28 December 2010


Mom is finally home...with some comedy of errors in between.

First, get back from taking the in-laws to the airport and notice that DJP is extremely warm. We take his temperature and it's 100.7. We give him so medicine, a bottle and put him down for a nap. He wakes up 30 minutes later with the same temperature. Jason calls the pediatrician and the reception asks where we live. We can be there in 5 minutes. So, Jason takes DJP to the doctor and I get my car loaded with stuff that I'm taking to stay with Mom overnight.

Second, I was about 3/4 of the way to the hospital and forgot Mom's coat and shoes. So I turned around (thank God I know my exits on 95!) and went back home. Somehow, I missed Jason coming back from the doctor...

Then, I get to the parking garage and the ticket machine makes a weird sound. One of the attendants comes over and says "don't worry, you didn't break the machine. it's just out of tickets." She opens the other machine and I get the first ticket out (this will be important later...).

I get to Mom's room and help her get ready to leave. We hurry up to wait for the nurse to give Mom her prescriptions, new diet and sign the discharge papers. I gather all Mom's stuff and head off to get the car. I get into line to pay. And wait. And wait. About 10 minutes go by and we haven't moved. The man in line behind me finds out that there's some ticket issue. Great. The line moves and finally it's my turn. There's NOTHING printed on my ticket so the attendant has to find some code to type in so that the gate will lift and I can leave. This takes 10 minutes. People come up to the booth and are complaining. I explain what's going on and they just keep yelling at the attendant to lift the gate. Finally, I get out of the garage and get Mom.

We get to Mom's house and I think the easiest way to get her in the house is by the front door. We get to the step and she cannot lift her leg(due to fluid retention). I try lifting her leg which doesn't work. I try pushing her up which also doesn't work. I think for a minute and run in the house and get a chair. Mom was able to get into the chair and turn herself so that she could get in the house without having to actually get up the step. WHEW!

Mom is feeling okay, just tired. She goes next Tuesday for a follow up appointment with the oncology team at UMMC. Hopefully, they will have a new schedule for treatments set up for her then.

ETA: DJP no longer has a fever but is a bit lethargic which the doctor said could happen.

23 December 2010

Surgery went well

After waiting all day yesterday with no one saying the surgery would be delayed until today, Mom was taken to surgery about 8am. One of the nurses called me around 9am to say that she had actually been taken to surgery. I arrived at the surgical floor at 11am and was told that Mom was still in surgery and doing well. About 12:30pm one of the staff came to get me and take me to see Mom in recovery.

Mom was awake and talking when I got to recovery. She was even cracking jokes with one of the anesthesiologists who came to see how she was doing before he left. Mom was in recovery until about 2pm mainly because the nurse and another anesthesiologist were debating whether or not to have Mom on a heart monitor since she hadn't been on a monitor in her room. The reason being is because during surgery she had what everyone was calling a "blip" in her heart rhythm. They almost missed it happening and didn't get a record of it. The recovery nurse explained that it could have happened for a variety of reasons but it could have been that Mom's potassium level was low before going into surgery and that can cause the heart to have an irregular rhythm. So Mom ended up with a monitor-she was thrilled to have the extra cords attached to her, which makes getting up to use the restroom a trial.

Mom got back to her room around 2:15pm and the doctors came around 3:30pm to talk about what they had done. The one doctor said that Mom's gallbladder was basically dead. There was a lot of pus and that's why they left the drain in just in case there was any pus left and it could drain out.

Mom was resting when I left the hospital tonight and hopefully will either be released tomorrow or Saturday depending on how she is overnight.

20 December 2010

9 Months Old

DJP is now 9 months old! He now weighs 20lbs. 8oz. and is 28 inches tall (we think he was measured incorrectly last dr's visit because this measurement means that he's only grown 1/4 of an inch in three months!). He has 6 teeth (4 top and 2 bottom). He crawls faster than we can walk. He stands. He walks along the furniture (has gotten quicker!) and will walk holding onto our fingers. He no longer falls trying to get down from standing but lowers himself.

DJP claps (with noise) and smiles all the time. He plays well by himself but by late afternoon wants someone to be with him constantly (there's a bit of separation anxiety too!). He enjoys all of his toys especially his very own TV remote. He likes to be chased-thinks it's the most hysterical game in the World.

We still have to say that Kitty (aka Ophelia) is his favorite play toy. Even with the gate up now, he will talk to her (more like giving her orders since his voice gets a very demanding tone to it) when she ventures to her food and water bowls.

He's also discovered that he can bounce when he's in his exersaucer. I love watching him do this-one of these days he's going to bounce himself right out of the exersaucer with his very powerful legs!

Updates are all over the place

It seems like there's another update every few hours...information changes from hour to hour, so once I know what's really going to happen, I'll post.

So here goes-

Saturday afternoon, Mom was transferred from Upper Chesapeake to UMMC. UMMC is not the best marked hospital that I've ever been in. I asked for help (and I don't do that often!). The ambulance transport guys were great and so was the admitting RN. Mom did see one of the residents who didn't think she needed surgery right away, but probably on Monday or Tuesday. It took him forever to put his orders in for the nurses so Mom went quite awhile without having any liquids. When I left around 9:30pm, she had just gotten a tray of "clear" liquids-chicken broth, lime jello, apple juice and water. Yum.

Yesterday, the team who is treating the cancer came to visit her and said that they thought it was the stints causing all the trouble and they'd send a GI guy to see her. He came about 7pm and said that Dr. Darwin (doctor who put in the stints) would be seeing Mom today. Well, a half hour later, Chris calls me and says that plans have changed and that Mom would be having another endoscopy done to see what is going on with the stints and her gallbladder. She will be having that done at noon today. Once I know more, I'll post again!

16 December 2010

Another Mom update

Mom is currently in the hospital at Upper Chesapeake. She was extremely dizzy and was vomiting on Tuesday morning, called the doctor and he sent her to the emergency room. Aunt Felicia has been with her (she had planned to spend the week with Mom anyway) and giving us updates as information comes in.

Mom did have a fever yesterday-blood culture results to come sometime today-and they gave her some Tylenol and low-dose antibiotics to reduce the fever. The doctor was telling her that if she has no fever she can go home today. When I talked to her last night, her temperature was 99 (better than the 102 is was earlier in the day!).

Mom sounds good and positive, although a bit frustrated at her roommate who is a bit loud...so loud that it was hard to hear Mom on the phone last night. I did put the speakerphone on so that Mom and DJP could "talk" to each other. DJP recognized his grandma's voice and smiled at the phone. Of course, he wanted to "hold" the phone so he could chew on it with his four new top teeth! (Mommy said no-what a surprise!)

09 December 2010

Latest on Mom

Since my last post, Mom has had two doctor's appointments-one to meet the surgical oncologist and the other to meet the entire team that will be working with her at UMMC.

The plan is to start with radiation and chemotherapy for about 5-6 weeks. Mom will go to UMMC Monday through Friday for radiation and the team is undecided about whether she will have IV or pill form of chemo. If they decide on IV, she will go once a week to the Cancer Center at UMMC for chemo. If they decide on pills, she will take those twice a day. The pills would be easier for her, since she wouldn't have to spend extra time at the hospital.

Once the radiation and chemo treatments are finished, Mom will have a month break, during which time she will have another CT scan to see if the tumor has responded to the radiation and chemotherapy. If it has, the team will schedule her surgery. After surgery, she will be in the hospital for up to 2 weeks since this is MAJOR surgery. Then have about 6 more weeks of recovery at home.

The final step will be to continue chemotherapy for 6 months after the surgery to make sure that there is no recurrence of the cancer.

The doctors are all optimistic and the plan is for this to be finished by this time next year.

30 November 2010


Before we left on the cruise, Mom went to the doctor and he said that she was jaundiced. He sent her to see a gastroenterologist. After some additional tests, he sent her to have an endoscopy done at UMMC. I went with Mom for the procedure. We got the results right there at the hospital-Mom has a walnut sized mass in her pancreas that is cancer. The doctor said that he thought we caught it early and that Mom is probably a candidate for the Whipple procedure.

Mom goes back to UMMC to have a CT Scan tomorrow and then we have an appointment to talk with the surgical oncologist on Friday. I will continue to update Mom's condition and progress here as soon as we have new information.

Eight month birthday

For DJP's eight month (plus) birthday he got a special present-he got to go on a cruise! Actually, we had planned this cruise before DJP was even a thought in our minds and now that we cannot imagine life without him, OF COURSE we took him along.

He enjoyed being on the ship, people watching and meeting so many new people, especially his two "girlfriends" from the main dining room, Monika and Precious:

DJP made friends young and old, so many that he has learned how to wave within a week and as we were waiting for Aunt Niki to pick us up, people that Jason and I had not met were saying "Bye DJP!"

While on board ship, DJP continued his teething and two new teeth broke through-a top incisor and a top front tooth! We could also feel the other front tooth and incisor which have started to poke through as well. Two of DJP's favorite "toys" in our cabin were the door stop and the metallic trashcan. (Yes, we wiped them down before he started chewing on them!)

Another "skill" that DJP worked on while we were away was his fearlessness. When DJP was on the bed, he would crawl around then look at us and then crawl to the edge and even attempt to crawl right off without seeing there was no where to go!

We're definitely going to have to watch out for our little daredevil!

DJP has also gotten brave enough to start hanging onto various pieces of furniture (and fingers too!) and walk! We are amazed at DJP's progress every day. He learns so quickly!

01 November 2010

Seven Plus Months

I'm a bit behind...as usual!

DJP is seven months plus a week or two and has changed so much in the last month.

DJP now has TWO (yes, they came in together!)bottom teeth which we avoid since they are super sharp and he likes to gnaw on various items. He has chewed on his Halloween book from Nina & Papa so much that he has put a hole in it (he liked it that much!) and we now look at that book from a distance. DJP is still teething-top gums are super swollen and have widened even more than the bottom gums did. Still no obvious signs of teeth yet, however the ear tugging and chewing on everything in sight (including Grandma's arm and thumb) has commenced once again. With the teething in full swing, there's been little sleep the last few days. We were very lucky last week that we had five FULL nights of sleep (well, DJP did!).

DJP is also not just rolling everywhere but he is crawling! He took the first few tentative crawls on his 7 month birthday then nothing for a couple of days. He moves around like a pro now! He's even been able to catch up with Ophelia lately-she'll learn to move faster when he grabs her tail and won't let go!

Our little boy is growing up so quickly!

19 September 2010

Six months ago...

Six months ago today, Jason and I went to the hospital very early to have a baby. DJP arrived at 9:58pm weighing 8 lbs, 3 ozs. We haven't had our official weigh in at the pediatrician's office, but we're guessing he weighs at least 17lbs. and has grown an inch or two more since our last visit.

DJP can sit up (once we put him there)and stay that way for quite some time (probably about 10 minutes) before he decides that he's had enough and falls over to be either on his back or his belly. He also rolls from belly to back and back to belly-today he did both while watching football with Jason. Apparently he wanted to go somewhere!

He's still teething-not so much drool but pulling on his ears. There's no sign of teeth other than his gums have widened a bit more and are definitely bumpy. DJP has become more vocal with lots of sounds and has different facial expressions to go with them. My favorite is when he gets this serious look and he raises one eyebrow! (Neither Jason nor I can do this...) He also can form his mouth into an "ooh" which is fun when we do it first and then he mimics us. Whenever we do something new, DJP is observant and taking it all in so that he can do it later!

DJP's favorite thing to do is watching Ophelia (aka "Kitty") whenever she's brave enough to come into the living room. He will squeal and his little legs go (this is while in the exersaucer) and Kitty avoids the little hands as much as possible. She came a bit close on Friday and DJP was able to grab her tail and didn't really want to let go! I had to pry his fingers off-he had a hand full of cat hair...

The biggest change has been that DJP has been pushing himself up with his hands-lifting his belly off the floor. If he can get his legs coordinated, he'll be mobile shortly!

ETA: DJP is 27 3/4 inches long and weighs 17 3/4 lbs. WOW!

08 September 2010

First Pool Party

DJP attended his first pool party a few weeks ago (only blogging about it now due to the "bday flu" which will be discussed in a few sentences). The pool party was in celebration of DJP's cousin's 2nd birthday. (Happy Birthday, KJP!) The little guy got into his bathing suit and Del Sol t-shirt along with his hat and went in the water with his daddy.

There was also a visit in the pool by Harley, my aunt and uncle's puppy! (who did get on the raft all by himself!)

DJP also got to try his own raft. He enjoyed lounging quite a bit!

Fun was had by all until the next day...when the "bday flu" hit about half the people who attended the party. A family who parties together also gets sick together...talk about family love! (It will definitely be something we all talk about for YEARS to come...)

22 August 2010

Making Ciabatta

Jason and I are very much into watching America's Test Kitchen and reading Cook's Illustrated. They have great recipes and take the time to get the right flavor, etc. with what they make. We were looking through some of their "best" issues last night and I came across a recipe for Ciabatta. Jason remarked that he had watched that episode and said that would be a good recipe to try. I looked at the ingredient list and checked the cabinets and said,"want me to make this tomorrow?" Of course he said yes!

I looked at the directions and noticed that the first part, making a "sponge," needed to rise for 8-24 hours. So I started making that last night:

This morning, after DJP and I woke up (guess who woke who up first?!), I continued with the recipe. I was excited that not only could I use my mixer, but that I could use the dough hook (a first)! After the mixer kneaded the dough and I got it into a bowl, I let the dough rise. And rise. And rise again. Then the dough needed to be shaped into loaves and left to rest and rise once more.
Finally, the loaves went into the oven to bake. Once they were nice and golden brown, they had to cool for about an hour (someone whose name shall not be mentioned was antsy about the length of time he had to wait...) The time passed and the bread was sliced and was decided by Jason to be excellent: (which means that I can make that particular recipe again...and again...and again...)

Visiting Grandma and Grandpa P

Once we arrived at Grandma and Grandpa P's house, DJP decided that he wanted to watch some TV. So he lounged on the comfy couch and took it all in. That was a good idea on his part since he didn't realize what a whirlwind time it would be visiting with Grandma and Grandpa!

First, we had dinner with the local aunts and uncles (there are no pictures because none of us thought to take any...next time!) which resulted in a later than normal bedtime. DJP took it all in stride that night...

Then we went to visit two family friends-one in a nursing home and the other at home recovering from hip surgery. Elyce, pictured here with Grandpa and DJP, wanted to know when he was going to come and stay with her and paint the town. DJP just took it all in-smiling and giggling! While we were there, he did sit all on his own-granted he was doing the tripod thing-leaning over with his hands between his feet. He's not really done that again-keeps tipping over!

Of course with all the excitement nap time was a bit disrupted and short but fun comes first, right?! In all the excitement DJP got dinner on his outfit, so Grandpa decided to change him into this:
which if you've been paying careful attention to photos is the same tie-dyed t-shirts the boys in SC had on (because SGW is the one who made them)! Of course, I had to send this picture (by text of course) to my SIL to share with the boys.

Then Jason and I got a date night in-we went to see The Girl Who Played With Fire at the Tampa Theatre. I love going there-the Wurlitzer organ still comes up onto the stage from below and the ladies' room is the ladies' "parlor." The ceiling even has little lights in it to make it look like there are stars. We also had dinner at one of my favorite places, Too Jays, a deli-like sit-down restaurant. It was yummy (as usual)!

We also got to see a Rays game-they were playing the Orioles as luck would have it! This was the first time we left DJP with someone other than ourselves or grandparents. He was in capable hands with Kim, a former student/protegee of Grandma P's. There were no problems and we had...ugh...I mean, I had a great time...everyone else suffered through it since the Orioles won and the Rays lost. (Go O's! Does Buck Showalter have fairydust in his pockets that he sprinkles over the players or what?!?!?)

The last part of our visit with Grandma and Grandpa P was to head north to Crystal River to visit with Great Grandma and the aunts and uncles that live there. Great Grandma had a wonderful time with DJP:

as did Aunt Janet and Uncle Dan. We also got to visit with Aunt Kay and Uncle Greg since Aunt Kay finished her special project for DJP-a quilt. In the family, Aunt Kay is THE quilt maker and makes them for the little ones. DJP is on his baseball themed quilt-even with O's and Ray's embroidered players!

It was great to see everyone and after all the fun and excitement and a great breakfast (Thanks, Great Grandma!) we headed home to MD.

21 August 2010

Visiting Nina and Papa

After saying one last goodbye to the cousins, we got DJP back into the car and headed to Florida. On our way, we stopped at Zaxby's, a fast-food chicken restaurant that would give Chik-fil-a a run for its money. As was typical of this trip, DJP got lots of attention from everyone. It amazes me how total strangers will strike up conversations when there's a baby around-especially the bright eyed and curious DJP!

We finally arrived at Nina and Papa's house, where some rooms were empty because they had packed most of the house and moved it to SC for the new house and were getting ready to settle on the FL house a few days after we would leave. It was bittersweet for Jason since he has a lot of memories there from college and lots of his favorite places are nearby.

We had dinner at Gigi's, Jason's favorite pizza place. They have the best thin crust pizza and little pepperoni. YUM!

We watched the Rays play on TV since they wouldn't be at the Trop until later in our trip.

We visited Jason's alma mater, Eckerd College, which also happens to be where his mom and his dad went to college. It's a bit ironic that I also wanted to go there (and recently found out that another college friend of mine had looked there as well!) and could have met Jason 10 years earlier!

We also had a chance to visit with some extended family. It was fun to watch M & M interact with DJP.

As well as DJP taking to Aunt Moon so well. We thought we'd have to bring her home with us-she didn't want to let him go!

DJP had a few firsts while we were at Nina and Papa's house too. He had his first meal in a high chair. He didn't seem to mind it at all, which was nice and easier for us to clean up!
And DJP had his first bathroom sink bath:
We also visited Selmon's (Leroy Selmon's restaurant, former TB Buccaneer) and the P. Buckley Moss art gallery, where Nina purchased a print, College Baseball Dreams, for DJP to celebrate his birth. Jason actually got to meet P. Buckley Moss, since we had to take a detour back to the gallery the next day. She will sign the glass of the frame for DJP.

We had a great visit with Nina and Papa and can't wait to see them when they come here at Christmas time.

Next stop: Grandma & Grandpa P's

20 August 2010

Our Visit to SC

Our first stop was to visit DJP's cousins in Clinton, SC. (Yes, this tiny town has it's own website!) We arrived later in the day then we had originally expected since we bypassed Interstate 95 (to avoid the DC/Northern VA traffic) to take a more scenic route and we had to stop more to let DJP out of his car seat, etc.

Once we arrived at Megan and Stan's (Jason's sister and BIL) house, the boys were excited to see us and LKW was just taking it all in. We also were able to have dinner with Jason and Megan's cousin, Joel and his wife, Mariah who happen to be in Spartanburg, SC for Mariah's job. It was nice to see everyone and spend time catching up and just relaxing.

Jason's mom and step dad are moving to Clinton and have already purchased a home, moved some things from FL and have the house set up to live in so we stayed there instead of a hotel. The house is a few blocks away from Megan and close to the elementary school where the boys and eventually LKW will go to school.

We also got to visit the center of town which includes a McDonald's, train tracks (that divide the town) and some other businesses. We ate lunch at Steamers, a restaurant that is mainly open for lunch but has branched out to be open for dinner one or two nights a week. We also passed by Presbyterian College and Thornwell Home for Children.

It's definitely a small town where everyone knows your business (someone walking their dog one night stopped to chat with my SIL and asked how she was feeling after her mouth surgey) and there aren't the creature comforts like Target, Walmart and malls close by.

Next post: Arriving at Nina & Papa's

18 August 2010

5 Months Old

From this:

To this:
DJP is 5 months old today! I cannot believe it's been that long and how much he has changed.

He is still teething with possible signs of teeth starting. Stuck my finger in his mouth to apply some orajel and there were bumps instead of smoothness on his gums. An the amount of drool has increased yet again, if that's even possible. (Still looking for a viable use for all this drool...)

DJP has rolled over from his back to his tummy however neither Jason nor I have seen this actually happen (he's done this at some point during the night/morning before we've gotten him and also on Grandpa P's bed but we think he cheated...)

He loves butternut squash-finishes the entire jar in one sitting! Definitely did not like peas (me either kiddo!) and is okay with green beans. Jason and I were wondering if DJP remembers the taste of butternut squash from last Christmas when Grandma P made butternut squash soup and mommy tried some?!?! Next up is either carrots or sweet potatoes.

DJP continues to smile easily (even when extremely tired like he was today since he'd only taken a total of an hour's nap all day), still not always sleeping through the night (dr. says 8 hours at a time...Jason and I laugh...it's about 5 if we're lucky! Kiddo wakes up with a hefty diaper and starving!) and is loving his exersaucer. He definitely likes the part where he throws toys on the floor and mommy picks them up (ha ha...that doesn't last long!)

17 August 2010

We're back!

We have returned home from our looooooooooooooooong vacation (2 weeks) to SC and FL. I think DJP's way of expressing the last hour was perfect-he cried/screamed and was just inconsolable. I told him, "Kiddo, Mommy feels the same way but she's not crying!" That's what happens when we've been stuck in the car for 10 hours...

We're happy to be home and able to sleep in our own beds since we had the opportunity to use 5 (yes, five) different beds on this trip. Last night, Jason said, "Just sit here a minute and enjoy the fact that this is our bed." I just laid down and sighed. Yes, it is our bed and went to sleep.

04 August 2010


When Jason lived in Raleigh, one of the places he would stop at on his trip home from Elon was Cook-Out which has burgers, hotdogs, fries, onion rings, hush puppies, and milkshakes. We were looking for somewhere to stop for awhile to get DJP out of his carseat when Jason saw a sign for Cook-out. Off the interstate we went. We found Cook-Out but there was a surprise. All the Cook-Outs that we had seen were only drive thrus-this one was a sit-down place. So we went in, had some burgers, fries and hush puppies along with some Cajun seasoning. Yum!

03 August 2010

What we saw on our trip south

Unfortunately there is no photographic evidence of what we saw due to the fact that pictures taken at high speeds in a car with an iPhone would just be a blur.

First, traffic came to a standstill on 81 due to 'blasting.' The construction crews were out in force and needed to use some old fashioned methods to clear dirt and rock. We did not see nor feel anything except dirt and trees being moved. This was okay by us since DJP was sleeping.

Once traffic got rolling again and a half hour later we pass the Extreme Makeover Home Edition tour bus. A bit ironic since they were filming a few weeks ago in Baltimore while working on a girls' home (one of my cousins went to help out).

Another vehicular sighting was a semi-truck decorated as a Tootsie Roll! I haven't seen that in a long time. Makes me want to go buy a Tootsie Roll...don't think my teeth can handle that now with all the dental work.
All in all, the ride so far has been uneventful.

31 July 2010

4 Months Old

DJP is now 4 months old (yes, it's been more than a month since I last posted...sorry DJP has been getting most of my attention lately because he's a tad bit cuter than the computer!).

DJP went to see the pediatrician on Monday and he currently weighs 15lbs and is 25 3/4 inches long. He also got the second round of shots for Rotavirus (one more round at 6 months), which was not much fun for him. It was interesting to see his reactions-the first needle he didn't know how to react and the second we saw him turn as red as our furniture and forget to breathe. He did seem to be a bit more irritated after this round of shots, but was fine again once we were home.

Currently, DJP smiles all the time, giggles, rolls over from his belly to his back (close to rolling from back to belly), likes to "stand" with assistance of course, enjoys watching lights and ceiling fans as well as cars and trucks go by if he's near a window, grabs small toys and attempts to stick them in his mouth (if they don't fit, he throws them down), and eats a bit of cereal (oatmeal is his favorite with rice a close second and barley is just nasty) two times a day in addition to his yummy formula. [Does this sound like a singles ad for babies?] Every 5 to 7 days DJP will be trying a new food-this week we'll probably try peas or green beans. So far, he's not disliked any of the cereals and enjoys making messes!

DJP has also been teething for a month. It started slowly, mainly in the evening when the drool factory would start and he'd want to put fingers (didn't matter whose they were) in his mouth. Occasionally, he will have his fist in his mouth and start to scream-this is when the baby Orajel comes in handy. He makes the best faces when he tastes this stuff, but it works especially in conjunction with teething tablets.

Another first for DJP was a mini-vacation! We packed the car and went to Ocean City, MD with Grandma Cass over the July 4th holiday. We took DJP out to the beach late one afternoon and let him feel the sand and the water on his feet. He neither cried nor giggled, but seemed to take in the experience especially how his feet "disappeared" in the sand when the waves receded.

DJP also had his first sleep over this past weekend when his Eckerd "cousins" M & J came to visit. He was in awe of M's walking skills (took copious notes for future reference) and J's napping abilities (3 hours! Mommy wishes for that every day...just once!). At one point, Aunt Niki came over, expecting mass chaos and the house was quiet-all boys were napping and so was Aunt Melanie! All in all having three children under a year and a half in one house went smoothly-helps when they are outnumbered by adults! It was sad to see M, J and their parents go home, but hopefully we will see them soon!

DJP's next adventure is a longer car ride to South Carolina to visit his cousins and then on to Florida to see Grandma & Grandpa P and Nina & Papa.

23 June 2010

School's Out for Summer

It's over. No more. Time to refresh and rejuvenate. More time to spend with the little one (who is 3 months old now)!

DJP has changed so much in the last couple of weeks. He now smiles and giggles all the time. He rubs his eyes when he's tired. He likes to "stand" more than sit (with assistance of course!) He is getting ready to start eating cereal because he's consistently taking 40 ozs. of formula at feeding time. The time he is spending on his activity mat is increasing and so is his tummy time, which he still is not fond of. I don't think he'll be fond of it until he can move himself around...I'm NOT ready for that! He is also starting to teethe. The drool factory started this past weekend and he decided that he likes his fingers as well as anything else that gets near his mouth. Jason and I broke out the teething rings that we had gotten as presents and they are within arm's reach and in the diaper bag along with a ton of bibs (Nina, there aren't enough now!) and burp cloths.

It will be nice to see all the changes that happen in the next couple of months.

02 June 2010

Pomp & Circumstance

Today is graduation day at WLHS. Due to the fact that graduation is held at Merriweather Post Pavilion and is at noon, we only have a half day of school. Yipppeeee! I am extremely lucky that I do not have to attend the actual ceremony since my graduation duty was to cover another teacher's class during graduation rehearsal. I thank my lucky stars that I do not have to be outside in the heat and humidity collecting tickets. However, I do miss getting to see the happy graduates anticipate the ceremony and to wish them well. During senior exams, I did give each of my 8 seniors cards and wished them much success in the future.

Good Luck WLHS graduates in whatever the future holds for you!

26 May 2010

Growing like a weed

Monster, aka DJP, went to his two month (can you believe it?!) check up on Monday. He was measured-23 inches long (has grown over 3 inches since birth) and weighed-11 pounds, 11 ounces (gained over 2 pounds in a month) and is right where he needs to be according to Dr. Otto, his pediatrician.

We asked local friends who they used for a pediatrician and they told us all about Dr. Otto. He is less than 5 minutes away and has been in practice since the early '80s. Jason went to interview Dr. Otto (since I could not take any days off at the time) and really liked the philosophy of the practice. It is also beneficial that there are adult doctors in the practice as well. I will be switching doctors so that I do not have to travel to Crofton (about 45 minutes from home) and wait for 2 hours to see my current doctor. That's a lot of wasted time, especially having an infant!

Dr. Otto spends time asking questions-even asked us how much sleep we were getting (good way to find out how the kiddo is sleeping too!) and how we are enjoying Monster. He went over developmental milestones for the next two months and started talking about solid foods since we won't see him again until the end of July. It was nice to have some guidelines as to when to start Monster on solids-he's currently taking 5 ounces of formula at feeding time!

Then the painful part came. Monster got his two month vaccinations-2 needles and a yummy (he enjoyed it!) oral vaccine. The first shot went okay-he wasn't quite sure how to react to it. The second one was administered and he turned beet red and held his breathe for what seemed like forever! Monster finally calmed down and was just a bit fussier than usual that evening. He hasn't seemed to have any reactions to the vaccinations as of yet other than being super hungry and tired more often. WHEW!

19 May 2010

Hi Ho Hi Ho...

...it's back to work I've been this week.

It was not as difficult to leave the little Monster as I thought it would be (even though I reallllllllllllllly did not want to return to work and begged Jason to let me stay home-his reply was much nicer than this, however he said, "NO!")

My first day back was Monday which started our state testing. About half of my students are taking the four tests (Algebra, Biology, English and Government)so teaching is definitely a challenge with some students present on one day but not another. So we've been reviewing.

Everything was going along nicely until my fifth period class (the hellions). I told one student three times to put away his water bottle within the first 5 minutes of class. Then the principal escorts one of my students to class (the student likes to be late ALL the time) and promptly tells the student with the water bottle to hand it over. Said student says, "NO!" and walks away from the principal saying that he's just going to the office. This student is now suspended. I probably won't see him for the rest of the school year. The rest of the day went well. It was nice to go home and see Monster.

Day 2 was pretty much the same...things were going well until 5th period. I had warned the students that if they misbehaved that there would be consequences of detention and/or an office referral. Well, the aforementioned student who likes to saunter to class late did so again and refused to sit in his seat. I gave him a choice-sit in the seat or go to the office. Guess which he chose? Yup-going to the office. So on my second day back I wrote a referral. UGH!

Day 3 has been going well so far. I had an interview for a media position at another high school in the county. It went well even though the manner in which the interview was conducted was a bit strange-they gave me a list of questions to answer before they interviewed me and then asked me about my written responses. There were other questions asked as well, but I've never participated in an interview like that before (and I've been involved with some real winners!). I've also yet to have 5th period...so we shall see!

06 May 2010

Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival 2010

This past weekend was the annual Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. It is held at the Howard County Fairgrounds and is a mix of animals, fiber and fun. This was the third year that I went and I found it to be a bit different than in the past.

First, it was HOT! So hot that most people tried to walk to each booth in the shade or stay in the exhibition halls where the sun was not beating down on you. The past couple of years, the weather has been nice, but chilly or raining. I wonder what next year will be like?

Second, the festival organizers moved some booths around to another area (which at first made me think that several vendors were not in attendance) and made the festival seem a bit bigger even though from past experience there were fewer vendors.

Third, it was HOT! It was at least 90 degrees.

Fourth, the products available for sale at various vendors were not new or overly exciting. I did visit some of my favorites (Brooks Farm and Creatively Dyed) and found a new favorite (Miss Babs) whose semi-solid colorways are amazing! Some of my former favorites (no names mentioned...) had the same products for three years running. It was just a bit disappointing.

And finally, here is what I purchased:

Long Awaited Gift

Back in January, during the first round of snowstorms here in MD, my family had a baby shower for me. Amazingly, most of the guests came during the 4-6 inches of snow braving the elements as well as the people who do not know how to drive in snow. (Yes, I apparently know some CrAzY people...and you know who you are!!!)

One of the gifts that I received was one that I would not see until Jason and I had decided on a name for our little Monster because the gift would be personalized just for the little guy. Once Jason and I decided on a name, Niki, great friend and maker of said gift, got to work. Here are the results of her hard work:

The note cards are absolutely fabulous! Some of the ribbons used were from the gifts that I received at the shower (Niki and I both like to recycle!). As Niki pointed out to Jason and myself, half of the cards are blue and half are brown as well as half of each color being horizontal in nature and the other half being vertical (and I still need to learn how to change the layout of the pictures once I upload them...). Each card is a work of art and I would love to just frame them however, they were made to be used and I will do so. Thank you, Niki, for such a thoughtful gift!