Sunday, February 25, 2007

Warning: Protective Eyewear Required!!!

On Thursday morning, I was playing with Amelia in bed and she grabbed my eye while I was looking away for a moment. I had often thought about how a little baby could really do some damage, and wondered that I hadn't heard of many cases of earrings being ripped out or eyes getting scratched. Maybe most moms' reflexes are just quicker than baby. Maybe not. I couldn't believe how badly it hurt, but couldn't see anything obviously damaged when I looked in the mirror. I was also coming down with a cold, and some of the symptoms overlapped as well. I ended up pulling it together and took A. with me to MOCA with Heather Shack, who was in town. I began realizing while we were out, though, that my eye was pretty bad and just getting worse. It hurt to have it open, it really hurt to close it, and light was awful.

Jeff stayed homefrom work on Friday, and we were fortunate to get a Doctor's appt. at ten in the morning. The doctor numbed my eye (ah, relief!) and then put what looked like a strip of litmus paper in my eye to dye my cornea. She confirmed that I have a "rather large" corneal abrasion, and called and made an appoinment at an optometrist for me that afternoon. She also prescribed a "mild sedative" which I seriously considered but didn't take.

At the optometrist's office, three different people saw me, each with their own set of drops and bright lights to shine into my very sad and sensitive eye. I reconsidered my decision about the sedative, but it was too late. I have to admit that it was pretty gratifying that both of the optometrists thought it was really bad. One assured me that I wasn't the first to have a baby scratch them, but wondered when I'd last trimmed her nails. Apparently, she had scratched all the way through the first layer of the cornea, but the cut was also really rough. My favorite moment was a conversation between the two optometrists that went like this,
"So, do you think you'll put a contact lense over the eye to smooth it out?"
"Well, I thought about it, but there is already so much inflammation, it might make it worse. Actually, I was thinking about getting in there and scraping to even it out.... (Both get a little excited at the idea) But I don't think I will."
Is that what the "mild sedative" was for? Yikes! Anyway, I was happy that the treatment only involves three different drops every four hours. I thought it was interesting that they want to keep the pupil dilated all the time. This is because the dilation and constriction with light changes is what really hurts the most, since the whole eye moves when that happens. Educational experience.

Anyway, I am happy to report that my eye is feeling MUCH, MUCH better today. My vision on that side is still a bit blurry, but it looks almost normal. Now if I can just get over my cold, I will be in great shape. But I don't think I'll be wearing earrings any time soon!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Lenten season is upon us, and I thought you should know that, starting tomorrow, our observation of Lent will keep us from the internet. So posting and blog- checking will happen on Sundays. It will be quite a change, but I am looking forward to more time to do other, more intentional activities. On the other hand, I might actually post weekly!

What is childhood without a set of these pictures?

After she spreads all of the food onto every inch of the tray, I take a spatula and round it all up. She also likes to eat off the end of the spatula.

Amelia is 8 months old!
I put pictures with stuff on her face because this is how she usually looks! She is an adventurous eater, and we recently found out that she LOVES salmon. It was so weird to see a baby eating chunks of fish. In this picture she has avocado on her face, and she spent the whole afternoon with a sprig of dill in her hand (and mouth.) What a funny girl...

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Amelia's Menu

Chicken Broth with Shiitake Mushroom
Gingered Chicken Broth with Lemonbasil
Mashed Avocado with Lemon

Main Courses
Irish Oats with Chicken and Dill
Coconut Mashed Yams
Pureed Chicken with Brown Rice and Butter
Whole Baby Carrots Braised in Broth

Mango with Cultured Cream
Banana with Yogurt Cheese
Ginger Coconut Milk Stewed Prunes
Lemon Ginger Gelatin

Carrot Juice with Parsley and Ginger
Chamomile Tea

YIKES!! It seems so silly, now that I write it all out like that. Sometimes when A isn't interested in what we're trying to feed her, Jeff and I just dig in and enjoy. The main goal is vibrant health, but it sure would be fun to have a little foodie to enjoy meals with us as well!

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Well, our camera is still MIA. I am just not that motivated to post when there are no pictures. But you keep checking to see if I have, so I will give some updates, boring as it may be with just words.

We went to the holistic pediatrician in Newport last week, and she confirmed that we do indeed have a very healthy, developmentally on-target baby. She said she is concerned about all of the yelling (A cooperated quite nicely as we tried to give the doc an accurate snapshot of her temperament,) but didn't really offer any solutions we hadn't already employed. She agrees that there is something different about A's awareness of the world, like she notices more than she should. I think she may have some sensory integration issues.

I also took her to see Michelle, the acupuncturist I work with. NO, not to get needled. That visit was actually very very helpful, and Michelle showed me some massage techniques to use with her and a LOT of diet suggestions. So I have been cooking and juicing up a storm. It's hard to explain Traditional Chinese Medicine, but I will just say that A is very tense, and a lot of her issues stem from overall tension that I need to help her with. So far, she does seem to be loosening up, but it will take time. And Michelle confirmed that possibility of some sensory integration problems, but assured me that they will probably resolve in a couple of years.

Amelia is changing so much right now. She is so much FUN! She has found a new, high, squeaky voice and uses it all the time. She inherited a jumper from her cousin and loves it. She will bounce for over an hour and I usually take her out before she gets tired of it. She has a great sense of humor, and it is getting a little easier to get a laugh. Tonight she couldn't get enough of Jeff's gorilla routine, but the trick was that he had to change what he was doing constantly-- once she laughs at one thing a couple of times, it's gotten old. She throws her arms out and shrieks when something is funny, and if we keep it up, she might start choking from laughing too hard. A loves music and being sung to, and today in church during worship she was yelling and squeaking like crazy, it was so exciting to her. She has four teeth now, and is eating all kinds of things. She likes feeding herself the most, and I am still looking for a highchair. I cannot believe the mess a baby can make, and it is a good exercise for me to let her do her worst a couple times a day.

Jeff has been working really hard on getting licensed to teach in Washington and searching for jobs. He is already licensed in Oregon, and we will be going to both states this spring for job fairs. He has gotten some good leads so far, and I am so glad that he is ahead of the game in terms of getting this paperwork done. He has had a very successful year at his school, and should be a very strong candidate for the type of work he is looking for.

He has been enjoying learning some new hobbies, namely coffee roasting and sourdough bread baking-- inspired and mentored by the Shack brothers. I have also been enjoying the fruits of his labor!

I am really enjoying work at the acupuncture clinic. I go twice a week four a few hours, and enjoy the commute both ways. I have found that I hardly even listen to music anymore, silence sounds so beautiful to me. Michelle has offered me a lot of different types of opportunities, and although I have had to turn down a few, it feels so great to have someone that is confident in my abilities and provides the opportunities for me to be challenged and broaden my repertoire. This week, I am going to meet with a family a couple of nights to help coach them through starting to buy, cook and eat whole foods. What could be more fun?

It is really hard for me to think about moving this summer, so I don't do it much. But I am beginning to pack a few things up here and there, and am looking forward to getting rid of as much stuff as possible between now and then. I have stopped trying to improve our apartment since we will be undoing it all so soon, and that feels strange. On the other hand, it will be fun to start afresh with a new home and new ideas, and hopefully it will be somewhat permanent.

I am really tired, but I have discovered that I can actually be completely exhausted AND completely happy at the same time. I didn't know that before, and it is a relief to realize it. There are so many sweet moments in my days, and I am striving to be real about the challenges and the joys that I am experiencing all at once.

Maybe I'll look for an older picture to throw in here...

This was taken in December. Enjoy!