Elliot’s first ambulance ride..

December 17th, 2010

Elliot had a series of seizures that lasted 30+ minutes on Weds. morning. It looked like one long seizure to me, as he was never responsive and there was very little break between them. We have video, yuck! He had another one about 6 weeks ago, which was not as complex, lasted about 15 min total, and he was somewhat responsive during that one. Ryan convinced me that he was sleeping with his eyes open during the first one, he has been known to sleep with one eye open and sleeps deeply, so it made sense at the time. On Weds. he took an ambulance ride to the ER, then again to CDH where we stayed overnight. They did an EEG on Weds. and an MRI on Thurs.

Elliot’s MRI showed a spot (each doc called it something different, one said scar tissue, one said sclerosis, blah blah, I’m going to request the records and see what the report actually says) in the same area of his brain that the EEG showed a slightly slower electrical pattern, so indeed *something* is going on, and it is causing partial-complex seizures. He’s had 2 instances, both early in the morning, which is when the brain shifts from sleep to wake, which can be a trigger. He also had a bout of diarrhea Weds. morning, and it’s entirely possible the dehydration could be the trigger for the seizure, or it could be totally unrelated. He does seem to have vomiting as a post-seizure symptom, though that could also be related to the different meds he was given in the ambulance and ER. Not knowing is so much fun!

The diagnosis is not epilepsy, at least not yet. We were offered meds to control them, and decided to wait and see. The neuro says that because his brain is still growing and changing very rapidly that he has a good chance of outgrowing them, right now he has a 50/50 chance for having another, and if he has another, the risk goes higher for it continuing. We’ve opted for now to wait and see, if he has another we will look closely at the medications, if he has none, we will be thankful. We do have a prescription for a med that will stop a seizure if he does have one again. I’m probably going to seek a second opinion as well, since I found the neuro patronizing, and his specialty is adhd/migraines, not seizures.

Elliot is clingy and whiny today, and we’re all tired, and all thankful for all the support and positive thoughts and prayers that were tossed our way via FB and email the last few days.

Lions and tigers and babies, oh my!

December 17th, 2010

I’m going to put 2 posts in, the first is to announce that on my lap sits a 2.5 month old baby. His name is Reed Reiley Wilkins, and he was born at home on 10/2/10 at 11:11 pm. His birth was fast and furious, and we called him Cannonball until we found a name that fit his grand entry to the world.

He had a posterior tongue tie and tight labial frenum, so we had both cut by laser at the dentist, it was a quick and mostly easy clip, and it took until he was 7 weeks old for him to be able to nurse without causing me pain. I now understand how easy it is for some mothers to stop breastfeeding when there are pain issues. We’re still working on nursing in bed, but he’s starting to get the hang of it, especially that last nursing in the morning around 6, where he’s rested and has energy. Nursing to bed while side lying is not something he can do yet. I hope in time he will get the hang of it so I can get more rest.

In other fun news, Ryan’s last day of work with MFC was on 10/4, our 7th anniversary. He’s in the process of creating his own company now. Fingers crossed he’s wildly successful and has too much work and has to turn people down.

I keep saying I’m going to try to post more, but then I get distracted. The kids are involved this year in a homeschool co-op where they have fine arts classes. Elliot and Reed and I are taking a music class that is very similar to Kindermusic. Lauren is taking a ballet/tap class and a modified Suzuki violin class. She seems to really enjoy the music.

We’re also running out of space. We either need to purge half of our lives or find a bigger place to live. I’d like to do both!

The aliens have stolen my children.

August 17th, 2010

It’s literally been since they woke up this morning. It’s starting to scare me a little. Or a lot.

This morning they both woke up in a good mood, and both made themselves breakfast (cereal) and cleaned up their dishes too. Then they asked to stay home instead of going to the park where their friends were. They played nicely all day, and only once asked for video/computer time, and when I asked about the park again, they said they really wanted to stay home today.

Lauren didn’t balk at any of my requests today – to pick up a dish on the floor that I knew wasn’t hers, to pick up the play-doh, to run to the basement and grab a few things from me from the pantry, etc. And she did “responsible” stuff too – like put the hairbrush away w/o a prompt (she always leaves it on the living room floor), sharing a snack with Elliot that she made, and put away some of their toys w/o any reminder.

And then when they bathed, they didn’t hose off my bathroom floor, they asked for clothing (they are always naked) and they let me take a 30 min. “nap” in the afternoon. When I got up, Elliot was sleeping (and still wearing his clothes!), and Lauren was playing quietly.

I swear these are aliens and my kids must be somewhere else being held captive!

——————- an hour later ——————–

And the aliens have returned my children. On my way home from Chrissy’s house (dropped off dinner, they have a new baby) I stopped to visit with Sherry (across the street) for a minute, and got home to find my previously calm and clothed children mostly nude and having a guacamole fight. Now they are throwing play-doh containers at each other.

Welcome back to normal.

Where has the time gone?

July 30th, 2010

Wow, it’s been nearly a year since I posted anything here. Oops!

Lauren is now five and a HALF and has a best friend (who has given her a “best friend” necklace) that lives just around the corner from us. Elliot is nearly 3.5 and highly dangerous with his mad skills.

Lauren learned to ride a two wheeler without training wheels this summer, and how to swim under water for short distances as well. She tries to do crawl stroke but can’t get her arms out of the water. Elliot is a climber and jumper and daredevil, and speeds around on his trike. I am pregnant, due in the fall, and we’re pretty excited about that. What else is there to tell?


August 26th, 2009

Elliot just had a conversation with his penis. He was sitting at the opposite end of the couch from me and looked down and went, “penis? peeeeniiisss?”

It didn’t answer him, so he grabbed it and said louder, “penis? PENIS!” then he yelled twice, “penis, peeenissss, don’t go dat, penis!” and then “daddy? daddy penis? PENIS!??!”

I asked him if he was talking to his penis and he said, “my penis, mine, no penis mama”

Oh if only I had a video camera built in to my glasses or something.

Happy half-Birthday

August 1st, 2009

Lauren is 4.5 and she’s VERY into being “and a half!” though she really wishes she could be 5 like some of her friends who are having parties now.

We’ve had a busy summer. Last week we spent the week in Ohio with Ryan’s family, his brother and family came back from 3 years of overseas living in Tel Aviv, and we took all the kids (2.5, 4.5, newly 5 and newly 8 ) to Cedar Point for an overnight of rollercoaster fun. The kids did great and the grownups got to ride on some fun rides too.

We recently rehomed Zoe to a wonderful couple on the east end of Ohio, where she is now roaming 10 acres of pet fenced land on a huge 50+ acre farm. We’re thrilled that there is someone out there willing to love her as much as we do, and we’re thrilled to know she’s safe and happy. She and Elliot have really had a hard few months together, and we were finding it much more difficult to rehome Elliot.

Dad has been traveling for work, and Ryan went to Afghanistan right after Easter, the kids and I have only been going to Ohio. We’re hoping to take some sort of trip in the early fall, after school starts, so we can avoid tourists and still enjoy the nice weather.

Mom graduates in December from CSU, she’s pretty excited about that. And Ella is going to be a big sister in the fall too.

Evie is coming here in a few weeks to visit, for a whole week, and Lauren is THRILLED. Though she would prefer visiting at Nonnie’s house and going to Kiddie Park, she’ll be pleased to have company here too.

Not much else is new, we’ve been VERY busy this summer, going back to Ohio for Amy’s dad’s funeral at the beginning of July, tons of park days and playgroups, and general good-weather mayhem.

I’ll be back with pics soon, I have to unload my camera and get the pics online first.

Care of Magical Creatures

April 30th, 2009

we have one of these

it roars and opens/closes mouth, turns head

So yesterday the kids had the dinosaur in the basement, I think they were trying to dress it up or bounce it on the trampoline.

This morning Elliot was downstairs, found it, and was bringing it back up, yelling “dista! scare ew! heeelp!” (sister, scare you, help), as in, Lauren, this damn dino is heavy, and I can’t say dinosaur, so it’s a “scare you” and will you help me drag it up?

He managed to get it up here on his own. And turned it over and said, “hi butt! scare you butt!” to it.

Then threw it down the basement (carpeted) stairs, “ut oh! hurt! scare ew hurt! hurt, ut oh!” and ran down to check on it. “ew kay?”

Really cool bike!

April 23rd, 2009


Follow the link and enter too! What fun we could have with one of these in our garage. I might even convince Ryan to sell his car.

Madsen Cycles Cargo Bikes

I can’t find my camera.

February 1st, 2009

I was just noticing that there aren’t any pictures on here in the last few months. Matter of fact, there are no pictures of my kids in the last few months, except for a few that my mom took of them at Christmas. I can’t find my camera. I did find my camera before Christmas but the battery was dead and I couldn’t find the charger. I finally found the charger yesterday, but now have no idea what I did with the camera.

So children, I apologize, for missing Lauren’s 4th birthday, for missing a huge chunk of your lives. You are having fun and growing and look adorable, I promise.

And yes, Lauren is 4! She is already telling everyone, “I’m going to be 5!” now. On her birthday (it was a Sunday) we made farble mudge cake and invited our favorite neighbors from across the street to come over for lunch. We served big bowls of chili, Lauren helped me make the cake and cornbread, and Elliot fell asleep in his chair at the table, with food on his face.

Mommy and Daddy gave Lauren a dollhouse, and Elliot and Zoe provided some furniture for it – Elliot, the kids bedroom (bunkbeds, etc.) and Zoe, the kitchen (her favorite place in our house too).

It’s been a big hit with the boys in our playgroup, they gravitate toward it every time they are here.

To really celebrate Lauren’s birthday, we had a “party” on a regular playgroup day/time. We invited our entire playgroup to join us, but to not bring gifts, as we have far too many toys here already. If they really wanted to bring a gift, I asked them to make her a card instead, which she thought was really neat after getting email cards from her cousins Patrick and Scott.

I guess I should mention that our playgroup is over 100 families big, and spans an entire county and beyond. Fortunately, only about 12 responded that they were coming. *whew* So on Monday Lauren and I headed to the store to buy supplies – we had promised lunch to our friends for the party. We bought a ton of pita bread and pizza toppings, and the kids had a blast building their own pizzas and eating them. The moms enjoyed it too. And Lauren and I made 48 cupcakes, 30 of which were literally inhaled in moments by the kids. In total we had 19 kids in our tiny house (ages 1-7.5) for 4+ hrs. and nobody got hurt, nobody had a terrible fight over a toy, and they left the moms alone to talk upstairs most of the time. I LOVE our playgroup.

Elliot’s birthday is coming in 2 weeks, and while he doesn’t really get it, Lauren is terribly upset because it means that her birthday is over. She’s insisting that it’s still her birthday (and she insisted it was STILL Christmas until recently, though she will tell you it’s still Christmas because we still have snow on the ground), and that brother can’t have a birthday. I think really it’s because she knows her Other Nonnie and Grandma have gifts for her in Ohio and she wants to open them. Only thing is, we won’t be going to Ohio until after Elliot’s birthday. Can’t wait to see how she processes that one.

In other news, our lease is up in April and we’re starting to watch the housing market. Ryan’s #1 priority is to live somewhere “where we won’t get shot” after watching kids running in the street with guns in our Chicago abode. I’m fairly sure that we’re not going to even consider moving back downtown as his office is a 30 min. drive WEST of where we live right now and we’re about an hour drive west-northwest of downtown. His #2 priority is being able to bike to work, which limits us to a 6 mile radius around his office and that limits us to about 4 towns in the area. 3 of them are in the next county. Which is good, it’s lower taxes, but bad in that it’s further west yet again, and it already takes 6 hrs to drive home. Or maybe his #2 is having internet access. Either way it’s important.

So, housing considerations. 3 bedrooms, 2 car garage, 1.5 baths. Air conditioning, dishwasher, usable basement or rec room. Those are the important parts. Bonus points for an attached garage, fenced yard, nice neighbors.

I hate browsing houses (we’ve been driving past for curb appeal and neighborhood feel) when it’s so cold out – I’d much rather see the neighborhood in action on a summer weekend to feel it out. More later on the house hunt. Of course we’re just starting now, so this could go on for the next year.

Merry Christmas!!

December 27th, 2008

We’re home! We’ve been celebrating Christmas for a week, and I think the kids are going to need to start a 12 step detox program tomorrow. I seriously fear the look of sadness on Lauren’s face tomorrow when there isn’t anything to open under the tree.

We had a nice week of visiting family and friends, and we avoided a major snow and ice storm here, as well as one in Cleveland, by our excellent plans (LOL) to travel. It’s raining like mad now, but I think the snow will be back before the end of the week.

So… a fast holiday recap:

We headed to Ohio on Monday, arrived after dinner, played with Nonno and Nonna, and headed to bed.

Tuesday we hung out and didn’t do much of anything, played with Gella and Evie, ran a few easy errands, dropped off some stuff, and lounged on the sofas.

Weds. we headed to Other Nonnie’s house for lunch, and played there all afternoon. She made us spaghetti and let the kids have icecream. From there we went to Grandma’s house for dinner with Ryan’s family (Grandma, Aunt Lala, Great Grandma and Grandpa, and Grandma Fitz), celebrated Grandma Fitz’s birthday, exchanged gifts, and ate cake. Big hits of the night – Lauren got a puzzle she loves, and some dolls (her dollhouse is coming in a few weeks for her birthday, watch for that important update), and Elliot is just enamored with his new airplane.

When we got home on Weds. night there were 2 big boxes at the house waiting for us – gifts from Todd and Jen had somehow traveled from Tel Aviv to my mom’s house! (Thanks guys, the gift cards rocked!) Elliot is the proud new owner of a ukulele and Lauren has a guitar.

Christmas morning they couldn’t wait, they really were excited to find more boxes wrapped in colorful paper. Nonno and Nonna gave the kids books, and Lauren got a fancy princess dress up dress, while Elliot scored this awesome truck that is just big enough to sit in and let Lauren push him around the house.

Other Nonnie gave Lauren a new chair and Candy Land, which she promptly figured out how to manipulate her parents while playing so that she’s guaranteed to win. Elliot got some more cars and trucks, smaller ones that he can play on the floor with.

THEN… Aunt Cole, Uncle John, Gella and Evie came over… and we started round 20394823049 of gift giving. A HUGE bag of art supplies for Lauren, and even more cars and trucks and airplanes (little wooden ones) for Elliot, I think we have enough cars to transport most of Ohio to Chicago now.

Whew! That was busy. But we weren’t done! On Friday we packed up and ran errands and took care of some business, stopped to have lunch and playtime with the Anholds, and headed for home. We got home at bedtime, but of course some magical entity made sure there were gifts under our tree when we returned home. Giant building blocks for the kids, a helicopter and bus for Elliot, wooden blocks for Lauren, some educational games and puzzles, and a GIANT ball for Elliot, and a bunch of finger puppets for Lauren, we were out of boxes to open.

Ryan got Lisa a Tomtom GPS, and Lisa got Ryan a toy for his phone, a geek t-shirt, and a few other little things. The kids, they love their dad so much that they each got him a bottle of Baileys and some Baileys glasses to match, and a tea kettle for me.

Poor Zoe, she got a long car ride, some hugs, and a cookie. She’s been on the naughty list this year.

Finally, bedtime! Elliot begged to go to bed last night, and Lauren didn’t want to. She left a bag of carrots out for Santa’s reindeer, and Santa threw the yucky ones in our trash, but took the rest. He also left some remote control cars next to a partially eaten cookie for the kids – a police cruiser and a red sports car, complete with batteries and ready to go. Elliot found them this morning when he woke up, and Lauren was excited to play with hers.

Merry Christmas! And Thank you! The kids are so thrilled with their gifts this year, and I’m so happy to have fun toys to play with too!!