Sunday, March 28, 2010

National Museum of Play

Earlier this month Kristen and the girls came up for another visit. We decided to pile everyone in the van and head to Rochester to meet PJ - my cousin Denine's new baby boy. PJ was born at 10lbs exactly and at 6 weeks old was up to 13lbs. The boy has a lot to love. He has perfectly kissable lips.

He started sleeping with one eye open since Jamison got a hold of him.

**cue JAWS music**

Jamison loved PJ. It got to the point that when I was holding PJ Jamison was not jealous that I was holding PJ but that HE wasn't holding PJ. Jamie would grab at him and try to pull him from my arms.
It was a bit awkward for Jamison since PJ is a chunk. Being 13lbs PJ looks like he should be able to hold his head up - but, as we all know, six-week olds typically don't hold their heads up.

My mother pointed out how large PJ looked when Jamie was holding him. "Look at the size of his feet!" Kristen then had to let mom know that she was looking at Jamison's feet, not PJ's. So PJ is not that big. To mom's credit it did look like an optical illusion due to the way Jamison was sitting and holding the baby.

The next day we decided to meet up with Aunt Linda, Denine, and PJ at the Strong National Museum of Play. Lily helped Maddie and Ruthie put their shoes on so we could leave on time.

I wasn't sure what to expect at the museum but there is no way I could imagine how fun it would be for all of us. There is a whole area devoted to Sesame Street. There are four different areas that look exactly like the sets from Sesame Street.

The kids waved at Big Bird and Aunt Linda joined in. I'm sure she was just showing them how it's done.

Elmo's World. I think the twins enjoyed this area more than my kids.

Lily, Jamie, and I bought extra tickets to go into the butterfly area. They both were equally excited even though I mentioned, repeatedly, "DO NOT TOUCH THE BUTTERFLIES."
LIly and I have a few (understatement of the year) things in common. One in particular is that we do not like the heat. We enjoy the sun, we like warm weather, but we do not like heat and humidity. Once we entered the room Lily and I immediately said the same thing - "it's really hot in here." And it was. Humidity was at 3,000%.
So Lily was not in the mood for pictures. She refused to look at the butterfly that Jamison found and for added drama crossed her arms and pouted. But Jamie did a good job of not touching the butterfly.
Don't enjoy yourself too much Lily. I wouldn't want to think that you appreciated the experience.

Excellent example of not touching the butterfly!

I wasn't, I was waving at it.
And it appeared that was the case. I apologized for flipping out.
Afterwards we headed toward the middle of the museum that was packed with all sorts of things. There was a replica Victorian home that Maddie and Ruthie stayed in for about an hour playing tea, a dress up/stage area for performances, a pirate ship, and a huge airplane that the kids could climb in.
I'm sure you can guess who was first to run to the airplane.
Lily joined him for the pre-flight checklist.

There appeared to be a mechanical problem with the aircraft.

Having fun in the airplane Jamie?

And that's when I was corrected. Jamison pointed out that it wasn't an airplane but a helicopter. What? And then as I looked closer it did, in fact, have a propeller on top. How in the world did he notice that?
There is another area that is a small replica of a Wegman's supermarket. The kids grab a cart and are allowed to choose five items to check out.

Lily unloaded her cart and prepared to check out.

Each item has a UPC code that gets scanned and is actually entered into the register. After everything is scanned Lily hit "total" and an accurate receipt came out.
Aunt Linda pretended to be Lily's customer and tried to greet Lily.
Linda:" Hi there."
Lily: (silence)
Linda: "Lily, you're supposed to say hello to the customer."
Lily: "hello."
Linda: "my Wegman's is a lot more friendly than this Wegman's"
Lily: (silent and apathetic, just wants to scan her food)
Lily proceeded to go food shopping five more times, each time insisting to check out at the "5" register since she is 5 years old. The four other registers could be completely open and she would wait in line for the "5" one. It was a little too intense.
I wasn't sure how Maddie, Ruthie, and Jamie would do at Wegman's but they caught on and were pretty good shoppers.
Notice that Kristen has a different hair cut all of a sudden? My cousin Myriah works at a very nice hair salon and was able to squeeze Kris in for a new style. I never got a close up shot of her but I promise it looks cute.

Jamison was having a hard time scanning his sweet potato. Or his yam. I'm not sure which one it was.

Naturally Lily made her way to the stage. Oddly, dressing up and performing was the last thing she did in this area. The stage also has a sound board and a light board (is that what it's called? any theater lighting technicians out there to correct me?).
She spent the majority of her time changing the lighting and the music to everyone else's performances (which is allowed). So when she got her opportunity to get on stage can anyone guess what she did? It's embarrassing. She completely called out the other girl doing the lighting and the music and ran over there to change it to her preference. It all happened so quickly that I didn't have time to explain that what she did was incredibly inappropriate. Lucky for her, the girl couldn't have cared less about the lighting and music. And lucky for me, the girls' mother was no where in sight.

After her performance I had to sit her down and explain that while the lighting and the music may not have been to her satisfaction it was rude to tell someone else how to do it. Yes, sometimes we don't agree with how other people do things but that doesn't mean we have to be rude about it. And then I had the opportunity to tell her that I do the exact same thing all the time and I have to work on it too. It's hard having a mini-me.

After four hours in the museum we had to head back to Albany. The kids were exhausted but I think we could have made it a full day in there if we had the time. Since we go to Rochester a few times a year I will make sure that we squeeze time in for the museum each time we go. Next visit with the kids is in June for my cousin Jill's wedding. I wonder if we can go to the museum in between the wedding and the reception?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Three Stitches

Tuesday evening was going to be a little different from our typical schedule. Brian and I had a meeting at Loudonville Christian about Lily's kindergarten acceptance and then we were eating dinner at my mom's house, where she was watching the kids.

During the meeting my phone kept buzzing at me. I think it's really rude to look at my phone in this type of meeting (at work, different story, I'm always looking at it then) so I just ignored it. As soon as the meeting was over I took a look and I had missed two calls and my father was texting me - Jamison fell. Call your mother ASAP.

Now the fact that Jamison fell is not much news. He falls every 10 minutes. But the fact that I had to call my mother about it was the news.

When I called she was calm, which was a good sign. Somehow Jamie slammed the bridge of his nose on the coffee table and it was bleeding continually. Lots of blood. She might have said the phrases "blood bath" and "huge gaping gash". Since Brian and I were driving in separate cars we had to figure out via cell phones who was doing what while rushing to my parents house.

Brian has been working like a mad man for the past few weeks. Not so much like that awful tv show but really like a mad man - leaving the house before 7am to get to the office early, staying a bit late each night, and keeping up his insane work out routine. OH - and he has to deal with a pregnant wife and hyper kids. So the last thing he needed was an evening in the ER. A lot of this has to do with being in a family business. As odd as it sounds I (we - let's be honest, the whole office) needed him to be 100% at work the next day more than I needed him in the ER. The ER I could manage. Working as hard as he does in the office I couldn't pull off. So we argued about that for a while and it was decided that I would take Jamison to the ER.

Brian had a valid argument about me going to the hospital It must be acknowledged that I have a problem with blood. It makes me a little weak. I haven't passed out from it in a while (small victories) but it definitely affects me. It's been this way for as long as I can remember. So the fact that I was pushing to go to the ER was a risk. Did the hospital staff really need a bloody toddler and his woozy pregnant mother? And the answer was yes.

When we arrived at the house Jamison was eating dinner and talking about the new car. (we bought a new minivan that afternoon) Thankfully he was acting completely normal.

So his maiden voyage in our new minivan was to St. Peter's hospital. Lovely. I was grateful that the bleeding had stopped by that time or else that new van smell would have been tarnished.

We were barely there 15 minutes when we were put in a room. And this is where we lived for almost 4 hours. It wouldn't have taken as long if the doctor hadn't asked for xrays. She thought that he might have broken his nose.

It never entered my head that I should take a picture of him until I decided to take pictures of things with my camera to entertain him. All the pictures I have of our ER visit are from my phone so the quality isn't the best.

See? He was a happy boy the whole time we were waiting. He was trying to smile without wrinkling his nose so the result looks like his growling.

My father showed up about three hours in to distract Jamison - which was needed. Now my dad is another one who should not be around a lot of blood. But here we both were.
The worst part was the 15 minutes that they had to restrain him in order to stitch up the gash. I later told my sister - "remember the worst night of our lives the night after Maddie's open heart surgery? I experienced 15 minutes of that with my son". To restrain him they laid a pillow case flat on the bed, laid him on top of it and trapped his arms in the opening of the pillow case. His body was then swaddled in blankets and taped to the bed. There were 5 of us restraining him while the doctor worked on the wound. A big, big, big man named Reuben had his lower half. One nurse had his head. The other two were on one side and I was on the other. My dad looked in from the door and tried to talk to Jamison. He didn't know what else to do with himself since he couldn't be near the blood.
The doctor had to inject three shots of lidocaine directly into the open bloody gash. Oh that was horrible. HORRIBLE. Jamison didn't even know the words to express himself. At one point blood was pouring into his eyes (the doctor was injecting into the wound) and he kept screaming SPICY! The nurse looked at me and we both said - does he mean it stings? That was when I just put my head on Jamie's chest and spoke softly to him. I might have sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and declared my love for him over and over. I physically could not look at what the doctor was doing but I wanted Jamie to at least hear me (could he possibly hear me over himself? I didn't care - I was going to talk the entire time).
I was hoping he'd calm down when she did the stitches but no - he was riled up and not about to back down. It required three stitches and while she wasn't very quick about it she was very efficient. I'm glad she didn't rush it since he will have a scar there for life and the neater the stitches the smoother the scar will be. The nurse said that comparatively speaking he was not that bad. Yes, he screamed, but he didn't really struggle.
As soon as she finished I grabbed him and just held him close. He was sweaty and smelled like blood but it was the best hug I have ever had from him. I can honestly say I didn't feel guilty for putting him through this. Obviously we were doing what was best for him. The thing that bothered me was that HE didn't know that what we were doing was best for him.
So two days later, this is what it looks like:
He is still bruised and swollen but unless he messes with the stitches it doesn't bother him. The stitches come out Monday morning when I'm in Florida at a tradeshow. Perfect timing. My mother will be taking him so that experience will be all hers.

Nurse Michelle gave Jamison this certificate that he is very proud of:

They must be big NASCAR fans at St. Peter's because all the stickers were racing numbers. The one on the bottom is Jr's autograph. Jamie immediately ripped off gte sticker of the race car and held it.

We were discharged around 10pm so I figured Jamison would drop asleep as soon as we got in the car. Nope. He was wired. Ready to take on the world - he wasn't going to let a coffee table or an ER visit slow him down!

Something that did slow him down? Me and my stupidity. This being a new van, I thought I had completely buckled his car seat onto the seat itself (there was no time to attach the seat to the latch system in between throwing the car seat in the van and taking him to the hospital). But no, apparently I didn't push the shoulder belt part of the seat belt all the way into the clicker thing. (he was secure in the five part harness, mind you)

And how did I realize this? When I had to stop short at a stop light and his car seat leaned into the back of my seat. Oh I felt horrible, sick to my stomach, gut wrenching nausea. I immediately pulled over and he was asking why my seat hit his face. Mama made a mistake. A BIG mistake. Luckily the motion didn't touch the brand new stitches. Can you imagine how awful that would have been? No. Let's not. Let's just move on.

He slept well that night. The next day was a different story. No nap. The tylenol with codeine that was prescribed had the OPPOSITE effect (what is up with that and my kids? Same thing happens when Lily take Benedryl - can I not catch a break?!). Then Thursday, no nap. I was cooking dinner around 4:30 while he and Lily were watching Word Girl (he, reluctantly since he doesn't like that show). I peeked in at one point because it was quiet and this is how I found him:

So cute and cuddly. Yuck - and wet. When I went to pick him up to put him on the couch I realized he wet his pants in his sleep. I'll take urine over blood any day.