Friday, May 30, 2014

19 Weeks and a Mae Update

I'm pretty sure that the doctor that Mae saw today was probably shocked when he asked when I was due and I said "October."  Here's why:

In totally unrelated but much more interesting news, Mae and I spent a good hour and a half at her doctor's office today.  I'm a little sad because the doctor that she's been seeing (the one who sent her for testing originally) has finished her residency and is opening her own practice just under 2,000 miles away, but the two doctors we saw today both seemed to be a good fit.

They didn't think she needed another dose of the antibiotic, but they did both say that she needed to have more testing done to rule out underlying issues.  After seeing the enormous line in the hospital lab today we're opting to take her back tomorrow morning when it will hopefully be less hectic.

I have been a little torn on the antibiotic thing as it is.  The doctors at the hospital were adamant and I was told to bring her back to the ER if her own doctors weren't going to give her the shot...  But her own doctors actually came in and examined her... and the doctor at the ER never actually came in the room... so I'm going with our doctors on this one and hoping they're right and that hopefully the ear infection really has been kicked this time by this dose of antibiotic (try #3).

She came home from her appointment and slept away most of the afternoon, but other than the 14-16 hour a day sleep sessions (which are part of why they're ordering more tests), she was mostly back to her cheerful cuddly self.  We even had this conversation:

Me:  "Okay Mae.  Can you tell me what kind of birthday part you want to have?  Do you want a Sophia party or a mermaid party?
Me:  "Sophia or mermaid?"
Me:  "You get to pick your birthday. Do you want a Sophia party of a mermaid party?"
Mae:  "Mermaid!!!  A mermaid!!!!"

So it's settled.  Mermaids it will be.  And I have the perfect birthday surprise planned out since she desperately wants to fit into her little dolls mermaid tail.

Now to get to sewing for the night!  And only two and a half days until the sonogram!  I am so excited!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

New Veils in the Shop: Chocolate and Charcoal and Ivory!

Tonight I finally snapped pictures of a few of my favorite veils.  I've been debating which color veil I'm going to keep for myself... and while the chocolate brown double loop is currently what I'm leaning towards, the grey veils are both a close second!  These are some of my favorites.  

So here are the latest veils I've posted in my store!  They are six of my favorites!

An Early Morning Trip to the ER and My Rambling Worries...

She snuggled on my lap until about ten minutes
after the shot.  Then she sat up and colored for a few
minutes before heading over to check out the sink...
The house is quiet right now... too quiet.

Usually 12 o'clock is a scramble of noises and demands for lunch, as I shuffle people into their seats and try to make sure everyone has had something to eat.

For the past hour and a half though, the house has been totally silent.  I've been sitting at my sewing machine, listening, waiting for them to wake up.

It started last night when Mae got home from OT.  Everyone still seemed healthy and cheerful.  Then Mae let us all know she needed to go up to her room and when I checked on her a few minutes later I found her fast asleep.

Fast forward to Sadie's bedtime.  I went to check on Mae and found her burning up in her bed.  A quick check of her temperature showed it was back up over 100 again.  And for the first time since she came down with whatever bug she's been battling for the last roughly eight weeks, I felt seriously worried.

Here's why...

This all started when Mae got mildly sick sometime towards the beginning of April.  It wasn't bad.  It was really mostly a cold, that sometimes seemed mildly like the flu.  The symptoms would change and rotate, but the only thing that was worrisome was how it dragged on and on.  Even then though I wasn't too worried... after all, colds can last for a while.

After three weeks her fever started to climb and she was truly miserable.  We got her in to see the doctor who gave her nine days of antibiotics and declared that she had an ear infection.  After a day of the antibiotics she seemed to be completely better.  She was bright eyed and bushy tailed and raced around the house giggling.

On day eight the fever returned and spiked up to 103.4.  We battled it all night as it kept going back up when the motrin wore off and took her to see her doctor in the morning. The ear infection was back.  They gave her a shot of Amoxycilin and said that it would wipe out everything and that she should be fine.  She came home and slept for about 16 hours and woke up laughing and happy again without a fever.  I was hugely relieved.

A week ago she went in for a follow up and got a clean bill of health.

Then we got home from her therapy appointment yesterday and the temperature came back... and that's when I start to worry.  You see, she hasn't been a kid that gets ear infection all the time. She hasn't had one in almost three years.  Sadie has had dozens, but Mae, with the exception of her tummy troubles, is pretty healthy.  So the fact that she has had a fever for most of the last eight weeks has me worried.  I know that she's getting ear infections but I want to know if there's something causing them... because it seems to me odd that they're coming on so suddenly (when they were little I understood that it was a structural thing as the shape of their ears developed, but that around 18 months they tended to stop... at least for our little ones so far).

This morning she wouldn't get out of bed.  She was burning up.  I took her temperature and it was just below 103 again.  She took my hand and put it on her chest to show me that her heart was racing.  Her little breaths sounded raspy and she lay perfectly still, clinging to my hand.

And that is when I took her to the ER.  With her little heart beat pounding against my hand I wasn't about to wait hours for her doctors office to open...

We went in.  There was no one in the ER and no one in the pediatrics ER.  They took us straight to a room.  They looked at her ears and told me that sure enough she had a double ear infection and fever.  I asked if they couldn't do some more tests just to rule out any underlying causes that might make her ill for two months even after the antibiotic shots.  They said it wasn't necessary and gave her a shot of lidocaine (because apparently the new antibiotic burns) and Rocephin and told me to take her to her doctor for a second shot and then back again on Saturday for a third shot, and to bring her back to the ER if her doctor couldn't do it.

So tomorrow we go to see her doctor, bright and early, for shot #2.  And I'm hoping that they might order a few more tests, even if it's just to humor a worrying mama who's wondering why her daughter has been sleeping 14-16 hours a night and has a fever that just won't quit...

Prayers for wisdom for the doctors and for Mae's health are greatly appreciated.

And for the other little ones as well since Patch and Sadie both just took hour and a half naps (Patch's second nap of the day before noon) so I suspect another bug has hit the entire house...

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Lace Eternity Veils: Take Two

I know, I know, just what everyone was hoping for, more late night selfies.  However, I'm still really excited about how the veils have been turning out and I just couldn't keep them to myself.  Here are the ones that I just finished photographing and editing tonight.  That means of the ones I already have made I've only got eight left to photograph! 

Here are the latest:

Now to get back to sewing!

Hazard a Guess: Will Baby Wollner 2014 be wearing pink of blue?

In four days I'll be heading to my OBs office for an ultrasound and to hopefully learn whether or not I need to unpack blue or pink baby clothes to be washed and folded and ready for the newest edition of our family.

Just for fun I thought I'd put up a poll, on the left hand side bar, for anyone who wants to guess as to whether the newest member of our family will be a "brubber" like Patch keeps insisting or a "princess" as Sadie responds just about every time he points to a picture in my pregnancy book and makes that announcement.  

For anyone who'd like to try to use the various old wives tales that exist... here's a little help:

  • With this pregnancy my morning sickness has been super mild and was pretty much gone at the end of the first trimester.
  • On the other hand the food aversions have been pretty intense (I think they seem to be easing up now) and have been enough to make me sick... but at least it's not all the time!
  • I'm 19 and a half weeks and have gained 8 lbs since this whole thing started but my bump looks like I've gained at least 30 (I'll post a bump picture at the end for anyone who wants to use that to help guessing).  You can mostly see it from the side.  It's not nearly as noticeable from the front.
  • I've been craving spicy and salty foods.  I eat hot peppers one after another and popcorn is the number two favorite food.
And that is just about all the pregnancy weirdness that comes to mind.  Here's a reminder of what the bump looked like (I haven't added this weeks picture in just yet):

And yet this was a couple weeks ago
taken from the front...
Any guesses?  A boy?  A girl?  Both (they only saw one baby at 11 weeks, so we're fairly sure it's just one!)?  Three?  If you have a feeling one way or another or just like guessing, the little poll to the left of the screen will be up until the morning of my appointment on June 2nd!


The poll at the top wasn't allowing votes so I added this one!

Will Baby Wollner 2014 be...
A Boy!
A Girl!
Poll Maker

And if that poll isn't working (I'm hoping it is, but I'm not having great luck with polls today!) you can cast your vote in the comments too!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Hot off the Sewing Machine: Eternity Veils

I spent a surprising amount of time tonight snapping "selifies."  The reason for all the picture taking was that the pictures that Paul had taken of my newest project hadn't turned out clearly, and my attempts at stacking the camera on top of two shoe boxes and using the timer had gotten me into the frame, but at the worst possible angle so that I was nearly ready to call it a night when I snapped a picture while holding the camera at arms length and had it actually turn out.

It's not the most ideal photo taking situation but... it works for the time being since Paul is so busy studying and I don't want to use the time when he is around taking photos of veil after veil...

And that leads me to my big announcement.  About a month ago I came up with a pattern for an eternity veil and made my first one out of a linen like fabric to test it out.  Since then I've been sewing quite a bit, and searching fabric stores for the perfect shades of lace.

I have eighteen eternity veils finished at the moment, and a pile of lace sitting next to me just waiting to be sewn!  I only managed to photograph four of them tonight (because apparently it took about 40 selfies of each one to get usable pictures and my arm was getting tired!), but I will keep snapping away until they're all listed.  They are now officially my favorite thing to sew and I love how they've turned out!

I have two designs.  One is a single loop, that goes around the neck one time.  The second is created with two yards of fabric and can either be worn long, or it can be wrapped around the neck twice.  Both veils can also double as scarves and can easily be pulled up and down.

And so here are my latest projects of the moment!  These first ones have already been posted in my shop!

Peacock (which is currently reserved while I see if I can get more fabric!)

And that's the latest from my sewing machine!  Hopefully I'll be able to get the other veils (in blue and pinks and ivory and black and brown and many other colors) up in the next couple of days!

Monday, May 26, 2014

A Day in the Life of Our Little Homeschool

Some of you may remember that on the day that Sadie turned five years old, she announced that we needed to begin kindergarten "right away."  She meant that we needed to begin that day, but I managed to convince her to wait until the following Monday to give me a bit of time to get ready.

As a result, we finished kindergarten towards the end of March and while I was ready for a break, a certain someone was eager to keep going.  After all, Maggie is having therapy in the playroom every day (which Sadie calls "Maggie's school") and so it seemed natural to keep going.

I sat down with a calendar and we came up with a plan.  We're taking off a whole week for each persons' birthday in the family and for extra special holidays and feast days and I threw in a little extra time off in October for the new baby's arrival.  In the end the new schedule took us right up to Easter break next year, giving us a year round calendar with plenty of school and plenty of time off (and exactly 180 days of class).

We plan our year around the suggestions laid out in The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home.  I first read it when Sadie was tiny and though I've read many more books, and looked at many different types of curriculum, it's still my favorite for Sadie so far.

We're six weeks into the new school year and so far I've been amazed at how smoothly things have gone.  We spend two to three hours in the morning doing basics like grammar and math (usually we finish in about 2 hours and then throw in lots of extra reading time, or move into history).  Some evenings we do history, or science, or art, after "the babies" go to bed.

So for those of you who are curious, this is what a day looks like in our little homeschool:

The Daily Routine:

We start each morning with a morning prayer, and on days we're not running late we read from the children's Bible and about the lives of two saints. And then...

Spelling- We start of the academic portion of the day with Spelling Workout.  As someone who was never a fan of spelling growing up (and who was very thankful when Spell Check came on the scene), I'm really amazed at how much Sadie seems to enjoy spelling and how much it's helped her with her reading lessons.

Grammar- After we finish spelling we move on to First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind: Level 1.  These lessons seem to fly by and they have Sadie saying things like "A noun is a person, place, thing or idea."  The lessons also includes a new poem to memorize once every two weeks.

Copy Work- After Grammar Sadie spends about ten minutes working on her handwriting.  She copies down a quote that I've written out for her.  Sometimes it's a prayer. Sometimes it's a quote.  Frequently it's a section of one of the poems that she's working on memorizing.

Memory Work-  Although her Language book does have a short poem for memorization every couple of weeks, Sadie has always made quick work of memorizing, so we usually spend about five minutes going over another poem, which she picks out of one of the poetry books that we have around the house.  So far she's memorized about one full page poem a week (she keeps picking long ones!) and she takes great pride in reciting them... and it's an opportunity to work on her pronunciation of new words.

Reading- After we finish her Memory Work we move on to her Phonics lesson.  We've been using The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading.  We'd actually used it as part of last year's curriculum, but while Sadie loved math, history and religion, reading was stressful.  So we put reading on the back burner for a while, played a lot of games involving letters and sounds without doing any particular program, and have picked it back up with much more success.  While she was ready to do fraction worksheets for fun, she just wasn't quite ready for reading last year.  This year things are really starting to click!

Math- Once we finish her reading lesson we move on to Math.  Last year we used Singapore Math's Essential Math Kindergarten Set--Books A and B and since Sadie really enjoyed math we decided to move ahead with Singapore using the Singapore Math Level 1 Set.  Sadie will tell you that this year is a lot more work (on certain days!  On other days we finish in five minutes!), but she's still doing really well and I'm happy with our choice in the program.

Religion- Sadie tells me almost every day that religion is her favorite subject.  If I don't ask her all the questions from all the units we've covered so far (which we've written on flash cards) she'll usually remind me that I'm forgetting them (even when I just wasn't planning on doing a full book review...).  We use the Our Heavenly Father Student Book and the Our Heavenly Father - Revised Grade 1 Activity Book (Faith and Life).  I really like this program, and have to admit that I've learned a lot of basics that just didn't come up all that much in RCIA (especially with definitions from the catechism).

After we finish our religion class we snuggle on the couch and read for half an hour.  Some days we read books about the period of time that we're covering in history.  Some days we read books about the animals that we're learning about in science.  And some days we just pick out "fun" books that we've brought home from the library (which usually end up being about ballerinas or princesses).  At least once a week we do a narration exercise where she retells me the story that we just finished in her own words and I ask her questions about it.

A couple days a week we also do...

History- I have to admit, history hogs far more than it's fair share of our time.  We're "supposed" to do history three days a week, for an hour at a time.  However, we really, really love The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child: Volume 1: Ancient Times: From the Earliest Nomads to the Last Roman Emperor (and the accompanying activity book The Story of the World, Activity Book 1: Ancient Times - From the Earliest Nomad to the Last Roman Emperor, which includes projects like the one we're currently working on to mummify a chicken).  There are additional reading suggestions, maps, questions, narration exercises and, as I mentioned above, projects!  If religion is Sadie's favorite subject that we cover in our little school, history is mine.

Science-  Twice a week we're supposed to do an hour of science.  For the majority of the year, this year, we study different animals (Sadie has already picked them out).  For the remainder of the year we do a section on plants (we're going to do part of that unit when we visit my parents in California and can borrow my mom's garden!) and another section on the human body.  Sometimes history tries to butt in and take over our science time... and I try to resist...

Art-  Art happens here and there.  We usually dedicate one night a week to it, after the babies go to bed, where we clear off the dining room table and take out water colors, colored pencils, acrylic pains, oil pastels, or whatever else we decide on at the moment and do an art project.  Often times history over laps into art, so that I now have paintings of a pyramid and a baby mammoth, along with many, many paintings of princesses.  Sometimes art even happens outside on the sidewalk!

And that is what a day in our little school looks like... with plenty of sunlight and running around outside thrown in!

There are affiliate links in this post!  They make it easier for anyone who's interested to find some of my favorite books!