Saturday, October 31, 2009

Piglet Goes to the Doctor


I was worried about Penelope this morning. Instead of looking happy when the Nu-ne-nu man came on at the beginning of Sesame Street, she started growling, going, "Mmmmm, Mmmmm," like just a sustained consonant M voice over and over again.

At first, I was worried she was in pain because of her teeth, but then I realized that the letter he types at the beginning is M, and then he says lots of Mmmm sounds and says M words. I thought that was very interesting.

She didn't Mmmm after that, just during the Nu-ne-nu parts.

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Eighth Dwarf

Penelope: Lalalalala chickens...
Mommy: P-P-P-Penelope...
Penelope: Hey, what's that strange sound underneath my saucer? I think somebody's down there...

Mommy: Hello, Penelope!
Penelope: Mommy! You sneaky Mommy!

Mommy: Hi, Penelope!
Penelope: You're so funny, Mommy! You silly Mommy!

Penelope: Mommy's crazy!

Infant Tylenol always makes Penelope so loopy and silly. We gave her a little because her mouth was bothering her so much. She's been silly for like two hours. Now, however, she's a little squinky. I think it's because she's insisted on being with Mommy this whole time and now she's with Daddy.
Oh, but now he's got her laughing.

Penelope's Kid Cuisine

We have some Kid Cuisine in our freezer from when Grayson was here last, so I decided to have one for lunch. I'd just finished microwaving it when Penelope woke up. I picked her up and made her some milk, thinking I could eat the Kid Cuisine while I gave her the bottle.

What I didn't realize was that was Penelope's Kid Cuisine. She pushed the milk away, and I worried something was wrong--but what was wrong was she wanted my lunch. She finally agreed to take some milk, but she stared up at me as I was eating little pieces of popcorn chicken.

Finally, I squeezed open a french fry and offered her a little taste of the potato inside. She licked it off my finger eagerly and then continued to suck on my finger. After that, she lunged forward and tried to get handfuls of corn and pudding. So I asked, "Does Nellie want some um mum?"

I made her some squash, and she tried to eat the jar while I was getting it ready. She ate a whole big bowl of squash, so I guess she was hungry. After her nap, she seems very energetic, and she's particularly fiesty after the bowl of squash, so maybe she's okay as well.

Poor Penelope!

Penelope is definitely out of sorts today, but she perks up from time to time, so I'm not sure what to make of that. She doesn't seem to have a cold because her nose is completely clear. She did have a very overflowing diaper earlier, and it was a different color than usual, but I think that's because she's not had any solids for a while. It looked like a milky diaper.

She is definitely having pain in her mouth, but I'm assuming that's from teething, since she keeps hitting the front of her mouth and trying to chew on everything. I really think that her forced vomitting crying fit screwed up her digestive track because she just kept spitting up snot. She must be all out of whack, though I'd imagine that a few days of milk alone should help. (Certainly, stopping the antibiotic will help.)

I hope she's not catching my cold, though if she is, I guess she'll get over it. After all, I'm getting over it. She did cheer up after pooping this morning, however, and only got squinky just now, and that's because she wanted to go down for a nap. Noon is about the time she goes down on mornings when she wakes up late.

I'm betting that the cold symptoms I have now are either the adult version of Hand Foot and Mouth (which I'd surely catch because I catch everything and she pooped and coughed and slobbered all over me), or else she had some other little virus combined with reflux and I caught that. Either way, I'm pretty positive I got sick from her because I've been sick for several days now, and her nose is completely clear.

Her big problem seems to be mouth pain, which would be kind of a double whammy considering her mouth is sore in the back and her teeth are coming in in the front. I imagine all the acidic stomach juices being forced up aggravated that to the extreme!

She might eat squash. That's not as acidic. Oatmeal wouldn't be either except she prefers it with prunes.

My Poor Little Toodle

Well, Miss Toodle Doodle seems to be doing better today, although she's still a little tired. She slept until almost 10:00. She seemed a little squinky this morning, but she perked up a bit once she finally believed that we were only having milk and no grape.

I'm not sure when to offer her food again or what to offer. She seems to be moving a little slow, but her nose is completely clear. It was stuffy most of the time last week. I'm feeling a little better, still not 100 per cent, but I just have a little congestion. I am so much hoping that whatever I have I got from Penelope, so she won't get my cold on top of everything she's got already.

I really think she did have Hand, Foot, and Mouth, and that she was mostly over it by this week, but then that power vomitting episode made the soreness in her throat flare up and also tired her. (When you cry that violently for 45 minutes, it's got to make you tired.)

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Penelope was having some tooth pain, so I asked, "Do you want some medicine?"

She was very excited by the Tylenol. She grabbed the bottle, started chewing on one end of it. Then she banged it around wildly. She smiled up at me with the most gratified look like, "Thanks, Mommy! How did you know? This medicine makes me feel much better." It was so funny. But then she bit down too hard. I turned the bottle around so she could chew on the soft end with the dropper, but to my amusement, she started to suck it like a pacifier. She smiled up at me again. "Thanks, Mommy!"

I wish I would get unsick. I'm tired of being sick. And then when I take cold medicine, I get really hot and think everyone has a fever because everyone and everything feels hot to me. It's like the cold medicine destroys my ability to feel anything cold. (Don't ask me!)

I wish I were like Jessica Fletcher, and at ten minute's till the hour, I'd suddenly gasp, "Oh my goodness! Excuse me!" as some random sight triggered an epiphany that solved the mystery. I have so many theories about why we're sick and who got whom sick and with what. But I don't really know.

Even Dr. Little didn't know for sure, though, since she didn't see Penelope earlier. But she did know that the tonsil whiteness (which I didn't even know about) was not bacterial and was related to blistering. What she doesn't know is whether that was caused by Hand Foot and Mouth or by really acidic reflux.

One thing's for sure--vomitting and continuing to cough up phlegm and other stuff for nearly an hour last night did not help with those raw sores. In fact, since starting the antibiotic, Penelope hasn't been eating as well as usual, but just yesterday, I actually got her to eat a decent amount of oatmeal, an entire jar of squash, and a big jar of sweet potatoes. It took some coaxing, but she did it. Now, of course, her throat is so sore from all that vomitting that she won't even attempt to eat.

I feel guilty now. I wanted her to eat well so that she didn't loose too many nutrients and too much water with all the excess poopery. But she was doing it just to please me. She'd go, "Mmmmm," but then she'd cry, and she'd look at me so imploringly. Poor thing.

Hand, Foot, and Mouth

Know what? I feel better now. I think I have Hand, Foot, and Mouth, too. It says sometimes you only get the mouth sores, and my mouth hurt unbearably Monday, Tuesday, and part of yesterday. I felt like I had little sores on the side of my tongue, and my tonsils hurt, and the roof of my mouth hurt.

I was reading that the symptoms are like the common cold with a rash. If I just had the mouth blisters that would make so much sense, because I did see sore red looking places on the roof of my mouth.


I feel frightened and confused. Why am I sick? Will I make Penelope sick? Have I made Penelope sick. I'm hoping and praying she's made me sick, but she never had yellow or green mucus.


Penelope is crying right now.

We just got back from seeing Dr. Little who said that she did not need an antibiotic. The sore on her bottom is nothing to be concerned about. She did, however, find some white patches on her tonsils. She said they were blisters. When the other doctor looked on Sunday, her throat looked a little red to him. Dr. Little said the blisters start out red and then turn white.

She said Penelope could have had Hand Foot and Mouth or reflux from very acidic food causing the blisters which are not caused by bacteria and do not require antibiotic. Right now, her nose seems stuffy, and I'm afraid she's getting my cold. But that seems impossible. We just took her to the doctor, and she was fine. Her temperature was 97.4.

But now her nose is a little stuffy. Derrick thinks it might be from the fit she threw in the office. When Dr. Little opened her diaper, she went nuts. She clearly thought Dr. Little was going to take her temperature rectally, the way the nurse did in urgent care.

I was really relieved but now I'm upset. Why is she suddenly sick? And if she didn't have a cold before, where did I get this cold? Will she get it?

I feel so awful. Derrick has a hole in his tooth, so he feels awful, too.

I just feel awful.

Also, she's getting teeth. Dr. Little found three that are trying to break through.

I'm very confused and frustrated. I'm horrified that I've made her sick.

Feeling Like an Idiot

I hope so much that she can stop taking that stupid antibiotic. I think she's pooped six times today. Not much each time, but it's like her butt is just spitting everythig back. It's hard to keep her diaper area clean when she has that nasty medicine poop constantly.

I'm so confused. I feel like I took a perfectly well baby and made her sick by being a big hypochondriac. She really didn't want to eat her oatmeal. Her eyes looked so pained. I'm pretty sure her tummy feels upset.

After the way she threw up food and snot and everything else last night, her digestive organs can't be feeling great. Poor little Penelope!

Her temperature was only 100 in the Urgent Care place--not that high, especially considering that she was bundled up in long sleeves and warm pants and sitting for several minutes in her hot car seat, and then that she started freaking out and screaming the instant the nurse approached to take her temperature, and then that the room they had us in was like five million degrees.

Her throat was probably red from all the screaming when the nurse took her temperature. I'm really hoping that the spot on her butt is just diaper rash, or even if it is something else, maybe we could treat it topically since it's the only one!


I talked to the nurse at Dr. Nichols's office because Penelope doesn't want to eat her oatmeal, and she's pooping so much. She said Augmentin is really hard on the stomach and gut and that Penelope might benefit from some florarestore. She also said that if the drug was just given as a precautionary measure, there would probably be no harm in stopping it.

I made an appointment for 4:15 today with Dr. Little to see if the little sore place on her bottom is staph. If it's not, I'm considering taking her off the antibiotic because it's making her so unhappy and uncomfortable, and she didn't even seem sick before that. She just had a stuffy nose.

So we'll see...

I didn't want to just stop the antibiotic without talking to a doctor.


I hate that antibiotic so much! Poor Penelope! I'm torn because the little sore on her butt is clearing up nicely, so maybe that was staph or something, and she did need the antibiotic. But I'll bet if we'd taken her to the regular doctor, they wouldn't have given her an antibiotic--at least not so quickly.

She hates taking it so much. It makes her so unhappy, and after what happened to her last night, giving it to her stresses me out a lot.

This morning, I snuck it in between drinks of milk. Not that I was fooling her, but she did swallow most of it. She spat out some of it, but at least she didn't vomit up everything in her stomach and sob like a child possessed for forty-five minutes.

I'm not sure if she's ready for oatmeal yet. She woke up at 6:20 this morning, and I made her some milk and changed her diaper--a little poopy--then convinced her to go back to sleep. We got up again just after nine.

She's happy now, watching her show in her saucer and banging her sheep.

As for me, my mucus has turned clear again after being yellow on and off yesterday. I feel a little better. I'm taking cold medicine now as well as lots of vitamin C and water.

I feel a little worried about Penelope. She doesn't have liquidy stools, but she poops so often these days--although sometimes, it's just a tiny bit, so I guess maybe the antibiotic just loosens up her bowels or something.

A Horrible Couple of Hours

This has been awful! At 11:00, Penelope was due for her last dose of medicine for the night. While I was in the kitchen washing bottles, Daddy was giving it to her. I watched him give it to her, a bit at a time. He does it much more slowly than I do (probably a better method).

Suddenly, he said, "Can you get me a wipe?"

"Did she spit it out?" I asked.

"She spat up everything," he said. "She spat up."

Apparently, on the last bit of medicine, Penelope had been so angry and resistant that she started choking and gagging. She got so mad and worked up that she spat up.

Here's the awful part. Spitting up so upset her that when I came in with wipes and burp cloths, she threw up again, this time really threw up, out her nose and everything. She'd been perfectly well and happy like five seconds before we gave her the medicine, and she's been taking the medicine since Sunday with no real side effects (other than seemingly pooping more often--but not freakishly often and it's not watery). I know she just made herself mad and got worked up, but it was still scary. After she threw up the second time, she threw up again. Then she cried hysterically, coughing up mucous and plegm for the next forty five minutes.

We called the ADC after hours number to see if we should dose her again (since she had vomitted up everything in her stomach and then some). The nurse said not to (thank God! Getting her calmed down was hard enough). She also said if we couldn't console her after two hours to take her to the ER at Dell Children's.

The thing is, we've seen Penelope do this before. She has a really bad temper and is prone to hysterical episodes. She's so pleasant normally, but once she gets upset, she just gets worked up at an exponential rate and just goes completely nuts. She hates having stuff in her nose. Bubbles of thick clear mucous were errupting from her nose and mouth. Basically, she puked up everything in her stomach, and then because she was crying so violently, she just kept coughing up thick strands of snot.

This started to freak me out. I took off my new clothes (because her diaper had leaked on my outfit just before that) so they wouldn't get covered in puke like Daddy and Penelope's clothes. We had just changed her into her panda pajamas, and she just vomitted all over them. So I was holding her naked against my naked body with a blanket around her back. It's one she sleeps with upstairs, one Laurel sent because her blankey was being washed.

I didn't want to dress her until she calmed down. But she didn't even begin to start calming down for literally forty-five minutes. It started to deeply scare me because I thought of the alarms at the NICU and knew that her heart rate must be over 212 or whatever that sets the serious alarm off. (I seem to remember that it starts getting mad at 200 and just gets worse and worse.)

Plus, the more upset she got, the more thick globs of gunk filled her nose. At one point, Daddy tried to use the squeeze bulb to clean her nose, but that just made her more upset. She hates that thing so much. Even trying to wipe off her face, just dab it would add to her hysteria. Her entire body was red from so much screaming and crying. Just when she'd start to calm down (and this didn't happen till 45 minutes later), she'd suddenly have this snorty snot catch thing in her nose or throat. Then she'd get upset all over again.

Finally, she fell asleep, so I just kept holding her naked. Eventually, she woke up, and we changed her into her spotty dot pajamas. I offered her food, but during the diaper change, she got a little upset again, so she was really too sleepy to eat much of anything. She maybe took 1/4 ounce.

It's frustrating because I was trying to have everything all nice and ready. We were just about to go up to bed after dosing her, and I would have had all the bottles but the one he would give her after the medicine ready for the next day. If she sleeps through the night, it will be a miracle. I'm so tired, but we'll see what happens.

She really terrified me, though. It was so scary that she wouldn't stop crying. She's not sick. I mean, other that whatever she's got. I'm the hypochondriac, and I'm 100 percent positive she made herself throw up because she got all worked up about not wanting the medicine. She almost did that this morning (well, I guess yesterday morning now), but there was nothing in her stomach yet then. She just gets very worked up. And it keeps getting worse and worse because now she recognizes the medicine and knows she hates it.

When she saw me pick up the syringe to wash it (because I'd forgotten it in here this afternoon), she started reacting badly in anticipation. I'm not looking forward to giving it to her tomorrow morning, I assure you.

We're waiting for her blankey to dry to go uptairs. Really, I just wanted to make sure her nose was clear before I go to sleep. I don't want her to choke to death in the night. How do you explain to a baby that it feels so bad because her behavior is making it worse?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Sillydoodle

Hooray! My Show!

The Bad Cow

Nell Bell and I have been playing in her saucer. (I've been kneeling on the outside, of course.) I still feel snuffy, but I have much more energy and am feeling pretty happy. Penelope is happy because she gets to watch her show. When I was carrying her around the room, she kept frowning at me and pointing at the TV (as in, "Something is wrong, Mommy. Sesame Street is all dark and quiet.") As soon as I turned it on, she got all smiley. She even let me take some pictures.

Lately, she wants to blow raspberries at me all the time with her tongue. I'm not sure where she picked that up. She does it spontaneously. It's her new thing.

Just now, I tried to give her that little cow that moos when you pull its cord again. As it did two months ago, it freaked her out completely and she started crying, so I spanked it and threw it across the room. That was probably not the mature thing to do, but it made her very happy, and then she smiled at me.

The Dreaded Grape

Penelope seems very sleepy today, but she was so chipper this morning that the issue may be only that she's an hour ahead of schedule. She woke up at 8:00, and she was down by 10:00. Now she fell asleep again just after 3:00, woke up briefly at 3:30, had some more milk and fell asleep again.

She doesn't seem to feel bad or sick in any way. She's just sleepy. I hope if my cold is different from whatever she had/has, I don't give her what I've got.

Poor Penelope really hates her antibiotic. Earlier, after reading, she got squinky, so I said, "Time to get some milk." I tried to sneak the antibiotic out of the fridge, but when I took the lid off, she started sniffing and looked suspicious. (The smell is really strong.)

"Yes," I admitted sadly. "It's also time for her grape."

Penelope then spotted the bottle and made the most disgusted face you can imagine. She looked like a gargoyle. Then she fell asleep on my shoulder. Part of me is convinced that she was just pretending to be asleep because she'd dodge violently to the side and bend over forward whenever I'd try to give her the medicine--like before the syringe was even in her mouth.

After lots of screaming and theatrical choking, so finished it and then had her milk. Poor thing.


After doing more research, I'm pretty sure that I have a cold. (I know. I'm so weird.)

Even though I'm not thirsty, I've been drinking tons of water, and that actually seems to be making a difference. I'm barely sniffly (still a little) and feel much better.

Decisions, Decisions

I guess I have a cold. This morning, I woke up and blew my nose several times. My mucus was definitely dark yellow. Now, however, it is back to clear, so I don't know what that means.

Penelope, meanwhile, woke up in a great mood, and now she's happy again. (For a while, she was hysterical because she hates to take her medicine, but that was short lived.) She is kind of gassy. Derrick says he's been really gassy, too, as am I, so we're wondering if the GI issues are actually a light virus that we all picked up.

I feel a little sick, but I'm not sure what to do about it. The doctor already told me I'm not sick. My nose is now running sometimes. I'm not sure if I have what Penelope had or something else. I don't want to make her sick. I'm not sure what to do. I wish I had some Kleenex. I'm trying to decide if I should take cold medicine or not.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Daddy and Happy Pants

Daddy Puts Penelope to Sleep?

Of Course

As we finished up eating dinner, Penelope started to squink in the saucer. I picked her up and immediately stood her on my shoulders.

"Look how tall you are!" I exclaimed.

Suddenly, my face felt very cool. "Are her feet wet?" I wondered.

Of course, my face was covered in poop--as were her feet.

Vacuumophobia Part II

Mommy: See, now the vacuum cleaner's not scary, is it? It just helps Mommy pick up. So I can turn it on again, right?
Penelope: Okay, Mommy! No problem!

Mommy: Okay, so I'll just turn it on again, and....What's wrong, Penelope?
Penelope: Nooooooo! It is the spawn of Satan come for my soul!!!!!!!!!
Mommy: I thought you didn't mind the vacuum cleaner now!
Penelope: Oh, Mommy! I didn't know what you were talking about! I'm a baby!

Twenty minutes later...
Penelope: What was that?
Mommy: Your sheep hit you in the face, Nell Bell!

Penelope: Nuh uh! It was that evil vacuum cleaner! I still see it over there laughing at me!

Mommy: The vacuum cleaner didn't hit you, Nelope. It was your sheep!
Penelope: You're a dirty liar, Mommy.

Vacuumphobia Part I

Mommy: What's wrong, Penelope?
Penelope: You know what's wrong, Mommy. It's that horrible monster you brought into the living room.

Mommy: What do you mean, Penelope?
Penelope: That vacuum cleaner.

Mommy: Oh, I'm sorry I had to turn that on. But you still love Mommy, don't you?
Penelope: I'll think about that.

Mommy: Ohhh. Don't you love Mommy?
Penelope: Well...maybe....

Mommy: Awww! I see that smile!
Penelope: Okay! You got me, Mommy! I do love you!


Penelope hates the vacuum cleaner. (The fact that I've just discovered this, unfortunately, reveals how often I vacuum.)

I thought I could put her in her saucer and vacuum the living room a bit.


She went more nuts than I've ever seen her. She cried and cried and screamed. I had to turn it off and go and get her. First I took her picture. That, of course, only added insult to injury. As I carried her around the room, trying to soothe her, she whacked the vacuum cleaner hard as we passed it, then recoiled with wide eyes, evidently scared it would retaliate.

Even now, she's keeping an eye on it. She's finally agreed to go back in her saucer. First she would just stare at the vacuum and cry. And then once her sheep hit her in the side of the face, and she whirled around and started screaming and glared at that vacuum, and I had to pick her up again.

She seems happy enough now, but her eyes dart over to look at it every thirty seconds or so.


My mouth might be sore because I keep eating incredibly hot salsa every evening and gargling periodically with Listerine.

Mommy Continues to Be Crazy

Monkeydoodle and I just took a bath and had some milk and a cuddle, and now she is watching them make Chinese noodles in her saucer. I really do like Sesame Street (good thing). It's funny, as a child, I always liked Maria best of the people because I thought she was beautiful and looked like my mom. It's very amusing because really she looks nothing like her at all--though she does dress similarly. At the time, my mom had long hair and wore late 70s style jeans and shirts.

I remember asking my parents on the way home from church one day when I was three or four how my friends in Sunday School recognized me every week when I always wore a different dress.

"Well, they don't recognize you by just your dress," said Mom.

I started to study myself, trying to figure out what made me look like me. But of course, in the back seat, I didn't have a mirror to look at my face, so I was just examining my limbs and torso and feeling really puzzled.

Oh yeah, but why I'm crazy....

Now I'm worried that the little sore on Penelope's butt is staph, though why I'm worried about that, I don't know. I mean, she's already on antibiotics, and it's so small, and she doesn't have any more. But now I'm worried I do carry staph.

For one thing, there was this hairy place on my chin last night, so I shaved it, and now there's a bump there. According to a website I read, this is staph, though that seems very strange to me. I mean, I always get irritated skin and ingrown hairs when I shave anywhere. In fact, when I shave my legs, they spontaneously bleed, not from cuts but just from the pores.

Ah, well. It's all a mystery. I'm trying to keep my hands very clean (as I always do), and I'm trying to keep her hands out of her diaper area (as I always do), and I'm trying to keep her clean (as I always do), and I'm washing her floor blankets and bath stuff, and I'm about to vacuum.

I guess everything is fine, though I don't know why my mouth hurts so much. It must be the pumpkin stench. My mom suggested that vacuuming might help clear up some of that, too.


I was finishing up submitting an online recommendation as Penelope was waking up from her nap in the swing.

"Just a minute, Best Friend," I told her.

But my best friend, as it turns out, is a rather impatient person. When I looked again, she was trying to climb sideways out of the swing--a trick she has never tried before. She had ripped off half the netting and had one leg out. It was very resourceful of her.

When I came immediately and picked her up, she grinned up at me serenely, with feigned innocence like, "Oh, Mommy? How did you know I wanted you to get me?"

She always seems so innocent, but then she laughs and laughs with this naughty sly little look and gives herself away.

Monday, October 26, 2009


Daddy is teaching Penelope how to talk. Since she's been so physical--sitting on her own, lunging, trying to crawl, standing up--she hasn't been saying her words very much. Even "ommy," the one she says the most, she hasn't been saying as often.

He was making "Mmmmm" sounds at her. "Can you say Mmmm?" He got her to say, "MMM" and "Ahhh" after him. It was very impressive the way she would say it after him. We both got excited and gushed about what a good girl she was, and I think that overwhelmed her a little. She seems puzzled now. (Also she really wants Daddy's "cold" (i.e., his frozen water bottle). She's trying to climb over his body to get it.)


I guess I didn't elaborate about the strep. Dr. Mahale took a look at my tonsils, and said they didn't seem to be infected with strep or any bacterial infection. My temperature was only 97.9. (I tend to run cool.) She suggested allergies, possibly a mild virus causing somedigestive issues in Penelope and me. She says strep is really really uncommon in infants, although Jack got it last year, I remember quite vividly.

I don't know why the Urgent Care doctor gave her an antibiotic, but he did. Possibly, he was also concerned about the sore on her butt. He didn't think it looked like staph (which scared me because I hadn't even thought of that), and then he confused me by asking if I had a history of staph or spider bites. Derrick explained later that he was implying some people think they get spider bites all the time, but they really have staph. I did get a spider bite earlier, but I saw the spider, so unless the spider had staph, I'm pretty sure that was really a spider bite.

My Silly Toodle

Aside from the stinkiness, Penelope doesn't seem sick at all--except that she's been kind of clingy and especially prefers Mommy more than usual. She is manipulative, though. Earlier, she sounded like she was being murdered in the saucer while I was in the kitchen trying to empty and load the dishwasher and wash the baby bottles, too. I went running in there. Turns out the only problem was I was missing "A Song from Kermit," and I guess she thought I'd want to hear it.

My Little Saucer Person

Penelope's diapers all smell like antibiotics, even just the wet ones. Other than that, she's not really showing any signs of being sick. She seems to be feeling okay. She's seemed a little tired today, like not quite as into it while we were playing with her elephant on the floor. But that may be because I was worried I had strep. I might have been acting off. Also, it's really overcast today.

Penelope's Grape

I feel bad that Penelope has to take these antibiotics, but maybe she needs them. Earlier this afternoon, we sat down on my lap with her milk and her medicine. She was so excited. She turned to face her milk and banged on her blanky looking so delighted with anticipation. I felt so bad. I had to tell her, "No, first we have to have our grape, and then we'll drink our milk." She was so disappointed.

No Strep

I don't have strep.

Curse the Moon!

Merry very kindly commented that our pumpkin really did look like a bunny--funny because I think it looks more like a vampire bran muffin, but we had fun making him. I hope I didn't make Grayson sick.

I was thinking about Merry--remembering the time she went in for a shot (I think her HIB, which she called the H-E-B shot). The nurse gave her a bandaid and a sucker and said, "See, now that didn't hurt so bad, did it?" Then she walked out of the room, and Merry turned to Mom and me and grumbled bitterly, "I wonder if that nurse has had a shot lately."

On another occasion, Merry got really sick when we lived in Friendswood. Mom let her stay home that morning, though we both thought Merry was faking it to get out of going to school. Later that afternoon, I called home to check on her, and she sounded delirious. I was supposed to stay for chemistry peer tutoring (because for reasons I can't fathom, I was a chemistry peer tutor), but instead I got a ride home from a friend. This didn't help much because I didn't have a driver's license or a car. Basically, I sat by while Merry raved in delirium and kept calling Mom and Dad all the time until Mom finally came home and took her to the doctor. Merry turned out to have a 108 degree fever.

The nurse said something like, "Well, lots of people are sick lately. Must be a full moon."

In reply, Merry wailed (totally serious) "That wretched moon! Curse the moon!" It was like a 40s melodrama.

And then there was the time I went in for a measles shot at five and recoiled in horror when the nurse approached with a needle. "What are you trying to do--murder me?" I screamed at the poor nurse, who was unaware that the night before, we'd watched a show about a killer who dresses up like a nurse and hides in a house full of nurses to murder them.

I keep thinking of the way Penelope looked at me so imploringly on that table, how she turned into me and put her arms up. The look on her face was just so powerful--that "Mommy, why won't you get me?" look.

I don't like being sick.


Well, Penelope and I are sick. It's so weird because I had no suspicion that she was sick until yesterday. When we took her in, I was worried she had a cold sore. I'm pretty sure she was coming down with strep. In that case, it's probably good we took her in early. I'm pretty sure I'm sick, too. It feels like strep to me. My throat is sore, and my head feels really hot (like from the inside), and I have a bad taste in my mouth, and I feel a little queasy.

It's weird. I felt no symptoms until yesterday afternoon. It's like strep just exploded all over us. I feel bad because Grayson was here, too, but we didn't know that we were sick.

Meanwhile, Penelope has diarrhea. She pooped all over her high chair when we were trying to eat oatmeal. I know that's from the antibiotic. It's only supposed to last two days. Then again, now I feel nauseas.

I don't know how we got sick. I tried so hard for us not to be sick.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


We're watching a DVRed Jeopardy! from Friday. Penelope is so funny. She's leaning back, giving it this funny look. A minute ago, I answered a question and hurled my fists passionately at the screen in this wavey, enthusiastic dance, as I did it. Penelope laughed and then she did the same thing.

Earlier, I was worrying, "How long has she had a fever without me realizing it?" I was thinking that maybe she'd had a terrible fever, and now she had brain damage. I was holding her, thinking, She doesn't seem that responsive.

Then Daddy took her to change her. From the changing table, she stuck out her tongue and blew raspberries back and forth with me. Then he sat her on his lap, and she proceeded to "talk" to and laugh at me.

Bunnicula Lives!

My Melodramatic Toodle

Daddy was holding Penelope, and I was eating some oatmeal and chips and salsa. Suddenly, she made this tortured cry. She cried and cried. Then she abruptly stopped and gave me this incredibly pointed stare, almost the way people stare in cartoons. It was like she wanted to ask, "Did you notice that, Mommy?"

Thirty seconds later, she started to cough. She coughed loudly twice and made a tortured face at Daddy, then turned and gave me the same pointed stare. It was so funny.

"Do you want Mommy to get you?" I asked.

I stood up, and she threw her arms out to me, and then as soon as I picked her up, she snuggled into me and was all smiley like, "Lalalalala!"


I'm nervous about her being on an antibiotic because I'm not sure she needs it. She doesn't seem that sick to me. I just thought she had something wrong with her lip. Then again, she did wake up in the night three nights in a row, swallowing a lot. We thought she was refluxing because of the peas. (We stopped feeding her peas, and for the past two nights, she hasn't had a problem.) But swallowing a lot could indicate a sore throat, too.

The PopSICKle or Mommy is a Crazy Idiot, Part II

I think Bunnicula turned out pretty well. I don't know why I feel so much worry about Penelope. It's very unlikely that she's allergic to penicillin. I'm not. I'm watching Derrick crush me at Fantasy Football. I don't know what's wrong with my team this year, but what I'm really worried about is that Penelope will have a drug reaction.

When she looked up at me this morning--she's just so sweet and wonderful, and I love her so much.

Grayson was such a good boy at the urgent care place. Poor Grayson! I'm always dragging him to the emergency room. On the bright side, we weren't there that long, and he did get stickers and a popsickle! It was really cool, actually, because it was a rainbow pop, but not only did it have rainbow rings going up and down the popsickle, but it also had rainbow layers inside the popsickle--like the core was red and the colors radiated out from the center. (And you can't spell popsickle without SICK. At least not the way I'm spelling it...Ah, apparently you can spell it without sick--in fact, you're supposed to. But he got this one from urgent care, so it was a popSICKle.)

I really thought about picking up Mike Wallace and starting him instead of Braylon Edwards, and I really wish that he'd done that. I thought about it like ten times during the week. I'm obviously an idiot.

Mommy is Crazy, the Saga Continues...

So I'm crazy...

This morning, Penelope's lip looked like it had a sore on it when she woke up. I started freaking out, worrying about a cold sore, so we took her to urgent care. Turns out, she has chapped lips, not a sore. But she did have a temperature of 100, and the doctor thought her throat looked red, so he gave her a little antibiotic.

She just took her first dose. It was grape flavored, and she didn't seem to mind it, which was a good thing because she has to take it three times a day for ten days.

The tenth day will be Monday, November 2, when she has a nurse's appointment for her second flu shot. I've got to call them tomorrow morning to see if it matters if she's finishing up a round of antibiotics. We may have to reschedule.

In the meantime, Grayson and I are getting ready to paint a pumpkin

Poor Penelope! You should have seen her when they took that rectal temperature! She started crying in advance, probably because she thought she was getting a shot. She was so sweet. She wanted me to pick her up so much. She turned and looked up at me like, "Mommy, you know I love you. Why won't you pick me up?" It was so heartwarming.

More Cow Creek Fun

Penelope's Reaction to Daddy Turning on the Lady Gaga CD

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Bang Bang!

Grayson said, "Look, Sarah! This is so cute! I got this great picture of me shooting Penelope in the head! See how it looks like I'm putting a gun to her head?"

He's so funny. Only a six-year-old boy would think this would delight a mother.

This is my picture, but he was taking a picture at the same time.

Some Cowy Pictures from the Creek

We have like 150 pictures (after I just pulled out the good ones), so I'm just including a random sample here. (Well, not totally random. These are all good, though not necessarily the very best. Lots of others are also good.)

661 Nameless Road

We had lots of fun today. We drove out to Cow Creek. Grayson actually got in to wade, and I did briefly (by accident). Penelope liked it when Daddy would walk, but she got mad when he held still. Of course, she always thinks Bubby is a hilarious delight.

Back in the car, Grayson and I kept yelling for Daddy to stop so we could take pictures. Derrick was like, "Hmmm. I'm not sure I can deal with two photographers in the back seat." Meanwhile, I set Penelope's bottle down to take a picture out the window, and she was like, "Hmmph!" When I turned back, she had picked it up and was giving it to herself. I tried to take it back, but she squinked at me and insisted on doing it herself. She did pretty well, except that once she got milk in her eye (and blamed me). Later, she ripped the nipple off and got her neck really wet. (This was also my fault, as was taking the bottle from her to fix it because that was Penelope's bottle!)

On the way back, we drove down Nameless Road. We were talking about buying a house there and decorating the road for Halloween.

"We could live at 666 Nameless Road," Daddy suggested.

"That's too creepy," I said. "How about 1313 Nameless Road?"

Grayson suggested in his spookiest voice (which involved fingers), "How about 661?"

"Yes," I decided, "661 is just about the right amount of spooky for me."

The Stranger

I'm without a battery right now because mine's being bizarro, so if my computer accidentally gets unplugged, it abruptly zaps off. That's happened like five times already. I assured Derrick it probably wouldn't happen. Anyway, when the computer zapped off just now, Penelope didn't know what was going on. She was very impatient to see the next picture and didn't understand why I wouldn't turn the laptop around and show her. She leaned forward and tried her best to lift herself out of the saucer--which, thankfully, will not work.

Anyway, when the computer finally restarted, I showed her my wallpaper--a picture (that used to be the blog header) of her smiling up at me on my chest in the NICU. It was from one of the first days she started smiling when I stroked her hair. She still has the cannula.

"There's my baby!" I said with a smile, turning it around to her. I've been saying, "There's my baby!" or "There's you and Bubby!" "There's Bubby!" Normally, she smiles in anticipation, and then her eyes light up with recognition and her mouth spreads into a huge grin. When she saw this picture, however, her smile abruptly faded, and she looked at me with a blank, curious stare.

"Mommy, you must have made a mistake," her wide eyes seemed to say, "I don't know that baby."

Mommy's Little Helper

I'm uploading pictures from today at Cow Creek. Penelope is helping. I'm sitting beside her on the floor. She's in the saucer. Every time I get to a new picture, I turn the laptop to show her. She smiles and smiles appreciatively. Right now I'm taking a long time because I'm writing this, and she's getting impatient and suspicious. She's leaning way over the edge, trying to turn the computer herself.

Pumpkin Rot


The zombie tried to kill us. Penelope and I both woke up with totally clear noses--no allergies, no sniffling, no snuffing, no morning nose. Then we came downstairs and snuffed it up. I sneezed like 77 times, and my whole nose tried to stop working. Grayson and Daddy were already snuffling.

Finally, Daddy threw the old jack o'lanterns away outside. If he'd waited any longer, he reported, he would have had to scrape the white one off the fireplace. Anyway, he just changed the air filters, and we've got all the windows open, so everything is much airier now.

Bubby and Sissy