December 12, 2018

So apparently while we were out partying the other day some random car pulled into our driveway, the driver jumped out and ran off somewhere while leaving the car in gear.  The car proceeded to inch its way forward and grind itself into the side of the house.  We only found out about this because our neighbour happened to mention it.  They apparently heard a loud crash and looked out to see a car driving into our house.  Figuring that the car was there to see us (since it wasn't there to see them) they left it at that.  After reviewing security camera footage, careful examination of the damage and parts left behind by the vehicle and canvasing neighbours we've developed the following story.


Delivery guy pulls into driveway and hops out of the car to deliver package.  As he walks towards the destination he glances down at the address one last time.  Ooops, he got the wrong address, turns around and wonders where his car is and where that awful noise is coming from... Oh #%#@!  He runs back to find his car smooshed into the side of our house (driver's side against the house).  Climbs into the car from the passenger side and slowly reverses back into the driveway.  There he contemplates his parking failure and possibly makes a quick phone call.  He recovers a few of the pieces of his broken side mirror and leaves.  He drives a blue Ford Focus.  Model year between 2008-2011.  He has extensive damage to the bodywork on the driver's side of his vehicle including a now defunct side mirror and possibly a damaged tire.


He never came to our door or as far as we can tell the doors of any of our neighbours for several houses in all directions.


We spoke with the police and as the house had no damage beyond some paint and rubber transfer they were not interested.


You read about people driving into houses and think that will never happen here.  Our house is 50 feet back from the street on a super quiet street.


On the bright side his car hit our house and not the neighbours where the same trajectory would have hit their gas meter.  That would have gotten overly exciting very fast.

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December 11, 2018
Umbilical hernia repair

Amelia has what's called an "umbilical hernia", which happens when the opening in the abdominal muscle that allows the umbilical cord through fails to close completely. Also known as an "outie" bellybutton, it's very common. Most of them resolve on their own by the time kids turn four.


Amelia's was quite large and not getting smaller. More importantly, she often complained about it hurting and pushing everything back in place stopped things from hurting. So we asked for a referral to someone who could check it out.


Turns out an umbilical cord hernia allows part of the intestine to protrude through the stomach wall and in rare cases it can get pinched. If it gets pinched too long that part of the intestine dies which is not good.


When we saw Dr Nasr, he decided that Amelia's hernia was unlikely to resolve on it's own even if we wait until she's four. Given that Amelia was having pain from the hernia we were already inclined to proceed. After talking to a family member with the same issue whose hernia was not repaired as a child, and hearing enthusiastic encouragement on going ahead we put Amelia's name on the list for surgery.


I wasn't terribly concerned about it; after all Elizabeth had day surgery around the same age. Then the pre-op nurse called and told me that she had to stay home from all activities for the first week of recovery and be kept quiet with NO JUMPING for a further two weeks and I started to freak out a bit. Then she was prescribed morphine for pain and let's just say I'm glad they checked her blood pressure and not mine.


The surgery was scheduled for 12:30-1:30pm. Amelia had yellow jello for breakfast and then we played upstairs for a while. She did not talk out loud much at all and I started to worry she was sick. Lorianne gave her a tin of stars "pretty like you" and a trumpet that Amelia thought sounded like an elephant. After that she forgot to be worried for a while and played being various animals, blowing her trumpet and stomping around.


Soon it was time to go. Daddy dropped us off at CHEO and we went to get her into her special pajamas. She was very very quiet, but after about twenty minutes in the playroom she started to relax a bit. We did crafts, played with their toys, played with toys we brought and played games. The volunteers quizzed her about how many brothers and sisters she had. Apparently she has one brother and one sister. No other brothers? I asked. Nope. Michael -as it turns out- is not a brother. He's a baby... They asked her if she had to travel a long way to get to the hospital. Answer? Yes. About ten minutes, I clarified.  The volunteers were quite amused.


Playtime flew by and it was time to go to the ER. She came so easily that the staff decided that she didn't need to premed to calm her down beforehand. I was a little surprised because admitting had strongly recommended it, saying that if she fought the mask the surgery would be delayed or cancelled, but the nurses really wanted her to try without so I got all gowned up ready to go to the operating room.


While I was getting dressed, the anesthesiologist was checking her heart and lungs and a volunteer was blowing bubbles to distract Amelia. Then it was Amelia's turn to blow bubbles and I don't know WHAT she was thinking but she popped the bubble wand into her mouth! Yuck! Everyone was quite surprised. It was quite a small one so I'm not sure if she didn't realize it was the bubble wand or what. Anyway, bubbles were blown and her lungs were deemed clear.


The nurses got me to put Paw Patrol on my phone for Amelia, and she proudly walked to the OR carrying my phone.


I lifted her onto the table and she picked cotton candy for the smell. I should have reread my blog entry about Elizabeth's surgery because I'd remembered that she'd fallen asleep almost instantly, and Amelia took ages to pass out. It was definitely longer than 30 seconds though and we had a whole conversation about how the cotton candy smell changed to smelly sock (probably Matthew's). She was watching Paw Patrol the whole time though so maybe she was trying to stay awake to see the end of the episode.


Then I was escorted back to the waiting room where I joined the throngs of anxious parents all watching the TV screen that had their child's unique number and current status. After only about 25 minutes, Dr Nasr came to tell me that she was all done and in recovery. The edict on NO JUMPING was repeated several times, but I was relieved to hear that we can otherwise take our cue from how she's feeling. Apparently they used a lot of freezing on her tummy.


I had to wait another twenty minutes or so before they finally fetched me. Amelia was calmly sitting in bed, eating a popsicle. The nurses all gushed about how good she was. "I know" she replied. Later she proudly told Matthew that she didn't cry at all "Not even a little waaah". The nurse suggested I might like to go downstairs to fill my prescription for morphine, because finding liquid morphine in a regular pharmacy is apparently hard. Amelia said it was fine if I ducked out to do that, so I did. Apparently she was a dream patient.


In recovery she had three popsicles and a container of jello. After which she claimed her tummy didn't hurt at all and she felt fine, so they removed her IV and let us go. Amelia liked getting to ride in the wheelchair and she liked getting to pick out the medication flavours (cherry Tylenol, bubblegum advil).


She spent the rest of the afternoon eating toast and popsicles, and watching Peppa Pig. It wasn't until late evening that she decided her tummy was starting to get a bit "owie", but only a bit. We aren't sure if that's because the freezing was starting to wear off but hopefully she has a good night! She sure is doing great so far.

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December 10, 2018
Eleven months

Eleven months is pretty exciting. First steps! (Current consecutive step count is six)

Sleeping through the night! Sleeping in his own room! Able to climb out of the exersaucer, highchair and crib!


Michael is spending a lot of time standing up these days. He doesn’t seem very interested in doing a lot of walking all at once - I’d say he “cruises” less than his siblings but the number of steps here and there is steadily increasing. Mostly he prefers to crawl, often partially while seated. It’s all about getting into all the things in the most efficient manner possible.


Eleven months is obsessed with the forbidden. We had ant traps out for a few days and that was a nightmare as he made a beeline for the traps if put down anywhere on the same floor. We never bothered with child locks in the kitchen before this child, but he discovered the paper towel roll in the cupboard. He likes to bang the lamp into the wall. Luckily the Christmas tree is an adequate distraction...


He’s very fond of the swiffer. We have one that we let the kids play with (shortened handle) and he likes to stand in the kitchen banging the swiffer on the floor. Thump! Thump! Thump!  He also enjoys throwing things down the stairs and generally rearranging things all over the house.


With all the firsts, we are experiencing a few lasts as well. Now that the highchair is no longer safe it’s time to pass it on to someone else! 

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December 9, 2018
Karen's birthday

It was Karen's birthday party so we wrapped up an empty box of skates in lieu of gift that needs her feet to acquire and headed from the NAC to Dave and Karen's place.


Uncle Dave is having terrible back problems and could hardly sit through dinner(!) poor soul. A massage chair was sitting on the couch and everyone took it in turns to test it out. I was not a fan. Elizabeth was REALLY not a fan. Auntie Yukiko and Xander adored it. Amusing times...

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NAC winter concert

We went to the next installment of our NAC kinderconcert series. Uncle Chris and Auntie Yukiko kindly watched Michael for us again, including bringing him to Auntie Karen's birthday party later that evening. Michael was apparently well behaved until it came time to get in the car - which was NOT approved so he wailed all the way there.


Amelia was concerned that the concert would be scary for some reason.


The theme was "Christmas all around the world", so the tunetown activity beforehand was belly dancing. The kids completely refused to join in and wouldn't let me do it either. Finally after watching for a while Elizabeth was warming up to the idea, so of course it was time to go watch the show! Oh well.


Elizabeth's favourite part was counting Christmas carols in the Christmas medley. Matthew liked Jingle bells.

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December 8, 2018
Party day

It was a party kind of Saturday.


After skating, I took the kids to celebrate my friend John's birthday - minus Michael who was under the weather and so stayed home with Brendan. Amelia played while the older two watched a movie (deemed too scary by Amelia). She was unimpressed by this decision. "You can watch movies at HOME!" said she indignantly. Matthew retorted "I can play with you at home too!" "But not with those toys!" Touché. In any case they didn't want to leave when it was time to go.


The kids were invited to neighbour Horatio's birthday and dinner party in the late afternoon and for supper, so shortly after we got home, we headed out again.


This time the kids did play with the toys. Horatio has lots of robots and other neat stuff, but Elizabeth's favourite toy was a magnetic drawing pad. I found this puzzling as she has the same toy at home and a few other similar ones, but apparently this was more exciting. Elizabeth and Matthew were double booked for supper at two separate venues; Elizabeth with her school friends Bianca and Samia (not sure who else), and Matthew with his friend Nico (Bianca's brother), so they had to leave early. Michael and Brendan stayed home again, but I did switch with Brendan mid-way through the party so that he didn't have to deal with sad snotty baby the whole time. I was a bit embarrassed that we ended up being kind of a revolving door kind of party guests, but we all had a good time at the party. Hopefully next time we can all come together!


I finally got around to making the Christmas pudding but since Michael was asleep by then and pretty disgusting I did not wake him up for the sake of "stirring". Janice and I also stirred, but no photographic evidence exists so you'll have to take my word for it. I felt last year's pudding was overly dry, so I vowed to follow the recipe to the letter (aside from gluten free flour of course) and loaded up on dried fruit like prunes instead of currants in the hope that it doesn't fall apart. Pudding charms were put in, but wrapped in foil in the hopes of not eating any this year.

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