Monday, March 30, 2009

News brief

Or brief news:

Peter is home and doing well. Deo gratias!

We had a nice time in Houston for the OM State Tournament, the team placed 6th.

Katie is going to the University of Dallas Summer Program and enjoying taekwondo. Yes, you read that right, Katie is doing martial arts. Katie.

Jack is agonizing over which CAP activity to do this summer and placed first in his division at a city wide chess tournament.

Ian is OK with the 6th place but thinking he may want to do a technical problem for OM next year. We will also be trying again for a Space Camp scholarship. A big thank you to those who contributed to that effort!

Grace is totally fine with the 6th place finish and had a blast in Houston and even made a new friend from another team.

Emma is looking forward to her dance recital in June and we are all shuffle-hop-stepping in preparation.

Ben will miss his weekly playtime with Jasper now that OM is over but it ended with a bang at Jasper's birthday party today. He is FIIIIIIIIVVVEEEEE!!

Lucy is 100% fine. Never would have known this time last week she was in the hospital.

Tristan is still thinking about walking and will be attending his NICU reunion on Saturday.

One of these days I will write something witty, pithy or thought provoking here.

PS. Garden is going well. Ice plant was a failure. Nasturtiums are hard to start. Lovin' the grow light!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Status: normal

Same-o, Same-o. Little excitement, little fun.....

Lucy and I spent a couple days in Methodist Children's as she had another bout of rotavirus. She had a perfectly normal day on Saturday. Playing, eating, yelling at Ben. She went to sleep happy and woke up at midnight vomiting followed by diarrhea. This went on all night long. By the time I got her to the ER on Sunday around 1PM she was in a very bad way. Blood sugar of 50, electrolytes seriously off, very lethargic.... Some Zofran, IV glucose and a lot of IV fluid and she is just fine now. I am the only other one to have contracted it. I think she and I picked it up out at the store when we ran errands late last week.

Chris kept the rest of the kids, including Tristan. Tristan is still a nursing baby and not a happy camper about being away from me. If the nursing baby isn't happy....everyone else is MISERABLE.

On Sunday afternoon, Katie, Emma and Grace went to see our friend Ellie play with the SA Symphony.
Ellie is 16 and a phenomenal young lady. She is a talented pianist but more importantly a caring, funny, sweet, young woman and we were all thrilled to see her excel and be recognized for all her hard work and dedication.

The garden is growing well and on the recommendation of a friend I am implementing suggestions from Carrots Love Tomatoes I have also purchased a couple praying mantis egg cases. I will release the praying mantises when they hatch in hopes they will help keep the harmful pests down in the garden.

Peter is still in the hospital. He started exhibiting a fever and they won't release him until he is fever free for 24 hours. So far, they believe it is viral but he is on IV antibiotics just in case.

Happy Feast of the Annunciation!!! Today should have been Gracie's birthday (missed it by 43 minutes) but I refused my midwife's suggestion to get up and walk.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Peter is doing much better.

Peter has been moved out of the PICU and barring any setbacks should be home within a week!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Monday chats.

Update on Peter: Peter is having more surgery today. A recent MRI showed swelling. The surgeons are removing two nickel sized pieces of skull to help relieve the pressure. Sadly, the doctors are predicting a stay of weeks or possibly even MONTHS until this clot in his sagittal sinus resolves.

On a lighter note.
Spring has sprung in TX and the yard work and gardening is in full swing. I'm starting everything from seed this year in an effort to save money. So far, so good, only my rosemary has been a complete bust. I should have started my tomatoes, peppers and all the flowers earlier but live and learn. Yesterday I got the raised beds turned over and raked in the soil conditioner. I put in 16 cucumber plants, squash, cantelope, melon (Chanterais hybrid) and onions. My tomatoes (36 plants) need another couple weeks. Watermelons and more cantelopes will go in as soon as I get the area tilled. The sunflower garden/forest is in and growing. I have multiple varieties of sunflowers including mammoths that can reach 15'. It is just for fun but will look really neat if it works. There is a path in the middle to walk through the 'forest'.
Chris built a great frame/trellis for my cucumbers to climb. Now I just have to pray the bees show up this year and pollinate my cucumbers.
I'll take pics of the whole shabang when everything is in.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

I'd like y'all to meet someone.

This is Peter. Peter is 2 years old. His parents are friends of mine I met through the internet.
Peter had brain surgery last week to remove a golfball sized tumor.
The surgery went well and he will need no further treatment as long as the tumor does not come back.
Unfortunately, his recovery has been two steps forward and one step back. He now has a fever and a blood clot in his brain and is having trouble eating. He is being treated by wonderful doctors and they are doing everything they can to get him well and home with his family ASAP.
Please pray for Peter and his family.
St. Peregrine, pray for us.
St. Peter, pray for us.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Thursday, March 5, 2009

DIY Chewy Granola Bars

My kids can plow through chewy granola bars like nobody's business. Same with cereal bars. Pretty much anything wrapped and in a box. While they are yummy, they are only one step above a candy bar nutritionally (and have the evil HFCS) and they are expensive. I searched the internet looking for recipes for cereal bars but couldn't find any but I did find some no-bake granola bar recipes. I tweaked it to make it healthier although it is still very sugary. It is very, very easy.

1 cup honey
3/4 to 1 cup brown sugar
1 cup peanut butter
1 tbsp vanilla

6-8 cups dry ingredients
-crispy rice cereal
-wheat germ
-flax seed
-dried fruit
-chocolate chips
-whatever else you can think of as long as it comes out to 6-8 cups. I use a base of oatmeal and crisped rice.

Mix your dry ingredients together in large bowl. Heat honey and brown sugar in large pot until boiling and smooth. Turn heat down, add peanut butter and vanilla and stir until smooth. Dump dry ingredients (except chocolate) into sugar/PB mixture. Stir well to coat. If you are adding chocolate let it cool a little before adding. Press finished mixture into lightly greased jelly roll pan.

It would be very easy to make these a GF/CF safe snack/treat/dessert.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Still in shock... (added info)

We returned from OM Regional Competition last night. After a long, exhausting journey (both the trip to Austin and the months of work) Grace, Ian and Emma competed yesterday. Primary teams are non-competitive but they are judged. Emma and her teammates had a great time working on their long term solution and did a gret job presenting it. The judges loved it. They received a medal, a ribbon AND a trophy for each team member. A happier bunch of 5-8 year olds you never saw.

Now the middle school team.... an alphabet soup of diagnoses and disorders, 4,000 cotton balls, sibling rivalries, fake cow patties, a giant radish, dozens of glue gun burns, one old ladder and a script that went through a thousand revisions produced......

the WINNING TEAM in their division and their problem and a Ranatra Fusca (the highest award given in OM).
3/3- The scores have been published. We are given their raw scores at competition. The raw scores are then weighted with the winners of each of the three categories receiving the full amount (200 for long term, 100 for spontaneous and 50 for style) and the other teams having their scores weighted in accordance. Our team won the long term, won the style and won spontaneous for a PERFECT score of 350. Mind blowing. The team that came in second was right behind them but a perfect score is nearly unheard of, especially when competeting in a good sized field.