Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Offending Sliver

The offending sliver!

So most of you know a week ago little Layna went in for a little trip to the operating room. Full-blown, general anesthesia, operating room, surgical procedure.

The whole thing seemed a little...dramatic... for a sliver, don't you think?

I mean, she'd already had that thing in there for a MONTH. Seems like they could have just numbed it up with a local and yanked the thing out of there, right?

Nope, apparently not. Seems the infection that had been festering for so long without being able to move it toward the skin it needed to be washed out. Even with the ultrasound to let the good doc know where it was he still had to fish around in there a while to get it out.

Nicely embedded, in other words.

For some reason, whenever Elayna would talk about her "poisonous pus" I would think of that scene in Summer Magic where Hayley Mills tells "Miss Julia" about the wildlife in the backwoods near the Yellow House in Beulah. "Snakes?", Julia asks. "Oh naturally.", answers Nancy (Mills) "But only about 1 out of 10 is poisonous, so when we get bit we just have a slug of whiskey." "Even Peter!", adds brother Gill.

And then I'd remember the story of Shadrach the great Golden Retriever who had his mouth, face, and throat full of porcupine quills one summer and the best way to remove them all was to get the poor pup wasted and wait till he passed out after swerving to miss the pole a few times and then finally smacking into it head on. His rock hard doggie head still probably hurt from all that when he woke up!

So... where was I going with all that? Oh yes, never fear, we did NOT resort to such irresponsible-parent tactics as dosing our 4 year old with a thimble-full of moonshine. We just sent her in to be put under by the doctors. No risk in that at all, right?!

Okay, okay, I must admit, I am very glad as a mom to be able to offer this sort of humane procedure to my kid, as opposed to holding them down and lancing it as a doctor would have done 100 years ago.

Poor little girlie had already been through enough poking around her foot with needles, tweezers, squeezing and even a (weak) attempt to open it up with *gasp* a sterilized razor blade. Every night she had a bandage with black salve to draw it out, every day she went back and forth between epsom salt soaks and charcoal poultices. Nothing was working.

And y'all are probably thinking... ewww. TMI!

And y'all are right, but just wanted to show how long and how hard we tried to resolve this on our own outside of the OR!

Now there's a picture to wrench a mother's heart!
In pre-op just before they came to get her.

What it looked like the morning of surgery.

She's doing very well now. She had to wear a special protective boot, keep it wrapped in gauze and completely dry for a week, but now we're good to go with just a band-aid and some neosporin! Thank you, Lord!

with her cousin Levi at campmeeting,
walking around with her special boot and walking sticks, of course!
Thank you to Levi's mom for taking this adorable pic!

Friday, June 17, 2011

My Dear Letters

It's that time again - time for some Dear Letters!

Dear Jenkins Family Immunity,
Stop it. Just stop it. Whatever it is that's driving you to such distraction that you've left us all out in the cold for the last 6 months, QUIT! The kitchen looks like a pharmacy. The house smells like ammonia. The doctors are getting jumbled up and confused in my mind. Can you please get your butt back in gear and do your job already?! Thanks,

signed: a-sick-of-the-meds-the-dosing-the-charcoal-and-the-fomentations-the-appointments-and-the-missing-out-on-SUMMER!-Lisa

Dear Poison Control,
You are pretty awesome, I have to admit. Thanks for answering on the second ring, calming this mama's hysterics, and informing me that I do not, in fact, have to induce vomiting for every ingested chemical. Thank you for not talking to me like I'm a terrible mother, and thank you for calling me back the next day to check on everyone, both ingesting child and insane mother. I do appreciate it! Maybe I'll put you guys on speed dial so I don't have to look it up next time!!! ..... or not.

signed: a-"hello, POISON CONTROL??? I need to know where to buy ipecac!!!!!"-slightly overreacting-mom-Lisa

Dear Emmy,
Please don't make me call poison control ever again. They might be awesome, but I'm still pretty sure they think I'm nuts and maybe it's just my conspiracy theory tendencies, but I think they might call CPS on me if I have to call them more than once in my whole entire parental career and THAT was it. So.... no more spraying the Orange Oil Pledge in your mouth. Yes, it does have a picture of an orange on the label. No, that does not mean it's edible.

signed: a-'life's-never-going-to-be-boring-with-this-girl'-Mom

Dear Lisa,
You. Yes, you! I'm talking to you-ooo!!! First of all, let's learn from our lessons the first time, shall we? Okay, good. Now. Since that little pep talk didn't happen earlier in the week, let's go over some basic principles that will *hopefully* keep us out of trouble again, okay? Great. First: don't leave hazardous chemicals in plain view of the children. EVER. Second: don't turn your back on said children OR chemicals, but especially not when both are in the same room (or out of doors on the same PLANET together, mmm-kay? Third: Poison Control might be a wonderful resource, however, they are NOT the people to call when your child has sprayed deet-filled bug spray in her face. Technically, that's not INGESTING the poison, now is it?

signed: a please-stop-talking-to-yourself-it's-freaking-me-out-Lisa

Dear Broken Ta-Ta,
You served me well through 4 babies and 43 months of nursing. Why you've suddenly decided to go kaput on me for the past 3 months is beyond me. I thought we had a deal. I thought we understood each other. Now? Now it's like you've crossed over to the dark side. I swear, this IS the last kid, so could you please just... hold off on going on strike for another 6 months or so??? You're killin' me here! No matter how hard you push me, I just simply can't give you a raise right now. That's all there is to it. You're going to have to wait! So let's get back to work, shall we?

signed: a slightly-lopsided-ouchie'd-broken-ta-ta'd-Lisa

Dear Dishwasher,
I think about you often (especially when it's really humid out and I remember when I was a kid and the hot, humid air that old dishwasher would fill the kitchen with). I dream of the day we finally meet (which as of publication has absolutely no plans of happening in the near future). I wonder what it would be like to bring you home and make you part of the family (a productive part of the family, I might add, since we all work together 'round here). We'd really love to adopt you. It'll be fun! Kind of like a playdate that never ends (there's only 6 of us, how bad could it be?)! We'll take good *ahem* care of you! Hope to see you soon!

signed: a "what-do-you-do-when-your-dishwasher-stops-working?-smack-her-in-the-butt(and tell her to get moving)-of-the-joke-Lisa

Dear Joshua,
Congratulations. We're not even two weeks into summer vacation and you've already beaten the Mario Kart game. I know this somehow makes you believe that you are a way better driver than me since I am NOT that great at the game. I know that you think mad Mario Kart skillz translates to mad IRL driving skillz, but yeh, not so much. Sorry. Please take this into consideration next time you try to be the back seat driver. You still have 9 years till you get your license, bud, so slow it down, k?

signed: a-please-stop-telling-me-how-to-drive-my-Wariomobile!-uh-wait-what-do-I-do-here?-Mom

Dear Online Friends/Community Members:
I realize that spelling is very difficult for most some of us these days (and no I'm not trying to say I'm perfect). I realize that predictive text, a facebook spellcheck that says "facebook" is not a word, and a pop culture that has dictated cutesy little abbreviations and acronyms are not only acceptable but preferable to actually spelling out WORDS has made spelling skills seem obsolete. I assure you, they are not obsolete. Go ask your boss. So, let's practice one teensy little rule of thumb for those cutesy status updates: express yourself with all the WoooHoooos!!! and Yeeehawwwwws you want, but please, please, PLEASE refrain from extending the silent "e" as if it were actually the sound you WANT to extend!!! It doesn't even make the slightest bit of sense! Like trying to accentuate the word "huge" for instance. Please don't say "hugeeeee" because I totally read this to say, "hug. eeeeeee." Huggy? Huggy? What does that MEAN?" Perhaps I'm too literal? I don't know. But for some strange reason, I do find it confusing when people extend a letter in a word that is supposed to have absolutely no sound! Comeeeeee over hereeeee!! Smileeeeeeeeeee!!!! You're on Candid Camera! Am I the only one annoyed by this terrible abuse of the silent "e"?

signed: a-biteee-me-cuz-thu-speleeen-crimeeeeee-is-a-lameeee-thin-ta-doo-and-it-scareeeeees-me-ta-tink-of-the-nest-jenerashun-Leeeeeeeeesa

Dear Pediatrician's Office,
Really? REALLY?! It takes y'all 6 DAYS to call me back with x-ray results? I mean seriously, I'm not sure what I was thinking when I made the appointment to see the ped. instead of taking her to the urgent care right here in town, but it wasn't URGENT when the sliver had already been in her foot for more than 2 weeks. And THEN you send us BACK to the same (much closer) hospital where we could have gone to in the first place, where we dutifully had the x-rays taken (which BTW, doc, WON'T show a piece of grass or wood, hello!) and then were sent away so the results could be read later and forwarded back to you whereas if we'd have just gone to urgent care in the FIRST place we'd have received them within an HOUR. Not. SIX. Days. Oh, and thanks for ignoring my numerous calls during those 6 days also. I mean, I can totally understand that you honestly thought the infection would clear up with the keflex, but some TIMELY communication about what WASN'T found on the x-ray would have been peachy. I'm not stupid. I'm not jumping at every little thing to rush my kids off to the ER for. Don't treat me like I'm THAT mom.

Oh, and P.S. - the podiatrist thinks you're a dork, too. The poor kiddo you ignored for a week will be in on Monday to have the ultrasound done that you should have ordered long ago and will likely have whatever it is in her foot removed surgically on Wednesday. No thanks to you.

P.P.S - don't mess with mama bear. Just so you know. For next time.

signed: Mama Bear

Dear Bose-less, air-conditioning-less, fuel-injection-less, working fuel guage-less, did-I-mention-air-conditioning-less?, smooth braking system-less, older-than-the-hills Suburban:


That is all.

signed: oh you know who I am. ME. *sigh*

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Never A Good Sign

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice?

I mean, the day had started off rough enough as it was. I woke up with very vivid memories of holding, smelling, kissing and snuggling a sweet little baby that I will never meet this side of heaven. It's been almost two years, but at certain times and on certain dates I will always think of that little one. I'm thankful for the dreams, even if they are bittersweet. I'll always miss that little peanut.

It had been a long week of sickness for me (SHEESH, what IS it with my HEALTH this year?!) and I stayed home from church... with three of the kids. Not much rest there, but hey, that's part of the job description of "Mother", right?

While we sat in the living room after breakfast, one of our little girls admitted she'd wet the bed the night before. Part of her deal is that if she has an accident she must help clean it up, so I sent her upstairs to gather the wet clothing and bring down the wet bedding if she could. Went back to chatting with my husband about the week past and the week ahead and before I knew what was happening Colby was yelling "STOP!!" and I was trying to figure out just exactly why there was a trail of water across the living room floor and into the kitchen...

It wasn't water.

But you already knew that, didn't you?

And yes, the trail went all the way from her bed, down the hall, down the stairs, through the living room, and into the kitchen. Not only had there been enough wetness to do all that, there was still a puddle in the middle of her *waterproof* mattress. Oh, joy.

Thank heavens for paper towels, bleach, and Swiffer antibacterial solution!

Somehow we managed to get cleaned up and get finished with the easiest church readiness program yet: prepping only the man and the boy for church. No hairdos, no tights, and no makeup (for Mommy, of course).

Colby headed off to church with Joshua and I got started with the clean up of breakfast, which included rinsing the dishes to stack up, including the full bowl of granola the 4 year old dumped into the sink instead of eating, which filled the sink strainer that I then dropped on the floor as I attempted to empty it.

This shenanigans kept up on a steady pace as I watched one of the girls knock the coffee maker onto the floor (thankfully not full of hot coffee) spreading black coffee grounds everywhere. The more we tried to clean it up, the further the mess spread! How DO you clean that stuff up, anyway?! Paper towels, sponges, washcloths, two little blonde girls, a very interested-in-helping baby, and a wet, brown tinged, coffee-smelling broom later and we were sort of cleaned up again.

After that I found a half of a 2lb block of cheese:


Get ready!

Are you sitting down?



No, no I do not have any idea what it was doing there or WHY it was there but I did wonder where that cheese had gone to after the haystack dinner we'd had the night before. I was quite sure that if I were to ask the girls why there was a block of cheese in the bathroom they'd both point accusingly at the dog. Who is all of 8 inches tall and while he does have this cute habit of sitting up on his hind legs is getting much too old to jump all the way up onto the counter to snatch some cheese.

Yep, quite sure of it.

'Specially since he was never talented enough to do that when he was a pup.

Jump from a second story barn door? Yes.

Jump higher than 12 inches off the ground? No.


I have to admit: when the girls grew quiet upstairs at 10:30 that morning and the baby was asleep, I was simply and wholeheartedly relieved to be able to sit down and rest for a while!

Did I mention the girls were QUIET? UPSTAIRS?

Quiet and upstairs... quiet and upstairs.... quiet and upstairs....

Finally the red flags registered in my hazy, sleep deprived, not-quite-with-it mind and I ran upstairs to find this:

*indicating a very improper use of scissors, which are, of course, BANNED from the upstairs

which is a combination of hair from my childhood Cabbage Patch, a Who from Whoville doll, and Elayna's newest dolly from Grandma:

But of course, the real fun started when I saw the sheets on the bed:

Followed quickly by catching a glimpse of the almost-but-not-quite-out-of-sight hidden treasure:

Oh yes, hair. Not just hair from the dolls, but little blonde Emmy hair and curly Elayna hair, too.

See, I've said it before and I'll say it again: It's HAZARDOUS for mothers to get sick!!! Why does God allow mothers to get sick? I truly, honestly have no good explanation for that, but it's on my short list of things to ask when I finally get to see Him!

No good comes from a household with a sick Mommy.

Oh, and if you're thinking to yourself right now, "Whoa, those kids are CRAZY and OUT of CONTROL!!", you are absolutely right! And someday when you least expect it, you're going to get sick, too. Suddenly there will be behaviors and naughtiness that weren't even on the radar of your sweet little Puddinpop that somehow develop into full blown do-we-call-the-dr.-NOW-for-tranquilizers-for-ME-or-the-KIDS or-do-we-go-to-family-counseling or-do-we-call-the-pastor??? ...issues

They know when you're weak...

**And Kelly - if you're now trying to catch a breath and not hyperventilate... it's okay, you can hardly see it, especially on Elayna's curly little head! I promise! They'll look just fine for Flower Girl duty!

Just don't look too closely!


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