My Seussical Life for 2004 November

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[Comments] (3) Halloween Bummer: Well, I thought I should at least mention Halloween, though it was somewhat of a disappointment. I sewed two black wizzard robes for Atticus and Samuel; Atticus has known for weeks and weeks that he wanted to be Harry Potter for Halloween. I figured Samuel could dress as Ron Weasley, so we bought spray on hair dye, black for Atticus and orange for Samuel. On Thursday we went to a little mom's group Halloween party during the day, so the boys dressed. I drew a lightning bolt on Atticus' forehead and he wore special Harry Potter glasses. Both boys wore their robes, and with their "hair spray," the costumes were complete. We did a heavy hair coloring on Atticus, and he absolutely LOVED his transformation. The down side was when he came home looking more like a chimney sweep than Harry Potter. The other drawback was the ring in the bathtub when we washed his hair out.

On Friday I sent Atticus to school all dressed up, but with a light spray of black on his hair this time. His pre-school celebrated Halloween with a costume parade. Unfortunately, Atticus came home with a fever. He walked in the door looking so vacant that I cuddled him close and he was asleep in minutes. He napped for three hours. So, the short of it is that he got sick, then Samuel got sick, and we stayed in for the rest of the weekend. Good thing these two are too young to know they missed Halloween.

[Comments] (8) Surgery Revision: After meeting with our surgeon today, we are feeling a lot better about our decision to go with the heel cord transfer. Dr. Anderson described the procedure in detail, so I thought I'd pass the information on to give you all a better understanding of what we're dealing with. Apparently, the routine is to drill a canal through the calcaneus (heel bone). Then, when the Achilles tendon is detached, Dr. Anderson will sew a suture to the end of the tendon. He will then thread the suture through the opening in the calcaneus, poke the end through the tissue and skin of his foot, and tie the end to a "button" that will anchor the suture from the outside of his foot. The tendon will, over time, attach itself to the new insertion in his calcaneus, and as the bone and muscle heal, Atticus will have much better range in his lower left leg. Atticus is most excited to have a cast; I pointed out a boy in the waiting room today who had a blue cast. As per his request, Dr. Anderson promised a blue cast, so Atticus is anxious to go and get it as soon as possible. He is also waiting with anticipation until he gets to spend the night in his special hospital room. I'm really surprised that he is looking forward to this so much.

[Comments] (3) : Atticus is coughing up a storm this morning. I hope he is well enough to go through with the surgery.

[Comments] (2) To the Hospital, and then Back Again: Well, we went to Children's Mercy this morning. Atticus was fasting, according to pre-operation instructions we'd been given, and crying, "I'm so hungry, my body needs food, I didn't even eat my vitamin, my body says it wants to eat . . ." When we arrived at the hospital, Atticus had already removed his shoes, "So that I'll be ready for my blue cast," he said. He was so cooperative and good for the nurse while she checked him over. The bad news is he is congested and has a little wheeze in his lungs. Not good for anesthesia. They let us go, and we will reschedule the operation when Atticus is well.

[Comments] (2) More Surgery Frustration: Our Orthopedic Surgeon is booked through March. This thing is going to loom in our future forever!

[Comments] (5) The Measure of my Happiness: The weather has been beautiful this weekend, and we have taken advantage of it, for sure. I took the boys to the farmer's market this morning and bought three and a half pounds of apples, two bunches of chard, one bunch of cilantro, two sugar cookies for the kiddies from a group that donates proceeds to the local leukemia society, and one scrumptious brownie from a grandma named Mary for myself and Dave to share (Dave did less of the sharing and I did more of the eating). Here's an idea for you: this brownie, and we've bought them before, is made from scratch, baked, topped with marshmallows and put under the broiler until the marshmallows melt and roast a little. Then Mary drizzles the whole delicious treat with freshly made chocolate syrup. Very yummy.

I put the boys in a Radio Flyer wagon, walked them to a park downtown, we played for an hour, then walked up and down Massachusetts (downtown main street) looking at all the shops and doggies out on walks with their owners.

I've decided that I am happiest when I am out doing things with the boys; they are entertained, they don't fight (much), and I get to be around people. When we are all stuck in the apartment for more than six hours without either visitors, naptime, or Dave coming home, it is like a death sentence. Okay, I'm exaggerating, it isn't death, but I get really angsty.

[Comments] (2) The Things My Child Learns In Pre-school: As the two were on a drive together, Atticus announced to Dave, "A bear market means you lose money, but a bull market means you make money." Dave and I were baffled that he knew such things, but then I remembered that Friday and Monday are "Dads visit school" days. One of the fathers is an investor.

[Comments] (1) Samuel Dramatizes his Life through Play: Atticus and Dave went to see The Incredibles last night, and not wanting to chase him all over the theater hallways, I stayed home and had a special one-on-one playdate with Samuel. We were playing with our Little People figurines and circus toy. Samuel loaded the two farmers onto two of three ferris wheel chairs. Then, he picked up two other figures and knocked them together again and again, saying, "'It's my turn,' 'No, it's my turn,' 'No, it's my turn. . .'"

He's really learning the facts of life.

What I do to Try to Get my Children to Eat Vegetables, or The Dinner Table Conversation Gone Awry: Tonight at dinner, I was encouraging Atticus to eat his roasted beets. I explained the nutritional benefits, promised that they would taste sweet, and then, desperate, I said, "Atticus, these beets will turn your poop into an awesome purple color!" He started to get excited about this possibility, and then was quiet for a moment. Then said, "Nah. I like my poops to be brown."

[Comments] (5) Celebrating the Bird that Got Away: I know you will (most of you) snicker at me, but I took a cooking class tonight on how to make a tofu turkey. It was awesome! There was stuffing, and Miso gravy (so delicious I'd make this for a non-tofu turkey), and the most remarkable sweet cherry cranberry sauce. For dessert, the presenter made pumpkin pie from scratch. The class was fun, and I plan to put this recipe to use. Anyone feeling adventurous?

[Comments] (5) "I'd rather be running to catch up than standing around wondering what's next"--Chef Sula: The boys woke up at the crack of dawn, so we went out for donuts and hot cocoa, and then to the grocery store for a few things. Our afternoon was full of fun: we toured our neighborhood Great Harvest Bakery (Bob the Baker assisted all little hands in making a loaf of bread), visited our favorite toy store for a prize for Atticus (he has been wearing his brace so dutifully while we wait for surgery), and then home for naps. Then we had our afternoon swim with friends (and I swam some laps). My (second) treat of the day was "Simple Meals for Holiday Company" *hint hint* with Chef Sula Teller and Chef Ali Olwenik at the Merc. We made such delights as roasted Balsamic garlic tomatoes, salmon wrapped in grape leaves with carmelized onions and lemon, red chard and garlic stuffed chicken breasts, roasted artichoke hearts and cumin dip on crusty European bread, walnut cake, and cream cheese pound cake with poached pears. Well, there were other things, but those were the highlights for me.

I'll be cooking when you come to visit *think about eastern Kansas.*

By the way, I must warn you that I am THE WORST about passing on recipes, so if any of these foods appeal to your holiday menu plans, you must hound me for the good reward, and I apologize for times I've fallen through in the past. Only those who persist will get me off my rump.

[Comments] (1) Evidently, as I was leaving last night . . .: Atticus called out "Where are you going?"

Mama is going to a cooking class," Dave replied

"Oh. I already know how to cook," the boy says while stirring pancake batter for his supper.

[Comments] (4) : We all went to see The Polar Express tonight at the theater. I couldn't believe that an adult ticket cost $7.75 and a child ticket cost $5! Inflation. Boy do I sound like my grandfather.

The movie is excellent, and was enjoyed by all. I think Dave and I enjoyed watching the boys watch the movie more than the movie, though.

[Comments] (4) : Poor Atticus got the pukies last night, so I'm washing bedding and giving him the royal treatment. This means warm apple juice and unlimited tv (an otherwise highly regulated activity). So far, this hasn't been the best season health wise. Hopefully we're getting it all behind us.

[Comments] (3) : Happy Birthday Samuel!! My baby isn't a baby anymore.

[Comments] (1) New Surgery Date: We finally firmed up a date with our orthopedic surgeon: April 4th. That is forever away, but oh well. I guess we have no choice. Even with privatized health care people have to wait for these things. *wink wink Joe*

[Comments] (2) : I sliced my finger tip the other day while chopping walnuts for our morning oatmeal. Atticus took a look at my injury and said, "Ewwww, I'm not gonna kiss that, Mama. You need a band-aid!"

It is a pretty gross looking wound. Sometimes I think I should be barred from using knives. But that would be like taking away my driver's license!

[Comments] (4) Holiday Travels: I leave for San Antonio with the boys in the morning. Well, actually, I'm staying the night in Dallas. Dave will fly in on Wednesday morning.

As I was listing the family members we are going to see, Atticus asked if we would see Aunt Frances. He was disappointed when I said no, and then it dawned on him that no Frances meant no Sadie. Then he was really sad. Feel loved, Frances and Sadie!

My Seussical Life for 2004 November

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