Sunday, August 29, 2010


Conor starts kindergarten on Tuesday. We thought he was starting last Wednesday with the rest of the Charlotte Mecklenburg system. We thought wrong.

Apparently, here at CMS, they have a staggered system. We thought (along with many other first time parents) that meant that not all the schools start at the same time in the morning. While that is true, it also means that kindergarteners get a "trial" day the first 5 days of school; that is, they only go one of the first 5 days of school. So some kids had their trial day on Wednesday and then start kindergarten for real the NEXT Wednesday, we have our trial day on Tuesday and then start for real on Wednesday.

So, um, yeah. That's actually fine. Conor starts kindergarten in two days. And actually, the twins start daycare tomorrow.

Halle-effin-lujah. We had two great nannies. Two women who were fantastic with the twins. But I am going to be so glad to the twins back to our regular daycare where I don't have to worry about what to tell someone to fix them for lunch, if I have the food I want them to have for lunch, if there is enough food for the nanny to eat something for lunch, does the nanny know how to prepare what they should have for lunch, and then to repeat the whole thing again for snack. Seriously. We loved the nannies, but I am so glad to be sending them to daycare.

Of course, the panic attacks in the middle of the night of how we're going to do all this have been a lot of fun. First, we cannot afford after-care for Conor. We were going to send him to an aftercare program at our church, but we honestly and truthfully do not have the money. How is that possible? Due to an amazingly low fixed rate mortgage we are not paying any more for that. And we were fine when it was just Conor is daycare, so what the heck?

I'll tell you the heck. It's doubling the daycare payments AND the new car payment. We had paid off both cars a while back so we didn't have a car payment. But the twins can't fit in a jetta, much less the twins, Conor, Dave, me and sometimes a dog. Here's a number that made Dave and me slack jawed in pain and anticipation: in 4 years when the twins enter kindergarten and we pay off the car, we'll have $2,000 more tax free dollars per month to, I don't know, to do what? That is so much money right now, we could use it for toilet paper and still end up ahead.

So that's been part of the panic attack--we have no money, we can't afford for Conor to be in after school care, but I, um, kind of have to work! But then we got some good news and some kind of bad news that helped solve the after school dilemma. Basically, if Conor rides the bus and I take him to the bus stop, I will have plenty of hours to get my work done during the day and Conor will not be in after school care. That's the good news. The bad news is that it will be a long-ish day for Conor--although not really longer than daycare. But it will start early. REALLY early. The twins' time in daycare will be about the same as Conor's has been these last 5 years, but not worse.

So that's where we are. I think it's sort of funny that people think I'm having a hard time with the twins going to daycare. But I don't. I'm more worried about Conor. I want him to have enough free time during the day--that doesn't involve sitting on a bus. I know it's going to work out. It always has. But the transition is going to be a little crazy and that's a little bit overwhelming right now.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Viral Pneumonia

Now that's a blog title!

Um, so, uh, yeah! It's been a busy week. First, viral pneumonia is not nearly as bad as bacterial pneumonia. And, indeed, we caught Bridget's viral pneumonia/chest cold early.

Ok. So let's back up a bit. Bridget appeared to come down with croup (from her brother, as you may recall) last Monday. I am not that worried about croup, so I saw no need to call the doctor. And then Bridget sort of melted over both Dave and me and wouldn't move from sitting in our lap with her head on our shoulder.

Lethargy is never a good sign in a feisty child, particularly one with a fever.

Additionally, Monday night, Bridget started throwing up. Tuesday morning, we opted to go in to the doctor, because again, Bridget could not even lift her head off our shoulder.

I expected the doc to give me another lecture about how viruses can cause croup, blah, blah, but instead he put Bridget right on a nebulizer. Fortunately, her breathing cleared up so no need for x-rays or oxygen. Instead, we went home with an albuterol inhaler and orders to come back Friday.

The virus continued this course for a while. Bridget has no energy, ran a high-ish fever (102 to 104), threw up, and as she got better, had diarrhea. And of course, there was the junky cough. Coughs are not good indicators of chest colds/viral pneumonias. Lethargy is. REMEMBER THAT if your child loses all his or her energy.

So, yeah. She's better now. The ultra-conservative doctor put her on an antibiotic which freaked both Dave and me out. This doc HATES antibiotics and to give her one without her having a bacterial infection really freaked me out.

In any case, school starts back next week and I am completely not ready for it. Last week, I had planned on doing what I'm doing this week. But I couldn't leave my little baby while she was this sick. So I'm trying to catch up this week before next week starts. I'm a wee bit freaked out.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Life With Twins

Do you want to know what life with twins is like? Do you want to know why Mothers of Multiples (MOMS) say it's much harder than you can imagine? Let me share this story with you.

Let's say you have a twin, a twin with floppy windpipe, something that while noisy is not that dangerous. Unless the child develops croup. At this point, it is prudent to put this child on prednisone to reduce the swelling in the throat and help the child breathe. This is a good thing. There is just one caveat: the major side effect of hyperactivity. Let's, hypothetically, call this twin: Christopher.

So on a Friday night when Christopher's twin sister falls asleep at 7:30, Christopher is a whirling dervish around the family room, giddily playing with every toy he can and manically running back and forth along the room until, oh, say 10:30. On the second night of medication, his parents look up whether benadryl can be given along with prednisone and, lo and behold, IT CAN! So on Saturday night, Bridget passes completely out at 7:30 and Christopher is only up until 9:30.

Not being slow, the parents of a twin on prednisone will, on the third and final night of medication, give benadryl right after dinner. And HOORAY! Christopher goes to sleep at exactly the right bedtime of 7:30. And so does his sister! Hooray! Hooray!

But that's not what it's like to be parents of twins. No. The twin god laughs when both babies go to sleep at the same time after two hellish nights. Nope, life with twins means that the sister twin wakes up at 7:50 and refuses to go back to sleep. With just one child, a) we would be enjoying a free night tonight or b) we would have enjoyed two previously free nights. But instead, we have one child peacefully sleeping and another happily playing, having had two amazing nights of sleep under her belt.

So, there. We were away for a good 11 day trip to see Dave's family in the midwest. AND WE DROVE! Yes! 6 days in the car for an 11 day trip. It wasn't as bad as you might imagine, and there were a couple of unexpected highlights including a hotel bathroom that opened into the bedroom and zooming (and subsequent squeals of laughter from the kids) over Ohio hills in Amish country. There was also an AMAZING thunderstorm and 12 straight hours of lightening. There was so much continuous lightening at one point that I thought a police car was outside the house and the lights were flashing through the window.

More, more, more to share. Christopher is walking now and has been for two weeks. Conor starts kindergarten in three weeks. The twins start daycare (AND NOT A MOMENT TOO SOON) in 4 weeks.

I'm not giving up this blog. I know I say that every (rare) time I update. I'm not ready to give it up yet. I am ready for a little more free time, but I have no control over when that is going to happen again.