When....

Everyone else is wrong and they won't take your damn good advice?

Sigh. There's some technical decision to be made about how we want to version digital objects within the repository. I'm the only one on one side, and it seems like everyone else is on the other side. Of course I'm right.

They want to add in more complexity, assume things about what the user wants, create objects that cannot be backed out of the repository if we wanted to change methodolgies. All bad.

I feel like I'm screaming my head off saying that it's a terrible idea, of course, nobody listens to me. Probably it doesn't help my case that I'm screaming my head off, I don't think people appreciate it and biases them against my view point. but whatever. I feel there are way too many negatives to ignore right now.

blah. of course I have the reputation of being the maverick - disagreable. That's fine, but don't dismiss what I say on the basis of that.

fugger.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Happy V day

Happy V day to everyone.

We bought funiture at Agusta about 30 miles from Aiken. We got a good deal. They will diliver to our apt next week.

A Bit Sore Today...

Oye, Yesterday was a prep race for Sea Otter and the 24 hour race. I did okay, tho I only had about 2 hours of sleep before the event, and I was mentally out of it, and during the race, I managed to run into a bush. Laff. I was trying to pass someone on the outside, and I mistimed it, and I smacked right into it. Of course, the feller could have moved over to the right a little, and I'd have been okay, but details details. I did pass him about 3 miles later. hahah. so yeah 8 out of 15. not too shabby for this early in the year.

When I got back home I zonked out for an amazing 13 hours of sleep. From 6pm to 7am. oye.

ON a side note, my landlord is not happy with me having my bikes in the house. I guess it was coming anyways. I'm a bit sad to move everything into the garage, because I don't really trust garages at all to hold expensive bikes, but I'm willing in the name of compromise.

Happy Valentine's Day!


Thank you!

Who's your daddy?


Here's another photo of Edda walking. Our standards are pretty low here for "walking". What you see in the picture is pretty much what you get. She holds onto the table and backs up away from it and stands and shifts weight back and forth between her 2 feet and then walks back to the table. So she's not really going anywhere, but at least she's walking.

Today we had a long meeting with the geneticist who advised us to get some more detailed genetic testing done on Edda. It involved getting blood from both Jeremy and me because they have to determine which chromosomes are maternal and which ones are paternal. It was pretty funny because in the consent form, it stated that, in effect, it was a paternity test and that if the results revealed that Jermey wasn't Edda's biological dad that they would have to tell him.

So who's your daddy, Edda?

Cupcakes! Yum!


Vince had a really long day today. He was in school from 8:30 to 11:30 and then from 1:30 to 5, he was next door at Aunt Helen's house while we were meeting the geneticist at the hospital. It was almost a whole day away from home. I know he's a resiliant guy, but at dinner his frazzled emotions came to the surface and he was in tears about how we moved some furniture around the house. Jeremy cheered him up by decorating cupcakes for his class tomorrow.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Doris loves Jeremy.



Here are my virtual roses for Jeremy. My husband is the sweetest guy - very considerate and polite, but this weekend in particular, he did extra-special things for me... Listen to this. On Friday, he took the day off and we both took Edda to her therapy class. Then in the afternoon, he took care of the kids while I got to go downtown and hang out and window shop for a few hours (which I never get to do). On Saturday, he took care of the kids at night so I could hang out in a pub downtown with my friend. And today - listen to this - he did therapy with Edda, crafts (making Valentines and painting pictures) and making cupcakes with Vince, the weekly grocery shopping (5 dinners worth), took the kids swimming, and he cooked dinner and did the dishes. I'm a pretty lucky girl.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Chijmes


This is where Kate and I went last night. They've turned old church grounds into a restaurant/shopping extravaganza. I'm sure just what the good Lord envisioned when his devoted followers took the time and energy to put the church together brick by brick. A lot of the places were pretty fancy, but we found a nice Irish Pub with good greasy food and beer and we sat and drank Corona's, rum & coke and gin & tonics and talked a lot and watched people watching soccer on big screen TVs. I got home at 11:30, Edda was still up, she just refuses to go to sleep without nursing. It's a weird thing.

Friday Night Bicycling Club.

So Friday nights are mountain biking nights to train up for the 24 hour race. We were at Waterdog park for about 2.5 hours. Here's Jason fooling around, and pogo-ing on his back wheel.

Sunday we're going down to Monterey to do a race for prep to get us into shape. Also we're going to pre-ride the 24 hour course since Don has never ridden it yet.

I'm embarrassed to say how much we've all spent in lighting equipment...

 
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Friday, February 10, 2006

Moved In

Well, we just moved in to our new apartment. I would like to check out the hotel and move in tomorrow. Mom thought it can save some money by moving in earlier. So you moved in today.

We just bought two new mattresses for sleeping. The rest can be a little bit later. I am thinking buying something from Goodwill, tables, chairs, etc. Mattress needs to be new, the rest does not have to.

I also found out we have un-secured wireless for free. However, we will install high speed cable for webcam and banking stuff.

Mom bought me some roses today - first time ever. Wow :) I must behalf myself real good.

Thursday, February 9, 2006

Well, take a look at this.


She's walking!

Sock yarn..


I got the sock yarn I ordered from eBay to do my sock pal's socks. She requested "spring colors" so this is what I chose. I hope she likes it.. Now off to find a pattern.

Bob Costas - Knitting Olympics.


Someone has made this hilarious button for the knitting olympics. Did I ever tell you that we all met Bob Costas? Jeremy, me, Vince, Ben and maybe Emy were all at JFK airport and we were flying to Arizona for our vacation when all of a sudden Bob Costas (who was behind us in line) asked if his lady friend could go ahead of us because she was almost about to miss her flight. At that point, we weren't sure whether it was Bob or not. But he stayed in line near us as she went to the counter and she yelled back, "Hey Bob, I have a question". So then we were sure. He spent some time thanking us and also admired Vince's eyes. This is the 2nd longest conversation I've ever had with a celebrity. The longest conversation I've ever had with a celebrity would be with Mia Farrow about heating houses in the winter.

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

Tired.

Not getting any work done. My head hurts. I think I need a better night's sleep. I think my body is not liking my new workout schedule either. Not enough recovery days. sigh. Going home...

Spina bifida

Hey bro-
In case you are wondering (and you probably aren't), they extra *ahem* dimple that you have and that Edda also has doesn't mean that you were ever even remotely close to having spina bifida. It just means your butt is weird. The spine ends about 6 inches above that, so it has nothing to do with anything. Straight from the mouth of a neurologist - so there you go.
Doris

Edda and Jeremy ride the bus.


We keep visiting the Children's Hospital. This week, we had two appointments, the first one was with a social worker and the second was with a neurologist. The one was yesterday and was so completely unhelpful and discouraging and not helped by my lack of sleep but today's was very nice and informative and good, perhaps due to a night of good sleep.

Yesterday started poorly. I spent a lot of the night upset and crying so I didn't get much sleep. I left Vince with another mom who lives in the complex who's daughter goes to the same preschool to take Vince to school and we took a cab to the hospital. The cab driver would not shut up! Yap! Yap! Yap! The whole way and even though I left a buffer of time, it took him 45 minutes to get there when usually it takes 25 minutes. Finally I had to yell at him to shut up (but I didn't actually say shut up, but he pretty much shut up, but it was only for the last 10 minutes) so we were late to our appointment. So we went to see the social worker who pretty much just gave us a bunch of lists of possible schools and said that she would file an application to the governing board and then we'd hear from them in 2 weeks or so and then we'd be on a waiting list for six months to a year. So pretty much, we aren't going to use the "public" system.

Today we went again to the hospital where we saw a neurologist. (This time we took the bus - faster if you can believe it and it cost 2.50 instead of 20 dollars.) Excellent appointment. She spent about an hour with us and Edda and these are her conclusions. The developmental doctor tested her for one kind of genetic disorder and that came back negative. The neurologist wants to test for another genetic disorder - Angelmann's syndrome - because Edda has some of the characteristics of the syndrome. She thinks they can just rescan the data they got from the previous blood tests. Edda has been exhibiting autistic tendencies - low eye contact, not responding to her name, non-verbal - but it's also confusing because she doesn't seem "just autistic", there are underlying physical problems (low-tone - inability to walk) as well as mental delays that seem not consistent with a diagnosis of just autism. The neurologist explained that some of these genetic syndromes will have autism as a pathology, meaning that the autism is caused by the syndrome and not just a behavioral issue as it is with some children. She also wants to run an MRI to see if anything is structurally wrong with Edda's brain, so we scheduled that for mid-next month because she'll need a pediatric anesthesiologist to administer general anesthesia because she'll have to lie still for about 40 minutes and they only have the doctor go there on Tuesdays and the next 3 Tuesdays are booked. And yes, finally, for all those people curious enough, her disabilities weren't caused by brain injury because of her fall that broke her leg. Whew!

Also, the neurologist was very helpful in telling us what we need to do in the US. She says that we should definitely see a pediatric neurologist and also get another genetic test done (Rett's syndrome) and metabolic tests done. Metabolic tests could indicate that she's missing a critical enzyme or something like that. These tests should be readily available in NYC, it's just so rare that they don't have the facilities to do it in SGP, they would have to send the samples overseas.

This afternoon was spent going to a school that will take Edda and work with her on all the therapies for 3 hours a day or so. We are looking at a bunch of different schools for her before we decide. We'll look at another on Saturday as well.

Also, I have to say that I have a lot of sweet friends who look after Vince as Jeremy and I go around town with Edda. Today, Rukia, our housekeeper came by to clean our house and she went to Vince's school to pick him up and take him to her house and he played with her daughter, Hazira (he loved her TV, of course). On Friday, Monday and Tuesday, we have more appointments and therapy, so my neighbor Helen will look after Vince and she still is refusing payment - she's the lady who looked after Vince when we had to rush Edda to the hospital for her UTI and she took him to a party! And there is also Julia who is the wife of a coworker of Jeremy who helped out with connections to the American school and looking after Vince and there is the mom Tina who takes Vince to school at 8:30 so we can make our 9 am appointments. And, of course, there is Kate who calls me up and invites me over and makes me get out of my house. It's really been wonderful...

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Apartment

Mom finally found the apartment that she likes to stay. One bedroom with double entries to the single bath room. It is about $700 per month including everything except electricity, phone, washer and dryer. There is no panelty for breaking the lease due to business reasons. It is about 5 minutes drive from the work place. I will buy a sleeping sofa to sleep in the living room. This way, Mom will not be disturbed during the night. They are doing the background check and will let us know for sure tomorrow, hopefully.

The Knitting Olympics

Well, the Knitting Olympics starts in a few days, and I was going to make a cabled hat, but I decided it wasn't challenging enough, so I switched over to these mittens worn by Hermione in the Harry Potter movies. I know I'm a few hours ahead of Turin and I'm not suppose to start knitting until the flame is lit, but I may take advantage of the time difference and start a little bit early.

Monday, February 6, 2006

Weekend Update...

As always, it seems like my weekends are packed these days.

Friday night, I went out to Waterdog park with Jason, Don and Brian. I just got my new Light & Motion ARC Li-ion lights. They are pretty much the new high intensty discharge lamps that you get on all the cars nowadays. It's freakin' bright. Had one on my helmet and one on the bars. I was going pretty damn fast cause I could like actually see the trail!

Saturday was work day. We've finally resolved the whole 24 hour mess. We have the green light to register. Ted's also going to race for us. It'll be fun (and lots of suffering). I also went ice skating for the first time since MIT. That was interesting. It's been awhile since I've bladed too, but it wasn't too bad. Can still skate backwards tho not very elegantly. There, I met one of Rich's friend's, Yong who had been going thru a similar career change like myself. He was working at Cingular for like 7 years, and decided to quit. He ended up working for a machine shop, and then over some bogus politico stuff, got canned. Right now he's getting his teaching degree right now. Also, he's a good skater since he plays hockey.

Sunday, I went out hiking with Anna. This is offcially our second date I suppose. We went out to the Stanford Dish, to walk along the trails there. It was cool. just a lot of chatting. I think I might be getting into better shape now since I wasn't really huffing or puffing up the hills. We ended up having brunch at a cafe in California Ave. I paid. :P Incidentally, she drives a Bug.

Hrm. This whole dating after all your friends are married or hooked up is really interesting. I'm not sure what to do now. My standard mode of operation is to meet people thru friends - groups of people hanging doing whatever. You get a chance to hang out with them, see them interact with other people, get to see them interact with their friends. Then you can gauge them pretty well, and you get to spend time with them before committing to any action. In the more traditional dating, your personalities sort of exist in a vacuum, and the intention is out on the table there. But I suppose it's how the world works when you get older. I'll get used to it.

Of course sunday was super bowl sunday. I went to a church gathering where people didn't really care very much about the game. Except for John Tang, who has been a die hard Steeler's fan since childhood. He painted his face Black and Yellow even. Needless to say, he was pretty happy with the result, tho the game wasn't really that great of a game. The commercials were only OK too.

It's interesting hanging out in a group that know each other, and you're the outsider. I notice in these groups that nobody really tries to get to know you at all. No questions are asked about who you are or what you enjoy doing or whatever. it all seems a bit superficial and fake in a way. Kind of sad I think for a group that supposedly touts openess, exchange and all that stuff.

Sunday, February 5, 2006

Aiken, SC

We just arrived at Aiken, SC. We are staying in a country club guest house, probably will stay about a week before moving into an apartment. It about 5 minutes away from work.

My car in Singapore


Look at what Jeremy found for me at Toys R Us today! This is my car in Singapore. A Comfort Cab... I love it!

Bubbles!


Saturday, February 4, 2006

Thank you, my SP!


So, of course, after I wrote my post about my secret pal, I found in the mailbox today a lovely package! (I must apologize as I haven't checked the mailbox in over a week - I hope it hadn't been sitting there too long.)

Look at that sock yarn! Beautiful, I've never knitted with Regia before and the color is fantastic. And the edible treats and the bath soap, just perfect.

It's been crazy around here. But I'm having a dandy time thinking of what I'm going to knit next. SOCKS!

Oh, secret pal, I love red too in my previous blog entry. I'm going to use the red yarn for a lace scarf, but first I had to buy some needles with a pointier tip because the Clover Bamboo ones I have just can't pick up the laceweight yarn.

Thank you for thinking of me :)

Crazy day. Again. Can't I ever have a normal day?


So last night, Edda had a fever and we gave her some Tylenol and she went to bed. But at about 1 am, she woke up with a pretty high fever and was shaking, so Jeremy ran out and took her to a 24 hour clinic just down the street and the doctor there gave her a suppository to bring the fever down and something else to prevent the possibility of a seizure. She came home and slept well.

But all today, we gave her the Motrin and the Tylenol, but her fever always hovered around 103. She finally was in enough distress that we took her again to the 24 hour clinic and they told us to take her right to the hospital. So we took her back to our lovely Children's Hospital. Luckily, I was able to snag my neighbor to take care of Vince. She was actually going to a Chinese New Year Party and said that it was fine to take Vince with her. We went to the hospital, spent a long time waiting for Edda to pee so they could do a urine test. (Picture is of Jeremy and Edda in the waiting room trying to get her to drink more water so she'll pee.) Turns out she has a urinary tract infection. Poor girl!

Anyways, we got home, Vince came home as well- had a fabulous time riding in a car (he told Auntie, "I love cars") and apparently he loves this beef noodle dish with gravy and didn't want to come home. Edda after her antibiotics perked right up and feels so good, she's still up at 11:00 pm.

Friday, February 3, 2006

Well. Somehow I can't read our blog.

So somehow, I'm "forbidden" to read my blog. Hmmm... interesting.

The Link.

Jacket.

Party Tonight with Friends with Cancer

Well, Mom started cooking last night and still cooking now. We are inviting two couples and a friend for dinner tonight. Each member of those two couples and that friend all have cancer, two of them with breast cancer. One has lung cancer. They are all our long time friends. We really don't know how to better handle ourselves but will try our best. Hope they will enjoy it.

Hello? Secret Pal? Are you there?

Hi Secret Pal,
Sorry the blog has been such a bummer, the exchange caught our family at a bad time. But I'm still knitting! Really, I am.. Here's a post all about knitting...

I'm almost done with the scarf that I'm knitting.

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So I'm moving onto a new project!

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Isn't this a beautiful thing? It's my first hank of yarn. I hesitated before attempting to unwind it into a ball, and for good reason...

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What a mess.



Therapy Appointment today

We went to the therapy place today. It was much better this time than last time, even though Edda did sleep through about 20 minutes of it. Ok, here is our assignment:

  • Get a mirror, put shaving cream on the mirror and encourage her to play with that.
  • Make faces with her in the mirror.
  • Get beans, dried pasta, sand and have her play with that. Hide things in the beans and have her find them.
  • Get some soft balls, put them in a bin, take them out of a bin.
  • For communication, make a picture book of things that she needs, food items, toys she likes. Before you get the item, open the book and point to the picture.
  • To stimulate her nerves, "brush" her arms, hands, legs, feet and back with a soft brush every 2 hours.
  • Also after the brushing, do joint stimulation.
We also got some sign language videos. We'll see how it goes.

Okay. Here's a picture...

We'll try ebay again... I'm still selling the microwave on craigslist tho.

 
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Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Digital Camera Users?

Hmmm.. Am I the only one with a camera? Come on guys, post some pictures!

Home, At Last

After 6 months, Mom finally came back to her east coast home. I did come back once, in early December. Well, everything is fine. Tomorrow, Mom will play marjar with her friends and I will do some house work.

We will not stay too long here. Saturday we will leave for SC.

Well....


After a few grumpy blog entries, I wanted this to be a happy, happy one. Mainly to let my parents know that we are still generally happy most of the time. See? In the picture? We're all happy.

Good news from the medical front, genetic tests were all OK, no apparent DNA screw-up. We have a tentative diagnosis of hypotonia cerebral palsy which basically translates into low-muscle-tone mentally-retarded kid. So, not much information than that, basically, they can't name it something, so this is what they are calling it.

Vince liked school today, they celebrated Chinese New Year and since it was so stressful for us this weekend, I didn't have a chance to buy him a super cool Chinese outfit, so he went to school in his uniform and everyone else was all spiffed up. But since they gave out goody bags, Vince basically had milk and candy for lunch. Boy was he on a sugar high today.

We are still planning on coming back in late March, I think we are going to go to the Children's Hospital in NYC affilitated with Columbia University as Bob and Katherine have an apartment in the city and also it will be the most viable one to go to frequently if necessary from where Jeremy would presumably work in NY.

Good night!