Monday, July 30, 2012

And...I'm done!

I finished my last 2 comments on my classmates discussion questions for school today.  Yesterday (after one final edit), I turned in my final paper of undergraduate.  I had to convince myself to log out of the online classroom. It just felt strange to be done with it. Now I have 6 months to find a job, before my student loan companies start calling.  Actually so far they've emailed me to tell me how excited they are for me. Anyone else find the humor in that? Sometimes I feel annoyed with the repayment process, but honestly those loan companies made it possible for me to get my education. So as long as we all play nice, there should be no issues. (I'll ignore the stalled economy issue...)

Matthew had his 6 month well baby check up today.  He is 15 pounds, 9 ounces. He is now in the 16th percentile for weight. He is also 27 inches long!! Holy height. Definitely doesn't get that from me (I'm 5'5.5"). I am pleased though. He's making progress.  He has eczema so we got a bunch of creams for that. He may outgrow it so we'll just watch it. I am not worried. Otherwise he is a happy,  healthy dude. He got his vaccines and took them like a champ. 

This past weekend, the town we live in has something called Whaling Days Festival.  We decided to go check it out on Saturday.  It seemed like a neat thing.  There were lots of food choices and rides. I think next year may be a bit more fun for us. This year Little Dude is obviously too small/young for rides so we just ate food and walked around. No pictures from it, so I won't be doing a weekend outtakes.

The Olympics have started, if you didn't already know, and we have been watching!  Thank goodness for DVR, since so many events are on late or in the early morning. 

I go back to the Allergist tomorrow and hopefully will get these allergies under control soon!

Friday, July 27, 2012

6 months old!

My absolute favorite of the 6th Month pictures!

A picture Daddy took of Matthew
In his Mickey Mouse pool

Playing in the jumperoo

How I found him yesterday morning. Not sure how he got the lamb in the crib.

Swinging, he loved it, despite the facial expression.
On Monday, July 23rd, Matthew turned 6 months old.  Hard to believe how fast the time has gone! (Wasn't I just giving birth to him??)  At 6 months: he is wearing size 2 diapers, wears 3 month & 3-6 month clothes, has discovered his love for his jumperoo, is eating solids once a day, sleeping in later and giving up the morning nap, has 2 bottom teeth and is thinking about crawling (he gets frustrated and quits!)

We leave in less then a week for Southern IL.  Where it is nice and hot!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Less then 1 Week to go!

I have less then 1 week to go of my degree.  Of course the graduation ceremony isn't until mid October, but just the same I am considered done July 30th.  Or maybe a few days later once the final grade is inputted. Either way, July 30th is my last day of undergrad.  (Have I rambled enough to make my point?)
People in my real life know, and those who really pay attention here, that I never stepped foot on campus at Ashford. It was really only a University that allowed me to finish my BA while being a military wife thousands of miles away.  I found out last fall that MacMurray College considers me an alum and even though my degree won't be from there, I still consider it "my college."  It was where I lived in dorms, made friends for life, had fantastic professors that are now friends, joined a sorority and did a whole lot of fun stuff (and stupid stuff, but let's not dwell on that.)  Still....I am grateful to Ashford.  They made it simple for a Navy wife in Hawaii (and WA) to finish school at her own pace.

I got the email saying I can order my cap & gown today that I will wear when I walk across a stage in Iowa on a campus I am only seeing for the first time. 

So as surreal as it is, thank you Ashford. Thank you MacMurray!  Mostly thank you Mom and Avery.
To my Oma up in heaven, I am finally there.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Allergies galore!

So I hit up the allergist office yesterday, not as hot a mess as you'd expect given I had been weaned off all my allergy medication.  After about 2 dozen questions, breathing tests (which I failed twice, thanks asthma!), and over 50 skin pricks we know what I am allergic to.  And the verdict is: mold, dust mites, grasses, ragweed, cats & dogs (I didn't believe them on this one until they repeated the skin test), borderline for trees, borderline for avocado & tomato, cockroaches (odd, but I kid you not), and a few other minor things.  Oh and they re-confirmed the latex allergy.  It was an interesting visit.  I walked out of there with another asthma medication, a second nasal spray, upping my dosage of flonase, an EPI pen prescription and orders for a medical alert bracelet.  Oh and loads of instructions on how to deal with the care of the house (i.e cleaning with bleach, hot water etc).  Plus I get to come back in 2 weeks and start allergy shots.  Woohoo!

In other news:

I started week 4 of school and can barely believe this college saga is finally over.  I really hope I can impart in my son that taking 9 years to get your bachelor's degree isn't the smartest idea in the world. Oh well, better late then never, right?

Washington State seems confused about what summer is...we seem to have a few hot days and then it rains & cools down for a few more days.  I am a tiny bit annoyed; you can never put away all the winter clothes here. My relatives think I am crazy, but I am genuinely looking forward to the hot, hot summer of Illinois that I will get to enjoy in less than 2 weeks.

Avery is working this weekend, so Matthew and I need to find something to get ourselves into. There's a lavender festival somewhere around here, we may need to check it out.

Ps. Some of the spam comments I've been getting lately are truly hilarious! Thanks for the laugh, spammers.

Monday, July 16, 2012

I'm Allergic to the United States...and other ramblings..

Okay, now before you groan and think to yourselves "oh no, a political post" I assure you, this is not one of those.  I save my political discussions for.... well no one, with the occasional blurp to Avery. (In fact, I bet very few of my friends actually have a clue about my political leanings...I like to keep people guessing.) No, this post is about actual allergies. 
I suffered from seasonal allergies for a number of years when I was growing up in the Midwest.  However most over the counter stuff took care of it.  Then in college, my doctors prescribed some medications to help me get through the fall and spring time allergy seasons.  Once I moved to Hawaii, my allergies got progressively worse.  To the point where I was taking medication full time everyday and they kept adding to my arsenal of medication while I was there.  When we moved to Washington, I had very high hopes that my allergies would improve here. Well unfortunately I was wrong. My allergies are so under-controlled here that they have added even more medication and are now sending me to see an Allergist. To be able to see her, I have to wean off all my allergy meds. By the time I see her this Thursday, I'll be on nothing and look a hot mess (we're talking red & puffy eyes, drippy nose etc.) My PCM thinks it's time for me to go to allergy shots. We'll see how Thursday goes....

Cars: We've been a one car family the entire time we've been married. It's been annoying at times, but otherwise fairly tolerable. Once we had Matthew we knew we'd want to get a second vehicle, we had just planned to wait until I was working again in the fall.  Well....that isn't going to happen. Our car is having issues again, so we've decided to get another car soon...very soon in fact.  As for our current car, we'll probably fix it once more, but I am done putting tons of work into it beyond that.

Solid Foods: Matthew turns 6 months next week Monday, can you believe it?? His first half year of life has flown past me quickly!! I decided to wait and introduce solid foods at 6 months and our pediatrician agreed with me especially as we've been dealing with his medical issues. Next weekend we are going to introduce solids though. I am pretty excited for this. We've been getting him used to the high chair, so he'll be ready. I plan to make most of his baby food, but did buy some pre-made stuff for when we're traveling in August.

School: I did all the work for third week of my last class yesterday, so today Matthew and I are having fun together. I cannot believe I only have 2 more weeks left. I am almost there. It's surreal after all this time.

Matthew is demanding fun...toodles friends!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Weekend Outtakes: USS Turner Joy

This past weekend, we decided to go check out an old USN ship that is in Bremerton.  The USS Turner Joy is a famed ship from the Vietnam War era.  Compared to the USS Missouri in Hawaii, this ship is considerably smaller, because it's a totally different type of ship.  It is also not maintained by the US Park Service.  However, the local group that maintains it has done a great job keeping it up.  We enjoyed walking around it.  The volunteers were friendly and talked to us a lot.  The coolest thing is that boy scouts (and other groups apparently) can stay the night on the ship and the day we were there a group of scouts from Arizona staying the night.
Going onto the ship.

USS Turner Joy
Afterwards, we went into downtown Poulsbo and had dinner at a really neat restaurant called Mor Mor Bistro Delicious food and neat atmosphere. They get an A+ also because they weren't annoyed with Little Dude. (I say that last part, because some places give us dirty looks for bringing him.)
Matthew reading the menu. :-)
 All in all it was a nice weekend.  Today it's rainy and thunderstorming.  I hope it clears up, so Matthew can try out his Mickey Mouse swimming pool!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Matthew Kidney Update

 Matthew at the hospital seeing the Kidney Doctor. I LOVE the little hospital gowns!

On Friday, Matthew and I drove the one hour to Mary Bridge Children's Hospital in Tacoma so he could see the kidney doctor.  I was afraid this would take all day, so I was pleasantly surprised that we waited 5 minutes and then they called us back.  (It was such a nice change from my days of going to Children's Memorial in Chicago for my spine where appointments meant waiting for hours.)  The hospital is so nice and I was super tempted to put Matthew in the little rowboat they have as decor/place for the bigger kids to play. I resisted...this time we're there, Little Dude is going in that rowboat for a picture op.
They took his medical history, the nurse came in and tried to get a BP (he didn't care for this so it was initially a no go), weighed him & measured him.  Then the doctor came in.  Dr. Y is fantastic!!  We loved her.  Apparently the renal u/s report that was sent over from Naval Hospital did not contain that much information, but she was still able to make a diagnosis.  Matthew has hydronephrosis.  Which basically means that his left kidney is enlarged and urine is possibly refluxing into it.  What are they doing about this?  For now, nothing, because the American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend doing anything invasive on a baby his age.  We will return in 3 months for another renal u/s and then see the kidney doctor again.  However, if he has a fever at any time, he must have a urine catch done.  So we're playing the wait & see game.

About his weight: Matthew weighed about 15 pounds at the visit, putting him in the 14 percentile for weight.  The doctor was concerned about this and informed me if he is still having a hard time gaining weight in 3 weeks (at his 6 month well baby appt), she wants blood work done on him.  She couldn't say if the kidney issue was related to this.  And to answer the question someone asked my Mom: YES, we feed him. His intake is monitored.

Thank you everyone again for your thoughts and prayers.  We are doing alright. :-)

Friday, July 6, 2012

I miss Hawaii!

I don't even know where to start this post.  I've been so negative lately.  And it boils down to the fact that I just desperately miss Hawaii and the people there. (Which Avery would roll his eyes at since I was the one who told him not to fight the detailer when his chief said he could and instead come here.)  Avery told me a few days ago that I really needed to change my outlook.  Of course at the time I took that personally and got angry with him.  However, he was right.  I've been so depressed about all sorts of things that I've been bitter.  My outlook has been negative and harsh. I have always been a plan- way- too- far- aheader and that is hurting me. My son is 5 months old and I am already wondering how we're going to have the second child, which just depresses me more. So to the person I dumped all that on the other day, I am sorry. I just didn't know where else to turn.

I am hoping my trip home in August helps me renew my spirit.  I always seem to feel renewed after I go home. 

Today I am taking Matthew to the kidney doctor in Tacoma.  Thankfully a gal I've known online since before I married Avery lives up there and I am finally going to meet her in person.  I just need a best friend here. Maybe it's her? (R, if you're reading this, sorry for the pressure. ;-)

Thanks for listening....update on Matthew's appointment to follow this weekend or Monday.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Weekend Outakes: Seattle

As I've been nearing the end of schooling for my BA in Health & Human Services, school has pretty much taken up most of my weekends.  On the few weekends that I don't have assignments, we've ventured out and about just exploring our new area.

A few weekends ago, we decided to check out Seattle and the City Center area.  We took our car onto the ferry and did the 1 hour crossing to Seattle. (Thank goodness for the ferry, it is so much nicer then driving the whole way!)
Free picture taken at the Space Needle

City Center is a pretty neat place. Besides the Space Needle, there's a lot of museums to see too. We didn't go to the museums, but plan to go back a different day and do more. This was more of a "get a feel for the city" day.  We left Matthew's stroller in the car and just used his Ergo carrier. I was so glad, because they don't let you take strollers up to the Space Needle and the "stroller parking" is just an area off to the side with no once supervising them.  As people with an admittedly pricier stroller, there's no way we are leaving it unattended.  It was a cool day (duh, this is the Pacific Northwest!) but the sky was pretty clear so we could see the city from the top.

After we saw the Space Needle, Avery decided he wanted to take the 7 Deadly Wings Challenge at the WingDome Restaurant in West Seattle.  You have to eat 7 wings with this super thick, hot & fiery sauce in 7 minutes.  Avery loves hot & spicy food. This is the guy who owns 12 million scoville pepper food additive so the challenge was definitely up his alley.
During the challenge.

Done and all cleaned up.
After that, Avery wasn't feeling too well so we hopped on the ferry and came home.  Next time we go to Seattle, I definitely want to hit up Pike Street Market and the aquarium. So much to do so little time!
Until next time...toodles friends!