Friday, July 31, 2009

gone cruising

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

So Big! II

No less than three people in the past week have remarked on exactly how big I am. Isn't there some kind of rule about this? Ah, the Internet never fails to instruct. Etiquette issues aside, I don't feel big AT ALL. The baby is only 1.5 pounds, I haven't gained too much weight, and, most importantly, I can still lie on my back without having my lungs crushed and my circulation halted. Unlike, for example, during my failed dentist appointment at 8 months with Dylan, where I flopped around on the chair gasping and was eventually ushered out the door without having received an dental services. Plus, there is nowhere to go from here but bigger (see: 16+ more weeks of gestating). And likely straight out the front at an unnatural angle, which is what happened last time and is probably why people think I look funny now.


Dylan came home today and told me they had washed her hair at daycare. She did not like the soap in her eyes. Had they washed anyone else's hair? No. Was it after water play? No. Did she get something in it? No. It was just dirty.

Is that weird? She's pretty reliable when she volunteers stories from her day. I wonder if she'll come home with new clothes and extra food one day. I just don't brush her hair because it's like mine and doesn't look quite right all brushed out, not that it looks particularly...kempt is the word, right? Okay, not a word, but you know what I mean. See also: choosing my battles.

Ack, I have to go, Aaron's lecturing Snuffy about his decisions again. "You're not a bad dog...you're just making bad choices right now." (=barking)

Monday, July 27, 2009

tomorrow, tomorrow

We have always had trouble with Dylan not eating enough at dinner, then weeping pathetically for food in lieu of sleeping. We have been pretty religious about not giving her food after dinner because this is an annoying personality trait, but she is like Snuffy and his quest for handouts at the table, in that no amount of experience (this has never worked before, but maybe tonight's the night) can train her to stop. She has, however, recently switched tactics. Instead of asking for food in the moment, she asks, "Mommy, can I eat tomorrow after I go to sleep?" As though we have also, in the past, refused to give her any breakfast, just out of habit. Tempting, but I've never pulled it off.


Do you think whenever a new issue of Rolling Stone comes out whoever is on the cover goes around humming that song for a while, even if they're really famous?

What about Oprah? Every time an issue of her magazine comes out is she like SCORE!?

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

So Big!

Dylan got a few good nights of sleep in a row and switched back to her normal self, while retaining the right to switch back to Devil Spawn should she become fatigued or reach 5pm, whichever comes first on a given day. More recently, she has ceased sleeping again, for unclear reasons, with predictable results. I am probably not helping, as I got in trouble at bedtime tonight for being a less than calming presence. However, YOU try to remain neutral and soothing while Dylan sidles up to Aaron and lovingly rubs his tummy and tells him how big it's getting.


I'm on my neurology now. It has had awfully humane hours this week, allowing me to both learn AND see daylight, all in the same day. Next week should be similar, I may go and get myself spoiled. I am bored of hearing myself yammer on about med school, so that's about enough of that for a while.

Monday, July 20, 2009


One of the hardest things about starting clinical rotations this year was figuring out that no matter how hard you work and how much you read, a big part of the training is getting a certain amount (=years) of experience and seeing a certain number (=lots) of patients. I'm starting my neurology rotation now, and because I have not made my schedule straightforward for myself, what with the research and the children, I am the only student on this rotation who has done other hospital rotations before.

So! Suddenly I know what's going on and no one else does, and I am not disoriented, and I know my way around, and I know how to learn efficiently on these rotations (=reading, not blogging), just by virtue of having spent 9 months more doing this than my new classmates have. I'm not sure what my point is, but it is really nice not to be anxious and confused all the time, for once. Maybe this is what failing a grade would have been like? Should I recommend that to young children?

Also, everyone treats you really differently if they find out you've done 9 months versus zero months of hospital rotations. If it was weird getting used to some of the hierarchy to begin with, it is even weirder to have a different place in the hierarchy because of...showing up at work. At which I am quite good, aside from OB appointments that I think start getting more frequent at some point (23 weeks today), if I am remembering the incessant appointments towards the end from last time correctly. Anyway, next time you see me, remember my excellent attendance record and genuflect, or something.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Confusion, two ways

Dylan and I cleared a little something up today. It is not that she wants to name the baby cookie monster. It is that she thinks the baby will be baby cookie monster. I would be a little disappointed too, if I had thought that we were about to have a muppet come live in our house. I would, however, hope that the new child might be slightly less...one dimensional, would you call it?


This last rotation has been more like House than anything else I've done so far. No one knew what was going on in any given case I saw in the hospital, which leads to all sorts of hijinks. Not sure why you're here? Let's biopsy some random stuff. Plan B? Take out your spleen. Several people got lumbar punctures looking for "we're not exactly sure what, possibly syphilis." High-dose steroids are always an option, because if it works, hey, we made you better! And we actually got fluid out of some joints, then took it down to the CRAZY lab in the basement that does all the tests for the hospital to look at it ourselves. Imagine any movie with a huge busy lab scene and that was it. One woman got diagnosed with an unusual case of a disease that's 90% fatal if untreated that no one else had figured out in her previous 10 days in the hospital. Also, my boss was a misanthropic drug addict.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Your input needed

New quiz to the right. A child's future is in your hands.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Dylan must have read yesterday's post because she woke up this morning as cheerful as a Snuff at feeding time. She ate actual food at breakfast, chattered happily at me as I got ready, and skipped (in her own mind at least) all the way to daycare. It took her two hours to fall asleep this evening though, so we're in for it tomorrow. I think a lot of the Grump is just being tired because she hasn't been sleeping well lately, and also because I won't do all the things she wants me to do all the time.


And now for an update almost in real time:
Aaron was just eating his customary evening large ice cream sundae bowl of fruit, when he suddenly emitted a plaintive, pained noise, such that I lept to my feet to see if he was okay. Which, he was not, as he is always not after snarfling ice cream fruit so fast that his entire head flash freezes and he is rendered temporarily mute due to being essentially a popsicle. To further investigate, I covertly had him do a quiz, confirming my suspicions.

Aaron is a Cherry Flavored Popsicle

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Open for business

I am on a rheumatology elective in which I have learned: moving parts, they cause problems. Every single patient in the hospital that I have seen on this rotation has been some crazy complicated thing that I will never see again. I got to practice allergy skin testing on some of the new fellows, so anyone who is looking to be poked with allergens, I'm your girl. Except that I don't have the right equipment at home, so we'll have to improvise. Looking around, we can currently provide testing for large hairy dog, dust, grass, incredibly itchy weeds, large hairy guy, eggs, potatoes, duplos, magnetic letters, antibiotics effective against lyme disease in dogs, almost-three-year-old, and several tree pollens. Mold is luckily out of stock.


Apparently admiring orthopedic shoes online is just the gateway to a larger world of frumpy, slightly medical items, because the next day I found myself in a medical supply store purchasing the strongest kind of compression socks possible without a prescription, and wondering if I should get someone to write me a prescription to take things up a notch. I have been wearing them for two days and I'm afraid there's no going back. Next up: matching tracksuits and a fanny pack.


Dylan has never been so irritating in all her life. And let me tell you, I have been reviewing her life in some detail via the never-ending pile of clothes in the attic worn at various phases. Her new status as a functioning, talking person allows her to express her grumpiness in a stunning variety of never-before-possible forms, from a baseline of Reflexively Contrary, escalating to Moderate Displeasure at My Continued Presence to her peak of All Out Tantrum, While Hurling Insults. Tantrums seem like sort of a reasonable response before you can say why you are frustrated and what it is exactly that you want, but I don't really see the point once you can TELL ME WHAT YOU WANT. Actually, now that I think about it, the problem is of course NOT getting what she wants. What can I say, most days I insist that she wear pants, and most days I don't feel like that's a good starting point for negotiations.

This morning I told her that we didn't have time to play around on the computer because she had spent so much time whining and crying so then she looked up at me and asked "Mommy, I not a nice girl anymore?" I always thought the differentiation between acting annoying and being annoying was too subtle for little kids to get, but I guess we better work on that. Although actually maybe it's a little too subtle for me also. Because: irritating.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Anyone who wants more direction in life can come lift things while I boss them around

Aaron snuck away to the Catskills for the weekend for a multi-day bachelor party (don't worry, I reminded him that We Don't Touch the Strippers), and in response Snuffy reset his barking threshold to High Alert and Dylan set her existence to High Maintenance. Dylan chose not to sleep much of the time he was gone, until right before he came home, at which time she took an excellent nap, then woke up happy and cheerful for her whole afternoon with him. I think I will hide all the blue and green duplos in retaliation. I guess she did watch the last 20 minutes of the Tour de France with me this morning, so maybe just the green ones.

The house rearranging and baby preparations continue. They are happening now as opposed to in October because 1) I am only going to get bigger and 2) I am starting 8 weeks of real rotations in a week, where in my experience I am lucky if I have time to make dinner once a week, let alone make room for another entire person, albeit small, to take up residence in my house. I have still managed to make my back feel maligned, which causes me to purchase ever more supportive shoes. I thought I would make fun of orthopedic shoes at this point, but then I went to some websites and all I could think about was how actually those look pretty good, so forget it.

Dylan was very helpful in Aaron's absence, and many of the house's new design features reflect her taste. For example, each of the nice wooden salad bowls is now carefully laid out on the floor and topped by a frisbee. Many of the other kitchen implements have been spread out in her teepee, which was finally evicted from the living room to the basement after 1.5 years.

I am also wading through baby clothes, which has both raised and answered some questions:
-How did one small child amass so many clothes in such a short lifetime?
-How can so many of them possibly be pink? Really, how? Have you ever met me?
-Yet, the pile of Things I Probably Won't Put on a Boy is rather small. It'll be like a social experiment!
-Also, he still has to wear all the Dylan's Candy Bar stuff. It's so cool. Wait, should we name him Dylan too? Or maybe Arby? They must have t-shirts.
-No, he will not be named Michael Jackson.
-Or Cookie Monster (Dylan I'm looking at you, because I'm not sure why else your daycare teachers think this is the main contender).
-Also, we're not telling you the name before he's born. No, we're not. Not that we've gotten that far yet.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday night: should get out more edition

As I mentioned in the comments, just minutes after posting yesterday I received an e-mail with our gas & electric bill, which was twice as high as it usually is for this time of year. How did I know it was too high? Common sense? Six years of living in this house? Or, perhaps, my spreadsheet, updated monthly, with all our gas & electric bills for the past three years?

See, that spike there in the purple 2009 line just didn't make sense. I called to figure out what was going on, and there actually was some kind of mistake in the meter read and they're going to send a new bill. So I'm about 1 for 5 this week. I started the graph to see if it made a difference in the bill when we switched to wind power (end of 2007) or when we replaced all the windows (summer 2007).

Trust me, if I could drink right now I would be doing that instead. Or, more likely, simultaneously.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Week So Far

But first, one more from the trip, Barf Bag Art:

Also, we got to see fireworks in both Philly and Rochester from the plane. We were a lot higher, suckers.

Dylan wakes up and asks when and where we're going for another trip. Luckily a roving band of Ithaca natives showed up to bring the party to her. They also provide therapy.

$350 in car repairs.
2 hours in the waiting room of a doctor I was supposed to be working with.
1 annual TB test (repeat 20 times: do not forget to get this read in two days. again.)

1 baby checkup (obstetrician: "Don't I know you?" she was right, possibly due to the 5 surgeries I was in with her during my OB/GYN rotation)
1 mailing telling just exactly how much our escrow payment is going to increase starting next month (hint: not zero)

$280 in Snuff necessities (checkup, rabies shots, hypoallergenic food, lyme disease testing...and treatment, heartworm pills, and a scolding that he is 82lbs instead of 78lbs)
1 visit from my burly siblings, imported to move heavy furniture around the house on my behalf (I believe this is called "nesting")
1 hour of rejoicing that I had finished work at 3:30pm and could hang out with my houseguests
3 hours of drudgery when I got called and made to go back into the hospital at 4:30pm
12+ hours of pouting afterwards

$270 for the plumber

Friday (scheduled):
Taking bets on who will require several hundred dollars of us next. Will it be
...the electrician?
...the appliance repairman?
...the DMV?
...the dog behavioral therapist?
...the parole officer?
Could be anyone. Variety is the spice of life.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Cape Cod, a 12 Step Program

Step 1, the plane. We cannot get enough of planes.

Step 2, identify destination. Here it is, right on the water. The fog tended to lift around 3pm most afternoons.

Step 3, pretend you don't hear the thunder. This was only necessary two of the days.

Step 4, identify which of those two days it would be okay to continue with your activity of choice. For example, tennis.

Step 5, use other clues, such as an ominous horizon, menacing flag, or power outage in the lighthouse, to select the day when an impressive thunderstorm is descending. Seek shelter.

Step 6, place small child and pregnant woman with camera in sauna.

Step 7, do not set foot in unholy bathtub filled by water that falls from the sky. Cry if anyone tries to convince you to do otherwise.

Step 8, avoid these people.

Step 9, intervene when hypothermia is still in early stages.

Step 10, immerse yourself in sand at every opportunity.

Step 11, allow your child to be spirited away by Larry the Lobster. Note to Larry: BINGO is perhaps a better choice of game for those who can recognize numbers.

Step 11a, if, during Duck Duck Goose, you are chosen as Goose, acceptable options include: remaining seated with a large grin on your face, running around the circle after the Duck while still tapping everyone on the head, or running three-quarters of the way around the circle, then bolting to your family's table. They'll never catch you there.

Step 12, nap in airport lounge. This will only be necessary if you find out the morning of departure that 1) your flight no longer exists, 2) you will now be flying home via Philadelphia rather than via no layover, and 3) you will be arriving at 11pm instead of 6pm.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Skipped town

And yet, have not been able to post because work tracked me down and won't leave me alone. If you don't know where we are, see if you can figure out where we were for this birthday field trip from yesterday. Don't be confused, Bono was not actually with us.