More drama…

On December 23, my six year old, Catie, began complaining of pressure behind her right eardrum.  She was running no fever of any kind, so we treated it kindly with warm compresses and Tylenol.  Uh-oh.  Already, it begins.

Christmas Eve,  Catie was fine during the day, but after the gift exchange at Grandma’s, she decidedly looked like she was ailing.  Still no fever.  Even the outside of her ear was not red.  At all. We continued to treat the ‘sore ear’ with warm compresses and Tylenol.  On Christmas Day, Catie was perky (what child isn’t perky when presents loom before them?) and told me that her ear was not bothering her ‘at all’ (her words, not mine).  We headed to my Dad’s for Christmas Day, which requires the proper prerequisite rest and hydration.  Again, once we were done opening gifts, Catie began complaining about her ear hurting.  I was beginning to see a pattern…  Gifts to open = No discomfort of any kind.   Gift opening finished = discomfort/complaints about ear.  Oh boy.

Catie was STILL not running even a mild fever that night, but added her jaw to the complaint.  Can you say, “Breakfast will be oatmeal with a side of Tylenol?” The next morning, I had to finish up my Internship @ Massage Therapy school. When I got home later that day,  Catie was obviously in pain – I called the pediatrician’s office.  The doctor was out with a family emergency (he’s got three boys. it’s gonna happen!) and the backup female pediatrician was out of town until after New Year’s.  Oh, crap! The charge nurse told me what I already knew: Catie was not running a fever, so there was most likely not any kind of infection, just a buildup of fluid pressure.  Then, she told me something I did not know: giving Catie some decongestant might help to ease the pressure behind her eardrum.  The nurse also had me alternate Tylenol and Motrin every three hours.  Worked like a dream – until this morning

This morning, Catie woke to a wet spot on her pillow and a dripping flow from her right ear.  Her eardrum ruptured!  Crappity- crap-crap-crap!  Of course, we’ll have to wait until, oh, TUESDAY to see the pediatrician.  Catie is no longer in any pain – something to be thankful for!  When cleaning her ear today, I found what I believe is one of the set of tubes that were inserted in her eardrums when she was 16 months old.  They’ve been in there five years!  Looks like a tiny spool (if you own a sewing machine).

I’ll keep you (all two of you, plus Mom) updated.


Catie AND Halie saw the pediatrician today.  Halie has strep throat and Catie’s eardrum has begun to heal on its own.  Both are on antibiotics for the next ten days.  Please pray for the rest of us that cuddled and smooched Halie all holiday season that our throats will not serve as festering petri dishes for the strep bacteria!



This post was previously titled ‘Halfway There’, but of course, that was a week ago.  Never got it posted.

I was busy finishing up the 50 massages I had to complete to graduate.  I began serving as a Massage Intern on December 8 ( for you lay people: ‘Intern’ is a fancy word we use down here in Texas that really means ‘testing our new skills on willing human guinea pigs’).  Today is December 26, and I have completed all fifty.  

Tomorrow, I send in a copy of my transcript and 117 dollars to the Texas Dept. of Health and I will be given an appointment time to go and sit for a written test.  Woo-Hoo!

I am a graduate and soon I’ll possess a professional license!  I wasn’t this excited after being handed my High School diploma. Maybe that says something about my life…

O’ Dark Hundred Hours

 My oldest daughter, Halie, turned 8 on December 7.  She graciously agreed to wait for a birthday celebration until December 17.   My daughter was well compensated for her patience.  Among the wonderful gifts was a gift I never imagined her desiring – ever : rollerblades.   Halie put them on before the party was over and was skating up and down the sidewalk in front of our house while we all watched.  She mastered them that same day! 

The next morning, it was back to school (Monday).  At 5AM, I saw a shadow in the hallway, outside my bedroom door – It was Halie: completely dressed for school, but also outfitted with helmet, gloves, pads and rollerblades.  My eight year old seemed to be trying to sneak in a skate around the living room before school without waking us up.  I jabbed my husband hard in one shoulder – repeatedly.  When I had his attention, I simply pointed down the hallway.   He called out to our daughter, “Halie? What are you doing?” She answered solemnly, “Well, my teacher said that if I get up extra early, I can have some time to do what I want to do before I have to get ready for school.  I like rollerblading, so that’s what I’m doing.” 

 WOW!  I had no words.  My husband just asked Halie to be careful around the TV and not to move the furniture.  Then he sent our daughter on her way.  My husband rolled over, saw the look on my face, and said, “You know what? Halie’s inspired me to use this morning to do whatever I want to do. I’m going back to sleep!

In the end, Halie was happy (not her usual grumpy morning self), and I asked her to thank her teacher for giving her such good advice.  Halie had a great day at school! When my daughter came home, she told me that the teacher passed a ‘Thank You’ right back to me.

I think Halie’s sisters might be getting some of their own rollerblades for Christmas!

(Sorry.  Having problems getting my photos loaded on WP.  Check out the pics of Halie skating over on myFlikr Photos page)

Have a Merry Christmas!

Anybody ready for Christmas?

Anyone?  Anyone? Bueller?  Although I unboxed my (fake) Christmas tree the weekend after Thanksgiving, getting it completely decorated has been a long process.  Today, we invited all of the family to be here to celebrate Halie’s eighth birthday.  So, while I had the camera out anyway, I figured I’d share a photo of our indoor Christmas decorations:

Christmas 2006 click to enlarge

Enjoy.  May your holiday season be blessed!

We Wish You AmeriChristmas

My sister posted about a flyer she got in the mail this week.  For a grocery store.  Uh. Mah. Gah!  Go read it: Zhook – Journal – We Wish You AmeriChristmas

Happy Birthday Halie!

Halie December 1998 I remember the day you were born with such clarity: The doctors were concerned that you we’re too immature to be born so early, but my body was creating an environment for you that was less than favorable.  We all decided that you would be better off on the outside rather than on the inside

My body was not ready to give you up!  Almost as soon as the doctors and nurses spoke of trying to induce labor, your heart rate began to plummet.  When it did not return to normal, we were off to the operating room.  This is where my memory gets a little fuzzy.  Honestly, if your daddy hadn’t video-taped your delivery, I wouldn’t remember any of it. 

On the video of your birth, I hear your birth weight being announced: 5 pounds, 14 ounces, followed by the pediatrician yelling, “She’s a keeper!”  I have told you that my heart gained exactly 5 pounds and 14 ounces that cold December morning. You were presented to me just before you were taken to the nursery, and I began singing ‘Happy Birthday’ as tears rolled down my cheeks.  Before I was through, your daddy and all of the staff in the O.R. were singing to celebrate your birthday!

At 7:36 this morning, you officially turned eight years old.  You were born, I blinked, and here you are on your eighth birthday.

  Thank you for blessing me every day, Princess Halie, Your Cuteness.

Halie turns 8!

Part 2 of 2 for testing out of Swedish Massage was TODAY.  Several of the Licensed Massage Therapists employed by the Institute had to volunteer to be massaged  by each of the eight ladies in my class, then offer critiques. The Licensed Therapist that was chosen for me to massage?  The founder of our Institute, Mr. Anderson. ( I know, I know.  He’s never SEEN any of the Matrix movies, so he doesn’t get it!) This is the  man who spoke before Texas Legislation (more than 20 years ago) to get clinical massage on the law books.  I therefore call him ‘The Godfather of Massage’.  There were others who stood beside him, sure, but he’s the only one I actually know.  Of all the students massaging for the ‘final exam’, it was ME who was brave  confident enough to volunteer to give Mr. Anderson a massage.  A one hour massage

He gave me some good feedback during the actual massage.  He had a suggestion or two when I was done, and when he filled out the critique form afterwards, he wrote “This woman was cut out for massage.”  How awesome is THAT? Coming from a man who’s been massaging/getting massaged for more than 20 years – I’m very flattered! 

Needless to say, I have aced all of my courses, including Swedish Massage (which was the last class) and I’ll be beginning my internship tomorrow.  For the lay people reading my blog, ‘Internship‘ is a fancy term we use down here in Texas for ‘practical massage’ or ‘practice on willing human guinea pigs’.

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