Saturday, October 26, 2013


By the time kids are 3, they have opinions on what they want to be for Halloween. I wonder what Saoirse would have wanted to be. A super hero, a princess, a fire truck, a train? She could have been anything she wanted. 3 is the perfect age to be anything you want. If only she could have been 3.

When you are bald and it's halloween, the best costume is Uncle Fester.

Saturday, October 19, 2013


I often find myself missing having two kids. It seems to be getting more and more frequent that I look down at my baby boy playing on the floor and miss that there is not a 3 year old entertaining him. It's been making it hard for me to play with him myself. I shouldn't be the one entertaining him - it should be Saoirse. She should be shaking the toy while I do the dishes. She should be showing him how to hammer the toys, while I do a load of diapers. She should be reading him a book, while I clean the dining room. He's missing it - all of it. 

We went to Russell Orchards to get cider doughnuts and take pictures with pumpkins. (We used to take Saoirse to Smolak's, but we just can't go back yet.) I wanted a picture of Lochlan in a bucket of pumpkins, just like we had done with Saoirse both halloween seasons. I brought her little hat that she had worn in the first one (I spared putting him in her same outfit). I went to put him in a nice big bucket - and promptly go yelled at. Apparently pumpkins roll - and I shouldn't be putting a baby where pumpkins might roll and crush him (like I was going to just leave him there for a while). I wanted to walk up to that man and ask him if he understood that my baby girl could never sit in another bucket of pumpkins. That she could never hold her brother in her lap and take a picture in the pumpkin patch. That the world is full of risk, and sitting in a bucket of pumpkins is the least of my worries for him. But I didn't. He didn't need that from me. I just took Lochlan to a different bucket and did it anyway. 

I will put him in her pea pod costume and parade him down the street on halloween. I will put the photos of him next to the photos of her and see if they look the same - even though she was almost 2 months older at halloween, and he is just huge. I will do the things that I would have done if she was still here with us. But I will do it all while utterly missing her actually being here. And knowing that I only have 18 months of comparisons before there are no more side by sides. And when that day arrives, there will just be one picture going forward. 

Friday, October 18, 2013


Lochlan had his tongue tie released! We had been going back and forth since he was born on whether or not to have it done. He was gaining weight and growing and I wasn't in pain, so we pushed it off - but then the gas started. Burping and farting were waking him up and keeping him from getting proper sleep. So we went in to have it looked at. The doctor took one look and said that she was surprised he was able to nurse at all. She did it right then - cut almost a full centimeter. 

Lochlan took it well, and did nurse right after. We will have to work on the latch a bit, to retrain him how to eat, but already we are seeing an improvement. I will miss his little heart shaped tongue though. 

Saturday, October 5, 2013


Lochlan is now two months old. The first month of his life we spent cuddling, and getting used to having a baby in the house again. The second month was spent on a whirl wind tour of the north eastern US - traveling by car to see family, friends, and mostly work. Lochlan, in his first two months, has seen states that I never had, and met more people than most two month olds could even expect to encounter. 

Firstly we took a 'test' trip to Virginia. My friends who I grew up with were all getting together for a little reunion (we all turn 30 starting this year - I'm the 'baby' so I turn 30 next July). All but two of our close knit group could make it, so I was determined to get down there to see everyone. (PS: we are not from VA, but Angela hosted and that's where she lives now.) Stopping in NYC to drop off the dog and break up the driving, we managed to get to Richmond in one piece, with not too much protesting from Lochlan (who hates the car). A whirlwind long weekend, we headed back home where we stayed just 5 days before leaving for our next excursion.

We started driving to Chicago - a 16 to 18 hour drive when we used to drive straight through, but with the baby (and in reality even the last couple trips out), we stop in Erie, PA for the night to break it up. Our wonderful friends, Paul and Katie, host us when we come - which makes a big difference when you are going to be on the road for so long (a kitchen and good friends always make a trip better). During our 7 days in the Chicagoland area, we had more than 7 families and friends to try and see. We managed to "cram" everyone in, and it felt like we spent most of the time in the car going from one place to another - double booking more times than I would like to admit. I am determined not to cram so much into so little time next time we are out there. 

From there we stopped for a meeting with a potential sales rep in Indiana. We stayed the night and headed down to Louisville, KY to the APHON conference. This is a conference we have been looking forward to for over a year. We missed last year's by just a few weeks, and this was the first on our list for ones we had to make in 2013 (and we will be going in 2014 for sure!). This was a great conference. Short, just 2 exhibit days, it is and intense show. We seemed to be quite a popular booth, and found so many nurses wanting more information to bring to their hospitals. As an added bonus, we saw a few of Saoirse's nurses from Children's and they were excited to meet Lochlan. He was a hit of the show, and (when he wasn't sleeping) flirted with all the nurses. 

From there we headed down to Nashville and a meeting with a distributor who is interested in our products. The first day Mike went to the AVA conference as a day guest, and spoke to a few people there. We had considered doing that show, but it was quite expensive, and we weren't sure if it would be worth it. I think the day pass was the right choice for this trip. We wandered around Nashville some, which was quite a trip (we saw someone almost get run over, and then pull a spoiler off a car, and we saw about ten thousand teen and tween girls wandering around before the Taylor Swift concert!). We decided to escape the main strip crazies, and headed up to find an art gallery. We found a great one - and we bought a painting! I love finding art when we travel and this one has a great story - it is from a group of paintings that are done by people in a community program for the disabled. They are mostly in wheelchairs, and have limited use of their hands. They paint either with their mouth, or they give signals to another person to where they want the paint and colors to go on the canvas. When you purchase the paintings, the money goes back to the program so they can continue to create! I love that the gallery is giving back to these people and helping them express themselves through art (this gallery also coordinates a program for local kids to do art after school when they might otherwise be left alone at home or out on the streets). 

After Nashville, we went back to Kentucky, this time to Lexington. We did an inservice at the University of Kentucky Children's hospital. One of the nurse managers had met us at APHON, and she wanted us to present our products to her staff. It was great to be able to go in and present the products and show how much they will be able to help the patients. 

From Kentucky, our goal was to get back to NYC for a few days. It's a long drive, so we decided to crash for the night back in Richmond. My friends were shocked at how big Lochlan had gotten in just 4 weeks. (He's growing like a weed!) Then we went up to NYC and tried to relax a little. Staying with friends always helps - especially when it means we get a home cooked meal after too much eating out. 

The driving took its toll on all of us. By the time we got to NYC, Lochlan was so off in sleeping, it took hours to get him to sleep at night. We managed to get him to nap during the day most of the time, but just short ones (which is a current trend even at home now because of all the "rocking" in the car). We were sick of the cramped quarters too, and were ready to get home. 

Once we got home, we weren't here for long. We had to make two trips right away - one to Vermont to meet a potential distributor, and one to Pittsburgh to do a children's hospital presentation. So more driving and more cramped quarters and interrupted sleeping. But now, hopefully (knock on all kinds of wood!) we will be home for a while and can just be settled (and stretched out). 

Things are moving like crazy - I have 3 events I'm trying to plan for the foundation, and things keep getting pushed off some, but we are making some headway. Now all I need is to find a few more board members and a grant writer, and maybe a free personal assistant (never hurts to wish). 

"Things I do now...."
teething (yup, for real - yes he's really young!)
sitting up in the corner of the couch
chewing on my hands when I can get them
grabbing toys
watching mommy do laundry
babbling stories