Two Months

Look who’s two months old already!

At Monday’s doctor visit, Donovan weighed 13 pounds, 13 ounces, and measured 23.5”, 

which puts him in the 80% for weight and the 60% for height. 

The doctor was impressed that Mr. D was already able to hold his head up on his own. Go, Donovan!


Playing Ketchup

Leia’s sojourn distracted me from everything else going on, so let’s play catch-up, shall we?

Fathers Day at Topper’s. Three generations - Donovan, Dad and Pop.

Marie’s belated birthday. Did you notice who’s in every picture but one?

I barely missed Jac in that one - she was at dad’s elbow, trying to shove her way into the frame. So funny.

My mini-me and crafting buddy. She even sits like I do. (Leanne is sewing up body parts, as you do. Kiwi Crates are awesome.)

Donovan’s tummy time.

Freyja missed Leia, and vice versa. Also? Frejya, at one year, weighs more - and is probably longer - than Leia at age 9.

Leanne’s first drive-thru car wash. She couldn’t decide where to look first. So exciting! 🤣

Leanne has an independent streak, which can be good and bad. On the good side - she decided she wanted pigtails, so that’s what she did. I think she did a great job for her first time.

And finally, I fell in love with a quilt that a friend was just finishing and talked her into selling it to me. 

Almost-two year old provided for scale. And because she would.not.get.out.of.the.way. 


Bunnies and Bears

We celebrated Leia’s impending hospital release 

by taking Leanne and Jac to Build-a-Bear.

Jaclyn is usually a ham when a camera is pointed her way but she made Pop work for these pics.

I’m not going to smile.
Nothing you do will make me smile. 
Dang it.
Can’t believe I smiled.


What A Week, Part 2

(Part 1 is here)

After I left Tuesday morning, Leia was moved from her regular room into Pediatric ICU when her oxygen levels wouldn’t stabilize. She was not a happy camper. In addition to  feeling crummy, she hated having the cannula in her nose. She brightened a bit when the nurses brought her play-doh (pneumonia meant she couldn’t visit the communal playroom)

and was even happier when she received a gift bag from Disney with stuffed animals, coloring books and more. 

Tuesday night/Wednesday morning found us me watching the monitors and enjoying hourly visits from respiratory and nursing staff.

Leia got restless if I wasn't touching her - thrashing around and trying to pull out the hated cannula - so I spent the night with my feet propped on her bed, watching her sleep.

She ended up sleeping through everything, including a 6 am blood draw (her only reaction was one big tear that trailed down her cheek).

 She refused to eat anything until I brought in the big guns - her favorite Motts applesauce. 

Wednesday was better. Leia was still in ICU,

still tired,

but had enough energy and concentration 

 Pinball, Yahtzee and emoji bead necklaces. 

to play with the toys Daddy brought her.

 Waffles and bananas 

Thursday Leia got her first solid food since Monday. Whoohoo!

She taught mom to play Yahtzee (and made her mom text me and daddy when mom got her first ever Yahtzee 😂🤣)

went walk-about to the playroom where the therapy dogs were visiting

 Beating Daddy at Wii

and late Thursday afternoon was moved out of ICU and back to a regular room.

 Leia and Fireena (a gift from Disney)

She was still having respiratory treatments 

and was still too tired to stay awake though our movie, but our hopes were high she would be released on Friday . . . . 

 Leia is so over this hospital thing.

Didn’t happen. Doctors decided her oxygen levels weren’t stable enough and they wanted to run one last test on her stomach issue, so it wasn’t until Saturday that she was finally, finally paroled released.

And that made her a very happy girl. 

What A Week, Part 1

Leia’s been complaining of stomach pains, off and on, for several weeks. Last Monday the complaints were accompanied by a fairly high fever, so off to the emergency room she went.

The ER doctor heard her coughing, ordered X-rays, promptly diagnosed pneumonia in both lungs and rigged her up with an IV, oxygen tanks and antibiotics. But what about the stomach pains?

 Drinking the contrast meds mixed in apple juice. Yummmm

A contrast CT scan was next on the agenda 

and showed pretty severe intestinal blockage from constipation.

Her temperature was still not under control, her breathing was labored and her stomach hurt. Since the Simi hospital didn’t have a pediatric ICU, 

and the closest in-network hospital with a PICU was in Los Angeles, south of Dodger Stadium,  

Leia and mom got to take an ambulance ride

while the rest of us caravanned along behind.

 Too sick to enjoy the ride.

Once she was checked in, the parental units went home for a bit of sleep while I stayed with Leia overnight. She fell asleep listening to the Food Network and about 3 a.m. - still sound asleep - started talking about “my cake isn’t big enough”. A welcome giggle-moment for me. 

 My 1.5 hour drive home in morning traffic was a PITA, especially with no sleep. 


Sunday Funday

Took the girls to their second favorite place on earth -

Chuck E Cheese! 

They spent almost 2 hours running around, playing games and having a great time.

 Mad scientist mixing her magic formula.

Then it was Leanne’s turn for a baking sleepover.

 Shaping colors with a toothpick

We made rainbow cake (from a vanilla cake mix)

and topped it with home-made chocolate frosting.

I’d forgotten how gooooood real frosting tastes and how easy it is to make.

We’re awaiting permission for Leanne to share this with her class. She’s rightfully proud of her work - and Pop and I can’t eat all this bakery goodness by ourselves. Sure hope the teacher says yes!


Cooking School

Leia loves baking and cooking so we’ve been experimenting with recipes.

Thursday night she made family-favorite porcupines, almost by herself (I supervised.) There’s no written recipe for this - I just wing it - so next time we’re going to measure ingredients and write them down. Then we’ll go back to winging it cause that’s a lot more fun.

Tonight, we made Guinness beef stew - from a recipe that we kinda followed - and my favorite brownies,

from a recipe I got 35+ years ago from Old John.

I wrote it, at work, on the back of an EDP card (emergency dispatch card) as he dictated it. It’s worn and stained and treasured and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.  But I may make a fresh, clean copy for Leia to keep.