Mark’s Very Own Blog!

Mark has finally been bitten by the blogging bug and started one of his very own tonight.   Check it out:

I am not being unkind: he came up with the name himself.  It’s not even that accurate – a lot of the time I help him ruin dinner. 

Tonight’s dinner exploits are featured, and no, we did NOT burn the house down.  Last week Mark DID buy some new smoke detectors and a fire extinguisher.  Let’s just say that tonight we were glad we hadn’t installed the smoke detectors yet!

Karen Ruins Dinner


Physical Therapy

PT 1 

Ben has global developmental delays, meaning that at the age of almost 9 months, he is more at the level of a 2 or 3 month old baby.  He gets physical therapy (affectionately known as PT) once a week, usually on Tuesday mornings when Jonny is at preschool and Isaac is at kindergarten.  During these sessions, we work on Ben’s gross motor skills such as sitting without support, holding his head up when he is on his belly, and weight-bearing on his legs.  Ben usually fusses during PT because his therapist makes him work.  Mom and Dad tend to be too easy on him sometimes!  Ben’s therapist is great, even though HE doesn’t always think so.   He seems to do a little better with PT when we are faithful with following though with his exercises during the rest of the week.  Sometimes it’s hard to do, especially when he’s sick.

PT 2PT 3

Mark took Ben to the doctor today because he was still having diarrhea.  Now we have to collect stool samples!!!  That will be a blast, I am sure!

This Old House

Our House 

We live in a VERY old house, and it shows.

In addition to the usual quirks that old homes have, the previous owners had awful taste when it came to interior decorating.  When we first moved here 2 1/2 years ago, we had to put up all new drywall and floors in the living room and foyer.  I won’t even begin to relate THAT sordid story. 

Our current project involves redecorating the dining room.  We have appalling dark green wallpaper stuck on top of equally appalling dark green paint.  The wallpaper seems to be stuck on with epoxy or something equally tenacious.  Mark has spent many hours on this task already, but his progress is painfully slow: 

Dining room wall

We would like to paint the room a nice bright color, but what I REALLY want is to move into a nicer, newer home with a big fenced yard for the boys to play in!   I guess we are just making things nicer for the prospective new owners, which is OK.

Poor Ben has post-antibiotic diarrhea.  I really hope it stops soon.

A Valuable Sunday School Lesson

Isaac went to Sunday school yeterday.  He didn’t want to go at first, but ended up having a good time with the other kids.  He came home with a “Tree of Knowledge”.  I was too preoccupied with the snow to pay much attention to it:

Tree of Knowledge

This morning, Aliyah asked him about it.  He told her his interpretation of the Adam and Eve story:

“God told Adam and Eve not to eat the fruit on the tree.  They did, and God punished them.”  Aliyah asked, “How did God punish them?”

“Well, one of them had to leave the garden, and the other one had to have babies and take care of them forever!” 

I wonder what he thinks WE’RE being punished for???  😉

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One Snowy Day

Isaac and Jonny in SnowJonny and Mark

We had our first (and hopefully last!!!) real snowfall of the season.  We didn’t even know snow was in the forecast, maybe because we don’t watch the news or the Weather Channel.  We were driving home from church when we noticed the first flakes.  That wasn’t a good sign: today was the day that Mark had to pick up my sister Aliyah from Dulles Airport, 2 hours away from home. 

The snow continued and we probably got an inch or two here.  The boys went out very briefly to play.   They would have probably stayed out for hours but I got cold and coaxed them inside with some hot chocolate.  🙂

Isaac throwing snowball

Ben chose to sleep through his first official snowfall…… 

Ben Fast Asleep

Mark took a lot longer than usual to get to the airport, but made it there OK.  Aliyah’s flight also made it in on time.  They made it back home around 10 pm last night in one piece, although Mark did crash into a cement divider on the highway on the way back because of ice.  Miraculously, they weren’t hurt and the van didn’t suffer any damage.

Mark missed the Patriots/Colts football game, but we had DVR’d it.  Would you believe he actually stayed up until 2 am watching it?  He was elated that the Colts had won!  He said he jumped up and down as if the Steelers were going to the Superbowl. 🙂

Feeling a Little Better

Ben Feeling Better 

Ben had to get his fourth Synagis shot on Tuesday, so we ended up having him seen by one of the doctors (not his regular pediatrician) while we were there.  He was still having fevers and feeling miserable.  He was still not tolerating his feeds even when we ran them in at a very slow rate.  And he did something he’s never done before; scrubbed at his left ear with his hand, so much that he scratched the side of his face. 

The pediatrician said that his left ear looked OK (which I don’t believe, no disrespect intended to the kind pediatrician who saw him; it’s just that he saw the ENT specialist just days before who declared she couldn’t see much with his tiny ear canals).  In any case, she said his throat looked red, and she put him on amoxicillin.  She also suggested that we feed him just Pedialyte for a day or two.

His recovery this time around has been slower than the last time he was ill in November.  Although he didn’t run any more fevers, he still slept alot and was fussy.  Today we had a follow up visit, and it is the first day that he’s actually stayed awake for most of the day.  The Pedialyte idea was a good one – it gave his GI tract a rest, and now he is back on formula, albeit at a slower rate than normal.  We have learned that we can’t rush these things.

So it might very well have been just a virus, but Ben is definitely on the mend.  😀

I had the day off today, and got to go to Ben’s appointment as well as take Jonny to gymnastics.  It was great to see him having so much fun. 

Mark took my car for an oil change.  Apparently I was supposed to have done this months ago – I only thought about it because the oil light has been coming on lately.  Last August I ignored my battery light for so long that the car stalled on the way to the mechanic.  I have since learned to pay attention to those lights!

Hopefully Just a Virus

Sick Ben January 

Ben has been sick for the last 2 days.  He hasn’t smiled at all, has been sleeping an awful lot during the day, and not sleeping very well at night (VERY unlike him).  He has been running a fever, is just a little congested, and hasn’t been tolerating his feeds very well.  Poor little baby.  We all feel sad when he is sick.  I hope it runs its course and hopefully he will be over it soon.  We cancelled his PT session for tomorrow.

Jonny seems to have diarrhea (TMI?) – he has probably picked up some sort of bug as well.

On a positive note, another mom of a little boy with CdLS has sent Ben some of her son’s outgrown clothes.  Her son has a little right arm just like Ben does, and she has shortened the right sleeves on all the outfits (and did a wonderful job, I might add.  I wish I could sew that well!)  They fit him PERFECTLY!  They look so much better than rolled-up right sleeves, which is what we had been doing.  And Ben has easier access to that little arm and finger he loves so much.  😉

 Ben and his Daddy

She also sent two gorgeous pictures of her son.

Last month I participated in the annual CdLS Christmas card exchange.  It was great fun – we ended up getting 20-odd cards from all over the U.S. (and some from other countries as well), all containing pictures of a child (or adult) with CdLS.  We saved all of these and made a bulletin board of the pictures in our computer room, along with each person’s name and age.  We enjoy looking at them, and marvel at how much our kids with CdLS tend to resemble each other!  🙂