Wednesday, August 08, 2007

You Asked For It

"You" being Libby and "it" being more postings. I've actually meant to start posting more frequently, since I am wowed and amazed by the sheer volume of you who seem to read this site, but the past week has kept me busy with one problem and one project (thus my topics here).

The problem has been Bryn's health. Last Friday and Saturday, she was very hot to the touch, basically radiating heat, but did not register any fever when I took her temperature with her handy ear thermometer (thanks Derek). What was odd, though, is that while she usually loves having her temperature taken (we have been known to actually hide the thermometer from her to avoid the endless cycle of repeatedly taking the temperatures of her, ourselves, her stuffed animals, etc.), she cried hysterically every time I did this at the end of last week. Hmm... On Sunday, she slept until 11:00, which is a full 2 1/2 hours later than usual. When she finally woke up, she just laid there. No talking, playing, sitting up, nothing. Just laid there staring. We managed to get her up and took her to church, where she fussed and sat on my lap in the nursery for the entire service. Then home again, where she promptly went down for a 2 1/2 hour nap--again, longer than usual. The afternoon was spent with her thrashing on the floor and screaming hysterically. Now, I have seen some tantrums out of Bryn and know what they sound like, and this was not one. She was crying in pain and eventually started batting Ben and I away any time we tried to get near her. We called the help desk for our doctor's office, described her symptoms to the nurse, and were told to go to the ER.

We held out for about 2 hours after that before the screaming was making us so frustrated and anxious that we finally gave in. At the local pediatric ER, we were seen by several very nice nurses, who listened carefully to us and then brought her toys to placate her. Then we were seen by two different doctors. The first looked in her ears and said she was fine. The second looked in her ears and said that one had a little bit of fluid in it but there was no infection. They then questioned us on a litany of other items and concluded that because Bryn had not pooped that day, we should do an x-ray of her stomach to see if she was constipated. This is where I lost all faith in the ER doctors. For one, they felt her stomach and said it was nice and soft, which would not indicate constipation. For two, she'd had a huge poop the day before (sorry if this is too much information for the public domain). For three, even though she hadn't pooped that day, she also hadn't eaten much of anything, given her incessant sleeping and then screaming. For four, I spent the vast majority of my vacation in Michigan with a constipated child, and this is not what the screams sound like. And for five, come on, if she's constipated, I'll go home and give her some prunes, I don't need an x-ray! So we packed up our screaming, thrashing child and went home.

In the morning, we took her to Dr. Z, where it took about two seconds to look in her ears and confirm that, yes, she has an infection in both ears. So, needless to say (Mrs. Applen), we are rather ticked that we spent all that time and money on the ER when they did absolutely nothing for us. Dr. Z prescribed some meds, which we promptly picked up at the pharmacy, and Bryn has been improving ever since. She sucks her antibiotic down greedily (sometimes it worries me how much our daughter likes to take medicine), and she refers to the eardrops as "bubbles." She has still been very fussy and very cuddly and very needy, thus keeping me from getting much done, but I believe we're on the road to recovery.

As for my new project, that story is much shorter. I'm still engaged in a heroic effort to get our house decorated / unpacked / "done" before the new baby comes. A big part of this involves moving Bryn into her "big girl" room, thus leaving the nursery usable for the baby. Since the main features of this room are a toddler bed with princess sheets (thanks Jennie) and a $10 Walmart folding table to match, and I am categorigally opposed to painting the walls pink, I got the bright idea to paint princesses on the walls instead. Not princesses all decked out in their finery, mind you, as that is what is printed all over the bed and the table, but princesses pre-royalty in regular clothes and with their friends.

Let it be said that I possess neither the interior design savvy of Caroline (see Everyday Elegance Design link in the sidebar) or the artistic prowess of Jen (see Jen Jordan Murals link in the sidebar), but I do develop grandiose dreams and then seek cheap ways to see them through. So I looked up coloring book images of Belle and Cinderella on the internet, and Ben borrowed a projector from work. We hooked it up to the laptop, projected the pictures onto the walls, and spent Saturday night (woo-hoo) tracing the images onto the walls. The wall by her closet door features Belle reading to Cogsworth, Lumiere, Mrs. Potts, Chip, and whatever the dog / footstool is called. The wall by the door into her room has Cinderella trying on the glass slipper surrounded by Jaq (that's how the internet tells me it's spelled?), Gus-Gus, the faithful dog Bruno, and many birds. I have spent every spare minute this week (which have mostly occurred while fussy Bryn has been asleep) starting to paint in these images. If I do say so myself, they are looking shockingly good for projects created by someone with no artistic talent whatsoever. Ben says I should keep up posting photos of my progress with this project, so here's my starting attempts:

This is Cogsworth, the first image I painted, along with the pencil outlines of the rest of the project (sorry, it's pretty faint).

Here's my completed Cogsworth.

And here's how it looked when I went to bed last night: Cogsworth and the chair Belle is sitting in. With the chair done, you can get a better feel for what the rest of the picture holds.

Today I painted Lumiere and am hoping to do one of the other characters tonight after Bryn goes to bed. Pretty cute, huh?


Anonymous said...

very very cute! I'm impressed!

amypfan said...

Kathy - If you're impressed, it must be decent, because you are the best artist I know personally!!

Anonymous said...

O MY GOSH!!!!!!!! TALK ABOUT TALENT!!!!!! How in the world do you do that?? AND, furthermore WHAT KIND OF PAINT,etc, are you using?? What an absolutely DARLING idea, and one that BRYN will LOVE to look at!!!! I am sorry to hear of her 'illness' and am SOOOOOOO --- at the ER DR's... what IDIOTS!!!!!!!!! Glad to hear YOUR dr. found the PROBLEM and FIXED it. Hope your trip back to p/town , works smoothly for you. Just chatted with MELI, and think a 'drop off point ' might be arranged!!! Be careful traveling , would love to see you, but not knowing what time , etc, maybe NEXT time!!!! HUGS to all of you, and an extra cuddle to your little "recovering" darlin!!! luv ya, Logan's gramma

Anonymous said...

Boooo. I hate ER docs too. They were going to give 2-month-old Elaina an IV last time we went. I put the kabosh on that one :) Anyway, LOVE THE WALL ART! You are soooooo good. I could NEVER do that. Please come to my house and do some bugs! That is just so darn cool. Bryn will grow up in a Princess Castle (where the princesses all wear street cools, because we all know, you can only handle so much: pink, bling, tiara, lace, pearls, and princess paraphanalia before you wanna barf. way to call that one amy and go with the plain jane princesses instead!!!) - C (who, is sick of pink too, which makes it a LITTLE easier to get rid of the pram ... but not much! :)

Anonymous said...

oops - meant "street clothes" :)

Melissa said...

Amy I had no idea all this was going on in your life while I am incessantly emailing you about my car! I feel awful. Speedy recovery wishes for Bryn.

Your art is amazing!! I have never been so impressed! Can you come and do a jungle/monkey scene in my whole house??

Anonymous said...

way cute!!! can't wait to see it all done!! :)

love u,

Alicia said...

Props on the pics Amy!

Crissy said...

The murals are pretty cool...I don't think I would have thought of the projection system idea.

How stressful for you and Bryn. To be fair, ear canals are hard to look into (the outer part is easy, but seeing the ear drum can be difficult sometimes), things can change dramatically 24hrs later with infections, and most ER docs deal with older kids and adults much more of the time (they're not necessarily pediatricians).

I'm glad the drops are working and Bryn's on the mend.

Anonymous said...

Glad Bryn is starting to feel better:) And I know the ER can be difficult... I've become a major fan of Urgent Care centers. Less wait and cost! But I've found they dont have them all over... The ones up here are fabulous tho!

And a major WOW with the artwork! Coming from a girl who had pink walls with pink and purple wall paper, with pink carpet, I'm sure she'll greatly appreciate this! :)
- Jill

Libtastic said...

i must admit that I feel rather special having a whole title of a blog named after me and my requests.

can i now request an updated family photo with growed-up Bryn, growing baby ___, and Ben?

oh i like this demands game - feel FREE to point them in my direction as well, dear!