Thursday, October 27, 2011

Catching Up (Copied from Facebook posts--September)

from September 29, 2011

I was talking with Em about her first class field trip tomorrow--a trip to a pumpkin patch. I told her we'd have to pack a lunch for her to take; she said, "Emma pack yunch."
I just opened her backpack, and here is a list of everything she had CRAMMED in there. Apparently, this is what she considers important to take to the pumpkin patch: winter coat, lightweight jacket, teddy bear, black patent leather shoes, pair of pants, a long-sleeved (turtleneck) shirt, a pair of socks, a pen, 2 pieces of blank white paper, a tube of crescent rolls, a tub of Philadelphia cream cheese, a pudding cup, 4 cheese sticks, a Capri Sun pouch, a stack of about 22 paper plates, and a stack of about 50 napkins.

from September 28, 2011

On Monday I bought a cheapie new Sterilite (plastic) pitcher with a great snapto-close lid. I made some lemonade in it for supper that night. Tuesday morning, when I got up, I walked by the trash can in the kitchen, and what do I see, but my brand-new pitcher in the garbage!
I said, "What in the world?!? Who threw my brand new pitcher away?!?"
Emma said, "Emma frow way."
I said, "Em! Just because it's empty does not mean it's garbage. That's brand new; I JUST bought it yesterday!"
She looked at me, said, "O-kay," and then walked over to garbage and pulled out the empty milk jug and the empty Powerade bottle that were also in the garbage, and brought them over to me. "Heyah (here), Mommy. Sowwy."

September 26, 2011

Oh, dear. Oh, my. How I wish my computer would let me upload pics. I have been listening to Em puttering around in the bathroom, but (probably against my better judgment), I let her be. She just came out....Now I see why she was in there for so long....
Lipstick on her lips (and above and below them, as well). Eye liner (several lines) across her forehead. Mascara all over her eye lids. Blush (I think??) on her eye lids, too. Foundation smeared across her cheeks, in two thick stripes. And the beauty queen just keeps wanting to kiss me. "Emma pwetty, Momma. Emma pwetty." ♥♥♥♥♥ (I'm sure if you saw me, after all these kisses I've received, I probably mirror Em's makeup pretty closely! LOL)

And......I *just* noticed, as she was walking away (from yet another kiss!) that she found the hair clips, too. 4 of them are now gracing the back of her head! (Along with the 2 barrettes and pony tail that she already had!) LOL

Catching Up (Some Posts I've Cut & Pasted from my Facebook page--October)

from October 20, 2011 9:00 pm
Overheard in my house in the last 2 minutes:
"Oh, soup nuts!" (Emeline's favorite expression for when she's frustrated. I have no idea where it came from; I'm guessing she made it least I don't remember SpongeBob ever saying "Oh, soup nuts!") Maybe I just missed it ????
"Nigh-night time! Yaaaaaaay!" as she runs to get into bed. (Don't be envious. That will last all of 15 seconds, and then she'll be back out here again....)

from October 20, 2011 9:00 am
Today is picture day at school for Emeline. She was SO excited. They put a "Don't forget it's Picture Day!" sticker on the kids' shirts yesterday before they were dismissed. She must have 'remembered' 10 different times last night. She'd be in her room playing, and all of a sudden, come RUNNING out, yelling, "Mom! No Foh-get! Pic-ture Day! To-mah-woah! No Foh-get!" I'd reply, "Okay, Em. I won't forget." And she'd go back to her room.....only to repeat the same exact scenario ten minutes later. LOL


Em must have been having SOME dream early this morning. At 4:00 she woke me up by yelling at the top of her lungs, "DOGGIES!!!!" ROFL When I woke her up this morning, I said, "Em, did you dream about... doggies last night?" She looked at me like, "How did you know that?!?" And the she started cracking up. "Yep," she said. "Bah-jo and Cay-cane FUN-NY!" (Banjo and Candy cane are our two beagles.) Silly girl! ♥♥♥

from October 15, 2011
Barb D. loves a girl who knows what she wants. Emeline came in carrying a box of spaghetti and a jar of Prego. Mom! Sketti! Emma hungry! ♥ wouldn't be the first time we've had spaghetti for breakfast. (But Daddy is definitely NOT a it probably won't be happening today. LOL)

from October 10, 2011
Dear Emeline,
Putting all of the kitchen towels and dishcloths inside the stove was a mean trick.
I'm just thankful I noticed it before I turned the oven on tonight. Next time, please put them away in the drawer, rather than the oven. Thank you.
Love, Mommy

Our Daily Conversations On the Way to School

If you were riding in the car with us in the morning, this is the conversation you would hear. Every day. :)

"We ah we?" (Where are we?)

"You tell me where we are."

"In da cah. Sool." (In the car. School.)

"That's right. We're in the car, going to school."


"We ah we?"

Repeat entire conversation two more times, or until we get to the end of our road, whichever comes first.

Once we turn onto Hwy 63 (7 miles still to go before we get to town), the animal watch begins.

"Whey cows?" (Where are the cows?)

The cows are up here, on the right. Just wait a minute, and we'll see them.


"We ah we? Oh, COWS! Oh, no! COWS! Goo Moh-ning, Cows! Goo Moh-ning!" (wave, wave, wave)

I also greet the cows. "Good morning, Cows!" Because that's the way we roll. ;)

"Toooo many cows."

"Yes, there are quite a few. Can we count them?"

"Oh, No. Toooo many. One, two, OH NO! Hoh-sie! (Horsie) Too many hoh-sie! Goo Moh-ning, Hoh-sie! Goo Moh-ning! Mom, Goo Moh-ning Hoh-sie!"

Okay, I will. "Good morning, Horses!"

"Tooooooo many hoh-sies."

"Yes, there ARE a lot of horses, aren't there."

"Oh NO! Cows! Moh cows! (More cows!) "Goo Moh-ning, Cows!"

Repeat entire conversation every time we pass cows or horses. (About 7 times, I'm pretty sure.)

The last mile before we get into town, there are no more animals. So I seize the moment.

"Em, what kind of note do I want to read tonight in your Notebook?"

"Goo Note."

"That's right. I want a good note. What do you need to do, to make sure it's a GOOD note that your teacher writes to me?"


"That's right. When she says it's time to stop coloring, you stop RIGHT THEN. Right?"


"When she says it's time to line up, you line up RIGHT THEN. Right?"


"What else do you need to do, to make sure it's a good note in your notebook tonight?"

"No pinch fwends."

"Uh-huh. No pinching. What else?"

"No huht fwends."

"Yep. No hurting friends. Keep your hands OFF of other people, right?"


"Anything else you should do?"

"Be nice."

"That's right. Anything else?"

"Hahd wook."

"That's right. You should work hard. Do your VERY BEST. No piddle-poking around, right?"

"Yight! Oh, NO!"

"What's wrong?"

"Daddy miss Emma."

(Notice her skill at changing the subject? I'm pretty sure I didn't learn that until at least junior high. LOL)

"Yes, Daddy misses you when you're at school. But he's at school, too, working hard, and he wants YOU to work hard at school, too. He wants to see a good note tonight that says, "Emma worked hard and had a GREAT day today. You know that?"

"Yep. Poh Daddy miss Emma." (Poor daddy misses Emma.) "Daddy key-eye." (Daddy cry.)

"I'm pretty sure Daddy doesn't cry when he's at school, but I know that he is thinking about you, and that he is hoping you are having a good day, and obeying, and working hard."

"Yep. Daddy key-eye." (Daddy cry.)

I have learned there is no debating this subject. She is firm in her belief that Daddy cries when he's at school, because he misses her that much. There is no changing her mind.

By now we're just a few blocks from school. We start seeing school buses.

"Mom! Sool Bus! Fwends!"

"That's right! There's the buses. Some of your friends are on the buses, aren't they?"


"Oh NO!"



"What about your friends?"

"Fwends sad Emma no sool."

"Your friends are sad when you're not in school?"


"But you're going to be in school today, so they won't be sad, right?"

"Yeah. Fwends happy."

"Okay. Here we are. You have a good day. Be a good listener and what else?"


"That's right. When you have a good day, you make Mommy happy, and Daddy happy, but most importantly, you make Jesus happy, right?"

"Yight. Momma happy."

"That's right. You make Grandma happy, too."

"Poppa happy."

"Uh-huh. Grandpa is happy, too."

"Ya-ya happy."

"Em, I don't think Boomer really cares at all if you have a good day, or not. He's a dog, and dogs don't care about those kinds of things."

"Yep. Ya-ya happy. Yep."

"Okay, well what's MOST important is that we make Jesus happy. And if we make Jesus happy, Mommy and Daddy and Grandma and Grandpa will be happy, too. You know that?"


I walk with her up to the building, where her 1-to-1 aide is waiting.

"Goo Moh-ning, Miff!" (Good morning, (Mrs.) Smith!)

Mrs. Smith replies with a cheery good morning, and a beautiful smile, and I walk away knowing that my child is in good hands, and is happy. What more could a mom ask for? (Other than maybe a good note from the teacher in that notebook every night. LOL)

Monday, May 16, 2011

So, Who Wrapped All of My Willow Tree Figures in Toilet Paper?

(As if anyone needed to ask?!?) LOL

I have six Willow Tree figures on a table in my room. They've been there for a while, standing in their positions without any trouble. Or at least I thought they were. But Emeline must have had some sort of conversation with them, unbeknownst to me, because I discovered yesterday that she had laid all 6 figures down, wrapped them in toilet paper (each one individually!), and then covered the entire group with a hand towel.
Who knows what they must have told her??? My best guess is that they were tired and cold. Tired of standing all the time, and cold because it was a cold day yesterday. So of course Em, being the helpful friend that she is, decided to help them out...or so I imagine. LOL
I can't wait for the day that she will be able to tell me why she does some of these crazy things!!!


The other day, while explaining to Emeline our plans for the day, I ended my statement with the question, "Okey-dokey?" Her reply (an attempt to repeat what I had said) made me giggle: "A weeka-weeka!"

I make no claims to understand how the brain processes speech, but that one just about did me in.

I was cracking up even more when Em used my phrase again later in the week, when she was asking permission to go outside to play. She said, "Mom. Emma Ott-side. A Weeka-weeka?"

I said, "You want to go outside?"

She said, "Yep."

"Okey-dokey," I replied. "A weeka-weeka!"

Sigh...I love that girl!

We're Still Here...

Yes, it has been 3 months since my last blog post. I'm sorry!
Between computer problems and being unable to upload pics, I have
been very unmotivated to blog. I mean, it's the picture that tells the story, right?! Or so I have been telling myself. But the reality is, I
have no idea how long it will be before my computer and camera software
will become friendly again (?), so my options are these two: either keep ignoring the blog, or just go ahead and tell the Em stories, even if I am disappointed to be doing so without accompanying pictures. Since I am notorious for failing to remember the things that everyone else remembers so easily, I have concluded that if I want to have any hope of remembering Em's childhood years, I'd best get to writin'. So, here we go again!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Saturday Fun!


Emeline LOVES the snow. Absolutely loves it. If I would let her, she would be outside from about 5 minutes after she wakes up in the morning, until Bill gets home at night. She can put all of her snow gear on by herself, and many times she has come to me, all suited up in her snow gear, and I've had to say, "No, I'm sorry, it's too cold outside to go outside to play today." Tears usually follow, but sometimes that's just life.

Today it warmed up to near 40, so--much to Em's delight-- when she came to me and said, "Pway. Ah-sigh." I answered her, "Yes! Yes, you can play outside today!" I think for a moment she was shocked. For so many days in a row lately she has asked, and I've always answered, "No, I'm sorry. It's too cold to play outside today." But when I said yes this morning, her eyes got big and she asked again. (I guess she thought I didn't understand the question or something! LOL) "Pway. Ah-SIGH. Me. Emma. Go. Pway. Ah-Sigh." I answered her again, "Go ahead!" And off she went. Yay for playing in the snow!
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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

"Peek A Cod"

In the last week, Emeline has been playing a new game that she just LOVES. I really need to capture her saying it on video; her pronunciation is pretty cute. The new game is "Peek a Cod." (Otherwise known as "Pick a Card." LOL)

She got a SpongeBob game set for her birthday that has 4 different games in it, but after looking at it, I felt like all of the games were still a little too challenging for her, so I put it up and away in the closet, thinking I'd pull it out in a few months and see if she was a little more ready for the games at that point.

But if you know Em and her unparalleled love for all things SpongeBob, you know that there is no way she was going to *HAVE* a SpongeBob game---or ANYTHING SpongeBob, for that matter--and not have it out, using it and loving it. The game was no exception, apparently. After I put the game up, she promptly got the broom from the kitchen and used it to knock the box back down from the closet shelf. (Ha! So THERE, Mom!) Once it was down, she opened it and took out all the pieces inside the game. (I really believe it must be men who have never been around small children who think that it is a great idea to come up with a game that requires 47 plastic chips, 63 cards, a spinner (that absolutely MUST be made out of the flimsiest paper and plastic avaiable!), and seven game pieces, along with the game board. I mean, REALLY?!? REALLY??? But I digress again...) So she got the game down, and the pieces were joyously spread throughout her room.
I did discover that Em didn't really care about the game itself, she only wanted the SpongeBob cards that came with the game. I did concede and let her have them, rationalizing to myself that we could practice numbers (since they do have the numbers on them), we could practice speech articulation by naming the characters (since they feature different characters from the SpongeBob series), we could practice colors (since the cards are different colors)....yeah, we could use them. So out they stayed. And throughout the day at different times, sometimes Em would bring the cards to me, other times I would get the cards, but we would do SOMETHING with them, whether it was counting, naming the characters, identifying the get the idea.

But the other night, Em came up to Daddy, cards fanned out in her hand, and said, "Peek a cod."
"What??? Say that again?"
"Peek a cod."
So he did.
After he picked his card, she yelled, "Bob-Bob!" and he said, "That's right. It's SpongeBob."
He laid the card down on the table, and Em held out the cards again. "Peek a cod."
So he did. And so the card game went. Daddy picked a card, and Em guessed which character was on the card.
She did get a little upset when, the next round, when it was Mommy's turn to play, Mommy made her turn the cards
around so Em couldn't SEE who the characters were, when Mommy picked a card. LOL
But she finally came around to the idea, and eventually thought it was great fun, even NOT knowing for sure
who the characters were on the cards Mommy was picking.

Peek a cod. Pick a card. Those words are music to this Momma's ears.

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I'm not even kidding you...

THIS is what she just brought me. Just NOW. Like, 5 minutes after I posted the picture-filled post of Emeline making pizza--the post immediately below this one.

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She ate one piece of her HOMEMADE pizza, and then she disappeared,
only to return a few minutes later carrying this Tony's frozen pizza. (She has disappeared to the basement, where the big freezer is.) At first I just thought she was showing me the pizza, you know, like, "Hey, Mom!
Look, we MADE a pizza, and here's a pizza from the freezer. Isn't that cool?!? Two pizzas! Awesome!!"

But no. That wasn't what she was telling me. In no uncertain terms she made very clear to me that she wanted me to cook the frozen pizza. (We won't even pretend that THAT actually worked out the way she had wanted it to. Yeah, NOT a CHANCE.) She wanted to eat the frozen pizza. She did NOT want to eat the homemade pizza. She had great fun MAKING the homemade pizza, but when it came down to it, she didn't want to EAT it. She wanted the Tony's pizza, NOT the homemade pizza. I can't believe it. I really can't. What a sad, sad day for pizzas everywhere....Except for Tony's pizzas, of course.

Silly, silly, pizza-confused girl of mine.

Emeline makes a pizza!




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Monday, February 7, 2011

Problem: We're out of chocolate milk

Solution: That's okay, Mom, I'll just drink the chocolate syrup!

No, we did not have this conversation. This is just how I discovered her, when I came up from switching loads of laundry. She is a girl after her Momma's own heart, when it comes to all things chocolate. Where there's a will, there's ALWAYS a way...


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Newsflash!! Missing Underwear FOUND!!!


In Momma's CROCKPOT?!!?

Due to some medical complications, potty training Emeline has been an extremely long and frustrating on-going challenge for us here. While I am proud to say (but still feel the compulsion to whisper, for fear that actually speaking the words out loud might accidentally jinx it, or something) that Em is 99% potty-trained and wears BGP (big girl panties) almost all the time now, she still has
her moments where she decides she wants the ease and comfort of her old faithful Pull-ups. (Because yes, life is so much easier when you can just GO, and not have to worry about your pants suddenly being wet and therefore uncomfortable! Eww.) on one of her more rebellious days last week, she took off her BGP's and started wearing a Pull-up.
I went into the bathroom, intending to make her put the BGPs back on, but said BGP's were nowhere to be found. Upon asking the Big Girl where her BGP's were, I was met with a blank stare, such as one might expect if one were hearing a foreign language being spoken to them. But such was not the case.
Sigh...I looked in the hamper, in her toybox, under her bed....all the usual places, but the BGP's had vanished.
It wasn't until I got the crockpot out yesterday morning, intending to put a roast in it for Sunday dinner, that I finally solved the mystery of the vanished BGP's. AHA! Mystery solved! Just call me Nancy Drew! LOL
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You'll never know what you'll find lurking in the refrigerator...

...when you have a 5 year old in the house!

Well, hello there, SpongeBob!
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Monday, January 10, 2011

Saturday, January 8, 2011

More from the School Christmas Program Day

I loved these two pics of Emeline with her Papa. The third one was taken at the diner. Emeline stole Papa's hat while we were waiting for our food to be delivered. LOL



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Emeline's School Christmas Program

December 16th was Emeline's Christmas Program at School. Grandma and Papa and Aunt Joy came over from Illinois for the day, just so they could see Emeline sing with her class. How neat was that?!? Emmie knew they were coming, and she was SO excited. I was a little nervous, because on the 15th, it started snowing. And kept snowing. And I know neither of my parents are great fans of "Let's take off on a road trip in the middle of winter with the snow comin' down" trips. So I was mentally preparing myself that they were probably going to call and say they had decided not to come. But the call never came. And when I called to ask where they were, they were almost to my house!

So they came, and we went and saw Emeline perform. Her class sang two different songs. This was Emeline's third year being in the school's Christmas program. The first year, her teacher had to physically hold her up on the stage, because she kept trying to come down. Last year, she stayed up there, but didn't sing. So I had already given myself the pep talk that even if she didn't "do" anything, it was okay. But she surprised me! She stood silently there through the whole Chipmunk's Christmas song, "Santa Don't Be Late," while her class sang, but when it came to the part, "[someone, I don't remember who] wants a Hula-hoop", she opened her mouth and sang the words "Hula Hoop!" She opened her mouth and said the words! I was so surprised; I think my jaw dropped open! Other parents may have seen a child who only sang two words, but *I* saw a child who SANG TWO WORDS!!! She knew the words, she knew when they came in the song, and she came in at exactly the right time! I was SO proud! and Excited! That, my friends, is progress! Yay!!!

After the program (which was only about 10 minutes), all of the guests were invited to stay and eat lunch in the classroom, so we did. Emeline was able to show Grandma and Papa and Aunt Joy her cubby, and her chair, and her favorite places in her classroom. :) After we left there, we all agreed we were still hungry (since the lunch consisted of a ham sandwich and half a banana LOL), so we went to the diner on The Square and ordered some lunch. LOL



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Let's see...November, October....Is December Next?!?

It is here! LOL

Early December found us making back-to-back trips to Iowa City two days in a row, for appointments with the ophthalmologist and the dentist. We received good news from the ophthalmologist--no changes in Emeline's eyes, and no signs of cataracts. Having Down Syndrome puts her at greater risk for cataracts, as does taking steroids every day (which she does), so it is something we monitor twice a year. Her eye glasses Rx didn't change, so that was good news. Since I had just replaced her "lost" glasses in October, I was really hoping NOT to hear, "Oh, by the way, her Rx has changed." So that was very good news!

Her dentist appointment wasn't so great. She had two cavities. I cried.
I didn't cry because she had cavities. I cried because they had to strap her down with the pappoose board, and at that moment, I was just SICK of having to stand by and watch my girl go through one more ANYTHING. How silly of me to cry over a dentist appointment. But Em didn't know what was going on. It didn't matter that they were simply trying to brush her teeth. All she knew what that those people in the white coats are messing with me again, and I.DO.NOT.WANT.TO.BE.MESSED.WITH.ANY.MORE. PERIOD!!!!! And I just felt bad. I tried to hold them in, but the tears just rolled silently down my face. The dentist noticed and said, "Mom, I promise you, we're not hurting her." I told him, "I know you're not. She has just been through too many tests, pokes, and scans that no matter what it is, she's going to fight it. She is just DONE." So they did what they had to do, and I sucked it up, and as soon as we got out of there, we headed for the playground outside the clinic. And amazingly enough, all was instantly right with the world once again, when I heard the laugh, and my sweet girl say, "Fun, Mom!" as she climbed the steps to go down the slide, and smiled that beautiful smile. Even with two cavities in front.

Random from the last of the October pictures

This is my potato bin. This is also an example of a typical "Emeline" stunt. I went to get a few potatoes from the bin, and when I removed the lid, this is what I found. She had taken out the bag of potatoes (there were only a few left in it), and replaced it with her baby doll. She had also thoughtfully dropped in a sweater, I guess to serve as a cushion so the doll didn't have to sit on the hard wood. I have no idea why Emeline does this, other than she likes to hide things. Like glasses. And cell phones. And tv remotes. And purses. And wallets. And baby dolls. Believe me when I say that life is NEVER boring in this house. LOL

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Trick or Treat!

My camera battery died after this one picture, so it's the only one I've got. :( This was the first year Emeline has been trick-or-treating. We've never taken her, since we don't really know many people where we live now, and we're out in the country.
Emmie's costume was a puppy, which she thought was WONDERFUL. LOL We only went to a few houses (the people who had been to her party earlier that day, in fact). Instead of begging for treats, we did reverse trick-or-treating---We TOOK treats with us! We had great funny "treating" each of Emmie's special friends to farm-fresh eggs that we had brought with us from home, and left-over birthday cake from the party earlier that afternoon! They were all thrilled with their Halloween "Treats!" I told them, "We're taking Em out egging for Halloween!" LOL

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Last of the Birthday Party Pics...Special Friends

In addition to family, Emeline has some other very special friends at her Papa's church. We are very blessed to have each of them in our life!



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More Birthday Party Pics...




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Oh, Man!!!

I just realized while looking back through the blog, that I somehow missed posting about Emeline's birthday party in October! Since that's kind of a big deal, I'm going to go ahead and add those pictures now. So much for having a blog that goes in order! LOL

Although her birthday is 10/10 (Yes, Emmie's 5th birthday was 10/10/10!), we didn't have her party until 10/31. We always have her party at Grandma and Grandpa's house in Illinois, so our family and friends can attend the party.



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Yay!!! No Hospital Stay for Emeline this time!

Emeline started December off with a bang. On the evening of November 30th, she fell asleep around 4:30 pm and slept all night through. I had to wake her up at 8:00, and even then she didn't want to get up. That is not normal for her at all. She is usually up much later at night, and up much earlier in the morning, so I was a little concerned. She fought me when I tried to get her up, and she stumbled more than walked down the hall to the bathroom. After she'd been up just a few minutes, she started vomiting. By then I knew the signs. I called our local Ped's office and told them I was on my way. We have been through this before, so we have a pre-arranged agreement that they will give her a shot if/when she needs one. They gave her her shot of hydrocortisone (solu-cortef) right away, and then I called our Endocrinologist's office in Iowa City. I told his nurse that Em had slept for over 15 hours, wasn't "waking" well, and had just vomited several times, but that she'd had the shot, so I was hoping I had caught it in time. She said we'd have to wait and see; she wanted me to call back in the afternoon and we'd talk then about whether or not we needed to head to the hospital. Meanwhile, I gave her a triple-dose of her oral hydrocortisone at the regular times (which is what I'm supposed to do), and watched her closely. And--drum roll here please--we did NOT have to go to the hospital! WooHoo! That was really a source of excitement for me, as it was the first time in the 14 months since Emeline had been diagnosed with Addison's, that she did NOT end up in the hospital from an Addisonian crisis. It gave me hope, that finally, FINALLY I was learning to catch it soon enough that we could handle it at home, and not have to go to the hospital in fear every time she threw up. (After almost losing her twice in the hospital because of Addison's, it is not something I took lightly.) So I am thrilled to report that, for the first time, we survived an Addisonian crisis and managed to avoid the hospital! We continued triple-dosing for 2 more days and then weaned back down to her regular dose, and Em came through it just fine! YAY!

What a way to welcome December!

More from November...Sleep Study Number 2 and Aunt Caryl's Funeral

On the Monday after Thanksgiving, Em and I hit the road again. (Yes, we do that a lot.) My Aunt Caryl had passed away, so we were going back to Illinois for her funeral. Things got a little complicated, however, due to the fact that Em had a follow-up sleep study already scheduled for that Monday night---in Iowa City. But I was supposed to sing and play the piano for my Aunt's funeral, and I really did NOT want to do that without practicing with the person I was playing for (my sister, Joy), so I really needed to go to Illinois, too. So...we left home after Emmie got out of school, and went to Illinois, where we stayed for about 2 hours---long enough for Joy and I to practice until we were both comfortable with the songs, and then Emmie and I headed to back to Iowa again, to the hospital in Iowa City.

The idea of a C-Pap Machine isn't new to Emeline; Bill uses one every night. She has messed with his more than once, putting the mask on herself, or on her baby doll. So I had hoped that it might not be a HUGE ordeal, getting her to wear the mask. Well, she screamed a good while and kept trying to take it off, but she eventually wore down and gave up. It was definitely another one of those times where I wished she was able to tell me what she was thinking/feeling. (Other than, "No, Mom, No! Hep, Mom! Noooooo!" That is just heart-breaking. We have been through it too many times to count, and it never gets easier, even when you know it's something your child NEEDS, and something that will HELP them.) Anyway...I *think* that she was scared because she couldn't feel her nose, when she had the mask on, so maybe she was thinking that her nose was gone, or something? I don't know, obviously. But each time she woke up, she said, "My nose, Mom," and then would reach over to me, and feel MY nose. I just kept telling her that her nose was still there, it was just under the mask, and she immediately calmed down and went back to sleep, so I don't know if that was it, or not. All I know is that it calmed her down. Although she did wake up several times through the night, overall, I considered the experience a success. We left at 5:30 Tuesday morning, and headed back to Illinois.

The funeral was as nice as a funeral can be, given the circumstances. My Dad conducted the service; I imagine that was one of the harder funerals he has presided over, given that it was his sister. Funerals are not one of my favorite things to attend, but my Dad does a wonderful job of using those times to remind us of the things that REALLY matter.
My Aunt Caryl was ready to go; there is peace and comfort in knowing that.

After the service, I enjoyed having the chance to visit with many other aunts, uncles, and cousins at the funeral dinner. I especially enjoyed watching Emeline interact with some of my relatives. It is always interesting to me, to watch other people watch her. I love to watch their expression transition from curiosity and uncertainty to joy, and for anyone who gives her half a chance, that is what this girl does to people. What a gift she is!

Here are the pics from her second sleep study, where she had to wear the mask.




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