Wednesday, December 9, 2009

16 Days to Christmas...

Wow...that seems odd. What happened to November? Where did it go? I could swear there used to be a month between October and December...but alas, it doesn't appear to be the case this year.

Actually, I am sitting in a pretty ok position right now as far as making and getting all the gifties in order. I have finished all the scarves for the girlies in my life, and have finished almost 3 of the scarves for the boys in my life (I have about 2 more repeats of the pattern to finish the third scarf). The kidlings are all taken care of, and even wrapped (of course, I had no choice but to wrap them the same day that we got them, since certain little persons are nosy and would likely have stumbled upon the gifts, thus ruining the surprise)! The other kidlings (nieces and nephews) are all finished, too. They were done the same time as mine own. Gawd, I love Samko Miko. That place is a godsend for anyone with children or children like persons to buy for. We walked out of there with gifts for 14 kids for less than $200. And I know, it is very tacky to mention money, but seriously, dude, that is less than I spent on the gifts when there were only 6 kids to buy for.

In other news, I am sure that we have all seen the various "make your own decoration" things. They're everywhere. And I have to admit, I am intrigued by this: a yarn-wrapped wreath. Sadly, I know myself well enough to know that I would want to unwrap it and start knitting...or would buy the yarn and immediately hide it so that it did not end up being used for a wreath. Especially if it were green. I love green. (I am very much an autumn, yellow, orange (not blindingly bright), deep reds, browns...yeah, I love those colours.) I am very weak when it comes to those hues. I wonder if it would look tacky in rainbow brights?

I have also been getting back into the sewing. A lot. I think that after this Christmas, with all the yarny goodness that is going on, I just need to have that little creative break. I am currently working on an apron for myself, but have just recently finished doing a bedspread and sheet for my daughter's teacher (for her daughter for Christmas). I've also become the "go to" gal for shortening pants.

Am has also done an amazing job on her first report card (seriously...there are 3 terms in grade 1...who knew this??). One C (which at this level means she is doing good, but slightly below the provincial guideline) in writing, but other than that, everything was As and Bs. Woohoo.

And little mister is doing great, too. We have started his OT appointments, but he is starting to show improvement. I think he just likes having someone other than mom or dad mention that he should be doing certain things that he is not. I mean, 2 weeks ago he couldn't roll over. Even if we pushed his bum. Now, he is doing it on his own. Same with the feet. Didn't know he had them...never once seemed interested in them or playing with them. Now he constantly rolls himself up to get them. And he is starting to use the right side more. He actually managed to pass one of his toys left to right! WEEEE!!! Our OT believes that he will catch himself up by the time that he reaches his 8 month follow up. I hope so.

Anywho, I am outta here for now. I have a scarf that needs finishing, and a bath that needs someone to soak in it...I guess I can suck it up and know, for the sake of the bath.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Madness, I Say

Yeah, that is sort of how the last week or so has felt. Unfortunately, both my daughter and I got the flu last week. What a write off! I was horrible, but in typical motherly fashion, recovered after about 2 days of being completely useless. Thankfully, Riley managed not to get it (both Ammy and I avoided him like the plague during the first few days, and after that, I wore a mask and made sure to wash my hands about every 5 minutes or so). So, needless to say, my birthday went by very quietly. I spent the day and night at home with my little ones, catching up on some Christmas knitting.

So far, I have these done:

They are my little non-scarf scarves (Fourteen, by name). I am in lourve with this thing. Not only is it a quick knit, but it is really warm and comfy.

I also got around to doing/finishing a few other things while I had nowhere to go and nothing else to do:
Sheldon (the cutest little turtle):

New hat:

There are a few other odds and sods, but I haven't really gotten around to completely finishing them (i.e. they still need the ends weaved in...lawd how I hate weaving in ends).

Oh, and in very exciting news, last Tuesday, Riley's belly button fell off!!! Yes, this was a super exciting thing (7+ months in the making). It also means that he won't have to go for surgery for the urachal sinus, since it is no longer causing any problems. We are still waiting for urology to get back to us, as well as the infant development centre, but at the moment, things are looking up (touch wood). And we are now down to a somewhat normal regime of appointments. We have monthly RSV clinic from now until April, and our regular family doctor appointments (yes, we got him switched over), but other than that, I don't think we have any more crazy 6 appointments in 8 days type of weeks any time soon.

Well, off to make Christmas shopping lists (we are heading out to the samko meiko warehouse thing this weekend). Wish us luck with that. :S


Friday, October 30, 2009

Oh My

Well, it has been an eventful week, if nothing else.

Monday afternoon, I finally went for a very much overdo root canal. It wasn't fun. I didn't enjoy it. But, I can actually bite down now without pain or fear of food getting caught in there and disturbing the nerve. Amazing how nice of a feeling that is. Absolutely amazing. I love our new family dentist. He has done more with our family in the last month than the previous one ever did. Not that she didn't recommend referring us to specialists for routine items for EVERYTHING (with the exception of cleaning...but seriously, sending my child to a specialist for a cavity??? why???).

Anywho, so there was that. Then, on Tuesday, we went for Riley's VCUG (voiding cysto-urethrogram). A VCUG is a test that uses an x-ray and contrast medium to show what happens when a person urinates. Our surgeon requested this test in order to ascertain whether the umbilical tube which is currently connected to his bladder is filling with fluid, or whether it is clear. Well, the tube is clear. It appears to be sealed off from his bladder. HOWEVER, in the course of this test, we discovered that after flushing fluid into the bladder, his kidneys are refilling with urine from the bladder. I don't know the full extent of this, but for the moment it appears to be something that is manageable. He doesn't appear to be in any pain, and it certainly doesn't seem to affect how many wet bottoms he has. We are adding a urology team to the group of doctors that Riley is collecting. :S

On Wednesday, we had our follow up with the Immunology Department at Sick Kids. They took a lot of blood, both from Riley and I, and took a whole lotta notes. We go back in March, since some of the tests they are running take a long while to develop. And, since there has been so much back and forth with respect to the H1N1, and since I can't get a hold of my pediatrician to save my life, I kinda figured that they would likely be the best qualified to answer whether it was right for my family, given our situations, medically speaking. And they want us all to get it. Mainly, they want Riley and I to. But, since we are getting it, figured that getting it for Ammy and the man wouldn`t hurt. Plus, with the number of things currently going around Ammy`s school, I feel comfortable with her getting it. (Especially considering that 7 days before symptoms show, those infected are contagious - two of my nieces who I don`t see often have it, and this is what their doctor informed them of.)

And here is where I am in a bit of a bind. So I got home and called our pediatrician...every 15 minutes...for 3 hours. No answer. No voicemail where I could leave a message and be contacted back. Nothing. Again yesterday - from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (with the exception of the answering machine I reached at 12:10 informing me that they were on lunch and the machine could not take messages)...and again no answer. I finally got pissed off and called our family doctor. They have no problem in giving us the shots, so we go in first thing on Monday for them. Even though my son is not their patient. Yeah, I am thinking that I am going to transfer him over, too. I understand the whole wanting someone who is experienced with children thing. I seriously do. But Riley has a huge team of specialists for everything that is going on. He is no longer on oxygen. Hell, our pediatrician refused to take any responsibility regarding Riley`s oxygen. So in short, we go there, he weighs him, measures him, gives him shots. We book the next appt., and that is it. And apparently, if this last week is any indication, if he gets sick before his next scheduled appointment, I am up poop creek without a paddle because no one answers the damn phone there.

Ok, venting done. Sorry, but that does bother me. What would happen if my son was sick with something (like any sort of virus at the moment, of which all viruses are huge red flags waving over him in the eyes of the Immunology Dept., since his immune status is completely unknown)...what for a month until our next appointment comes around (and no, I am not stupid enough to leave my child sick because they won`t answer their phone).

Okay kidlings, that is all. Hope you all have a safe, happy and wonderful Halloween.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

To Keep Myself Occupied

Well, I have found some wonderful things that I can do while I am sitting at home on mat leave right now. My daughter's teacher is big on reading (which I personally think all teachers of lower grade levels should be, but that is neither here nor there). Her and I got talking about knitting one day, and I mentioned that I do knit so she has asked me if I can make her some "props" for some of the books that she reads repeatedly.

At the moment, I am working on an oversized mitten for The Mitten. Her teacher has little fisher price animals that are all in the book, so she plans on using those for putting in the mitten. I will also be doing a regular sized one so that the kids can see the size difference before and after the animals move in, and can discuss why the mitten grew. :)

I found an amazing site that actually deals with this type of stuff (Children's Lit n' Knit). There are a few other books that she has asked me to work props for, if I have the time and inclination. I am sure that it will be fun (since she would like to have them to share with the other lower grade teachers at Ammy's school).

Also of note, I have finished Tony's muves. They look and fit him great! Seriously, they rock. I am thinking that I may have to look into a pair for myself. The only real "christmas knitting" that I am planning on doing this year is a pair of socks and a hat. Other than that, nothing. Both of those shouldn't take too long (so long as I try to remember that they are a gift, and therefore 1 sock is not an option).

That is all, really. Family is doing great. Currently I am just enjoying the calm before the storm that starts next week...


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Love These Things

So, it may just be a honeymoon phase, but I am super duper in love with these cloth diapers. We have also ordered a bunch of the KaWaii brand AIO pocket diapers which should arrive beginning of next week. Our total so far for all our diapers (which is - including the ones to arrive next week - 18 diapers and 40 inserts) is less than $300.

Beyond that, though, I love the feel and leak stoppageness of these things. Not only are they super cute, but they really do their job. They fit Riley wonderfully. And doubling the insert overnight has worked perfectly. So far (touch wood) we haven't had any all.

And let me tell you, the softness of the microfleece lining is amazing. I am thinking I may have to start putting a microfleece lining in all my underwear! Damn kid is lucky as all sin to have that up against his little bottom all day. And it really does pull the moisture away from him and on to the insert.

Well, that is it for my raving. But check him out, being all happy with them:

I have also finished one of the glove/mittens for the hubby. (You know, the strange mittens with the first finger as a glove? Ya, those.) Ammy has been proudly sporting hers, and another little girl that I made them for has been declining to touch any one or thing with hers on, so I am guessing so far, so good. Oddly, I haven't even thought of making myself any. I am working on the sleeve for my cardigan (pictured below), and I guess I will make a pair for myself when that is done.

I also had a wonderful time hitting up the thrift shops this week. Riley is growing like a weed (is actually in 6 month clothing now), and Ammy seems to be in a new size every week. I bought her a pair of boots for winter (oddly enough, they are the "Riley" boot from walmart), and ended up getting the size 13. 13!!! Seriously? My main intent when I hit up the ValuVillage and local TS was to try to find a snow suit for Ammy (I don't want to spend $50 on something that will only last 1 season) and some warm winter sleepers for Riley. Ended up with several warm winter sleepers for Riley (the thick fleecey ones) for $2 each, and a few really cute outfits that I just couldn't resist (they were on sale at VV, and worked out to be about $3 each, so I can't complain in the least). I also got Am several pairs of pants, since we seem to have hit flood season. Couldn't find a snowsuit (apparently thrift shops understand that Christmas and Halloween stuff shouldn't be out at the same time) nor any pjs, but will likely go on another expedition in a few weeks time.

That is really all that is new and exciting, boys and girls.


Side Note: Most people don't realize this, and I know that I never noticed this before, but on the disposable diapers there is a notation that all fecal matter should be dumped into the toilet and flushed prior to throwing the diaper away. Do you do that? Do you know anyone who does?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Mittens Already?

Yeah, I broke and made a pair of mittens for Ammy already. But damn it is getting cold up here in the mornings. Seriously cold. I hate it. So, I have made the first pair of mittens of the season. I am sure that there will be more, many more, as the school has a "mitten tree" which I will be making several mittens for.

I'm also currently working on a new hat for Riley, since the ones that I have already made for him no longer fit his fat little head. (We are fifteen pounds now...just a side note.)

I'm also making great headway on the cropped cardigan I am making for myself. See:

I am hoping that I can get this finished sometime this week. The only things left, really, are the sleeves (and the collar, but that will be done when it is all put together so that I can judge it myself as to how big I want it).

And this, boys and girls, i why you shouldn't drink and drive:

(dont worry, no one was hurt). My sister and I were outside at my uncle`s place last weekend for the birthday party we held for all the nieces, and watched this happen. Buddy in the van took off down the road, until he realized that I was chasing him down the middle of it, and another girl was following from further up the road. Then he decided to come back, where he proceeded to fall over and claim that he couldn`t get any traction (though it had rained earlier in the day, everything was mostly dry by this point). Amazingly, when I took off, I threw the coffee cup I had in the middle of my uncle`s lawn, and somehow it didn`t break.

Well, that is really all that is new and wonderful in my world. Kinda slow, but that is okay. I am sure that it will get hectic soon enough. After much debating back and forth on the topic, we have decided that we are going to switch to cloth diapers for Riley. For starters, we are getting a trial package of 6 of them with 12 inserts, just to get us used to them, and will probably get another 6-10 of them as we see fit once we are used to them and ready to make the switch permanently. The cost for 12-16 in total with extra inserts will end up being about $350/400, which may seem like a lot, but while I was at my doctor's the other day, I found out that the average cost for diapers for a child until they are two and a half is $2,300. $2,300!!!! And that doesn't include pull up type of things. That is just purely diapers. Shocking, eh? Yeah, I think that I am okay with the extra effort and $350 vs. less effort and over $2,000. When I was younger, I babysat for a lady who had cloth diapers for her son. I remember what it was like with them. The ones that we are getting are super cute (Fuzzi Bunz, for those who are interested) and come with a pretty kick ass reputation.

I will likely update everyone on what an experience it is. :)

Until then, ttfn

Monday, September 14, 2009

RIP Childhood Crush

Well, my first girlhood crush past today. I know, I know. He'd been sick for a while. (I still can't believe that the National Enquirer was right with their article about him being diagnosed with cancer last year.)

But I was just reading that it was announced that Patrick Swayze died this morning after his long battle with cancer from an actual new source.

So sad!

And, of course, "She's Like the Wind" is on a continual mental repeat play. I am thinking I will have to have a Swayze day tomorrow...Ghost, Dirty Dancing, Roadhouse...


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Changes and Other Events

Well, the wedding went great. Ok, our JP thought it was at 4, so didn't show up until 3:30 (the wedding was supposed to be at 3). BUT, the weather turned out to be great...not too hot, not too cold, and not a raincloud in the sky (after 1:00 p.m.).

Both the children were wonderful! Ammy looked adorable:

As did Riley:

And I realized that that was 2 weeks ago. But good lawd it has been a very busy two weeks.

After the wedding, we ended up staying down at the Royal York (won a free room from a 680 prize pack that my husband won). And we had room service. It was awesome. Sadly, though, my fries were undercooked and unedible. Really, that was extremely sad, given where we were. But the Alberta Steak Sandwich we had was amazing. As was the french onion soup (I love me some french onion soup).

Riley ended up being off his oxygen from the Wednesday before the wedding to the Tuesday after. We put him back on since we didn't want to get into any trouble with our RT about how long he'd been off (and he did awesome the entire time...especially with all the man-handling he was subjected to the night of the wedding). And then, to boot, our RT didn't come by...she called instead. I told her about Riley and how long he'd been off and that the only reason we put him back on was to avoid getting in trouble with her. She decided that we should give him a break for 24 hours, and take him back off for a week, if we were comfortable. So we left him on until Wednesday morning, and promptly took him back off. Which is how he still is right now. Off his oxygen, and rocking it.

And, of course, Ammy started Grade 1 on Tuesday. That was a little bit of a heartbreaker for me. She couldn't have cared less. But thankfully she remembered to turn and wave at me while she disappeared through the doors that would carry her on to her future. *sniff**sniff*

I discovered that, while I always just thought that it was normal with her, since we read a lot and all, she is "very advanced and ahead of all the other children" in her class given that she has the ability to read on her own. And not just "Dick and Jane" type books, but actual books. We got to the library at least once every 2 weeks and take out a bunch of books. Ones that she reads. Usually ones like the Little Miss books, and Dora books. She likes books. But hey, bonus if that makes her advanced. At least I know that she won't be struggling with it (touch wood).

Today we start jazz. Yes, jazz. I decided that she is now old enough to handle more than one weekend activity, and since I am still in the SAHM phase, I have the time and energy too. So I signed her up for Beginner Jazz at Futures Gymnastics (about 5 minutes up the road). I spoke with the lady who works there about which dance would be best for her, since she is high energy, but easily distracted, so I was thinking that ballet *might* not be the best choice for her (what, with the discipline and slow, repetitive movements), and we talked about jazz. She told me that it will likely be ideal for her, since it is a very high energy genre, but that at this stage, it wouldn't matter overmuch. Still, jazz it is.

My daughter's school also does the typical "we are looking for parent volunteers" thing. I was looking into it since, well, I do have time. Well, they sent home a notice about it the other day, and apparently I would have to pay for one of the long form criminal record checks in order to apply (I understand why they want them, but if I am reading this correctly, these are the ones that are, like, $55...seriously, I am a SAHM...where am I going to come up with the $55 just so I can volunteer to help them out??).

Also, Peel Region (I understand it is the entire region, and not just our school) has swtiched to a "two nutrition breaks" thing instead of a morning and afternoon recess and a lunch hour. I hate this. I really do. And it seems like there are so many conflicting reasons floating around about why. First off, I hate that they are given these 2 40 minute breaks. One is at 10:30 a.m. and the other is at 12:55 p.m. 10:30 a.m. is too early for a full lunch, and by 12:55 p.m., my daughter is starving. She is confused by this completely, as am I. One of the apparent reasons for the change is that "kids learn better when they eat periodically through the day". Um, so getting rid of the 2 different snacking times that are evenly spaced through the day is the way to achieve this??? Yes, I plan on finding out from the region what the basis was for this change and if they are only doing it as a trial. I personally think it is beyond asinine. me the work place where you get 2 lunch hours. If school is supposed to be about prepping kids for the future, show me the work place that does that, please.

Anywho, that is about all. I have to go get my little dancer fed, cleaned and dressed.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

Soon to be with 100% More Husband

Yes, I has been a while. I have been slacking off on updating over the last few weeks. But come on, I am fully justified. Look at the wedding countdown clock beside this...seriously...check that out. Depending on when you are reading this, I am a few hours away from my wedding. I think I am allowed a little bit of time away from the big event.

So yes, that is really all that is new.

I have finished my socks for the wedding. I will post pictures when I can, cuz I just haven't even bothered to load them up on the computer yet.

Also, we got a new monitor for Riley. So far (touch wood) he is doing wonderful with the trial off oxygen. Seriously...really good!

Well, that is really all I have the thought control to write. I am suffering from a touch of ADD at the moment. I guess eventually I need to sleep (especially given that I will be up at about 5:30 with the little man for feeding...and have to stay up since the day is going to start very early tomorrow morning).


Friday, August 14, 2009

6 Year Anniversary of the Ontario/New York Black Out

Yes, yes it is. How do I know this so certainly, you may be asking? Well, my little girl is 6 today. I know exactly where I was the day of the blackout. Do you remember where you were and what you were doing? did the time go. She is going to be starting grade 1 in a few weeks. What the heck is that? I don't know if I am prepared for that yet. But, whether we are prepared for it or not, life tends to move forward.

We finally got Riley's monitor in yesterday. What fun. The thing doesn't particularly like to hold a signal too long, but it was like that in the hospital too. Once the baby moves, even the slightest, you tend to lose the signal. But, he has been doing great on it. High (and I mean 97-99) saturation. So, 4 p.m. today, we will get to remove the horrible prongs and tape and tubing from his little wee face...that will be so nice.

Wish us luck.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Oh Whoa

So, this morning we have our first of many specialist follow ups down at Sick Kids hospital. Fun fun fun. And what makes it more fun, you may be asking yourself, since the drive down to Toronto through horrible traffic for someone who hates downtown driving might not be enough for you? Well, there is the fact that right on our referral form it clearly states "please be prepared to wait at least 2 hours". Um? What? Why not just book me an appointment 2 hours later than the one that I have been given, and actually, I don't know, let me in at that time?

I suppose that would be too easy.

Anywho, we are off to the immunology clinic today. They want to check him out before we meet with the surgeon next week to make sure that the urachal sinus hasn't caused him any additional problems or been the cause of any additional problems. So I suppose it is a necessary evil.

This month is just going to be one of too much. I have that appointment today; Ammy's 6th birthday on Friday (6...when the hell did that happen???); her birthday party on Saturday; Monday is our meeting with the reception hall director and cook; Tuesday Tony is heading down to Buffalo for a prize pack thing that he won which includes him going to the Bills training camp for the day while I take Riley to his surgery clinic appointment; the following Monday is Ammy's annual physical with Riley's pediatric follow up on the Tuesday; that Friday the out-laws fly in; and, of course, the wedding on Saturday. Yeah, it's going to be a little busy.

There are still a thousand and one things that need to be done for the wedding which is, as you can see from the countdown, 16 days away...and I have no clue when I will be able to get to them all. I finally finished the favors, but still need the tags for them. I also still need to get the centrepieces and all the flowers. :S I think I should make a list.

Anywho, off to my waiting period. :)


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

For Times Like These

So in the update section of this blog, Riley is doing grand. We had his ped appointment yesterday. He is doing wonderful. 10 lbs 10 oz. Such chubby little goodness. He's been home for almost 3 weeks now. And life is so much better for it. I will admit that I was scared poopless being on my own and taking both kids plus Riley's oxygen tank out of the house. Terrifying. But I did it. Ammy is such a wonderful ball of goodness and such a great big sister.

I can honestly say that I don't mind having the extra worry about the sleep/breathing thing. I mean, all parents worry when their infants are sleeping so completely and totally soundly that you are not entirely sure if they are still breathing. For us, it is a little more so, given that he is prone to pulling his nasal prongs off his face. But, we have adjusted (I have found that I can function pretty darn well with about 3-4 hours sleep per day - of course, I feel very full body stoned most of the time, and good lord you don't want to see me if I haven't chucked at least one coffee in me, but still...). Next week, when our RT (Lesley), whom I adore by the by, comes for his weekly check up, she will be bringing a sat monitor with her. Tuesday will be spent monitoring Riley with it, and Wednesday we get to do a 48 hour trial with him completely off the oxygen. No more juggling him and his oxygen tank! Woohoo!

He's such a wide eyed and alert little guy. Seriously. And the head control. I mean, I know that I am supposed to treat him as if he were a 4 week old, but it is damn difficult to do when he is able to do all these wonderful things.

Another perfect example of his "no way that I can treat him as a 4 week old" thing is that he actually holds his bottle. To explain, Riley does wonderful with breast feeding. But, his latch is so damn strong. Unfortunately, my poor nipples are cracked and have been seeping occasionally. I have had to start pumping and bottling him, since the pump (sadly) is more gentle to my nipples than he is. Hopefully they will heal up within the next few days, and I can let him back on, but as it is right now, I physically can't. But, as I mentioned, when I make him a bottle, he will hold it himself. Needs help, but has his hands wrapped right around it. Seriously, what 4 week old could do that?

In knitting (and plain other) news, I have started working on a shawl for the wedding. I know, I know...I started making stockings. But I kinda realized that wool stockings for an August wedding was just not the best use of my skills. I have almost done the stockings. Just need to cuff them. But I have decided to interrupt that project by making a shawl which I will actually use at the wedding. It's coming along great. I, unfortunately, don't have any pictures of it just yet, but will do so shortly.

And, as I mentioned in a previous post, I bought myself a drop spindle. Ta da:

I am thinking I will use the varigated yarn for a nice thick pair of mittens for myself. Just cuz.

I also purchased the following beauty:

I really enjoyed making the yarn. It was fun and interesting and I love that I am going to be making something for myself with yarn I made myself. So, since I found this on craigslist, and it is at a steal of a price, I figured "what the hell". :)

In other wedding news, the boys parents are going to be able to make it. There was some question as to whether they would be able to make it out here for it, and I know that much as he was being all "I understand, you know, the cost and time and so on", he was really kinda upset that they weren't going to be there. I mean, come on...the entire reason we aren't eloping is because he wanted his parents there.

Anywho, that is about all.


Sunday, July 19, 2009

Riley's Shorts

Riley's shorts are done:

I made these to fit a 16" waist. Depending on the yarn and needles you use, you can alter this size, but I have found that 16" gives a good bit of give, but not so much that they are falling off his little behind. I have also measured these to fit around a size 1 diaper. As promised, here is the pattern:


Loops and Threads Baby Sport (less than 1/2 a ball)
4mm circular needles (16")
Buttons (optional)


Cast on 92 stitches. Work 7 rows in stockinette stitch.

Set up for drawstring waist:
At this point, I was able to connect the two sides on the circular needle without a problem. So, join in the round and k one round. Work 2 rounds in stockinette stitch.

K26 st, cast off 2 st, k to end.
K26 st, cast on 2 st, k to end.

K 2 rounds.

Pattern on front of shorts:
K26 st, p20 st, k27 st
Repeat this round for 2 inches (or however long, depending on how far you want the pattern to go - or you can choose to completely leave off the purling if you want something plain and simple).

Work in st st until piece measures 5.5" from the turning round.
K36 st. (You may wish to place a marker after this stitch.)
Kfb, K44 st, kfb. Place sts to marker on holder. (These make up the legs.)
P row.
Kfb first st, k to second last stitch, kfb.
P row.
Repeat the above pattern to 62 st.
Work 8 rows in st st.
Work 6 rows in garter st.
Bind off.

Pick up 46 sts from holder and repeat leg same as other.

Make Icord (I chose to make mine with 2 stitches cast on.)

Sew crotch seams together (increases along legs). Sew leg seams together. Sew split before turning row together. Fold over and sew drawstring in place.

Affix any decorations (i.e. buttons at corners of pattern).


Feel free to ask/comment/etc., if you have any questions.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Busy Beaver Says...

So Riley had his first pediatrician appointment yesterday. Everything went well. He gained 2 oz. over the weekend since he has been home, so no worries on that front. Everything else seems AOK with his health, other than the oxygen, of course. And, since I have been playing around with the new photo thingy on the computer, I thought I would yet again insert loverly pictures of my little man (all prepped out):

In two weeks, my two week old will be going for his four month old shots. Yeah, that sounds really messed up. It was really interesting to hear our pediatrician trying to explain to someone who is shadowing him that although Riley is two weeks old corrected, he was born in April, and is therefore three and half months old.

Ammy came home from a super fun filled weekend with Granny and Gramps.

These are both from the petting piglet and camel...sweet! (They had a llama, but alas, she did not even get me any llama hair to make into wool...some people!)

Swimming like a superstar:

In other news, my shoes died. Ok, maybe fell apart and died a disgraceful death would be more appropriate. They soles of them have been falling apart for a while (damn rain puddles), and the straps no longer velcroed together...and now the tongue completely came out AND the small strip of sole that kept the water from poring in has come out. So, sneaking around on eBay, I found these:

They are slip ons (see the small back part on the heel??), and they appear super comfy. I have heard some good things about volatile, with the exception that they tend to size a little small, so I got one size larger. These ones were actually on clearance in one of the eBay stores, so even after conversion and shipping, they cost me less than $20.00. Perfect. Cheap, comfy, slip ons. What more could I ask for?

And since I get bored without things to do, and love trying new things (plus the fact that I cannot ever seem to just pop on to eBay for just one thing without looking around and ogling a thousand other things), I got myself this:

For those of you who know what this is, kudos, and I am sure that you will delight in reading my loverly upcoming frustrations in connection with it. For those who don't, this is a drop spindle and fibre. I am going to teach myself how to spin wool. :) I love the colour combo of the "pumpkin patch" bag, which is what this is. I don't know, there is just something awesome about greens and oranges and browns and yellows.

Anywho, that is about all. Currently working on my PLAR portfolio, which will help me to obtain credits for personal life experience, as I am planning on returning to school next year (hopefully).

Tis all, and till next time.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Stress Relief is an Amazing Thing

Wow...hard to believe just how much better I am feeling with the hospital stress all gone.

Spoke with our primary nurse from Mount Sinai yesterday to give her an update on Riley. She was super excited to hear that he was doing so well, and she was very happy that we were able to transfer him out of MS to somewhere with more flexibility.

But, on the topic of being calmer, I have started designing my own pair of pants for Riley. Will post the pattern when I have completed them, but so far, they are coming along ok.

Also, I spent a good chunk of the day doing something I haven't done in ages...planting. I know, I am slightly behind in the season for it, but I don't care. It was nice to get my hands in the dirt. We now have a few sunflowers, beans and tomatos. I am thinking I may also nip back and grab some cukes. I love veggies grown by my own hands. Haven't had them in about 5 years, but they are the best.

Anywho, the little man (who, I might add, has established himself in a lovely pattern of bed around midnight, up around awesome is that??? 5 full hours of sleep!!!) is up and snuffling (and smelling like the wrong side of a horse) so...


Friday, July 10, 2009

Home, Home on the Range

So, we started our day off with the visit from the oxygen people. Got our 3 tanks, and were shown how to work them. Good lord but they are super sensitive.

And, since the only issue *might* have been if he didn't gain weight without the fortifier, I called in to find out how his weigh in went. He gained 66 grams! Awesome, awesome...then I hear "but". What? No, no buts! I refuse.

Apparently the little bugger decided to have a bit of a spell, so they had to increase him from 10ccs to 50ccs in less than a 2 hour span. Not good. Our doctor decided that if he stayed stable, we could take him home after his 6 p.m. feeding. If not, then he would be there at least over the weekend.

So we decided to go up for the noon feed, and to get him dressed in his going home clothes and bring up the portable oxygen tank, believing wholeheartedly that he would be good for the 6 p.m. take home.

Look at how irresistible he is:

And here he is all strapped in with a very, very proud papa:

I wish I could sleep on a dime like this...seriously, doesn't this look so very far from comfortable?:

His first nap AT HOME (he is currently just to my right right now):

Needless to say, when we got to the hospital for his feed, he was back to 10ccs. We asked the nurse if this meant we could take him home today, and she told us that as soon as he was done with his feed, we could take him. Right then. No waiting until evening.

So all the running around we were planning on doing before we got to the hospital to pick him up...yeah, I have sent the other half out to do...

Well, I am off to ogle my boy.


Thursday, July 9, 2009

Amazing What Occurs to You When You Can Actually Relax

For starters, just because, umlaut, umlaut, umlaut! (Sorry, this word got stuck in my head earlier today for no apparent reason. Just thought I would share. And for those of you who don't know what that is, check here.)

Second, now that the stress of when I will be getting my boy home is gone, I feel much relieved. I mean, I know without a shadow of a doubt that I was barely keeping it together there for a while. I don't shirk away from that one. But I was stressed. And come on...seriously, how many people do you know could sanely handle 14.5 weeks of having a child they couldn't hold when they wanted to, change when he needed it, feed on demand, smell and sniff and play and double check that there are 10 little fingers and 10 little toes? Right. There is your slice of perception for the day.

Our first cuddles with great-nanny (who, I might add, was tickled pink with getting to see him...we wouldn't allow people to force the game of "you come down to toronto at such and such a time so I can see the baby"):

And on that note, if we skip back 14.5 weeks:

This was my first glimpse of Riley (after the initial red, screaming thing that just fought his way into the world before being whisked away to be saran wrapped). Kinda terrifying. Kinda completely terrifying.

Then we were blue...and I mean that quite literally.

One of the first holds...

my boob is bigger than his head...and pretty much all of him (yes, this will scar him when he is older).

Finally looking human...with the exception of that horrible machine which I hope to never have to name again:

Rolling along nicely...

Behind bars:

Finally off the obnoxious machine:

Look...even he is cheering.

Chilling in our bouncy chair (this was on his due date...June 28, 2009):

And now...and 98 days old...

For those of you doing the math, Riley will be coming home on his 101 day of post-uterus living. :)

I'm heading in to the hospital today to give him some loving and cuddles, a bath, and to pick up the rest of his swag that is there (the bouncy chair, the clothes, the bathtub).

A part of me is still thinking this can't be real yet. I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas.


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Best Friday Ever!

This morning (well, technically yesterday morning, I suppose), we were advised that Riley will be coming home on Friday!!! Yes, I still am almost in tears every time I think of that. He is coming home. Like to our house. To stay. No more hospitals. No more baring my breasts in the middle of a nursery because he cannot leave the bedside or oxygen that he is connected to. No more listening to "code blue; front lobby"; "code yellow; please log on to staff site for description"; and so forth. No more.

Yes, he will be coming home on oxygen. But I am okay with that. We will have a respiratory team out on Friday morning to set everything up, and then we just have to go pick the little guy up.

My parents will be taking Ammy from Thursday night until Monday, as they want us to have a few days to adjust to him being here, and to learn how to move around and operate normally with Riley's oxygen. They are wonderful peoples.

I need sleep now. I know that I need sleep. I just don't know how it is going to come. I am still completely spun.


Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Well, today we are three days overdue, and Riley is 3 months old. Interesting that, eh?

Anywho, I spent a loverly weekend at the hospital (and yes, for those of you who have asked and who are wondering, Mount Sinai WAS under quarantine for H1N1...there was an exposure to both the NICU and Level II nurseries due to a visitor with H1N1). Last week, we were still battling with the doctors telling us that Riley could not handle oral feeds. This came about when one of the nurses we got stuck with...and yes, I mean "got stuck with"...gave him a bottle too quickly, and he immediately vomiting almost the entire feed back up. Now, prior to this, Riley had taken maybe 8 bottles...and all of them had been paced. I called in last week to hear "well, he took his bottle too quickly and threw it all back up". Um, first off, the kid is 12 weeks old. He didn't take anything too quickly, you gave it to him too quickly. Second off, please tell me for the love of christ that you didn't chart it that way, as I have spent the last 2 weeks battling for them to provide him with bottles when I am not there to breast feed, since that is the only thing keeping them from sending him home on oxygen.

Well, sure enough, the damn RN had charted it, and Riley's feeds were changed back to 1 bottle per shift; breast feeding on demand ad lib when mom in. Meaning, in short, that if I wasn't there to breast feed him, he would be allowed to do one bottle, and other than that, it would all go through his feeding tube. So yes, I freaked out and forced them to see that he can handle it. I booked myself into their care by parent room, and spent the entire weekend in the damn level II showing them that he could do it. I hate that it had to come to that. That the level of credit he is being given is completely negligible unless I am taking it into my own hands. But, the up side of it is that the feeding tube is completely gone now, and is not going to be going back in. He is now on bottle or breast, period end of story.

Of course, it helps that he is no longer at Mount Sinai.

That's right. No more 6 doctor panel in order to change things. No more nurses agreeing that things should be different, but doctor on call not wanting to stir the pot by changing anything. No more "your son can't do this, but we aren't going to bother setting up any sort of a plan to get him to". How freaking awesome is that?!?

While I was rooming in at MS, I spoke with one of the doctors (after they grudgingly admitted that he was able to handle all oral feeds) about starting the process to transfer him out to Credit Valley, if they had space, and home on oxygen, if they didn't. He stated CV had no spaces, but that he could certainly put in the request to start the home on oxygen process...which would take about 3 weeks! 3 weeks?!? "If we rush it, we may be able to get it through in 10 - 14 days." Okay, I don't even want to have him here under your "care" for another day let alone another 2 weeks. Then, of course, this was mentioned to one of the nurses, who completely contradicted him in his timeline (saying that it only took a few days for the process and approval to go through). Followed by another doctor contradicting both of their timelines. Yeah, it was time for us to get out of that place.

However, one of our nurses was a gem and called CV (where she also works) about a bed space for him since he was born there. They had one, and were willing to hold it for Riley until the clearance regarding H1N1 was given. Great! Wonderful! Phenom! Until they decided that there was another baby in the level 2 who had been on the list to transfer to CV (who was born at Mount Sinai) that they decided they would let have that bed space. Um, first off, Riley was born there. He has top priority to go back. Second off, the baby in question who essentially stole our bed space has been having issues and even the other nurses have flat out said that he shouldn't be transferred anytime soon. But yeah, sure, you go ahead and give our damn spot to that baby. Can't say as how I could expect any less.

I am sure that if I wasn't dealing with constant negativity (such as being told that Riley going from "he can't survive off his CPAP" to 50-80 ccs of oxygen in a little less than 2 weeks being considered "not very good" and "virtually no progress"), I may have been a little more understanding. As it is, not really. I am no longer in the mood to play nice with that place.

So, Riley has moved to Trillium. I went over his first night to visit him (around 1:30 a.m.). He was settled and great. He is already making progress on what he was when he was at MS. He is down to 75ccs of oxygen at 50%, which is a big step up from the 80-100 ccs of oxygen at 100% that they kept sticking him on at MS. And he only has one doctor who will decide upon his care based on him. Hmmm...taking things on a baby by baby basis? What an interesting concept.

I also love that he is allowed to have all the little knitted things I made for him (such as his hats and his booties and his blanket). AND, best of all, my daughter is so very happy that she can finally touch him, and hold his hand, and rub his back. She was almost in tears over the fact that she couldn't do any of that.

His doctor (the only one that he has) has decided that she wants to monitor him for a few days, and will decide on Monday if sending him home on oxygen would be the best bet. If she believes so, we will have the RTs in that morning, and hopefully have him home a few days after that. If she thinks that he is doing good and making some real progress, to the point that in a few weeks, she thinks he can shake the need for the oxygen all together, she will let us know, and they will keep him in for those few weeks.

Either way, it takes me 15 minutes to drive over there in heavy-ish traffic. I can go up and feed him, come home and eat and play with my daughter, go back for his next feed (almost have a normal life. And I don't have to battle people for my son to get an inch of credit. That is probably one of the nicest things.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Please Sir, I Want Off This Ride

Well, it has been a rough ride, and still it is going. :( I hate that. Most of the people who we started our NICU journey with are home now. A few who we knew that had preterms after us are prepping to go home (the last of whom will be home this Saturday). We, however, can't even get moved closer to home.

Many of the friends we made while at the NICU have gone home now. The last of them left yesterday. Most of them were born after Riley (both gestational and actual). And still we are looking at July or August to get him home. And, as they have already discussed him coming home on oxygen, that is likely going to be the case. I hate this. I really and truly hate this. It is beyond frustrating and I hate that I feel like some hormonally charged, angst ridden teenager. It has been 12 weeks. Our due date is Sunday. And still we do not have a clue when our son is coming home.

Riley's breathing issues are getting better, slowly...very slowly. He is now down to low-flow 24/7. But that doesn't mean sweet jack at the moment, since he is still down in Toronto in the Annex, and still requiring enough oxygen that they haven't even bothered to discuss discharging him with us.

He makes these baby steps, that most of the preemies made weeks before him, gestationally speaking, and even though I get very excited about it because he is doing things better, or without intervention, to say the least, it is still a baby step that should have been taken weeks ago. Seriously, can I even call him a preemie anymore? I mean, he is past being "full term". He is over 8.5 lbs.

And I hate having to explain to people that yes, I did have a baby, but no, he is not home. Yes, I know I was due this month. No, I did not go full term. No, it is not a freaking vacation having a full term child who is not able to be home with us, so please stop making it seem like a dream that I don't have to wake up to screaming and dirty diapers several times over the course of the night.

I don't know when he started smiling. When did he learn this one? (I hate that I cannot just appreciate the smile, as my first thought AFTER "OMG, look how cute he is" was "I bet one of the nurses here was the first to see this miracle".)

I'm frustrated. Seriously frustrated. And, as before, there is not a damn thing that I can do about it. I can suck it up, drive down to Toronto to spend a few hours with him (because with another child at home, I don't have the luxury of spending 24/7 with him down there), come back home, clean and cook and go through the motions of everyday, ordinary life, pump, and cry myself to sleep; only to repeat it all over again the next day. Just like I have the last 85 days.

A part of me cannot stand going down to that hospital anymore. There is nothing wrong with the hospital itself. Don't think that in the least. This is not like my experience with Women's where I despised the place because of the people I was dealing with and the "care" I received. I just can't stand going down there anymore and knowing that I have to leave that part of my heart there every night. And as much as I don't want to do this anymore, as much as I cannot stand even thinking of heading down there again, I know that I will, because I cannot stand to not go down to see him and be with him.

This is the blanket I mentioned in my previous post. I am about 1/2 way done now, but have become so lackadaisical in continuing it, because it seems to have become a bit symbolic in the downward spiral pattern. That is how this is starting to feel...and that is, sadly, the only thing that I can think of whenever I pick it up. (Yes, great big fie on the friend who pointed that one out to me.)

I won't apologize for the sullenness of this post. (You read it and no one forced you.) I got set off this morning when I received yet another "they are sending my son home on Saturday...I am no where near ready. Are you guys?" text message. Yes, I am freaking ready. I am more than ready...yes, we have all our furniture and all the accoutrements that babies come with and likely will never need.


Monday, June 8, 2009

The Post In Which KnittyBitch Tries to See the Bright Side

Well dear readers, as you know, my son's breathing has been an uphill issue with the hubby and I. Earlier this week, after questioning if it might be related to the fact that I have an immune system disorder (my body fails to respond when I have a simple infection, and often times does not respond to infection in the "ordinary" course), or other medical problems which have occurred on both hubby's side of the family and mine, as well as questioning what I might have done wrong (if you are or know a preterm mother, the guilt is a common, though illogical, thing), we finally received a straight answer, of sorts. My son has been diagnosed with a chronic lung disease. It is gestationally related (he is over 36 weeks and still requires a fair amount of outside help with breathing), and sadly there is nothing that anyone can do to facilitate his recovery from it. This type of lung disease does not have any hard and fast rules for what can be done to make the child breath. Some things work for some children, some things work for others. But, there is nothing that is constant with any child, beyond time. So, at this moment in time, we are looking at "at least" another 3-4 weeks in the NICU. Because of how badly he responds to low-flow (i.e. the last time they tried him on it, he was at 600 oxygen on low-flow, and destated to 49% in less than 10 minutes), they want to give him more time before trying again. This has hit the point of frustration that is well beyond having anything left to say.

So the above was actually written last weekend. On Tuesday just past, we had our family meeting with the staff neonatalogist and the nurses, as well as the NICU coordinator and social worker at the hospital. At that meeting, we were advised that we were looking at at least 6-8 weeks of Riley remaining in the hospital, before they would look at sending him home on oxygen. They decided that they weren't going to even consider trying him on the low-flow again for another week. He just didn't get it. Both of us expressed our frustration at the fact that we honestly believe that he can do these things, but that he isn't being given a chance to try in circumstances that are optimal for success (i.e. every time that he was apparently tried on low-flow, we were never there for it, despite calling in to tell them when we would be). So on Wednesday, we arrive to be told that they are putting him on one hour low-flow during breastfeeding, and will keep him on the 9 hours of high flow as well. What? What happened to the statements of "he can't handle it, so we aren't even going to try"? Apparently our nurse for the day, who was one who had been there for many years, decided she also believed he could do it, so screw it, she was trying. The RTs agreed with her. So it was done. And he did amazing! They put him at 400, and for the entire hour, WHILE BREASTFEEDING, the lowest his saturation went was 96%. This is, I should mention, much better than he ever does on the CPAP. So the nurse charted how well he did, and decided that she would tell the Drs that he could handle the hour without issue. Thursday, same thing. One hour LF...they had to turn it down to 100 just to stop him from setting off his "over saturating" alarm. All this while breastfeeding. Amazing!

That evening, they moved Riley to the annex (which is a step between NICU and Level 2). It was agreed there that they would increase his breastfeeds and his low flow, since he appeared to be doing great with it. Since they are still operating under the assumption that he can't do it, though, they only increased it to 6 hours and completely got rid of the high flow, but what can you do. So, we are now doing 6 hours of low flow and 2 sessions of breastfeeding a day. Hopefully, since the nurses in the Annex are awesome and have seen how well he is doing and read his past charts (often times asking me "um, why is he still on the CPAP? I don't want to put him back on it, he hates it"), I am hoping that on Monday they will increase his low-flow time.

I must say, though, that I hate (and I mean deep down hate) that the doctors keep telling us that our son can't do things, and that he is not able to handle these things that we know he can, and finally agreeing with us. I have stopped attending the rounds for this reason. They piss me off. I know that they "have the child's best interest" at heart, but I am sick to death of fighting them, and it doesn't amount to anything, so...

In other news, I have started the OpArt blanket for Riley. Not too far into it, but after only a few rounds, you can already see the illusionary effect of it. I have also completely finished his sweater, and several more of the aviatrix hats.

I will post with pictures later, but for the moment, check out the chunky monkey:

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Since I am Getting Married Soon

Just thought I would share this, since it is probably one of the best answers ever (leave it to Grover, man)!


Yeah, I can't believe that. I am still sort of stunned by the fact that my little man turned 2 months old yesterday, however isn't due for another 26 days. That is, all things considered, really very freaky.

However, on the topic of my little man, he is doing good. They have upped his high flow to 6 hours daily. WEEEE!!!! Hoping it means that we will start to hear the word "low flow" being tossed around soon. has been over 2 months now. I hate that when I go in to visit him at the NICU, babies who have been there for 2 weeks who were born at a younger gestation than him are chilling out on the low flow and looking to be transferred down to level 2 while they are still within their first month of life.

I know, I know. You can't compare babies. But still, it is bloody frustrating. I mean, I had the lovely shots in my hips which were supposed to mature his lungs...most of these ladies didn't. Riley didn't have to be resuscitated...most of these babies did. Riley is 63 days old...most of these babies are under 30. Why the hell can't he get rid of this CPAP?

Yesterday, he did amazing on the 6 hours of high flow. Rocked it out at 35% for the entire 6 hours...and stayed in the mid to high 90s the entire time. Then they flipped him back to 40%...because he kept desating at anything lower. Seriously? Seriously...what the hell is that?

Anywho, rant over now. I am still happy that he is doing so well, and that he is starting to make progress, and that he is doing good with the breastfeeding. I am just very disappointed with seeing every other baby around us move from intubation to biphasic CPAP to CPAP at room pressure while my little guy is going ass backwards and keeps going up in necessary oxygen on the bloody CPAP.

I guess the worse part is that there is nothing that can be done, and no reason that can be found for this. His lungs appear to be fine and very well developed. He just doesn't seem to have the ability to keep his saturation levels up. And I am getting really, REALLY sick of hearing "well, he will do it on his own at his own time". I know this. I realize that I won't have a twelve year old still sitting around in the NICU. But that doesn't mean that all the false hope of him moving to a level 2 and being home before his due date that I was filled with from the comments of how wonderful he was doing and how healthy and strong he was (all things being considered) doesn't affect me every waking hour. And the fact of the matter is that if I were to have had him today, he would be coming home with me tomorrow.


Sunday, May 31, 2009

Finally seeing some progress

Such a good last few days. Seriously, very happy with myself for all that has been accomplished over the last few...and how much others (note: Riley) have accomplished.

So, in the most important of the news's, Riley is still doing great on the high flow. He has been on it for handlings for the last 5 days in a row, and each time they have weened his oxygen down, and he has continued to rock it like a superstar. As of today's hold, he was down to 37/38% and kept himself around 94/95% saturation. Our nurse (our primary) was on today, so she has put in a request that he go to "as long as he can handle" for the high flow. Both yesterday and today, they put him on the high flow before the handlings, so he was on it for longer than just the "one hour during handles" that is currently written in his charts. Today was a busy day for him, too. While he should have had his shots (he is 60 days old already...seriously, how did that happen???), there was no prescription ordered for it, so he will be getting that tomorrow. However, when I got there, Andrea had him flipped to high flow, and we had a bath. He is too big to fit in the salad bowl any more, so they are going to have to move over one of the baths from Level 2 for him. But it was wonderful for me. And look:

Mad Scientist Hair!!!

And while we did our cuddles today, once again we did the NNS. Each time, he has been really good with handling swallowing the milk that releases when he first latches. And today, he actually got about 3-4 good size mouthfuls swallowed. I was so very happy about that (of course, that was in addition to his feed of 58 mls). And the results after 4 swallows and 20 minutes:

He spent the rest of our cuddling time like that...out cold and using his former snack provider as a pillow.

So, the other day my daughter and I went out to the store by our place, and crossed the path of the local thrift shop. It is a small, hole in the wall place, with "Bibles for Missions" written in HUGE letters on the front window. Needless to say, being agnostic, and having had a bad experience of an overly pushy devout woman last time I was in a thrift shop with a religious connection, I was a little iffy, but thought they might have a comfy chair that I could pick up cheap.
Well, I didn't find a chair, but check out the other goodies I stumbled upon (for a total of $9.00):

I plan on making myself a chunky vest with the red. With the other colours (the Sirdar balls), I am planning on making a bunch of hats/booties/mittens for Riley. One of the balls has a purple mixed in, and I am going to make Ammy a new winter hat with that (thinking I might just alter the Aviatrix pattern to fit her head). Speaking of the Aviatrix hat:

Yes, I have finished the second of these hats, and have started on the matching booties.
Tis's late and I have to pump then hit the sack.


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

We are cleared for take off

So last night, I set Riley's new sweater to block, and was kinda wasting time, being very reluctant to work on the second sock for my hubby since I hate doing a second sock (yes, I suffer greatly from one sock-itis), when I stumbled upon the aviatrix baby hat which I saved on Ravelry eons ago. I LOVE THIS HAT. Seriously. I started it last night during my 1:30 a.m. pump, and look...this was it this afternoon:

So adorable (yes, I will be making more and in a multitude of colours), and such a quick knit. I think I have a new favorite for gifties for friends who are expecting.

I have also realized that I horrendously over estimated the size of Riley's sweater, and have enough of the blue wool left over to make a matching pair of pants. Yes sir, I think I will. Am thinking I will alter the pattern to have a sailor's bib, since there is nothing cuter than a baby boy in sailor's pants. :)

On the topic of my little man, we started NNS yesterday. They put him on high flow (which he rocked out at 97-99% saturation the entire time) and let me have at it (or him...hmm...not sure which that would be). Anywho, I was super impressed with our little rockstar, since he got a little bit of milk (it was bound to happen), and didn't freak out or choke, but calmly swallowed and continued on desat, no cough, nothing. Just swallowed and kept on breathing. And good lord does the boy have a good latch. He fell asleep after about 20 minutes, but if I tried to move him away from the nipple, he would immediately start sucking again just so he could stay...then would promptly fall back asleep.

AND, since he did so well on the high flow, they are going to start putting him on it at least 2 times per day for one hour periods, just to get him used to it. From there, they will try to change it up and get him on low flow for one holding, and high flow for the other. Right now, they are happy that he is able to handle it without the constant pressure provided by the CPAP.


Saturday, May 23, 2009

Frustrations and General Crud

What an interesting last little while. For starters, I still hate EI and their inability to process an application even AFTER they have given themselves a 10 day grace period. Seriously...we are now on day 46 of the 28 day processing period. Fun, eh? I suppose different areas of the government will always remain a part of the government and I shouldn't expect overmuch with them. Side note, really interesting article that I think everyone should read here. There is a lot about this proposed HST that most people are completely unaware the fact that services we don't currently pay the PST on (i.e. gas, home heating fuel, water, hydro, used cars, government and city services, real estate fees and many other professional services) will now have the 8% PST tacked on by default under the 13% HST. Yes, this bothers me. I am not one to discuss politics or the government, as I honestly believe that they are all as bad as one another (seriously, if I am raising my children not to lie and steal and cheat, why the hell would I support any entity or group of persons who have such a long history of lying, stealing and cheating - "better health care"; "shorter wait times"; "more support for families" - any of these ring a bell??), but I think that everyone should be made aware of these goings on, as we do have a tendency to bend over and take it when the government announces some new tax, or any sort of cut to services, because we feel we can't do anything to change it.

Sorry, now that that rant is over, let's move on to nicer things (and some not so nice things). In the world of Riley, this has been one of the more frustrating weeks. Our little man is a lazy boy. I fully acknowledge that. If you read this blog regularly, you know that he was listed as being biphasic dependent for ages before our primary nurse decided that she didn't care if he sent his saturation bells and whistles off, he could handle it, and was being lazy and just not wanting to. She shut his biphasic off, and yes, he complained and alarmed for a day before settling himself when no one would provide him with the part of the CPAP that would breath for him. The last two weeks, the o2 on his CPAP has remained between 30 and 35. None of the nurses would give him a chance to do anything lower than what he had been on the day before, even if he was saturating high on what they had him at. And he wasn't being allowed to try the low flow again, since the RN we had one day decided to try him on it while no one was around (he sats higher when being held) and he didn't do so well...which also put a minimum 2 day lapse on his next try, which put us into the weekend when no RT was around. The boy should have started NNS already, which he can't do on CPAP.

And we kept being told he was "supposed" to be at 34, 35, etc. Well, where the hell did this "supposed to" come from? No one could answer. And it became even more frustrating when we came in on Tuesday and his RN was changing the bedding and had accidentally knocked the o2 down to 24. I didn't say anything, as he was holding his own at that level. After about 10 minutes, the other half came in and commented about him being down to 24. Of course, the nurse immediately jacked him up to 35 because he was "supposed to be at that level". When I asked what she meant by he was supposed to be at that level, she just kept repeating it, and telling me he couldn't handle any lower. Um, I just stood here for 10 minutes watching him handle 24%, so don't tell me he can't handle it. But fine, whatever. I am not going to get into an argument with yet another new nurse this week. Then, as I am sitting there thumbing through his charts to see what is going on and if the results have come in from his follow up head ultrasound, I noticed that the drs have listed him as being "CPAP dependent". Um, why? Because the nurses don't know him (he had a new one every day for the last 7 days at that point in time), so they just kept him on what he had been on, and didn't give him any time to recover before turning the o2 up? Also noticed that along with the head ultrasound, they did an abdominal one, and he would have to see a surgeon after discharge for a urachal remnant. What?? I didn't even know that he was getting an abdominal ultrasound.

So, of course, I did what any parent in the NICU would have done. I asked to speak with a dr. Unfortunately, they were all in recess. So, we asked that a note be left for them to call us, as we wanted to speak with one ASAP. When we called in later that evening, no note had been left. And, of course, Riley had started to desat, so he was now up to 35% o2. I ended up going in the following morning first thing, and had a long, long talk with our dr. He explained the urachal remnant that Riley had (which was something he had never even heard of...not the U.R. itself, but the type of one that Riley has developed...a failure of one of the tubes attached to the umbilicus to dissolve so it is still supplying blood to the outer belly button - which is why his belly button hasn't fallen off yet) and that the surgeon was just a precaution...they want to see if it will dry up on its own, but if not, they may have to operate on his belly button to remove the tube. His brain bleeds, though, seem to have been reabsorbed into his brain, with trace amounts of blood in his occipital lobe. Then we got to the breathing issue.

Thankfully, as he is Riley's actual dr, he knows what he is like. He completely agreed that if he is holding his own, there is no reason for the nurses to bump his o2 up, and he would mention that at rounds and to the other fellows in case we ever argued with the nurses regarding protocol vs. what our son is like. He also agreed that since the window for the time that Riley should be starting the NNS is coming near its end, getting him onto something other than the CPAP so that he can start doing that is a necessity...even if it means flipping him to high flow as opposed to low flow. So, starting Monday, I will be able to start the NNS. :)

Here is the latest picture of our little tank (2600 85 gram gain from yesterday - approximately 5 lbs 10 ounces):

In other news, and on the topic of the little ones, my daughter recently wanted to chop her hair off, since she cannot stand getting it brushed (she has very curly hair, and it gets knotted very easily) and it often ends up in tears, even with a half a bottle of detangler. The final result (here's a before and after):


And, in the world of knitting, I am almost done the second sock for the big man. I can't believe that it didn't take me months this pair of socks I made him started in August of last year and finished about a month ago...yeah, I am bad like that). Anywho, here is the updated in progress picture (which will hopefully become a finished product by the end of the week):

I've also started making some headway on Riley's sweater (the skull sweater is not going to fit him when he finally gets out of hospital at the rate he is growing...guess I will have to make another one):

That is really all that is new and exciting. It is damn early, as I was up with the yellow beastie (my lovely medela pump, that is) at 5 this morning. Definitely time for coffee (oh, that reminds me...last picture...this is what happens to concrete when Timmies is spilled on it:

On that delicious note, ttfn