As usual, content faded fast once the holiday hit. We had two cases of strep and a vomiting bug, and an asthma flare. November, you shall be remembered as the month of sick. Tom was out of town for his LEAD (management training) graduation, so this week was extra-long. Tomorrow we will bring out the Advent books and begin the Christmas countdown...2012 is drawing to a close.
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Monday, November 26, 2012
I really wanted to do a review of our new baby gate and fireplace screen today, but Tom's been at a meeting tonight and Willem is ready to go to bed. He's been asleep for a long time, but not sleeping well...so I'm giving up on getting anything done and heading of to bed with a babe who needs some snuggles.
Sunday, November 25, 2012
After dinner I took a piece of thread and wrapped it around the very top of her tooth, crisscrossing it in the front and pulling (like one does to cut cinnamon rolls) and it popped the tooth right out!
Now she looks like this:
Saturday, November 24, 2012
Friday, November 23, 2012
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
I think I finally cracked today. Someone (often many someones) have been sick for a couple of weeks. I'm exhausted. I'm behind in every conceivable way...laundry, cooking, cleaning. The baby's sleep is a mess because everyone is bored and crabby and LOUD. In my frustration I said mean things to my children just to spread the anger around. I slammed my hand on the counter so hard I broke a blood vessel, while yelling about something I can't even remember now.
May there be grace and forgiveness and a better day tomorrow.
Monday, November 19, 2012
Thankfully our doctor will be around all through the holiday, and told me to call if someone else shows symptoms - she will meet us at the clinic for a strep test and save a trip to urgent care. I am pretty sure that we have the best family doc someone could hope for.
Sunday, November 18, 2012
Every so often I decide that knitting something would be a good idea. I generally stick to wash cloths or kids' scarves, since they are small projects that don't make me too crazy when kiddos decide to pull out the needles or unravel the stitches. I started on a lace scarf a few days ago because I am hoping to turn it into a Christmas gift. The pattern, from Sock Yarn One Skein Wonders, is pretty simple (only one stitch that I hadn't done before, and a two row repeat). The problem with lace is that if you make a mistake you just have to rip out until you get to a correct row - and the waviness in lace makes that pretty much impossible for me. Having had to rip it out and start over several times I was about at the end of my patience and ready to scrap the project.
Then...I had an idea - I would run a row of contrasting thread through the purl row every few inches. That way
Saturday, November 17, 2012
Friday, November 16, 2012
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Monday, November 12, 2012
It appears that this will be post 200 for The Whompers. When I started this blog to do the first (ever, I believe) NaBloPoMo I had two kids, a nearly full time job in research, lived in a much smaller house, had more cash and little free time. Now I have four kids, two cats, no job, a bigger house, much less cash, and no free time.
I am a terribly inconsistent blogger. Some years, I only check in in November. I absolutely love going back and seeing what we were up to in years past, remembering things that were important. I'll never be a great blogger with regular, interesting posts. What I will have is a series of November snapshots, and I have NaBloPoMo to thank.
Sunday, November 11, 2012
Saturday, November 10, 2012
Friday, November 09, 2012
Thursday, November 08, 2012
Wednesday, November 07, 2012
Heartbeat: My Involuntary Miscarriage and 'Voluntary Abortion' in Ohio
The pain of a fatal diagnosis for your unborn child is unfathomable, and I cannot imagine the grief. I have never faced her dilemma, nor wrestled with the pain of losing a much-wanted baby. I do take issue with Ms. Mann's rabbi, who declares that her baby has not drawn breath, and is therefore not a life:
The idea of "removing" my baby, my fetus, while its heart was still beating was simply unbearable. Was it living? Was it still growing? Would I be stopping the heartbeat, cutting short its life? And what do I do after the operation? Do I bury it? I didn't understand what I had inside of me and I didn't understand what I should do. I called a dear friend, an Orthodox rabbi, who I knew would be both compassionate and firm. After consulting with his rabbi, he said the case was clear. In situations where the mother's health is at risk and the fetus (he explicitly said fetus) is not viable, Jewish law errs on the side of the mother's health. I should have the operation and I should not bury the fetus -- it is not a life.
Perhaps this rabbi is unfamiliar with the Psalmist, who declares in Psalm 139 :13-16:
13 For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.
As I continued to read, I discovered that there is indeed something that I, as a conservative, am afraid of. Ms. Mann writes:
The next morning I got the following message [from the physician's office], "Because your fetus still has a heartbeat, it has been our experience that insurance companies in Ohio will not cover the costs of the operation. They consider it an optional abortion. Our office suggests that you go to Planned Parenthood, which will only run you $800. If you go to the hospital it will be over $10,000." I was stunned. What did my insurance company want, for me to have a dangerous late-stage miscarriage or go through the risks of labor to give birth to a stillborn?
That last line struck fear in my heart, because I suddenly wondered what would happen in the future if our country continues to devalue the life of the unborn. Could I, in the same situation, be forced to abort my baby because of a fatal prenatal diagnosis? Would I face a time when the lowest cost option is the only option afforded by insurance? Would I have to exercise my "freedom of choice" and choose between an insurance-covered termination or monumental debt so that my child might live as long as possible, and die within the warm confines of my womb rather than at the hand of a physician?
I always thought of being pro-life as being "pro-the life of other people's babies." Now, I think, it would be wise for me to be consider voting pro-life as voting for the protection of my own babies as well, that their lives, created by the one who created us all, end only when He ordains it.
Tuesday, November 06, 2012
Käthe climbed on my lap on Sunday morning, and the busy me wanted to give her a quick squeeze and get the ball rolling on the process of getting us ready for church. Instead, we sat, still and silent, while I counted the ticking clock. Three whole wonderful minutes of being held tight by a girl who is usually in constant motion, before she spoke (and as is her fashion, demanded food). It was an eternity and twinkling all at the same time. What a precious, precious gift.
Monday, November 05, 2012
Breakfast of fresh cranberry-orange scones and bacon, because I am refusing to run to the store when we run out of things like cereal, bread, and malt-o-meal (oatmeal being inferior in the eyes of my children). It would appear that we need to be in such a destitute state more often.
Kiddos to school on time, with lunches and snacks and homework as needed.
Washed three loads of laundry (only diapers left to do, I needed to give the hot water heater a break). What is sad is that today is supposed to be just towels and diapers, but a load of kids clothes was already sitting by the washer so I did it too.) If I do a load or two every day I can keep on top if it, but we are in the "lots of clothes" season and if I am out for the day I get behind so, so quickly.
Put away a bazillion loads of laundry - almost finished. I counted once, as I was hanging up clothes: as a family we wear about 40 articles of clothing a day, almost none of which can be worn more than once because my children see my clothing as a personal napkin. Pajamas get multiple wearings if no one dumps their breakfast down their front or uses their sleeves as a tissue. The quantity of clothing is insane.
Baked Swedish Rye, due to the aforementioned lack of bread in the house. This recipe turned out great (my only pet peeve being that she doesn't consolidate measurements - don't measure 9 teaspoons of yeast, because 3 Tablespoons is more accurate).
Took a shower!
Unloaded and loaded the dishwasher (this will probably happen twice more today).
Attempted to vote (I didn't realize the early voting in my town was a one-day event LAST Monday, which means I'll need to try to vote with the crowds tomorrow).
Managed to get the children to do their homework and help with laundry with a minimum of grumbling, and no crying (on anyone's part).
Is there still quite a bit of laundry hanging out in piles to be put away? Did I dust or vacuum? These days I need to be accepting of "Good Enough" and enjoy the time with my babies.
Sunday, November 04, 2012
Saturday, November 03, 2012
At his 4 month appointment Dr. Hempy flipped him on his belly and we were both surprised at his upper body strength. Two days later I tried to lay Willem in the stroller on a partial recline and he strained to lean forward...up went the seat and in a week he was sitting unassisted.
At five and a half months he was gnawing on my finger (as he has always been quite the chewy baby) and I discovered that two teeth were pushing through. I was so sad, in a way, because I love little toothless babies and those teeth are a stark milestone when it comes to growing up.
At 7 months he is getting on hands and knees, spinning on circles on his belly, and going from sitting to laying down and back again. Crawling will be here soon. A couple of weeks ago we dropped the crib mattress, and a few days later he pulled to standing in it using his musical aquarium.
He loves his big sisters, and daddy is the greatest. When Tom comes home Willem's whole demeanor lights up, and if Tom doesn't pick him up he usually starts to cry. Willem loves Pippi and Sphinx, and gets super excited if they come near (which is rare, smart kitties). Thea got a stuffed kitty at Build A Bear on her birthday, and Willem seems to think it is real - it gets the same gleeful reaction as the real cats. He is still pretty bald, and his sleeping habits were diminished by the girls being home (and noisy) all summer. I hoped that they would get better after school started, but progress is slow (and there is still one loud sister at home). It doesn't help that it is nearly impossible to nurse him outside of a dark, quiet room; he is too easily distracted. Unfortunately he is making up for it by eating super often in the night - which I hate because I'm waking up so often, but love for the uninterrupted cuddle time.